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Chuck Bean

Weekends

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MAY 29: A man and his child dressed as Spiderman pose as Melburnians participate in a Guinness World Record attempt for the most number of people dressed in superhero costume at Federation Square on May 29, 2010 in Melbourne, Australia. The event was organised to mark the 75th anniversary of DC Comics. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

In addition to going a little stir crazy these days being locked down to home with your loved ones, small businesses are hit especially hard during this time. I’ve watched some of my favorites from video to record stores evaporate away during the best of times and worry that the comic book store could be next in line. Local store in the area are finding new ways to conduct business while keeping the public safe from COVID-19 like Chris Brown of Comics and More in Madison Heights.

 

Oakland County small businesses adapt to protect customers, stay afloat during coronavirus outbreak

MADISON HEIGHTS, Mich. - Small businesses in Oakland County are having to adapt to protect their customers and stay afloat during the coronavirus outbreak. The sign on the door of Comics & More in Madison Heights reads, "Carryout only during quarantine." Chris Brown doesn't usually offer curbside pickup, but these are not usual times.

 

There are also online subscriptions services like Marvel Unlimited  DC Universe and Comixology for those without a local comic store that want to take in the adventures of their favorite superheroes on their phone or tablet. With all this time on our hands here’s some recommendations of what to seek out in the world of comics.

 

House of X/Powers of X

House of X | Powers of X | Latest News, Comics, Videos | Marvel

Marvel's HOUSE OF X and POWERS OF X marks the next major milestone in X-Men history. Since their introduction by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby over 50 years ago, fans around the world have followed the extraordinary stories of the X-Men.

I already wrote about this back in December but the short version is, The X-men are back to prominence in the Marvel universe and everything is different but familiar. Is Professor X mind controlling some of his greatest allies and enemies into getting along? Are the X-men a cult now? Writer Jonathon Hickman reset the standards of what it means to be a mutant in the 616 (the numerical designation for the marvel universe) last summer and even now with 6 monthly titles and more on the way the questions are fascinating and lead to even more questions in a way I haven’t seen since ABC’s Lost.

 

Batman: The War of Jokes and Riddles

 

BATMAN VOL. 4: THE WAR OF JOKES AND RIDDLES

The Riddler and The Joker are at war! As the battle rages, the villains of Gotham City are forced to choose sides or be caught in the crossfire. As the conflict spreads to every corner of Gotham City, Batman battles back both sides' forces, and an unlikely criminal becomes the key to a potential resolution...but is the price of peace too high?

Writer Tom King just wrapped up a historic run on DC’s Caped Crusader which featured the almost wedding of Catwoman and Batman, a long term revenge plot throughout by the villain Bane, and this story where The Riddler and the Joker realize neither of them can become Batman’s greatest adversary as long as the other is alive. What follows is a Civil War where all the villains in Gotham City must choose a side or be wiped off the board with the Batman caught in the middle and trying to keep his city from burning to the ground.
Transformers More than Meets the Eye/Lost Light

IDW

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I’ve loved Transformers since seeing the cartoon as a kid in the 80’s and in the last decade the comics feel like they’ve been made specifically for my demographic. Following the alien robots that can transform into cars and planes after their 5000 year war is over and seeing more of the art, religion and politics that make up Cybertronian society is everything i never knew i wanted until i got it. The More than Meets the Eye comics, which were rebranded as Lost Light for its “3rd season” followed Autobot Rodimus (fans of the cartoon movie remember him as the hot headed youth that got Optimus Prime killed) as he leads an expedition of post war Autobots and Decepticons across time and space. It’s not just fun licensed stories, it’s good science fiction with snappy dialogue.

 

Sex Criminals

Sex Criminals

Image is a comics and graphic novels publisher formed in 1992 by 7 of the comics industry's best-selling artists, and is the 3rd largest comics publisher in the United States.

I cannot fully explain to you how difficult it is to ask folks if their following this comic with a name like Sex Criminals. However it is a funny, sweet and very strange story about a couple who discover they can stop time whenever they achieve orgasm and decide to use that power to rob a bank. From writer Matt Fraction who made me actually care about the Avenger Hawkeye and Artist Chip Zdarsky who is a fantastic follow on Twitter.