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Review: The Tankies

Three stories of war from the perspective of those who ride in tanks. The Tankies collects three stories originally published by Dynamite and now released by Dead Reckoning.

Story: Garth Ennis
Art: Carlos Ezquerra
Ink: Hector Ezquerra
Color: Tony Aviña
Letterer: Simon Bowland

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Dead Reckoning provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
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Review: The Tankies

The Tankies

Within The Tankies are three tales: in “The Tankies”, we meet Corporate Stiles, a hardened vet who is ready to bring his men against the German Tiger tank, a machine feared to be unrivaled. Then in “The Firefly & His Majesty”, Stiles and co. lead a Firefly, which is a Sherman tank, up against the German’s newest weapon, the King Tiger. Lastly, “The Green Fields Beyond” sees Stiles and company’s involvement in Korea against the Communists.

These stories were originally published under the “Battlefields” title that Dynamite had going with Garth Ennis from back in 2011. Last year saw Dead Reckoning release The Stringbags, which was another WW2 Ennis book. That said, it’s nice to see these stories see light again and to also be dedicated to longtime Ennis collaborator and Judge Dredd co-creator Carlos Ezquerra, who passed away in 2018. Like any Ennis-written War Story, they certainly aren’t for the squeamish and the language is something totally beyond colorful. I do feel that a good Ennis war story is as good as it gets.

Reading through The Tankies, you can see that the research has been done to be accurate to the times portrayed. You’ll almost feel like an expert in tanks after reading this. There’s a great afterword by Ennis at the end that really encompasses the amount of research done for such a book as The Tankies. And to finish the book, a section of sketches from Carlos Ezquerra.

I’ve always appreciated the artwork of Carlos Ezquerra. He worked with Ennis on many stories, from Kev at Wildstorm to World Of Tanks at Dark Horse, just to name a few. With The Tankies, I feel like he took this job seriously and put forth a great amount of detail in everything from weapons of destruction to the people using them. His character expressions are great. I have a real appreciation of the art within these pages.

I enjoyed reading The Tankies very much. Honestly, I buy every war story Ennis works on when I know about them. While some might not enjoy the destructive power of war or the violence man casts upon themselves with it, I always appreciate the history lesson of it and the little things that Ennis and Ezquerra inject into it. If you enjoy war or if you like what Garth Ennis brings to comics, The Tankies is just the book for you. It’s not as funny as Ennis and Ezquerra’s work in The Adventures Of The Rifle Brigade but certainly feels similar in tone to World Of Tanks.

Story: Garth Ennis Art: Carlos Ezquerra
Ink: Hector Ezquerra Color: Tony Avina Letterer: Simon Bowland
Story: 10 Art: 8.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Dead Reckoning provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: AmazonTFAWBookshop

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

Home #1

Wednesdays (and now Tuesdays) 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 week.

Batman: The Detective #1 (DC Comics) – Tom Taylor, Andy Kubert, and Brad Anderson take Batman on a European adventure!

Canto & the City of Giants #1 (IDW Publishing) – A bridge between the second and third volumes of the beloved series.

Children of the Atom #2 (Marvel) – The first issue left us scratching our heads and we’re excited to discover the secret about this team.

Doctor Who: Missy #1 (Titan Comics) – The Doctor Who villain gets the spotlight!

Guardians of the Galaxy #13 (Marvel) – It’s a new team and new direction for Marvel’s cosmic side of its universe.

Home #1 (Image Comics) – A story about immigration and asylum mixed with superhero abilities. The series explores the real-world implications of migration.

Jenny Zero #1 (Dark Horse) – The military’s top kaiju killer, “Jenny Zero” now lives the celebutante life. When the massive creatures return, Jenny must decide if she can sober up and save the world!

The Joker #2 (DC Comics) – The first issue was fantastic with its focus on Jim Gordon and his being recruited to hunt the Joker. Now, Gordon must decide what he wants to do and how to do it. There’s also a hell of a reveal in it that will have an impact of Batman stories of the past!

Jules Verne’s Lighthouse #1 (Image Comics) – Based on the story by Jules Verne, he who controls the Lighthouse controls part of the galaxy.

Locke & Key/Sandman: Hell & Gone #1 (IDW Publishing) – The two properties come together for what is sure to be an entertaining tale.

Maniac of New York #3 (AfterShock) – The first two issues were fantastic. The series asks what if Jason was real in New York City?

MPLS Sound (Humanoids) – MPLS Sound is the ultimate love letter to the legendary Minneapolis funk-rock sound of the 1980s.

Non-Stop Spider-Man #2 (Marvel) – The first issue was full of action and excitement and we’re excited to see if it can keep it up.

Phantom on the Scan #1 (AfterShock) – A comment gives Matthew incredible psychic powers but those who gained similar powers are all dying in horrible ways.

Proctor Valley Road #2 (BOOM! Studios) – The first issue was full of mystery and has us returning to see what happens when the group of girls is blamed for the disappearance of their friends.

Scout’s Honor #4 (AfterShock) – A great series that’s been building its world while telling an engaging and exciting story. No idea where it’s all going but we want to find out!

Spider-Man: Spider’s Shadow #1 (Marvel) – What if Peter Parker became Venom? By Chip Zdarsky, Pasqual Ferry, and Matt Hollingsworth? Yeah, we’re in.

The Tankies (Dead Reckoning) – Garth Ennis’ latest collection of war comics!

Undone By Blood or the Other Side of Eden #2 (AfterShock) – It’s a crime comic set during the Depression. Yeah, we’re in for this one.

White Lily #2 (Red 5 Comics) – Based on the real Russian pilot during World War II. She was one of the best of the time!

Weekly Preview! Tanks, Maniacs, Manga, Oh My!

We’re kicking off a new regular tease of what’s coming each week in video reviews. This is just the tip of the iceberg of what’s coming, there might be more!

You can watch and subscribe or follow at YouTube or Facebook.

This week you’ll find:

  • In Another World With My Smartphone Vol. 1 (Yen Press)
  • Life is Strange: Partners in Time – Tracks (Titan Comics)
  • Maniac of New York #3 (AfterShock)
  • Phantom of the Scan #1 (AfterShock)
  • Scout’s Honor #4 (AfterShock)
  • Serial #3 (Abstract Studio)
  • The Stringer (NBM)
  • The Tankies (Dead Reckoning)
  • Undone By Blood or The Other Side of Eden #2 (AfterShock)

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

Radiant Black #1

Wednesdays (and now Tuesdays) 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 week.

Black Hammer: Visions #1 (Dark Horse) – The world of Black Hammer opens up with guest creators. Should be a lot of fun to see what others do with the characters and world.

Casual Fling #1 (AWA Studios) – An affair leads to torment from a mysterious stalker.

Children of the Grave #2 (Scout Comics) – The first issue ended with a hell of a cliffhanger. Who’s the mysterious “Mother”?

Eternals #2 (Marvel) – The first issue was fantastic as the classic characters get a bit of an update and reintroduction to the masses before their film drops.

Freiheit: The White Rose Graphic Novel (Plough Publishing House) – The story of the White Rose, an undercover resistance movement in Nazi Germany.

Ginseng Roots #8 (Uncivilized Comics) – The series exploring Craig Thompson’s life around the ginseng community continues to focus on the generations involved and the changing market.

Mapmaker #1 (Scout Comics/Scoot Comics) – Any map he creates comes to life, a power highly desired by King Gus, who will stop at nothing to obtain it.

Morbius: Bond of Blood #1 (Marvel) – A film is coming from Sony so we’re interested in seeing what Marvel does with the character.

Orcs #1 (BOOM! Studios/KaBOOM!) – Bog and his crew venture out into the world to seek their fortune, and hopefully find their way back home again.

Parenthesis (IDW Publishing/Top Shelf) – A memoir about the creator’s experience with tumor-related epilepsy-losing herself, and finding herself again.

Radiant Black #1 (Image Comics) – A new superhero series coming out of Image, Kyle Higgins, and Marcello Costa. With Higgins writing, we’re really intrigued to see where this all goes.

Rorschach #5 (DC Comics/DC Black Label) – As a crime/political thriller comic, it’s been great so far.

Scarenthood #4 (IDW Publishing) – A horror series focused on parents attempting to solve the mystery of the haunted school their kids go to. It’s been an interesting one so far that’s perfect for parents into horror.

Scout’s Honor #2 (AfterShock) – The first issue shook up the whole belief structure the Ranger Scouts have been built on. What will the second issue bring?

Space Bastards #2 (Humanoids) – The first issue was over the top violence in this sci-fi postal service adventure.

Undiscovered Country #12 (Image Comics) – This series has kept us on the edge of our seat. You never know what to expect with each issue which gets us excited to see what’s next.

Review: Teddy

Teddy

The last 4 years are one of ruin, hate, and the rise of idolatry, and the widespread acceptance of willful ignorance. It has shown the world, just how ugly America and Americans are. It also has shown systemic racism is and has been part of the national fabric since the birth of our country. This all begins with whom we identify as our nation’s leader.

The nation’s highest office once had dignity and pride connected before our national nightmare settled in. In fact, a name that was synonymous with the office and with those qualities was Roosevelt. We have been lucky to have two presidents to have that name and occupy it knowing history has its eyes on them. In Teddy, Laurence Luckinbill and Eryck Tait delve into who the 29th President and uncovers what made him so legendary.

We open to Roosevelt about to debate then President Woodrow Wilson. Personalizing the threat of World War I, he lets the crowd, know that he has sons on the front lines. This makes him nostalgic, making him remember his upbringing In Europe, trying to stand out in the midst of his siblings and how difficult it was for him to get into Harvard. AS he sought to better himself, and just when he started to burgeon at the college, his father dies, a man he was both adored and was scared of,  putting a kibosh on his future momentarily. As this event forced him to be introspective, as he soon found out more about himself, realizing how much of his father trickled down to him, especially the part of being a politician, but he would take baby steps, first, becoming a lawyer. Then joining the New York State Legislature, where he got introduced to what so frustrating and despicable about politics in the first place, in a world where deals were made behind closed doors. As he would not only have to deal with the intricacies of the dirty world of politics, but he would also deal with the death of his mother of Typhoid Fever and his wife, Alice, who died after childbirth of his daughter, Lee, only mere hours apart, left politics and went west to the Dakota Badlands, to make a new life for himself. He would eventually fail as a rancher but would find his passion back in writing, transcribing his own histories of the still very young country. He would reconnect, with a childhood friend, Edith Carow, reigniting their friendship and eventual marriage, which refocus his efforts, which pushed him to become the Civil Service Commissioner, then the police Commissioner of the NYPD, and the Assistant Secretary Of The Navy, which under his watch, began the Spanish American War, and where he led the Rough Riders. This made him known and the eventual Vice President where he served under McKinley, who was assassinated, which lead him to occupy the Presidency, becoming the youngest one to, at 42. He would introduce progressive ideas like old-age pension, public housing, and regulation of large corporations. He would also spend time with his children, something he got to do, more so than any other time in his life. He would talk about the trials and tribulations he to go through with the Panama Canal, listing what made the effort worthwhile. He would leave the presidency after seven and a half years, to gallivant around the world in ways he could not before as a President, as he also struggled to not be as effective as a civilian, seeing the tragedy of World War I unfold, and hoping and wishing for his sons to come back home safely.  By the book’s end, he implores the audience and the reader, the importance of living.

Overall, Teddy is a personal look into probably the most iconic President to have ever held the office. The story by Luckinbill is extraordinary. The art by Tait is awe-inspiring. Altogether, Teddy is a graphic novel that makes this important historical figure both relatable and relevant.

Story: Laurence Luckinbill Art: Eryck Tait
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy

Dead Reckoning provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: AmazonKindle

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

Transformers: Beast Wars #1

Wednesdays (and now Tuesdays) 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 week.

Avengers: Mech Strike #1 (Marvel) – The Avengers face a big threat and decide to suit up in Mechs. It sounds like a toy tie-in and it sounds completely silly. We’re in.

Chained to the Grave #1 (IDW Publishing) – A tail of intrigue, murder, magic, and the wild, wild, west! Westerns in comics have been rare lately, so we’re always interested in checking out a new one.

Deep Beyond #1 (Image Comics) – Humanity has been devastated by a disease and a small group of scientists studies the hidden depths of the abyss. Something there may be even more destructive!

Far Sector #10 (DC Comics/DC’s Young Animal) – The truth begins to be revealed!

Fear Case #1 (Dark Horse) – Two Secret Service agents attempt to track down the Fear Case which appears throughout history at sites of disaster and tragedy.

Future State: Harley Quinn #2 (DC Comics) – Wrapping up the series, the first issue was a neon-infused interesting take on Harley and this second issue delivers the endgame in her situation.

Future State: Swamp Thing #2 (DC Comics) – Humanity has been rediscovered but what does that mean for Swamp Thing ans his people?

Legend of Shang-Chi #1 (Marvel) – With a big movie coming, Marvel is upping the amount of comics starring Shang-Chi. We’re up to seeing what each creative team does with him, especially after the recent miniseries reworking his origin a bit and taking on the problematic aspects of his past.

Luna #1 (BOOM! Studios) – A hippie cult whose leader claims to have met the divine, secret blood rituals, power drugs and sex… yeah, we’re intrigued.

Man-Bat #1 (DC Comics) – A character that has come and gone as far as the spotlight. We get a new take on the character delivering a tragic other side of the coin to Batman.

Maniac of New York #1 (AfterShock) – A masked slasher stalks New York City. He’s inhuman, unkillable, and unstoppable. So, the authorities decided to ignore him. When he returns to kill, two disgraced cops decide to attempt to destroy him.

Redemption #1 (AWA Studios) – A despot rules a town with an iron fist after the apocalypse. A legendary gunslinger is asked to come out of retirement to help save a young girl’s mother.

Sea of Sorrows #3 (IDW Publishing) – The horror series has been great setting up tension and we’re back for more.

The Shepherd #1 (Scout Comics/Black Caravan) – A Professor becomes convinced he can rescue his son’s wandering soul.

Specter Inspectors #1 (BOOM! Studios) – A group of ghost hunters, the comic sounds like the fun goofiness that the television shows on the topic bring.

Star Wars Adventures: The High Republic #1 (IDW Publishing) – The new Star Wars setting has been interesting so far and we want to see what else spins out of it.

Teddy (Dead Reckoning) – A graphic novel about the life of Teddy Roosevelt.

They Fell From the Sky #1 (Mad Cave Studios) – A teenage kid meets an alien and must balance his day-to-day life and prevent an interplanetary war.

Transformers: Beast Wars #1 (IDW Publishing) – The beloved comic series gets a comic celebrating 25 years!

The Walking Dead Deluxe #8 (Image Comic/Skybound) – The series has been fascinating to read again in the age of COVID. A great way to experience the comic for the first time or good excuse to return and experience it again.

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

The Impending Blindness of Billie Scott

Wednesdays (and now Tuesdays) 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 week.

7 Good Reasons Not to Grow Up (Graphix) – Why would any kid want to be an adult? This graphic novel explores the challengese of growing up.

Great Naval Battles of the Twentieth Century (Dead Reckoning) – In this collection, Jean-Yves Delitte and Giuseppe Baiguera plunge you into the heart of three of the twentieth century’s greatest naval battles: Tsushima (1905), Jutland (1916), and Midway (1942).

The Impending Blindness of Billie Scott (Avery Hill Publishing) – Billie Scott is an artist. Her debut gallery exhibition opens in a few months. Within a fortnight she’ll be completely blind. Already getting tons of praise, read our early review here.

Miskatonic #1 (AfterShock) – Miskatonic Valley holds many mysteries – cultists worshipping old gods, a doctor deadset on resurrecting the recently deceased, a house overrun by rats in the walls – but none more recent than a series of bombings targeting the Valley’s elite.

Plutocracy (NBM) – 2051. The world’s largest company, The Company, has seized power on a planetary scale and runs the world as if it were a business. In a plutocracy, the richer one is, the more powerful one is. A citizen decides to explore how the world came to this situation.

Power Rangers #1 (BOOM! Studios) – A new era for the Power Rangers is here and it’s a perfect opportunity to dive in and see what you’ve been missing.

Punchline #1 (DC Comics) – The hit character gets a spotlight in a not so veiled exploration of Trump’s America.

Scarenthood #1 (IDW Publishing) – With the kids away the parents away in this ghost-hunting/demonic entity fighting twist of a story.

Terminal Punks #1 (Mad Cave Studios) – Mutant animals are unleashed at an airport and four punk teens take them on.

Taskmaster #1 (Marvel) – Framed for the murder of Maria Hill, Taskmaster is on the run attempting to survive and prove his innocence.

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

Atlas at War

Wednesdays (and now Tuesdays) 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 week.

Atlas at War (Dead Reckoning) – The graphic novel collects fifty hard to find war stories published by Marvel between 1951 and 1960.

Cyberpunk 2077 Trauma Team #1 (Dark Horse Comics) – The highly anticipated video game comes to comics.

Dark Nights: Death Metal Trinity Crisis #1 (DC Comics) – Really, this should have been part of the main series, so we’re highlighting it so you don’t dismiss it as just another one-shot tie-in.

Dog Man Vol. 9 (Graphix) – The series is huge and this latest volume is being printed in the millions. Comics aren’t dying, they’ve got a whole new generation hooked.

Dry Foot #1 (Mad Cave Studios) – It’s Miami in the 1980s and a group of kids are attempting to escape the violence and drugs of the city.

Kent State: Four Dead in Ohio (Abrams Comicarts) – A graphic novel depiction of the tragic day that reflects on the violence we see today.

Rise of Ultraman #1 (Marvel) – We’re intrigued to see how this Marvel take on the classic manga/anime character turns out.

Stargazer #1 (Mad Cave Studios) – If you like alien abduction stories, this is a great first issue of an intriguing mystery.

Student Ambassador Vol. 1 (Iron Circus Comics) – An eight-year-old wins a photo op with the President of the United States but is pulled into an international incident when another eight-year-old takes his father’s crown and stumbles into trouble.

Vampire: The Masquerade #2 (Vault Comics) – The first issue was a bit heavy on the terms from the classic roleplaying game but nailed the characters and world down.

Review: The Stringbags

The Stringbags

In today’s fast-paced world, not necessarily intentionally, we tend to dismiss those of an older generation. When I was in the military, I often found myself being given advice by those who came before me. Sometimes, it was something useful. I would use these gems in future situations. Some of the best stories I ever heard were the guys who went to Desert Storm.

 Much of what they did was unheralded and often it was an important contribution to the overall mission. In my fascination with history and finding those rarely told stories, I’ve found hundreds of them. Many brave men and women did missions that didn’t give them medals and deserved photo ops. Those endeavors threaded that invisible needle to ensure the proper outcome. One of those stories where these men and women, most of them deceased, finally got their recognition, was the WWII veterans of native Filipino descent who fought for America. One of those being my grandfather. In Garth Ennis, PJ Holden, Kelly Fitzpatrick, and Rob Steen’s brilliant The Stringbags, we find out about another ragtag crew whose exploits may have saved the world.

We are taken to 1940, where crews of young men in the British Royal Navy were flying what is then considered an artifact, the Fairey Swordfish, also known as Stringbag, because of its simplistic structure. As we meet the crew of one these flying wonders, Archie, Ollie, and Pops, whose banter and camaraderie make an easy lane for cohesion and the long missions just a bit shorter. They are soon tasked with Operation Judgment, as Britain is hanging on to the forwarding operating bases by skin of their teeth, and the lone nation at the time fighting against Nazi Germany and looking to keep the ground at Malta, as this particular crew volunteers to scout, a mission that could mean their ultimate fate. At They soon find they could are outnumbered but if can take out one of their vessels, they can tilt the odds in their favor, as they soon catch heavy fire from one of the Italian Battleships, which they responded with a torpedo, taking out the Taranto, and soon the rest of the Stringbag squadron would take out the remaining fleet of the Regia Marina. As glory did not last long, eventually the German Blitz hit London and all of England was under attack from the “axis of evil”, as the UK sought some type of victory, as the expansion of Nazi Germany into England seemed almost imminent. Soon, the German Navy became a powerful force at sea, as we find Archie, Ollie, and Pops, flying U Boat patrols, but are soon tasked with a covert mission to escort the Ark Royal, one of the best aircraft carriers of the Royal Navy. As the crew lands on the Ark Royal, they soon find out that the HMS Hood, one their battleships had been blasted in half by the German Battlecruiser, the Bismarck. Soon our heroes take on two missions to destroy the battleship, one which was unsuccessful but the other, landing a crucial blow, which our protagonists’ plane did not survive but they did, and would lead the way for the rest of the squadron to ensure it was the Bismarck’s final voyage. Soon Germany would need to shore up its more vulnerable territories, which lead Hitler to recall three of their Battle cruisers, going the fastest route, through the English Channel. Of course, the Royal Navy guessed this would happen, and in February 1942, would deploy Operation Fuller, but rattled by the success of the Japanese fleet, they would need the fearlessness of the Stringbag squadron. By the book’s end, this would be the last mission of this crew, as they would not survive this mission, which was a complete failure, leaving only five survivors.

Overall, a book that is very much a throwback to the war movies of yesteryear, which gives these unsung heroes their proper day in the sun. The story by Ennis is funny, relatable, action-packed, and well developed. The art by the creative team is simply breathtaking. Altogether, a story that will make you want to go watch movies like Midway, to remember the heroism of those who fought despite the odds.

Story: Garth Ennis Art: PJ Holden, Kelly Fitzpatrick, and Rob Steen
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy

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