Showing posts with label Quick Reviews. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Quick Reviews. Show all posts

Monday, February 06, 2017

Children's comics received this winter

Here's some recent comics that we've received that aren't really for our audience, so we won't try to do an actual review. Several of these are reprints from England and won't be familiar to US audiences yet.  (Screen grabs, links and blurbs from Amazon but we don't take any money from them. Buy from your local store if you'd prefer)

by Neill Cameron
Scholastic Graphix
 
Want to have awesome ideas, every time? Feel like turning your ideas into amazing stories? And ever wish you could make your creations come alive with incredible artwork?

If any of these things sounded cool to you, then How to Make Awesome Comics is the perfect book to help you on your way to comics/cartooning genius. Let Professor Panels and Art Monkey take you through every step you'll need to be on your way!

From the very basics (coming up with your stories and characters, learning how to draw) to more advanced levels (making art and text work together well, what makes a good villain, creating your own books from paper), How to Make Awesome Comics is a comprehensive and can't-put-down guide for every burgeoning artist, all from the mind of accomplished comic book-maker Neill Cameron.


Evil Emperor Penguin: Book 1 (The Phoenix Presents)

by Laura Ellen Anderson

Scholastic Graphix

Far away in the icy wastes of Antarctica lives a warm and cuddly, kind-hearted penguin who only wants to do good in the world . . . NOT! This is no ordinary penguin. This is . . . EVIL EMPEROR PENGUIN! And he wants to take over the world!

Of course, every evil ruler needs a sidekick and a minion, and Evil Emperor Penguin is no different. That's why he has Number 8, a very polite and thoughtful octopus who knits, and Eugene, the incredibly cuddly abominable snowman who loves hugs.

Join this fearsome team of Evil as they try to take over the world--and obviously, destroy it--but get waylaid by evil cats, rogue farts, killer plants, and visiting sisters.


by Jamie Smart
Scholastic Graphix

Welcome back to the woods! It's a peaceful home, really, but wait . . .

ZAP! ZAAP!! ZAAAPPPPP!!!!

It's Monkey in a hovercraft that fires lasers! And is that a kitten cannon and a Hamster Mobile too?

Join Bunny, Monkey, Skunky, Pig, and all the rest of the lovable and crazy characters from the first book, as science and nature fight again. There's all the same irreverent humor, bold and appealing art, and non-stop action, but this time with robotic worms, Trojan mooses, and lemony doomsday devices, of course.

It's the continuing battle between good and evil . . .

It's . . . Bunny vs. Monkey: Book Two!





by James Burks 
Scholastic Graphix

 It's been a long, crazy trip around the world. Now the duo is back in their beloved forest, and Bird wants to throw a party! But Squirrel isn't in the mood to celebrate. His house needs a good cleaning, the river has been dammed up by a pesky beaver, and the forest animals are jittery about a growing menace. Will the dam dry out the forest? Will the mysterious new danger ruin the party? Will Bird finally convince Squirrel to let go and just have a good time? Find out in their hilarious new adventure!


by Dav Pilkey
Scholastic Graphix

New from the creator of Captain Underpants, it's Dog Man, the #1 New York Times bestselling, crime-biting canine who is part dog, part man, and ALL HERO!

George and Harold have created a new hero who digs into deception, claws after crooks, and rolls over robbers. When Greg the police dog and his cop companion are injured on the job, a life-saving surgery changes the course of history, and Dog Man is born. With the head of a dog and the body of a human, this heroic hound has a real nose for justice. But can he resist the call of the wild to answer the call of duty?

Dog Man Unleashed (Dog Man #2)

by Dav Pilkey 
Scholastic Graphix

 Dog Man, the newest hero from the creator of Captain Underpants, is still learning a few tricks of the trade. Petey the cat is out of the bag, and his criminal curiosity is taking the city by storm. Something fishy is going on! Can Dog Man unleash justice on this ruffian in time to save the city, or will Petey get away with the purr-fect crime?






by Matt Groening
HarperDesign

It’s a unanimous decision! These pulse-pounding stories and more featuring Matt Groening’s beloved first family of fun, the Simpsons, will have you rolling with the punchlines!
Go the distance with the Simpson family as they join everybody’s favorite moonraking megalomaniac, Hank Scorpio. for a globetrotting adventure that will not only take you around the world but into orbit around the Earth. And when the lovelorn losers of Springfield feel like throwing in the towel on romance, they pick themselves up off the mat and get an adrenaline rush by living life to the extreme! And as if Homer wasn’t already a glutton for punishment, watch him discover his killer instinct as he goes toe to toe with C. Montgomery Burns!



Born into an elite family in one of the Republic's wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a military prodigy. Born into the slums of the Republic’s Lake Sector, fifteen-year-old Day is the country’s most wanted criminal. But his motives are not as sinister as they often they seem. One day June’s brother is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Now, Day is in a race for his family’s survival, while June tries desperately to avenge her brother’s death. And the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together and the lengths their country will go to in order to keep its secrets.

After escaping from the Republic's stronghold, Day and June are on the run in Vegas when the country learns that their Elector Primo has died and his son has stepped in to take his place. They meet up with the rebel stronghold of the Patriots—a large organization straddling the line between the Republic and its warring neighbor, the Colonies—and learn about an assassination plot against the Elector. Using threats and blackmail to get what he wants, the Patriots' leader, Razor, convinces June to let herself be captured by Republic soldiers so she can win over the Elector and feed him a decoy assassination plan. But when June realizes that the new Elector is nothing like his father, she must work with Day to try to stop the Patriots' plot before Razor can fulfill his own devastating plans. The second book in the best-selling Legend trilogy comes to life in this vibrant graphic novel adaptation.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Comics on the Rack, Quick Picks for Comics Due 02-03-10

COMICS ON THE RACK
Quick Picks for Comics Due 02-03-10
By John Judy
 
BLACKEST NIGHT: WONDER WOMAN #3 of 3 by Greg Rucka and Nicola Scott.  WW's had her world rocked from fighting Black Lanterns, being a Black Lantern and then becoming an honorary Star Sapphire.  But no matter things get, she makes it look good.
 
THE BOYS #39 by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson.  New story arc kicks off here with everyone getting closer to knowing stuff they ought not.  Awkward moments galore!  Recommended.  Not for kids.
 
BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER #32 by Brad Meltzer and Georges Jeanty.  "Chapter One: Buffy Has F#@$ing Superpowers."  Worth it for the tribute cover alone.  Recommended.
 
CRIMINAL: SINNERS #4 by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips.  Ex-Army bad-ass Tracy Lawless has been busted by Uncle Sam, which leaves him almost as screwed as disappointing the gangsters he's been working for.  What's an AWOL royal executioner to do?  Highly recommended.
 
CROGAN'S MARCH HC written and drawn by Chris Schweizer.  How long has it been since you've read a good French Foreign Legion story involving flesh-eating monsters?  Too long, obviously!  From Oni Press.
 
DEMO #1 of 6 by Brian Wood and Becky Cloonan.  A series of done-in-one stories, each one sketching pivotal events in the lives of their unique protagonists.  From the author of NORTHLANDERS and DMZ.
 
DISNEY'S HERO SQUAD: ULTRAHEROES #1 by Riccardo Secchi and Stefano Turconi.  No, this is not the first Avengers comic under the Disney logo.  This is the all-ages adventures of Super Goof, the Duck Avenger, Eega Beeva and the Red Bat.  And they don't meet Wolverine until next issue.  From BOOM! Studios.
 
DOOM PATROL #7 by J.M. DeMatteis and Matthew Clark.  One of the greatest DP members ever, Crazy Jane, is back. But will she bring her multiple personalities and Morrisonian weirdness with her?  Plus, Metal Men!
 
GREEN LANTERN: SECRET ORIGIN SC by Geoff Johns and Ivan Reis.  What it sounds like.  Collecting GL #29-35 with some nifty foreshadowing of the current "Blackest Night."  Recommended.
 
INVINCIBLE IRON MAN #23 by Matt Fraction and Salvador Larroca.  Tony Stark remains comatose while Norman Osborn's assassin draws ever closer.  This one's got three variant covers so it must be awesome!
 
JUSTICE SOCIETY ANNUAL #2 by Keith Giffen, Matthew Sturges and Tom Derenick.  The JSA thinks Magog's responsible for a prison break and he's miffed.  Expect fisticuffs and zappage.
 
MARVEL HEARTBREAKERS #1 by Various Creators.  Four Valentine's Day tales featuring the heartache of hormonal heroines.  Starring Dazzler, MJ and Gwen, the Nextwave gals and Snowbird.  That's right, Snowbird!  You got a problem with Snowbird?  Take it up with Dazzler, I say!  Gotta look!
 
MILESTONE FOREVER #1 of 2 by Dwayne McDuffie and Many of Milestone's Original Artists.  In which we see the merging of the Milestone Universe with the DCU from the Milestone POV.  Gotta look!
 
THE QUESTION #37 by Greg Rucka, Denys Cowan and Bill Sienkiewicz.  Vic Sage is back from the dead and looking to mix it up with the new Question.  I loves me some Rucka but what a shame they couldn't get Dennis O'Neil to write it.
 
SCALPED #37 by Jason Aaron and RM Guera.  When last we left our heroes Chief Red Crow was voluntarily having his guts kicked out by the Hmong gangsters.  Is it possible they have him right where he wants them?  Highly recommended.  Not for kids.
 
SIEGE #2 of 4 by Brian Michael Bendis and Joe Quesada.  For some reason someone thinks it would be a fine idea to invade a city full of gods.  This in turn is guaranteed to result in an Avenger dying.  Tough break, Living Lightning.  (Note: I'm kidding about Living Lightning, but if Bendis did off him would people have to start calling him Dead Lightning?  Because that actually sounds cooler.)
 
SEIGE: EMBEDDED #2 of 4 by Brian Reed and Chris Samnee.  Y'know, you can't have a really great company-wide cross-over without a title devoted to the brave reporters who are covering all that stuff you've already read in the other titles.  Sorta goes without saying.
 
SUPERMAN: WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON #12 of 12 by Greg Rucka, James Robinson and Pete Woods.  Supes and Adam Strange unravel the Kryptonian conspiracy but at what cost?  Plus, it looks like Brainiac is back for seconds.  Big finish!
 
TORCH #5 of 8 by Mike Carey, Alex Ross and Patrick Berkenkotter.  They should change the name of this comic to TORCHES because there's three of 'em in this issue.  Nobody can turn a one-shot into a maxi-series like Alex Ross!
 
ULTIMATE COMICS X #1 by Jeph Loeb and Art Adams.  So it appears Ultimate Wolverine has an Ultimate Kid or he's pretending to be dead while masquerading as a surly blonde teenager.  In spite of Loeb's recent output, this one merits a look because it is drawn by the great Arthur Adams.  And Loeb likewise always merits a look, if only to see if he's getting his game back.  Fingers crossed.
 
WOLVERINE: SAVAGE ONE-SHOT by Ryan Dunlavey and Richard Elson.  Wolvie's fighting monsters at sea!  Big ones!  Maximum choppage!
 
WOLVERINE WEAPON X #10 by Jason Aaron and C.P. Smith.  Nobody writes Wolverine better than Jason Aaron and this one introduces a new woman into his cursed life.  Good luck, lady!  And may god have mercy on your immortal whatever…  Highly recommended.
 
 

Friday, January 01, 2010

Comics on the Rack (Quick Picks for Comics Due 01-06-10) by John Judy

The former Quick Reviews with a new name for a new year. Happy 2010!

COMICS ON THE RACK
(Quick Picks for Comics Due 01-06-10)
by John Judy
 
BLACKEST NIGHT: WONDER WOMAN #2 of 3 by Greg Rucka and Nicola Scott.  Diana must battle the Black Lanterns, a hot-tempered fish-woman and Death itself!  Did I mention the hot-tempered fish-woman?
 
BPRD: KING OF FEAR #1 of 5 by Mike Mignola, John Arcudi and Guy Davis.  The BPRD is gonna put the frog menace to rest once and for all!  And that's just for starters!  How can any red-blooded American resist?
 
THE BOYS #38 by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson.  The secret origin of The Female, in the inimitable BOYS fashion.  Recommended.  Not for kids.
 
DOOM PATROL#6 by Keith Giffen and Matthew Clark.  This month features everyone who's ever been wrapped completely in radiation-proof bandages to keep from killing their team-mates.  Plus, the Metal Men.
 
JSA ALL-STARS #2 by Matthew Sturges and Freddie Williams II.  Big fights and loud arguments!  And that's before the bad guys show up!
 
LIFE & TIMES OF SCROOGE McDUCK , VOL. 1 HC written and drawn by Don Rosa.  What it sounds like, kids: The biography of the fowl plutocrat who makes Monty Burns look like a dude wearing a paper hat at the deep fryer.  Great for all ages.  Recommended.
 
MARVEL BOY: THE URANIAN #1 of 3 by Jeff Parker, Marko Djurdjevic and Felix Ruiz.  A little background on your favorite Agent of Atlas: bubble-helmeted saucer jockey, Bob Grayson, the boy who fell to Earth.
 
NATION X: X-FACTOR #1 by Peter David and Valentine DeLandro.  Yeah, so like Cyclops is asking X-Factor to move into Utopia with him?  And it's like, y'know, maybe it's too soon?  Cuz, there are still, like, issues?  And Cyke's a bit of a control freak and X-Factor likes their space.  On the other hand, he would totally pay for utilities!
 
ORC STAIN #1 written and drawn by James Stokoe.  I really just wanted to type the title.  From Image Comics.
 
PREVIEWS by Marvel and Diamond Comics.  "It's 2010.  Do you know what your comics are?"
 
SIEGE #1 by Brian Michael Bendis and Olivier Coipel.  This is the big one:  Norman Osborn versus the World.  Or is it the other way around?
 
STUMPTOWN #2 by Greg Rucka and Matthew Southworth.  Chronic gambler and private investigator Dex must be getting closer to her target because the bullets keep getting closer to her.  Good stuff, set in Portland, Oregon, one of America's great cities.  Recommended.
 
SUICIDE SQUAD: BLACKEST NIGHT #67 by John Ostrander, Gail Simone and J. Calafiore.  A one issue revival of a classic DC title as the Squad goes after the Secret Six, the Black Lanterns and anyone else that happens along.  It's a ruckus!
 
SUPERMAN WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON #11 by Greg Rucka, James Robinson and Pete Woods.  Supes and Adam Strange uncover some shenanigans in their murder investigation on New Krypton.  Super-shenanigans!
 
UNCLOTHED MAN IN THE 35TH CENTURY AD HC written and drawn by Dash Shaw.  A series of short stories from the creator of the acclaimed BOTTOMLESS BELLY BUTTON, plus some production material from his series airing on IFC.com.  Gotta look.
 
UNWRITTEN, VOL. 1: TOMMY TAYLOR AND THE BOGUS IDENTITY SC by Mike Carey and Peter Gross.  Collecting the first five issues of the breakout hit series that blurs the line where fictional characters end and real people begin.  Clever, scary stuff for mature readers.  Recommended.
 
WALKING DEAD, VOL. 11: FEAR THE HUNTERS SC by Robert Kirkman and Charles Adlard.  Collecting one of the creepiest story arcs yet, in which the flesh-eating threat is no longer coming from the zombies.  Rough stuff, even for this bunch.  Recommended.  Not for kids.
 
WEIRD WESTERN TALES #71 by Dan DiDio and Renato Arlem.  Come on, admit it, you've always wanted to see DC's old Western heroes rise from the dead as evil Black Lanterns!  Y'see where the "Weird" part comes in here?  Eh?  Eh?  Yippee-ki-yay, Black Lanterns!
 
 

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

2009 Comics in the Rearview

2009 COMICS IN THE REARVIEW
by John Judy

Right. Technically this list is not confined to those little paper things with two staples holding them together on the spine.

Instead it encompasses monthly and even weekly periodicals as well as a huge number of quality hard and soft cover graphic novels, trade collections of previously printed material and associated stuff.

Basically if it uses words in conjunction with pictures to get an idea across in the year 2009 it was eligible for the list.

And of course I favored anything that was available at finer brick and mortar comic stores near you. Sorry, webcomics. I know you're the future but not just yet. Maybe next year.

In the meantime, here are my faves of 2009 with apologies to all the great creators and material I have certainly missed.

ART OF STEVE DITKO HC edited by Craig Yoe. What it says on the cover, kids. Plus an intro by Stan "The Man" Lee. Lots of amazing material plus tributes from Jerry Robinson, John Romita and P. Craig Russell. Highly recommended.

ASTERIOS POLYP written and drawn by David Mazzucchelli. So whatever happened to the guy who drew "Batman: Year One" and "Daredevil: Born Again?" Somewhere along the line he grew into a creator who could get a blurb like this from Entertainment Weekly: "It's as if John Updike had discovered a bag of art supplies and LSD." You want this.

BATMAN AND ROBIN
by Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely. Don't worry, it's not the perennially late-shipping ALL-STAR version by Jim Lee and the guy who killed The Spirit for a generation. This is the dream-team that gave us ALL-STAR SUPERMAN among other things. It's the new Dynamic Duo and their flying batmobile! All the weirdness you've come to expect from Morrison, plus an honest to gosh story you can actually follow.

BLAZING COMBAT HC
by Archie Goodwin and a Pantheon of Sixties Art Gods. Collecting all four issues of the war comic that was so good it got put out of business by people who were afraid it would end the Vietnam War. Kudos to Fantagraphics for putting this together.

BLUEBERRY GIRL HC
by Neil Gaiman and Charles Vess. The creator credits on this make it a Must-Have but if you need a taste try this: "Ladies of Light and Ladies of darkness and Ladies of never-you-mind. This is a prayer for a blueberry girl. First may you ladies be kind." And it's all drawn by Vess. Highly recommended for anyone who has or has been a daughter. No lie, the older my daughter gets the harder it is to get through this book without choking up.

BOOK OF GENESIS ILLUSTRATED HC
by Robert Crumb. A straightforward adaptation of the classical Judeo-Christian creation myth, done up in R. Crumb style.

THE BOYS
by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson. Trademark Ennis violence, depravity and dark satire with layer upon layer of fandom in-jokes, still managing to hold up as an accessible mystery-thriller with capes. A must for fans of Ennis's anything goes style.

CHARLES DARWIN'S ON THE ORGIN OF SPECIES: A GRAPHIC ADAPTATION SC
by Michael Keller and Nicole Rager Fuller. A beautiful new presentation of the book that changed the world and raised us that much further from the muck of our common origins. Have a look at what's been pissing off the morons for 150 years. Highly recommended.

CHEW
by John Layman and Rob Guillory. Set in an alternate United States where meat is outlawed and the USFDA is more powerful than the NSA and the Mossad's secret love-child. Agent Tony Chu has the ultimate power and the ultimate curse: He's a cibopath, a guy who gets psychic impressions off everything he eats. Imagine "The Dead Zone" meets "Top Chef." It's twisted, over the top and available in trade. Bon apetite!

COMIC BOOK COMICS
by Fred Van Lente and Ryan Dunlavey. The Evil Twin boys and their comic about comics! The latest of their four issues features stories about the rise of Marvel Comics, Robert Crumb and Tin-Tin! More fascinating than a lot of imaginary stories being published today! Highly recommended!

CRIMINAL: SINNERS by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips. The latest of the story arcs has Tracy Lawless back, solving a crime only a guy who's not a cop can solve. Lawless is among the more fascinating and conflicted characters in the Criminalverse and it's great to see him back in action even as he seems more lost than ever. And the comics-exclusive back-up text features remain as irresistible as ever.

EC ARCHIVES: FRONTLINE COMBAT VOL. 1 HC by Various Geniuses. Collecting the first six issues of this masterful series of war comics from 1950-51. Still some of the best ever done. Highly recommended.

EX MACHINA by Brian K. Vaughan and Tony Harris. Yet another Vaughan maxi-series is drawing to a close. This sci-fi political thriller about a New York Mayor who communicates with machinery is a great read for political junkies and superhero fans alike. Lots of trade editions available.

FAHRENHEIT 451 GN
by Ray Bradbury and Tim Hamilton. A graphic adaptation of Bradbury's classic story of firemen who really expand on the traditional definition of the job. Highly recommended.

FINAL CRISIS AFTERMATH: RUN
by Matthew Sturges and Freddie E. Williams II. Full disclosure: I thought FINAL CRISIS was a huge let-down and all the other spin-off series were unreadable. This was the exception! All you needed to know was the main character was a costumed moron who taped the murder of the Martian Manhunter on his cell phone. The Red Flame. Everyone hates him so now he's got to RUN! And he does, growing more powerful and loathsome with every issue until… Well, let's not give it away, but the beauty of it is you're kind of rooting for him the whole time.

FLASH: REBIRTH
by Geoff Johns and Ethan Van Sciver. More honesty: I still don't follow how exactly Flash #2, Barry Allen, came back from the dead or why, but this series makes me glad he did. And it looks great.

GARTH ENNIS' BATTLEFIELDS
by Ennis and Several Artists. Ennis's obsession with World War Two and the people who fought on all sides of it seems inexhaustible. As a result we readers are able to enjoy (if that's the right word) two or three mini-series per year exploring the tragedy, gallows humor and tarnished nobility of those people whose sacrifices made everything we enjoy today possible. No capes, but lots of heroes. Recommended.

THE GOON
written and drawn by Eric Powell. This one's hard to explain except to say, "Imagine if Tim Burton and Terry Gilliam had a baby and it was raised by Mickey Spillane…" I love it and so should you.

GREEN LANTERN
by Geoff Johns and Various Artists. Okay, the whole "War of Light/Blackest Night" thing is a love it or hate it deal. Got it. But no one can deny Geoff Johns is pulling off the most successful, character-defining GL story since the Denny O'Neill-Neal Adams run in the seventies. Fine, you could deny it but you'd be wrong. And who doesn't love those promotional power rings?

INCOGNEGRO SC
by Mat Johnson and Warren Pleece. The paperback of Johnson and Pleece's powerful graphic novel about a light-skinned African-American reporter passing as white in the deep South at the height of the segregation era. Highly, highly recommended.

INCOGNITO
by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips. This is the mini that took Ed and Sean away from CRIMINAL for a while and, though I would have preferred more CRIMINAL, this story of a super-villain busting out of witness protection was still pretty darn good. Shocked if this isn't a movie in a few years.

IRREDEEMABLE
by Mark Waid and Peter Krause. A little number from the author of KINGDOM COME about a god-like superhero going bad. Really, horrifyingly good. Recommended.

LOGICOMIX: AN EPIC SEARCH FOR TRUTH SC
by Apostolos Doxiadas, Christos Papadimitriou, Alecos Papadatos and Annie DiDonna. A graphic biography of philosopher/mathematician Bertrand Russell woven with interstitials of the creation of the bio itself. An well-crafted, informative brain-melt with which to pass an afternoon.

MARVELS PROJECT
by Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting. The best thing to happen to Marvel/Timely's golden age since THE TWELVE. See how it all came to be with a little retroactive continuity polish. Highly recommended.

MASTERPIECE COMICS HC
written and drawn by R. Sikoryak. This one is a true Must-Have if you are a fan of classic literature, classic comics and ingenious mash-ups. This one lives up to its name. Highly, highly recommended.

MIGHTY AVENGERS
by Dan Slott and Khoi Pham. A niche book for people who always wanted to see founding Avenger Hank Pym really come into his own. If you like your hero/scientists eccentric and unpredictable Dan Slott delivers yet again.

MORE THAN COMPLETE ACTION PHILOSOPHERS SC
by Fred van Lente and Ryan Dunlavey. Collecting all nine issues of the original run, plus four all-new stories written just for this book! A real treat! Also a bit of aggravation for those of us who bought all the comics and original trades. I suppose we must be philosophical about it….

NORTHLANDERS
by Brian Wood and Various Artists. A series of stories (sagas?) unconnected by anything but the setting of Viking culture 1000 years ago. Some are almost like westerns, some are police procedurals, but all of them create a sense of place more successfully than most books. Wood turns cold, bleak isolation into unexpectedly fertile ground. Recommended.

ODD AND THE FROST GIANTS HC
by Neil Gaiman and Brett Helquist. A hardback edition of the story Neil wrote for the UK's World Book Day about a boy in Viking times who must save Asgard from the Frost Giants and restore springtime to the world. Illustrated by Brent Helquist (of Lemony Snicket fame), 128 pages and appropriate for young readers. Recommended.

PICTURES THAT TICK SC by Dave McKean. A graphic brain-bender from the guy who brought you every single cover of SANDMAN among too many other works of genius to mention here. Gotta look!

PRESIDENTS OF THE UNITED STATES GN written and drawn by Ben Templesmith. I'll let Mr. Templesmith speak for himself on this one: "All 43 (well, technically 42, but Cleveland served two nonconsecutive terms) plus, technically, I think the 44th as well will be in time for printing. A portrait each, plus some facts. Especially about some of the lesser known ones. Damn some were sick/quirky/weird bastards." Highly recommended.

RASL
written and drawn by Jeff Smith. The latest ongoing from the creator of BONE. This one's more for mature readers as it involves reptilian assassins chasing down a scientist turned dimension-hopping art thief. Cartoon, sci-fi noir is the closest it comes to a category, so don't be fooled by the simple appearance of it. There's dark doings here as each issue reveals another layer to the onion and draws you that much further in.

RICHARD STARK'S PARKER THE HUNTER HC
written and drawn by Darwyn Cooke. Donald Westlake's first Parker novel adapted by comics master Cooke. Yeah, you need this, especially if you enjoyed the movie "Payback" with Mel Gibson and Maria Bello. Unbelievably good and highly recommended.

SCALPED
by Jason Aaron and R.M. Guera. This series continues to be among the most underappreciated on the monthly stands, even as its trade collections sell out. A bloody crime comic set on a fictional Indian reservation with a hero who seems on a race to destroy himself before his past can do it for him. Joyously unpredictable even as it grinds the reader's face in the squalor and hopelessness of The Rez. Forget the year, this is one of the best comics of the decade. Read it.

SECRET IDENTITY: FETISH ART OF SUPERMAN'S CO-CREATOR JOE SHUSTER HC
by Craig Coe. Exactly what it sounds like. Spicy pictures drawn by the guy who helped create the all-American icon of the 20th century! Not for kids but highly recommended anyway.

SPECIAL FORCES
written and drawn by Kyle Baker. Okay, so this title comes out about as often as Boo Radley. It's still Kyle Baker so it's gorgeous, clever and edgy as all get out. This comic was inspired by the corrupt recruiting practices of the US Military that put kids with autism in the front lines of the Iraq War. Seriously. This happened. Highly recommended.

THE STAND
by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and Mike Perkins. This encompasses all the mini-series thus far in this epic adaptation of Stephen King's most famous novel. For the two guys who haven't read it already, a strain of flu wipes out 95 percent of the population and the survivors have to choose whether to ally themselves with well-intentioned do-gooders or a goal-oriented monster. Having seen the 1994 TV adaptation I can say with assurance that this is a more skillful and satisfying beast. Accessible even to the above-mentioned two guys. Here's hoping the Aguirre-Sacasa/Perkins creative team sticks together when it's all over. These guys have the magic.

STRANGE SUSPENSE: STEVE DITKO ARCHIVES, VOL. 1 HC edited by Blake Bell. The complete two-year run of all Ditko's pre-code horror comics from the earliest days of his career. You must have this.

STUDS TERKEL'S WORKING GN by Harvey Pekar and Various Artists. An adaptation of the late journalist's anthology of first-person accounts of what it was like working various jobs in 1974 America. Recommended.

STUMPTOWN #1
by Greg Rucka and Matthew Southworth. When a private dick with a gambling problem finds herself on the hook for big money to a casino the best way out is probably to do the casino owner a favor. Because that always ends well. Highly "Rucka-mended!"

SUPERMAN: SECRET ORIGIN
by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank. It's the new Official Canon of Superman's Life and Times. Put your Byrne-autographed MAN OF STEEL back on the shelf, kids. It is now an antique. Recommended.

TROTSKY HC
written and drawn by Rick Geary. A graphic biography of Stalin's arch-nemesis, and it ain't Hitler. Two pick-axes up! Recommended!

UNDERGROUND #1 of 4
by Steve Lieber and Jeff Parker. "Thriller set in a cave" doesn't really do justice to this tense, good-looking comic by the artist of WHITEOUT and the author of AGENTS OF ATLAS. Highly recommended.

UNWRITTEN
by Mike Carey and Peter Gross. This one's heating up fast, kids. It's the story of a guy who may or may not have been written into the real world and all that implies about other pop fiction characters. This is not your father's Earth-Prime! Recommended.

WALKING DEAD
by Robert Kirkman and Charles Adlard. It's the awesome zombie movie that never ends, now into its 6th triumphant year and heading to television on AMC. Kirkman is a master of the gut-wrench and the uncomfortable "What if?" and Adlard seems almost supernatural in his ability to render post-apocalyptic people and scenery just right. The skill these guys have in putting their readers shoulder to shoulder with the besieged survivors can't be overstated. This is the zombie book for people who don't like zombie books. And those who do. Not for kids.

WARREN ELLIS FRANKENSTEIN'S WOMB GN
by WE and Marek Oleksicki. That nice Mister Ellis takes on Mrs. Shelley and her lad, teaching us a few things we didn't know along the way. Not for kids.

WAS SUPERMAN A SPY AND OTHER COMIC BOOK LEGENDS REVEALED SC
by Brian Cronin. A fun collection of comics industry legends and apocrypha, perfect reading for the one seater or anywhere else.

WEDNESDAY COMICS
by Many, Many Amazing Writers and Artists. This was the most audacious experiment of the year: DC Comics taking some of their best and least known characters and putting together a 12-week anthology book in the form of a traditional Sunday newspaper comics section. It was honestly very hit or miss and everyone had their favorites and their fishwrap, but this was a great reminder of how much we're missing in the real comics sections today. Let's hope DC learns and tries again. (BTW, my favorite strips were Adam Strange and Kamandi, two characters I never had much interest in when they had their own books.)

YOU SHALL DIE BY YOUR OWN EVIL CREATION SC
by Fletcher Hanks and Paul Karasik. This is the sequel volume to 2007's deeply disturbing and entertaining I SHALL DESTROY ALL CIVILIZED PLANETS and completes the collected works of golden-age writer/artist (and monster) Fletcher Hanks. Publisher Fantagraphics has generously provided a 13 page preview on their website http://www.fantagraphics.com/. Highly recommended.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Quick Reviews for Comics Due THURSDAY (not Wednesday) 09-10-09

QUICK REVIEWS FOR COMICS DUE THURSDAY (not Wednesday) 09-10-09
By John Judy
 
ADVENTURE COMICS #2 by Geoff Johns, Michael Shoemaker, Francis Manapul and Clayton Henry.  Superboy and Wonder Girl have "the talk."  So do Lightning Lad and his evil brother Lightning Lord, after a fashion.  Hijinks ensue.
 
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #604 by Fred Van Lente and Barry Kitson.  In which we learn how wrapping yourself in web fluid can keep you alive and breathing for days in a vat of flesh and bone disintegrating acid while the Chameleon assumes your identity.  Also the Black Cat maybe shows up and acts all flirty.
 
DARK AVENGERS / UNCANNY X-MEN: EXODUS #1 by Matt Fraction and Mike Deodato. Big fight containing nuggets of plot and character.  Because you demanded it or something!
 
DARK REIGN: THE LIST AVENGERS ONE-SHOT by Brian Michael Bendis and Marko Djurdjevic.  "Clint Barton fans… you are not going to want to miss this one!"
 
DOOM PATROL #2 by Keith Giffen, J.M. DeMatteis, Matthew Clark and Kevin Maguire.  The DP fight a black hole and the Metal Men go into space.  That's right: Space!
 
KICK-ASS #7 by Mark Millar and John Romita Jr.  Four months after the last issue came out we finally learn what hideous fate awaits Big Daddy, Hit-Girl and that dirty traitor Red Mist.  You do remember Big Daddy, Hit-Girl and that dirty traitor Red Mist, don't you?  Come on, it's only been four months!  Quality takes time and so does KICK-ASS!  Stop whispering how the last time an issue of KICK-ASS came out Michael Jackson still had two months to live!  Just stop it, I say!
 
MARVELS PROJECT #2 of 8 by Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting.  The best thing to happen to Marvel/Timely's golden age since THE TWELVE.  See how it all came to be with a little retroactive continuity polish.  Highly recommended.
 
PUNISHER FRANK: CASTLE MAX #74 by Vic Gischler and Goran Parlov.  It's a sign of just how low Frank has fallen when his survival depends on the punk he had doped up and stuffed in his trunk.  Featuring hulking hillbilly swamp cannibals.  Recommended.
 
SECRET SIX #13 by Gail Simone and Nicola Scott.  After last issue's brutal take-down of Wonder Woman you probably didn't think the Six could get darker.  Guess again.  The closest the DCU has to an old-school EC crime/horror comic.  Recommended.
 
STITCHES HC written and drawn by David Small.  The autobiographical story of how a young boy woke from a "harmless operation" to discover a major and unpleasant surprise.  No capes, but lots of action.  Highly recommended.
 
SUPERMAN: WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON #7 of 12 by James Robinson, Greg Rucka and Pete Woods. What alien race would be dumb enough to declare war on a planet full of super-powered Kryptonians?  Other than humans?  The answer may surprise you.  Or not.  Either way this thing is playing out much stronger than expected.  Recommended.
 
THUNDERBOLTS #135 by Andy Diggle and Miguel Angel Sepulveda.  The T-Bolts were backstabbing, corrupt and psychotic before DARK REIGN made it cool.  Let's see who ends up with the most steel between their ribs, shall we?  Recommended.
 
ULTIMATE COMICS AVENGERS #2 by Mark Millar and Carlos Pacheco.  So Ultimate Red Skull is Ultimate Captain America's son and Ultimate Tony Stark now has an "older, richer, smarter brother" who we somehow never saw in his own series.  Oh, Millar…!
 
UNWRITTEN #5 by Mike Carey and Peter Gross.  A little stand-alone tale of Rudyard Kipling and how he fits in with Tommy Taylor's rapidly collapsing ficto-verse.  Highly recommended.
 
WEDNESDAY COMICS #10 of 12 by Various Creators.  Lots going on as the end draws nigh but seeing Superman and Hawkman getting ready to stomp alien monsters and dinosaurs respectively promises great fun still to be had.  Recommended.
 


Sunday, August 02, 2009

QUICK REVIEWS FOR COMICS DUE 08-05-09

QUICK REVIEWS FOR COMICS DUE 08-05-09
By John Judy


ABSOLUTION #1 of 6 by Christos Gage and Roberto Viacava. John Dusk is a super-hero who decides to stop playing nice. Moral quandaries ensue.

AGENTS OF ATLAS #9 by Jeff Parker and Dan Panosian. Jimmy Woo has to fight his ex-girlfriend and her killer robot. Don’t we all?

ALL-WINNERS COMICS #1: 70th ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL by Karl Kesel and Steve Uy. “Old Soldiers Never Die” especially at the House of Ideas! Zombies in Times Square! Who could tell? Fun stuff!

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #601 by Mark Waid and Mario Alberti. America’s favorite redhead is back and I don’t mean Danny Bonaduce! “Face it, Tiger, you hit the continuity problem jackpot!” (But it’s Waid so it’ll be fine.)

ASTRO CITY: THE DARK AGE BOOK THREE #4 of 4 by Kurt Busiek and Brent Anderson. Those Williams brothers are in a heap o’ trouble. Recommended.

BLACK PANTHER #7 by Reginald Hudlin, Jonathon Maberry and Will Conrad. The all-new, all-pretty Black Panther takes the reins now that everyone wants to mess with a Wakanda weakened by battle. Poor, dumb everyone. You think they would have learned….

BOYS #33 by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson. The cold war between the Boys and the supes just keeps getting hotter. Not for kids. Recommended.

BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER #27 by Jane Espenson and Georges Jeanty. Having stranded her Slayer-Submarine in the mountains of Tibet, Buffy must now place her fate in the hands of a werewolf. But it’s cool because it’s Oz and he’s, y’know, cool. We love Jane Espenson on this book and so do you. Highly recommended.

CAPTAIN AMERICA REBORN #2 of 5 by Ed Brubaker and Bryan Hitch. The good guys and the bad guys race to get to Steve Rogers who is, unbelievably I know, NOT DEAD ANYMORE! Okay, who had “2 years, 5 months” in the pool? You in the Hulk sweatshirt? Right, you get the gift certificate, dinner for two at Wendy’s and our undying respect and love. But we’re all winners here, right? Get it? “ALL-WINNERS?” I’m here all week, folks…

DOOM PATROL #1 by Keith Giffen, Matthew Clark, J.M. DeMatteis and Kevin Maguire. The all-new adventures of DC’s favorite freaks! And if that ain’t enough you also get a back-up feature of the original Rock ‘Em, Sock ‘Em Robots, Doc Magnus and the Metal Men! Gotta look!

FINAL CRISIS AFTERMATH: RUN #4 of 6 by Matthew Sturges and Freddie E. Williams II. “Trashy humor and unnecessary violence… property damage and hideous disfigurement…!” Okay! Recommended!

GHOST RIDERS: HEAVENS FIRE #1 of 6 by Jason Aaron and Roland Boschi. Johnny Blaze and Danny Ketch have to save the Anti-Christ to save the world. And wouldn’t that be a great catch-phrase for a network TV show?

HULK #13 by Jeph Loeb and Ed McGuinness. Wicked Norman Osborn sends Ares the God of War to puzzle out the identity of the Red Hulk (or “Rulk” if you must), although any fanboy who hasn’t figured this one out after last issue’s Ego the Living Planet-sized clue really needs to hang up their purple pants and go back to Komics Kindergarten. Or become a story editor at Marvel.

IRREDEEMABLE #5 by Mark Waid and Peter Krause. A little number from the author of KINGDOM COME about a good guy going bad. Really horrifyingly good. Recommended.

IRREDEEMABLE, VOL. 1 SC by Waid and Krause. The first four issues collected for you latecomers. Recommended.

JUSTICE LEAGUE: CRY FOR JUSTICE #2 of 7 by James Robinson and Mauro Cascioli. Hal and Ollie’s splinter group of pre-emptive butt-kickers gets their game on. Watch out, evil-doers! Here comes Congorilla and the blue Starman!

POLITICAL POWER #1: COLIN POWELL by Wey-Yuih Loh, Matt Flyer and Vinnie Tartamella. A little something different, a biography in comics form about a man who might have been President if he hadn’t been a Republican.

RED CIRCLE: THE HANGMAN #1 by J. Michael Straczynski, Tom Derenick and Bill Sienkiewicz. The first of the old Archie heroes gets relaunched here! He hangs people! Sometimes. Other times he prevents it. It evens out mostly. OK, honestly this one’s gonna be a tough sell, but it has The Great Straczynski at the keyboard so that’s a big plus.

SECRET SIX #12 by Gail Simone and Nicola Scott. The gang fights Wonder Woman.

SUPERMAN: WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON #6 of 12 by Greg Rucka, James Robinson and Pete Woods. Someone gets shot on New Krypton. But everyone there’s bulletproof, so what’s the harm?

WALKING DEAD, VOL. 10: WHAT WE BECOME SC by Robert Kirkman and Charles Adlard. Collecting WD #55-60 in which the survivors of the zombie plague begin their trek to Washington D.C. and safety. Boy, if they only knew… Recommended. Not for kids.

WARREN ELLIS FRANKENSTEIN’S WOMB GN by WE and Marek Oleksicki. That nice Mister Ellis takes on Mrs. Shelley and her lad. Not for kids.

WEDNESDAY COMICS #5 of 12 by Various Creators. By now you’re either in love with this Newspaper Comics Section of the Gods or you’re not. If you’re not you can stop reading this now.

www.johnjudy.net

Saturday, July 25, 2009

QUICK REVIEWS FOR COMICS DUE 07-29-09

QUICK REVIEWS FOR COMICS DUE 07-29-09
By John Judy
CITIZEN REX #1 of 6 by Mario and Gilbert Hernandez. “What compels life without a soul?” No, it’s not a biography of Dick Cheney. It’s a sci-fi adventure about a scandalized robot in a world he never made. For fans of LOVE & ROCKETS and good comics everywhere. Recommended.
DARK REIGN CROSS-OVERS by Tons o’ People. Let’s see, there’s HAWKEYE, HOOD, LETHAL LEGION, SINISTER SPIDER-MAN and YOUNG AVENGERS. Go completists, go! It’s feeding time at the DARK REIGN trough! Good luck!
DETECTIVE COMICS #855 by Greg Rucka, JH Williams III and Cully Hamner. Batwoman and the Question do the detecting thing and look really good doing so. Hey, if you’re gonna call yourselves Batwoman and/or the Question you better be at the top of your game. Otherwise people will talk.
FANTASTIC FOUR #569 by Mark Millar and Stuart Immonen. The Marquis of Death must pay for his treatment of Doom! And for being French!
GARTH ENNIS BATTLEFIELDS: TANKIES #3 of 3 by Garth and Carlos Ezquerra. It’s end-game as the lads must finally face the deadly German tiger tank. Riveting wartime adventure. Recommended.
GHOST RIDER: LAST STAND SC by Jason Aaron and Tan Eng Hut. Continuing Aaron’s run on this hellfire and booze-fueled cycle circus originally published in GHOST RIDER #26-32.
IGNITION CITY #4 of 5 by Warren Ellis and Gianluca Pagliarani. Mary Raven’s in the firefight of her life armed with naught but her dead dad’s raygun and her own spunk to see her through. Bet on the Ellis uber-chick.
JUSTICE SOCIETY OF AMERICA #29 by Bill Willingham, Matthew Surges and Jesus Merino. A new creative team adds two new characters to the JSA roster. But will they last?
KID COLT #1 by Tom DeFalco and Rick Burchett. It’s a Tom DeFalco comic and a Western. That makes it twice as unusual in today’s market.
NEW AVENGERS #55 by Brian Michael Bendis and Stuart Immonen. It’s a new issue and Brother Voodoo is still the sorcerer supreme. And you thought Bucky America was a lot to accept.
NORTHLANDERS #19 by Brian Wood and Danijel Zezelj. “The Shield Maidens” wraps up with the ladies inflicting some serious choppage. Highly recommended.
NORTHLANDERS, VOL. 2: THE CROSS AND THE HAMMER SC by Brian Wood and Ryan Kelly. Collecting Northlanders #11-16. An Irishman rebels against his Viking rulers. It’s awesome. Highly recommended.
PREVIEWS by Marvel and Diamond Comics. See what you’ll be reading, wearing and playing in three months time!
STUFF OF LEGEND #1 of 2 by Mike Raicht, Brian Smith and Charles Paul Wilson III. In 1944 a small boy is dragged into his closet by the Boogeyman. Now it’s up to his toys to go in and rescue him. Great fun for reading at bedtime, especially if the kids have been naughty. Gotta look!
SUPERMAN #690 by James Robinson and Renato Guedes. Mon-El: Still dying.
THUNDERBOLTS #134 by Andy Diggle and Miguel Angel Sepulveda. Be honest, did anyone ever think Songbird would be so tough to kill? I mean, her name is “Songbird” for crying out loud! And now it’s like Wolverine and Keith Richards had a kid and he wasn’t a tattooed, mohawked moron! I digress… Good comic, worth a read or three.
ULTIMATUM #5 of 5 by Jeph Loeb and David Finch. The last issue. Lots of people dead. For now.
ULTIMATUM: SPIDER-MAN REQUIEM #2 of 2 by Brian Michael Bendis, Mark Bagley and Stuart Immonen. Ultimate J. Jonah Jameson continues his weepy eulogy for Ultimate Almost Certainly Dead Spidey.
WEDNESDAY COMICS #4 of 12 by Lotsa Awesome People. So ya say ya want Hawkman by Kyle Baker? Metamorpho by Neil Gaiman? A Kamandi adventure in the style of Prince Valiant? We have that and a lot more! Metal Men! Flash! Green Lantern! It’s a smorgasbord! Highly recommended.
WONDER WOMAN #34 by Gail Simone and Aaron Lopresti. It’s WW and Black Canary! What a pair! Recommended!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

QUICK REVIEWS FOR COMICS DUE 07-22-09

QUICK REVIEWS FOR COMICS DUE 07-22-09
By John Judy
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #600 by Lotsa People, including Stan the Man, Mark Waid, Dan Slott and JR Jr. It’s an all-new, no reprints anniversary issue featuring 104 pages of web-slinging wonderment! Read it!
ARCHIE #599 by Stan Goldberg and the Gang. It’s the last one before #600, Riverdaliens! This one features three stories including “Return to Riverstock” in which the gang commemorates the 40th anniversary of a certain music festival. Fun for all ages.
AVENGERS INITIATIVE #26 by Christos Gage and Rafa Sandoval. Norman Osborn is taking the old Mr. Miyagi’s Little Tree Initiative and turning it into the evil Cobra Kai Initiative. Because he’s EVIL!
BEANWORLD VOL.2 HC: A GIFT COMES written and drawn by Larry Marder. Collecting the final twelve issues of this unique and imaginative series.
BLACK PANTHER #6 by Reginald Hudlin and Mitch Brietwieser. The final battle with Morlun, Devourer of Totems! Please, god, let this be the final battle with Morlun, Devourer of Totems…
BOYS: HEROGASM #3 of 6 by Garth Ennis and John McCrea. A death at Herogasm! And not a little one either. Not for kids. Recommended.
CAPTAIN BRITAIN AND MI13 #15 by Paul Cornell and Leonard Kirk. The final dust-up between Dracula and all the limey super-spies he hasn’t already killed.
CREEPY ARCHIVES, VOL. 4 HC by Various Creators. Collecting issues 16-20 of this classic horror series with a spooky/fabulous cover by Frank Frazetta. Nice!
DETHLOK VS THE GOON ONE-SHOT by Eric Powell and Brandon Small. No, it’s not the Marvel cyborg from the future. The Goon is mixing it up with the greatest American/Scandinavian death-metal band in the world, DETHLOK!!! Thank-you, Dark Horse. Thank-you Adult Swim. Gotta look!
FINAL CRISIS: LEGION OF THREE WORLDS #5 of 5 by Geoff Johns and George Perez. Hey, ya remember FINAL CRISIS? Me neither, musta been retconned out of my brain. Nevertheless, here straggling across the finish-line after all the other FC titles and cross-overs have showered, gone home, gone back to work, married and had babies is FCLOTW #5! Enjoy!
GREEN LANTERN #44 by Geoff Johns and Doug Mahnke. Black Lantern Jonn Jonzz is back from the dead and looking to eat what he kills. At least he no longer looks like a Skrull. Now he looks like Thanos.
HELLBLAZER #257 by Peter Milligan and Giuseppe Camuncoli. Featuring a cover by Simon Bisley suggesting John Constantine is now working as a greeter at Abercrombie and Fitch. Rated “A” for abs.
IMMORTAL WEAPONS #1 of 5 by Jason Aaron, Duane Swierczynski and Many Talented Artists. It’s the story of Fat Cobra so you want it! It’s by Jason Aaron so you need it! Highly recommended.
INCREDIBLE HULK #600 by Jeph Loeb and Ed McGuinness. Spidey’s gonna try and find out who the Red Hulk really is. Yeah, he’s gonna try…. SPOILER: He’s Michael Jackson.
PROJECT SUPERPOWERS CHAPTER TWO #1 by The Alex Ross Factory. Because some of you still haven’t learned…
RICHARD STARK’S PARKER THE HUNTER HC written and drawn by Darwyn Cooke. Donald Westlake’s first Parker novel adapted by comics master Cooke. Yeah, you need this, especially if you enjoyed the movie “Payback” with Mel Gibson and Maria Bello. Highly recommended.
WEDNESDAY COMICS #3 of 12 by Various Awesome Folk. Now this is the weekly series DC should have been doing for the past couple of years! Beautiful, serialized stories presented in glorious tabloid format. Even my least favorite of the strips (“Wonder Woman! Cough! Cough!”) looks amazing. This is one to share with your friends, especially if your friends publish newspapers with comics sections. Highly recommended!
YOU HAVE KILLED ME HC by Jamie S. Rich and Joelle Jones. From Oni Press and the creators of 12 REASONS WHY I LOVE HER, this is a noir tale to remind all us hard-boiled private dicks why it’s a bad idea to take your ex on as a client.
YOU SHALL DIE BY YOUR OWN EVIL CREATION SC by Fletcher Hanks and Paul Karasik. This is the sequel volume to 2007’s deeply disturbing and entertaining I SHALL DESTROY ALL CIVILIZED PLANETS and completes the collection of golden-age writer/artist (and monster) Fletcher Hanks. Publisher Fantagraphics has generously provided a 13 page preview on their website http://www.fantagraphics.com/. Highly recommended.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

QUICK REVIEWS FOR COMICS DUE 07-15-09

QUICK REVIEWS FOR COMICS DUE 07-15-09
By John Judy


ACTION COMICS #879 by Greg Rucka, James Robinson, Fernando Dagnino and Cafu. Nightwing! Flamebird! Captain Atom! The reasons one buys ACTION COMICS!

AGENTS OF ATLAS #8 by Jeff Parker and Carlo Pagulayan. The AoAs meet the Hulk. Smashing ensues.

ALL-SELECT COMICS #1: 70th ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL by Marc Guggenheim and Javier Pulido. The Blonde Phantom is “gorgeous, quick-witted and hard-boiled!” I think I used to date her. Nefarious schemes will be foiled, believe you me! Plus a golden-age reprint and Marvex the Super-Robot! Recommended.

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #599 by Joe Kelly and Marco Checchetto. For some reason this has Richard Nixon on the cover. Hey, the last time Spidey had a President on the cover it went to seven printings or something. Marvel ain’t no dummy.

BATMAN: WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE CAPED CRUSADER HC by Neil Gaiman, Andy Kubert and Others. “Ummm, he got kilt?” It’s Neil doing his dreamy funeral thing. Looks good too. Plus other Gaiman Bat-tales. All good.

BLACKEST NIGHT #1 of 8 by Geoff Johns and Ivan Reis. “The dead shall rise!” Or as we say here in Comics-Land: “It’s Wednesday!” If your favorite hero snuffed it in the past few years they’re probably here looking corpsey. Gotta look!

CAPTAIN AMERICA #601 by Ed Brubaker and Gene “The Dean” Colan. Those two names in the credits should tell you how good this book is. Highly recommended.

CREEPY COMICS #1 by Many Talented Horror-Meisters, including Angelo Torres and Bernie Wrightson. It’s back from the publishing graveyard and ready to eat your brains in glorious black and white! For fans of the original mag and those who weren’t even born back then. Featuring two painted covers by Eric Powell. Yum!

DAN DARE OMNIBUS VOL. 1 TP by Garth Ennis and Gary Erskine. Collecting the cult favorite mini-series that brought the British space hero out of retirement in every possible way. Good stuff.

DARK AVENGERS #7 by Matt Fraction and Simone Bianchi. The DAs throw down with the X-gang in San Francisco. Big fight.

INCOGNITO #5 by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips. The penultimate issue of this beautiful anti-heroic ditty. Too good to wait for the trade. Highly recommended.

LITTLE MOUSE GETS READY HC written and drawn by Jeff Smith. A children’s book from the creator of BONE, RASL and SHAZAM: MONSTER SOCIETY OF EVIL about a little mouse who gets ready. Tell yourself you’re getting it for your kid. Recommended.

MIGHTY AVENGERS #27 by Dan Slott and Khoi Pham. A new story of a king so vile he had to be written out of history, but only after he screwed up traffic all over LA with his memorial service. Dan Slott is rocking this title. Highly Recommended.

RASL #5 written and drawn by Jeff Smith. Our dimension-hopping science thief gets in even more trouble. This one keeps getting better. Recommended.

SCALPED #30 by Jason Aaron and R.M. Guera. Red Crow learns there’s an FBI agent on The Rez as Dash Bad Horse begins the countdown to Totally Screwed. Not for kids. Highly Recommended. Read it.

UNWRITTEN #3 by Mike Carey and Peter Gross. Tommy Taylor meets Frankenstein! How great is this book? Very-very! Highly recommended.

WALKING DEAD #63 by Robert Kirkman and Charles Adlard. The scary non-zombies are hunting our intrepid band. Let’s hope Michonne chops ‘em up good. Not for kids. Recommended.

WEDNESDAY COMICS #2 of 12 by A Pantheon of Comics Dieties. Tabloid-sized awesomeness every week to remind you of how great a newspaper comics section could be. No lie, this stuff could save newspapers if they picked up on it. Highly recommended!

X-FACTOR #46 by Peter David and Valentine DeLandro. Time travel and girl-fights, but the big news is that Rictor and Shatterstar are gay. In other news, water is wet.

www.johnjudy.net

Saturday, July 04, 2009

QUICK REVIEWS FOR COMICS DUE 07-08-09

QUICK REVIEWS FOR COMICS DUE 07-08-09
By John Judy


100 BULLETS, VOL. 13: WILT SC by Brian Azzarello and Eduardo Risso. Collecting the final issues of the series, 89-100, in which questions get answered and secrets get turned over in their graves.

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN ANNUAL #36 by Marc Guggenheim and Patrick Oliffe. It’s a wedding in Spideyland and don’t those always go well? But who will catch the webby bouquet?

BATMAN #688 by Judd Winick and Mark Bagley. Judging by the cover of this book the new Batman appears to have been shot in the face with… something… And that’s really all I think I’m going to say about that.

BPRD 1947 #1 of 5 by Mike Mignola, Joshua Dysart, Fabio Moon, and Gabriel Ba. So, BPRD 1946 wasn’t enough for ya, Fanboy?! Well, how about THIS?!?! Featuring Nazis and other monsters.

DARK X-MEN: BEGINNING #1 of 3 by James Asmus, Paul Cornel and Humberto Ramos. Y’know, I hate to say it but the Dark X-gang sound like the most intriguing line-up of mutants I’ve seen in a long time. Except for Wolver-Lad, but few comics are perfect. Gotta Look!

GREEN LANTERN #43 by Geoff Johns and Doug Mahnke. The Black Hand is raising the dead to form his Black Lantern Corps. Guess who’s first? Recommended.

NO HERO #6 of 7 by Warren Ellis and Juan Jose Ryp. The continuing adventures of our tragic, castrated, largely psychotic super-chap from that nice Mister Ellis.

THE NOBODY HC written and drawn by Jeff Lemire. The Xeric Award-winning creator of THE ESSEX COUNTY TRILOGY re-imagines H.G. Wells’ story of “The Invisible Man” in graphic novel form. Recommended, especially if you miss the old rascal from LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN.

NORTH 40 #1 of 6 by Aaron Williams and Fiona Staples. An interesting look into what happens when some dummy uses a magic book without knowing what he’s doing and turns a Midwestern American county into Hell on Earth. It’s a lot like when Texas first elected Governor Bush.

PUNISHER: FRANK CASTLE MAX #72 by Victor Gischler and Goran Parlov. Frank vs. cannibal rednecks in the Bayou. The wild card appears to be a huge freakin’ alligator who eats frat boys on command. Anyone else wanna see the gator get his own book? Recommended. Not for kids.

THE STAND: AMERICAN NIGHTMARES #4 of 5 by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and Mike Perkins. This “End of the World by Super-Flu” story remains top-notch morbid entertainment. Stephen King should be writing this creative team a sincere thank-you note because they’re handling his novel better than any of the TV movies ever did. Recommended.

SUPERMAN: WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE MAN OF TOMORROW HC by Alan Moore, Curt Swan, Murphy Anderson and Others. Don’t let the title fool you. This is not merely another re-printing of the title story, but also a deluxe hardcover including Moore’s other two Superman classics “For the Man Who Has Everything” from ACTION COMICS ANNUAL #11 and “The Jungle Line” from DC COMICS PRESENTS #85. Highly Recommended.

SUPERMAN WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON #5 of 12 by James Robinson, Greg Rucka and Pete Woods. You would think a world as advanced as New Krypton would have moved beyond caste systems and the death penalty. But you would be wrong. Typical behavior from people too dumb to listen to their leading scientist when he tells them the world’s going to end… Recommended.

UNWRITTEN #3 by Mike Carey and Peter Gross. Wow, is this a great book, mixing the best traits of the Harry Potter novels, Alan Moore and Neil Gaiman with a twist of mystery and illustrated to the nines by Peter Gross. Read it! Recommended.

WEDNESDAY COMICS #1 of 12 by Many, Many Amazing Writers and Artists. This one is too big to sum up in a Quick Review. Just trust me that this is the most awesome thing on the stands this week and you need to sell a kidney if that’s what it takes to add it to your stack. Highly Recommended Times a Million.

X-MEN LEGACY #226 by Mike Carey and Dustin Weaver. Some old X-Men return to San Francisco only to encounter the new Dark X-Men. You would think that a group calling itself “The Dark X-Men” would stir some measure of mistrust, but you would be wrong. Because this is America and we watch a lot of TV.

www.johnjudy.net