Welcome back True Believers to our weekly series where we run down the top five comics we are enjoying with the week's featured coffee roast. Of course we love our community and are always interested in what you are reading and what Coffee 'n' Capes coffee you are drinking. So drop us a line at email@example.com.
And. here. we. go:
This weeks featured roast is our newest addition to our League of Coffee: Ragin’ Cajun French Roast. This dark roast comes from a single origin, high mountain grown, Colombian coffee bean. This small batch, artisan roasted dark coffee is, like your favorite swashbuckling, card-slinging Cajun hero, truly bold but always very smooth.
On to the comics!
TOP 5 WEEK OF AUGUST 8TH:
5. Batgirl #35 (2011)
With the extremely disappointing news that Warner Bros Discovery cancelled their Batgirl movie, this is the perfect time to reacquaint ourselves with the book that inspired the film. The art from Babs Tarr and Brenden Fletcher is a breath of fresh air and a great way to start this new arc for Barbara Gordon. Writer Cameron Stewart tells a story that feels quite contemporary while exploring the age-old theme of finding your place in the world. This story reinvents Batgirl and is just plain fun! Check it out. (Though once you do, you’ll be sad/mad all over again that the movie was cancelled. Sorry in advance about that.)
4. Batman #4 (2011)
This goes back to the Court of Owls story line. Yes, this is a bit of a random pick. And, yes, this is part of DC’s much-maligned “The New 52!” reboot. So why read this book right now? Because it is freaking cool, that’s why! For me this Court of Owls arc was the best part of Scott Snyder’s run on Batman. This issue was exceedingly enjoyable with its underground setting, traps set a ridiculously long time ago, and some pretty shocking discoveries along the way — including a flashback to young Bruce right after…well, you know. Greg Capullo and Jonathan Glapion’s art doesn’t disappoint. Additionally I appreciate how Batman’s inner dialogue serves as the narrator. Makes for a entertaining peek into that oft-impenetrable mind. If you’re looking for some semi-old school (medium school??) Batman, Batman #4 could be just want you need.
3. House of Slaughter #3 (2021)
By all rights, I shouldn't like House of Slaughter. I’ve never been into horror comics (until very recently). I try not to just automatically buy every offshoot or one shot or side story just because I enjoy the main story. And yet. Here I am feeling very glad I broke all those habits to start reading House of Slaughter from James Tynion IV and Tate Brombal with art by Chris Shehan, Werthier Dell’Edera, and the appropriately named Miguel Muerto.
I’m still not really all that in to horror comics as a genre. But I am hooked on Something is Killing the Children. House of Slaughter continues that story by going back in time and providing an inside look at the Order that produced Erica Slaughter. Issue #3 is the pick this week because it offers a bit of everything a reader wants in an origin story: a peek behind the curtain at the intense pressure all the teenaged recruits are under and the fierce competition that pressure engenders. The true danger lurking around every corner — even inside their home. The conflict that arises between elders and students, students and students, and internal conflict in Aaron (and a couple other characters to a lesser extent). But we also get tender moments of caring and concern and even love. Perhaps the overriding question the series asks: How does one deal with trauma? I find this book compelling and I’m guessing you will too.
2. Captain America #25 (2012)
Admittedly, jumping into the very end of a convoluted Steve Rogers story arc might seem like an odd suggestion. This story from writer Rick Remender and art by Carols Pacheco, Mariano Taibo, and Dean White is extremely comic book-y with alternate dimensions, time speeding up and/or slowing down, characters thought dead only to (surprise!) show up and save the day…this story has it all. What really sets this book apart for me though is its conclusion which introduces us to Sam Wilson: Captain America — badass suit and all!
Beyond and behind that reveal, however, it is the opening couple of pages that remind us who Sam is and what makes him special. They remind us of what makes Sam Wilson a hero. Add in that all this is offered from Steve Roger’s perspective means it is easy to see why Sam is the pick to take over Steve’s mantle.
1. Mighty Thor #1 (2015)
“There must always be a Thor!” So declares writer Jason Aaron in the midst of his years-long Thor story — and so declares this blog! Ok, so there will probably be a post where we don’t include a Thor comic…but today is not that day, my friends! Thor Odinson has become unworthy to wield his hammer, Mjolnir. Who will defend all the realms in his place? The Mighty Thor! As you’ve no doubt deduced by now, that is Dr. Jane Foster (not Jane Fonda) under the helmet-mask. Artist Russell Dauterman’s style is colorful and nearly always in motion. While I loved Esad Ribic’s art on God of Thunder, it seems to me Dauterman is perfectly suited for Mighty Thor. This book looks beautiful.
In addition to beginning the full Jane-as-Thor story, this issue gives us the main dramatic tension that will weave throughout Jane’s time as Thor: transforming into Thor “neutralizes the effects of chemotherapy. It purges that poison from my body. But not the cancer, because cancer is just another part of me now. A part that keeps getting bigger and is killing me a little bit more each time I change back.” From the very outset, Jane’s time as Thor is exceedingly finite — a great contrast as we are used to Thor being immortal. As is most often the case, this book, and the series it begins, is better than the movie.