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Joe Simon: My Life, Loose Ends among new comic reviews 

Another week, another stack of comic books and comic-related goodies; here's a look at what I've recently scooped up:

Joe Simon: My Life in Comics: Just in time for this week's big-budget, big-screen release of Captain America, I'd suggest that you get your hands on this memoir by one of the guys who created the star-spangled hero: Joe Simon. (Yeah, I said memoir — not comic book.) The book offers up an engrossing look at the comic industry's early days, where titles were churned out on veritable assembly lines and creators saw zero royalties for their efforts. My Life in Comics also unearths a slew of other characters that Simon created (my favorite being House Date Harry). Pick it up and get a taste of comic history.

Loose Ends No. 1: It seems like whenever crime comics are released these days, folks make comparisons to the work of writer Ed Brubaker. I've read some early reviews of Loose Ends and critics have already started opining about the similarities. But, honestly, this comic is doing its own thing. First off, this book isn't a retro-flavored, noir-type tale. It's a modern take on crime fiction and, if anything, probably borrows more from films of the 1970s than pulp novels of the 1940s. And setting the story in the South — and not some antiquated idea of the South, by the way — allows Loose Ends to define its own voice and pace. So look y'all ... as much as I love Brubaker, this ain't Brubaker. (And, yes, that's a good thing.) Oh and the art, and colors (as well as the production) are fucking amazing. Buy it.

Captain America No. 1: Speaking of Ed Brubaker, why did I get déjà vu after reading the first issue of this new Captain America series? Well, it's because Brubaker has given us this same story — some mystery foe from Cap's WWII past returns to give him grief — numerous times already. Enough is enough. I just can't keep reading the same crap over and over again.

Guarding the Globe No. 5: Speaking of crap, not only was this comic super late, it's also super pointless. I love writer Robert Kirkman, but this limited series has been a mess since about issue No. 2. I'm done.

Reviewed materials provided by Heroes Aren't Hard to Find: www.heroesonline.com.

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