Comics!

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“Old Demons” comes to a close as despite Archaeus‘ temporary hold over Angel pitting Buffy‘s ex against her current undead boyfriend, and having a host of lesser demons to fight off the rest of the Scoobies, the gang finds a way to come through in the end. Despite the fact that the arc comes to a close here with Archaeus’ defeat neither the demon nor the “Restless Door” artifact are taken out of play leaving the opportunity for one or both to make an appearance later in the season.

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With Darth Vader waiting in the wings the motley crew put together by Aphra of both bounty hunters (including Bossk) and killer droids (including IG-90) take down the Son-Tuul’s Pride on the Outer Rim to make off with a serious supply of credits to fund his secret operations. Just as everything seems to be going his way Vader is saddled with an Imperial Adjunct who the Sith Lord quickly realizes is more than clever enough to see through his ruse and eventually trace the theft back to him.

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In an action-heavy issue Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #48 moves the title one-step closer to its concluding 50th issue as Splinter, Leonardo, Raphael, Michelangelo, and Robo-Donatello fight for their lives against the seemingly never-ending supply of Mousers and Flyborgs controlled by the Shredder and Baxter Stockman. Even with the arrival of back-up in Alopex and Angel things look bleak for our heroes.

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Picking up from events introduced in last year’s The Shadow #0, Dynamite Entertainment launches a new series starring The Shadow and his war against a secret cabal of illusionists known as The Society of United Magicians. Opening with the death of magician George Carlini and The Shadow taking on a group of circus performers and then interrupting a seance, the first few pages (as bizarre as they are) lay the groundwork for arc as the Shadow reveals himself to a low-ranking member of the order that he, and he alone, holds Harry Houdini’s secret of “the Last Illusion” which the society covets.

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Astro City #25 offers a snapshot of the life of a second-generation super-hero in Hummingbird who is both gifted and cursed with unique gifts which begin to express themselves during adolescence including wings that give her the power of flight.

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Released first as a webcomic and later picked up by IDW for print publication, the first issue of Atomic Robo and The Ring of Fire deals with the present-day fallout of Tesladyne being branded a terrorist organization (see Atomic Robo and The Savage Sword of Dr. Dinosaur) and Atomic Robo‘s Old West adventures (Atomic Robo: The Knights of the Golden Circle) after being lost in middle of Dr. Dinosuar‘s timebomb and presumed dead by all but a handful of his most trusted scientists.

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“The Thief and the Kunoichi” comes to a conclusion as Usagi and Chizu make the best of Kitsune‘s plan to sell Inouye’s secret treaty back to the merchant. The warriors decide to use the time and setting of the transaction to their advantage by destroying a secret shipment of Ginseng Inouye is counting on to help fund his underhanded dealings.

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Oliver and Roy‘s journey to Lian Yu proves fruitful as the pair get the blood sample they need from Slade Wilson in order to fight the latest Mirakuru-powered madman with a grudge against Oliver walking the streets of Starling City.

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Secret Six #4 is a tease of the comic we should be, but aren’t, getting. Thanks New 52. After the new team makes its way to the suburbs they are almost immediately attacked by three of Mockingbird‘s assassins who will be familiar to longtime fans of the team well-before they are unmasked: Scandal Savage, Ragdoll, and Jeannette (who seems oddly toned-down here). Despite still missing Deadshot, and insisting on dressing Catman in that awful fetish costume (#BringBackTheCowl), Secret Six #4 has a bit of the old magic (even if it is unnecessarily stomped on by quite a few superfluous characters).

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While offering glimpses into the world Sticks left behind, and his reasons for doing so, the latest issue of Astro City concludes the warrior-ape turned drummer turned super-hero turned nomad’s story which includes a stint with the super-group Reflex 6 who, among other adventures, fought to close illegal alien speakeasies in Astro City where human brain chemistry and dreams were the drug of choice for an elite clientele. Like super-apes who play the drums are known to do.

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