JohnP's Comic Reviews

Reviewer For: Comics: The Gathering Reviews: 38
7.9Avg. Review Rating

7
All-New X-Men #3

Dec 7, 2012

The art team continues their excellent job here, even though they aren't given too much to work with. Still loving Immonen's renderings of both the old and new X-Men. I don't know if it's the fact that this title has shipped like 3 times in a month, but I'm perfectly happy to wait a couple weeks if the quality of the first two issues is kept up. I'm still curious to learn more of what's going on with Hank and to see how having the original X-team running amok in present day pans out. It seems likely that this issue is a small bump on the road for a series that has great things in store for it. I have faith that Bendis will be back on track two weeks from now in #4.

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9
Archer & Armstrong #4

Nov 20, 2012

This is a creative team that knows their characters and keeps the story moving along like a freight train. They are proving to be among the best teams currently working and I don't doubt that their run has the potential to become a future classic. If you aren't reading Archer & Armstrong yet, you need to start.

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8
Archer & Armstrong #5

Dec 12, 2012

Ok, maybe this issue was a little light on the comedy compared to previous ones, but you will chuckle more than once still. It's the beginning of a new arc and is laying the groundwork for a much larger tale. Fill in artist Emanuela Lupacchino nails the action perfectly. During a scene when Gilad is chasing Armstrong down with a bus, I could practically hear the Terminator soundtrack in my head. Fred van Lante is excellent, as always, deftly balancing all elements of the plot, inserting unforced funniness where possible, and pacing everything well. It's a solid start to a new story that has me anticipating next month's reveal of a new Geomancer.

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8
Batman (2011) #17

Feb 12, 2013

In the end, it is really hard to say where I rank this. My opinions on it are still evolving. I'm still mulling the possible meanings and future implications of what I've read and I'm sure I will be reading it many times more in the future. That alone says quite a bit about the issue. Whether fans love it or hate it - and this is already proving to be a divisive issue - fans are sure to be talking about this one for some time. If only to be part of the discussion, this is a must read.

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6
Dark Shadows #10

Nov 21, 2012

Dynamite's Dark Shadows has been a faithful adaptation, sure to please longtime fans of the cult hit and this issue is no exception. Mike Raight continues to weave a dark, soap opera narrative and new artist Nacho Tenorio maintains the standard of art the series has kept so far. The art is reminiscent of great old horror/thriller series of the past, stylistically evoking the work on such titles as House of Mystery and House of Secrets. Fans of that type of series can expect to find a solid, if not overly creative, facsimile in Dark Shadows. Those who aren't already drawn to this, however, will probably not find much compelling here.

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9
Flash (2011) #14

Nov 29, 2012

This was most definitely the best issue of Flash so far. The plot seems to be getting deeper and it looks like the new character is going to introduce an over-arcing facet to the series. I'm pysched to see one of my favorite titles suddenly get even better and I've never been anticipating the next issue as much as I am now.

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7
Flash (2011) #15

Jan 5, 2013

Some may be frustrated by the perceived lack of plot in this issue, but transitional issues are a common fact in comic storylines. A lot happened last issue and this one sets up what look to be several major developments for the future. In fact, there will likely be multiple plot threads that have been building throughout the series that will be tied up in the coming penultimate Gorilla Warfare issues. I, for one, am a huge fan of this series's Flash reboot and can't wait to see what is in store for the Scarlet Speedster.

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7
Flash (2011) #16

Feb 7, 2013

I'd be remiss to not say that the art in this issue is of course, spectacular. Once again, we get an amazing, creative title page. Here's hoping that next month we also see an end to Grodd.

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10
Frankenstein Alive, Alive! #2

Nov 26, 2012

Anyone who wants to read a finely crafted comic with lavish artwork needs to get this now. Each issue is an instant classic. Here's hoping the wait for chapter 3 is short.

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4
Green Hornet #31

Nov 29, 2012

Complaints about the title in general aside, this issue is a slight improvement over previous ones. If you've been buying the Hornet due to loyalty to the character, this issue will leave you slightly less unhappy than usual. If you're just checking out Green Hornet for the first time thanks to Masks, do yourself a favor and get Green Hornet: Year One by the great Matt Wagner instead.

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4
Green Hornet #32

Dec 21, 2012

By now, I can't imagine there is a single reader who is enjoying this series. As a huge Hornet fan, it physically pains me every month to see the beloved character fall so far. Thankfully there is a bright, shining light at the end of this tunnel: Mark Waid's New Hornet series starts in March. Only two more issues to go until then.

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8
Green Hornet: Year One Special #1

Jan 19, 2013

While this issue may be pretty light on actual Hornet action, it really is a very well written and interestingly executed one shot. It is streets ahead of the current Green Hornet ongoing and really whets the appetite for more 40's era Hornet action coming in March from Mark Waid. Best of all, since the main character is brand new, this issue is perfect for fans both new and old, so if you've never read any Hornet comics, feel free to dip your toes in here.

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9
Indestructible Hulk #1

Nov 21, 2012

The future of the Hulk is bright! Judging from this introductory issue, Waid's run on Hulk could concievably eclipse his great runs on Flash, Irredeemable, and Daredevil. Already teased is Hulk vs. Iron Man in issue 2 and further battles with villains across the Marvel Universe, as well as intellectual duals between Marvel's genius's are sure to keep the title interesting. Although things seem to point towards the series being filled with self-contained story's from one issue to the next (a true rarity these days), look for bigger story arcs to emerge soon. For now, add this to the other spectacular Marvel NOW! debuts like Thor: God of Thunder and Fantastic Four and I'll see you at issue 2.

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9
Indestructible Hulk #2

Dec 22, 2012

This team is settling in for fun-filled, character defining run from the looks of things so far. Indestructible Hulk is something you need to add to your pull list if you haven't yet.

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7
Lone Ranger Vol. 2 #11

Dec 5, 2012

This is another good chapter in the tale of the Lone Ranger. Anyone who is a fan of the character or of westerns in general should be reading this.

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9
Masks #1

Nov 27, 2012

Dynamite comes out of the gate firing on all cylinders with Masks #1. It's an exciting and intriguing ride that promises even bigger things to come. This is definitely one you'll be reading more than once. The only question that remains is, will they be able to continue to deliver? Dennis Calero is slated to take over on art fro the rest of the series. Ross is an impossible act to follow, but I have faith Calero will carry the ball well. For now, Masks #1 is an outstanding beginning.

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9
Masks #2

Dec 21, 2012

Already the Black Bat has been announced as a new title coming in 2013 from current Flash writer Brian Buccaletto. It seems to me that Ms Fury can't be far behind. Masks is a smash success on it's own and I have little doubt that it will go down as the crossover of the year, but what it is doing for the entirety of the pulp comics from Dynamite is a humungous bonus. With the announcements of Black Bat, Mark Waid on Green Hornet, Wagner on The Shadow Year One, and even Francavilla's New Black Beetle over at Dark Horse, it really looks like Masks is ushering in the year of pulp.

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7
Masks #3

Jan 26, 2013

Masks #3 is a solid chapter in the continuing story. It may be relatively light on action and the plot is somewhat transitional in terms of the overall story, but those are the only reasons why it may not make as strong an impression as the first two issues. The cast is all here now, so from here on out things are bound to really heat up. Don't forget, this is a team of vigilantes with no qualms about killing bad guys. This story won't end with someone being locked up in an Asylum, there's gonna be hell to pay. If you aren't tuning in to Masks every month to see what happens, you're missing out.

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10
Mind MGMT #7

Jan 23, 2013

Listen, I could go on and on about the brilliance that is Mind MGMT, but I'd rather spend that time going back and reading it again. This issue is the perfect time to get on board one of the most intriguing and unique stories in comics right now. Do yourself a favor and pick this up while you still can.

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8
Miss Fury #1

Apr 5, 2013

So if you are a fan of pulp comics, if you've been loving Masks, or if you just love a great comic with a badass female hero and great art, you should be picking up Miss Fury. This issue is a very promising start to a series that I hope to see run for quite a while. As I said, Dynamite's pulp line is one of the best things in comics today and if you aren't on board then the time to jump in is now.

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6
Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt #3

Nov 21, 2012

With all that said, Thunderbolt has a lot going for it. The story so far, though relegated mostly to the background, has introduced several interesting threads that will be coming into play. A mysterious villian who seems to be orchestrating things behind the scenes, a chicken-hawk General determined to undermine Peter's plans, and an intriguing twist at the very end has me hooked into continuing to see if this series takes off.

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9
Shadowman (2012) #2

Dec 5, 2012

Shadowman is shaping up to be the strongest title yet in a relaunch full of home runs from Valiant. Each issue stands alone as a great chapter, but also advances a wider tale at the same time, and from the looks of things the story is only going to get darker and more intense. I highly recommend getting in now on the ground floor of Shadowman. This is going to be epic.

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9
Shadowman (2012) #3

Jan 11, 2013

Honestly, if Shadowman keeps being this consistently great, I am going to run out of adjectives to describe it. It is one of the best of Valiant's stellar lineup and if you aren't reading it, you really need to check it out.

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9
Shadowman (2012) #4

Feb 8, 2013

In short, if you aren't reading this book, you should really check it out. Any fan of Justin Jordan's work...pick this book up ASAP. It is becoming my favorite thing he has done. At just 4 issues in it is a bit too soon to call, but I see this clearly surpassing Luther Strode. Really any fan of dark, vigilante heroes from Batman to Spawn will love this and any fans of the Dark line from DC need to add this to their pull right away. It's hard to standout when you're surrounded with great titles at Valiant, but Jordan and Zircher are at the top of the heap. The highest praise I could give is that I read this before even cracking open Harbinger or the Rotworld finale, and that is the truth.

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7
Sherlock Holmes: The Liverpool Demon #1

Dec 12, 2012

Overall, this is a very promising introduction for the 5-part series. Fans of the character, be it the new movie version, the BBC Sherlock, or the classic Sir Arthur Conan Doyle tales, will not be disappointed as the mystery of the Liverpool Demon begins.

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8
Swamp Thing (2011) #15

Dec 6, 2012

This issue is one that harkens back to Swamp Thing's roots as a horror comic and that is a very good thing. Next month promises a trip to Arkham and I can't wait to see a splash page of Rotworld Gotham as well as "rotten" Batman villians. It will be the conclusion of the Green Kingdom and Yanick will be back, so I can't wait to see what happens.

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7
Swamp Thing (2011) #16

Jan 11, 2013

I think this issue may go down as being better as part of a whole than as a single chapter of the story. It may well be much better than I seem to be giving it credit for, but it's hard to judge this issue given my unreasonable expectations going in. What is clear is that things have been set up for a grand climax to Rotworld coming in just four weeks. I'm confident Scott and Yanick are gonna knock that one out of the park, but this issue feels like they're just stepping up tot the plate and settling into their batting stance.

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10
Sweet Tooth #40

Jan 11, 2013

Like I said, it's hard to say much about the story without giving something away. Even telling what emotions are evoked would probably be too much. I think this ending caps the series off brilliantly and cements Sweet Tooths reputation as an epic series that can hang up there in the same realm as Y: The Last Man. If this issue feels short or rushed at first, it's because Lemire has created a world we wish we could spend more time in, filled with characters we have come to love.

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10
The Black Beetle #1

Jan 16, 2013

If you know anything about Francavilla, you know he is basically "Mr. Pulp Comic" since he draws covers for nearly every pulp hero comic being published. It's no secret that pulp is his thing and this is a true love letter to the genre. The Beetle can stand tall beside the likes of the Shadow, the Spider, and even Batman. Everyone owes it to themselves to get this comic. It is a tale that immediately captivates you, propelled by a character who is is an instant classic. Go to your comic store and get this before it sells out, because it is going to. You don't want to miss it.

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6
The Lone Ranger: Snake of Iron #4

Dec 5, 2012

Overall, this short mini-series is completely separate from the main Lone Ranger continuity and the story it tells is not particularly compelling. However, the talents of Dixon and Polls make it more than it could have been. Give this a miss unless you are a big Lone Ranger fan.

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9
The Shadow #8

Nov 21, 2012

The first issue in the “Revolutionary” arc shows a fantastic beginning for the new team and has instilled creative new energy into an already thriving title. Even Aaron Campbell’s art seems to have taken on a new, more Shadow-y tone. I have great expectations for the future of The Shadow with Gischler on board and can’t wait to see where this arc takes the story. For anyone who hasn’t been reading, this issue is the perfect place to start.

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8
The Shadow #9

Feb 7, 2013

Overall, another very solid chapter in Gischler and Campbell's run. It's unfortunate that it will be ending after this arc - it was announced a couple weeks ago that Chris Roberson (writer of Masks) will be taking over the series as of issue #13. It's hard to say that this is a bad thing since Roberson is doing a great job on Masks, but I wasn't in any hurry to get rid of Gischler. Anyone who can come on board after Garth Ennis and actually make me like a series MORE is doing a damn fine job.

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7
The Shadow Special #1

Dec 28, 2012

Overall, this issue is a good read, especially on such an uncrowded week for comics. It's a standalone story, so anyone can pick it up and enjoy a good, old fashioned Shadow tale that balances humor and dark adventure. As a fan of the old radio serials, I enjoyed it very much as somewhat of a call back to that kind of plot, but fans of Dynamite's main Shadow series right now might find it lacking.

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8
The Shadow: Year One #1

Feb 19, 2013

This series has been one that pulp fans have been very much anticipating and it more than delivers. It's too early to tell where this ranks in respect to Wagner's other Year One comics, but it is a very strong start. Definitely something all fans of pulp heroes or good comics in general should be checking out.

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9
The Spider #6

Nov 21, 2012

This latest issue opens with a brief look into Wentworth’s time in Iraq, introduces a new addition to the stable of characters, and wraps up the short Wingman arc that began in issue 7. There’s no major revelations, no cliffhangers, and none are needed. The strength of Liss and Worley’s abilities draws you into the pulpy, nourish world of The Spider for yet another issue and leaves the reader both satisfied and wanting more. Here’s hoping Dynamite locks these two into a lengthy deal and really give them room to continue building this world.

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9
The Spider #7

Dec 21, 2012

This issue is the second in a series of stand alone stories that are going to continue until March, when The Spider's arch nemesis is set to be introduced. This is one of the best issues of a series that is doing nothing but get better every month and there is no better time than now to get started reading it.

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7
The Spider #8

Jan 23, 2013

Minor nitpicks aside, The Spider #8 is another solid story from Liss and Rodriguez. It's a fun read that builds a head of steam, racing towards a cliffhanger that isn't necessarily too surprising, yet left me wishing next month could come faster. Fans of the series will not be dissappointed. For those new to The Spider, I HIGHLY recommend picking up the trade of Vol. 1 which is also out this week.

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6
The Spider #9

Feb 19, 2013

That said, don't think I'm writing The Spider off. David Liss has been doing fantastic work with the character and I have confidence he will in the future. This issue is still a fun read and continues to build the world of the Spider. Jackson's role is increased, Detective Hilt is given an opportunity to further pressure Richard, and there are other plot threads that have been slowly being pulled tighter in the last few issues that are sure to explode soon.

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