Sophie Buijsen's Comic Reviews

Reviewer For: Comic Book Corps Reviews: 45
7.4Avg. Review Rating

7
Angel (2019) #1

May 26, 2019

This reboot feels less new and different than the Buffy reboot, but that still leaves us with a much beloved character and a great story premise. Don't fix what ain't broken as the old saying goes, and that seems to be very applicable here. Of course, I fully assume that future issues will introduce new and updated characters and world building. For now though, I look forward to Angel's reckoning with social media.

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8
Blackbird #1

Oct 3, 2018

I recommend this series for anyone who enjoys Gillen and McKelvie's The Wicked and the Divine. Both the writing and the art are reminiscent of the impossibly beautiful and cool supernatural beings from Wic+Div as they enter our ordinary world. I look forward to following Nina as she finds the magic she knows to exist.

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9
Blackbird #2

Nov 7, 2018

But don't let those similarities fool you, Blackbird is laying the foundations of a robust story and is promising to be a powerhouse of a series in its own right. I would not be surprised if Blackbird becomes the comic people start recommending to their non-comics reading friends, the way Saga and the Wicked and the Divine appear to have been for several years.

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8
Blackbird #3

Dec 4, 2018

Which leads me to the character design in this comic. It's exciting each time you are introduced to a new character in Blackbird, even if it is just in the background. All the design of the paragons has such great detail and sets the tone of the comic perfectly. The flashbacks that occur at the start of this issue perfectly offset the bright and dazzling designs of the paragons. The flashbacks instead are slightly muted whilst keeping Nina in her signature turquoise and purple colors. It makes reading this story such a joy.

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9
Blackbird #4

Jan 21, 2019

In the first issue of Blackbird, Nina was a woman who is so broken by her past, and so lost in her obsessions that she hides away in drugs and alcohol as a coping strategy. By issue 4 she has grabbed life by the horns and is taking responsibility for her life. She is tired of being the victim of what happened to her and is deciding to demand the things she needs. And she is recognising the strength within her that has kept her afloat all of this time. I take my hat off to Sam Humphries who has managed to write this remarkable transformation in the space of only 4 issues, whilst also setting up a whole new universe and a whole new narrative.

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9
Blackbird #5

Feb 13, 2019

As we get to see more of the world of paragons, so Jen Bartel's art gets the space to flourish in brilliant design. These pages are like a box of treats, with each panel beautiful and almost shiny.Some of the references in Blackbird go slightly over my head as a non-Hollywood, non-American reader, but none of that detracts from a stunning and fascinating series. I thoroughly recommend Blackbird.

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9
Buffy the Vampire Slayer (2019) #1

Jan 23, 2019

The writing of this reboot has captured the voices of the original cast well, and Dan Mora has done a brilliant job reimagining modern looks for the characters (well, excluding Giles obviously). In the next issue we will be introduced to the reboot's first Big Bad, and given the ending of this comic and the cover of next month's issue; I can't wait!

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9
Buffy the Vampire Slayer (2019) #2

Feb 27, 2019

Buffy #2 reassures me that this reboot is in good hands. It manages to swirl together some iconic Buffy moments - such as Buffy and Giles in the library - and repurpose them for a modern age. Willow is clearly still Willow, in all the ways she responds to things. But in these comics she is much closer to the wiccan of later seasons of the show, than the insecure quiet teenager of the high school days. Which makes sense given the fact that in 2019 Willow would've had more freedom and opportunity to explore who she is than 1997's Willow.

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8
Buffy the Vampire Slayer (2019) #4

Apr 17, 2019

Any worries about whether the reboot would be in good hands are wiped away by these extremely strong first 4 issues. Issue 5 will hopefully reveal the strength of Xander's character. And I think that is the first time that the end of an installment of Buffy leaves me wondering: 'what will Xander do next?!'.

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9
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 12: The Reckoning #1

Jul 18, 2018

By introducing time travel we get to find out what 'immortal' truly means as we find out what happened to some of the regular cast. Hopefully the plotting of this 4 issue arc allows for Buffy to get the finale that she deserves after 20 years of being the slayer.

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6
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 12: The Reckoning #3

Aug 22, 2018

Overall I feel like I've seen this exact narrative arc of this issue in each of the post-TV show seasons of Buffy. It's an understandable narrative choice given the finality of the season, but it feels unexciting, and lacks in nostalgia for that to not be problem. I have hopes that this issue was deliberately a bit flat to ensure the final issue makes a bigger impact.

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9
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 12: The Reckoning #4

Sep 19, 2018

I am grateful that these comics provided more of a universe that fundamentally I would always choose to be a part of. And these final 4 issues together round off the seasons before it in a satisfying way.

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7
Bully Wars #1

Sep 5, 2018

I picked up this comic as a little challenge to myself, because it's not a comic I would've naturally picked up off the shelf. And I'm not sure I'm sticking with this title for the long run. I do recommend this for a slightly younger audience. I know that as a teen I would've loved the gross, madcap artwork in this issue, and the storyline is funny and light. As a comic it is very good at what it does.

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7
Elvira: Mistress of the Dark #1

Jul 4, 2018

I had a lot of fun reading this comic. It is different from the comics I usually enjoy with plenty to read between the lines (panels?). Elvira is none of that, and I am happy that it isn't. If you enjoy a good old-fashioned camp horror romp, this is the book for you!

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6
Elvira: Mistress of the Dark #3

Nov 7, 2018

Besides these issues, the comic is still a fun read. Elvira is still a fun lead and the idea behind the adventure is fun and compelling. I am looking forward to #4!

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8
Giant Days #42

Sep 5, 2018

The Christmas themes are a bit surprising in this early September issue, but I assume things will culminate in a big holiday spectacular come December. You could do worse than picking this series up as an early Christmas gift!

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7
Giant Days #43

Oct 3, 2018

Sadly Susan and McGraw have been tabled for much of this issue. I will admit that I am keen to see more of them in Giant Days. I understand that after a lengthy will-they-won't-they arc, it makes sense for them to be allowed to just have some peace and be happy in their new home. But Susan's brief appearance as a ball of furious outrage is something I think every issue could do with a little more of. Hopefully as the next issue thunders ever closer to Christmas, we will see more of the domestic bliss of Susan and McGraw.

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7
Giant Days #44

Nov 7, 2018

Daisy is left dealing with her RA duties, which I'm sure she'll be camping with for the duration of her final year. I'm hoping this is the year where Daisy learns to stand up for herself against all the unreasonably confident first-years, which have plagued her since she first started at university. I can't wait for her to tell them all where to stuff it, the same way she told Valentine's Day.

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7
Giant Days #46

Jan 21, 2019

And this issue also addresses something all readers must've known to be true: Esther has a devastating effect on the patrons of the comic book shop. Being a wrecking ball of a woman, she causes havoc in the minds of men wherever she goes, and this is of course true for her place of employment too.Shout out to Max Sarin and Jeremy Lawson, who do some great work with the noir pastiche and the tonal shifts between detective novel, gritty crime scenes and the everyday world of Sheffield.

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7
Giant Days #47

Feb 6, 2019

Giant Days runs slightly out of sync with the calendar, meaning our characters are entering Spring time. It may be because it is snowing outside as I write this, but seeing Esther, Daisy and Susan outside in an English park in light jackets just made me feel so happy. All of the colours of this month's issue bring to mind Easter and saplings springing from the ground. Even Esther's trademark black seems a little bit brighter. Winter may be all around us, but the positivity of Giant Days 47 briefly took away my winter blues.

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7.5
Giant Days #48

Mar 6, 2019

My favourite part of this issue is seeing the wedding outfits our main characters have chosen. Esther, unsurprisingly, has managed to transform into Elvira for this wedding, looking ever so formal and yet also entirely goth and slightly too revealing. Daisy is wearing a suit I wish I could buy myself, it is a brilliant androgynous number with a great pattern. And Susan has clearly found the one dress and boots that are dressy to her, but slightly underdressed compared to everyone else.

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5
Giant Days: Where Women Glow And Men Plunder #1

Dec 5, 2018

However, besides the character development of Ed Gemmell, this issue is great fun. Nina's family dynamics and the rivalry between Australian towns is great. I enjoyed exploring more of Nina's background and seeing how her life in Australia is full of ridiculous politics and sausages. Because nothing says 'Christmas' like a giant barbecue event.

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8
Hex Wives #4

Jan 30, 2019

Although the art really pushes this issue, the writing seems to effortlessly weave together the lore of Hex Wives and the ongoing story. Only 4 issues in, there are still questions unanswered, but none which prevent enjoying the comic and understanding the implications of the events that unfold. I'm looking forward to seeing the progress of these witches regaining their powers, and hopefully the reduction of the witch hunters control.

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9
Hex Wives #5

Mar 27, 2019

Beyond a cathartic read, it is also very funny. There is a scene in which Margeaux the cat does some unspeakable things that had me laughing out loud. And the final issue includes a makeover scene that finally allows these witches to move out of the swinging sixties and into the 21st century.

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5
Lumberjanes #51

Jun 27, 2018

The end of this issue promises more excitement, but I am surprised that at 3 issues in, this slow pace in the comic is to be continued further. I have my fingers crossed for a dramatic twist, because I love spending time with the Lumberjanes. I just wish the rainy Sunday would clear up so we can go outside!

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6
Lumberjanes #53

Aug 22, 2018

I think I just felt a little bit like April when the treasure was found, and am just impatient for the real adventure to begin!

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9
Lumberjanes #54

Sep 19, 2018

What Lumberjanes manages to succeed in with this issue is tell a Greek myth like a campfire story. It draws you in, and put you on the edge of your seat, and has some unexpected twists and turns. And of course it's easy to draw these parallels when Lumberjanes already invokes all the feelings of a summer camp.

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8
Lumberjanes #55

Oct 17, 2018

Other than this minor confusion of space within the comic's universe, I had fun reading this issue of Lumberjanes. Ripley is a charming character. Although she is infuriatingly easily distracted, her pure joy at having kittens around is infectious. And you'd be wrong to underestimate her, as Ripley is clever and thinks outside the box to find solutions to her (sometimes very scary) problems. That kind of nave optimism shines through the character and makes Lumberjanes such a feel good comic.

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7
Lumberjanes #56

Dec 4, 2018

If you are looking for any holiday gifts for any young people between the ages of 9-13 in your life, I always recommend Lumberjanes. It's a story for all ages and genders and is full of wholesome lessons, funny writing, and excellent art.

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9
Man-Eaters #1

Sep 26, 2018

Every page of this comic had me smiling; the glitter design of the cover, the pamphlets warning of 'big cat attacks', the fact the first panel of the comic shows a tampon-superhero defeating the patriarchy; it's all tongue in cheek and fun.

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7
Man-Eaters #2

Nov 6, 2018

The flip-side of using so much real estate on leaflets and other literature, is that there is limited space to move the story forward. In this issue we learn a few new tidbits, but the characters repeat in large strokes what they did in the first issue. I'm looking forward for the story to get going, as I think this comic has all the potential to be a great satirical piece as well as a great story.

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5
Man-Eaters #5

Jan 30, 2019

In my first review of this series I praised the fact that the art direction for this comic uses the medium for more than just the standard panelled narrative. But by issue 5 I could really do with them calming down on wanting to push this medium to its limits. Yes it is fun to create ads and infographics, and tell stories with visuals, but I wouldn't be angry if for one issue it told the story straight up and didn't cover the same ground again.

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4
Man-Eaters #6

Feb 27, 2019

I think this comic is meant to be read as collected volumes, rather than single issues. Luckily, volume one of Man Eaters comes out today as well! Collecting issues 1-4, it feels much more like what a single issue is meant to do. And looking back over volume one, I think that if I had picked that up, I would've enjoyed it and been intrigued to keep reading. Because at the heart of this, this comic has got all the elements that should by rights be brilliant. But so far it hasn't managed to get there yet, and that is disappointing.

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5
Man-Eaters #7

Mar 27, 2019

Although this issue tries to push the story forward more than the previous 3 issues may have, the pacing and reliance on repetitive cliffhangers is still frustrating. I'm hoping this comic picks up the pace and gives some kind of resolution to the story that has been teased for over half a year.

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9
Orphan Black: Crazy Science #1

Jul 4, 2018

I would highly recommend any Orphan Black fans with withdrawal symptoms pick up a copy of the Crazy Science story. Who knows, maybe our cries for more sestra content will make IDW release the rest of this series!

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7
Paper Girls #21

Jun 12, 2018

I'm looking forward to getting reacquainted with Paper Girls and finding out what the future has in store for this girl gang.

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8.5
Paper Girls #22

Jul 5, 2018

Paper Girls 22 was yet another enjoyable romp through time and space. It provides readers with more of all the perfectly honed elements that make this series so enjoyable to read.

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6
Red Sonja/Tarzan #3

Jul 4, 2018

The writing in this balances between the fun and ridiculous (H.G. Wells makes an appearance!) to the more gritty and action packed scenes of fights in the jungle. However balancing two main characters is tricky, and so far Tarzan really seems to have taken the lead. I am hoping Red Sonja will be given more of a spotlight in future issues, as I am personally less interested in Tarzan as a character. With a character with this much cultural history, it is hard for him to be entirely three dimensional. Red Sonja seems more layered, and more suited to Simone's writing. So hopefully she will take centre stage again in the rest of this crossover title.

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5
Red Sonja/Tarzan #4

Aug 28, 2018

I am waiting for the penny to drop with this crossover. I am enjoying Sonja, but I am not sure if her character and Tarzan 'click' necessarily, the chemistry seems overly reliant on external narrators telling the reader that there is a deep connection, rather than showing us this connection. I hope following issues find some time to slow down and explore this further.

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7.5
Sex Criminals #24

May 2, 2018

I hope I am right, because although Kegelface and her cronies provide some fun tension, this comic works best when it delves into the emotional worlds of its lead characters.

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8
Sex Criminals #25

Jun 27, 2018

I found myself feeling this issue was just as cathartic to read as it was for its central characters and had me cheering through the last 7 pages of Zdarsky's beautiful art.

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8
Thrilling Adventure Hour #1

Jul 18, 2018

In this issue we embark on a brand new adventure with Frank and Sadie, with their friends Donna and David Henderson. The story manages to combine a classic 'whodunnit' story as the Doyles often encounter by someone knocking on their door looking for help with the supernatural. Mix this with a mysterious noir detective, and you have all the ingredients for a classic Beyond Belief. And it's all held together by Frank and Sadie's love for one another, and their joint love for a drink. Here's to the Doyles' new home, may they live there happily ever after! *Clink*

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8
Thrilling Adventure Hour #2

Aug 22, 2018

And any fans of classic horror would've picked up the hints to Dracula's folklore in issue 1, which are picked up further in this issue. In many ways the Doyle's are working with the most classic of stories about ghosts and vampires, told a million times over, and yet manages to make those stories fresh and fun to read.

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8
Thrilling Adventure Hour #3

Sep 26, 2018

The Thrilling Adventure Hour's Beyond Belief always feels like someone trying to tell a traditional ghost story whilst its audience loudly interjects at how positively tedious the tropes and details are. In issue #3 of this series Frank and Sadie Doyle are required to listen to exposition by both the victim and culprit of the murder they have just successfully solved. And they are not having any of it.

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8
Thrilling Adventure Hour #4

Oct 24, 2018

This is the final issue of this arc, confusingly so, because the Prince of Darkness has yet to make an appearance. I assume the Beyond Belief canon will continue with BOOM!, because this felt like an odd thread to leave untied for a closing issue. Otherwise this makes for a great story. Frank and Sadie stumble into the next adventure just as reluctantly as always. And they try to ignore the drama they're faced with for as long as possible, only to resolve the problems with a nonchalance us mere mortals can only dream of.

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