Wednesday Watch: MUST-READ New Releases For 2/1/12

<i>By <a href=>Albert Ching, Newsarama Staff Writer</a></i> <p>Yes, 2012 is already nearly a month old weird, right? <p>The first New Comic Book Day of February is bringing plenty of treats, including the long-awaited return of a Marvel miniseries, a collected edition of a pre-New 52 gem from DC, new material from Dark Horse, Dynamite, IDW and Image, plus much more. <p>Each week, we look through the intimidating list of new releases and pick 10 things especially worthy of at least a little bit of your attention. Find out 10 of the week's most newsworthy releases by clicking "start here" in the upper-left corner. <p><i>Got a comment? There's lots of conversation on Newsarama's <a href=><b>FACEBOOK</b></a> and <a href=><b>TWITTER</b></a>!</i> <p>


Disney's live-action <i>John Carter</i> premieres in theaters in just a few weeks, and comic book publishers aren't letting that opportunity pass them by. <p>This week Marvel a subsidiary of Disney is putting out trade paperbacks of both their <i>John Carter: A Princess of Mars</I> and <i>John Carter: Worlds of Mars</i> miniseries. Over at Dynamite, the publisher is debuting <b>Warriors of Mars</b>, starring Lt. Gullivar Jones a pre-John Carter visitor to Mars.


Image Comics has had a hot streak the past couple of years with launching new series that are genuinely different, and <b>Alpha Girl</b> might be the next unconventional hit. <p><b>Alpha Girl</b> takes place in the '80s, features zombies created by a cosmetics company, and contains the words "sells her tampons to perverts" in the solicitation for the first issue. So, pretty different.


As a result of DC's New 52 revamp this past September, a lot of comics released right before that period have been mostly forgotten about due to the sweeping wave of relaunch hype. <p>The six-issue <b>Xombi</b> run by John Rozum and Fraser Irving might have fallen into that category, but DC is collecting the entire critically acclaimed series into a trade paperback, plus <i>Brave and the Bold #26</i>, which also features The Spectre.


Before Bongo Comics which introduced a new company logo this month, as seems to be the industry trend existed, there was <b>Simpsons Illustrated</b>, a magazine that included comics and articles during the show's heyday of the early '90s. <p>Bongo is reviving the title with a new quarterly series, and the first issue includes a reprint from 1993's <i>Simpsons Comics & Stories Issue #1</i>. So feel free to dust off old Simpsons catchphrases as you feel is appropriate: "Don't have a cow, man!" "Underachiever and proud of it!"


<a href=>Click here for a preview!</a> <p>The last time a new issue of <b>The Twelve</b> was on store shelves, it was 2008, George W. Bush was in the White House, and <i>Keeping Up with the Kardashians</i> only had two seasons. <p>The 12-issue series set in Marvel's Golden Age and from writer J. Michael Straczynski and artist Chris Weston is now complete, and the last third is finally getting released, starting this week.


Earlier this month, Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo wowed comic book readers with <b>Batman #5</b>, notching three consecutive 10/10 reviews from Newsarama's own Best Shots review team. <p>So if you're digging what's happening on that title, you may do well to check out Snyder's other New 52 series, <b>Swamp Thing</b>, which sees issue #6 this week, with art from Marco Rudy.


IDW has set a lofty standard for their licensed books, even within the subsection of books based on role-playing games. Blog@Newsarama's <a href=>Graeme McMillan has called</a> IDW's <i>Dungeons and Dragons</i> series "one of the most-well-written team books available." <p>The first <b>Magic: The Gathering</b> comic book in more than a decade could potentially repeat that success, though <a href=>Gizmodo interns</a> might remain skeptical.


<a href=>Click here for a preview!</a> <p>Why is this book worth checking out? Let's look at the list of contributors: <p>John Arcudi. Brian Wood. Howard Chaykin. Neal Adams. Andi Watson. Duncan Fegredo. Geof Darrow. <p>Covers it pretty well, right?


For the first time since <i>Flashpoint</i>, Andy Kubert is illustrating the interior of a DC Comics and he's picking an auspicious series to do so, filling in for Rags Morales on a couple of issues of the Grant Morrison-written <b>Action Comics</b>. <p>In the story, the battle armor-sporting Superman of today teams up with the Legion of Super-Heroes to save the jeans-clad past Superman that's been depicted in <b>Action</b> thus far. Whether or not there was a corduroy-wearing Supes in the interim may remain a mystery for a little longer.


The recent revelation that Bucky did not in fact die during <i>Fear Itself</i> has led to this a new series starring the character, written by Ed Brubaker, the guy that brought him back in the first place. <p>When Brubaker writes the Winter Soldier, magic tends to happen, and Eisner Awards tend to be won. Now he's got a whole series featuring Bucky and Black Widow as super-secret spies (so secret, in fact, that the world at large still thinks that Bucky is dead). Thanks to advance solicitations, we know that Dr. Doom plays a major role in the opening arc. <p>With art from Butch Guice, this is poised to likely be one of the best-received new Marvel series of the year, along with probably being a relatively huge commercial hit. So this week might be a good time to get on board.

Wednesday Watch: MUST-READ New Releases For 2/1/12

Date: 30 January 2012 Time: 09:10 PM ET