Tag Archives: shaft: imitation of life

Preview: Shaft: Imitation Of Life #4

Shaft: Imitation Of Life #4

writer: David F. Walker
artist: Dietrich Smith
cover: Matthew Clark
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Mature

The only thing John Shaft wanted was a simple case, one where no one got hurt or killed. He figured working as a consultant on a low budget film would be easy money. He was wrong… dead wrong.

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Preview: Shaft: Imitation Of Life #3

Shaft: Imitation Of Life #3

writer: David F. Walker
artist: Dietrich Smith
cover: Matthew Clarke
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Mature

Working as a consultant on a film proves to be more difficult that Shaft had expected. Not to mention more dangerous. Things take a potentially deadly turn when the police bring Shaft in for questioning on an unrelated case.

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Preview: Shaft: Imitation of Life #2

Shaft: Imitation of Life #2

writer: David F. Walker
artist: Dietrich Smith
cover: Matthew Clarke
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Mature

Having grown tired of dangerous cases that lead to violence, private detective John Shaft decides it’s time to earn some easy money. His first job? Working as a consultant on a film about a black private dick. Award-winning author David F. Walker (Cyborg, Power Man & Iron Fist) proudly delivers the second chapter, entitled “Easy Money”, of the hard-hittin’, tough-talkin’ John Shaft’s latest case!

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Around the Tubes

Power_Man_and_Iron_Fist_1_CoverIt was new comic book day yesterday! What’d everyone get? What did you find exciting? What were duds? Sound off in the comments below!

Around the Tubes

Ad Week – Youssef Daoudi to Create a Thelonious Monk Graphic Novel – Well that’s interesting.

The Beat – The Deadpool Movie Isn’t Faithful To The Comics, And I Approve – Do you think it is?

BBC – Did the Maya create the first “comics”? – This is really interesting.

The Beat – Commentary: BATMAN: The Uncomfortable Conversation – Bryan Hill is always someone to see what he has to say.

Panels – 12 Black Comic Artists You Should Know – Some great suggestions.

 

Around the Tubes Reviews

Comic Vine – Avengers Standoff: Welcome to Pleasant Hill #1

Newsarama – Avengers Standoff: Welcome to Pleasant Hill #1

Talking Comics – Bill & Ted Go to Hell #1

Comic Vine – Bill & Ted Go to Hell #1

The Beat – Midnighter Vol. 1

CBR – Power Man & Iron Fist #1

Talking Comics – Sex Criminals #14

Comic Attack – Shaft: Imitation of Life #1

Comic Vine – Star Wars #16

Comic Vine – Superman: American Alien #4

Talking Comics – Will Eisner’s The Spirit: The New Adventures

Mini Reviews For The Week Ending 13/2/2016

Sometimes, the staff at Graphic Policy read more comics than we’re able to get reviewed. When that happens you’ll see a weekly feature compiling short reviews from the staff of the comics, or graphic novels, we just didn’t get a chance to write a full review for. These are Graphic Policy’s Mini Reviews.


Alex

Bigfoot_SOTE_03_coverBigfoot: Sword Of The Earthman  #3 (Action Lab) There’s a very interesting aspect to this comic; Bigfoot hasn’t said a word in three issues, and his silence is perfectly negated by the narration of his companion who’s name escapes me right now. This has been a solid series so far, with Bigfoot being stranded on Mars, this feels like a brilliant mix of Starship Troopers, John Carter: Warlord Of Mars and Conan all wrapped up in a glossy comic book story. It’s actually pretty damn good. Overall: 8 Recommendation: Read

Batman #49 (DC Comics)* Holy fucking shit. If, like me, you’ve not been a fan of the Robot Bunny Batman, then this issue will have you pumping the ceiling with joy. It’s a brilliantly well done comic that doesn’t feel like Bruce becoming Batman again is a dues ex machina. There’s been a legitimate build up for this moment for bloody months, that came together for me with this issue in an almost montage like moment. Mr H eloquently captures what I love about the characterization in this issue below, and Batman #49 is the issue that cements Scott Snyder as one of the best Batman writers of the past decade, giving us a 50 odd issue run that we’ll be talking about for years. Overall: 9.75 Recommendation: Buy

 

Brett

Captain Canuck #6Captain Canuck #6 (Chapter House Comics) – Wrapping up the first story arc, the comic is an ok ending that wraps up the action nicely and sets us up for what’s to come. As a piece of the arc it’s a solid comic, but on it’s own it’s a bit weaker than previous comics. Still, lots of fun to read. Overall: 7.4 Recommendation: Read

Dark & Bloody #1 (Vertigo) – An interesting start to what seems like a horror comic. Not quite sure where it’s going, if it’s just a weird horror story or a southern gothic story, we’ll see. But, it has me wanting to check out the next issue. It definitely has the creepy vibe down. Overall: 7.6 Recommendation: Read

Green Lantern Corps: Edge of Oblivion #2 (DC Comics) – The second issue continues what feels like a giant action sci-fi film. So far, I’m digging it, and though there’s a lot of action here, it also moves the bigger story along introducing you to this new alien world. Overall: 7.8 Recommendation: Read

Legend of Wonder Woman #2 (DC Comics) – Hells yes. This is the Wonder Woman comic I’ve been waiting for. This is so good. Overall: 8.2 Recommendation: Buy

Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #49 (IDW Publishing) – A good finale to the current arc. I’d have liked it all to have been a straight up horror story, but it does some solid work on the various characters. Overall: 7.7 Recommendation: Read

Black Science #20 (Image Comics) – Just fun science fiction. Turn your brain off and go with the ride. Never disappointing. Overall: 7.8 Recommendation: Read

descender10_CoverArtDescender #10 (Image Comics) – One of the best science fiction comics on the market. Amazing story, even more amazing art. Beautiful to look at and fun to read. Overall: 8.4 Recommendation: Buy

Deus Ex #1 (Titan Comics) – A good first issue that from what I remember catches the world from the video game series pretty well. It’s not deep but sets up a cyberpunk-ish comic that should fill a nice niche. Overall: 7.7 Recommendation: Read

Interceptor #2 (Heavy Metal Magazine) – The first issue caught me off guard and the second issue continues the excellence. Funny, fun, it’s a solid mix of the Heavy Metal vibe along with “western” comics. Overall: 8.4 Recommendation: Buy

James Bond #4 (Dynamite Entertainment) – The individual issues aren’t bad, but I feel like this’ll be a better read as a trade. Overall: 7.1 Recommendation: Read

Letter 44 #23 (Oni Press) – I seriously have no idea where this series is going and I can’t wait to find out. Overall: 7.9 Recommendation: Read

Second Sight #1 (Aftershock Comics)* – The first issue is good, but doesn’t blow me away. My issue is I feel like we’ve seen this story before as well as its protagonist. Maybe it’ll set itself apart down the road. Overall: 7.3 Recommendation: Read

Street Fighter Unlimited #3 (Udon Entertainment) – The comic is a lot of fun. I’m not the biggest Street Fighter fan, but these comics capture the video game series really well and give us some awesome action. A must get if you’re a fan of the video game. Overall: 8.1 Recommendation: Read

 

Mr H

Batman #49 CoverBatman #49 (DC Comics)*: The moment we’ve all been waiting for. We knew Bruce was coming back to the cowl it was never a matter of it, it was always when. Snyder has another win this issue, as I think it’s his absolute best one yet. It delves into the Batman legacy as well as probable futures. What really stands out for me is how well Snyder gets the relationship between Alfred and Bruce. He’s not Bruce’s butler, he’s his father. Alfred doesn’t want to lose his son again. Bruce has finally got the peaceful life he’s always wanted but for Gotham to survive, he must allow Batman to return. Now I won’t spoil here as its too good, but the return method is well thought out and true to the character. Julie Madison even plays a big part. With 50 around the corner Snyder has his day numbered on the title but his impact may have crafted the best Batman run EVER. No Capullo this issue but it doesn’t suffer one bit. Yannick Paquette does a terrific job on the art chores. I cannot find any fault with this issue at all. Overall: 10/10 Recommendation: Buy this book.

 

Ryan C

Hip-Hop Family Tree #7 (Fantagraphics)*: Ed Piskor’s cultural history/odyssey finally takes a look at the nascent hip-hop scene on the West Coast, while out east the Beastie Boys, among other future luminaries, enter the fray with their first stumbling steps out of the gate. As always, truth is stranger — and better — than fiction, I’m not even a hip-hop fan but I wouldn’t dream of missing an issue of this fantastically-written, superbly-illustrated series. Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy.

Shaft-Imitation-of-Life-1Shaft: Imitation Of Life #1 (Image)**: David F. Walker returns to the character he rejuvenated — and to the street of New York — with the first of four sure-to-be-spectacular parts. John Shaft wraps up one particularly brutal case, takes some much-needed time off, and the jumps back in to handle a missing persons case that nobody else would have the balls to touch. And he picks up a gay Latino sidekick by the end? As always , Walker adds new depth and dimension to the character without compromising an ounce of bad-ass, while new artist Dietrich Smith picks up admirably from Bilquis Evely. Overall: 9/10. Recommendation: Buy.

Low #11 (Image)** : Good to see Rick Remender and Greg Tocchini dive back into things — literally — after a bit of a break between issues/arcs, but the “keep hope alive” message is starting to veer into tiresome mantra territory, and echoes the “newfound optimism” philosophical outlook of “Black Science” a bit too closely at this point. Story and art are still good, but decidedly less spectacular than the ultra-high standard we’ve become used to on this series. Intrigued to see how he plans to rotate issues between Stel and her kids, and next issue promises some spectacular stuff as we finally see the surface of , well, Waterworld, so let’s hope this just represents a temporary lull before the visual and verbal fireworks show commences in full swing. Overall: 6. Recommendation: Read.

Injection #7 (Image)**: Continuing with the arc begun last issue, our new inhumanly-smart (or maybe that’s just inhuman) private eye protagonist follows the supply chain of the “long pig” he was nearly serves last issue and nonchalantly antagonizes the police while he’s at it. Warren Elli’s script is razor-sharp and Declan Shalvey’s art is enough to make a grown-up cry with its understated precision and elegance. This is a book that doesn’t see to know how not to keep getting better and better every month. Overall: 8. Recommendation: Buy.

 

Shean

House of Montresor#1 (Red Stylo): Jang and Strutz have written the captivating sequel to Edgar Allen Poe’s Cask of Amontillado , dad wonders into some seriously interesting territory.Imagine that one episode of Twilight Zone where the heirs are fighting over inheritance commingled with Crimson Peak. The script by Enrica Jang, is moody , mysterious, gothic and all types of creepy. The art By Jasob Strutz is beautiful.Overall, strong execution by two masters.Overall: 9 Recommendation: Buy

cyrus perkins tpbCyrus Perkins and the Haunted Taxi Cab TPB (Action Lab): I always wondered what would happen if the Michael Mann masterpiece ” Collateral “, was a TV show, as this book answers that but with a supernatural twist. The Reader joins Cyrus as he navigates his personal life , avoids thugs , run ins with supernatural creatures were trying find peace for his haunted rider. In what would be a normally dark story ,there are a great many funny scenes.The story by David Dwonch proves an interesting twist to both slice of life genre and the supernatural genre. The art by Anna Lencioni, is vibrant and full of heart.Overall, fun when you least expect it.  Overall: 9.2 Recommendation: Read

 


Well, there you have it, folks. The reviews we didn’t quite get a chance to write.

Please note that with some of the above comics, Graphic Policy was provided FREE copies for review. Where we purchased the comics, you’ll see an asterisk (*). If you don’t see that, you can infer the comic was a review copy. In cases where we were provided a review copy and we also purchased the comic you’ll see two asterisks (**).

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

Jonesy_001_A_MainWednesdays are new comic book day! Each week hundreds of comics are released, and that can be pretty daunting to go over and choose what to buy. That’s where we come in!

We’re bringing back something we haven’t done for a while, what the team thinks. Our contributors are choosing up to five books each week and why they’re choosing the books.

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this Wednesday.

Javier

Top Pick: Sunflower #4 (451 Media) – The visuals are amazing, but the luminescence is in stark contrast to the dark cult ridden story. CJ will do anything for her daughter. Or at least we are going to find out?

Descender #10 (Image Comics) – The space adventures of Tim 21 continue on the Robot Resistance’s Machine Moon home world. A new group (‘The Between’) and character (‘Queen Between’) are to be introduced in this issue.

The Last Contract #2 (BOOM! Studios) – The assassin Old Man with No Name is on the hunt for the rat bastard who exposed his kill list. And he ain’t taking no prisoners.

Last Sons of America (BOOM! Studios) – Don Carlo is about to open a Mexican Can of Whoop’ Ass on Jackie and Julian.  I guess they shouldn’t have gotten involved with the Don’s Star Wars quoting daughter.

Snow Blind #3 (BOOM! Studios) – Trent is one messed up kid, and now he knows everything about the WITSEC program and his family.

 

Elana

Top Pick: Constantine The Hellblazer TP Volume 1 (DC Comics)Constantine is DC’s best comic and this is the place to start for fans both new and old. It holds the blend of dark humor, self destructive lust, creepy magic and relatable melancholy that’s required in a Constantine comic. Yet the stories and creative art feel all new. And hurray, one of the writers is a bisexual man writing a bisexual male lead.

Top Pick: Jonesy #1 (of 4) (BOOM! Studios/BOOM! Box) – Love is dumb! Thus spaketh many a young rebel such as Jonesy, the protagonist of this new all-ages miniseries. She has the superpower to make people fall in love, but not with her. While she revels in being unique and an outsider she also wants to be accepted– in-spite of herself. Cute and bold art that’s half punk/half cartoon feels very contemporary and young.  This is writer Sam Humphries’s second latina teen protagonist (the other stars in Marvel’s Weirdworld which you should also be buying).

All-New Wolverine #5 (Marvel) – Laura Kinney teams up with The Wasp! I love this series’ character development and consistent feminist awesomeness. Laura is a complex female superhero and we’ve been hungry for that.

Black Canary #8 (DC Comics) – A mysterious ninja is stalking Dinah. I think I know who it is. Fantastic rock and roll art and interesting stories featuring a great female cast make this series easy to love.

No Mercy #7 (Image Comics) – After last issue’s climax how are you not reading this?! Completely suspenseful, realistic and accessible to non-comics readers. It’s sort of the HBO of comics.

Zodiac Starforce #4 (Dark Horse) – The Final issue of a magical girl series I wish I had as a kid (and I never did read Sailor Moon). A charming and inventive all ages comic with a kick-ass diverse and distinctive cast. You’re sure to find a character to identify with. Feels a bit like a technicolor Buffy for kids.

 

Logan

Top Pick: Batman #49 (DC Comics) –  After Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo rewrote the Batman mythos last week to have Bruce Wayne not be motivated by his parents’ death to pick up the cape and cowl, I am interested in how Snyder and guest artist Yanick Paquette put him back in the middle of the action against Mr. Bloom.

Jem and the Holograms Valentine’s Day Special (IDW Publishing) – My favorite part of the Jem and the Holograms series hasn’t been the plots, but the fun characters, art, and romance. This is why I enjoy the various annual and special issues, which can focus on the characters, their interactions, and antics without having to progress the overall plot. Hoping for some Kimber/Stormer adorableness.

Jonesy #1 (of 4) (BOOM! Studios/BOOM! Box) – The BOOM! Box imprint has a strong track record of fun, relatable all ages comics with great cartoonish art, like Lumberjanes and Giant Days. And Jonesy is different with its focus on romance. Also, there can never be enough comics starring members of fandoms.

Jughead #4 (Archie Comics) – Chip Zdarsky and Erica Henderson make for an excellent comedy team, and Jughead is one of the funniest current comics. Each issue, I anticipate the weird and wacky dream sequences in the middle of the comic. Also, Jughead is revealed to be asexual this issue.

Ms. Marvel #4 (Marvel) – I’m really enjoying the new volume of Ms. Marvel, and how Ms. Marvel has to balance being a regular high school student, Avenger, and superhero while also dealing with her name being used by an evil corporation that wants to level her city for expensive condos. Talk about a full course load.

 

Brett

Top Pick: Shaft: Imitation of Life #1 (Dynamite) – David Walker’s first volume for the classic character was fantastic, and this second one is a comic that I’ve been waiting to read since I found out about it many months ago. Walker mastered getting to the basics of John Shaft, what makes the character great, and I’m expecting more of the same.

Descender #10 (Image Comics) – One of my favorite comics out right now. This sci-fi series is as great to read as it is to stare at it’s beautiful pages.

Legend of Wonder Woman #2 (DC Comics) – The Wonder Woman we need. It’s a back to basics take on the character and is right now the best depiction of the character in comics. The first issue was great and shows you can easily do the character right with a solid creative team.

Old Man Logan #2 (Marvel) – The first issue was fantastic, the best debut of any All-New, All-Different Marvel comic. It perfectly captured the “Western” feel of the original story mixed in with a good revenge tale. So good that I don’t care this issue is out just a few weeks later.

Sunflower #4 (451 Media) – This series is just beautiful to look at, and the story rather haunting. A mother trying to get her kid back from a cult, yes please!

Preview: Shaft: Imitation of Life #1

Shaft: Imitation of Life #1

writer: David F. Walker
artist: Dietrich Smith
cover: Matthew Clarke
FC • 32 pages • $3.99 • Mature

After a high profile case that put him in the headlines, private detective John Shaft is looking for something low profile and easy that will keep him out of the spotlight and out of danger. Shaft takes a missing person case that proves to be more difficult than he initially thought. At the same time, he is hired to be a consultant on a low budget film that may or may not be based on his life, and proves to be as dangerous as any job he’s ever had. But when there’s danger all about, John Shaft is the cat that won’t cop out — even if it means squaring off against sadistic gangsters that want him dead.

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Mini Reviews For The Week Ending 6/2/16

Sometimes, the staff at Graphic Policy read more comics than we’re able to get reviewed. When that happens you’ll see a weekly feature compiling short reviews from the staff of the comics, or graphic novels, we just didn’t get a chance to write a full review for. These are Graphic Policy’s Mini Reviews.


Alex

johnnyred4Johnny Red #4 (Titan)** I love this series; it’s a fantastic WWII era story about a British fighter ace fighting for Russia (but do the Russian brass really want him there?) that tugs on my fondness for war comics, my respect for those who fought in the war, and my love of high quality stories. That this just happens to be one of my top two comics released this week, is just a happy accident. While this isn’t an ideal point for new readers to jump on – what with it being right in the middle of the series – it’s worth hunting the back issues down. Overall: 9 Recommendation: Buy

Surviving Megalopolis #2 (Dark Horse) I was surprised by this series. It has a slight flavour of Irredeemable but with enough of an original twist to the “Justice League’s gone bad” that it should pique your interest, because it’s well worth reading. Overall: 8.75 Recommendation: Buy

Cry Havoc #1 (Image) I finally got around to reading a couple of the last week or two’s comics, and this was fantastic. I should have read this when it came out, because the mix of the supernatural, an awesome lead character (or two) and some brilliant art make this a must read. Overall: 9 Recommendation: Buy

europa 3Batman: Europa #2, #3 & #4 (DC)* I found the differences in the art style issue to issue jarring – at first. Then I realized that whether intentional or not (and I think it was) it absolutely makes sense given the nature of the story. I devoured the three remaining issues that I hadn’t picked up in less than an hour. Truly great stuff. Overall: 8.75 Recommendation: Buy

Amazing Forest #1 & #2 (IDW) Are a pair of fantastic anthology comics. You don’t need to read the first to enjoy the second, but both issues have some brilliant short comic stories within them that are – at times – out of this world, but are all fantastically entertaining. Overall: 8 Recommendation: Buy

Doc Savage: The Spider’s Web #3 (Dynamite) Meh. It’s okay, but just doesn’t do it for me. Overall: 6 Recommendation: Read, maybe?

The Precinct #3 (Dynamite) I wasn’t that impressed with the last issue, but this one was a lot better. It definitely drew my interest much better, and felt like a much more complete installment in this story. Plus, the steam punk aspects are fantastically understated. This comic would be just as good without them, but why would you want that? Overall: 8 Recommendation: Read

Cage Hero #4 (Dynamite) While I have enjoyed the issues so far, I’ve enjoyed them as I would the Sharknado movies; Cage Hero is good because it knows exactly what it is, and it celebrates it with every cheesy bit of dialogue, every been-there-read-that scene. The thing is, it does those things almost well enough to be worth buying, but does fall a lttle short. Overall: 7 Recommendation: Buy

 

Mr H

Spider-Man_1_CoverSpider-Man #1 (Marvel Comics)* Whooo Miles is finally here in the Prime Universe! This issue was great. I didn’t enjoy an issue like this from Bendis since his first story arc on Ultimate Spider-Man. Miles is having trouble balancing hero life and school responsibilities. What makes the issue though is when he swings into action. Spidey takes it right to Blackheart and even wields Captain America’s shield! Just a whole lot of fun and it ends with a great cliffhanger. Bendis and Pichelli have another win. I already can’t wait for the next issue. Overall: 9 

 

Patrick

Vision #4 (Marvel) * – This is the best book about robots that needlessly stars robots. There’s really nothing about the book so far that would prevent an editor from taking out the fact that it stars androids and replacing them with a racial or religious minority family and telling the same story. If the point of the story was to humanize the Vision, why is it being injected with this daytime soap plot? I was so glad they acknowledged the Vision had previously been married to the Scarlet Witch because the whole book began to feel like it took place in a pocket universe. Tom King is amazing and I keep reading to see what he’ll do. Gabriel Hernandez Walta is a tremendous talent and I’ll often by a book just because I enjoy his dark tones and the way he captures human emotion. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy this book. The characters just haven’t meshed with the story yet. Overall: 7 Recommendation: Read

PaperGirls_05-1Paper Girls #5 (Image)– It saddens me to only be writing a shortened review but I don’t want to spend the time being negative about one of my favorite writers in a luscious and gorgeous book. The issue mostly resolves its own tangential distraction this issue and writes two characters who we didn’t really know super well in the first place. I have re-read every issue since it came out and I still have to go back and figure out the names of the four central characters. I like that this issue ends with them literally somewhere else (as it’s beginning to feel like they have just been bouncing back and forth between the same locations accomplishing nothing). The story… I like to start with a summary of what’s happened. You can usually tell how good a book is by how much the summary changes from review to review. I’d be writing the same summary if I did a full review.  Overall: 7 Recomendation: Read

Detective Comics #49 (DC)*– The best part of Jim Gordon-Batman is still just watching him roll with the punches and really do his best. Bruce Wayne-Batman is always treated like a dark god that somehow stands toe-to-toe with everyone from Darkseid to street-pushers. Jim Gordon’s Batman wakes up the whole neighborhood with a blimp spotlight trying to conduct an investigation and fails to get anyone turn it off before just breaking it. I also like some of the darker imagery (for a mainstream DC comic) which helps me balance out the idea that all Batman and his team are doing is watching statues. Seriously, someone’s probably being assaulted in the alleyway adjacent to one of the statues, Batman. Can you think big-picture for a second? Overall: 5.5 Recommendation: Pass

Spider-Man #1 (Marvel)* – This book follows Miles Morales integration into the mainstream universe following the events of Crisis on Infinite Earths (right? I didn’t read Secret Wars, I already had the trade for the original Crisis so I just read that). Honestly, Miles Morales is far more like Peter Parker than Peter Parker has been for a very long time which helps me to understand why this issue ended with me thinking, “Oh, yeah… it’s that red-and-blue rip-off Spider-Man! Oh, red-suit Venom!” Bendis’s best work comes when he is not writing every book with the Marvel logo printed on it (so, essentially everything from before ten years ago), however Sara Pichelli and Justin Ponsor own Miles Morales as far as I’m concerned. There’s something about Pichelli’s angles that make the formerly ultimate Spider-Man so dynamic. I’ve seen static shots of Spider-Man web-slinging for years, but Pichelli’s renditions always make me stop and admire her work. Overall: 6.5 Recommedation: Read

Uncanny X-Men #3 (Marvel)– I miss this book when it was drawn by Rob Liefeld. I miss this book when it was drawn by Mike Allred. I miss this when it was written by Rick Remender. Am I making my point? I struggle with subtly. My point is that it’s sacrilege to have the Uncanny X-Men title be a clone of one of its own spin-off. (I also struggle with perspective.) Overall: 6 Recommendation: Pass

 

Paul

vision 4Vision #4 (Marvel) * Still, in my opinion, the best All New All Different title that I’m reading. Vision still has no idea what his wife has been up to and what she’s hiding; and Virgina comes face to face with her blackmailer and the meeting does not end well. I could feel for her in this issue, and her situation; feeling helpless and things spinning out of control, thanks to King’s writing and complemented beautifully by Walta’s dark tones in the art. I look forward to this title every month and you should be too. Overall: 9 Recommendation: Buy 

Uncanny Avengers #5 (Marvel)* Well here’s a surprise…I didn’t hate it! Rogue, Deadpool, Human Torch and (briefly) Cable are on the hunt for the Red Skull, or more accurately, Professor X’s brain in Red Skull’s head. They do some good cop/bad cop and get a lead on where to find him. The trio (no Cable) break into where they are told they will find Skull and instead find none other then Gambit. He and Rogue have a brief litte reunion and Red Skull slips right past the team…literally. This isn’t a bad stand alone issue coming off the end of the debut story arc. The action was good and I’m sure the search for Red Skull will be explored in more depth as the series goes on.  Overall: 6.75 Recommendation: Read 

 

Ryan C

Providence #7 (Avatar Press) *: The best book on the stands by a country effing mile keeps getting better as hapless protagonist Robert Black finds himself thrown into the Lovecraftian underbelly of America’s physical and psychological horror-show and constructs the most bizarrely effective means for rationalizing his experiences, and coming out the other side more cheerful and optimistic, that I’ve ever witnessed. Thrown in themes of class division, loneliness and isolation, and the terrible burden of keeping secrets and this is “Pickman’s Model” as you’ve never seen it before. Alan Moore’s most compelling “major work” in decades combined with Jacen Burrows’ flat-out breathtaking art makes me feel genuine pity for the folks out there who aren’t reading this. Much as I love any number of current comics series, the simple fact is that right now there is “Providence” — and there is everything else.  Overall: 10. Recommendation: Buy

unfollow 4Unfollow #4 (DC/Vertigo) *: Rob Williams’ fiendishly clever social-darwinism-disguised-as-charity premise goes from “gettign warmer” to “heating up” with this issue, and I can only imagine what “boiling” is going to be like. Somebody we’ve gotten to “know” a bit dies in this issue, and it appears we’re going to get a murder mystery added to the mix here, as well. On art, Mike Dowling seems to be stepping out of his self-imposed Frank Quitely shadow and developing his own, more organic style, so that’s good to see, as well.  Overall: 7.5. Recommendation: Buy

The Sheriff Of Babylon #3 (DC/Vertigo) *: Another strong and compelling series of wrinkles is added to our layer-cake of corruption and rat-fuckery in Occupied Iraq — and speaking of fucking it turns out that two of our protagonists are doing just that — but while Mitch Gerads’ art continues to impress with its grittiness and authenticity, the script by “ex-” CIA operative Tom King (yeah, lots of folks quit the CIA and go into low-paying freelance writing) is taking on a more blatant neo-colonialist tone that seems very much of a piece with the right-wing themes on display in the author’s other high-profile works such as “Grayson” and “The Omega Men.” King hasn’t earned the right to be compared to Ditko, but both are examples of people in comics whose work I admire despite finding their politics anywhere from questionable to downright nauseating. If there’s any doubt in your mind as to where King stands, I’ve seen him say that he’s “proud” of the work he did in Iraq. I’m sure his “former” bosses are proud of the work he’s doing, supposedly of his own volition, to spread their worldview in our entertainment media. Troubling material to say the least, but I can’t deny its quality.  Overall: 7. Recommendation: Buy, but know the writer is probably supplementing his income with a check from Langley.

Swamp Thing #2 (DC)*: Len Wein and Kelly Jones’ “back-to-basics” take on the character continues to showcase both the best and worst aspects of 1970s horror comics — the best being Wein’s deliriously OTT purple prose and Jones’ heartfelt stylistic homage to the art of Bernie Wrightson, the worst being the lame-ass, easily-resolved plot (that could, I suppose, work as a one-or two-parter in a monthly ongoing, but feels downright bizarre in a six-issue mini-series) and the shoe-horning in of guest stars for no apparent reason. The Phantom Stranger I could see, sure — but what possible point does plugging Shade from “Starman” into this story serve? Nice little epilogue/cliffhanger at the end, though, and I’m still loving the ride for the most part. Overall: 7. Recommendation: Buy.

 

Shean

Shaft: Imitation of Life#1 (Dynamite Ent.): The adventures of John Shaft continues in this new miniseries as we catchup with him right before he becomes a successful private investigator. All it took was one case of a mobster’s missing daughter to propel his business. As he enjoys the fruit of his success, David Walker proves that it has not changed the man, as he takes on another missing person’s case , finding trouble at every turn. Altogether, a strong first issue to an already entertaining series. Overall:9.4 Recommendation: Buy


Well, there you have it, folks. The reviews we didn’t quite get a chance to write.

Please note that with some of the above comics, Graphic Policy was provided FREE copies for review. Where we purchased the comics, you’ll see an asterisk (*). If you don’t see that, you can infer the comic was a review copy. In cases where we were provided a review copy and we also purchased the comic you’ll see two asterisks (**).

David F. Walker Returns to Shaft

ShaftsRevengeDynamite Entertainment has announced that critically acclaimed author David F. Walker will continue the legacy of Ernest Tidyman’s iconic private detective John Shaft in an all-new comic book series, Shaft: Imitation of Life, illustrated by Dietrich Smith. The first issue will debut in February 2016 alongside Shaft’s Revenge, the first Shaft prose novel in 40 years (also written by Walker), coinciding with the nationwide celebration of Black History Month.

Imitation of Life takes place following the events of Walker’s 2015 comic book miniseries, Shaft: A Complicated Man – a six-part storyline that won a 2015 Glyph Comics Award and was nominated for the Dwayne McDuffie Award for Diversity. After a high-profile case puts him in the headlines, private detective John Shaft searches for something low-profile to keep him out of the spotlight and out of danger… and takes a missing person case that proves to be more difficult than he thought. At the same time, he is hired to be a consultant on a low budget film that may or may not be based on his life, and proves to be as dangerous as any job he’s ever had. But when there’s danger about, John Shaft won’t cop out – even if it means squaring off against sadistic gangsters that want him dead.

The premise of Shaft’s Revenge: When the Godfather of crime in Harlem reaches out to Shaft for a favor, the hardboiled detective finds himself caught in a web of violence and murder. No one is safe as the bullets start to fly and the bodies start to drop, leaving Shaft with only two options: kill or be killed. It’s a two-fisted tale of retribution as Shaft cuts a bloody path through city, settling old scores and faces the demons of his past.

Shaft - Imitation of Life - Character Model