Tag Archives: Comics

Dark Horse Decreases Monthly Releases and Makes Comics Returnable Due to COVID-19

Comic publishers are scrambling to change their policies and release schedules in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Dark Horse has made their initial plans known. They include decreasing the number of comics being released as well as offering 90-day fully returnable terms. They are continuing to explore other options.

It’s unclear what Dark Horse will be releasing as Diamond Comic Distributors has ceased sending out new weekly releases for an unknown amount of time.

You can read Dark Horse’s full letter to retailers below.

Preview: Transformers vs. Terminator #1

Transformers vs. Terminator #1

(W) David Mariotte, John Barber, Tom Waltz (A) Alex Milne (CA) Gavin Fullerton
In Shops: Mar 25, 2020
SRP: $4.99

It’s Skynet vs. Cybertron in a crossover for the ages! 1984: When a deadly race of machines emerge from another time, will a robotic guardian be able to protect the Earth from a dire future… or will the T-800 fail in his mission to prevent the world from becoming a plaything to the Decepticons?

Transformers vs. Terminator #1

Review: X-Ray Robot #1

X-Ray Robot #1

In X-Ray Robot #1, writer/artist Michael Allred and colorist Laura Allred run their usual 1960s space-age aesthetic through a body horror filter. It’s basically that bad trip of a cover of “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” that Flaming Lips, Miley Cyrus, and Moby did in 2014 as sequential art. The comic is a tale of a scientist named Dr. Max Wilding discovering interdimensional travel with the help of a nifty robot. However, his journey to the “other side” is not without its effects. It messes up his home and work life while kick-starting this miniseries’ ongoing plot.

X-Ray Robot #1 gets off to kind of a weird start. It looks like the CEO of Wilding’s funding company, Reynolds, makies an unwanted pass at the only female member of their scientific team. Later, she kisses Wilding on the mouth in front of his wife and kids. Honestly, the character’s motivation doesn’t make sense to me. It’s the single, real flaw in a visually stunning, engrossing, and sometimes terrifying comic.

X-Ray Robot #1

After the initial awkwardness, Mike Allred easily rights the shop by making interdimensional travel look like the process of drawing, but with a robot and a splash of yellow from Laura Allred. Instead of having unnecessary exposition, we get to experience the journey with Wilding and the growing bond between him and his robot. Each trip (Pun definitely intended.) has its own distinct style with consciousness transfer and an incredibly psychedelic double-page spread appearing as the story progresses.

However, a key strength of X-Ray Robot #1 is its juxtaposition of the normal with the otherworldly beginning with Dr. Wilding’s wife and children showing up at his launch and even the banter between scientists as he begins his journey. At first, they seem like scientists, who took design notes from Jack Kirby’s Fantastic Four, Osamu Tezuka’s Astro Boy, and yes, Mike Allred’s earlier work, who have normal lives otherwise. But, then, the unsettling nature of Wilding’s journey creeps up on him while he’s pushing his kid on the swing, in bed with his wife, and finally, hurtling down the passageways of his lab. The man, who had enough wit and grit, to ask his boss for an increase in funding is no longer tethered to reality anymore.

Mike Allred shows this by having a constant sense of movement in his line art and foregoing a boring ol’ grid for fun and new panel shapes. Laura Allred adds the icing on top with intense background colors because X-Ray Robot #1 is really pop art gone loony, or Andy Warhol spending way too much time with Luis Bunuel.

X-Ray Robot has all the pulp science fiction trappings, like intrepid scientists with cool outfits going on a wondrous journey beyond what scientists in our current time can do. Mike Allred combines these elements with the mecha genre, including a cool looking robot that has But he cuts the story together in a way that looks like an avant-garde fever dream at times. Some of the ways he does this is by reality turn on a dime, making Dr. Wilding the ultimate unreliable narrator, and transforming his and Laura Allred’s wonderfully refined artwork into raw pencils.

X-Ray Robot #1 may end up being another scientist and robot team up to save the world from a threat beyond our knowledge, but for now, Mike Allred and Laura Allred subvert these well-trodden tropes and give readers a unique experience of traveling to another dimension and bonding with another consciousness. The way they shift their art style when Dr. Wilding goes to another dimension and the cutting together of tranquil domesticity with violent unreality makes X-Ray Robot #1 a fantastic reading experience and worth pouring over for the Allreds’ dynamic storytelling alone.

Story/Art: Michael Allred
 Colors: Laura Allred Letters: Nate Piekos
Story: 8.0 Art: 9.5 Overall: 8.7 Recommendation: Buy

Dark Horse Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Bang! #2

Bang! #2

(W) Matt Kindt (A/CA) Wilfredo Torres
In Shops: Mar 18, 2020
SRP: $3.99

A constant stream of terrorist attacks follows John Shaw, and the only thing that keeps him one step ahead is a collection of power-giving inhalers and a hatred of shoes.

When he’s once again caught in the middle of a terrorist plot, Shaw finds that these random attacks may not be so random-and the fabric of reality may be at stake.

Bang! #2

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

Alienated #2

Wednesdays are new comic book day! Each week hundreds of comics are released, and that can be pretty daunting to go over and choose what to buy. That’s where we come in!

Each week our contributors choose what they can’t wait to read this week or just sounds interesting. In other words, this is what we’re looking forward to and think you should be taking a look at!

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this Wednesday.

Alienated #2 (BOOM! Studios) – Three kids discover an alien and there’s no way this goes well. An amazing first issue and we’re expecting the same from the second.

Archangel 8 #1/Hotell #1/Red Border #1/Resistance #1 (AWA Studios) – AWA Studios launches with four series all being released this week. We’ve read the teaser magazine and these all look great. A new publisher? We’re in!

Artemis & the Assassin #1 (AfterShock) – A time traveling assassin and a spy from 1944 try to kill each other. Yeah, this sounds awesome.

Bad Reception #4 (AfterShock) – Each issue is like an Agatha Christie novel and it’s been so good.

Bang! #2 (Dark Horse) – The debut was a crazy riff on the James Bond genre. There were enough twists to make it stand out and we want to see where it goes.

Canopus #2 (Scout Comics) – Fantastic sci-fi and a must get. The debut issue was one of the best of the year so far. Helen’s stuck on a mysterious planet and doesn’t know why.

Outlawed #1 (Marvel) – There are absolutely echoes of Civil War but the first issue is a solid start to what’s coming.

Plunge #2 (DC Comics/DC Black Label/Hill House Comics) – The first issue was fantastic horror and we’ve been awaiting the second.

Starship Down #1 (Dark Horse) – An extraterrestrial ship is discovered buried under the ice for thousands of years.

Undiscovered Country #5 (Image Comics) – This comic has been crazy with everything it’s throwing out there and mixing together. Mad Max and apocalypse story with possible time travel-ish elements. It’s all over and just crazy fun.

Wicked Things #1 (BOOM! Studios) – A spin-off from Giant Days about everyone’s favorite child detective: Charlotte Grote!

X-Ray Robot #1 (Dark Horse) – Mike Allred’s latest and Allred’s name alone has us excited for the first issue.

Spy Island #1 Sells Out Before Its April Release

Spy Island #1, the Bermuda Triangle spy-mystery miniseries from the Eisner-nominated team Chelsea Cain, Lia Miternique, Elise McCall, Rachelle Rosenberg, and Joe Caramagna sells out ahead of its on-sale date. Dark Horse Comics has announced a second printing, featuring an all-new cover by co-creator Lia Miternique. 

The highly anticipated dark-humored espionage-adventure is told from the point of view of wry super spy Nora Freud, and takes place on a tropical island where surfers are more likely to be attacked by mermaids than by sharks, and cheap super villains take advantage of the deep discounts during the off-season.

Spy Island #1 arrives in your local comic shop April 1, 2020 featuring a main cover and variant cover by Lia Miternique. Dark Horse Comics will publish the new, second printing variant of issue 1, featuring an all new cover by Lia Miternique on April 8th, in order to meet the high demand from comic book stores and readers.

Spy Island #1

The Orville’s Season 2.5 Comes to Dark Horse Comics

The Orville Executive Producer David A. Goodman, artist David Cabeza, and colorist Michael Atiyeh are teaming up once again to bring the world of The Orville back to the printed page in The Orville Season 2.5: Launch Day.

In the same fashion as Season 1.5, these new stories will consist of two, two-issue “episodes” telling stories set between the second and third seasons of Seth McFarlane’s hit television show. The first of these “episodes” starts with  The Orville Season 2.5: Launch Day #1 (of two).

When seemingly hostile Krill ships cross into Union space, the Orville intercepts. Captain Mercer learns they are en route to a planet that left the Union decades ago, under mysterious circumstances. Scans have discovered a moon-sized construct above the planet, and the Krill intend a preemptive strike against the presumed weapon. But is it? 

The Orville Season 2.5: Launch Day #1 (of two) goes on sale June 3, 2020.

The Orville Season 2.5: Launch Day #1

Mike Mignola and Christopher Golden Introduce Lady Baltimore in 2020

This summer Mike Mignola and bestselling novelist Christopher Golden will reunite for an all-new series, Lady Baltimore. The five-part comic-book series from Dark Horse Comics is co-written by Mignola and Golden, with art by Bridgit Connell, colors by Michelle Madsen, and stunning covers by Hugo Award-winning illustrator Abigail Larson.

Her name was Sofia Valk. Once she lived in an Estonian village, before the evil came. But when Europe erupted with the early battles of World War II, it was time for Sofia Valk to embrace her destiny as Lady Baltimore.

Lady Baltimore takes place 13 years after the events of Baltimore, The Red Kingdom, the final Baltimore series in which the Red King amassed power on his way to the Vatican coronation while his armies swept across Europe in an unholy war.

In time, Sofia Valk became Lord Baltimore’s most trusted ally, but without him she must take on the fight herself. Can she fight monsters without becoming a monster herself?

The first issue of Lady Baltimore goes on sale from Dark Horse Comics on June 10, 2020.

Lady Baltimore

Geralt Returns to Comics in The Witcher: Fading Memories

For fans who can’t get enough of the White Wolf, CD Projekt Red and Dark Horse Comics are teaming up again to bring you a brand-new story set in the world of the smash hit game series! Penned by Bartosz Sztybor and illustrated by Amad Mir, with a cover by Evan CagleThe Witcher: Fading Memories follows the further adventures of Geralt of Rivia.

Geralt has become impoverished and dejected since monster threats have seemingly vanished. Times have always been hard for Witchers—but without continual work, his situation has worsened. As Geralt explores new possibilities for his life path, he receives a request from the Mayor of Towitz, a small town where children are being kidnapped by Foglets…but something feels off about this new threat.

The Witcher: Fading Memories #1 (of four) goes on sale June 17, 2020.

The Witcher: Fading Memories #1

Bang! #1 Gets a 3rd Printing

The debut issue of the hit comic book series BANG! by writer Matt Kindt, artist Wilfredo Torres, colorist Nayoung Kim, and letterer Nate Piekos is going back to press for a third printing, featuring an all new cover by acclaimed artist David Rubín.

The first printing of BANG! #1 sold out ahead of publication, following widespread press attention and endorsements from Keanu Reeves and some of the comic book industry’s most respected writers and artists. Following the sell out of the second printing, a third printing of BANG! will go on sale from Dark Horse Comics on April 1, 2020. Orders close for the third printing cover on March 9th, 2020.

Bang! #1
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