Welcome back to our third week in a row that is a new current record for reviews. Just wanted to give a shout out to my local comic book store where I get my comics at Pulp Fiction Comics Long Beach is a great local shop and they do mail order also. You also want to check out their Facebook page where they do live videos of new comics on Monday night and on Sunday nights I join Ryan to go over the FOC (Final Order Cutoff) so that you don’t miss ordering anything from the store.
Strange Academy #1 & #2
Marvel Comics Writer Skottie Young, Artist Humberto Ramos, Colorist Edgar Delgado, Letterer Clayton Cowles
It was so long ago when the first issue came out that I had to go back and read it again because I forgot about the story and it was a good thing to do. This is quite a fun little title from Marvel and Young has become quite the writer who is more known for his artwork and his many variant little Marvel covers but his writing on Middlewest and now Strange Academy has proven that that he is becoming a real strong storyteller. What makes him a perfect writer for this book is that he has a great knack for writing younger characters and he is able to capture those awkward teenage years perfectly. What I really enjoyed about this book so far is that he does a great job of balancing the superhero aspect of the story but never loses sight of the humor and fun of it either. He does such a great job of capturing the teen drama and angst of it but always keep the characters grounded and never loses sight of that. It’s one thing to have a good story but you need an artists that is going to be able to not only capture the big moments but with this type of story they need to get the smaller more intimate moments and Ramos is simply perfect for this one. Drawing subtle humor is always tough but Ramos has a great knack for it and it really shows here with the way that he has fun with it and makes the story flow from page to page with his amazing detail that gives this book a great visual charm.
Is this comic worth you’re time and money? I really enjoyed this book so far and sure it has shades of Harry Potter but it’s not like that was super original ether. This type of story has been told many times before but I have to say that Young and Ramos has found a way to tell it in a fresh new way here. It’s also nice to have a comic that is simply a lot of fun and light at times that is nice to have compared to the grim and gritty that seems more prevalent today. This was a great surprise and they give you a good reason to come back for more. I’m adding it to my pull list. RECOMMENDED!
Dceased: Dead Planet #1
DC Comics Writer Tom Taylor, Penciller Trevor Hairsine, Inkers Gigi Baldassini & Stefano Gaudiano, Colorist Rain Beredo, Letterer Saida Temofonte
The Night of the Living Dead DC Universe is back and its no surprise because the original series was a huge surprise and along with huge sales it was a no brainer that there would be a sequel. The ones who have survived are now on Earth-2 and of course the big shock is that they have to back to Earth-1 to find out a message from Cyborg and what it means. If you read the first mini series then you know what exactly to expect from Taylor’s story here. He does a good job of getting the reader back up to speed with a quick recap of the first series and for those who may have not read it. This first issue is pure exposition for the series with a cliffhanger (shock) so there is only so much here to go on. The story is decent but there is not a lot that happens here in this first issue but I will give Taylor credit for taking the time to set the characters up here. Hairsine’s artwork is nice and does a good job on both the action and the drama of the story. One thing that I like is that he is quite good with the emotions of the characters with their expressions that really helps sell the story.
Is this comic worth you’re time and money? As with the first series this is not high art but it’s a fun “Elsewhere” type story that has zombies in it and who doesn’t love zombies? Taylor and Hairsine deliver here what you expect and the question is going to be what happens from here? This first issue is pure set up so it’s really going to have to see where it goes from here.
Image Comics Writer Matt Fraction, Penciller & Colorist Terry Dodson, Inker Rachel Dodson, Letterer Layton Cowles
I’ll be really honest here that I wasn’t all that impressed with the first issue of this book and its really Dodson’s artwork that even got me to come back for a second outing. I’m still not thrilled with the pacing of Fraction’s story here because were basically at the third issue at this point and there is still not a lot of forward momentum to the story as much as I would like. I get that you don’t want to give to much away too early but the problem is that there is not enough to care about the main characters. It’s all nice and everything but there is not a lot to care about here and while there are some interesting ideas here and there, it’s just not enough. As always Dodson’s artwork makes it a lot easier to swallow the so-so story here. He really make it much more interesting that the story and he does his best to move things along visually that helps a bit but he can only do so much here.
Is this comic worth you’re time and money? I get what Fraction is doing here but if you don’t care about the characters then it doesn’t help with a story that seems to take forever to get going. Then you have one of the top artist in the field with great artwork but even it can’t save this slow paced bore. SKIP IT!
The Boys: Dear Becky #1 & #2
Dynamite Entertainment Writer Garth Ennis, Artist Russ Braun, Colorist Tony Aviña, Letterer Simon Bowland
So after reading the first two issues of The Boys I’m a bit lost on the whole thing. It’s been a long time from the last issue of the boys (2012 to be exact) and I get that this is Hughie is reading a story from the past but it’s just not coming together with the story so far. The first issue was a real tough slog to get though because it didn’t really do much and the story sort of wandered around. The second issue was a bit tighter but still you are not sure what is going on with both the past and present as Hughie is reading this story sent to Becky. To be sure this is Ennis capturing the Boys when it deals with the past but the problem that I am having with it is the present and how what is the point with Hughie beyond him reading the story? There is classic Boys violence and action that was a staple of the series but this story is just all over the place. The one thing that is good here is Braun’s artwork that who was the final artist on the regular series does a great job of doing his best to help move the story along visually but as good as the book looks I was just not sure what to make of it overall.
Is this comic worth you’re time and money? I’m really not sure what Ennis is trying to tell with his story here. It’s not that the book is bad but the weird pacing and jumping around doesn’t help it at all. Its pretty disjointed and the only thing holding it together barely is Braun’s artwork that is really great to look at but he can only do so much here. I really wanted to like this but it left me really frustrated.
Batman: The Adventures Continue #2
DC Comics Writers Alan Burnett & Paul Dini, Artist Ty Templeton, Colorist Monica Kubina, Letterer Josh Reed
This continuing adventure of Batman from the animated series continues to not only be a fun ride but adds a lot of surprises along the way. One fun thing that Burnett and Dini are doing is throwing as many classic Batman villains into the story as possible that is giving the book a great deal of fun and excitement but they are also using other DC characters that were never in the show such as Deahstroke in this second issue. This is really making this a fun twist in the story and is not just taking the simple route. I like how they are keeping the mystery of the person watching them a mystery but building him up along the way in the story so far. They also keep things simple and moving along quite well here and that keeping on the lighter side that is a nice change of pace for a comic. Templeton continues to capture the animation style of the show but makes it fit into comic form perfectly here.
Is this comic worth you’re time and money? I loved the first issue but I have to say that they have really built the story out here in the second issue quite well and there were a lot of surprises along the way that is making it even better than I thought it would be and I am not disappointed. They have really stepped up here in this second issue and leaves you with a great cliffhanger that will have you wanting more. VERY RECOMMENDED!