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Review: By The Horns #2

Elodie hates unicorns. For nearly a year, she’s been hell-bent on tracking down and killing all the elusive horned creatures responsible for trampling her husband, Shintaro.

By The Horns #2 continues Elodie’s mission of revenge but first, she must deal with an evil wizard.

Story: Markisan Naso
Art/Lettering: Jason Muhr
Colors: Andrei Tabacaru

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.

Scout Comics
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

Review: By The Horns #2

By the Horns #2

I always try and be objective when writing a review,though how successful I am is usually debatable, especially when I’m as excited to read a book as I am By The Horns #2. I’ve made no secret of my admiration for the work from this creative team, across the three Voracious miniseries and the first issue of By The Horns, although I will also freely admit that I tend to have higher expectations from the creative team (writer Markisan Naso, artist Jason Muhr, and colorist Andrei Tabacaru) than I do other comics. And yet despite those higher standards, I am constantly astonished at what arrives in my inbox.

By The Horns #2 is no exception.

This is a book I have been waiting to read for almost four months, and it did not disappoint.

This issue finds our unicorn hating and hunting hero Elodie and her deer/wolf/pony/friend Sajen make their way to the island home of Futen, the Dark Demon Sorcerer of the Western Wind, to have a chat about unicorns. The chat… well let’s just say that it makes for a fantastic read.

The opening of this book explains why Elodie has a mad hate on for unicorns, and I have to say that there’s more emotion and heartbreak in those near silent three pages than I’ve seen in some Nicholas Sparks movies. For comparison, it’s like the opening to Up with Carl and Ellie’s love/life story, but focusing on a specific moment. Those three pages set you up for what to expect from Muhr and Tabacaru for the rest of the comic; some pretty bloody gorgeous art work.

Muhr’s visual storytelling is wonderful, and I’ll always enjoy how he lays out his pages. There’s an elegant simplicity to his panels, though the first double page spread has more of an ethereal sense to it – in part I’m sure because of the colouring. The darker hues are at odds with the brightness in the following pages which adds a layer of unease for the reader upon opening the comic.

By The Horns is a fantasy series set in a universe that’s akin to a typical steampunk setting in terms of technology; on the surface it looks like a typical fantasy setting, but one you start paying attention you’ll notice some fantastic things; I won’t lie, I obsessed over Elodie’s boat far too much for a boat in a comic.

It’s within this rich tapestry of art that Naso’s story springs to life. I swear to you, this dude knows how to write a compelling comic; he’s one of the few writers I’d pick up anything he writes because he’s incredibly consistent (well technically that’s a lie – as with Muhr and Tabacaru, Naso is a better writer now than when he first penned Voracious, but you get the point I’m making; I’ve yet to read a bad comic from this man). By The Horns #2 is so much fun; there’s an incredible amount of detail and subtle nods within the art – more than I want to specifically mention because half the fun is in seeing how the team have framed the story within the comic.

By The Horns #2 is probably the best issue to come from this creative team, which surprises me because my expectations were sky high already. Naso, Muhr and Tabacaru are one of those rare teams where everything just clicks into place, and we end up with a fantastic comic book.

Story: Markisan Naso Art/Lettering: Jason Muhr Colors: Andrei Tabacaru
Story: 9.5 Art: 9.8 Overall: 9.7 Recommendation: Buy

Scout Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: Zeus ComicsTFAWScout Comics

By the Horns #1 Gets a Second Print

Scout Comics has announced that By the Horns #1 has gone to a second printing.

Elodie hates unicorns. For nearly a year, she’s dedicated her life to tracking down and killing them all for trampling her husband, Shintaro. Now exiled from her farming village of Wayfarer for selfishly neglecting her duties, Elodie and her half wolf/half deer companion, Sajen, search the continent of Solothus for clues to the whereabouts of unicorns. When they discover a lead in the port city of Lycus, their revenge mission suddenly takes a dangerous turn.

By the Horns #1 is by Markisan Naso, Jason Muhr, and Andrei Tabacaru. You can read our reviews here and here.

By the Horns #1 2nd printing

Review: By The Horns #1

Elodie hates unicorns. For nearly a year, she’s been hell-bent on tracking down and killing all the elusive horned creatures responsible for trampling her husband, Shintaro.

By The Horns #1 kicks off a twisted, intriguing, and most importantly entertaining fantasy series.

Story: Markisan Naso
Art/Lettering: Jason Muhr
Colors: Andrei Tabacaru

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.

Scout Comics
Zeus Comics

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

Review: By The Horns #1

By the Horns #1

Full disclosure: I am so bloody excited to have read By the Horns #1. The creative team (writer Markisan Naso, artist Jason Muhr, and colorist Andrei Tabacaru) are one of the most underrated teams I’ve ever come across – their first story, Voracious has been firmly lodged as one of my favorite comic stories since the first volume wrapped (there’s three, and each one is better than the last). Needless to say, when the first issue of By the Horns #1 arrived in my inbox far earlier than I expected, I jumped on that like an Englishman jumping for tea.

Elodie hates unicorns. For nearly a year, she’s been hell-bent on tracking down and killing all the elusive horned creatures responsible for trampling her husband, Shintaro. Now, exiled from her farming village of Wayfarer for selfishly neglecting her duties, Elodie and her half wolf/half deer steed, Sajen, search the continent of Solothus for clues to the whereabouts of unicorns.

When Elodie discovers that four ancient wind wizards are abducting unicorns and other mystical creatures so they can extract their magic, she means to go through them at any cost to exact her revenge. But she’ll need to rely on an increasingly reluctant Sajen, a floating-eyeball guide named Evelyn, and two unicorn prisoners – Zoso and Rigby – who grant her the ability to rip off their horns and combine them to form wizard-slaying weapons. Will she use their gifts to save the captured unicorns, or destroy them all?

By the Horns #1 opens with a figure standing over a unicorn, bloody axe in hand with their head out of frame. It’s a scene-setting image, and you know what you’re in for, but Naso’s words over the image hit me in a way I wasn’t expecting. Normally when I stop reading a comic, it’s not because I need to take a moment to collect myself. By The Horns #1 is not a normal comic.

Khemmis, the name of the village that our lead character is from, is a brilliant nod to one of the most played metal bands on my Spotify (coincidentally, Naso cohosts a podcast about heavy metal, and has recommended Khemmis’ Desolation album – which I highly encourage you to check out). If I’m honest, I reread the book a second time trying to find other references and nods hidden within the comic, and while I caught a few, there are probably others that I missed, but that’s the joy of Naso’s work; this shit’s like an onion – the more you peel away at things the more you’ll find below the layers.

The story weaves between emotional turmoil and a deep sense that something is missing. To be clear, there’s nothing missing in the comic, but rather than the character Elodie is missing a part of who she is after the loss of her partner. Naso doesn’t force feed you this revelation, but rather shows you through the dialogue, and the pacing of Elodie’s conversation with the village elder. It’s a powerful scene, made even more impactful because of the visuals; Muhr and Tabacaru are like poetry in motion in By The Horns #1. This has got to be one of the most beautiful books you’ll see, and a lot of the credit should go to the way Tabacaru brings Muhr’s art to life.

Muhr is good, make no mistake, but Tabacaru’s work is astounding. The warmth and emotional desolation in his colours are breath taking when taken as a whole with Muhr’s facial expressions and Naso’s dialogue.

I remember first reading about this series, though I don’t know where that was (likely social media), and after Voracious I knew I’d be all in. What I didn’t expect was to be shown such an emotional depth in the debut issue; it’s hard for me to reconcile that the creative team hasn’t been working together for far longer than they have been because the synchronicity on display is utterly breathtaking.

By The Horns #1 is another blinder of a comic by Naso, Muhr, and Tabacaru. Get to your shop and make sure to grab a copy.

Story: Markisan Naso Art/Lettering: Jason Muhr Colors: Andrei Tabacaru
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Scout Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: Zeus ComicsScout Comics

Those Two Geeks Episode 103: Hunting Unicorns (AGAIN) in By the Horns with Markisan Naso and Jason Muhr

Alex and Joe are joined by the author and artist of the upcoming Scout Comics release By The Horns, Markisan Naso and Jason Muhr. They may be familiar to you if you’ve ever heard us rave about his debut series Voracious. By The Horns reunites the Voracious team in a new fantasy setting that follows a new heroine as she hunts down the unicorns the trampled the love of her life.

For more on By The Horns check out the links below:
Facebook: @ByTheHornsComic
Instagram: @ByTheHornsComic
Twitter: @BYTHEHORNScomic

You can reach Markisan at the following:
Twitter: @darthsan
Instagram: @darthmarkisan

You can find Jason below:
Twitter: @JasonMuhr
Instagram: @JasonMuhr

As always, Alex and Joe can be found on twitter respectively @karcossa and @jcb_smark if you feel the need to tell them they’re wrong individually, or @those2geeks if you want to yell at them together on twitter, or by email at ItsThose2Geeks@gmail.com.

Underrated: Voracious: Appetite For Destruction

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week: Voracious: Feeding Time.


Markisan Naso, Jason Muhr and Andrei Tabucaru have a new comic coming out in 2021, By The Horns. Because of the fact that these three have created one of my all time favourite series, I’m going to revisit the three volumes over the next couple of months. You can find the first column on Diners, Dinosaurs & Dives here, and the second on Feeding Time here.

Published by Action Lab, Voracious: Appetite for Destruction is written by Markisan Naso and drawn and lettered by Jason Muhr, with the co-creators being joined by colourist Andrei Tabucaru. The series can usually grab your attention with the shortest of descriptions: “time travelling chef makes dinosaur sandwiches.”

It sounds awesome, right? Well, that’s because it is. But there’s a lot more to the series, including dinosaur cops, giant monsters and a strangely relatable dilemma throughout the series.

The first trade introduced the concept of time travel and dinosaur hunting, the second volume introduced us to dinosaur cops and an entirely new world as we learn that our hero wasn’t time travelling but hopping dimensions. The third brings everything together as we add a giant flying monster into the mix as the story hurtles to a remarkable conclusion.

Again, it sounds like it shouldn’t work as a story progression, but the comic never feels as though it’s out of hand; Markisan Naso has an excellent grasp on pacing and weaving the tale through some genuinely heart warming and wrenching scenes that continuously serve to keep the more science fiction aspects of the story feeling as though they’re perfectly natural occurrences.

Whereas the last trade effectively established the time travelling dimension hopping chef Nate as the villain in the story, Naso never quite lets you dislike the character; his action were and remain entirely sympathetic, and his desire to do the right thing even as he acknowledges his mistakes echoes across the page. Of course, the right thing in this case is stopping a significantly enlarged dinosaur as it rampages through Nate’s hometown of Black Fossil, a small desert town with a single cop who just happens to hold a massive dislike for our hero. Familial ties are a massive part of the entire story, but especially volume three as the shit hits the fan in ever increasing ways you see certain characters’ bonds deepen as they try not to fall apart.

I’ve yet to mention the artwork; Jason Muhr and Andrei Tabucaru step up their game from the last volume, and there are some great silent panels as Naso literally lets the pictures tell a thousand words in conversation and character development. Although the high octane scenes are brilliant, it’s the subtle moments when the art shines brightest; the gradual fading of Gus’ memories, the pastel infused flashbacks and those previously mentioned silent conversations help elevate this volume into must read territory.

Voracious is one of the few series where I own both the floppy issues and the trades as, like I said in the last two columns:

“I put my money where my mouth is because Voracious is a wonderful breath of fresh air in an industry that has been choking on relaunches and rehashes; the five issues that make up Feeding Time are some of the highest scored comics that I have reviewed for Graphic Policy.

If you’re tired of reading about superheroes fighting each other and you want a story to take you across the emotional spectrum without the use of glowing rings then you need look no further. While the comic is about a time traveling, dinosaur hunting chef, it’s also a powerful look into what makes us who we are and how. It’s a story about mistakes and loss, and most importantly coping with those things.

If you want more Voracious, then you can check out the episode of GP Radio where we talked all about the dinosaur sandwiches with both Markisan Naso and Jason Muhr. The new book, by the same team, will be launching February 28th.


Unless the comics industry ceases to exist this week, Underrated will return next week.

Underrated: Voracious: Feeding Time

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week: Voracious: Feeding Time.


Markisan Naso, Jason Muhr and Andrei Tabucaru have a new comic coming out in 2021, By The Horns. Because of the fact that these three have created one of my all time favourite series, I’m going to revisit the three volumes over the next couple of months. You can find the first column on Diners, Dinosaurs & Dives here.

Published by Action Lab, Voracious: Feeding Time is written by Markisan Naso and drawn and lettered by Jason Muhr, with the co-creators being joined by colourist Andrei Tabucaru. The first volume can usually grab your attention with the shortest of descriptions: “time travelling chef makes dinosaur sandwiches.”

It sounds awesome, right? Well, that’s because it is. But it’s also so much more than just that elevator pitch. The second volume is better than the first, but it also takes a left turn when the dinosaur cops Owen and Gus are introduced. You see while Nate may have been travelling back in time to hunt dinosaurs, our assumption was always that they’d be wiped out by an asteroid so no biggie, right? Only Nate hadn’t just been bouncing back in time, but rather into an alternate dimension/timeline where dinosaurs would evolve into intelligent beings.

As you can imagine, hunting the dinosaurs that would eventually evolve is having a disastrous effect on the future of that world as people disappear and are forgotten as their ancestors are turned into burgers and steaks.

It’s a stunning reversal in the story when you realize that Nate, the sympathetic lead of the first volume is also an accidentally diabolical villain in this volume. Or he would be if Naso wasn’t able to continue weaving a tale where you want Gus and Owen to stop the man responsible for Gus’ wife’s disappearance but you also want to make sure that Nate’s business doesn’t go under.

Voracious: Feeding Time has one of my favourite comics within it (issue three) – the entire volume is brilliant, but it certainly peaks around the third issue with the combination of art and writing reaching a height that Voracious hadn’t yet seen. This was the issue when I realized the creative team were destined to write some fantastic comics together. Voracious: Feeding Time is an absolute joy to explore as we witness the series transition from the first volume’s fun to a deep treatise about memory and the importance of cherishing those in your life.

Voracious is one of the few series where I own both the floppy issues and the trades as, like I said in the last column:

“I put my money where my mouth is because Voracious is a wonderful breath of fresh air in an industry that has been choking on relaunches and rehashes; the five issues that make up Feeding Time are some of the highest scored comics that I have reviewed for Graphic Policy.

If you’re tired of reading about superheroes fighting each other and you want a story to take you across the emotional spectrum without the use of glowing rings then you need look no further. While the comic is about a time traveling, dinosaur hunting chef, it’s also a powerful look into what makes us who we are and how. It’s a story about mistakes and loss, and most importantly coping with those things.

If you want more Voracious, then you can check out the episode of GP Radio where we talked all about the dinosaur sandwiches with both Markisan Naso and Jason Muhr. The new book, by the same team, will be launching February 28th.


Unless the comics industry ceases to exist this week, Underrated will return next week.

Those Two Geeks Episode Ninety Eight: Hunting Unicorns in By the Horns with Markisan Naso

Alex and Joe are joined by the author of the upcoming Scout Comics release By The Horns, Markisan Naso. He may be familiar to you if you’ve ever heard us rave about his debut series Voracious. By The Horns reunites the Voracious team in a new fantasy setting that follows a new heroine as she hunts down the unicorns the trampled the love of her life.

For more on By The Horns check out the links below:
Facebook: @ByTheHornsComic
Instagram: @ByTheHornsComic
Twitter: @BYTHEHORNScomic

You can reach Markisan at the following:
Twitter: @darthsan
Instagram: @darthmarkisan

As always, Alex and Joe can be found on twitter respectively @karcossa and @jcb_smark if you feel the need to tell them they’re wrong individually, or @those2geeks if you want to yell at them together on twitter, or by email at ItsThose2Geeks@gmail.com.

Advanced Review: By The Horns #1

By the Horns #1

Elodie hates unicorns. For nearly a year, she’s been hell-bent on tracking down and killing all the elusive horned creatures responsible for trampling her husband, Shintaro. Now, exiled from her farming village of Wayfarer for selfishly neglecting her duties, Elodie and her half wolf/half deer steed, Sajen, search the continent of Solothus for clues to the whereabouts of unicorns.

When Elodie discovers that four ancient wind wizards are abducting unicorns and other mystical creatures so they can extract their magic, she means to go through them at any cost to exact her revenge. But she’ll need to rely on an increasingly reluctant Sajen, a floating-eyeball guide named Evelyn, and two unicorn prisoners – Zoso and Rigby – who grant her the ability to rip off their horns and combine them to form wizard-slaying weapons. Will she use their gifts to save the captured unicorns, or destroy them all?

Full disclosure: I am so bloody excited to have read this comic. The creative team (writer Markisan Naso, artist Jason Muhr, and colorist Andrei Tabacaru) are one of the most underrated teams I’ve ever come across – their first story, Voracious has been firmly lodged as one of my favorite comic stories since the first volume wrapped (there’s three, and each one is better than the last). Needless to say, when the first issue of By The Horns arrived in my inbox far earlier than I expected, I jumped on that like an Englishman jumping for tea.

By the Horns #1 opens with a figure standing over a unicorn, bloody axe in hand with their head out of frame. It’s a scene-setting image, and you know what you’re in for, but Naso’s words over the image hit me in a way I wasn’t expecting. Normally when I stop reading a comic, it’s not because I need to take a moment to collect myself. By The Horns #1 is not a normal comic.

Khemmis, the name of the village that our lead character is from, is a brilliant nod to one of the most played metal bands on my Spotify (coincidentally, Naso cohosts a podcast about heavy metal, and has recommended Khemmis’ Desolation album – which I highly encourage you to check out). If I’m honest, I reread the book a second time trying to find other references and nods hidden within the comic, and while I caught a few, there are probably others that I missed, but that’s the joy of Naso’s work; this shit’s like an onion – the more you peel away at things the more you’ll find below the layers.

The story weaves between emotional turmoil and a deep sense that something is missing. To be clear, there’s nothing missing in the comic, but rather than the character Elodie is missing a part of who she is after the loss of her partner. Naso doesn’t force feed you this revelation, but rather shows you through the dialogue, and the pacing of Elodie’s conversation with the village elder. It’s a powerful scene, made even more impactful because of the visuals; Muhr and Tabacaru are like poetry in motion in By The Horns #1. This has got to be one of the most beautiful books you’ll see, and a lot of the credit should go to the way Tabacaru brings Muhr’s art to life.

Muhr is good, make no mistake, but Tabacaru’s work is astounding. The warmth and emotional desolation in his colours are breath taking when taken as a whole with Muhr’s facial expressions and Naso’s dialogue.

I remember first reading about this series, though I don’t know where that was (likely social media), and after Voracious I knew I’d be all in. What I didn’t expect was to be shown such an emotional depth in the debut issue; it’s hard for me to reconcile that the creative team hasn’t been working together for far longer than they have been because of the synchronicity on display is utterly breathtaking.

By The Horns #1 is another blinder of a comic by Naso, Muhr, and Tabacaru. Get your shop to order this for you, because you’re not going to be disappointed when you get to read it in February.

Story: Markisan Naso Art/Lettering: Jason Muhr Colors: Andrei Tabacaru
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Graphic Policy was provided with a FREE copy for review


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