Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Judging Comic Books by Their Covers: Dark Horse -- January '08

Last month, I enjoyed looking at some comic book covers and deciding whether or not they made me want to buy them, so I'm doing it again. Today, I'm checking out Dark Horse's comics for next January.

Here are the ones that interested me and why. To clarify though: this isn't my actual pull list or anything. There are several titles that I love and will keep right on buying no matter what's on the cover. Publishers in general are well aware of that about fans and I think that's why we see a lot of pin-up covers that don't tell you anything about the story inside. This is just an exercise to get me thinking smarter about marketing.

My Name is Bruce: I'm not that interested in ancient Chinese demons, but slap Bruce Campbell as Bruce Campbell on the cover and you've got me at least looking inside to see how well you've captured his voice. And I like that this is a step above a simple pin-up of Bruce offering wise-cracks. Even though he's about to fight a monster I don't care about, the fact that he's fighting a monster is interesting.

Star Wars: Legacy #20: I'm enough of a fan of space opera that this space battle would have caught my attention with or without the Star Wars logo on it. The ship designs are cool, the laser blasts are exciting, and the whole thing is just gorgeous. I definitely want to see what's going on inside.

Usagi Yojimbo #109: Usagi Yojimbo covers always make me want to buy. It's the anthropomorphic animals in feudal Japan concept that sells it. Usagi could be just standing there and I'd be interested, but that's never the case. There's always something cool going on too.

Vampire Hunter D, Volume 10: Dark Nocturne: Speaking of just standing there, that's all D's doing on the cover of his book, but the Yoshitaka Amano art is so beautiful and detailed that I want to know more about the character it represents. Sometimes -- when the art is this good -- a pin-up is enough.

Zero Killer #4: I'm torn about this one. I'm turned off by the decapitated heads (gore on a cover is never a selling point for me), but attracted by the dinosaur skulls. I'd open this one up to see which element was predominant and let that make my decision for me.

Next week: Image's January covers. At least, that's the plan.

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