Comics Disassembled: Ten Things of Note from the Past Week in Comics, Led by Free Comics, For Real

It’s the last column on here for a month, with a podcast still to come on Monday. Let’s get to the week that was in this week’s edition of Comics Disassembled.

1. DC Comics, Officially Free!

We knew that DC was going to be participating in Free Comic Book Day in some way, but we didn’t know how and we didn’t know what their FCBD release would be. We still don’t know the former, but we do know the latter now. The answer is…all of the releases! Or, more specifically, four free comics, as they’re dropping a Batman comic that sets up the Fear State story in Batman as well as I am Batman, a King Shark-centric issue that seemingly sets up Suicide Squad: Get Joker, a YA release that is likely a snippet from Beast Boy Loves Raven, and a kids-centric issue that is a flipbook of two comics.

So it’s a lot! It feels like they’re almost compensating for not participating in a traditional fashion, but hey, I’m all for it. More free comics increases the likelihood I start reading more comics, a theory that truly has a lot of historic precedent behind it. I think it’s encouraging that DC is participating and doing so in such a prodigious way. That suggests that they really value this day and that they’re in a relatively good place. I dig it.

Plus: King Shark solo book! It’s been a huge few years for King Shark and this ball is going to continue to roll if this is any indication. I love it.

2. DC Comics, Officially Coming!

There was a ton of DC news this week, as they are pretty dang busy these days, which, again, is a good thing to see. One of those announced projects is an unusual one, but one I like. It’s a graphic novel anthology called Batman: The World, a tome that tells stories about the Caped Crusader but with creative teams from a slew of countries across the world leading the way. The first story is by Batman: Damned’s creative team, Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo, but it also features creators like Piotr Kowalski (Poland) and, incredibly, Kim Jung Gi (Korea). Each country will have its own cover, a smart plan that makes each edition a little special. Big fan of this idea. It arrives in September.

Then, over in Batman: Urban Legends #6, DC’s odd and random integration of Wildstorm properties continues, as this Batman-centric series features Wonder Woman fighting Zealot of WildC.A.T.s fame. It’s written by Matthew Rosenberg, who seemingly is the non-Grant Morrison driver of most Wildstorm inclusion, making Matt one of my very favorite people now. It’s super random, but baby steps!

Speaking of Rosenberg, the scribe is partnering up with Jesús Merino, Joshua Hixson and Ulises Arreola on The Joker: Puzzlebox, an upcoming seven-part Black Label series that’s told from the Joker’s perspective and built around a single interrogation of the Clown Prince. I like that idea! I like that team! I like the Black Label of it all! I still just really don’t care for the Joker! It’s coming in August so I have a lot of time to think about this, but the Joker part really turns me off. Alas.

There’s lots more coming – including other projects I didn’t even mention – so it seems clear to me that whoever their distributor is and whoever owns them, DC is doing just fine…FOR NOW.

DUN DUN DUNNNNNN.

Just kidding, they’re fine.

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