Tag Archives: max bemis

Review: Heavy #1 Puts a Fun Spin on the Man-Pain Vigilante Genre

Heavy #1

Writer Max Bemis, artist Eryk Donovan, and colorist Cris Peter deconstruct the shit out of the whole “bad guy kills a good guys wife so he becomes a vigilante and takes revenge on them” genre in Heavy #1. The premise of the comic is that Bill lost both his wife and his life to the bullets of an Irish mobster and got stranded in a place called The Wait. Think Purgatory, but more Uber and less Dante. He plays the role of “Heavy” in The Wait killing and using violence to keep the multiverse “righteous” and maybe be reunited with his wife one day. Bemis mines a vein of dark humor in Heavy and couples it with a little of the old ultraviolence from Donovan and Peter while also caring about Bill’s mental health.

Heavy #1 is a laugh out loud funny and outrageous satire of the old tough guy mentality. Bemis’ script makes many references to action movies and heroes while undercutting their tropes. For example, Bill isn’t good at his Heavy job because he was ex-military; he’s good because of the non-stop repetition of his work. If something is the only thing you do all day, every day, you’re bound to get good at it. Donovan and Peter illustrate this in a single jaw-dropping image of Bill doing cool things with guns over and over. But then Bemis undercuts it with a quick one-liner as if taunting the reader to not find fist pumping entertainment value from Bill doing badass things when he’s basically the gun-toting anti-hero version of Sisyphus rolling his boulder up the hill.

This rhythm of badass thing followed by joke at the badass thing’s expense starts in basically the first scene of the comic where Bill gives a teenage bully a taste of his own medicine with a powerful punch and an acid drop of pink. Then, Bill is back in office with his boss Kyle, who is yelling at one of her other Heavies. It adds a touch of humanity to Bill as a character. He’s Charlie Brown getting the football yanked out from under him, but with more violence and weirdness. Max Bemis and Eryk Donovan even take some time to riff on the whole flashback visions of the dead wife trope, and while Cris Peter uses an extra-radiant palette for Bill’s dearly beloved, she gives him such a good advice as moving on and finding friends. But, of course, Bill doesn’t listen, and he won’t even take a Heavy partner to give him a better chance of getting out of The Wait and finding bliss.

Seriously, Heavy #1 goes to some weird places and is a better book for it. It will probably take a life time of brain bleach for me to scrub out the image of an alternate universe Leonardo da Vinci, who has gone from designing futuristic machines, to creating machines to remove the unsuspecting citizens of Renaissance Italy’s colons whilst indulging his foot fetish and lounging with his cock out. But that’s the mark of a good artist, and Eryk Donovan is perfectly fine indulging in absurdity while Cris Peter adds garish colors that symbolize both decadence and carnage. Because who needs photoreality when you’ve got pinks and oranges blasting through the Vatican, and Bill landing cheesy, yet epic one-liners about da Vinci forgetting to invent bullets while he was too busy doing his steampunk thing. And when he gets to do that, Bemis and Donovan remind readers that Bill is an incredibly competent killer thanks to his hours of practice and not much else going on. But he definitely needs some help in the mental health and self-actualization department.

Max Bemis takes the dark humor of both his songs with Say Anything and great comics like Moon Knight and Foolkiller combines it with unparalleled violence and wild, eye-popping visuals from Eryk Donovan and Cris Peter. There’s also strong, Vertigo-style supernatural world-building with tongue firmly placed in cheek; think less Sandman and more Preacher. Whether you like vibing out and thinking about the multiverse, afterlife, and moral philosophy, or just reading about a guy who kills the shit out of people thanks to his ever-present man-pain, Heavy #1 is a strong debut and the comic for you.

Story: Max Bemis Art: Eryk Donovan
Colors: Cris Peter Letters: Taylor Esposito

Story: 8.4 Art: 9.0 Overall: 8.7 Recommendation: Buy

Vault provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: comiXology – Kindle – Zeus Comics

Heavy #1 Has Sold Out and Gets a New Printing

The first issue of Heavy,  Vault‘s newest series, sold out at the distributor the day it went on sale. The series saw the largest influx of immediate on-sale date reorders in the publishers history. The issue is being rushed back to print. A new cover and release date for the second printing will be announced soon.

Heavy is co-created by writer Max Bemis, and artist Eryk Donovan, with colors by Cris Peter, letters by Taylor Esposito, and designs by Tim Daniel.

Bill may be dead, but he’s got a job to do.Welcome to the Big Wait, where folks who do’t quite make the cut go to work off their debt. Everyone in the Wait’s got a job. Bill is a Heavy, whose job is policing the multiverse, making sure bad eggs get what’s coming to them. He’s on track to earn his Climb and reunite with the woman he loves… until he meets his new partner: the worst dude of all time.

Heavy is The Punisher for neurotics; Inception for the impatient; Preacher for… well, it’s a lot like Preacher. Max Bemis and Eryk Donovan bring you a story about the existential purpose of dumb boys with big guns.

Heavy #1

Review: Heavy #1

Heavy #1

Bill may be dead, but he’s got a job to do. Welcome to the Big Wait, where folks who don’t quite make the cut go to work off their debt. Everyone in the Wait’s got a job. Bill is a Heavy, whose job is policing the multiverse, making sure bad eggs get what’s coming to them. He’s on track to earn his Climb and reunite with the woman he loves… Heavy is The Punisher for neurotics; Inception for the impatient; Preacher for…well, it’s a lot like Preacher. Max Bemis and Eryk Donavan bring you a story about the existential purpose of dumb boys with big guns in Heavy #1.

Max Bemis is one of those writers that I don’t tend to follow from comic to comic, but I always seem to enjoy the comics he writes to the point where I was on the fence about reading Heavy #1 until I saw Bemis’ name attached to the project. His dry sense of humor is evident throughout the pages of the comic as Bill’s snide and sarcastic comments drive his narrative through some spectacularly violent moments. This is a comic that opens with a middle-aged man breaking a teenager’s nose because we can only assume based on the knowledge we get a little further on, he deserved it on a cosmic scale of justice.

In fairness, compared to some of the other folks Bill encounters, the teenager got pretty lucky.

Comparisons to the Punisher are inevitable given that this is a character killing and otherwise injuring those who are guilty of some crime against the space/time continuum, but that’s where the similarities end (though it is really useful to be able to say “start with the thought of it’s like the Punisher meets Preacher, but its far more fun”). Whereas Frank Castle is a grim, determined guy with no shits to give who can stop his mission at any time (but won’t), Bill has a clearly defined end goal, a whole lot of self-pity, and a wry appreciation of what he has to do if he is going to finally move on with his (after)life.

Artistically, Eryk Donovan and Cris Peter are really solid. There are some suitably eclectic pages in the comic when it comes to the odd page (but what would you expect from a book whose main character has killed 14 different versions of the same person), and it helps to make the comic one of the more visually exciting reads on the racks. There’s an energy to the art that really encourages you to read the book at an equivalent pace to match what you’re seeing on the page, which can make you miss some of the details in the art itself. It’s an odd conflict, and one that may have been specific to me, but if nothing else it encourages you to read the book twice before you put it down.

Fortunately, it’s a book that’s more than good enough to read twice anyway.

Vault Comics have been publishing some absolute corkers recently, and Heavy #1 is another on a growing list of Must Read comics.

Writer: Max Bemis Art: Eryk Donovan
Colorist: Cris Peter Letterer: Taylor Esposito

Story: 8.5 Art: 8.2 Overall: 8.4 Recommendation: Buy

Vault provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Pre-order: comiXologyKindleZeus Comics

Early Review: Heavy #1

Heavy #1

Purgatory. Limbo. Outside of Dante’s Divine Comedy, these are concepts rarely touched upon in the commonly dichotomous concepts of heaven and hell. What if, instead of a person’s entrance to heaven or hell being predicated on what they did over the course of their life, a person had a chance to earn their place in heaven after their death? That’s the question posed by Heavy #1. This new series from Titan Comics is due out on September 16th.

In Heavy #1, writer Max Bemis explores how far one man is willing to go in order to ascend to heaven and be reunited with his wife. To earn his way to heaven, Bill is sent all over the multiverse. He works as an enforcer, protecting timelines and dealing punishment to the villains of history. Bill’s tough guy persona quickly drew me to the character but it was his sensitive side that won me over. It’s not common to see the hero in an action story motivated by feelings that come off as believable and realistic. As if the premise, plot, and character development weren’t enough to draw me in, the first issue also ended with a shocking reveal. Throughout the first half of the comic, I wasn’t impressed with the artwork. It was good but not spectacular. Then, I got to an aerial fight scene and was blown away. The framing of the panels is dynamic and the colors are quite striking.

Heavy #1 is an action packed, existential thrill ride. Just like a multiverse, the story could branch from here into any number of possible storylines as Bill continues his quest to be reunited with his wife. For an action comic with a science-fiction twist, the story has quite a bit of heart. Readers will find themselves invested in the plot after only a few pages. Be sure to pick up Heavy #1 when it releases on September 16th.

Story: Max Bemis Art: Eryk Donovan
Color: Cris Peter Letterer: Taylor Esposito
Story: 9.0 Art: 7.5 Overall: 8.3 Recommendation: Buy

Vault Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Pre-order: comiXology

Advance Review: Heavy #1

Heavy #1

Bill may be dead, but he’s got a job to do. Welcome to the Big Wait, where folks who don’t quite make the cut go to work off their debt. Everyone in the Wait’s got a job. Bill is a Heavy, whose job is policing the multiverse, making sure bad eggs get what’s coming to them. He’s on track to earn his Climb and reunite with the woman he loves… Heavy is The Punisher for neurotics; Inception for the impatient; Preacher for…well, it’s a lot like Preacher. Max Bemis and Eryk Donavan bring you a story about the existential purpose of dumb boys with big guns in Heavy #1.

Max Bemis is one of those writers that I don’t tend to follow from comic to comic, but I always seem to enjoy the comics he writes to the point where I was on the fence about reading Heavy #1 until I saw Bemis’ name attached to the project. His dry sense of humor is evident throughout the pages of the comic as Bill’s snide and sarcastic comments drive his narrative through some spectacularly violent moments. This is a comic that opens with a middle-aged man breaking a teenager’s nose because we can only assume based on the knowledge we get a little further on, he deserved it on a cosmic scale of justice.

In fairness, compared to some of the other folks Bill encounters, the teenager got pretty lucky.

Comparisons to the Punisher are inevitable given that this is a character killing and otherwise injuring those who are guilty of some crime against the space/time continuum, but that’s where the similarities end (though it is really useful to be able to say “start with the thought of it’s like the Punisher meets Preacher, but its far more fun”). Whereas Frank Castle is a grim, determined guy with no shits to give who can stop his mission at any time (but won’t), Bill has a clearly defined end goal, a whole lot of self-pity, and a wry appreciation of what he has to do if he is going to finally move on with his (after)life.

Artistically, Eryk Donovan and Cris Peter are really solid. There are some suitably eclectic pages in the comic when it comes to the odd page (but what would you expect from a book whose main character has killed 14 different versions of the same person), and it helps to make the comic one of the more visually exciting reads on the racks. There’s an energy to the art that really encourages you to read the book at an equivalent pace to match what you’re seeing on the page, which can make you miss some of the details in the art itself. It’s an odd conflict, and one that may have been specific to me, but if nothing else it encourages you to read the book twice before you put it down.

Fortunately, it’s a book that’s more than good enough to read twice anyway.

Vault Comics have been publishing some absolute corkers recently, and Heavy #1 is another on a growing list of Must Read comics.

Writer: Max Bemis Art: Eryk Donovan
Colorist: Cris Peter Letterer: Taylor Esposito

Story: 8.5 Art: 8.2 Overall: 8.4 Recommendation: Buy

Vault provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Pre-order: comiXology

Preview: DC Cybernetic Summer #1

DC Cybernetic Summer #1

Written by: Liz Erickson, Max Bemis, Heath Corson, Stephanie Nicole Phillips, Joshua Williamson, Andrew Constant, Steve Orlando, Corinna Bechko, Gabriel Hardman, Stuart Moore, Che Grayson
Art by: Paul Pelletier, Nicola Scott, Gabriel Hardman, Scott Koblish, Leila del Duca, Marguerite Sauvage, Greg Smallwood, Cully Hamner, Nik Virella, Darko Lafuente

Rub some sunscreen on your circuits, because DC’s favorite cyborgs are hitting the beach in DC Cybernetic Summer on July 28! In this sizzling summertime anthology special, Harley Quinn and Sy Borgman conquer a truly titanic water slide, Cyborg, Superman, and Cyborg Superman find it difficult to have a conversation, much less a fight, and Batman tries everything to escape a summer cookout—even taking on the omnipotent Brother Eye and his newly infectious O.M.A.C.s!

And it’s not just the cyborgs hitting the surf! Flashes from across the multiverse gather for a race to claim the fastest Flash in the multiverse! Mercury Flash from Earth-44 is out to win it all this year, the only person standing in his way is…Barry Allen! And Red Tornado’s on a camping trip with his wife Kathy and his daughter Traya, but he’s distracted by Justice League matters! When a threat emerges, will Red Tornado be able to protect his family?

All these and more sunburnt stories that are worth getting sand in your motherboard for!

DC Cybernetic Summer #1

It’s a Cybernetic Summer for DC in July

Rub some sunscreen on your circuits, because DC’s favorite cyborgs are hitting the beach in DC Cybernetic Summer on July 28! In this sizzling summertime anthology special, Harley Quinn and Sy Borgman conquer a truly titanic water slide, Cyborg, Superman, and Cyborg Superman find it difficult to have a conversation, much less a fight, and Batman tries everything to escape a summer cookout—even taking on the omnipotent Brother Eye and his newly infectious O.M.A.C.s!

 And it’s not just the cyborgs hitting the surf! Flashes from across the multiverse gather for a race to claim the fastest flash in the multiverse! Mercury Flash from Earth-44 is out to win it all this year, the only person standing in his way is…Barry Allen! And Red Tornado’s on a camping trip with his wife Kathy and his daughter Traya, but he’s distracted by Justice League matters! When a threat emerges, will Red Tornado be able to protect his family?

All these and more sunburnt stories that are worth getting sand in your motherboard for!

  • Red Tornado in “Summer Camp” by Stephanie Phillips and Leila del Duca
  • Cyborg, Superman, and Cyborg Superman in “Catfish Crisis” by Stuart Moore and Cully Hamner
  • Superboy, starring the Legion of Super-Heroes, in “Summer Lovin’” by Liz Erickson and Nik Virella
  • Batman, O.M.A.C. and Brother Eye in “The Limits of Control” by Corinna Bechko and Gabriel Hardman
  • Robot Man in “The Summer Blues” by Max Bemis and Greg Smallwood
  • Harley Quinn and Sy Borgman in “Splish Splash Special” by Che Grayson and Marguerite Sauvage
  • Booster Gold, Blue Beetle and Skeets in “The Boys of Summer” by Heath Corson and Scott Koblish
  • Mercury Flash in “The Speedster Games” by Joshua Williamson and David Lafuente
  • Midnighter, Apollo, Monsieur Mallah and The Brain in “Out There” by Steve Orlando and Paul Pelletier
  • Platinum and Wonder Woman in “Fandom” by Andrew Constant and Nicola Scott

DC Cybernetic Summer is an 80-page, Prestige format one-shot on sale at comic book stores and participating online retailers on July 28 with a cover by Dan Mora.

DC Cybernetic Summer

A Wave Blue World Kickstarts Maybe Someday: Stories of Promise, Visions of Hope

Maybe Someday: Stories of Promise, Visions of Hope

A Wave Blue World has announced the launch of its latest anthology, Maybe Someday: Stories of Promise, Visions of Hope which is now raising funds on Kickstarter. The graphic novel anthology is a sequel to All We Ever Wanted: Stories of a Better World which received a Ringo Award nomination for “best anthology.”

Maybe Someday is a new full-color anthology presenting over twenty-five aspirational stories to lift the spirits of readers and instill the hope that a brighter future is possible. Maybe Someday also reunites the publisher with the editorial team of Matt Miner and Eric Palicki.

The Maybe Someday Kickstarter campaign, running through the entire month of June, offers a Kickstarter exclusive cover, which is only available to backers. The cover art is by Max Dunbar with colors by Espen Grundetjern. Logo and cover design are by Tim Daniel. A different cover by this same team will be featured on the direct market edition when the book comes out later this year.

Other rewards include a digital sketchbook, signed bookplates, and combo packs of previously published anthologies.

Check out the full list of creators taking part, it’s a who’s who of comic talent:

Natasha Alterici, Alejandro Aragon, Darren Auck, Max Bemis, Anthony Breznican, Ryan Cady, Mario Candelaria, Joe Caramagna, Tyler Chin-Tanner, Gab Contreras, Shawn Daley, Jono Diener, Jeff Edwards, Greg Anderson Elysee, Mike Feehan, Ryan Ferrier, Joe Glass, Isaac Goodhart, Adam Gorham, Hagai, Ray-Anthony Height, Josh Hood, Daniel Kibblesmith, Konner Knudsen, Michael Kupperman, Alisa Kwitney, Valentine De Landro, Robert Lee, Yasmin Liang, Mauricet, John McFarlane, Matt Miner, Christopher Mitten, Michael Moreci, Steve Niles, Eric Palicki, Emily Pearson, Stephanie Phillips, Curt Pires, Sebastian Piriz, Andy Poole, Nick Pyle, Rod Reis, Renfamous, Marco Rudy, Ethan Sacks, Phillip Sevy, Erica Shultz, Martin Simmonds, Aubrey Sitterson, Stelladia, Sally Jane Thompson, Zoe Thorogood, Bobby Timony, and Rockwell White.

Heavy and Hundred Wolves Get New Release Dates from Vault Comics

Vault Comics announced that two upcoming series, Heavy and Hundred Wolves will now both be released in September 2020. Heavy #1 will now be released on September 9th, 2020, and Hundred Wolves #1 will be released on September 16th, 2020.

Heavy is co-created by writer Max Bemis and Eryk Donovan, with colors by Cris Peter, letters by Taylor Esposito, and design by Tim Daniel. Heavy is a dark, violent comedy about love and the transcendence of toxic masculinity. The story centers on Bill, who, though he may be dead, still has a job to do. Welcome to the Big Wait, where folks who don’t quite make the cut go to work off their debt. Everyone in the Wait’s got a job. Bill is a Heavy, whose job is policing the multiverse, making sure bad eggs get what’s coming to them. He’s on track to earn his Climb and reunite with the woman he loves…until he meets his new partner: the worst dude of all time. Heavy is The Punisher for neurotics; Inception for the impatient; Preacher for…well, it’s a lot like Preacher. Max Bemis and Eryk Donavan bring you a story about the existential purpose of dumb boys with big guns.

Hundred Wolves is co-created by writer Myke Cole and artist Tony Akins, with colors by Vladimir Popov, letters by Jim Campbell, and design by Tim Daniel. The Hundred Wolves are bloody-handed terrors of the steppe. Andrei and Oksana have left the Cossack band to raise their daughter on a farm they hold from the noble Count Ostoja, but the raiding life isn’t done with them. Both the Hundred Wolves and the couple’s new liege lord wish to employ their deadly skills—and neither will take no for an answer. From celebrated author Myke Cole and venerable artist Tony Akins comes a story of war and family, blending historical fiction with a touch of fantasy.

Look for Heavy #1 and Hundred Wolves #1 in the July 2020 Previews catalog.

Vault Has Announced a Local Comic Shop Gift Card Initiative. Buy a Gift Card and Get a Free Advance Comic!

In order to support local comic shop retailers in these trying times, Vault Comics has announced their LCS Gift Card Initiative. It’s simple: readers who purchase gift cards from their local comic shop will receive free, early copies of Heavy #1 by Max Bemis & Eryk Donovan, and HUNDRED WOLVES #1 by Myke Cole and Tony Akins, months ahead of release.

Vault’s LCS Gift Card Initiative has five easy steps: 

  1. Call, email, or reach out via social media to your local comic book retailer.
  2. Purchase a gift card from them for any amount.
  3. Submit any proof of purchase, along with the local comic shop you purchased your gift card, here.
  4. Vault Comics will send participants an email containing free, advanced, digital copies of HEAVY #1 by Max Bemis & Eryk Donovan, and HUNDRED WOLVES #1 by Myke Cole & Tony Akins.
  5. If you like the two issues, add them to your subscription list at your local comic shop.

Vault strongly emphasizes that participants should obey any shelter-in-place mandates that may be active in their areas. They strongly encourage participants to call, email, or reach out to their local retailers via social media to purchase these cards. Do not put anyone’s health at risk.


HEAVY #1

Writer: Max Bemis
Artist: Eryk Donovan
Colorist: Cris Peter
Letterer: Taylor Esposito
Designer: Tim Daniel

Bill may be dead, but he’s got a job to do.
Welcome to the Big Wait, where folks who do’t quite make the cut go to work off their debt. Everyone in the Wait’s got a job. Bill is a Heavy, whose job is policing the multiverse, making sure bad eggs get what’s coming to them. He’s on track to earn his Climb and reunite with the woman he loves… until he meets his new partner: the worst dude of all time.
Heavy is The Punisher for neurotics; Inception for the impatient; Preacher for… well, it’s a lot like Preacher. Max Bemis and Eryk Donovan bring you a story about the existential purpose of dumb boys with big guns.

HEAVY #1

HUNDRED WOLVES #1

Writer: Myke Cole
Artist: Tony Akins
Colorist: Vladimir Popov
Letterer: Jim Campbell
Designer: Tim Daniel

The Hundred Wolves are bloody-handed terrors of the steppe. Andrei and Oksana have left the Cossack band to raise their daughter on a farm they hold from the noble Count Ostoja, but the raiding life isn’t done with them. Both the Hundred Wolves and the couple’s new liege lord wish to employ their deadly skills-and neither will take no for an answer. From celebrated author Myke Cole (The Sacred Throne Trilogy, The Shadow Ops Trilogy) and venerable artist Tony Akins (Fables, Hellblazer, Wonder Woman) comes a story of war and family, blending historical fiction with a touch of fantasy.

HUNDRED WOLVES #1
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