Tag Archives: Jason Keith

The Amazing Spider-Man Gets Black Cat Covers from Mike Wieringo, J.G. Jones, and J. Scott Campbell

Black Cat didn’t commit the crime…but Spider-Man will need to befriend his once-foe-once-friend-once-crime-boss Felicia Hardy if he wants to solve this case!

This October and November, join Peter and Felicia Hardy in Amazing Spider-Man’s Black Cat arc, featuring two new variant covers by J.G. Jones (with colors by Paul Mounts), Mike Wieringo (with inks by Tim Townsend and colors by Jason Keith) and a Hidden Gem variant by J. Scott Campbell (with colors by Nei Ruffino).

The excitement starts this October – don’t miss the start of the action in Amazing Spider-Man #8, on sale October 24th at your local comic shop!

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #8
Written by NICK SPENCER
Art and Cover by HUMBERTO RAMOS
Black Cat Variant Cover by J.G. JONES (AUG188288)

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #9
Written by NICK SPENCER
Art and Cover by HUMBERTO RAMOS
Black Cat Variant Cover by MIKE WIERINGO (AUG188290)

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #10
Written by NICK SPENCER
Art and Cover by HUMBERTO RAMOS
Black Cat Variant Cover by J. SCOTT CAMPBELL (AUG188289)

Review: Asgardians of the Galaxy #1

Out this Wednesday is a new team of Asgardian misfits, Asgardians of the Galaxy!

Asgardians of the Galaxy #1 is by Cullen Bunn, Matteo Lolli, Federico Blee, Cory Petit, Dale Keown, Jason Keith, Humberto Ramos, Edgar Delgado, Cliff Chiang, Skottie Young, Nick Russell, Sarah Brunstad, and Wil Moss.

The issue comes to shelves September 5th. To find a comic shop near you, visit www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Amazon/Kindle/comiXology or TFAW

 

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with FREE copies for review
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Review: X-Men The Wedding Special #1

Full disclaimer: for a long time, Kitty Pryde was my all time favorite Marvel superhero thanks to her awesomeness in X-Men Evolution and Joss Whedon and John Cassaday’s Astonishing X-Men run, and there is a Marvel Legends figure of her sitting on my bookshelf right now as I write this.

Even though Kelly Thompson, Marika Cresta, and Federico Blee end up almost saving the day with a fun tale of X-Women out on the town with pretty, shiny art to match, X-Men The Wedding Special #1 is a big stinker of a “special issue.” Greg Land’s stiff art style isn’t a good fit for a raucous bachelor party, Chris Claremont can’t rekindle his old magic, and this book doesn’t really have much for long time X-Men fans who might be a little lapsed (Like yours truly.) and definitely not new or casual fans. Why are Kitty and Piotr even getting married? Maybe, the X-Men Gold  hardcore readership will find something to love here.

In the first story, Kitty Pryde’s co-creator/father of the X-Men Chris Claremont returns to Marvel with his Nightcrawler collaborator Todd Nauck and skilled colorist Rachelle Rosenberg.  However, after having Nauck re-draw Kitty’s greatest hits courtesy of John Byrne, Dave Cockrum, John Romita Jr., Alan Davis, and others, he makes the story all about Kitty’s relationships with the dead men in her life, namely, her dad, Wolverine, and some guy from a 1999 time travel miniseries called X-Men True Friends. Claremont is a still verbose prose stylist, Rosenberg is game with the bright colors of the different eras, and Nauck turns in some gorgeous dualistic compositions contrasting the triumphs and trials of Kitty Pryde’s life as an X-Man.

But there isn’t really a coherent story to channel these skills and traits into as Claremont abruptly cuts from Kitty recounting her life story and feelings about being phased through a bullet (Thank you, Joss Whedon.) to randomly talking about Wolverine and the aforementioned guy from a time travel story. Plus I guess I missed the issue of X-Men Gold where she worked as a bartender at the Hellfire Club themed branch of Coyote Ugly as Claremont and Nauck cut to this, and Nightcrawler has some great lines about faith and facing challenges. There are a few good ingredients, a few bad ones, and sadly, the story doesn’t touch on the great female friendships (and possibly romances) that Claremont set up for Kitty with Magik, Storm, and Rachel Summers among others and focused on ghostly men instead. It’s like a great slice of Chicago deep dish (Shoutout to Deerfield, Illinois resident Kitty Pryde.) that’s completely burnt to a crisp too bogged down in a continuity to have any real emotion or even nostalgia.

The second story by X-Men Gold writer Marc Guggenheim, the aforementioned Land and inker Jay Leisten, and colorist Jason Keith tells the story of Colossus’ bachelor party and except for the part where Piotr throws an anti-mutant alien monster around a casino, it’s cliched, heteronormative, and just plain bad. In keeping with his introverted nature and desire to be faithful towards Kitty after decades of breakups, reunions, and the original Secret Wars crossover, Colossus wants a chill night out and not the typical strippers/booze/brawling trifecta of a normal bachelor party. But Nightcrawler, Gambit, Iceman, and the “boyo” overusing new-look Pyro have other ideas for him including Bobby lecturing Piotr on traditional masculinity and making me glad that Sina Grace had almost exclusive creative control over him for a year. The story follows a limp, through line of getting Colossus to “lighten up”, and you have to buy a whole other comic to see how the story ends. It’s pretty terrible except for the huge smile on Nightcrawler’s face as he ushers his squad into Las Vegas and beams that there is a casino run by demons so he doesn’t have to feel weird or different while having a good time for once. Kurt is such a great character that he shines even in subpar stories like the first two in X-Men Wedding Special #1.

The final story in X-Men Wedding Special #1 is a fun, cute, grownup version of the “X-Men go to the mall” plotline as Storm, Rogue, Jean Grey, Psylocke, and others take Kitty to karaoke, which is actually “stripperoke”. However, there are both male and female strippers at the club, which Kitty is cool with. And it’s also this issue’s only nod at the bisexual subtext surrounding her since the late 1980s. In a similar way to Piotr, Kitty is introverted and more than a little Type A so the cocktail of strippers and karaoke is pretty lethal for her, and she spends most of the issue hoping for a fight.

Kitty does end up doing hand to hand combat with Callisto, who I think had a crush on Colossus, in the 1980s, and her resolves shows how much she has grown in 38 years from the X-Men’s kid sister to their leader. It also shows that artist (and star in waiting) Marika Cresta has a knack for fight sequences as well as conversation, beautiful faces, and high fashion. The bright filters used by Federico Blee and soft lighting definitely give this issue a very laidback field even if Kitty is freaking out a little bit about her wedding. The Kitty/Callisto derails the story a little bit, but Thompson and Cresta easily counterbalance with great moments like Storm rocking the karaoke stage, and Rogue and Kitty having a true heart to heart that reminded me of a more mature version of their bond in X-Men Evolution.

X-Men Wedding Special definitely lessened my faith in the marriage between Kitty and Colossus as well as heterosexual, monogamous marriage as an institution in general. Okay, maybe not completely, but the Marc Guggenheim and Greg Land story is a great example of how bachelor parties are dated and played out. However, Marika Cresta is a real find as an artist in the final story and should definitely be the main artist on one of the big X or Marvel books.

Story: Chris Claremont, Marc Guggenheim, Kelly Thompson
Art: Todd Nauck, Greg Land with Jay Leisten, Marika Cresta
Colors: Rachelle Rosenberg, Jason Keith, Federico Blee Letters: Clayton Cowles

Story: 5.0 Art: 7.0 Overall: 5.0 Recommendation: Pass

Marvel Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Carol Danvers Celebrates 50 Years with Variants this July

This summer, Marvel is celebrating the 50th anniversary of Captain Marvel’s alter ego Carol Danvers with variant covers showing how everyone’s favorite high-flying super hero has evolved throughout the years!

Look for Marvel’s Carol Danvers variant covers on these select titles:

  1. Avengers #4 by Kate Niemczyk with colors by Morry Hollowell
  2. Black Panther #3 by Paul Renaud
  3. Doctor Strange #3  by Ema Lupacchino with colors by Jason Keith
  4. Immortal Hulk #3 by Mahmud Asrar with colors by Edgar Delgado
  5. Thor #3 by John Tyler Christopher

Don’t miss your chance to collect all 5 variant covers, coming to comic shops this July!

Celebrate Amazing Spider-Man’s Landmark 800th Issue with a Mark Bagley Variant Cover!

It’s all been building to this – the biggest Peter Parker and Norman Osborn story of all time, and the first Marvel comic EVER to hit 800 issues! In celebration of the 800th issue of Amazing Spider-Man and the now historic run of Dan Slott, Marvel is excited to show a variant cover from industry great Mark Bagley with colors by Jason Keith!

Witness the culmination of the Red Goblin story as Slott is joined for his final issue by epic artists such as Stuart Immonen, Humberto Ramos, Giuseppe Camuncoli and Nick Bradshaw! It also features a regular cover by Alex Ross.

The Amazing Spider-Man #800 is out May 30th.

Review: Avengers #686

As Wonder Man struggles to get through to the Hulk, the Black Order attacks Avengers HQ! The grand cosmic game comes to its shocking conclusion – but the war for Earth is just beginning!

I’ll admit, I thought last issue slipped a little as it focused on a lot of punching and not much else. Avengers #686, part 12 of “No Surrender,” corrects that and then some.

Written by Jim Zub, Mark Waid, and Al Ewing, the issue focuses on Wonder Man’s attempt to reason with the Hulk. What’s revealed though feels like a Hulk we’ve never seen. And, that revelation is scarier than anything presented last issue. Gone is the thoughtless machine of destruction. Now it’s clear this is a being full of rage, one full aware of what it’s doing, with a clear agenda and reasoning. Hulk has been many things and presented in so many ways but what we see here feels frightening and had me pause to say, “oh shit.”

Where the last issue was a giant action sequence, this is the portion that adds some depth to it all as we see things from Simon, aka Wonder Man’s perspective. Zub, Waid, and Ewing have done an excellent job in this series shaking things up when it comes to the narrative. This isn’t an event about punching things. Where you think an issue might be that, it turns out to be presented in a different way. The trio regularly change the narrative and in doing so keep the storytelling fresh and interesting.

The art by Paco Medina, with ink by Juan Vlasco, and color by Jesus Aburtov is fantastic. The Hulk feels intimidating in his size and strength compared to everyone else. And, while it’d be easy to go over the top in the destruction, things feel focused here. What’s even bigger is the perspective of Simon. You can see the fear and his working through the situation on his face. The artistic team does a solid job of presenting the various emotions Simon goes through. And through his realization of the horror, we experience it too. The lettering by Cory Petit enhances that emotion with emphasis on key words.

Just when you think things might have fallen into brainless punching, the series event series has no problem showing it can shake things up. Here we get a depth to the destruction and fighting that’s unexpected and through subtle moments we also get different perspectives. A wonderful issue that continues the excellent narrative that’s been weaved. “No Surrender’ is proof that big events can work and is one of the most unexpected positive surprises of the year so far.

Story: Jim Zub, Mark Waid, Al Ewing
Art: Paco Medina Ink: Juan Vlasco Color: Jesus Aburtov Letterer: VC’s Cory Petit
Cover: Mark Brooks Variant Cover: Dale Keown, Jason Keith
Graphic Design: Carlos Lao
Editor: Tom Brevoort Assistant Editor: Alanna Smith
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Invincible Iron Man #598

Invincible Iron Man #598

Story: Brian Michael Bendis Art: Stefano Caselli, Alex Maleev
Color: Marte Gracia, Alex Maleev Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles
Cover: Alex Maleev
Variant Cover: Dale Keown, Jason Keith
Editor: Tom Brevoort Assistant Editor: Alanna Smith
Rated T+
In Shops: Mar 28, 2018
SRP: $3.99

THE SEARCH FOR TONY STARK Part 6
Since the beginning, the houses of Stark and Doom have been unshakeable pillars of the Marvel Universe – and one of them is about to fall. No one ever thought they’d see what is about to happen, but the world of Tony Stark will NEVER be the same again. It all leads up to the explosive, blistering, quadruple-sized INVINCIBLE IRON MAN #600, with a cliffhanger you will NOT want to miss!

Preview: Avengers #686

Avengers #686

Story: Jim Zub, Mark Waid, Al Ewing
Art: Paco Medina Ink: Juan Vlasco Color: Jesus Aburtov Letterer: VC’s Cory Petit
Cover: Mark Brooks Variant Cover: Dale Keown, Jason Keith
Graphic Design: Carlos Lao
Editor: Tom Brevoort Assistant Editor: Alanna Smith
Rated T+
In Shops: Mar 28, 2018
SRP: $3.99

NO SURRENDER Part 12
THE AVENGERS WEEKLY EPIC CONTINUES!
As Wonder Man struggles to get through to the Hulk, the Black Order attacks Avengers HQ! The grand cosmic game comes to its shocking conclusion – but the war for Earth is just beginning!

Review: Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #300

Peter_Parker_The_Spectacular_Spider-Man_Vol_1_300

“Showdown”

Well here we are at a time honored tradition in the comic book world: “The Milestone.” Like in life, the milestone marks an important point on a journey. Now 300 issues of a comic book series in this day and age is not unheard of, nor is it anything to sneeze at. Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man in some form or another has been around for quite a few decades. It has been hampered by end publication, reboots and various other situations but late in 2017 the comic has reverted back to its original numbering with 297 and now here we are at the prestigious issue 300.

Truth be told I had given up this title a long time ago but I have always had a soft sport for it. After all, in the 1990’s, this comic was my favorite title. I grew up on the saga of Harry Osborn as the Green Goblin and Spectacular Spider-Man # 200 is one of my favorite comics of all time. Yes all time. (If you haven’t read that issue I highly suggest you do, it illustrates friendship fantastically and has one of the most touching endings to a comic book ever) However back to the business at hand, milestones are one of comic book publishers’ sneaky little tricks that always draw me back in and I got caught in the web yet again. (I will try to make that my last web related pun here)

So having not read this title for a bit, I did a quick run through and got the gist. Here’s the skinny: Peter Parker, the formally global mogul of Parker Industries is now back to his friendly neighborhood self and has gotten reacquainted with some old pals in the form of Johnny Storm (The Human Torch) and J Jonah Jameson (yes that is right, Jonah is now Peter’s brother in law and also knows his secret ID, try to keep up). Peter has a long lost thought sister Teresa Parker who has been gone since she first appeared in Amazing Spider-Man: Family Business one shot quite a while back. Well guess what? She’s baaaaack. To add to the family fun, we got introduced to a new character who is having family issues as well in the guise of the Mason who is the supposed brother of very long time Spidey foe, Phinias Mason: The Tinkerer. Unlike his evil brother, The Mason uses his advanced tech to create new gadgets and assistance for the Superhero Community, instead of the Villain society. Or so we thought.

Cover_B_1500_1024x1024

In the meantime, there’s a pretty Gwen variant cover to look at.

Due to some hardboiled sleuthing by JJJ (J Jonah Jameson, not gonna keep typing that out) he and us the dear readers, find out that The Mason is a fraud. He is actually The Tinkerer using a giant robot body to fool the heroes and gain access to their ID’s and tech. JJJ tries to stop Tinkerer and warn everyone but does what he’s always done, namely screws it up. Gotta love hardboiled JJJ though! While this is going on we have Spidey getting pummeled by a squad of his most hated B-Stringers who are now upgraded to the nines by the Tinkerer’s new toys. However being a Superhero is not without its perks as a few of the Avengers show up to aid our friendly quipping punching bag. Hawkeye, The Vision, Black Panther and Ironheart all join to enter the fray. The catch though, they don’t have access to their most powerful tech as the Tinkerer has corrupted it due to them being so trusting. Oh well no matter, they proceed to do battle the old fashioned way.

This part was very cool to me as it proves once again for the umpteenth time, the very best heroes don’t need the gadgets or the special tech costumes, just themselves to get the job done. This notion gets illustrated with a touching conversation between Spidey and Riri Williams (Ironheart) in the issue that actually made me a bit of a fan of Riri and now I want to read more. What made this more memorable is the art from Adam Kubert (of the legendary Kubert art family) and Juan Frigeri. They just make every panel pop. The visuals never seem lazy or boring and we are not treated to a bunch of talking head. Like the climax in every great action movie, they keep the story going at a frenetic pace. The art was a joy to take in and the kind of thing you want on a big milestone issue.

However the issue is not without faults. The writing and plot by Chip Zdarsky at the beginning to the middle was very good and then once the special guest star shows, it goes awry. I’m not a huge fan of clichés in comic books and this issue had a few of them. I know that this is serving as a springboard to the next adventure but it really just left me very meh. We have the team of Peter, Jonah, and probably sis Teresa rushing off for a world saving adventure. See that would be fine for me if it was the sole story, but as for the wrap up to the “Most Wanted” arc, I felt like it was in a bit of a rush. It didn’t give me the conclusion I wanted, especially for an issue with a number like 300 attached to it.

There was much to like about this book but it gets weighed down by the meh. Art wise it was great where the story was just kind of wrapped to get you to the next one. There is a decent and cute Spidey and Black Cat short story as a backup but nothing of large note. As with many milestone issues, this book comes with array of variant and special covers that rate from okay to stunning and those are always cool even if they are gimmicky. I dipped my toe in for this one but hard to say if I will be back next month. Guess we will just have to wait and see. Till next time True Readers!

Story: Chip Zdarsky Art: Adam Kubert, Juan Frigeri
Color: Jason Keith Letterer: VC’s Travis Lanham
Editor: Nick Lowe Associate Editor: Devin Lewis Assistant Editor: Tom Groneman
Story: 6.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 6.74 Recommendation: Read

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #300

Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #300

Story: Chip Zdarsky Art: Adam Kubert, Juan Frigeri Cover Art: Marco Martin
Color: Jason Keith Letterer: VC’s Travis Lanham
Editor: Nick Lowe Associate Editor: Devin Lewis Assistant Editor: Tom Groneman
Rated T
In Shops: Feb 28, 2018
SRP: $5.99

MOST WANTED Part 4
An oversized anniversary epic, told the only way your pre-eminent pals in the Spidey-Office know how – in the Mighty Marvel Manner! For weeks, the Tinkerer has been launching a campaign against his do-gooder brother, the Mason, and Spidey’s nearly met his maker more than once trying to stop their sibling rivalry! With a little help from a tech-heavy team of Marvel heroes, Spider-Man takes the fight directly to Tinkerer! But Tinkerer’s got tech of his own…and it’s out of this world!

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