The second volume of popular pirate adventure seriesA Man Among Yehits the high seas this Summer thanks to writer Stephanie Phillips and a new interior artist to the team, Josh George. A Man Among Ye #5 begins this new story arc this July from Image Comics and Top Cow.
In A Man Among Ye #5, Pirate queen Anne Bonny is back with her crew of lady buccaneers after a harrowing escape from a Caribbean prison! But can they find a safe haven on land or sea after Calico Jack Rackham’s betrayal and the governor’s promise to hunt down and execute Anne?
A Man Among Ye #5 Cover A by Josh George (Diamond Code MAY210089), A Man Among Ye #5 Cover B by Abigail Larson (Diamond Code MAY210090) and A Man Among Ye #5 Cover C by Craig Cermak (Diamond Code MAY210091) will be available at comic book shops on Wednesday, July 14.
(W) Stephanie Phillips, Dave Johnson (A/CA) Marika Cresta, Andrew Dalhouse In Shops: Apr 07, 2021 SRP: $16.99
In Averee’s world, the usual trials of making your way into adulthood come with the added stress of Ranked, a ubiquitous and all-knowing tech innovation that awards you points for socially acceptable behavior and takes them away when you don’t conform. It seems fun enough at first, but it becomes much more than a game when Averee’s rank suddenly drops overnight. Now she’s getting hassled at school, blocked from her favorite restaurants, and her mom is out of a job. Luckily, her bottom-ranked BFF Zoe is a perfect accomplice for what’s about to be the heist of the century: a raid on the app’s corporate HQ to set things right and its spokesperson, the virtual popstar Pretty Kitty!
Writer: Stephanie Phillips Artist: Tony Shasteen Colorist: JD Mettler Letterer: Troy Peteri Cover: Tony Shasteen w/ JD Mettler $3.99 / 32 pages / Color / On Sale 4.28.2021
Surviving a nuclear attack in the 1950s, the McCleans wake to find that the explosions have somehow propelled them into a post-apocalyptic United States that has been moved entirely underground. While the McCleans find a country caught in a never-ending war, they also learn that this new underground society might be willing to go to extreme lengths in order to destroy their enemies. Can the McCleans find a way to return to their own time before it’s too late?
AfterShock Comics 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
Heavy Metal has announced that they will be exclusively selling a second printing of Taarna, The Last Taarakian #1, the first issue of the bestselling series about the venerable science fiction, fantasy, and horror magazine’s flagship character from the 1981 animated film, brought to life by writer Stephanie Phillips and art by Patrick Zircher. This special edition will also have eight pages of additional content, including a special “Script to Final Page” feature with script excerpts by writer Stephanie Phillips.
The first printing of the first three issues of the hit series Taarna, The Last Taarakian have completely sold out.With overwhelming demand from retailers and fans, Heavy Metal will be releasing the second printing of Taarna, The Last Taarakian #1 to retailers exclusively as a direct order. This special printing will include a one-of-a-kind cover, illustrated by mega-popular cover artist Peach Momoko.
This August will mark the 40th anniversary of Taarna’s debut in the landmark Heavy Metal film. In Taarna, The Last Taarakian #1, writer Stephanie Phillips breathes powerful new life into the iconic and beloved character, bringing her into the modern era with a strong voice. In Phillips’ groundbreaking series, the flagship character returns in a new story of cosmic mystery, as she battles throughout the multiverse in her war against Kako, the embodiment of chaos. This is the tale of a millenia-old battle between godlike beings, with all sentient life caught in their path.
I’ve never been the biggest fan of Harley Quinn. I always felt the character was more interesting (for me) as part of an ensemble and not the center spotlight. I’m also not a fan of the more slapstick take, instead, I like the bit more goofy but very intelligent version that’s torn between different worlds. DC Future State delivered a take I hadn’t seen before, focused on her background as a psychiatrist as she took on Gotham’s worst. She still delivered laughs and a bit of manic self and very interesting insight into others. Harley Quinn #1 kicks off a new volume for the character set back in the present and a Harley who’s attempting to make amends for her past misdeeds.
Stephanie Phillips continues to guide Harley on her adventures giving us a character who’s still a bit out there but also one you can relate to a lot more. Harley has made mistakes, being the sidekick to a mass-murderer will do that. She now has a clean slate due to her work with the Suicide Squad and she wants to make things right. But where to start?
Phillips gives us a Harley with a mission. She has a clear focus now and it’s not random adventures. She wants to do the right thing but she’s not completely sure how to go about that. She’ll also need to face her past. It’s a solid direction for the character who has been an anti-hero for so long after her villain roots. Harley Quinn #1 has the character really making her “face” turn as she attempts to be a hero. And to me, that’s really interesting.
The debut issue has Batman who is rather skeptical of her abilities and intent. She has to now deal with not having income as a hero (this seems to be a popular topic lately). She’s starting over. Harley Quinn #1 is a woman who has finally broken away from an abusive relationship and life and is starting over. There’s a lot of potential in that. Most importantly, it entertains too.
Riley Rossmo helps deliver a kinetic punch to Phillips story through the art. It’s in Rossmo’s distinctive style with color by Ivan Plascencia and lettering by Deron Bennett. Rossmo’s art is perfect for the character as it captures the energy she has. It matches her energetic personality. The colors pop adding to it all and Bennett’s lettering often delivers the punchline in dialogue delivery. The trio come together to capture and create the feel of the comic and character. It’s a perfect mix of humor, action, and some more grounded emotional moments. You get the sense of the highs and lows of Harley throughout.
Harley Quinn #1 is the first Harley comic that has me hooked in to really check out what’s next. I like Phillips’ take on the character and mixed with the art, it has a fun punch to it all. It’s a fresh start for the character and is a solid jumping-on point for new readers and a pivot point for long-time fans.
Written by: Stephanie Nicole Phillips Art by: Riley Rossmo
Ahem! You better read this closely, ’cause we’ve got a red-hot relaunch on our hands here—and I should know! Harley Quinn here to let everyone know that I got a brand-new monthly series here with a brand-new status quo. I’m coming back to Gotham City to make up for the sins of my past and help the city recover from “The Joker War”! But there’s no welcoming committee waiting for me, your favorite Maid of Mischief! And between you and me, some real creeps are working to keep the city broken. We can’t let that happen, can we? Rising-star writer Stephanie Phillips, my new partner in crime, takes me into a bold new era with her partner in artistic crime Riley Rossmo, who I gotta say designed a real nice new costume for me. You’re not gonna wanna miss this one, folks!
It’s election day and individuals have decided to attack each other for unknown reasons. Was it an attack by a foreign country? Was it something else? Red Atlantis #5 wraps up the series answering a lot of questions but also leaving a lot out there. It’s a bit of a mixed finale for this intriguing series.
AfterShock 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
Time to dust off your Boxing Glove arrow, fire up the Arrowcar and join DC in celebrating eight decades of emerald excellence! On June 29, the Green Arrow 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular #1 brings together some of comics’ greatest storytellers to pay tribute to Green Arrow’s legacy and the heroes and villains that have fought aside and against him.
Since his first appearance in More Fun Comics #73 in 1941, Oliver Queen, a.k.a. the Green Arrow has been one of the premier (and loudest) characters in the DCU, always at the forefront of where the superhero genre is headed as the eternal champion of the underdog. This over-sized anniversary issue follows in those footsteps, combining an all-star line-up of Green Arrow storytelling legends such as Mike Grell, Jeff Lemire, Phil Hester, Otto Schmidt, Ben Percy, Tom Taylor, and Devin Grayson alongside new Green Arrow contributors, including Stephanie Phillips, Mariko Tamaki, Ram V, Vita Ayala, Nicola Scott, Chris Mitten, Laura Braga, Max Fiumara, Brandon Thomas, and others to pay homage not just to the Battling Bowman, but Ollie’s partner-in-crime fighting Black Canary, Connor Hawke, Arsenal, Red Arrow, Speedy, Onomatopoeia, Count Vertigo and more!
Featuring a breathtaking cover by Detective Comics artist Dan Mora, this can’t- miss collectible will also feature an incredible selection of “decade” variant covers, courtesy of some of the best artists in the business:
1940’s Variant: Michael Cho
1950’s Variant: Daniel Warren Johnson
1960’s Variant: Neal Adams
1970’s Variant: Derrick Chew
1980’s Variant: Gary Frank
1990’s Variant: Howard Porter
2000’s Variant: Jen Bartel
2010’s Variant: Simone Di Meo
See what the past, present and future have in store for Green Arrow his allies and his enemies when the Green Arrow 80th Anniversary 100-Page Super Spectacular arrives in comic book stores and on participating digital platforms on Tuesday, June 29, 2021 for $9.99.
As seen in TheLego Batman Movie, the Arkham video games, and the Batman comics of the 1990s and early 2000s, Batman’s strength is in the world and characters that he creates access to. Whether that’s his allies, villains, nooks and crannies of Gotham, or even police officers that he either works with or against, these personalities and settings are why I continue to return to the Batman side of the DC Universe. The creators of Batman: Urban Legends #1 understand this and flesh out different Batman-adjacent characters and even sometimes explore their relationship to the Dark Knight while also telling action, romance, and crime stories.
First up in this Gotham-themed anthology is the beginning of a six part Batman and Red Hood serial where Batman and his former protege-turned-killer vigilante (He’s switched to rubber bullets for the moment.) investigate a source of a hallucinatory street drug tackily called Cheerdrops. Writer Chip Zdarsky has a firm grasp on Jason Todd’s voice, including the darkness inside his soul and his hunger for justice, especially for Gotham’s beleaguered working class. Artists Eddy Barrows and Eber Ferreira and colorist Adriano Lucas nail the grit of the city with explosive linework and jagged layouts to go with a color palette that has had all the light sucked out of it. However, Excalibur’s MarcusTo does the art in the flashbacks, which features brighter colors as well as simpler, cleaner lines with a more traditional superhero feel even though one of the scenes is set during “Under the Red Hood” when Jason Todd came back from the dead and started killing criminals.
“Batman and Red Hood” is also a study in contrasts in how two very different crime fighters deal with the same crisis. Batman is the World’s Greatest Detective and is super methodical with Barrows and Ferreria drawing him looking at the chemical makeup of Cheerdrops CSI-style, and his All-Star Superman-esque moment with a jumper is less feel-good and more evidence collection. On the other hand, Jason fights crime with his guts and heart and even admits in a wry line from Zdarsky that he’s not a great detective as he struggles to find a Cheerdrop stash house. However, he does find a boy named Tyler, and of course, Jason is great with kids and even lets him wear part of his mask while he looks for his dad in a dodgy part of Gotham. Zdarsky, Barrows, and Ferreira create something truly heartwarming between Jason Todd and Tyler.
There’s a throughline between this and the flashbacks where Batman (Portrayed as more of an action figure than man by To) struggles being a father figure to Jason, and Alfred does the job perfectly because he sees him as a human being and not an obstacle in his war on crime. Chip Zdarsky writes Alfred Pennyworth as the perfect parent to the Bat-family, who isn’t afraid to tell Batman that he’s full of shit and chooses compassion over a closed fist. And speaking of Batman, I love how Zdarsky doesn’t give him an inner monologue and depicts him more as a force of nature than a gun toting, broken man like Jason Todd, who agonizes over every decision and whose interaction with Tyler bring back memories of his mom who died of a drug overdose. Also, he’s not afraid to go a little dark, and Eddy Barrows and Eber Ferreira jagged layouts and emotional poses are along for the ride.
The second story in Batman: Urban Legends #1 is an eight page Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy one-off from writer Stephanie Phillips, artist Laura Braga, and colorist Ivan Plascencia. Plascencia is this story’s secret weapon that shows the happy, hilarious times of Harley and Ivy’s first dates and the bleak current times for Harley as she has moved back to Gotham in her solo title and as a recurring character in Batman. Braga’s art is expressive and high energy for both the good times (Harley and Ivy smooching and snapping selfies) and bad times (A sudden bolt of lightning shattering their pictures), and she is a good fit for a story that isn’t centered around a heist or fight against a superhero, but a relationship. She and Phillips tap into the depth of feelings that Harley has for Ivy, and through some handy plant symbolism, they create hope for the relationship that has become very popular for fans in the past decade. “Harley and Ivy” is a nice, nearly slice of life oasis in the midst of the three other stories, which have more moving parts.
The third story in this comic is a 10 page “Outsiders” feature by Brandon Thomas, Max Dunbar, and Luis Guerrero starring Black Lightning, Katana, and an interesting take on Metamorpho. Thomas turns in kind of a mystery plot with the story starting with Black Lightning and an unseen Metamorpho in a Japanese prison before cutting to a bonkers, two page spread of a speedboat chase. Unlike the previous two stories in Batman: Urban Legends #1, Thomas and Dunbar go for a action over character focus, and honestly, I’m here for it. Dunbar uses arrows from their pursuers to act as eye-lines to follow the high speed chase, and he and Thomas have a clever moment or two up their sleeve, especially in regards to Metamorpho’s first appearance. The story isn’t particularly deep, but it has the vibe of a James Bond cold open with superpowers as Guerrero really makes Black Lightning’s abilities sizzle. Finally, Brandon Thomas’ plotting really kept me engaged with thinking about why characters were acting a certain way, and the the mini mystery box structure has me intrigued for the upcoming issue.
Grifter is a character I didn’t really know a lot about except for some random comics like the New 52 Team 7 and JLA/WildCATs, but Matthew Rosenberg, Ryan Benjamin, and Antonio Fabela have made this anti-hero/rapscallion and his various pratfalls quite lovable and hilarious Batman: Urban Legends #1’s final story. Grifter is like that guy who bluffs at poker, but never has a good hand. And until maybe the penultimate page of the comic, he’s either screwing up or making a joke about it beginning with his mad rush towards supervillain fire during his Team 6 days with a lot of characters with familiar names from Wildstorm comics. (I’m not an expert on these characters, and you don’t have to be to enjoy the story.) Grifter uses his sense of humor to detract from his mediocre performance as Lucius Fox’s bodyguard or to avoid getting his ass kicked by Batman, but he also has a mystery side that is revealed when he has a “date” at one of Penguin’s bars. The mystery starts to really unfold towards the end of the comic, but Rosenberg hints at every time, he talks on a headset with what I assume is his older brother.
The comedy in “Grifter” isn’t just limited to Matthew Rosenberg’s delightfully smartass dialogue. It shows up a lot in Ryan Benjamin’s visuals, which range from G.I. Joe or Authority homages (When the superheroes clean up Team 6’s mess.) in the flashback to pure slapstick. For example, Grifter spills a drink at a party Lucius Fox is meeting a client at and spills a drink on a woman. In this situation, Benjamin doesn’t just show a simple facial expression, but throws in some growlixes and makes you know that she’s furious that the soaking wet guy in Converse and blue jeans is even in the same room with her. This playfulness extends to the fight between Batman and Grifter, which starts as a serious throwdown and ends up in a total cat and mouse situation with Grifter finally getting enough self-awareness to call it quits. However, their paths will cross, and you can tell that Batman understands he’s a wildcard with his connections to Lucius Fox, the criminal underworld, and probably those Wildstorm guys. All in all, Matthew Rosenberg, Ryan Benjamin, and Antonio Fabela turn in a hilarious action-comedy set in DC’s weirdest and (sometimes) dourest city and also slowly unveil what seems to be a master plan to merge the worlds of Wildstorm and Gotham.
Batman: Urban Legends #1 is an absolute win for the anthology format that DC Comics has been trying out with all of the four stories in the comic being entertaining and shedding light on a unique cast of characters. The longer stories that bookend the comic are especially noteworthy thanks to Chip Zdarsky’s pitch-perfect handle on the fascinating character of Jason Todd in “Batman and Red Hood” and Matthew Rosenberg and Ryan Benjamin’s skill with verbal and visual humor in “Grifter”.
Story: Chip Zdarsky, Stephanie Phillips, Brandon Thomas, Matthew Rosenberg Art: Eddy Barrows, Eber Ferreira, Marcus To, Laura Braga, Max Dunbar, Ryan Benjamin Colors: Adriano Lucas, Ivan Plascencia, Luis Guerrero, Antonio Fabela Letters: Becca Carey, Deron Bennett, Steve Wands, Saida Temofonte Story: 8.0 Art: 8.6 Overall: 8.3 Recommendation: Buy
DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review