Batman Last Knight On Earth Book One: This one is so good that I couldn’t help but smile thinking that this creative team has a helluva swan song sendoff for the character they’ve left a mark on. Batman unsuspectingly walks into a trap which seems to send him down an even darker rabbit hole and creates an end no one could’ve foresaw. The politics of this tumultuous time we now find ourselves where most choose to only help themselves comes into effect to destroy the worlds of the DC universe. A scientifically reincarnated Batman must trek through the wastelands of this beautifully drawn apocalyptic wasteland with only Joker’s head as his companion to find the culprit and rebuild after all others have given up hope. This one is one for the ages and a shoe-in for one of the all time greats.
Angel #1– Another bomb first issue for Boom’s Buffyverse. I think that still means really good? Angel has made his way to Sunnydale after receiving vague instructions from his seer friend in L.A. As he sits in his friend’s house who he saved when said friend was only a child, he has horrible flashbacks to who he once was as brooding characters are wont to do. It’s here we learn of some of the insane things Angelus once did which are 100% coming back soon (which is extremely exciting considering their ramifications). The most interesting part is how they bring the series back into modern times, with the crux of the central story being about how cruel we can be via the internet. Very excited to see where this one goes and how it ties into the Buffy comicverse at large.
Superman: Leviathan Rising #1 – Leviathan strikes at last in what is a foundation issue for DC’s summer event. The story itself is split into four main perspectives over the course of the issue as they take in Leviathan’s titular rise: Superman, Lois Lane, Jimmy Olsen and Supergirl. Clark stumbles into a kidnapping purposefully to see what Leviathan is up to which ended with him being trapped in a Kryptonite vest. Not a great idea. This sends Lois Lane and the Justice League hunting after him which does not go the way Leviathan would like…only to deepen the mystery even more. Meanwhile, Jimmy Olsen gets mistakenly married to a pan-dimensional jewel thief in Gorilla City after drinking a ton of Gorilla Champagne at a book tour event. It has as much to do with the main story as it sounds but was hilarious enough as is. Pick this up for a piece of the puzzle so you can further see how Bendis’ big event unfolds.
She Said Destroy #1: Two gods, one world and an epic war to decide who governs it. That’s what’s about to go down in the set up for She Said Destroy as Brigid and the Morrigan prep their masses for war. Every god exists only when belief in them is strong and in the distant future, only two remain to fight for control of humanity. The two societies live in constant distaste for the other and as a result, Brigid’s forces begin their invasion into Morrigan’s realm. Winona is one of Morrigan’s believers who has been chosen as the fey princess with faerie guides to boot. Their leader sends her forth to a realm within the woods to bring their god to them before Brigid’s strike comes fully down. A good bit of world building and strong story beats push this book in what looks to be a very interesting direction.
Thanos #2: Tini Howard continues a strong storytelling start to this origin of Thanos and Gamora’s initial meeting. The Butcher Squad is unsure why their leader Thanos has brought along their first ever prisoner Gamora after the destruction of her species at his hand. Maw is wary of his intentions so to throw the big purple dude into a loop, he lets Gamora loose onto the ship to gauge Thanos’ reaction to her misbehavior. The fight between the Magus and Thanos didn’t end on Gamora’s home world though as he finds a way to attack from the inside the ship. All this plays out badly for Butcher Squad though as Maw’s plans unravel in a disastrous way…another great addition to the Marvel cosmic books which are thankfully starting to expand as of late.
Ascender #2: The way in which Lemire and Nguyen have transformed this world from a futurist nightmare to a magical dystopia is truly something amazing. Mila reunites Bandit with Andy is an incredibly touching seen, that is until Mother’s forces sense the technology and send hit squad of vampires after them. Meanwhile, Mother herself has to bring the kingdom of Gnish closer under her command through sheer brute force and a disgusting tag-along to keep an eye on them. The action amps up in amazing ways in this issue with appearances from characters from the original Descender series making their return. I cannot wait to see where this story takes us as it is sure to be another instant classics from one of the best creative teams to put pen to paper.
Black Science #40 – Kadir has betrayed everyone, and was sent out to face this dimensions horrors at the end of the last issue. Grant and his gang have a plan to take down the Witch, but things go terribly wrong. It might be Kadir who saves the universe after all.
Killer Groove #1 – Jonny is a want to be star, who plays guitar at the local dive between making drinks behind the bar. After closing up one night, he hears a scuffle in a near by alley. He goes to break up a fight between two people, but he might be catching a break for himself.
Batman: Last Knight on Earth #1 – Oh no! I will say, for awhile there, I thought they were going to let that whole “you are crazy Bruce” thing ride for awhile. Bruce was falling for it though, and when Alfred explains the hopelessness of the outside walls, he is still the same ol’ Bat despite obvious memory loss. So off he goes, he find Joker’s head preserved in a lamp (which was super convenient) so now they’re hanging out. After a two day hike, they make it to Ocean City, and it is in ruins. Joker speaks of Lantern rings falling from the sky, and people subsequently destroying the town with all that power. They are rescued, but no one believes he is the real Batman because he has been missing for so long. He finally gets to speak to an old friend, Wonder Woman, but she has given up on the outside world too. The story ends with Bruce heading out to fix this broken world.
Queen of Bad Dreams #2 – Inspector Judge Wei is trying to get to the bottom of a case that just doesn’t feel quite right. After meeting with the escaped “figment” the night before, she lets her go, despite the high profile of this case. This time the figment, Ava, finds her. Ava tells Wei about her roles in dreams of Emerson Chase, and how she began to distrust him. Realizing she no longer wanted to be apart of his dream world, Ava escapes Chase’s dream and takes files as leverage to ensure her safety in the real world. This is the first time a figment has been able to take the reins in such a way, but before Wei could ask more questions a couple men burst through the door to make sure she never gets the chance..
Star Wars Vader: Dark Visions #4 – another great short story about the legend that is Darth Vader only this time Vader doesn’t even appear in it very much. Instead, we get to see how even just the idea and presence of him can instill so much fear in even Rebel pilots who would consider themselves to be the bravest of the bunch. Vader’s skills as a pilot also help a lot and no madder how good you think you are at flying, Vader will always be better and cheat slightly via his force intuitions.
She Said Destroy #1 – Maybe it’s because of the Fiona Staples/Saga #1 homage cover, but reading this I got weird poor mans Saga vibes. The gods have been dying off by being forgotten and only a few remain it seems. There are two warring factions, each of them aligned to either the god Brigid or Morrigan. Who these cards are remains to be seen, but Brigid and her followers seem to be the bad guys. Our two main characters seem to be some sort of kid wizards or something and they discover a secret at the end that will change things going over for sure, It was honestly all kind of confusing for me and the art didn’t really do it for me either.
X-Men Grand Design X-Tinction #1 – Ed Piskor is back to finish off his X-Men magnum opus. This one of the best things Marvel has ever done and Ed Piskor’s love of the X-men and X-men history really shines. In this first of the final two chapters, we see the birth and rise of Nathan Summers/Cable and Madelyn Pryor and all the shenanigans they bring. But really, the main thing this book has is all that sweet sweet Ed Piskor art. Marvel at it. Love it. Let it consume you.
My Little Pony: Spirit of the Forest – What can I say? These MLP comics are the only thing doing it for me sexually right now.
Invisible Kingdom #3: Time for more excellent space-punk this month from G. Willow Wilson. It’s crunch time for Grix and her crew as Lux begins to close in on their location. While the crew debates on their next move, the two storylines finally converge as Vess answers a distress signal from her monastery none of them knew they sent. Turns out the smallest member of their crew, Grix’s baby brother, knew that they needed to ask for help even though they seemed to have nowhere to turn. Vess’s mantra of “the path will present itself” seems to be going into overdrive as Grix decides to head planetside to her, not knowing that Vess too has evidence of the insidious connection between Lux and the galaxy’s main religion. Beautiful visuals from Christian Ward provide the perfect sci-fi setting once again.
War of the Realms Journey Into Mystery #3: Lots of #3s of my favorite books this week! The dream team babysitters club continues their cross-country trek to Death Locket’s secret abandoned Heli carrier. This month the gang stumbles upon an old ghost town out west. As it happens, Death Locket is a huge western fan thanks to her Uncle Dum Dum and regales everyone with stories of Marvel’s western heroes. As they go deeper into town, it seems DL’s stories are coming to life as many people on the team experience some close encounters of the cowboy kind while Thori the god-dog smells something fishy going down with their mission overall. Don’t miss tons of good good goofs by the McElboys as the event tie-in to end all event ties-ins continues.
Justice League Dark #11: Tynion IV’s epic magic saga continues in spectacular fashion once again. Wonder Woman and Zatanna meet up with the god of Chaos and brother to the Lords of Order wrecking havoc on magic, Mordru himself. The god with a huge god complex had himself holed up in an invisible bar hidden within the Hall of Justice. Total baller move. Too bad he’s a huge a-hole who, though he helps them with their plight, totally deserves an insane comeuppance. This meeting did help facilitate a fascinating conversation on magic itself and the concepts of order and chaos. Meanwhile, things break bad for the magical refugees as the Lords of Order zero-in on their location. Will they submit before them and lose all magic or will they fight for the wonders they create?
The Goon #2: I made sure to read this in the privacy of my home for fear of laughing too loudly and was correct in doing so. Powell puts up another hilarious issue as the terribly evil history of Vinnie Nosferatu is laid out. Turns out some people are just born evil as all hell which is the case for Vinnie. He uses his vamp prowess to become one of the most feared gangsters around, taking out all the shop keeps who won’t fork over the protection money now that Goon’s back in town. Goon doesn’t take too kindly to this and seeks out Vinnie to give him some well-deserved payback. Jokes and classic fisticuffs ensue as the issue quickly turns into Goon the Vampire Slayer. Don’t miss out on a good laugh as it’s still a great time to catch up on this exceptional funnybook.
Road of Bones #1: A pretty fantastic start to a historical book interspersed with a little magical realism. Roman in a prisoner in Russia in 1950 where, surprisingly enough, conditions are utterly deplorable and Stalin’s guards regularly brutalize and kill inmates. Roman was imprisoned for making a joke at a party about Stalin and now works to build this road and as a chef in the kitchen. He regularly sneaks food to leave out for a domovik, a supernatural being who guards house and home. Roman catches the attention of Gregor, a member of a Russian crime syndicate, who has an escape plan set up and just needs Roman to build a food reserve. Everything seems to play out like a normal prison break story until the last night before they escape the camp when Roman leaves out food for the domovik and a gnarled, scarred hand reaches out to devour it. Unbeknownst spooks await and are coming up soon!
Avengers #19: I haven’t been caught up on this run but once again Jason Aaron proves he can write a damn good comic book. This issue sees one of the most unlikely Avengers as its star: Gorilla-Man. The story starts with him meeting Ursa Major in a zoo where a bear and gorilla can inconspicuously converse. Kazar picks him up in a flying car to tell him the events of Malekith’s invasion (see War of Realms). The pair head to Avengers Mountain to prep defenses for the oncoming onslaught. The real winner of the issue is the perspective, the ability to see all the Avengers in the eyes of a self-described underachiever and Hale’s hilarious voice-overs. The turning point of this one is a real heart-breaker in a glorious way though and is definitely going to make me catch up on this series.
Invisible Kingdom #3 – Vess and Grix are two people whose determination to do the right thing have brought them together. Grix is the pilot of a Lux cargo ship with an incorrect manifest with aims to smuggle money. When Grix goes to his superiors, he is met with threats. Vess lives in the Invisible Kingdom who are largely anti Lux, but when doing paper work, realizes the smuggled money was coming there. She too went to her superiors who fed her the usual faith nonsense. Grix is afraid for his crew’s safety, so when Vess reaches out to get more information, they decide to share what they know. It isn’t long after Vess meets with Grix that the people on Duni are after the two.
Drawing Blood #1 – Shane Bookman aka Books, is cartoonist who’s given up on his craft to turn his attention to the stage. But after he hears his childhood hero and colleague, Frank Forrest, has killed himself, Books can’t help but reminisce on his younger days when inking pages meant the world to him. He finds out very quickly Frank wasn’t the man he though he was. After Books lawyer informs him Frank had been stealing money from the company, Books wonders how he is going to get his stage play off the ground. Before this news can even digest, Books is strong armed by a couple guys in an alley. Apparently, the money stolen from Books’ company wasn’t enough and now these men want him to pay for Frank’s mistakes.
Assassin Nation #3 – Bishop thinks he has finally found the man who has been trying to kill him. His team of assassins set off to take out a rival gang leader while he remains tucked away in a safe room. The job gets done, unfortunately they lose some of their own in the process. Later at their hide out, some of the team is still uneasy. They aren’t all sure they got the right guy.
Clue: Candlestick #1 – Everyone knows the classic Clue story “come to my mansion”, followed by unexplained murders and a house full of suspects. It’s the art style and the page layouts that are reinventing this story line here, and giving the reader a sense they are finding clues alongside the dinner guests. With two people dead at the end of this issue, we know the next will begin with fear and accusations…and i’m here for it.
Faithless #2 – Faith’s life was turned upside down in the last issue and magic is to blame. After an amazing day with Poppy, she wakes up in Poppy’s flat with a note inviting her to an exclusive party. Faith arrives and is dumbfounded by all the ”who’s who” at the event. After accidentally snapping a pic and getting kicked out, Poppy eventually finds her outside, in the arms of famous artist Louis Thorn. Faith awkwardly handles the situation and the two head back to the flat, only to be stopped by a group of cat callers that won’t take no for answer. Too bad they don’t know who they are messing with…
Road of Bones #1 – It’s 1950 and Stalin’s communist Russian wonderland is really getting into the swing of things. Roman Morozov is happily working in a gulag in the “kitchen” and picking up shifts digging when one of is prisoner friends gets beaten to death by the nice Russian guards. But Roman makes sure to smuggle away some food for his little Domovik (demon maybe. spooky thing for sure) friend hiding under a building. Let’s say the guards weren’t to happy about it but I think the Domovik might have a way of getting Roman off the hook. All in all a pretty solid spooky debut and something about it being in soviet Russian winter wonderland makes it even spookier.
Faithless #2 – This book continues to be great and sexy. Faith gets invited to a super secret sexy party where she breaks a cardinal rule. But that rule breakage allows her to meet someone who will become pretty prominent later on. Also Faith unleashes some magical punishment on some gross cat calling boys and they learn a real HARD lesson. lol. I love this series.
Star Wars Age of Rebellion Jabba the Hutt – There’s a space wine that’s all the rage called “The Tusken Wind” but it’s super hard to get but only one….thing, knows how and his name is Jabba. Some traders catch wind of this magical elixir and are granted a meeting with the mighty Hutt but are denied. What follows is a series of events that will lead multiple groups to try obtain this mighty juice, even the little Jawas. Obviously Jabba has a master plan in place because he’s a gangster genius except when it comes to women in chains.
Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge #2 – I still can’t believe I’m reading a tie in comic for a theme park, but for a theme park comic it’s not too bad! In this issue we get a lil flashback story for everyone’s favorite green bounty hunter Greedo gets to flex his expert marksman skills on a job that goes as you’d expect of Greedo. But he does get a fancy light saber out of it to please his master Jabba who then sends him on his way to his fateful encounter with Han. In the “present”, out crew finds out some more info on this Sith artifact they are trying to steal. I’m thoroughly impressed that they are able to work in elements of this new theme park, like Dok-Ondar runs a shop in the comic and he will literally run the same shop where you too can buy ancient star wars artifacts at Star Wars Land when it opens, and it actually kind of works.
Guardians of the Galaxy #5: After being thoroughly trounced at the end of last issue in their attempt to save Gamora from the Dark Guardians, the GotG regroup with seemingly no where to go with no way off the planet. That is, until Beta Ray Bill swings an intergalactic dog whistle around and summons everyone’s favorite transport, Lockjaw! The pupper gets the scent of Gamora and sends them aboard the Shi’ar war cruiser but too little too late as Hela gets to their transport ahead of them…the late Thanos’s plan is exposed and damn, it doesn’t look good for everyone involved. Marvel’s cosmic heroes are in for a huge shake-up if this issue’s cliffhanger is meant to unfold so you don’t wanna miss out.
Fairlady #2: Dragons! That’s supposedly the culprit of Galin Flood’s death according to the Constabulary but his wife Imelia doesn’t buy it since they also claim he was becoming a large organizer of the Feld’s black market. After an initial investigation of the crime scene, Jenner and Oanu learn there’s credence to Imelia’s words as there’s lamp oil found at the scene. That’s a pretty suspicious oversight on behalf of the other investigatory Fairmen so Jenner Faulds suspects the involvement of higher-ups within her own organization. This sends her on the path of slowly interrogating other Fairmen and learning more about the harsh realities others have faced in wake of the War of the Harshland. One complete mystery awaits in this book which is told brilliantly in this short format.
The Immortal Hulk #17: It’s very easy to say that Al Ewing and Joe Bennett are on a legendary run with their Hulk stories and this issue stands as another testament to that. Bushwacker chases Banner throughout the inner-workings of The Mountain, a hidden base run by the shadow government organization that’s been chasing Banner down. Unfortunately for Bushwacker though he’s not actually chasing Bruce Banner, he’s after one of the doctor’s personas: Mr. Joe Fixit. With a penchant for causing pain, Joe knows how to take down a person in the worst possible ways…not only that, but it seems this organization has been crafting its own gamma-irradiated monstrosities to boot. Catch up on this one because as I said earlier, it’s definitely getting a place in the comics history books.
Last Stop on The Red Line #1: This one was a strange one and unfortunately not in the best of ways. Boston is the setting for this one and currently inexplicably the first page features a paneled retelling of the Boston Marathon bombings which borders on exploitative. The story then jumps to a bunch of teenagers on the underground train as their friend pushes them off. Then said friend ripped apart violently by a person who changes into a monster as a homeless man falls through a vortex and lands in a park. The next day the scene is investigated by Officer Torres. She then sees the homeless man from earlier and invites him to her house without context or introduction because as it turns out, the man had saved her deaf daughter earlier in the day from a swarm of geese. Everything seems swell for a time before her husband comes home and instantly kicks him out with barely two lines. The man, Yusef, heads to his shelter where he meets up with his friends who are under the impression they’re old school monsters. Things just happen in this book without motivation or plot in a seemingly uncontrolled fashion to a point where I thought I was missing pages or it was misprinted. Hopefully future issues will clear up the glaring holes left here.
Gideon Falls #13: Lemire continues once again to make his own damn genre in the latest GF. Father Burke continues his chase into Gideon Falls Steam after the dubious Norton Sinclair. As soon as he quickly sketches out his map outlining the different planar versions of the city, another murder occurs and he’s off again. The new Gideon Falls he lands in seems to be some sort of police state and unfortunately for the Father they apparently don’t allow religion so they beat him mercilessly before taking him in. In the jail cell though he finds Norton, claiming he was jailed there too. Norton or The Smiling Man within him recounts why they’re here and what seeing the center of everything has done to him. He uses his weird devil-porting powers to make them both escape, landing Father Burke in another alternate Gideon Falls; this one stranger and potentially more dangerous than the others before it. I want this story to last forever. Really, I do.
American Gods: The Moment of the Storm #2: Neil Gaiman is, in my opinion, the greatest modern wordsmith and Scott Hampton does a hell of a job changing those words into glorious art. This part of the adaptation sees Shadow and his friends receiving the dead body of Mr. Wednesday in a truce from Mr. World’s underlings. After arriving in a squat motel, Television tries to convince Shadow once again that he’s on the wrong side to no avail. Internet creeps outside his door too, asking him as a friend to hang out because he feels uneasy about his whereabouts. Shadow refuses the creep though and Internet returns to his room even more unhinged. Shadow walks outside to find that the driver of Mr. World’s forces is none other than his old cellmate Low-Key who turns out to be Loki Lie-smith himself. This hits Shadow hard as it’s another old god who’s turned to the new. Mr. Nancy, Czernabog and Shadow get back on the road, hauling Mr. Wednesday’s body to Roanoke, Virginia where Shadow will stand vigil for nine days. The next issue is sure to be the trippy things Shadow sees during said vigil so make sure you catch up so you too can see the wonderous colors unfold.
Little Bird #3 – Things aren’t going as planned for the resistance. The issue begins with everyone in high hopes on route to take out the Bishop. Unfortunately, they are met with betrayal. The Axe is betrayed by an old friend, Sarge, who used to be on the resistance’s side. Little Bird has the same fate, when the crusader she set free out of kindness captures her. The issue ends with both the Axe and Little Bird killed and I don’t know if the resistance will last much longer…
Fairlady #2 – Jenner has another case. This time she is called upon by a women who is in search of her mate, who happens to be a Fair Man. The constable said the Fair Man was killed by dragons, but a body was never recovered. After more digging Jenner, finds things aren’t what they seem. The grieving women is sure he faked his death because they were smugglers and he took all their earnings. After Jenner finds the Fair Man she turns them both in for their crimes. You have to wake up preeeetty early to get one over on this Fair Lady.
Last Stop On The Red Line #1 – I have to be honest, I’m not a fan of this series so far. The story line seemed pretty disjointed. Yusef is some sort of paranormal being who has the ability to see a recent spring of crimes from the POV of the victims. So far they have been committed by a shape shifter who are killing women. In between all this he saves a little girl form a swarm of geese, and her mother, who is the officer working on these cases, invites him over for dinner. They seem pretty friendly/trusting for strangers, but when her husband comes home he is a total ass and kicks him out. Then he goes to some weird AA meeting with werewolves and vampires (which is why I assume he has paranormal abilities). Wrapping up the story with another crime and still no details about any of the characters. Too bad the story sucks so bad because the illustrations are pretty cool.
Naomi #5 – Naomi finally knows her origins, and where her powers came from (and since this is the first issue I’ve picked up I feel right on time!). She finds out she is from another dimension’s Earth and that her real parents sent her away to keep her safe. She confides in those closest to her and they are amazingly comforting. She always knew she was adopted, but to finally hear a recorded message from her birth mother gives her great comfort. Before she can even have a day of peace of mind, the “being” her parents tried to save her from appears…oh, snap.
Fairlady #2 – Another solid adventure for our Fairlady in which she’s on the hunt for someone who may or may not have been burned to death….by a dragon. We are introduced to some more secondary characters that I’m sure will continue to show up as the series progresses. Still recommended to anyone who wants some solid fantasy crime capers.
Star Wars Tie Fighter #2 – I want to like this book because it’s Star Wars, but I can’t. This series seems disjointed and heavily tied to the prose novel that isn’t even out yet. I’m not sure why they decided to start the series 2 months before the book when they could have released it in conjunction with the prose book or just release this as an OGN. But the events from this second issue don’t really seem to stem from the end results of the first issue and it really seems like I’m missing key information which is a bummer.
Star Wars Age of Rebellion: Lando – My main man Lando is having money troubles with running Cloud City and debts are mounting and collectors are calling. So the dream team of Lando and Lobot accept a mission that might leave them, and Cloud City well funded for the foreseeable future. I’v been loving all of these Age of Rebellion one shots far more than any of the prequel stuff for obvious reasons. The art on these things have been pretty solid as well, with this issue being no exception.
Spider-Man Life Story #3 – Another fantastic chapter in the life of Peter Parker/Spider Man. In this issue we get to see the effects of the Secret War and Parker getting the Symbiote suit and how it interferes with him and his personal life. Also Aunt May is old as balls and getting senile and I’m really hoping next issue she kicks the bucket because it’s been a long time coming. The cold war sub plot shows up again and I honestly wish there was more of that. Zdarsky could honestly come out with more else world stories of heroes aging in real time mixed with real world events and I would read them all.
Excellence #1– I won’t stray from it so I’ll just come out and say it: Excellence is excellent. Beautiful artwork by Khary Randolph brings the tight world creation accomplished by Brandon Thomas to life as each brings their best talents to the table. We’re introduced to Aaron Dales through each year of his early life as he trains in magic with other pupils under his father at the Aegis, a magical compound within New York whose goal is to hone protectors for their charges. An underwhelming student at first, Aaron goes full Super Saiyan around the age of ten and finally catches the attention of the higher-ups. At 15 he’s able to take his qualifying test- make sure a rich guy falls in love with someone while fighting a team of sorcerers as you scale a skyscraper. It’s an amazing ride which, centered at the heart of it, is a story about the expectations of family and for what reason we all strive to succeed.
War of the Realms- Journey Into Mystery #2– Hooo, this event tie-in is everything I want from a rando team. Funny and with a lot of heart, this comic continues to go more places than even just the continental U.S. The truth behind Ares’s heel turn is revealed: the Queen of Cinders promised to kill him. The God of War wants to be reunited with his dead son Phobos but can only do so by dying in battle. All he has to do for the queen is track down Thor’s sister Laussa who is currently in a cross-country road trip with the best assortment of characters I didn’t know I wanted. The comedy keeps coming in the tight-spaced R.V. which proves the team dynamic here definitely works. Their new goal instead of hopping from campground to campground is offered by Death Locket. She hid away a retired helicarrier that they can swipe to run from the gods below. All isn’t what it seems at the R.V. park they crash at for the night though…or with the baby they’ve been sent to protect either….you know since she’s a god. Pick this one up for good laughs and great action!
The Batman Who Laughs #5– Dial the creep factor up to 11 and strap in for another excellent entry into Snyder’s Batmanverse. This one opens to another brilliant anecdote from Batman’s childhood with a heavy description of a Gotham city subway token. It’s a wonderful Chekov’s gun that goes off in a big way toward the end so pay close attention to it. Batman was cornered at Blackgate after the guards were tricked into thinking he was the BWL so he barely escapes only by playing the guards that he actually is the big, scary dude in a big, scary way. Meanwhile Gordon has an escape of his own to pull off from the Grim Knight in the Gotham sewer system. GK worked with BWL just to torture this guy so some of the revelations are warped as all hell. The titular villain is off-world during all of this though, courting the Court of Owls to do what he wants while significantly declawing the Talons. It ramps up to Batman about to initiate the Last Laugh protocols to stop the Batman Who Laughs’s plans, but is Bruce too far gone now?
Batman and the Outsiders #1: A solid start to the new series and a fresh return to old Outsiders is always good to see. In days of old, a corporation sought to create their own metahumans and in doing so caused a hell of a lot of pain and death in the process. Batman was able to put a stop to it but was only able to save the Ramos family. The mother succumbed to the horrible treatment she received their months later but Bruce Wayne ensured the father and daughter had a new start in L.A. Now there are supervillains tracking them down, one even succeeding in offing poor Sofia Ramos’s father. To find and protect her, Batman sends his allies the Outsiders while only footing the bill. Black Lightning leads the team and openly mistrusts the Bat while following everything he says, Signal isn’t a team player and is extremely impetuous, Katana still likes to kill kill kill and Cassandra Cain is cool as a cucumber as always. Hopefully they can come together and save this poor girl with the incredibly unfortunate superpower.
Star Wars Age of Rebellion: Boba Fett- A true character study in true neutral as everyone’s favorite T-visored bounty hunter does what he’s best at: everything. I love a story where the protagonist is of few words and this one is laid out splendidly by Greg Pak. After bringing in a bounty to the local dive bar, Fett goes into the desert wastelands to track down an asshole who has helped the rebellion gather people and supplies. He isn’t just a pain in the empire though, he is one bad dude who is a pain to everyone who encounters him. So Zingo Gabnit finds himself in the crosshairs of the Mandalorian and his first inclination is to capture a small village to hold innocent villagers as a shield in front of him. Too bad he’s dealing with Boba Fett. An honestly damn good issue where the only bad part about it is you realize how little Marvel has taken advantage of this character. Give me him climbing out of the Sarlacc, damn it!
New Agents of Atlas #1: Follow up a Pak read with yet another and yet another very good one at that. The War of the Realms is brought to Asia as its many heroes have to unite in order to stop the threat from Malekith’s armies. Some of the Champions, Silk, and Shang-Chi are helping Jimmy Woo, head of Atlas, show some of his students at the Pan-Asia School for the Unusually Gifted. Unfortunately, Amadeus Cho makes a huge ass of himself and gets said ass kicked off Champions. Luckily Woo is there to tie everyone together and remind them that they all find themselves in their positions to make the world a better place. This all coincides with the announcement of the invasion so they get themselves into high gear and get moving. That’s where the Atlas team then meets up with White Fox, Crescent and Luna Snow already fighting the good fight in Korea until Cho screws that up too. They were characters who premiered in the Future Fight mobile game and if this issue is any indication, I look forward to seeing a whole lot more of them.
New Agents of Atlas #1 – The War of the Realms keeps on spreading this week. Queen Sindr and her fire goblins have landed on Earth with sights set on turning it into the New Muspelheim. But the secret, global organization, Atlas is not going to let that happen. The US branch is having some internal conflicts of their own, but have to put it all aside when inter-dimensional breaches start popping up all over Earth. Ms. Marvel stays to help save New York while the others head to Seoul to aid the forces there. Crescent and Luna Snow seem to have created a pretty good defense against these fiery conquerors. Never the less, Adamdeus the Hulkster thinks it’s best they join this fight. Unfortunately, he only makes things worse by accidentally immobilizing Luna Snow. With their greatest ally out of the picture, all seems lost, but unknown to them, they might be gaining an even stronger ally.
The Batman Who Laughs #5 – All hope is appearing to be lost in our Gotham. The Batman Who Laughs (whom I’ll respectfully refer to as TBWL for the rest of this post) seems to have thought of everything. In this issue he has managed to turn the police force against Batman and found a Batman to come control this dimension’s Court of Owls. Gordon escapes and things start to look up, but even this turns out, was a part of TBWL’s plan. Our universe’s Bruce Wayne has been doing his best to fight the toxin running through his veins, but at the end of this issue it appears he is too far gone.
Metalshark Bro #1 – This book is just a good time all around. When a shark eats a man who was pushed off a boat, he quickly finds out it wasn’t that easy of a meal. A demon appears and tells the shark that man’s soul was promised to him. In a fit of rage he turns the shark to a half human and refuses to turn him back until he kills all the people on the demons list. Now here we are, watching a half shark, half human who talks like a total douche, on a killing spree. I hope he doesn’t face any obstacles…🤭
Bronze Age Boogie # 2 – Brita is stuck in a time not her own. She was excited for the future, but not so much about the martian invasion. Lucky, for her she meets up with two bad asses, Lynda Darrk and Jackson Li. Lynda and Jackson find a safe place for Brita to stay while they go investigate more. They find humans in cages being starved and forced to fight in arenas for the martian’s pleasure. Lynda and Jackson are discovered lurking and told to fight. Before they could refuse, the martians play their hand. They have found and trapped Brita and will kill her if those two don’t fight to the death! Elsewhere, Elvis (a bear whose space voyage turned him sentient) is stuck pushing a mop around at NASA because they aren’t sure what to do with him. Elvis knows his worth and is fed up with this life. As he is making his escape from the facility he comes across an agent planning a secret mission of his own!
Conan the Barbarian #6 – In this chapter of the life of Conan, we get to see how it’s really stupid to doubt Conan’s battle knowledge/troop leading abilities. I mean, for crying out loud, the guy is never wearing a shirt and is constantly covered in blood. But as much as I’m enjoying these stand-alone issues of random Conan adventures, I’d really like for things with these witch kids that’s constantly being teased on the last page of each issue to wrap up soon.
Star Wars Age of Rebellion Boba Fett – Everyone’s favorite masked bounty hunter gets his own wonderfully drawn one shot. Boba Fett rides in on his trusty robo-steed to kick ass and take bounty names. When a village is taken hostage by a rival bounty hunter, a contract goes out and Boba Fett steps up to the plate. Is Fett a secret sweetie for saving people or is he just in it for them credits?
Savage Sword of Conan #5 – The tale of Koga Thun comes to a close where we find out Conan really hates scrolls and parchment. Also it’s tough being one of Conan’s many lovers as there is a 50/50 chance you might not make it out. Everything wraps up nicely but without setting up the next arc, not that there’s much continuity with Conan stories to begin with.
Excellence #1 – A modern wizard’s tale where 10 families run a wizard society with strict rules. One of these rules is that only boys/men can cast magic. One of the heads of one of these houses has a son and as time goes by it becomes clear that he may not be as magical as they would hope and could spell the end of the line/dynasty. But Spencer, our chosen child and main character is more determined than others would think and ends up going through his magical trials. This book has a few pages dictating the magical rules in this series, but as Spencer went through his trials, I personally had trouble knowing what exactly he was supposed to and not supposed to be doing. The world itself is unique enough (so far) that i’d be interested in reading more and I do enjoy the fact that there ARE rules. Hopefully they can be explained a bit further as the series progresses. With that said, it’s nice to have a book like this where the entire cast so far are PoC’s and magical PoC’s at that.
Green Lantern #7: Just as ever, Morrison proves that he loves the silver age and the silver age alone with his Green Lantern run. This issue takes place within Hal Jordan’s ring as it hurtles through space, low on power and its bearer without his memories. The magical fantasy world inside the ring was created by Myrwhydden long ago, even in real life standards. That’s where this story falters a little bit- relying on a plot element that premiered in 1964 and was only briefly mentioned in Crisis On Infinite Earths, VERY briefly (thanks Google!). That aside, it was a fantastic issue. Most of it was told in metered rhyme through a fantasy narrator as Jordan is led through a dying world by a mysterious woman to the castle where the sleeping wizard Myrwhydden slumbered. It is only after a bit that the two of them learn one is a member of the Lantern Corps while the other is his most faithful partner through all his adventures, both about to face their destruction in the lonely abyss of space. It’s a brilliant short tale told in bursts and worth a read even if you haven’t been caught up on the previous issues (or 1960’s Green Lantern runs).
Gogor #1: Step into a new fantasy world with a hecka cool map in this one! The world of Gogor (GAW-GORE according to their letter pages) is a series of sky islands in the shape of a circle called the Wheel of Altara. The story starts as Armano and his giant flying mole are being chased being chased by armored dudes on beetles. They mange to escape and we learn why he’s being chased: he was given a scroll just as these soldiers invaded his school claiming the land was theirs. When he turns in for the night he meets a blue, goblin-like person named Wexil who boils some cabbage by his fire. The two read the scroll and learn he must go to a hill called Green peak and recite an ancient poem. Wexil then leads him to the home of his friend, Dolni the Potter where the pair meet a myriad of cool-looking characters. She then lets him pick a pot before he heads off to recite poetry. Atop the hill the readings don’t go so well, until the pair realize there was a seed hidden within the scroll. Stop in for this book in you want the start to a fantasy epic and beautiful story-telling: Ken Garing pulls off some wonderful panel elements that you’d be remiss to miss.
Savage Avengers #1: Fans of slice-and-dice action have had their cries answered! Lots of slicey people in this line-up. I haven’t read any of the new Conan yet (sorry, Juan) but this book makes a strong case to. Conan finds himself in the Savage Land after helping the Avengers during the events of No Road Home. He then finds a whole mess ton of Hand there which he starts dispensing in bloody fashion. During this fight he runs into Wolverine and the two do exactly what is required of superheroes when they meet for the first time: fight it out hard. There’s a particularly cool scene during their brawl where Wolverine pulls a sword out of his gut and hands it back to Conan. What a gentlemen. The two go their separate ways as Wolverine is on a mission: find Brother Voodoo who’s about to be sacrificed to a weird blood cult in their Bowl, collecting the greatest human specimens on Earth and murderizing them. It’s unfortunate then that Brother Voodoo is under utilized and almost misused in this one. Meanwhile, the blood cult does something which will have Punisher doing things to them that I don’t want to imagine. We’ll have to see how all these lone wolves come together as a team in future issues.
DCeased #1: Oh hey! Another zombie book where we get to watch all of our heroes be torn to shreds and mutilated! Oh joy! Ugh…the story starts with the Justice League sending Darkseid back to Apokolips. He menacingly threatens that he got what he needed and then GTFOs. The League then notices that Cyborg is missing and goes, “Huh, I wonder what Darkseid needed?” Oh my god, guys. Turns out Darkseid was getting the Anti-Life Equation which he and his torturer then proceeded to implant into Cyborg. They did it incorrectly though and unleashes a techno-organic virus which infects Darkseid himself. The torturer boom-tubes Cyborg back to earth just before Darkseid destroys Apokolips. Now for the eye-rolly part: once Cyborg hits Earth, he system updates and spreads the virus online but through social media outlets only…not just, like, any form of internet…do you get it? Social media is turning us into zombies! How edgy. The world then falls into chaos in zombie apocalypse normality. Superman’s son Jon almost succumbs to it but Supes uses his crazy-hot vision to horribly burn his son’s hand to stop him looking at his phone. Meanwhile, things break bad for Batman as it seems his sons enjoy the Facebooks. Read this if you’re into zombies. I’m not but I don’t like to kink-shame people (a line directly from this comic).
Year of the Villain #1: DC’s new universe event is shaping up hella nicely as evidence by this issue. It all starts when Amanda Waller rushes to meet with the president only to find that the Lex Luthor and the Legion of Doom have knocked him out and taken over the oval office. Let’s enjoy a moment thinking of the LoD knocking out Trump, violently. Aaaah…Anyway! Lex has a plan he starts putting to action after Brainiac steals Waller’s thoughts. He is going to single handedly give all villains the tools they need to take down their heroes so he can please his lord Perpetua. Just as he reveals all this, he blows up LexCorp and seems to kill himself. Meanwhile in Seattle, after teaming up with Green Arrow to take out Merlyn, Batgirl is captured by Leviathan and given an offer she can’t refuse in order to change the world. Damien and Bats are on it to find her, with Damien thinking Leviathan might be Jason Todd the Red Hood. Damn good guess since he’s the hidden baddie in like 8 DC storylines and a video game. As the heroes and villains prepare for an ultimate showdown between Justice and Doom, it’s revealed that Perpetua is cooking someone up as her messiah. Don’t miss this great priced read and lead-in to what is sure to be a fun, expansive event courtesy of DC!
War of the Realms #3: Hell yes! I like this event! Things take a turn after the tragic events of the last issue. The heroes split into different teams on different realms in order to tackle Malekith’s war on multiple fronts. Too bad the maniacal elf is busy conquering Europe and the Black Knight which means he now wields the ebony blade, one of the world’s greatest weapons. Cap, the Heroes for Hire, Wolvie and Spidey lead a rescue team to Jotunheim to save Thor from the Frost Giants. I wish the entire issue focused on them only because their banter was fantastic as usual. Daredevil takes the sword of the Bifrost from Heimdell and thus becomes the God Without Fear. Hulk, Punisher, Ghost Rider and Thor’s mom merc a ton of dark elves in their realm in spectacular ways of comic goodness! The Fantastic Four knock SO many heads together in New York!! Just a ton of cool scenes all happening at once. Not to mention Thor looking as bad ass as he ever has at the end of this book. This is what Marvel dreams are made of.
DCeased 1 – After a week of battle, the Justice League believe they are finally rid of Darkseid’s terror. They make him swear never to return, but he makes an ominous goodbye, leaving the League uneasy. Shortly after, they try to get a hold of Cyborg, but he isn’t answering. Batman reveals to the team he has a tracker on him (the other members don’t care for that either) and he isn’t even on the planet Earth. Darkseid is planning on merging himself with Cyborg and a “The Motherbox” to complete an anti life equation. The procedure is tricky and if Cyborg dies in the process the equation will not be complete. Darkseid summons Death himself to add him to the equation, but all it does is corrupt it. Driving Darkseid to madness, causing him to destroy the planet they are on, shortly after Cyborg is portaled back to Earth. As soon as Cyborg lands on Earth, his online systems start connecting with others around him. He puts up a fire wall, but it is too late the maddening virus that caused Darkseid to violently lose his mind is now being transmitted through screens. Metropolis is in chaos the Justice League is trying to keep everyone away from technology, which you can imagine is a hard task. Superman is able to keep the kids and Lois safe. Meanwhile, Batman heads to the Manor to see how they are holding up there. Alfred is fine, but the issue ends with Batman trying to subdue a blood thirsty Dick Grayson and Tim Drake. Batman didn’t look like he had the upper hand, hopefully the rest of the Justice League is having better luck.
Savage Avengers #1 – I have been looking forward to this series, and so far so good. As expected, the book begins with conflict as Conan and Wolverine go at it. After doing the whole ‘punch first ask questions later’ thing they realize they mean each other no harm, and are not in town for the same reason. They wish each other luck and go their separate ways. Conan is off to find treasure and Wolverine is off tracking the scent of a friend gone missing. That friend is Doctor Voodoo, and he has gotten himself caught in a bit of a trap. Some psycho cult has been kidnapping and killing “the best of mankind”, from musicians to warriors. They are draining them of their blood in hopes of bring back an ancient power named Jhoantun Lau. (Pretty far fetched, but the pit of blood is pretty full so they might as well see this through.) Wolverine enters just in time to see Doctor Voodoo’s throat cut. Now they’ve set their sights on Logan, but him being their was more of a freebie. They already have their next warrior’s capture planned. They recently stole the dead bodies of the Punisher’s family, to lead him there. Now all we can do is wait and see how this team up plays out!
Nobody Is In Control #1 – After decades on the air, Richard a retired radio host, is ready to live the simple life. He has just begun his day when he sees a person walking through the woods in the back of his house, which is rare in this rural Georgia town. He goes out to see if this person needs help, but Richard can’t seem to get a straight answer out of the guy. The stranger Nick seems to just want to discuss random conspiracy theories, and Richard is trying to figure out how any of it put him in his backyard. Richard is intrigued and begins to walk with the man, but his patience is growing thin. This book was a super fun read and I’m excited about the next issue. I’m all about conspiracy theories and random facts, and this book is full of both!
Meet The Skrulls #4 – The last issue ended with Alice, the youngest Warner daughter having to kill an agent in self defense. This is a big deal because the family has been ragging on her because they feared she was becoming too human and forgetting their Skrull mission. After bare handed killing a trained operative, it is clear she has Skrull inside. The family is still a bit shaken up, but they realize now or never is the time to finish their mission. They infiltrated Stark Industries and open the vault holding the top secret end to the Skrulls. To much surprise they find their missing daughter, who they assumed was dead, hooked to wires and machines. How she plays into this is still to be determined. The Dad goes to meet another Skrull agent outside (it appears to be a debriefing type of situation), but the other agent shoots the Dad! He clearly had plans of his own…
Savage Avengers #1 – Lots of set up this comic has. Conan is wandering the Savage Land and I’m assuming replacing Ka-zar somehow as the defacto Marvel barbarian/wildling. Conan becomes friends with Wolverine. There’s a spooky cult trying to summon a spooky bone marrow monster demon and somehow Brother Voodoo, Venom, and The Punisher are involved, Again, this issue is very set up heavy. The art is not particularly my bag, but it’s fine and does it’s job. I’ll give the next few issues a shot just to see how they handle my boy Conan in a team dynamic.
DCeased #1 – Finally, a zombie book for the digital age. Something called the anti-life equation is sucked from cyborgs cyborg-y body by Darkseid and his dungeon master. It does not go according to plan and cyborg is sent back to earth and immediately uploads this virus to the interwebz and everyone connected to some sort of electronic device start going CrAzY and tearing their faces and their friends faces apart. It’s all very entertaining and I hope we get to see some real brutal deaths in the coming months. Special mention goes to the wonderful pages drawn by James Harren in the middle section of the book. I would read any monthly series he draws.
Gogor #1 – Cutesy fantasy series involving a young boy, his trusty giant shrew steed and a swamp thing/hulk like golem. Our hero, Armano was a student on Academia island, one of many floating islands that make up this world. Some military force called “The Domus” begins attacking and Armanus is handed a mysterious scroll and forced to flee. Armanus makes a friend who helps decipher the scroll and the stage is set for further mysterious adventures. Overall, the book seems very lighthearted compared to other fantasy series out now. No crazy complex mythology to wrap your brain around. The art is fine, with my only issue really being that the flashback scenes are kind of difficult to tell about from what’s happening in the present. This book also seems to be good for the kids, which is nice.
Marvel Team Up #2 – Marvel’s Freaky Friday continues! This series continues to be a really fun read. Although we don’t get the fun flip book excitement like we did in the first issue, we do get some dual adventure action. Watching both characters deal with being in each other’s problems and the issues they face is super enjoyable and cute. Still a great series for those who have interest in either of these characters but don’t want to be tied continuity or events in their respective main series.