Saturday, March 28, 2020

No One's Rose #1

   This comic might be a tough read for those who are under lockdown right now because of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) epidemic.

   That's because No One's Rose is set in a dystopia future where the Earth has suffered a terrible disaster, and humanity is locked up in one of the only safe havens - a domed city that is nurtured by a gigantic tree.

   Life among those lucky enough to be inside the dome is divided among the worthy... and the rest.

   The story focuses on a brother and sister: Seren is a slacker who's always working an angle, and Tenn is a dedicated student working her way up the ranks.  

   For mysterious reasons Tenn decides to accompany Seren as he follows a secret path that will lead them to the upper level - a place only a chosen few are supposed to enter.

   It's an interesting story, if a big fuzzy in places (of course, they can't spell out everything up front), and the art is very good.

   It's a bit of a slow start as we learn more about the society and how this world of the future operates, but it's an interesting premise, even if it hits a bit close to home right now.

Grade: B


Wednesday, March 25, 2020

New Comics Day

   The area I live in is one of those shut down by the ongoing Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis. I talked with the owner of my comics shop yesterday and he said he had to shut down his shop until the order is lifted - and to make matters worse, Diamond Distributing has shut down its service after today. 

    What a shame! (Of course, there are much worse things happening out there.) We can only hope that the local shops will survive this closure and return to business when this is all over with.

   Here's what I had planned to pick up today:
- ACTION COMICS #1021 - Guest starring everyone!

- FANTASTIC FOUR MARVELS SNAPSHOT #1 - The Human Torch goes home again!

- LEGION OF SUPER HEROES #5 - Can the team save New Earth?

- GIANT SIZE X-MEN #1 NIGHTCRAWLER - Who's haunting the Xavier School?

- TAROT #4 (OF 4) - Can the Avengers and the Defenders get back to normal again?

- X-MEN #9 - What is the menace from space?

- X-MEN FANTASTIC FOUR #3 (OF 4) - The lives of mutants are at stake.

     I did receive these comics for review:
- BLADE RUNNER 2019 #7 - Where no Blade Runner would go!

- HEATHEN #10 - Trapped in a dungeon!

- MINIONS PAELLA TP - Going global!

- NO ONE'S ROSE #1 - Life inside the Green Zone.

- QUANTUM & WOODY  #3 (OF 4) - Back in high school?

- X-O MANOWAR  #1 - Win the battle, lose the world?

   So we'll see what happens next. Will the industry survive? Will the shops return? Stay tuned!

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Coronavirus vs. the Comics Industry

    As the Coronavirus disrupts life around the world, the comics industry is also feeling the impact.

   Comics shops across the country are scrambling to deal with the sudden drop in customers, as many shelter in place. Some shops are being forced to close. Some are offering curbside delivery, and others are actually delivering orders to some customers.

   The companies are also under pressure from shops asking for help is dealing with orders they now aren't able to sell.

   Several companies, including Valiant, Aspen and Vault, have announced plans to shut down the production of new comics until the crisis passes (whenever that might be). Others may follow suit.

   The other big casualty is Free Comic Book Day. That tradition was rumored to be expanding to fill the entire month of May (instead of just the first Saturday), but now retailers are planning to move it to sometime in the summer.

   Needless to say, at this point we don't know how long the quarantine conditions will continue, and the ultimate effect it'll have on a comics industry that is often struggling financially.

   More news as it develops!

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Doctor Tomorrow #2 (of 5)

   I'm not sure I have much to add to my review of the first issue of Doctor Tomorrow, since this issue is more of the same.

   And that's not a bad thing.

   This is a time-traveling adventure tale that - despite its dark backstory and the impending destruction of reality - manages a fun, almost lighthearted feel.

   It's actually a story of two Doctor Tomorrows - the adult version and a teen version who's suddenly forced to learn the ropes to prevent the destruction of the universe.

   It's a breezy tale with serious implications to the Valiant Universe. Lots of guest stars, an origin story and a few twists along the way.

   Good fun!

Grade: A-


Friday, March 20, 2020

Invasion From Planet WrestleTopia #1 (of 5)

   As a long-time pro wrestling fan (dating back to the days when Hulkamania was just beginning), how could I pass up this series?

   It's that rare comic book that "gets it right."

   Invasion from Planet WrestleTopia is set in 1999, as a flamboyant wrestler, "Rock 'n Roll" Rory Landell (think Rick Flair crossed with Hulk Hogan) carves a path across assorted wrestling promotions - but he's his own worst enemy, the living embodiment of one of my Dad's favorite sayings: "Nothing will get you in trouble faster than your big fat mouth."

   But his promos bring him to the attention of a higher power - and an intergalactic wrestling challenge awaits.

   The script by Ed Kuehnel and Matt Entin is spot on and lots of fun, using classic wrestling terminology and lots of in-jokes and characters who will be very familiar to long-time fans.

   The art by Dan Schkade is a lot of fun, rippling with energy, with great character designs and occasionally winking at the reader.

   It's a comic any true wrestling fan will enjoy - well worth tracking down!

Grade: A-


Thursday, March 19, 2020

Grendel: Devil's Odyssey #4 (of 8)

   It's been a mild winter in my neighborhood (so far), but there's a fierce one in the pages of Grendel: Devil's Odyssey.

   The story finds Grendel Prime - a fearsome fighting machine - continuing his search for a planet suitable for colonization, and faced with an enemy he may not be able to defeat: murderous cold.

   He also encounters a powerful alien race with (shall we say) unusual motivations.

   The story and art are by series creator Matt Wagner, with color art by Brennan Wagner, and as always, it's tremendous (if vicious in spots). 

   This is the latest chapter in Wagner's long-running and epic series, and as always, it's tremendous work by a master craftsman. 

   Highly recommended!

Grade: A



Wednesday, March 18, 2020

New Comics Day

   I didn't make it to the comics shop today because I was home teleworking! (Stay safe out there, readers!) I called my shop owner and asked him to set these aside, which I hope to pick up on Thursday:

- FANTASTIC FOUR #20 - Empyre is coming!

- GRENDEL: DEVILS ODYSSEY #4 (OF 8) - A world of ice!

- SUPERMAN'S PAL JIMMY OLSEN #9 (OF 12) - Can Jimmy solve his own murder?

- USAGI YOJIMBO #9 - Guarding a shipment of unique items!

    I also received these comics for review:

- BLACK STARS ABOVE #5 - Escaping the woods!

- BLOODSHOT TP VOL. 2 - It's a long shot.

- DOCTOR TOMORROW #2 (OF 5) - His origin revealed!

- HEIST HOW TO STEAL A PLANET #5 - Here comes the judge!


- MONEY SHOT TP - Sex in space!

- VAGRANT QUEEN PLANET CALLED DOOM #3 - Why are the heroes drawn to the same planet?

- VAMPBLADE SEASON 4 #8 - Time for the final battle!

- VISITOR #4 (OF 6) - Who would you kill to save the world?

- WASTED SPACE #15 - It's a reunion!

      And that's it!