Bagged and Boarded Comic Reviews: The Walking Dead, Batman and More

New comic book Wednesday has come and gone. The dust at your local comic shop has settled. An eerie silence descends as you finish reading your last superhero book of the week. Now it's time for something a little more sinister. Welcome to Bagged and Boarded: comic reviews of the sick, spooky, twisted and terrifying!

The Walking Dead: Michonne Special No. 1

The zombie apocalypse has happened. Now it's time to see The Walking Dead's Michonne deal with it. Michonne enters the fray like a true mystery, donning a katana, a rain poncho, and two chained up zombie "pets." This is a true distillation of one of the series' most crucial characters, as we see Michonne react to and survive in the fallout of the comic book.

Bag it or board it up? This comic is more of a re-release than an original story. But if you're new to the comic and ready to watch the season 3 premiere this weekend, pick this up and learn a little bit about the most bad-ass comic heroine this side of She-Hulk. The material here has all been told elsewhere, but it flows so nicely in this re-edited format and it's just a damn delight to read anything related to Michonne, even if it is recycled material.

Demon Knights No. 13

The Demon has sacrificed his friends and colleagues to rid himself of an infernal curse. Now he and all his compatriots are in hell (a natural fit for The Demon) and at the whim of Lucifer. Lucifer's minions have set up sick little games and scenarios for all of The Demon's doomed friends, and we get to see people like Vandal Savage prodded in hell.

Bag it or board it up? This comic is off the rails. There's so much going on here, with so many characters, and it all takes place in hell. If you don't follow the series... Good luck. But if you are a regular reader then there is a lot to love in this issue. Lucifer is written beautifully. He comes across, above all else, as wildly bored. Now he just wants to play with his new captives. This is a fun, albeit confusing, issue. Most of these DC issue 13's are meant to be intro issues to series you may have missed the first year of. Not so with Demon Knights, apparently.

Haunted Horror No. 1

Beware mortals! Collected in this new release are tons of reprints of pulpy old horror comics. This schlock collection contains six short comic stories about the weird, ghastly and nasty. We get stories about a Grim Reaper's daughter, a spider woman, mutants and mayhem. The color on these old comics has been lovingly restored, and the panels all pop with vivid, gory imagery. This collection features artwork from Bernard Baily and Jack Kirby among others, and the love with which these comics has been restored is evident.

Bag it or board it up? I really, deeply hope that we're not just getting comic reprints like this because Halloween is around the corner. Comics this good, weird, and horrifically historic deserve to be read all year long. These comics come from a different, stranger time, when monster movies didn't have to be realistic to be scary, and when a freaky story went a long, long way. Oh, the good old days (I assume, I certainly wasn't alive during them!)

Batman No. 13

Here it is. The return of the Joker. And boy, howdy, does the Joker return. After getting his face cut off and hiding for a year, the Joker busts back into Gotham, breaking necks and being a total psychopath. I wouldn't normally cover a Batman comic, but you better believe I'll be keeping a close eye on this run of comics. The Joker is back meaner, more psychotic and *spoiler alert* he's wearing his own cut off face as a mask!

Bag it or board it up? Bag it. Run out and get it and read it and freak out over it. This is a beautiful, scary, sad comic that shows a much more dangerous Joker. Batman says it himself: "You sense something even worse in [the Joker]. Something different. Meaner and angrier than before." This is a lean, mean comic book. If the rest of the series is as good as this opening issue, we could be looking at a momentous moment in comic history.