Mini Reviews For The Week ending 6/24
Sometimes, the staff at Graphic Policy read more comics than we’re able to get reviewed. When that happens you’ll see a weekly feature compiling short reviews from the staff of the comics, or graphic novels, we just didn’t get a chance to write a full review for. These are Graphic Policy’s Mini Reviews.
Cryptocracy #1 (Dark Horse) A conspiracy theorists dream, the first issue of Cryptocracy is a well realized comic that should be read by anybody who finds stories about the Illuminati fascinating (and not the Illuminati of Marvel comics). A well drawn, well written comic that has a ton of promise for the future. Overall: 8 Recommendation: Read
Action Man #1 (IDW) I didn’t expect much out of this comic, honestly, and it read like a cheesy 80’s movie in comic book form. I gotta say it was much more enjoyable than I expected it to be. Overall: 7 Recommendation: Read
Pencil Head #5 (Image)**: Ted McKeever concludes his rant on the comic book industry. After a short look at his formative years, and a touching homage to Jack Kirby and Kamandi the Last Boy on Earth; he executes his final dig. Me. Well not me personally, but the fans. Read only if you have a sense of humor and thick skin. Overall: 9 Recommendation: Buy
Killbox #3 (American Gothic Press)**: Tom Riordan adds a mind-bending reality twist to the third issue of this inspired sci fi series. Nathan Gooden’s black and white art has a ’70s retro look; but there have been times when I had to give it a second pass to stay on track panel to panel. Still the writing is solid, given the familiar ‘last man standing’ material.
Overall: 7.5 Recommendation: Read
Aquaman #1 (DC)*: Welcome to the Atlantean embassy! Don’t try the seaweed rolls, you’ll turn into — oh, wait, dude was Black Manta in disguise the whole time, sneaking in a journalist even though Meera herself claimed to have vetted every member of the press corps and military given a pass for the event. Dan Abnett’s bog-standard script can’t even follow its own simple-as-shit internal logic, while Brad Walker’s art is, sorry to say it, horrible — the guy can’t draw faces, especially, to save his life. Overall: 2. Recommendation: Pass
Detective Comics #935 (DC)*: After finding myself generally pleased with the first issue of this series’ latest iteration, things take a major step backward this time around as James Tynion IV resorts to clumsy, overly-expository “infodump” dialogue, most of the principal characters revert to the same dull ciphers they’ve been in other (purportedly lesser, but it remains to be seen) hands, and the story barely moves forward at all. Okay, the new junior varsity Bat-team is training hard for some as-yet-undisclosed mission. And Tim Drake might chuck it all to go to grad school — which isn’t a bad idea on his part as it would save him having to keep hanging out in this lackluster comic. Eber Ferreira continues to prove his worth as a pretty darn good superhero artist, though, so at least the book’s nice to look at. Overall: 4. Recommendation: Pass
Cry Havoc #6 (Image)**: Si Spurrier and Ryan Kelly deliver a reasonably satisfying conclusion to a depressingly truncated series, and while the main plot points do all feel resolved, one can’t help but get an over-arching sense of “what could have been” from first page to last here. Nobody mailed it in, though, and everyone kept producing quality work right up to the final buzzer — that’s worthy of some respect right there. Overall: 7. Recommendation: Buy.
Black road #3 (Image)**: Brian Wood hews much closer to his minimalist, “let-the-art-do-the-talking” scripting style of “Northlanders” in this issue than he did in previous installments, and the results are frankly stunning, as Garry Brown delineates one harrowing struggle for survival at the start of the story and drops Magnus and his young charge smack dab into another at the end, with a “lull” in the action in between that sees the two characters try to get some sleep and avoid starving to death. The threat of the church and its disruption of traditional ways of life also comes into more stark and harrowing focus than ever this time out. I loved it to pieces. Overall: 8. Recommendation: Buy.
She-Wolf#1 (Image): When I first heard about the concept for this book, my mind went right to the current TV adaptation of Teen Wolf. In many ways it really is , but with a female protagonist, Gabby. The first issue is simply the setup , as the reader finds out how became a Lycanthrope. By Issue ‘s end, it seems a whole lot scarier than anything else that has been logged into the canon. Overall:10 Recommendation: Buy
Lucas Stand#1 (BOOM): The influx of antiheroes in popular culture over the last 10 years has been exhausting and most are primarily formulaic. This is where this book differs, as we are introduced to Lucas Stand , a war veteran who at the onset, suffers from episodes of PTSD. His transition to normal society has been arduous , thus keeping has been a challenge, until the Devil offers him a job to track demons escaping hell. By book’s end, the reader is left with a lot of questions but will definitely tuning in next month to find out what happens. Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy
Two Girls One Tank #2 (Titan): In this issue, we catch up with Magnolia as she runs right into the real Tank Girl as they both get arrested. Jet Girl and Booga, eventually spring them both. The rest of the issue goes into the revelations why Magnolia was drawn into Tank Girl’s mystique.Eventually, the two decide to join forces, as as they wreak havoc on the Australian Outback. Overall: 9 Recommendation: Buy
Well, there you have it, folks. The reviews we didn’t quite get a chance to write.
Please note that with some of the above comics, Graphic Policy was provided FREE copies for review. Where we purchased the comics, you’ll see an asterisk (*). If you don’t see that, you can infer the comic was a review copy. In cases where we were provided a review copy and we also purchased the comic you’ll see two asterisks (**).