Acclaimed Infinity Gauntlet in July

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Jim Starlin and George Perez’s epic Infinity Gauntlet is to be released in omnibus form on 2nd July 2014.

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The 1,248-page book collects together all the issues of The Thanos Quest, Silver SurferCloak & Dagger, and Quasar that lead up to the main event, as well as the titular six issue series, tie-ins (including The Incredible Hulk and Spider-Man), plus two issues that deal with the aftermath – though bizarrely seems to exclude Warlock and the Infinity Watch. Here’s the official synopsis:

Death has released Thanos from her cold embrace, and he plans to repay her by murdering half the universe! But even as the Mad Titan gathers the six Infinity Gems from across the galaxy, assembling them into the Infinity Gauntlet and gaining truly godlike powers, a host of heroes gather to oppose him — including the Silver Surfer, Adam Warlock, Gamora, Drax the Destroyer, Dr. Strange and the Hulk! Even with Dr. Doom, Galactus and the universe’s cosmic powers aiding them, can Marvel’s mightiest possibly prevail against Thanos the all-powerful? At long last, the fan-favorite cosmic event is collected in its entirety!

Collecting Silver Surfer (1987) issues #34-38, #40 and #44-60; Thanos Quest #1-2; Infinity Gauntlet #1-6; Cloak And Dagger (1988) #18;Spider-Man (1990) #17; Incredible Hulk(1968) #383-385; Doctor Strange, Sorcerer Supreme #31-36; Quasar #26-27 and Sleepwalker #7. Written by Jim Starlin, Ron Marz, Terry Kavanagh, Ann Nocenti, Peter David, Roy Thomas, Dann Thomas, Mark Gruenwald and Bob Budiansky; pencilled by Ron Lim, George Perez, Todd Smith, Tom Raney, Dave Ross, Rick Leonardi, Dale Keown, Tony Dezuniga, Chris Marrinan, Dan Lawlis, Dave Hoover, Greg Capullo and Bret Blevins; with covers by George Perez and Jim Starlin.

At the moment, Forbidden Planet International has the best price, at £63.65 (though, no guarantees, there might be a further special offer available from their newsletters sometime in the future), with ForbiddenPlanet.com not far behind with a price of £65.55.

With an RRP of £95.00, Amazon UK hasn’t discounted it at all yet (their prices are particularly odd at the time of writing), and Amazon US has it listed for $96.11, a 23% saving of the American RRP of $125.00.

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News Round-up: January 2013, featuring Thor, Wolverine – and Rare Omnibuses!

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A second Mighty Thor omnibus is due for release in August, carrying on from where the first volume left off.

Thor Omnibus

Many thanks to Rubèn, who found this in the Marvel May to August Preview.

Thor Omnibus blurb

The first omnibus, released in January 2011, collected together Journey Into Mystery #83-120 and Annual #1; this second will continue from Journey Into Mystery #121, relaying the foundations of Thor, Loki, the Warriors Three and the rest of Asgard to readers before the release of the movie sequel, Thor: The Dark World, due out in October in the UK.

The Wolverine is also set to hit cinema screens this year (in July, to be precise), and to coincide, Marvel will release Wolverine by Mark Millar Omnibus, which I will personally be lapping up. With art by John Romita Jr (Thor; X-Men), Steve McNiven (Captain America; The Amazing Spider-man) and Kaare Andrews (Spider-man: Reign; Incredible Hulk), the 576-page book will include the popular Enemy of the State and Old Man Logan storylines. Here’s the official blurb:

He’s the best there is at what he does. And when writer Mark Millar (The Ultimates; Kick-Ass) gets his hands on Wolverine, what he does isn’t very pretty! When the Hand brainwashes Wolverine, he slices and dices his way through friends and foes alike — carving a swath of terror through the Marvel Universe that ultimately results in an X-Man’s death! Finally captured and deprogrammed, Wolverine swears vengeance against his tormentors — and the vengeance of Wolverine is a wonder to behold. Then: Nobody knows what happened the night the heroes fell, but the villains have been calling the shots ever since. Wolverine’s fate is the biggest mystery of all. No one has heard from him for fifty years, and in his place stands an old man called Logan.

Collecting Wolverine (2003) #20- 32, #66- 72 and Wolverine: Old Man Logan Giant-Size #1.

Wolverine Omnibus

With an RRP of $75, expect to pay about £50 when it’s released in July.

And finally… Amazon UK has an influx of older omnibus titles back on sale. The Incredible Hulk Volume 1, collecting Hulk #1-6, Tales to Astonish #59-101, and Incredible Hulk #102, is priced £63.75. Though they’re temporarily out-of-stock, they’re taking orders for The X-Men Omnibus Volume 1 (again, £63.75) and Brubaker’s Captain America Volume 1, for sale at just £47.59. The Avengers Omnibus, meanwhile, is just £48.

X-Men Omnibus

Get over there quickly – I’m sure they’ll sell out pretty fast!

“A Vision of Things To Come”: 40% Off Avengers Vs X-Men!

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It may not be classed as an omnibus, but the Avengers Vs. X-Men Companion is both the size and price of a normal Marvel omnibus… so I guess you kind folks will be interested, right?

AvX Companion

Released in May 2013, the HC is a huge 1088 pages long, featuring every Avengers Vs. X-Men tie-in! Naturally, a large RRP comes alongside the large page count: £75.

But if you pre-order it today (Tuesday 4th December 2012), you can claim 40% off, bringing the price down to just £45! All you need to do it get over to Forbidden Planet International.

It looks to be an amazing book. Here’s the blurb and contents:

Every AvX tie-in, collected in one massive volume! When Captain America declares war on the X-Men, how will Generation Hope and the Avengers Academy react to their mentors’ actions? As the Secret Avengers battle the Phoenix Force in space, Iron Fist discovers the connection between K’un Lun and Hope Summers! And when the Avengers try to secure the Jean Grey School, Wolverine must decide where his loyalties lie! But as the Phoenix Force arrives, tipping the scales of battle, the Avengers and X-Men realize the stakes are higher than they knew — and the that fate of the Earth is in their hands.

Collecting Avengers Academy #29-33, Secret Avengers (2010) #26-28, Avengers (2010) #25-30, New Avengers (2010) #24-30, X-Men Legacy (2008) #266-270, Wolverine & The X-Men #9-16 And #18, AvX: Consequences #1-5, Uncanny X-Men (2012) #11-20, and A-Babies Vs. X-Babies #1, written by Christos Gage, Rick Remender, Brian Michael Bendis, Jason Aaron, Kieron Gillen & Skottie Young, pencilled by Tom Grummett, Renato Guedes, Walter Simonson, Mike Deodato Jr., Rafa Sandoval, David Baldeon, Chris Bachalo, Nick Bradshaw, Jorge Molina, Greg Land, Daniel Acuna, Ron Garney, Gurihiru & others, with cover art by Jim Cheung.

AvX HC

The book os the perfect partner of last month’s Avengers Vs. X-Men hardcover, with an RRP of £55.99. (FPInternational has it for £37.51, though!)

Review: Ultimate Avengers By Mark Millar Omnibus

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Mark Millar is a controversial figure.

No one can doubt what he’s given to comics and, indeed, films. He changed the Marvel landscape with Civil War, gave us London’s Kapow! convention, and launched CLiNT magazine. Oh, and supplied us with possibly the most violent and swear-ridden comic known to man.

It’s been ten years now since the critically-acclaimed Ultimates hit the shelves, introducing warped versions of the familiar MU Avengers. And in Mark Millar’s latest omnibus collection, we’re introduced to warped versions of the warped versions.

Ultimate Avengers By Mark Millar Omnibus collects the first three volumes of the titular comic book (each comprising of six issues) and Ultimate Avengers vs. New Ultimates #1-6 in a beautiful white and gold/green exterior that won’t break your wrist unlike some other omnibuses. And with an RRP of £55.99, it’s pretty reasonably priced, considering that you can typically get a copy for about £35. As ever with the omnibus range, it’s wonderfully presented, with nice glossy finishes, a stand-out, white spine and a few ‘special features’ at the back, like variant covers, sketchbooks and cover ideas; it’s fleeting, but a welcome addition.

It begins three weeks after Ultimatum, an event generally considered as bad as comics get, and immediately sets up the premise of the whole book, even though this won’t become apparent until quite a way in. This first arc ushers in the return of Carlos Pacheco (Avengers Forever; Fantastic Four) to Marvel, and his stunning art echoes the widescreen-work of original Ultimates illustrator, Bryan Hitch. He’s a perfect choice for the book, and, coupled with colourist, Justin Ponsor and a plethora of inkers, gives the volume a fresh and exciting feel. The spreads and flowing layouts really help its pace, which has the feel of a blockbuster movie to it. And this is something Millar is often criticised for.

Ultimate Nick Fury sets out his agenda

I can see it both ways. Yes, comics are a medium of their own right; a medium that doesn’t have to be defined by or likened to others, particularly films. This is the reason Alan Moore doesn’t like to see V for Vendetta and Watchmen on the big screen. However, I also feel that as long as it sparks the imagination, it doesn’t really matter.

We also have to remember that many will be flocking to comics after seeing the big-hitters like Avengers Assemble and The Amazing Spider-Man in cinemas and on DVD, so these ‘widescreen,’ sweeping techniques are well suited as an introduction to the medium. As long as the characters are well-written, the dialogue is snappy, and the plot is interesting and relevant, does it really matter if an issue or storyline has the feel of a movie?

The Ultimate origin of the Red Skull…

And maybe this is an issue with Millar’s Ultimate Avengers. While much of the dialogue is good – “[Spider-Man] can drive a man to suicide in three or four exchanges,” someone remarks – and the characters involving, not all of them are particularly likeable. And this is surely a big problem with heroes you’re supposed to be rooting for. Indeed, some of the pointless deaths that occur hardly make an impact. Captain America and Hawkeye remain the most likeable, especially as the former is the personification of a one-man army, but many of the others are just there as replacements for the original Ultimates line-up. There’s a new Black Widow, a new Hulk (or two), and a new Iron Man (sort of) – and only the latter is remotely successful. In fact, I really hate what Millar’s done with the Hulk: the ‘original’ Hulk is a useless addition, while the ‘Nerd’ Hulk is ridiculous.

‘Nerd’ Hulk vs… Iron Man?

Oh, and in case that wasn’t enough, there’s a new Captain America too. Even though the original’s still there, on the whole. And this new Captain is… uh, the Punisher. Maybe this is why the deaths are meaningless: you know another replacement will be along any minute.

The low point for the team comes in volume two, where they’re overshadowed by an amazing Ghost Rider, awesomely drawn by Leinil Francis Yu (Secret Invasion; Wolverine), as he goes up against Blackthorn. (In fact, his Ghost Rider might be the best rendition I’ve seen!) It’s not that strong a story, mainly due to a ragtag team of Avengers who you know won’t gel. With the original Avengers and Ultimates, there were many arguments and fisticuffs, but you just knew that, in the end, Captain America, Iron Man and Thor would get along. But here, there’s too little chemistry and heart.

Ultimate Ghost Rider. Wow.

However, this isn’t a terrible omnibus, as many expected. Actually there’s a lot to enjoy.

As previously stated, Captain America really kicks butt, particularly in the first arc, which heralds in the first and only appearance of the Ultimate Universe’s Red Skull. The twist on his origin isn’t that surprising, but it’s still pretty cool, and suitably gruesome. The death of Nikolai Laskov is particularly horrible – so naturally, there’s some mindless violence lingering on from Kick-Ass.

The third arc riffs off the huge vampire trend of late, something which Millar has come under criticism for. But it’s actually a great move. Keeping up with trends, and predicting the next ones, will always draw readers in, and it’s something that Marvel – and, indeed, every noteworthy company – has always done. Plus there’s a fantastic Twilight parody.

 I was initially sceptical of Steve Dillon’s artistic contributions to the storyline that introduces us to Blade, but, actually, it’s very fitting. But Leinil Yu makes a welcome return in the final storyline, which pits the Ultimates against the Avengers. There are plenty of surprises throughout, but especially in this concluding tale, which starts off really strong. The addition of Spider-Man seems forced – as the Punisher aptly notes, “where the %&*# did HE come from?!” – but Frank’s guilt is great.

The ‘Hulked-out’ heroes in Ultimate Avengers vs. New Ultimates #5 is a bit too silly for my liking, but generally, Millar’s conclusions are really strong. The finale to the third arc is very visual and cinematic – clever too – as is the way the Red Skull is dealt with in the first storyline.

Yes, there are plenty of clichés thrown about, and character depth isn’t at its most fascinating, but there’s still a lot to enjoy here. Well worth thirty-odd quid.

If you want to see Mark Millar at his best, pick up The Ultimates. But if you want him in his “not-at-his-best-but-still-much-better-than-most” mode, order Ultimate Avengers now.

Secret Warriors available for pre-order!

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Forbidden Planet.co.uk has just made the Secret Warriors omnibus available for pre-order.

Though the book has an RRP of £75, you can buy it from fp.co.uk for just £49.01.

Amazon.co.uk also has the 904-page HC for £49.01. Which is pretty wierd.

My advice would be to wait maybe just for a week, as fp.co.uk normally offer these £75 books with a 40% discount for two weeks only – bringing it down to £45 – as part of their ‘STOP THE PRESS!’ offer. I reckon next week’s graphic novel newsletter wil include the deal, as the latest one was for The Incredible Hulk: Past Perfect – which looks really cool!

Here’s the synopsis for the Secret Warriors omnibus:

Former S.H.I.E.L.D. director Nick Fury and his newly minted team of Secret Warriors uncover a conspiracy that reaches from the Oval Office to Japan — and even beyond death. When a shadow war breaks out between Leviathan and Hydra, it’s up to Fury and his Warriors to take them both out.

The reconstituted Howling Commandos join Fury’s ranks, but tragedy waits in the wings as the conflict blossoms into an all-out war on three fronts. As Hydra and Leviathan ready for their final strikes — on each other and the world — Fury will have to make some of the grittiest life-and-death choices of his long life!

Collecting Mighty Avengers #13 and 18, Secret Warriors #1-28, Dark Reign: The List – Secret Warriors, Siege: Secret Warriors, and material from Dark Reign: New Nation. Written By Brian Michael Bendis and Jonathan Hickman; and pencilled by Alex Maleev, Stefano Caselli, Alessandro Vitti, Gianluca Gugliotta, Mirko Colak, David Marquez and Ed McGuinness, with cover artwork by Jim Cheung.

The book is expected to be released in July 2012.

“What Would Spidey Do?”: 40% off Spider-man!

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If you’re a fan of Spider-man – and who isn’t?! – get over to Forbiddenplanet.co.uk for a massive 40% saving off March’s Untold Tales of Spider-man omnibus. With an RRP of £75, by clicking on the link below you can pre-order it for £45:

http://www.forbiddenplanet.co.uk/index.php?main_page=product_music_info&products_id=66705

Cover B By Pat Olliffe

Get there now though – the offer ends on Wednesday 12th October 2011! It only applies to Cover B… but it’s by the excellent Pat Olliffe, so if you have a problem with that, there’s probably something wrong with you. Olliffe also provides Cover A; so it’s win-win!

The 800-page omnibus collects Amazing Fantasy #16-18 (from 1995), Untold Tales Of Spider-Man #1-25, #-1, Annual 1996-1997 and Strange Encounter, plus material from Amazing Spider-Man Annual #37, and is written by Kurt Busiek, G.L. Lawrence, Tom DeFalco, Roger Stern and Fred Hembeck. There’s a plethora of fantastic artists too, including: Pat Olliffe, Paul Lee, Greg Loundon, Ron Frenz, Bob McLeod, Mike Allred, Tom Lyle, and John Romita.

Cover A... also by Pat Olliffe!

It’s expected around 14th March, and features some of the supposedly-‘lost’ stories of Peter Parker as the wall crawling menace.

If you wanna see what’s included in this omnibus, take a look here:

http://spiderfan.org/comics/title/spiderman_untold_tales.html

Really does look awesome, huh?

The seriously cool cover to Untold Tales of Spider-man #15

Forbiddenplanet.co.uk also have Cover A for £48.70, while Amazon.co.uk has Cover B for this price too. Forbiddenplanet.com has the highest price for both covers at £51.74. WHSmiths.co.uk has it on pre-order for £49.50.

In other news…

 

Amazon.co.uk has revealed a really big teaser of things to come: they’ve got an omnibus pre-order for April 2012… Ultimate Comics Avengers By Mark Millar. Of course, the range has previous with the Ultimates omnibus, which is now long out-of-print. Here’s the blurb, straight off Amazon:

“All of superstar Mark Millar’s Ultimate Avengers sagas, collected in one oversized volume! In a bid to learn the truth about the devious Red Skull, Captain America goes rogue and S.H.I.E.L.D. commissions a new group of Avengers to bring him in. But can Nick Fury, Hawkeye, War Machine, Red Wasp, the new Black Widow and Nerd Hulk hope to keep Cap from his mission? Then: a 7-foot-tall biker with a flaming skull has been brutally murdering rich and powerful men across America, and the White House orders the Avengers to take down the Ghost Rider by any means necessary.”

Apparently a 608-page HC, the book has an RRP of £55.99, but they have it for £47.59. If they’re right, I’m looking forward to this one; what do you think, everyone?

“The Old Order Changeth!”: 40% off the Avengers!

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“And there came a day, a day unlike any other, when Earth’s mightiest heroes and heroines found themselves united against a common threat. On that day, the Avengers were born—to fight the foes no single super hero could withstand! Through the years, their roster has prospered, changing many times, but their glory has never been denied! Heed the call, then—for now, the Avengers Assemble!”

Avengers #16

I haven’t been this excited about an omnibus in a while.

February 2012 sees the release of The Avengers omnibus, collecting Stan Lee, Jack Kirby and Don Heck’s Avengers #1- 30, which introduces several characters including Kang the Conqueror, Wonder Man and, of course, the re-introduction of Captain America! (It’s odd, however, that the omnibus finishes at #30; Lee went on to write and edit until issue 35.) The HC will be the equivalent of buying the first three volumes of the Marvel Masterworks: Avengers editions.

Art by Jack "The King" Kirby!

The 728-page book has an RRP of £75, but anyone after the Jack Kirby DM – that’s Direct Market – cover (a re-coloured version of Avengers #01) should go to forbiddenplanet.co.uk for a 40% saving:

http://www.forbiddenplanet.co.uk/index.php?main_page=product_music_info&products_id=66206

The offer stands until 21st September; as anyone with a calendar in their peripheral will know… that’s tomorrow, so get over there straight away!

The DM Kirby cover.

If you’ve missed it, don’t panic; amazon.co.uk has a pre-order price of £45.54:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Avengers-Omnibus-1-Jack-Kirby/dp/0785158464/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1316517898&sr=8-1

Bookdepository.co.uk currently has it for £47.46, while forbiddenplanet.com has a price of £51.74.

Avengers #20

John Romita Jr. (my favourite artist by a mile) provides a variant cover, which promises to be just stunning. Forbiddenplanet.co.uk has this available for £50.25, which I expect will be the price of the Kirby cover after tomorrow.

The JRJR variant cover

Despite Amazon predicting 29th, the omnibus is expected around 15th February, plenty of time before the release of the The Avengers Movie. There are obviously a few omnibuses out there for Kirby fans, including his runs on Captain
America
, Fantastic Four, Devil Dinosaur and The Eternals.

Original Eternals advert

The first Avengers comic I read was the milestone #16, which heralded a new line-up for Earth’s Mightiest, and since then, I’ve loved them, just like every Marvel fan. While the original team – debuting in September 1963 – comprised of Iron Man, Thor, Hulk, Ant man and the Wasp (with Cap joining the team in #4), issue 16 saw the roster change, with Captain America headlining a team of Hawkeye, Scarlet Witch, and Quicksilver.

The final panel of Avengers #01.

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