Tag Archives: image comics

The Belfry: Ascend at Your Own Risk

From Logan storyboard artist and Hugo Award-nominated writer/artist Gabriel Hardman comes The Belfry, a self-contained one-shot that may just strip you of your humanity.

When an airliner crashes in a remote jungle, everyone walks away unscathed—only to find they can’t escape the lush, brutal world of The Belfry.

Hardman said in the press release:

This is my dark trip into a world that’s a little surreal, a little nihilistic, and all terrifying. I wanted to flex some different storytelling muscles, and that led me down the road to eye-gouging violence and naked bat people. But there’s beauty as well in the lush art style I’ve adopted for this story. And naked bat people.

The Belfry (One-Shot) hits comic book stores Wednesday, February 22nd.

the-belfry

Bloodwulf Must Stop Grand Admiral Lord Emperor Trump

Comic creator Rob Liefeld has been teasing what’s to come, particularly reviving a lot of his classic characters that rose to prominence in the 90s. Today he posted on Instagram his latest with a relevant political spin… Bloodwulf must stop Grand Admiral Lord Emperor Trump whose reach has extended throughout the galaxy.

Bloodwulf debuted in 1993 and got his own mini-series in 1995. The character is an alien bounty hunter who has enhanced strength and a personal force field. The character in the past has been generally humorous poking fun at science fiction tropes and standards.

Review: Seven to Eternity #3

seven-to-eternity-3Seven to Eternity #3 continues the story of the Osidis family and their legacy. In the last issue, just as Adam was about to hear the God of Whispers offer, a group of wild characters called the Mosak entered to bring the fight to the God of Whispers and his Piper. This issue gives us some great action, with some fantastic fight scenes with swords, magic, and more. This book truly feels like a great fantasy tale, and I always feel like the world is going to open up more and more with each issue. Thankfully, this issue doesn’t disappoint in that area. Rick Remender loves to keep his readers on their toes and has shown before that he will kill main characters, as he often does. That gave me a sense of anxiety while I was reading this book, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I enjoyed flipping each page and wondering what awaits me. That’s what you get in a Remender tale.

We get an important flashback to Adam’s youth and a sad look at his brother Peter, who was very ill. We learn more about Zeb as a father, and while the story told us so far that he was stubborn and wouldn’t budge on much, we do see some vulnerability here when he admits he will do anything to save his son. Things come full circle as we learn that the same group who appeared to fight the God of Whispers are the same people who turned Adam and his family away, leading to a heartbreaking scene in his past. When we flashback to the present, you see why Adam is reluctant to work with the very people who didn’t help him when his family needed it most. But times are tough, and he soon learns he will need all the help he can get.

Jerome Opeña on art is near flawless again as he draws the limb flying, dinosaur stomping, flute playing action scenes. This series is going to be awesome to have in trade, just to be able to spend more time with Opena’s art alone and see how everything comes together in a bigger volume. I love all of the crazy character designs from the dinosaur with a portal in his mouth named Drawbridge, to Healer Monkey, and the amazing looking Piper conjuring his demons. This is some of the best art Opena has ever done, and I am glad that issue three continues that trend. Matt Hollingsworth does a great job on color and gives the world and most of the characters a dirty and depressed look, which fits the tone of the story perfectly.

Seven to Eternity is only three issues in, and I feel like while some big things have happened, the best is yet to come. I truly have no idea where this story is going, and I love that. Remender once again keeps the reader guessing and on edge with this book, and like his other comics, you cannot wait to see where it goes next.

Story: Rick Remender Art: Jerome Opeña Color: Matt Hollingsworth
Story: 9 Art: 9.5 Overall: 9 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

inhumans_vs__x_men__0Wednesdays 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!

We’re bringing back something we haven’t done for a while, what the team thinks. Our contributors are choosing up to five books each week and why they’re choosing the books.

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this Wednesday.

Joe

Top Pick: Seven to Eternity #3 (Image) – The first two issues told a lot of story in such a short time. More comics could learn from this. The first issue set up the legacy of the family name and the big bad, and the second introduced us to him and then a whole new band of characters. Let’s see what Remender has planned for the third issue! So far this series has been awesome.IVX #0 (Marvel) – Death of X did not fully satisfy me, but the surprise ending did. Let’s hope this series is a lot better, as it is leading us into the new Inhuman and X-Men titles coming this spring. I am hopeful that Lemire and Soule come through big here for this event and get people excited for what’s to come.

IVX #0 (Marvel) – Death of X did not fully satisfy me, but the surprise ending did. Let’s hope this series is a lot better, as it is leading us into the new Inhuman and X-Men titles coming this spring. I am hopeful that Lemire and Soule come through big here for this event and get people excited for what’s to come.

Great Lakes Avengers #2 (Marvel) – The first issue was so fun and goofy, and I loved it. The art by Robson is fantastic, and the jokes by Gorman worked well. The entire premise is ridiculous and it just makes it better. This isn’t even a b level team of Marvel heroes, but that doesn’t make it any less enjoyable of a premise. I highly recommend this if you’re looking for something light and fun.

Batman Annual #1 (DC Comics) – DC is bringing in all of the bat writers on the annual. I usually don’t get very excited for annuals, but I am for both this and Superman hitting the same day. This book will have Snyder, King, Dini, Orlando, and Scott Wilson writing with Riley Rossmo and Neal Adams on art. I am hyped!

saga40-01-covSaga #40 (Image) – If you haven’t read Saga yet, please go start. This is what is arguably the best comic out today. I am eager to see where Vaughn and Staples takes us this issue, as we follow these incredible characters on their wild adventures. This book can make you laugh, cry, and smile all in one issue.

 

Alex

Top Pick: Savage #1 (Valiant) – I can sum up why this is awesome in three words: Tarzan meets dinosaurs. It also looks savagely brilliant.

Batman Annual #1 (DC Comics) – Paul Dini and Scott Snyder writing Batman all in one book? Sounds ideal.

Conan The Slayer #5 (Dark Horse) – A consistent story that not enough people are talking about. If you’re a fan of sword and sorcery then you owe it to yourself to check this out.

Old Man Logan #14 (Marvel) – It’s been awhile since I enjoyed a solo Wolverine series as much as I have been enjoying this. A new arc starts this issue, and I’m pretty excited to dig in.

Revolution #5 (IDW Publishing) – A left field surprise for me; I can’t wait to see how this epic crossover ends.

 

Brett

copra_round_four_cover_bergen_streetCOPRA Round Four (Bergen Street Press) – If you haven’t been reading Michel Fiffe’s series you’re missing out on some of the best comics out there. The indie series is collected here in the fourth trade and it’s worth every penny. The series is best described as an indie Suicide Squad and it’s absolutely awesome. This is the only series I buy single issues and the trades.

Fish Eye #1 (Scout Comics) – The publisher has been putting out some fantastic comics and this new series is well worth checking out. The concept is about a cop who is on a reality show whose ratings are slipping and he has to protect his family from a group of killers. Sounds interesting!

The Skeptics #2 (Black Mask Studios) – The first issue was solid taking place during the Cold War and featuring con-men pretending to be psychics to fool the US government. It’s a crazy concept but the style and characters have me coming back and been looking forward to this one.

Inhumans vs X-Men #0 (Marvel) – I’m a sucker for Marvel’s events and this first issue is pretty solid. It catches up new readers while also setting up some new stuff as well.

The Revisionist #6 (Aftershock Comics) – Time traveling entertainment and I seriously have no idea where it’s all going. With an 80s action film flair, this is one to read from the beginning, it’s so good.

Green Valley #2 Gets a Second Printing

Image Comics/Skybound has fast-tracked Green Valley #2 by Max Landis and Giuseppe Camuncoli to a second printing in order to keep up with increased customer demand.

In Green Valley, the knights of Kelodia are the finest in the land, but they’ve never faced a power like the one that resides in the Green Valley… Welcome to the world of Green Valley… where nothing is ever what it seems.

Green Valley #2, 2nd printing and Green Valley #3 (Diamond Code OCT160612) will be available on Wednesday, December 14th.

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Mini Reviews For The Week Ending 11/26 [Updated with even more reviews!]

Sometimes, the staff at Graphic Policy read more comics than we’re able to get reviewed. When that happens you’ll see a weekly feature compiling short reviews from the staff of the comics, or graphic novels, we just didn’t get a chance to write a full review for. These are Graphic Policy‘s Mini Reviews.

Alex:

ac_cv968_dsAction Comics #968 (DC) When Rebirth began, I never expected Superman and the Green Lantern comics to emerge as my favourite books… but that’s what happened. Action Comics #968 is an action packed fight that builds on a lot of the previous issue’s plot points without ramming it down your throat. An excellent issue that sets the stage very well for what’s to come next.Overall: 8.75 Recommendation: Buy

After Death Book One (Image) Jeff Lemire and Scott Snyder team up to produce something that is as much prose book with pictures as it is a comic book, but it will completely take you away  from your couch as you read this (though I’d recommend reading a physical copy); the art is superbly suited to the story with a water-coloured blends in fantastically as background art for the prose sections, yet works very well for the more traditional comic pages. The book is 825 years after death, and while the events that brought us to where the comic begins aren’t explained, yet, the back story is told by the prose sections of the comic in an almost journal like fashion, written by the main character; Jonah Cooke. After Death Book One is a fantastic read that clocks in at over 70 pages, and had me enthralled right till the very end. Highly, highly recommended. Overall: 9.75 Recommendation: Buy

The Goddamned #5 (Image) Holy shit, I forgot how brutal this series is. Issue five brings the first arc to a close probably later than was originally intended, and while I’d love to say that it closes with a bang… that’s not quite the case; although the more I think about it the better the ending actually is. This is a must read issue if you’ve been with The Goddamned from the start, but if you haven’t you’ll enjoy the trade quite a bit (probably more since you can read it all at once). Overall: 8 Recommendation: Buy

Prowler #2 (Marvel) …. if you’re looking for an average story with some brilliant art, look no further. There’s nothing here that adds to the over all Clone Conspiracy arc, so the budget concious reading the event shouldn’t feel pressured into picking this up. Overall: 6.5 Recommendation: Flip through for the art, pass on the story.

Venom #1 (Marvel) This issue was far more interesting in terms of it’s concept than execution (but not by much). Unfortunately talking too much about that will rob the book of the realization it lets you have mid way through, so I’ll save that for next issue, but what I will say is that if you have a passing interest in Venom then you should read this. Venom #1 is a fantastic start to a new series, but I’d be lying if I didn’t say I had some reservations about the series’ future – but that’s a concern for another day. Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Joe

Civil War 2 #7 (Marvel) – I don’t know if I enjoyed this more because it is finally almost over, or because things actually happened, but this issue was better than the last few. We get a very cool trip for Ulysses to a different place, which he couldn’t control, complete with the artist drawing these scenes from that title that I do not want to spoil. After that awesome cameo, and some information that puts Ulysses on a path to stop Carol Danvers from confronting Tony Stark, we are left with a very big moment at the end. There’s only one more issue left, and after all of the delays, and wasted issues, I just want the event to end and see what happens. Overall: 7.5 Recommendation: Read

The Mighty Thor #13 (Marvel) – This issue has Steve Epting on art, and he is a fine artist, but I have become so used to Russell Dauterman on this series, that the change took me a bit to get used to. Dauterman is one of my favorite artists working today, so this may not distract everyone as much as it did me. This issue sets up some things with the League of Realms that will be working with Thor to stop Malekith, Loki, and company. While it was a little slower than what I am used to in this fantastic series, seeing Ud the Troll, Screwbeard, Angela, and other fun characters together was fun. Overall: 8.0 Recommendation: Buy

Dept H #8 (Dark Horse) – The claustrophobic deep sea murder mystery continues. Matt and Sharlene Kindt have done a fabulous job with this series, and as water fills the base and everyone is doing what they can to survive, this issue mostly focuses on Bob. Fantastic art and water colors as always, and this book just keeps its pace up somehow and keeps me excited to read every month. Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Kingsway West #3 (Dark Horse) – This issue had been delayed a few weeks, and it did leave me trying to remember exactly what happened in the second issue. Once I got past that, this issue was fun. There’s not anything revolutionary by Pak and company, but there is an entertaining story thus far. This is a miniseries and I believe we only have one final issue coming, so it will be worth seeing how this ends. Will the gunslinging former soldier find his wife? Save all of the other people? I will be sticking around to see. Overall: 7.5 Recommendation: Read

Patrick

Hellboy and the BPRD 1954 #13 (Dark Horse)** – I’m a sucker for stories of the underbelly masked_1_cover_bof the Perfect Fifties, which is why I’m here for this series. But the stories don’t go deep enough into it for me, and this issue is no exception. On the other hand: murderous ghost monkey. Overall: 7 Recommendation: read

Masked #1 (Titan) – Having lived in Paris, I’m a bit of a sucker for genre stories based there. But this super-hero/sci-fi mashup set in Paritropolis lacks a certain je ne sais quoi – maybe just the chaotic nature of the City of Lights. There’s a certain interesting idea of using Fantomas as a kind of Guy Fawkes-type symbol, and this military brat certainly appreciates characters who come from the French armed forces (yes, they have an army). But the story feels a mile wide and an inch deep, and unfocused. Overall: 6.5 Recommendation: skip.

Superf*ckers Forever #4 (IDW)** – Into the Stupid Zone! SuperDan has taken the boys to Dimension Zero to find his sidekick Percy 2. But when Ultra Richard finds out the truth, he decides to go rogue, and Jack goes with him. Meanwhile, back at HQ, the girls get up to smashing stuff. This feels like a placeholder issue, with the mayhem hopefully to come soon. Overall: 7.5 Recommendation: read.

Ryan C

Cage! #2 (Marvel)** – Genndy Tartakovsky unleashes more mind-bending fun with a psychedelic, far-ranging second issue that’s certainly a feast for the eyes — but can be read in all of about two minutes. Worth a look for sure — but better to do so when it comes out in trade, as this just simply ain’t worth four bucks. Overall: 6. Recommendation: Read.

Vigilante Southland #2 (DC)** – Gary Phillips and Elena Casagrande plunge us deeper into their modern-day, inner-city updating on “Chinatown” with a second issue that’s considerably more clunky to read than the first, but the art more than picks up the slack of the story and the proceedings remain uniformly intriguing and reasonably authentic to the urban experience. Overall: 7. Recommendation: Read

Lake Of Fire #4 (Image)** – The penultimate chapter of Nathan Fairbairn and Matt Smith’s sword-and-sorcery-meets-Lovecraftian-sci-fi epic delivers an action-packed and admittedly breezy sprint toward the finish line, but it’s all kinds of breakneck-paced fun and sets things up for what promises to be a memorable conclusion. Overall: 8. Recommendation: Buy

Jim Thompson’s The Killer Inside Me #3 (IDW)** – Devin Faraci and Vic Malhorta have been doing a bang-up job with their extremely faithful adaptation of this still-shocking pulp novel, and this third issue is no exception as our protagonist’s descent into a hell of his own making locks itself in an iron grip around him even as it seems like he’s about to get away with everything. Cringe-worthy stuff, in the best possible way. Overall: 8. Recommendation: Buy

Shean

Athena Voltaire and The Volcano Goddess #1 (Action Lab): I remember listening to the serial radio dramas with my Grandfather when I was a kid, especially The Shadow and Modesty Blaise, on his old 45 player. Since then, the closest to those dramas, we have is Indiana cage___2Jones and Allan Quartermain , so when I read a few months ago that a Kickstarter for Athena Voltaire, it definitely piqued my interest.In the first issue, we catch-up with Athena as she fights a gargoyle and a plot which involves Nazis. By issue’s end, Athena quickly finds out just what power the Volcano Goddess has and how many people want it.
Overall: 9.4 Recommendation: Buy

Cage!#2 (Marvel):When I heard Grady Tartatovsky was doing a his own run on Luke Cage, I was more than excited as I was a fan of Samurai Jack. So when I read the first issue, I was distracted by the blaxploitation references, but I had to remember the character’s origins. So in the second issue, our hero gets caught up in a wooden box, and sent on a mysterious island to be part of a hunt.By issue’s end, Luke suffers a hallucination before succumbing to the real reason why they brought him there. Overall: 9 Recommendation: Read



Well, there you have it, folks. The reviews we didn’t quite get a chance to write. See you next week!

Please note that with some of the above comics, Graphic Policy was provided FREE copies for review. Where we purchased the comics, you’ll see an asterisk (*). If you don’t see that, you can infer the comic was a review copy. In cases where we were provided a review copy and we also purchased the comic you’ll see two asterisks (**).

Get wrapped up in Loose Ends

From writer Jason Latour, artist Chris Brunner, and colorist Rico Renzi comes Loose Ends, a four-issue miniseries from Image Comics this January.

Loose Ends is a gritty, slow-cooked, Southern crime romance that follows a winding trail down Tobacco Road, through the war-torn streets of Baghdad, and into the bright lights and bloody gutters of South Florida.

Loose Ends #1 (Diamond code: NOV160548) hits stores Wednesday, January 25th. The final order cutoff deadline for retailers is Monday, January 2nd.

loose-ends

ComiXology Black Friday Sale

ComiXology is celebrating Black Friday with lots of sales all of which you can find below!

IDW Transformers: Cybertron Sale (11/25– 11/27)

Upwards of 80% off Transformers trades

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Marvel Collections (11/22 – 11/27)

Upward of 70% off volumes of new Marvel series from 2015 and 2016

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Marvel Secret Wars (11/23 – 11/27)

The first discount sale on last year’s hit event and includes the classic Secret Wars series

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DC Comics (11/25 – 11/28)

Buy One, Get One Free Sale on all DC & Vertigo titles released before 11/21/16. Sale includes DC Rebirth one-shots and #1s – Use promo code DC16 at checkout

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Image (11/21-11/28)

Deep discounts up to 64% off on 140 plus trades from Image’s recent hits and perennial bestsellers, including Saga.  Buy Image trades individually or in 2 huge bundles collecting 75 and 69 trades respectively

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Dynamite (11/25 -12/1)

60% off line wide Dynamite sale on titles released before 11/15/16 with code DYNAMITE16 at checkout

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Dark Horse (11/25-28)

Line wide sale on Dark Horse single issues released before 11/22/16, priced at 99¢ each with digital art books marked down to $9.99

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Enter the fray with Mechanism in January

Writer/artist Raffaele Ienco will release the first trade paperback collection of his sapient sci-fi series Mechanism this January from Image Comics and Top Cow Productions.

In the aftermath of an alien invasion, a prototype military robot is rushed into the field before it is combat-ready. Now, attached to a group of survivors, it studies them to learn what it means to be human. Will it come to see humanity as worthy, or will it conclude that the human race isn’t worth saving at all?

Mechanism TP Volume 1 (ISBN: 978-1-5343-0032-3) hits comic book stores Wednesday, January 18th and bookstores Tuesday, January 24th.

mechanism-tp-volume-1

Review: AD: After Death Book One

adbook01_coverartAD: After Death Book One has been described as part comic and part prose. When I first heard that, I wasn’t sure exactly what the creators meant, but now it makes complete sense. This book may not be for everyone, as it can be very wordy, but it really shines the more writer Scott Snyder got to write. Even if you do not like wordy comics, I would still give this a chance, because it is something very special, and it doesn’t feel like a comic.

The story is narrated by Jonah Cooke, as he looks back at his own memories. I could relate to a lot of Jonah’s childhood, and to the message of family that is this books heart. I mean that when I say it, this book has heart. There is a longer part, I believe in the middle where Snyder’s words spoke to me in a heavy way. It was describing someone who worries about everything, and how no matter how good something can go, you’re waiting for the other shoe to drop. Now I have always had some form of anxiety, which is most of the time manageable, but when I read this brilliant part, I could feel my heart racing. That is a very powerful thing, and that is what a good writer can do.

It wouldn’t be fair if the only thing I raved over was the writing, which certainly deserves it, but so does the art. Jeff Lemire, who is another favorite talent of mine, gives us some incredible work. You can tell that these two powerhouses worked with such care creating this story. From seeing the little green balloon our young Jonah and his family are following illustrated like something out of a beautiful watercolor version of children’s book. To the full beautiful painting of a field and windmills with Jonah’s truck driving past. Some of the pages are something I would hang on my wall as actual art, and not just prints or pages. It is beautiful, and his style is so unique and much different from what we see in most comics. We have seen more books do the watercolor route (like Dept. H), and it is truly refreshing. It is nice to have different forms of art in the medium of comics, especially when so many other books are doing the same thing. Nothing about this book feels familiar, and the beautiful work by Lemire is a big reason why.

This extra large book runs around seventy pages, and the story will be completed in three issues. We don’t get everything that is going on yet, and that’s okay, because we still have two more large books coming to tell us. But we do get a lot of setup, and a lot of Jonah’s past. It is also mentioned multiple times that this is hundreds of years after he was a child, and that death has been cured. Jonah is not some frail old man, in fact he looks quite young still, so it is apparent that perhaps aging in general has stopped, but I don’t want to get ahead of the story here, because I am sure most of these questions will be answered in time. How was death cured? Is that a good thing? I cannot wait to find out.

I feel like this book is personal, and I love that. Sometimes it is hard to read something so real, but you’re better for it. It can be therapeutic. Like Jonah, I was a young child in the eighties, and I lost my father at seven years old. Now our stories may be different, but there were pieces that connected. The car rides, family vacations where things went wrong, the silly games, and mostly just about the innocence of being a child and the moment where something horrible happens, and it changing you forever. This book captured that part of my youth perfectly, and it’s like it was speaking to me and me alone. Even if that is just for a moment, that is something magical, and I hope that when someone else reads this, they feel that too.

I would absolutely recommend AD: After Death Book One to anyone looking for something a little deeper, a little longer, and a little different. Snyder and Lemire have created a tale that feels raw, real, and beautiful. As surreal as something like curing death may seem, this book tells a very believable story. I connected to Jonah as a boy, and am very interested to learn more about who he is as a man.

Story: Scott Snyder Art: Jeff Lemire
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy

Image provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

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