Nisha Gopalan

After her husband died on 9/11, a pregnant Alissa Torres was shell-shocked. In American Widow, punctuated by melancholic white-and-gray sketches, she recalls how motherhood jolted her out of grief.

For Fans of… Frederik Peeters’ Blue Pills.

Bottom Line A powerful portrait of a woman — and a survivor. B+

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It’s said that Delta bluesman Robert Johnson made a Faustian deal to become a badass axman. Set in the racist South, Akira Hiramoto’s manga, imbues that myth with bizarre flourishes like a trigger-happy Clyde Barrow (without Bonnie). Plus, we learn the secret to Johnson’s genius: 10 fingers…on one hand!

For Fans of… Depression-era lore.

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Building Comic-Con

In 1970, 300 comic-book fans convened in the basement of a dumpy San Diego hotel for the first Comic-Con. Conceived as a peaceful nerd Eden where fanboys could score a dusty back issue of The X-Men or an autograph from its co-creator Jack Kirby, the annual four-day convention was so far under Hollywood’s radar that the only ”stars” who showed up in those early years were Frank Capra and Chuck Norris.

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First Look: Spider-Man goes ape!

”Marvel Apes Issue 1” Variant Cover (out Sept. 17)

Courtesy of Marvel

King Kong. Curious George. Clint Eastwood’s buddy in Every Which Way but Loose. All pioneering simians, all troublemakers. Come Sept. 3, Spider-Man, Wolverine, Daredevil, and their compadres will join these ranks when Marvel Comics, in a bid to duplicate the success of the Marvel Zombies franchise, re-envisions its marquee superhumans as…apes. Creepy apes.

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