Showing posts with label comic books. Show all posts
Showing posts with label comic books. Show all posts

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Winter Reads: Comic Books Galore!

In my attempt to get caught up on reviews before the end of the year (Yes, I know 2016 is just a few days away!), today I'm featuring five comic books that were published between 2014-2015.

Vampirella Southern Gothic
 by Jose Luis

Book Description: Vampirella, the beautiful and bloodthirsty heroine, travels to Mississippi to help an old flame solve the mystery of his murdered fiancee... a woman who appears to have died thirty-seven times before.

Burdened by a mystical wound that will not heal, can Vampi hack through racist demons, evade corrupt lawmen, and solve this strange Southern mystery... or will the man she once loved sacrifice his soul to get the answers instead?

Final Thoughts: Similar to other comic book characters, Vampirella has received several makeovers since her debut in 1969. Here, Diamond Book Distributors have rebooted the character once again, where Vampirella travels to the south to help solve a few mysteries. By the cover one would think this was a straight up horror story, but actually there is quite a bit of humor throughout each tale. The illustrations are nicely done, adding a bit more fun to the stories. Overall, I enjoyed the new Vampirella and I recommend it to others.

The Crow: Pestilence
by Drew Moss

Book Description: A young boxer, Salvador, refuses to take a fall, but has no problem taking a vicious drug gang’s pay-off. When they take their lethal revenge on Salvador and his family, he returns as THE CROW, in search of vengeance… and forgiveness.

Final Thoughts: I'm a huge fan of the 1994 film version of The Crow featuring the late Brandon Lee. I've never been interested in reading the original comic books, though I did read one paperback tie-in when I was a teenager.

The Crow: Pestilence tells the story of a brand new character, Salvador, a boxer who is killed and is resurrected as The Crow to seek revenge.

While the overall revenge plot is a little stale, the dark illustrations make up for it. In the end, it wasn't a bad read.

Rocky & Bullwinkle
by Roger Langridge

Book Description: They’re finally here! Welcome Bullwinkle the Moose and Rocket J. Squirrel back to comics in these four great tales, "The Psychic Sidekick," “The Washed-Up Wizard," “First Moose on the Moon,” and “The Burger Monster.”

Plus, four back-up stories featuring everybody's favorite mountie, Dudley Do-Right.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Review - Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles/Ghostbusters

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles/Ghostbusters
by Erik Burham, Dan Schoening, Tom Waltz
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Pub. Date: May 5, 2015
Retail: $17.99
ISBN: 9781631402531
Pages: 104 pages
Buy Link: Amazon


In my humble opinion, last year's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles feature film reboot was a complete letdown and next year's Ghostbusters all-female reboot looks like a major disaster. Luckily, the Nickelodeon TMNT animated series has ignored all the errors the 2014 movie made and has turned out to be a great cartoon. TMNT has continued to appear in comic book form with this May's release of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles/Ghostbusters, which combines all 4 issues from the crossover mini-series.

The crossover occurs when Donatello tests out Fugitoid's Interspatial Teleportation Unit and accidentally zaps himself, along with Michelangelo, Leonardo, Raphael, April O'Neil and Casey Jones, to a parallel dimension. They literally crash a church wedding  and before they can figure out where they are, a supernatural demon is unleashed - a Japanese warlord named Chi-You.

Chi-You takes possession of Casey Jones and the wedding guests, turning them all into his minions. Out of nowhere, the Ghostbusters (Dr. Peter Venkman, Dr. Raymond "Ray" Stantz, Dr. Egon Spengler & Winston Zeddemore) arrive to save the day, well, kinda, as Chi-You is much stronger than your average ghost, so they ghost-busting team must team up with the four Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to stop the demon and his league of minions.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Review - Ash and the Army of Darkness

Ash and the Army of Darkness
by Steve Niles, Dennis Calero and Nacho Tenorio
Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment
Pub. Date: October 21, 2014
ISBN: 978-1606905166
Pages: 192
Buy Link: Amazon

While I consider myself to be a horror-buff, I never knew the Evil Dead films even existed until I caught the last half of Army of Darkness on the Scifi Channel (now known as Syfy) in the late '90s during my teenage years. Being a fan of Bruce Campbell ever since he starred in the short-lived series The Adventures of Brisco County Jr., I instantly took to liking to what little I saw of the movie. Luckily, the movie reaired the following weekend, so I could watch it.  I was able to find the VHS (Remember those?) of Army of Darkness at Best Buy, along with Evil Dead II: Dead By Dawn. I later rented the original Evil Dead and eventually bought it on VHS, so, basically I saw the movies in reverse. And of course I saw last year's remake.

There have been several comic books based on the character Ash from the series over the years, but none has picked up directly where Army of Darkness left off - well, until Dynamite Entertainment released a brand new series last year called Ash and the Army Darkness. The eight issue series is now available in one volume.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Review - Damian: Son of Batman Deluxe Edition

Damian: Son of Batman Deluxe Edition
by Andy Kubert, Grand Morrison
Publisher: DC Comics
Pub. Date: July 22, 2014
ISBN: 978-1401246426
Pages: 176
Buy Link: Amazon


Arriving in comic book stores this Tuesday, July 22, 2014 is the hardback Damian: Son of Batman Deluxe Edition, featuring Issues #1-4 of Damian: Son of Batman and Batman #666.

In the DC Comic Universe, Batman had a son, Damian, with Talia al Ghu. At the young age of ten, Damian took on the identity of Robin, fighting side-by-side with his father and later becoming Redbird, until his death by the hands of the Heretic.

Damian returned last year in the"what if" 4-issue storyline, Damian: Son of Batman, which Damian takes up Dick Grayson's mantel as the Batman in a potential future after Batman dies. Unlike the old Batman, Damian will kill criminals if needed, despite the fact that this upsets his elderly father, Bruce Wayne. Damian decides it is best that he goes by the Batman code and not kill anyone, but his anger always gets the better of him.

In Batman #666, Damien is now adult taking over his father's legacy as the Batman, but he uses more violent approach to stopping criminals, which has upsets Commissioner Barbra Gordon, who condemns Batman's actions. In this version, Damien sold his soul to the Devil in exchange to receive the immortality he needs to protect Gotham.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Review - The X-Files: Conspiracy

The X-Files: Conspiracy
by John Stanisci
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Pub. Date: July 15, 2014
ISBN: 978-1613778968
Pages: 152
Buy Link: Amazon


I grew up watching FBI Agents Mulder and Scully investigating the strange and the bizarre on Friday night and then later on Sunday nights over the course of nine seasons. I even watched the short-lived spinoff, The Lone Gunmen and the two X-Files feature films. The franchise seemed to be dead until the official 10th season comic book series arrived last year, picking up where the 2nd feature film left off.

Despite dying in the final season of The X-Files, it is explained in the comic book series that The Lone Gunmen (Byers, Fronhike and Langly) faked their deaths and they are continuing their work to expose conspiracies.

In The X-Files: Conspiracy, The Lone Gunmen are sent internet files from the future, where they learn that a deadly virus will wipe out humanity. Of course the trio turn to Agents Mulder and Scully to help them, but while they are investigating one lead, it is up to the Gunmen to investigate several urban legends that might be the cause of the upcoming outbreak.

This is a crossover with other IDW Publishing titles, so these urban legends involve the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, the Ghostbusters, the Transformers and the Crow. Between being chased in the sewers by mutants, being scared to death by a ghost and confronting alien-changing robots, the Gunmen have their work cut out for them.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Review - Injustice: Gods Among Us Vol. 2

Injustice: Gods Among Us Vol. 2
by Tom Taylor, Mark S. Miller Tom Derenick, Bruno Redondo
Publisher: DC Comics
Pub. Date: July 1, 2014

ISBN: 978-1401246013
Pages: 224
Buy Link: Amazon


Do recall the old Mortal Combat games where you battle it out against another warrior? Well, the creators of Mortal Combat took that idea and created the video game Injustice: Gods Among Us, set in the DC Universe. In January 2013, a weekly digital comic book prequel was released, shortly followed by print versions of the issues.

Injustice: Gods Among Us Vol. 2 contains issues 7-12 and the Injustice: Gods Among US Annual #1. The overall plot details Lex Luther becoming the Justice League's new ally, pulling their strings to create his own alternate universe. A world where Lois Lane is dead and Superman takes vengeance into his own hands by killing the Joker. 

Superheroes pick sides -you are either good or evil! Green Arrow, Black Canary, Huntress, Captain Atom, and Catwoman choose to follow Batman. While Wonder Woman, the Flash, Cyborg, Green Lantern, Hawkgirl, Shazam, and Robin are teaming up with Superman with the idea that lives have to be lost to restore justice to the world. 

Friday, July 18, 2014

Review - Hellboy In Hell Vol. 1: The Descent

Hellboy In Hell Vol. 1: The Descent
by Mike Mignola and Dave Stewart
Publisher: Diamond Book Distributors
Pub.Date: June 3,, 2014
ISBN: 978-1616554446
Pages: 144
Buy Link: Amazon


While Hellboy has been in the comic book world since 1993, I have only been exposed to the films starring Ron Perlman in the title role. I was excited when I saw this title was available to review on NetGalley, I eagerly signed up to review, as this was my chance to read a Hellboy tittle.

This summer's release of Hellboy In Hell Vol. 1: The Descent combines the first four issues (The Descent, Pandemonium, Family Ties and The Three Gold Whips) of the Hellboy In Hell series into one volume.

"Shortly thereafter he fought a dragon and was killed."

Yes, that is the introduction line in the first issue that sets up the plot with Hellboy literally going to hell. From the entering the Abyss to traveling through the heart of hell, Pandemonium, Hellboy must confront his past, present and future, if he is going to survive. In the end, he must pick up his father's sword and slay the devil and take the thrown to fulfill his destiny. 

Sunday, April 27, 2014

ARC Review - The Girl Who Played with Fire: A Graphic Novel

The Girl Who Played with Fire: A Graphic Novel
by Denise Mina
Illustrators: Leonardo Manco and Andrea Mutti
Publisher: Vertigo Comics
Pub. Date: June 3, 2014
Retail: $29.99
ISBN: 9781401237578
Pages: 272


The Girl Who Played with Fire is the graphic novel adaption based on the late Stieg Larsson's second installment in the Millennium series. All three books have been adapted into feature films in Sweden; while the first book, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, was adapted into a feature film in the United States in 2011, starring Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara.

After the events of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, computer hacker, Lisbeth Salander, mysteriously disappeared from Sweden. Her state legal guardian, Nils Bjurman, (who had raped her and in turn she sexually assaults him and then tattoos the words "rapist" on his chest and stomach) is searching for her, mainly because she is in possession of the videotape she had recorded of him abusing her.

Lisabeth is actually taking a long vacation on the Caribbean shores of Grenada, where she meets an American tourist, Dr Forbes, and his wife, whom he has been abusing. Lisabeth quickly gets involve with the situation.

ARC Review - Black Canary and Zatanna: Bloodspell


Black Canary and Zatanna: Bloodspell
by Paul Dini
Illustrator: Joe Quinones 
Publisher: DC Comics
Pub. Date: May 27, 2014
Retail: $22.99
ISBN: 9781401210540
Pages: 144


The DC Comics Universe is full of a variety of male superheroes, but there are also many female superhero characters as well, including Superwoman, Batgirl, Supergirl, etc.. And of course, many of you have probably heard of the character Black Canary that has been appearing on the CW's Arrow this season. In the series, Black Canary's real identity is Sara Lance, while in the comic book it was her sister, Dinah Laurel Lance; though I do have a feeling that Dinah will become Black Canary 2.0 in near future.

The character was first introduced in 1947 and she is normally paired up with the Green Arrow; as you can imagine the character has had many different makeovers over the years, with the most recent occurring in the New 52 reboot. Another character that got a makeover was Zatanna, who first appeared in the DC Comic Universe in 1964. Both of these ionic characters are teaming up for the upcoming graphic novel, titled Black Canary and Zatanna: Boodspell.

Besides from watching Black Canary on Arrow, I'm not to familiar with the character; and I've never even heard of Zatanna before reading the digital graphic novel this morning, which I received from NetGalley. Unlike a few recent DC Comics graphic releases, this isn't a combination of past issues, but instead it is a one-shot, 144 pages issue; giving the readers a glance into the origin of how these two female characters first met.

ARC Review - Batgirl Vol. 4: Wanted

Batgirl Vol. 4: Wanted
by Gail Simone
Publisher: DC Comics
Pub. Date: May 27, 2014
Retail: $24.99
ISBN: 9781401246297
Pages: 192


Comic books may seem like the thing of the past, but thanks to a surge of superhero blockbusters and hit television series (Arrow), not to mention reality TV (Comic Book Men), comic books are starting to become popular again. Publishers have finally entered modern times with digital comic books. 

In the comic book world, superheroes never age, as the comics eventually get rebooted, giving franchises a brand new start. This is exactly what happened with DC Comics with the launch of their New 52 line in 2011, including everything Batman related.

Thanks to NetGalley, I got to review an advanced digital copy of Batgirl Vol. 4: Wanted, which consists of issues #19-25, as well as Ventriliquist #1.

Being a superhero has its ups and downs, and Barbara Gordon has hit the lowest-part of her crime-fighting career with the recent death of her brother, which her alter ego, Batgirl, had a part in his death. She is a complete mess and she has even turn to drinking to try to help with the pain. Nothing seems to help her do deal with what has occurred, even visiting a shrink isn't helping her. To make matter worse, her father, Commissioner Gordon, has a personal vendetta to hunt down his son's killer, Batgirl.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

ARC Review - The New Ghostbusters Vol. 1

The New Ghostbusters Vol. 1
By: Dan Schoening &  Erik Burnham
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Pub. Date: July 16, 2013
ISBN: 978-1613776780
Pages: 104  


I was a big fan of the Ghostbusters movies and even a bigger fan of The Real Ghostbusters cartoons back when I was a kid. Well, I guess you can say I'm still a fan as I have the cartoon on DVDs and I own one Ghostbusters t-shirt. With the rumored third movie still in development hell, fans can look forward to the new comic series from IDW Publishing, who kindly sent me a free copy (along with NetGalley) in exchange for my honest review.

The original four Ghostbusters (Dr. Peter Venkman, Dr. Raymond "Ray" Stantz, Dr. Egon Spengler, & Winston Zeddemore) have been zapped by paranormal entities and dragged to a demon dimension. Months have gone by and New York City is in chaos as there are countless ghost sightings. A new crew of Ghostbusters has been formed to take care of the ghosts. The new team is Janine Melnitz (the Ghostbusters' Secretary), Melanie Ortiz (an FBI agent), Kylie Griffin (manager of Ray's Occult Bookstore), and Ron Alexander (a former member of a rival ghost hunting company). The new team works together (despite a few differences) to take care of the ghosts and to locate the missing Ghostbusters.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Review - Severed

Authors: Scott Snyder & Scott Tuft
Art & Covers: Attila Futaki 
ISBN: 9781607065296 
Pub Date: April 24, 2012
Pages: 192

     In this disturbing adult horror graphic novel, Jack Garron receives a letter that a stranger left in his grandson’s hands that shock him to his core. He starts to remember what happened to him when he was a kid.

    In 1916, Jack had recently found out that he was adopted when he received a letter from his birth father who said he was playing at the Majestic Theater in Chicago. Jack was thrilled that his father was a famous musician as Jack was very talented with a violin. One night, he says good night to his adopted mother, packs his bags along with his violin, and takes off into the night, planning on finding his father. He jumps onto a moving freight train where he is attacked by a drifter, but is luckily saved by another runaway - a girl named Sam who dresses as boy because it is safer for her to travel.

    Meanwhile in Illinois, an orphan boy’s body was found mutilated, which stuns the local police. What kind of human could do this? Or was it something else?

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Review - Charmed: Season 9 Volume 3

Title: Charmed Season 9 Volume 3 
Publisher: Zenescope 
Pub Date: April 24, 2012 
ISBN: 9781937068967 
Author: Paul Ruditis 

I caught a couple of episodes of Charmed during it’s original run, but I didn’t get a chance to really like it until I borrowed my grandmother’s complete series of it. I watched episode after episode and I had the whole series watched in three months. When I saw Season 9 Volume 3 was up for review on NetGalley, I had to request to review it.

In the continuing style of the Buffyverse comics, Charmed continues the storyline from the series finale with the Season 9 comic book series. Even though I haven’t read the first two volumes, I easily understood what was going on in Volume 3 which consists of the issues 13-19.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

ARC Review - Adventures into the Unknown! Archives Volume 1

TITLE: Adventures into the Unknown! Archives Volume 1 
PUBLISHER: Dark Horse Comics
PUB DATE: June 6, 2012
ISBN:  9781595829306
AUTHORS: Edvard Moritz, King Ward, Mac Elkan 
CONTRIBUTORS:  Al Feldstein, Al Ulmer, Bruce Jones, Fred Guardineer, Leonard Starr, Paul Reinman

Back in the 1940s a comic titled Adventures into the Unknown! hit the stands. It was published by B&I Publishing (aka American Comics Group) and was one of the earliest horror comics. The stories were more traditional and stayed away from the blood/gore horror of today, and relied more upon ghost stories and gothic novels which eventually became a popular series. Just like other comics, Adventures into the Unknown! was criticized for its violence, but it (unlike others) survived the Senate of Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency hearings of 1954. The series eventually ended in 1967 after 174 issues.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Review - Dollhouse Volume 1: Epitaphs

Dollhouse Volume 1: Epitaphs

PUBLISHER: Dark Horse Comics
PUB DATE: April 11, 2012
ISBN: 9781595828637 
AUTHORS: Andrew Chambliss, Jed Whedon, Maurissa Tancharoen
CONTRIBUTORS: Andy Owens, Cliff Richards, Michelle Madsen, and Phil Noto

I only got a chance to watch few a episodes of Dollhouse during it’s original run, so I was quite interested in Epitaphs which takes place between the series episodes Epitaph One and Epitaph Two: Return, which were both set in the year 2020

Set in the future, where most of the population has been brainwashed by mental virus delivered through phones. In the process your entire memories are wiped out, but you are reprogrammed to be zombie-mindless killers. A small band of survivors are trying to undone the damage that has been done.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

ARC Review - Star Wars: Invasion Volume 3 - Revelations

TITLE: Star Wars: Invasion Volume 3- Revelations
PUBLISHER: Dark Horse Comics
RELEASE DATE: April 25, 2012
ISBN: 9781595828828 
AUTHOR: Tom Taylor
CONTRIBUTORS: Chris Scalf; Colin Wilson; and Wes Dzioba 

In this third volume, featuring issues 1-5 of the Star Wars: Invasion graphic novel series, continues the story of the Galfridian family from the peaceful world of Artorias as they battle a race of deadly warriors that call themselves the Yuuzhan Vong, whom are taking over the galaxy. Finn Galfridian, a Jedi in training, along with his Master Dray, discover a terrible secret about the leaders of the New Republic. Meanwhile, Finn’s mother (Nina) and sister (Kaye) struggle to help refuges from their home planet, but they must defend themselves from the Yuuzhan Vog and the Empire.

With all this craziness going on, Kaye learns the shocking truth of what her adopted mother really is. The New Republic has made many alliances with other planets and brings an armada against the Yuuzhan Vog and the Empire, which leads to an epic space battle.