Tag Archives: greg pak

Monsters Unleashed Prelude Sets The Stage For Marvel’s Monstrous New Series!

Long before Super Heroes patrolled the skies, mammoth monsters roamed the Marvel Universe – leaving wanton destruction in their wake. Now, they have returned! Before their explosive re-emergence in the all new spectacular Monsters Unleashed #1 – catch up on the rich history of these marvelous monsters with the Monsters Unleashed Prelude TPB coming to comic shops and bookstores everywhere in January! Peel back this brand-new cover from artist Greg Land and you’ll find a treasure trove of iconic stories and first appearances! Titanic tales from the past and present designed to get fans everywhere prepared for Monsters Unleashed!

Before the can’t-miss first issue of Monsters Unleashed in January, meet a menacing menagerie of unforgettable monsters, Marvel mainstays, and some major players in Monsters Unleashed! Featuring Monstrom, Grottu, Moomba, Bruttu, Orrgo, Elsa Bloodstone, Lady Hellbender, Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur and many more!

Monsters Unleashed Prelude TPB collects Fearless Defenders #8, Marvel Zombies (2015) #1, Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #1, Totally Awesome Hulk #2-3 and material from Strange Tales (1951) #73 & #90, Tales to Astonish (1959) #11-13, #15, #17, #19 and #23; and Tales of Suspense #15, #17, #19 and #22.

MONSTERS UNLEASHED PRELUDE (OCT161023)
ISBN: 978-1-302-90089-2
Written by STAN LEE, LARRY LIEBER, CULLEN BUNN, SIMON SPURRIER,
AMY REEDER, BRANDON MONTCLARE and GREG PAK
Art by JACK KIRBY, WILL SLINEY, KEV WALKER, NATACHA BUSTOS & FRANK CHO
New Cover by GREG LAND
264 pgs…$34.99
FOC – 11/14/16, On-Sale – 01/04/17

monsters_unleashed_prelude_tpb_cover

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Review: Kingsway West #1

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After spending thirteen years in a war that made him a monster, a Chinese gunslinger named Kingsway Law just wants to live in peace with his wife, Sonia. But even in a fantastical Old West crackling with magic, a man of his skills can never quite disappear. So when a woman with a red-gold sword brings bloody chaos to his doorstep, Kingsway must fight for his life, his wife, and his very soul.

Magic, gunslingers, and swordsman collide in the premiere issue of Kingsway West written by Greg Pak. The fist issue manages to showcase a solid, action-filled, pace as everyone seems to lust after red gold, the one element in the world that is more magic than science. It all comes together to create a really solid first issue, that leaves you wanting more.

Artist Mirko Colak manages to showcase a strong degree of realism, and heavy violence. Even with fantasy based creatures like dragons, and bigfoots running around the world feels real. I’m really curious to see what other fantasy-inspired creatures and elements get added as the story continues.

Story: Greg Pak Art: Mirko Colak
Story: 9 Art: 9 Overall: 9 Recommendation: Buy

Dark Horse Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Civil War II: The Fallen #1

Civil War II The Fallen #1 CoverAs a giant falls, friends and enemies alike gather to mourn his passing. Amadeus Cho, Rick Jones, Betty Ross, Thunderbolt Ross, the Warbound and more. Can they all keep a level head – or will some of them get ANGRY? Plus, what secrets lie in the Last Will and Testament of Bruce Banner?

Written by Greg Pak, Civil War II: The Fallen #1 deals with the aftermath of the murder of Bruce Banner by Clint Barton. A funeral. A follow up with various key Hulk characters. A Last Will and Testament. A lot is thrown into this issue which feels rather rushed and a bit choppy.

What’s presented in this comic is pretty important and closes some plots while opening up some others. The issue is a set of chapters that work slightly together as if a bunch of scenes were written, but it wasn’t clear how to actually tie them all together in a smooth narrative. But, most importantly, none of this had to be in its own comic one-shot. There really isn’t a reason this couldn’t have been a part of a few other Civil War II tie-ins.

The issue attempts to give a funeral for Banner as well, but that too feels barely thought out. There’s some discussion on the duality of the character, monster and hero, but the scene involving that feels flat and lacking real emotion. Much of the issue is like that.

The art by Mark Bagley really falls short as well. I’ve like Bagley’s work and was shocked when I looked to see whose name was on the comic I thought it was that bad. It looks and feels rush, exactly what I’d expect for a comic event tie-in put together by the “B” team, but this is Bagley! C’mon!

The comic as a whole is just flimsy in so many ways. Lacking much emotion. A series of scenes. Art that just doesn’t work. All for $4.99. This one is an absolute pass unless you’re a die-hard Hulk fan or obsessive completist.

Story: Greg Pak Art: Mark Bagley
Story: 5 Art: 5 Overall: 5 Recommendation: Pass

Preview: Kingsway West #1

Kingsway West #1

Greg Pak (W), Mirko Colak (A, Cover), Wil Quintana (C)

After spending thirteen years in a war that made him a monster, a Chinese gunslinger named Kingsway Law just wants to live in peace with his wife, Sonia. But even in a fantastical Old West crackling with magic, a man of his skills can never quite disappear. So when a woman with a red-gold sword brings bloody chaos to his doorstep, Kingsway must fight for his life, his wife, and his very soul.

KWW1_WM FC

Escape From New York and Big Trouble in Little China Crossover Thanks to BOOM!

It’s a double dose of Kurt Russell as BOOM! Studios is bringing together Big Trouble in Little China and Escape From New York in a crossover comic Big Trouble in Littla China/Escape From New York.

The comic has the blessing of John Carpenter and will be written by Greg Pak with art by Daniel Bayliss. It finds Jack Burton transported to the dystopian future of 1997 where he meets Snake Plissken. Both characters were played by Russell in their films.

Check out the connecting covers for the series below.

Big Trouble in Little China Escape From New York

Review: Civil War II – Totally Awesome Hulk #7

34733fec-afb7-4529-8307-24f499462e89_Screen20Shot202016-06-3020at206.14.0720PMFor those of you who have been keeping up with Marvel’s Secret Wars saga along with the new Civil War II series, Totally Awesome Hulk #7 will answer the one question folks have had since the franchise introduced Amadeus Cho as the new version of Hulk. In the 8 months since the Secret Wars ended, what happened to Bruce Banner? And where has he been since the Hulk’s gamma powers were transferred to Cho?

The story starts with Bruce Banner coming to at the side of a road, freaked out and stealing clothes from a nearby farmhouse in classic post-Hulk-out fashion. (This opening reminded me of the Bill Bixby/Lou Ferrigno Hulk TV Show where Bruce would wander up a random road at the end of almost every show). When Banner tries to make a phone call at a nearby bar the owner of the stolen clothes recognizes him and confronts him, (I always used to wonder why that never happened more often). Only this time, when Bruce is threatened, he doesn’t Hulk out. In fact, he seems to be suffering from temporary amnesia, because he can’t remember why he can’t feel the Hulk anymore.

Amadeus Cho, the new version of the Hulk does make an appearance in this issue and he shares the Cliff’s Notes version of how he and Bruce changed places. Cho’s version of the Hulk is very different, because, as he explains, he’s different. Cho’s transformation appears effortless, less agonizing both during and post Hulk out compared Banner’s. He embraces his new role as a hero, but as previous issues have revealed, he’s never looked at Hulk or Banner any other way. Cho is smart, confident, and not at all freaked out by his psyche’s new green roommate.

theblerdgurl_Totoally-awesome-hulk-7-insert2.jpg

On the flip side, remember how when Bruce wasn’t the Hulk, he was socially awkward, always on the run, anxiety-ridden and plagued by guilt? Well, this version of Bruce is still like that…just..all the time. This is a bit of a mid-life crisis for Bruce as this is the first time in his life that he hasn’t had to worry about accidentally hurting people or property damage, and it has a profound effect on him.

 

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What I Think

I have been a little wary of Marvel’s “All New All Different” all e’er thing, because as many of us cry for diversity in comics we often get reboots of only one or two characters thrown at us in tribute. However, I think this is a fun series and I think Greg Pak and Frank Cho have everything to do with that.

With issue #7, Pak’s writing is reminiscent of Peter David’s classic tormented Banner mindset, (which I really liked) and my only wish here is that there were a couple more pages of it. Alan Davis replaces Frank Cho as the penciler in this issue and personally, I miss him, but Chris Sotomayor’s colors make everything feel congruous enough that the switch isn’t too jarring. I did feel, however, that Cho in human form, resembled more of a skinny Kpop star on his day off rather than a super-scientist.

But then again, Cho isn’t Banner.

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I believe this is the point of this issue. The storyline definitely feels like we’re being prepped for something, and it wraps up what happened to Banner fairly well.  I feel Banner’s representation here is exactly what Bruce would do if he woke up and realized that the Hulk was no longer a part of him. For good. I really wanted one comic totally devoted to the retelling of how this switch happened, instead of being spoon fed the story in flashbacks and memories, but this will do.

This is classic all-ages Marvel, but this issue is a slight departure from the main arc and is definitely for folks who are Banner fans since Cho really only makes a guest appearance. This comic is definitely worth a read and I’m curious what will happen next. What are they going to do with Banner? Are we being prepped for two Hulk’s in the Marvel U like we have two Spideys and two Captain Americas? I also find it interesting that in each case one version of each of the aforementioned characters is a person of color.

Writer: Greg Pak Penciler: Alan Davis Inker: Mark Farmer
Colorist: Chris Sotomayor Letterer: VC’s Cory Petit
Cover Artists: Alan Davis, Mark Farmer & Matt Hollingsworth Editor: Mark Paniccia


screen-shot-2016-01-14-at-6-47-27-pm@theblerdgurl is a commercial film/video editor by day and comic book reading, anime watching, TV live tweeting,  K-Pop listening, blog writing, geek gurl by night. She is on a mission to shine a light on indie, female and comic artists of color and highlights them and their work on her blog theblerdgurl. She currently lives in a century old brownstone in Brooklyn with 2 cats who plot her demise daily. You can also find her on twitter, facebook, instagram,  tumblr and snapchat.

Totally Awesome Greg Pak Signing at Midtown Comics

Pak Midtown Comics HulkThis one I knew about for over a week now. There’s 20151202_192044been no shortage of fanfare about the new Totally Awesome Incredible Hulk sans Bruce Banner—who is replaced by Amadeus Cho, the eighth smartest man in the All-New, All-Different Marvel Universe, according to the Pym-Von Doom Raw Calc Scale.

To celebrate the series launch, Midtown Comics hosted Greg Pak for a signing. It was scheduled to begin late at 7 PM, so I was able to head downtown right after work via the subway. Midtown and Pak ran the signing like a well oiled machine (although I did get a little suspicious when commanded to wait outside in line in an alley). In groups of ten we were ushered into the store, and in a matter of minutes I was in front of Greg. He graciously signed my two copies (I had both the original cover and alternative hip-hop variant); and I was able to quickly get in a photo op). Plus I got a free Ant-Man movie poster (in exchange for some personal info to enter a contest for a free Ant-Man Blu Ray Disc).

Pak Midtown Comics Hulk Signed

The book itself is pretty light. Good old eye candy, plenty of cameos, and Hulk smashing action. This one is for the open-minded, true-blue Hulk fans, who won’t resent a sidelined Bruce Banner, and an annoyingly hyperactive 19 year old Hulk.

Review: The Totally Awesome Hulk #1

The_Totally_Awesome_Hulk_1_CoverThere’s a brand new Hulk in town, and his name is Amadeus Cho! Billed as the “craziest Hulk story of the millennium,” Cho has taken over the role of Hulk and is out to be the best Hulk that has ever existed?

How did he come to be? What happened to Bruce Banner? None of that is really revealed in The Totally Awesome Hulk #1, though Banner is slightly hinted out in this first issue which attempts to give us a very lighthearted and fun take on Marvel’s Green Goliath.

Instead of torment and anguish about his power, writer Greg Pak gives us an alter-ego who comes off as exactly that, full of ego. Brimming with confidence, Cho is arrogant in the first issue, making him almost unlikeable.

I’ll admit, I don’t have a lot of love for Banner or the Hulk, and have only read his comics in spurts, but I was really looking forward to checking out a new take, and there’s a good chance my checking out will be short-lived after reading this first issue.

I actually don’t mind the change, but Cho as I stated before is arrogant to the point of being borderline unlikeable, a quality I need in entertainment I’m consuming (of course I also do enjoy the occasional character I hate too). We get a smart kid full of ego he puts individuals in danger, and the comic comes off like teenage id in many ways. The comic goes for a fun tone, but Cho’s Hulk is having almost too much fun to the point you want someone to beat sense into him, which I guess is supposed to be Cho’s sister who is also in the series. Again, neither is a character I know all that well, but in my little reading of him, I never found Amadeus to be a character I wanted to beat senseless.

Frank Cho‘s art matches the fun tone, and I’ll say the style and vibe do match perfectly. This is a comic where I found the art more enjoyable than the story, but…. everyone looks too similar in their body types. Though there are cool images such as a double page spread of Cho/Hulk bunching a giant fire breathing turtle, the characters in the background all have similar body types. Even the hot dog vendor is svelte.

The comic goes for a comedic tone, but mixed with its main character, that tone becomes a turn-off at some points. The change in character and direction got me interested, but the first issue didn’t interest me enough to keep me around. One issue and I already want Banner back.

 

Story: Greg Pak Art: Frank Cho
Story: 6 Art: 7.8 Overall: 6 Recommendation: Pass

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Dan Abnett, Tim Seeley and Greg Pak tapped for New Suicide Squad, Aquaman, & Teen Titans

Starting in February 2016, the ongoing creative teams for New Suicide Squad, Aquaman, and Teen Titans will feature some familiar faces from DC Comics’ lineup of writers and artists!

Kicking things off, New Suicide Squad #17 will be written by Tim Seeley and illustrated by Juan Ferreyra. These regular Gothamites visit the dark and unspeakably violent world of the Suicide Squad for a thrilling new storyline! We’re excited to see what they bring to the Squad!

Indentured super villain Harley Quinn has made covert contact with someone outside the walls of Belle Reve prison—and this mysterious savior has discovered the secrets of Amanda Waller and Task Force X.

 

Next, Aquaman #49 will be written by Dan Abnett and illustrated by Vicente Cifuentes. Watch these two make waves with the beginning of a new chapter featuring your Atlantean heroes!

In the aftermath of the Thule invasion, Aquaman must show the people of Atlantis that he was the target of a conspiracy and earn their trust once more. And no, it’s not going to be easy…

 

Finally, Teen Titans #17 will be written by Greg Pak with art by Noel Rodriguez. The creative team isn’t going to give the Titans a single break. Run for your lives, Titans!

With their backs against the wall, the Titans are wanted across the country! Now, Tim Drake must find a way to clear the team’s name while staying one step ahead of the law. But Wonder Girl’s past is also catching up with her and it won’t wait for the Titans’ troubles to calm down.

Review: Batman/Superman #26

BatmanSuperman26Superman enlists the help of Batgirl, Redhood, Dick Grayson, and Batman to protect a group of people forced to mine uranium for Vandal Savage. As the story unfold, Vandal’s intentions become more clear and more treacherous. Now, everyone must figure out how to stop the immortal Savage before his destructive plan begins.

Batman/Superman #26 mainly focuses on Superman and the repercussions from a previous fight he had with Vandal Savage. He was defeated and psychologically, he has not been able to recover. Superman’s struggle with who his is and who he was is the heart of the story. Writer Greg Pak, does a phenomenal job showing how far he has fallen. Those he is protecting at the camp still see him as a hero. They see him as a symbol of hope. He himself cannot see this though and it causes a great ideological dichotomy between the two views. The character interactions are also well done. Each heroes personality shines through and feels appropriate. The main issue with the story is the way Batman is presented. He does not arrive until midway through and immediately solves all of the mystery behind Vandal Savage’s plan. This goes in the face of Superman actually calling Batgirl a genius. By establishing her as a genius, it makes little sense that she could not have solved everything herself. He also makes Red Hood and Grayson look incompetent in the process during the climatic battle.

The art is consistently strong throughout. The action scenes are well paced and well designed. Each character model is distinct and unique in both look and emotional expression.There really isn’t a bad panel in the entire issue. Each page is very solid.

Overall, this issue is only meant to build towards an eventual battle with Vandal Savage. And, while there may be issues with Batman and how his portrayal effects others, the story is very entertaining. There are many quality character moments and Superman internal struggle makes this a very good read.

Story: Greg Pak Art: Ardian Syaf, Cliff Richards
Story: 7.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8 Recommendation: Read

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