Emmanuel Malchiodi's Comic Reviews

Reviewer For: Florida Geek Scene Reviews: 25
7.3Avg. Review Rating

8.0
'68 Scars #1

Apr 12, 2012

The artwork by Jones is very similar to what appeared in the Better Run Through the Jungle trade (incidentally, Jones does not do the artwork for the two one-shots released last year) and I have not noticed a large leap forward in his artistic prowess. That does not mean it is not there and maybe I am spoiled by the nearly ten year run artist Charlie Adlard has had on The Walking Dead, where I can see his art improve over a long period of time but 68 has not gone on long enough for his work to mature yet. Hopefully this will happen because if the first issue of Scars is any indication of what is in store 68 is a series that will entertain comic book fans for years to come.

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4.0
Batman Incorporated #1

May 29, 2012

In this introductory issue Batman and Robin end up fighting Leviathan, like in the previous incarnation of Batman Incorporated, but also an assassin trying to kill Robin. While Morrison tries including some existential explorations of murder and fatherhood he does it haphazardly, not really allowing the reader to feel anything for the sharpshooting antagonist hunting down the Boy Wonder. Really, all the characters in Batman Incorporated feel a bit flat and the situations Morrison creates are nothing special. Maybe it is because the exceptional Batman titles released in the past, including Morrisons incredible Arkham Asylum graphic novel from 1989, have raised the bar and anything not of the same caliber falls short. Whatever the reason, avoid Batman Incorporated, save your money for a more worthy title and continually wonder, like I do, whether Morrison has lost his touch.

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5.0
Before Watchmen: Comedian #1

Jun 20, 2012

Maybe Im placing my own biases in the forefront, allowing my love for Watchmen to cloud my judgment and see these books as subpar before they mature. Then again, maybe theyre nothing more than DCs attempt to make a quick buck by cashing in on one of the most celebrated comics of the 20th century. I said something similar in my previous reviews of the Minutemen and Silk Spectre titles and I still believe its true, regardless of who is writing and drawing these titles. Nonetheless, unlike the Minutemen book and like the Silk Spectre comic, Im interested to see where Azzarello and Jones are going with this series, even if its a bit foolish.

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5.0
Before Watchmen: Comedian #2

Jul 26, 2012

Unlike the last issue, this chapter has more action, with The Comedian killing scores of Vietcong and enjoying it. Artist J.G. Jones (Final Crisis, Wanted) depicts the joy on Blakes face as he stabs an enemy repeatedly perfectly, demonstrating that hes a decent artist. I still think Brian Azzarellos (100 Bullets) story needs work and hopefully the next few issues of The Comedian will pull the story together, demonstrating that this venture isnt anything more than high-budget fan fiction.

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5.0
Before Watchmen: Minutemen #2

Jul 12, 2012

Still narrated by Hollis Mason (the original Nite-Owl), this issue continues on with the supplemental version of Masons autobiography Under the Hood. The artwork, also by Cooke, attempts to look like a classic comic book but instead is reminiscent of Batman: The Animated Series (but the 90s Batman cartoon was much more aesthetically pleasing). Ive seen what Cooke can do outside of thisfor instance, his work on Catwoman is quite entertaining and solidbut his efforts at nostalgia fall a little short here.

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8.0
Before Watchmen: Ozymandias #1

Jul 4, 2012

I wasnt familiar with Len Wein before reading this book and Im actually embarrassed to say that. He co-created Swamp Thing, Wolverine, and most of the X-Men who first appeared in Giant Size X-Menwhy wasnt I familiar with him? Wein is a comic book legend, responsible for books and characters Ive enjoyed for a long time now yet Ive never uttered his name once. Im certain Ive seen his name before but didnt notice. Wein also edited the original Watchmen and worked with Moore on Swamp Thing in the 1980s. The mans knowledge of history and comic book writing make this inaugural issue of Ozymandias a good, intelligent read, paying homage to Moore and Gibbons creation rather than being mediocre fan-fiction. At this point Ill say this is probably the best title in the Before Watchmen series.

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7.0
Before Watchmen: Silk Spectre #2

Jul 19, 2012

Even though I object to this Watchmen prequel business as a whole I can't deny some of the issues have been entertaining and even intelligent; Silk Spectre is turning into one of those.

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7.0
Bloodshot #1

Jul 10, 2012

Like all the new Valiant titles the adherence to Golden or Silver age tropes are gone, instead trying to appeal to a more adult audience. This doesnt mean the title is above the average teenager but I doubt theyre seeing the philosophical leanings of the character or the subtle nuances of writer Duane Swierczynski (Cable, Birds of Prey). Nonetheless, that subtext is there for those who look for it but not necessary for somebody looking for a good action comic riddled with espionage, betrayals, and violence (which is here in droves).

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9.0
Fatima - The Blood Spinners #1

Jun 27, 2012

Filled with excessive violence and the artistic styling's Hernandez is famous for, this four issue limited series is wonderful so far, adding to the zombie canon by asking questions regarding drugs in the 21st century, post 9/11 surveillance, and issues of economic importance (non-zombified community members murder a homeless man as a preventative measure). Yet the book isn't academic or pedantic (like this statement), instead relying on Hernandez's storytelling style: excellent artwork, compelling characters, and an honest voice. Even though the year's only halfway over I have a feeling Fatima will end up being my favorite new comic of 2012.

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9.0
Fatima - The Blood Spinners #2

Jul 18, 2012

Without providing too many spoilers this issue ends on an interesting note, where Fatima either finds herself 100 years in the future, hoping to avoid the zombie apocalypse, or possibly part of an institutional trap designed to kill anybody with insider knowledge. Also, like last issue, this installment is filled with violence and women dressed in overly tight clothing (a specialty of Hernandez). I cant wait for the next issue, supposedly out in August, as the mysteries set up this issue will undoubtedly be answered and Im sure with violent results.

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7.0
Fury MAX #1

May 9, 2012

The artwork by Goran Parlov, teaming him up again with Ennis, is well done. It does not attempt to stretch outside of what is usually expected from a Marvel book while at the same time doing it with panache. I think if Parlov attempted anything else the book would not succeed, even with Ennis writing it. It is uncertain whether this series is continuous or only a limited title but I hope it stays around for a few issues.

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7.0
Fury MAX #2

May 17, 2012

I am uncertain whether Fury Max is a limited series or continuous. Personally I hope it is limited, guaranteeing Enniss involvement; I am not sure whether the title would work without his writing. I am eagerly awaiting the next chapter.

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8.0
Invincible #93

Jul 7, 2012

As with The Walking Dead, Invincible requires the reader to know what happened beforehand, as the characters are highly involved by this point and the Invincible universe has become quite large. Picking the title up on a whim isn't a good idea, as it's like watching an episode of The Sopranos in the middle of the fourth season"you'll probably have no idea what's going on and not understand why these characters are important. However, if you're looking for a new comic book series to obsess over I highly suggest Invincible"the reason I like superheroes again"but I warn you, it'll take your money and your time.

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9.0
Mind MGMT #2

Jul 4, 2012

Hopefully, Kindt will reveal more about the Immortals, Mind Mgmt, Henry Lyme, and Meru's connection to all this with next month's installment as this issue brings more variables into the story without really explaining much. Some new mental super powers are introduced, especially the Perrier twins who tell stories with one twin drawing and the other writing, using their psychic link to work simultaneously. Unfortunately, if the twins are separated their powers short circuit. This is a funny little quirk allowing a look into Kindt's interesting storytelling abilities.

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8.0
Punk Rock Jesus #1

Jul 11, 2012

Murphys artwork is excellent, even if the style is a bit derivative of mangas like Yukito Kishiros Battle Angel Alita. It suits the story well, showing a culture overrun by corporations and mindless advertisementsa splintered world, where Aldous Huxleys Brave New World beats out Orwells 1984 by offering too many choices, diluting dialogues and drowning out any voices of importance. Im not very familiar with Murphys prior work but if the art for Punk Rock Jesus is any indication of his talent Im curious to see where this title goes and what he has planned for the future.

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8.0
Revival #1

Jul 14, 2012

Im uncertain whether Revival is an ongoing series or a limited one but there are enough elements in this first issue to set up a decent run for the book. Between the mysteries of the Revivers and the weird creature seen walking through the forest in the books beginning, Revival has enough material so far for it to keep my interest for a couple more issue at the least. I only hope Seeley and Norton can keep the series clever and intelligent for a long time as I think the premise for the book is inventive and the social commentary embedded in the story is fairly valuable.

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5.0
Saucer Country #1

Apr 18, 2012

The artwork by Kelly is competent, even quite good at times, but nothing out of the ordinary. Maybe it is the color palette colorist Giulia Brusco was working from but they were probably my biggest complaint about the book they just seemed uninspired and picked haphazardly. Hopefully the next issue will see this corrected.

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6.0
Star Wars: Darth Vader And The Ghost Prison #1

May 25, 2012

Featuring decent artwork by Agustin Alesio, Darth Vader and the Ghost Prison is an entertaining entry into the Star Wars canon. Yet unlike Dark Horses first jaunt into the Star Wars universe, Dark Empire, these current tales are more like mediocre fan fiction, capitalizing on the franchises 35 years of success. Maybe it is because Star Wars has been part of the cultural lexicon for over three decades, spawning a glut of products and extraneous stories; maybe it is because I grew up watching the original trilogy and reading Marvels Star Wars series (which I feel is superior to anything Dark Horse churns out nowadays) but the endless barrage of Star Wars comics hitting shops every month is tiring and almost embarrassing. There are too many Star Wars comics out there nowadays and finding a decent one, like Ghost Prison, is a rarity, reminding me, if only for the briefest of moments, why I liked Star Wars in the first place.

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7.0
Star Wars: Darth Vader And The Ghost Prison #3

Jul 19, 2012

I'm horribly curious to see where the next installment goes and whether author Haden Blackman will deliver on what looks like will be an excellent final act.

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7.0
The Massive #1

Jun 14, 2012

The artwork by Donaldson isnt anything unique but works well for Woods words but the coloring by Dave Stewart isnt anything impressive. If anything, the coloring is pretty banal. Im fairly certain the coloring is done digitallywhich saves both time and moneybut takes away the human factor which makes comic books such a joy. The palette Stewarts working with is decent but its fluidity is like Zoloft, which spreads a giant layer of happiness over the brain, not allowing for human imperfects to shine through. Like the automatons in Aldous Huxleys Brave New World, the colors are like drones removing any depth from the illustrations. Thankfully Donaldsons artwork is passable and Woods story is intriguing, hooking me in for the entire three-issue run.

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9.0
The Walking Dead #95

Mar 30, 2012

Thankfully the next issue comes out in three weeks instead of four. My ravenous appetite for each new issue of The Walking Dead is never sated.

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9.0
The Walking Dead #98

May 30, 2012

The cover, similar to last issue, isnt anything special but I guess Im spoiled by Adlards stunning exteriors each issue. Now I know why theyre getting these out every three weekstheyre skimping on the covers but not the insides, which are once again beautifully rendered by Adlard. The way this artist conveys emotion is fantastic and I cant think of another contemporary artist able to match him. Im sure some disagree with my assessment but for this book Adlard has created the perfect visual aesthetic to complement Kirkmans story. Hopefully this book will continue for decades to come. Hopefully I wont die in a fiery plane crash or have a heart attack in the next six weeks (I should quit smoking) because I need to see where The Walking Dead goes with issue 100. Until then I have the first two issue of the Something to Fear storyline to quench my desires; unfortunately, these issues are always too short and leave me wanting more.

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8.0
The Walking Dead #99

Jun 20, 2012

Hopefully Kirkman wont kill off Andrea, as shes probably the best character in the series, in a tie with Carl and Glenn. Personally, I dont care if everybody else dies, as itll make the series all the more interesting. Hell, they can kill off Rick at this point, placing Andrea, Glenn, and Carl as the series primary protagonists. Its possible putting an emotionally disturbed adolescent into the drivers seat would make the series extremely interesting.

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8.5
X-O Manowar #1

May 2, 2012

Nords artwork, like what he did for Dark Horses Conan, is excellent and I cannot wait to see what he has in store for future issues. I know Venditti has already written five issues of the series and hopefully Nord is involved with those as his art impeccably compliments the writing. The issue also features a preview of Valiants re-launch of Harbinger, which comes out next month.

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8.0
X-O Manowar #2

Jun 5, 2012

Even though I feel the artwork in the first X-O issue is better, Nord's work for issue two is sublime, explaining why his tenure on Conan was so revered. He really has a knack for bringing historic and fantasy situations to life, taking from Golden and Silver Age influences and making them contemporary. The glances we've received of the aliens or their technology are stunning and only hint at what's in store as Aric makes his way to the present. Hopefully, Nord's artwork travels into science fiction and the super hero realm well here. Thankfully both Nord and Venditti are on board for the first five issues and even if they leave the title I'm certain they'll craft an enjoyable comic book universe for other artists to play in.

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