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AfterShock Announces the New Graphic Novel Party & Prey from Steve Foxe, Steve Orlando, Alex Sanchez, Juancho!, and Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou

Party & Prey OGN

Writers: Steve Foxe & Steve Orlando
Artist: Alex Sanchez
Colorist: Juancho!
Letterer: Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou
Cover: Alex Sanchez w/ Jose Villarrubia
$17.99 / 112 Pages / Color / 10.06.2021

Alan is used to being ignored by younger guys, so he hardly believes his luck when lithe, handsome Scott makes a move on him in the crowded gay club. But there’s a wolf on the dance floor tonight, and he’s hungry for fresh prey… 

A taboo-breaking queer thriller from co-writers Steve Orlando (KILL A MAN) and Steve Foxe (Razorblades) and artist Alex Sanchez (The Evil Within), packed with twists sharp enough to draw blood.

Review: Sympathy For No Devils

The world’s largest Colossal has been murdered and Winston Wallis-the last human in a world of monsters-has been called in to solve it.

Sympathy For No Devils is an interesting mash-up of a detective story in a monster world.

Story: Brandon Thomas
Art: Lee Ferguson
Color: Jose Villarrubia
Letterer: Simon Bowland

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.

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AfterShock provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
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Review: DC Pride #1

DC Pride #1

In honor of Pride Month, DC Comics dropped DC Pride #1, an 80 page anthology featuring short stories with LGBTQ+ characters by mainly LGBTQ+ creators. In addition to the stories, there’s an introduction by prominent gay comics writer Marc Andreyko (Manhunter, Love is Love) and pinups by some of the best LGBTQ+ artists (and artists period) like Sophie Campbell, Nick Robles, and Kevin Wada. The overall tone of the anthology is celebratory, but one story definitely made me tear up. I really enjoyed how DC Pride touched all corners of the LGBTQ umbrella and its exploration of how our differences make us stronger and really hope that one day all the characters featured in the book can have their own comic.

After the aforementioned introduction by Andreyko and a vibrant pinup of queer Teen Titans Aqualad, Bunker, Traci-13, and Crush from Travis Moore, DC Pride #1 leads off with a Batwoman story from James Tynion and Trung Le Nguyen. It starts with a look back at Kate Kane’s childhood, and how she didn’t conform to traditional gender roles and desires beginning with the games she would play with her sister Beth (Now the supervillain Alice) where they would pretend to be dolls complete with makeup, frilly dresses, and the accoutrements of traditional femininity. There’s almost a fairy tale cadence to both Tynion’s writing and Nguyen’s art as Kate grows up, finds love in the arms of a variety of women, and forges an identity as the superhero, Batwoman. Trung Le Nguyen’s flat reds and blacks punctuate these changes while James Tynion’s script takes a macro-level to the theme of pride as they show a montage of various queer heroes in the DC Universe fighting their battles and being themselves. This opening story is a fine encapsulation of Batwoman’s character journey and also is an ode to embracing queerness and gender conformity in a heteronormative world. Plus Nguyen’s story book style applied to superhero comics is a real visual treat.

estrano and midnighter

The next story was one of my favorites as Steve Orlando returns to Midnighter (kind of) and Extraño as the magician regales John Constantine with a tale of a night out with the violent vigilante. Orlando and artist Stephen Byrne’s story is pure fanservice and adventure in the best way with iconic visual and verbal moments like Midnighter punching a Nazi vampire’s head off and John Constantine flirting with Extraño at a bar and totally being open to a threesome with Extraño and his werewolf husband. This story is mostly made up of fun things like one-liners, magic, and mayhem. However, Steve Orlando digs a little deeper with his script and commentates on how queer history is rewritten by bigoted historians with lovers becoming relatives (Like in the original Sailor Moon English dub) or “pals” as Midnighter and Extraño fight the aforementioned vampire to stop him from casting a spell that makes people think the mythological heroes Achilles and Patroclus were cousins, not lovers. This is a very real issue, and it’s vindicating to watch Midnighter and Extraño kick the asses of those who would straight-wash history in a thrilling, beautiful way thanks to Orlando’s witty script and Byrne’s power-packed visuals.

The third story in DC Pride is a noir-tinged saga of dark alleys, fisticuffs, and political activism starring Renee Montoya aka The Question from Vita Ayala, Skylar Partridge, and Jose Villarrubia. The plot is fairly straightforward with the Question tracking down missing defense attorney and city council candidate Valeria Johnson. Partridge and Villarrubia bring the dark shadows, atmosphere, and flat background colors when Montoya puts the fear of her into some loutishly heterosexual goons. I love how Skylar Partridge uses inset panels to show Montoya’s speed and skill and match Ayala’s snappy narrative captions. The whole story looks gorgeous, and there’s also a hint of budding romance between Renee Montoya and Valeria Johnson as the latter isn’t just a do-gooder damsel in distress. It definitely feels like a backdoor pilot for a Renee Montoya Question series, and I would love to see more of this creative team fleshing her and her relationship with Valeria out.

The Question story is followed by a hilarious and touching Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy story from Mariko Tamaki, Amy Reeder, and Marissa Louise. Basically, this anti-heroic duo stop a plant monster from going on a rampage (After giving it several cute pet names.) and talk about their relationship. Underneath Louise’s candy-meets-body horror palette and Reeder’s memorable facial expressions and high-wire layouts, they chat about going from the “will they, won’t they” stage to the moving in and starting a life stage. Tamaki’s script is peppered with jokes (Including a classic lesbian U-Haul one.), but she also once and for all shows that Harley and Ivy are a well-matched, occasionally wacky queer couple, and that they’ve brought a lot of support and laughs into each other’s lives. Also, Harley’s hammer should always have a Kirby face on it.

Alan Scott and Obsidian

Full disclosure: Sam Johns, Klaus Janson, and Dave McCaig’s Alan Scott and Obsidian story was the one that made me cry. At brunch with Obsidian and his partner, the Golden Age Green Lantern opens up to his estranged son and tells him that Obsidian’s confidence to live as an out gay man encouraged him to finally come out and be his full, true self to the world. Janson uses nine panel grids, Ben-Day dots, and a command of 1940s fashion to show Alan’s secret romance with a train conductor named Jimmy and also walk down memory lane when being gay was a crime and gay bars were shuttered and didn’t have liquor licenses. As well as expanding on Alan Scott coming out in the main DC continuity in Infinite Frontier, this story is an homage to queer elders and their struggles in a world where they could be jailed or even killed holding someone of the same gender’s hand in public. It’s a beautiful intergenerational story and really made me fall in love with Alan Scott as a character even more. He’s the queer grandpa I never had.

The sixth story in DC Pride #1is a fast-moving, romantic story from Danny Lore, Lisa Sterle, and Enrica Erin Angiolini about Jess Chambers (Future State Flash) getting ready for their date with Andy Curry aka Aquawoman. This pair had fantastic chemistry in Future State: Justice League, and it’s nice to see a story centered around their relationship that also riffs on the classic Flash tropes of lateness, Rogues, and legacy. As Jess faces off against Reflek, who was trained by Mirror Master, Sterle and Angiolini get play with different panel shapes simulating the speedster trying to break free from a hall of mirrors while trying to get their outfit, makeup, and gift together. Also, it’s refreshing to see a story featuring a nonbinary character not be all about their gender identity, but focus on action and relationships like any other Flash story. Andy and Jess have a nice thing going, and like many of the other characters who appear in this anthology, I hope to see more of them, their impeccable fashion senses, and cool superpowers in future DC titles.

DC Pride #1 returns to the intergenerational queerness well in a Pied Piper story from Sina Grace, Ro Stein, and Ted Brandt. They introduce a new character, Drummer Boy, who is inspired by Pied Piper to create mind-controlling beats so that he can take money from rich fat cats and save Central City’s gayborhood from gentrification, which is a very real problem in real life today. Drummer Boy calling out Pied Piper’s photo ops and not taking direct action since he’s been rich and famous is something that could be directed at many LGBTQ+ celebrities like Ru Paul, who literally uses his wealth to destroy the Earth. This issue creates a real fantasy in which LGBTQ+ celebrities help their community instead of palling around with war criminals at NFL games while Grace gets in some licks about being smart with one’s direct action and abilities when Pied Piper points out that if Drummer Boy steals money off rich people’s credit cards that they’ll just contest the charges. Drummer Boy has a real activist streak as a hero, and I love the energy that Stein and Brandt visually bring to his powers as well as not making him look like the average Ken-doll superhero body type.

The penultimate story in DC Pride #1introduces the transgender superhero Dreamer, who first appeared in the Supergirl television show, to the comics in a story written by Nicole Maines (Who played Dreamer in the show) and with art by Rachael Stott and Enrica Erin Angolini. Dreamer’s debut is a slice of story as she rushes to clean up a League of Shadows cell before rushing off to date night with Brainiac 5. Maines’ script has a cheery, humorous tone with a hilarious final panel, and Dreamer makes a lot of quips to go with Stott’s acrobatic fight choreography that is still good at showing motion even though her art style is more photorealistic. There’s a big feeling of wanting to get the fights over with so that Dreamer can spend time with the man she loves, and this story could honestly be one big metaphor for work/life balance. Dreamer makes her mark with charm and wholesomeness in the story, and her oneiromantic abilities have real visual flair.

Jackson Hyde

DC Pride #1 wraps up with a superhero spin on a big damn Pride parade with Andrew Wheeler, Luciano Vecchio, and Rex Lokus chronicling Aqualad’s first Pride since coming out with his new friend (and Extraño’s apprentice) Syl. Lokus’ colors match the tone of the story from bright and triumphant to dark and dreary as Eclipso has everyone at Pride airing out their worst thoughts and finally triumphant again with a group of DC’s LGBTQ+ superheroes led by Extraño saving the day and being the true, queer selves in the process. This story is a true victory lap, but Wheeler spends a little time in Aqualad’s head as he takes in the sights and sounds of Pride and also grapples with not wanting to be like his father, the villainous Black Manta. Even though everyone feels isolated and alone when targeted by Eclipso, there is actually a large, vibrant LGBTQ+ community of heroes in the DC Universe and hopefully they show up in stories beyond this anthology, which has honestly been a recurring theme as I read through the stories in DC Pride #1.

DC Pride #1 is a fantastic showcase not just for DC Comics’ LGBTQ+ characters, but the company’s LGBTQ+ creators too as they capture a range of relationships, feelings, sexualities, and gender identities. There’s a lot of focus on established romantic relationships, but some of the stories explore activism, community, and the Midnighter/Extrano/John Constantine is a straight up adventure yarn. I enjoyed seeing myself and my queer siblings uplifted in this comic and hope DC can do something more ongoing with these characters, situations, and especially creators.

Story: James Tynion IV, Steve Orlando, Vita Ayala, Mariko Tamaki
Sam Johns, Danny Lore, Sina Grace, Nicole Maines, Andrew Wheeler
Art: Trung Le Nguyen, Stephen Byrne, Skylar Partridge, Amy Reeder, Klaus Janson
Lisa Sterle, Ro Stein and Ted Brandt, Rachael Stott, Luciano Vecchio
Colors: Jose Villarrubia, Marissa Louise, Dave McCaig, Enrica Erin Angiolini, Rex Lokus
Letters: Aditya Bidikar, Josh Reed, Ariana Maher, Tom Napolitano, Becca Carey, Steve Wands
Story: 9.8 Art: 10 Overall: 9.9 Recommendation: Buy

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


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TV Review: Sweet Tooth S1E2 Sorry About All the Dead People

Sweet Tooth Sorry About All the Dead People

The second episode of Sweet Tooth, “Sorry About All the Dead People“, focuses on Aimee, played by Dania Ramirez. It’s an interesting opening as it not only introduces a new character but gives us the world from another perspective. Much like the first episode, there’s a sadness and something magical about it all.

Aimee’s story, begins here.

Gus and Tommy’s adventure begins hitting some bumps and forcing them to find help introducing three new individuals who have been hiding out from the pandemic.

Yes, pandemic.

There’s something unerving and weird watching Sweet Tooth as we continue to experience one ourselves. Characters wear masks much like so many of us have done over the year. It’s a weird experience and in some ways Sweet Tooth feels like the first major film and show to feel like a response to our current life. Sweet Tooth was actually written in 2009.

The episode’s an interesting one as we see Gus interact with a kid his own age. It’s an interaction that feels like something so many of us will be experiencing over the next year as we reintegrate into society. The entire segment is one of fun and joy, a glimpse of hope in a world devestated.

The episode also adds a lot to the world and series. We get hints as to the villains that’ll be faced. And we get some depth to the characters as well. It’s just a fantastic follow-up full of action and emotion. “Sorry About All the Dead People” is a damn near-perfect second episode. It continues the emotional journey and adventure while expanding the world and danger.

Overall Rating: 10

TV Review: Sweet Tooth S1E1 Out of the Deep Woods

Sweet Tooth Out of the Deep Woods

Adapting the beloved and praised comic series from Jeff Lemire (along with letterer Pat Brosseau and colorist Jose Villarrubia), Sweet Tooth‘s debut, “Out of the Deep Woods“, takes us to a magical world and the beginning of a magical journey.

The world has been devestated by an unknown illness. In the destruction, a new race is being born, one that’s half human and half animal. These hybrids face hatred and racism from the survivors who blame them for what has happened.

Sweet Tooth tells the story of Gus, a half human and half deer. Gus is hidden away by his father, played by Will Forte, in an attempt to protect him from the chaos. After his father dies, Gus is forced to step into an unknown and dangerous world.

Played by Christian Convery in a star-making role, Gus has the bright-eyed wonder that makes interacting with kids so enjoyable. Convery delivers a performance that’ll have viewers going through a series of emotions in the debut. There’s a sweet innocence that feels natural and honest. It’s a believable delivery that’ll have you wanting to protect Gus from the dangers he faces.

The series knows at its core is heart. The interaction between Will Forte (as Gus’ father) and Convery is sweet. Forte’s delivery of a paranoid father attempting to protect his son shows a depth not often seen in his comedic offerings. It’s a father and son interaction that is both protective and somewhat scary as Gus’ father spirals in his fear.

Convery stands out but maybe more so is Nonso Anozie as Tommy Jepperd, his unexpected protector. Anozie delivers a tough but vulnerable character. He’s torn about his own survival and is the tough guy with the heart of gold. He could easily hurt Gus, aka Sweet Tooth, and help himself, but he has limits as he states. It’s a performance that will have viewers feeling for Jepperd’s clear sadness and wanting him as their protector and guide.

Sweet Tooth‘s debut is one that’ll have you returning to your childhood roots. “Out of the Deep Woods” feels like the heir to Jim Henson’s films and shows of the 1980s. There’s an adult nature to a story that so far is accessable for younger viewers. It’s a story of exploration and finding more about oneself. It’s a hell of a start and maybe one of the best comic adaptations ever.

Gus’ story, begins here.

Overall Rating: 10

Review: The Other History of the DC Universe #4

The Other History of the DC Universe #4 is an interesting shift in the series. While previous issues have examined the DC Universe, this issue takes us in and out of the comic world to the real world discussing real events and issues through a comic lens.

Discover the 1990s and 2000s through the eyes of Renee Montoya.

Story: John Ridley
Layouts: Giuseppe Camuncoli
Finishes: Andrea Cucchi
Color: José Villarrubia
Letterer: Steve Wands

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.

Amazon
Kindle
comiXology
Zeus Comics
TFAW


This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site

AfterShock Reveals the Clans of Belari from Rob Blackie, Peter Blackie, Daniel Maine, Carlos Lopez, and Taylor Esposito

Clans of Belari #1

Writer: Rob Blackie & Peter Blackie
Artist: Daniel Maine
Colorist: Carlos Lopez
Letterer: Taylor Esposito
Cover: Andy Clarke w/ Jose Villarrubia
Incentive Cover: Barry Kitson
$4.99 / 32 pages / Color / On Sale 07.07.21

PRIMARY LAWS OF THE BELARI SYSTEM:

1.) No person or Clan may exit the system.
2.) No person or Clan may do the Designated Work of another Clan.
3.) Clans may not merge.
4.) Any person that breaks a Primary Law shall be made Outcast.

On the far side of the galaxy, an isolated branch of humanity is trapped in a feudal dystopia. Order is maintained by a system of oppression, until an orphaned girl and her incorrigible adoptive father sow the seeds of a revolution and unite the clans against a fearsome alien threat.

From Rob Blackie and Peter Blackie (creators and writers of Netflix’s historical action-adventure series, Frontier) and artist Daniel Maine comes this vast and enthralling sci-fi adventure.

Clans of Belari #1

Review: The Other History of the DC Universe #3

The Other History of the DC Universe #3 is an interesting shift from the first two issues. This is more of a focus on the myth superheroes build about themselves with Katana as the focus. It’s a graphic essay and a graduate course in DC history.

Story: John Ridley
Layouts: Giuseppe Camuncoli
Finishes: Andrea Cucchi
Color: José Villarrubia
Letterer: Steve Wands

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.

Amazon
Kindle
comiXology
Zeus Comics
TFAW

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from this site. Making purchases through these links helps support the site

Exclusive Preview: Knock ‘Em Dead #5

KNOCK ‘EM DEAD #5

Writer: Eliot Rahal 
Artist: Mattia Monaco 
Colorist: Matt Milla 
Letterer: Taylor Esposito 
Cover: Andy Clarke w/ Jose Villarrubia
$3.99 / 32 pages / Color / On Sale 4.21.2021

It’s the curtain call. Tonight, the people were so fine. They waited there in line. And when they got up on their feet, they made the show. And that was sweet. But I can hear the sound. Of slamming doors and folding chairs. And that’s a sound they’ll never know – oh, sorry those are the lyrics to Jackson Browne’s The Load Out. Whoops. 

This is it. The final act. The last punchline. Fame has torn the Brice family apart. Can their love bring them back together?

KNOCK ‘EM DEAD #5

ComiXology Features 7 New Releases Including New Challenge of the Super Sons and Inferior Five!

It’s a new week and comiXology is kicking it off with seven new releases. Get new comics from DC, Magnetic Press, and Harlequin. Get shopping now or check out the individual issues below.

Batman Univers Vol. 1

Written by Collectif
Art by Collectif
Purchase

10-Page Preview!
10-Page Preview!
“Scott SNYDER et Greg CAPULLO ouvrent une nouvelle ère pour Gotham avec l’arrivée d’un Chevalier Noir totalement différent ! Les hommes de Bullock s’acclimatent à ce nouveau venu, par Francis MANAPUL, Brian BUCCELLATO et Fernando BLANCO ! Dans une toute nouvelle série, Damian Wayne parcourt le monde à la recherche de ses racines, par Patrick GLEASON ! Une nouvelle ennemie électrique pour Batgirl, par Cameron STEWART, Brenden FLETCHER et Babs TARR ! Et la Matrone prend les rênes de Spyral, l’organisation où enquête Dick Grayson, par Tim SEELEY, Tom KING et Mikel JANIN ! (contient les épisodes US BATMAN #41, ROBIN: SON OF BATMAN #1, DETECTIVE COMICS #41, BATGIRL #41, GRAYSON #9, ainsi que toutes les SNEAK PEEK des séries)”

Batman Univers Vol. 1

Brindille Vol. 1 #2

Written by Frédéric Brrémaud
Art by Frédéric Brrémaud
Cover by Frédéric Brrémaud
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The village is empty — they’ve abandoned the mysterious girl rescued from the fire. Now, with no friends and no ideas where to go, she wanders the woods, where she quickly finds a new friend — and apparent guardian angel — a wolf who will help her uncover her past!

Brindille Vol. 1 #2

Challenge of the Super Sons (2020-) #10

Written by Peter J. Tomasi
Pencils Evan Stanley
Inks Evan Stanley
Colored by Luis Guerrero
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Journey back with us once more through the mists of time to uncover the secrets of the Doom Scroll! Picking up where we left off in Chapter 5, Superboy and Robin have been rescued from the clutches of some truly wicked spells by their new ally, Rora. As Rora rushes to help the boys return to the present, their pursuers close in and prepare for attack – and Vandal Savage and Felix Faust are one deadly duo that mean BUSINESS.

Challenge of the Super Sons (2020-) #10

Hard Melody Vol. 1 #2

Written by Lu Ming
Art by Lu Ming
Cover by Lu Ming
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Part two of Lu Ming’s tale of Rock-and-Roll dreams shattered by reality. A barfight wakes the trio from their numb lives and suddenly the future seems bright and full of possibility again. But reality has a way of stepping up its game when challenged by fantasy…

Hard Melody Vol. 1 #2

L’amante du rebelle.

Written by Jennifer Lewis
Art by Nayuna Sakurano
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Alicia s’inquiétait d’être encore vierge à 26 ans. La cause en était un grand frère hyperprotecteur qui l’avait élevée à la place de leurs parents après la mort de ceux-ci. Il fallait à Alicia trouver le garçon parfait, capable de le convaincre. Le prince charmant de ses rêves, Rick Jones, apparait alors ! Beau, riche, prévenant, Rick, est le partenaire idéal à qui donner sa virginité. Alicia en tombe complètement amoureuse, sans savoir qu’il lui cache quelque chose…

L'amante du rebelle.

Almost Perfect

Written by Judy Duarte
Art by Taki Inase
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Maggie, a pediatrician, invited her childhood friend, Jake, to her hospital’s reception party. It’s been fifteen years since she last saw him, and he’s become a stunning cowboy who catches everyone’s eye when he walks into a room. Is he really the same skinny Jake I once knew? That’s when her ex-husband walked in with his new fiancée. Maggie asked Jake to act like her boyfriend in an attempt to make her ex-husband jealous. Jake listened to her wishes and told her he’d play the best lover ever and kissed her…!

Almost Perfect

Inferior Five (2019-) #5

Written by Keith Giffen, Jeff Lemire
Pencils Keith Giffen, Jeff Lemire
Inks Michelle Delecki, Jeff Lemire
Colored by Hi-Fi, Jose Villarrubia
Cover by Hi-Fi, Michelle Delecki, Keith Giffen, Howard Porter
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The danger under Dangerfield: the young heroes have discovered a relic from the Invasion interred deep beneath their horrifying hometown, but will they be as irresponsible with it as they have with everything else? Plus, the Peacemaker arrives on the scene to keep them from hurting themselves and planet Earth!

Inferior Five (2019-) #5

This site contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from these sites. Making purchases through these links helps support the site.

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