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's Comic Recommendations
Comics that I'm reading, or stuff that I wish I was reading.

Batman - currently in the middle of a 12 issue arc. "Hush" by Jeph Loeb and Jim Lee. I've only gotten the first two issues, but the rest should be waiting for me somewhere.

Jeph Loeb has written many comics including Superman for All Seasons, Batman: The Long Halloween, Batman: Dark Victory, Daredevil: Yellow, Spider-Man: Blue, and Cable. He recently ended a run on the ongoing Superman series, and will be writing the upcoming series starring both Batman and Superman.

Jim Lee rose to fame drawing X-Men. He then left Marvel to help create Image, where he founded Wildstorm. He came back to Marvel briefly to draw the Heroes Reborn volume of Fantastic Four. After selling Wildstorm to DC, it was just a matter of time before he would come to draw something for the DCU.

During this run, nearly all of Batman's major friends and foes will be appearing, even Superman. The arc started in #608, and will conclude in #619.

A "Hush" hardcover is coming out soon, collecting the first five issues.

X-Treme X-Men by Chris Claremont and Salvador Larocca.

At first, I was going to avoid this series after Claremont's disasterous run on both of the core X-Men titles in 2000. However, after I heard what Grant Morrison and Joe Casey were going to be doing to those titles, and then realized that Claremont was under heavy editorial restrictions, I changed my mind. Now, X-Treme is the only X-Men series I get, since Morrison and friends crapped all over my favorite characters.

The only downside to XXM is that it cost $2.99. There's no apparant reason why it should. Oh, and Claremont seems to have more restrictions on him than Morrison and the other writers for whatever reason. And, one more downside, is that Morrison stole Beast away and completely screwed him up. However, all that aside, the art is spectacular, and the stories are great. The art is enhanced by the pencils-to-colors method. And it's the only X-Men title that has had the same creative team since May 2001. Larocca has pencilled every issue, plus the annual. The only exceptions were the Savage Land mini-series (which came out at the same time as the regular series for four months), and the X-Pose mini (which was because Salvador was working on other projects).

Fantastic Four by Mark Waid and Mike Wieringo.

Starting with a 9 cent introduction issue, this team has taken the FF back to the basics of being explorers. All of the major threats have definitely been science based, and are really interesting.

The only downside to this book is that it comes out the last week of the month, which always makes the wait seem longer.

Amazing Spider-Man by J. Michael Straczynski and John Romita Jr.

It's just good, solid Spider-Man stories, month in and month out. However, I'm getting this run in trades. Not a slam against the regular issues, but I missed out on the early ones, and started getting the TPBs. And I'd like to keep it all the same.

There are three trades out: Coming Home (#30-35/471-476), Revelations (#36-39/477-480), and Until the Stars Turn Cold (#40-45/481-486). Wal-Mart has put out special "Platinum" editions of the first two, at a lower price for the first, and two bonus issues of Tangled Web in the second.

The author is best known for his TV series Babylon 5 and Jeremiah. His other comic work includes the Joe's Comics imprint at Top Cow, where he wrote Rising Stars and Midnight Nation.

John Romita, Jr. is the son of legendary Spidey artist John Romita. He's currently on a quest to pencil the most number of Spider-Man comics. So far, he has one run of Amazing from the early 80s under his belt, as well as runs on Peter Parker, Spider-Man and now Amazing Spider-Man. He has also worked on Uncanny X-Men, The Incredible Hulk, and Thor. (The last two at the same time as his current Spider-Man runs.)

Gotham Central by Ed Brubaker, Greg Rucka, and Michael Lark.

It's about the cops in the worst city to live in. And it's one of DC's best - yet underrated and overlooked - books. It's not a typical superhero book, but it's close enough to almost be considered one.

Ed Brubaker was first noticed by most mainstream fans with his work on Batman. He currently writes Detective Comics and Catwoman for DC, and Sleeper for Wildstorm. He's also wrote the short lived Vertigo series Deadenders.

Greg Rucka was a sucessful crime novelist, who wrote books such as Smoker, Finder, Keeper, and others. He was first noticed as one of the regular contributers to the No Man's Land event in the Batman titles during 1999. He then took over Detective Comics, which he recently left. He has also worked on Elektra, Black Widow, and other projects for Marvel, and will soon be writing Wonder Woman.

Michael Lark is best known for his work on Batman: Nine Lives.

Power Company by Kurt Busiek and Tom Grummett.

I'm sorry, I don't read this, but I wish I could. I don't have as much money as I would like, but it's an interesting premise (a superhero team set up like a law firm), and I've heard many good things about it. Sadly, not enough people are reading. Please, go support this title. I will try my best to get an issue soon.

Kurt Busiek writes Astro City, and used to write Avengers and Iron Man, among other stuff. He's also the writer of the upcoming JLA/Avengers.

Tom Grummett is known mostly for his work on Adventures of Superman and one of the Titans series. He also had a brief stint on Action Comics.

Nothing more I can say about it, except that it will definitely be out by the end of 2004. Whether or not it will begin in 2003 is unknown.