Pardon me while I gush over The Spirit for a moment

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I eagerly anticipate the next issues of Green Lantern, Action, Detective and Brightest Day each month as much as the next guy, but I'll take a few paragraphs here to talk about a book that's quietly snuck its way to the top of my read pile each week it's been released.

The Batman’s true loyalties revealed?

Writer Brian Azzarello and artist Rags Morales present the next chapter in the FIRST WAVE saga, as Doc Savage and The Spirit have followed the Blackhawks to Hidalgo. But the Red Hand stands between them and the murderous Anton Colossi – who's busy breaking bread with his dear friend Bruce Wayne, i.e. The Batman. And when Doc's newfound fortune is stolen as quickly as it was discovered, it'll take another uneasy truce between The Avenger and Doc's crew of compatriots to track it down.

FIRST WAVE #4 hits 9/29.

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PRODUCER/WRITER Michael Uslan on his SPIRIT BLACK AND WHITE story

It's quite rare in this day and age for me to get excited about the artwork in a particular comic book story. It happened to me when I saw my first Golden Age Captain America comic as Joe Simon and Jack Kirby's art tore through panel borders and leaped directly at me. I witnessed it in those nine panel cinematic pages by Steve Ditko in the '60's. I was shaken up by it when I bought Spectre #2 in the Silver Age and saw the work of some guy named Neal Adams who then continued to push the envelope of graphic story-telling through his every Deadman page.

End your week with some FIRST WAVE #2 pages

Writer Brian Azzarello and artist Rags Morales return for the second installment in the FIRST WAVE mini-series, as The Golden Tree begins to bear fruit. The Blackhawks are on the hunt for the Spirit. Doc Savage is after the Blackhawks. Anton Colossi is after William “Johnny” Littlejohn. And only Rima, the eyes of the jungle, knows what the heroes do not: something glorious and terrible has risen in the darkest corner of Hida’lgo.

FIRST WAVE #2 hits 5/12.

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THE SPIRIT #1 is here

Starting today, the Spirit returns in an all-new ongoing series from writer Mark Schultz and artist Moritat. Central City destroys everyone who lives within its borders, so it's a good thing The Spirit's already experienced being dead, huh?

The international crime syndicate known as The Golden Tree wants to help the devious Octopus consolidate his control over the underworld and the Spirit is the kind of mess the evil conglomerate was created to clean up. What chance does the vigilante have against one of The Golden Tree's deadliest assassins? Guess we'll find out...

Take a look at Mark Schultz’s THE SPIRIT #1 variant cover

Some things you probably know: The Spirit returns in a new ongoing series next month from writer Mark Schultz and artist Moritat. We showed off a page of the first SPIRIT: BLACK AND WHITE co-feature by Dennis O’Neil and Bill Sienkiewicz just last week.

Did you also know that Mark Schultz is not only writing the issue, but also contributing a variant cover? It’s possible. But I know it hasn’t been seen yet, so here it is:

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