Arpad Okay's Comic Reviews

Reviewer For: Doom Rocket Reviews: 57
7.9Avg. Review Rating

7.0
A-Force (2016) #1

Jan 7, 2016

It seems to me that A-Force is more Fantastic Four than it is Avengers. It has high tech Star Trek moments and it has atomic monsters destroying downtown New York. Beyond that it has heroes who are open minded towards alien cultures and approach outsiders with diplomacy and charity. The thing is, the Fantastic Four's atomic family is neither All-New nor All-Different. Families beyond the year 2000 are no longer a closed circuit bound by genealogy. We choose our family. So does A-Force. Friends so tight they together can support the weight of the world.

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7.0
Aliens: Dead Orbit #1

Apr 27, 2017

The work is powerful. Inspired by, not based on. If you don't know the franchise, it's a damn thrilling read. If you do, there are clues for you, things to make the inevitable all the more painful. Stokoe makes horror better, and Aliens bursts with promise.

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7.0
American Way: Those Above and Those Below #1

Jul 13, 2017

The wheels that turn beneath the surface are propelling a story forward that's critical for today's world. American Way should pique the interest of any political science buff, armchair or academic. It can go anywhere from here, but the reader can count on walking away from it wiser than they were at the start of the journey.

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8.0
Arclight #3

Dec 9, 2016

The delicate, expressive lines and sumptuous colors in Arclight are beautiful, a modern touch on classic mores in the spirit of Edmund Dulac. The art is impossibly good, hefty with spirit and weightless on the eyes. Thoughtful. Measured. It's gorgeous. It smolders. Perfect for the story it brings to life, maybe just perfect.

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9.0
Black Panther (2016) #1

Apr 7, 2016

The Midnight Angels, Black Panther's suit and Wakanda tech, these are things that must be seen to be truly appreciated. The artwork of Brian Stelfreeze and Laura Martin is as ambitious as Coates' layered storytelling and flowery dialog. I love the Panther suit. I love the sacred geometry that permeates everything. Most of all, I love Stelfreeze's liberal use of silhouette instead of detail. Doing this with a Panther suit is one thing, but the use of shadow in the genesis of the Angels was a bold move that elevates the storytelling from excellent to avant garde. Every line, every drop of ink is used to give power to the story.Black Panther is, simply put, unparalleled.

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8.0
Black Panther (2016) #2

May 13, 2016

And then it steps beyond that. Got your bearings on the moral dilemma of the Midnight Angels? Have any feelings on T'Challa being too busy pursuing the evil wizard opposing his rule to deal with how this struggle affects his subjects? Put them on the shelf, because there are more ideas and worlds to explore. It's a dense story, never rushed, but very busy. Once you have your bearings, an unseen door opens and a whole new branch of the tale is exposed. Science. Magic. Political intrigue and epic action. Love, family, tradition. Black Panther promises to have it all. What's more, it promises tomake it all count.

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9.0
Black Panther (2016) #3

Jul 5, 2016

It is concerned with putting down the spear for the drum. Stelfreeze gives us lots of gorgeous and thoughtful new costumes and technology. But magic rises to meet it, magic that clothes the powerless — even the bodiless. The power folks have to resist is greater than any tool fashioned by man to control them. Black Panther is the clash of the mysteries of the past. Mysteries that werenever really lost, only forgotten against the structures built to replace them.

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8.0
Black Panther (2016) #4

Aug 1, 2016

The people " you and I " that is what still lacks a voice in this book. The first quarter closes with issue four. Is the king wise? Is his opposition right? Can two women be a better voice for all of us than one man? The fire rises in Wakanda, and its stars rise with the flames, each of them vying to be the one who saves all the lives burned in their ascension. You. Must. Read. This. Book.

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9.0
Black Panther (2016) #5

Aug 15, 2016

While the story rolls forward, the art in Black Panther undergoes a changing of the guard. Brian Stelfreeze will return for the third quarter, and Chris Sprouse and Karl Story have taken his place. Their work is pulpy and modern (like Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell), touches of Kirby, a large dose of Gillo Pontecorvo. It is serious, clean, spare, but finely detailed. Laura Martin continues to color the book, and her work this issue is just off the charts. She lifts the art up. Together, they realize Coates' lush vision, they capture and communicate the silent power of the panther.

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6.0
Carver: A Paris Story #2

Jan 13, 2016

What I see in Carver is the promise of strong storytelling. Hunt understands what works and does it in his story, his familiarity with Carver's world gives him the confidence to use extreme, disturbing circumstances to punch up the tension without violating the overall attentiongiven by the reader. From gunfire to hand holding, he never takes us out of the moment.

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7.5
Dark Ark #1

Sep 22, 2017

The multifaceted characters are the final awesome nail in the coffin. Shrae and company may be ferrying evil to unknown shores, but they are as conflicted about what they're doing as the reader is. And the animals can talk. They have agency. They can (and do) mess with the family. They mess with each other. The flood is the least of the passengers' worries. Nature is a killer, on and off the ark.

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8.0
Fantomah #1

Jul 27, 2017

Fantomah in 2017 is no superhero comic. Nor is it a straight horror title. What awaits you in this read is the origin story of a dark avenger, a mystery that begs to be explored.

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8.5
Gotham Academy: Second Semester #12

Aug 11, 2017

MSASSYK is a real hero this issue, her colors superb and essential. The fires that burn up the bulk of the book glow, and they clash sublimely with the inhuman spectral blues of the spirits that plague Olive. The memories in monochrome underscore the separation of flashback and contemporary parallels without betraying them.

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5.0
Groo: Fray of the Gods #1

Jul 26, 2016

A mildly contradictory book (man's folly as bro-fest) with lots of potential. A worthy addition to the history and legend that is Groo.

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8.0
Gutter Magic #1

Dec 10, 2015

Cinder finds himself in a library at the issue's start and a bookstall at its end. His past and his power are hidden in books, but there's something more to their presence in Gutter Magic than that. Rich Douek is an Alonso Quixano, surrounded by every kind of book, and their stories become his stories. Stories of derring-do, of magic and monsters, ghosts and pirates, stories of people surrounded by books.

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8.0
Gutter Magic #2

Feb 10, 2016

Gutter Magic is doing a spectacular job of pushing the walls of the world back and giving the folks in it more space, more room to breathe and grow and show how much is written into them. Everything feels real, yet that everything is imbued withmonsters and witches and sassy gargoyles and I don't even know what. It is all coming together, the real and the fantasy, with Cinder at its center. The many untied ends in his wake are still drawn to him. Perhaps they'll come together toform a noose.

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9.0
Gutter Magic #3

Mar 10, 2016

This is definitely the best issue of the series so far. Gutter Magic is on fire at this point " dragonfire, that is " and I expect the coming finale to really bust the glass of the backboard. It burns brighter and brighter as it comes to a close, and while nothing has been held back, I can't help but feel that all the fury thus far has been the thunder before the storm.

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8.0
Gutter Magic #4

Apr 21, 2016

I said it was a book book once, something that reminded me of Cervantes. Well, it turns out Gutter Magic is really a mix of Carl Sagan and Hesiod. It steps away from the swashbuckling long enough to show us the true power of the star stuff that's in our blood, not just Cinder's. For Cinder, and Gutter Magic's finale, this closes one door and opens another. He is transformed into Prometheus. He brings the fire to us, the readers, and thus our imagination becomes the storyteller now that this book has shut. That's real magic.

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8.0
House of Penance #1

Apr 14, 2016

This sinister effect is the product of a seamless creative team. Peter Tomasi's storytelling is well suited for Ian Bertram's simple and expressive artwork, and Dave Stewart's colors cement the otherworldly atmosphere that this book demands. Almond eyes on a waspish face, brutish loaves of men, scars and hollow cheeks. Winchester and Peck could both have come straight from the pages of Vault of Horror, but their story has the luridintrigue ofSunset Blvd. The lonely old witch. The one murderer in town who is looking to die. So much of the story is still shrouded in mystery. And things seem bound to get much worse.

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7.0
House of Penance #2

May 16, 2016

All that blood is the result of when two planets collide: Winchester and Peck's orbits pull them ever closer into each other. Has their submersion into madness put them in touch with the beyond? Or are they just nuts? The "horror" here is comics doing what comics do best. The reader sees the lunatic and their point of view simultaneously, the two are incapable of being separated. House of Penance started out like The Wild Bunch, all gristle and eyeball sweat. Now it stands flooded with gore, open elevators at the Overlook Hotel. Last time I cried Norma Desmond but now I'm feeling the widow Winchester's potential to go full Annie Wilkes. The only sure bet in the House of Penance is things will inevitably grow darker. As they must.

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8.0
House of Penance #3

Jun 13, 2016

House of Penance makes room in its third issue for romance, laughter that isn't barked out from behind clenched teeth, the potential for redemption, even some Shakespeare. Taking time to be both touching and gut-wrenching amplifies the intensity of both. Love and violence and regret. It stirs up what haunts us.

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8.0
House of Penance #4

Jul 22, 2016

With clarity comes a new darkness. Getting close to the (not quite but still kind of) true story behind the building. The return of Warren Peck's fantasies, his own demons as unique and omnipresent as Sarah's. The Sunset Blvd. ending is coming hard for Peck whether or not his romance with the Widow Winchester ever gets off the ground. But this time the pool is overflowing with blood, flooding the House, fixed to drown every lost soul in the book.

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9.0
House of Penance #5

Aug 15, 2016

Yeah, House of Penance presents the reader with things they'll never see anywhere else. Things that no one should ever see. Writing meant to disturb the mind's eye; to actually look upon it is to court madness. This is going to be a cult classic down the road and it will be because of issues like this one. Part horror, part mystery, all the facts are finally laid out for us, right before the table is cleared.

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7.0
Hulk (2016) #4

Mar 23, 2017

That's Hulk, Jennifer Walters' life, Walters' struggle, the everyday unable to reach an equilibrium. The focus isn't monsters, it's on women who have survived trauma and are trying to find peace. It just happens to have monsters in it, too.

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8.0
Imposter #1

Feb 4, 2016

There is much about the writing that I respect. The motifs are old but the angles are fresh. The twist on heroism in Imposter is one of those great ideas that should be too good to work but does anyway (and gloriously). Everything runs together seamlessly because it is all so well planned. I am smitten with the quality of misdirection employed by Imposter. Patrick grasps the art of the MacGuffin, and so the depth of the imposter's lies are allowed to sneak up on us. The result? I have no idea what to expect next, but I know I'm going to like it.

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4.0
Jimmy's Bastards #1

Jun 19, 2017

Jimmy's Bastards is a judo chop to the throat, and meant to be that way. It successfully rakes up the coals, but thus far fails to rise above them. Can't say yet that it won't. Just doesn't seem like it will.

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8.0
Jughead (2015) #3

Jan 4, 2016

The smooth transition from high school stuff to fantasy story in Jughead erases the distinction of the gang as teens, and the book as a teen book. It's an All-Ages title where the invitation is extended to both the young and the old. For nerds by nerds.

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8.0
Jughead (2015) #8

Aug 8, 2016

Derek Charm handling both the illustration and color makes the simplicity in his style pop with focus. His work has a touch of Toei teen team, but with angles instead of curves, modern instead of retro. Just right for Archie Comics. Charm will continue on Jughead past this issue, which sadly wraps up Chip's run. The writer leaves Jughead a better book than anyone ever thought it could be. His vision achieved. A send-off fit for a Forsythe. Mr. Zdarsky, we shall miss ye.

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7.0
Ladycastle #1

Jan 23, 2017

Ladycastle hits on that philosophy a little hard, but there is an intriguing finesse beneath that gives the genre conventions life. This book is shameless. It loves its fairy tale staples. Loves all things Medieval, Ren-Fest, Monty Python. And Ladycastle loves its ladies. A delightful premise, enlivened by true-life solidarity. A thinking book, melding the indulgent pleasures of youth with the real issues of the world. There's purpose in these pages, an agenda I am excited to see unfold over the course of the series.

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7.0
Moon Knight (2016) #1

Apr 14, 2016

Moon Knight is a psychological thriller, possibly a gargantuan work of supernatural espionage, possibly the unshakable fantasy of a damaged mind. Standing on the hospital roof without shoes, a torn up sheet wrapped around his head, Spector sees the moon and tells it, "this is the only real thing I've felt in so long." Given the choice between the sterile truth of reality and the hero fantasy he lives in his dreams, Spector does what he does best. He fights the world.

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8.0
Mother Panic #3

Feb 17, 2017

Modern and clear without being sparse, Mother Panicfinds great success in picking the right details and hitting them hard. The eye for composition goes beyond fitting the right amount of action into a panel; its subtle symmetry can balance a page, or elevate the story beats. Always busy but never cluttered. Capable of making both fistfights and conversations crackle with presence. Told in rich colors that can make Paige's white suit look natural without losing its intended pop. Mother Panic is a formidable book, challenging, rewarding, and beautiful.

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7.0
Mother Panic #5

Mar 27, 2017

That said, look at Paige as a reflection of Bruce Wayne's isolation, not just as a socialite for show. Paige is just as driven to construct a family, and to use everyone outside of it as a tool. Like her grey and blue counterpart, the white queen has a goal at odds with her morals: vengeance. And like Bruce, despite her drive, Violet defers to what's right. Her struggle and complexity, her story, it's all a refreshingly sophisticated re-imagining of the black knight.

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9.5
Mother Panic #8

Jul 3, 2017

In that twisted truth, the real deal can be found. Everything the series has established thus far is culminating, approached from a new and unexpected angle. Mother Panic is a tour de force, and the eighth issue is its best chapter yet. Spare and sharp action beats, an unshakable foundation of character study, a comic too damn good for this world.

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9.0
Mother Panic #9

Jul 31, 2017

She, and we, are figuring out what gives her life meaning. It just might be as simple as knuckles meeting face. Mother Panic is an endlessly unfolding origin story, unseen pieces from the past continuously coming to light, contemporary actions changing her still. Here, finally, Violet Paige assumes the title of "Mother Panic." She is transmutation through violence. Epic, mystic, and splendid.

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8.0
Motor Crush #2

Jan 16, 2017

The gorgeous candy colors and textured process feel like a glowing update to the watercolor tones of risograph printing. Super kawaii, sassy and strong, furious, brassy and brave. Motor Crush is a ride not to be missed.

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9.0
Motor Crush #3

Feb 13, 2017

I enjoy the heck out of reading this comic. The whole team behind Motor Crush really knows how to effectively drop a gentle cliffhanger. The aesthetic holds from cover to cover, there's a bonus comic and a letters page where other floppies have ads. There's hard work put into this title in toto, and the deeper readers become submerged, the richer their experience becomes. Go find this book already.

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9.0
Motor Crush #6

Sep 7, 2017

Team Motor Crushknows how to put together a damn fine series. The issues themselves are beautiful objects, thanks to the superior publication design. You could jump into the deep end here and you can still enjoy it. Solid true crime genre fiction yarn. For readers who approach this issue as the first after an intermission, Motor Crush succeeds in stoking both the fires of satisfaction and suspense. You get answers to questions you didn't know you had. You get hints that drive you broncos. You have to wait a month and then they're going to get you all over again with the joy, the agony, the elation that is reading this one-of-a-kind-book.

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9.0
Ms. Marvel (2015) #4

Feb 12, 2016

The new artist for this story arc, Nico Leon, is more than up to the task of Wilson's varied scripts. Ms. Marvel needs an artist who has the full Masamune Shirow range, from chibi to dead serious. Leon delivers. Each page meets the emotion the scene needs, silly or severe or sanguine. Down to the panel, Ms. Marvel raises the bar on superhero comics.

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9.0
Ms. Marvel (2015) #6

May 2, 2016

Kamala Khan is one of the most important things to happen to comics in quite some time, and Ms. Marvel bears that responsibility with grace.

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8.0
Nowhere Men #11

Sep 12, 2016

It is a book devoted to spectacle. Nowhere Men has those literati action film thrills. A race with time, a battle between fantastic creatures, technology on the bleeding edge with ideology to match. But the battle is of wits. The gasps come in the wake of understanding as well as the grotesque. Every factor of the story is aimed at leaving the reader awestruck. Half a dozen locations with a dozen different feels, and things like book excerpts and magazine covers and pop art serve as snapshots of the world, transitions between the scenes that ground their plethora of characters in a shared history. Is this poster they've put between the Arctic exploration and the troll under the bridge important for now or is this a clue for the future? Meanwhile, the story's many threads wind around the maypole, making magic. A busy book. A bullet train, really. Its destination: cult classic.

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8.5
Redlands #2

Sep 18, 2017

For me, this is horror's highest calling. Where do you draw the line? Which set of murderers should we be cheering for? Sympathizing with a character who goes on to murder the folks she should be saving is unsettling. The men fighting demons are worse than demons. That's Redlands, messing with you. Placing powerful hooks in your heart and then tugging hard to see which side hurts worse.

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7.0
Revival #35

Dec 7, 2015

Norton's character design is absolutely top notch. The Cypress sisters have those tiny details that speak volumes, like Emma's rag doll smile or Dana's awesome bones and wings hoodie (very 90s but I would still wear it). It isn't just the stars who are compelling, even the supporting characters are distinct, which in turn lends credibility to Seeley's world. There is a utilitarian simplicity to the horror of the burned man that plays to the strength of comics. His voice in my head is perfect. It is inhumanly charred. And watching him digging a hole in the earth, I become so glad for comics, where you get to both see and imagine" the best of both worlds.

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8.0
Shade, the Changing Girl #4

Jan 6, 2017

So if you have been following this book, this issue should cinch things for you. If you haven't, and you're curious about how deep the stories told at Young Animal are willing to plunge, take the dive with Shade, The Changing Girl #4.

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9.0
Shade, the Changing Girl #7

Apr 7, 2017

I think the overarching question is, what do we own? Shade, the Changing Girl looks at the pieces, what lead from there to here, but it doesn't justify. Instead of having it all be in service of creating the present, the events of the past aren't robbed of their individual importance. We see the injustice. We see the mistakes. We decide. Loma glibly wonders what her ex-boyfriend is up to. The answer is being tortured in space prison because of her actions. It's in her nature to abandon the things she brings into her nest. Does that make it right? Rac Shade, poet, mad oracle, he gets it. The life you dream about is beautiful, says Shade. And it also sucks.

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4.0
Sheena: Queen of the Jungle (2017) #0

Aug 21, 2017

Sheena is carefree jungle romp, a woman's body on display and not much else.

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8.0
Space Battle Lunchtime #1

May 5, 2016

This comic is gorgeous. Riess has a glib, flexible hand that matches the tone of the story. Serious when it needs to be, cartoonish as it wants to be. Her coloring is wonderful, a Gobstopper of a palette that extends from characters to backgrounds to speech bubbles. Every choice in this book is measured and joyous. The aliens come in a thousand flavors, unbound by the anthropomorphism that lesser creators don't travel beyond. Super Battle Lunchtime looks like Strawberry ShortcakemeetsCoprameets Chopped. A solid debut with a ton of promise for the rest of the series. I cannot wait for next month: if the dishes the next issuesserve contain an iota of the creativity that went into the chefs, this comic deservesall the (Michelin) stars.

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9.5
Spiritus #1

Aug 7, 2017

The early anime robot tech, retro CPU visuals, and bleak military atmosphere all mesh perfectly for a powerhouse debut. Spiritus rules.

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7.5
Spy Seal #1

Aug 21, 2017

Rich Tommaso is having fun and the reader can feel it. Spy Seal satisfies, with something for everyone. Kids will dig it. Espionage aficionados will enjoy its accuracy. The Fantagraphics crowd searching for highbrow genre fiction. Old folks who miss old comics. It's breezy and well executed, a damn fine idea, We look forward to seeing Rich run with it.

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9.0
Surgeon X #1

Sep 1, 2016

There will be beauty, and that beauty is John Watkiss and James Devlin working together. Watkiss spreads an entire inkpot across everypage, his style so saturated that it passes beyond an initial resemblance to the sure linework of the Romitas into something positively block printed. Stark as Andy Warhol screening a film noir still onto wallpaper, brought to glorious, glowing life by James Devlin's Monterey magic hour color palette. There are no finer colors in comics today than the pages of Surgeon X. This book has the look. It has good ideas and hard questions. A wealth of imagination that is highly infectious. Depth. Wit. Promise.

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8.0
Surgeon X #2

Oct 28, 2016

This issue's theme is the repercussions of ignorance in the face of medical emergency. Problems arise when people try to go outside the system and misdiagnose and mistreat their symptoms. Problems when people don't have the patience for the drugs to work, people who go off their meds. Problems with politics, with fascists buying and selling healthcare. Problems with doctors who are dead on the inside. The issues within Surgeon X hit quite close to home, reflections of the now that are a little too spot-on for comfort, given how thoroughly messed up Surgeon X's London actually is. This book doesn't feel like the future. It feels like our future. Let's hope we get some heroes as explicitly awesome as Rosa Scott.

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7.0
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Universe #11

Jun 22, 2017

This could be a book about a cool dog dude. It isn't. It's a story of a refugee, a mutant with a code, a real life interrupted by outsiders' agendas. Sally and Ray wrestle with their motives as much as with their opponents. That's the point of a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comic. Fun. And feels.

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8.5
The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina #7

Jul 7, 2017

"Witch-War" is a masterful refresher that fleshes out the Chilling Adventures world while simultaneously dining on it. (Heck, it makes you want to go back and re-read the whole series the minute you finish it.) It's an ideal comic. Bulky, gorgeous, and an enticing set-up of what comes next. Sabrina's return has been worth the wait. There's nothing quite like this anywhere else at Archie Comics, or in comics at all, frankly. Find it and be transformed yourself.

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8.5
The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina #8

Aug 24, 2017

This setup for tragedy has huge potential. Father Spellman's return is catastrophic for the residents of Greendale, but the ante compared to even an issue ago has been raised immeasurably. Spellman stands back and lets his family tear themselves apart over politics, unaware of the war to come. He is a crafty foe, for sure, but has he got anything on Madam Satan? Everyone thinks that they're the ones calling the shots, but this entire conundrum has been the result of her secret machinations. It's impossible to say what happens in the next issue, and equally impossible to resist reading it.

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9.0
The Electric Sublime #1

Oct 13, 2016

The first issue plays out as a series of astonishing reveals, each one a greater surprise than the one that came before, stacking up into a towering behemoth of a story. All of The Electric Sublime comes together to achieve what every debut should strive towards. The anticipation for the next issue to come out is overwhelming, but my imagination has been given so much fuel that I have more than enough to dream about between now and then.

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8.0
The Electric Sublime #2

Nov 21, 2016

For all this talk of uneasiness, The Electric Sublime is still written with a delicate touch. If half of it is murder, half of it is the quiet comfort of being in love. To have those two side by side" it's worrisome. Breslin's professional and domestic lives are already overlapping. She dates an artist. But then what's to stop the rest of it from spilling over? Artists are in the crosshairs. Breslin has brought Art Brut into her home. Who is to say that the body count and property damage that surround Brut won't follow onto Breslin's doorstep? This book has a tendency to pay off mysteries by creating new ones. I am confident Margot will make it out. I just hope she makes it out alive.

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10
The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #1

Oct 30, 2015

Might be teaching me things about life, comic book. Does your child read The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl? Because they should. Doreen is a hero, but she doesn't just save people from burning buildings. The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl teaches people to think first, findacceptance, and embrace posthumanism! (Probably.) Just because a person is a squirrel or a fish or a brain in the jar or different from you in some mundane way doesn't mean they have tobe defined or marginalized by that characteristic. The case is actually quite the opposite; these odd folks are intensely relatable and as real as you and your friends are. I loved this issue. This is what comics should be.

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6.0
Tokyo Ghost #4

Dec 18, 2015

The boys having such a good time here is a bit of a double-edged sword. Verbal fencing being simultaneous with physical fighting is practically a pillar of the genre, but all that talk can border on becoming a lecture on honor. These warriors clash from atop soapboxes. The actual fighting is as frantic and copious asthe dialog. It can be hard to follow who is slicing up what. Remender himself seems to be aware of this (saying in the letters column that "visual whiplash is the perfect description of what we wanted to accomplish".) The creator-controlled nature of this comic allows for Remender and Murphy to be so sure of what they're doing that it falls upon the reader to try to keep up with them. Rick writes half a dozen comics a month, talks at length about shriveled dicks and has the utmost confidence in himself. A new Warren Ellis? Might could be.

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