So… Why Aren’t We Reading ‘Resurrection’?

I’ve known for a month that I had a new favorite series on my hands, if only I could remember its name long enough to buy and read an issue of it.

A while back — possibly on this very site — I saw somebody post an anecdote about a visit to his local comic shop. Apparently, there was a guy standing in line ahead of him at the counter who was grabbing up all the latest Marvel comics like Ed Brubaker’s Captain America and Daredevil. When he got to the counter, the gent saw a display for the latest issue of Criminal and, his arms loaded down with all Brubaker’s other comics like he was hoarding them McDuck-style, the guy eyeballed Criminal and said, “Who buys this crap?”

Then, as I imagine him, he stuffed his comics into his Silent Bob trench coat and waddled back to his scooter, which promptly broke beneath him. But that’s just me taking out my frustrations on imaginary people.

If I have had any one guiding principle for my reading habits since returning to comics as an adult, it has been Do Not Be That Guy. There was a time when, yes, I would buy fifty issues of Web of Spider-Man and not know who wrote any one of them (well, I remember who wrote two of them; perhaps not coincidentally, those are the only issues of the fifty I can remember as being great) but that time was 1988 when I was 13. Now, while I’m still interested in what my childhood superheroes are up to, the first thing I do before I buy their books is see who’s writing them. If the writer’s someone whose previous shenanigans have burned me, I steer clear rather than “sticking with it till it gets good again.” Conversely, unlike Mr. Brubaka-hata above, if I like the guy I find out everything else he’s writing and try that as well, even if those tries don’t always work out for me.

I always assumed that everybody else at the comic shop was doing the same thing. After all, we are reading; shouldn’t we all be at least a weensy bit interested in the people doing the writing? Over time, though, I came to slowly, painfully learn that my ex-girlfriends, little sister, and faculty adviser were right: not everyone has to look at things the same way I do. Nonetheless, if iFanboy has hammered home one lesson time and time again, it is this: if there’s a Marvel or DC comic you like, chances are the person writing it is also toiling away on a labor of love that’s all theirs for some independent publisher. You’d be doing yourself a big favor to seek it out.

wowThis brings me back to my favorite unread book. Weeks ago, I heard a creator on a podcast talking about one such labor of love and was mesmerized. He was writing a book about an alien invasion, like War of the Worlds or Independence Day… but his book was about what happens after the invaders are repelled. After Morgan Freeman finishes his voiceover and calls it a day, what happens to the people who have reclaimed that decimated Earth? How do they rebuild? How do they stop jumping at shadows and learn to trust again? Do they continue to band together, or do they revert to old prejudices and self-preservation? Are all the aliens, in fact, gone? Let’s keep the camera rolling after the movie’s big climax and find out.

“The End” doesn’t appear in the sky after humanity surmounts a big hurdle. (At least, it hasn’t so far; keep watching the skies.) We have to keep living with the things that have happened. Unlike movies or even TV, comics are uniquely suited to tell the hell out of this kind of story, to follow a set of characters episodically over the long term as they deal with, say, losing loves ones, or recovering alien technology from downed interstellar craft. The usual stuff. As a reader, lingering on the consequences is like crack to me. Clearly, I had to get my hands on this book… which would have been a whole lot easier to do if I had been able to remember what podcast I’d been listening to.

Ugh! Who was that? It was that guy who wrote that thing. C’mon, Jim, you loved that thing! What the hell was that thing? Dammit, you can’t even Google it unless he titled it The Moon-Men Are Gone; Now What? Which seems unlikely.

Miraculously, it all came rushing back to me when I opened up the latest Marvel Comics Presents (yep, still a faithful reader, though I understand it may be down to me and the relatives of the people working on the book) and saw the name Marc Guggenheim. In addition to writing the one story that still compels me to buy Marvel Comics Presents, Guggenheim wrote an excellent stretch of Wolverine comics you may have heard about somewhere a year or so ago. Anyone who can make me buy Wolverine after all these years has some powerful mojo indeed, so I was delighted when he signed onto the team responsible for Spider-Man’s “Brand New Day,” which has also turned out to be a great idea every step of the way, as I will be delighted to talk more about on a day when I feel like having a huge fight break out in the Comments section of my article.

Once I had the Guggenheim piece of the puzzle, I was quickly able to find out the book is called Resurrection and get my hands on the first three issues. Expectations were in the stratosphere; after the thrill of the hunt and the anticipation I built up hearing about the premise, you can imagine how crushed I was when it turned out to be awful.

No, of course it wasn’t! I’m kidding. What a waste of everyone’s time that would be.

Resurrection by Marc Guggenheim and David Dumeer is just as outstanding as I hoped it would be. I’m moved by everything the main characters have lost; I’m riveted by the intrigue surrounding the acting president; I want to know everything there is to know about “Spock” and the invasion itself as it unfolds in flashback. I can’t wait to get my hands on the next issue.

So why aren’t more of us reading it?

amen, sisterDo the shops just not carry it? I’ve heard that in a lot of places, if you want something that isn’t DC or Marvel you’re plumb out of luck. Good news, though: if you look around where you’re currently standing, you will notice there is an internet now. First problem solved.

Is it just that Oni Press doesn’t have its own Mighty Marvel Marketing Machine gassed up in the garage, waiting to beat the drum for the book all summer with zombie covers? The reason it took me so long to find this book wasn’t solely that I subscribe to too many podcasts; it’s that the only person I hear talking about this Marc Guggenheim book loudly is Marc Guggenheim. Maybe we can do our bit to solve that problem as well.

Is it that nobody else can remember the name of it either? Look: Resurrection. Resurrection. Resurrection. It’s not about your personal Lord and Savior; it’s about saucer-men from the stars!

Any time you  read about comics online, you find factions perpetually engaged in a pillow fight about which of the big companies has the most convoluted history, but here we have an established writer who’s made his bones at both of those companies putting out something entirely self-contained that you can walk into cold and do just fine. There’s a nice recap page in the front; they’re only on issue six; all aboard!

Why are people allergic to books like these? I know I’m not breaking new ground when I ask this question; I guess I’m just trying to get your sense of it, o’ reader. How aware are you of the good work your favorite writers are doing outside your wheelhouse? How eager are you to seek it out? For that matter, how wary are you?

Oh, and just to be thorough: Resurrection is by Marc Guggenheim. E before I. All right-thinking fans of The Walking Dead or Y: The Last Man can afford at least a taste. If you have ever bought a bust of any character, you can afford at least a taste. You still have about six weeks to pre-order the first trade, and in the meantime it looks like Oni would be more than happy to sell you the individual issues. Their site even has some free preview pages. Take a moment to stop arguing about which crossover you’re most tired of and see humanity recover from the Bug invasion. If it doesn’t hook you, the crossovers will still be there when you get back.


Jim Mroczkowski can say whatever he wants about following writers, but even after Jason Aaron tore it up over on Wolverine he still hasn’t picked up a copy of Scalped. You can chide him for his hypocrisy via or


  1. i remember reading about this on an interview but forgot all about it, he is becoming one of my favorite writers including especially since he also writes the t.v. show Eli Stone (which is coming back for a second season on Abc).

    i will be pre-ordering the trades thanks for the article

  2. Heh – that Brubaker story happened to Josh and I; we told it on the podcast.

    I’ve been waiting patiently for this first trade and just now preordered it.  Thanks, Jim!

  3. I think it’s because a lot of people are spending a ton on books now. SO when they find themselves in the position of having a couple of extra dollars, on a light week let’s say, that they first try and buy what might be on their ‘want’ list already. A trade paperback that they missed, for intance, might get those bucks that would otherwise be spent on the Indy book that they have never heard of before.

    Additionally, if they are going to take a shot on something new, they might gravitate towards, titles from the big 2 that have had a ton of hype. The average comic fan will probably buy Final Crisis to see how it is over a title that they have never heard of before. Also the big 2 have a ton of these little mini series attached to events such as Secret Invasion: Front Line. Chances are that they have seen many solicitations and ads for Front Line, than they did for something for Oni press. 

    Ironically, I have never heard of Resurrection myself and I am downloading the series right now. I will decide if I want to buy the trade after reading. Yes. I am one of ‘those’ guys.

  4. Oh and good article by the way. 🙂

  5. For more, Guggenheim talks about this book at 48 minutes in of this year’s NYCC show, just in case you needed a refresher. 

  6. I’m actually in the the market for a Jimski bust, but that’s a story for another day I’m afraid.

    I’ve made this argument nearly 600 times so I’m sympathetic.  I will check out Resurrection.  I almost promise.  It’s a cool concept.  It would suck if it went away on you like Strange Girl, American Virgin, anything else I like.

  7. Excellent article Jim, and thank you for the coverage!

    As Oni’s one man Marketing Machine (powered by solar energy and coffee) I think it’s important to point out the obvious: the more we talk about the independent press the more it’s read, and the more it’s read the more it’s discussed.

    (cue patriotic music)

    I personally believe that things are only getting better for small press, particularly as comic sites and web communities become more willing to review/preview/discuss. But we can’t let up!  We need to continue to express our love/hate for the independent publishers in the same way we do the mainstream press!  Talk about what you like and what you don’t, not only will it help small press sell books and publish more, it will improve the content and quality of the work and the readership!

    (fanfare, fin)

    … I know, I know. Lofty goals, but if you don’t aim for the stars, etc etc.

    Thanks for the article Jim, and thanks to all the fans who go pick up a copy of Resurrection and love or hate it.  We can’t do any of this without you!

  8. great article jimski, I am glad there are articles like this that put a spotlight on indie books that would go completely unnoticed at the shops I frequent.  I shop at two shops, one is the "if it’s not Marvel or DC you’re out of luck" one and the other has everything indie basically thrown into a pile by a snow shovel.  Articles like this give me a road map to mine through those lumps and lumps of books at the latter shop. 

  9. I imagine there’s little we could do to prevent the massive ode to the Beyonder Jim’s got planned for next week after these 2 indie themed weeks.

  10. When I get done buying SiP trades and Y: The Last Man trades, I’ll think about it. However, right now, the only book I’m reading that Guggenheim is writing is Young X-Men and I’m strongly considering dropping that.


  11. I actually bought the first four issues of Resurrection before I had read anything else by Guggenheim, because I was just getting into comics, it was at the LCS (which just places things alphabetically rather than by publisher), it had cool covers, and the concept looked interesting.  Ironically, Ressurection is the book that I most recently put on probation.  The art is pretty great, but I actually thought the writing was frustratingly close to being good: close enough that I despised it for not actually being good.  The concept is great, and I like a lot of the setup.  Every element, though, had something that very much didn’t sit right.  As an example, I thought that having the military leaders focus on the civilian line of secession was an interesting concept, but that the characters in those scenes were  written in a heavy-handed, clunky, stereotyped manner, and it seemed in danger of allowing Guggenheim’s probably libertarian politics and worldview to color the story too much.

    Issue five was the make-or-break issue for me.  The title’s still on probation, but I liked five enough to give it, say, two more issues before reassessing.


  12. just added the trade to my wishlist on amazon…which is like 30 pages

  13. "As an example, I thought that having the military leaders focus on the civilian line of secession was an interesting concept, but that the characters in those scenes were  written in a heavy-handed, clunky, stereotyped manner, and it seemed in danger of allowing Guggenheim’s probably libertarian politics and worldview to color the story too much."

    I read the first three issues & I agree with this. I checked it out becuause I love the idea of it, but the execution didn’t hold up, for me. In comics, dialogue is make or break, and the dialogue in this book is … not good (IMO), and the main reason I didn’t keep reading it. Also I think it’s a political soap box for the writer disguised as a comic book.

  14. OK. I find myself into this story. I am going to get the first trade when it comes out.

    Like was stated. Word of mouth for books with limited marketing budgets is probably going to be the best way to get em out there. 

    Also, another killer for me is issue 2, or higher. If I dont, or havent read the first issue, for some reason my eyes glaze over the solicitations for any issues past that. Especially indy books because of the limited retailer supply in the first place. If you hadnt mentioned it here (THE place I get all my comic news and recommendations from) this book would have simply slipped by.

    Thanks for the heads up. I will be telling my friends about the book. 

  15. Been following this title since issue 1.  Great story. Can’t wait for the trade too.

    Great article!

  16. Well now that i have a job again…I may indeed pick up this book

  17. I read it, have since day one and, well, it’s okay right now. Loved it for the first couple issues and now it’s kind of lost a lot of steam. The irregular schedule doesn’t help it either. It’s a strong premise, but doesn’t feel like its gone anywhere with it yet. I’m still giving it a couple more issues, but it needs to sell me more. Also, it doesn’t help that Oni is publishing another Post-Apocalyptic book in WASTELAND that is far and away better (and, if you want to talk a criminally under-read book on the stands, there’s your pick right there).

     Oh, and if anyone wants to try some of RESURRECTION, I have doubles of the first three issues just sitting around. I had bought them as they came out, but the guys at ONI randomly sent me some review copies so, I guess if anyone wants them I can send them out. Just give me a PM or whatever on the messageboard or here (wait, can we even do PM’s on this page?)

  18. Love this book

  19. Sounds interesting, and I remember his pitch on the iFanboy show a while back.  But, like you, it slipped my mind.  I’ll remedy that.  Thanks Jimski.

  20. I have been reading this book since the first issue as well, and though I do like it, it’s on the chopping block because I just buy so many books.  I’m giving it another issue or so to pick up and wow me.  In a perfect world I’d read every good book out there, but right now there’s so many good books.

  21. I LOVE the concept. I’ll be picking up the Trade. I loved GGuggenheim’s Woverline run. But I will stay clear of "Eli Stone" because George Michael is far too lame for me to put up with.