Tag Archives: simon bowland

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Review: The Princess Who Saved Herself

Gloria Cheng Epstein Takahara de la Garza Champion likes to rock out with her pet snake but the witch next door doesn’t like Gloria’s guitar playing.

Story: Greg Pak
Based on the song by: Jonathan Coulton
Art: Takeshi Miyazawa
Color: Jessica Kholinne
Letterer: Simon Bowland

Get your copy in comic shops! 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.

comiXology
Amazon
Kindle
Bookshop
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: Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula’s Safe

Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula's Safe

Bad Idea is a publisher that’s willing to throw out new ideas and see how it sticks. There’s a long list of both good and bad about their latest, a comic available for only 24 hours. It must be paid for today. Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula’s Safe is just $1 delivering an entertaining enough detective story. Featuring a B-Side (that’s Bad Idea’s version of a backup story), it’s definitely worth the money. Now the question is, is it worth having to go to the store?

Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula’s Safe introduces us to a detective who must determine who broke into the safe at a pizza joint. The short comic seems to have fun with its genre pulling out various tropes and throwing them at the reader like an interrogation. Writer Robert Venditti seems to take the concept as a good and roles with it. The concept itself is taken seriously which delivers a level of spoof about it.

David Lapham delivers the art with Simon Bowland on lettering. The combo of the two makes the comic feel more like a B-Side since its style in art and pacing is so close to the series of “Hero Trade” stories that have filled the releases so far. Like Venditti, the art too feels like it’s having fun with the concept and story again playing on tropes for the genre and also playing them very straight.

The comic also features the teaser story for Save Now, a riff on the time travel genre. Written by Matt Kindt, the comic features art by Tomas Giorello, color by Diego Rodriguez, and lettering by Dave Sharpe. The concept is straight out of the manga All You Need is Kill (which inspired the film Edge of Tomorrow). A team of heroes features a leader who can go back in time and then let things play out. The only things are he can’t go forward and he does age. But, it allows him to fix mistakes in battle and find the best strategies. I don’t want to ruin the twist and surprise but the teaser comic has me excited to read more with its concept and features some fantastic art.

Is Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula’s Safe worth it? Sure, the comic is definitely worth the $1 cover price. Now, is it worth making a special trip for? That’s more up in the air. If the comic was available for a week, sure, but for one day only, this is a special trip to the comic shop it’s ok to skip. Hank Howard, Pizza Detective in Caligula’s Safe is for the diehard Bad Idea fans.

Story: Robert Venditti, Matt Kindt Art: David Lapham. Tomas Giorello
Color: Diego Rodriguez Letterer: Simon Bowland, Dave Sharpe
Story: 7.5 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.5 Recommendation: Buy (if you’re already going to the shop)


Purchase: Zeus Comics

AfterShock Reveals God of Tremors from Peter Milligan, Piotr Kowalski, Brad Simpson, and Simon Bowland

GOD OF TREMORS

Writer: Peter Milligan
Artist: Piotr Kowalski
Colorist: Brad Simpson
Letterer:  Simon Bowland
Cover: Piotr Kowalski w/ Brad Simpson
Incentive Cover: Michael Gaydos
$6.99 / 48 pages / Color / On sale 8.18.21

A 19th Century gothic horror of exorcism, demonic worship and epilepsy. 

When Aubrey has his first seizure, he’s pulled out of school and hidden away in the family’s remote country estate. His father — a high-ranking English priest — tries to chase the “devil” out of Aubrey — but maybe the devil lurks in the grotesque pagan effigy that dwells on the grounds. And maybe the devil will turn out to be Aubrey’s only ally…

A singular tale of nightmarish terror and creeping enlightenment told against a backdrop of ignorance and brutality, GOD OF TREMORS springs from the fertile imagination of award-winning writer Peter Milligam (OUT OF BODY, Shade the Changing Man, X-Force) with illustrations from Piotr Kowalski (JOIN THE FUTURE, Sex).

GOD OF TREMORS

Review: The Marvels #1

The Marvels #1

The Marvels #1 is the beginning of a sprawling new epic spanning decades of Marvel history. Where Marvels focused on the view of the Marvel Universe from the average person’s perspective, The Marvels is another massive story from the perspective of the heroes.

And with a sprawling story, The Marvels #1 kicks things off in 1947 taking us through modern times. It’s a choppy delivery of short stories that clearly all will connect with each other at some point down the road. But, for now it’s setup and due to that, things don’t feel rather satisfying. While some moments leave an interesting mystery, others feel like they just hang there. Some storyline segments already connect, while others feel like they’re from a different series or issue. Writer Kurt Busiek delivers an interesting history but the execution is choppy without a solid flow to it. It’s a little frustrating as the debut issue hops from one focus to another with some not playing out long enough to feel satisfying.

The transitions between segments has issues as well. There just isn’t a flow between so many of them giving off a feel of a hard cut and transition instead of a natural experience. It’s hard and abrupt as we jump from one focus to another. An example would be the segment between Thor and Iron Man transitioning to Captain America’s story compared to Schumer’s story surrounded by the Punisher’s. There’s a bit of transition in the latter example and none in the former, though even the latter has issues.

Yildiray Cinar‘s art is decent. There’s a classic feel to it in many ways with a look that fits more in the 1980s than 2021. With color by Richard Isanove and lettering by Simon Bowland the issue’s art misses a dynamic aspect. There’s some sequences that could really pop but never quite stand out on the page. It’s not bad at all but there’s a classic style about it that readers will probably be split on. For an epic story, the art just doesn’t match it on that grand scale. For an opening statement, the art doesn’t deliver. Bowland’s lettering too has a retro feel about it at times. It handles the dialogue well with some creative choices but overall feel like something from years’ past.

The Marvels #1 is an ok start. There’s nothing inherently bad about it but it also doesn’t deliver the experience that’s set up. This is a grand story but the issue feels like a series of short stories that don’t connect in a cohesive way. The issues when they come together may be quite different when read together but this one is a bit of a snooze to start. It’s a jumble of concepts that never comes together.

Story: Kurt Busiek Art: Yildiray Cinar
Color: Richard Isanove Letterer: Simon Bowland
Story: 6.5 Art: 6.75 Overall: 6.6 Recommendation: Read

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: comiXologyKindleTFAW

Review: The Tankies

Three stories of war from the perspective of those who ride in tanks. The Tankies collects three stories originally published by Dynamite and now released by Dead Reckoning.

Story: Garth Ennis
Art: Carlos Ezquerra
Ink: Hector Ezquerra
Color: Tony Aviña
Letterer: Simon Bowland

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.

Amazon
Bookshop
TFAW


Dead Reckoning provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review
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: The Tankies

The Tankies

Within The Tankies are three tales: in “The Tankies”, we meet Corporate Stiles, a hardened vet who is ready to bring his men against the German Tiger tank, a machine feared to be unrivaled. Then in “The Firefly & His Majesty”, Stiles and co. lead a Firefly, which is a Sherman tank, up against the German’s newest weapon, the King Tiger. Lastly, “The Green Fields Beyond” sees Stiles and company’s involvement in Korea against the Communists.

These stories were originally published under the “Battlefields” title that Dynamite had going with Garth Ennis from back in 2011. Last year saw Dead Reckoning release The Stringbags, which was another WW2 Ennis book. That said, it’s nice to see these stories see light again and to also be dedicated to longtime Ennis collaborator and Judge Dredd co-creator Carlos Ezquerra, who passed away in 2018. Like any Ennis-written War Story, they certainly aren’t for the squeamish and the language is something totally beyond colorful. I do feel that a good Ennis war story is as good as it gets.

Reading through The Tankies, you can see that the research has been done to be accurate to the times portrayed. You’ll almost feel like an expert in tanks after reading this. There’s a great afterword by Ennis at the end that really encompasses the amount of research done for such a book as The Tankies. And to finish the book, a section of sketches from Carlos Ezquerra.

I’ve always appreciated the artwork of Carlos Ezquerra. He worked with Ennis on many stories, from Kev at Wildstorm to World Of Tanks at Dark Horse, just to name a few. With The Tankies, I feel like he took this job seriously and put forth a great amount of detail in everything from weapons of destruction to the people using them. His character expressions are great. I have a real appreciation of the art within these pages.

I enjoyed reading The Tankies very much. Honestly, I buy every war story Ennis works on when I know about them. While some might not enjoy the destructive power of war or the violence man casts upon themselves with it, I always appreciate the history lesson of it and the little things that Ennis and Ezquerra inject into it. If you enjoy war or if you like what Garth Ennis brings to comics, The Tankies is just the book for you. It’s not as funny as Ennis and Ezquerra’s work in The Adventures Of The Rifle Brigade but certainly feels similar in tone to World Of Tanks.

Story: Garth Ennis Art: Carlos Ezquerra
Ink: Hector Ezquerra Color: Tony Avina Letterer: Simon Bowland
Story: 10 Art: 8.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Dead Reckoning provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: AmazonTFAWBookshop

Review: Shadecraft #1

Shadecraft #1

We all live in a shadow. Whether it’s a family member or something from our past, or our own expectations, we’re haunted. Shadecraft #1 delivers an exploration of that with Zadie Lu. Zadie is a high school student who is afraid of the shadows and for good reason. The shadows seem to be alive and attacking her for some reason.

Writer Joe Henderson takes us into a world that’s familiar but also haunting. So many of us have had that feeling that we’re being watched or chased and some might have experienced that sensation being their shadow. This takes that and turns it into both a magical and scary concept. What’s going on? We’re not quite sure but the setup is solid.

In Zadie, Henderson has found a character so many can relate to. An older brother whose shadow she falls. A rather serious parent whose shadow she also falls. Then there’s that of reputations and school popularity and Zadie’s life is one that feels familiar. Henderson also doesn’t go over the top with his concepts, instead building things slowly for the end reveal. It keeps readers guessing what’s in Zadie’s head and what’s real.

Lee Garbett‘s art helps with that by teasing the shadows giving them a look that can be both normal and not. At times it feels like the shadows are reaching for Zadie but in reality it’s what they should be doing. Antonio Fabela‘s color is key in that the shadows are dark and ominous but also not just flat black. There’s a life in them thanks to Garbett and Fabela. Simon Bowland‘s lettering is solid enhancing the moments and emotions just right.

Shadecraft #1 is a solid start. It’s a mystery as to what’s going on and dances between horror and something much more. There’s a family touch to it that grounds the story and adds a bit more than just scares and tension. The school aspects make Zadie a more believable character and one that’s a bit easier to connect to. I have a feeling that the series is going to deliver a lot more of that and turn on the waterworks.

Story: Joe Henderson Art: Lee Garbett
Color: Antonio Fabela Letterer: Simon Bowland
Story: 8.0 Art: 8.0 Overall: 8.0 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: comiXologyKindleTFAW

Exclusive Reveal: Kit Buss’ Variant Cover for The Modern Frankenstein #3 (of 5)

The next thing in horror continues in June with The Modern Frankenstein #3 from Magma Comix. We have the exclusive first look at Kit Buss‘ variant cover. Retailers can receive this variant for free when they order 10 copies of the comic.

The Modern Frankenstein is by writer Paul Cornell, artist Emma Vieceli, colorist Pippa Bowland, and letterer Simon Bowland.

The Modern Frankenstein #3 (of 5)

Paul Cornell (w) • Emma Vieceli (a/ca)

Discover the next thing in horror from award-winning writer of television and comics Paul Cornell (Doctor Who, Saucer State, Wolverine) and acclaimed artist/writer Emma Vieceli (Doctor Who, Life is Strange), along with color artist Pippa Bowland and letterer Simon Bowland!

When one of James and Elizbabeth’s experiments spirals out of control, will they be able to contain the damage? And will it drive them apart, or closer together?

A twisted horror/romance that walks a fine line between attraction and fear.

Variant cover by Kit Buss (Critical Role, Cloven: Bloodlines)!

FC • 32 pages • $3.99

*Retailer incentives:

Order 10 copies and get one free variant cover by Kit Buss!

On sale 6/23/21

The Modern Frankenstein #3 (of 5) Kit Buss variant cover

Cullen Bunn, Andrea Mutti, and Simon Bowland Bring Nightmares to Life in Parasomnia

From acclaimed horror creators Cullen Bunn and Andrea Mutti, alongside letterer Simon Bowland, comes the new nightmare-invoking miniseries Parasomnia.

After the disappearance of his son, one man becomes a captive in a nightmarish dreamscape in order to find him. As dreams and reality blur together in growing panic, a ruthless cult seeks to break down the barrier even further and rule the land of dreams. Can our hero and his son return to the real world, or will they be trapped forever in limbo?

Parasomnia #1 (of four) arrives June 30, 2021, and is available for pre-order now. It features a variant cover by Rafael Albuquerque.

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