Moon Knight #188
Marvel Comics Writer Max Bemis, Artist Jacen Burrows, Colorist Mat Lopes, Letterer Cory Petit
I have been digging Bemis’s other books lately and was intrigued that he was going to be writing the new Moon Knight book because after the all to short but brilliant Warren Ellis and Declan Shalvey’s recent run they had some really big shoes to fill. The first issue is a bit on the slow side because Bemis is setting things up but by the end of the issue it all comes together very nicely. The story is very dense and there is a lot to take in with the exposition going on but in a way that works well as it all comes together. I do like the slow burn approach to the book that he is taking and getting deep into the Egyptian mythology that plays a key role in the story. It was very interesting that Moon Knight doesn’t even show up in the first issue and for me that set a great tone for the book right out of the gate. I wasn’t familiar with Burrows artwork before this book but he gives the book a fresh approach and it really pays off with a great looking book. He put a lot of detail into the art and it really pays off on the characters facial emotions that drive a the story in this first issue. The only minor issue was that there were a few times where there was a lack of backgrounds but overall the book looks really good.
Is this book worth your time and money? While I was not totally overwhelmed with this first issue, Bemis and Burrows does set things up well and gives you a good reason to give the book a few more issues to see where their going to take it. Sometimes you have to start a story with throwing the readers off a bit but to Bemis’s credit he does keep it focused even though it doesn’t seem it at first. The book shows a lot of promise and I hope that they build upon this first issue. It’s worth checking out.
Mister Miracle #5
DC Comics Writer Tom King, Artist and Colorist Mitch Gerads, Letterer Clayton Cowles
At this point I can’t figure out how King and Gerads just keep making this book better and better each issue and manages to throw in twists and turns that continues to keep readers on their toes. King story for this issue is a real game changer for the story and turns the book into a whole new directions that its been leading up to. King has not only fashioned a great dramatic story here but this issue has a great sense of humor that gives a great balance to the events of this issues story. It’s the emotional depth that King brings to these characters and we also are starting to learn how being a New God is not what it’s cracked up to be. There are so many levels that this story is dealing with and in a lesser writers hands this book would have spiraled out of control at this point, but King manages to keep all of the spinning plates perfectly timed together. You feel every little detail with each panel that is hard to rush through. It’s a book that you let wash over you and let it soak into you and gives you a feeling amazement that you rarely get from mainstream comics today. It’s the emotions of the characters that is making this book work so well. It’s not thing to have a great script but you need and artist that is going to bring it to life and Gerads has simply exceeded all expectation on this book and each issue is better than the last that is a very rare feat. His nine panel approach to the story is simply genus and gives the book a great rhythm while your reading it. There was a lot of subtle humor that was in this issue and Gerads simply nailed those moments so well that was a real joy to see. This book is a perfect marriage of story and art that are perfectly in sync.
Is this book worth your time and money? Mister Miracle has simply become the must read comic book of the year. It’s a rare feat to take a classic character created by Jack Kirby and give it a new and greasy approach and yet doesn’t try and reinvent the wheel here. King and Gerards have crafted a compelling and visually amazing book here that continues to simply get better and better with each issue. HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION!
Image Comics Writer Sean Lewis, Artist Caitlin Yarsky
Coyotes is an interesting little book that I liked a lot of the ideas but didn’t necessarily fall in love with. I will give Lewis credit that there are some good ideas that he set the story up with but I did find the story to drag a bit and didn’t flow as well as I would have liked. The first issue is pretty much exposition and that does hamper a first issue at times. I think that the biggest problem for me was that I didn’t really connect with the characters and that could be where I struggled with the story. I will say that the back up story that gives the back story to Frank was quite good and helped me understand his motives better so this gives me hope that the second issue could turn the book around for me. On the plus side Yarsky’s artwork is quite nice and give the book a great mood and look that did help the first issue out quite well. Not only was his line work nice but he does a nice job on the coloring of the book. You can really see that in the backup story that is wonderful black and white with some great shading work.
Is this book worth your time and money? Lewis script does try but there wasn’t a strong hook in this first issue. He does however set some interesting things up for the story arc so I’m willing to give the book a second chance with the strong backup story giving me hope. Yarsky artwork does give the book a strong visual look that helped keep me interested and that was a plus. Overall the book has promise but we will have to see if the second issue is able to pick up the pace.
Kid Lobotomy #2
Black Crown/IDW Writer Peter Milligan, Artist Tess Fowler, Colorist Lee Loughridge, Letterer Aditya Bidikar
Milligan is a writer that always has a lot of plates spinning in his stories and Kid Lobotomy has a ton of them. I do like a lot of the ideas that he throws in the book but this second issue does have me a bit worried. It’s one thing to build a world but it seems that the connective threads are not fully formed. Milligan keeps introducing characters and story elements but I would wish that they were a little more focused. There are a lot of good things that he is throwing into the story but on the flip side that can leave the reader a bit overwhelmed with it all. That is where I’m at with the story in that I really like the ideas but not connecting as well as I would like at this point. There is enough here to give me hope that the story will right itself a bit in the next few issues but it just needs to be a little more focused with the next issue. Fowler is doing a nice job here and is able to capture all of the wildness of the book that Milligan is throwing at her. I loved how she played with the formatting of the story this issue and gave the book a strong visual punch that caught me off guard but in a very good way. Her artwork does help the story out well and helps to ground it in a sort of weird reality that gives the book a great punch.
Is this book worth your time and money? I was a little underwhelmed with this second issue but not that it was bad but for me didn’t build well upon the first issue as much as I would have liked. Milligan is a great writer and there is a lot to like here but wished that it was a little more focused. I get that The Suites is a wild hotel that allows the comic to go beyond reality but you need to able to latch on to characters to walk you though this wild ride.
Royal City #7
Image Comics Writer/Artist/Colorist Jeff Lemire, Letterer Steve Wands
This second story arc of Royal City is simply blowing me away and in fact that it adds so much depth to the present story and adds a great richness that I never expect but am very happy with. We are learning so much about Tommy that is adding so many layers to the story. While we know some of the story because of the present part of the story arc there are so many new details that Lemire is uncovering that its like a whole new story. What I have loved about this book from day one is the characters and how they are all a part of us and so relatable and natural that makes this book so special. Each page dives deeper into the story and the only complaint that I can say about the book is that each issue is over far too soon. It’s rare for a comic today to always leave you wanting more each and every issue. Lemire has written some great comics over the years but this might just be the best story that he has ever told. It’s a heartfelt and charming story that washes over you and draws you in to this fantastic story. My favorite part is from Tommy’s journal that gives the story a great tactile feeling and why reading a comic on paper gives the story so much more depth and feeling and why it’s working so well. Lemire’s artwork always is a treat and this book continues to capture the world of Royal City perfectly with it. I think the thing that I love most about his artwork is the color work that he does. It gives the book a perfect natural feel that brings you closer to the story and it’s emotions. It really brings out his beautiful line work on this book and makes for a great visual feast.
Is this book worth your time and money? This is alway one of the first books I read when it comes out and has yet to disappoint me. With this second story arc shedding light on the past is simply a joy to read and to look at. Lemire is keeping me on the edge of my seat to see where it all ends up. It’s a book that just gets better as it goes along and is a truly must read comic book. HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION!
The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #26
Marvel Comics Writers Ryan North, Erica Henderson, Artists Madeline McGrane, Chip Zdarsky, Tom Fowler, Carla Speed McNeil, Michael Cho, Rahzzah, Anders Nilsen, Rico Renzi, Jim Davis, Colorist McGrane, Zdarsky, Renzi, Cho, Rahzzah, Nilsen, Letterers McGrane, Travis Lanham & McGrane, Davis,
When all is said and done The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl has been the most consistent and bright spot in the Marvel line from day one and this all-star “zine” issue shows why it works so well month in and month out. North simply keeps the book fun and loose and that is why it’s so charming. While the big new in this issue is the artwork of renowned Garfield creator Jim Davis in this issue but its the entire rosters of artist that makes this issue so fun and charming. While I don’t think that this issue is necessarily the best ones for new readers to jump on to the book, it does however give you a great flavor of the silly fun that this book consistently delivers each month. While the Jim Davis will get all of the attention it was the Wolverine story that really surprised me and caught me off guard. The one that was a true double take was the Loki story that I don’t want to give anything away but once you read that one twice it will blow your mind and shows the amazing talent of North’s writing skills. The other fun one was the simply gorgeous artwork on the Kraven Comic by Cho who seemed to be channeling Not Brand Echh from the 1970’s perfectly. Each short story shows North’s ability as a writer to tell different story that don’t connect but flow perfectly well together. He also wrote the stories to fit the artist that was also impressive. I must hand it to all of the guest artist who really brought their A game to this issue and made it such a fun romp visually.
Is this book worth your time and money? I’m a huge fan of this book and North delivers a wildly silly but still heartwarming stories that is both charming and fun. It was great to see other artist visit the Squirrel Girl Universe and get to play in the sandbox. If you have never read the book I would say give this issue a try to it will give a glimpse of the playful tone that the book delivers each month and if you like it go back and pick up one of the previous issues or trades to discover one of the most consistent and best Marvel books being published today. RECOMMENDED!
Rock Candy Mountain #5
Image Comics Writer/Artist/Letterer Kyle Starks, Colorist Chris Schweizer
Every once in a while when I pick up my comics each week there is a nice little surprise and this Weeks was the return of Rock Candy Mountain’s second story arc and really hit the ground running. We get to learn about Jackson’s past and how he ended up where he did and it’s both amazing and heartbreaking at the same time. Starks goes really deep with this story and the emotions that it delivers really gets to you and you start to understand more about Jackson but not entirely the full story. You do however find out the dual sides of him and understand why he is lost and trying to find Rock Candy Mountain. Wisely Starks doesn’t answer everything here and that is a good thing because there is a lot of story ahead and its the journey that is the most interesting. We also start to see the different paths of the characters start to come together at the end of this issue and it’s going to be quite interesting to see if go from here. One of the great charms of this book is Starks artwork that has a unique style that is a bit cartoony but that really works in the books favor. I’m always impressed that he is able to capture so much emotions in the characters with such simple details with his line work. He does a great job with the coloring on the book that adds so much emotion to the line work that makes this such a joy to both read and to look at.
Is this book worth your time and money? I’m a huge fan of this book and was really excited to see where Starks is taking the story. This was the perfect time to go to Jackson’s past to learn how and why he is currently. It also makes you want to go back and re read the first story arc with new eyes to see the subtle things that we now understand. This book is a great read with wonderful visuals to match. If you have missed the first issues there is a trade that is only 10 bucks and it will catch you up to this wonderful book. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
DC Comics Writer Ray Fawkes, Artist Inaki Miranda, Colorist Eva De La Cruz, Letterer Josh Reed
I really want to like Ragman and I do to a point but it seems to be getting off to a sluggish start. I had wished by this second issue that we would have gotten past most of the exposition and we do to a point but while there was great action in this second outing for some reason it just didn’t gel as well as I would have liked. Fawkes does have some good elements that he sets in motion and I did like the book more than I didn’t but the pacing just seems a bit off. There were also a few times where the dialog seems to be a little too thick and slowed it down a few times. There was more good than bad but honestly I’m just not quite feeling the story but am willing to give it one more issue to see if Fawkes can right the ship. The real saving grace of the book is Miranda’s gorgeous artwork that really helps the book along. The battle scenes are truly impressive and really shows off his range as an artist. He is one of the reasons I want to give this book a chance.
Is this book worth your time and money? While it’s not a total train wreck, the book is just not coming together like a second issue should. While there are some good ideas here and the artwork is really good the book is on a thin thread at this point. It’s got only one more issue to convince me to keep going. I can’t quite recommend it but it’s not a total waste either.