FTG Contributor's Comic Reviews

Reviewer For: Front Towards Gamer Reviews: 39
6.3Avg. Review Rating

7.0
Ash and the Army of Darkness #1

Oct 29, 2013

Overall, I feel they were trying to do too much with the one issue, but I almost wish I could step outside myself and read the book with out having knowledge of the movie first. It's so engrained in me, it's hard to tell how a reader new to the series might enjoy the issue. However, if its sole purpouse is to get old Army of darkness fans pumped for the series to continue, then baby, I'm pumped like a boomstick!

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7.0
B.P.R.D.: Hell On Earth #110

Aug 22, 2013

If you've been feeling burnt out on B.P.R.D. or are looking to get into the series I actually recommend this book as a good jumping on point for new readers and a pretty solid fresh start for old fans like me getting tired of having to dig out all our old B.P.R.D. back issues every time a new issue is released, consider this one recommended.

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6.5
Ballistic #2

Sep 17, 2013

The artwork in Ballistic is generally pretty solid but the coloring and cluttered eco-tech has a bad tendency to blend together, as I said though the most interesting thing here is the weird world but that's also the least well explained. If you're like me and you actually can get into trying to make sense of jumbled but fascinating weirdness it might be worth a look down the line but ultimately I'd say even if you are interested I'd wait for the trade.

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8.5
Baltimore: The Infernal Train #1

Sep 3, 2013

If I was to raise one complaint it's that the book could stand to be more new-reader friendly, if you're jumping onto this with no grounding at all you won't be completely lost as Baltimore's narration will often help fill you in on the broad strokes but you are missing some of the deeper flavor and meaning behind certain lines but that's a minor nit-pick. Overall Lord Baltimore: The Infernal Engine is powering up to be a great installment in the characters mythos of stories, building the world, introducing new threats, closing off longer storylines and just generally drawing you in with a mix of solid characters, original ideas, and great artwork and pacing, highly recommended.

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9.0
Baltimore: The Infernal Train #3

Nov 4, 2013

The issue crescendos in a symphony of blood, death, and mystery then drops off suddenly, baiting the reader well for the next issue. **stands and claps** well played gentleman, well played! I enjoyed every aspect of Baltimoreand I would recommend it to anyone. Its easy to read and understand, you don't even have to be a comic book or a horror fan to enjoy what this has to offer.

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6.5
Batman '66 #1

Jul 20, 2013

Ultimately, like a lot of beloved Batman stuff Batman '66 comes down to a matter of style over substance and I think in that realm it really delivers, the bad artwork and messy plot do bring it down in my opinion but the mood and atmosphere of the classic show and campy silver age comics is on full display and is still very enjoyable. If you're tired of the overly dark world of modern Batman or are a big fan of the classic show I'd recommend picking Batman '66 up, just be willing to forgive it some of its flaws.

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5.0
Battlestar Galactica (2013) #4

Sep 30, 2013

Battlestar Galactica's artwork is more then a little mixed as well, Cezar Razek does a commendable job with scenes when he's drawing everything the same size and scale with some really good artwork early on of Cylon death camps but when asked to give the reader scale for space ships or celestial bodies things tend to end up scrunched in together which is a big problem for a space book. Overall Battlestar Galactica is more maddening then anything else, the spirit of an epic story is in here in the vein of great time travel stories like Days of Future Past or Back to the Future 2 but it's been buried under poor pacing and bad exposition with mediocre artwork not helping anything. I'd give this issue a miss, sorry to say.

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6.0
Catalyst Comix #3

Sep 2, 2013

Catalyst Comix#3is a mixed bag that gets progressively worse the deeper you go; the first story is very good featuring some great visual artwork and an interesting character approach to an annoying clich it is weighed down by a few out of place bouts of surrealist humor. The second story is entertaining a bit while being too short to be of any real substance with some surprisingly cartoony humor. The third story alienates any new readers to this universe of characters not just the series and fails to really accomplish any forward movement as a story. If you're a fan of the Catalyst Comixcrew and have been reading this series the first story is good while the others are “meh”. For new readers I would not recommend starting with this issue.

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4.5
Catalyst Comix #4

Oct 8, 2013

I think I might've been a little too generous in my initial statement that Catalyst Comix #4was an improvement from issue 3. Overall this issue isn't exactly less flawed just differently flawed, where Catalyst #3was muddled and confused issue 4 is lazy and stagnant, coming off a lot like filler, or a holding pattern while the author tries to figure out where to make any of these stories go. For those curious the artwork is decent if unimpressive, it serves the function without breaking any molds. I've heard good things about past stories from the Catalyst and agents of change characters but this really isn't one of them, not recommended guys.

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4.0
Conan And The People of The Black Circle #1

Oct 22, 2013

The artwork is overall fine, competent and adequate for the task but not really breaking any molds aside from a few really big screw-ups that were just left in the book. For instance there's one point where a character mentions five skulls and we're shown a picture of only four. I realize that it can be difficult to get a book out under a deadline but that'd be such an easy thing to fix, just have the character say four skulls instead of five and done. Overall though that's Conan and the People of the Black Circle in a nutshell, it's a generic story that hopes the ending twist from the usual will hold up the rest of the sagging narrative, a narrative that instead of being full of action, intrigue, or Conan is just full of stupid and lazy mistakes. This comic doesn't fail because it's treating Conan too blandly or poorly it fails because it's just a poorly made comic, not recommended.

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4.5
Cryptozoic Man #1

Oct 8, 2013

This is a comic that really would've benefitted from having some character to act as the voice of reason but instead every character who does speak or narrate what's happening seems to take a sadistic delight in keeping the audience completely in the dark to what is happening. I realize a strong mystery is essential to keep readers coming back every month but here just basic establishment of character and setting have been thrown to the wind in the name of weirdness and I really do think that was a mistake here as the weirdness just isn't fascinating enough to really keep you engaged the way it would be if it was just a little bit more explained to us. Sorry to say it but I can't recommend this one.

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6.0
Dark Horse Presents #28

Sep 22, 2013

Overall this Dark Horse Presents #28is not bad but it's not exactly good either, most of the stories come and go very quickly with far too little impact to be found. A few of the stories will have interesting artwork or some good writing to buoy them but overall they're usually too brief to really let you sink your teeth into them and are visual too generic to help them stand out from being just another comic book story. Dark Horse presents has done good work in the past but I wouldn't call this an example of their best stuff, overall I'd give it a miss unless you've been following some of these stories and want to see the conclusion, the good stuff here just doesn't justify the price.

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7.5
Edgar Allen Poe's The Raven and the Red Death #1

Oct 28, 2013

Recently Darkhorse has been boasting that it has some of the best horror comics on the market right now, while I can't say that's true for all of their horror offerings it's certainly true for this one-shot. Corben offers us a unique new take on old stories that really present them in a new and interesting light all smothered in layers of great atmosphere. It's a chilling and macabre read that I highly recommend picking up for fans of Edgar Allen Poe or just horror in general.

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7.0
Gamma (One Shot) #1

Jul 25, 2013

Wrapping this up,Gammais an odd bloodshot eyed duck in just the art style and world concept alone, it gets points for creativity and an interesting lead you can root for and who has a bit of depth to him. However, those seeking a broader insight into the world Gamma creates or a stronger element of closure or resolution to the story might be turned off. Even so I recommend this comic on visuals alone.

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4.0
George R. R. Martin's The Skin Trade #2

Aug 11, 2013

Reviewing this book really felt like I was screaming at a brick wall. The mistakes Skin Trade makes are downright amateur, showing a complete misunderstanding of the medium and basic concepts of story telling such as suspense or mystery. The story goes nowhere very quickly and the characters are all about as interesting as a bowl of milk and the entire enterprise comes off horribly dull, sluggish, and as a giant waste of potential. Worse then that though I question if Skin Trade was ever meant for success beyond its years. The original novella was written in 1989, 24 years ago, so much about werewolves has been done or changed in that time that most of Skin Trade has that feeling of day old bread, it's gone stale and even if you could soften it up maybe it's time to get off the bread and give something else a shot instead. Not recommended.

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7.5
Hellboy: The Midnight Circus #1

Oct 28, 2013

Hellboy: The Midnight Circus is a thoroughly enjoyable graphic novel and a real return to form for Mignola. As anyone who follows me on Front Toward Gamer knows I've been severly critical of Mignola in a slew of previous reviews so its nice to read something of his that I could just strait up enjoy. I won't deny that the story works more for its atmosphere and style then the actual substance but sometimes that's all as story really needs to be and this is definitely one of those times. Hellboy: The Midnight Circus creates an immersive and dreamlike atmosphere that pulls you into the bizarre and unsettling world it creates for a great journey that skirts the thin line between dream and nightmare, highly recommended.

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5.0
Hunger #2

Aug 10, 2013

Overall Hunger #2is the worst kind of comic to review because of how non-descript it is. The artwork is above average and the story is passable but there's just nothing of substance to grab hold of, no atmosphere of dread or desperation to Galactus's coming, no innovative new twist on the world devourer being in a new universe, no character focus or insight into those involved. Maybe if you're a huge Ultimate fan there's something for you here but if you're coming in from Age of Ultron or as a lover of Galactus I don't recommend Hunger.

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6.5
Infinity #1

Aug 15, 2013

So you could say I was not a fan of the opening shots of Marvel's latest event comic but I will say that despite the many flaws I mentioned the portions of Infinity #1 not dealing with the builders are actually pretty enjoyable and well written. If you were already planning on buying this comic there's no real reason for me to tell you otherwise but if you're on the fence about this issue I'd say to take a look at the current Avengers book story line and judge from that just how much of the builders and Captain Universe you can take, if they're too much for you there I'd say wait for the trades but if you're okay with it then go ahead and pick this book up.

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7.5
Itty Bitty Hellboy #3

Oct 28, 2013

Itty Bitty Hellboyis something of a miracle in its own right. Not only is it a secondary adaptation of beloved characters but also it's an adaptation that removes those characters from their standard style and tone, with all that weight upon it you'd think a book like this would end up cluttered or shallow but it isn't, it's actually one of the better modern Hellboy comics that I've read. Maybe it's just my own exhaustion with the dark slow-motion apocalypse of Mignola's universe but this book was a refreshing change of pace that really helped me actively enjoy reading about these characters again and that's a rare accomplishment. To sum up I highly recommend Itty Bitty Hellboyfor Hellboy fans of all ages, it's a delightful comedy cartoon romp that brings fun to these characters in a much-needed way.

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5.0
King Conan: Hour of the Dragon #3

Aug 30, 2013

Stories like this view Conan as an immutable brick of a character who interesting things happen around but not too which just isn't the best way to take the character. This is usually the part where I say if you like most of the written Conan stories you'll this because it's basically just more of it but with pictures but even that rings false as the "interesting things happening around Conan" part of my description is really lacks here with so much of the magic and mythology here being very basic fantasy stuff you've undoubtedly seen before. Still if you're new to Conan I guess this isn't a bad read and maybe if you are or know an adolescent whose big into Conan right now this is probably a pretty good book to get them but in that case I'd say wait for the trade.

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5.0
King Conan: Hour of the Dragon #5

Sep 21, 2013

The big picture of KingConan Hour of the Dragon is ultimately that if you're already reading it chances are I'm not going to dissuade you, especially with just one issue left to go. No this is a review for everyone else who sees this book on the shelves and has considered buying it or the trade, I tell you sir or madam don't do it, there are plenty of great Conan stories out there and I encourage you to seek them out this just isn't one of them, what King ConanHour of the Dragon #5is, is simply a tired re-hashing of worn out franchise clichs, it's paint by numbers of the most transparent kind and I'll be happy once it's over.

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5.0
King Conan: Hour of the Dragon #6

Nov 1, 2013

Big picture time here, looking at not just this issue but this series in the possibility of trade purchase. I myself have said within these reviews that King Conan and the entire series feel very tired, very much going through the motions and while I feel that holds true for the other issues this is the first one in the series where "the motions" are actually pretty interesting again. It's the same meat and potatoes type story with our meat headed protagonist but this time it's being garnished with some new and imaginative spices in a much nicer restaurant then before. That's the best thing I can say about this issue of the series, the meat of the issue still isn't that great but the atmosphere is certainly better. I wouldn't recommend picking up the King Conan: Hour of the Dragontrade, though if you wanted to buy this issue there's really nothing wrong with that; however, there are just probably better things to spend your money on, here's hoping for better in 2014.

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7.0
Kiss Me, Satan #2

Oct 22, 2013

But those few slip-ups aside Kiss Me Satan is very good, the plot flows at a solid pace with lots of action and intrigue though not much development but this really isn't the issue for that either. This is the issue concerned with accelerating our characters towards a major climax and it does that really well and despite what I said earlier there are some points where the artwork is extremely well done with a unique style that avoids just aping classic horror approaches or the like. There's really not much else for me to delve into on Kiss Me Satan, it's a well written and enjoyable little romp through horror action all coated under a delightful ooze of low budget video rental action junk and sleazy high-octane exploitation goodness. Kiss Me Satan comes recommended.

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7.5
Lobster Johnson: A Scent of Lotus #1

Jul 26, 2013

On the flip side I also note that like almost every one of these Lobster Johnson minis has featured some kind of mystic villain from the "mysterious orient" which, though I'm not going to call the series racist by any means, it often shows there are good strong ethnic characters it might be a little bit on the edgy in its depiction of Asia as a land full of magicians and monsters. I understand the story is aping a specific genre style, and that's a common theme in that style, I just think it could stand to have a bit of variety in its mystic villains. Overall though this mini-series is well paced with good action and an interesting mystery backing it up all wrapped in some very good artwork.

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8.0
Lobster Johnson: A Scent of Lotus #2

Aug 27, 2013

Lobster Johnson: A Scent of Lotus#2 is a great example of a conclusion done excellently. It enhances the good aspects of the previous comic and takes the character to a new place while never feeling slow or bogged down. It's a fun, quick, punchy pulp piece with an infectiously enjoyable protagonist who never fails to endear himself to the audience and a really cool villain for him to fight. I highly recommend this issue for new readers and old fans a like.

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3.0
Mister X: Hard Candy One-Shot #1

Apr 12, 2013

Mister X is still an iconic character, and everyone has a bad day. The team of Mr. Motter and X had been in the back issue section for over twenty years before recently returning. Some say it's like riding a bike, and some say you can never go home again. I guess time will, because we will be seeing more of Mister X in the near future with the mini-series Mister X: Eviction coming soon.

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5.0
Resident Alien: The Suicide Blonde #0

Aug 13, 2013

As I mentioned above there is a place in the world for zero issues, they can be a solid way to wheel your audience to the world you created without having to hit the ground running on story or to give us insight into your characters and motivations before seeing them thrown into a situation. Resident Alien Suicide Blonde however does neither of these things; it rests on its Loral's fumbling about just trying to fill the space till the real issue #1 gets here. For new readers this issue is confusing and off putting to the concept and for old fans coming back the lack of story or progression leaves the issue flat, not recommended.

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4.0
Superior Carnage #1

Jul 21, 2013

Basically half of Superior Carnage is meaningless padding that doesn't add anything to the comic. When the Wizard finally does show up it still feels like the writers are really padding out this book as a lot of what he's doing is just pointless arguing with hostages that he just ends up killing, Superior Carnage #1 is constantly forming these little plot cul-de-sacs in attempt to distract from the fact that they only have enough story to fill up about half a comic here.

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8.0
Superior Carnage #2

Aug 10, 2013

Superior Carnage issue 2 is a great example of how a book can defy your expectations and turn around into something great. The humor is always spot-on but never overpowers the book enough to become the focus, constantly skirting that line between comedy and tragedy. It's a great character study of the Wizard and his own relationship with family, both biological and the one he has crafted for himself over the years (an interesting parallel to the FF series right now.) Again the only real bring down is that the book is called Superior Carnage because if you're a Carnage fan there isn't a whole lot for you in this book, as I mentioned Carnage is basically comatose for most of it. But if you're a fan of the Wizard or don't really care about Carnage, but like good story telling I highly recommend Superior Carnage.

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7.0
The Massive #16

Oct 21, 2013

For a book set on the ocean and called The Massive the artist has a major problem representing scale and can fall prey to size issues as the book goes on. That's not really a huge problem as the dialogue and the characters are really strong I just think that maybe with a firmer or more ambitious hand on the artistic wheel the book could've made up for a few of the slower moments. As is it's a very solid and promising start to a new storyline and made me want to read more from this universe so I'd call that a definite success, pick it up.

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4.0
The Mocking Dead #1

Oct 1, 2013

As I said at the start The Walking Dead is easily one of the biggest and most popular names in comics right now so creating a whole comic based around spoofing it (along with the massively overdone zombie genre as a whole) was an ambitious move on Dynamite's part but ambition can't makeup for lack of quality and sadly The Mocking Dead seriously lacks that. It's too noncommittal to be a parody, too unoriginal to really break the genre's mold, and what few interesting ideas it has end up relegated to the background all of which is exacerbated by poor artwork and a general lack of flow and focus and of course there are no recap boxes for new readers. Give this one a miss, readers.

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7.0
The Occultist #1

Oct 8, 2013

Going back to what I said at the start of this review a key thing for me with first issues is the question of promise and The Occultist promises good things to come. Rob is a likable protagonist who feels realistic without ever being annoyingly out of his depth. The universe and visuals are cool and the mythology is interesting and just horror oriented enough to help the book stand out in that sweet spot between horror and dark fantasy. There are a few hiccups but a lot of those have to do with being a new reader and unfamiliar with the character I'm sure that once the series starts going in earnest that won't be a problem. The Occultist is definitely one to keep an eye on guys I'm expecting very good things to come in the next few issues, recommended.

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8.0
The Shadow #18

Oct 21, 2013

The Shadow is a burst of energy and creativity, dynamic action, beautiful art, and superb storytelling.

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7.5
The Shadow Now #1

Oct 1, 2013

Despite that this is still a very good first issue, it establishes things pretty quickly if you haven't ever heard of the Shadow before and gets a lot of the key points of the universe laid out for new readers. Steaks are raised and introduced and the ending really leaves you psyched to see what happens next. Overall The Shadow NOW! is a very fun adventure seeing this classic character and his universe transported into the modern day, it manages to stand out uniquely from a lot of the Green Hornet comics or Captain Midnight and is buoyed by some amazing artwork. I'd say check it out, it could've been great but pretty good is nothing to sneeze at either.

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5.0
The Strain: The Fall #2

Aug 23, 2013

The Strain #2 is not a good place to pick-up the book and it really isn't a great place for it to continue to either. The story is cluttered with too many focuses while never achieving forward momentum in any of those focuses. The recap at the beginning is too inconclusive and will leave new readers unsure of who different characters are and a lot of the chatter relating to last issue is just poor recap, to vague to be helpful if you don't know what happened and too basic to give you a deeper insight if you do know. The Strain‘s artwork ranges from passable to stylized with serious gaps in quality, overall I can't really recommend this one.

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8.0
The True Lives Of The Fabulous Killjoys #3

Aug 13, 2013

Killjoys is a great example of a comic can make up for leaving readership in the dark by just being a really well written comic. Even though the issue lacks a recap and doesn't fill you in very well the world does a great job of drawing you in and making you want to know more, where most comics that lack a recap flounder because the story and the world aren't interesting enough to make you want to learn more about them Killjoys has an imaginative world that really peeks your interest. The world itself never feels un-creative or flat and finds new energy and creative spins for tired old genre tropes all wrapped around very endearing and human central story, highly recommended.

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6.5
The True Lives Of The Fabulous Killjoys #5

Oct 29, 2013

There are positives, as is usually the case the artwork is very good and the ideas are interesting and new though as I've said not presented as well as usual though even that isn't universal. The exposition about the Destroya is pretty well conveyed through a sort of sacred android text called the Graffiti Bible, that's the kind of weird and evocative way to do exposition right in this story. Overall though I think this will just end up a hiccup in an overall very well written and very enjoyable series, I'm sure the next issue will be much better. If you're reading The Killjoys regularly you'll probably buy this issue either way but if you're thinking of jumping on I'd recommend going back and reading the previous issues first or waiting till next month's issue.

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6.5
Tom Strong and the Planet of Peril #1

Aug 17, 2013

In the end there just isn't that much to say about Tom Strong and the Planet of Peril; it has good ideas and a solid story towing along some decent characters and decent artwork. It's not painfully boring and it's not offensively bad but it isn't jump out of your skin amazing either, it simply is. If you like Tom Strong you've probably already picked this up and there's no reason not to, if you're curious about the character but new to the mythos this is a pretty solid place to start by way of introduction just don't expect to be wowed by anything here.

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8.5
Witch Doctor: Mal Practice #5

May 28, 2013

Witch Doctor is tied to Robert Kirkman of Walking Dead under the Image umbrella. Unless you're a naked native of the Outback I know you've at least heard of The Walking Dead. Theirs is the comic to television success story that all others will be measured by. I think Witch Doctor can make that jump just a successfully, but it will take the fans to make it happen.

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