Sunday, 31 March 2019
Silver Surfer #116 (Marvel)
George Perez (w) Tom Grindberg (a)
Having picked up read and quite enjoyed Silver Surfer #100 in this second and longest running series I thought I'd try another whilst randomly picking up stuff to read. So the cover of #116 caught my attention. Ooh I thought a "Surfer Corps". Boy how wrong I was!
Before I tackle this strange story that I cannot make my mind up about I need to point out that I stopped collecting and reading comics between sometime in 1989 and 1998 so I missed the boom and collapse of the industry that happened in between.
Over the years when I got back into the hobby I picked up a lot of Image/Chaos stuff and was far from overwhelmed though Chastity did catch my attention and Supreme had his moments, especially the Alan Moore issues.
However let's face it there was a hell a lot of overblown over-hyped crap out there and although I picked up some DC events series from the period overall I have tended to avoid this period even when it comes to Marvel.....
Now we all make mistakes and so did George Perez one of my favourite all time artists and writers. This story was utter crap. Bits of the Surfer sold off all over the place effecting various aliens and an atrocious pleasure planet where all this seems to stem from. I am so not buying any more of this story line and I'm a big fan of the character.
Saturday, 30 March 2019
Detective Comics #1000 (DC)
Various (w) & (a)
The comic from which DC gets it's name is their second title to reach the magic number one thousand having been preceded by Action Comics. Detective Comics did start earlier than Action Comics but various publishing schedules meant that the latter got behind. And so here we are with a 96 page special in a prestige format with a luscious wraparound cover by Jim Lee.
Oh yes and there are several "through the decades" variant covers for the hard core collector though one has always been enough for me. This is the best anyway. I love Jim Lee's art.
There are a number of stories two of which look of interest to the future including the first Batman's Longest Case which without any spoilers proves to be a nice opener. The other and more immediate worry for the future is the introduction of the psychotic Arkham Knight. at the end of the book.
Of course there's a few stories in between which are of varying interest (to me anyway. My favourite of these is I know by Brian Michael Bendis with art from Alex Maleev which sees a retired and disabled Bruce Wayne meet up with the Penguin. The most amusing feature is The Legend of Knute Brody. Both are highly recommended.
Worth picking up even if one or two of the short stories didn't quite hit it with me but then I stopped buying Batman titles a while back due to to the endless and expensive crossovers and I wasn't over-enamoured with the Court of the Owls saga either, reboot or no reboot we could have done without this particular revisionism.
Still that's my gripe out of the way and I have ordered Batman and the Outsiders which is finally seeing the light of day.
Worth picking up.
Rating: 4 Stars
Friday, 29 March 2019
Dial H for Hero #1 (DC)
Sam Humphries (w) Joe Quinones (a)
The use of the phone triggers warnings around the DCU including Alfred, Batmans butler and other sensitives. It even brings the police but Miguel ain't hanging around. The six issue mini series begins.
A enjoyable start to yet another revival of the dial. I first read stories of these with Bobby Reed back in House of Mystery back in the sixties. It's been revived several times but never lasted though I thought the last one was quite good.
Rating: 4 Stars
Sabrina: The Teenage Witch #1 (Archie)
Kelly Thompson (w) Veronica Fish & Andy Fish (a)
Another series featuring everyone's favourite witch from Riverdale, except she's moved to a new town with new problems and befriends the bullied girl. Has a couple of flirts get's detention and runs into trouble big time. There's something going on in Greendale. No kidding.
Nothing unexpected but a nicely crafted story with good art that will entertain. This issue was over all too soon and I can't wait for the next one!
Rating: 4 Stars.
Also out this week is the excellent Freedom Fighters #4 from DC, the boring Heroes in Crisis #7 from DC which should never have been published and of course Detective Comics #1000 which will be reviewed separately tomorrow.
Wednesday, 27 March 2019
Until the advent of the British magazine Comics Scene the only comic related publication I had occasionally been getting was Back Issue magazine which in it's themed issues covers lost of interesting stuff from the seventies onward. The latest issue which came out a couple of weeks ago concentrates on "alternate realities".
The stories I remember that started this trend were DC's "Imaginary stories" which were usually about Superman and his cast but not anyone else that I'm aware of. I thought these were just a sixties phenomenon but they did continue in the seventies and of course there is that wonderful Alan Moore story I have buried in a box somewhere.
What a lot of today's fanboys (and girls) will remember is Marvel Comics What If series which showed events where the established events of Marvel continuity took a different road in tales narrated by The Watcher. A lot of these were great fun though not all were to my taste. It was very much "hit and miss" as far as I was concerned.
And my favourite from the first volume:
The first volume of What If lasted just 47 issues but did have a longer run when revived later down the line. I think there have been a couple of one-shots here and there that I recall picking up.
Then there was Elseworlds, DC Comics modern uptake of their "imaginary" stories. There's some gems in these usually prestige format books but also some right turkeys.
These are some of my favourites:
The other major event covered by Back Issue this month was Earth X. I liked that but thought it had far too many sequels and tie ins. Companies often overdo their successes. I am avoiding War of the Realms for precisely that reason!
The latest Back Issue magazine covers these and a bit more in detail and is well worth a read. Pick up a copy and keep an eye out for future issues!
Friday, 22 March 2019
Avengers No Road Home #6 (Marvel)
Jim Zub, Mark Waid & Al Ewing (w) Sean Isaakse (a)
I ordered this on the strength of Conan's appearance in the Marvel Universe although it's Wanda (The Scarlet Witch) who ends up in the Hyborian age for now at least. This isn't a self contained adventure and it seems Conan is destined to be a part of the modern MU in a violent version of the Avengers.
As a novelty appearance to promote the return of Conan to Marvel this might be fine but adding him to the MU in an on-going is an overkill. A completist would end up buying Conan weekly as there already three Conan titles being published even if the Age of Conan doesn't actually feature the main man.
The story is straightforward enough though what's up with the Hulk is unknown to me and Nyx is a is a new one on me. The art is terrific though.
Rating: 3 Stars
The latest issue of the British comic 2000AD hit the stores on Wednesday so if you are interested in jumping on board this is an issue with a complete Judge Dredd story and two new features. Survival Geeks has returned. I am not familiar with this strip but it's quite entertaining especially for those of you who play games.
The other (and extra length) new story is Kingmaker set in a what seems to be a more sinister version of the Shires. There's more than a passing homage to Lord of the Rings in this rather interesting adventure.
And of course there's the continuing Grey Area which I am not a great fan of mainly due to it's untidy art but 2000AD is well worth the price of entry every week!
Rating: 4 Stars
The new Megazine is also out this week with the conclusion the current Dredd vs plan based attackers. Other adventures include my favourite being Lawless. All continued stories but you should be reading this!
Also with an interview about British girls comics. A lot of these outsold boys one's but seem less well remembered but this a bit of a male dominated hobby though there are plenty of fan-girls around!
Rating: 4 Stars
Support British comics!
Tuesday, 19 March 2019
Vampironica (Volume 1 Trade Paperback) (Archie Horror)
Greg & Meg Smallwood (w) Greg Smallwood & Greg Scott (a)
Now this is a cracking little venture into another alternative Riverdale universe with Veronica at the heart of the mystery and action. The title gives away the story as Veronica is transformed into a vampire, but a good one as it turns out.
Fleeing from her house chased by a turned boyfriend she finds help in the form of Dilton who researches her little prolem and even ties her down (bet he's dreamed of doing that but I digress). By becoming her sidekick the pair realise it's Chery'ls party that is the target of the plot and also rushes to the rescue of her beloved Archiekins.
Great story, great art (which changed for the last two issues) and comes highly recommended by Howie! Nuff said!
Rating: 5 Stars