When I finished reading and reviewing Shards: Volume 1, I was eagerly ready for more content from the creators of In Hiatus Studios. Getting my hands on a digital copy of the second anthology was as exciting as my first read of Volume 1, and the wait was well worth it.

“We typically don’t know what we have until it’s lost” is a lesson that many of us heard growing up, and it’s one that Jack Boniface has to contend with in this issue of Shadowman. For years, he’s wanted to be rid of the Ioa, and in Issue #10, he is finally free from his curse, but everything always has a consequence of some sort.

I’m embarrassed to admit it, but I’ve never read Michael Moorcock’s books.  I’ve read almost every other fantasy writer, but, for some reason, I never got around to him. As I bow my head in shame, I can say that I finally know what has fascinated readers about the sword, Stormbringer, and the White Wolf (a.k.a. Elric of Melniboné).  Like all heroes (or anti-heroes), they carry a burden far greater than any of us could bear.

I read issue one of The Empty Man, but a concussion kept me from writing the review at the time, so here we are at issue two as Cullen Bunn taps into what makes online urban myths like The Tall Man spooky as hell to me. The Empty Man is a virus, or maybe a person, or maybe both that gets into the heads of its victims, making them do erratic and violent things. It can affect anyone at any time. It makes you see things, think things, believe things. It alters your reality. The idea is unnerving. The execution makes it more so.

Ho, ho, Hellboy, the magical man in red is coming to your comic store this holiday (this Wednesday to be specific), and he brings with him some most welcome friends. Considering that Christmas was originally a pagan holiday, a Hellboy Winter Special seems far more fitting than our usual festivities. I wonder if the Winter Solstice festivals around the world would ever consider incorporating this wonderful creation and bizarre world of talking animals and snotty spirits into their celebrations. If this new movie is a hit (Fingers crossed!), Hulu or Amazon should do a Hellboy Winter Special… but I digress…

When I started playing The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild in December of 2017, I was immediately entranced by the beautiful, open-world design of the game, the immersive storyline, and the intricate character design. For me, the game mechanics were (and remain) secondary to the more narrative elements of the text. I was thrilled to receive a review copy of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - Creating a Champion, because it allowed me to further indulge in the rich fantasy space of the Zelda universe.

I know this is issue #1 of Hellboy and the B.P.R.D 1956, but, really, it’s an ongoing series that’s well into its run. Be that as it may, this issue is sort of ground zero for a new story arc, and I thought I’d see how easy it would be for me to jump on board. While there are some story beats between characters that are lost on me, the general sense of the events are pretty understandable.

This week marks the release of the second issue of Dark Horse Comics’ Alien 3: The Unproduced Screenplay, a comic book adaptation of William Gibson’s unused stab at the third film in the Alien franchise. Featuring a script and artwork from Johnnie Christmas and colors from Tamra Bonvillain, the second issue of this unusual adaptation lights a fuse to the powder keg that really can only eventually reach its inevitable and disastrous end. And, if the Alien franchise has taught fans anything, it’s the fact that disaster always multiplies when xenomorphs are in the mix.

Just because Halloween is over doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy all of the spooks and scares of Blackwood. Investigate the strange, unusual happenings of the occult through the lens of some troubled college kids on a campus of nightmares.

Things are getting dangerous in Joe Golem: Occult Detective - The Drowning City #4. What’s happened thus far is a pretty tangled web of intrigue and occult-style mystery. Over the last three story arcs, some pretty intricate layers have been built. The foundation is that of Joe and his boss/father figure Mr. Church. Mr. Church is a complex individual, alive well beyond his years, fighting against dark forces. He’s old enough now that he has to use Joe to do the foot work. Basically, Joe is the muscle. Mr. Church also helps Joe to forget. The fact is, Joe is older than Mr. Church, and as his name implies, he’s not necessarily human. Anytime Joe becomes confused with dreams of a distant past featuring a golem that killed witches, Mr. Church gives him tea that muddies his brain and causes him to forget.

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