Plot Summary: The February 2011 issue of Wizard magazine is the 2011preview issue, meaning the editors interviewed creators and publishers to find out what comics readers had to look forward to this year. Dark Horse Comics, the publisher of Hellboy, promised a new Hellboy trade and a few other spinoffs. The editors also did a preview of films coming out in 2011, including Captain America, Thor, and Green Lantern. Similarly, they did a story on superhero video games coming out in 2011 including Batman: Arkham City and Captain America: Super Soldier. Finally, as in all publications of Wizard, a price guide for single issues of comics is included in the back.
Critical Analysis: Wizard is perhaps the most trusted publication in the comics world. They always offer concise and accurate reviews of major comics from DC and Marvel but also of independent publishers such as Top Shelf, Fantagraphics, and Top Cow. As is evident from the plot summary, Wizard also keeps its readers updated in the comics world in other mediums such as video games and film. The editors seem to really know their subject and are passionate about it.
Unfortunately, Wizard magazine is very clearly a boy's club. Admittedly, most comics alienate women in the form of blatant sexism or weak female characters, but Wizard magazine does nothing to help. When women are mentioned in an article, they treat them as sex objects, not an important aspect of the comic or film. Comics are becoming more and more inclusive, it's unfortunate to see such a widely used comics publication take a step back in terms of inclusivity.
Wizard magazine is a reliable and well-written publication that many comics fans look to. In the age of the internet, where anyone can and will write about comics, having a trustworthy and long-running publication is an asset. Despite the dated gender views of the editors, Wizard magazine remains a good resource for comics news.
Reader's Annotation: The February 2011 issue of Wizard magazine offers never-before-seen previews on your favorite comics and superhero films.
Author Information: Wizard magazine launched in 1991, promoting releases from independent publishers like Image. The magazine is having difficulty remaining relevant, but continues publication.
Genre: magazine, graphic novels, comics
Curriculum Ties: N/A
Booktalking Ideas: Explain the current trend in superhero film adaptations.
Many say that Batman: Arkham Asylum was the first superhero game that developers got right. Why is this?
Interest Level/Reading Age: 12 to adult
Challenge Issues: N/A
Why I included this title: Teens are huge fans of comics, so there's definitely an audience for a publication on comics out there. This is also a great place to start for teens looking to get into comics, there's often a "best of" feature and the editors are good at asking creators about good places to start.