Category Archives: Reviews

Review: Ginseng Roots #2

Comic creator Craig Thompson continues to explore his life entwined with ginseng as the second issue gets meta about creating a comic about his own life.

Story: Craig Thompson
Art: Craig Thompson

Get your copy in comic shops now! To find a comic shop near you, visit www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Uncivilized Books
TFAW

Uncivilized Books provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site

Review: Oathbound #1

Oathbound #1

Clive Owen is a one of those actors whose believability in roles is the reason so many people watch him. His ability to immerse himself is what makes people relate to him. The first movie I remember him in was Children Of Men, a story in which he plays a gun for hire in a dystopian future where no one can get pregnant. He played the character with ease, grit, and soulfulness. You couldn’t help but root for his character.

One of my favorite movies by him was the enigmatic yet hard-boiled I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead. He portrays a former gangster whose brother has suspiciously committed suicide. He displayed what Descartes called “the duality of man,” where he easily turned back to his former life in name of vengeance. In the debut issue of Oathbound, we find a protagonist much like Owen’s Will, where his old life interferes with his present life and he is forced to act.

We’re taken to 1868 Nevada where a posse is about to undertake a score of a lifetime by stealing enslaved Elves. Of course, nothing goes as planned. One of the posse members, Cole Jamison, meets the love of his life during the heist leading to a change of heart. We fast forward 20 years later, high in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Cole and his daughter Voila living a fairly boring normal life. Their seemingly quiet existence gets interrupted when a band of Goblins decides to cause a ruckus near the house leading Cole to spring into action.

Overall, a powerful story that will remind readers of Wynonna Earp but will find a more entertaining story. The story by Kevin Cuffe is even paced, well-characterized, and masterfully told. The art by the creative team is beautiful. Altogether, a story that is both emotive and action-packed, providing readers with a rare story that will move you and entertain you.

Story: Kevin Cuffe
Art: Paul Gori, Hedwin Jimenez Zaldivar, Micah Meyers,
and Shawn Greenleaf
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Mini Reviews For The Week Ending 11/16

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.


Logan

Far Sector #1

Far Sector #1 (DC/Black Label)*- Hugo winning writer N.K. Jemisin and artist Jamal Campbell team up to tell a Green Lantern story about a utopia gone wrong that is bathed in both the speculative fiction and police procedural dramas. Jo Mullein is the Green Lantern representative to the furthest end of the universe, which is a world called the City Enduring. Ostensibly, the City Enduring is a perfect world, devoid of emotions that is built from the ruins of a genocide that hasn’t had a murder in 5 centuries and calls their cops “Peace Captains”. However, it’s mostly definitely not as Jemisin and Campbell expose the bullshit beneath its sleekly drawn surface. Jemisin definitely plays to her SF strengths in this comic using a serial murder plot to progress the narrative while adding oodles of world-building and a side of snarky humor. Campbell continues to have some of the cleanest visuals in comics with his distinct looks for the three types of inhabitants of City Enduring, but he can do grotesque too. Also, kudos to both N.K. Jemisin and Jamal Campbell for coming up with one of the most creative uses of a Green Lantern ring for comedy purposes. Overall: 9 Verdict: Buy.

Morbius #1

Morbius #1 (Marvel) – In the opening 8 or 9 pages, writer Vita Ayala and artists Marcelo Ferreira and Roberto Poggi establish that Morbius #1 isn’t a superhero comic, but a slasher story. Morbius’ philosophical musings about virtue, the greatest good, and curing his hunger and pain don’t pop up until midway in the issue as he stalks a warehouse taking out members of Melter’s crew, who are exploiting his neighborhood. Ayala writes him as a vampire with a conscience, but with the soul of a PhD and the appearance of monster in contrast with angsty pretty boy pop culture vampires like Louis and Angel. Ferreira, Poggi, and colorist Dono Sanchez-Almara’s work goes beyond Morbius’ appearance, and his skill at killing and bloodlust is evident through quick series of panels, lots of red, and veiny figure work although they don’t go full Joe Mad or Stephen Platt. Morbius #1 is a classic horror tale with pseudoscientific trappings of a monster wanting to become human, but outside forces not wanting to give him that chance. (And for good reason.) Overall: 8 Verdict: Buy

Shean

Punisher Soviet #1

Punisher Soviet #1 ( Marvel)– In this story, Frank Castle is a gun for hire, as he opens the book on a massacre he unleashes, he wonders who’s this new criminal force making a move. Soon his handler puts the dots together and finds out it is a crew he had been targeting last time he was in Russia. As he shakes down one of the goons, we find out just how brutal Frank really is. By issue’s end, he finds the crime boss, who knew eventually The Punisher would find him. Overall: 9 Recommendation: Buy


Well, there you have it, folks. The reviews we didn’t quite get a chance to write. See you next week!

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 (**).

Review: Among the Willows #4

Among the Willows #4

What happens when revenge consumes you? Does it merely encapsulate every thought in your mind, trying to figure out how you would react? Some people internalize it, knowing how these consequences can affect the rest of their lives. Then there’s those who just see red and will only stop at decimation.

I once served with someone who would constantly get in fights and he was more than a few years older than me. Once he got mad, he wouldn’t stop fighting until he saw blood flow from whomever he was beating on. I always wondered what would get a normal person this angry? In the fourth issue of Among The Willows, the boys’ new ally certainly has her reason for fighting Gideon.

As this issue starts, Sam’s father finds out the awful truth about how his mother died in a fire a year prior. We also catch up with the new stranger who showed up at the end of the last issue, as she reveals to Adam the sex slave ring that Gideon has been circulating near their town giving the boys a reason to respond. The boys find out who exactly killed the Sheriff. By issue’s end, Adam and his new ally find the bodies of several townspeople hanging from the tree leading to avenging their deaths.

Overall, an exciting issue that pushes this story forward. The story by Adam Meadors and Sam Romesburg is brilliant and intellectual. The art by the creative team is spectacular. Altogether, a story that brims with tension and crackles with intrigue.

Story: Adam Meadors and Sam Romesburg
Art: Bruno Chiroleu and Renzo Podesta
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Review: The Incapable Trump #3

The Incapable Trump #3

Distraction is often a way for us to avoid answering those uncomfortable questions. It had been some years, since I dealt with a full-fledged narcissist, until my most recent supervisor. I didn’t pick up on it at first, as the niceties overshadowed the deep-seated inconsistencies. Eventually, the errors became more apparent and the conversations often drained anything fruitful into something being completely one-sided.

I see the same constantly self-centeredness in the present world leader who this comic is named for. Their constant reductionist attitude to complex geopolitics and apparent derision towards domestic policies gives the American populace little faith in who is leading us. Never in recent history, does America feel lull and directionless than the present tense, as we all know what gross incompetence looks like. In the third issue of The Incapable Trump, the brilliant Omar Mirza uncovers how such an imbecile navigates foreign policy.

We’re taken to the hospital where Trump’s condition is closely being watched by Dr. Iman Ali, a situation Mueller looks to get down to the truth about. We also find Kim Jung-Un, who offers a reward to capture the Incapable Trump. This leads President Trump to enlist the help of Dennis Rodman as they prepare to visit North Korea. What unfolds is a hilarious exchange between these two delusional office-bearers.

Overall, one of the best parodies of this officeholder that almost everyone agrees should have kept his day job. The story by Mirza gives readers what they have come to expect from the story and more than they ever expected. The art by the creative team is beautiful. Altogether, the story gets better with each issue.

Story: Omar Mirza
Art: Joao Marriero, Alex Genaro and Bezzz Studio Artist Team
Story: 9.6 Art: 9.5 Overall: 9.8 Recommendation: Buy

Review: For Real #1

For Real #1 dives into the life of Jack Kirby juxtaposing his cancer diagnosis with his time during World War II. Also featured is an essay about the comic great.

Story: James Romberger
Art: James Romberger

Get your copy in comic shops now! To find a comic shop near you, visit www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Uncivilized Books

Uncivilized Books provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site

Review: Green Lantern Mosaic #12

Green Lantern Mosaic #12

When it comes to one’s morals, sometimes holding the line can be the most difficult thing you can ever do. Life will show you, just like in that movie Training Day, people are either sheep or wolves. People who are sheep tend to be meek, quite ordinary, and will bend towards whatever direction those in power lean. People who are wolves, usually stand their ground and will persevere no matter the consequences.

What happens when your morals and your convictions are at a crossroads? Take for example when people support free speech. What happens when that same argument is used to defend hate speech? Can the argument outlive the situation? In the twelfth issue of Green Lantern: Mosaic, we find Jon defending an unworthy enemy, one which shows what kind of hero he really is.

We find a KKK leader espousing how Jon’s hopes for an interspecies utopia is fruitless furthering the division between the inhabitants of the Mosaic. Jon intercedes as the KKK’s efforts become unfortunately increasingly effective, but also united against these usurpers, who Jon soon realizes he has to defend, despite the hate they spread. As he soon dreams about what would the different Lanterns of the Corps would react. By issue’s end, as Jon looks to intercept another attack by the KKK, the tables turn to Jon’s surprise, ending this issue both ironically and hysterically.

Overall, an issue that shows just how sophisticated and progressive Jones’ writing has come over the course of the book.  The story by Jones is entertaining. The art by the creative team is elaborate and beautiful. Altogether, an issue that tackles a real-life issue but instantly pushes the story even more.

Story: Gerard Jones Art: Cully Hamner and Danny Panosian
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Review: Zindan #4

Zindan #4

When you have no options left, what do you do? Where do you turn? How do you go forward? These are the questions when it seems there’s no hope, that you must answer for yourself. When it seems as though you have no light guiding your dark days. If you grew up in a religious family, you would hear sayings that stoked your faith. From my Roman Catholic Filipino mother, I would hear “God will only put us through those things that make us better”.

From my Trinidadian Muslim father, I would hear “And He will provide him from he never could imagine. And whosoever puts his trust in Allah, then He will suffice him. Verily, Allah will accomplish his purpose. Indeed, Allah has set a measure for all things.” Faith gives us a vision where our eyes cannot guide us as we cannot see the future, but we can ask for a greater being to look out for us. We must remember these things when life throws us those curve balls we never saw coming. In the fourth issue of Zindan, Timur and Zain are still trying to pickup the pieces after an unfathomable betrayal.

We find the Shah of Punjab returning to his palace in Lahore, with this capital brimming with intrigue and hungry peoples lining the streets, as they revel in the victory, they had over the Ansaars, not knowing Zain and Timur are waiting in the shadows. We also find Tara and her companions fighting their way through the Shah’s men in the desert, trying to equalize the damage his men unleashed on the Ansaars. We also are taken to Herat, where Zain and Timur are being hunted by Tatar soldiers, as the betrayal they suffered in the last issue has left the brothers with few options. By issue’s end, as Timur finds a moment of solace only for it to be interrupted by the Tatar soldiers who are there to end the Last of the Ansaars.

Overall, an excellent issue that gives fans a complex world where the heroes look like the people of color this mythology is built on. The story by Omar Mirza is well developed and well characterized. The art by the creative team is gorgeous. Altogether, an installment that proves Mirza is an expert storyteller.

Story: Omar Mirza
Art: Sajad Shah, Adelso Corona, Mostafa Moussa, La Beau Underwood, Bryan Valenza, Jessica Jimerson, Alonso Espinosa, Roberto Vargas,
and Joe Weems
Story: 10 Art: 9.5 Overall: 9.6 Recommendation: Buy

Review: Unpublished

Unpublished

In a world where we’re interested in creators, the director’s cut of any work has become an inevitability. Petitions launched screaming for creators to release their own original intended product has become commonplace. One of the most recent campaigns included Zack Snyder’s cut of Justice League. The movie which probably would have been much more fulfilling than what was released was probably the 6-hour version of Watchmen, as the new series shows just how dense this world is.

Another good example of a story enriched by cut scenes is Avengers: Endgame a movie that was an emotional rollercoaster but became even more endearing with the added scenes. Anyone who has ventured into the special features of a Blu-ray can tell you deleted scenes can be the best scenes in a film. The audience can see the many different directions one story can go or what certain scenes may have alluded to. Unpublished is a collection by the burgeoning creator Michael Lee Harris showcasing this rising star’s works in progress.

In “Tug,” a tugboat crew deals with the advancement of technology and how it affects their livelihood. In “Metro Litan,” Harris takes us to a dystopian future where books are a commodity and zombies grow like weeds. In the final story, “Beaver In Chief,” we find a young beaver looking to be chief of his tribe but doesn’t want all of the trials and tribulations. By the book’s end, there are definitely reasons why each story wasn’t picked, but not because of a lack of talent.

Overall, a trio of stories which proves that Harris is a talent that should be on everyone’s radars. The stories by Harris are well developed and well characterized. The art by Harris is beautiful. Altogether, a set of stories both magnetic and full of heart, which makes Harris a creator to watch out for.

Story: Michael Lee Harris Art: Michael Lee Harris
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Review: X-Factor Epic Collection Vol. 8 X-Aminations

X-Factor: X-Aminations is volume 8 in Marvel’s Epic Collection. It collects issues #84-100 and Annual #8

Story: Peter David, Scott Lobdell, Skip Dietz, J.M. DeMatteis, Shana David, Joe Quesada
Art: Jae Lee, Joe Quesada, Chris Batista, Buzz, Jan Duursema, Terry Schoemaker, Paul Ryan, Greg Luzniak, Cliff Van Meter
Ink: Al Milgrom, Mark McKenna, Andrew Pepoy, Jeff Albrecht, Cliff Van Meter
Color: Brad Vancata, Glynis Oliver, Marie Javins, Ariane Lenshoek, Tom Smith, Joe Rosas, Mike Thomas, Matt Webb, Carlos Lopez
Letterer: Richard Starkings, Steve Dutro, Lois Buhalis, Janice Chiang, Dave Sharpe, Pat Brosseau

Get your copy in comic shops now and bookstores on November 26! To find a comic shop near you, visit www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Amazon
Kindle/comiXology
TFAW

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site

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