Oscar Maltby's Comic Reviews

Reviewer For: Newsarama, Word Of The Nerd Reviews: 200
7.5Avg. Review Rating

8.0
2000AD #1924

Mar 24, 2015

All in all, 2000 AD 1924 is a hugely enjoyable and varied anthology that retains a high quality of artwork and storytelling. There's a few low spots here (Namely Slaine's incomprehensibility and Strontium Dog's gaudy coloring), but they are mere niggles in the grand scheme of things. If you've never jumped into the weird world of 2000 AD before, maybe you should finally take the plunge.

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9.0
A-Force #1

May 21, 2015

A solid cliffhanger rounds out the intriguing A-Force #1, which is another imaginative and original concept for Marvel's Secret Wars event.

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8.0
Action Comics (2016) #957

Jun 8, 2016

Zircher and Jurgens try their best with the final page of Action Comics #957, but it doesn't quite live up to the big two's most recent twists. Still, if there's one thing that Action Comics #957 promises, it's that Action Comics #958 is going to feature the mother of all super-powered fights. And after all, what else are we here for but a good ol' brawl?

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7.0
Action Comics (2016) #958

Jun 22, 2016

Action Comics #958 is a high-impact book with simple aspirations. Jurgens and Zircher are content to fill their 20 pages with gorgeous, wide action sequences; undoubtedly taking advantage of the faster pace afforded by Action's twice-monthly publishing schedule. It's the kind of issue that makes you feel like a kid, sprawled out on the comic book-covered sofa, too engrossed in four-color fun to listen to your mom telling you to tidy the place up. Although Dan Jurgens' writing style shows its age here and Patrick Zircher's vacant expressions often make his figures resemble mannequins, this creative team still knows exactly how to weave a thrilling and satisfying single issue.

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9.0
Action Man #1

Jun 21, 2016

Action Man #1 is a welcome introduction and a successful refresh of one of Hasbro's lesser known properties. John Barber's punchy and snappy script whizzes us through the basics and sets up a compelling new status-quo with loads of room to build from, even if it is marred by a handful of rude words that detract from what is otherwise a decidedly all-ages offering. Visually, Paolo Villanelli's clean and minimalist artwork carries a subtle manga influence that effectively communicates both action and emotion. All in all, Action Man #1 is a fantastic new start for Britain's favorite 12-inch super-spy.

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8.0
Adventures of Supergirl #1

Jan 25, 2016

Like most of DC's digital-first series, The Adventures of Supergirl #1 is a well-executed microcosm of the property it's based on. With fun artwork and a fast-paced script, CBS' Supergirl has survived the jump to comic books intact, even if Bengal doesn't attempt to match the likenesses of the show's cast. For just a cent shy of a dollar, The Adventures of Supergirl #1 is a worthy lunch-break diversion.

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10
Age of Reptiles: Ancient Egyptians #1

Jun 2, 2015

It's difficult to rate Age of Reptiles: Ancient Egyptians #1 alongside more orthodox comic books. Ricardo Delgado has put his heart and soul into this quiet yet dramatic book that feels more like a nature documentary than a standard comic. It would be easy to blast through Age of Reptiles: Ancient Egyptians #1 in 3 minutes and blast it as overly simplistic, but you'd be missing the point. There's a subtle elegance to Delgado's tale of battling beasts that demands you spend a long time poring over its every nuance. Your mileage may vary.

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7.0
Agent Carter: SHIELD 50th Anniversary #1

Sep 21, 2015

Agent Carter : S.H.I.E.L.D. 50th Anniversary #1 is a solid addition to Marvel's celebration of a half-decade of espionage and intrigue for the spies in blue and white. Kathryn Immonen's script is refreshingly free of violence, somewhat let down by Rich Ellis' artwork. Ellis' occasionally confusing action and Rachel Rosenberg's questionable color palette leaves Agent Carter: S.H.I.E.L.D. 50th Anniversary #1 often unappealing to the eye, but there's a warmth that shines through to make it worth a read.

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5.0
Aliens/Vampirella #1

Sep 1, 2015

Aliens/Vampirella #1 is a primo example of a writer who chose to play it safe, much to the issue's detriment. Javier Garcia-Miranda's solid pencilling wrings the best out of Corinna Bechko's safe script, especially in the issue's opening and closing pages. Vampires vs. Aliens is an absolutely killer concept for a horror book, but this first issue barely scratches its multi-fanged surface.

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8.0
All-New Hawkeye #1

Mar 5, 2015

Jeff Lemire and Ramon Prez brazenly attempt to follow Matt Fraction and David Aja's ground-breaking and not-quite-finished run on Hawkeye with All-New Hawkeye #1: an ambitious and visually distinctive issue that offers an all-too fleeting glimpse into both the past and present of Clint Barton.

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9.0
All-New Hawkeye (2015) #1

Nov 16, 2015

Contrast is the name of the game in All-New Hawkeye #1, both in an artistic and narrative sense. All in all, Jeff Lemire's iron-clad plotting and Ramon Perez's night-and-day stylings come together to make All-New Hawkeye #1 another great start for Team Hawkeye set in tumultuous times.

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7.0
Amazing Spider-Man (2015) #1

Oct 7, 2015

Amazing Spider-Man #1 is an absolute beast of comic book. At 60-odd pages, there's more than enough bang for your buck here, even if Slott's vision of Spider-Man ignores what makes one of Marvel's greatest great. Between the main feature and six short stories, there's something here for every Spidey fan, even it's not all perfect.

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8.0
Amazing Spider-Man (2015) #13

Jun 1, 2016

All in all, Dan Slott and Giuseppe Camuncoli deliver another action-packed and joke-infused issue of Amazing Spider-Man, meaningfully progressing a plot-line that's been simmering for the last 12 issues. For a healthy slice of wise-crackin' action, Amazing Spider-Man #13 can't be beat.

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7.0
Ant-Man #2

Feb 5, 2015

Simple but clear artwork and a script heavy on laughs make Ant-Man a book to watch.

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9.0
Aquaman (2016) #26

Jul 24, 2017

Gorgeous and compelling, Aquaman #26 is the cream of the crop this week.

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9.0
Archie (2015) #1

Jul 7, 2015

Waid and Staples' respectful reboot must come a relief for longtime fans of Riverdale's most optimistic teenager. The modern art-style combined with this faithful take on Riverdale gives Archie #1 an air of timelessness. It should have been so easy to redesign the entire cast into unrecognizability and make smartphones integral to the plot, but Staples and Waid thankfully ignore this temptation. While there are a few telltale signs of a learning curve " perhaps both for creator and reader alike - at its core, Archie #1 is a successful injection of energy and relevancy into the most innocent universe in modern comics.

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3.0
Armor Wars #1

Jun 8, 2015

At its core, Armor Wars #1 is little more than a set-up for an impending murder mystery. Robinson's world-building is more than a little clumsy, although there are a few moments here when the setting really shines. Marcio Takara's artwork is similarly troubled. His stylish pencils seem choked by overzealous inkwork and ham-fisted color. All in all, Armor Wars #1 is a book with a solid concept hampered by poor execution.

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8.0
Ash vs. The Army of Darkness #1

Jul 6, 2017

School's in session for Ash Williams in Ash vs the Army of Darkness #1, a lighthearted and animated introductory issue that applies The Real Ghostbusters approach to The Evil Dead thanks to artist Mauro Vargas' lanky cartoon stylings.

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7.0
Assassin's Creed #1

Oct 13, 2015

Assassin's Creed #1 is an enjoyable origin tale set in a well-worn and imaginative universe. Protagonist Charlotte De La Cruz is a fully realised and likeable character, while the world she inhabits is recognisable with a thick dollop of action and fantasy. Visually however, this book is a mess. From heavy-handed inking to soft and simplistic color-work, Assassin's Creed #1 is far from a feast for the eyes, despite Edwards' excellent grasp of visual storytelling. If you can handle the problems in the artwork, there's a rock-solid foundation for a compelling ongoing series here.

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8.0
Astonishing Ant-Man #1

Oct 21, 2015

Despite the lack of Scott Lang's scene-stealing supporting cast and a couple of over-written panels, The Astonishing Ant-Man #1 is a great first issue. With genuinely funny dialogue, effective drama and tense action, Nick Spencer and Ramon Rosanas have well and truly delivered the goods here.

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8.0
Batgirl (2011) #39

Feb 18, 2015

Batgirl #39 is a comic for the Vice generation, a fast-paced young-adult oriented title that puts equal weight on both sides of Batgirl's identity to provide a well-rounded window into the life of an incredibly well-realized character. Tarr's artwork plays well with Fletcher and Stewart's punchy script, and while it's almost too contemporary to stand the test of time, in the here and now Batgirl is a damn fine comic book.

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7.0
Batgirl (2011) #40

Mar 18, 2015

Maris Wicks' unique and visually arresting use of color atop Babs Tarr's fluid and expressive hand make for a gorgeous conclusion to a story that suffers a little in this final chapter. While Stewart and Fletcher arrive at the destination of Barbara's emotional journey in style, they get there on a rickety and tired vehicle that seems better suited to an '80s cyberpunk protagonist than the fiercely modern Batgirl of Burnside.

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8.0
Batgirl (2011) #41

Jun 25, 2015

It's business as usual for Batgirl, and business is booming.

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9.0
Batgirl (2011) #43

Aug 27, 2015

The sky is still blue, the sun is still hot and Batgirl is still an excellent read. If it's not on your pull-list already, this is a fine moment to jump in.

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7.0
Batgirl (2011) #44

Sep 23, 2015

This clearly isn't the best issue of Stewart and Fletcher's memorable run. A fumbled splash page and stuttering pace hamper the overall issue, but a memorable baddie, rock-solid drama and a carefully chosen guest artist show that this creative team's dynamic take on Batgirl is still one of the best books that DC currently publishes.

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7.0
Batman '66 Meets Steed and Mrs. Peel #1

Jun 8, 2016

Overall, Batman '66 Meets Steed and Mrs. Peel, Chapter 1 is a solid start to a thematically appropriate team-up. Ian Edginton delivers an entertaining script that captures the silly kitsch of Batman '66 and The Avengers as well as being a complete Catwoman escapade in and of itself, illustrated adeptly by Matthew Dow Smith. For die-hard fans of the decidedly non-Marvel Avengers, we've not hit the good stuff just yet, but this is still a solid taster of the adventure to come.

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8.0
Batman And Robin Eternal #1

Oct 7, 2015

All in all, Batman & Robin Eternal #1 is a comic book that just about manages to pull off its lofty ambitions. Snyder and Tynion IV have slaved over the plot to this tale of back-stabbing and secret history, although they take care to retain accessibility with a healthy dose of action and the obligatory cliff-hanger. Tony Daniel is Tony Daniel, offering up impossibly handsome faces atop detailed and architecturally solid cityscapes. Grayson fans will find a lot to love in Batman and Robin Eternal #1, as well as anyone who's ever had a cursory interest into the tangled web that Bruce Wayne weaves.

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6.0
Batman Beyond (2015) #1

Jun 3, 2015

Batman Beyond #1 is a poisoned chalice of a comic book. The artwork and coloring on display here are absolutely top-notch, and of course, it's great to see one of the better costume designs in the world of modern superheroics get a much-needed airing, even if the guy under the cowl isn't to everyone's liking. Dan Jurgen's script ultimately suffers from its marriage to the convoluted Futures End, but there's a lot of potential here for the series to find its own feet as Tim Drake continues to battle the omnipresent Brother Eye.

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7.0
Batman Beyond (2015) #2

Jul 6, 2015

Dan Jurgens and Bernard Chang are slowly beginning to reveal the potential behind this incarnation of Batman Beyond. Forgetting the shaky time travelling premise, there's a solid foundation here for future adventure. Jurgens still stresses plot above all, which makes Batman Beyond #2 a slow and ungainly read, although Chang's stylish artwork makes action sequences pop with activity. It's an improvement, but we're still not in "must-read" territory yet.

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8.0
Batman Beyond (2015) #3

Aug 6, 2015

With #3, Batman Beyond is quickly turning from poorly conceived oddity to a stunning and distinctive comic book.

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8.0
Batman Beyond (2015) #4

Sep 3, 2015

All in all, this is a top-notch slice of blockbuster superheroics.

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6.0
Batman Beyond: Rebirth #1

Sep 28, 2016

Batman Beyond: Rebirth #1 is a clunky but visually appealing reset for Terry McGinnis. Although Dan Jurgens is capable of much less intrusive storytelling than this, he succeeds in clearly setting up the Beyond universe for the entirely uninitiated. Ryan Sook's imaginative panel layouts work well with Avina and Lawson's bold palette of deep blacks and reds, interlaced with calming blue to create a visually appealing comic book with a wonderful sense of flow from panel to panel and page to page. Now that the "Rebirth" is out of the way, hopefully Jurgens will focus on character and plot to live up to Sook's artwork.

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8.0
Batman/Elmer Fudd Special #1

Jun 29, 2017

Tom King and Lee Weeks make the most of an offputting concept in this moody one-shot, successfully reinterpreting Bugs Bunny's baby-faced nemesis into a grizzled Gothamite.

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9.0
Batman/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1

Dec 10, 2015

This reviewer's a sucker for an improbable cross-over, and Batman/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is shaping up to be one of the greats.

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5.0
Batman: Arkham Knight #1

Mar 11, 2015

The all-star villain approach of the Arkham games is well-represented here, but average artwork and an overly verbose script make Batman: Arkham Knight #1 difficult to recommend, even if there are a few chuckle-worthy moments.

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9.0
Big Man Plans #1

Mar 3, 2015

The quality of Big Man Plans #1 shines through its every off-putting page. Eric Powell and Tim Wiesch are truly a terrible twosome, crafting their own unique spin on the hard-boiled crime drama. It's not big, and it definitely isn't clever, but Big Man Plans #1 is a solid read for those who can stomach its lurid content.

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8.0
Black Canary (2015) #1

Jun 18, 2015

All in all, if you enjoyed Fletcher's take on Batgirl, you'll be in your element here. Highly recommended.

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7.0
Bloodshot's Day Off #1

Jul 6, 2017

It's a holy day for Tank Man and Viet Man of the Bloodshot Squad in Bloodshot's Day Off! #1, a somber and low-key one-shot with a sentimental heart.

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6.0
Book Of Death: The Fall Of Bloodshot #1

Jul 21, 2015

Book of Death: The Fall of Bloodshot #1 is ultimately forgettable. Doug Braithwaite tries his best to wring some excitement out of Jeff Lemire's sedate script, to some degree of success. Eventually, the entire concept comes together for the issue's finale, but it's almost impossible to recommend a $3.99 book based on the strength of its final seven pages. One for the Valiant completionist only.

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8.0
Book Of Death: The Fall of Harbinger #1

Sep 29, 2015

Book of Death: Fall of Harbinger #1is the lone shining star in an otherwise weak summer event. Although Kano's standard humans look a little wonky, his surreal scenes of mind and monster are so gorgeous that they more than make up for it. Story-wise, Dysart's written a thoughtful script here that feels like a respectful and tender funeral for the entire Harbinger concept. If this were truly the end, it wouldn't have been the worst way to go.

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5.0
Book Of Death: The Fall of Ninjak #1

Aug 25, 2015

Book of Death: The Fall of Ninjak certainly is an end for Valiant's gentleman ninja, but it's the case of a great character stuck in a poorly told story. "The elderly monk of ultimate enlightenment" is a great look for Colin King, but it isn't utilised to its fullest here. Visually, this is a solid title, but Hairsine, Winn and Passalaqua's work can't quite save Kindt's script. This isn't a worthy death for Colin King, but it is a good-looking one.

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7.0
Book Of Death: The Fall Of X-O Manowar #1

Oct 21, 2015

Book of Death: Fall of X-O Manowar #1 is a great read right up until its last pages. Clayton Henry and Andrew Dalhouse's artwork is strong throughout, but Robert Vendetti's otherwise excellent script stumbles at the final hurdle, resolving an age-old conflict much too easily. Frustration defined.

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6.6
Burning Fields #1

Jan 22, 2015

All in all, Burning Fields #1 is a densely written and hard-hitting horror that will definitely play on your mind long after closing the back cover. However, it is a mostly unfulfilling slice of a much larger story, so those bothered by a slower pace may want to wait for the collected edition.

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8.0
Burning Fields #2

Feb 19, 2015

Make no mistake, Burning Fields #2 is a miserable comic book filled with miserable characters carrying out miserable jobs in a miserable country. It makes for a sobering read, but when that's clearly the book's intention, it's difficult to hate it. Although based entirely in the present, Moreci and Daniel's style of realistic dialogue ensures we learn about Dana at the same pace her new colleagues do. Lesser books would have resorted to entire pages worth of flash-backs by now, and Moreci and Daniel achieve that effect in a much more subtle manner. Burning Fields is definitely gathering steam, turning from a book worth just a cursory glance into a must-read.

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8.0
Burning Fields #3

Mar 18, 2015

Despite its tension-cutting misstep, Burning Fields #3 is the strongest issue yet. With eye-catching artwork and a layered script, Burning Fields #3 makes for a unique and compelling read.

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8.0
Captain Britain and the Mighty Defenders #1

Jul 15, 2015

There's no obvious drawbacks to Captain Britain and the Mighty Defenders #1. There's nothing bad about Alan Davis' pencils, they're just incredibly safe. Contrastingly, Al Ewing is an unrestrained whirlwind of ideas and energy, clearly enjoying the freedom offered by the Battleworld concept and using it to maximum effect. A great script and solid (if unexceptional) artwork make Captain Britain and the Mighty Defenders #1 an issue worth recommending.

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7.0
Civil War (2015) #1

Jul 9, 2015

Civil War #1 is a quiet caution against extremism, and both men's arguments should feel familiar to anyone who pays attention to world news. It's a purposefully ugly comic book, and it won't be to everyone's taste, but there's no denying the quality.

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8.0
Civil War (2015) #2

Aug 6, 2015

All in all, another compelling cliffhanger combined with a quality script and some fantastic artwork make Civil War #2 one to recommend.

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7.0
Civil War (2015) #4

Sep 10, 2015

Solid artwork, an impassioned Steve Rogers and a smarmy Tony Stark still make Civil War #4 worth a read, but it isn't quite the series it should have been.

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10
Civil War II #1

Jun 2, 2016

Tragedy rocks the Marvel Universe in Brian Michael Bendis and David Marquez's Civil War II #1, a truly widescreen comic book of universe-spanning proportions.

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4.0
Convergence: Batman and Robin #1

Apr 13, 2015

At the end of the day, Convergence: Batman and Robin #1 feels like a workman-like piece of work-for-hire. There's a solid creative team behind this issue, but neither artist nor writer nor colorist seems particularly enthused to be back in a pre-Flashpoint Gotham. It isn't offensive, just bland. Even the most hilarious failure can be interesting, but a boring comic book is often worse. And unfortunately, Convergence: Batman and Robin #1 is one boring comic book.

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3.0
Convergence: Batman and Robin #2

May 7, 2015

All in all, unless you're a diehard fan of some obscure Justice League Europe villains, Convergence: Batman and Robin #2 is one to avoid.

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7.0
Convergence: Batman and the Outsiders #1

Apr 23, 2015

Despite the solid character work here, a few too many splash pages make Convergence: Batman and The Outsiders #1 a quick read. It's great fun while it lasts, though.

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6.0
Convergence: Green Lantern/Parallax #1

Apr 16, 2015

From Paul Mounts' bright colors to Ron Wagner's classically super-heroic pencils, the whole creative team's in full '90s-throwback mode for Convergence: Green Lantern/Parallax #1. The question is, is that what you really want?

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8.0
Convergence: Justice Society Of America #1

Apr 29, 2015

Yes, Convergence: Justice Society of America #1 is a slow-paced affair, but that doesn't detract from its appeal. Entirely free from super-heroics and almost entirely a rumination about what it means to be powerless, Convergence: Justice Society of America #1 is a thoughtful and carefully worded book that sets the stage for what should be a cathartic finale.

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9.0
Convergence: Suicide Squad #1

Apr 16, 2015

Tom Mandrake's grimy pencils complement Tieri's dark story, inking his own work with a thick and shadowy line to reflect the less-than-perfect nature of the team.

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6.0
Convergence: Suicide Squad #2

May 13, 2015

Convergence: Suicide Squad #2 is the night to its preceding issue's day, the con to its pro, the Lisa to its Bart. Tom Mandrake struggles to depict the bright and clear super-heroics that Convergence: Suicide Squad #2's script so clearly requires, although he manages to crank out a few memorable images. Frank Tieri's script does the bare minimum when the two teams finally collide, but remains strong for quieter scenes. All in all, a shocking yet riotous finale means that Convergence: Suicide Squad ends on a high note; it's just a pity about the 16 or so pages in the middle.

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8.0
Convergence: Superman #1

Apr 9, 2015

Visceral action and a killer cliffhanger round out one of the best Convergence books this week. Good stuff.

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7.0
Convergence: The Question #1

Apr 8, 2015

he return of Rucka and Hamner's the Question is an inspired addition to the busy Convergence line-up. This is a crossover with limitless opportunity, and it's nice to see an often-overlooked run receive a second look amid more obvious choices. However, if you're scouring the plethora of Convergence titles for books that matter to that crossover, and you aren't already initiated with Renee Montoya: the Question, you should probably give this one a miss. Despite this relative inaccessibility, Hamner's moody artwork and Rucka's great take on Two-Face make Convergence: The Question #1 a fulfilling read.

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8.0
Convergence: Wonder Woman #1

Apr 22, 2015

Convergence: Wonder Woman #1is a book which represents exactly the right approach to the amazing Amazon. Larry Hama provides a confident and capable script with just the right amount of Silver Age fun, and Middleton's realistic and clean pencilling style is as equally adept at action sequences as it is dialogue. You'd be a fool to miss this one.

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7.0
Convergence: Wonder Woman #2

May 21, 2015

The ending's a bit too sudden, a casualty of Hama's antiquated style of comic story-telling, but otherwise Convergence: Wonder Woman #2 is a big slice of fun.

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6.0
Cyborg #1

Jul 22, 2015

Cyborg #1 is the first time that Vic Stone's really been able to pause for breath since he joined the Justice League. Walker offers some meaty insight into Vic's fragile state but his paper-thin villains need some serious fleshing-out in order to become worthy adversaries to Cyborg's conflicted mix of man and machine. There's real potential in the solo adventures of Vic Stone, but Cyborg #1 hasn't fully realised it just yet.

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8.0
Cyborg #2

Aug 27, 2015

All in all, Cyborg #2 is a marked improvement on a shaky start.

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6.0
Dead Drop #1

May 5, 2015

All in all, Dead Drop #1 is an average read. Story-wise, there just isn't a lot here to go on. It's a polished chase sequence and not much else. Still, Adam Gorham's stylish and fluid pencils are perfectly suited to Ales Kot's speedy script, so if you can stomach its vacuousness, Dead Drop #1 is a fun little popcorn read.

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9.0
Deadman: Dark Mansion of Forbidden Love #1

Oct 10, 2016

Deadman: Dark Mansion of Forbidden Love #1 successfully combines the classic haunted house tale, traditional romance and the tragic super-heroism of Deadman to create a disquieting portrait of the living and the dead trapped together in a hundred year old mansion. Although Sarah Vaughn's script sometimes falls foul of excessive narration, she effectively establishes relationships between three very different characters, pitting them against supernatural forces of malevolent and benevolent nature. Lan Medina and Jose Villarrubia's evocative visuals ascend Vaughn's atmospheric thrills, making Deadman: Dark Mansion of Forbidden Love #1 one ghost train you wouldn't want to miss.

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6.0
Devolution #1

Jan 19, 2016

Devolution #1 is an effective slice of apocalyptic horror, rendered even more potent by Jonathan Wayshak's stunning artwork. Rick Remender's script is foul of mouth and temper, but his reliance on the standard tropes of the post-apocalypatic scenario chokes the potential of its fantastic premise.

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7.0
Divinity #1

Feb 10, 2015

Divinity #1 is unashamedly an origin issue for its two unfortunate protagonists, offering nothing in the way of a supporting cast and very little progression past Adams' and David's stories. As such, it's almost impossible to see where Divinity is going; which is a somewhat questionable decision for a four-issue miniseries. Despite the intrusive narration, detailed artwork and thoughtful coloring combined with a gripping premise make for a solid book with great potential for issues to come.

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7.4
Django / Zorro #1

Nov 13, 2014

It's nice to see a comic book team-up that doesn't just seem like an excuse for the writers involved to bash two of their favorite toys together. There are a few niggling flaws here, but nothing that detracts too badly from an otherwise quality offering. Django Zorro #1 is a solid set-up issue that promises to lead towards a memorable series.

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7.4
Django / Zorro #2

Dec 19, 2014

Overall, Django Zorro #2 is a meaty read. This isn't a glorified $3.99 pamphlet of punching, but a word-heavy character study in obsession. This does somewhat disrupt the flow established in issue 1, which won't be for everyone, but it admirably sets the stakes for what will undoubtedly be a memorable next 4 issues.

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7.4
Django / Zorro #3

Feb 5, 2015

Django/Zorro #3 is by far the strongest issue yet. Wagner confidently guides Tarantino's voice on to the page and although conversation dominates the issue, the dastardly new slavers are just about entertaining enough to warrant your attention. The final moment of action is brief, but satisfying. As a single issue, Django Zorro #3 feels the most complete yet, despite a few irritating flaws.

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6.0
Django / Zorro #4

Feb 27, 2015

Overall, Django Zorro #4 is another slow-paced installment that, whilst solid in characterization, seems to tread water as we head towards its finale. Another shocking insight into Native American slave life hits as hard as Wagner and Tarantino surely intended, although some readers may be growing impatient with the somewhat pedestrian pace of plot development.

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5.0
Drax (2015) #1

Nov 5, 2015

There's a few solid chuckles here, but overall, the unintentionally amusing and single-minded murder machine can't carry his own ongoing series by himself just yet.

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8.0
E Is For Extinction #1

Jun 25, 2015

All in all, E is for Extinction #1 is a solid introduction to Morrison's quickly dismantled status quo, offering up that world in an easily digestible and accessible package with a raucous sense of humor.

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9.0
Empty Zone #1

May 26, 2015

Between The Empty Zone #1 and Danijel Zezilj, Dave Stewart and Brian Wood's Starve, Image Comics seems to be on a bit of a sci-fi horror kick at the moment. Jason Shawn Alexander has produced a visually stunning comic book here, with a unique script that begs just as many questions as it answers. Hitting the shelves June 17, The Empty Zone is a visceral and challenging book that feels fresh, even if it is set in a slightly clichd universe.

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6.4
Fight Like A Girl #1

Dec 3, 2014

Fight Like a Girl #1 is a distinctive and eye-catching book. There are a few niggling problems here that could have been solved with a ruthless and indiscriminate edit, the lack of which sadly leaves the issue's 26 meaty pages feeling unpolished. Still, the unique aesthetic on show here, along with the unpredictable and flexible nature of the premise, ensures that my eyes will be firmly fixed on issue 2.

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5.6
Fight Like A Girl #2

Dec 25, 2014

All in all, Fight Like a Girl #2 is a great-looking comic book with a fun and dynamic fight sequence that is sadly hampered by a script which, whilst occasionally showing flashes of great character, lacks conflict and consistency.

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8.0
Fury: S.H.I.E.L.D. 50th Anniversary #1

Sep 24, 2015

All in all, Fury #1 is a powerful one-shot that'll stick with you long after you put it down, even if the artwork within is average.

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7.0
Ghost Racers #1

Jun 11, 2015

Felipe Smith's script moves at a lightning pace, dedicating the majority of the issue to the race itself. The dialogue works, but this isn't an ambitious book, and there's nothing substantial here to get your teeth into.

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7.0
Ghost Racers #3

Aug 13, 2015

Finally, a solid but predictable cliff-hanger caps off Ghost Racers #3; a big and brash comic book that's low on subtlety and high on unadulterated chaos.

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7.0
Ghost Racers #4

Oct 1, 2015

Ghost Racers #4 is a solid slice of mindless and demonic super heroics. And if that doesn't sway you, here's four more words of recommendation: Flaming T-Rex flies jet.

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7.0
Giant Days #1

Feb 23, 2015

With Giant Days #1, John Allison has successfully adapted all the wit of his web-series to the traditional comic book. Barring a pacing issue and a few sloppily-rendered panels, Giant Days #1 is a massive and very welcome change of pace from the uniformity of the average comic book week.

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9.0
Giant Days #2

Apr 14, 2015

John Allison and Lissa Treiman have created another witty and colorful comic book with Giant Days #2. Allison's firm grasp of characterisation means he could write any kind of story with his well-established sandbox, and this issue is another true-to-life yet ridiculous insight into the lives of three headstrong teenagers.

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10
Giant Days #6

Aug 18, 2015

The world that Allison and Treiman have created here is real. The relationship webs weaving in and out of Giant Days feel tangible, their connections believable and endearing. This is a contemporary and forward-thinking comic book, for anyone who enjoys the vibe that Stewart, Cloonan, Tarr and Fletcher bring to their fledgling Batgirl-verse. Allison and Treiman are both at the top of their respective games here, and with that in mind, Giant Days #6 recieves a perfect 10.

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9.0
Godzilla in Hell #1

Jul 14, 2015

Between Godzooky and the much-maligned 1998 movie, Godzilla has always been a popular if poorly utilized character in the west. Godzilla in Hell #1 marks the most successful integration of Godzilla into western cultural canon, leaning heavily on the Christian concept of hell. Restrained in narrative but expertly realised in artwork, Godzilla in Hell #1 is a perfectly pitched single issue. Each instalment of Godzilla in Hell will be helmed by a different creative team, needless to say, the next team has quite an act to follow.

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5.0
Gotham Academy #5

Feb 25, 2015

All in all, Gotham Academy #5 isn't a very compelling read. Cloonan and Fletcher's light-hearted approach has produced a light-weight comic book, free from tangible threat and consequence. Even the imposing man-eater Killer Croc has been reduced down to a harmless oaf in an appearance which conflicts a little with his usual characterization. There's no denying the craft that has gone into the visual elements of this comic book, but there's little here to recommend other than as a shallow feast for the eyes.

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9.0
Gotham Academy: Endgame #1

Apr 6, 2015

Gotham Academy: Endgame #1 is a nice little "Endgame" palate cleanser, a break from the unrelenting grisliness of this Bat-crossover. It's a a quality book in it's own right: a good example of a tie-in done right. It's incredibly rare to see an anthology title from one of the big two in 2015, and it's a fitting testament to DC's refreshing new initiative that it found a home at Gotham Academy.

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7.0
Grayson Annual #2

Oct 1, 2015

Tim Seeley and Tom King have a solid grasp of characterization here, comparing and contrasting two radically different heroes in a way that sometimes hits and sometimes seems like nothing more than a retread of told tales.

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7.0
Green Lanterns #1

Jun 15, 2016

All in all, Green Lanterns #1 is a more grounded take on a usually bombastic series, utilizing mob and murder imagery alongside the delightfully wretched-looking Red Lanterns to gruesome effect. An obvious pick-up for fans of the departed Red Lanterns ongoing series.

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9.0
Green Lanterns #2

Jul 6, 2016

Simon Humphries and Robson Rocha have hit upon the appeal of Simon Baz and Jessica Cruz's on-the-job training scheme with Green Lanterns #2. Higher stakes and an increased focus on character propel this title from a solid contender to a must-have. Although Robson Rocha's pencils can be distractingly cheesecake-y, his Red Lanterns are delightfully disgusting and his talent for staging action-packed panels makes for an eye-catching read. All in all, Green Lanterns #2 is a thrilling issue of a series that is quickly gaining momentum.

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7.0
Green Lanterns #3

Jul 20, 2016

To err is human, and that makes Simon Baz and Jessica Cruz more alive than us mere flesh and blood bags. Sam Humphries continues trucking forward with the winning formula that piqued our interest with Green Lanterns Rebirth #1, relishing in Simon and Jessica's continued trials by fire to become fully fledged Green Lanterns. Despite a whiffed dramatic scene involving Bleez and fill-in artwork and coloring of varying quality, the believable and compelling dynamic between Jessica and Simon still makes Green Lanterns #3 worth a look.

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7.0
Green Lanterns: Rebirth #1

Jun 2, 2016

While this is a well-crafted issue, it is also a mostly expository one; a mere teaser for the Green Lanterns #1 yet to come.

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7.0
Guardians Team-Up #1

Mar 4, 2015

In summation, if you can forgive the crude colors, a few dodgily rendered background beasties and the ever-present evocation of the MCU, Guardians Team-Up #1 is a witty and accessible start to what will surely be a fun addition to anyone's pull-list.

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7.0
Gwenpool Special #1

Dec 10, 2015

Gwenpool herself seems like a lab-bred creature designed specifically to catch fire with the cosplaying crowd, and although there's nothing particularly compelling about the mix of wise-cracking murderer and cute-as-a-button teenager, Gurihiru's appealing manga-styled artwork and Christopher Hastings' joke-laden script make "Gwenpool's Holiday Adventure" a solid and funny affair.

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6.0
Hail Hydra #1

Jul 16, 2015

All in all, Hail Hydra #1 is a fun but ultimately unimpressive jaunt into another grim little nook of Battleworld.

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4.0
Harley Quinn (2013) #14

Feb 2, 2015

Still, pretty art can't save a comedy fallen flat. Whilst Harley Quinn #14 is undoubtedly catnip for the initiated, if it isn't tailor-made to your sense of humor, it's a disappointing read. Although this one-shot is a fairly accessible jumping-on point for new readers, it's still a straightforward story with little to offer outside of (in this case, missed) comedic value. A cringeworthy sitcom in comic-book form, Harley Quinn #14 is a wildly inconsistent representation of a character that writers still struggle to define.

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7.0
Harley Quinn (2016) #1

Aug 3, 2016

Although there's nothing here to convert the unconvinced into fully-fledged Harleyholics, Harley Quinn #1 is a fun and dynamic comedy book with bright and attractive artwork. Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti have been holding firm with Harley Quinn for a long time now, and their grip is in no danger of loosening any time soon.

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5.0
Harley Quinn: Road Trip Special #1

Sep 9, 2015

Bret Blevins, Jimmy Palmiotti and Amanda Connor have a knack for the comedic, but their work in Harley Quinn: Road Trip Special #1 sits uneasily between the past and the present. There are hints here and there that suggest that Palmiotti and Connor know better than to lower themselves to the level of a Marvel Swimsuit Special, but they frequently do so any way. The actual script underneath the skin is solid, and the friendship the three villains share is believable and endearing when you scrape away the barrage of lame sapphic euphemisms. However, it's 2015. We shouldn't have to scrape at all.

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9.0
Hawkeye Vol. 2 #21

Feb 5, 2015

Hawkeye #21 is a bitter-sweet beginning to the end of Clint Barton's most stylish solo run.

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5.0
Hit: 1957 #1

Mar 24, 2015

All in all, Hit: 1957 #1 is a stylish issue, hampered by a tired script that feels like it would rather be a novel. Vanesa Del Rey's fantastically styled artwork is expertly colored by Niko Guardia, but Hit: 1957 #1 can't quite be recommended on eye candy alone.

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8.0
Howard The Duck #1

Mar 12, 2015

Zdarsky's script is chock-full of jokes and visual humor, and whilst not every joke lands (a training montage sequence feels especially derivative), Howard the Duck #1 is still a hugely enjoyable first issue.

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7.0
Howard the Human #1

Aug 19, 2015

Howard The Human #1 is a stylish and witty book, but there's just no denying that the main draw of the character has been eradicated by its concept. Despite these misgivings, Mahfood and Stewart's wild, energetic artwork work with Young's tightly plotted script to make this a book worth a glance. Still, there's a reason he's supposed to be a duck.

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8.6
Itty Bitty Comics: The Mask #2

Dec 11, 2014

Despite that one tiny niggle, Itty Bitty Mask #2 is a fun and expressive title. I happily recommend it if you're in the mood for something funny and innocent, or more importantly, if you're looking for that all-important first issue for someone new to comics. Heck, my daughter's only 3, and she's sat on the sofa giggling at the "silly green lion" as I write this.

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10
Itty Bitty Comics: The Mask #3

Jan 19, 2015

As is to be expected from Baltazar and Franco, Itty Bitty Mask #3 is a frenetic 22 pages of zany fun, the kind of comic book that gets passed around the family by sniggering adults who should (but thankfully don't) know better.

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10
Itty Bitty Comics: The Mask #4

Feb 12, 2015

Itty Bitty Mask #4 is a fitting and rewarding ending to a high-quality series. High-octane and packed with imagination, this is a rock-solid book that achieves its every goal. Much like each instalment before it, issue 4 is just as satisfying and accessible on its own as it is in the context of a whole series. Much like Tiny Titans and Itty Bitty Hellboy, I see a strong and robust future for this series as a forever-recommended collected edition.

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7.0
Jonah Hex/Yosemite Sam Special #1

Jun 29, 2017

While the main story is rather rote and grisly for grisly's sake, Maheney and Alvarez's back-up shines brightly at the back of the book.

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9.0
Justice League / Power Rangers #1

Jan 11, 2017

Justice League/Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #1 is silly fun of the highest level. The Justice League might be first billed here, but this is a Power Rangers book first-and-foremost, maintaining that same high quality of their smash-hit BOOM! Studios ongoing. Tom Taylor and Stephen Byrne know full well where the appeal lies in a crossover like this, and they deliver it here in spades. You already know you want this.

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4.0
Justice League: Gods and Monsters - Batman #1

Jul 23, 2015

There's a solid story underneath all the jank, and the generous pages-per-dollar count helps a little, but overall, Justice League Gods and Monsters: Batman #1 is just too rough to recommend.

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6.0
Justice League: Gods and Monsters - Wonder Woman #1

Aug 5, 2015

There's a lot to like in Justice League: Gods and Monsters - Wonder Woman #1, but it's far from perfect. Rick Leonardi's artwork is mostly sub-par, even if Passalaqua's bold and bright colors bring out the best of it for the finished article. As a concept, Wonder Woman running a 1960's hippie commune is up there with the best that Elseworlds has ever had to offer, but DeMatteis' script doesn't quite wring all the potential it promises.

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7.0
King's Road #1

Feb 9, 2016

King's Road #1 is more suited to a dusty old comic book shop's bargain bin; lying dog-eared, water-damaged and thoroughly loved, than in the glossy glow of the new release rack. Occasionally embarrassing but always entertaining, King's Road #1 is one for the pulp fantasy fan.

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6.0
Last Sons of America #1

Nov 10, 2015

Last Sons of America #1 has a rock-solid central concept and great characterization, adeptly illustrated by Matthew Dow Smith and Doug Garbark. Despite this, Phillip Kennedy Johnson's script is heavy on exposition and low on visual ideas, making Last Sons of America #1 a dry offering that fails to engage the readers interest past the initial high-concept. There's potential here, even if the jury's still out on whether it will be fully realized.

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7.0
Leaving Megalopolis: Surviving Megalopolis #1

Dec 22, 2015

Over all, Gail Simone's story of one woman's life of struggle against those in power is a valid contribution to the "ultra-violent heroes" subgenre of the modern superhero comic book, even if her potty-mouthed psychopaths dull the sheer horror of this issue's predecessor through misplaced humor. Visually, J. Calafiore's nuanced and detailed linework and Jason Wright's equally effective coloring brings Simone's world to disturbing life. Leaving Megalopolis: Surviving Megalopolis #1 sure ain't pretty, but it is a worthwhile read.

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7.0
Marvel Zombies (2015) #1

Jun 15, 2015

Marvel Zombies #1 is a comic book that'll live or die depending on the reader's sense of humor. It isn't the best looking comic on the shelves this week, but there's a snappy exuberance to Spurrier's script that brings to mind Al Ewing's excellent Zombo. There's definitely legs in the ongoing adventures of Commander Elsa Bloodstone, even if this first issue suffers from some visual roughness.

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8.0
Marvel Zombies (2015) #3

Aug 31, 2015

All-in-all, Marvel Zombies #3 is another solid instalment of a miniseries that's been well-worth reading since page one of #1. Simon Spurrier's script is quick-witted, well-paced and full of heart, whilst Kev Walker's confident lines adeptly illustrate Elsa's zombie-infested corner of Battleworld. Let's hope next month's finale sticks the landing.

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8.0
Master of Kung Fu #1

May 21, 2015

All in all, Master of Kung Fu #1 is a welcome return for Shang-Chi, as well as a solid introduction into a promising realm with loads of potential.

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9.0
Midnight Society: The Black Lake #1

Jun 9, 2015

Drew Edward Johnson has started off on the right foot here. With a rock-solid script and striking artwork, Midnight Society: The Black Lake #1 is a gem of a comic book. Sure, there's a little stiffness to Johnson's facial expressions and the general conceit may seem a little worn, but these niggles hardly detract from the issue's overall quality.

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7.0
Midnighter (2015) #4

Sep 3, 2015

If you can stomach some embarrassing dialogue (example: "Ready to receive a new A-hole, you goat-fondling jack-ass?"), there's a lot to like in Midnighter #4.

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8.0
Moon Knight (2016) #1

Apr 13, 2016

Ultimately, it's Greg Smallwood's knack for visual storytelling that elevates Moon Knight #1 into a worthwhile pick-up for new initiates to the avatar of Khonshu as well as die-hard fans.

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8.0
Ms. Marvel (2015) #1

Nov 19, 2015

Needless to say, if Batgirl and the rebooted Archie suit your tastes, there's loads to love in Ms. Marvel #1.

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7.0
Mystery Girl #1

Dec 1, 2015

Although dynamic and filled with personality, Alburquerque's distorted figures detract from Paul Tobin's rich and characterful script. Despite its artistic problems, Mystery Girl #1 is still a solid first issue with a compelling premise that delivers.

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4.6
Nailbiter / Hack/Slash (One-Shot) #1

Mar 5, 2015

As it stands, it's fairly difficult to recommend Nailbiter Hack/Slash. If you're a Hack/Slash-aholic, you'll definitely enjoy the solid artwork and quality script of the back-half of the book, but that uninteresting first half and the reluctance to embrace the obvious "Let's make them fight" concept of a crossover makes for a disappointing read. Compared to previous Hack/Slash crossovers, which includes Cassie's epic battles with Evil Ernie and Chucky from the Child's Play movies, Nailbiter Hack/Slash falls criminally short.

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5.0
Nighthawk #1

May 25, 2016

Nighthawk's origin as a Batman analogue is well-known, but this reviewer wonders about the character's value in his own sphere. If you completely divorce Nighthawk #1 from the character's history, this is a painfully generic street-level hero book. There's definitely something very timely about the book's focus on anger at the establishment, especially when it comes to the evils of dodgy rented property, but the sadistic serial killer story at the issue's core is something we've seen a thousand times elsewhere, and better to boot. This is one for the real Nighthawk fans only.

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9.0
Nightwing (2016) #4

Sep 7, 2016

Tim Seeley and Javier Fernandez reveal the terror behind the mask in more ways than one with Nightwing #4, succinctly bringing Dick Grayson's first arc back behind the domino mask to a close. Seeley finally lifts the veil on Raptor's ambiguous driving forces, solidly establishing him as a force to be reckoned with while shifting power from the Parliament of Owls to an even more theatrical (and mutated) force. Equally weighted between pulse-pounding action and heartfelt drama, Nightwing #4 is the last ray of sunlight before the "Night of the Monster Men." A very worthwhile read.

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9.0
Nightwing (2016) #8

Nov 2, 2016

All in all, Nightwing #8 is a fulfilling, if inevitable, conclusion to a compelling arc. Equally successful in both art and script, Tim Seeley and Javier Fernandez work within a tried-and-tested framework to produce a memorable finale to Nightwing's triumphant "Rebirth."

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9.0
Nightwing: Rebirth #1

Jul 13, 2016

Between Tim Seeley's satisfying story and Yanick Paquette's clear and emotive lines, Nightwing Rebirth #1 is a bit special. Seeley and Paquette have crafted a compelling and logical path for Dick Grayson to slip back into the Nightwing persona, while also serving as a fitting and respectful goodbye to the thoroughly successful Grayson. Another well-executed new start for Dick Grayson.

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8.0
Ninjak #1

Mar 10, 2015

As is expected from Valiant, Ninjak #1 is a first issue that is the very definition of "rock solid". Clay Mann's classically super-heroic artwork combine with Matt Kindt's well-rounded script to make for a decent take on one of the most serious victims of 90's xxxxtreme.

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6.0
Ninjak #2

Apr 22, 2015

Ninjak #2 is a feast for the eyes, but a lazy script chokes this issue's potential. Still, another snapshot into Colin's tumultous childhood and an excellent back-up strip means that Ninjak #2 isn't entirely without storytelling merit. Proceed with caution.

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6.0
Ninjak #3

May 19, 2015

With Ninjak #3, Kindt and Guice's back-up story threatens to upstage the main feature, mostly due to the fact that a flawed Ninjak is more interesting to read about that an impossibly perfect one. Clay Mann's artwork is as gorgeous as ever, and Kindt's slow reveal of Colin King's difficult childhood is becoming more intriguing with each new issue. As a blockbuster-style spy comic, and if you can forgive its occasional groanworthy moments, Ninjak #3 performs admirably. Don't expect anything more than that, though.

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9.0
Ninjak #4

Jun 25, 2015

Ninjak #4 is a much-needed palette cleanser from the book's inconsistent first arc, and stands as the strongest single issue of the entire run so far.

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8.0
Ninjak #5

Jul 28, 2015

Overall, Ninjak #5 is a solid finale to a rollicking rollercoaster of a first arc. Kindt's scripts haven't always been the sharpest tools in the drawer, but Mann's chiselled heroes have offered the perfect accompaniment to this light tale of martial-arts infused espionage. Ninjak #5 is unambitious, but ultimately aware of its place in the market. There's nothing wrong with enjoying a mindless action & adventure every now and then, and Ninjak #5 is perfectly formed to give exactly that.

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8.0
Ninjak #6

Aug 26, 2015

Ninjak #6 is a complete tonal reversal of the previous issues. Whereas Clay Mann brought classic superhero aesthetics to the main story and Butch Guice injected a darker tone into the back-up strip, now Raul Allen dominates the issue with a more subdued take whilst Stephen Segovia brings the muscle in the back-up story. Matt Kindt's solid and bombastic storytelling continues uninterrupted, taking cues from the strengths and weaknesses of his new creative team and tweaking the script appropriately. Ninjak continues to be one of Valiant's strongest properties, even if he's a little less handsome and a little more sneaky under Raul Allen's hand.

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8.0
Nova (2013) #26

Feb 2, 2015

All in all, Nova #26 is a fun and heady throwback to a simpler time, before Marvel's heroes battled with bi-yearly crossovers and mourned cruel deaths. Sam Alexander is still finding his heroic feet, and it's fulfilling and refreshing to grow with him as the issues fly by. Although John Timms' artwork doesn't always hit its mark, he renders action scenes with aplomb. Gerry Duggan's script is punchy and memorable, which makes for an accessible issue that throws two colorful characters together and begins a promising arc for the young Human Rocket.

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8.0
Nova (2013) #27

Feb 19, 2015

All in all, a fast-paced script and animated pencils make Nova #27 a rock-solid issue of a quality run.

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7.0
Oh, Killstrike #1

Apr 27, 2015

While I was writing this review, I kept self-correcting Killstrike to Bloodstrike, Killstorm and any other random combination of violent words you could possibly think of. That's as good a sign as any that Oh, Killstrike #1 nails the abrasive and try-hard tone of the worst comic books of the '90s. At the end of the day, Oh, Killstrike #1 is a love/hate thing. It'll either resonate with you or it won't. There's a lot to like here, from Max Bemis' perfectly pitched grim 'n' gritty parody to Logan Faerber's purposefully ugly anti-hero, but it won't be for everyone. Faerber's art-style is initially off-putting and Bemis' script doesn't exactly start off strong, but the issue builds into something satisfying and witty with a promise of stronger issues to come.

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9.0
Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #1

Jun 21, 2017

The appeal of Peter Parker: Spectacular Spider-Man #1 as a jumping-on point for new readers, as well as a chance to get more conservative fans back in the saddle after a prior alienation, is obvious and strong. The main feature offers a razor-sharp script combined with well-realized although imperfect pencils, while the back-up is just as quick-witted as it adds an extra question mark or two to the main mystery. Read this.

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7.0
Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #2

Jul 24, 2017

It's all secret sisters and coffee date chaos in Chip Zdarsky and Adam Kubert's light-hearted Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #2, a genuinely funny book that's a little too thick on exposition and a little too light on action to match up to the compelling first issue.

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8.0
Phonogram: The Immaterial Girl #1

Aug 4, 2015

Phonogram: The Immaterial Girl #1 is a welcome return for Gillen and McKelvie's high-concept baby, fleshing out an already compelling world with a haunting back-story for one of its most intriguing characters, Emily Aster. For new readers, it's more than a little overwhelming, and even moreso for the less musically inclined. Challenging and alienating it may be, but Phonogram: The Immaterial Girl #1 is an impressively distinctive comic book all the same.

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8.0
Plunder #1

Feb 17, 2015

Plunder #1 is a refreshing acquisition for the more literary-focused Archaia Entertainment; a visceral, well-written book set in a dark corner of the world full of narrative opportunity. Swifty Lang attacks the questionable subject matter of modern day Somali Pirates with style and excess, whilst Skuds McKinley uses his knack for an ugly face to great effect. If you can stomach the violence, Plunder #1 is a quality comic book.

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4.0
Poison Ivy: Cycle of Life and Death #1

Jan 21, 2016

Despite its visual appeal, Poison Ivy: Cycle of Life and Death #1 struggles to offer a decent reason to read.

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7.0
Predator vs. Judge Dredd vs. Aliens #1

Jul 5, 2016

All in all, Predator vs. Judge Dredd vs. Aliens #1 is a solid set-up issue of an exciting (if slightly overdone) concept. Let's hope the inevitable monster triple-threat successfully pays off the promises of this decent if somewhat slow introductory issue.

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8.0
Rasputin #1

Oct 30, 2014

All in all, Rasputin #1 is a fun first issue of a series that promises to rejuvenate a well-worn historical story with a dynamic and modern sense of the fantastical.

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8.0
Rasputin #2

Nov 27, 2014

Rasputin #2 follows the blueprint set by the first issue pretty much to the letter. Riley Rossmo's art is still gorgeous and Alex Grecian's almost-silent script is once again a breath of fresh air in modern comics, although this does mean the issue is a little too much of a quick read.

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7.0
Raven #1

Sep 21, 2016

Marv Wolfman and Alisson Borges cast a long overdue spotlight on the daughter of Trigon with Raven #1, a solid first issue which serves as a great introductory point for the character as well as expanding a recent lost period of Teen Titans history. Although Borges' horrific artwork shines, busier sequences in Madison High School suffer for their detail. Most of all, Raven #1 offers Marv Wolfman the opportunity to show us all that he's still got it.

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9.0
Rebels (2015) #1

Apr 10, 2015

Dark Horse should be applauded for publishing Rebels #1. Gutsy, well-written and with solid artwork, itis the first part of a grounded historical tale that will elevate the literary value of anyone's pull list.

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8.0
Red Hood and the Outlaws (2016) #1

Aug 10, 2016

Scott Lobdell and Dexter Soy are immensely comfortable in Jason Todd's shoes, and it shows. Red Hood and the Outlaws #1 fulfills the first half of the issue's title, comfortably establishing the series' main threat and demonstrating Jason's new-found approach to a more ethical brand of crimefighting than he's used to. Irritatingly, there's still a massive question mark hanging over the series' long-term viability, as we have not yet been introduced to the last two thirds of the title's ensemble. Although it is yet to satisfy as a team book, Red Hood and the Outlaws #1 is one fantastic Jason Todd comic book.

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8.0
Red Hood and the Outlaws: Rebirth #1

Jul 27, 2016

Red Hood and the Outlaws: Rebirth #1 makes a very convincing argument for Jason's place in the Bat-family and the larger DC Universe as a whole. Scott Lobdell's portrait of a grudge-bearing warrior provides a rock-solid foundation for the ongoing series to come, provided of course that Lobdell can paint Bizarro and Artemis in a similarly compelling light. Dexter Soy's intimidating and balanced pencil-work is rich in eye-candy, aided by Veronica Gandini's tried-and-tested color palette of monochrome with energetic splashes of bright red. More than anything, Red Hood and the Outlaws: Rebirth #1 offers hope that Lobdell and Soy won't make the same mistakes that hampered the "New 52" Outlaws. A successful rebirth, indeed.

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7.0
Red Skull (2015) #1

Jul 1, 2015

All in all, Red Skull #1 is a standard set-up issue, sprinkled with a few fresh ideas that elevate the concept above the initial execution. Pizzari's artwork is wonderfully gritty during action, but fails to accurately render static characters. A compelling cliff-hanger and the promise of adventure with a great team of super-villains make Red Skull #1 worth a read, but only if you've got some room in your pull-list.

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7.0
Red Skull (2015) #3

Sep 14, 2015

If the set-up is "surely Red Skull is a worthy opponent for the omnipotent force of God Doom?", then Red Skull #3 is that joke's punchline in comic book form. Williamson deftly destroys Red Skull's delusions of grandeur in a single swoop which will surely prove controversial for some readers, even if it was the closest thing to a happy ending we could've possibly received. Visually, Pizzari's artwork is hit-or-miss, nailing grotesque but struggling to depict order and symmetry. In all aspects, Red Skull #3 is one ugly comic book. But when that is the intention, how could you possibly hate it?

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4.0
Red Wolf #1

Dec 3, 2015

All in all, Red Wolf #1 is a standard and somewhat forgettable take on a very unique Marvel property.

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8.0
Regular Show March Madness Special (One-Shot) #1

Mar 27, 2015

The Regular Show 2015 March Madness Special is a a must-have for Regular Show fans and indie comic enthusiasts alike. Consistency is the key with anthologies and Kaboom! has certainly nailed it here, even if the last two stories aren't quite as excellent as the first two.

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7.0
Scarlet Witch #1

Dec 10, 2015

More of a visual treat than a narrative triumph, Scarlet Witch #1 is nonetheless a dramatic opening issue that definitely offers something a little different from the House of Ideas.

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9.0
Secret Six (2014) #2

Feb 16, 2015

Secret Six #2 is a satisfying second installment of a successfully re-imagined fan-favorite. When combined with Ken Lashley's energetic artwork and Jason Wright's textured use of color, Gail Simone's strong and intriguing script makes Secret Six #2 an unmissable issue.

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7.0
Secret Wars 2099 #1

May 28, 2015

All in all, Secret Wars 2099 is intriguing fun, if you can stomach a few lines of dodgy dialogue.

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9.0
Siege (2015) #2

Aug 6, 2015

Appropriately, Siege #2 is set at the very centre of Battleworld, because it sits ahead of the pack in quality.

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8.0
Silk #2

Mar 23, 2015

Thompson writes a solid issue here for the soul-searching web-slinger, capably drawn by Stacey Lee. A renegade Hydra-bot action sequence and a heart-rending reunion scene make Silk #2 a great comic book, even if Cindy and her world should probably look a little less breezy and a little more mournful.

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8.0
Silk #4

May 14, 2015

Silk #4 is lighter on action than past issues have been, but when the characterization is this solid, it hardly matters.

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9.0
Silver Surfer (2016) #2

Feb 19, 2016

Dan Slott and Mike Allred pretend the Silver Age never ended with Silver Surfer #2, a purposefully cheesy all-ages adventure that harkens back to a narratively simpler time whilst retaining a modern pace and sense of humor.

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6.0
Sixpack & Dogwelder: Hard-Travelin' Heroz #1

Aug 24, 2016

Sixpack and Dogwelder: Hard Travelin' Heroz #1 is a peculiar mash-up of missed punchlines with an undercurrent of tragic horror. Garth Ennis' brand of shock humor is showing its age here, but his grasp of the form shines through in his colorful characters and Dogwelder's tonally refreshing pages. Russ Braun and John Halisz's artwork leans into the grotesque elements of Ennis' script to create a visually arresting book that stands out as something different. It's not all successful, but Sixpack and Dogwelder: Hard Travelin' Heroz #1 is definitely something different.

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8.6
Sleepy Hollow #2

Nov 21, 2014

All in all, Sleepy Hollow #2 is a surprisingly self-contained and great value second issue of a mini-series that is rich in both chuckles and chills.

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8.6
Sleepy Hollow #3

Dec 25, 2014

Sleepy Hollow #3 is another compelling issue that finally brings together plot elements from the first two issues, setting the stage for an absorbing finale. There isn't a single weak link in this creative team, and it makes for a great-value package that just feels more fulfilling than the average comic book.

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8.6
Sleepy Hollow #4

Jan 29, 2015

Sleepy Hollow #4 is a fulfilling and straight-forward end to an excellent mini-series. Although this issue lacks the humor we've come to expect from the last 90 or so pages, it is a cathartic finale that will hopefully set up a future series. For fans of the show, this series has been an absolute must-have, but it's important to note that if you're just a reader who fancies a bit of the occult, Sleepy Hollow is a series well worth your money.

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4.0
Sleepy Hollow: Origins #1

Apr 7, 2015

"Origins" is probably the most predictable and overused prequel subtitle, and it's fitting that this Sleepy Hollow one-shot carries that tired name. There's little here for the Sleepy Hollow die-hard to chew on and the backstory will be lost on anyone who's missed out on the show so far. BOOM! Studios have made every mistake they avoided with last year's excellent Sleepy Hollow miniseries; which was accessible to everyone and satisfying for the initiated. There are five vague stories here that probably would have worked much better as five separate one-shots and, although there are a few pretty pages, there's not much here that's truly worth the cover price.

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7.6
Smiley the Psychotic Button One-Shot #1

Jan 9, 2015

All in all, Smiley the Psychotic Button is a fun and wacky reinvention of a truly unique character. Smiley's new origin gives him an added depth that he didn't really have before. With the exception of that head-scratching penultimate page, Smiley the Psychotic Button is an enjoyably twisted horror book, chock-full of the wicked sense of humor that Chaos! is notorious for.

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9.0
Spider-Gwen #2

Mar 12, 2015

Although Spider-Gwen #2 is not exactly packed with action, a compelling story and freshly fleshed-out characters make this issue a must-read.

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9.0
Spider-Gwen #3

Apr 2, 2015

Action-packed from end to end, Spider-Gwen #3 is easily the most thrilling issue yet, and that's without mentioning the poignant and heartbreaking climax.

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9.0
Spider-Gwen #4

May 6, 2015

With Spider-Gwen #4, Jason Latour, Robbie Rodriguez and Rico Renzi have offered up yet another stellar installment of a trailblazing series. This issue marks an important moment in Gwen's continued evolution as a superhero, and it's not to be missed.

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9.0
Spider-Gwen #5

Jun 11, 2015

Spider-Gwen #5 is another flawless issue of one of Marvel's best titles, so let's just hope Gwen and company return unscathed when Secret Wars comes to a close.

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9.0
Spider-Gwen (2015) #2

Nov 12, 2015

Spider-Gwen has always been a quality title, and this issue is no exception.

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8.0
Spider-Gwen (2015) #3

Dec 14, 2015

As expected, Spider-Gwen #3 is another stellar issue of a book that continues to justify its status as one of Marvel's hottest new series. Jason Latour's clear ambition has paid off with this issue, which stands as one of the most important issues of Spider-Gwen yet, as well as a great example in how to write compelling drama. Although Robbi Rodriguez's stylized pencils hits new heights of extreme this issue, his great panel composition and evocative character expressions ensure that Latour's story is told with maximum effectiveness. If you're not on the Spider-Gwen train yet, its still not too late to grab a ticket.

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9.0
Spider-Gwen (2015) #6

Mar 14, 2016

Poignant character moments and exciting fight sequences make up the bulk of Spider-Gwen #6, finally lifting the shadow of Peter Parker's death from Gwen Stacy's life. Jason Latour and Robbi Rodriguez have successfully refreshed the core tenets of Spider-Man to create a unique new universe of characters that, although positively ancient, feel brand-new. All in all, Spider-Gwen #6 is a fitting conclusion to an absorbing story arc.

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9.0
Spider-Man/Deadpool #2

Feb 11, 2016

Although the barrage of unashamedly teenage comedy might not be to everyone's taste, Spider-Man/Deadpool #2 is light-hearted superheroics at its best.

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8.0
Star Wars (2014) #7

Jul 29, 2015

Star Wars #7 works as a decent little palette cleanser in between Luke, Han, Leia and co.'s adventures, but more importantly it provides color for an oft-mentioned but until-now unseen slice of Star Wars history. Aaron's script works on the whole, only falling into overt and unintentionally amusing melodrama for a few brief panels before expounding on the character of Obi Wan's lonely and solitude. Likewise, Simone Bianchi's artwork is solid but inconsistent, lacking all texture one moment and turning wildly detailed and intricate the next. Despite those few little niggles, Star Wars #7 still stands out above the rest.

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8.0
Star Wars: Chewbacca #1

Oct 15, 2015

With a breezy script and warm artwork, Chewbacca #1 achieves exactly what it sets out to do: Another stellar Star Wars book from Marvel.

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8.0
Star Wars: Chewbacca #2

Oct 28, 2015

With Chewbacca #2, Gerry Duggan and Phil Noto have created a tonally faithful Star Wars tale filtered through the eyes of a child. Duggan and Noto have no time for shades of grey here, as writer and artist work in unison to deliver a bright and exciting moment of escapism with just enough character development to strengthen one of the least substantial characters of the Star Wars universe.

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6.0
Star Wars: Darth Vader #1

Feb 11, 2015

Kieron Gillen rose to prominence with his excellent characterization of Marvel's finest heroes, and his depictions of the villains of the rich Star Wars universe are equally on target. Although his dialogue is well-written, I can't help but feel like it's also well-trodden ground for Star Wars, and I don't think it's unfair to crave for something a little more unique. With Darth Vader #1, Kieron Gillen has proven to the world that he has the chops to pull these legendary characters off. Now that he's established himself, let's hope that the Lucasfilm Story Group lets the reins go a little so he can truly make his mark on this rebooted Star Wars Expanded Universe.

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9.0
Star Wars: Darth Vader #3

Mar 26, 2015

Kieron Gillen and Salvador Larroca finally succeed at putting a face on the faceless in Darth Vader #3, a surprisingly funny book that offers some fresh perspective on the lord of all bad guys.

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8.0
Star Wars: Darth Vader #5

May 14, 2015

Darth Vader's robot army descends on his would-be replacements in Darth Vader #5, another solid issue filled with Kieron Gillen's trademark wit and Salvador Larroca's meticulous and realistic artwork.

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8.0
Star Wars: Darth Vader #7

Jul 2, 2015

Seven issues in, and Darth Vader's still going from strength to strength.

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8.0
Star Wars: Darth Vader Annual #1

Dec 17, 2015

A great jumping-on point for new readers, Darth Vader Annual #1 is a perfect microcosm of Gillen's excellent ongoing series.

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7.0
Star Wars: Kanan #1

Apr 1, 2015

All in all, Kanan: The Last Padawan #1 is a quality foundation for future escapades. Greg Weisman's solid grasp of the Jedi combined with Pepe Larraz's emotive pencils make for an interesting read, even if the plot doesn't exactly thunder out of the gates.

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10
Star Wars: Lando #1

Jul 9, 2015

Lando #1 is yet another stellar Star Wars title that should prove impossible to resist.

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10
Star Wars: Princess Leia #1

Mar 5, 2015

Mark Waid's characterization of the princess herself is faultless; effortlessly finding the sweet spot between Leia's icy outward shield and the warm intelligence of her unguarded self. Terry Dodson's artwork is simple yet striking, whilst Jordan Bellaire colors in a warm and bold palette that feels appropriately Star Wars-y.

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10
Star Wars: Princess Leia #2

Mar 19, 2015

Combined with a solid story of action and intrigue, all of the above makes Princess Leia #2 one fantastic read.

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7.0
Star Wars: Princess Leia #3

Apr 30, 2015

A final battle involving Storm Troopers and the Rancor-like Rockrenders close out an enjoyable issue that just doesn't quite match the quality of its predecessors.

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9.0
Star-Lord And Kitty Pryde #1

Jul 23, 2015

With Star-Lord and Kitty Pryde #1, a fresh creative team's finally managed to wring out some fun from the interminably grim dystopia that Battleworld often seems. Next-level artwork and a great script make this issue not to be missed.

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8.0
Starve #1

May 12, 2015

Starve #1 certainly is an evocative first issue. Brian Wood, Danijel eelj and colorist Dave Stewart have produced a striking comic book that'll stick in your mind long after you put it down. Although this first issue isn't narratively without fault, there's a sense of cohesion and forethought to Starve #1's pages that place it above and beyond the rest of the rack. Starve #1 hits on June 10, and it's well worth a look.

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8.6
Stray #1

Jan 2, 2015

Running 25 full-color pages for only $0.99 (0.69 in the UK), Stray #1 is ridiculously great value. It provides a strong spring-board for what promises to be a fulfilling series and, although it suffers a little from its unoriginality, there's enough room here for Delsante to put a new spin on a worn tale as the series progresses.

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6.0
String Divers #1

Aug 12, 2015

String Divers #1 is a frenetic and saturated mess of a comic book, in the most complementary terms. Ryall's script is simplistic, although there are some big themes here that should ripen nicely as the series continues. Artistically, Daniel's artwork is full of expression and excitement, even if it does look flat and depthless. String Divers has the potential to be something really special, but it isn't - at least not yet.

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7.0
Suicide Squad: War Crimes Special #1

Aug 31, 2016

All in all, Suicide Squad Special: War Crimes #1 feels disposable, but that's far from a criticism. Ostrander's 40-page tale evokes childhood trips back from the newsagents with a wad of cheap creased comics under your arm, to be enjoyed once then flung into a bedroom corner and forgotten about. Visually, while Gus Vazquez and Carlos Rodriguez contribute some characterful illustration here, Gabe Eltaeb's bright colors detract from the murky nature of the Suicide Squad's mission. Despite this tonal weakness, Ostrander shows that he's just as comfortable writing for DC's Clown Princess of Crime as he is with classic Squaddies Amanda Waller, Rick Flag, Captain Boomerang and Deadshot. There are technical problems here, but Suicide Squad Special: War Crimes #1 is still a neat little one-and-done that harkens back to a simpler time, for whatever that's worth.

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8.0
Swamp Thing (2016) #1

Jan 6, 2016

Sometimes, a legendary creator will step back into familiar shoes only to embarrass him or herself (Batman: Odyssey, I'm looking at you.), but that thankfully isn't the case here. Swamp Thing #1 feels like a lost issue from the '70s, lovingly dusted off by DC and placed proudly alongside the books of today. Although Wein's script breaks almost every rule of modern comic book storytelling, and Kelley Jones' artwork neglects the finer details, there's a wonderful spirit to Swamp Thing #1 that permeates every page. A tremendously entertaining read.

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10
Terrible Lizard #1

Nov 7, 2014

All in all, Terrible Lizard #1 is a rich and dynamic first issue, a fantastic all-ages take on the massive monster (or Kaiju, if you want to be specific) genre that will undoubtedly prove to become a pop-culture monolith.

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9.0
Thanos (2016) #1

Nov 16, 2016

Thanos #1 is a strong start for what is already shaping up to be another in Marvel’s burgeoning line of successful villain-led ongoing series'. Jeff Lemire wisely steers away from giving us much insight into Thanos’ single-minded motivation, instead focusing on the tidal wave of destruction that comes in his wake. It’s a great opportunity to cast the spotlight on some of the lesser used members of the Marvel Cosmic, executed with confidence and style by Jeff Lemire. Mike Deodato Jr. holds up his end of the bargain too, combining the bombast of Marvel space opera with the twisted black metal landscapes of a more nihilistic brand of sci-fi to illuminate this new darker side of Marvel’s vast universe.

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7.0
The Fox #1

Mar 16, 2015

A bit of blood and a mildly risqu villain inhibits the book's otherwise all-ages potential, but this isn't really for them, even if its wholesome nature makes it seem like it should be. The pre-teens of today might be a little too cynical for The Fox's self-aware homage to the Golden Age, mistaking the purposefully old-fashioned for the embarrassingly out-of-date. Waid and Haspiel have a clear vision for The Fox, but it won't be for everyone. Peculiar but eye-catching artwork sit alongside a fun script that is overwrought by design, making for a polarizing package. But if you can silence your inner cynic, The Fox #1 is a worthwhile read.

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7.0
The Last Contract #1

Jan 5, 2016

There's no denying the The Last Contract #1 is a well-crafted comic book, even if its brutal nature sometimes detracts from the overall package. Still, Ed Brisson's story of one old man forced back into a life of crime is rendered in an effective way by Lisandro Estherren's evocative, creased and scarred artwork. You'll already know if this one's for you.

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7.0
The Spire #1

Jun 30, 2015

The Spire #1 is an impressive first issue. This is not a comic book of plot, but one of atmosphere and character that reaches out to ensnare you into its world. Yet, despite a solid script and firm direction, The Spire #1 doesn't always look as polished as it should; with certain panels looking downright unprofessional. If you can forgive the visual roughness, this is Simon Spurrier's best work yet and a worthwhile addition to the BOOM! Studios lineup.

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8.0
The Totally Awesome Hulk #1

Dec 3, 2015

The Totally Awesome Hulk #1 is a great-looking and funny book from a top-notch creative team.

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7.0
Thor (2014) Annual #1

Feb 26, 2015

Whilst there are a few rough edges here, Thor Annual #1 is a diverse selection of stories from a faithful hand, a promising up-and-comer and an oddball celebrity fan.

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8.0
Thors #2

Jul 30, 2015

A tantalizing cliffhanger rounds out Thors #2, an issue that seems to have a split personality. Luckily for us, both sides are equally enjoyable.

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5.0
Venom: Space Knight #1

Nov 25, 2015

Between Thompson's solid but safe script and Olivetti's stellar yet static artwork, Venom: Space Knight #1 is a good issue that should have been a great one. While the concept of Venom as an unambiguously good superhero is questionable, there's no denying that the vast and varied backdrop of outer space is a good fit for Flash Thompson and his pet symbiote. Although Venom: Space Knight #1 is an enjoyable issue, it's tonally at odds with its main character.

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10
Vision #1

Nov 5, 2015

All in all, The Vision #1 is a truly unique, fresh and genuinely affecting comic book.

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3.0
Wonder Woman (2011) #43

Aug 20, 2015

Finch often uses an entire paragraph of dialogue when a single line would have done the job; a page of Donna walking the streets of London is especially over-wrought, as she spouts words and words of "woe-is-me" monologue to recap plot that is already well established earlier within the issue.

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