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Review: Crypt of Shadows #1

Crypt of Shadows #1

When it comes to holidays, there is nothing like Halloween. Before cosplaying became as accepted as it is now, this was the only day most people could become someone else. Costumes can show the other sides of people. As you get older, you take for granted, the ignorance of youth and how something as simple as dressing in a costume can be… freeing.

Fast forward to today, and the world now exists where dressing up ay as your favorite character is not only accepted but encouraged. This is huge when you think of how the children of today will have a better sense of self than most of us did growing up. I remember watching all those Halloween specials growing up, and have wondered where they all went. As much as we’ve gained in cosplay, we’ve lost those “special events”. In Crypt Of Shadows #1, we find our favorite heroes of the Marvel Universe in some spooky situations.

In “The Crypt Of Shadows”, a séance goes wrong, unearthing ghosts that come back for what they feel is theirs. In “Werewolf by Moon Knight”, Moon Knight gets in the middle of a brawl between two werewolves. In “Skin Crawl”, Morbius and Jinx take down a demon. In “Down Came The Rain”, Elsa Bloodstone and Johnny Storm traverse a underground tunnel to save Spider-Man. In “Endless Slaughter in the Infinite Swamp”, Man Thing and X-23 get stuck in a battle that lasts forever. In the last story “Neither Big Nor Bad”, our heroes gets caught up in an unknown and unseen evil.

Overall, Crypt of Shadows #1 is a fun set of stories which will have readers ready for All Hallow’s Eve. The stories by the different creators are exciting. The art by the different creators are gorgeous. Altogether, this book will remind readers exactly why we all get excited for this time of the year.

Story: Al Ewing, Danny Lore, Rebecca Roanhorse, Chris Cooper, Chris Condon, Adam Warren
Art: Ramon Bachs, Karen S. Darboe, Geoff Shaw, Ibrahim Moustafa, Fran Galán, Adam Warren
Color: Rain Beredo, Cris Peter, Arif Prianto, Neeraj Menon, James Campbell, Guru-eFX
Letterer: Travis Lanham
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Purchase: TFAWZeus ComicscomiXology/Kindle

Preview: Red Tag: Season One #1 A Day For the Prey

Red Tag: Season One #1 A Day For the Prey

by Rafael Scavone (Author), Rafael Albuquerque (Author, Cover Art), Roger Cruz (Cover Art, Artist), Bernardo Brice (Penciller), Cris Peter (Colorist)
Purchase: comiXology/Kindle

While searching for justice on the streets of São Paulo, Lis, Lu and Leco – three friends bonded by their love for Brazil’s unique street art “pixo” – discover a deadly conspiracy. And their actions have brought them to the attention of dangerous elements coming straight from Brazil’s brutal past…

Part of the comiXology Originals line of exclusive digital content only available on comiXology and Kindle. This title is available as part of comiXology Unlimited, Kindle Unlimited and Prime Reading.

Red Tag: Season One #1 A Day For the Prey

Preview: Red Tag: Season One #1 A Day For the Prey

Red Tag: Season One #1 A Day For the Prey

by Rafael Scavone (Author), Rafael Albuquerque (Author, Cover Art), Roger Cruz (Cover Art, Artist), Bernardo Brice (Penciller), Cris Peter (Colorist)
Purchase: comiXology/Kindle

While searching for justice on the streets of São Paulo, Lis, Lu and Leco – three friends bonded by their love for Brazil’s unique street art “pixo” – discover a deadly conspiracy. And their actions have brought them to the attention of dangerous elements coming straight from Brazil’s brutal past…

Part of the comiXology Originals line of exclusive digital content only available on comiXology and Kindle. This title is available as part of comiXology Unlimited, Kindle Unlimited and Prime Reading.

Red Tag: Season One #1 A Day For the Prey

Review: Wastelanders: Star-Lord #1

Wastelanders: Star-Lord #1

Guilt is one of the many emotions burden humans.  As this comes often when one feels they have done something wrong, whether at the time or soon after. Those whom we have wronged may have forgiven us, but we rarely forgive ourselves. There is also those of us who don’t feel guilt whatsoever, as they don’t see that they ever did anything wrong in the first place.

Rather than dwell on those many who are amoral, it is often those who are wrought with this burden that find ourselves revisiting this one memory that evokes guilt over and over again. As I can remember a museum exhibit I made my Mom miss, even though she made no big deal of it. I felt guilty then and it stings even more now she is no longer with us, because there is no way to undo that mistake. In Wastelanders: Star-Lord #1, we find Peter Quill back home on Earth feeling guilt for leaving the place he called home before the Ravagers took him.

We find Peter Quill back on Earth, shortly after defeating Galactus’s final threat on the planet, as he pays a tribute to those he left behind at Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters. He is greeted by someone who looks like Kitty Pryde, who he chases at the once standing mansion, where he also runs into what looks like the specter of Cyclops and the rest of the X-Men. It turns out these are manifestations of guilt borne of his mind palaces, even brining up the ghosts of the Avengers and Nova, eliciting physical pain in exchange for mental anguish, tearing the very fibers of his character. By Issue’s end, we find out Shadow King was behind it all, and shuts him down once and for all, leaving Earth again and changing the designation of his ship to the name of his former love, the Pryde.

Overall, Wastelanders: Star-Lord #1 is the best of the Wastelanders one-shots so far. The story by Douek is bittersweet and satisfying. The art by the creative team is gorgeous. Altogether, a story that those of us who suffer from PTSD will more than identify with.

Story: Rich Douek Art: Brent Peeples, Cris Peter, VC’s Cory Petit, Josemaria Casanovas
Story: 8.0 Art: 8.0 Overall: 8.0 Recommendation: Buy

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Purchase: comiXologyAmazonKindle

Discover New Digital Comics on comiXology

It’s a new day and comiXology has you covered with new comic releases. Check the releases out below or start shopping now!

Aleister Crowley: Art of the Waste

Written by RH Stewart
Art by RH Stewart

In 2009 Roy Huteson Stewart set out on an expedition into unknown realms to chronicle the life and times of the so-called “wickedest man in the world”. His artwork for what would become the graphic novel Aleister Crowley: Wandering the Waste is now collected in its truest, rawest form. Here are the pencils, inks, and collages depicting all the glorious filth and splendor of a life lived at the extreme limits of human knowledge and sanity. Truly an art book to savor.

Aleister Crowley: Art of the Waste

Cyclopedia Exotica

Written by Aminder Dhaliwal
Art by Aminder Dhaliwal

Following the critical and popular success of Woman World—the hit Instagram comic which appeared on 25 best of lists—Aminder Dhaliwal returns with Cyclopedia Exotica. Also serialized on instagram to her 250,000 followers, this graphic novel showcases Dhaliwal’s quick wit and astute socio-cultural criticism.

In Cyclopedia Exotica, doctor’s office waiting rooms, commercials, dog parks, and dating app screenshots capture the experiences and interior lives of the cyclops community; a largely immigrant population displaying physical differences from the majority. Whether they’re artists, parents, or yoga students, the cyclops have it tough: they face microaggressions and overt xenophobia on a daily basis. However, they are bent on finding love, cultivating community, and navigating life alongside the two-eyed majority with patience and the occasional bout of rage.

Through this parallel universe, Dhaliwal comments on race, difference, beauty, and belonging, touching on all of these issues with her distinctive deadpan humour steeped in millennial references. Cyclopedia Exotica is a triumph of hilarious candor.

Cyclopedia Exotica


Written by Andre Mateus
Art by Pedro Mendes

When a monster attacks, who you gonna call? Ulfrith, Olaf and Svein, that’s who! These three Norse monster hunters always get the job done…until the day they’re hired to kill a god!


Heavy #8

Written by Max Bemis
Art by Eryk Donovan
Colored by Cris Peter
Cover by Eryk Donovan

This is not Bill’s fault. Honestly, what more can you ask of him? He already rebelled against the universe and spent a gazillion years in an afterlife prison. You cannot possibly hold him responsible for whatever cosmos-ending shenanigans Slim is up to. Even when they involve taking over the afterlife for all eternity…right? RIGHT?! Sigh…hang on, lemme go get my machine gun…

Heavy #8

The Intergalactic Adventures of Zakk Ridley Vol. 2 #1: Sins of the Past

Written by Ian Sharman
Art by Ewan McLaughlin

Zakk Ridley’s back and this time it feels like the whole universe is after him…and not just for his rugged good looks. But that’s what happens when you paralyze the galactic president and then do a runner! Can Zak and his trusty friends, Dan and Kyouri escape the cold, hard hand of justice…while also dealing with a spate of kidnappings?! Can a vast cast of space pirates and space ninjas stop them?! Probably not, but you’ll have to read the book to find out…

The Intergalactic Adventures of Zakk Ridley Vol. 2 #1: Sins of the Past

The Script Rebellion

Written by Morgan Quaid
Art by Elisa Meneghel

A hapless clerk dreams his way into a dream city called Rust, where builds a life, falls in love, but has that love stollen by the brutish ruler who governs the city. In an effort to recover his bride, he becomes the figurehead for a city-wide rebellion which is doomed to fail with bitter consequences.

The Script Rebellion

Upgrade Soul: Collector’s Edition

Written by Ezra Claytan Daniels
Art by Ezra Claytan Daniels
Colored by Ezra Claytan Daniels
Cover by Ezra Claytan Daniels

For their forty-fifth anniversary, Hank and Molly Nonnar decide to undergo an experimental rejuvenation procedure, but their hopes for youth are dashed when the couple is faced with the results: severely disfigured yet intellectually and physically superior duplicates of themselves. Can the original Hank and Molly coexist in the same world as their clones? In Upgrade Soul, McDuffie Award-winning creator Ezra Claytan Daniels asks probing questions about what shapes our identity: Is it the capability of our minds or the physicality of our bodies? Is a newer, better version of yourself still you?

Upgrade Soul: Collector's Edition

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Critical Role: The Tales of Exandria Gets a David Mack Variant

Critical Role and Dark Horse Comics have announces a line of retailer exclusive variant covers for Critical Role: The Tales of Exandria — The Bright Queen comic series, only available through Things From Another World. Illustrated by the incomparable David Mack, each of the four issues of the series will have its own unique variant cover. All four Mack covers will be available exclusively from Things From Another World, as a complete set of four or individually. 

Pre-orders for the exclusive variants will be open during the timeframes noted below:

#1 –  #4 (Complete Set) Thursday, September 23, 2021, 9:00 am PT – Monday, September 27,2021,  5:00 pm PT
#1 Thursday, September 23, 2021, 9:00 am PT – Monday, September 27, 2021, 5:00 pm PT
#2      Monday, October 25, 2021, 9:00 am PT –      Monday, November 1, 2021, 5:00 pm PT
#3      Monday, November 22, 2021, 9:00 am PT – Monday, November 29, 2021, 5:00 pm PT
#4 Monday, December 13, 2021, 9:00 am PT – Monday, December 20, 202, 5:00 pm PT

Focused on side characters and stories from the world of Critical Role, the first Tales of Exandria comic series centers around Leylas Kryn, the Bright Queen of the Kryn Dynasty. This series is written by Darcy Van Poelgeest with Critical Role Game Master Matthew Mercer, and features art by Coupleofkooks, colors by Cris Peter, and letters by Ariana Maher

Leylas has spent multiple lives in her pursuit to assemble the Luxon. With her eternal lover Quana at her side, she will stop at nothing to use its power to bring a Golden Age to the people under her rule. When what seems to be the final piece of the Luxon appears nearby, Leylas sends Quana to collect it…with consequences that may threaten the entire Kryn Dynasty!

Critical Role: The Tales of Exandria — The Bright Queen is the next addition in an ever-growing line of Critical Role comics, graphic novels, and art books from the ongoing collaboration between Critical Role and Dark Horse Comics! Issue #1 of this four part series, with standard cover art by Helen Mask, will be available at comic shops on October 20, 2021. 

Be sure to pre-order the special David Mack covers exclusively at Things From Another World by Sept. 27, 2021.

Critical Role: The Tales of Exandria David Mack Cover

Logan’s Favorite Comics of 2020

2020 definitely felt like a year where I embraced comics in all their different formats and genres from the convenient, satisfying graphic novella to the series of loosely connected and curated one shots and even the door stopper of an omnibus/hardcover or that charming webcomic that comes out one or twice a week on Instagram. This was partially due to the Covid-19 pandemic that shut down comics’ traditional direct market for a bit so I started reviewing webcomics, trade paperbacks, graphic novels and nonfiction even after this supply chain re-opened. I also co-hosted and edited two seasons of a podcast about indie comics where we basically read either a trade every week for discussion, and that definitely meant spending more time with that format. However, floppy fans should still be happy because I do have a traditional ongoing series on my list as well as some minis.

Without further ado, here are my favorite comics of 2020.

Marvels Snapshots: X-Men #1 – But Why Tho? A Geek Community

10. Marvels Snapshots (Marvel)

Curated by original Marvels writer Kurt Busiek and with cover art by original Marvels artist Alex Ross, Marvels Snapshots collects seven perspectives on on the “major” events of the Marvel Universe from the perspectives of ordinary people from The Golden Age of the 1940s to 2006’s Civil War. It’s cool to get a more character-driven and human POV on the ol’ corporate IP toy box from Alan Brennert and Jerry Ordway exploring Namor the Submariner’s PTSD to Evan Dorkin, Sarah Dyer, and Benjamin Dewey showing the real reason behind Johnny Storm’s airhead celebrity act. There’s also Mark Russell and Ramon Perez’s take on the classic Captain America “Madbomb” storyline, Barbara Kesel’s and Staz Johnson’s sweet, Bronze Age-era romance between two first responders as the Avengers battle a threat against the city, and Saladin Ahmed and Ryan Kelly add nuance to the superhuman Civil War by showing how the Registration Act affects a Cape-Killer agent as well as a young elemental protector of Toledo, Ohio, who just wants to help his community and do things like purify water. However, the main reason Marvels Snapshots made my “favorite” list was Jay Edidin and Tom Reilly‘s character-defining work showing the pre-X-Men life of Cyclops as he struggles with orphan life, is inspired by heroes like Reed Richards, and lays the groundwork for the strategist, leader, and even revolutionary that appears in later comics.

9. Fangs (Tapas)

Fangs is cartoonist Sarah Andersen’s entry into the Gothic romance genre and was a light, funny, and occasionally sexy series that got me through a difficult year. Simply put, it follows the relationship of a vampire named Elsie and a werewolf named Jimmy, both how they met and their life together. Andersen plays with vampire and werewolf fiction tropes and sets up humorous situations like a date night featuring a bloody rare steak and a glass of blood instead of wine, Jimmy having an unspoken animosity against mail carriers, and just generally working around things like lycanthropy every 28 days and an aversion to sunlight. As well as being hilarious and cute, Fangs shows Sarah Andersen leveling up as an artist as she works with deep blacks, different eye shapes and textures, and more detailed backgrounds to match the tone of her story while not skimping on the relatable content that made Sarah’s Scribbles an online phenomenon.

8. Heavy #1-3 (Vault)

I really got into Vault Comics this year. (I retroactively make These Savage Shores my favorite comic of 2019.) As far as prose, I mainly read SF, and Vault nicely fills that niche in the comics landscape and features talented, idiosyncratic creative teams. Heavy is no exception as Max Bemis, Eryk Donovan, and Cris Peter tell the story of Bill, who was gunned down by some mobsters, and now is separated from his wife in a place called “The Wait” where he has to set right enough multiversal wrongs via violence to be reunited with her in Heaven. This series is a glorious grab bag of hyperviolence, psychological examinations of toxic masculinity, and moral philosophy. Heavy also has a filthy and non-heteronormative sense of humor. Donovan and Peter bring a high level of chaotic energy to the book’s visuals and are game for both tenderhearted flashbacks as well as brawls with literal cum monsters. In addition to all this, Bemis and Donovan aren’t afraid to play with and deconstruct their series’ premise, which is what makes Heavy my ongoing monthly comic.

Amazon.com: Maids eBook: Skelly, Katie, Skelly, Katie: Kindle Store

7. Maids (Fantagraphics)

Writer/artist Katie Skelly puts her own spin on the true crime genre in Maids, a highly stylized account of Christine and Lea Papin murdering their employers in France during the 1930s. Skelly’s linework and eye popping colors expertly convey the trauma and isolation that the Papins go through as they are at the beck and call of the family they work almost 24/7. Flashbacks add depth and context to Christine and Lea’s characters and provide fuel to the fire of the class warfare that they end up engaging in. Skelly’s simple, yet iconic approach character design really allowed me to connect with the Papins and empathize with them during the build-up from a new job to murder and mayhem. Maids is truly a showcase for a gifted cartoonist and not just a summary of historical events.

6. Grind Like A Girl (Gumroad/Instagram)

In her webcomic Grind Like A Girl, cartoonist Veronica Casson tells the story of growing up trans in 1990s New Jersey. The memoir recently came to a beautiful conclusion with Casson showing her first forays into New York, meeting other trans women, and finding a sense of community with them that was almost the polar opposite of her experiences in high school. I’ve really enjoyed seeing the evolution of Veronica Casson’s art style during different periods of her life from an almost Peanuts vibe for her childhood to using more flowing lines, bright colors, and ambitious panel layouts as an older teen and finally an adult. She also does a good job using the Instagram platform to give readers a true “guided view” experience and point out certain details before putting it all together in a single page so one can appreciate the comic at both a macro/micro levels. All in all, Grind Like A Girl is a personal and stylish coming of age memoir from Veronica Casson, and I look forward to seeing more of her work.

5. Papaya Salad (Dark Horse)

Thai/Italian cartoonist Elisa Macellari tells an unconventional World War II story in Papaya Salad, a recently translated history comic about her great uncle Sompong, who just wanted to see the world. However, he ended up serving with the Thai diplomatic corps in Italy, Germany, and Austria during World War II. Macellari uses a recipe for her great uncle’s favorite dish, papaya salad, to structure the comic, and her work has a warm, dreamlike quality to go with the reality of the places that Sampong visits and works at. Also, it’s very refreshing to get a non-American or British perspective on this time in history as Sampong grapples with the shifting status of Thailand during the war as well as the racism of American soldiers, who celebrate the atomic bomb and lump him and his colleagues with the Japanese officers, and are not shown in a very positive light. However, deep down, Papaya Salad is a love story filled with small human moments that make life worth living, like appetizing meals, jokes during dark times, and faith in something beyond ourselves. It’s a real showcase of the comics medium’s ability to tell stories from a unique point of view.

4. Pulp (Image)

Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips (with colorist Jacob Phillips) are two creators whose work has graced my “favorite comics” list many times. And this time they really outdid themselves with the graphic novella Pulp about the final days of Max Winters, a gunslinger-turned-Western dime novelist. It’s a character study peppered with flashbacks as Phillips and Phillips use changes in body posture and color palette to show Max getting older while his passion for resisting those who would exploit others is still intact. Basically, he can shoot and rob fascists just like he shot and robbed cattle barons back in the day. Brubaker and Phillips understand that genre fiction doesn’t exist in a vacuum and is informed by the historical context around it, which is what makes Pulp such a compelling read. If you like your explorations of the banality of evil and creeping specter of fascism with heists, gun battles, and plenty of introspection, then this is the comic for you.

3. My Riot (Oni Press)

Music is my next favorite interest after comics so My Riot was an easy pick for my favorite comics list. The book is a coming of age story filtered through 1990s riot girl music from writer Rick Spears and artist Emmett Helen. It follows the life of Valerie, who goes from doing ballet and living a fairly conservative suburban life to being the frontwoman and songwriter for a cult riot girl band. Much of this transformation happens through Helen’s art and colors as his palette comes to life just as Valerie does when she successfully calls out some audience members/her boyfriend for being sexist and patronizing. The comic itself also takes on a much more DIY quality with its layouts and storytelling design as well as how the characters look and act. My Riot is about the power of music to find one’s identify and true self and build a community like The Proper Ladies do throughout the book. Valerie’s arc is definitely empowering and relatable for any queer kid, who was forced to conform to way of life and thinking that wasn’t their own.

2. Getting It Together #1-3 (Image)

I’ll let you in on a little secret: slice of life is my all-time favorite comic book genre. So, I was overjoyed when writers Sina Grace and Omar Spahi, artist Jenny D. Fine, and colorist Mx. Struble announced that they were doing a monthly slice of life comic about a brother, sister, and their best friend/ex-boyfriend (respectively) set in San Francisco that also touched on the gay and indie music scene. And Getting It Together definitely has lifted up to my pre-release hype as Grace and Spahi have fleshed out a complex web of relationships and drama with gorgeous and occasionally hilarious art by Fine and Struble. There are gay and bisexual characters all over the book with different personalities and approaches to life, dating, and relationships, which is refreshing too. Grace, Spahi, and Fine also take some time away from the drama to let us know about the ensemble cast’s passions and struggles like indie musician Lauren’s lifelong love for songwriting even if her band has a joke name (Nipslip), or her ex-boyfriend Sam’s issues with mental health. I would definitely love to spend more than four issues with these folks.

1. The Impending Blindness of Billie Scott (Avery Hill)

My favorite comic of 2020 was The Impending Blindness of Billie Scott , a debut graphic novel by cartoonist Zoe Thorogood. The premise of the comic is that Billie is an artist who is going blind in two weeks, and she must come up with some paintings for her debut gallery show during that time period. The Impending Blindness of Billie Scott boasts an adorably idiosyncratic cast of characters that Thorogood lovingly brings to life with warm visuals and naturalistic dialogue as Billie goes from making art alone in her room to making connections with the people around her, especially Rachel, a passionate folk punk musician. The book also acts as a powerful advocate for the inspirational quality of art and the act of creation. Zoe Thorogood even creates “art within the art” and concludes the story with the different portraits that Billie painted throughout her travels. The Impending Blindness of Billie Scott was the hopeful comic that I needed in a dark year and one I will cherish for quite some time as I ooh and aah over Thorogood’s skill with everything from drawing different hair styles to crafting horrific dream sequences featuring eyeballs.

Review: Heavy #1 Puts a Fun Spin on the Man-Pain Vigilante Genre

Heavy #1

Writer Max Bemis, artist Eryk Donovan, and colorist Cris Peter deconstruct the shit out of the whole “bad guy kills a good guys wife so he becomes a vigilante and takes revenge on them” genre in Heavy #1. The premise of the comic is that Bill lost both his wife and his life to the bullets of an Irish mobster and got stranded in a place called The Wait. Think Purgatory, but more Uber and less Dante. He plays the role of “Heavy” in The Wait killing and using violence to keep the multiverse “righteous” and maybe be reunited with his wife one day. Bemis mines a vein of dark humor in Heavy and couples it with a little of the old ultraviolence from Donovan and Peter while also caring about Bill’s mental health.

Heavy #1 is a laugh out loud funny and outrageous satire of the old tough guy mentality. Bemis’ script makes many references to action movies and heroes while undercutting their tropes. For example, Bill isn’t good at his Heavy job because he was ex-military; he’s good because of the non-stop repetition of his work. If something is the only thing you do all day, every day, you’re bound to get good at it. Donovan and Peter illustrate this in a single jaw-dropping image of Bill doing cool things with guns over and over. But then Bemis undercuts it with a quick one-liner as if taunting the reader to not find fist pumping entertainment value from Bill doing badass things when he’s basically the gun-toting anti-hero version of Sisyphus rolling his boulder up the hill.

This rhythm of badass thing followed by joke at the badass thing’s expense starts in basically the first scene of the comic where Bill gives a teenage bully a taste of his own medicine with a powerful punch and an acid drop of pink. Then, Bill is back in office with his boss Kyle, who is yelling at one of her other Heavies. It adds a touch of humanity to Bill as a character. He’s Charlie Brown getting the football yanked out from under him, but with more violence and weirdness. Max Bemis and Eryk Donovan even take some time to riff on the whole flashback visions of the dead wife trope, and while Cris Peter uses an extra-radiant palette for Bill’s dearly beloved, she gives him such a good advice as moving on and finding friends. But, of course, Bill doesn’t listen, and he won’t even take a Heavy partner to give him a better chance of getting out of The Wait and finding bliss.

Seriously, Heavy #1 goes to some weird places and is a better book for it. It will probably take a life time of brain bleach for me to scrub out the image of an alternate universe Leonardo da Vinci, who has gone from designing futuristic machines, to creating machines to remove the unsuspecting citizens of Renaissance Italy’s colons whilst indulging his foot fetish and lounging with his cock out. But that’s the mark of a good artist, and Eryk Donovan is perfectly fine indulging in absurdity while Cris Peter adds garish colors that symbolize both decadence and carnage. Because who needs photoreality when you’ve got pinks and oranges blasting through the Vatican, and Bill landing cheesy, yet epic one-liners about da Vinci forgetting to invent bullets while he was too busy doing his steampunk thing. And when he gets to do that, Bemis and Donovan remind readers that Bill is an incredibly competent killer thanks to his hours of practice and not much else going on. But he definitely needs some help in the mental health and self-actualization department.

Max Bemis takes the dark humor of both his songs with Say Anything and great comics like Moon Knight and Foolkiller combines it with unparalleled violence and wild, eye-popping visuals from Eryk Donovan and Cris Peter. There’s also strong, Vertigo-style supernatural world-building with tongue firmly placed in cheek; think less Sandman and more Preacher. Whether you like vibing out and thinking about the multiverse, afterlife, and moral philosophy, or just reading about a guy who kills the shit out of people thanks to his ever-present man-pain, Heavy #1 is a strong debut and the comic for you.

Story: Max Bemis Art: Eryk Donovan
Colors: Cris Peter Letters: Taylor Esposito

Story: 8.4 Art: 9.0 Overall: 8.7 Recommendation: Buy

Vault provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Purchase: comiXology – Kindle – Zeus Comics

Heavy #1 Has Sold Out and Gets a New Printing

The first issue of Heavy,  Vault‘s newest series, sold out at the distributor the day it went on sale. The series saw the largest influx of immediate on-sale date reorders in the publishers history. The issue is being rushed back to print. A new cover and release date for the second printing will be announced soon. 

Heavy is co-created by writer Max Bemis, and artist Eryk Donovan, with colors by Cris Peter, letters by Taylor Esposito, and designs by Tim Daniel.

Bill may be dead, but he’s got a job to do.Welcome to the Big Wait, where folks who do’t quite make the cut go to work off their debt. Everyone in the Wait’s got a job. Bill is a Heavy, whose job is policing the multiverse, making sure bad eggs get what’s coming to them. He’s on track to earn his Climb and reunite with the woman he loves… until he meets his new partner: the worst dude of all time.

Heavy is The Punisher for neurotics; Inception for the impatient; Preacher for… well, it’s a lot like Preacher. Max Bemis and Eryk Donovan bring you a story about the existential purpose of dumb boys with big guns.

Heavy #1

Review: Heavy #1

Heavy #1

Bill may be dead, but he’s got a job to do. Welcome to the Big Wait, where folks who don’t quite make the cut go to work off their debt. Everyone in the Wait’s got a job. Bill is a Heavy, whose job is policing the multiverse, making sure bad eggs get what’s coming to them. He’s on track to earn his Climb and reunite with the woman he loves… Heavy is The Punisher for neurotics; Inception for the impatient; Preacher for…well, it’s a lot like Preacher. Max Bemis and Eryk Donavan bring you a story about the existential purpose of dumb boys with big guns in Heavy #1.

Max Bemis is one of those writers that I don’t tend to follow from comic to comic, but I always seem to enjoy the comics he writes to the point where I was on the fence about reading Heavy #1 until I saw Bemis’ name attached to the project. His dry sense of humor is evident throughout the pages of the comic as Bill’s snide and sarcastic comments drive his narrative through some spectacularly violent moments. This is a comic that opens with a middle-aged man breaking a teenager’s nose because we can only assume based on the knowledge we get a little further on, he deserved it on a cosmic scale of justice.

In fairness, compared to some of the other folks Bill encounters, the teenager got pretty lucky.

Comparisons to the Punisher are inevitable given that this is a character killing and otherwise injuring those who are guilty of some crime against the space/time continuum, but that’s where the similarities end (though it is really useful to be able to say “start with the thought of it’s like the Punisher meets Preacher, but its far more fun”). Whereas Frank Castle is a grim, determined guy with no shits to give who can stop his mission at any time (but won’t), Bill has a clearly defined end goal, a whole lot of self-pity, and a wry appreciation of what he has to do if he is going to finally move on with his (after)life.

Artistically, Eryk Donovan and Cris Peter are really solid. There are some suitably eclectic pages in the comic when it comes to the odd page (but what would you expect from a book whose main character has killed 14 different versions of the same person), and it helps to make the comic one of the more visually exciting reads on the racks. There’s an energy to the art that really encourages you to read the book at an equivalent pace to match what you’re seeing on the page, which can make you miss some of the details in the art itself. It’s an odd conflict, and one that may have been specific to me, but if nothing else it encourages you to read the book twice before you put it down.

Fortunately, it’s a book that’s more than good enough to read twice anyway.

Vault Comics have been publishing some absolute corkers recently, and Heavy #1 is another on a growing list of Must Read comics.

Writer: Max Bemis Art: Eryk Donovan
Colorist: Cris Peter Letterer: Taylor Esposito

Story: 8.5 Art: 8.2 Overall: 8.4 Recommendation: Buy

Vault provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Pre-order: comiXologyKindleZeus Comics

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