Tag Archives: andrew dalhouse

Review: Rai: Book One

Rai: Book One

Rai: Book One takes us to the 41st century, the great hero Rai and his smaller and younger-looking (but older) brother Raijin wander the Earth looking for artifacts that could bring back their adversary, Father. He created Rai and all the other Rais that have existed. But he’s a bloodthirsty force that Rai has had to fight time and time again. His forces are expert killers, raiders, dinosaurs, and even a crazy model home, but they are no match for Rai.

Rai: Book One has a great blend of science fiction and action. Series writer Dan Abnett, who previously wrote Rai’s adventures in the preceding Fallen World mini-series, seems to understand how the character works. The book takes place in the 41st century, so there’s a lot of interesting and creative world-building done, too. Raiders and dinosaurs and even the haunted model home make up some of the threats that Rai and Raijin face and it feels like a refreshing slap of creativity.

Two of my favorite things about Rai are this:  For one, most of this is written as single-issue stories. Issues 4 and 5 are a two-parter. But, you could pretty much pick up any issue of this and be able to jump right in. Issue 2, where the Rais come upon the model home dedicated to its own preservation was one of my favorite single issues I read last year. The other favorite thing about Rai is the art.

I think that Juan Jose Ryp’s art on this book is jaw-dropping. I’m a bit biased; he’s one of my all-time favorite artists, but what he does with a page, very few can do. His work on Rai is very detailed and with Andrew Dalhouse on colors, it makes for a perfect pairing. Ryp has a way with action and violence in his work that stands out. Rai is the kind of book that could be appreciated for the art alone.

Rai doesn’t quite recap its previous events at the beginning of the book but through reading it, you learn what got him and little Raijin to this point. Honestly, it’s not that confusing and I feel Rai: Book One is ripe for new readers. This first volume from the relaunch of Rai starts off with all guns blazing and never lets up. It comes out in shops on September 16th and should leave with you on that same day.

Story: Dan Abnett Art: Juan Jose Ryp
Color: Andrew Dalhouse Letterer: Dave Sharpe
Story: 9.0 Art: 10 Overall: 9.5 Recommendation: I think it’s worth buying

Valiant provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: comiXologyAmazonKindle Zeus Comics

Review: Bloodshot #8

Bloodshot #8

In Bloodshot #8, unthinkable monsters are unleashing Hell on Earth! Surrounded by enemies, who can Bloodshot trust?

It has been a long time since the previous issue was released, although there was an expanded edition with some bonus features released last month under the guise of Bloodshot #7 Fully Loaded Edition, but there wasn’t any new story content in that comic. On the off chance you didn’t pick that one up just for the bonus features, and I understand why you may not have, the good news is that you don’t need to remember Bloodshot #7 all that much to be able to enjoy this book because writer Tim Seeley has structured the comic in such a way that a chunk of time has passed between issues seven and eight. It’s not explicitly stated how much time, and whether this was an incredible stroke of luck given the break between issues because of Covid 19, or Seeley was able to adjust the dialogue just enough to convey a longer chunk of time passing than he originally intended, I’m not sure.

Frankly, as far as my enjoyment of the comic goes, I don’t particularly care which it was because the story and dialogue flow so well across every page (but I am genuinely curious as to whether he needed to adjust the text at all).

The story finds Bloodshot atoning for releasing a horde of formerly imprisoned enemies that all have some form of super powers, and may or may not have been used by their respective governments. Granted, he wasn’t in control of himself when he did it, but still he feels responsible for unleashing what he has.

Bloodshot has been one fast-paced and frenetic issue after another. It has been a great ride for the last seven issues. I’ve certainly enjoyed the series for what it is; a popcorn comic that has a depth to it that’s revealed further with each issue. Tim Seeley gives you a little more of his plan with each release. There are moments in this issue that change or enhance your idea of the characterizations of some characters inbetween the action. It’s this balance that allows you to fly through the book while still feeling like you’ve read more than the twenty-odd pages.

Seeley is joined by artist Marc Laming, inker Adelso Corona, colorist Andrew Dalhouse, and letterer Dave Sharpe. All of whom combine for an aesthetic that appeals enormously to me. The style gives me a sense of nostalgia for the comic art I read growing up; it’s dynamic, clean and yet full of life and vibrancy.

If the above paragraph or two feel familiar to you it’s because I copied it from the review of the last issue. It was as true then as it is for this issue, and I didn’t feel like I should try and craftily rewrite the same thing when my feelings on the books hasn’t changed. Personally, I love how this book looks. The lines are clean and it’s very easy to discern what’s happening on every page. It’s an awesome book that consistently surprises me.

Every time I open an issue of Seeley’s Bloodshot, it reminds me why I love reading comics; it’s fun, looks great, and there’s always more meat to the story on the second and third read through as you pick up on the subtleties of Seeley’s dialogue and the details in the art. You can’t go wrong with this book – it’s a must-read for all the right reasons.

Story: Tim Seeley Art: Marc Laming
Ink: Adelso Corona Color: Andrew Dalhouse Letterer: Dave Sharpe
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.2 Overall: 9.2 Recommendation: Buy

Valiant provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review.


Purchase: comiXologyKindleZeus Comics

Preview: RAI Book One TPB

RAI BOOK ONE TPB

Written by DAN ABNETT
Art by JUAN JOSÉ RYP
Colors by ANDREW DALHOUSE
Letters by DAVE SHARPE 
Cover by JUAN JOSÉ RYP
On sale SEPTEMBER 16th | 208 pages, full color | $9.99 US | T+

Welcome to the 41st century: New worlds, new characters, new adventures.

The cyborg ronin named Rai embarks on a thrilling quest to save the future. Side by side with his prototype and predecessor – the robot boy called Raijin – the spirit guardian of the fallen nation of New Japan will journey into the wastelands of Earth to set right the wrongs of their onetime overlord once and for all.

Multiple New York Times bestselling and award-winning writer Dan Abnett (Guardians of the Galaxy) joins forces with breathtaking artist Juan José Ryp (X-O MANOWAR) to begin the essential sci-fi series of the next two thousand years!

Collecting RAI (2019) #1–5.

RAI BOOK ONE TPB

Preview: Bloodshot #8

BLOODSHOT #8

Written by TIM SEELEY
Art by PEDRO ANDREO
Colors by ANDREW DALHOUSE
Letters by DAVE SHARPE 
Cover A by TYLER KIRKHAM
Cover B by DIEGO BERNARD
Cover C by CRYSSY CHEUNG
Preorder Variant Cover by SHAWN CRYSTAL
On sale SEPTEMBER 16th | 32 pages, full color | $3.99 US | T+

Unthinkable monsters are unleashing Hell on Earth!

Surrounded by enemies, who can Bloodshot trust?

BLOODSHOT #8

Review: Rai #6

Rai #6

A brand-new arc of the critically-acclaimed series starts in Rai #6! Rai and Raijin are drafted into the positronic Roman legions to face a savage threat.

I absolutely loved the first issue of the current volume of Rai. I was quite taken with the second issue, as well as the third and fourth. After how much I loved Fallen World, I wasn’t expecting to enjoy Rai as much as I have. Every issue has been near perfection. The theme of the series is the inclusion of technology in our lives and the potential future we face. One could argue I’m reading too much into the comics, but I’d like to counter that. After all, what a reader takes from a book can be different depending on their perspectives.

The core concept of the series is that Rai and his younger brother figure who is also an older model android, Raijin, are searching for Offspirng. Not the band, but rather pieces of artificially intelligent code that when returned to Bloodfather will make him nigh unstoppable. Each issue centers around Rai and Raijin and their search for more Offspring, giving the series it’s overarching plot line while allowing Dan Abnett to have each issue effectively tell a whole story or the first half of a two parter.

Rai #6 is one of those comics that deals with the Greater Good; aiming to win the war at the expense of the smaller battles. Abnett explores this concept in a microcosm as Rai and Raijin intervene in an ongoing struggle between two warring factions. There’s a tenseness to the writing as we discover how Rai plans to react the the situation, his singleminded dedication to his goal coming across as selfishness and indifference, which emphasizes Abnett’s point; you can save the world, but don’t forget who your saving it for.

Juan Jose Ryp‘s artwork pulls me right back to Valiant’s Roman era series Britannia (probably because he also drew that), which only helps to emphasize the interconnectedness of the Valiant universe (even if it was unintentional). Once again coloured by Andrew Dalhouse, the visual presentation of the book is near flawless.

Rai was THE book I was waiting for once comics began shipping again, and I can happily say I wasn’t disappointed in Rai #6 after the long wait. Abnett’s Rai is easily the one of the very best things being published right now. If you’re not reading it, why not?

Story: Dan Abnett Artist: Juan Jose Ryp
Colorist: Andrew Dalhouse Letter: Dave Sharpe

Story: 9.8 Art: 9.8 Overall: 9.8 Recommendation: Buy

Valiant provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: comiXologyKindleZeus Comics

Preview: RAI #6

RAI #6

Written by DAN ABNETT
Art by JUAN JOSÉ RYP
Colors by ANDREW DALHOUSE
Letters by DAVE SHARPE
Cover A by NETHO DIAZ
Cover B by KANO
Cover C by JASON METCALF
Preorder Cover by BRET BLEVINS
On sale AUGUST 19 | 32 pages, full color | $3.99 US | T+

A brand-new arc of the critically-acclaimed series starts here! Rai and Raijin are drafted into the positronic Roman legions to face a savage threat.

RAI #6

Review: Bloodshot #7 Fully Loaded Edition

Bloodshot #7 Fully Loaded Edition

Valiant’s supersoldier must hunt down monsters, aliens, living weapons, and other terrifying threats after they’re set loose from a top-secret facility in “The Burned” Part 1 – plus exclusive new content, and commentary from Kevin VanHook! All in the Bloodshot #7 Fully Loaded Edition!

Note: The story hasn’t changed at all in the Bloodshot #7 Fully Loaded Edition, and you’ll find the review for that below. This update is specifically talking about the added content to the comic.

Content that is designed to pull those who have already purchased the comic back to buy another one with a half dozen pages of extras, but is it enough? Eh… maybe. If you’re a super fan, or somebody who loves to learn about the history and the behind the scenes of comics, the answer is obvious, just as if it is if you haven’t read the book at all: Absolutely.

But if you’re more interested in the story? Well that can get a bit trickier. There’s a page with scenes from the comics that inspired the movie, which honestly, is two thirds a crock of shit with two panels taken from this series, which was released after the movie had finished filming, but before it hit cinemas. It feels like that was thrown in as filler, with panels that look kinda similar, so why not try it?

The next two pages of the extras are worth reading as Bloodshot co-creator Kevin Van Hook takes you on a tour of the character’s origin. It may be a story some are familiar with, but if you’re not then it’s a worthy read, followed by Tim Seely taking us on a quick look inside a certain page.

After that we get a breakdown of the characters in the series, which is great for new fans, but maybe less exciting for some.

Is the Bloodshot #7 Fully Loaded Edition worth buying if you’ve already picked up the story the first time it came through? Maybe – it depends on your interest in the character. For me, it’s a book I’ll be picking up when I hit up my LCS, but I’m one of those fans who loves the history of comics, and Van Hook’s section is worth the price of admission for me alone.


Original Review:

What better way to release a comic featuring the first character to appear on the big screen than by having it start with a new jumping on point? A first issue, you could say, and you wouldn’t be wrong – but with the comic already having had seven issues released (including Bloodshot #0) it would have been a touch disingenuous to renumber the series with the story still ongoing. Nobody would ever do that. Certainly not.

If you are looking to check the character out ahead of the movie, or you’re reading this after having seen the Sony Pictures Bloodshot movie starring Vin Diesal, then you’ll be happy to know that Bloodshot #7 is fairly new reader friendly. Cleverly paced dialogue that flows without feeling like forced exposition tells you everything you need to know.

Bloodshot has been one fast-paced and frenetic issue after another. It has been a great ride for the last seven issues. I’ve certainly enjoyed the series for what it is; a popcorn comic that has a depth to it that’s revealed further with each issue. Tim Seeley gives you a little more of his plan with each release. There are moments in this issue that change or enhance your idea of the characterizations of some characters inbetween the action. It’s this balance that allows you to fly through the book while still feeling like you’ve read more than the twenty-odd pages.

Seeley is joined by artist Marc Laming, inker Adelso Corona, colorist Andrew Dalhouse, and letterer Dave Sharpe. All of whom combine for an aesthetic that appeals enormously to me. The style gives me a sense of nostalgia for the comic art I read growing up; it’s dynamic, clean and yet full of life and vibrancy.

If the above paragraph feels familiar to you it’s because I copied it from the review of the last issue. It was as true then as it is for this issue, and I didn’t feel like I should try and craftily rewrite the same thing when my feelings on the visuals haven’t changed. Personally, I love how this book looks. The lines are clean and it’s very easy to discern what’s happening on every page.

Bloodshot #7 isn’t the most original story. It won’t shake you to your core or have you asking yourself deeply introspective questions. But not every comic needs to do that. What Bloodshot does, it does very well. Seeley, Booth, and co have been remarkably consistent issue to issue, and I can’t really find any fault in an issue that does exactly what it says on the tin (that may be an obscure reference for you – it’s from a UK add originating in the late 90’s from a company called Ronseal).

Bloodshot remains one of the series I look forward to reading each month. This wasn’t the best comic I’ve read this week, but it still comes with a big fat stamp of approval from me.

Story: Tim Seeley Art: Marc Laming
Ink: Adelso Corona Color: Andrew Dalhouse Letterer: Dave Sharpe
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.2 Overall: 9.2 Recommendation: Buy

Valiant provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review.


Purchase: comiXology

Preview: Bloodshot #7 Fully Loaded Edition

BLOODSHOT #7 FULLY LOADED EDITION

Written by TIM SEELEY
Art by MARC LAMING, JASON MASTERS
Colors by ANDREW DALHOUSE
Letters by DAVE SHARPE
Photo Cover feat. Vin Diesel as BLOODSHOT
On sale AUGUST 12 | 32 pages, full color | $3.99 US | T+

Valiant’s supersoldier must hunt down monsters, aliens, living weapons, and other terrifying threats after they’re set loose from a top-secret facility in “The Burned” Part 1 – plus exclusive new content, and commentary from Kevin VanHook!

BLOODSHOT #7 FULLY LOADED EDITION

Preview: Batman: Gotham Nights #12

Batman: Gotham Nights #12

Five Little Robins” by Tim Seeley, V. Ken Marion, Sandu Florea, Andrew Dalhouse, and Troy Peteri
Purchase

Every current and former Robin has been captured by a mysterious villain! Will these distinctly different students of Batman be able to stand each other long enough to fight off a horde of their greatest enemies?

Batman: Gotham Nights #12

This Week’s DC Digital First Includes Our Fighting Forces from Priest and Christopher Mooneyham

DC’s Digital First delivers new comics every day! New series Our Fighting Forces joins the lineup next Sunday July 12 and Flash: The Fastest Man Alive returns for another “Flash Friday” with a new issue, giving fans even more choice of characters while expanding DC’s digital publishing line with original stories. And Harley Quinn: Black + White + Red’s third chapter will hit on Friday July 10 with a story by Saladin Ahmed and Javier Rodriguez!

Monday July 6

Superman: Man of Tomorrow #10

Purchases

Pro-Lobo” by Dave Wielgosz, Riley Rossmo, Ivan Plascencia, and Tom Napolitano

The Main Man himself, Lobo, has come to Earth chasing a bounty, but Superman thinks Lobo is just hurting the little creature. Will Superman put a stop to Lobo, or does the alien have other plans?

The Champion” by Michael Moreci, Thony Silas, Wil Quintana, and Clayton Cowles

Superman wakes up in chains and doesn’t know where he is. He’ll need to put the pieces together quickly if he’s to survive a brutal bout in this gladiator arena!

Superman: The Man of Tomorrow #10

Tuesday July 7

Batman: Gotham Nights #12

Five Little Robins” by Tim Seeley, V. Ken Marion, Sandu Florea, Andrew Dalhouse, and Troy Peteri
Purchase

Every current and former Robin has been captured by a mysterious villain! Will these distinctly different students of Batman be able to stand each other long enough to fight off a horde of their greatest enemies?

Batman: Gotham Nights #12

Wednesday July 8

Wonder Woman: Agent of Peace #9

Obsession Aggression” by Jimmy Palmiotti, Amanda Conner, Hendry Prasetya, Hi-Fi, and Travis Lanham
Purchase

Wonder Woman’s been ambushed! After receiving a house from the will of a person she’s never met, Wonder Woman must investigate, but finds a house of horrors out to kill her! Who’s done this and can Wonder Woman survive the onslaught?

Wonder Woman: Agent of Peace #9

Thursday July 9

Titans: Titans Together #3

Purchase

What’s ‘Normal’” by Marc Guggenheim, Steve Pugh, Mike Spicer, and Marshall Dillon

A charismatic cult leader has been recruiting followers to join his “church,” a highly suspicious organization locked behind the walls of a private compound. For Raven, freeing this vulnerable flock is imperative…the question is, how can she save people who don’t want to be saved?

Cool and HIPAA” by Andrew Aydin, Juan Gedeon, Mike Spicer, and Marshall Dillon

When reports surface that LexCorp has gained access to confidential government health records, Raven realizes that this could mean the unmasking of countless superheroes. With Beast Boy’s help, she must infiltrate LexCorp’s private servers and destroy the information before it falls into the wrong hands.

Titans: Titans Together #3

Friday July 10

The Flash: The Fastest Man Alive #10

Purchase

Bullet” by Van Jensen, David Lafuente, Paul Mounts, and Rob Leigh

It’s an all-out brawl between Reverse Flash and Flash as Barry tries to save a cop from an errant bullet. Will the Flash be fast enough to stop a bullet?

Burnout” by Dave Wielgosz, Brad Walker, Nathan Fairbairn, and Rob Leigh

Barry is running himself ragged, and his best friend Hal Jordan comes to check on him, but Flash doesn’t want the help. When the Top goes on a rampage, can the two friends put their differences aside to work together?

The Flash: The Fastest Man Alive #10

Saturday July 11

Scooby-Doo!: Mystery Inc. #3

Scooby’s Last Rep” by Scott Gross, Franco Riesco, and Saida Temofonte
Purchase

A mysterious giant is bringing chaos to a local gym. Can Scooby and the gang stop him and save the day?

Scooby-Doo!: Mystery Inc. #3

Sunday July 12

Our Fighting Forces #1

House Call” by Priest, Christopher Mooneyham, Ivan Plascencia, and Willie Schubert (cover by Mikel Janín)

A cable news reporter embedded with a mysterious U.S. Army tactical unit tries to figure out which one of the team’s members is the immortal covert operative code-named the Unknown Soldier—and discovers much more than she bargained for!

Our Fighting Forces #1

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