Tag Archives: eric battle

Preview: Shadowman Vol. 3: Rag and Bone TPB

SHADOWMAN VOL. 3: RAG AND BONE TPB

Written by ANDY DIGGLE
Art by RENATO GUEDES and ERIC BATTLE with ULISES ARREOLA
Colors by ANDREW DALHOUSE
Letters by SIMON BOWLAND
Cover by TONCI ZONJIC
On sale March 13, 2019

Bones are buried for a reason…

Shadowman is back in New Orleans and with a better handle on his powerful abilities, just in time for a war like no other! The vicious battle between the Brethren and the Abettors over the ultimate magical artifact – the remains of Shadowman’s arch-nemesis, Master Darque – will impact the future of the Valiant Universe, so will the formidable foe return from the dead, or will his bones be destroyed once and for all?

Collects SHADOWMAN (2018) #8-11.

Shadowman Vol. 3: Rag and Bone TPB
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Exclusive Preview: Bloodshot Rising Spirit #4

Bloodshot Rising Spirit #4

Writer: Kevin Grevioux
Artist: Harvey Tolibao
Color: Andrew Dalhouse
Cover A by Felipe Massafera
Cover B by David Lafuente
Variant Cover by Eric Battle

New story arc! “Corps Memories,” Part 1!

When a walking weapon of war like Bloodshot goes completely missing, you need the toughest of the tough to do the dirty work of bringing him back. Luckily, Project Rising Spirit has just such a team at their disposal – a black budget strike force with capabilities no ordinary soldier could ever conceive. Enter…the H.A.R.D. Corps!

$3.99 | 32. pgs | VALIANT PREMIUM | T+ | On Sale FEBRUARY 27th

Bloodshot Rising Spirit #4

Review: Shadowman #11

The final showdown!

Shadowman #11

At long last, Shadowman is unbound…and it couldn’t have come at a worse time! Finally free from the Boniface lineage after generations of torment, the loa that once shared its gifts with Jack Boniface must now be convinced to join his cause willingly…or else the Brethren will lay waste to everything Jack holds dear!

Whenever a series ends prematurely – whether that’s due to a lack of sales, or not – there’s always the fear that the story won’t end as well as was originally planned if the number of issues allotted are shaved down. While I’m not sure if that’s the case here, there is a lot of story packed into the pages of Shadowman #11 than there has been in the last couple of issues. This has the effect of giving the comic a very retro feel; comics from the 90’s and before always seem to pack a lot of dialogue and text within the pages in comparison to more modern offerings.

Whilst I’m a fan of older comic

s, where Shadowman #11 stumbles is a lack of clarity in some sequences as the scenes transition – the art, while astonishingly brilliant to look at, doesn’t always have the backgrounds necessary to indicate a transition without narrative explanation. Unfortunately, his left me reeling a couple of times during my read through wondering if I’d missed a page, or a text box, or if I needed more caffeine.

That being said, the issue’s pacing is relentless, and hits you with one development after another – it’s the kind of comic that feels like it’s absolutely worth the money you’re spending on the book, even with the occasional stumble.

Andy Diggle closes out his time with Shadowman on a high after taking the character on a journey full of revelations and character growth as he fleshed out the mythology and history of Jack Boniface and the shadow loa. It was a successful run, and one capped off with an explosive and action fueled issue that ties up enough loose ends that you’re not left with a sense that too much is dangling in the ether waiting for a resolution that’ll probably never come, but rather with anticipation for Shadowman’s next stage.

As has been mentioned already the art by Renato Guedes and Eric Battle is spectacular, although the comic would have been stronger had there been a few more backgrounds used during scene changes or passages of time. For the most part, though, there’s very little to bemoan in regards to the artistic offering here, and credit for that should also be given to Ulises Arreola‘s colouring that goes a little way toward helping the eye follow the story breaks if you pay attention to the background colours.

As a conclusion to an eleven issue run, this is a strong comic. Diggle puts a cherry on top of a run that’s added a lot to Shadowman’s lore whilst wrapping up the story satisfactorily. Although you’re not likely to buy this issue if you haven’t at least read the final arc, you can at least rest assured that once you’ve caught up, this is a really solid cap to a brilliant run. I’m looking forward to seeing what Andy Diggle has in store for us next.

Story: Andy Diggle Art: Renato Guedes with Eric Battle
Colours: Ulises Arreola Letters: Simon Bowland
Story: 8.8 Art: 8.1 Overall: 8.2 Recommendation: Buy

Valiant provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Shadowman #10

Shadowman #10

Darque Destruction!

Sandria Darque’s vile plans are finally clicking into place… With his allies incapacitated, it’s up to Jack Boniface to stop the machinations of this vengeful sorceress – but can he trust in his ability to control the loa spirit bound to him, or will he have to face an ageless enemy completely alone?

Shadowman #10 is a comic so close to excellence that it is oddly frustrating. The  comic, written by Andy Diggle  with art by Renato Guedes and Eric Battle, and colours by Ulises Arreola, is very interesting to look at. The art in this comic, primarily handled by Guedes, is fantastic. There’s a lifelike realism to the pages where details jump out at you, grabbing your eyes by ink-stained fingers and pulling your attention to each and every page in your hand.

Ultimately, though, it’s within the intricately layered story where this reviewer’s frustration with the comic lays. Diggle brings a lot of the elements he had introduced earlier in his run back to play a part here (which is fantastic), but also relies upon the reader having read most, if not all, of Shadowman’s previous appearances since the Valiant relaunch in 2012. Material that, I haven’t fully read (specifically the first Shadowman series). So while there is just enough info provided for me to enjoy the series couple with my previous reading of Rapture and Operation Deadside (a self contained miniseries and an arc in Ninjak respectively), if you’re unfamiliar with either of those then you may struggle a little here – but if you’ve read the series thus far then there’s every chance that you’ll be more than able to follow the book along to a rather brilliant pay off that’s been building for several issues. 

Although it will undoubtedly be a benefit for you if you have read the entire Shadowman saga to date, it won’t be a gamebreaker if you haven’t. But, because of my annoyingly innate desire to know everything, I was a touch frustrated with the seemingly casual references to things I had no idea about, but can’t deny enjoying that Diggle has spent time researching the character and his previous appearances.

Ultimately what bothered me mot about the book may not be on your radar at all (like I said it’s an annoying desire), and so being aware of that I tried not to let that influence my judgement of a comic that propels the story forward into what promises to be at the very least an interesting and powerful conclusion that will set Shadowman up for some freaking amazing stories in the future.

Story: Andy Diggle Art: Renato Guedes and Eric Battle
Colours: Ulises Arreola Letters: Simon Bowland
Story: 8.3 Art: 9.0 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Valiant provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review, but I picked up my own copy.

Review: Shadowman #9

SM2018_009_COVER-B_GRANTEvery family has skeletons in their closet…but these ones are ready to kill!

As Jack Boniface and Alyssa Miles hunt for the remains of Master Darque, their search brings them to the enchanted home of his sorceress sister – none other than Sandria Darque herself! Face to unearthly face with the sorceress responsible for binding his fate to that of the deadly shadow loa, Jack now stands at a crossroads… Will he achieve his greatest desire and free himself from the monster within?

Shadowman #9 begins to tie a lot of threads together that Andy Diggle has been letting dangle ever since he first took on the series. Whether it’s the early interactions between Jack and the Brethren, Jack’s journey through the history of the Shadowman or the growing threat of Master Darque, if you’ve been with the series for the past eight issues, you’re going to start to see a lot of things begin to come together. That’s not to say that new readers will be out in the cold – Diggle has still written a very compelling comic, and one that anybody can hop into. But he certainly is rewarding those who’ve been around the block with ol’ Jack Boniface.

The overwhelming impression the last issue left on me was just how special the art was… well for the most part that’s true again. The art, by Renato Guedes, remains fantastic; blending a touch of the classical styles into a comic book script that compliments the mystical nature of the character. It’s undoubtedly the highlight of this issue, and watching how Guedes moves the story along was worth my price of admission alone. However, Guedes isn’t the sole artist this time around; the superbly named Eric Battle takes charge for a few interspersed pages (coloured by Ulises Arreola), and the effect is almost jarring. Battle and Arreola make a great pairing, but the team isn’t as complementary to Guedes’ style as one would hope.

There’s a touch more development when it comes to the plot with this issue than last, and once again the comic is visually spectacular. I said it last month and I’ll say it again – some of the pages here should make non-comics folks rethink their definition of fine art.  I’ve every intention of adding this to my collection on release day, because Shadowman #9 is another brilliant addition to the Valiant library – and is once again one of the best visual experiences I’ve had in comics.

Story: Andy Diggle Art: Renato Guedes and Eric Battle
Colors: Ulises Arreola Letters: Simon Bowland
Story: 8.2 Art: 8.8 Overall: 8.6 Recommendation: Buy

Valiant provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Shadowman (2018) #9

SHADOWMAN (2018) #9

Written by ANDY DIGGLE
Art by RENATO GUEDES and ERIC BATTLE
Letters by SIMON BOWLAND
Cover A by TONCI ZONJIC
Cover B KERON GRANT
Cover C JEFFREY VEREGGE
Interlocking Variant by RYAN LEE
Pre-Order Edition by HANNAH TEMPLER

Every family has skeletons in their closet…but these ones are ready to kill!

As Jack Boniface and Alyssa Miles hunt for the remains of Master Darque, their search brings them to the enchanted home of his sorceress sister – none other than Sandria Darque herself! Face to unearthly face with the sorceress responsible for binding his fate to that of the deadly shadow loa, Jack now stands at a crossroads… Will he achieve his greatest desire and free himself from the monster within?

Renowned writer Andy Diggle (Green Arrow: Year One) delivers a powerful portent of horror as “RAG AND BONE” creaks onward, gorgeously rendered by artist Renato Guedes (BLOODSHOT SALVATION)!

$3.99 | 32 pgs. | T+ | On Sale NOVEMBER 21nd

Preview: Antar #1

Antar #1

Nnedi Okorafor (w) • Eric Battle (a & c)

Honor through perseverance. Legacy through diversity. IDW is proud to present the epic story of one of history’s greatest warriors and finest poets: Antar the Black Knight. A despised camel driver born of an African slave mother and an Arab Noble father, Antar proves that heroes are made by embracing who we are and dreaming about what we can become.

FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Preview – The Scourge #6

THE SCOURGE #6

Scott Lobdell – Story / Eric Battle – art

They are taking over…

From the innovative mind of acclaimed movie producer Gale Anne Hurd, and written by superstar writer and visionary Scott Lobdell, comes the finale of Aspen’s blockbuster new series – THE SCOURGE!

It’s SWAT officer John Griffin’s final stand! He’s New York City’s only hope in avoiding complete annihilation. All he has to do is get past countless bloodthirsty gargoyle-like creatures in an attempt to kill his best friend…and save his son in the process! Take a deep breathe, this is going to be one hell of a last ride!!

Featuring the astounding artwork of series artist Eric Battle, and colors by David Curiel, THE SCOURGE is set to infect the comic book community like never before!

In stores December 21st

Aspen Comics Review – Haunted City #1 and The Scourge #5

One book out last week and the other is out today, Aspen Comics has released two solid books.  How solid?  Find out what I think below…

Haunted City #1

A crooked cop, a secret NYPD department and demons running around New York City, this is the second (that I can think of) super natural cop comic book series to launch in recent months.  Like that other one, this one’s pretty solid.

Time is running out for Detective Tom Whalen.  He’s got NYPD Internal Affairs breathing down his neck, Korean drug dealers chasing him across the streets of Manhattan, and a lunatic Albanian crime boss wanting him dead.  His only chance for salvation: a Priest who comes to him offering him a chance to work on his team.  But, Whalen soon discovers that this is a very special team: it’s a secret unit within the NYPD that has existed for centuries. A unit as old as New York itself, sworn to protect the city from monsters and myths, the terrors and nightmares that exist in the darkest shadows and corners of the great metropolis.

It’s kind of fun to have a crooked cop as the lead.  I know I was going through the first issue with a “is he or isn’t he” vibe throughout as I was looking for more to that, but nope, he’s crooked.  The first issue also sets up a pretty solid premise.  It’s similar to Epoch or Witchblade with the cop fighting the supernatural premise, but it’s out there.  This seems to be a legit unit, so it won’t be quite as hidden underneath the day to day police business.  Hopefully we get to see how the unit interacts with the “normal” police.

The art is solid as well, it’s creepy at times and has some good detail to it, Aspen is a company that I can look towards for that.  It’s just a first issue, but I’m looking forward to the second and see how it compares to those other ones.  Three isn’t over kill and all are unique in their own way, it’ll be fun to see how each handles similar plots in their own way.

Story: Chap Taylor and Peter Johnson Art: Michael Ryan Colors: Peter Steigerwald Publisher: Aspen Comics

Story: 8 Art: 8 Overall: 8 Recommendation: Buy

The Scourge #5

So going into this fifth issue I was worried.  I haven’t read the first four, and usually that’s a notch against the series.  Interestingly enough, I was able to dive right into the issue.  The action is cool, story seems interesting, and while I don’t know how all of these characters came together, they seem interesting.

The Statue of Liberty has been in the United States since the late 1800’s and has seen millions of people come and go over the years. But, you bet she’s never seen this:  an army of gargoyles perched atop her arms, her robes, and her crown, ready to leave Manhattan and spread an ancient pandemic across the entire United States! Only one man can stop this outbreak, and SWAT officer Jon Griffin had better hurry– because the United States Government is less than an hour away from dropping a bomb on New York City!

Part of the reason it was easy to get into the comic was because the story is familiar.  It’s very similar to other Vampire or Zombie tales, but this one has to do with crazy demons.  It’s accessible partially because of that.  But, the story is also pretty damn unique.  There’s talk of bee hives and frequencies and while the military plays a role, it isn’t the complete focus.

The art is cool with some fantastic page layouts and awesome scenes.  The angles and perspectives that are taken are really good, the art just popped for me.  Reading on an iPad, it really stood out for me.  While this might have been the fifth issue, it was entertaining like the first and made me want to check out what’s come before.

Story: Scott Lobdell Art: Eric Battle Publisher: Aspen Comics

Story: 8.25 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.25 Recommendation: Buy

Aspen Comics provided Graphic Policy with FREE copies for review

Preview – The Scourge #5

THE SCOURGE #5

Scott Lobdell – Story / Eric Battle – art

They are taking over…

From the innovative mind of acclaimed movie producer Gale Anne Hurd, and written by superstar writer and visionary Scott Lobdell, comes this summer’s biggest blockbuster new series – THE SCOURGE!

The Statue of Liberty has been in the United States since the late 1800’s and has seen millions of people come and go over the years. But, you bet she’s never seen this:  an army of gargoyles perched atop her arms, her robes, and her crown, ready to leave Manhattan and spread an ancient pandemic across the entire United States! Only one man can stop this outbreak, and SWAT officer Jon Griffin had better hurry– because the United States Government is less than an hour away from dropping a bomb on New York City!

Featuring the astounding artwork of series artist Eric Battle, and colors by David Curiel, THE SCOURGE #5 is set to infect the comic book community like never before!

THE SCOURGE #5 is in stores October 19th, 2011!