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Hi, Carol and John’s Shoppers! I hope everyone had a fun and safe Fourth of July. This week is MASSIVE, with an insane amount of new and exciting books, perfect for those back-to-work blues after the holiday weekend. Let’s check things out.

DC Comics

The next big Batman run begins! Chip Zdarsky has been lighting up the Marvel Universe with his Daredevil run and has been dipping his toes into the DC Universe recently too, but now he takes on the Dark Knight full-time with Batman #125 new this week. “Bruce Wayne is at a turning point, haunted by dreams of a dark future, while Gotham City billionaires are being gruesomely murdered. With the discovery of an archenemy’s involvement and a tragedy unfolding, the Dark Knight’s nightmares are just beginning. Failsafe starts here.” And while I don’t typically read the backups, this issue has the beginning of a pretty exciting one with Catwoman tasked to track down the 10 kids of the supervillain [REDACTED]. You are NOT going to want to miss out on this new Batman run. It even has a trailer!

Dark Crisis continues! After the death of the Justice League and the shocking finale to issue #1, things continue right after that with the assault on Titans Tower. It’s Dick Grayson Nightwing versus a powered-up Slade Wilson Deathstroke with the fate of the Titans in the balance. All the while, Pariah and the Great Darkness are approaching. Fans have been waiting a while for the next DC Universe Crisis, and Dark Crisis #2 does not disappoint.

“The Clown Prince of Crime had one more trick up his sleeve—a thrilling, surprising final issue! How did Gordon escape Texas? What happened to Bane and Vengeance? Did The Joker get the last laugh? Find out!” When this series was first announced, I was skeptical about why we really needed a Joker miniseries, let alone whether it’d be good or not. But this series, written by James Tynion IV (who seems to write just about everything these days), has been one of DC’s best and has a dedicated following. This final issue is just the end of the beginning, with DC already planning a new series to follow up with an announcement of the new creative team hopefully sooner rather than later. We’ve got volume 1’s of this series coming back in stock soon, so keep an eye out for those.

DC has a HUGE week of new releases this week, with more than I could possibly cover individually in this email. To name a few, we have new issues of Flashpoint Beyond and Batman: Killing Time, the finale to Batman 89 (finally), and the triumphant return of the main DC Vs. Vampires series, and the follow-up to the excellent Poison Ivy #1 with issue #2 all-new this week. If you’re a DC diehard, this week is for you.

Marvel Comics

“The end of the first arc of this historic new volume is here, and you won’t believe what we’re putting the Web-Slinger through! Spider-Man and Tombstone have their most brutal battle ever, but I fear the worst damage to Peter isn’t going to be physical. Also, did you notice that this was ASM Legacy #899?! That means the next issue is…” 900! The next issue is a huge milestone for the Web-Head, and we’ll be sure to celebrate it when it comes out later this month, but this week’s issue #5 is not to be overlooked. There have been plenty of spirited discussions amongst the staff and customers about John Romita Jr.’s art, but nobody can deny that this new Spider-Man story has been exciting and unpredictable for both new and old readers alike.

Jason Aaron’s Avengers Forever has been a lot of fun! Featuring the Avengers of the Multiverse, with the mightiest heroes of every Earth assembled, it’s a new shop favorite that Marvel and Avengers fans need to read (Volume 1 just came out collecting issues #1-5, BUY IT). This week, in issue #7, it’s the escape from the Prison of Steves! We have met Tony Stark, Invincible Ant-Man, as well as a Deathlok who refuses to die, a brutal Wonder Man, a half-built Vision, and the Infinity Thing, but now we meet several different Steve Rogers from across the multiverse who have been plucked from their worlds and are now being held captive in a mysterious prison out of time and space. What mysteries do these Steves of the multiverse possess, and who has imprisoned them together and why? This issue is awesome, especially for Cap fans.

I’d be remiss to not mention that King Conan wraps up this week also with issue #6. It’s a bittersweet moment, with this being the final Marvel Conan story, but Ben’s now inadvertently turned me onto another Marvel fantasy series with the 70’s cult-classic John Carter: Warlord of Mars. He jokingly pitched it as Conan on Dune, two of my favorite properties, but after reading the first issue and doing some background research (the entire 28+ issue Marvel series takes place between the third and fourth paragraphs of chapter 27 of the first Edgar Rice Burroughs book!) I’m preparing to go down that wormhole now. Thanks, Ben!

Small Press

“Revered creator Liam Sharp cuts loose in his visually stunning six-issue masterpiece, Starhenge: Book One! A future Merlin travels to 5th-century Britain to prevent monstrous time-traveling killer robots from robbing the universe of magic, and Amber Weaver’s lively present-day narrative reveals how she becomes drawn into a war across time! The Terminator meets The Green Knight in 30 enthralling story pages, setting the scene for this original epic inspired by the Arthurian sagas!” This series has a big, weird, and lofty premiere issue, with stunning artwork from Sharp. I’m excited to dive into this one, it’s a trip.

“Edison Crane is the world’s smartest man, but what happens when he’s targeted by an entire club of geniuses who also fly too close to the sun? Meet the Icarus Society.” Mark Millar is a comics writer who needs little to no introduction, responsible for such hits as Kick-Ass, Wanted, Kingsman, Jupiter’s Legacy, The Magic Order, King of Spies, and many more. His newest, Prodigy: Icarus Society, is a five-issue miniseries that boasts starring his favorite creation in Edison Crane. Issue #1 is new this week.

Brian K. Vaughan, you’re a son of a gun. After a delay last week, we finally have another issue of Saga with issue #60 this week and it’s the end of the first story arc after the much-awaited return earlier this year. And it’s a heartbreaker. No spoilers here, but you’re going to want to read this one first to get it out of the way, and also because it’s the best book every month. My new goal is to get my girlfriend Amber to catch up and read this series; I told her it’s important for the future of our relationship that she reads it. And it’s issues like this one that back up that crazy statement.

There’s a lot for comic fans to be excited about this week in the shop, but we’ve got more than just great books to be excited about this month. Like our annual Not at Comic-Con Sale coming up!

From July 21st through the 24th, it’s our biggest sale of the summer! We’ll have 50% off back issues as well as 10% off everything else in the store including trades and figures. We’ll also have over 50,000 books in the foyer (Winston’s favorite vacation spot) for only $1.00 each. Hit the 100-book mark, and each issue becomes only 50 cents each. We’ve got a lot of cool issues from collections we’ve bought recently, and we’ve been refreshing our Marvel and DC back issue bins, so there’s plenty to dig through.

Also, we’ll be hosting The Munsters’ own Butch Patrick at the shop on Friday, July 29th with special guest Lenora of the Big Bad B-Movie Show! Meet the actor, get a photo, and get a chance to ride in the Munster Koach here at CNJ’s! Photos start at $10, autographed photos are $20, and a ride in the Koach is only $50.

There are lots for everyone to look forward to this month. Take care, and we’ll see you around.

Hey everyone! Rafael is on vacation and I’m filling in, and the best way I can imagine doing it is with half-off back issues for the weekend! 

It’s an incredibly small new comic week so it seems appropriate. We have also bought a couple of new collections (finally) that will be going out on Tuesday, so it seems appropriate to clear the wall out as best we can beforehand. (keep an eye out on Facebook for our rerack video on Tuesday the 7th.)

So…ALL BACK ISSUES WILL BE HALF OFF FROM FRIDAY JUNE 3RD TO MONDAY JUNE 6TH!

This is the last time back issues will be half off until our big “Not at Comicon” sale from July 20th to the 24th, where we will bring thousands of comics out from our storage locker at only $1.00 each, as well as half off back issues as well. (so mark your calendar!)

So, on another note, my trip to Washington DC went great, and I got to talk with Senator Sheron Brown’s Office with a dozen other small business representatives from Ohio. 

Cleveland.com even did a short story on the trip! Check it out here!

Happy Wednesday, Carol and John’s Shoppers! With the weather heating up, so are the comics this spring. There are a few big entries from the Big Two, but there are a lot of diverse options for everyone, including some gems from small press companies this week also. Let’s see what’s up.

Marvel Comics

It’s part 2 to the current Banner of War crossover this week with Thor #25! “Banner’s newfound control of his rage is prolonging this fight more than Thor expected, and with Banner holding his own, Thor must get creative. Odin’s breakthrough look into Banner’s psyche seems to slow the violence, but will it be enough?” Plus, there’s more, with two separate backups in this jam-packed issue.

Gerry Duggan’s Savage Avengers was a shop favorite amongst the staff here, and we were all bummed to hear it was ending this past January with issue #28. We were excited to hear it was relaunching with a new #1 though, and that time is now with new writer David Depose and artist Carlos Magno. During the previous Savage Avengers run, Conan the Barbarian was brought into the modern-day, and he’s been stranded here ever since. But now he’s being hunted by a Deathlok for crimes against the timestream, and Conan along with Weapon H, Elektra’s Daredevil, Black Knight, Anti-Venom, and Cloak and Dagger are all dragged back to the Hyperborean Age for a new adventure. As a Conan fan, I’m excited to see what mess these characters can cause back in Conan’s time and the universe. You may have heard also that Marvel has now let the Conan license lapse, so we’re in the final days of Conan’s time with Marvel (again). We don’t know what that means for this new series, but by Crom, I’ll still be picking it up. It was a fun first issue!

Original creator David Michelinie returns for issue #2 of the new miniseries Venom: Lethal Protector. This week, it’s “Venom vs. Hydro-Man… for the first time! ‘Nuff said!” I’ll just leave it at that. This is a great series for fans who want a more back-to-basics approach for the symbiote.

DC Comics

“Just in time for the 20th anniversary of its launch, the acclaimed blockbuster that defined an era of Vertigo returns with an all-new 12-issue story, The Black Forest—a tale that picks up right where Fables #150 left off, providing a new entry point into the world of Fabletown! The dust has barely settled from the climactic battle between Totenkinder and Cinderella—and everything is far from happily ever after. A legendary new adversary has arrived, and he plans to get even with Geppetto for the mess that has been made of Manhattan. But it’s a new day… and with it, a new Jack in the Green has arrived in the Black Forest. And within the emergency room of a New York hospital… a Fable long thought dead returns!” I’ve never read Fables (outside of Preacher, I seem to be very lacking in my Vertigo reading), but there’s certainly a following for Fables and I may just have to give it a try sooner rather than later.

Chip Zdarsky’s Batman: The Knight series has been a great Batman origin retelling, that isn’t just dead parents and trees getting kicked in half Year One style. In this series, Bruce Wayne is traversing the globe and learning from the best of the best how to become something more than just a man, but even Bruce doesn’t know what he’s trying to become just yet. This issue finds Bruce and his friend Anton captured in a Russian prison after their escape from the cold mountains of Master Kirigi’s elite fighting school, where Bruce learned how to be a ninja. In this issue, he’ll learn how to be a superspy. I’m really enjoying this fresh take on Bruce’s origin that explains all the ways he learned how to kick ass. If you’re behind and looking to get caught up, last week DC released a reprint of issues #1-3 that you should check out if you’ve missed out so far.

Small Press

This week has a new Image #1 and it is for fans of Gideon Falls and Home Sick Pilots, it’s I Hate This Place (or F*** This Place is you pick up the B cover). “After inheriting a farmhouse, Trudy and Gabby are ready to start the next chapter of their lives together… except it’s already home to a mysterious force that’s attracted ghosts, aliens, and all kinds of supernatural beings for decades. Now, Gabby and Trudy must play by the ‘house rules’ in order to survive living among the most frightening creatures on Earth in this new series” from Kyle Starks and artist Artyom Topilin. The recent Image #1’s have all been great, and this series has been getting a lot of buzz before it’s release this week. Check it out.

Just when I needed a new manga, there’s a new one in print this week that I’ve been looking forward to for a minute, it’s Crazy Food Truck from Viz. “The owner of a food truck in a postapocalyptic world nearly runs over a naked girl sleeping in the middle of the desert. When he gives her a lift, he inadvertently takes on her baggage too – an armed militia hot on her trail… and her even more problematic appetite. If one doesn’t take him out, the other surely will!” I’m wrapping up Alita: Battle Angel, Gantz, and Chainsaw Man now, so I’m excited to get something new. I’m getting some cool Mad Max/foodie vibes from this one.

“The year is 1977. The King is dead, and the world mourns. But… When a mysterious briefcase turns up in his dressing room, Bruce, a coke-addled Elvis impersonator finds himself wedged between a Mob boss out to avenge the death of his only son, and a government conspiracy with far-reaching, world-ending ramifications, all in an attempt to discover the true identity of his father’s killer.” We don’t feature a lot from Behemoth Comics (although plenty of you are enjoying Heavy Metal Drummer at the moment), but this new trade paperback collection of Pop Star Assassin seemed too cool to pass up on. If you ask me, it looks like a blend between Scumbag and Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. I’m excited to read it and find out.

That’s just some of what we’ve got in store for you all this week. We’ve got plenty of cool new figures also, including plenty of Toddy Mac DC Multiverse figures (Clayface, Joker Titan, Dark Knight Returns, and Endless Winter characters to name a few), some Masters of the Universe figures, and a badass King Spawn figure that comes with his throne. If I had room for any of it, I’d probably pick up a few of these figures. Please buy them so I don’t have to fight the temptation to make room. We’ll see you all around.

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