Reading an issue of Colder I imagine is like being cooked like a lobster. You don’t notice the temperature change until it’s too late.
There’s something psychologically methodical about how Paul Tobin and Juan Ferreyra (Prometheus: Fire and Stone) layout their story from page to page and panel to panel that slithers back behind your subconscious, hides there, and then starts poking at it, taking the form of a gnawing discomfort. Much of it has to do with the patience they exhibit. They don’t just throw creepy images or violent mayhem at you right away. In fact, much of the creepiness occurs because, sometimes, things don’t happen for several pages at a time, and with Nimble Jack spreading madness, you kind of don’t want it to.
I jumped at the opportunity to read what I believed to be a new offering from Kevin Eastman (TMNT) and Simon Bisley (Lobo, Heavy Metal, etc.), thinking it would be a fun trip back to the '90s. Little did I know that it quite literally is a trip back in time, as it’s a republishing of something from Heavy Metal.
The trade paperback of Memetic collects all three issues of James Tynion IV (Batman Eternal, Ufology) and Eryk Donovan’s (In the Dark, Imaginary Drugs) 2014 three-issue, paranoia-laced, completely unnerving horror series about the spread of information in the social media world.
Richard Corben is one of those names you recognize immediately. From Heavy Metal Magazine to drawing some of the most popular rock album covers (Meat Loaf's Bat out of Hell), he’s left his mark on pop culture for a wide spectrum of people for decades now. He’s a name spoken alongside some of the masters like Frank Frazetta and for good reason. His artistic prowess has an otherworldly grace to it. Some of my memories of his work range from Hellboy, Aliens: Alchemy, a couple of Punisher one shots, Hellblazer, and the list goes on. Though it’s hard to pin him down as he’s not known for one thing, when he works, I pay attention.
Secondary plots and background noise are all pushed to the foreground in the third issue of Paul Cornell and Tony Parker’s This Damned Band. As the elements intertwine and slowly begin to close in on the hapless and drug-induced band members of the band Motherfather, their personalities begin to spiral out of control. No one is left unaffected.
You know those moments when you say something knowing that, as you say it, there’s a much better way of actually approaching the situation, but for whatever reason, you reach down to the part of you that is most afraid, terrified actually, of making the right choice and you doom yourself anyway. And then, you crumble because that may have been it. You just keep pushing away the things you love.
Every now and then, you have to do a cool thing as a boyfriend. My girlfriend is a huge Sailor Moon fan – she sings along with the opening credits. I’m an anime fan, so one day not long ago, I suggested we watch the new series, and so we are. It’s really entertaining watching her face light up. The good thing is, I’m also enjoying it. Far more than I imagined I would. Zodiac Starforce has the same sort of appeal. Awesome and entertaining female characters who do power poses to activate their magical abilities that have been given to them by a force from the astral plane named Astra! I can almost hear a theme song playing over the top of their transformation scenes.
This is the first I’ve read of the Colder series, Toss the Bones being the third story arc.
I wouldn’t be able to tell you much about who the hero, Declan, or his friend, Reece, are, as they spend most of the time in this first issue not wanting to talk about what happened in the previous series, but while they are attempting to take a “me” (in this case a “we”) day, a pretty terrifying character named Nimble Jack, long-lost offspring of The Joker and Salvador Dali, wreaks havoc on just about everyone he comes into contact with.
There is a moment in Alan Moore’s Watchmen when Dr. Manhattan is talking about the miracle of life and we’re led on a journey through the stars. I remember this moment specifically, as I’m sure many do. It is not a personal moment as it was shared with readers everywhere, but one that was felt like it was. I remember crying. Moore has this way of drawing you into not only his story, but his thoughts, his wants, his humanity, and, many times, the destruction or loss of it. In this case it was the discovery of it. Reading the current issue of Arcadia, it felt like I was being teased into someone else’s dreams in the same way. It’s poetry of ideas and art - a symphony of words and images. There are things presented that I personally have never seen that kind of blew my mind.