Red and green. They say the official colors of Christmas were chosen because we spend til we bleed. It also had to do with holly branches, but that’s not the metaphor I need right now.
We round out our week of holiday gift guides with the highest of high end goodies. The wallet-busting deluxe editions so appropriate to the economic climate. Consider this your Sky Mall catalog of yuletide comics decadence.
For its rich, rich marrow:
We’re pretty sure they consulted the guys who saved Apollo 13 to develop the binding technology that made this mammoth omnibus possible. Over 1300 pages rendered in color to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Jeff Smith’s fantasy epic Bone. The previous single volume edition in black and white remains pretty dope, but the quality of this slipcased hardcover edition with its lush colors makes it an absolute landmark. It certainly doesn’t hurt that it’s one of the most impressive tales in American comics, all told through a singular voice. ($90 on Amazon)
You need reasons? How about five?
The first two entries in Darwyn Cooke’s sensational adaptation of Westlake’s Parker saga are bigger and better than ever in this deluxe slipcase. Appropriately black and blue, and outfitted with sumptuous bonus material, it’s the Miles Davis bootlegs of your premium comics collection. It’s the first thing you want to grab before slapping on a getaway face and starting your new life as a mug with principles. ($75 retail, and a merciful $47.25 on Amazon)
The definition of definitive. Had the Thor story begun and ended with these pages, it’d still be legend. From the arrival of Beta Ray Bill, a chance meeting with Clark Kent, the death of Odin, and an amphibious transformation, this is a bona fide epic. Clocking in at over 1000 pages, it’s also worthy of the tome moniker. If they loved the flick and want to see a master storyteller at his peak, Simonson’s Thor hammers it home. ($70.45)
For…we seriously have no idea, but we like talking about it.
Earlier this week, Josh C. rounded up some gift ideas for the fan who has everything. This? It’s for the fan who needs everything. All 52 #1 issues of DC Comics’ 2011 relaunch are packaged together in a 1200+ page behemoth. It retails for $150, making it one of the pricier samplers yet printed. It’s hard to say if a new reader would benefit from this anthology of teasers, but as a keepsake, it’s about as comprehensive a time capsule for DC comics in 2011 as you’ll find in one place. ($89.99 on Amazon)
For Johnny, man! We’ll do it for Johnny!
If John Byrne’s tenure with Marvel’s First Family is the second most popular Fantastic Four run in history, it’s only because he’s going toe-to-toe with the King himself. But if you want to go a little more modern than a Stan Lee script, this is your jam. This one also features relevant issues of Alpha Flight, Avengers, and Spectacular Spider-Man. ($77.17)
For those who smell like teen spirit:
If Red Hood and the Outlaws has you less hot than bothered, consider revisiting the iconic 80s series that put the Star in Starfire. Dick Grayson comes into his own as captain of The New Teen Titans, a team that once vied for supremacy with the irrepressible X-Men. Next year’s second volume leads us into “The Judas Contract,” which Conor rightly suggests as the coolest name for a superhero story just about ever. Off the shelf, it goes for about 75 clams, but online it can be had for a price that practically disqualifies it from this list. ($41.40)
For Doop, when it happens.
What’s weird and wild and Allred all over? It’s the X-Statix by Peter Milligan and Mike Allred. Big Two superhero comics had never been so bizarre, and this motley crew of mutants set a new tone for subversion. Combine Milligan’s wild, gross-out scripts with art from Allred, Darwyn Cooke, Sean Phillips, Duncan Fegredo, Paul Pope, Nick Dragotta, and Phillip Bond…and you’ve got money well spent. ($74.55)