It's a sad week for comics this week; a week I'd hoped would never come: The first appearances of annoying X-Men Gambit are being collected to tie in with his upcoming movie debut. I'm sorry.
Actually, there's a pretty movie-centric feel to most of this week's new launches or noteworthy titles; even the non-obvious ones (Detective Comics #853 is finally released, only two months late, finishing up the Neil Gaiman two-part storyline "Whatever Happened To The Caped Crusader?") have some kind of cross-media connection (It's Batman).
Admittedly, you may have to squint to see that connection with Marvel's new series Skrull Kill Krew, but come on; alien invaders and biker gangs. That's got to have been a movie at some time, right?
Marvel's also launching Fantastic Force, a spin-off from Fantastic Four written by Doctor Who director Joe Aherne. And Marvel is making up for Gambit Classic Volume 1 - I swear, that title is taunting me by including the word "Classic" - by also releasing collections of Warren Ellis' short Wolverine run as Wolverine: Not Dead Yet and the first volume of the enjoyable-if-blindingly-colored Spider-Man 2099, which introduces you to the Spider-Man of the future. And if you're rich, there's a hardcover omnibus of the first 31 issues of the original X-Men run, for "just" $99.99.
But for the most part, the releases you'll want to look out for are all tied into nostalgia and TV or movies; Dark Horse's wonderful Star Wars: Dark Times series returns, with the first part of Blue Harvest (I'll allow you a moment to get over the geeky perfection of the title), while Boom! Studios has Farscape Script Book, letting fans see Rockne S. O'Bannon's original script and plans for the comic continuation of the beloved TV show.
IDW go for the gold with two collections - GI Joe: The Best of Larry Hama (celebrating the comic writer who shaped the franchise so much during the '80s) and Terminator Salvation: The Movie Prequel, letting you see just what made Christian Bale's John Connor so screwed up (Clue: Everything in his life up until that point).
Dynamite Entertainment, meanwhile, are putting out a collection of the unlikely Army of Darkness/Xena Warrior Princess crossover series, as well as their Battlestar Galactica: Adama flashback book (And, finally, the Final Five comic that was supposed to come out last week), but that's only a distraction from the true prize of the week - Their 25-cent preview of the new Buck Rogers series launching this summer. At that price, how can you resist?
So, come tomorrow - Thursday if you're in the UK (And potentially the rest of Europe?) - strap on that jetpack and fly down to your local comic book store to demand your cheap future. And, if that doesn't do it for you, you can always check out the complete shipping list of what's making it to stores this week and find something else to spend your money on, instead. Just remember to turn that jetpack pack off before entering the store. Comics are flammable, after all.