Tag Archives: crossover

Early Review: Crossover #1

Crossover #1

Stories about fantasy and reality bleeding over into each other isn’t anything that’s new. We’ve seen it numerous times before and in some cases its worked and sometimes it hasn’t. These types of stories often also play off of nostalgia and can get lost in pop culture references. Crossover #1 is the latest entry into this type of story and it succeeds and sores. It does so because it isn’t a pop culture check list and because it has a depth that can be debated and discussed.

Written by Donny Cates, Crossover #1 focuses on a world where the imagined has appeared in reality. In an unexplained event, the world of comics has popped up destroying a major American city where their battles rage resulting in the death of who knows how many. This event has lead to puritanical religious zealotry being waged against comics. It’s the latest “moral panic” to an extreme but actually based on something real as opposed to the imaginary events that have fueled that actual real world ones.

Where Cates succeeds is by bringing it all into the playground. The references to heroes from so many different publishers and lines is impressive. It gives the check list comic fans will enjoy without being bogged down in specifics. It doesn’t name Savage Dragon but there’s a reference that’s likely him as an example. But Cates balances the fantastical elements with the real-world impact. This is a world that has had a “Watchmen like” event destroying a city. Due to that there’d be real world change directly impacting pop culture and consumerism. We get to see that. We get to see how it also impacts businesses and communities. And that’s where I think Cates really succeeds. He emphasizes and makes front and center that comics is a community. It might be dysfunctional but we are a community.

The story revolves around two individuals, one works at a comic shop and one the son of a firebrand preacher. Each has their community. Those communities have their side on this issue. Each feels they’re under attack by the other and the events of “The Crossover” have only amplified that. Cates has taken real-world tension and turned it up into a comic event-like level.

Joining Cates is Geoff Shaw on art. Dee Cunniffe handles the color while John J. Hill is on lettering and design. The art is fantastic and that shouldn’t be a surprise at all. In reality, nothing about this debut issue’s quality should be a surprise. There’s a lot packed into the pages and panels which beg readers to examine the world and learn from the visuals. What little we see of the “comic characters come to the real world” will have you linger and attempting to figure things out but it’s the eventual twist of the comic that stands out about the thought put into the visuals. But, we’re not going to spoilt that fun.

Crossover #1 is an amazing start with a love letter to comics and its community. It also is a larger discussion about community as a whole with a lot of interpretation possible by readers. This is a comic that should be on everyone’s pull list and I have no doubt it’ll be seeing multiple printings and lots of buzz when it eventually comes to shelves. Do yourself a favor and don’t miss out. Crossover is a comic that should be on everyone’s pull-list.

Crossover #1 comes to comic shelves on November 4th, pre-order it now.

Story: Donny Cates Art: Geoff Shaw
Color: Dee Cunniffe Letterer & Design: John J. Hill
Story: 9.5 Art: 9.5 Overall: 9.5 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


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Crossover Gets Collectible “Raw” Versions of Geoff Shaw and Ryan Stegman’s Covers

Image Comics has reveal three breathtaking, collectible “raw” versions of the Geoff Shaw covers and Ryan Stegman cover for the forthcoming Crossover by Donny Cates, Geoff Shaw, Dee Cunniffe, and John J. Hill. These unique covers will showcase the raw inks and pencils behind the stunning cover art for the series coming this November.

The raw Geoff Shaw “Ellie” cover will be a 1:75 incentive cover, the raw Ryan Stegman cover art will be a 1:100 incentive cover, the Geoff Shaw “Infinity” cover (main cover) will be a 1:200 incentive cover.

The highly anticipated Crossover will also feature a 1:10 incentive cover by Daniel Warren Johnson, a 1:25 incentive cover by Tradd Moore, a 1:50 incentive cover by Ryan Ottley,

The creative powerhouses behind the bestselling, critically acclaimed God Country, Thanos Wins, and Redneck returns for Crossover. Imagine everything that you thought was fantasy…was real. And now join us, in a world where reality is dead…and anything is possible…

Crossover #1 will be available at comic book shops on Wednesday, November 4.

  • Crossover #1 Cover A Shaw & Stewart – SEP200012
  • Crossover #1 Cover B Stegman & Cunniffe – SEP200013
  • Crossover #1 Cover C Shaw “Ellie” – SEP208021
  • Crossover #1 Cover D (blank) – SEP208023
  • Crossover #1 Cover E 1:10 Daniel Warren Johnson – SEP208022
  • Crossover #1 Cover F 1:25 Tradd Moore – SEP208024
  • Crossover #1 Cover G 1:50 Ryan Ottley – SEP208025
  • Crossover #1 Cover H 1:75 Geoff Shaw “Ellie” (raw) – SEP208026
  • Crossover #1 Cover I 1:100 Ryan Stegman (raw) – SEP208027
  • Crossover #1 Cover J 1:200 Geoff Shaw “Infinity” (raw) – SEP208028

SDCC 2020: Get a First Look at Crossover from Donny Cates, Geoff Shaw, Dee Cunniffe, and John J. Hill

Announced during Comic-Con@Home, Crossover is the much anticipated new comic series from Donny Cates, Geoff Shaw, Dee Cunniffe, and John J. Hill. The team behind God Country and Redneck reunite for this new series being published by Image Comics and out in November.

What if a comic book summer event generated so much energy, broke down so many barriers, and upended so many expectations that the sheer critical mass of the moment blew open a portal into our world? Imagine if everything you thought was fantasy…was real. Now join us on an epic quest through a world where reality is dead… and anything is possible…

Get a look at Crossover #1 below!

Crossover #1

SDCC 2020: Donny Cates, Geoff Shaw, Dee Cunniffe and John J. Hill Crossover from Image

During Comic-Con@Home, Image Comics announced Crossover, a new series from Donny Cates, Geoff Shaw, Dee Cunniffe, and John J. Hill.

During the panel, Cates described the series as “Avengers: Endgame, but as Cloverfield.” The concept for the comic began in 2017 as an “anti-event event” told from the perspective of an average person.

The series is about a comic company line-wide event getting out of control and opening a portal into the real world.

Check out the panel below as well as the cover for the first issue.

Crossover #1

Review: Outer Darkness/Chew #3

Outer Darkeness/Chew #3

The new definition for something that is badass, funny, bonkers, cosmic, and just downright bizarre all at the same time is Outer Darkeness/Chew. Use it in a sentence! For example, “that new David Lynch movie is completely Outer Darkness/Chew!” Okay, there’re a few grammatical kinks to work out, but it still does the job of describing what is surely the wildest ride in comics today. The only thing it did wrong was end.

The third and last chapter of the very short crossover series embraces all of the culinary and sci-fi horror beats it had established in the previous entries to cap it all off as neatly as possible. The crew of the Charon (the spaceship housing the characters from the Outer Darkness comic) found a way to create living holograms out of the two main characters from the Chew universe, Tony Chu and Jack Colby, in order to communicate with an alien race that only speaks through food. Chu’s abilities allow him to do the same and he is successful, but then he learns he isn’t real and that he originally comes from a comic book universe.

And that’s just the premise.

This book works as a fascinating look at how the creative mind works and how well-suited comics are for letting imagination run free, crash into a tree, and then produce an unforgettable story. John Layman, Afu Chan, and Rob Guillory are all conscious of the ridiculous amounts of crazy they can bring to the comics page while never compromising the story. It’s impressive to see the rules of the two stories in this crossover—which are already self-indulgent and gleefully over the top—get broken and remade into fresh and unpredictable story threads.

Outer Darkness/Chew #3, Image Comics

Fans of Chew have a lot of Easter eggs and callbacks to look forward too, especially every time Poyo is involved. There’s an interesting twist with the mechanisms that allow the holograms to exist that brings the crossover full circle and gets the comic to speak in the voices of the two original comics simultaneously. If one felt that the first two issues might lean too heavily on Chew or vice versa, this third and last issue is where the creators get the balance between the two just right.

Afu Chan’s art captures the spirit of the Chew characters despite being drawn in the style of Outer Darkness. I did wish Rob Guillory would’ve have illustrated the Chew characters throughout the story as his cartoony designs are quite striking and so imbedded into the identity of that book. But this is a minor gripe and I know it is asking for a lot. Still, I wouldn’t have minded more Guillory pages in the crossover.

In the letter’s department, Pat Brosseau manages to infuse the text with the same energy exploding out of the panels. Demons and other creatures possess different text fonts to capture the sound or feel behind the words they impart. It adds another layer to the storytelling and it makes each page feel even more alive.

In a perfect comic book world, this crossover would be its own on-going series. The setting, the exchanges between characters, and the cast as a whole is more than enough to sustain a long-running series for years to come. Alas, it came down to three issues. Thankfully, this brief trek into crossover territory turned out to be the most fun I’ve had with a comic in a while. It makes me want to read more unusual crossover stories (perhaps one with another John Layman or Rob Guillory title? Say Leviathan or Farmhand?). Regardless, what this story brought was well worth the read and is sure to become a favorite for many, many readers.

Script: John Layman Art: Afu Chan and Rob Guillory
Story: 9.0 Art: 10 Overall: Buy and then write the creators demanding more of it!

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


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Review: Outer Darkness/Chew #2

Outer Darkness/Chew #2

There’s no comic on the stands right now that’s having as much fun with its characters than Outer Darkness/Chew #2. This short three-issue crossover story from the minds of John Layman, Afu Chan, and Rob Guillory has reached its halfway point and it made sure every little bit of story got ramped up to 11. Oh, and it doubled down its most metafictional aspects and, well, I think they created a new type of meta in the process.

OD/C #2 sees Tony Chu and John Colby from Chew questioning the means through which they were transported to the world of Outer Darkness to speak with an alien that only communicates through food. They immediately realize that the whole “time-traveling” mumbo jumbo they got as an explanation for their presence isn’t all that genuine. And then it all goes meta.

Layman, Chan, and Guillory take this opportunity to really play around with the idea of one fiction inside another fiction and how it can essentially blow up into an entirely fresh and new kind of world-building. Tony and John realize they were brought into the spaceship, The Charon, by way of some kind of projection that extracts them from their comic book world. And by comic I mean the actual, literal comic. They even mention, and pass judgment, on its creators, Layman and Guillory.

A lot of the issue’s comedy finds itself lodged in this dynamic, with Tony trying to understand what reality is, or if it’s even something that exists for him and his friends, knowing they’re all part of a story created by Layman and Guillory. This actually serves as a good introduction to Chew, as John Colby proceeds to explain the comic’s history along with a few key details here and there. It doesn’t spoil Chew, though. But it makes a good case for diving into the comic whether you’re new to it or not.

With the knowledge of this meta mess Tony and John find themselves in comes the worry of what’ll happen once their services are no longer needed. From here, the story takes on a whole new life and the Food-Talking Alien plot takes a backseat to the fight for the meta survival of the Chewverse.

As fun and outrageous as this is, the shift did take me by surprise, with speed bump or two along the way. The change drastically shifts the balance of the story towards the Chewverse, leaving Outer Darkness a little in, well, the dark. That side of the story feels a bit underdeveloped in this second issue, especially in terms of character development. It makes me wish this crossover were an issue or two longer so that the Outer Darkness crew got some more breathing room.

Also, as much as I love Afu Chan’s art, I wish Guillory’s art also featured more in the issue, and the crossover as a whole. I hope the creative team takes advantage of the different visual styles in both series to mess around with the art in the upcoming final issue.

I did appreciate the scope of the fan service and easter eggs found in the comic. Fans of Guillory’s newest work, for instance, will have a thing or two connecting it to the stories found here and Afu Chan seems to be sneaking in pop culture references in the monster designs (with one in particular reminding me of a famous clown who was seen in theaters not too long ago). This is what I meant by world-building earlier. Each page brings something with it that connects it to the different series, and they can only go bigger. I’m thinking the next issue will double down on this.

I can honestly say I have absolutely no idea what issue #3 of OD/C is going to bring, and this makes me very happy. Despite Outer Darkness being left out a bit in this part of the story, what Layman, Chan, and Guillory have achieved here is gleefully unique and well worth the price of admission. If you buy one comic this week, make sure it’s this one.

Story: John Layman Art: Afu Chan and Rob Guillory,
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0

Recommendation: Buy and then read all of Chew

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


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