Tag Archives: vita ayala

Preview: Xena: Warrior Princess: Road Warrior TP

Xena: Warrior Princess: Road Warrior TP

writer: Vita Ayala
artist: Olympia Sweetman, Vasco Georgiev, Jordi Perez, Erica D’Urso
cover: David Mack
FC | 128 pages | $19.99 | Action/Adventure | Teen+

She has outwitted gods, defeated massive armies and found redemption through conquering insurmountable tasks.

In a time of ancient gods, warlords and kings…a land in turmoil called out for a hero! She was XENA, a mighty princess forged in the heat of battle! In this all-new series, writer VITA AYALA (Black Panther, Shuri, Wonder Woman, The Wilds) and artist OLYMPIA SWEETMAN throw Xena and her companion Gabrielle headfirst into a mysterious adventure. Can Xena discover the secrets of a village full of super-strong children, before jealous and petty GODS get involved?

Xena: Warrior Princess: Road Warrior TP

Review: Marvel’s Voices #1

Marvel's Voices #1

Marvel’s Voices is an Experience, capital E. It’s the first comic I know about that adapts the concept of a podcast into a comics anthology collecting stories from black creators giving their take on the Marvel universe.

The book’s title carries over from the podcast it’s based on, which is hosted by Angélique Roché. The list of creators includes Vita Ayala, Damion Scott, Kyle Baker, Brian Stelfreeze, Roxane Gay, Method Man, Alitha Martínez, among other notable industry names. What’s interesting about the project, though, is that it embraces its multimedia roots by featuring essays from other creators accessible via Marvel’s Voices online page.

Two particular essays grabbed my attention: Regine L. Sawyer’s “Growing Up Marvel” and Karama Horne’s “The Legacy of Isaiah Bradley: The First Black Captain America.” (Disclosure: Karama and Regine have both contributed to our site – ed.)

Sawyer’s essay is about her origin story into comics through a less conventional avenue than most other stories of the kind: X-Men trading cards. I don’t want to spoil the essay because it is a fascinating and well-written story, but it is wonderful to get this look at how comics allow for multiple entry points given it’s an entire cultural package. It made me remember my card collecting days growing up, both the same X-Men cards Sawyer collected and the classic Pepsi Cards I religiously hunted down back when they came out in Puerto Rico. I still have them with me and they also helped me embrace comics.

Horne’s essay is about two comics: Truth and The Crew. Each one stands as some of Marvel’s best comic book offerings. They were subversive and hard-hitting, daring enough to give Marvel a black Captain America (in Truth), complete with an exploration of the tragic treatment black heroes get using real-life black history as the basis for the problems each character faces (which is expanded upon in The Crew).

The essay is a great and concise history of these comics, but it also serves as a lesson on visibility. That Marvel hasn’t reprinted these stories or released newer editions of the paperbacks brings up more questions than it should. I think Horne’s essay makes a strong argument as to why we need these comics back on the stands.

On the comic’s side of Marvel’s Voices, we get a strong if a bit uneven set of short stories that are personal, celebratory, and thoughtful as to why Marvel characters mean so much in the struggle for more diverse voices in the industry. Kyle Baker, for instance, produced a one-pager Ant-Man and Nick Fury story titled “Perspective,” about Fury’s problem with depth perception. It’s a quick hit but the art on display here is impressive enough to make anyone want to see Baker do more Marvel work.

Geoffrey Thorne, Khary Randolph, and Emilio López’s “Top of the Key,” on the other hand, is a one-pager on Mosaic story (a character Marvel has severely underused, in my opinion) that would’ve benefited from an additional page or two. It feels more like a setup for a larger story and we only really just get a taste of it.

Rob Markman, Damion Scott, and Dono Sánchez-Almara’s “What a Wonderful World” stands as one of the most impressive stories in the anthology as it offers a well-rounded look at a Marvel character with outstanding art and a clear message to boot. It centers on a troubled Silver Surfer, comparing Marvel’s biggest villains with humanity’s own villainy when it comes to protecting the environment. No panel was spared, no color was misplaced, and no bit of text hung without intent. Just a really good two-page story.

The best story in the book is without question “Inspiration,” by James Monroe Iglehart, Ray-Anthony Height, and Emilio López. This 4-page tale gives the radioactive spider that gave Peter Parker his powers a much-deserved platform to contemplate his role in the grand scheme of things. The script showcases an interesting play on what a superpowered spider is supposed to be and how much of its natural instincts define its actions. It’s simply unforgettable and truly worthy of getting its own comic book series.

Marvel Voices #1 is the type of book Marvel needs to invest more on. It shows just how important it is to bring in other perspectives into this superhero universe and just how different it can all turn out to be. It speaks to the power of voices hungry for diversity in storytelling. And that, in itself, is a beautiful thing.

Writers: John Jennings, Anthony Piper, Luciano Vecchio, David Betancourt, James Monroe Iglehart, Evan Narcisse, Vita Ayala, Regine L. Sawyer, Brian Stelfreeze, Brandon Montclare, Tatiana King Jones, Karama Horne, Kyle Baker, Roxane Gay, Yona Harvey, Don McGregor, Geoffrey Thorne, Rob Markman, Method Man, Daniel Dominguez, Charlamagne The God, David F. Walker, Chuck Brown
Art: Anthony Piper, Luciano Vecchio, Ray-Anthony Height, Jahnoy Lindsay, Bernard Chang, Brian Stelfreeze, Natacha Bustos, Kyle Baker, Brittney L. Williams, Khary Randolph, Damion Scott, Alitha E. Martinez, JJ Kirby, Sanford Greene
Color: Anthony Piper, Luciano Vecchio, Emilio Lopez, Marcelo Maiolo, Brian Stelfreeze, Tamra Bonvillain, Kyle Baker, Rachelle Rosenberg, Dono Sánchez-Almara, JJ Kirby, Matt Herms
Letterer: Travis Lanham
Writing: 9 Essays: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10
Recommendation: Buy and make sure to bag and board it.

Preview: Marvel’s Voices #1

Marvel’s Voices #1

(W) Vita Ayala, More (A) Brian Stelfreeze, More (CA) Ryan Benjamin
RATED T+
In Shops: Feb 19, 2020
SRP: $4.99

THE WORLD OUTSIDE YOUR WINDOW!

Marvel’s acclaimed podcast series focusing on telling the stories of diverse creators and their unique perspectives becomes a one shot of brand new adventures! The X-Men find their place in the world after declaring a new nation! Killmonger strikes! Moon Girl and Devil Dino return!

Marvel's Voices #1

Preview: James Bond (2020) #3

James Bond (2020) #3

writers: Vita Ayala & Danny Lore
artist: Erica D’urso & Marco Renna
covers: Jim Cheung (A)
Cheung (RI-B/W), Cheung Pure Pencil (RI-B/W), Cheung Vintage Paperback Cover (RI)
FC | 32 pages | $3.99 | Action/Adventure | Teen+

The first arc concludes, from VITA AYALA (Morbius), DANNY LORE (Queen of Bad Dreams) and ERIC GAPSTUR (The Flash). Bond is in over his head. What started as a “punishment” assignment has expanded into a world of international crime that Bond can’t wrap his mind around. Will 007 accept that the mission is too big for one spy, and seek assistance… or will pride be his downfall?

James Bond (2020) #3

Review: Nebula #1

Nebula #1

Nebula is often a character that plays second fiddle to others. She orbits her sister Gamora or their father Thanos. Since her breakout in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, she’s dipped her toes a bit more into individuality. Nebula #1 is a big leap for the character putting her squarely in the spotlight.

And that spotlight delivers something that could be interesting though not what was expected.

Writer Vita Ayala has Nebula do what she does best, kill people as she plunders. Some of the early action is hinted at. That decision allows the reader’s imagination to go wild upping the awesome of Nebula’s mission. And that mission is… intriguing. Ayala uses the unique cybernetic nature of the character as a driver for the story and it’ll be interesting where it all drives the character. Her relationship with her sister and abuse of Thanos are characteristics I know of and I fully expected an exploration of what that does to someone. This might touch upon that in a direction I wasn’t expecting or it might go somewhere else getting here away from that. In Ayala we trust.

Claire Roe‘s art is decent. With color by Mike Spicer and lettering by Travis Lanham the issue I see is a drop in detail in some panels. Overall, the comic is consistent and looks good but there’s some work as far as Nebula’s cybernetics where the detail isn’t quite there. That detail gives the character a bit of personality as far as design. Instead of lines defining panels, it’s just a solid color. Where Roe really stands out is the upgrade Nebula gets and how she begins to see the world. Teamed with Lanham’s lettering (assuming that’s his work) the perspective is cool and different.

Nebula #1 goes in an unexpected direction and one that opens things up in numerous ways. The open road is not just for plot but also for the character. There’s something about this debut, it has a lot of potential and it’s definitely one to keep an eye on as far as a series.

Story: Vita Ayala Art: Claire Roe
Color: Mike Spicer Letterer: Travis Lanham
Story: 8.05 Art: 7.95 Overall: 8.0 Recommendation: Read

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Morbius #4

Morbius #4

(W) Vita Ayala (A) Marcelo Ferreira (CA) Skan
Rated T+
In Shops: Feb 12, 2020
SRP: $3.99

THE MONSTER CALLED MORBIUS!

• Michael Morbius has always been a man of science. But he’s also a man of pride, and when those two traits combine, the results have been catastrophic. This time is no different!
• Whatever Morbius has wrought havoc on his genetics – with his humanity inching closer to memory with every passing moment!
• This while a figure from his past returns, with Morbius dead in her sights.

Morbius #4

Preview: Nebula #1 (of 5)

Nebula #1 (of 5)

(W) Vita Ayala (A) Claire Roe (CA) Jen Bartel
Rated T+
In Shops: Feb 12, 2020
SRP: $3.99

Nebula has grown under the shadows of Thanos and Gamora, but no longer! With her eyes set on a top-secret device, Nebula has big plans for her future-and she’s not about to let anyone get in her way! But her goal may end up costing her more than she’s willing to pay after a showdown with one of the cosmos most feared bounty hunters….Don’t miss out on this cosmically critical series launch from rising stars, Vita Ayala (PRISONER X) and Claire Roe (FEARLESS)!

Nebula #1 (of 5)

It’s a New Era of X-Men in Children of the Atom from Vita Ayala and Bernard Chang

The new era of X-Men books continues this April with Children of the Atom, a new ongoing series from writer Vita Ayala and artist Bernard Chang! This thrilling new team book will debut a new squad of superheroes that will turn the X-Men’s world upside down and you can get your first glance at these new young heroes in R.B. Silva’s stunning cover below! Further details surrounding the cast remain a mystery but it’s no secret that these teens have been inspired by your favorite X-Men. But don’t let their admiration fool you, their adventures will be far different and you won’t believe the twists and turns that await you from the very first issue!

Just who are these new kids?

Written by Ayal, with art by Chang, the first issue’s cover is by R.B. Silva with color by Jesus Aburtov.

Children of the Atom

Review: James Bond #2

James Bond #2

While the theft and forgery of a valuable piece of art might not seem like a logical mission for James Bond, things become clearer in the second issue. James Bond #2 slowly rolls out why 007 has been dispatched and we learn it’s something much bigger.

Writers Vita Ayala and Danny Lore have made it clear what their vision of a good Bond story is. This isn’t the over the top action of Moore, Dalton, or Brosnan. This is a story that’s more of a slower build like the Bond of Connery and Craig. It’s also a Bond that’s a bit gruffer like Craig’s depiction. He’s not all that likable, so far. Ayala and Lore deliver some teases of the smooth character that can win you over. But, this is a Bond of little words and constantly thinking.

What’s interesting about James Bond #2 is the history of Brandy that’s unexpected. She has history with M, something that’s hinted and teased but not laid out yet. She’s not a former agent but there’s something that’s key to her current business and also something that keeps her on the side of angels. It adds something to the series and takes the slow build and plot and adds enough mystery to have you wanting to continue.

The art by Eric Gapstur is good. With color by Roshan Kurichiyanil and lettering by Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou, the issue isn’t one of excitement. The art team has the difficult task of making talking interesting. While some panels could be tighter in their focus, the art pacing is good. The latter half of the comic particularly brings with it some tension as Bond focuses on his mission. That tension is helped by the art. The earlier panels in the comic featuring wider open scenes work in a different way in the latter part of the comic. Instead, the wide-open rooms and halls, with little detail and items, make you wonder how Bond will sneak around as he has so little to hide behind and use.

This new volume of James Bond is an interesting one. It’s a slow build that’s intriguing in a noir/crime sort of way. This isn’t over the top action and fancy gadgets. The first two issues are good but the pacing might mean waiting for the trade or binge-reading will enhance the enjoyment a bit. It’s a slow burn that’s more reminiscent of a crime/spy prose story than anything else. Fans of Bond that’s not about crazy sets and implausible will enjoy this one.

Story: Vita Ayala, Danny Lore Art: Eric Gapstur
Color: Roshan Kurichiyanil Letterer: Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou
Story: 7.5 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.5 Recommendation:
Read

Dynamite Entertainment provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: James Bond (2020) #2

James Bond (2020) #2

writers: Vita Ayala & Danny Lore
artists: Eric Gapstur
covers: Jim Cheung (A), Jim Cheung (RI-B/W), Cheung Pencil Sketch (RI-B/W), Cheung Vintage Paperback Cover (RI)
FC | 32 pages | $3.99 | Action/Adventure | Teen+

A fake is only the beginning…

James Bond is forced into a world he doesn’t understand.

Counterfeits, smuggling, following impossible trails to invisible villains. Can he learn to trust others for help, or will the mission leave him behind? From VITA AYALA (Morbius), DANNY LORE (Queen of Bad Dreams), ERIC GAPSTUR (The Flash: Year Zero), and ROBERT CAREY.

James Bond (2020) #2
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