It is time for the best covers from the week that was. A quick reminder: only comics that I personally have purchased qualify for this piece. If a title contains more than one cover, only the one I own is taken into consideration. Now without further ado:
Third Place Batgirl #20
Eddy Barrows certainly delivered one chilling cover this week to take the third place spot. Making her debut this issue is none other than a new female version of classic Batman foe, the Ventriloquist. Never before has the Ventriloquist look quite so creepy ranging from her boney frame to her pale white skin to her sinister grin to her beady eyes. What really takes this cover over the top is the use of blood though. The Ventriloquist is splashed with it, her stool is covered, there are mass quantities on the floor, and there are traces dripping off of her puppet. Speaking of her puppet, usually the Ventriloquist is always accompanied by Scarface (a gangster-like dummy) but this one has hers dressed as Batgirl…holding giant knives. What could this mean? Is she metaphorically pulling the strings from behind the scenes? Is she framing Batgirl? Does every murder she commits weigh so heavy on Batgirl that she feels they are her fault for not saving them in time? Or does it mean something else entirely? Finally, the inspired choice of highlighting the villainess with a spotlight is a nice shout out proclaiming that the world is her stage and she is about to put on a “killer” performance for us all. Add that to the black background and the tagline “she gives a voice to death” and you’ve got a really impressive image here.
Second Place X-Factor #256
David Yardin is the runner-up this week with this cover featuring Monet who lies before us in a pose very reminiscent of the Crucifixion. As if her pose wasn’t enough of a clue, residing beneath her is a large puddle of blood heavily implying that Monet has indeed passed on from her mortal coil. This blood flows from her lifeless body in a spiral shaped circular pattern which could be a nod to the nine circles of Hell considering the storyarc is called “Hell on Earth” after all. Within this spiral of crimson are the various shocked visages of her fellow teammates in X-Factor, not believing what they are seeing as they each let out a horrified gasp. The choice of making the background white not only makes the blood pop off the page, not only helps the faces of X-Factor really standout, but it also gives her a more ethereal quality as white is usually associated with Heaven which is quite a contrast to this book’s current “hellish” direction. Is Monet really dead? Will X-Factor fail to save the day and meet the same fate? Can this arc possibly end on a happy note? It compels you to open the book up for answers and like I always say…that is what truly makes a great cover.
First PlaceBatwoman #20
And here is the Cover of the Week by J.H. Williams III who wins this distinction for the fifth time with yet another awesome visual masterpiece. He limits himself to just the reds, blacks, and whites to create an image that is anything but limited in regards to its impact. The entire scene is a master class lesson in transitioning techniques as we start in the upper right-hand side with Batwoman whose hair dramatically blows in the air before transitioning into drops of blood. Her cape is drawn with such skill and it is here within her cape where a collage of images forms. First up is a mysterious sarcophagus surrounded by white symbols which blends into a foggy white sky. The cape itself then bleeds downwards, forming the familiar sight of Gotham City itself, an image that leaps off the page thanks to the white background. All three covers this week utilized blood but this one managed to standout as the cream of the crop with an image that is just screaming to be made into a poster. Add the black background and what you get is a drawing that flows with an effortless motion that it’s almost as if it is coming to life before your eyes. With that said, J.H. Williams III, I award you the first place crown this week. Congratulations!
So those are my favourites and it’s a victory for DC with a three-to-two showing against Marvel. What’s your personal favourite covers from the week that was? Comment below!