Tag Archives: mike atiyeh

Review: Shazam! #4

Shazam #4

“Shazam and the Seven Magiclands” continues as Billy Batson and the other foster kids are lost in the dangerous Wildlands! A realm where animals walk like humans…and where humans live in zoos! When Freddie and Darla are captured and paraded around like oddities, it’s up to Billy and the others to rescue them from the greedy Crocodile Men! Plus, the shocking ending to issue #1 could up end Billy’s new family…or make it stronger than ever.

The only reason I read Shazam #4 was to see how easy it would be to pick up the newest issue of the comic after having recently seen the movie (on an advanced screening, not through nefarious means). Having only read the back up stories in the New 52 Justice League series, my familiarity with the character relies primarily on the movie. And, having no intention of reading the first three issues in the series… I was curious how easy it would be for me (and by extension any other readers turned on to the comic from the movie) to dive right in.

Obviously, starting a story on the fourth issue with no recap beyond the first paragraph above isn’t ideal, but the comic was easy enough to follow, and more than enjoyable. Following Billy Batson and his siblings as they’re separated across various different lands, we get introduced to a handful of the seven Magiclands.

Geoff Johns crafts a tale in this issue that’s essentially a fish out of water situation featuring superheroes, which will assist any newcomers like myself. That the comic looks fantastic doesn’t hurt things either; the lightning effect is almost electrifying (though that may have been the static electricity that got me earlier).

Shazam #4 isn’t a must read comic, but it’s a damn fun one that serves as a decent introduction to the series for new readers.

Story: Geoff Johns
Art: Dale Eaglesham & Marco Santucci
Colors: Mike Atiyeh Letterer: Rob Leigh
Story: 8.6 Art: 8.9 Overall: 8.7 Recommendation: Buy

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review.

Review: Shazam #1

Teenager turned super-hero Billy Batson struggles to balance school and superheroics! (Guess which one is more fun?) But when Shazam unlocks a shocking secret deep within the Rock of Eternity, it challenges everything he knows about the worlds of magic and his family’s future as its champions!

Potential. That’s the word that sticks out the most after reading Shazam #1 which as presented is a lot of setup and some humor and that’s about it. How this classic character fits in the Rebirth world is a bit of a mystery but the Marvel, I mean Shazam family is back. There’s so jokes, winks, and nods, as to the previous naming of the characters but this first issue is the set up the series is more than just Shazam, Mary, and the rest are along for the ride as well. How? Well, that’s not really explained but again, this is an issue that’s set up.

The potential is all in the character interactions. Writer Geoff Johns focuses on that dynamic and out of everything, how a group of kids with superpowers interacts has a lot of potential to be a lot of fun. When we see that in the comic, it absolutely is. But, beyond a robbery and some exploration of the Rock of Eternity, the comic is fairly thin on excitement or anything of interest.

Dale Eaglesham‘s art though is interesting to look at with a classic New 52/90s look to it that you’ll either like or hate. While something more stylish and unique would have been interesting, the art is crisp with color from Mike Atiyeh. There are some good small details like the robbers’ masks and some looks flashed here and there but overall, the style is one we’ve seen a lot of.

Where art does stand out is a backup story focused on Mary with art by Mayo “Sen” Naito. The story provides the origin of Mary as far as the family and the art has a manga influence with a young adult bent. It’s fantastic art and makes me want to see Naito’s style on some of DC’s Zoom and Ink imprint releases.

There’s nothing particularly bad about this first issue. There’s also nothing that’s all that exciting either. The series is going to rely on the interaction of the kids and how much Johns goes down the Harry Potter direction it feels like he’s heading. Again, there’s potential which has me interested in at least checking out more issues.

Story: Geoff Johns Art: Dale Eaglesham, Mayo “Sen” Naito
Color: Mike Atiyeh Letterer: Rob Leigh
Story: 5.0 Art: 7.75 Overall: 6.0 Recommendation: Read

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Protectors, Inc. #10

Protectors, Inc. #10

Story By: J. Michael Straczynski
Art By: Gordon Purcell
Art By: Mike Atiyeh
Cover By: Ben Templesmith
Price: $2.99
Diamond ID: ICSEP140740
Published: November 19, 2014

In the finale to this first arc, Riley learns a tragic secret about the Angel and finds himself in the crosshairs of a battle royale between The Patriot and the man responsible for a series of brutal murders, who is as powerful as any of the Protectors…maybe more so. The ending will forever change the world of the Protectors…and not in a “we’ll reset this later” way.


Preview: Protectors, Inc. #8

Protectors, Inc. #8

Story By: J. Michael Straczynski
Art By: Gordon Purcell
Art By: Mike Atiyeh
Price: $2.99
Diamond ID: JUN140564
Published: August 20, 2014

After having mysteriously disappeared over a decade earlier, The Patriot has returned from his long absence. But what has prompted this sudden reappearance? Does he know something of value about the murders that have lately gripped Chicago in a fist of terror…or is he trying to hide something? Who do you trust in an organization where everyone wears a mask and very few tell the truth? Detective John Riley must decide whether or not to trust someone he once idolized, but who may now be a serial killer.


Preview: Protectors, Inc. #7

Protectors, Inc. #7

Story By: J. Michael Straczynski
Art By: Gordon Purcell
Art By: Mike Atiyeh
Cover By: Gordon Purcell
Cover By: Mike Atiyeh
Variant Cover By: Renae Deliz
Variant Cover By: Ray Dillon
Price: $2.99
Diamond ID: MAY140720
Published: July 2, 2014

The Angel and Detective Riley have joined forces to determine who killed the Huntsman, and why. With each new discovery, the suspicion grows that it was one of the Protectors who did the job…and that there may be other, unsolved murders that could only have been committed by one of their own. In a world without super-powered bad guys, has someone finally crossed over to the other side? And if they have, how can they be stopped? And what secret is Protectors Inc. hiding about all this? Tune in for another thrilling adventure…


Preview: Protectors, Inc. #5

Protectors, Inc. #5

Written By: J. Michael Straczynski
Art By: Gordon Purcell
Art By: Mike Atiyeh
Cover By: Gordon Purcell
Cover By: Alina Urusov
Price: $2.99
Diamond ID: JAN140609
Published: March 26, 2014

In every good mystery, there’s a moment when the detective confronts the suspects to try and figure out which of them is the killer. But generally speaking, the suspects aren’t powerful enough to fly you five miles straight up, rip off your limbs, and drop you into the Atlantic. That’s the problem faced by Lieutenant Detective John Riley, when he finally comes face-to-face with the Protectors, one of whom may have murdered the Huntsman. Meanwhile, an autopsy on a woman presumed to have died in a boating accident reveals a grisly connection to the Protectors…


Celebrity, Murder, and Super Powers Collide in Protectors, Inc.

What’s it like to be a hero in a world without villains? In Protectors, Inc., the life of a superhero is wonderful, thanks to a bevy of corporate sponsors, an adoring public, polite rivalries, sports franchises, and best of all, no super-powered bad guys to worry about. Wonderful, that is, until a hero is murdered in such a way that the only possible culprit is an unknown person with superpowers, throwing the status quo into upheaval. Protectors, Inc. comes from a place of deep appreciation for genre fiction.

The latest project from writer J. Michael Straczynski and artist Gordon Purcell, Protectors, Inc. focuses on Lieutenant Detective John Riley’s search for the truth behind the murder of a being that shouldn’t have been able to be murdered by anyone. Nothing is as it seems, however, and Riley’s case will lead to a fifty-year-old secret, love affairs, and possibly even more death.

Protectors, Inc. #1 will be in stores on November 6, is currently available to pre-order from the September issue of Previews, and features two separate covers. Cover A (Diamond Code SEP130489) features art by Gordon Purcell and Mike Atiyeh, while Cover B (Diamond Code SEP130489) features art by Whilce Portacio and Mike Atiyeh.