This Week’s Comic Book Reviews
Welcome to this week in comic book reviews! Here the Soda and Telepaths staff have read and curated as many comic books as we can get our grubby little mits on. However, this list isn’t totally comprehensive. In fact, it’s a bit of a mixed bag. This week’s Comic Book Reviews list ranges from DC, Marvel and Image right through to BOOM!, Mad Cave, Scout, Valiant, Behemoth and an assortment of indies.
These comic book reviews are listed in alphabetical order and do in no way infer our preferred comics. Simply put, it’s what we’ve been reading this week.
For any corrections, feel free to leave a comment below and we’ll be sure to look into it.
1. Blake Undying #1 (Indie)
Blake Undying #1 follows Blake Carson as he decides to become a superhero in order to find out a way to die. The series is written by Jason Cook, art by Ezequiel Rubio, additional colours by Jovanna Plata, and lettering by Nikki Sherman.
This is a book for a very particular audience. If you don’t like darker humour or, more specifically, jokes about death and suicide then this one is definitely not for you. If you can enjoy all of that then this very well may be the comic for you. There is certainly something to admire in the fact that Blake Undying doesn’t shy away from what it is and instead embraces it.
2. Helm Greycastle #1 of 4 (Top Cow)
Helm Greycastle #1 is written by Henry Barajas with art by Rahmat M Handoko, coloring by Bryan Valenza and lettering by Gabriela Downie.
Helm Greycastle is a visually stunning fantasy spectacle shone through the lense of latin creators, creating latin characters. It’s the much needed face lift overdue for an otherwise dull comic book genre. Every character is extremely likeable. Every line of dialogue purposeful. I feel the same type of joy in reading Helm Greycastle that I got from watching the Dungeons and Dragons cartoon as a kid. Definitely sticking around for Issue 2.
3. Once and Future #18 (BOOM! Studios)
Once and Future #18 sees a Britain about to learn the truth about monsters. Once and Future #18 is written by Kieron Gillen, illustrated by Dan Mora, coloured by Tamra Bonvillain, and lettered by Ed Dukeshire; with variant covers by Dan Mora and Qistina Khalidah.
If you do find the imagery of maggots squirming out of flesh, this one may be a difficult read (though if you like that kind of thing you are in for a treat). There’s something beautiful in the unsettling nature of Once and Future, both the story and art. That may be part of Gillen’s point, that these stories are unsettling at their core, and yet we find ourselves so immersed by them that sometimes we lose ourselves in a way that isn’t always good.
4. Robin #1 (DC Comics)
Robin #1 is a Damian Wayne centric Robin comic book. It’s written by Joshua Williamson with art by Gleb Melnikov and lettering by ALW’s Troy Peteri.
Robin #1 follows Damian Wayne aka Robin and his search for the League of Lazarus which sees Damian kneeing a whole bunch of jerks in the face along the way. It’s Batman light which is the right decision by Williamson, allowing Damian’s character to breathe and find his own adventure, whilst still having that same Gotham aesthetic to a rich privileged vigilante going on an international crusade of his very own.
Do we know exactly what this crusade is right now? Not really. But this Robin comic is bound to impress the most avid Batman reader all the way down to a newcomer. Although, the who’s who when it comes to the Bat-family at the start of the comic may confuse a few readers.
5. Spider-Man: Curse of the Man-Thing #1 (Marvel Comics)
Spider-Man: Curse of the Man-Thing #1 is a crossover event comic starring numerous members of the Marvel Universe including Spider-Man, Captain America and the horror character Man-Thing. It’s written by Steve Orlando with art by Marco Failla and Minkyu Jung, coloring by Guru-eFX and Daniel Acuna, and lettering by VC’s Clayton Cowles.
Spider-Man: Curse of the Man-Thing #1 is a very obviously crossover comic which follows on from the Captain America: Curse of the Man-Thing comic from the other month. The numerous growths of Man-Thing continue to appear all over the world which symbolises an increase in the Swamp God’s power. When Captain America and Curt Connors enter the growths they encounter Ted Sallis, the new host of the Man-Thing power, and are unable to get to him to stop. However, when Spider-Man enters the growth he uses his own loss of life as a means to build rapport with Sallis.
While it seems to work at first, it does nothing except fuel the birth of Sallis as Man-Thing. The exact opposite of what the Avengers, Spider-Man and The Lizard are trying to do. While a decent enough premise, I’m afraid the art is too over produced for me. To the point where the perspectives and angles are more of a brain melt than aesthetically pleasing to gaze upon.
6. The Monuments (Indie)
The Monuments is a beautifully rendered independent graphic novel created by Oliver Mertz, Michael S. Bracco and Mike Isenberg.
The Monuments injects new life into a stale post-apocalyptic genre featuring dead mechs, crazed lunatics, religious cults and provides a much needed narrative on the human condition. Inspiring, gargantuan, metaphorical – just some of the many words to explain what you’re all going to get from this Kickstarter campaign funded graphic novel.
If you haven’t supported this Kickstarter, tough. You’ve missed out. To the 1000+ other backers who are getting a copy. You’re in for a treat.
7. The Recount #2 (Scout Comics)
The Recount #2 is a espionage thriller dealing with sensitive, yet topical, themes centering around political corruption. Written by Jonathan Hendrick and drawn by Gabriel Ibarra Nunez. Fans of movies such as The Bourne Identity should definitely have their eyes on this series.
The Recount #2 is definitely THE issue to read when it comes to this series. Even though it is still, technically, the beginning of the story, the escalation of the problem is done extremely well here. It truly feels like this organization is everywhere and everything is happening all at once. Our protagonists are scrambling to figure out a way out of this mess, while our antagonists tie the noose around them ever tighter. It is quite a thrill and I can’t wait for more!
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