Brendan F. Hodgdon's Comic Reviews

Reviewer For: Doom Rocket Reviews: 23
8.1Avg. Review Rating

8.0
Analog #1

Mar 20, 2018

Overall, this is a solid debut issue. It cuts to the quick in setting up the world and its protagonist, while leaving a lot of intriguing balls up in the air for subsequent installments. Analog #1 is a fun read that does a bunch of cool things well. Definitely worth a look for old-school pulp fans who don't mind some new-school packaging.

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8.5
Border Town #1

Sep 7, 2018

Border Town is an essential comic that captures a much-needed perspective in a wild and entertaining fashion, right at a time where we need such things. Much like Frank, it confronts the ugliness around us with bloody knuckles and a righteous attitude, promising a rollicking (and hopefully long-running) adventure to come.

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9.0
Crude #1

Apr 16, 2018

It is pretty safe to say that in terms of craft and emotion, Crude is very much the opposite of its title. This issue is an exquisitely-told chapter of what will undoubtedly be a devastating story when completed, that serves as yet another bar-raising piece of work for its creators. Crude will likely resonate with anyone who longs to be recognized for who they are, or who regrets what they've left unsaid. Simply put, Crude is a book for almost everyone.

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8.0
Dark Nights: Metal #5

Feb 1, 2018

A while back when I reviewed Batman: Lost #1, I said that Scott Snyder always finds a way to make a story into a horror story, which has been true of Metal as a whole from the beginning. And the reason why this approach is so effective is because it sets up issues like Metal #5, when all the fear and pain of the story so far heightens the impact of seeing our heroes face it head-on and reject it. It makes for stirring storytelling, and it sets us up for a monster finale.

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8.0
Death or Glory #1

Apr 30, 2018

In many ways, Death or Glory is a quintessential Image book, and a quintessential Rick Remender book; two things that are almost synonymous with each other at this point. And just as the world and characters are peak Remender, so is finding a tremendous and distinct artist to bring it all to life, which Bengal does as wonderfully as anyone. This is a solid start to what I'm sure will be a beautiful and exciting new journey. I call shotgun.

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8.0
Death Orb #1

Aug 16, 2018

The combination of high-octane, action-driven pacing and mysterious, loosely-defined mythology builds to crescendo in this issue's climax. How Ferrier and Aragon continue from here will likely reveal more about the nature of this world, and maybe a little bit more about Rider, too. Whether it results in clear answers or not, this Dark Horse Comics mini-seriesis certainly capable of capturing the reader's attention. This is a thrilling and beautiful new action comic that's just damn fun to read. Look no further than the ultraviolent delights of Death Orb.

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8.5
Her Infernal Descent #1

Apr 13, 2018

Questions of loss and depression, death and love are perpetual concerns for humanity and our art, and the concept of Hell always offers an intense prism through which to consider such unsettling queries. While this isn't the first or last story to undertake these considerations, it's still a damn good one, and well worth reading. These collaborators have crafted an incredible work that truly brings this story to life" or death, as it were.

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7.5
Infidel #1

Feb 19, 2018

Fear is an omnipresent element of society, for good and bad people alike. It only stands to reason that those fears would make great fodder for horror stories. If only they could all be as impactful and intelligent from the get-go as Infidel.

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8.0
Infidel #2

Apr 19, 2018

The issue ends on an emotionally horrifying note, one that sets up some very upsetting consequences in the next issue. At this point, it already seems like Aisha's been dragged down too far, and that there's no way she could possibly escape the trap that her life has become. Of course, that only makes reading the next issue even more of an imperative.

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8.0
Isola #1

Apr 10, 2018

The more series like Isola there are out there, the better the medium will ultimately be.

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8.0
Justice League (2018) #2

Jun 22, 2018

Scott Snyder has been steadily upping his game throughout his tenure at DC, telling more epic stories as he goes. Justice League is a great continuation of this trend; the Morrisonian bombast is colored with Snyder's particular brand of dread and danger, his layered storytelling still unimpeachable. While this second issue does feel like the connective tissue to more consequential chapters, it still does so much so well. Definitely check this series out, folks. It more than earns its status as a tentpole DC title.

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8.5
Maxwell's Demons #1

Nov 27, 2017

All in all, this is a killer first issue that promises a great deal, and I'm sure this creative team will deliver on all of it.

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7.5
Nightwing (2016) #44

May 4, 2018

What really sells me on this new creative team is all the little details Percy, Mooneyham, and Filardi got right. They seem to have a great understanding of Nightwing and what makes him distinct amongst the Bat-family, something that will be a huge asset going forward. For the past few years, Nightwing has had a pretty uninterrupted run of great stories. This team should have no problem continuing that hot streak.

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8.0
No. 1 With A Bullet #2

Dec 7, 2017

Whatever reservations I may have had about No. 1 With a Bullet in the first issue have been largely dispelled by its second. This creative team is really coming together and presenting a blunt, unapologetic treatise on how we relate to each other in the 21st century, and all the horrors that entails. As perverse (and ironic) as it may sound, I can't wait to see more.

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8.5
Pearl #1

Aug 16, 2018

After blazing through this first issue, it's clear that Bendis and Gaydos are onto something here. What's more, it bodes well for Jinxworld as an imprint, and serves as a reminder of Bendis' talent beyond his cape-and-cowl work. Pearl had a lot to prove in its debut. It's cleared that bar.

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8.0
Relay #1

Jul 12, 2018

Relay would be cool just as a fun AfterShock Comics jam session; a bunch of veteran creators for the publisher coming together to whip up something different. But these creators, being as talented and ambitious as they are, didn't stop there. Instead, they gave us an epic and unsettling take on some classic sci-fi ideas, one that will satisfy your eyes even as it gnaws away at your brain.

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8.5
Saga #50

Apr 3, 2018

50 issues in, and Saga continues to be one of the best comic series out there. This probably comes as a shock to pretty much no one, but that should in no way diminish the immense accomplishment that this series already represents.

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8.0
Shanghai Red #1

May 28, 2018

Sebela, Hixson, and Otsmane-Elhaou have certainly struck an equilibrium with this bloody entertaining debut. While one might believe they have a comfortable idea of where this series may go plot-wise, there is a lot of thematic new ground to be broken here. The broad strokes of Shanghai Red may be familiar, but the devil is in the details.

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7.5
Stranger Things #1

Sep 14, 2018

Stranger Things #1 may not be breaking any boundaries as far as its source material is concerned. But if you're a sucker for this tale of friendship and interdimensional monsters it will scratch that itch nicely. Hopefully as it progresses its top-flight creative team will have more of a chance to cast a die of their own, charting a thrilling new path both for this world and its heroes.

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7.5
Swamp Thing Winter Special #1

Feb 12, 2018

I'm not going to lie; trying to wrap my head around this issue after only a couple of reads was a little harder than I expected. And I could see the detatched and philosophical tone being off-putting to some, especially without the added context that some of Tom King's longer works provide. But there's no denying that the Swamp Thing Winter Special will get inside your head, and that it really summarizes the spirit of Wein & Wrightson's love child in typically tragic fashion.

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9.0
The Dead Hand #1

Apr 10, 2018

As far as debut issues go, this is certainly a top-tier example of how to do it right. The creative team works well together to craft a detailed mystery that clearly still has a lot left to reveal about its world and its characters. I'm confident that The Dead Hand will be providing us with some great thrills throughout this summer, and beyond.

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8.5
The Unexpected (2018) #2

Jul 10, 2018

The New Age of DC Heroes has produced some solid books thus far, but it feels like The Unexpected is the most "DC" of them all; the entire DC Universe is open for the book's characters to explore, with space enough for its reality-bending action. It feels closer to Orlando's work on his Midnighter books than anything else he's done, and it allows Nord to exercise the distinct artistic muscles he used for Conan and Iron Man at the same time.

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8.0
The Weatherman #1

May 15, 2018

The careful balance of tone, style and character is essential to the telling of any good story. But in the case of The Weatherman, the tone is going to be the real make-or-break factor to this series. Can they maintain the tension between bleak and adventurous? Can they nail the emotion through a heightened, absurdist aesthetic? If the work in this first issue is any indication, the answer is most likely yes.

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