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Help Me Help You Buy That New Empowered Hardcover

February 27th, 2012 by | Tags:

All right, listen. Lean in close. I want to let you in on a secret, okay?

I want you to buy Adam Warren’s Empowered Deluxe Edition Volume 1. It hits your local comic shop this week, but if you’d rather get it off Amazon, you’ll have to wait until 03/13. In exchange, though, it’ll cost you just 37 bucks instead of 60. The choice is yours. (edit: The HC is in-stock on Amazon as of the morning of 02/29)

That’s a steep price for a comic, but you get a lot of bang for your buck. It’s a nice hardcover with Empowered volumes 1 through 3. For your money, you’re gonna get 712 pages of sexy superhero comedy, including 40 pages of bonus material like sketches and designs and ideas. It’s a pretty good deal, I’d argue, and I already own all these books. If the price is too steep for you, and you have some way to enjoy digital comics, give some thought to picking up digital versions of the series. They’re 7.99, which is a steal. If you don’t do digital comics, then you should buy Empowered Volume 1 in print, maybe?

I’ve written about Emp and Warren’s work a lot. Maybe more than anyone else on comics internet? I dunno — probably, if I had to guess — but that’s mostly irrele except to point out that if you want to know about Emp, I’ve got you covered. A (surprisingly thorough) selection:

-I talked about his fantastic runs on Gen13 (you’ll not find a teen comic better, for my money, even though I guess the cast was early 20s by that point?) and Livewires. You can find his Gen13 (with a variety of artists, including a not-terrible Ed Benes!) in a couple of volumes– Gen 13: Superhuman Like You and Gen 13: Meanwhile. Livewires Vol. 1: Clockwork Thugs, Yo is kinda-sorta the type of hard sci-fi I’m not into, but Warren makes it work, and throws an ill espionage angle onto the whole works. I can’t recommend them highly enough. They’re clever, they’re pretty, they’re well-plotted, and they’re just good comics. Everybody who likes “fun” in comics, whatever that means to you, should pick them up.

-I reviewed Empowered 6 for ComicsAlliance. It’s the volume that comes after the incredibly devastating emotional landmine that was volume 5, and it’s pretty good.

-I did another Empowered thing for CA, about why the sex scenes work so well in this particular cape comic and not so well in others, but it isn’t up yet. I’ll edit it in when it goes live, if that happens in the next couple days. The short version is “It’s funny and makes you care about the characters before they get down to the old in-out.”

-I typed a little about Empowered: The Wench With A Million Sighs and why it’s a good jumping-on point. You can buy it here.

-I typed at length about Adam Warren’s writing abilities, and how his work on Iron Man: Hypervelocity with Brian Denham was a brutally effective way to do an Iron Man story. It’s all about the ideas and pushing things forward using real-world cutting edge technology, rather than like… boring looking robots and smart cars. I like this bit I wrote:

Adam Warren is an idea guy in the best possible sense of the phrase. If you want to kick something into high gear, really peel back what makes it work and throw a whole bunch more stuff into the mix without breaking your character, he’s the man to come see. Hypervelocity is what Iron Man should always be like. Something fresh, something moving at Mach 8, and something that takes something from real life and makes an ill comic book concept out of it. Warren just pours ideas onto the page at a rate no other writer can match. He drops them out there into the world where they’re just aching to be explored.

Of course, the trade’s out of print and Marvel hasn’t put up the digital version. Dig this one up, though. It’s a trip.

-Remember The Dirty Pair? Warren worked on those back in the day, and I wrote about that, too. They’re a dynamic duo, masters of disaster, and a whole lot of fun to read. Good luck finding trades, but definitely check your local comic shop for the hookup. I like these a lot.

The character of Sistah Spooky in Empowered is actually a really deft and fantastic exploration of black pathology. Hating the skin you’re in, wishing you were white (or at least not-black)… it’s all self-hatred and it’s all poisonous. And this gem is hidden in what looks like a fluffy and sexy superhero comedy. I mean… yowza, I can’t really over-state how awesome it is that Warren did this, and that it was intentional. It’s a lightning bolt out of the blue, the saddest thing in the world, and totally great, too. You want emotional resonance in your funnybooks? Spookums has so much of it that your head will spin.

-Finally, I did a 5800 word interview with Warren around the time Empowered 5 dropped about a lot of things. His process, his tools, his history, his craft… we cover a lot of ground. It’s still pretty interesting, and it’s cool to see hints of stuff that ended up being worked into the book. I’m pretty sure one thing he says hasn’t been seen in cape comics before has been seen in Emp since, but I don’t want to ruin it. It has to do with the character Mindf–k, though.

-Oh yeah. If you want to see images, click any of those posts, or check out his deviantart.

If all of that can’t convince you to buy some Empowered… I dunno, man. There’s cute girls and buff guys in it, I guess? Will that do the job?

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16 comments to “Help Me Help You Buy That New Empowered Hardcover”

  1. One problem . . . what about those of us who already have all of the volumes? Why should I get gypped out of all of the extras Warren is including with the deluxe edition?


  2. @Jason: Do me a favor and don’t say “gypped,” please.

    You aren’t getting screwed out of anything. This is a deluxe format–it’s supposed to include extra stuff. You’re paying a premium to get all that junk. Books 1-3, at retail, are what, forty-five bucks, total? Fifteen each? There’s another fifteen added onto that for the 40 pages of design work. If you want them, you can choose to pay for it. If you don’t want to pay for them, that’s on you, I guess? But this is a different product than the original volumes and priced accordingly.


  3. Sorry for the turn of phrase, David. I just feel that there should be a way to get the new material for those who already bought the first volumes when they came out. Not like I’m dying to see the new material, but it would be nice.

    And for those who have NOT read Empowered? It’s awesome. Adam Warren should be getting more mainstream work beyond the odd story or two from Marvel.


  4. I’m buying a copy just so I can gift it to someone. I’ve already read all 6 volumes, and when I told my friend he NEEDS to read this comic, he added it to the to-do-list-of-things-friends-have-showed-him-but-will-never-get-to. Therefore, I’ll have to take drastic measures and slam the hardcover onto a table he’s sitting at in a dramatic fashion, and follow it with a great one-liner.

    Because I’m feeling extra generous (or irrational), I’m considering buying two.


  5. David is right, folks: it’s good comics.


  6. I discovered Empowered through your posts, David, and now have every volume — so thanks very much.

    But I have to agree with Jason that it’s irksome to buy something in one format and then have it reprinted with extras in a way that makes me regret having bought the earlier edition. Especially when it’s from a large publisher like DC/Marvel. I figure, hey, put the bonus stuff up online, so that those who already bought 90% of that deluxe volume can see it, and those who haven’t yet might be enticed to buy the whole shebang. I figure the only downside for that publisher is losing sales from the few people who would’ve double-bought, but maybe you’re better off with their long-term goodwill in that case.

    But that’s just how I think I might do business, if that were my business to do. Either way, Empowered has so much goodness in it, and I’m glad you’re consistently championing it.


  7. Having been a longtime Adam Warren fan, I’ve been buying every volume of Emp as they come out, have also grabbed the digital versions, and will be picking up the Deluxe Edition at full retail without hesitation when I get home from vacation later this week. I’m loathe to double-dip on anything, but Warren and Emp are just that good.


  8. @BrianMc: I’m not 100% positive, but I believe much of the extra sketches and such are on Warren’s DeviantArt account. Beyond that I initially wasn’t planning on rebuying as I like my current volumes jus fine, but that discounted Amazon price is pretty tempting…


  9. Hey David, I don’t know if you get enough hits from the UK to justify the extra typing/uglification of your links, but I’d make sure to use your Amazon.co.uk click-throughs if you had ’em. Maybe it’s a whole different program, though? Anyway, just a heads up.


  10. This deluxe hardcover was solicited at the perfect time for me when I thought that I had heard quite enough about Empowered and other comics by Adam Warren without knowing what the fuss was about. I check Amazon, and BAM there’s the deluxe hardcover. I just have to wait a while before I get to read it. :P


  11. Everything Adam Warren has done has always interested me, if only in that “I really need to try that sometime” way, where I never get around to actually buying it. Based on this recommendation, this seems like as good a time as any to finally read one of his comics.


  12. @LurkerWithout: Ah, thanks for the tip. I’ve never checked out Warren’s DeviantArt. Will do now …


  13. Ah, good. I loved Hypervelocity and Empowered has been on my “I really should get into this series” list for a few years. Procrastination pays off yet again!


  14. Yep… been planning on finally getting to read Empowered for a while, and this will do just fine in making that happen!


  15. Empowered is genius and completely disappointing at the same time. I bought the first 4 trades… meaning I wasted money on the first 4 trades. It’s like Miller doing comedy violence. Adams is into the fetish but has to make excuses like mainstream likes to see… and read apparently. His genius is how well he fools himself he’s not into it – and how he fools everyone else he’s not either.


  16. If you already got the volumes like did there’s some good news as well. Volume 7 is due in June.

    And the Dirty Pair books aren’t that hard to get, I found most of them on Amazon for under $10. And they really are THAT GOOD. Even the first book from the late 80s holds up today as a fun sci-fi story.

    I’m a huge Warren fan, glad to see him getting the credit he deserves.