By Molly Jane Kremer and Jarrod Jones. Undercover is our opportunity to lovingly gaze upon gorgeous works from magnificent artists. Each week, we single out the most striking covers that grace comic book stands and gush all over them.
We Are Robin #1, by Lee Bermejo. (DC Comics)
JJ: Lee Bermejo is DC Comics’ #1 ace-in-the-hole. The man carved out his now-legendary status as one of comics’ leading artists by supplying top-notch work to scripts written by Brian Azzarello for more than fifteen years. And now the man is breaking out on his own, forging drafts for his own books, like Vertigo’s Suiciders, and here with the utterly fantastic We Are Robin #1. But that doesn’t mean Bermejo is setting his pens down in favor of the keyboard: this Banksy-inspired cover is a high-contrast beaut of stunning wonder.
Jem and the Holograms #4, by Sophie Campbell. (IDW)
MJ: A wonderful companion piece to Campbell’s cover to issue #3 – of the adorable and sweet Holograms selfie-ing a group shot – this one has mean-girl Pizzazz (front-woman of rival band The Misfits) taking a selfie while blocking the rest of her band out of the photo. Roxy, Jetta and Stormer pout and vie for space in the background while Pizzazz angrily beams at her camera. Campbell’s amazing talent for drawing hair and fashion is again on display, and the colors are electric neons, perfect for the Misfits’ glam-goth sensibilities.
Ninjak #4, by Raul Allen. (Valiant Entertainment)
JJ: You ought to know by now that Valiant has some of comic’s finest artists working under their banner, and more often than not, their cover game is completely on lock. Consider this gorgeous cover by Raul Allen: an eye-popping fusion of sharply contrasting blues, purples, and fuschias rife with symbolism, subtext, and intrigue. If this doesn’t make you stop dead in your tracks during your weekly gloss-over at the local comic stands, you might need to consult an optometrist.
Howard the Duck #4, by Jason Latour. (Marvel Comics)
MJ: Marvel’s month of variant Gwen-sanity is nearly over, but not before we’re given a couple more excellent additions to the list, most notably from the Spider-Gwen scribe himself, Jason Latour. No stranger to Howard either (he drew the backup in issue #3), Latour draws his “Gwen the Duck” mélange directly from Robbi Rodriguez’s Edge of Spider-Verse #2 cover, Spider-Gwen’s lauded debut. With her duck-toed Converse and a yellow bill matching her blonde hair, this is one of the funniest (and cutest!) Spider-Gwen variants in an already talent-crammed roster.
Grayson #9, by Mikel Janin. (DC Comics)
JJ: I do not lament the end of Nightwing. I don’t have to. Not when a killer book like Grayson keeps Robin numero uno Dick Grayson super-busy in ridiculously entertaining ways. And here, Mikel Janin’s suave-as-hell cover to Grayson #9 pays direct homage to the former Knight of Blüdhaven by decking Dick out in his legendary blacks and blues, all while containing it within the most stupendously well-fitted suit ever rendered. And then there’s the escrima sticks. Yessir, Nightwing is still in there somewhere; Agent 37 is merely clockwatching.
Superman #41, by Karl Kerschl. (DC Comics)
MJ: DC’s special month of variants is drawing to a close as well, this one celebrating that Clown Prince of Crime, the Joker. Quite a few of these variants have drawn on the character’s more dark and violent recent stories, but Karl Kerschl decided to take a more lighthearted look at a character who was, for a large portion of his 75-year history, another goofy guy who robbed banks in Gotham while wearing clown make-up. On the cover, Superman sports a look of tired, mild annoyance on his handsome features, holding on to the Joker – who just happens to be wearing the same diaphanous dress that Margot Kidder had on in the Superman film of ‘78. The Joker is clutching a briefcase overstuffed with recently pilfered cash, mewing softly, “Can you read my mind?” with the usual rictus grin plastered across his face. Kerschl has created a fitting visual gag for his Joker cover, and I’m still giggling about it.
Which covers are you into this week? We want to know. Tell us about it in the comments below.