Category Archives: Underrated

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Underrated: Sequels That Aren’t As Bad As We Think

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week: Sequels That Aren’t As Bad As We Think


In the interest of full disclosure, this wasn’t the column I wanted to run today. This is an older one, with updates, that previously ran on Ramblings of a Comics Fan in 2015 or so because my original plan was to talk about the sales numbers for December – but I failed to make sure they were released (they’re not) before leaving it to the last minute to write this. Granted, I’ve got several hours before publication time, and if I wasn’t heading out shortly for a signing at my LCS then I’d have time. But I am, and therefore I don’t.

A few things before we start; firstly, these comic book movies were generally derided by comic book fans when they were released.  Secondly, some of these movies I’m probably viewing with the rose tinted glasses of nostalgia, and as I haven’t seen many of them in years so be prepared for some potentially foolish claims.  Thirdly, this isn’t a complete, or inclusive, list and it is completely subjective.

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014)
For some reason, this movie has been absolutely shit upon in the last five years. In part, I believe because the villains weren’t exactly strong. Hell, they’re only a step above Topher Grace’s Venom (more on that later) if we’re being honest. But Dane DeHann wasn’t horrible as Harry; I’d go so far as to say that the worst part about the character in the movie is the visual aspect and not the actor’s portrayal. Andrew Garfield’s Spider-Man was an engaging and electric presence on screen, and up until Spider-Man: Homecoming his was my favourite onscreen depiction of the wall crawler. In a movie that did a lot of things right, the main takeaway fans seemed to have was what it did wrong.

The Dark Knight Rises (2012)
I really enjoyed this movie. It was a fitting climax to Chris Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy, but it didn’t live up to the lofty expectations set by the second movie in the franchise: The Dark Knight. The Dark Knight is, simply, the best Batman movie since Tim Burton’s Batman (and even then, I feel The Dark Knight is superior to that movie). The Dark Knight Rises… wasn’t. It was a good Batman film, a very good movie, but it didn’t live up to huge expectations that the previous movie left it.

Spider-Man 3 (2007)
Any movie following one of the greatest superhero movies ever made would be faced with some huge expectations. In Spider-Man 2 Alfred Molina gave one of the best performances as the antagonist in a comic book movie in the last fifteen years – rivaled only by Heath Ledger’s Joker in The Dark Knight. So when Spider-Man 3 promised us Venom, and Sandman, and a New Goblin, we were excited. We heaped our expectations on a movie that simply couldn’t handle it. Although Venom probably should have waited until Spider-Man 4 before finally appearing, Spider-Man 3 isn’t all that bad. There were some good moments, and Thomas Haden Church’s Sandman was surprisingly well portrayed.

X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)
It would have been tough to follow X2 anyway, but for a new director and some quick casting changes when James Marsden dropped out of the project, X-Men: The Last Stand faced an uphill battle. The poor treatment of Angel;  a character that was shoehorned into the movie to appease the fans rather than adding anything to the story. But that being said, it wasn’t a bad movie, it just didn’t measure up to the previous two.

Crow: Salvation (2000)
Sequels to the 1994 movie The Crow  generally range from absolute tripe, to just a little bit above bad with one exception; The Crow: Salvation.  As far as sequels to the original movie go this is the best of the bunch, although that’s ultimately not really saying much when you look at the quality of the other two. Certainly not the best Crow movie out there, that title currently belongs to the original, but it is the best of the rest.

Batman Forever (1995)
The second Batman movie on this weeks Underrated is easily the worse of the two. Although Joel Shumacker ruined the Batman movie franchise with Batman and Robin (although had he not done that, then the Nolan movies would never have been made) I still enjoy Batman Forever  to this day. It echoes the Adam West TV show of the 1960’s, updating the camp foolishness of that time into a neon tinged modern interpretation that tries to distance itself from Tim Burton’s movies.  No, the film isn’t the best batman movie out there, but it isn’t as bad as Shumacker’s other offering.


There we have it – five underrated comic book movie sequels. Are there other comic book related things out there that are, for whatever reason, underrated and under-appreciated?

Absolutely.

Because of that, Underrated will return to look at comic book related stuff  that either gets ignored despite it’s high quality, or maybe isn’t quite as bad as we tend to think it is.

Until next time!

Underrated: Battlepug Volume One

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week: Battlepug: Volume One


Disclaimer: Somehow I managed to delete, and save the deletion, of almost the entire text of this column. It is currently about ten minutes before it’s due to go live… 

After a visit to the thrift store the other day I found the first volume of Mike Norton‘s BattlepugJoining Norton for the comic is colourist Allen Passalaqu and letter Chris Crank. The story itself is a blend between homage and parody to Conan and He-Man in a world where sword and sorcery is the name of the game in a world where giant cuddly and innocent looking (mostly) animals represent a rather unconventionally large threat. With the first volume taking on a story-within-a-story set up, the framing is of a fairly stereotypical fantasy woman telling a bed time story to her two talking pugs. 

It’s the story within, that bed time story, that holds the origin of the Battlepug as a lone survivor of a village grows to become the Conan figure in all his brutal glory. The book, a slightly oversized hardcover that cost me $6, is presented almost like a children’s book – and because this isn’t a book for kids, that only adds to the brilliance of its presentation. Battlepug is one of those rare stories that is able to both poke fun at and show respect to its genre while exposing the tropes and criticisms that audiences level at classical fantasy. And it does all this with utter seriousness as a giant pug slurps and snorts through the pages.

Although there is a very cohesive and well told story here, there are also brilliant little moments every few pages; jokes in dialogue and imagery, nods of the head to other things the reader should be all too aware of, and things that may not necessarily be on their radar (I’m sure I missed a lot, honestly). There’s a much deeper story for you to unpack upon the second or third reading, and it never gets old. Or it hasn’t for me.

Norton’s story is utterly fantastic. It’s funny, it’s remarkably well written, and it deserves so much more than the hastily rewritten column that it is getting. It is beyond an Underrated gem, and it’s one that I have every intention of revisiting very soon, and in more detail, when I find the second volume.

 


 

Join us next week when we look at something else that is, for whatever reason, Underrated.

Underrated: X-O Manowar: Birth

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week: X-O Manowar: Birth

 


 

I’ve been a Valiant fan for nearly four years now, and while I have dabbled in the original comics (affectionately known as VH1 among the fanbase), it has primarily been the modern era, comics from 2012 to the present day (known as the VEI era), that has been my reading and collecting focus. But a couple of weeks ago, the owner of my LCS returned from visiting one of his other stores with a hardcover for me because he thought I’d be interested. That hardcover reprinted the first six issues of the original X-O Manowar run from 1992, the #o issue and an original story featuring the origin of one the early issues villains. This collection represents the earliest comics from Valiant I’ve yet read, and although I prefer the 2012 origin for X-O Manowar, I can understand why Valiant was able to hook fans in with the original X-O stories. I’m looking at this book today from the perspective of somebody who has read a lot, or even some, of the modern X-O Manowar comics before ever touching the original VH1 run, and asking whether that person would be interested in looking to the past.

If you’re at all familiar with Aric of Dacia, the X-O Manowar armour and his abduction and subsequent return to Earth then you’ll know the essence of the plot this book. The 2012 origin took a lot from these six or seven comics, and although some details were updated or modified, the the influence the original story still bears upon the modern is easy to see. Aside from Aric’s Hulk-like speech patterns that do, thankfully, begin to diminish as he learns English, the barbarian’s character still shows flashes of the man he will become when the publisher relaunched.

The Vine are replaced with the Spider-Aliens, although aside from the name there is little that distinguishes them from the first few comics in the 2012 run. Where as the Vine become one of the more interesting and complex plot points in the VEI stories, the Spider-Aliens show little of the same qualities at this point (yes, there are signs that there is more to the Vine within the first three issues of the VEI run), but then that really just makes it easier to enjoy the battle carnage as Aric tears his way through the soldiers and corporate representatives of the Spider-Aliens.

Although you can enjoy the book without any prior knowledge, for a Valiant fan of the old or new school (or both) this beautifully presented book is a must read. And most of us will seek the story out if we can, but for those not entrenched in Valiant lore, this standalone story here represents an Underrated gem from comics history.


Join us next week when we look at something else that is, for whatever reason, Underrated.

Underrated: Power Rangers (the 2017 movie)

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week: Power Rangers (the 2017 movie)



This has been an interesting year for me. 2018 marks the first time in decades where neither Marvel or DC comprise even a third of my pull-list, when I deliberately chose to read a space based science fiction book (which usually run totally against my tastes) and the first time since I was a nipper that I watched the Power Rangers.

Whilst waiting for my wife to wake up on Christmas morning (because she’s happy to sleep in to a normal time, whereas I am a man-child who wakes up at 6am without an alarm one day of the year only) I was flicking through Netflix and came across the 2017 Power Rangers movie. Remembering it not doing so well critically or commercially, I decided to press play so I could enjoy a bad movie alone (hey, sometimes bad movies are awesome).

This wasn’t a bad movie.

Oh, it was cheesy, with moments of camp and a villain that was desperately trying (and partially succeeding) to exude evil with every step, but it wasn’t bad. Power Rangers was exactly what I expected and hoped it would be, given the source material filtered through twenty five years or more of nostalgia. In short, it was bloody awesome.

I understand people’s frustrations with it taking nearly and hour and a half before we first see the Power Rangers in their suits (or armour, as the outfits are in the movie), and that the pacing seems a touch slow until it suddenly isn’t. But for me, having not watched anything Power Rangers since I was about nine or ten years old, it allowed me to get reacquainted with characters I had long forgotten. The movie is brilliant, and for my money, is perfectly self aware. In a world with Thor: Ragnorak, Wonder Woman and Spider-Man: Homecoming, Power Rangers is never going to stand out as a truly great superhero movie. And that’s honestly a shame, because the movie is a lot of fun.

The martial arts action is well choreographed, the giant robot fights are also fun (but far too short), but what had me nearly cheering out loud was when the theme song came on. It was a brilliantly self aware homage to the original series, the longtime franchise fans who returned to watch the movie, and people like myself who haven’t heard that song in decades.

Frankly, it was glorious. Which is why, dear reader, I wanted to talk about it today. Power Rangers  is exactly the kind of movie that Underrated is about; one that was largely laughed off or over shadowed by a bigger release. This flick is on Netflix (Canada) now – do yourselves a favour and go check it out.


Join us next week when we look at something else that is, for whatever reason, Underrated.

Underrated: The Highest House

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week:  The Highest House



 

I had picked this book up prior to going on vacation to read on the plane at the suggestion of my LCS, but never actually got around to reading the book while I was away. Thankfully, I found I had the time this week and decided to sit down and start reading the book in between devouring Andrej Sapkowski’s The Witcher novels. 

I don’t say this lightly, but The Highest House is one of those books you give to people who don’t like comics, or don’t read comics, to show them what the medium can do. Its impact isn’t only felt in the story, but rather that you don’t need to be aware of decades of tropes and nuances to get the most from the book. This is just a really moving and powerful story about change and overcoming the shit life throws at you in order to rise above and become the best version of yourself.

Written by Mike Carey and illustrated by Peter Gross, the trade paperback set me back $30 Canadian, and is worth each and every penny that I paid for it. Without revealing too much about the story, this won’t be the longest column, but I want you to go in blind – just like I did. 

Because this book is worth it.

I usually end this column with a recommendation to check out the book or series or movie in question, but I genuinely can’t recommend this graphic novel to you highly enough If you don’t grab this with both hands when you see then you’ll miss an Underrated gem.


Join us next week when we look at something else that is, for whatever reason, Underrated.

Underrated: Comics Not In Diamond’s Top 100 For November ’18

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week: Comics not in Diamond’s top 100 sellers for November


This week we’re going to be looking at a list of comics that are all pretty good, but don’t get the attention that they deserve. Now I’m not even going to pretend to have a definitively exhaustive list of underrated comics here, because we’re hoping  that you decide to check at least one of these series out next time you’re looking for something new either online or at your LCS, and giving you a huge list to check out would be counter productive to that. Instead, you’ll find four to six comics that are worth your attention that failed to crack the top 100 in sales. The only hard stipulation for this week: not one of the comics made it into the top 100 for July’s comic sales, according to Comichron, which is why they’re Underrated.


 

 

Catalyst Prime: Accell #10 (Lion Forge)
October Sales Rank/Units Sold: 370/1,631
Why You Should Read It: A satirical take on superheroes and serialized stories, this series has a lot more depth than you would first think. With the ending of the first arc in this issue, you’ve only got four to catch up on before the fifth issue hits this month.

Low Road West  #3 (Image)
October Sales Rank/Units Sold: 463/1,609
Why You Should Read It: 
 A nuclear war that destroyed part of the US is only the beginning for this series, which is effectively a series of familiar tropes done so very well in every way possible. A very engaging and enjoyable read.

Shuri #1 (Marvel)
October Sales Rank/Units Sold:336/1,982
Why You Should Read It:
I really hope that this comic has landed at this place on the sales chart because of its release late in the month and not because people ignored it. Shuri #1 is worth checking out – if nothing else at least read the first issue.

Quantum And Woody #12 (Valiant)
October Sales Rank/Units Sold: 262/3,960
Why You Should Read It: 
Perhaps one of the best comics  to illustrate what it means to be a superhero, and the effect that even one’s presence can have on the neighborhoods under a hero’s protection. THe final issue of the series, but a great candidate for my comic of the year.

Ducktales #14 (IDW)
October Sales Rank/Units Sold: 238/5,191
Why You Should Read It:
Because it’s frigging Ducktales.

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Unless the comics industry ceases any and all publication look for a future installment of Underrated to cover more comics that aren’t cracking the top 100.

Underrated: Freaks Of The Heartland

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week:  Freaks Of the Heartland



foth.jpg


This is another book in the “well this looks interesting” series that usually results in me grabbing, seemingly at random, a trade paperback from the shelves at my LCS. Freaks of the Heartland was originally published as a six issue miniseries around 2004/2005. The series was written by Steve Niles and Greg Ruth handled the art and lettering.

Freaks Of The Heartland is set in the 50’s or 60’s, based on the visual clues throughout the book, and tells the story of young Trevor Owen and his mysterious younger brother Will, a mysterious child who is condemned to live in the barn behind the house. 

When I first cracked the cover, I was struck at how wonderful the art was – which feels like an odd statement given the subject of the book. Ruth’s work is frankly astounding. He is able to give you all you need to know about the characters within a panel or two at the very most – whether this is a facial expression, a gesture or their body language, this is a book where the words are almost unnecessary for your understanding of the story and the journey the characters are on. 

Niles is known for his horror comics, and the story of Freaks of the Heartland has its origins in the horror genre. There is the hidden threat and ominous sense of foreboding are very present throughout this book, and right up until the very end you’re never quite sure how the cards will fall in the conclusion. Nothing is telegraphed, nothing is given away, and the ending is all the more powerful for that. I went into this book without any idea of the plot – I never bothered to read the back of the book, and so I won’t give you anymore plot details here than I have because there are moments and revelations that hit me as I turned each page that I don’t think would have had the same impact upon me had I been more cognizant of the plot when opening the book.

Instead, I hope you’ll take my word for it that this is an utterly fantastic non-superhero story that will make you rethink the power of sequential art as a story telling medium. I genuinely believe that this story, a story that is told in its entirety in one volume, is an example of what comics are truly capable of when you look past the cyclical nature of superhero stories.

I devoured this book in a single sitting and knew immediately that had it been released this year then there is no question it would have made an appearance on my Best Of 2018 list. At this point, I’m thinking I’m going to add some kind of “Best thing I read this year that wasn’t from 2018” category just so I can highlight the book once again.

I usually end this column with a recommendation to check out the book or series or movie in question, but I genuinely can’t recommend this graphic novel to you highly enough If you don’t grab this with both hands when you see then you’ll miss an Underrated gem.


Join us next week when we look at something else that is, for whatever reason, Underrated.

Underrated: The Astounding Wolf-Man Volume One

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week:  The Astounding Wolf-Man



atounding wolf-man.jpgBorn from Robert Kirkman‘s desire to see comic books on the rack that are easily identifiable from the cover and the title, The Astounding Wolf-Man is a comic about a werewolf superhero. The complete twenty five issue run is collected across four volumes, all published by Image. The series originally ran in the mid 2000’s, culminating with the 25th issue in 2010. The Astounding Wolf-Man mixes the supernaturally traditional horror monsters (basically werewolves and vampires) in with the traditional cape and cowl crowd in ways that you may not have necessarily encountered before within the Marvel or DC universes. Kirkman establishes the existence of the monsters long before he does the heroes, which has the effect of grounding the world in the supernatural long before we see the heroes – so while the reader is used to and has accepted the existence of werewolves, the heroes are left to question the very nature of Wolf-Man much longer into the series.

The origin of Wolf-Man is told succinctly, with Kirkman never allowing the origin to feel overly drawn out or excessive – the story is well paced from start to finish, and it all begins with the origin.

Who is the Wolf-Man?

Gary Hampton. A man who was mauled by a werewolf while out camping with his family, and chooses to use his newfound powers for good by becoming a superhero. But there are dangers with being a heroic werewolf, both the physical reactions of those he confronts, and from the reactions of those around Gary Hampton. Kirkman stays true to the horror stories that have made him famous by injecting a touch of the emotional tension from The Walking Dead as the audience witnesses Wolf-Man’s world adjust to who and what he is.

Joining Kirkman in this venture is artist Jason Howard. Howard was a relative newcomer at the time of the series publication, but has gone on to work on Super Dinosaur, also with Kirkman, and Trees with Warren Ellis. His style throughout the comic reminded me a lot of Batman: The Animated Series in how the characters had a weight to them, and their kinetic energy as they dance their often violent dance across the pages of the graphic novel. Obviously, given the nature of the titular hero, one should expect a judicious use of red ink on these pages as Wolf-Man slices his way through various opponents of varying degrees of villainy.

So the question now, is why is this underrated? Because aside from it being an incredibly fun read, I hadn’t heard of it until I saw the collection on the used shelf at my local comic shop. It turned out that the fresh take on supernatural superheroes was far more entertaining than I had initially expected, and given the fame of some of Kirkman’s other work, I was a little surprised that the twenty five issue run ofThe Astounding Wolf-Man hadn’t gained any real stream before. 

If you get a chance to read this, then do so. You’ll find an Underrated gem just waiting for you.


Join us next week when we look at something else that is, for whatever reason, Underrated.

Underrated: Comics Not In Diamond’s Top 100 For October ’18

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week: Comics not in Diamond’s top 100 sellers for September


This week we’re going to be looking at a list of comics that are all fantastic, but don’t get the attention that they deserve. Now I’m not even going to pretend to have a definitively exhaustive list of underrated comics here, because we’re hoping  that you decide to check at least one of these series out next time you’re looking for something new either online or at your LCS, and giving you a huge list to check out would be counter productive to that. Instead, you’ll find four to six comics that are worth your attention that failed to crack the top 100 in sales. The only hard stipulation for this week: not one of the comics made it into the top 100 for July’s comic sales, according to Comichron, which is why they’re Underrated.


 

 

High Heaven #2 (Ahoy)
October Sales Rank/Units Sold: 496/1,222 
Why You Should Read It:
A main character that’s as unlikeable as he is sympathetic, a clever story that is freshly original and art that is beautiful in its simplicity. A fantastic issue from a relatively new publisher.

Dread Gods #4 (IDW)
October Sales Rank/Units Sold: 463/1,609
Why You Should Read It: 
A satirical take on superheroes and serialized stories, this series has a lot more depth than you would first think. With the ending of the first arc in this issue, you’ve only got four to catch up on before the fifth issue hits this month.

Hot Lunch Special #3 (Aftershock)
October Sales Rank/Units Sold: 423/2,136
Why You Should Read It:
Because it’s written by one of the best comic book writers around: Eliot Rahal. This is a fantastic midwestern noir style story, and one I can’t recommend enough.

Hey Kids, Comics! #3 (Image)
October Sales Rank/Units Sold: 341/3,758
Why You Should Read It: 
An oddly accurate yet slightly subtle portrayal of the history of comics, this series assumes you have some knowledge as to the subject covered – the names of creators have been altered a little, but not their actions, which provides a valuable insight into the industry’s past.



Unless the comics industry ceases any and all publication look for a future installment of Underrated to cover more comics that aren’t cracking the top 100.

Underrated: Road Rage

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week:  Road Rage



road rageRoad Ragepublished by IDW is an adaptation of Stephen King and Joe Hill‘s Throttle and Richard Matheson‘s Duel by writer Chris Ryall and artists Nelson Daniel (on Throttle) and Rafa Garres (on Duel).

Despite the collected edition of Road Rage containing two versions of essentially the same story; King and Hill’s story in this trade is itself an adaptation of Matheson’s original short story, making the two issue comic an adaptation of an adaptation – which is an interesting choice for a collection. But if you’re expecting to read the same story twice, then you’ll be pleasantly surprised. King and  Hill’s story focuses on a group of bikers who end up running afoul of the deadly truck, where as Matheson’s features a lone salesman desperately trying to avoid a different truck in his car. The two stories are linked by the deadly truck, but are ultimately different enough that you shouldn’t feel short changed should you happen to pick this book up.

When it comes to the quality or faithfulness of the adaptations to the original stories, well that’s not something I can comment on as I have never read the text-only stories. However, I did really enjoy both comic stories as they were presented; Ryall’s comic scripts, presumably, more than does justice to the source material as he’s able to effectively convey the tense horror and suspense of both Throttle and Duel (the latter feels more like a horror story for me than the more action tinged former), though a portion of the credit should also be given to the artists. Garras work on Duel veers between the mundane daily life of a salesman driving to the pants wetting terror and desperation to stay alive. The more afraid the protagonist becomes, the more distorted the art feels – it’s a brilliant and investing touch to the story that effectively builds upon the tensions of the script.

The collection is a great taste of horror tinged comic books, and one that despite the high profile genre names connected to the comics I had never heard of before I spotted it at the used section of my LCS. It’s the subject of today’s column because it was a fantastic read, remarkably tense and quite exhilarating. If you get the chance to read the collection or the four issues collected within, then do so. You’ll find an Underrated gem.


Join us next week when we look at something else that is, for whatever reason, Underrated.

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