Lido's Comic Reviews

Reviewer For: Front Towards Gamer Reviews: 316
6.4Avg. Review Rating

4.0
Abe Sapien #7

Nov 11, 2013

In the end this whole review comes down to the matter of the story's ideas and attitude, and that attitude comes off as petulant more then anything else. This isn't the anger of someone who wants to see legitimate change or the passion of someone whose trying to send a cautionary message to the future, it's the ranting of someone whose tired of caring and tired of waiting, and would rather see the world destroyed then keep trying to fix it. Again, maybe that would be enough if it was in some other medium or if the writing and characters were more then just puppets to hold up the plot or if the story was more self aware of its own view points but Abe Sapien #7is none of those things, it's just a bad comic that I don't recommend.

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7.5
Abe Sapien #8

Dec 11, 2013

Yes, this was a great issue, but I can't shake that sinking suspicion that it's a fluke, a one time only deal that is more of a blip on the series than a new trend-setter. There's no way to tell if this nightmare will become reality or if I'm completely off till the next issue comes out, but until then, I can happily say I very much recommend Abe Sapien #8.

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7.5
Action Comics (2011) #41

Jun 5, 2015

While this issue doesn't breakAction Comicsfor me, it does keep me from ever really loving it. There are parts I really engaged with and the ending promises some very interesting things to come, especially in terms of focus and scope. I just hope that future stories keep the emphasis on human storytelling about Superman as a defender of the innocent rather than backsliding into just another exercise in generic super punching.

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6.5
All-New Miracleman Annual #1

Jan 1, 2015

Not so with Miracleman, with Miracleman I get the sense most fans really do want more stories from this character, not just because Neil Gaiman has some unfinished business but because Miracleman as a character works. You need a creative team energized and engaged with the chance for long-form stories, yes, but without itMiracleman as a concept feels so much more unique and inspiring.He's free from connection to simply his story, he's a powerful character with a rich history of loss and responsibility and so many other compelling elements that acheto be explored further. Whetherit be more one-offs or as an actual part of the Marvel Universe, there's a strong place and infinite potential for more Miracleman stories. I just hope they're a little bit more active and engaged than these.

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4.0
Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #1

Jul 10, 2015

It also doesn't help that the comics many contrivances are growing more and more pronounced. Regent still lacks any personality beyond bland conquer and worse he has no motivation for conquering Earth and no repercussions whatsoever. This goes beyond simply missing details to the point of confused continuity, despite taking place in Battleworld during Secret Wars we haven't seen any indication of that. It all just comes off as lazy and supremely in the audience's face about that laziness. Renew Your Vows doesn't care that its plot is weak and full of contrivances and holes, so long as it can make sure the audience knows Peter's marriage is the worst it's all okay. It's the author fighting with the fan base and not trusting the readers to feel "the right way" about their work. Not recommended.

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4.0
Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #2

Jul 10, 2015

It also doesn't help that the comics many contrivances are growing more and more pronounced. Regent still lacks any personality beyond bland conquer and worse he has no motivation for conquering Earth and no repercussions whatsoever. This goes beyond simply missing details to the point of confused continuity, despite taking place in Battleworld during Secret Wars we haven't seen any indication of that. It all just comes off as lazy and supremely in the audience's face about that laziness. Renew Your Vows doesn't care that its plot is weak and full of contrivances and holes, so long as it can make sure the audience knows Peter's marriage is the worst it's all okay. It's the author fighting with the fan base and not trusting the readers to feel "the right way" about their work. Not recommended.

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6.0
Apocalypse Al #1

Feb 4, 2014

I hazard to call Apocalypse Al bad, or even that mediocre, because the world being created is decently original, if, again, very vaguely defined for a fantasy story (seriously nothing is explained or elaborated on here), and the concepts are all really good. I just don't think we're seeing this in the right light. If this was the world and story of a video game, I'd probably hail it as being really good and a competent voice actress could probably inject Al with the necessary charisma and personality to make her weird dissociative quipping feel more organic and less like a symptom of head trauma, but as a comic book, Apocalypse Al keeps falling frustratingly short of being good.

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3.0
Apocalypse Al #2

Mar 4, 2014

In fact, all of the humor crammed awkwardly into Apocalypse Al falls flat, because, similarly to issue one, Al's one liners come off like she's legitimately unaware of the scope of her situations, or how one-liners should work, usually just being dropped at the end of a sentence and only tangentially related to the topic at hand. So, yeah, between the really questionable hacker guy sex antics and the bumbling, nonsensical diversion of the cyber-afterlife, I wouldn't call this an improvement; in fact, I'd dare say it's a little worse, no recommendation awarded.

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4.0
Arkham Manor #1

Oct 24, 2014

At the end of the day,Arkham Manor doesn't feel bad so much as it feels wrong. Amistake somewhere in the assembly line process that produced it. Marked under the Batman bannerbarring the connective tissue that made this an actual story. Shipped away hoping wewouldn't notice. Even with all that said I can't bring myself to hate Arkham Manor, I just don't recommend it.

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7.0
Armor Wars #3

Jul 17, 2015

Overall Armor Wars is nothing mind blowing but it remains deeply enjoyable. A lot of this boils down to better by comparison as standing on its own as alternate universe tale Armor Wars remains only serviceable. However when compared to a lot of the other tie-in comics to emerge out of Secret Wars its stands tall as one of the most enjoyable and engaging spin-offs.

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7.5
Astro City (2013) #24

Jun 18, 2015

Overall it's a fun yarn with enough talking monkeys and alien speak easies to stay impressive while the more grounded and human narrative helps the weird elements feel all the more unique.

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7.0
Avengers (2012) #35

Sep 19, 2014

The future presented to us here doesn't come off oppressively bleak as Hickman is want to do but instead feels like a solid blend of dark turns and interesting twists.

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7.0
Axe Cop: American Choppers #1

May 21, 2014

I'm not trying to say Axe Cop is a bad comic as in many ways it isn't bad at all; the artwork is very nice and it's brimming with creativity. No the better descriptor for Axe Cop is an adequate comic; it is adequate for the task it's set for itself namely being a strait one-to-one transliteration of whatever random crazy thing its child author had to say at the moment and that's a noble goal but not really a sustainable one for someone whose reading the comic and hoping to get a lot out of the experience. If you're just picking up the issue for a brief, fun, one and done experience you'll be satisfied and I imagine the insanity of the comic is probably a delight to behold while stoned but if you're sober and looking for more I'd recommend setting your sites a little higher but as I said; recommended if you're looking for some good comic book junk food.

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6.0
Axe Cop: American Choppers #2

Jun 19, 2014

It might just be that I've been spoiled now by an Axe Cop that comes with awareness of the horrible actions of its protagonist and a willingness to accept that a lot of what it's presenting is at the very least questionable but I was honestly a little disappointed by this issue of Axe Cop. Though still enjoyable the novelty of the randomness is definitely wearing off and the empty center of the series becomes all the more apparent, pick it up if you've got a younger kid or are a completion-ist for the character but otherwise I'd skip this one.

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5.0
Axe Cop: American Choppers #3

Jul 24, 2014

Everything about Axe Cop American Choppers makes Axe Cop feel like an idea gone past its sell-by date. Maybe that was always going to happen considering the whole thing Axe Cop was selling itself on was the imagination of a literal child and no one can stay a child forever. As a result Axe Cop American Choppers feels like a comic that's straining to do what once came naturally, still clinging to the format that spawned the character 5 years ago without accepting that it's author's relation to imagination and storytelling has changed. If there was a time where Axe Cop really was insane enough to excuse all the failings of basic narrative and character but that time is quickly coming to a close and unless Axe Cop can change with its creators it's just going to end up spinning its wheels and running in place till something newer and quirkier takes its place, not recommended.

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3.5
B.P.R.D.: Hell On Earth #113

Nov 24, 2013

I sincerely hope that this is the bottom of the barrel for Mignola's exploration into the dark disgusting nature of human behavior in the midst of dangerous times, but I get the troubling sense there's probably deeper yet to go. Regardless, it should be obvious I don't recommend this comic. Mike Mignola you can continue to be angry, cynical, and despondent about change and the future, but as for me I'm going to look forward to a future where I'm not reading any more comics like this one, B.P.R.D. #113 is not recommended for anyone.

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4.5
B.P.R.D.: Hell On Earth #114

Dec 18, 2013

The artwork is decent, if overly stylized, with the artist falling back on very cartoony, near-emoticon facial designs, and there are enough gradient and speed line backgrounds to be overused. This review was a mistake; I honestly hope to find something new to say about Mignola's work, but I really don't know what I can add that I haven't thoroughly expounded upon previously. The story is dank and joyless, with no deeper meaning to justify its own unpleasantness, the characters are generally ciphers who worship inaction more than Spawn (you know it's true), and the whole enterprise just feels empty, even after all the work I'll have put in reading the book, re-reading it, and writing and formatting this review, I feel zero personal connection to this comic beyond just a dull throbbing pain where my sensation of fun and enjoyment for this series used to be. Not recommended.

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7.0
B.P.R.D.: Hell On Earth #120

Jun 20, 2014

On the whole I would definitely recommend this issue of B.P.R.D. It's a breath of fresh air change from the doomsday tedium the series had descended into and really reminds you of the potential this concept has to it. The artwork is amazing and creates a truly foreboding atmosphere of dread and horror to the story. It's also surprisingly new reader friendly as no one ends up so wedded to past character continuity that they can't be enjoyed as just individuals, there's nothing about them that would come off as alienating or difficult to understand except some stuff with Fenix that shakes out to be pretty inconsequential, here's hoping the next part is just as good.

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8.0
Baltimore: Chapel Of Bones #1

Dec 31, 2013

All of this adds up to a very enjoyable read, with an enrapturing atmosphere and enjoyable characters, all helped by a seriously great pace that keeps Baltimore: Chapel of Bones moving and leaves you wanting more by the time it's over; recommended.

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9.0
Baltimore: Chapel Of Bones #2

Feb 3, 2014

From the way Baltimore: Chapel of Bones ends, it's obvious this isn't meant to be the final Lord Baltimore story, but more the end of a cycle of stories in which he hunts for Haigus and, as a capstone to that era for the character, Baltimore: Chapel of Bones is excellent. The 2-parter as a whole is very good with great callbacks and extraordinary atmosphere, while doing a lot to advance the character and ground us in what's to come next. The action is awesome and glorious to behold, the reveals are shocking and intriguing, the set-up makes you desperate to see more, and the artwork is deeply chilling and perfectly complementary to the tale; definitely recommended.

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7.5
Batman '66 #47

Nov 16, 2014

The balance between corporate product and original art strikes as the most impressive bit about Batman '66.The story, format, and visual gimmick suggests a corporate mandate to help foster a new generation of Bat fans through family-friendly stories expanded across the new media frontier. And yetthe comic remains a blast for Bat fans of all ages with a legitmately interesting comic application, lesseningthe gimmick descriptor. Recommended.

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4.5
Batman '66: The Lost Episode #1

Nov 20, 2014

This comic is drawn with that critique very much in mind as Batman does crack a smile once in the entire issue.Batmangoes through the entire comic book scowling and frowning and gritting his teeth to show how grim and angry he is. Every frame of the comic informsthat the authors starepoint blank at us and say "we didn't want to make an Adam West comic."Instead of feeling fun and engaging, the story comes off empty and laborious, a real chore to read. Not recommended.

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5.0
Batman (2011) #37

Dec 18, 2014

Getting away from the broadstrokes, this issue is easily the weakest in the Endgame arc so far. Where previous issues at least interesting fandering (fan pandering) having Batman fight a Jokerized version of the JLA so as to allay everyone's self conscious fear about whether or not money can defeat natural ability this issue is just very generic zombie pabulum but painted up in Batman colors, which is, again, something I've seen before and better: not recommended.

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7.5
Batman (2011) #39

Feb 27, 2015

All of this helps ‘Endgame' really transcend its weaker aspects. It becomes something far more interesting and strangely touching in its own bizarre way. More than just being a Batman story, it serves of a reflection of how we relate to Batman, his characters, and his world as fans. Snyder's narratives have always been personally driven, but this is the first one that seems to draw on his relationship to the Batman character and how it changed and evolved over the years and how really that relationship is everyone's relationship in a broad way. We've all been that dumb 13-year old bragging about how Batman could beat the entire JLA with enough time to plan or the adult yearning for dark mature content in every corner. All just as much as we've been the little kid having the greatest Batman adventure ever with just a bucket of toys and imagination.

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8.0
Batman (2011) #41

Jun 15, 2015

Batman#41 is the first Batman story I've read since Morrison left the comic that felt free from the mounting array of tired clichs and excessively gritty storytelling that's become endemic to the character's mythos. I especially like that in their efforts to redefine Batman while maintaining a sense of continuity with the character's previous definition they've refocused his mission in a great way. What made Batman so insufferable these last four years or so is that he's been defined solely as a character who exists to punish the wicked. This new Batman fights to protect the innocent. That's a bold new direction for the character and an engaging and well-written one at that. Recommended.

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4.0
Batman Beyond (2015) #4

Sep 5, 2015

Putting aside the generic iconography and the fact that the entire set-up is ripped straight from Power Rangers RPM, the world of Batman Beyond just isn't very engaging or fun to be in. Tim Drake has been stripped of all defining personality and is basically just a warm body to fill the bat suit. The world is drably designed and never rises above being a Bladerunner pastiche. What's more the element of youth and optimism that made Batman Beyond so engaging is stripped out, it's no longer a story about legacy and revival now it's just a nasty little end of the world tale about how Batman couldn't save anyone but his own city. The story doesn't simply fail to be Batman Beyond; it's the opposite of everything that made Batman Beyond enjoyable.

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3.5
Batman: Eternal #26

Oct 2, 2014

The thing that strikes me the most about Batman Eternal is that it's the best argument for why the Arkham video games should stay video games. Those games have basically all these same problems: weird masterminds that don't make sense, horrible villain redesigns, story points that are essentially less meaningful retreads of Batman's greatest hits, but that's okay because it's a video game. A game can work on other levels beyond narrative and character design, levels like emergence and agency, two qualities the Arkham games have in spades, partially because of how much of a pastiche their Batman aesthetic is. Comics don't have those qualities, they rise or fall on narrative, depth of ambition, innovation, and character, and Batman Eternal sucks at all of those elements. There's no reason anyone should be reading Batman Eternal instead of the myriad of other, better stories it borrows from: not recommended.

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7.5
Batman: The Jiro Kuwata Batmanga #31

Feb 1, 2015

Bat-Mangaprobably won't change anyone's life or anything, but it is a lot of fun. That's something that's honestly in very short supply these days, notably at DC Comics. How much mileage you'll get out of the comic will depend on how much you can let go of the popular myth of Batman as the grim urban avenger. Just roll along with the madness of the campy crusader. If you can tune your brain to that wavelength, Bat-Mangabrings plenty to like here. The lens of Japanese recreation is a unique and interesting one that only enhances things.

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5.5
Battlestar Galactica (2013) #5

Nov 18, 2013

As is probably clear by now I'm seriously of two mind about this comic, on the one hand it's full of a lot of great ideas and cool concepts and it's really fun to get to see my Battlestar Galactica again. On the other hand those ideas aren't being executed very well and in this case presentation trumps concept. I guess what I'm saying is that I'm very much in favor of a Battlestar Galactica comic and of a dark dimension type story like this one, just not this particular story. This issue ends ambiguously as to whether or not this will be the series conclusion or just the end of the arc and I hope it's the latter, Battlestar Galactica has the seeds to be a great story it just needs time to germinate and proper cultivation, as it stands it's still just too mediocre to recommend.

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7.5
Battlestar Galactica (2013) #6

Dec 2, 2013

This is the Battlestar Galactica comic I've been waiting to see for a long time, it's a simple story that does a good job highlighting the extremes of the situation and how those extremes have slowly become the norm for the men and women who have to face them everyday. It also really manages to capture the kind of problems the Galactica would face in its endeavor as well as feeling dynamic and really engaging. There are a few complaints I could level against it, but in essence they all boil down to just wanting more of this story and I certainly hope we see more stories like this one in future, highly recommended.

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5.0
Battlestar Galactica: Starbuck #1

Nov 19, 2013

More then really being bad Battlestar Galactica: Starbuck was just pointless. Nothing about it really spoke to a story that had to be told or an author that felt any kind of creative spark or inspiration from the material he was working with as evidence by the very dry and stock nature of the story. Very quickly I'll say the artwork is decent with a few nice scenes of spaceship battles and such but the artist has noticeable trouble with human faces as they can sometimes look weird and off putting with just enough slight distortion to be deeply unsettling. I really have to wonder if the series needed to start with this story as the preview for next month's issue totes that it will be jumping ten years into Starbuck's future so I wonder how much of an impact this story could really have on what's coming next. More then anything this adds to the air of being an issue 0 more then an issue 1 and it's an issue 0 I don't recommend.

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7.0
Battlestar Galactica: The Death Of Apollo #1

Dec 8, 2014

OnceApollo and company make it to the lost vessel, things start to kick off whereBattlestar Galactica: Death of Apollo really finds its solid footing. Abnett does a good job weaving together pre-existing iconography and mythology of the Battlestar Galactica universe to create his narrative. You get the sense he really got deep into what makes the series tick and pluck the best bitsabout the classic Battlestar Galactica show. With all being said, the safe, limited feel becomes a niggling problem with Death of Apollo. Compared to Dynamite's other new release this week, Shaft, Death of Apollo is a better-constructed comic, but far less innovative or imaginative in what it wants to do with its characters and its universe. It's still quite good and I'm thoroughly interested in where Abnett will go next with his story, I just hope that he takes it in a more bold and daring direction.

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9.5
Book Of Death: The Fall Of Bloodshot #1

Jul 25, 2015

What's the most engaging about The Fall of Bloodshot though is its dedication to a mood and atmosphere beyond just action and thrills. When I say we see Bloodshot's life I do mean all of it, including times he left fighting behind and had a family and even up to the end of existence in a very well written and emotional sequence. It's an incredible journey just through one man's life without any real judgments on it, it's not saying his life was bad or good or anything in between just that here it is and here's where it ends. It's an incredible experience that leaves you emotionally satisfied at the conclusion in a way we rarely see from comics nowadays, The Fall of Bloodshot is a true masterwork.

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4.0
Brain Boy #0

Dec 10, 2013

I was originally going to give this issue a pass as a not terribly good, but not terribly bad issue 0, with more promise for the series to come than actual quality but the more I think about the more I don't like this issue. It just feels so unimaginative and by-the-numbers; the espionage label comes off very restrictive here, and you can tell it's being used as a way to fill in plot details that the writers just weren't that concerned with. This wouldn't bother me that much if the writers were interested in doing something imaginative and creative with this set-up, but the only thing that seems to really capture their imagination is the cruel and twisted way Brain Boy's power can be used. Additionally, the artwork is weird and constantly scrunched to fit panel size without giving us the proper scope for the action sequences, so no I would not say I recommend this issue.

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7.0
Brain Boy: The Men from G.E.S.T.A.L.T. #2

Jun 20, 2014

The artwork is still seriously over-stylized but there are some good designs to be found and well choreographed action scenes and there was enough to keep me entertained pretty much every time I re-read this issue in the course of writing this review, which is a rarity. I reserve the right to take back this recommendation later depending on where the series goes but as of right now consider Brain Boy #2 recommended.

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7.5
Brain Boy: The Men from G.E.S.T.A.L.T. #3

Jul 17, 2014

I already recommended Brain Boy The Men from G.E.S.T.A.L.T. in this review but I'm doing it again because it's just that good; it's fun, it's imaginative, it's got some very good artwork, and it's overall just a really great read, highly recommended.

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8.0
Burning Fields #1

Jan 23, 2015

With Burning Fields, that element remains;this time grounded overseas in the remnants of the Iraq War and occupation. In that respect,Burning Fields very much attemptsto make a statement. It presents us a world where the only law is that of a gun, the real authorities are held hostage by unaccountable mercenaries, those agencies who are meant to construct infrastructure only drain the land for its resources. And the only real hope for justice anyone has comes from those broken and unattached enough to think they can get it, a chilling vision in this opening chapter.

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7.5
Burning Fields #8

Sep 29, 2015

Burning Fields won't change your life and it won't blow your mind but what it will do is thoroughly entertain and engage. There really aren't a lot of stories to enjoy in the subgenre of horror action and even fewer in the realm of quasi-Lovecraftian contemporary horror so Burning Fields already has a very unique wrinkle to it. It's still a little disappointing that it's basically just a fun, pulpy horror story about investigators fighting extra-dimensional demons in Iraq but the comic we have is the comic we have and it's a pretty fun comic, recommended.

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6.0
C.O.W.L. #1

May 28, 2014

I said once that the main criteria for a good first issue for me is if there's a good central premise but C.O.W.L. has forced me to amend that: a good premise only goes as far as what the authors are willing to do with it. In the case of C.O.W.L. the premise has a lot of potential but I'd recommended waiting for a later issue to see if the series is really going to live up to it. Not currently recommended.

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7.0
C.O.W.L. #2

Jun 24, 2014

On the whole I'd actually recommend C.O.W.L. despite all my bashing, there's enough in it focusing on the good stuff to be really engaging and the conspiracy bollocks is at least serviceable background noise to the more interesting super-cops stuff.

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8.0
C.O.W.L. #3

Jul 31, 2014

Also we get a chance to see the only still living bad guy in Chicago; Camden Stone, who runs some kind of organized crime. Despite being normal it's established that Stone uses super powered muscle while hiding behind the fact that sense his goons don't wear costumes he's out of C.O.W.L.'s jurisdiction. These are the kind of little additional tidbits and complications that make C.O.W.L.'s universe feel all the more fleshed out and real while still feeling grounded through its excellent and interesting characters; this one comes highly recommended.

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3.0
Captain America: White #1

Sep 19, 2015

It's an empty and pointless comic that in no way justifies its own existence and has the gall to make the entirety of its proceedings a deliberate allusion to an infinitely superior work, don't waste your time with this one.

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6.5
Captain Midnight #8

Feb 27, 2014

Fury Shark herself is a walking annoyance in the series, constantly moustache twirling hilariously, and is far too overpowered to work as a credible threat. When she comes up, she feels less threatening and more annoying, as you know any solution the heroes have, she'll just whip out some new random gadget to invalidate the idea or claim it was all part of her plan. On the whole, this isn't the worst Captain Midnight I've seen, but it's definitely not the best. It's nice that we aren't bogged down with the Captain complaining about the modern world, but that's just because he's not in it, and what is in it only manages to eek out a recommendation from me by the skin of its teeth.

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8.5
Captain Midnight #12

Jun 26, 2014

Personally I think this is kind of a misstep for a villain concept as Captain Midnight has already fought Nazis plenty of times before, his first villain was a Nazi after all with the comically named Fury Shark (real name, no joke) so this is retreading old territory. There's still room to use the Nazi concept for interesting turns as Fury Shark's very over the top and bombastic style felt more in line with a serial villain or classic super villain type. I'd be interested to see a Nazi villain here who felt more creepy and grounded but we'll see what happens. As for right now this was a great new installment for Captain Midnight, very new reader friendly, big on character development and introspection, with a lot of aspects that justify the character as more than just a cheap copy; highly recommended.

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3.5
Catalyst Comix #5

Nov 5, 2013

I legitimately didn't realize how much I hated Catalyst Comixtill writing this review. This is a 90′s throwback book in all the worst ways I can imagine; the terrible artwork with no idea of proportions and completely jumbled colors, the nonsensical fight scenes, the angry indignation at heroes for not taking a more "pro-active" stance, misspelling words to sound cool like "comix", nonsense villain plots that go nowhere. It's like someone managed to distill out all the worst elements of Youngblood and made it into a comic that reminds us of all that was wrong with that decade of comics in a horrible haze of anti-nostalgia. Catalyst Comix should've been left in a previous decade because it's not worth your time or anyone else's, don't buy it.

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5.5
Catalyst Comix #6

Dec 3, 2013

This review is already running long so I'll try and sum this up very quickly; Catalyst Comix #6 still isn't a good comic but it is better then the past 3 issues I've reviewed meaning Catalyst Comix has finally clawed its way up to being mediocre instead of bad. The artwork is passable if suffering from poor coloring, the stories are okay for the most part, and there's overall less to hate then previous installments. I still don't recommend it but if you did feel inclined to read it I guess it won't hurt anyone.

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7.0
Catalyst Comix #8

Feb 5, 2014

Overall, though, I'd actually recommend Catalyst Comix #8 even if you're a new reader, the bulk of the comic is very enjoyable and interesting and self-explanatory enough to allow someone to jump into it without having read the previous 8 issues (that last bit goes for the other 2 stories, on the off chance you think they sounded awesome and are going to go read this comic), and the other two stories neatly slip past being bad to just bland and lame. So, yeah, consider Catalyst Comix #8 surprisingly recommended.

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6.0
Catalyst Comix #9

Mar 6, 2014

So, yeah, total: 1 for 3, I can't honestly say I would recommend paying full price for Catalyst Comix with those particular stats, but if you're already reading the series, or maybe you really like some of the stuff I've been describing here (you know the dictatorship = awesome stuff, real Frank Miller stuff), I guess you could pick it up. Here's hoping that, if we run into these characters again, we can skip the lackluster first 7 issues and get right to the cool concepts and ideas.

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7.0
Chaos #1

May 6, 2014

On the whole though I'd actually recommend Chaos if you're a junky for horror action titles or are a fan of these characters.

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6.0
Charmed: Season 10 #1

Oct 6, 2014

As it stands Charmed #1 is a mixed bag, I like the idea of using lower level demons the girls wouldn't care about as antagonists and actually addressing one of the series core flaws is a bold move but there's still a lot of broken stuff here. Our filler villain is kind of lame and the artwork is so lackluster I couldn't tell who each character was supposed to be. I will say that the girls actually being active this issue is a massive step in the right direction and seeing Cole and Prue back in the series is a welcome return but for right now there really just wasn't enough good for me to truly recommend this one, maybe with issue 2.

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6.0
Chastity #1

Jul 8, 2014

I suppose I haven't really reached much of a conclusion to this review so I'll try and sum up. At the end of the day I found Chastity #1 more fascinating than anything else, I don't actively dislike it or even find it that unpalatable just kind of weird and vaguely interesting. Sad to say probably the most intriguing thing about it was the in story vampire adventure romance series Blood Rose which sounds (and looks) way more interesting and original. Maybe it's that Chastity is just an idea long past its sell buy date as we've had so much with vampires in the 83 years sense Lugosi put on the cape (92 sense Nosferatu) that all the angles have been explored, or at the very least all the vampire slayer angles. If there is still a vampiric new frontier it really isn't here and unless you're really curious or a big fan of Chastity the character I'd give this comic a miss.

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6.5
Civil War (2015) #2

Aug 7, 2015

Civil War still hasn't managed to claw its way up to being legitimately good as the drab aesthetic keep the comic from visually realizing its proposed big scale superhero war of nations but there's enough here to be worth your time if what I've said so far has intrigued you. Not one of Battleworld's best but still far from its worst.

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4.5
Clown Fatale #1

Nov 10, 2013

I don't think I'm going to break anyone's heart if I say that Clown Fatale isn't a very good comic. The characters and story are just a floundering repackaging of old clichs all of which is weighed down by a one-note idea that wasn't all that imaginative or interesting to begin with. I get the impression the authors plan to bring in other elements of the circus in future and maybe then the comic would be worth your time as a sort of mash-up of circus roles and crime sploitation tropes, but as it stands Crime Fatale is just too boring to be worth picking up.

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8.0
Clown Fatale #2

Dec 11, 2013

If you had told me a week ago I'd be praising Clown Fatale #2 for its deeper character exploration, enjoyable action, and embodying ideals of third-wave feminism, I'd have called you crazy, but here we are. The issue helps flesh out the characters and affords them real personality, albeit ones that could've used a little more development. It also has enjoyable action and some pretty solid artwork, though occasionally characters will have to be scrunched into panels. I have never before seen a comic take such a positive increase in its second issue ,and it's quite possible we won't see this kind of thing again for a long while, so, yeah, consider Clown Fatale #2" highly recommended.

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7.5
Colder: Toss The Bones #1

Oct 2, 2015

It's possible the next issue will break from this kind of steady and deliberate pacing for a more action oriented approach but I actually really hope it doesn't. If we're going to continue seeing Colder stories it'll be good for the books to branch beyond the standard action adventure approach and embrace the vast range of stories that can be told with such a unique and innovative central mythos and Colder: Toss The Bones is a great first step on that path.

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5.0
Conan And The People of The Black Circle #3

Dec 12, 2013

I will admit that Conan and the People of the Black Circle issue 3 isn't as bad as the previous two issues, it's not nearly as lazy as issue 1 or as clogged as issue 2 but that doesn't make it good either, what it is more than anything is mediocre. The artwork is the worst part about with tons of lazy backgrounds, awkward posing, and flesh colored eyes (oh and the covers a complete lie because of course it is) but the story itself isn't that bad it's just so unimpressive. You read it and almost immediately forget what you just read, it washes over you in a wave of snow, muscles, and made up words but it makes no real impact. After reading Conan and the People of the Black Circle I wasn't angry or tired or annoyed, I just shrugged my shoulders and moved on to the next part of my life, no better and no worse than I was before. I guess if you wanted to read that there's no harm in it, I just don't see why you'd want to, I know I certainly don't.

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2.0
Conan And The People of The Black Circle #4

Jan 29, 2014

The artwork alone would be enough to doom Conan and the People of the Black Circle for me, but when you compound that with a boring, dense and convoluted setting, an incredibly (almost comically) weak villain, and the overall sexist treatment of the princess, coming to a head here with Conan's whole 'your old life is done, you will be my bride now,' thing really soured me to Conan and the People of the Black Circle. I don't recommend Conan and the People of the Black Circle to anyone, not even my enemies.

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7.0
Conan the Barbarian #22

Nov 15, 2013

I won't deny that these flubs in the artwork do bug me but in the end Conan: The Barbarian #22's positives far outweigh the negatives. I've been desperate for a Conan comic from Dark Horse that I could legitimately like and get behind and Conan #22 is that comic. It catapults a very simple story to great levels through well-written dialogue, imaginative twists on old ideas, and a threateningly creepy atmosphere that is near palpable on every page. It manages to inject fresh energy and life into a character I legitimately thought didn't have anything left to be done with. But most of all, it restored my faith in the idea that you can actually make quality Conan comics and comes highly recommended.

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5.0
Conan the Barbarian #23

Dec 16, 2013

Overall, it just doesn't feel like this issue of Conan The Barbarian justified its own existence. So much of the comic feels like padding, or various scenes the Wood felt had to happen but couldn't fit in anywhere else. The creepy atmosphere is gone, and replaced with a very stumbling and uncertain pace not helped by stating the nature of the abandoned series and monsters right at the start of the issue, as well as the artwork seriously undercutting any sense of gore or threat that could've been wrung out of the horror concepts on display. Maybe, if these ideas were being used for a more gorey, rock'em-sock'em fun style story, they would've worked, but in the slow build horror approach here, Conan The Barbarian 23 just doesn't have the artistic talent to make its concepts work; not recommended.

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5.0
Conan the Barbarian #24

Jan 23, 2014

The idea of a more moody or horror-oriented Conan story may not be new, but it at least would've stood out among all of Dark Horse's lackluster adaptations. Instead, Conan The Barbarian has just turned into a boring, uninspired fight fest, like far too many other Conan offerings, and without even the decency to be stupendously bad"only a mediocre waste of time and potential.

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4.0
Conan the Barbarian #25

Feb 20, 2014

You really get the sense Conan The Barbarian #25 was only attached to the story to pad our Song of Belit for some future trade paperback edition. As I mentioned, this is the conclusion of the story, and most likely marks the end of my reviewing Conan comics for awhile (thank god). I might one day return to the character down the line, if there's a really great issue or something so awful I have something new to say about it, but from where I'm sitting now, I think I've managed to exhaust all the possible ways I have to call a Conan comic bad. I've seen boring, badly written, stupid, mistake filled, insultingly simplistic, needlessly convoluted, terribly executed, bad twists, well intentioned mistakes, and even an actually good comic, so maybe it's time to give Conan a rest for a while; as for Conan The Barbarian #25, this is probably implied by now, but I don't recommend it.

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6.5
Conan: The Avenger #1

Apr 21, 2014

On the whole Conan The Avenger is not a great comic, it's not even a very good comic. No this is more of an okay comic, there's some promise here and there, the artwork is serviceable (though I don't much like this slimmer leaner Conan design), and it thankfully fills new readers in on anything they need to know but I can't help but feeling it could've been better. But it is what it is, just a shame what it is isn't that great, if you want to check it out there's nothing awful but I wouldn't if I were you.

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7.0
Conan: The Avenger #2

May 29, 2014

Overall I liked Conan The Avenger #2, it doesn't have the same atmosphere of issue 1 but it makes up for that by taking Conan back to his roots as an adventurer and someone who can actually enjoy himself without having to be constantly sad. I hope that writer Fred Van Lente decides to keep the pacing up and doesn't pull the drag shoot as I've seen in previous stories but only time will tell, for now consider this one recommended.

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7.5
Conan: The Avenger #3

Jun 27, 2014

With all that in mind I'd say I'd highly recommend Conan The Avenger #3, yeah it's nothing amazing within the annals of Conan comics but it's still a very enjoyable and engaging read.

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6.5
Convergence #0

Apr 4, 2015

This isn't the story that blows your mind or redefines art; it's the story you enjoy while it happens. It wants you to reminisce about better days and simpler times; hence why so much of the appeal bases on catching classic continuity references. After all, it is fully possible the long-lasting effect ofConvergencewill be DC hermetically sealing itself in a warm bath monument to their own glory days. It makes senseConvergencewould start by looking back not with regret or contemplation but fondness and contentment.

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8.0
Daredevil (2014) #8

Sep 19, 2014

As the cover probably implies the kids don't really like their fuchsia father no matter how many Mr. Rogers sweaters he wares and end up going full Children of the Damned, it's really good stuff and a great take on the idea.

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7.0
Dark Horse Presents #30

Nov 25, 2013

Overall though, these are very minor complaints and are easily overlooked. The good stories are all highly imaginative with cool concepts that are well worth exploration and are wrapped up in solid writing and absolutely beautiful artwork. Some of which were the best I've seen while reviewing comics. Additionally, the number of good stories in the issue far outweighs the mediocre ones so I can easily assure you that this issue is undoubtedly worth the cover price this time around. Dark Horse Presents number 30 is a great jumping on point for new readers who are interested in the series and if you're already a long time reader I can promise this issue won't be leaving you disappointed, highly recommended.

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6.0
Dark Horse Presents #31

Dec 18, 2013

It's not as lackluster as Dark Horse Presents #28, but not as great as Dark Horse Presents #30. It's more just slightly pretty good, with 'pretty' very much acting as a pejorative as opposed to a point of enthusiasm. I'd pick it up if you're desperate for some classic Hellboy, or if you're already buying this book, but I don't recommend it as a jumping on point for new readers.

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8.0
Deadpool Bi-Annual #1

Sep 19, 2014

If you're interested I wrote, produced, and performed a post-apocalyptic action adventure podcast called KQKW Calling that you can listen to here.

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7.0
Death Vigil #1

Jul 7, 2014

With all that in mind I actually do kind of recommend Death Vigil, yes it's not perfect, yes the characters are kind of cardboard cut outs at the moment, and yes the monsters need a better colorist but despite all that I still found this a very enjoyable read. I think part of that is the weirdly friendly and comforting nature of the comic's clichs, they feel very familiar sort of like eating big handfuls of goldfish (wish I was getting paid for plugs like that.) It's just a very easy comic to get into without needing to be massively invested in, a fun distraction that's entertaining and light with some very cool world building and well written dialogue; recommended.

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7.0
Deathlok #6

Mar 27, 2015

The strangest thing aboutDeathlokis that everything I like about it seems like a negative. It's a very small story, a little comic in the vast cosmic arena that is Marvel's universe, and within that pantheon, it boasts of just being pretty above average. Those are all the reasons I love it; it's just an enjoyable little comic that is exactly what it intends. There are no overinflated stakes or grandiose, world-shaking events, just a simple and enjoyable story told well with an even pace. It's almost like an airport novel in that way, comic book junk food. Like junk food, you enjoy it while it happens and walk away satisfied even if the sensation is fleeting.

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7.0
Deathlok #9

Jun 20, 2015

As I've said previously, the joy of Deathlok is a simple but filling one. The main thing I like about the comic is that it's content to just be a fun little read about Cyborgs and evil PMCs, real pop culture junk food stuff. It doesn't concern itself with the broader Marvel universe or the end of the world; it just wants to tell its story and be fun, and it does that masterfully.

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7.0
Doctor Strange (2015) #1

Oct 13, 2015

Dr. Strange is by no means the best comic I've read this week or even a great Marvel comic but it's solid and given the fluidity of Marvel's content lately solid is a pretty good win. There's still time for things to go horribly downhill and it's hard to get past how much the comic exists as essentially a marketing tool for the Dr. Strange movie in 2016 but if you can overcome that this is an enjoyable read.

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7.0
Dream Police #1

Apr 28, 2014

A series like this feels to me like it'd be more interesting to explore in a case of the week type engine rather than going full conspiracy route, especially strait out of the gates but I guess we'll see where issue 2 leaves us, until then Dream Police receives a tentative recommendation as being good enough for now.

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4.0
Dream Police #2

Jun 2, 2014

On the flip side the narrative construction is more than a little flawed in Dream Police. There are long chunks of the comic where the story halts all forward moment for simple exposition about the Dreamscape or Thursday will indulge in the series B-plot about the horrible secret behind the Dream Police because every crazy cop comic has to have a conspiracy subplot. At the same time the Dream Police themselves come off thoroughly incapable, in two issues now somebody else has dealt with the major threat of the issue while the Dream Police just run around TALKING tough without ever ACTING tough. It robs our heroes of any real agency or even downright competence when their only successful tactic is calling in their more powerful friends to solve the problem for them.

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7.0
East of West #10

Mar 11, 2014

I understand that the setting here is meant as an allegory for Hickman's bizarre obsession with the destructive nature of humanity, and a borderline nihilistic view on the inevitability of destruction (which we've seen repeated ad nausea in New Avengers), but it feels like somewhere along the way he's become more interested in the setting than the plot. I just wish he'd give in and make that the focus. I don't recommendEast of West #10 as a jumping-on point for new readers, but if you're working your way through the series, this is a better chapter of time marking before the next cool look at one of the states, so I certainly recommend it in that respect.

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6.5
East of West #11

Apr 7, 2014

I wrote a speculative fiction story about Smart Rifles and Video Games and it got published here.

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6.0
East of West #13

Jul 1, 2014

Worst of all it made me realize how incredibly limited Death's character really is, he has exactly 1 note he hits in every scene and that's angst on a level Spawn would be jealous of, he never modulates or changes, there's nothing TO Death beyond the anger. Compare that to the protagonists of better revenge stories like Kill Bill or Django Unchained or even Eric Draven from The Crow and it starts to come home how limited and shallow the actual story of East of West to the point where I really started to wonder if the rest of the series had actually been that good or if I had just been suckered in by clever world building, not recommended.

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7.5
East of West #14

Jul 31, 2014

This issue of East of West was a delightful surprise, it's like the series has finally kicked back into gear again and there's an actual conclusion in sight, or at the very least a more unified plot. It's the first issue in a long time that felt like what was happening had actual weight and tension and stakes and with that present the series best aspects are finally allowed to shine through: recommended.

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7.5
Edge of Spider-Verse #2

Sep 19, 2014

This is an excellent take on the concept and really sets itself apart from Spider-girl from the MC2 universe. Gwen is injected with real personality (certainly more than in the silver age comics) but it feels in no way stock or like a girl version of Peter, here the idea is that she's trapped between wanting to do music in her band and her responsibility as Spider-Woman.

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7.0
Epic #1

Mar 25, 2014

The issue's biggest problem plot wise is feeling a little bit compressed on the whole. There are a few things they don't get around to explaining and are just dropped on us with no explanation like "the alpha strand" which really demands some explaining while other questions such as what happened to our protagonist's consciousness now that he has become E.P.I.C. are best left for future installments to explore. I've said before that concept trumps execution when it comes to first issues and in that respect I'd say E.P.I.C. is a surprising triumph that manages to walk the tightrope of taking some strong inspiration from other sources while remaining uniquely its own and not just a watered down version of what it draws inspiration from, recommended.

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8.5
Fantastic Four (2014) Annual #1

Oct 4, 2014

It ties into some ongoing story about Sue's mind slipping into her Malice persona again or something like that but really the details are unimportant what makes this work is the raw emotion of it all. The gut punch of Sue's unleashed fury on a level I haven't seen outside Dark Phoenix, how much of a pounding Doom takes to seriously insane levels, and what finally convinces Sue to cease her bloodlust, it's all just such an immensely thrilling and satisfying ride along the spectrum of emotions, a tale of honor, madness, obsession, tragedy that is so incredibly worth your time, I highly recommend it.

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4.5
Flash Gordon #1

Apr 8, 2014

Everything about Flash Gordon speaks of a comic made due to contract not because the creators had an idea they were really into and really wanted to share. It's all just so uninspired and basic, the few scant interesting ideas at the opening quickly giving way to the generic center like a light sprinkling of interesting and creative leaves over the tiger pit of mediocrity and clich, made all the worse by the clear talent of the people working on the comic. Not recommended.

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7.5
Flash Gordon #2

May 20, 2014

All of this isn't quite perfect of course, the extreme darkness of what we're seeing feels a little jarring and out of place in the broader narrative, Flash's character comes off like a spastic competitive jock with little to no control of his own actions, Arden is the stick in the mud with no persona, and there's overall quite a bit of padding that's just "Flash and pals screw around in the Arborian capitol." Despite all that I still have to recommend this comic with just how incredibly risky and impressive a maneuver that ending twist is, it's the kind of harsh, realistic, dark cruelty that feels almost refreshing if it weren't so deeply horrifying. Here's hoping Flash Gordon can keep defying my expectations with issue 3.

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7.0
Flash Gordon #3

Jun 27, 2014

Actually a lot of elements of Flash Gordon remind me of Deep Space Nine, specifically the idea of taking a classic pulp scifi property and trying to view it through a more modernistic and updated critical lens. I just wish Flash Gordon would stick to actually doing that, as the portions of the comic more devoted to swashbuckling adventure always feel flat and very much clash with the darker more grounded tone of the rest of the comic. Still this is the book we have and for what we have it's not terrible just not as good as it could or should be, I'd pick it up if you're already following the comic but as for jumping on maybe wait a little bit longer to see if issue 2 was just a fluke.

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8.0
Flash Gordon #4

Aug 7, 2014

Bottom line time here Flash Gordon has built itself up into an excellent comic series that applies a very original, adult, and uncompromising vision to the classic character in a way that makes this feel like a legitimate revitalization and not just a quick update for modern times, this could've easily ended up a cheap cash-in comic and the fact that Flash Gordon is not only good but as great as it is, is the kind of delightful surprise we just don't see often enough; recommended.

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7.5
Frankenstein Underground #1

Mar 23, 2015

Story stands as the most interesting aspect of the comic in how well Mignola preserves the themes of the originalFrankensteinnovel. The climax of the comic plays heavily on the enlightenment ideas and philosophies that informed the original book, doubly so concerning man and his relationship to God. It's good stuff. I'm not sureFrankenstein Undergroundwill blow anyone's mind, though a solid first issue to read. The series shows a lot of potential and entices you to keep reading to see where things go next. Plus, Frankenstein Underground is a breezy read with a heavy emphasis on tone and visual storytelling over dense exposition and dialogue. If you're looking for an enjoyable and easy entry point into the Mignolaverse or just want some cool Frankenstein action, this is a good choice.

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6.5
Future Imperfect #2

Jul 4, 2015

The issue's major let down is at the end where it's revealed this is all a prelude to Maestro making a move on Dr. Doom, the literal God of Battleworld. It's just such a disappointing direction for the series to take, especially give how well Peter David has managed to fit Maestro into the roll of compelling anti-villain. As it stands this is a fun interim issue that sours when it finally betrays where the series is actually heading, here's hoping we get rerouted in issue 3.

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4.0
G.I. Joe (2014) #5

Feb 8, 2015

The worst part about G.I. Joe is how much potential itsquanders. I went into this series wanting to like it, actually excited to see someone do a serious and adult take on G.I. Joe akin to Larry Hama's work with the franchise. Everything about the comic had been sold as a deep and interesting take on the franchise. Right down to those amazing covers working so hard to subvert the idea these are just plastic action men smacking against each other. Now here we arefiveissues in, instead of depth and substance, it's all just so much ponderous noise without of anything to say.

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7.0
G.I. Joe: Snake Eyes - Agent of COBRA #1

Jan 23, 2015

With all that said, I did enjoy Snake Eyes: Agent of Cobra as it is a comic that features a ninja rescuing a literal metal man from a well-armed train. What I'm saying is that a lot of the plotting and concepts of the comic are very fun and imaginative, but the mixed execution leaves it falling short of what it could've been. Still, Snake Eyes: Agent of Cobra isa fun little G.I. Joe comic.

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4.5
Galaxy Quest: The Journey Continues #1

Jan 23, 2015

Making a direct sequel to Galaxy Quest was an uphill battle from the start. While I applaud this comic for not taking the Ghostbuster/Men In Black route ofrehashing the first film, that's the only praise I can give it. There's just nothing about this comic that really shows Galaxy Quest needed a sequel. It almost seems like a comic adaptation of the fictional Galaxy Quest show would've been a more rewarding project. As it stands, the mediocre writing would be bad enough to sink this comic, but the terrible artwork really makes this a deeply unpleasant experience.

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3.0
Genius #2

Aug 12, 2014

Genius is a confused and insulting series that managed to make the jump from just being lame and distasteful in issue 1 to strait up loathsome and actively contemptible in issue 2.

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7.0
George Romero's Empire of The Dead: Act Two #1

Sep 12, 2014

Empire of the Dead is not a great comic but I can't deny that I really like it. Maybe it's just that we've had so many zombie stories lately about the brutal dark nature of man (IE the most boring focus for a zombie story) that zombie fiction straying away from that focus just seems infinitely better by comparison (hence why I tend to dislike The Last of Us but praise the World War Z movie.) I realize though that I'm not the majority in this taste and there's a chance you'll see this as not nearly dark enough for you palette and even so I have to concede there are problems with repeating past themes and the very poorly implemented vampires which just feel like lazy symbolic shorthand. Overall though like I said I liked Empire of the Dead and there's a good chance you will too, I recommend it.

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8.0
Ghost (2013) #1

Dec 17, 2013

I've reviewed a lot of opening issues in my time doing this job (like Clown Fatale or The Occultist), and almost every time, the series has been almost the complete opposite of its introduction(like Clown Fatale or The Occultist); I really hope that's not the case with Ghost because this was a superb first issue. Ghost herself is interesting and well characterized in a way that draws the reader in and makes you root for her, the supporting cast are enhanced and perfected from previous appearances, the story and additional plots are all expertly constructed, and it's chock full of awesome action scenes; highly recommended.

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8.5
Ghost (2013) #2

Mar 12, 2014

Ghost is a true testament to the writer's skill at shared focus and pacing" despite being chock full of concepts and ideas, the book never once feels off center or jumbled or weighed down by those stories. The characters all feel legitimately real and complete and like they have lives, even when we aren't directly looking at them or they aren't directly involved with our heroin. I also really like that none of the female characters in this are ever forced into sexually revealing outfits and that Ghost's costume itself is one of the more conservative designs in superhero comics today. Great artwork and character design, an engaging narrative hook, down right amazing focus, balance and pacing helping to give the characters a three-dimensional, fleshed-out appeal all make this a great comic that I highly recommend.

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8.0
Ghost (2013) #4

Jun 3, 2014

And this isn't just me extrapolating from a small part of the comic either; there's a B-story revolving around Ghost going undercover as a prostitute and getting picked up by a couple of frat bros who like to tie up women with ropes and do"bad things to them shall we say. We see snippets of this throughout the comic till we reach the revenge filled conclusion as Ghost carves "coward" into their chests. You get the sense that this is meant as a serious change in stance and tone for Ghost, one more towards violent unadulterated justice, the kind you see from Judge Dredd or Lobster Johnson which I really like. I'm honestly kind of amazed I actually liked this issue but the more I think about the more this whole Stand By Me meets Girl With The Dragon Tattoo just really comes together in a great way thanks mainly to grounding in character drama and dynamics: recommended.

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8.5
Ghost (2013) #5

Jun 26, 2014

Finally the artwork on this issue is very well suited. Jan Duursema is an excellent artist and really knows how to make a panel full without it feeling cluttered. Jan also does an excellent job conveying so much of Elisa's anger, hatred, and frustration just through her facial expressions it's really great. Overall this is a great new storyline for Ghost, it ups the stakes and doubles the danger taking us into possibly new villain territory as well as building on the character development of the first 4 issues giving the entire series a true sense of direction and continuity; strongly recommended.

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7.5
Ghostbusters: Get Real #2

Jul 31, 2015

This series was fine on its own merits as just an enjoyable crossover that highlighted the teams differences and similarities while balancing comedy and adventure but issue 2 takes things one step better. Now that Ghostbusters " Get Real has opened the Multiversal door they have no intentions of closing it. This means tons of great references to other Ghostbusters incarnations including a cameo by the incredibly underrated team from Extreme Ghostbusters. If you're a Ghostbusters fan whose been avoiding picking up this series this issue really clinches it as a must read. There's genuine love here, not just for the original film, but for the entire idea of Ghostbusters and all its myriad forms. Consider this one to be highly recommended, especially for hard-core Ghostbusters fans.

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6.0
Goddess Inc. #1

Aug 5, 2014

I also like this particular execution of the Gods among us concept which has been a bit overdone well before now. So overall call me conflict on this one, there are plenty of elements I enjoyed but there are probably more negatives than positives on the whole, if you're a bit more forgiving I'd pick it up but otherwise I might wait a bit and check in with this series later on to see if it gets better.

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7.5
Godzilla in Hell #2

Aug 28, 2015

Unlike issue 1, Godzilla in Hell #2 is punctuated with a lot of narration, represented eloquently by letterer Chris Mowry in a very biblical script. The way the narration is written it's clearly meant to evoke aspects of Judeo-Christian mythology, specifically drawn from the book of Revelations and Christian myth. Godzilla is referred to as Leviathan, the beast that swallowed Jobe, the 4 realms of Hell are color coded to match the Horseman of the apocalypse, and Ghidorah is referred to as the great dragon, directly paralleling revelations. The biblical apocrypha is enjoyable and lends the story a sense of elegance and archaic grandeur but it's ultimately a little too slap dash to be truly meaningful. Still, as a simple exercise in wedding classic Kaiju monster mash action to the visual solemnity and narrative artifice of Judeo-Christian myth Godzilla In Hell is an incredibly enjoyable read.

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7.5
Godzilla in Hell #3

Oct 1, 2015

At this point the story's lack of deeper themes or ideas comes off more intentional than ever before and more acceptable, no the greater ideas at hand here are rooted in the spectacle, concept, and visuals more than the actual text of the story. I would like to see the next issues move away from the Inferno as that's a very well trod representation of the underworld, maybe explore some non-Christian concepts of Hell like drawn from Buddhism or the like but that's a minor issue. For now, Godzilla In Hell stands tall as a great experiment in artistic blending that's a must read, highly recommended.

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4.0
Gotham Academy #1

Oct 1, 2014

At the end of the day Gotham Academy feels like a comic created by committee, a Frankenstein-job of various bits and pieces of popular other works forced together into something that is definitively less than the sum of its parts. It also reminds me a little of Destiny because despite the corporate push behind it and the very nice artwork and design work that went into Gotham Academy it's essentially soulless, none of the characters really have any identity beyond the most cursory roles of new girl, mean girl, man meat, and protagonist and the whole thing ends up with a hollow center where its beating heart should be. Not recommended.

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7.0
Gotham By Midnight Annual #1

Jul 31, 2015

Gotham By Midnight Annual #1 isn't an amazing comic but it's a fun little gothic horror story that explores the more supernatural and creepy side of Gotham with a level of quality usually absent from the series. Here's hoping it carries over into the next issue and Gotham by Midnight manages to rise from its doldrums permanently instead of enjoying only a brief reprieve.

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8.5
Grayson Annual #2

Oct 2, 2015

In addition to all the excellent character stuff about finding a stable identity in the face of a constantly shifting universe this is just a great action comic. The death cult provides engaging and varied hench people for the two to fight with Blockbuster a great boss to highlight Superman's weakened state. Thrilling engaging, fun banter, and engaging characters, what's not to love, pick it up.

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4.0
GRIMM #7

Nov 27, 2013

For a comic trying to either lampoon or at the very least take some kind of cue from the popular buzz surrounding superheroes Grimm 7 has very little in the way of new ideas or insights into its chosen targets. The comic's lead hero is dropped out of proceedings relatively quickly and barely has a total of 5 pages in the issue, his replacement though possessing the potential for a greater connection to the villains is never actually afforded it beyond the most basic and perfunctory level, the villains themselves are clichd and uninspired and between the two of them barely have any personality and the lead villain of the entire piece descends into gibbering insanity dialogue for no adequately explained reason. Combine all of these story problems with some subpar artwork and you get a disappointing experience to say the least and an undoubtedly bad one at that, not recommended.

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8.0
Grimm Fairy Tales #97

May 6, 2014

Grimm Fairy Tales #97 was a really fun read but more than that it was an engaging and emotionally satisfying read. I think there's a tendency to misjudge the Zenescope books as being just an excuse to show off hot chicks in skimpy outfits and while that might be true for some of Grimm Fairy Tales (this is the first of their comics I've read as I mentioned) this definitely wasn't one of them.

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8.0
Grimm Fairy Tales Presents: Wonderland #23

May 30, 2014

Cards on the table right now I really liked this issue; it's full of awesome action sequence and awesome female characters doing awesome things and never feeling like over-sexualized puppets to just flounce around in revealing costumes without personality. It's also telling that the only male character, the Void, is not only the villain but his whole plan is to use manipulation and dehumanizing tactics to collect and enslave as many hot women as possible. Yes he's looking for specific family lines and so forth but it says a lot about the respect Zenescope is willing to pay to its female characters that they're given strong personalities and identities while fighting against their own literal objectification. Combined with the legitimate sense of grandeur formed by the internal universe and unique interpretation of a lot of Wonderland iconography and it all adds up to a really great comic, recommended.

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6.0
Grimm Fairy Tales Presents: Wonderland: Age of Darkness #1

Jun 18, 2014

If you're a completionist and need every element of a cross over there's nothing really wrong here but for anyone else I'd just skip this issue, there's just not enough to it.

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7.0
Grimm Fairy Tales Vs. Wonderland #1

Jul 29, 2014

At the same time I'm not sure how much of a "versus" Grimm Fairy Tales vs. Wonderland will end up being as once this misunderstanding gets cleared up there's really not much for our heroines to fight about. But at the same time we'll see where the creators go with that as there are plenty of dramatic twists and turns they could easily throw into Grimm Fairy Tales vs. Wonderland. As it stands this is an enjoyable first issue, the set-up, while good, weighs down the story a little bit and it could've been more out of the box but as it stands Grimm Fairy Tales vs Wonderland is a solid start for what's to come; recommended.

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7.0
Grimm Tales Of Terror #1

Jul 28, 2014

On the whole this is a very good start to what I hope becomes a very good series, there's a lot of potential to the set-up (as is true with any anthology series) and I really like that the creators didn't skimp on affording our narrator a real character and personality as it helps Grimm Tales of Terror stand out as its own entity and not just something trying to skirt by on the styles of its predecessors as the narrator is her own woman and totally different from say Rod Serling or the Crypt Keeper; recommended.

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7.5
Grimm Tales Of Terror #3

Sep 13, 2014

At the end of the day Grimm Tales of Terror #3 is a very fun comic, it won't necessarily have you turning on all your lights in fear but that's not it's aim, it's more like Evil Dead 2: Dead By Dawn walking that thin line between a horrific revelation and a comedic pie in the face and totally succeeding, I recommend it.

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8.0
Grimm Tales Of Terror #4

Oct 3, 2014

All of it helps lend Grimm Tales of Terror a decidedly modern sensibility that makes this feel like a real exploration of what can be done with the genre instead of just a throwback to its heyday in the 50s, in fact more than anything it reminded me of the 80s animated anthology Heavy Metal as the gore soaked climax to the story had that kind of gonzo, hard rock, action feeling to it which I liked. Overall Grimm Tales of Terror #4 is a great little nasty apocalypse tale that felt like it was doing something new and dynamic with the anthology genre and I highly recommend it.

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8.5
Grimm Tales Of Terror #5

Dec 3, 2014

In many ways, Death's target this week doubles asa sly parallel to her own personality. Both mask who they really are and what they're truly capable of, so it makes sense Death broke out the supernatural punishment for this person. Of the series, this is the firstperson who thought they could play in Death's world and eventually found out they just didn't like what they found there. Between the excellently-written main horror story and Death's continued development, this is by far the best issue of Grimm Tales of Terror yet. Given how great the series has been so far, it's more than likely they'll be topping issue #5 next month.

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7.5
Grimm Tales Of Terror #6

Jan 7, 2015

Grimm Tales of Terrorconstantly reinventing itself, pushing its own boundaries and expanding what it can accomplish. So even though this issue's main story isn't as strong as previous installments, I still highly recommend this issue. It maintains that spooky adventure atmosphere that permeates the entire series while pressing ahead boldly for new territory and ideas. I can't wait to see what they do next month.

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7.5
Grimm Tales Of Terror #12

Jul 2, 2015

Grimm Tales of Terror isn't going to set the world on fire, but it remains thoroughly enjoyable and fits well into the growing category of comics I enjoy simply for being solid comic books. This is something of a response to the shifting landscape of the comics world and the nature for books to fall into the categories of artistic boundary pushing, bloated event comic, or just plain-old bad. It's nice that there's still a firm middle ground to be found in comics where you can just pick up an issue, read it, and thoroughly enjoy the experience without having to pour over symbolic meaning or tie-in references.

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7.5
Grindhouse: Drive In, Bleed Out #1

Nov 15, 2014

If I had to sum up Grindhouse in one word it'd be bold. The commentary is a dark approach to Christmas I haven't seen since Batman Returns, the horror elements are gutsy both in how disturbing they're willing to go conceptually and just the risky idea of using mascots as monsters.Thenthe decision to take the series in a new direction away from its Grindhouse origins is a striking and impressive one. All of those chances end up paying off amazingly as Grindhouse: Drive In, Bleed Out is an excellent read. Recommend.

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7.5
Groot #3

Aug 7, 2015

Groot is a lot like Punisher, Magneto, Howard the Duck, Ant-Man, Moon Knight, or Deathlok in that it stands out at Marvel thanks to how small it is. In a comic landscape more and more dominated by overinflated stakes and end of the world situations it's nice to be able to read a comic that just wants to make us laugh and tell its own story rather bludgeon us with dreary doomsdays. Small really is bountiful and Groot is the best example of that there is.

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3.5
Hail Hydra #3

Oct 2, 2015

So much of this boils down to the big problem that this series has no way of embedding its ideas into an actually compelling plot, characters, or world. Hail Hydra is a story that wants to be all about legacy and parents and genes and choices but all those big complicated ideas are just dumped on the reader in relentless panel after panel while the characters and plot are left as these horribly uninteresting vestigial limbs. The messages may be interesting but they aren't worth engaging with if there's no story or characters to get invested in, Hail Hydra is just someone's personal philosophy blog post with more steps.

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7.0
Hank Johnson, Agent of Hydra #1

Aug 28, 2015

In the end Hank Johnson: Agent of Hydra isn't a comic for everyone, it's honestly more a state of mind than an actual story. It most reminds me of The Adventures of Sam & Max: Freelance Police, a deeply surreal experience made all the more bizarre by how sedate and unaffected the characters are. You're not so much reading the story as you are letting it wash over and ideally you'll be happy with the experience at the end, at least I was.

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7.5
He-Man: The Eternity War #9

Aug 28, 2015

It's also really nice to have Skeletor back as a major villain. I like the idea of Hordak as a primary antagonist for He-Man The Eternity War, especially given that he always represented a more cosmic level threat, but it would feel wrong for the ultimate showdown not to involve He-Man's archenemy. The only real problem with the series is that sometimes the innumerous twists and turns of the plot tend to strain credulity. There gets to be a point where only so many close calls and last minute reversals can be accepted and He-Man The Eternity War is getting close to that moment. Still this is a great series for He-Man fans looking for something more substantial or people who've only admired the series from afar.

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7.5
Hollywood Zombie Apocalypse #1

Nov 8, 2014

Taking out the question of any deeper meaning, the funHollywood Zombie Apocalypseplays light and breezy. Kept with a pacecomplimenting its humor perfectly, backed up by solid artwork thatmimicscelebrities they're trying to portray aids the wit inHollywood Zombie Apocalypse. Obviously, we'll have to check in a month from now to see if it all adds up to something more than just a very fun little “zom-com.” Until then, Hollywood Zombie Apocalypse remains enjoyableand recommended.

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7.5
Hollywood Zombie Apocalypse #2

Feb 2, 2015

I don't want to oversell anything here because it's not likeHollywood Zombie Apocalypseis an undiscovered gem or anything. It's a lark, a one-off goof installment of a very small subgenre bolstered partially by the strong writing but predominately by hindsight. Had stuff likeReal HeroesandGalaxy Quest: The Journey Continuesnot been things assessed here, I would've been harsher onHollywood Zombie Apocalypse.Given how bad things can get, it's nice to see something ambitious enough to be fun, imaginative, and emotionally affecting, yet stumble on the landing stick.

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7.5
Howard The Duck #1

Mar 13, 2015

The most impressive thing about Howard The Duck is that it feels like a creator-driven project. There's no getting around the fact that Howard's appearance in Guardians of the Galaxy is why we're getting this book, so it could've easily been a heartless cash grab. Thankfully, Zdarsky's style manages to strain just enough against Marvel's committee to turn in a comic that brims with creativity and passion. Between that and the supreme detail and effort put in by Quinones and Renzi Howard, The Duck is a great first issue and triumphant return for Marvel's strangest character.

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8.0
Inferno: Rings Of Hell #1

Aug 12, 2014

That friendship makes the ending plummet into Hell feel almost more like the beginnings of an 80s action buddy comedy than anything else and honestly that would be a great direction for Inferno Rings of Hell to take. Bottom line: the characters are fun to be around, the central conflict blends grounded situationalism and high fantasy expertly, and the whole thing has enjoyable personality up the wazoo, recommended.

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7.5
Invader Zim #1

Jul 9, 2015

It all adds up to a delightful new series that hits the ground running like the series never ended. Old fans should thoroughly enjoy the comic as it has all the best aspects of the show translated into a new medium and new fans will find this a great entry point into the series if they choose. Very funny, very maniac, and very well made, highly recommended.

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7.5
Itty Bitty Hellboy #5

Dec 18, 2013

Incidentally, even if you aren't considering buying this comic for a younger comic fan, I would still highly recommend Itty Bitty Hellboy. This comic is a delight all around. It's well-written, with fun and likable characters, witty jokes and a stellar pace that never drags, and it makes for a delightful read. It is overall just a breath of pleasant sunshine; its happiness and optimism is downright infectious. Highly recommended.

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8.5
Jem and the Holograms #1

Mar 27, 2015

The other two band members Aja and Shana are enjoyable in their own way, though less dramatically involved. Shana the drummer is the voice of stability and optimism in the band, while Aja is more prone to angry, honesty, and snark (Aja is my favorite.) I like thatJemboasts so many different body types and ethnicities, and it feels infinitely more inclusive than most of the comics I review. The only major flaw in this issue is that the sci-fi elements feel a little shoehorned in at the end, yet extremely minor given how excellent the rest of the issue presents.Jem and the Hologramsis an absolute triumph that compels. An emotional story that creates a deeply moving and engaging human story through beautiful art and incredible subtlety. I highly recommend it for all readers.

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8.5
Jim Henson's The Storyteller: Witches #2

Oct 17, 2014

The Storyteller: Witches is a great example of how comics, as a medium, don't need to rise and fall on complex narratives or multilayered characters. As I mentioned both the characters and story of The Storyteller: Witches are relatively simple but the manner in which they are presented is an amazing work of art, both in terms of the actual artwork itself and the tone and atmosphere created by Vanderklugt's diction and pacing. It's a triumph of a comic and I highly recommend it.

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7.5
Joe Frankenstein #1

Mar 10, 2015

Finally, Joe Frankenstein marinates in this super fun and breezy layer of retro joy that is far too hard to come by in modern comics. It doesn't feel like a throwback, rather a great story that revels in the styles of the past and magnetize on them to create something so overjoyed with the chance to exist. It's a downright infectious comic impossible to read without smiling.

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9.0
Juice Squeezers #1

Jan 2, 2014

It is with the highest of fives to the creators that I recommend Juice Squeezers #1.

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8.0
Jupiter's Circle #1

Apr 11, 2015

Richard embodies the heart ofJupiter's Circlein a lot of ways: he's the point where the nostalgic ideals of classic superheroes violently clash against the awkward and uncomfortable truths of reality. Jupiter's Circle is a potent, thematic marinade that condenses into a deep-seated sense of resignation that pervades the story; it's a story about the past more than anything else: about the good and the bad of it, the disappointing and the promising, and how it all went wrong. Highly recommended.

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6.5
Jupiter's Legacy #5

Jan 16, 2015

There are probably those out there who will say that just being an alright dystopia plot made by an expert artist and an inconsistent author is good enough but I'm certainly not one of them. Call it high standards, call it over exposure to the medium, but I know that everyone involved is capable of better work than this, specifically because I read that better work in the first 2 issues. Still there are a lot of worse things for a comic to be than the much better crafted superhero equivalent of Divergent, but there are better things to be too, make of that what you will.

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7.5
Kaijumax #1

Apr 12, 2015

Additionally, it provides a compelling narrative underneath all the gags and visual humor, and it's all supported by a ferociously imaginative and well-crafted world that never comes off shallow or underdone. It also helpsKaijumaxhas a genuine affection for the period in monster movie history its riffing on and never comes off as dismissive or mocking towards the visual tropes its paying homage. I'm not sure people who aren't already big fans of the giant monster movies will likeKaijumaxas much as I did. I'd still recommend it for the curious or the diehard Kaiju fans in the audience.

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7.5
Kaijumax #3

Jun 20, 2015

Overall, I really liked this issue. It's the most serious and intellectual issue of Kaijumax yet and really shows the series doesn't need all the jokes and references to be good, though they're certainly a nice touch regardless.

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9.5
Kaijumax #5

Aug 14, 2015

Kaijumax is a testament to how affecting a fantastical setting with realistic characters can be. It's a harsh and uncompromising prison story but the scale of its players allows it to realize uniquely brutal moments in an imaginative and confrontational manner. Not a comic for the light of heart but a great read for any fan of Sci-fi, Kaiju, or well written drama.

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8.0
King Conan: The Conqueror #1

Feb 26, 2014

Bottom line here: this was an amazing issue of King Conan: The Conqueror at a time when I thought I was legitimately done with this character and everything surrounding him. This comic really makes me remember what it was that originally drew me to the Barbarian. The sense of fun, larger than life gonzo action, imaginative storytelling, and a kind of high fantasy approach that's grounded in big characters and 80s machismo that's just infectiously delicious; highly recommended.

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7.5
King Conan: The Conqueror #4

May 30, 2014

The Rest of King Conan: The Conqueror #4 is still very good though largely for the artwork. It revolves around Conan sneaking deeper into the temple/tomb of these multi-colored wizards who are using his mystic gem to resurrect their ancient sorcerer king. What helps this stand out as more than just flavor text for any given Skyrim mission is the imaginative designs of the tomb and high impact, pulpy, broad strokes artwork style. It really plays to Conan's strength of blending real life ancient aesthetics without resorting to medieval designs like a lot of classic fantasy. There's also a pretty spectacular wizard/warrior battle at the end and the whole thing ends on a really cool cliff hangar for next time. All in all this was a pretty enjoyable installment of King Conan: The Conqueror full of action, imaginative designs, beautiful artwork, and maybe a hint of meaning and subtext: recommended.

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7.5
Kiss Me, Satan #3

Nov 26, 2013

Kiss Me, Satan issue 3 was a pleasant surprise of something I already thought was good turning into something I thought was really damn good. Where issue two was a little too cluttered with a heavy focus on 70s sex-sploitation, issue three takes a tighter focus and trades up for an aesthetic drawn more from 80s action splatter fests like Toxic Avenger. More than that, this issue of Kiss Me, Satan just feels far more confident in its own ideas; this issue really believes that it can keep you entertained through its world and its characters without the need to pile on extra wackiness like last issue's zombie ninjas. It expands the mythos of the series because it has greater faith in that mythos to bring in readers and I think it's spot on about that, consider this one recommended.

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5.0
Kiss Me, Satan #4

Dec 19, 2013

But overall, this is less of a Kiss Me, Satan: awesome female characters magic and kill their way through the New Orleans mystical underworld in a Miami Vice paint job, and more Kiss Me, Satan: the Barnabus Black show, featuring the super-awesome Barnabus Black, thrill as he beats up people who pose no threat to him and gets it on with characters who used to be far more interesting. So, yeah, this issue represents a definite change for the worst. There are still some parts I liked, like there are some new enemy designs that are cool, and Cassian has a touching moment with his newborn, but this is the first issue of Kiss Me, Satan I honestly can't recommend.

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6.0
Kiss Me, Satan #5

Jan 14, 2014

Barnabus is a flat new protagonist compared to the more interesting Zell from previous issues, the villains have more personality than the hero, the fight scenes lack tension and don't even have enough goofy balls-out awesome moments to justify themselves, and the visual aesthetics and styles clash with the new story concepts and character designs. I can't say I don't recommend the issue if you've been reading the story, because it does offer some measure of closure and completion to the story; it's just a shame that we couldn't have had a stronger finish to this series. Kiss Me, Satan deserved better.

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8.0
Lobster Johnson: Get The Lobster #1

Feb 3, 2014

The artwork is very good, with its own unique stylized nature, but it's a stylization that doesn't cover up for inadequacy and enhances the mood and tone of Lobster Johnson: Get the Lobster (as does the coloring, which is just spectacular as always with Lobster Johnson). Overall great pacing, fun action, threatening and creative villains who skirt the line of weird and menacing perfectly, and a deeper mystery that looks to take the Lobster into uncharted aesthetic waters make Lobster Johnson: Get the Lobster a must-read for Lobster fans, and for those interested in the character, or who just like pulpy superhero action, consider this one highly recommended.

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6.5
Lobster Johnson: Get The Lobster #2

Mar 6, 2014

So consider this a more mixed review. There's still more than enough in this issue to recommend Get The Lobster #2, and the good stuff is really good. I just wish the comic had found a more centered focus, especially for the 2nd issue.

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4.5
Lone Ranger Vol. 2 #20

Dec 4, 2013

No, as I mentioned, what really sinks The Lone Ranger #20 is the story. The Lone Ranger is hardly even featured in this comic, and when he is, it's as an afterthought. You could've replaced he and Tonto both with any anonymous dork and the story would be exactly the same. The main focus of the book is boring and 1 dimensional with no greater insight into his personality or character to be found and the story as whole feels a little rushed, not to mention more than a bit brutal for someone like The Lone Ranger. I'm sorry to say I can't recommend this comic.

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8.0
Lone Ranger Vol. 2 #22

Feb 26, 2014

If there's a downside, it's that the finishing plot point of the issue is a little bit too quick and clean in wrapping things up, and that I wasn't a huge fan of the artwork. It wasn't necessarily bad artwork, just not one that really floored you or enhanced the artwork. Those are minor nitpicks, however. This was a great comic and a real amazing read; the kind of western superhero story that harkens back to what makes those two genres work: ordinary people accomplishing extraordinary acts of heroism and selflessness. I highly recommend this issue.

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3.0
Low #1

Jul 29, 2014

It's a hateful little story that takes a demented glee in its own mean spiritedness, it's glad to make you feel awful for having read it with barely contained jubilance at punishing its main characters in a manner you don't usually find outside of Hostel. It's the kind of comic that makes you question why you read comics in general when one can be made with so little skill or meaning. I'm not against bleak things in comics or having bad things happen to good people in comics or nihilism in comics but it has to have a point, the whole point of Low is to try and make you as miserable as possible while reading it while saying exactly nothing; not recommended.

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6.5
Magnus: Robot Fighter #1

Mar 10, 2014

Ultimately, though, there's enough good about Magnus Robot Fighter for me to recommend it despite this review. I really didn't mean to come off this negative, as there is stuff to like: Magnus is a good guy, there are a lot of interesting mysteries, the robot designs are enjoyable, and Magnus's robot fighting kung-fu is really coolly realized; it just ended up with a little extra space left over from too many reveals. Still recommending Magnus Robot Fighter, though, as just a more easy and enjoyable read than most of the books I review.

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7.5
Manifest Destiny #4

Feb 12, 2014

The plot is probably where Manifest Destiny has its biggest flaws, as there's both too much and not enough, the story sort of eats its own tale that way. About half the book is taken up with Lewis & Clarke trying to form a plan to bypass the buffalo beasts on their doorstep but by the time they implement said plan Sacagawea has already killed them all making it something of a moot point. There is a B-plot revolving around the plant monsters that comes to a head by the end but it all comes off a little disjointed. Still the combination of winning concept, likable characters, and hauntingly striking artwork (Sacagawea emerging out of the fog laden with minotaur pelts is a particularly striking image) make this comic an enjoyable read all around. Manifest Destiny is by no means perfect and I do wish I could've read issues 1-3 before this installment but for what it is this is actually a pretty solid jumping on point and I'd definitely recommend it.

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8.5
Manifest Destiny #5

Mar 12, 2014

That core relationship between the two leads is really what elevates Manifest Destiny to a great comic for me, but, obviously, it's bolstered by the crazy Americanized mythical monsters and the various elements of historical fantasy (seriously, more people need to get into this genre). The atmosphere is very well-done; the monsters are intriguing and awesome with great designs, the characters are engaging, and you easily get swept up in their relationships and struggle, and above all, it makes you want to spend more time with these characters and see more of their adventures, and that's enough in my book for a recommendation.

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6.5
Manifest Destiny #6

Apr 7, 2014

On the whole, this climax feels like it was in bad need of more time to be polished and an additional issue to allow a greater range of focus. You'll probably be picking it up if you're already reading the series, but anyone else, I'd wait till Manifest Destiny 7 to get involved.

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6.5
Manifest Destiny #7

Jun 12, 2014

Overall this is a better jumping on point than a new issue of Manifest Destiny, dramatically speaking the directions Clark and Lewis are going is interesting but it's less engaging, they're less likable characters as they become more unhinged. Additionally the overall decrease in monster action and atmosphere don't help things much, if you've heard good things and want to jump on the Manifest Destiny band wagon this is a good place to jump on but you'd probably be fine waiting for issue 8 too.

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7.5
Martian Manhunter (2015) #2

Jul 18, 2015

Martian Manhunter is exactly the kind of comic that DC has needed for the past 4 years. It's confident enough in its characters and ideas that it doesn't feel the need to pander but at the same time it's not adversarial towards its audience. Most of all it feels genuinely excited to be working with a character as weird and versatile as the Martian Manhunter, viewing his broad history as a canvas to paint on rather than a condemned building to destroy.

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4.0
Masumi #1

Aug 5, 2014

Everything looks flat and dull and cheap, like they didn't have it in the budget to create an actually cool looking section of Tokyo but just rented out a couple warehouses for all the action to take place along. That's the big risk of doing this kind of a kung-fu comic is that it will rise or fall on the artwork more than anything else, that's the nature of a Kung-Fu story; it's like a pressure cooker of ethics and philosophy and duty and sacrifice that builds and builds till the emotion of it all boils over into a cathartic fight scene, but without the spectacle of those fights or the real drama behind them everything is left just feeling empty and more than a little dull, sad to say I can't recommend this comic.

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8.5
Mega Man #45

Feb 6, 2015

Mega Man #45 is a complete and utter triumph. It manages to be more adult and uncompromising than most adult comics without losing sightof the core of the material itadapts. A supremely emotional tale that proves the full depth and extent of what can be donein akids comic when the authors set out to tell compelling and engrossing stories; Storytelling free from talking down their audience.

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8.0
Memetic #1

Oct 24, 2014

Memetic actually reminded me a lot of the Doctor Who episode 'Turn Left' in that both present situations feel eerilyplausible yet also avoidable. All throughout Memetic as the world slowly collapses you're left with this niggling hope that everything won't fall apart, that someone will stop this even though you've already seen the outcome. You just keep expecting The Doctor or Batman or someone to do something, to save the world. But it never comes. Everything falls apart and the only people who might be able to help are a million miles away from a solution. It's that sinking realization there is no one to save the day makingMemetic feel so completely chilling. The realization there are no heroes to save us and that sometimes we just don't get to survive. Highly recommended.

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7.5
Millennium #1

Jan 22, 2015

The shakiest part of Millennium though is how much it has to do to adapt to the time shift. As much as the show has a lot of great elements that stand the test of time, the emphasis on the mystic and anxiety about the millennium remains one of its weaker elements. Anelement the comic needsto jump through the most hoops to try and justify. At the same time, the definitive way The X-Files worked to close the book on the Millennium Group's story in the crossover is a running sore for the comic. Certain plot points in the time betweenthe show and the comic need further explaining.Still, it's in the early days for the comic with plenty of potential for future stories firinga very engaging opening plot off the bat. Millennium is a hard sell alone, though coupled with knowledge of the show, Irecommend it.

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7.0
Mirrors Edge: Exordium #1

Sep 11, 2015

The biggest problem with Mirror's Edge Exordium is its technical flubs. There's too much telling and not enough showing, we're told the government is evil and the people are sheep but we never see any real evidence of that. Additionally we're never even told what Faith's resistance is actually doing and there are a lot of terms like Beatlinked that really should've been explained. Still Mirror's Edge Exordium is a strong first step and it's clear the creators want this story to be more about emotional stakes than end of the world nonsense. It's worth checking out, especially if, like me, you enjoyed the game but always felt it was more of a rough draft than a polished finale.

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7.5
Monster Motors: Curse Of Minivan Helsing #2

Apr 17, 2015

I think there's probably a misconception thatMonster Motors: The Curse of Minivan Helsingis just a kid's comic, but that's not the case. More than anything else, an all-age comic is something that both kids and adults can enjoy. Younger kids will like it because it's full of crazy looking monster vehicles crashing into each other and firing freeze rays and harpoons. Adults can enjoy the clever comedy and rapid-fire pacing that keeps things from ever getting dull. It's a fun read that's sure to entertain all readers and is a great way for kids and adults to share a comic series together. Highly recommended.

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7.5
Moon Knight (2014) #15

May 24, 2015

Additionally, the decision to focus on mood, atmosphere, and visuals over narrative and character really makes it stand out in the current comic landscape. A lot of books these days make the mistake of cramming their comic full of character back-story and detail combined with tedious world building and circuitous world building that just stomps all over the comic's potential. People have become so ensconced in the structural literary trappings of comic books that we've completely lost sight of the artistic and atmospheric benefits the medium provides.Moon Knight embraces those aspects and is all the better for it.

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8.0
Moon Knight (2014) #16

Jun 20, 2015

Moon Knight #16 is a great continuation of the series trend of embracing and improving on '90s tropes. It shows just how impressive and exhilarating genre meshing can be when the focus can actually be on the themes and genres instead of angst or circuitous narrative. I highly recommended.

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6.5
Mortal Kombat X #3

Jan 18, 2015

Overall,Mortal Kombat X has the feel of something created by fans for other fans. It has the problems and general aesthetics of a book created by amateurs but very enthusiastic amateurs who are generally glad to be making the comic. That doesn't necessarily make it a good series, though certainly getsthere if you arean active Mortal Kombat fan. The series leaves a lot to be desired and won't really win you over, but if you do like the series I get the sense you'll probably enjoy this comic too.

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7.5
Nailbiter #1

May 5, 2014

The Nailbiter is initially quite horrific but it's a bit unsustainable and eventually slides into being sort of awesome horror as Warren's personality isn't all that alienating, while the Bookburner character just seemed confused ascribed multiple forms of murder and designs. This tells you a lot about the book's central problem; a lack of secure creative & design footing. I still recommend this issue as there's a lot to really enjoy and engage on the level of a very good paperback trash mystery, I just hope that issue 2 gives us a more grounded horror focus to inform the series.

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7.5
Nailbiter #2

Jun 2, 2014

I get that this is probably foreshadowing the same way the occasional bees that show up in panels are foreshadowing but it does deflate some of the creepiness from the killers and the concept in my opinion. It tells you we're going to be keeping the focus on the mystery more than anything else which is their choice and not a bad one at that just not the one I would've made. Still though this is a very strong second issue for Nailbiter that doubles down on character in a great way and still manages to define itself as a unique series: recommended.

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8.0
Nailbiter #3

Jun 30, 2014

Regardless of shifting tone the core engine that drives Nailbiter remains the mystery and that's still strong in this particular issue. Admittedly we don't receive a whole ton of clues and insights into the secret of Buckaroo or what happened to Carroll but things are definitely moving forward with some new revelations and a direction that affords our heroes a chance to be proactive for a chance instead of just reacting to the actions of our mysterious foe, and it's a direction that gives the audience a chance to explore more of Buckaroo. One thing that did strike me while reading Nailbiter #3 is how much this feels like a tie-in to a video game; a good blend of fast action sequences, tense chase scenes, a strong mystery element to drive a plot linked to exploration, and the copycat killer would provide an easy mechanic for some kind of boss system, somebody make that, at the very least it'd be better than Murdered: Soul Suspect, recommended.

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8.5
Nailbiter #4

Aug 7, 2014

Nailbiter was already an intensely enjoyable comic that pulled from a plethora of sources I counted amongst my favorites like Twin Peaks or Millennium but with this issue it's taken a broad leap towards being more than just a fun junky high concept serial killer story to being actually about something and I couldn't be happier. The comedy and horror elements gel together better than ever, the new focus on the town is a welcome addition that never drags down the ongoing plot, and the combination of societal commentary with slasher mystery affectations is brilliant and delicious, highly recommended.

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7.5
Nailbiter #5

Sep 4, 2014

Overall though this is a very solid issue, I love the design of the new killer, he looks creepy and menacing while not crossing over into cartoonish or overdone. The major theme though is foreshadowing, you get the sense everything in this issue is going to come back in future; the random appearance of the FBI agent, Finch's past, Nailbiter's heroic actions, and Finch beginning to realize the duo is on a breadcrumb trail. We'll have to wait till next month to see how these elements are played out but for right now this issue is recommended.

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8.0
Nailbiter #6

Oct 3, 2014

I initially really loved Nailbiter for its style, it was pulpy and trashy and basically all the kind of adult oriented junk food I've come to love as I've become an adult, sort of like Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. At this point though Nailbiter has reached a whole other level of great, it's still got all the style I loved only now with more ambition and more meaning, highly recommended.

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8.5
Nailbiter #7

Nov 6, 2014

On top of great artwork, Nailbiter mixeseffortlesslyfrom a more comedic tone to sobering darkness without missing a beat. At this point, I really don't know what else I should have to say to convince you to go buy a copy of Nailbiter #7. Remarkably sobecause of itsaccessibility at issue #7. Smart, funny, chilling, and drenched in a fat layer of style, Nailbiter is an absolute delight. Highly recommend.

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7.5
Nailbiter #8

Dec 5, 2014

What's most impressive about Nailbiter is how easily and organically it's able to flow through different phases in its evolution. The series just moves so naturally between the very gimmicky and jokey, previous issue to this month's focus on societal critiques through the lens of trashy crime and high concept. What it boils down to is how well Nailbiter knows itself, elements that the various stages of the comic explores sat presentfrom day one.When the series decides it wants to be focus more on commentary than comedy, it flows naturally because both coexisted and madeNailbiterflourish. That level of planning takes oodlesof creativity and foresight along with no small amount of skill and vision to execute,and yetNailbiter pulls it off and makes it look easy while doing it. A great read.

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8.5
Nailbiter #11

Apr 4, 2015

Finally, I'd be remise not to mention how beautifully drawn this issue is.Mike Hendersonalways submits great work withNailbiter and outdoes himself here. There's an opening two-page title spread that's simply a white background with blood splatter so eloquent and evocative; it's downright beautiful. Henderson also makes great use of the medium, including 4×6 panel grid that intercuts a grizzly dismemberment with the Nailbiter's interrogation just incredible to see. If you've been on the fence about picking upNailbiter,this issue is made for you. It raises the stakes and cements the series' current direction for old fans as well as welcoming new readers with open, blood-soaked arms. Highly recommended.

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7.5
Nameless #1

Feb 7, 2015

Namelessis a great example of just how different a simple concept can become in the hands of the right creator. Instead of grounding the dream aspect in the human element, they exist more as commentary on the comic's own weirdness. Morrison uses dreams here not as a malleable recreation of the real world, but as an expression of how easily the tightly structured rules and definitions of our reality can slip their boundaries and blend.A great parallel toNameless's connection to its own genre, Nameless seamlessly bleeds across multiple tropes and ephemera without so much as a second thought. It's a great meditation on how much genre is an oxymoronic concept, applying limits and restrictions to what a story can or can't do based solely on arbitrary metrics.

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7.0
Nameless #2

Mar 7, 2015

It's entirely possible I'm giving Nameless too much credit, and all the strange otherworldliness and meta-commentary that inhabits this issue won't actually amount to anything when all's said and done. Even if that is the case, the comic still holds up really well as just an extremely high-concept Lovecraftian horror story with a bunch of weird blockbuster affectations. The narrative compels with creepy and alien atmosphere. Even if meta stuff on the nature of stories and authorship isn't really your bag of tricks, I still recommend Nameless for only one reason: There really is nothing else like it coming out right now.

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6.0
Noah #1

Mar 17, 2014

On the whole Noah is only about 2/3rds good, and that's the opening 2/3rds. Noah is at least tolerable there doing his whole biblical/eco Dirty Harry routine and there's enough head tilting madness to keep you interested and the big climactic battle is pretty awesome it's just a shame that all of this goes downhill after that and our hero turns into a thuggish lunatic obsessed with murdering babies and ending humanity, so call this a mixed review overall but hey it's still better than The Godyssey right? Recommended if you've got more of a stomach for awful characters than me.

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4.0
Punisher (2014) #19

Jun 25, 2015

This overly gritty aesthetic extends to the artwork as well. The colors are all drab and washed out, and there's a real lack of memorable or fun carnage to be found. It's possible the point of the comic isn't meant to be reveling in cathartic destruction; I just don't see what else the point could be. Punisher is so colossally capable the action lacks any sense of tension and without any creativity to the action it all ends up tragically tedious. The closest point of comparison I can make is that it's a lot like watching someone else play a video game; the actions look fun but it's hard to stay invested when you're so detached from everything.

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3.0
Quake: S.H.I.E.L.D. 50th Anniversary #1

Sep 11, 2015

Quake worked before this because she was basically a super powered female Nick Fury, she ran S.H.I.E.L.D. and her own covert ops. Avengers unit, she had personal agency and a unique and engaging ethos within the universe. Now she's literally defined as just another cog in the Avengers machine, just another character filling an empty space on the superhero team checklist. For a comic meant to celebrate Quake's character and 50 years of S.H.I.E.L.D. the book only serves to cheapen her identity and completely ignore the agency it's meant to be showcasing. This is merchandising at its absolute worst, bland and soulless while actively degrading the material its chosen to infect, Quake deserved better and so do you, don't buy it.

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3.5
Real Heroes #1

Mar 25, 2014

Everything about this pitch indicates comedic potential, hence the actual name drop of Galaxy Quest but there's nothing fun and honestly nothing loving about Real Heroes. The stuff in this that is directed at the Avengers film often comes off kind of mean spirited, like someone doing a cruel mockery of it with sock puppets. A lot of the weird character and actor redesigns don't help this air as they really come off feeling like genuine attempts at "improving" things none of which work in the slightest (I especially like the Captain America stand in with a pony tail, all black costume, and carrying assault rifles while injecting himself with steroids, clearly the better character.) Every creative choice that went into Real Heroes seems to have been tailor made to take things that are normally heartfelt, vibrant, joyful, witty, and imaginative and make them drab, mean-spirited, grim, and ultimately soulless. Not recommended.

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7.5
Realm War: Age of Darkness #1

Jul 21, 2014

Still on the whole this was an excellent first issue for Realm War. Despite the horrible bleakness of like mass deaths and impalings and such Realm War manages to keep an odd sort of perspective about itself in a way that reminds me of Independence Day. The sincerity that Realm War affords its more ridiculous elements extends to the entire comic and as such the horribleness of the events never feels like cheap shocks or shallow grabs at pathos but like the components to an epic story and its very easy to be swept up in the same sincerity and confidence of the creators. Realm War manages to feel incredibly self assured and sincere without ever feeling too dark or too self obsessed so as to come off pretentious or shallow, which is frankly amazing given how dark and big and climactic this series is, recommended.

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7.5
Revenge #1

Feb 25, 2014

also, you better believe those two are name dropped.) Honestly, what The Revenge reminds me of the most is a slightly lesser version of Hobo With a Shotgun. The Revenge has all the fetishized, over-the-top violence and crazy sex, but without the angry yet sincere central message and strong leading performance. The result may not be a deconstruction, or an elevation of junk films, but it is a celebration of them, and for me, that was enough; recommended.

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7.5
Revenge #3

May 7, 2014

Revenge is not a great comic and I don't think it's going to change anybody's life but I did find it very fun. It skirts along the same genres as Tarantino or Rodriguez like to walk but overall feels closer to something like Hobo With A Shotgun in the insane levels of gratuitous violence and insanity on display here which is oddly refreshing. A lot of the time in comics or even movies looking to emulate the insane and sleazy air of 70s grindhouse the final product can end up feeling a bit limp so it's cool to see a comic like Revenge which never lets up on the insanity or intensity, recommended if that sounds like your bag.

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5.0
Robert E. Howard's Savage Sword #7

Jan 29, 2014

So what does this all add up to? Honestly an okay comic; that's the unifying theme I've found through my feelings on all these stories: they're okay, they've got some flaws (sometimes big ones) but never anything to sink the story and there's usually something that keeps it from teetering over into being bad or lame (usually the artwork). I guess if you had the money and were really interested, Robert E. Howard's Savage Sword wouldn't be a bad comic to pick up, but if you've got a passing interest, I wouldn't pick Robert E. Howard's Savage Sword up as Robert E. Howard's Savage Sword is ultimately just 80-pages of being passable.

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7.5
Robyn Hood #1

Aug 18, 2014

Finally the internal artwork is enjoyable and well above average. There are a few gradient backgrounds but New York has a genuine and physical feeling to it that makes up for that. At the same time the action scenes are excellently paneled, nothing super innovative to be sure but very good usage of compartmentalized sequential art to convey the events. You get a real sense of how powerful and deadly Robyn hood is and she never feels overly sexualized, though she does twist to some very weird angles and is put in a pretty tight cocktail dress at the start but I'm willing to let that slide. All and all this was a very good first issue and there's enough here to make Robyn Hood feel like more than just ANOTHER urban fantasy with hot chicks comic, I recommend it.

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7.5
Robyn Hood (2014) #1

Aug 18, 2014

Finally the internal artwork is enjoyable and well above average. There are a few gradient backgrounds but New York has a genuine and physical feeling to it that makes up for that. At the same time the action scenes are excellently paneled, nothing super innovative to be sure but very good usage of compartmentalized sequential art to convey the events. You get a real sense of how powerful and deadly Robyn hood is and she never feels overly sexualized, though she does twist to some very weird angles and is put in a pretty tight cocktail dress at the start but I'm willing to let that slide. All and all this was a very good first issue and there's enough here to make Robyn Hood feel like more than just ANOTHER urban fantasy with hot chicks comic, I recommend it.

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6.0
Robyn Hood (2014) #2

Sep 8, 2014

In case you're interested I wrote, produced, and performed a post-apocalyptic action adventure podcast calledKQKW Calling that you can listen to here if you like.

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8.0
Rumble #1

Dec 20, 2014

Rumble #1 is easily one of the most interesting approaches to comics I've seen in quite some time. Swaps out the usual emphasis on character and plot for a unique vibe that hinges entirely on the strength of the artwork and colors to convey the creator's unique vision. It's a comic that stays with you after you've read it. Echoes of a dream that persist long after you've woken up and make you want to return as soon as possible. Recommended.

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8.5
Saga #21

Jul 23, 2014

It's an awesome image and the righteousness of Robot Janitor's cause makes him easy to root for while also hoping to see Prince Robot reclaim his son now that his wife is dead. The whole thing is like some brilliant and insane riff on the Mario universe and is one of the only times the B-story of a comic has been just as engaging to me as the primary narrative. Issue 21 of Saga is the best the series has ever been and I cannot recommend it highly enough.

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8.0
Saga #26

Mar 7, 2015

I've long maintained what made the previous installments of Saga so enjoyable were the side characters than the actual heroes, but now those side characters moved decidedly to the center. Overall, it seems to represent maturation for Saga; it's a deliberate move passed the more personally focused issues of the past to broader concerns. Not to say the series was bad before, Saga remains strong, if not, stronger and more interesting.

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8.0
Satellite Sam #8

May 7, 2014

If all of that sounds good to you I highly recommend trying to pick-up the series in its entirety as the density of the storytelling isn't exactly new reader friendly despite the series' best efforts. For those who are already reading the series and just wanted to enjoy me drooling over it for most of the review here's my review of this latest issue: it's very good, greater focus on a side character who hasn't enjoyed the spotlight yet, some really shocking reveals in character stories as the truly villainous soul of the plot begins to really emerge and Michael becomes a stronger character, only real complaint is that the Guy storyline that was set-up last issue doesn't have any forward momentum here despite ending on sort of a cliff hangar. The last few pages really did leave me with my jaw hanging open, recommended.

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3.5
Secret Six (2014) #1

Dec 5, 2014

A shame that such a worthless waste of a comic came from the very well-regarded Gail Simone who helped reintroduce the world to the Secret Six through a very good series. Although,maybe this is just another indication of Simone's creative slump in recent years as it has far more in common with her awful Tomb Raider series than any of her more respectedwork. As for“Catman The Idiot and his Five Friends,” just taken on its own merits, it's a stunning display of incompetence. The amount of spectacular incompetence needed to fail at executing such a simple story concept as "five character in a locked room" is nothing short of astounding. Just not the kind of astounding that's worth 2.99 to see.

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4.0
Secret Wars #5

Aug 14, 2015

The only somewhat interesting aspect of the entire issue is the last page where some measure of forward momentum is restored. For an event that's already dragged on through the entire summer and thrown the entire Marvel continuity into disarray, devoting an entire issue to reiterating back-story because readers hadn't been that interested in its original publication is an incredibly regressive and ill-advised move. Secret Wars is supposedly winding down soon, here's hoping things shake out for the better in the next 3 issues.

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8.5
Serenity: Leaves On The Wind #1

Jan 27, 2014

Overall, though, Serenity: Leaves on the Wind was a really great first issue, even as someone who knows nothing about the series as a whole. I was engaged and interested in both the stakes of the universe and the crew of characters presented, and most of all I wanted to know more about what was happening and see more of this universe, which is the best thing a first issue can do. If you're a fan of the classic series, you'll probably like this, and if you're a Firefly n00b like me, I'd definitely recommend Serenity: Leaves on the Wind comic as a jumping-on point, highly recommended.

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6.5
Serenity: Leaves On The Wind #2

Feb 24, 2014

So I wasn't a huge fan of Serenity: Leaves on the Wind issue 2, but as I said, it was in no way terrible, and there's a decent chance that (if you're already a big fan of the show or movie and just want more of it), this will probably suffice. But coming at this from the perspective of an outsider to the series as a whole, this definitely felt like a step backwards for Serenity: Leaves on the Wind in focus and characterization. Though there was still enough to be found to keep me curious and engaged for next week, it was not as much as I would've liked. Still giving it a recommendation" just not a very passionate recommendation.

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4.0
Serenity: Leaves On The Wind #3

Mar 24, 2014

Looking back the fact that I not only liked but really liked the first issue of Serenity: Leaves on the Wind seems like nothing short of a miracle compared with how far the series has fallen by this third issue. Plot points eat their own tale as the story continues to get smaller and more distended from any kind of central point, meaning, or stakes while also failing to offer the kind of introspective meaning such a scale would normally warrant. We're now moving into a narrative focusing around the series' worst character even as more interesting plot threads just come and go with little to no fan fair or reasoning behind their sudden drop other than excising the portions of the story that made it interesting or accessible to new fans. Not recommended.

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5.0
Serenity: Leaves On The Wind #4

Apr 28, 2014

So yeah put me down as mixed for Serenity: Leaves on the Wind issue 4, better than last week but nowhere near as good as it was at the start, if you like Firefly already well you probably think I'm a jerk and are typing up some angry comments for me to read but hey feel free to buy Serenity: Leaves on the Wind #4 (at least you're having fun and reading something you enjoy right?) anyone else not recommended.

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7.0
Serenity: Leaves On The Wind #5

May 26, 2014

As I said overall this is a very good issue of Serenity: Leaves on the Wind. It sheds the heavy reliance on continuity of previous issues while also focusing the story and making the lead character more likable and engaging. The artwork is solid or at the very least better despite the issues with drawing faces still remaining (no one has a normal nose.) Most of all it's the first issue of Serenity: Leaves on the Wind sense issue 1 I can say I fully enjoyed reading all the way through and that deserves a recommendation.

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7.0
Serenity: Leaves On The Wind #6

Jun 23, 2014

It reminds me a lot of Highlander: Endgame in that that was supposed to be a movie made from a TV show but ended up a TV movie IE it's made to almost aggressively pander to people who wanted more of what they saw in the show not more adventures of these characters and universe. By contrast Serenity: Leaves on the Wind #6 has been a very fun is very basic action adventure scifi western story with these characters, yes it's a little on the shallow side and doesn't manage to mangle a full on resolution out of the bajillion plot threads started in the past 5 issues but it does a good job of entertaining and is a fun read which is a pretty good thing to be overall; recommended.

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7.5
Sex #15

Aug 29, 2014

I really enjoy Sex #15 (and the other 14 issues I read so I could understand.) It's an adult comic in the truest sense in that it wants to approach the subject of sex in an actually adult manner, which is very rare to find in comics. It reminds me a lot of The Knick (which is also awesome) weaving together character's inner personal motivation with an intimate and penetrating act while create unique and compelling storylines for all the members of its broad and engaging cast, recommended.

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7.0
Shaft #1

Dec 6, 2014

What Shaft reminds me of the most is Casino Royale,a top-down rebuild framed as an origin story with a decided slant towards gritty harshness and no small degree of realism, yetleft a little flat by acting as part one of something greater than itself. That being said, I still recommend it because there's more than enough potential here to be worth the price of admission and I wouldn't be surprised if Shaft ended up one of the best books of 2015.

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5.5
Shaolin Cowboy #2

Nov 15, 2013

My recommendation for this really depends on your tolerance for repetitive scenes and how willing you are to delve into the deep meaning of a comic like Shaolin Cowboy. If what I've described here sounds awesome and like the greatest deepest statement about life, the universe, and everything then have at it but everyone else I'd recommend leaving this one be.

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6.5
Shaolin Cowboy #3

Dec 10, 2013

However, as I mentioned, lacking the proper allusion to define the nature of the undead horde, the issue does lose a lot of the meaningful subtext it was crafted with. There are still the hints of the meaning of zombies as western consumer culture, but they are understated to the point of being missed and unclear. If you're just looking for a good fun romp with cowboys, karate, ninjas, and chainsaws, there's a lot to like here, but if you are in the market for deeper analysis and subtext, you won't get what they're trying to say unless you track down the previous issues of The Shaolin Cowboy. It's still worth your time; I just wish it was a more self contained story.

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4.0
Shaolin Cowboy #4

Jan 8, 2014

The Shaolin Cowboy was a mess. I desperately wanted it to be good and afforded it the benefit of the doubt at every turn, but here at the end, it just doesn't hold up. The action in this comic is jumbled and boring, with only a couple cool moments, but in general there's so much of it to desensitize you to those moments. The cowboy has no character, so there's very little investment in his fate, and as a result, the action has no tension or urgency. The artwork is occasionally nice, but generally tries to work in way too much and comes off cluttered; I don't recommend it, and the whole the series feels like it's wasting your time.

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4.0
Sherlock Holmes And The Vampires Of London #1

Feb 7, 2014

Also, the vampire stuff feels very ill thought-out, with random vampiric powers pulled out of nowhere with no explanation and the surprisingly unused revelation that Van Helsing was a real guy in this universe (a fact that has nothing to do with anything). On the artwork side of things, there's not much to say; Holmes looks really stiff and wooden in the comic, with way too many lines on his face that really make him look inhuman on the whole, and the artist seems more suited to big landscape drawings than close ups. So, yeah; an overall dull mystery with a flat protagonist that ignores both its own revelations and series core elements in exchange for exactly nothing. Needless to say, Sherlock Holmes and the Vampires of London is not recommended.

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3.0
Shutter #1

Apr 8, 2014

Tortured similes aside, needless to say I don't recommend Shutter. The main character is a truly distasteful "human" when she isn't just being boring, the comic delights in wasting your time with boring overdone drama and clichs, and it completely wastes its very imaginative artist, and overall the entire issue is smothered in smug self-awareness. Not only is Shutter awful, not only is Shutter horribly miss-focused, but it knows it and will take every chance it can get to rub it in your face how much they don't want to be interesting, and, really, screw that. Not recommended.

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7.0
Sinestro #14

Aug 28, 2015

The only downside is that the writing seems a little unsure of how they want to ground Sinestro's character, which leaves a lot of his mentoring sequences flat. This might've been a place to play up Sinestro's classic super villain origins with more speechifying and purple prose but ultimately he's just too aloof and uncentered. Still this was a great start to the comic and really got me interested in the Green Lantern universe again for the first time in far too long.

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7.5
Six Million Dollar Man Season 6 #1

Mar 10, 2014

I think what elevated the comic for me the most was a greater sense of passion and fun to the comic, as well as a sort of happier tongue-in-cheek ridiculousness about the action sequence. You can really tell the creative team is having a blast with the concept, and really embraced the silliness that was inherent to the TV show. It feels very much like Six Million Dollar Man is completely at peace with being what is, in essence, a the comic book version of the adventures of a middle schooler's action figures. It's that gung-ho, game-for-nonsense attitude that really pushes this one into the recommendation zone for me.

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7.0
Skyman #1

Jan 15, 2014

Overall, SkyMan #1 is a decent start to this story; we've set-up the world and the main hero and provided a lot of options for future stories, be they simple super hero espionage tales or stories about the higher ups using Eric for their own purposes, or solving the mystery of where the suit's technology came from, there's a lot of potential for exploration here. The characters and plot of this issue are a little broad, and I'd like to see those aspects come into a sharper focus down the line, but as a starting point, those are overlookable problems, consider this one recommended.

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5.5
Skyman #2

Feb 19, 2014

As for this issue, I suppose it's ultimately harmless, if just kind of dull. It passes the time and is serviceably functional but that's about all the praise I can give it, it's not good, it's not bad, it's just whatever and I don't recommend that.

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6.5
Skyman #4

Apr 15, 2014

I may have mentioned this before but if Skyman had been more of an espionage oriented comic with Eric slowly uncovering the true nature of what he was doing or deep undercover or maybe even already aware of the groups atrocities just slowly developing a conscience, stirred by Midnight's example that might've been at least a bit more of a stand out, especially as superhero espionage feels like an underserved concept on today's market. As is Skyman isn't a terrible series it's just not a very memorable or standout or memorable one, and certainly not one that adds much to the black sky mystery box. If you're curious or are looking to get in on the ground floor of this new Captain Midnight/Skyman/Ghost/Occultist/X universe Dark Horse is making more power to you but for others there's just not a lot to recommend here.

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7.5
Sleepy Hollow #1

Oct 16, 2014

I must say that the artwork is also spectacular. It's a very stylized approach with a cartoonier slant that actually reminds me a lot of the line work in Sleeping Beauty but I think that fits well with the tone of both the book and the show. Additionally Tamra Bonvillain does amazing coloring work here, especially with all the warm oranges and bright yellows that just ooze that autumnal palette that so defines Sleepy Hollow. Finally I'd be remise not to mention you actually get a back-up feature to this comic, a little 2 page story called 'Movie Night' which is basically just a very fun and cartoony one-off goof, sort of like Itty Bitty Hellboy. It's a hilarious little capstone to a very fun comic experience, lighthearted in all the right ways and, much like the rest of Sleepy Hollow, you can tell it's made by people who are real fans of the show. Consider Sleepy Hollow highly recommended but only if you've already gotten into the show.

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9.0
Southern Bastards #1

Apr 29, 2014

That last bit is part of the cynicism that I actually really like in the book and ties into what Southern Bastards really reminds me of: The X-Files, specifically mid-90s X-files. Specifically those mid-90s episodes of The X-Files (and also Millennium) which exuded an atmosphere of oncoming dread and disaster but not from an external force but from the new generation, a generation more violent and deadly then you would like to admit, and becoming so more and more violent earlier and earlier. It's similar to the themes of No Country For Old Men only with the added focus of this new wave of horrors infesting the nostalgic concepts of the past such as the perfect small town, and making you question if those places ever really existed or were just a fairy tale we tell ourselves at night, Southern Bastards is highly recommended.

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8.0
Southern Bastards #2

May 27, 2014

Southern Bastards is a testament to execution trumping formula. From the outset all the elements we're seeing here: the evil football coach, the reluctant returning son, the old soldier, the sheriff father, the rotting town are in essence very stock basic ideas but it's the delivery that makes Southern Bastards such a great read. It's pulp and noir and a little bit western all wrapped up in a smooth rich coating of horror and rural Americana that always delivers and always brings you back for more: highly recommended.

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9.5
Southern Bastards #3

Jun 30, 2014

All of this helps make Southern Bastards a stand out story and more than just something about macho men doing what they have to do. It's about Earl standing his ground on something for once instead of retreating from it and finally confronting the myth of his father that has metastasized like a cancer throughout the entire town. Additionally the artwork is really good and Esaw, Coach Boss's main lieutenant has proven himself to be a truly terrifying bastard that's like the southern lovechild of Bill Sykes from Oliver Twist and Biff Tannen from the dark future in Back To The Future Part 2. Great characters driving a great story with great artwork all make Southern Bastards #3 a must read, recommended.

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8.0
Southern Bastards #4

Sep 4, 2014

The real focus that's driven home with Southern Bastards #4 has to do with Earl's impotence, his inability to truly achieve any of the goals he sets for himself, often because those goals are living in his father's shadow. We see brief flashbacks of his life in the fight I mentioned like his Sergeant getting killed in Vietnam and Earl choking up on the football line, even the first issue of Southern Bastards concluded with Earl unable to chop down the tree that had grown out of his father's grave. I'm not sure what this particular emphasis is meant to be in the grand scheme of things but I think that idea of his impotence being tied into his cowardice and attempts to emulate his father is going to end up a major thematic counter point in future issues. For right now however this was a great capstone to Southern Bastards' first arc, a magnificently violent and bloody pay off to all the building pressure and tension of the series so far, highly recommended.

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8.0
Southern Bastards #5

Oct 31, 2014

At the same time the kind of angry and bitter way Southern Bastards approaches its now central act of violent murder borders on the transgressive and Coach Boss's attitude towards his own crimes neatly mirrors the attitude of the book towards the south itself. It doesn't want people to just turn away and forget the horrors so prevalent in America's own 3rd world out of shame and embarrassment, so it's going to rub our faces in the awful truth of existence there till we can't ignore it anymore. That's a bold way to go with this story and it's bound to turn some people off with just how raw and forceful the storytelling can be but it comes with a passion and earnestness that's impossible to fake and severely endearing. Overall a great new chapter in a great comic, definitely check it out.

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4.5
Spawn #253

Jun 25, 2015

The thing is I actually have a lot of time for fetishized violent release draped in macho posturing that values surface over substance; it just has to be done well.Spawn#253 isn't interested in being a violent romp or a polished and shallow distraction. It only exists to show off how angry Spawn still is, and that's a hollow goal.

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4.0
Spawn #254

Jul 31, 2015

I'm tempted to actually call Spawn #254 a "so bad it's good comic" but it's really not, it's a so bad it's bad comic. The writing is circuitous and can't overcome the central inaction of the story, the artwork is choppy and exaggerated to ridiculous extremes, and the coloring is horribly inconsistent between the 4 different colorists. It's baffling to me though, that in 2015 you can put out 25 pages of a character refusing to do anything and charge people for the privilege of reading all the inaction.

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5.5
Spider-Gwen #1

Feb 26, 2015

I have to wonder if the non-committal approach to Spider-Gwen's character is the direct result of the fan favoritism that spawned this comic. Despite creating the character, Dan Slott isn't the author ofSpider-GwenratherJason Latour, a relatively new author. Combine Latour's inexperience with the massive popularity of the Spider-Gwen character, and one wonders if Gwen's shallowness in the comics comes from a fear to enact any change on the character, thus diverge from whatever it was so many fans clings to in the first place. Barring prior fan investment, Spider-Gwenis a real misfire that fails to engage and comes off as just a great, big stumble at the starting line.

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4.0
Spider-Gwen #2

Mar 13, 2015

This issue is just awkward fumbling as Marvel desperately throws popular elements at the page in the vein hope something generates fan interest. It leaves Spider-Gwen feeling like a comic that was published not because anyone wanted to make it, but because they felt they had to.

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6.0
Splinter Cell: Echoes #1

Jul 1, 2014

All speculation and more interesting ideas aside is Splinter Cell Echoes good; short answer- kind of. It's not terrible, there is the semblance of character arc and story albeit a very diet version of both, the conspiracy is generally workable stuff on the level of other Tom Clancy works, and if you're just going into this looking for some decent Splinter Cell material to pass the time you won't be disappointed. But if you're looking for something with a greater degree of originality or creativity or depth you aren't going to find it here, I know those things are generally allowed to be sacrificed when it comes to the games because they're still fun to play and the point is to immerse you in the universe of a trashy paperback spy novel you bought at the airport to read on your long plane ride but with the actual gameplay element taken out there is a serious missing piece to Splinter Cell Echoes, pick it up if you're not looking for much.

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6.0
Splinter Cell: Echoes #2

Aug 8, 2014

Like I said there are a lot of little moments peppered throughout Splinter Cell Echoes that suggest that the writers do have a more ambitious story they want to tell than just another installment in the old guy action espionage genre I just wish they'd drop the Tom Clancy backwash and get more ambitious with the plot they're coating their dramatic core in, bottom line is that they can do better.

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8.0
Spread #1

Jul 7, 2014

When I first opened up this issue of Spread I had some music on like one does when reading comics, upon reading a page or two I actually had to pause the song I was listening to and put on 'End of All Hope' by Nightwish because the stuff on panel was just that awesome. The artwork is great and works wonders with what could be overcrowded design by simple but effective coloring techniques. Simple but effective sums up Spread as a whole: the story is simple and the panel design is simple but that simplicity affords the creative team the focus and strength of purpose to deliver an awesome comic that works like gangbusters. Between Spread, Southern Bastards, Nailbiter, The Revenge, and Satellite Sam maybe Image needs to stop trying to be like Terrence Malick and start trying to be more like Troma, highly recommended.

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4.0
Star Trek #40

Jan 16, 2015

Star Trek: The Q Gambit could've been a thoroughly interesting cross between New Trek and Real Trek. Intend to patchthe problems of the new films' place as it displays these new interpretations of the characters standing on their own as engaging recreations. Instead, it just did everything wrong;Boring instead of bold, empty instead of impressive, and pointless instead of meaningful. Overall,Star Trek: The Q Gambit isjust a waste of everyone's time.

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7.0
Star Trek #46

Jun 18, 2015

Star Trek #46 basically takes the build blocks of the episode but rearranges them with some clever new twists.

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4.0
Star Trek #47

Jul 25, 2015

The really infuriating part though is the ending, where the Enterprie breaks free of the web and violent murders several innocent Tholian ships that were just trying to defend themselves. It's an incredibly jarring sequence given how much of a non-threat the Tholians were to the Enterprise not to mention the sickeningly peppy view Kirk takes on the event. He sees his actions as a form of positive intimidation to make sure the Tholians don't mess with the Federation in future. This goes beyond simply not being inspired by the material or even just not understanding Star Trek, no this seems like the work of someone who understands Star Trek but simply loathes it and its entire ethos of peaceful exploration and valuing the sanctity of life.

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7.5
Star Trek / Planet of the Apes #1

Jan 1, 2015

While this first issue is predominately set-up for things to come, it's a very telling set-up that indicates a lot of positives about the team making this book. For one, they clearly know Star Trek lore very well. Secondly, the teamknows of the issues with trying to combine these two franchises and formclear plan for how to approach this mash-up. Overall, a very good start that definitely makes me hungry for more in 2015.

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6.5
Star Trek/Green Lantern: The Spectrum War #1

Jul 10, 2015

The big problem with the crossover really does come down the core problems with the Star Trek reboot overall coloring this story. At one point in the issue several characters receive lantern rings with seemingly no reasoning behind who gets what rings. The decisions don't even match character personalities as seen in the recent films. It adds to the overall sense that you aren't reading an actually Star Trek/Green Lantern crossover event but simply enjoying some pretty action art coated in Star Trek and Green Lantern colors, visually stimulating but emotionally and intellectually unfulfilling.

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7.0
Star Wars (2014) #1

Jan 14, 2015

My biggest complaint about the issue is that it's infinitely too derivative of the Star Warsfilms. Hear me out, the plot, in all its simplicity, thoroughly cobbles together from previous scraps. Disguised infiltration plot liftsfrom A New Hope, andthe Millennium Falcon hides itself as garbage (a laEmpire Strikes Back). That's not necessarily a bad thing per say. After all, the prequel films were all fairly original and different and everyone hates those. Still, if you were hoping for a Star Wars comic branchingout full speed into unfamiliar waters, this isn't it.It'sStar Wars comfort food. Familiar and pleasurable, yetnot exactly challenging or dynamic. However, good Star Wars material is in short supply these days, and for an opening act for things to come you could do far worse.

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7.0
Star Wars: Darth Maul: Son Of Dathomir #1

May 19, 2014

If there is a downside to Star Wars Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir it's that Maul himself. With so much of the plot driven by Palpatine's plotting or the action sequences Maul doesn't get much time for character development and so comes off as a bit of a non-entity here. He's generally snarling or growling or fighting and so we never get much of a sense for what his motivations or goals are, just to mess up everyone's day. Maybe this is elaborated on a little bit more in the previous comics or hopefully will come up later on but within this issue despite having Maul's name on the cover this feel's more like Palpatine or Dooku's comic. Overall though Star Wars Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir is still a very enjoyable read and does give off that authentic Star Wars oeuvre in a great way and I'd recommended it for fans looking for something quick and easy to pick-up and read.

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6.5
Star Wars: Darth Maul: Son Of Dathomir #2

Jun 16, 2014

Overall though what Star Wars Darth Maul: Son of Dathomir reminds me of the most would be Star Wars: Bounty Hunter, the Jango Fett video game. Both work as these sort of set-piece tours of the Star Wars universe as well as taking you through a collection of popular villains from the films (which makes sense given the villain centric nature of the prequel series.) I can't say that there's much to really sink your teeth into by way of the series' meaning something but it is good Star Wars action, not amazing or incredibly or even great, just good and that's good enough for a recommendation.

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7.5
Star Wars: Darth Maul: Son Of Dathomir #3

Jul 14, 2014

There's really not much else to say about Star Wars: Darth Maul Son of Dathomir for this wrap up; the action is well drawn and engaging, everyone is afforded a fair amount of screen time, there's a solid balance between high stakes action and fighting, and a good job is done drawing in the series core focus of the secret war between Palpatine and Talzin. If I had to make a few complaints it'd be that the Jedis feel a little underpowered and clone trooper Cody could've used a bigger moment but in the end this is Darth Maul's story so the choices they made in that respect make sense. On the whole Star Wars: Darth Maul is just a very fun, very solid Star Wars comic, recommended.

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7.5
Star Wars: Darth Vader #2

Feb 26, 2015

The art of doing a comic that stars an unrepentant genocidal madman is no small task, but Darth Vader #2 masters it perfectly. It understands more than anything that the appeal of seeing Darth Vader in a solo series is living vicariously through a black plastic avatar for our darkest and pettiest power fantasies. It also helps that the artwork is phenomenal, emphasizing the larger than life iconography of Star Wars with a lot of brisk, clean, line work. Highly recommended.

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8.0
Star Wars: Darth Vader #9

Sep 11, 2015

If you can tune your brain to the frequency of monsters against monster and just enjoy the pettiness of the characters and their own schemes you'll really enjoy Darth Vader.

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6.0
Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Cry of Shadows #1

Dec 19, 2013

That being said, it did pique my interest, and I'm curious to see whether or not CT-5539 reveals himself to be a complex character as the story progresses. I recommend Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Cry of Shadows #1 much in the same way that I recommend eating a handful of almonds to tide you over until you can eat a real meal.

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5.0
Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Cry of Shadows #2

Jan 16, 2014

All in all, I'm still waiting for something to happen that kicks the story into gear. Most of my character complaints were fixed within just a couple pages, but that doesn't make up for its lack of depth. So far, the Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Cry of Shadows has felt like a prologue. It's not unenjoyable, but I'm still waiting for the story to begin. The newness of the premise has worn off. I need something more, and I'm sure I'll read the next issue because I really want to see this go somewhere, but I wouldn't recommend Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Cry of Shadows #2 to anyone looking for something of substance.

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8.0
Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Cry of Shadows #3

Feb 18, 2014

Awkward disembodied heads aside, Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Cry of Shadow was an excellent comic. It was enjoyable, sassy, and dramatic without taking itself too seriously. Stuff happened, and I dug it. 8/10. Read it.

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4.0
Starlight #1

Mar 3, 2014

Here in Starlight, everything about the writing is crafted to make Duke's life miserable, and while I understand that this in service of him having a character arc to being less miserable (hopefully), there isn't a good version of Duke we really know other than the Zap Brannigan-type character we see in the flashbacks. All of this leaves Starlight just feeling empty and more than a little mean-spirited; it's something I wouldn't want to come back to, but if you're more inclined to this style of storytelling, maybe you'll like it.

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6.0
Starlight #2

Mar 31, 2014

I understand his world is emptier now that Joanne is dead but so much of the intercutting (IE first a shot of him doing amazing stuff on Tantalus then a shot of him farting around the supermarket looking vacant) is meant to convey how much worse his life on Earth is and the allusion of the Fisher King continues that trend. The problem is that Starlight also needs his relationship with Joanne to be cartoonishly perfect to give him his more grizzled and shattered outlook and to again rip-off Unforgiven. It all adds up to a story that feels very unsure of how it wants to frame its 1 female character. So yeah Starlight #2 was an improvement and 1 I might tentatively recommend but I'm still not sure this series is headed anywhere good.

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8.0
Steampunk Battlestar Galactica 1880 #1

Aug 19, 2014

On the whole Steampunk Battlestar Galactica 1880 is a very good series with tons of clever and interesting ideas that really make this seem fresh and new, I highly recommend it.

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8.5
Stray Bullets: Killers #1

Mar 11, 2014

The only mild downside to Stray Bullet Killers is that the artwork is somewhat inconsistent and will occasionally not quite match up with what the characters are saying, or will feel a little too compressed for a panel, but those moments are seldom enough for it to be forgiven. Stray Bullet Killers is a truly brilliant take on the crime noir genre; it's an inspired story that effortlessly blends the kind of long form twist you might find in a Bioshock game with the effortless genre aping in service of greater message that Tarantino has turned into a trademark. All of which is wrapped around a core so darkly unapologetically real and grounded that you have to wonder why more stories haven't done something like it. Stray Bullet Killers is definitely recommended.

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7.0
Superman: Lois and Clark #1

Oct 19, 2015

However, putting aside the very well written character narration and dialogue Superman " Lois and Clark is just such a weird comic. It's almost like a literalization of the meta-reasoning behind the New 52 changes, that the old universe is literally making sure this new one won't be the same as it was. I'm not sure that idea alone is enough to maintain a whole ongoing series rather than just an enjoyable one-shot but at the moment Superman " Lois and Clark is just weird enough and just well written enough to get a pass. We'll see if the creative team and core concepts are weird and engaging enough to sustain the book beyond this first installment.

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3.5
Supreme: Blue Rose #1

Jul 22, 2014

It's probably a good thing no one cares about this comic because all in all much like Trees Supreme Blue Rose has an interesting concept that it completely squanders with boring characters, horrible pacing, and no idea what to do with its ideas. Compound that with the terrible artistic decisions and the whole thing just feels like a messy rough draft someone turned in expecting a passing grade when really all you should do is pass it up and buy better comics.

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8.5
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #50

Oct 13, 2015

If you're a big Turtles fan or even someone like me who's spent more time admiring the franchise from afar because you didn't grow up with it this is the comic for you. It's honestly got all the best elements of the previous Turtles incarnations rolled up into one excellent adventure, highly recommended.

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4.5
Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle #1

Dec 4, 2013

As the series has continued, it's gotten farther and farther away from its origins and become bogged down with a focus on human protagonists, fate over personal choice, and showing us a conflict we really never should've seen and maybe that was a mistake. Maybe, at the end of the day, Terminator was only ever meant to be a series about time travelling robots looking through identical names in a phone book. As it stands, Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle isn't the worst thing to come out of the series and seems like a stab at trying to reclaim that original format, but it's still got a long way to go to reach there and really seems hindered by the limits of the film its hitched itself to. Beyond that, Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle is convoluted and unfocused with subpar artwork; not recommended.

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4.0
Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle #2

Jan 1, 2014

I think the most disappointing thing about Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle is that every piece of it feels like it was taken from some more interesting Terminator series. There really isn't anything new on display in Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle; the stuff in the present feels like a rejected Sarah Connor Chronicles arc, the stuff in the future is just Terminator Salvation on continuous repeat and, the serial killer stuff could (maybe) get interesting sometime, but we really aren't there yet. At the same time, it takes your engagement and sympathy for characters like John Connor as given, and uses it as an excuse to forgo giving him character development or likable traits. Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle was already out to a rocky start, but this issue really plunged it straight into the bad category" it's boring, it's tired, and I don't recommend it.

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4.0
Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle #3

Feb 4, 2014

It's akin to someone dissecting the Terminator franchise as a whole and then putting it back together and acting surprised it didn't live again; there's just nothing about Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle #3 that shows any kind of passion or creativity for the material at hand.

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5.0
Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle #4

Mar 5, 2014

Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle is still not great. The new elements don't exactly gel and, conceptually, are kind of stale, so we've got a long way to go before I start handing out recommendations, but maybe this is a sign we're headed in the right direction.

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4.5
Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle #5

Apr 1, 2014

Time travel is a tricky subject to do well even at the best of times with the very twisty and intricate logic that needs to be employed to navigate the internal logics of it so it's best to just take a simple approach but with Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle it combines the worst elements of an overly complicated mechanic and an inconsistent simplistic system. It's just in general poor decision making on what is the central narrative DNA of both the story and the universe and only serves to be more trouble than it's worth. So overall this issue of Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle really only served to undercut any positive points I might've afford the previous issue as the series slides back down to its standard poor quality, not recommended.

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4.0
Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle #7

Jul 10, 2014

As for the issue itself this is probably one of the worst Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle has yet to turn in and really highlights the same problem I've had with trying to review the bloody series: there's too much convoluted nonsense going on.

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6.5
Tet #1

Sep 11, 2015

This is coming off harsher than I wanted it to because Tet is a genuinely well made comic, just not one I necessarily like. It's possible you'll still like Tet if your tastes run more in its stripped down, nuts and bolts approach to mysteries and sterilized depiction of war. It's sort of like a weird blend of The Conversaton, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, and Flight of the Intruder, if that sounds like your bag dive in.

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7.0
The Darkness: Vicious Traditions #1

Mar 4, 2014

As is, though, this is still a very fun action issue, and is only that disappointing for how good the writing around the action is. The artwork does a lot to complement the story with heavy usage of shadows and shading that blend nicely with the coloring and the excesses of gore and violence. As I've stressed throughout this review, The Darkness: Vicious Traditions is a very fun and action-packed comic, and the gore induced by all this ancient savagery is easy enough to get into and I do recommend it. I just wish the creators had been willing to flex their narrative muscles a bit as they clearly have the talent for it.

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6.0
The Eltingville Club #1

Apr 21, 2014

This again goes back to that issue of being a fakey firsty in that any dramatic arc or character investment we might feel for the club comes from previous appearances, not self contained investment. A story like this could've worked if it was more willing to give the characters dimensions or at the very least an interesting edge to who they are, like Pain & Gain, or if there was just 1 likable character to act as an audience surrogate in this horrible unholy land, like Django Unchained, but as it stands unless you're already following the The Eltingville Club saga I wouldn't recommend this issue.

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4.5
The Evil Within #1

Oct 16, 2014

At the end of the day I'm really not sure who The Evil Within the comic is for. The game only came out THIS week so I doubt there's anyone out there whose already enough of a fan to jump on this comic series, maybe it's meant to appeal to people who are interested but too poor to afford the game but if that's the case it seems like a serious waste of time and effort. You don't learn anything new about the story of the game or the protagonist or the monsters your fighting and as a stand alone story it's awkwardly structured and nowhere near as scary as it's trying to be; not recommended.

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5.5
The Flash: Season Zero #1

Sep 11, 2014

Overall The Flash Season Zero isn't a terrible comic, it's just not a very good one, it's thoroughly passable, situated squarely in the zone of okay if not downright mediocre. There seems to be this thinking that runs through it that because it's connected to the TV show it doesn't have try as hard for characterization or tone but that's a really counter intuitive and backwards way of thinking and it shows in just how unmemorable the end result is, especially when there are far better Flash stories to buy for new fans looking for a place to start (I recommend tracking down a lot of the Geoff Johns Flash graphic novels) this comic is not recommended.

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3.0
The Fly: Outbreak #1

Mar 24, 2015

Who is this comic even for? Anyone who likedThe Flyhated the sequel when it happened. They aren't going to like it now that it's two dimensional and has less impressive visuals. Anyone else is going to be completely lost because this comic explains nothing. Finally, just as a standalone comic, it's an atrocious story, even calling it a story seems unfair. A story implies characters, plot, and scenes that add up to a greater whole;The Fly: Outbreakdoesn't have any of that. It's a creation so flimsy, immaterial, and devoid of merit I'm shocked it doesn't disintegrate in the wind. It's comic book dust nothing more.

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8.0
The Ghost Fleet #4

Feb 6, 2015

Above all else, Ghost Fleet is a testament to craftsmanship and conviction. A comic full of insane and offbeat ideas right down to its very conception; An insane levels of self-confidence and skill needed to make those ideas flow in an awesome, natural, and truly compelling way. A lesser book might've just fell back on the novelty of doing a truck-based action series in 2015 (like Vandroid did), yet Ghost Fleet bulks up on imagination and form to deliver a great comic driven by strong characters and blockbuster action.

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8.5
The Ghost Fleet #8

Jun 1, 2015

Ghost Fleet is blockbuster comics at its absolute best. The series takes you on an incredible journey across focus, tone, and even genre all without missing a beat or ever once feeling dull or padded; the characters are fun, engaging, and well written. Most of all, it's a comic that's incredibly excited about being a comic book, excited about all the insane and limitless freedom that affords it. It gets the best out of everyone involved with it and is one hell of a ride. Highly recommended.

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8.0
The Humans #5

Jun 6, 2015

Ideas about free love, mind expansion, revolution, and peace gave way to pornography, chemical dependence, anarchy, and violent rage. A loss of humanity that would spread nationwide as the decade marched onward. That's the emotional stateThe Humanstaps into; it's apes, anarchy, and action packed, and I highly recommend it.

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4.5
The Massive #18

Dec 16, 2013

This will probably be the last issue of The Massive I'm going to review, as the downward trend doesn't seem to be changing anytime soon. Maybe one day, I'll come back to this series, but probably not any time soon. All I can say is: not recommended.

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3.0
The Mocking Dead #3

Nov 14, 2013

The Mocking Dead was an idea good enough for maybe one short story if it was being implemented right, and it's painfully obvious this comic isn't doing it right. Atrocious artwork, obnoxious jokes, painful dialogue, and a truly repugnant main character make this an unpleasant slog to get through, even now I feel less like I "read" this comic and more like it was inflicted on me. I don't recommend The Mocking Dead for anyone (especially not new readers as there's yet again no recap.)

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4.0
The Mocking Dead #4

Dec 1, 2013

I was originally going to say that this issue of The Mocking Dead wasn't as bad as issue 2 or 3, that it had managed to claw its way up to being just mediocre but the more I think about it the more honestly disgusted I become with this comic. I sincerely hope Bunch is meant as a satire or vague take down of nerd culture and not a hero we're meant to be rooting for because that would just raise too many horrible implications about what the authors think of as 'relatable.' Either way Bunch is still a deeply unlikable and truly repugnant character and that's a big problem because he's also the main character. Meanwhile the jokes feel tired and cartoonish or on the rare occasions of actually being funny are completely removed from the actual characters and story and the artwork is seriously cartoonish to the point where I'm left to question whether this was stylization or incompetence. Needless to say I don't recommend this or any other issue of The Mocking Dead.

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8.5
The Multiversity #1

Aug 20, 2014

That sums up Multiversity pretty well I think, weird and complex but if you don't fight it it's one hell of a ride, especially with how detailed and dynamic the artwork is, truly stunning stuff and the design of the demons is really the stuff of nightmares. As I mentioned Multiversity isn't for everyone but you should be able to tell from this if you'd enjoy it or not, if it sounds like your cup of tea pick it up I know I had a blast with it.

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9.0
The Multiversity: Pax Americana #1

Nov 21, 2014

It speaks volumes the biggest problem with Multiversity #3 is it leaves you desperately wanting more. You finish the comic with an immediate urge to re-read it, pouring over every page for depth and meaning, while savoring every second you spend with theengaging characters. An enormous achievement Morrison and Quitely were able to cram so much amazing work in just one issue and it can't be recommended enough. Definitely pick it up.

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7.0
The Multiversity: Society of Super-Heroes #1

Sep 17, 2014

None of this is to say that Multiversity: Society of Super-Heroes is at all bad just that it's not as good as it could've been. Maybe if the individual heroes were given more personality (even if it was even just stock personalities) or the invading parallel reality had more definition I'd have liked it even more but as it stands it's a very fun little road trip into this weird other world exploring a very different take on these characters that doesn't feel like any other parallel reality paint job I've seen before (not even JSA: The Liberty Files) and really made me want to see more adventures of Doc Fate and his fellows if only to explore more of their universe, recommended.

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4.5
The Occultist #2

Nov 5, 2013

I really wanted to like this comic, I wanted to find something to praise or some way it lived up to the potential established by the previous issue but it just doesn't. If anything, it's actually a little worse. The plot seems to be keeping pace with a glacier. The few scenes with the supporting characters range from confusing to just tacked on, and the main character comes off as a weak-willed protagonist being pushed around by the desires of others. It's too early to really tell if all of The Occultist will continue on this trend and we'll just have to check back in a couple months to see if this is either a trend or an unfortunate blip, but as of right now, I sadly can't recommend this issue.

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4.5
The Occultist #3

Dec 3, 2013

If there's one thing I can praise in this issue it's the artwork, which had enough really stand out panels and designs for me to remember them. But that's far from saving The Occultist issue 3; an un-engaging and unlikable protagonist is really what sinks this comic. I mentioned earlier that I thought The Occultist wants to be Buffy but with men but really it's more like Charmed with men and that is no good thing; the story and universe feel half formed and the metaphors serve no real purpose and worst of all our main character is shallow and self-centered. I described issue 1 of this series as stumbling but showing potential and I felt issue 2 continued that trend but here with issue 3 any hope I might've had for The Occultist pulling into something interesting has really fallen away, I hope I'm wrong about this one but as of right now I really don't recommend this comic.

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5.0
The Occultist #4

Jan 1, 2014

There's one more issue in this arc, which I'll probably review, but something tells me I won't be coming back to The Occultist any time soon after that.

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4.0
The Occultist #5

Feb 5, 2014

The artwork is actually pretty good, for a change of pace, with an artist who seems legitimately able to draw faces well, which is a surprising rarity amongst the books I've reviewed, but really it means nothing" this comic was lame, and this series as a whole was just a squandering of a cool idea. It's a testament to how execution completely trumps concept and the dangers of assumption especially when you're assuming your reader is already invested in the lead character. I don't know if this is the final issue of The Occultist (Dark Horse site was unhelpful), but if it is, I say good riddance and let's hope for better going forward; not recommended.

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9.5
The Paybacks #1

Sep 19, 2015

That particular of blend of jokey self-awareness with earnest self acceptance is slathered over The Paybacks and ends up key to the story working as well as it does. It creates a quasi-unreal atmosphere that successfully blends The Paybacks' more ludicrous and cartoony moments with the story's legitimate stakes. It's a fine line to walk but The Paybacks nails it perfectly. Bold, brilliant, ferociously humorous and delightfully nerdy, The Paybacks is one of the best books you'll read all year.

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4.0
The Shadow #19

Nov 29, 2013

The story moves at a snail's pace even though the kidnapping plot is completely contained to this one issue with very boring attempts at "detective" work which just boil down to "the same thing as the police but with less concern for civil liberties." The title character is blank and without real substance, the focus character is equally bland and one-dimensional while attempting to be a character of female empowerment even though her entire personality and world view is shaped by her love for her man. Finally, the artwork is bad; everyone is drawn in profile with extended chins and bizarre lines that make them look skeletal and jaundiced mixed with more then a few complete slips of perspective in the long shots.

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7.0
The Shadow #22

Feb 7, 2014

On the art side of things, it's pretty above average. There are some severely wonky perspective shots here and there and some surprisingly heavy inking on character faces, but nothing unforgivable (also the cover's a complete lie). Overall this issue does a lot wrong, but to no great extent while only doing 1 thing that right but getting it very right; it'll probably go down for me as the bench mark for future reviews where I need a definitive example of barely adequate, but adequate none the less, skirting into a recommendation by the skin of its teeth.

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4.0
The Shadow #24

Apr 15, 2014

There's some good artwork to be found with clever paneling and some excellent shading work and use of lighting but that's far from saving The Shadow #24. Overdone zombies, a plot that goes nowhere in no particular hurry, horrendous racial undertones that just keep piling on the questionable till it smothers the story like so many blubbery layers of bad decisions and a weak framing device that adds nothing makes The Shadow #24 a slog at best, not recommended though it was still better than The Mocking Dead.

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8.0
The Shadow (2015) #1

Aug 7, 2015

Aside from the concept The Shadow #1 also shines in the artwork by Giovanni Timpano and the colors by Marco Lesko. Timpano does amazingly crips and visually dynamic designs, reminiscent of the great Dale Eaglesham, while Lesko baths the entire proceedings in moody lighting with a lot of artificial yellows and eerie purples. The only problems with the issue are structural, the plot is a little winding and feels moderately padded while the issue also relies a little too heavily on the audience having read issue 0. Still this was a great start to the comic with imagination and style to spare, highly recommended.

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5.0
The Shadow Now #3

Dec 2, 2013

Maybe The Shadow, Now will get better with time, but as it stands this was a series downgrade and as such I can't recommend it.

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4.5
The Shadow Over Innsmouth #1

Jul 30, 2014

I think in many ways The Shadow Over Innsmouth is a comic for the wrong time. If this had come out in the 90s maybe I would've received it better but nowadays we really aren't hurting for Lovecraftian stories and a lot of the good ones we have are really damn good like Welcome to Nightvale or, again, True Detective so something as mediocre as The Shadow Over Innsmouth really just isn't necessary. At the same time it's not a very interesting or unique Shadow story as he's just fighting more bloodthirsty Scooby Doo villains and again we aren't really hurting for Shadow comics now a days either. In the end The Shadow Over Innsmouth is just a quick little one and done comic that wants to be Lovecraft without the Lovecraft, that's like trying to be Pixar without the Pixar and all that gets you is Cars, not recommended.

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6.5
The Strain #1

Jun 17, 2014

Overall this isn't a bad first issue to The Strain mach 2 or whatever you want to call this rerelease in fact I dare say it's pretty decent. Solid pace and some interesting mysteries make it a decent enough read even if the main character is a little empty and the dialogue often too wordy, there's a lot of exposition dump conversations here that probably would work better if we were seeing them acted out rather than reading them. The artwork is however is a big negative: over stylization breeding laziness with a lot of block color backgrounds and some really poor foreshortening on the plane but there are at least a few very cinematic shots. On the whole The Strain #1 isn't a terrible comic or a great comic it's simply serviceable, it's middle of the road as far as these things go, if you've liked what I've described and really can't wait I'd recommend it but otherwise wait for the TV show.

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4.5
The Strain: The Fall #5

Nov 25, 2013

It's entirely possible that I'm just experiencing The Strain: The Fall in the wrong context and that looking back on this series as a trade paper back or in its original novel format I'll actually have a greater fondness for it, but as is this really doesn't seem to be working as a monthly series.

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3.5
The Strain: The Fall #6

Dec 17, 2013

But, until then, all we have is this ongoing series. I really don't recommend it; it's harsh and joyless, with characters that range from flat to cartoonish, and a plot that's so vague and blurred as to be nigh invisible.

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4.0
The Terminator Enemy Of My Enemy #1

Feb 17, 2014

A lot of really cool things happened when people decided to break out of the original boxes imposed on Star Trek or Batman, and maybe the same needs to happen to Terminator, because from where I'm sitting, The Terminator Enemy of my Enemy sits firmly in the mediocre and disappointing section; not recommended.

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5.0
The Terminator Enemy Of My Enemy #2

Mar 19, 2014

Credit where it's due The Terminator Enemy of My Enemy #2 was an improvement working to solve a lot of things I've complained about in the past but as I've probably mentioned before I'm just not sure we really need to see a rehash of "unstoppable dude tries to kill person" that's a story we've all seen overdone well before this comic. It's not quite the Terminator greatest hits real of Terminator Salvation: The Final Battle but that's only because there's so little variation beyond the original story here to the point where what this feels like more than anything else is the comic version of lazy sampling, it's Terminator meets Whatcha Say, not recommended.

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4.0
The Terminator Enemy Of My Enemy #4

Jul 10, 2014

This is what I mean when I call this comic the dead eyed puppet version of Terminator, it's basically the same scenes as the original movie (this particular one being the assault on the police station) only without the engaging characters and shock of seeing it for the first time. This franchise has been running in place for over 2 decades now and I'm starting to think we'd be better off just leaving it in the past like this comic; skip it.

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7.5
The True Lives Of The Fabulous Killjoys #6

Dec 31, 2013

Overall, though, I would still recommend Killjoys #6; it's not the best end the series could have had, but it's still pretty damn enjoyable for all my complaints. The middle may have been a stronger portion of the series, but this issue still holds up well, especially in comparison to a lot of the other stuff I've seen come out this year. It's sort of like that old adage "always shoot for the moon, because even if you miss, you'll still land amongst the stars."

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6.0
The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #1

Jan 10, 2015

Part of this major criticism comes from perspective, I've seen a lot of better and more engaging examples of whatSquirrel Girltries to do. Force superhero clichs of narration and theme songs into the real world both enter here like tropes of the very things they ridicule (Seen in spoofs likeThe Tick,Darkwing Duck).The "whacky" banter is like a much nicer version of whatKeith Giffenused to do inJustice League International(or as I call it the great Justice League comic ever.) Lastly, UnbeatableSquirrel Girljust isn't weird enough to be as interesting and unique asAmbush Bug,Freakazoid, or the newTeen Titans GoTV show. Left somewhere in the middle with a main character too nice, quirky, and competent enough to be funny or interesting, I don't recommend it.

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9.5
The White Suits #1

Feb 17, 2014

The artwork is another great element of the series, but one that can threaten to overindulge itself. Though a lot of the time the heavy stylization only adds to the mood, especially in moments where the white suits themselves sort of twist and morph from the stylization to become more disturbingly monstrous, at other times the styling can obstruct what we're seeing. Thankfully, that didn't happen often, and there are enough truly great moments to this comic that it easily overcomes any pitfalls like that. I've gushed about this issue for the last 900 words, so anything I say here will just be additional gravy; great style and use of the medium combine to make a great comic. You should buy it.

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5.5
The Wicked + The Divine #1

Jun 16, 2014

The way things have been set-up this isn't a story to be told piece meal overtime and it really isn't a story that should serve as an introduction to these characters and their universe. Maybe things will improve with the next issue but as for now I'd say give it a pass.

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4.0
The Wicked + The Divine #2

Jul 15, 2014

We're low on time so let's wrap this up; not a ton of plot goes down in The Wicked and The Divine #2- we learn that the gods incarnate into already existing people which mean someone had to basically die so Lucifer could dress up like David Bowie (there I said it happy?) and do concerts so that's depressing, Laura reveals more of her twisted inner madness as she becomes embroiled in the hunt for whoever framed Lucifer, and a rapper type god named Baal goes on TV and swears at a reporter for daring to suggest the "gods" shouldn't be allowed to murder with impunity helping to cement the truly ugly nature of these so-called Gods and how completely backwards Laura's worship of them is, The Wicked and The Divine #2 is not recommended.

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3.5
The Wicked + The Divine #4

Sep 18, 2014

If it's not apparent I hate The Wicked and The Divine just on the principal of the concept alone. I will never understand the thinking in dropping beings of stupendous power into your universe only to have them sit on their hands, it's like if the next Superman movie was about him using his powers to become a pro-footballer and that's it.

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4.5
The Wicked + The Divine #5

Oct 25, 2014

This problem extends to the entire world of The Wicked and the Divine. Despite this supposedly being a universe where the gods incarnate into mortal humans every 90 years it's somehow exactly the same as the world we live in right now. Right there, that static sameness sends a massive message, that these gods change nothing. If you actually follow back the 90 years thing that means there would've been literal gods walking the Earth during the age of enlightenment, there's no way that wouldn't result in the entirety of our world being irrevocably altered. Yet despite that the world is still the same as ever, because the writing is bored with its own premise. The Wicked and The Divine isn't a comic about exploring the ramifications of gods among us it's abut exploring someone's feelings about creating art in a very haphazard and poorly written manner and charging you 3 dollars for the privilege of reading a very pretty first draft. Needless to say I don't recommend it.

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7.5
The Witcher #1

Mar 17, 2014

Overall I thought this was a very, very, very decent issue. Good atmosphere complemented by good art with interesting monsters and enough to the world to help it stand out as wandering adventurer fantasy piece but let down a bit by ironically enough a lot of the same problems that plague other entries in the genre; underdeveloped protagonist and mixed supporting cast. Still if you're curious, loved the games, or are a big fantasy junkie I'd recommend this issue.

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8.0
The Witcher #2

Apr 22, 2014

It should be clear by this point that I highly recommend The Witcher to basically everyone. In a world of terrible comic adaptations like Mass Effect or god help you Tomb Raider, The Witcher stands tall as a beacon of quality in a sea of mediocrity and awfulness, a stunning triumph of slow paced story telling, creepy horror infused atmosphere, and a faith in the immersion of the comic's artwork and designs to draw you into the characters without the need of some complex narrative, which is beginning to feel like a serious rarity. It's a great book and I highly recommend it (also 5 bucks says that the reason the food keeps appearing in banquet halls is that this is actually a video game and that's the secret of the mansion Wreck-It-Ralph/Lego Movie style.)

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4.5
The Witcher #4

Jun 19, 2014

I don't mean to sound so negative about The Witcher as it's not like it's a horribly broken or deeply offensive comic, it's just that it feels like a lazy comic. It's a series that, before now, had enough uniqueness and creativity to make the last couple issues feel like blatant giving up. It's still adequate at passing the minutes from cradle to grave but if you're looking for a more unique or engaging experience there's nothing to recommend here, this issue doesn't even have a real conflict driving things anymore so much as it's become a holding pattern of characters awkwardly telling "amusing" anecdotes to pass the time till The Witcher issue 5, not recommended.

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4.0
The Witcher #5

Jul 15, 2014

This is meant to be the story of Geralt the Witcher, wandering adventurer and magic user yet he's barely present and had no agency or true connection to any of the events within this series, which is a pretty big screw-up given it's his name on the damn title when all he did was ramble in, stuff his face with wine, pork some succubus in a random bath tub and then wander off to parts unknown, our hero ladies and gentlemen; not recommended.

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7.5
The X-Files: Season 11 #1

Aug 14, 2015

If you're a big fan of the X-Files or someone who's getting into the series but wants more The X-Files Season 11 is a good pick-up. It's got enough detail to engage but is accessible enough to still be enjoyable even if you don't know every episode by heart. There's also more than enough Sci-Fi weirdness and conspiracy malarkey to keep any X-Files fan happy.

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9.0
Think Tank #12

Feb 11, 2014

The artwork of the series has improved a lot over its run and works really well now with some awe-inspiring scenes to be found in the issue. Overall Think Tank is an excellent series and this second season has truly cemented that. It manages to overcome the character hurtles of the first season, to deliver a chilling and engaging political thriller story full of gene targeting viruses and mid-air robot combat, all of which only serves to ground the story on the front lines of reality. It'll be awhile before season 3 starts up again so in the meantime I recommend everyone pick up this issue if you're already reading or get the trade paperback once it hits the stands, Think Tank is one you don't want to miss. Highly Recommended.

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5.5
Thor (2014) #1

Oct 2, 2014

Maybe this is just a rough start, like I said it strikes me that this issue feels more hurried than anything else, like the authors were rushing to meet a deadline. Maybe in the coming months I'll grow to love Thor, it'll open my eyes to the beauty of the world around me and all mankind will sing its praises, our shared love for Thor ushering in a new era of Viking based peace and prosperity, but I kind of doubt it. As of right now I don't recommend this comic.

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7.5
Thor (2014) #2

Nov 14, 2014

All this adds up to a very light and breezy comic alternatingbetween fun, action adventure and enjoyable writing. While the very stripped down and basic approach to storytelling might seem lazy,the willingness to let the story breath and develop at its own pace justifies. Bequietly subversive simply by having a Thor struggle being something she's notis a strong one, and improves the storytelling immensely. Recommended.

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7.0
Thors #2

Jul 31, 2015

I'm not sure that Thors is a comic that needs to exist but it's a damn enjoyable one and I'm glad its here regardless. Amid all the ponderous bloat and excessive mini-series that have plagues Secret Wars overlong running time it's nice to have books like Thors or Weirdworld that are a more creative approach to the idea of a gestalt universe created from bits of other realities. I wish more of the Secret Wars tie-ins were as creative and stylish as this one.

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5.5
Tomb Raider #1

Feb 24, 2014

Overall, Tomb Raider feels like something that doesn't need to exist, and it's hard to think that even fans of the game would be interested in this" if only because it undoes a lot of Lara's development from the Tomb Raider game. The game ends with Lara supposedly in a place of strength, as the point was to explain her origin story, but here it feels very much like we've hit the reboot button on that character development and sent her back to the realms of fragility and vulnerability she spent an entire video game getting out of. Besides that, most of the issue feels severely padded-out, and the action is disappointingly short, with a new mystery that feels simplistic and not very attuned to providing interesting set pieces or plots. I'd give this issue a miss unless you're a hardcore Tomb Raider completionist.

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4.0
Tomb Raider #2

Mar 24, 2014

There really is no 1 easy thing to point to explain why Tomb Raider has moved from poor to sucking in my view, just a ton of small bad decisions that all add up to one big bad decision that is the entire comic. The story goes exactly nowhere and is in no hurry to get there with no understanding of action, fun, intrigue, or drawing the reader into some kind of mystery and serves mainly as a loose excuse to rehash the character development of the game but with softer, less violent edges while also alienating any possible new fans the series might've found with this installment. You get something of the impression this is a Tomb Raider comic from people who don't like Lara Croft and didn't really want to make a Lara Croft comic but didn't have any other ideas to throw up instead and as a result it's not much of anything other than just an infuriating waste of time and talent especially with how sloppy and clunky this issue was, don't buy it.

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4.0
Tomb Raider #3

Apr 22, 2014

The plotting is uninspired, the enemies are lame and way too overpowered while making no sense within the series' continuity, and the entire comes off as tragically flaccid and with no energy. It's all just so much white noise, just bits of time occupying bits of space, none of it funny, interesting, or scary but I can't deny that there are pictures with dialogue on them, if that interests you fine, go for it, but for everyone else stay far away from Tomb Raider.

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4.0
Tomb Raider #4

May 26, 2014

The thing that drives me absolutely nuts about this comic is how much it didn't have to be this bad. I like what I've heard and seen of the new Tomb Raider video game and I would be genuinely interested in exploring the struggles of THAT character and HER universe but this isn't her. This is a panicky, out of her depth character that confuses doing SOMETHING for having agency or competence. I'm not saying you can't have a protagonist occasionally be panicky or out of their depth but with comic book Lara it's her soul character note; she's always panicking and flailing and it gets really old and really annoying really quickly: not recommended.

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4.0
Tomb Raider #5

Jun 23, 2014

I didn't intend for this review to turn into a mini-dissertation on Lara Croft and the relation between repressive views on sexuality and its influence on strong female representation but at this point there's really not much else to say about this comic. Basically all the complaints I had in my past 4 reviews and the first couple paragraphs of this review still stand for this latest issue of Tomb Raider and I was a little tired of repeating myself. Suffice to say I doubt I'll be reviewing the final issue of this series, the only reason I might now is for posterity's sake, as for Tomb Raider #5; not recommended.

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4.0
Tomb Raider #6

Jul 24, 2014

The game may have had issues with Lara's character lacking personal agency but at least she had an arc, this comic just felt like a waste of time and made me question the wisdom in doing more Tomb Raider stories, not recommended.

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6.5
Trees #1

May 27, 2014

So yes I admit this was a less than stellar review for Trees but I still liked the comic and found it interesting just not quite as narratively tight or character focused as it really needed to be. The concept, while imaginative and cool, isn't enough to sustain all these disparate unfocused parts and really needs a strong narrative for the concept to grow around. Still recommend just with the reservation to not get your hopes up too high.

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6.5
Trees #2

Jun 24, 2014

You know I opened this saying it was better than Trees #1 but here at the close I'm not sure if it's actually worse. The biggest problem in trying to assess Trees now is that I'm not sure how the series will proceed; more random world plots thrown in around the central arctic story or have we finally collected all the plots we're going to be using like their pokemon cards. Either way I'm still not sold on this series as so far the only story I've really found that impressive or engaging is the Somalia stuff, especially with how annoying the arctic adventures were this issue. Maybe things will get better with issue 3 or maybe they'll get exponentially worse as for now Trees hangs in the limbo of just kind of lame and certainly not recommended.

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5.0
Trees #3

Jul 22, 2014

Overall Trees #3 benefits from being more centered and focused than the previous installments and the story it's mainly centered on, the Italy plot line is at least interesting, it just does nothing to justify its own vast eccentricities and set-up, almost like Trees is embarrassed to bring up the Trees. You could do worse but you could also do far better, me personally I'd skip it.

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3.5
Twilight Zone #2

Feb 6, 2014

This is the kind of character who would only appeal to the most egomaniacal and petty. If that's not you, then I don't recommend this comic.

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3.5
Twilight Zone #3

Mar 5, 2014

It's a slow reveal twist, gently pulling back from what we thought was happening for a reveal; where we thought we were following a poor guy besieged by his evil doppelganger, we eventually see it's a bad man getting replaced by his better shadow self. Here, Fat-Cat has been very firmly cemented as a horrible person from the start of the story, and only gotten more and more irredeemable as it has gone on, and there hasn't even been a real conflict between the two yet. That's honestly Twilight Zone's biggest problem. Fat-Cat is just so incredibly unlikable, yet we're still very much following his story.

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6.5
Twilight Zone #5

May 29, 2014

Overall though this is actually a pretty promising start of The Twilight Zone's 2nd installment; as I said the pacing is considerably flawed in how much the story spirals directionless in this installment but there are the seeds of a legitimately good modernization of a classic Twilight Zone story here and the ending does show they're being nurtured and might germinate into something worthwhile. I don't fully recommend it as it's sort of a circular read and chances are you'll be able to pick-up issue 6 without skipping a beat but if you want to complete the entire story or get into this new Twilight Zone comic this is a good place to start.

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7.0
UFOlogy #1

Apr 4, 2015

The most impressive thing aboutUFOlogyis how little it needs to be about aliens. There's alien conspiracy stuff to be had; it just all seems very trite and meaningless, an afterthought under the weight of our main characters. It's possible that's just a side effect of being a first issue. As we go on, the aliens will tie more and more into the lives of Becky and Malcolm, and I certainly hope so. As it stands,UFOlogyis a great comic when it focuses on the compelling drama of its small world. I highly recommend.

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4.5
Undertow #1

Feb 19, 2014

More than anything else Undertow was frustrating. It was frustrating because of how much I wanted to become immersed in the world being presented, but the comic just keeps fighting me and trying to keep me from actually knowing what's going on. The awful coloring is another kneecap to the storytelling here, as there's never anything worth focusing on in any panel and the characters are all so poorly differentiated that I just gave up trying by about half way through the comic. Maybe somewhere down the line Undertow will get better, but as of this issue, it's probably best if Atlantis remains lost: not recommended.

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8.0
Vandroid #1

Feb 25, 2014

Yeah, most of the characters are jerks, and the story doesn't make a lick of sense, but that all kind of pales to the awe and nonsense on display here, all of which is infused with a passion for the material that's impossible to fake and really makes Vandroid fun to read and not just to mock, so I guess I really can't help but recommend this one.

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7.0
Veil #1

Mar 3, 2014

I'm basing this mainly off of extrapolations from Rucka's ending letter, so I could easily be off the mark here, and we'll just have to check back in a month or so to see where the series goes, but the bottom line here is that Veil is good. The central mystery is engaging and the artwork is striking and memorable, with some amazing color work that extenuates the tone and atmosphere quite well, all of which help to make up for the first issues somewhat disjointed narrative, recommended.

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5.5
Veil #2

Mar 31, 2014

Overall Cormac is a boring antagonist though, he's just sort of there. His end goal is to find Veil to achieve profit (citation needed) but he doesn't have any personality beyond that other than being a little bit superior and a little bit snide. That's sort of a microcosm for the series as a whole, it's a whole ton of little bits that don't add up to a cohesive whole. Specifically the lack of a central narrative thread really ends up hurting the comic with this issue as you get the distinct impression of how much the story is floundering. Overall I was just left with the distinct impression this comic was written with the intention of having a message more than telling a good story, granted it's a good message about how our society treats women with a specific lens for rape culture but that doesn't add up to 3 dimensional engaging characters. Sad to say but I'd give this one a miss.

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7.5
Weirdworld #2

Jul 23, 2015

Like a lot of Secret Wars tie-ins Weirdworld's biggest success is in being fun while unobtrusive. The action is fast paced, the plot simple, and the characters likable and it's all easily enjoyed and forgotten pretty quickly. It's a fun comic snack that's buoyed by some stupendous artwork.

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4.5
Wildfire #1

Jun 12, 2014

It's a shame because there really is something to the GMO/disaster concept but with the very ugly layer of sexism lathered over it, whether intention or not, makes Wildfire a problematic book. Coming back to it a second time before writing this review it struck me how un-moored I felt reading the comic with no one acting as a strong main character as Dr. Silva was caught up in the story of being a successful and respected scientist being bullied into making dumb decisions and Dan Miller is trapped by having no-personality to engage with. All of this adds up to a very good concept that's struggling for characters to uphold it so it all comes off at least flat and worst sexist, pass.

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3.5
Wildfire #2

Jul 17, 2014

The bottom line with Wildfire is that regardless of whatever message it might be trying to peddle about the authorities (instead of ya know- GMOs, but I guess that's only the central premise of Wildfire why would that be important) the staggering incompetence and negligence on display strangles even the slightest hint of character agency in its crib. The interesting characters are thrown aside for an ill advised and bland protagonist, there are too many meaningless side plots to mention, the sexism hasn't gone anywhere, and the whole thing has poor pacing and really boring un-dynamic artwork for a disaster story; not recommended.

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7.5
Wonder Woman '77 #1

Jan 11, 2015

It's a testament to how well the format of digital comics can be used to create something new and interesting with the medium. There have been a lot of things out lately dealing with women and espionage in a period piece setting, but Wonder Woman '77 is easily the best. The lighter and more “anything goes” tone goes hand-in-hand with the unique stylistic approach to create a great send up to the classic show, and a very enjoyable standalone Wonder Woman comic.

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6.0
X #14

Jun 10, 2014

Overall I didn't hate X #14, I just didn't think it was all that amazing. More than anything X feels like it has 1 too many influences over what it is which leaves it without enough of a truly dominant aesthetic or style. It doesn't feel like it has a true genre even within the subgenres and focuses of superhero comics, so what you're left with though an overall good superhero action story ends up feeling a little empty and ambitionless, however if you liked what I described here and think this sounds awesome this is a very good issue to jump on with, otherwise maybe leave X by the wayside for the moment.

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