Blue Beetle Information Sought

I had no idea that there were four Blue Beetle collections out already. Where can I find out which issues are reprinted in each one? And which one is the best stand-alone read for someone who doesn’t want to get drawn into the big DCU but does want to see the strongest stories with the character?

10 Responses to “Blue Beetle Information Sought”

  1. Olivier E. Says:

    There’re 3 trades ou now and the fourth coming out in Ocotber.

    1 Shellshocked (1-6; w Keith Giffen & John Rogers; a Cully Hamner, Duncan Rouleau). [From DC Comics: Tearing its way through the events of DAY OF VENGEANCE and INFINITE CRISIS, the mystical Blue Beetle scarab has chosen its new guardian: teenager Jaime Reyes! But supernatural powers can be a blessing or a curse, and when it comes to the powers of the Scarab, you don’t get one without the other.]
    2 Road Trip (7-12; w Keith Giffen & John Rogers; a Cully Hamner, Duncan Rouleau, Rafael Albuquerque). [From DC Comics: Jaime discovers the secret of his Blue Beetle armor and hits the road looking for answers from the Scarab’s original owner.]
    3 Reach for the Stars (13-18; w John Rogers; a Rafael Albuquerque). [From DC Comics: Jaime has his hands full when he learns the scarab’s alien owners are invading Earth – and no one will believe him! Plus, more adventures guest-starring popular Green Lantern Guy Gardner, the Teen Titans, the villainous Eclipso, Typhoon, Giganta and more!] 2/27/08

  2. Jer Says:

    DC actually usually does a pretty good job of telling us what issues are reprinted where in their solicitation copy on the main DC Comics website (click on Graphic Novels and look under Blue Beetle). Their collapsing list interface that doesn’t know what a “back” button is gets annoying, but the content there is pretty good.

    Here’s the breakdown:

    Vol 1: 1-6
    Vol 2: 7-12
    Vol 3: 13-18
    Vol 4: 20-26

    Since I bought these as individual issues (as it was one of the few series on the stands at the time that was actually worth buying from month to month instead of waiting for), I’d have to look at my issues to see which ones I’d recommend.

    The book really has two story arcs – the first year is one large story and the second year is another. I think that the ones collected in volume 2 (Road Trip) may be the strongest stand-alone issues, but I’d need to go back and look to make sure. The first six issues are quite good by themselves, and Rogers and Giffen do a good job of introducing the supporting cast and the setting in them, but I recall them moving a little slowly.

  3. John Jakala Says:

    Johanna, from my perspective, the whole series is too entangled with the larger DCU to work well as a stand-alone read. A little over a year ago I checked out a volume of Blue Beetle from the library based on the strong reviews in the blogosphere. It was actually the second collection, but if I remember correctly, there was no indication of this anywhere on the book. I was a bit lost, since there were references to completed and upcoming crossover events, but even looking past that I thought the story wasn’t very good. Nice art by Rafael Albuquerque toward the end, though.

  4. david brothers Says:

    My vote’s the second trade– we get a recap of Blue’s origin, some fun stories, a sneaky primer on the DCU (Metron is explained in like one page, and I believe it boils down to “Know-it-all who wants to know it all”), and a lot of the little character interactions that make the series great.

    It’s also crossover free, though there are ties to other stories if you know where to look for them. There’s none of the “SPRINGING FROM THE PAGES OF UNDERWORLD UNLEASHED!” stuff.

  5. david brothers Says:

    Whoops, I didn’t see John’s post when I put mine up. It’s interesting to see the two different perspectives, I hope!

  6. Kelson Says:

    There’s a great Trade Paperback List on Millarworld that’s incredibly thorough, though it looks like it hasn’t been updated since maybe February.

  7. caleb Says:

    I think you can probably find them all easily at a library; the first two trades made the YALSA (Young Adult Library Somethingorother Association?) list for good teen reads a year or two ago.

    I just read those first two trades, and I think the PRECISE moment in which the book goes from so-so superheroics to pretty good is the first John Rogers solo issue. At that point, Jaime and Brenda are in the middle of an adventure with some New Gods, so it’s obviously a terrible place to start a story, but that’s where it starts being really fun.

    I think if you have a decent understanding of the DCU already (i.e. you know who the New Gods are), you can probably start halfway through the second trade, and then read the third and fourth for the good stuff.

  8. Paul Says:

    The second trade ‘Road Trip’ starts with Jaime and his family investigating his origin. It’s done really well and more personable than the usual superhero tale. That’s done in the very start of it, and then it goes into good superheroics. That’s why I picked it as the first trade to buy.

  9. Johanna Says:

    Thanks, everyone, for the help!

    John, David, I trust you both! But now I’ll have to see for myself. So much for taking a shortcut. :)

  10. James Schee Says:

    Hmm, this is one of those series I’ve been considering as well Johanna. Since I remember reading somewhere that Traci from Dr. 13(a fav.!) was a part of the cast. Plus I remember seeing some uproar about a mainly all Spanish language dialogue issue.




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