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Review: Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula’s Safe

Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula's Safe

Bad Idea is a publisher that’s willing to throw out new ideas and see how it sticks. There’s a long list of both good and bad about their latest, a comic available for only 24 hours. It must be paid for today. Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula’s Safe is just $1 delivering an entertaining enough detective story. Featuring a B-Side (that’s Bad Idea’s version of a backup story), it’s definitely worth the money. Now the question is, is it worth having to go to the store?

Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula’s Safe introduces us to a detective who must determine who broke into the safe at a pizza joint. The short comic seems to have fun with its genre pulling out various tropes and throwing them at the reader like an interrogation. Writer Robert Venditti seems to take the concept as a good and roles with it. The concept itself is taken seriously which delivers a level of spoof about it.

David Lapham delivers the art with Simon Bowland on lettering. The combo of the two makes the comic feel more like a B-Side since its style in art and pacing is so close to the series of “Hero Trade” stories that have filled the releases so far. Like Venditti, the art too feels like it’s having fun with the concept and story again playing on tropes for the genre and also playing them very straight.

The comic also features the teaser story for Save Now, a riff on the time travel genre. Written by Matt Kindt, the comic features art by Tomas Giorello, color by Diego Rodriguez, and lettering by Dave Sharpe. The concept is straight out of the manga All You Need is Kill (which inspired the film Edge of Tomorrow). A team of heroes features a leader who can go back in time and then let things play out. The only things are he can’t go forward and he does age. But, it allows him to fix mistakes in battle and find the best strategies. I don’t want to ruin the twist and surprise but the teaser comic has me excited to read more with its concept and features some fantastic art.

Is Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula’s Safe worth it? Sure, the comic is definitely worth the $1 cover price. Now, is it worth making a special trip for? That’s more up in the air. If the comic was available for a week, sure, but for one day only, this is a special trip to the comic shop it’s ok to skip. Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula’s Safe is for the diehard Bad Idea fans.

Story: Robert Venditti, Matt Kindt Art: David Lapham. Tomas Giorello
Color: Diego Rodriguez Letterer: Simon Bowland, Dave Sharpe
Story: 7.5 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.5 Recommendation: Buy (if you’re already going to the shop)


Purchase: Zeus Comics

Review: ENIAC #3

The paranoia ramps up in ENIAC #3 and another twisted “heroic” story with a B-Side of The Hero Trade.

Story: Matt Kindt
Art: Doug Braithwaite, Doug Lapham
Color: Diego Rodriguez
Letterer: Dave Sharpe

Find a comic shop to get your copy.

Or, buy your copy at the link below:

Zeus Comics


This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site

Review: ENIAC #3

ENIAC #3

ENIAC #3 continues the mission to stop an out-of-control artificial intelligence. But, it’s beyond the action that really stands out. It’s the paranoia that permeates throughout the storytelling that’ll keep readers at the edge of their seat.

For those catching up, ENIAC is the story of an artificial intelligence developed during World War II that has been growing its reach through the decades. Now, in modern times, it has launched a countdown until something. What that is is unknown. But, it’s expected to be bad. A team has been gathered to track down ENIAC and stop it from its mission. In the previous issue, we discovered that Fletcher’s mother was involved somehow and may hold the key to stopping ENIAC.

Writer Matt Kindt continues a great mix of storytelling in the issue. There’s a tense nature about it with a little bit of action but it’s really the setup before the confrontation. Kindt plants seeds in the reader’s mind forcing them to question some of what we know and where things are going. It’s all a bit too convenient and pre-ordained. Is ENIAC ahead of everyone or is there something else at play here?

A lot of those twists and reveals are fun but ENIAC #3 has some minor bumps in its storytelling. It’s a little too convenient that Fletcher’s mother is involved. The world is a bit too small in a way. But, with some teases and hints and one key moment, that might be part of the point of it all. There’s also the use of the Challenger Explosion which felt a little in poor taste. It could be the fact it’s an event I lived through and witnessed live on tv but it being a part of the narrative doesn’t quite work. The series has weaved real history in and out of its narrative for a while but this is the first time that has given me pause.

Doug Braithwaite’s art continues to impress. With color by Diego Rodriguez and lettering by Dave Sharpe, the issue lets it all hang out. There’s some solid emotion driven by the images and it’s use of nudity creates an interesting dynamic with the very tech driven nature of the series. There’s also some great perspectives in what’s delivered that brings a cinematic quality to the visuals. With beautiful color and sharp lettering, it all comes together with fantastic visuals that continue to shine and pop on the page.

The issue also features another B-side of The Hero Trade. Matt Kindt continues to deliver intriguing stories along with artist David Lapham. Each story has felt like something from The Twilight Zone or Tales from the Crypt and is beyond entertaining on its own. This one features the selling of parts of a missing superhero. Gruesome stuff and a twist that’s solid. My issue continues to be not with the quality but the disconnect between each story as far as focus. One is a techno-thriller, the other a horror story involving superheroes. The lack of theme is a bit head-scratching.

ENIAC #3 continues a quality series from Bad Idea. The production quality is excellent from the card cover to the quality of the paper within. It features a solid story with fantastic art. The series has its followers and deserves far more delivering the high-quality entertainment I’d expect from this creative team.

Story: Matt Kindt Art: Doug Braithwaite, David Lapham
Color: Diego Rodriguez Letterer: Dave Sharpe
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy


Purchase: Zeus Comics

Explore the Bat-Family in Batman Secret Files

Gotham is full of heroes, far more than Batman. He can’t be everywhere and has a family of heroes to help him out. This July, DC launches Batman Secret Files, a new monthly series of one-shots featuring Batman’s partners in crimefighting. In this series, Bat-fans will see new adventures in Gotham City, exploring the deep bench of heroes the Dark Knight has inspired.

Batman Secret Files: The Signal #1

The return of Duke Thomas, a.k.a. The Signal, kicks off this series on Tuesday, July 7. In a story written by Tony Patrick with art by Christian Duce, The Signal comes back as Gotham City’s daytime protector after his time with the Outsiders. But during his sabbatical from his hometown, everything about the city and the people closest to him changed. And the mystery of the White Market, a deadly source of weapons being trafficked into Gotham City that even Batman can’t track down, will only push the Signal further away from everything he knows and into a brand-new world of danger.

This 40-page one-shot features a main cover by Ken Lashley with a variant cover by Cully Hamner.

Batman Secret Files: Huntress #1

On Tuesday July 27, Detective Comics and Eisner Award-winning writer Mariko Tamaki teams up with acclaimed Stray Bullets writer/artist David Lapham for a new tale featuring Gotham City’s Violet Vengeance! Huntress has been through a LOT lately…including her brain being invaded by a violent parasite bent on sending her on a deadly slugfest. If that wasn’t enough, now she has to deal with enhanced abilities too, thanks to a villain by the name of Vile. This parasite has given her the ability to see through the eyes of his victims and this is not her idea of a good time! Huntress isn’t one to be played with, and she’s on the hunt for Vile, with a crossbow bolt with his name on it!

Also weighing at 40 pages, this one-shot features a main cover by Irvin Rodriguez, with a card stock variant by Riccardo Federici.

Review: ENIAC #2

The mission to take out ENIAC really begins but how do you stop a computer that’s five steps ahead?

Story: Matt Kindt
Art: Doug Braithwaite, Doug Lapham
Color: Diego Rodriguez
Letterer: Dave Sharpe

Find a comic shop to get your copy

Or, buy your copy at the link below:

Zeus Comics

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site

Review: ENIAC #2

ENIAC #2

ENIAC delivered a solid debut with a story that mixed action and a bit of history. The combination felt like a story that came from the headlines but with a fantastical spin. ENIAC #2 delivers more of the same quality with an issue that features more history and a lot of action.

Matt Kindt does a nice balancing act of a story that feels like classic 80s action films. But, mixed in the clichés and explosions is some history and 90s paranoia. ENIAC #2 delivers a story about technology gone wrong. ENIAC is loose and counting down to something which has forced a crack squad to attempt to destroy the computer. What we learn is ENIAC is far more advanced than we first expected. The computer isn’t just toying with life but also delivering peace as well. It has created the balance and safety that social systems like Marxism promised. The computer has achieved what humans could not. But, at what price?

Kindt delivers a wrinkle in that way. The series could easily be a countdown to destruction, much like the latter half of Wargames. But, with this new bit of information we’re challenged to debate if ENIAC is all that bad. ENIAC #2 creates a bit of a gray area for our villain. It also throws up a huge question mark for readers to questions the motives surrounding its destruction. Is this computer really a threat? We assumed the countdown would lead to destruction. What if it would bring peace to the world instead? Isn’t that as much a threat to leaders?

Dough Braithwaite’s art continues to be top-notch. It dances between the past and present with a detail and look that’s fantastic. Diego Rodriguez delivers colors and Dave Sharpe the lettering. The look of the comic balances that action vibe with that of horror. ENIAC #2 really is an action-horror story. Numerous images deliver a shock while others increase the tension as you wonder who will survive or what might explode. The art nails down the tension that Kindt’s story sets up.

Kindt also delivers a backup story with artist David Lapham. “The Bloody Mess” feels like a solid Twilight Zone addition. The story is about a husband who crawls out of a shallow grave only to be accused of killing his wife. The mystery zigs and zags and leaves you guessing until the very end. Its punchline is a direction that’s unexpected. The only downside is the story doesn’t match in “tone” to the main feature creating a combination that’s a bit disjointed. They’re both quality stories though.

ENIAC #2 is a great second issue. The series is a hell of a start and high bar for new publisher Bad Idea. It mixes solid action with a techno-thriller mixed in with a little bit of horror. The combination is a fresh take on a classic concept. The series may be hard to get being limited to a couple hundred comic shops but it’s one that’s well worth seeking out.

Story: Matt Kindt Art: Doug Braithwaite, David Lapham
Color: Diego Rodriguez Letterer: Dave Sharpe
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy


Purchase: Zeus Comics

Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula’s Safe… for 24 Hours Only

It was April Fools’ day yesterday so Bad Idea made an announcement that seemed like a joke but wasn’t. A new comic, Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula’s Safe will be released this May 12 for 24 hours only. The 16-page comic from Robert Venditti and David Lapham will be available for $1.

Every Bad Idea Destination Store will be set an amount of copies matching their full original allotment of ENIAC #1 (or Tankers #1 for the Wave 2 stores). The comic will have to be sold in 24 hours on Wednesday, May 12th.

They can sell in-store, off-the-shelf sales, and mail-order (which needs to be mailed the same day), phone order, and pre-orders. It just needs to be done in 24 hours.

Any unsold copies can not be sold once May 13th arrives and all unsold copies have to be returned to Bad Idea using materials they provide.

Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula's Safe

Bad Idea’s ENIAC #1 Gets A Brief Case with Hero Trade

With ENIAC #1 out this week, Bad Idea has delivered a bit of a surprise with what’s packed in the first issue. The publisher has revealed that the B-side in the comic is a new entry in Hero Trade from Matt Kindt and David Lapham. Originally, Bad Idea announced that Save Now, a comic by Kindt and Tomas Giorello would be included in the first issue.

Each issue of ENIAC will feature a Hero Trade tale.

Stay tuned for:

  • HERO TRADE: A BRIEF CASE in ENIAC #1
  • HERO TRADE: BLOODY MESS in ENIAC #2
  • HERO TRADE: HERO FOR SALE in ENIAC #3
  • HERO TRADE: FABULOUS in ENIAC #4

ENIAC #1 is written by Matt Kindt with art by Doug Braithwaite, colors by Diego Rodriguez, and a cover by Lewis LaRosa and Diego Rodriguez. It’s on sale March 3, 2021.

ENIAC #1

Helm Greycastle Mixes High Fantasy and Aztec Mythology

Critically acclaimed writer Henry Barajas teams up with artist Rahmat M. Handoko and colorist Bryan Valenza for the all new Latinx fantasy series Helm Greycastle. This four-issue miniseries will launch from Image Comics and Top Cow Productions this April.

Helm Greycastle will also feature alternative covers by such talent as David Lapham, Tony Parker, and Becky Cloonan, along with a bonus Latinx one-shot RPG (5E compatible) written by Tristan J. Tarwater and showcasing art by Jen Vaughn.

In Helm Greycastle, the last dragon prince has been abducted—kept prisoner by an unknown threat: AZTEC MEXICA! Helm Greycastle and his outsider comrades are here to save the prince—but are recruited by a resistance plotting to overthrow Montezuma. Will Greycastle help save the people of MEXICA…or rescue the dragon prince and flee?

Helm Greycastle #1 will be available at comic book shops on Wednesday, April 28:

  • Helm Greycastle #1 Cover A Handoko & Valenza – FEB210027
  • Helm Greycastle #1 Cover B Lapham – FEB210028      
  • Helm Greycastle #1 Cover C Parker – FEB210029      
  • Helm Greycastle #1 Cover D Cloonan [limited] – FEB210030
Helm Greycastle #1
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