Revenge is a dish best served gratuitously.
I love environmental, emotional storytelling. I grew up with Samurai Jack, and Genndy Tartakovsky was a master of this style. Allowing a rich environment suffused with a singular mood influenced by music and color to tell the story for you, to be content with the smallest of expression, to have the courage to let it stand and allow the audience to be drawn into your world;it’s an incredibly brave and effective storytelling method when it works. Victor Santos has that fearless talent, and it makes his two graphic novels a masterwork of the style, which makes for two very enjoyable reads.
Alice goes through a fun house looking glass.
Ben Gilboa spins a tale that will set your mind on fire. Reality becomes something more akin to silly putty in his hands with a narrative that makes you question not only the motivations and interests of the characters on the page, but their sanity (and possibly yours), as well. There's no way to read through Blue Moon without having a strong impact. It's a Lynchian horror show that is quite beautiful to look at, making you feel like you're cringing or reading out of the side of your eyes, wanting to keep one foot ready to flee this mental circus. It's the kind of work that makes you wonder "What's happening?" while making you nervous to know the answer. I dig it.
A place for voices to be heard.
This may be a bit meta, but I’m a guy who writes about comic books going to talk about a publication of folks who . . . write about comic books. There are also a slew of comic strips and shorts included, so at least something’s familiar to me. I have to say, this is a very ambitious project and if every issue is as strong as this one, it may become a very cool platform for creators and those that hope to engage and shape the medium. There are some fantastic contributors hitting on interesting topics that comic readers can really be intrigued by. Whether they come to the hobby through the artwork or the stories, there’s definitely something for everyone who enjoys comics.
More than meets the eye.
Things get explosive in Drew Edward Johnson’s third issue of his super-powered secret agency tale. Trapped in the most known loch in the world with a creature of incredible size and power, Matilda Finn tries to keep herself and the hapless Billy the Sub Pilot safe from the rampaging beastie. We finally find out what she can do, and just how powerful she is.
To boldly go to a galaxy far, far away.
Image Comics launched a series that presses the boundaries of technology in the story and in our world. The first mission to Mars has been augmented with a new technology: a device allowing for faster-than-light travel (Didn’t think I needed a spoiler alert there . . . but I could be wrong.), reducing the trip from the Earth to the red planet from 22 months to just a few minutes. This tech has apparently come at a price, though we don’t find out much about that except for on the back cover.
It’s a Zombie Jamboree.
Fans of Eric Powell’s titular Goon will feel right at home at the beginning of this new series from Dark Horse. Suspended in a watery tube at a sideshow attraction, a corpse floats free of the restraints of time until it awakes hungry . . . to know who he is.
Slice, stab, haha . . . huh?
Starlight City Productions brings us an anime-inspired action comic that kicks some serous ass and has great, dark humor that will have you laughing out loud often. Set in a world of super-powered and highly trained individuals fighting for two sides of a world-spanning conflict, an assassin only known as Rade joins Strykes in a high-profile mission behind enemy lines and wakes up in the middle, not knowing who he is or what he has done.
Spunk will get you many places, wisdom gets you back.
Tyson Hesse brings us a witty, fun, and truly entertaining read in his new series, Diesel. I had such a fun time reading this book; I was laughing out loud and had a smile on my face the entire time. A wise-ass young lady on the eve of her 18th birthday cavorts around the airship her father left her and leaves the crew in fits, especially the captain. Having no discernible skills, her greatest asset seems to be being a living stress test for every system and patience level on board, and I love every panel.
Don’t look down.
Nerd alert: I think that Mirror’s Edge is one of the most innovative game experiences I’ve ever had. I felt more in touch with a game world through this game than anything else I’ve ever played, and every time I fall, I have to take a second to stop the minor vertigo I get when I realize that I’m not plummeting to my death. So, when EA (May they burn for eternity.) and DICE (Thanks for Battlefield, but for reals make more experiences like Mirror’s Edge!) announced that they were finally going to release a sequel (It’s not a sequel, but some kind of side-quel that’s not a reboot . . . ? Shut up, Todd!), I was all over this. Funnily enough, I felt that the story was one of the least developed parts of the original game, and now we have a whole lot going on with the licensed book from Dark Horse. I know, that phrase usually means stay away, but with the game’s story so bare from the first time we slipped into Faith’s shoes, I think that everyone can be surprised from the results.
I think, therefore, I am AWESOME.
What if you had any implement you ever needed at hand, like a cartoon character reaching behind their back? And yet somehow didn’t need to be all pure of will and such? And whatever it was stays that way and doesn’t fade away once you stop concentrating? This is the world that Aaron Lopresti brings to life in his new Dark Horse series, Power Cube. Having a father who lacks in the communication department but manages to make an overpowered MacGuffin can be emotionally difficult but provides for a heck of an action title. Knowing its trope-heavy nature and having fun with it, Lopresti makes a smart and fun contribution to the world of comics.