Russ Burlingame's Comic Reviews

Reviewer For: ComicBook.com Reviews: 201
8.0Avg. Review Rating

8.0
Action Comics (2016) #1000

Apr 18, 2018

If sales figures are any indication, more comic book readers will be picking up Action Comics than almost any comic book in recent memory -- especially one at its hefty price point. That is as it should be, as there is a lot to love in this volume. It is not perfect, however -- and what's frustrating is that you can't really add "...but not for lack of trying" to that sentence.

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6.0
Action Comics (2016) #1001

Jul 25, 2018

The issue drags along, Superman's characterization is weird, and there is a compelling cliffhanger, so the story itself is something of a mixed bag.

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8.0
Action Comics (2016) #1002

Aug 22, 2018

Action Comics #1002 feels like a significant, and welcome, tonal shift from previous issues of Bendis's Superman run. The sense of humor, the Easter eggs, and the hints and teases of things to come " especially on that first page " are fun and charming little bits of storytelling.

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8.0
Action Comics (2016): Special #1

May 2, 2018

The publisher seems to have decided that the best use of that real estate is to tell stories that center more on Lex Luthor than Superman himself, somewhat fulfilling that promise of early Rebirth.

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10
Adventures of the Super Sons #1

Aug 1, 2018

Well-paced, well-drawn, and full of heart, humor, and solid character moments, The Adventures of the Super Sons #1 is everything that has been missing from the Superman titles since Action Comics #1000.

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6.0
Adventures of the Super Sons #2

Sep 5, 2018

The beautiful art from penciler Carlo Barberi and inker Art Thibert, with colors by Protobunker, is a highlight of the issue, delivering exactly the tone they need to sell a menacing cadre of kid supervillains.

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10
Army of Darkness/Bubba Ho-Tep #1

Feb 13, 2019

This isn't Watchmen, but if you're buying a book about Bubba Ho-Tep vs. Army of Darkness, you know that " and you're going to love what it is instead.

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6.0
Back to the Future: Tales From The Time Train #3

Mar 14, 2018

The Time Train series, co-plotted with Back to the Future writer Bob Gale and scripted by John Barber, is a spiritual successor to the Back to the Future animated series, with wacky hijinks taking center stage and Doc Brown's children, Jules and Verne, getting as much "screen time" as he and his wife.

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6.0
Back to the Future: Tales From The Time Train #4

Apr 11, 2018

Written by Bob Gale and John Barber, the issue still reads like a slightly aged-up episode of the old Back to the Future cartoon, and centers around wacky hijinks most likely to be popular with very young readers.

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4.0
Black Panther: The Sound And The Fury #1

Feb 7, 2018

Pairing a competent-but-generic tale like this alongside an issue from Stan Lee and Jack Kirby's legendary Fantastic Four run does Sound and Fury no favors, as the King's rich, kinetic art leaps off the page and Lee's dated dialogue crackles in a way that the lead feature fails to do.

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4.0
Bloodshot: Rising Spirit #1

Nov 14, 2018

It feels like a million other mediocre indie comics you have already seen before, and fails in one area where Valiant has consistently succeeded in the years since the company's rebirth: production value.

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10
Bloodshot: Salvation #6

Feb 14, 2018

The stakes " both physical and emotional " are incredibly high here, and because Lemire's previous Valiant stories have been known to slaughter some sacred cows, it does not feel guaranteed that a good outcome is promised at the end of it all. If not, the arc itself might become so pervasively dark that it becomes borderline unreadable, but as a first chapter, this is first-rate comics.

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8.0
Bloodshot: Salvation #7

Mar 7, 2018

The issue delivers on the promise, despite the absence of some key elements of mainstream comics, and manages to be compelling and emotionally effective.

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8.0
Bloodshot: Salvation #8

Apr 11, 2018

The endpoint is genuinely interesting, for both Bloodshot and his daughter, but ultimately the journey there feels a little more by-the-numbers than this remarkable series has so far.

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8.0
Bloodshot: Salvation #9

May 16, 2018

Bloodshot: Salvation remains one of the best and best-looking series on the stands, although both the story (by Ray Fawkes and Jeff Lemire) and the art (by Renato Guedes) were a little spottier than usual this week as the book took a hard left into a detour from the title character's magical mystery tour and spent some time in the real world.

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8.0
Charlie's Angels vs. The Bionic Woman #2

Aug 7, 2019

. It ends with Lopez returning for a strong final scene between Willow and Xander, but it still feels like a story missing most of its middle.

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10
Criminal (2019) #1

Jan 9, 2019

Phillips's art is phenomenal, with some of the best faces and storytelling in the business, while Brubaker provides the same sharp, heartbreaking dialogue you have come to expect.

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8.0
Criminal (2019) #2

Feb 13, 2019

It's a fun and surprisingly light chapter in what looks like is going to be a dark and twisty story.

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8.0
Criminal (2019) #4

Apr 24, 2019

There is a lot of telling rather than showing in Ed Brubaker's script this issue, which makes Sean Phillips's natural talent for conveying emotion and body language all the more important, because it keeps things from feeling slow or procedural.

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8.0
Dark Red #3

Jun 5, 2019

Strong characterization and beautiful art elevate what could easily be just another fun-but-forgettable vampire story into something special.

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10
DC/Hanna-Barbera: Flash/Speed Buggy Special #1

May 30, 2018

The script is utterly absurd, totally ludicrous... and maybe the best thing Scott Lobdell has written in years.

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6.0
DC/Looney Tunes: The Joker/Daffy Duck #1

Aug 29, 2018

The dialogue is fine, although the schtick of Daffy's lisp is something that works better in animated form than on the page, especially when you get scenes that are more dialogue-heavy and sentences that are more complex than Looney Tunes generally supports.

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10
Deadly Class #36

Jan 16, 2019

The result is an elegant solution to the challenges raised by releasing #36 of the comic and the first installment of the TV show on the same day, and it effectively emphasizes a lot of what makes Deadly Class one of the best books on the stands.

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10
Deadly Class #37

Mar 6, 2019

Wes Craig's manic, beautiful art takes the issue on a visual odyssey that isn't quite as iconic as the Vegas issue, but certainly is going to be remembered as one of his most ambitious and crazed issues.

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10
Deadly Class #38

May 8, 2019

Wes Craig manages to create a beautiful, kinetic, and at times disorienting issue, creating a sense of momentum in a comic that could easily have become little more than talking heads.

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8.0
Deadly Class #39

Jun 26, 2019

Wes Craig is great, turning an issue that's half-action and half-talking into a story that feels perfectly paced.

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6.0
Deathstroke (2016) #28

Feb 7, 2018

Deathstroke #28 brings an impressive script by Christopher Priest together with mediocre art from Diogenes Neves to create a comic that is surprisingly readable in spite of being crammed full of what seems at face value like far too many plot points.

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8.0
Deathstroke (2016) #29

Mar 7, 2018

This might not be the best Bombshells entry, but it will leave fans curious to see what comes next.

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8.0
Deathstroke (2016) #30

Apr 4, 2018

All in all, the issue reads like the relatively uneventful first chapter of what is going to be a pretty good storyline.

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8.0
Deathstroke (2016) #31

May 2, 2018

Aside from some minor pacing issues, it's an excellent read.

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6.0
Deathstroke (2016) #32

Jun 6, 2018

The "Deathstroke vs. Batman" storyline seems to have blown its wad on a premise that everyone could get behind, leaving the story to wonder how it could keep up with the version fans have written in their heads.

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8.0
Deathstroke (2016) #33

Jul 4, 2018

Christopher Priest's Deathstroke is going to be one of those great runs that people talk about for years, and while the Batman arc has been its weak link, Deathstroke #33 is a high point and a great single issue of comics.

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10
Doomsday Clock #4

Mar 28, 2018

Doomsday Clock #4 is arguably the most exciting and interesting issue of the series since #1 " even if the big "twist" is kind of a dud (don't worry -- there's another twist that really, really isn't).

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10
Doomsday Clock #5

May 30, 2018

Colorist Brad Anderson turns in some inspired work in an issue that gives us everything Doomsday Clock should be: Johns' character work is inspired, and the narrative gives us several fun mash-ups of DC and Watchmen characters, homages to the Moore/Gibbons classic, and artist Gary Frank's best use yet of the nine-panel grid format.

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8.0
Doomsday Clock #8

Dec 5, 2018

Another DC hero gets a great bit of characterization that mirrors a classic beat from Watchmen, and the pain and turmoil in that plot is supported by Gary Frank's emotive and heartbreaking art.

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6.0
Doomsday Clock #9

Mar 6, 2019

This is a watershed issue for the series; it is at once the thing so many fans wanted to read, and the thing that a vocal minority of readers were dreading. For that reason alone, it is worth reading, as it represents at once the best and worst of Doomsday Clock's potential.

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8.0
Doomsday Clock #10

May 29, 2019

The story itself is strong, with a lot of moments that will leave fans guessing at what's next.

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8.0
Elfquest: Final Quest #24

Feb 28, 2018

It's a proper sendoff to one of indie comics' best-loved franchises.

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10
Eternity Girl #1

Mar 14, 2018

What is arguably the most fascinating thing about Eternity Girl is the way it manages to tackle all of this darkness, complete with some trippy, spooky, and gruesome imagery, without ever devolving into violence porn or dour hopelessness.

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10
Eternity Girl #2

Apr 18, 2018

Writer Magdalene Visaggio and artist Sonny Liew create another gorgeous and challenging issue of one of the best new comics of 2018.

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10
Eternity Girl #3

May 9, 2018

Magdalene Visaggio, Sonny Lieu, and Chris Chuckry continue to deliver one of the most ambitious, thoughtful, and beautifully rendered titles on the stands.

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10
Eternity Girl #4

Jun 13, 2018

Writer Mags Visaggio used the opportunity of a flashback/expository issue to experiment with form and layout, turning what could easily have been the series' most standard issue into something wild.

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10
Eternity Girl #5

Jul 11, 2018

It is sharp storytelling, gorgeously illustrated, and this series is one of the best new big two titles in years.

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10
Eternity Girl #6

Aug 8, 2018

Eternity Girl, one of the most captivating and original series in comics, wraps up its run today, and if you have not been reading all along, do not spoil it for yourself (surely, there will be a trade collection soon).

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10
Fight Club 3 #1

Jan 30, 2019

Fight Club 3 #1 is an exciting first issue that easily exceeds expectations, turning in one of the strongest debuts of 2019 so far.

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10
Fight Club 3 #2

Feb 27, 2019

Writer Chuck Palahniuk, artist Cameron Stewart, and colorist Dave Stewart are taking advantage of the comics medium in more creative and ambitious ways with Fight Club 3 than they did with most of Fight Club 2, making one of Dark Horse's most accessible blockbuster titles in recent years feel like a fresh indie art book.

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8.0
Fight Club 3 #3

Mar 27, 2019

As Fight Club 3 kicks into high gear, we learn some important things this issue -- even if the audience is not fully sure what to make of them.

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6.0
Fight Club 3 #4

Apr 24, 2019

Cameron Stewart's art and Dave McCaig's colors continue to draw us into a world of disconnected and slow-paced single issues which will undoubtedly build to a cool and complex graphic novel -- at some point.

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8.0
Fight Club 3 #5

May 29, 2019

Through some really great body language and facial expressions, the art team picks up the slack of one of the series' weaker scripts, and of course the calendar fold-out in the middle is, as ever, a delight.

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8.0
Fight Club 3 #6

Jun 26, 2019

The art remains amazing in this series, and Cameron Stewart goes wild in this issue. It is supported by the script, with some big, crazy ideas"dozens of them packed into a single issue"giving Stewart a lot of room to move.

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6.0
Fight Club 3 #7

Jul 31, 2019

As with every issue of Fight Club comics, though, there are a few moments where clarity is sacrificed on the altar of a payoff or surprise to be redeemed later.

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10
Five Years #2

Jun 12, 2019

While world building was necessary to set the stage last time around, this might be a more enjoyable and accessible overall issue than #1 was.

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8.0
Flash (2016) #40

Feb 14, 2018

The Flash #40 benefits a bit from turning your brain off, but it is not because the comic is not good, only that the story of Grodd's pursuit of Speed Force powers seems to be sandwiched between a number of tangentially-related stories, one of which " "Flash War" " has been teased for so long that if you have a passing interest in the comic it is difficult not to wonder how all of this will play into it.

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8.0
Flash (2016) #41

Feb 28, 2018

Joshua Williamson's dense script turns what would, in most stories, be a lifeless filler issue into some fascinating and intense interpersonal dramas.

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8.0
Flash (2016) #42

Mar 14, 2018

Dan Panosian's art lends The Flash #42 a kind of Silver Age feel that slows down the fast-moving blast radius of the "Perfect Storm" story just when you need it to.

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6.0
Flash (2016) #43

Mar 28, 2018

This issue, though, is a lot of running in place, and for the first time in the current storyline feels like padding that could have been halved or entirely left out.

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10
Flash (2016) #44

Apr 11, 2018

Dense, heartfelt, and gorgeously illustrated, The Flash #44 from Joshua Williamson, Carmine Di Giandomenico, and Ivan Placencia is the perfect end to "Perfect Storm," and sets up the next big story in Williamson's The Flash beautifully.

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8.0
Flash (2016) #45

Apr 25, 2018

Joshua Williamson delivers a heartfelt script that propels Wally West's story and makes this issue feel like a direct follow-up to his triumphant story in DC Universe: Rebirth #1, and gives audiences a bit of a calm before the next inevitable speed force storm.

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8.0
Flash (2016) #46

May 9, 2018

Writer Joshua Williamson channels Geoff Johns for an expository issue that manages to thrill longtime readers and get newer audiences caught up ahead of "Flash War," while Scott Kolins -- who has done some similar stories with this character before -- provides able art assistance.

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6.0
Flash (2016) #61

Jan 2, 2019

"Force Quest" is not the best of Joshua Williamson's Flash stories, but what feels a little bit generic as a plot is elevated by strong art by Christian Duce and Williamson's typically sharp dialogue.

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6.0
Flash (2016) #62

Jan 16, 2019

A solid -- if somewhat pedestrian -- story of a superhuman sting operation gone wrong is hindered by a trio of villains whose costumes are dull and interchangeable.

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4.0
Flash (2016) #63

Jan 30, 2019

It seems like, with the introduction of the various warring forces surrounding The Flash's Speed Force, this title has more or less become a game of giving virtually indistinct powers to a bunch of people and then punching them.

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8.0
Flash (2016) #64

Feb 13, 2019

Joshua Williamson keeps his foot on the gas as part two of "The Price of Innocence" barrels through this issue.

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8.0
Flash (2016) #65

Feb 27, 2019

A bleak issue, a depressing end to the Batman crossover, and a profoundly dark chapter in The Flash's recent history, The Flash #65 can at least boast strong characterization by writer Joshua Williamson and beautiful art by Rafa Sandoval, Jordi Tarragona, and Tomeu Morey to get the reader through.

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8.0
Flash (2016) #66

Mar 13, 2019

Great art and a solid story sell some iffy dialogue really well.

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10
Flash (2016) #67

Mar 27, 2019

Joshua Williamson has put together a genuinely intriguing mystery with a creepy premise that is sold perfectly by the art of Scott Kolins and colorist Luis Guerrero.

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8.0
Flash (2016) #68

Apr 10, 2019

A solid story and great characterization for Trickster is enhanced by great artwork and visual storytelling from Scott Kolins.

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8.0
Flash (2016) #69

Apr 24, 2019

The story itself is serviceable; as with the rest of the Trickster story, it is not Williamson's most compelling work, but it he ably juggles character and plot moments, while giving both the breathing room they need.

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8.0
Flash (2016) #70

May 8, 2019

Gorgeous art, solid characterization, and an ambitious story are more or less par for the course on this title.

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8.0
Flash (2016) #71

May 22, 2019

Without a ton of action in the issue, this is likely to be one of those stories that fans either love forever or forget about. I'm leaning toward loving it.

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10
Freedom Fighters (2018) #1

Dec 19, 2018

Freedom Fighters #1 is a near-perfect first issue, featuring exciting visuals and some clever, thoughtful world-building that leaves you wanting more.

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10
Freedom Fighters (2018) #2

Jan 23, 2019

It should be required reading for our dark and divided times.

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8.0
Freedom Fighters (2018) #3

Feb 27, 2019

Everything about this book feels dark and bleak, from the writing by Robert Venditti to the world the characters in habit to the art by Eddy Barrows and Eber Ferreira and the colors by Adriano Lucas.

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10
Freedom Fighters (2018) #4

Mar 27, 2019

The story is powerful, and in this issue, we get a sense for Uncle Sam himself that evokes some of the best elements of the Alex Ross/Steve Darnall U.S. miniseries/graphic novel.

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10
Freedom Fighters (2018) #5

Apr 24, 2019

Robert Venditti continues to blend superhero action with modern day commentary and Golden and Silver Age nostalgia, making the first "real" Uncle Sam issue of the series into a treat.

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8.0
Freedom Fighters (2018) #6

May 22, 2019

There's a lot of exposition in this one, and a lot of action. What remains is not a lot of room for forward movement, but there are plenty of revelations about the nature of the world in which this story takes place that will leave fans wondering what's next.

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8.0
Freedom Fighters (2018) #7

Jul 24, 2019

All in all it feels like one of the more procedural issues of the series, but that doesn't make it bad.

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10
Ghostbusters: Crossing Over #1

Mar 14, 2018

In any fair universe, Erik Burnham's long run on IDW's Ghostbusters comics would be viewed as the astonishing feat that it is " and Ghostbusters: Crossing Over #1 reads like a master ignoring the call to create a "definitive" work and instead just reveling in the fun and creativity his existing body of work has provided.

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8.0
Gogor #1

May 1, 2019

All in all, it's an enjoyable, all-ages fantasy book that feels like what might happen if you put Tellos, The Warlord, and Bone into a blender.

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8.0
Gogor #2

Jun 12, 2019

Ken Garing picks up the pace and does a fair amount of world-building in a fun and action-packed installment of his new series Gogor.

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8.0
Gogor #3

Jul 10, 2019

The third issue of Gogor blends some dynamic visual storytelling with a lot of exposition. Garing manages to keep the story moving while doing a lot of info-dumping, and the his great approach to faces and body language makes the issue feel quicker than it is.

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8.0
Gogor #4

Aug 14, 2019

The big, cool ideas that have been teased throughout the first three issues really start to come into play this month, though, making for maybe the best issue of the series yet.

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6.0
Hellblazer (2016) #19

Feb 28, 2018

Writer Tim Seeley starts in a predictable place, delivers a bold surprise, and then cruises right on into a story that ends up nowhere close to where you expected.

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6.0
Hellblazer (2016) #20

Mar 28, 2018

There is definitely room for this to become an interesting story that will read better in trade.

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6.0
Hellblazer (2016) #21

Apr 25, 2018

Tim Seeley delivers some of his best writing on The Hellblazer as "The Good Old Days" rolls into its third part, and Huntress takes center stage in some of the scenes.

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6.0
Iceman (2017) #10

Feb 7, 2018

An issue-long fight sequence, Iceman #10 shows off Sina Grace's excellent sense of pacing and the care which Grace and artist Robert Gill choreograph their action. The result is a better-than-average fight comic, but there is still only so much you can do with an issue-long fight.

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4.0
Joe Golem: Occult Detective: The Drowning City #3

Nov 14, 2018

The script is serviceable, even if a lot of it is expository dialogue, and the art shows off a strong sense of mood and pacing, even if the faces and figure work are hit or miss.

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6.0
Jughead: The Hunger (2017) #4

Mar 7, 2018

A trip through the history of the Cooper and Jones clans, Jughead: The Hunger #4 has a suitably O. Henry twist to a dark and violent one-and-done story from writer Frank Tieri, but it is periodically undone by uneven art that sometime descends into the ultraviolent and absurd.

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6.0
Last Stop on the Red Line #1

May 15, 2019

Featuring beautiful art and colors by Sam Lotfi and John Rauch, Last Stop on the Red Line #1 is a creepy and intriguing beginning in spite of some wonky pacing and unclear moment-to-moment storytelling.

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10
Last Stop on the Red Line #3

Aug 21, 2019

It feels like Maybury has realized the great potential of this series in this issue, which is beautifully rendered with exciting page layouts and an engaging writing style that keeps the story moving and energy flowing, even on the pages that are bathed in text.

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9.5
Legendary Star-Lord #1

Jun 30, 2014

While the super-modern coloring is a bit distracting in some spots, the art is beautiful on this title, which sees Star-Lord reinvented a bit to more closely match the hugely-anticipated film adaptation ofGuardians of the Galaxy. The plot unfolds at a decompressed speed that will make for a great collected edition, even if it feels a little thin...and you don't notice the thin plot becuase there's plenty to like about the character work and action. It sets up what promises to be a really interesting series and, like Booster Gold, match humor and heart beat-for-beat while establishing a surprising new mythology for the character. This is a really great first issue. Run, don't walk, to your local comic shop to get a copy on Monday.

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10
Lodger #2

Dec 5, 2018

The second issue fills in some backstory for the two leads, and it's... unsettling. In that perfectly Lapham way.

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10
Lodger #3

Jan 16, 2019

The Laphams continue to turn out a creepy, smart, and compelling crime/mystery book, with all of David Lapham's Stray Bullets/Young Liars hallmarks.

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10
Lodger #4

Apr 3, 2019

With an ending that will leave you wondering what the heck is going on next and a "Lodger" column that provides a darkly appropriate counterpoint to the narrative events of the issue, this might be the best and most urgent installment of the series yet.

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10
Lodger #5

May 8, 2019

A satisfying and visceral conclusion to the first arc of The Lodger ends the only way it can, and leaves you wanting more.

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10
Mage: The Hero Denied #15

Feb 27, 2019

Ultimately, the ending of the Mage trilogy is satisfying, offering a conclusion if that is what Wagner wants, and setting up the potential of future stories -- either those he will tell or at least just the implication that they will be there.

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10
Man and Superman #1

Feb 6, 2019

Man and Superman feels a bit like Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse; it is not what you might expect at first glance, but it is a near-perfect interpretation of the story its creators set out to tell, and the minute you finish it, you want to pick it back up and "go back into the movie," so to speak.

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6.0
Man of Steel (2018) #1

May 30, 2018

The Man of Steel #1 is certainly not a bad comic; it is gorgeously illustrated, engaging, and includes a few very nice character beats. Still, it feels more like a teaser for something potentially really interesting than the beginning of it.

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6.0
Man of Steel (2018) #2

Jun 6, 2018

Two issues in, it was hard not to be blown away by Doomsday Clock, baffled by Metal, and intrigued by No Justice. Two issues into The Man of Steel, it feels like time for Bendis to get on with it already.

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6.0
Man of Steel (2018) #3

Jun 13, 2018

Decompressed storytelling is what it is, but even if it reads marginally better in the trade, spending literally one page at a time on Jason Fabok's Lois-and-Jon-getting-kidnapped scene is just" exhausting.

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4.0
Man of Steel (2018) #5

Jun 27, 2018

In its weakest chapter yet, writer Brian Michael Bendis's The Man of Steel does not even have excellent art to fall back on.

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8.0
Man of Steel (2018) #6

Jul 4, 2018

The sixth and final issue of Brian Michael Bendis's The Man of Steel, featuring art by Jason Fabok and colors by Alex Sinclair, provides a coherent, reasonably satisfying conclusion to the meandering mysteries of the miniseries, sets up a potentially interesting new status quo, and largely succeeds even while none of it feels particularly awe-inspiring.

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10
Mech Cadet Yu #6

Feb 7, 2018

An emotionally satisfying and visually striking issue, Mech Cadet Yu #6 is a perfect showcase for how far these characters, and this world, have evolved in a short time.

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8.0
Mech Cadet Yu #7

Mar 7, 2018

It is a fresh start, from a series that was good enough that it did not strictly speaking need one, but the result is a fresh story with gorgeous colors and creative page layouts that leaves us wanting more.

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8.0
Mech Cadet Yu #8

Apr 4, 2018

Greg Pak and Takeshi Miyazawa, along with colorist Triona Farrell, continue to deliver one of the most entertaining and YA-friendly comics on the market in Mech Cadet Yu, which ships its eighth issue this week.

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10
Mech Cadet Yu #9

Jun 13, 2018

Maybe more than any single issue since the start of the series, this captures the spirit of a high-action animated series for kids that seems to be Pak and Takeshi Miyazawa's bar for success with the series.

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8.0
Mech Cadet Yu #10

Jul 11, 2018

Mech Cadet Yu features the same creative team (Greg Pak writing, Tak Miyazawa drawing, Jessica Kholinne coloring) that has been on the book up to this point, but the issue feels like the series has "grown the beard" a little bit.

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8.0
Mech Cadet Yu #11

Aug 8, 2018

The stakes keep spiraling up in Mech Cadet Yu, which makes it harder than ever to believe that writer Greg Pak has not lost the sense of fun and adventure that launched the series.

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10
Mech Cadet Yu #12

Sep 12, 2018

Over the life of its 12 issues, Mech Cadet Yu has been one of the most reliably excellent comics on the stands, and its series finale is a fitting send-off to a book that exceeded its potential in almost every way.

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8.0
Milk Wars: Mother Panic/Batman Special #1

Feb 7, 2018

While writer Jody Hauser and artist Ty Templeton do not recreate the surreality of last week's Justice League of America/Doom Patrol one-shot, the second part of the "Milk Wars" crossover is a strong addition, and Keiren Smith's bold colors give the Mother Panic/Batman special a distinctly otherworldly feel, especially when set against heroes who are all-white and mostly-gray.

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8.0
Milk Wars: Cave Carson Has a Cybernetic Eye/Swamp Thing Special #1

Feb 21, 2018

The issue drags a bit here and there, with those minor pacing issues likely caused by the "secret" coming out too soon without sufficient obstacles between our heroes and solving the mystery. Because of this, the back half feels a bit padded, but it is overall a great read.

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8.0
Mystery Science Theater 3000 #1

Sep 12, 2018

The first issue drags a bit, since it has to spend almost half of its pagecount setting up how the world of the story is going to work (a bit like this review), but the eventual payoff is both creative and entertaining.

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6.0
Ninjak vs. The Valiant Universe #2

Feb 21, 2018

The whole thing comes together like a Big Two crossover from the '80s or '90s, beginning at around page three and just passing the baton from character to character, introducing the world of the story to the reader in scenes that feel slow and didactic.

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4.0
Ninjak vs. The Valiant Universe #3

Mar 14, 2018

The emotive cartooning of Joe Bennett is rarely a poor choice for any project, but Ninjak vs. the Valiant Universe " based on a webseries by the Bat in the Sun folks whose calling card is making superheroes look and feel as real as possible in their shorts " feels like a miscalculation.

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8.5
Original Sin #3

Jun 4, 2014

Aaron turns in a capable script with some terrific character moments in what's ultimately one of the hardest things to pull off well: the middle chapters of one of these universe-spanning event books. It's been years since I've been as impressed with Deodato's work as in this issue, and they picked the perfect colorist for the projectin Frank Martin. The issue retreads a lot of familiar ground and plays with some overused tropes, but it's beautifully executed on a lot of levels. So far, Original Sin is the best Marvel event in years.

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8.0
Original Sin #4

Jun 19, 2014

The bottom line:Aaron has some pacing and characterization issues in this issue that he hadn't up until now, but the story itself remains strong and he gives some cool moments so it's fairly easy to forgive. Deodato continues to impress, and the mood struck by his art and Frank Martin's colors is perfect. The big twist ending is clever, but somewhat expected.

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8.0
Quantum and Woody (2017) #3

Feb 21, 2018

For the third month in a row, Kibblesmith's Quantum and Woody flirts at the edges of greatness but never quite makes it to the promised land.

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8.0
Quantum and Woody (2017) #4

Mar 21, 2018

Writer Daniel Kibblesmith has written a story that will read better in the trade " not necessarily a bad thing, but always a gamble " but he did so without telegraphing that is what he was doing, making this issue a genuine treat.

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10
Quantum and Woody (2017) #6

May 30, 2018

Writer Eliot Rahal takes over from Daniel Kibblesmith and delivers an emotionally effective and high-stakes jumping-on point with a cliffhanger that will propel the arc forward into new territory.

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10
Quantum and Woody (2017) #7

Jun 27, 2018

Quantum & Woody has fast become one of the best comics on the stands, and this issue is, even more than last issue's billed jumping-on point, a solid starting place for new readers.

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8.0
Rocket Raccoon #1

Jun 30, 2014

Rocket Raccoon starts off like a shot, and it ends up in a clever and surprising place. In between, it seems like it meanders a bit, but that can be forgiven when you take into account that this is hardly a first issue, despite that All-New #1 on the cover. The art is beautiful and perfectly tuned to the series, and Young has drawn inspiration from a number of sources, not least of which appears to be source material from Rocket's creator. The downside? Relying heavily on the Infinite Comics and evoking a particular other work so strongly make it feel like this issue doesn't stand on its own all that well...and when you've got 300,000 people reading it, that's going to be an awful lot of first impressions and quite possibly a lot of fairly confused new readers.

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8.0
Savage Dragon #231

Feb 7, 2018

Erik Larsen's Savage Dragon remains one of the most consistently entertaining, engrossing, and confounding superhero stories on the racks, even when " as in this week's #231 " a given issue is an imperfect jumping-on point at best.

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10
Savage Dragon #232

Mar 7, 2018

Strange, fun, and kinetic, Erik Larsen's Savage Dragon #232 is arguably the most entertaining issue since #225, when the series took its last major directional shift.

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10
Savage Dragon #233

Apr 25, 2018

Erik Larsen takes his long-running, creator-owned superhero series in yet another unexpected direction, delivering a gut-punch of an issue that says good-bye to a long-running character in a way that will shape the book for some time to come.

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8.0
Savage Dragon #234

May 30, 2018

After the intensity of last month, #234 feels like the stakes have diminished. Still, Larsen handles two distinct plot threads well, delivers some great art, and manages to make everything feel organically like it's coming to a head in both stories at once.

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8.0
Savage Dragon #235

Jul 11, 2018

A wild and wacky villain, paired with a major win for Team Malcolm, pulls this issue away from the Very Serious Things Larsen has been doing over the last few months and sets up what appears to be a fun, exciting new status quo for the Dragon family and their friends and allies.

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8.0
Savage Dragon #236

Jul 25, 2018

A fun issue where the stylized subplot outshone the main story, Larsen seems on the cusp of a new beginning for the Dragon family and other members of their circle.

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8.0
Savage Dragon #237

Aug 8, 2018

Larsen's art is sharp and clear, and he writes a cuttingly funny backup story that incorporates a pair of fan-favorite supporting characters.

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10
Savage Dragon #238

Sep 19, 2018

A great jumping-on point for potential new readers, Savage Dragon #238 sees the culmination of a long-running subplot, but does so in a way that is fully explained and satisfying to casual or non-fans.

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8.0
Savage Dragon #241

Jan 2, 2019

Long-running plot threads are starting to come to a head, against the backdrop of a holiday-themed one-and-done.

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8.0
Savage Dragon #242

Feb 20, 2019

This month's issue is chock full of plot, a cogent reminder that any comic that unfolds in real time is going to have a hard time keeping up with a handful of superheroes and four superpowered kids.

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8.0
Savage Dragon #243

Apr 10, 2019

Savage Dragon #243 is a fun romp. As much as the series has been incredibly NSFW, with both nudity and extreme violence lately, Larsen is no dummy: he knows that making the toddler Amy the central character of an issue has to change the complexion of the issue somewhat.

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8.0
Savage Dragon #244

May 22, 2019

If you are a long-term fan, you're likely already sold by the news that Powerhouse is back. If not, this is a solid (and easily accessible) issue, with some cool fight choreography and some great moment-to-moment storytelling enhanced by Larsen playing with the form a little.

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8.0
Savage Dragon #245

Aug 21, 2019

It's hard to argue that this issue wasn't ambitious.

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8.0
Scooby Apocalypse #23

Mar 14, 2018

Ron Wagner's workmanlike art is not as clear a fit for the world of Scooby Apocalypse as that of the somewhat more stylized and occasionally twisted Howard Porter, but it suits this month's issue well.

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8.0
Scooby Apocalypse #24

Apr 11, 2018

While DC makes a big deal of the upcoming wedding of Batman and Catwoman, writer Keith Griffen and J.M. DeMatteis, artists Pat Oliffe, Tom Nguyen, Andy Owens, and Hi-Fi have put together a surprisingly touching love story between two characters fans have also shipped since long before "shipping" was a thing.

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8.0
Scooby Apocalypse #25

May 9, 2018

Ron Wagner and Andy Owens deliver a likable take on Scooby Apocalypse, but the characters feel off-model, and given how important the look of this title is to its brazen, blackly-hilarious appeal, it does feel as though something is amiss.

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8.0
Scooby Apocalypse #26

Jun 13, 2018

Mandrake's art is a little stiff for a series that has been so fluid and kinetic all along, but he is a great draftsman with strong storytelling, so ultimately it is not bad at all; it just doesn't feel like Scooby Apocalypse.

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6.0
Scooby Apocalypse #27

Jul 11, 2018

Scrappy Doo's re-entry into the series is a nice surprise; it seems as though DeMatteis has an ear for how to keep his personality consistent without making him the irritating character he is so well known for being.

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8.0
Scooby Apocalypse #28

Aug 8, 2018

The issue is a dark one, featuring a lot of combat and not nearly as much of writers Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis's sparkling dialogue as fans of the series are used to " but it sets up a curious cliffhanger that just begs to be answered.

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8.0
Scooby Apocalypse #29

Sep 12, 2018

Pat Oliffe and Tom Palmer deliver one of the best-looking issues of the series (which is saying something), although their particular style is well-served by the subdued colors in the zombie-inspired Fred flashback sequence that begins the book, and somewhat less effective in later portions where the book takes on its normal garish hues.

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8.0
Scooby Apocalypse #32

Dec 12, 2018

The lead feature, from J.M. DeMatteis, Pat Oliffe, and Tom Palmer, is a gem of a story, juxtaposing Daphne's desperation and anger against the hope and joy that Shaggy has in celebrating his forthcoming child.

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6.0
Scooby Apocalypse #33

Jan 16, 2019

J.M. DeMatteis's ear for dialogue and Patrick Oliffe's crackling storytelling elevate the book, but any time Scooby Apocalypse goes basically an entire issue without an action set piece, it tends to drag a bit.

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8.0
Scooby Apocalypse #34

Feb 13, 2019

The story itself is solid, and sets up what feels like a bit of a Hail Mary ending, but ultimately an appropriate one for the title. We will have to see how it all shakes out.

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8.0
Scooby Apocalypse #35

Mar 13, 2019

A mythology- and dialogue-heavy issue that gives us plenty of insight into the characters, while Patrick Oliffe and Tom Palmer's art us as consistently excellent as ever.

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10
Scooby Apocalypse #36

Apr 10, 2019

There is a whole lot of plot to get through in this final issue, but given the rapid movement that the series has had for the last several months, the pacing is actually pretty comfortable.

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8.0
Scooby Doo Where Are You? #91

Mar 14, 2018

Neither tale is revolutionary, both are fun and well-executed, but the first is a real treat.

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8.0
Scooby Doo Where Are You? #92

Apr 11, 2018

They turn it on its head and have a fun, wild, and Easter egg-filled story that is better than it has any business to be.

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10
Shazam! (2018) #1

Dec 5, 2018

Geoff Johns returns to Shazam! for the second time in the last decade, and does so while teaming with artist Dale Eaglesham, who worked with Johns on his beloved JSA run. The result is a comic that works with mathematical precision, creating one emotionally resonant page after another, and delivering exactly the fun, zany adventure that fans are expecting after seeing the trailer for the forthcoming movie of the same name.

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6.0
Shazam! (2018) #2

Jan 23, 2019

There is... a lot happening in Shazam! #2, and it feels like none of the three stories get enough time to come fully into focus.

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8.0
Shazam! (2018) #3

Feb 27, 2019

With King Kid, writer Geoff Johns has created a villain who feels like Billy Batson's opposite number in the same ways that Black Adam is the opposite number to Shazam. It's a clever way of approaching the new series, and plays nicely into the themes of family and acceptance that Johns has used Shazam stories to tell in the past, since the villain is both demanding of acceptance and inclusion on his terms and also incredibly exclusionary when it comes to his own territory.

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8.0
Shazam! (2018) #4

Mar 27, 2019

Whereas Shazam #3 felt a bit like it was treading water and leaning hard on the reliably excellent art, #4 is a big step up all around.

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8.0
Shazam! (2018) #5

May 8, 2019

The issue's four artists " Marco Santucci, Dale Eaglesham, Scott Kolins, and Max Raynor " are all terrific, but the "jam issue" aspect of the comic lends itself to uneven pacing and visual tone.

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10
Shazam! (2018) #6

Jun 5, 2019

After a couple of issues that felt like they were treading water, Shazam! is back in top form this week with an issue that feels like it takes place immediately following the events of the movie that was just in theaters.

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10
Strangers In Paradise XXV #4

Jun 6, 2018

Terry Moore steps up the pace of Katchoo's road trip through the "Terryverse" in this week's issue, providing some tantalizing clues as to what is going on with Stephanie, Tambi, and the larger story at play in the ten issues of Strangers in Paradise XXV.

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8.0
Strangers In Paradise XXV #7

Oct 17, 2018

That pacing, sharp dialogue, and beautiful art paired with a genuinely chilling final page delivers an issue that sets up an epic final three issues.

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8.0
Strangers In Paradise XXV #10

Feb 13, 2019

Like the rest of the series, Strangers in Paradise XXV #10 is not perfect -- and it may not be exactly what you expect, or want going in -- but it is beautifully executed, and it feels like home.

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6.0
Suicide Squad: Black Files #3

Jan 9, 2019

This story, by Suicide Squad co-creator Mike W. Barr, reads like a solid but unspectacular story from the '80s or early '90s.

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6.0
Suicide Squad: Black Files #4

Feb 6, 2019

The story, meanwhile, manages to have more story packed into it than the previous two issues combined, but still feel like not much happened.

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8.0
Suicide Squad: Black Files #5

Mar 6, 2019

The second story, by writer Jai Nitz with artists Scot Eaton and Wayne Faucher with colorist Guy Major and Sharpe once again on letters, is a twisting and turning journey. It has some pacing issues, and the combat scenes do not generally flow as well here as they do in the first half. Still, Eaton and Faucher have higher highs and lower lows, so that there are a few viscerally satisfying moments in the issue.

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6.0
Suicide Squad: Black Files #6

Apr 3, 2019

In the lead story, writer Mike W. Barr embraces some of this '80s dialogue to tell a story that is not bad, but feels dated and a little over-the-top for contemporary audiences.

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8.0
Super Sons #13

Feb 21, 2018

A beautifully drawn issue by Carlo Barberi, Art Thibert, and colorist Gale Altaeb is diminished somewhat by the feeling that we have all been here before with this story.

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10
Super Sons #14

Mar 21, 2018

Super Sons under writer Peter J. Tomasi has been one of the most consistently entertaining series of DC's Rebirth era, and while it is perhaps not a "great" series, few superhero books have been more fun in recent memory.

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8.0
Super Sons #15

Apr 18, 2018

Peter J. Tomasi's script is sharp and he has managed to soften Damian Wayne and make him more likable without losing the core of what makes Damian, Damian. he also set up a solid (if a little predictable) cliffhanger for the next issue.

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9.0
Superman (2011) #32

Jun 25, 2014

A well-worn premisekeeps the issue from feeling as fresh as we might like for such an important debut, but Johns's pacing and characterization carry the day writing-wise, turning out an issue that's a fast, fun read and delivers a lot of information without feeling like it's all about the exposition. Romita's first DC work could stand shoulder to shoulder with just about anything he's done in his long, distinguished career and if he can maintain this level of quality, this will quickly become one of DC's best monthly titles.

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6.0
Superman (2016) #42

Mar 7, 2018

Writer Peter J. Tomasi and writer/artist Patrick Gleason create an issue that is both incredibly clever in its structure and yet a bit of a slog to actually get through.

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8.0
Superman (2016) #43

Mar 21, 2018

Downer's colors are a high point of this issue, which puts Superboy side by side with his Bizarro doppelgnger throughout. While that makes for some cool, fun, and funny visuals, unfortunately the writing on the Bizarro stuff continues to be a little too" Bizarro.

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6.0
Superman (2016) #44

Apr 4, 2018

The writing in this arc continues to frustrate; the team are clearly having an absolute ball, but the determination with which they commit themselves to Bizarrospeak makes sequences " especially ones where Bizarro characters are disagreeing or fighting with one another " nearly impenetrable on a casual read through.

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10
Superman (2016) #45

Apr 18, 2018

This issue is probably better than their story in Action Comics #1000 in some ways, and an absolute must to celebrate 80 years of Lois Lane and Superman.

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8.0
Superman (2016): Special #1

May 16, 2018

This one feels a lot less cobbled together than the Action Comics Special from earlier this week did, and also a bit more grounded with recent events since the Tomasi & Gleason story picks up threads directly from their run on Superman.

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6.0
Superman (2018) #1

Jul 11, 2018

With Superman #1, writer Brian Michael Bendis and the art team of Ivan Reis, Joe Prado, and Alex Sinclair turn in a beautifully-rendered, sometimes thoughtful, but ultimately uneven issue of comics that feels like it would be a very good Superman comic if not for a few strange choices that taint the whole affair.

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6.0
Superman (2018) #2

Aug 8, 2018

Gorgeous art by Ivan Reis and Joe Prado can't overcome a leaden story that goes virtually nowhere between the first and last page, and the highlight of which is a wink-and-a-nod in-joke.

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8.0
Superman: Up In the Sky #1

Jul 3, 2019

Depending on the scene, Superman can feel spot on or a little too much like Batman, but King gets the big, symbolic moments right.

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8.0
Superman: Up In the Sky #2

Aug 7, 2019

It's a thoughtful look at what makes Superman tick, and not without its share of punching.

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10
The Batman Who Laughs (2018) #1

Dec 12, 2018

The Batman Who Laughs #1 is thematically of a piece with a lot of what Scott Snyder has been doing with Batman in the last few years. The idea of exploring Batman's inner demons, his darkest corners and worst fears while still not giving up hope or the occasional moment for quiet character introspection or even -- gasp! -- a joke illustrates that Snyder, who seemingly came on board fully-formed with "The Black Mirror" all that time ago, is in fact still evolving as a writer of Batman comics.

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10
The Batman Who Laughs (2018) #2

Jan 16, 2019

A sharp and satisfying character piece, this issue ends with a cliffhanger that will have longtime Snyder readers reeling until the next issue.

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10
The Batman Who Laughs (2018) #3

Feb 13, 2019

The action ratchets up throughout the issue, creating a suspenseful and foreboding tone that culminates in yet another great cliffhanger for this series.

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10
The Batman Who Laughs (2018) #4

Apr 10, 2019

Jock provides some of the best artwork of his career in this issue, enhanced by the work of colorist David Baron.

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10
The Batman Who Laughs (2018) #5

May 8, 2019

The story is going to a dark, strange, violent, and twisted place, putting each of the characters through the wringer.

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8.0
The Batman Who Laughs (2018) #6

Jun 12, 2019

The Batman Who Laughs #6 is a disorienting and fast-paced issue, leaving fans on a foreseeable, but still viscerally exciting cliffhanger.

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8.0
The Batman Who Laughs (2018) #7

Jul 31, 2019

Beautifully illustrated and well-structured, with parallel stories that mirror each other in key moments and provide insight into almost every major character in the tale, The Batman Who Laughs #7 only suffers from how completely it is focused on setting up the next big story with the title character, which takes the wind out of your sails as a reader when the big "ending" is no end at all.

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6.0
The Curse of Brimstone #9

Dec 5, 2018

The issue feels like a big exposition dump, built around a fight with another superhero (here, Doctor Fate), which may or may not have long-term significance to the plot.

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8.0
The Curse of Brimstone #10

Jan 9, 2019

As a stand-alone issue, this is better than it is as part of the ongoing story (although the way it answers some questions makes it important to that story). It has a clear throughline at the beginning and end that helps chart the direction for the rest of the series and make sense of the decisions made by characters within the issue before, essentially, returning everything to a familiar status quo at the end.

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8.0
The Curse of Brimstone #11

Feb 6, 2019

You can't go wrong with Denys Cowan art, and he (with inker John Stanisci) ups his game in the penultimate issue of Brimstone, giving some exciting layouts to the huge story Jordan is shaping with his script.

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8.0
The Curse of Brimstone #12

Mar 6, 2019

A strong finale with a couple of genuine WTF moments, this issue certainly feels of a piece with the recent Annual.

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8.0
The Curse of Brimstone Annual #1

Jan 23, 2019

If you have been reading along, you likely can guess that Justin Jordan does a very solid John Constantine and Swamp Thing. What's more is that Joe and Annie's panic and incredibly serious approach to everything plays beautifully off of the crass, casual Constantine.

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10
The Silencer #2

Feb 28, 2018

By the time the story is over it feels like a comic book equivalent of John Wick, featuring a badass woman of color with a kid in place of Keanu Reeves.

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8.0
The Silencer #3

Mar 28, 2018

John Romita, Jr.'s name is on the top of the book, and it's for good reason: the success of Silencer hinges almost exclusively on his huge, dynamic visuals (along with the rock-solid inks of Sandra Hope), his command of visual storytelling, and a frantic pace that is expressed through his widescreen, emotive artwork.

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8.0
The Silencer #4

Apr 25, 2018

The somewhat baffling decision to remove John Romita, Jr. from the "artist-focused" New Age of Heroes title The Silencer does not materially hurt the comic, as incoming penciler Peter Bogdanovic continues his string of doing incredibly difficult jobs very well.

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8.0
Titans (2016) #20

Feb 14, 2018

Dan Abnett, meanwhile, uses strong characterization and a surprising revelation or two to convert a frustrating and dull story idea " "the Justice League have benched the Titans because they don't trust Troia" " into something genuinely interesting to read.

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4.0
Titans (2016) #21

Mar 14, 2018

A fatally flawed high concept haunts the "Titans Apart" storyline, and the beautiful art and strong storytelling of Paul Pelletier, inker Andrew Hennessy, and colorist Adriano Lucas can't quite overcome it in Titans #21.

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6.0
Titans (2016) #22

Apr 11, 2018

Writer Dan Abnett and artists Paul Pelletier, Andrew Hennessy, and Adriano Lucas do the very best with what they have in this issue, which continues that somewhat contrived story of a Justice League who refuses to take the Titans seriously.

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8.0
Titans (2016) Annual #2

Apr 25, 2018

Titans Annual #2 takes a setup that feels like it could fit into a 10-page backup story and stretches it out to a 40-page issue, but writer Dan Abnett manages to keep it from being boring by filling those pages with interesting characters and well-written dialogue.

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6.0
Titans (2016): Special #1

Jun 13, 2018

The story is solid, but a little uneventful, and primarily follows Nightwing, which feels a bit like it defeats the purpose of it being a team book.

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10
Wonder Twins (2019) #1

Feb 13, 2019

This is the perfect comic to put in the hands of somebody who has not read comics in years and just wants something fun.

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8.0
Wonder Twins (2019) #2

Mar 13, 2019

Stephen Byrne's body language and facial expressions are put to the test (and pass beautifully) in this issue as writer Mark Russell dives into a commentary on the prison-industrial complex, but doesn't get bogged down in polemic and manages to keep the laughs flowing.

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8.0
Wonder Twins (2019) #3

Apr 10, 2019

Fun, light, and character-driven writing combines with expressive and kinetic art to make for a hugely enjoyable issue.

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6.0
Wonder Twins (2019) #4

May 8, 2019

There's some fun to be had here, and the art is beautiful as usual, but the superheroics take a back seat to the humor, and the humor in this issue lacks the sharpness of the first three.

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8.0
Wonder Twins (2019) #5

Jun 12, 2019

Wonder Twins has turned the corner, with the plot accelerating and the story taking over a lot of pages that would have previously been dedicated to character building. That said, the character building we do get in this one is touching and a little melancholy.

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10
Wonder Twins (2019) #6

Jul 10, 2019

Stephen Byrne's terrific art keeps the story moving even while there is a LOT of story and a lot of dialogue packed into only 20 pages.

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4.0
Wonder Woman (2016) #40

Feb 14, 2018

The significant talents of Emanuela Lupacchino are wasted entirely on Wonder Woman #40, a comic in which characters say things no human being would say and both drama and comedy fall flat as a result.

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