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Review: Spawn’s Universe #1

Spawn's Universe #1

Big things are happening in Spawn’s universe expanding the world beyond the title character. The hope is to spawn (no pun intended) a universe of stories. Spawn’s Universe #1 is the next step in creator Todd McFarlane‘s plan to do exactly that.

Spawn’s Universe #1 is home to a lot of great comic artists and I thought they all knocked it out of the park. Whether it was Jim Cheung doing the main character, or Brett Booth on Gunslinger, Stephen Segovia working with Medieval, or Marcio Takara on art for She-Spawn’s story, I thought all of the artists working on this issue really nailed the look and feel of what they were given to illustrate. Art-wise, this is the kind of effort that I think could get people interested in this book. There’s not an ugly page to be found here and each artists’ style feels so distinct from one another. The various colorists and letterers put the cherry on top of a fantastic-looking issue.

Todd McFarlane handled the writing duties on all the stories and the one thing I’d say is I do kinda like how he writes. It feels like a mix of old and new, still decompressed for the newer era of comics but with a nice bit of narrative caption boxes throughout the issue. The story did seem to have a few problems. My main one is that I’m pretty sure there are characters used here and I have no idea who they are. Who is the guy on Omega’s island? Who was the guy with angel wings? Are these people that read the monthly title would know? There’s a lot of action in the pages and Spawn’s still a cool character but adding in some more of the Spawns and Cy-Gor was an added treat. The short stories are good starting points for what will happen with the supporting cast. I thought Gunslinger Spawn’s solo story was the best of the lot.

Overall, Spawn’s Universe #1 is a tiny bit confusing to read but it’s nice to look at. I’m hoping it’s just that I’m not a monthly Spawn reader that causes it but then it begs the question: is this a good jumping-on point for new readers to Spawn? I think that Spawn’s Universe will be a rewarding experience for those who have stuck with the title but that’s it, outside of just simple artistic enjoyment. Still, Spawn is 300+ issues old and a new launching pad should still offer something for the older readers. Hopefully, newer readers can make sense of it all.

Story: Todd McFarlane Art: Jim Cheung, Brett Booth, Stephen Segovia, Marcio Takara
Inks: Adelso Corona, Todd McFarlane Lettering: Tom Orzechowski, Andworld Design
Colors: Fco Plascencia, Andrew Dalhouse, Peter Steigerwald
Story: 5.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 7.0

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: comiXology KindleZeus ComicsTFAW

Get Your Aspen Groupees Bundle Featuring Over $325 in Comics!

Aspen Comics has released their second digital bundle on the Groupees platform with “The Aspen Creations Bundles”. On the Groupees website, Aspen fans can select from three tiers of separately priced bundles featuring Aspen Comics titles for a limited time of 14 days, highlighted by the debut of a new Aspen 11×17” Soulfire holofoil print featuring cover art by legendary artist Jim Lee with colors by superstar Peter Steigerwald, limited to 50 editions.

Aspen recently completed their hugely successful Michael Turner Creations Kickstarter campaign, and the publisher is looking to offer fans an affordable way to expand their digital collection of Aspen Comics titles. The “Aspen Creations Bundles” will include Aspen’s popular best-selling titles such as Aspen VisionsJirniCharismagicPortalBound and more titles for over $325 in value.

In addition to the Jim Lee exclusive Soulfire holofoil print, the top ten contributors on the Groupees bundle page will receive special Aspen physical reward items including a complete set of Aspen’s sold out Comic-Con International: San Diego, New York Comic-Con and past Groupees exclusive prints, a Michael Turner-signed Fathom “Black Armor” mini-bust and Aspen Mystery Packs. Full details on the campaign page.

Jim Lee Soulfire Print

Preview: Fathom Vol. 8 #2

Fathom Vol. 8 #2

Vince Hernandez – Story / Mauricio Campetella – Art / Peter Steigerwald – Color

The world below is no longer a secret and everything has led to this…

Wind—a new commander of The Blue, emerges to lead her people from the ashes of Anika’s destructive attack on the capitol city of Muria. However, the city receives two new powerful visitors—Aspen and Kiani! Meanwhile, Anika continues her warpath deeper into the depths, as she arrives at the secret realm of the world’s most deadly beings—The Black!

Aspen’s Vince Hernandez (Michael Turner’s Fathom: KianiCharismagic) marks his debut on Fathom’sprincipal series alongside artist Mauricio Campetella (Jirni) and colorists Peter Steigerwald (FathomSuperman/Batman) in a storyline that will define the Fathomuniverse for years to come! 

FATHOM vol 8 #2 is in stores June 12th, 2019!                               $3.99

Fathom Vol. 8 #2

Review: The Incredible Hulk: Last Call #1

Betty Ross is dead and Bruce Banner is suicidal and has an assassin waiting for his signal to end his life. It’s a touching and emotional issue that reunites Peter David and Dale Keown.

Story: Peter David
Art: Dale Keown
Ink: Mark Farmer, Marc Deering, Walden Wong, Scott Hanna
Color: Peter Steigerwald, John Starr
Letterer: Cory Petit

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Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
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Review: The Incredible Hulk: Last Call #1

The Incredible Hulk: Last Call #1

The Incredible Hulk: Last Call #1 is a celebration of two creators who have had a massive impact on the character. It re-teams writer Peter David with artist Dale Keown for an oversized one-shot that packs a punch.

Bruce Banner is tired of being the Hulk. Heck, he’s tired of being. Taking place after the death of Betty Ross, Banner is broken and wants the pain to end. He’s debating if he should remain in this world and contemplating suicide. Not so much contemplating as Banner has tried it multiple times. But, now he has a plan that might work. But, instead of pulling the trigger right away, he reaches out to a help line.

David delivers a story focused on Banner’s ups and downs. It’s a “this is your life” type tail going through his history, both good and bad. All the time he’s contemplating if he should continue on.

The Incredible Hulk: Last Call #1 is a tough read. The comic’s a rough emotional ride focused on depression and loss. But, that’s also where the comic soars. It creates an emotional impact in the reader and when art can impact you like that, it’s a success.

The art by Keown has ups and downs. For the most part it’s dazzling and engaging. But, it’s clear Keown’s strength is the monster himself. So, when presented with Banner, things just aren’t as impressive. What’s interesting is that Keown forgoes the expected splash pages and full page spreads to let us soak in the Hulk. Instead the art matches the emotional tone with a subdued style to it all. It’s more emotional horror than monster. The art also has a lot of inkers and colorists and the shift is noticeable. None of it enough so to hamper the issue. But, it is something that sticks out while reading the comic. Keown’s work still holds up though. The art brings home the emotional story David has put together adding a depressing tone to it all through the art style and look.

The comic is an emotional one that needs a trigger warning to start. It’ll impact you at an emotional level and that’s a good thing. When art hits you at that level, it’s a success. The Incredible Hulk: Last Call #1 is a comic you may want to grab a box of kleenex while reading. These two are still a hell of a team and hopefully we get some more down the road.

Story: Peter David Art: Dale Keown
Ink: Mark Farmer, Marc Deering, Walden Wong, Scott Hanna
Color: Peter Steigerwald, John Starr Letterer: Cory Petit
Story: 8.1 Art: 7.65 Overall: 8.0 Recommendation: Buy

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Fathom Vol. 8 #1

Fathom Vol. 8 #1

Fathom is a series I’ve always wanted to enjoy but it never quite clicks for me. Fathom Vol. 8 #1 is a perfect example of that as the issue attempts to be all things to all readers.

Written by Vince Hernandez, the issue is the latest volume in the long running series. Much has taken place and with a new volume you’d hope a clear explanation would be present for new readers. Hernandez attempts that, weaving in a lot of history from the previous seven volumes. The result is an issue that attempts to be new reader friendly but falls short with too many references to the past and not enough explanation.

The issue puts forth the key players of this latest volume and story and does its best to explain it all. But, when you need to have numerous editorial explanations of when things took place, there may be too much reliance on the past. Instead of clear explanations, it feels like the reader is expected to go back and read the references. It leaves one feeling left out when the issue should deliver enough to understand why what’s references is important.

Fathom Vol. 8 #1 does set things up well though. There’s more than enough intrigue and action that by the end of the issue, you may feel compelled to come back and see where things go. It ends with a nice cliffhanger that’s a bit traditional in a way but makes it clear as to what to expect next.

The at by Mauricio Camptella is nice. With colors by Peter Steigerwald, there’s a cool blending of the world of the blue and humans though at times it doesn’t feel like it goes far enough. The team is working off what has come before and for an underwater world, the design feels rather plain and basic, not taking advantage of the underwater beauty enough. There’s both a lack of detail and detail at the same time. What’s present is nice but there could be more of a blending of the inorganic and organic worlds.

Fathom Vol. 8 #1 is entertaining in a lot of ways and moves the narrative forward. Where it ends up delivers what’s likely a second issue that might be more new reader friendly. With some narrative changes, this could have been an explosive debut reinvigorating the series. As is, it attempts to please two camps of readers and in the end wind up making neither happy.

Story: Vince Hernandez Art: Mauricio Campetella
Color: Peter Steigerwald Letterer: Zen
Story: 7.0 Art: 7.0 Overall: 7.0 Recommendation: Read

Aspen Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Michael Turner’s Fathom Volume 8 #1

Michael Turner’s Fathom Volume 8 #1

Vince Hernandez – Story  / Mauricio Campetella – Art / Peter Steigerwald- Colors / Zen – Letters

The world below is no longer a secret and everything has led to this…

Aspen Matthews must restore the balance between both Humans and The Blue as once again Fathom’s preeminent villain, Killian, has returned to reclaim what he believes belongs to himself and his people! The stakes have never been higher as this volume returns Aspen’s best-selling franchise for over 20 years to its roots, as Aspen must risk the fate of both worlds in order to stop Fathom’s most dangerous foe!

Aspen’s Vince Hernandez (Michael Turner’s Fathom: Kiani, Charismagic) marks his debut on Fathom’s principal series alongside artist Mauricio Campetella (Jirni) and colorist Peter Steigerwald (Fathom, Superman/Batman), in a storyline that will define the Fathom universe for years to come!

Fathom Volume 8 #1 is in stores May 15th, 2019!

FC                               32 pages                                  $3.99

Michael Turner's FATHOM Volume 8 #1

Aspen Celebrates 15 Years of Fathom with a New Volume from Vince Hernanez, Mauricio Campetella, and Peter Steigerwald

On the heels of their partnership with Mythos Studios to develop the animated feature film for Michael Turner’s Fathom, as well as the ambitious fifteen-year anniversary campaign last year, Aspen Comics will be releasing Fathom #1 this summer with an all new creative team on May 15th.

The publisher is streamlining their release of titles in 2019 to feature their core and flagship series in an effort to maintain the standard of quality the publisher is known for throughout the industry.

This summer kicks off their first major release, Michael Turner’s Fathom, on May 15th with the brand-new creative team and implementing retailer-friendly ordering of their special edition variants.

Fathom: Kiani writer Vince Hernandez takes the helm of the principle Fathomseries for Volume 8 along with rising star newcomer Mauricio Campetella with colors by superstar colorist Peter Steigerwald. This new volume will feature direct edition covers by Campetella and creator, the late Michael Turner.

The publisher has announced they will be offering Fathom #1 Retailer Special Edition variant covers with no restrictions on order quantity by creator Michael Turner and superstar artist Siya Oum. This is the first time Aspen has provided retailers the chance to order their incentive variants with no restrictions and encourages fans to check with their local comic book store to pre-order.

Aspen Comics’ Releases in April 2019

THE ZOOHUNTERS #4

Peter Steigerwald – Art & Story

THE ZOOHUNTERS is back!

There is life on other planets—THEY find it. After their encounter with the villainous Quarec, Abros is in a race to save his son Ty from death. Can he and Minalara keep Ty alive or will Abros lose the only family he has left? The critically acclaimed series makes its long-awaited return as creator and artist Peter Steigerwald presents to you Aspen’s most out of this world hit series – THE ZOOHUNTERS!

THE ZOOHUNTERS #4 is in stores April 24th, 2019!

FC                               32 pages                                  $3.99

RETAILER NOTE: THE ZOOHUNTERS #4 will ship with two different covers by series artist Peter Steigerwald and artist Joe Benitez. Each cover is available to order separately, with no quantity limitation or restrictions.

THE ZOOHUNTERS #4 RETAILER INCENTIVE:

For every 6 copies of THE ZOOHUNTERS #4 ordered, retailers will receive one (1) FREE copy of the alternate THE ZOOHUNTERS #4 cover by artist Billy Tan, with the option to purchase up to three (3) additional Tan alternate THE ZOOHUNTERS #4 Covers at net $4 each.

THE ZOOHUNTERS #4 EXPANDED RETAILER INCENTIVE:

For every 12 copies of THE ZOOHUNTERS #4 ordered, retailers will receive one (1) FREE copy of the alternate THE ZOOHUNTERS #4 cover by artist David Finch, with the option to purchase up to three (3) additional Finch alternate THE ZOOHUNTERS #4 Covers at net $8 each.   

Preview: Fathom Vol. 7 #6

FATHOM Vol. 7 #6

Ron Marz – Story  / Siya Oum – Art / Peter Steigerwald – Colors

1998’s Best-Selling Title of the Year Celebrates 20 Years in 2018! 

Allies are in short supply for Aspen as she’s caught between the Russian Military and hostile warriors of The Blue, with both trying to end her once and for all! And even if Aspen manages to survive, she’s no closer to rescuing her brother from the hands of her enemies!

Michael Turner and Aspen Comics’ flagship title commemorates its landmark twenty years since its debut in grand fashion! The superstar creative team of Ron Marz (Green Lantern, Witchblade) and Siya Oum (Lola XOXO) are on board to deliver Fathom, and the iconic heroine, Aspen Matthews, to a new generation of readers as well as loyal fans alike! 

FATHOM vol 7 #6 is in stores is in stores January 2nd, 2019!

FC                               32 pages                                 $3.99

Fathom Vol. 7 #6
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