Wednesday, April 18, 2018

New Comics Day

      Here's what I picked up at the comics shop today:

-  ACTION COMICS #1000 - Big anniversary issue! (I got the Steranko cover!)

-  AVENGERS #689 - Still not surrendering.

-  BRAVE & THE BOLD BATMAN & WONDER WOMAN #3 (OF 6) - The death of a god!

-  DAREDEVIL #601 - The plan fails.

-  INCREDIBLE HULK #715 - World War Hulk II roll on!

-  INFINITY COUNTDOWN #2 (OF 5) - The search for the stones.

-  MISTER MIRACLE #8 (OF 12)  - Back to the war!

-  MAGE HERO DENIED #8 (OF 15) - Disaster on all fronts!

-  USAGI YOJIMBO #2 (OF 7) THE HIDDEN - A murder conspiracy!


     And I received these review copies:

-  ATHENA VOLTAIRE 2018 ONGOING #3 - Fighting Nazis!

-  BABY BADASS #3  - How to save civilization!

-  BLACK BETTY #3 - Taking on a new job!

-  DAN DARE EARTH STEALERS HC - Reprinting two classic stories!

-  GHOUL SCOUTS TWEENAGE WEREWOLF #2 - The attacks continue!

-  GRAVETRANCERS #3 - A fate worse than death!

-  JIRNI VOLUME 3 #2 - The fall of the Djinn!

-  JUPITER JET #5 - The final battle!

-  MOORCOCK LIB EREKOSE HC VOL 01 - The Eternal Champion returns!

-  NINJAK VS Valiant Universe #4 (OF 4) - The explosive finale.

-  PENNY DREADFUL #9 - Continuing the TV series.

-  QUANTUM & WOODY #5 - Meeting with Dad!

-  SHERLOCK THE GREAT GAME TP - Adaptation of the TV series!

-  SURVIVAL FETISH #1 - Snipers in Honolulu!

-  WONDERFUL WORLD OF TANK GIRL #4  - An old friend returns!

-  ZOMBIE TRAMP ONGOING #46 - Can a zombie die?

     And that's it! Whew!

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Season of the Snake #1

    This volume is a hefty story translated from the original French version, and The Season of the Snake is an impressive science fiction mashup of wild concepts, a futuristic society, a star-spanning travel system, strange alien races, a dash of superheroics and a new host learning the system.

   The result is a Mobius-influenced story (written by Serge Lehman) that will challenge the reader to sort out the concepts presented - but the rewards are great.

   The art by Jean-Marie Michaud is wonderful, loaded with visuals that manage to be realistic and fanciful. The story makes clever use of color, reflecting the emotions (and stability) of the subject.

   It's not an easy read, but it's a terrific piece of work and well worth tracking down.

Grade: A

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Saturday, April 14, 2018

Right Ho, Jeeves #1 (of 6)

   I admit to being a recent convert to the amazing work of P.G. Wodehouse, a British writer from the 20th Century who had an amazing knack for comedy and unique wordplay.

   No other character talks like a Wodehouse character! His amazingly clever, rapid-fire delivery and creative wordsmithing make his work unique and endlessly entertaining.

   So it was a delight to find this new comics series, Right Ho, Jeeves,  devoted to his most famous creations: the lovable yet daffy aristocrat, Bertie Wooster, and the capable-beyond-belief butler, Jeeves.

   Their encounters with assorted offbeat (and usually eccentric) friends, relatives, would-be lovers and the occasional enemy provides the impetus for a number of zany adventures.

   It's a bit of a shock to note that this clever romp is created by two guys who are famous for crafting some of the toughest, most bad-to-the-bone characters in comics history.

   The adaptation is written by Chuck Dixon (who, to be fair, has written a wide variety of stories in his amazing career, including a beloved adaptation of The Hobbit) and drawn by Gary Kwapisz, who displays a deft hand with comedy and caricature here (he's best know for work on Conan the Barbarian and the Punisher).

   The comic is faithful to a fault, which means it's loaded with gentle laughs and wonderful dialogue.

   It's a "must have" for any fan of Wodehouse. (And if you're not a fan, give him a whirl, ya stinker!)

   Highly recommended!

Grade: A

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Friday, April 13, 2018

Captain America #700

   Trapped in the future, Captain America celebrates his 700th issue by fighting for the United States - but not one that we might recognize.

   That's because he's trapped in the future - one in which America has suffered under a tyrant's rule.

   Cap led a group of freedom fighters (including a few familiar faces) to bring liberty back to the country - but keeping the country free is proving to be a huge challenge.

   What happens next - and the ultimate resolution of the story - takes Cap to some interesting places, forced to make the kind of decisions he's never had to face before.

   It's the story of a hero and a role model, and a darned good one. This issue, sadly, wraps up Chris Samnee's amazing run on the art, after a long and fruitful run with writer Mark Waid on this, Daredevil and Black Widow.

   In a backup feature, Waid also teams up - sort of - with another artist famous for his work on Captain America - namely, Jack Kirby! It's an offbeat story Waid managed to reverse-engineer - it's a bit silly but lots of fun!

   So, this is another excellent issue in the "new" adventures of Cap! Highly recommended!

Grade: A

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Thursday, April 12, 2018

The Immortal Men #1

   Of the "New Age of Heroes" books from DC, the two I've been looking forward to the most are The Terrifics (which has been very good) and this title: The Immortal Men.

   The concept of immortality has always been a fascinating one, and the idea of a group made up of DC's immortal characters sounded promising.

   It didn't hurt that the issue was drawn by Jim Lee - though it's hard to tell what he did on this issue, as he is only credited as a "Storyteller" with Ryan Benjamin and James Tynion IV (with Scott Williams and Richard Friend inking).

   (But the art definitely looks like Lee's work.)

   Surprisingly, the series uses mostly-unknown characters.

   It focuses on a young man named Caden Park, who keeps having vivid dreams about strange lands and secret societies of heroes. But even though he's no hero and has no apparent powers, he seems convinced of his destiny.

   Perhaps my expectations were too high - but the issue was disappointing. The story's difficult to sort out, as we meet a steady rush of characters (mostly unidentified) and surreal situations - and we don't know how it all ties together.

    Hopefully future issues will clear up the confusion, but it all makes for a sluggish start to the series.

Grade: B-

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Wednesday, April 11, 2018

New Comics Day

   Here's what I picked up at the comics shop today:

NEIL GAIMAN AMERICAN GODS MY AINSEL #2 - The trip across America continues!

AVENGERS #688 - No Surrender will not end!

CAPTAIN AMERICA #700 - Can Cap save the future?

CHAMPIONS #19 - Beginning "A Wider World!"

DOCTOR STRANGE #388 - Hell in a hand basket!

IMMORTAL MEN #1 - The end of forever!


     And I received these comics for review:

ASSASSINS CREED ORIGINS #2 (OF 4) - Adapting the video game!

ATLAS AND AXIS #4 (OF 4) - Their journey through a perilous land continues!

BLOODSHOT SALVATION #8 - Can he save his daughter from the darkness?

CHARISMAGIC VOL3 #3 (OF 6) - No magical being is safe!

JACK HAMMER PAPER HERO ONE SHOT - Can a normal guy stop a crazed super-villain?

MINKY WOODCOCK GIRL WHO HANDCUFFED HOUDINI #4 (OF 4) - Solve the mystery!

NINJA-K #6 - Stopping a rogue secret agent!

NORMANDY GOLD TP - Avenging the death of her sister!

PENNY DREADFUL VOL2 BEAUTEOUS EVIL - Continuing the story from the TV series!

ROBOTECH ARCHIVE OMNIBUS VOL. 1 (OF 3) - Based on the classic animated series!

SEA OF THIEVES #2 - Searching for treasure!

SEASON OF THE SNAKE #1 - Out there in the universe, something powerful is waking up.

SUPERMANSION #1 (OF 2) - Based on the animated TV show.

     And that's it!

Monday, April 9, 2018

Portal Bound #1

   Aspen's latest book is set in a world of fantasy that threatens to cross over into our reality.

   Portal Bound is an unusual tale that centers around Havos, a  fantastic world rocked by a power struggle.

   The discovery of a way to travel between that world and Earth offers a promise of hope - and help - but Earth isn't exactly brimming with warriors.

   A teenage warrior princess named Sybil does discover a source of help at the last moment - but it takes a surprising form.

   The art by Alex Arizmendi is vibrant and high-charged, matched well with vivid color art by Wes Hartman.

   In reading the issue, I had the feeling that I'd dropped into the middle of the story - but this is issue one, volume one. Perhaps it refers to a previous series?

   It isn't clear, and it makes for a story that takes some sorting to get up to speed - but for any fan of this kind of D&D / Game of Thrones-type adventure, this is a strong start to the series.

Grade: B

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