Tag Archives: hi-fi

Review: Justice League: Road to Dark Crisis #1

Justice League: Road to Dark Crisis #1

Dark Crisis” is the next DC big event. The Justice League has been seemingly killed leaving a world without them and a new generation of heroes that need to stand up. We know this won’t last long and at the end, hope will win, but the setup is ominous and “epic” in scope. With the League killed in Justice League #75, Justice League: Road to Dark Crisis #1 is the next chapter in the event, leading into its official kick-off the following week. If this one-shot is supposed to get readers excited, it falls very short in achieving that.

Featuring five stories from a wide range of creators, we get everything from a team-up and discussion on hope to some more info on Pariah, and a lead up to what the heroes on Earth will be dealing with. It’s not bad but none of it left me excited to see what’s next. Ironically, the most emotion came from a story involving Hal Jordan, who despite being a classic character was left out of the Justice League being murdered. The stories as a whole go through the motion but generally lack emotion.

The best of the bunch features Pariah as he’s haunted by ghosts in a story that feels like it should feature Scrooge and Christmas. There’s an odd holiday feel to it.

The art is good throughout the comic but, like the stories themselves, never quite deliver a memorable moment. They too feel like it’s going through the motions. There’s far too many moments and panels that get you to pause for the wrong reasons than those that stand out to excite. The highlight for the art is a story involving the new Aquaman and Hal Jordon which has some interesting page layouts and color.

Justice League: Road to Dark Crisis #1 isn’t bad but it also doesn’t get me excited for the major event to come. It feels like an annual that gets released because it’s on the schedule more than anything. While there’s a bit to catch readers up, it doesn’t do a great job explaining what has happened or the looming threat. It also doesn’t quite make it feel like there world is worse off for the Justice League not being there. Overall, things are going fine. That also might be the point. But, if it is, why should we care about what’s to come?

Story: Joshua Williamson, Jeremy Adams, Chuck Brown, Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Stephanie Phillips
Art: Dan Jurgens, Rosi Kämpe, Fico Ossio, Leila Del Duca, Clayton Henry Ink: Norm Rapmund
Color: Hi-Fi, Matt Herms, Sebastian Chang, Jordie Bellaire, Marcelo Maiolo Letterer: Josh Reed
Story: 6.75 Art: 7.0 Overall: 7.0 Recommendation: Pass

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: comiXology/Kindle Zeus ComicsTFAW

Colleen Doran, Greg Hildebrandt and Joe Jusko Join Comics for Ukraine

Last week, more than three dozen comic-book writers, artists, colorists, letterers, designers, and editors announced a collection of all-new comic-book stories to raise money to aid refugees in Ukraine. Comics for Ukraine: Sunflower Seeds, the benefit anthology edited by Scott Dunbier, with all proceeds going to Operation USA, surpassed an initial $35,000 funding goal just twelve hours after the campaign launched, with over $113,000 from over 900 contributors raised to date. The book will be full-color, 96 pages, 8 x 12 inches, and available in both hardcover and softcover editions, with hundreds of supporters on day one. As the campaign enters a second week of funding, it is announced that Eisner Award-winner Colleen Doran, legendary illustrator Greg Hildebrandt, and celebrated cover artist Joe Jusko have joined the project.

These three creators join the incredible roster of comics talent assembled for Comics for Ukraine: Sunflower Seedsunited under the mission of providing relief to a war-torn Ukraine, which has suffered attacks from neighboring Russia since late February. There will be multiple versions available: a hardcover with a painted cover by Alex Ross, and softcover versions by Arthur Adams, Dave Johnson, and Bill Sienkiewicz. At press time, stories will be created by a virtual who’s who of writers and artists, including Brent Anderson, Sergio Aragones, June Brigman, Kurt Busiek, Howard Chaykin, Joshua Dysart, Mark Evanier, Emil Ferris, Dave Gibbons, Rob Guillory, John Layman, Gabriel Rodriguez, Stan Sakai, Louise Simonson, Walter Simonson, Chris Sprouse, Jill Thompson, Matt Wagner, Mark Waid, and more.

Apart from hard costs (printing, credit-card fees, marketing, etc.) all of the funds raised by Comics for Ukraine: Sunflower Seeds will benefit the relief efforts in Ukraine in partnership with Operation USA, so while the initial funding goal has been met, continued support will maximize the impact on the lives of those deeply affected by the ongoing war—improving conditions for Ukrainian refugees in neighboring countries via the provision of emergency grants and in-kind material aid. 

Operation USA supports health and education programs to help children and families at home and abroad recover and thrive in the wake of disasters, disease, violence and endemic poverty.  Every day, they strive to meet the needs of under-served and overlooked populations so that future generations may have the tools they need to create meaningful change in their own communities and lives. Working with partners around the world, they empower communities to recover, build resiliency and thrive in the face of pervasive obstacles during a time of unprecedented global need. Since 1979, OpUSA has delivered $450 million in aid to 101 countries.

Comics for Ukraine

Disclosure: The site founder is a part of this project handling some of the marketing for Zoop

DC is Celebrating George Perez’s Birthday for All of June

During June, DC will celebrate the 68th birthday of George Pérez, one of the titans of the comic industry, with a two-page spread featuring some of his most beloved characters. Working from a layout designed by Dan Jurgens, some of the industry’s biggest names including Jim Lee, Walter Simonson, Alex Ross, Dave Gibbons, Todd McFarlane, Daniel Sampere, Jerry Ordway, Nicola Scott and many more, collaborated on the colorful spread.

In December, Pérez took to Facebook to announce that he has been diagnosed with Stage 3 Pancreatic Cancer. His doctors estimated he has six months to a year left, and rather than undergoing time-consuming treatment, Pérez decided to spend the time with his friends and family.

The tribute features the following DC characters that Pérez is most known for, as well as the man himself, drawn by a number of the top artists in the industry and colored by Hi-Fi:

DC George Perez Celebration
  • The Monitor & Anti-Monitor – Jim Lee & Scott Williams
  • Trigon – Todd McFarlane
  • The Spectre – Alex Ross
  • Darkseid – Walter Simonson
  • Firestorm & The Justice League Satellite – Scott Kolins
  • Ares & Hippolyta – Phil Jimenez
  • Cheetah & The Amazons – Colleen Doran
  • Lady H.I.V.E. & H.I.V.E. Agents – Scott Koblish
  • Vigilante – Dave Gibbons
  • Cheshire – Joëlle Jones
  • Brother Blood – Darryl Banks
  • Blackfire – Mike McKone
  • Gizmo & Mammoth – Klaus Janson
  • Shimmer – Bruno Redondo
  • Psimon – Mikel Janín
  • Neutron & Jinx – Dan Mora
  • The Legion of Super-Heroes – Francis Manapul
  • The Justice Society of America – Jerry Ordway
  • Power Girl & Huntress – Kevin Maguire
  • The Justice League of America (and the background) – Dan Jurgens & Norm Rapmund
  • Superboy-Prime & Alexander Luthor – Ivan Reis
  • Supergirl – Gary Frank
  • Harbinger – Adam Hughes
  • Pariah – Daniel Sampere
  • Jericho & Kole – Nicola Scott
  • The New Teen Titans, Deathstroke & George Pérez – José Luis García-López

Accompanying the spread on a separate page will be a key highlighting the characters and artists that participated.

In addition to being included in all of DC’s June issues, the tribute will also be featured as a variant cover for Dark Crisis #7. Each issue of the event series will feature a cover highlighting a previous crisis event from DC’s history, starting with the genre defining Crisis on Infinite Earths by Marv Wolfman and George Pérez for issue #1. Artwork and additional details on each of the covers will be announced at a later date.

A special version of the Dark Crisis #7 variant cover will be available for sale by The Hero Initiative to raise funds for one of Pérez’s favorite charities. Pérez is a founding member of Hero Initiative’s board of directors and has served as chair of its Disbursement Committee.

DC George Perez birthday Celebration

Comics for Ukraine Brings Comic Creators Together for a Cause

More than three dozen comic-book writers, artists, colorists, letterers, designers, and editors have announced a collection of all-new comic-book stories to raise money to aid refugees in Ukraine. Comics for Ukraine: Sunflower Seeds is a benefit anthology edited by Scott Dunbier, with all proceeds going to Operation USA. The 96 page graphic anthology will available in both hardcover and softcover editions with multiple cover choices.

The Comics for Ukraine: Sunflower Seeds anthology features an incredible roster of comics talent united under the mission of providing relief to the war-torn Ukraine, which has suffered attacks from neighboring Russia since late February. There will be multiple versions available.

Covers:

  • Alex Ross
  • Arthur Adams
  • Dave Johnson
  • Bill Sienkiewicz

Stories:

  • Kurt Busiek, Brent Anderson, Wade Von Grawbadger, Alex Sinclair, Richard Starkings – New Astro City
  • John Layman, Rob Guillory – New Chew
  • Walter Simonson, Laura Martin, John Workman – New and Exclusive Star Slammers
  • Howard Chaykin, Nitro Yen, Ken Bruzenak – New and Exclusive American Flagg
  • Stan Sakai, Hi-Fi – New and Exclusive Usagi Yojimbo
  • Matt Wagner, Brennan Wagner – New and Exclusive Grendel
  • Mark Evanier, Sergio Aragones, Stan Sakai – New and Exclusive Groo
  • Jill Thompson – New and Exclusive Scary Godmother
  • Louise Simonson, June Brigman, Roy Richardson, Dave Stewart, John Workman – New and Exclusive short story “The Cost of War
  • Dave Gibbons, Chris Sprouse, Kevin Nowlan, Laura Martin, Todd Klein – New and Exclusive short story “Hardrada
  • Mark Waid, Gabriel Rodriguez, Dave Stewart, Todd Klein – A new and exclusive short story
  • Emil Ferris – New and Exclusive short story “Bombings

Additional material by:

  • Joshua Dysart
  • Pia Guerra
  • Peter Kuper

With the exception of hard costs (printing, credit-card fees, marketing, etc.) all of the funds raised by Comics for Ukraine: Sunflower Seeds will benefit the relief efforts in Ukraine in partnership with Operation USA.

Operation USA supports health and education programs to help children and families at home and abroad recover and thrive in the wake of disasters, disease, violence and endemic poverty.  Every day, we strive to meet the needs of under-served and overlooked populations so that future generations may have the tools they need to create meaningful change in their own communities and lives. Working with partners around the world, we empower communities to recover, build resiliency and thrive in the face of pervasive obstacles during a time of unprecedented global need. Since 1979, OpUSA has delivered $450 million in aid to 101 countries.

Check out the cover by Alex Ross below.

Comics for Ukraine: Sunflower Seeds

Disclosure: I am a part of this project and act as the marketing director for Zoop.

Review: Wonder Woman Historia: The Amazons #1

This new series published under DC’s Black Label imprint takes us through the history of the Amazons from the very beginning.

Story: Kelly Sue DeConnick
Art: Phil Jimenez
Color: Hi-Fi, Arif Prianto, Romulo Fajardo Jr.
Letterer: Clayton Cowles

Get your copy now! To find a comic shop near you, visit http://www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

comiXology
Kindle
Zeus Comics
TFAW


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Superman: Son of Kal-El #5 Gets a Second Printing

Following the news that the first four issues of Superman: Son of Kal-El are being reprinted, the fan excitement for the series continues to grow as DC will also be reprinting the milestone fifth issue of the series. If you missed out on ordering the first time, fans can now order a copy of Superman: Son of Kal-El #5 at their local comic book shops by Sunday, November 28 and it will be available on the same day as Superman: Son of Kal-El #6, Tuesday, December 28.

From writer Tom Taylor, artist John Timms, colorist HI-FI and letterer Dave Sharpe, issue #5 of Superman: Son of Kal-El is now available in comic book shops and digital retailers. After initially striking up a friendship with reporter Jay Nakamura, he and Jon become romantically involved in the pages of Superman: Son of Kal-El #5. Following a scene where Superman mentally and physically burns out from trying to save everyone that he can, Jay is there to care for the Man of Steel.

Superman: Son of Kal-El #5 second printing features a special version of the variant cover originally created by Travis Moore and Tamra Bonvillain for the fifth issue.

Superman: Son of Kal-El #5 2nd printing

Review: Superman, Son of Kal-El #5

Superman: Son of Kal-El #5

Superman: Son of Kal-El #5 shows just how stressful being Superman is (Especially when Bendix hits you with some solar energy.) in a focused story from Tom Taylor, John Timms, and Hi-Fi. Jon Kent think he can save everyone thanks to his little power boost that enhances his strength and speed, but it also increases his stress levels and leads to a kind of superpowered burnout. This is a comic for anyone who has taken on way too much at work or school and just can’t handle it any more as Taylor and Timms zeroes on Jon’s emotions and also set up a little romance with Jay, a journalist and metahuman.

John Timms and Hi-Fi’s visuals drive home how overworked Jon is while Tom Taylor’s plot has Jon Kent flying all over the world and only delegating a single task to a fellow superhero, The Flash, who definitely knows what he’s going through. Superman: Son of Kal-El #5 features several single and double page spreads with darting figures everywhere. There’s one page in particular where Timms and Hi-Fi depict Jon as just a red blur grabbing every citizen of a town in Luxembourg that has been overwhelmed by a flood. However, when Jon is portrayed in close-up, John Timms draws him with dark circle and beads of sweat coming down his face showing that he’s ill, and although he’s bulletproof, he still gets tired. A concept that comes into play throughout the comic is control with Jay and The Aerie finally telling Jon to take a break because people around the world are filming and saying that he can’t control himself.

These reality checks combined with Taylor’s narration for Jon shows how much self-control it takes to be Superman. You can’t just fly around willy-nilly: that shit is for Miracleman or Homelander. He and John Timms are digging into a vein of Superman story that can be great (The ending Superman vs. Darkseid battle in Justice League Unlimited) or not so great (Superman Returns video game). They create tension through Jon having to maintain control of his enhanced abilities and avoiding collateral damage that would directly contradict his mission to save everyone. However, the events of Superman: Son of Kal-El #5 are a wake up call for his youthful idealism and stress the importance of self-care and not filling one’s plate too much. But because Jon Kent’s job involves the difference between life or death, this sometimes gets lost in the shuffle, and the issue wraps up with him again going into action.

The cover of Superman: Son of Kal-El #5 isn’t misleading as Tom Taylor and Timms continue to flesh out the relationship between Jon and Jay. In-story, a big deal isn’t made about Jon’s sexuality: he and Jay have chemistry and an emotional bond so they smooch. It’s refreshing and reads like your standard superhero romantic subplot instead of some kind of Glee-esque very special issue although that’s the kind of media coverage this comic has been getting. (Just saying, Superman being bi would have been a huge deal for me as a queer kid so I’m 100% okay with all the hype and have enjoyed laughing at the ignorant cretins on Fox News and right wing Twitter.) I enjoy the back and forth that Taylor writes for Jon and Jay, and how sensitive Jay is to Jon’s needs giving him noise-canceling headphones so he can take a break from saving the day. Previous comics have laid the ground for their activism-driven approach to superheroics so Superman: Son of Kal-El #5 is really the culmination of everything as they’re ready to fight Bendix in upcoming issues. Also, Hi-Fi’s colors play an underrated part in showing Jon and Jay’s feelings for each other as the studio uses softer lighting compared to Jon’s frenetic flying and superheroing. The vibe for their first kiss is more like a Carly Rae Jepsen live show than a cape book.

Superman: Son of Kal-El #5 is character, not plot-driven as Tom Taylor, John Timms, and Hi-Fi dig into Jon Kent’s emotions at both work and play. He has great power, but he also has limitations. However, smooching a cute boy and taking some time for self-care will help with that so that Jon is back in action and using his powers in a social justice-tinged way.

Story: Tom Taylor Art: John Timms
Colors: Hi-Fi Letters: Dave Sharpe
Story: 9.0 Art:8.5 Overall: 8.7 Recommendation: Buy

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: comiXologyKindleZeus ComicsTFAW

Review: Deathstroke Inc. #2

Deathstroke Inc. #2

Deathstroke Inc. #2 delivers an issue that’s full of action in unexpected ways. Deathstroke and the team must go to space to rescue scientists who have been taken hostage on a space station. It’s the type of setup that is open for some potential and writer Joshua Williamson and artist Howard Porter take advantage in ways that are beyond unexpected.

Deathstroke Inc. #2 has Deathstroke, Black Canary, and Hiro heading to space where they come across the unexpected Cyborg Superman who’s trying to do some villainy thing. Those specifics aren’t too important, it’s just the fun action by which Porter can work his artistic magic with the issue. Williamson keeps the story fun and fast paced with lots of action and the quips you’d hope for this sort of story. Deathstroke is full of irritation as he must deal with strange situation after strange situation. And his reactions are one of a grumpy soldier thrown into a crappy situation they don’t want to be in.

It’s Porter’s art that stands out for the issue and takes a fun romp into space to the next level. Hi-Fi handles the color while letterer Steve Wands has an interesting task based on the layouts of the page. It’s those layouts that pop.

Porter takes the issue in a really interesting direction with nothing but two-page spreads. The choice by the team is one that opens up the flow and the action in a way that feels appropriate for space. A normal grid layout with some panels breaking them wouldn’t quite have the same impact.

What’s impressive about Deathstroke Inc. #2 is how it evokes the weightlessness of space in those pages with a look that’s fitting and shows the flow of movement so well. It opens up amazing page flows with work that’s just not regularly scene in comics. The issue is so unique in its style that it deserves to be bought for the art alone. The fact the story is fun too just adds to the enjoyment of it all.

The issue doesn’t waste a moment setting up the various personalities of the characters and letting them shine in the issue. It also does an excellent job of setting up the plot to come and the mystery being dangled in front of us. A fantastic issue that’s a must see.

Story: Joshua Williamson Art: Howard Porter
Color: Hi-Fi Letterer: Steve Wands
Story: 8.15 Art: 10 Overall: 8.75 Recommendation: Buy

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: comiXologyKindleZeus ComicsTFAW

Review: Deathstroke, Inc. #1

Deathstroke, Inc. #1

Lets get the big thing out of the way, Deathstroke is a very complicated character with a past that’s unforgiveable at times. There’s some major stories featuring the character that has him as a pedophile and rapist. For that alone, it’s a bit awkward to see the character in a starring comic, and has been. But, it’s even more difficult when that comic is just… fun. Deathstroke, Inc. #1 has the character joining a new organization, T.R.U.S.T. who are taking down DC’s villains. Joining Deathstroke are Hiro Okamura, aka Toyman 2.0, and Black Canary. The trio creates a combination that’s full of over-the-top action cool.

Written by Joshua Williamson, Deathstroke, Inc. #1 drops readers right into the action with crazy action moments and full page art that pops. There’s little you need to know here, it’s Black Canary and Deathstroke vs. H.I.V.E. with orders to bring the H.I.V.E. Queen in alive. That doesn’t stop the duo from blowing things up, shredding bad guys with guys that’d back Rob Liefeld blush, and all the cool tech toys a looted Batman’s arsenal brings. Yes, you read that right, T.R.U.S.T. has access to a lot of Batman’s former toys. Deathstroke riding in on a Batmobile? Yeah, it’s here. Hints at even more cool tech toys to play with? That’s peppered throughout the comic. Deathstroke, Inc. #1 is James Bond action on steroids, Q and all.

While Williamson doesn’t address the most troublesome of Deathstroke’s actions, what he does bring up is the guilt. Through all of the explosions and action, he gives us some motivations as to why Deathstroke and Black Canary are now partners and part of this new organization. We get a sense of a character who has aged and trying to create some sort of legacy that’s more than being a mercenary and villain. There’s a lot there and we’ll see if Williamson dives into some of his weightier moments.

Deathstroke, Inc. #1 pops due to Howard Porter’s art with colors from Hi-Fi and lettering by Steve Wands. The action is dialed up to 11 with no subtlety at all. This is a comic which doesn’t take itself seriously and has no issue ramping everything up to silly moments. Drone strikes won’t get you to blink as entire blocks go up in flames. There’s also some great creepiness to it all as H.I.V.E. is depicted in an interesting way that is a little unnerving. A trip into the Queen’s home turns into the things of nightmares and that’s all due to the visuals. It’s impressive to deliver such a twisted, unnerving aspect to the popcorn action.

Deathstroke, Inc. #1 is a fun comic. It doesn’t take itself seriously and just goes with the flow. There’s no thinking here. It’s big guns, cool toys, and lots of action packed in its pages. But, Williamson teases a little more with the characters’ motivations. Whether the series continues its popcorn summer blockbuster path or can be more will be all about that and we’ll have to wait and see. But, for a beginning, this is a crazy start that shows off everyone’s talents.

Story: Joshua Williamson Art: Howard Porter
Color: Hi-Fi Letterer: Steve Wands
Story: 8.25 Art: 8.75 Overall: 8.3 Recommendation: Buy

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: comiXologyKindleZeus ComicsTFAW

DC and Harlequin Make up Today’s New Digital Releases

There’s four new digital releases today on comiXology. Get two from DC and two from Harlequin now!

Legends of the Dark Knight (2021-) #15

Written by Che Grayson
Pencils Belén Ortega
Inks Belén Ortega
Colored by Alejandro Sanchez
Purchase

THE GHOST AND THE KNIGHT! THe Ghost Dogs, a new band of thieves, have been stealing from some of Gotham’s most profitable businesses. Batman will track them down and come face-to-face with their leader GHOST, who will show him a side of Gotham City he was woefully uninformed about. From the rising star creative team of Che Grayson and Belén Ortega!

Legends of the Dark Knight (2021-) #15

Truth & Justice (2021-) #19

Written by Preeti Chhibber
Pencils Lalit Kumar Sharma
Inks Lalit Kumar Sharma
Colored by Wendy Broome
Cover by Hi-Fi, Jay Anacleto
Purchase

Zatanna finds herself trapped in a dream world. How did she get there and how can she possibly get out without her magical powers?

Truth & Justice (2021-) #19

Les pièges du désir

Written by Jessica Steele
Art by Ayumu Aso
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Un an après avoir perdu son mari dans un tragique accident le lendemain des noces, Josy culpabilise toujours autant. Sa vie est rythmée par les tâches ménagères diverses et par les injonctions de son père abusif. Un jour, Dacre, le cousin de son défunt mari, lui rend visite. Ce gentleman raffiné l’invite à venir dans sa villa en France pour prendre un nouveau départ. Son regard doux et attentionné fait battre le cœur de Josy, mais elle sait qu’elle ne peut s’éprendre de lui. En son for intérieur, elle se dit qu’elle n’a plus le droit de tomber amoureuse, car si son mari est mort… c’est de sa faute !

Les pièges du désir

No Gentleman

Written by Kate Walker
Art by Shioko Mizuki
Purchase

Ryan is said to be one of the best portrait painters in England. But for Anna, he’s a nightmare. Anna and Ryan were once two young lovers living in an impoverished town—until Anna fled one day. She changed her identity and found success in London, even getting engaged to a man from the upper class. But fate pushes Ryan and Anna back together again when they cross paths at a party. With his knowledge of her past, what could he have in store for her?

No Gentleman

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