Saturday, August 15, 2009
Written by Ed Brubaker (Criminal, Captain America)
Pencils by Steve Epting (Captain America)
The Marvel 70th Anniversary celebrated last Tuesday, Aug. 11 saw the release of two new titles from the House of Idea(s), The Marvels Project being one of them. In the tradition of Marvels (and maybe even DC's Kingdom Come), The Marvels Project runs down the reaction of us "normies" to the presence of supernatural, super powerful beings among us. The "normy" doing the running down in this case is a little known (to me anyway) hero named Angel from way back, when Marvel was still called "Timely Comics" and comics cost a strawpenny and nobody told lies. In this, the first issue, Angel is still Dr. Holloway and as he toys with the idea of fighting crime he relates the state of late 1930s America on the brink of war with Germany. Plus the American Government has invented the Human Torch. Plus Germany has been conducting experiments on Sea-People and the Prince of Atlantis is pissed. Fascinating Times, indeed.
Ed Brubaker is an unstoppable force. I don't want to stop him. Incognito is one of the best books out there, Captain America still kicks ass and Criminal? Come on. I think one of the things that makes his writing so sweet is his whole matter-of-fact approach to the fantastic. He just completely nails the tone of a life weary, unbiased observer who gets the outlandishness of what he's seeing but still wants to find out what happens next. The Marvels Project is this to the umpth degree. I fucking love it. You might think by this point that there was little left to work with when it comes to this theme of super-hero realism but that was before Brubaker got his mitts on it.
Read The Marvels Project, you won't be sorry.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
w/a- Darwyn Cooke adapted from the novel by Richard Stark (pseudonym of Donald Westlake)
Parker:the hunter? more like parker:the shit! this book was so effin great!i have been anticipating the release of this since it was announced last july,and it totally delivered.The Hunter is the story of meticulous planner and career criminal Parker who is double crossed on a heist and left for dead by his associates and his wife.Parker's not having that and comes back to New York lookin for his money from the job......and he's going to get it.Darwyn Cooke is one of the most amazing and unique illustrators ever,and he can tell a phenomenal story as well! (dc:new frontier,the first 13 issues of the spirit relaunch!) Parker is a very personal project for Cooke and he clearly has taken his time with the adapting and design of gorgeous visuals.the art is all two tone,black with a water colored blue on top. it is simultaneously hard and light,much like the character parker himself.he is out for revenge but has no extreme emotions (love,fear,hate,happiness!).the bold ink is the perfect compliment to his solid drive for revenge,while the watercolor brushing mirrors his ethereal emotions and desire. When thinking of his ex-wife Parker ponders "He hated her.he hated her and he loved her and he'd never felt either emotion for anyone before.never love,never hate,never for anyone.She put him here." check out a preview here
An amazing character that is not immediately likable (but fun to watch get turned loose) and an amazing effort from one of the mediums top talents.
-thank you mr.cooke.
In celebration of the bad-assery of The Hunter we will be having a movie showing of Payback:the Directors Cut.payback is adapted from the same source material as "the hunter" and stars mel Gibson as "Porter".this film is real awesome-ness and is directed by Brian Helgeland (oscar winner for best adapted screenplay-l.a. confidential ,shit!) come hang with us and watch "parker/porter" wreak havoc on the criminal underworld in search of his cut.if you've seen payback and NOT the directors cut it is a totally different and better film then the theatrical but.less gibson,more Helgeland.you're in for a treat.
poster by the lovely jeremy wheeler. peep it!
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
PLANETARY #27 IS SCHEDULED FOR RELEASE!!!!!!! OCTOBER 7th!!there are colored pages! dc/wildstorm knows they cant fuck this up!get ready for closure on one of the worlds greatest works of fiction.and for those that have never read it (shame on you,but i understand) and were waiting for it to be finished before diving in........get read to have your mind blown.......and probably your eardrums as well.we'll be ranting about this one,i can tell you!
congratulations mssr's ellis,cassaday,and madame depuy martin.
- 11 out of 10 for having the balls to announce this.
- all this awesomeness depicted on this cover actually happens in the series
READ IT! lets not have a repeat of the "criminal incident"
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Here's the thing: I love historical graphic novels (comic books, etc.). Love 'em. Here's another thing: T-Minus by Jim Ottaviani and co. is maybe the best one I've ever read. On top of making the whole thing really funny and accessible (for those of us not aeronautic engineers or mathematicians), he doesn't spare the technical details that give weight to the whole daunting, mind-fuck of an endeavour that is Putting a Man on the Moon.
Read this, I'm serious. And I heard a rumor that Jim O. himself is having a release party for the book at Vault of Midnight this Monday...
Sunday, July 5, 2009
Monday, June 29, 2009
This is the book I've been waiting for since I started reading Invincible. Curtis turned me on to Invincible around the time the third trade was out and I've been hooked ever since. But this one... wow. If you're one of those people who think Robert Kirkman is overrated, this book is the evidence that you are wrong. The action is spectacular and truly kinetic. The characters continue to develop and change as the story progresses. The story is engaging and the dialogue is spot on. This is how a Superhero book is done.
Plus the title of every trade is the title of a sitcom while also relating to the events in the book. Genius!
If you're not reading Invincible, you should be. If you are, then you know exactly what I'm talking about.
Sunday, June 21, 2009
I have no idea what's going on. One of those crazy "childhood friends have to reunite as adults to fight a malevolent force from their youth" kind of Stephen King stories. The story jumps around in time and it's fucking cool. 3 volumes of 22 are available in English so far. From Naoki Urasawa, author of Monster and Pluto. Get in on the ground floor, sucker!
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Of all the new books coming out recently this one had me the most excited. Vertigo was really pushing this, there were three or four page previews in the back of Hellblazer and such for awhile, and I liked what I saw. The premise seemed strong, the art had that mix of style and accessibility that I like so much, Mike Carey was on board. And it was about stories. I love stories about stories. I know that sounds weird but it's true. Well issue #1 is finally out and I am not disappointed. I only hope that Mike Carey and Peter Gross truly realize what they've got on their hands (I get the feeling they do) because it feels like something special to me. It's only the first issue so I don't want to get ahead of myself, but I dig it, and I think it has legs. I don't want to lay out the premise for you because the way they set it all up is neat and much more fun to read if you don't really know where it's heading. And best of all it's only a dollar! Genius! I hope this comic sells through the roof so more publishers can see what a brilliant marketing strategy this is. Do you know how many more comics I would give a chance to if the first issue was only a dollar? Hell, I'd buy 'em all.
Keep and eye on this one. If you like comics that are well written, well drawn, and not the same old crap you've been reading since forever, you could do a whole lot worse. Go scoop it up. It's only a buck, and if you're really that cheap, I'll even spot you that.
Sunday, April 26, 2009
I've been sitting here for awhile trying to think of what to say about Pluto besides “you must read this book.” I'm having trouble. There's just so much good here.
Story: someone is gunning for the seven greatest robots in the world, as well a few scattered “Robots Rights” advocates. Detective Gesicht is put on the case, a robot himself, and incidentally one of the seven supposedly targeted by the killer. This is a retelling of the “The Greatest Robot on Earth” story arc from Astro Boy, by the legendary Osamu Tezuka. You don't need to have read any Astro Boy to get down with this, but if you haven't this may just inspire you to explore the phenomenon for yourself. If you are familiar with the source material then you will find much to knowingly nod and smile about. The themes concerning the nature of humanity and what it means to be “alive”, themes that made up the central concept behind Astro Boy, are well preserved and even expanded upon in Pluto. the way these supposedly “emotionless” characters are brought to life is remarkable.
Art: Naoki Urasawa has managed something pretty amazing in these pages. He has taken Tezuka's somewhat “cartoony” (for lack of a better term) style and brought it into the real world, while maintaining the unique character aesthetic and expressions that Tezuka is known for. Fusing these two ideas with his own style Urasawa creates a thing of beauty. The story is wonderful, but the art brings an emotion and drama to it that raises the work to a whole new level.
So, you really should read this book. Don't be afraid that it's manga, or that it reads right-to-left, or that it comes from something you may be unfamiliar with. None of that matters. This is good stuff, brilliant science fiction, and it will sweep you away in moments. If it doesn't then it's possible you may not have a soul. You might want to get that checked out.
It's a funny thing, I enjoyed the four page story in this “preview” more than I've enjoyed half the stuff I've been reading lately. Having said that, and having seen some of the preview work for this series, I believe it is one to watch, and now that it finally has a publisher, we can do that. Jeremy Bastian's art style is wonderfully unique and expressive. It ranges from absurd to realistic, sometimes even in the same panel. He is also quite funny. Let me give you a sample: “The worst pirate I ever seen went by the name Captain Squeak. When we came up on his ship he ordered his men to chop down their own mast, and then throw their cannons overboard. Then them buggers attacked us... with bananas! Turns out 'ol Captain Squeak was just two monkeys and a portrait of Queen Mirl of Gerrick.” Now that is funny. I urge you to put this on your pull list immediately. I've just got this funny feeling that it's going to rock.
Sunday, April 5, 2009
"The Boys" takes place in a world where super heroes and villains are commonplace, they're celebrities, but all they really do is run around making a mess of things. The story centers around "Wee" Hughie, whose girlfriend is caught in the crossfire of a super hero/super villain battle and is quite messily killed. Hughie is subsequently tapped by a covert, government group know simply as The Boys, each member having some sort of axe to grind with super heroes. They're job is to observe and, if necessary, police the super powered community (though, honestly, they're pretty much just looking for an excuse to take them out). The Boys are super powered themselves, giving them the necessary muscle to deal with their enemies. The resulting altercations are wonderfully brutal and gory, as they realistically would be.
Garth Ennis (Preacher, Crossed) is in full swing with this one, clearly loving every moment of the ride, and pulling zero punches along the way. I get that same feeling I got when I was reading "Preacher" all those years ago. This confluence of entertaining violence, depraved sexual exploits, and a well crafted storyline are not something you see every day, and for good reason, because it's a damn hard trick to pull off. Darick Robertson (Transmetropolitan, Punisher) delivers as well, with his accessible yet unique style, bringing the story to life beautifully. You can almost feel every face crushing punch and rent limb.
"The Boys" is by far my favorite comic right now, I eagerly await its arrival every month and immediately devour its contents at the first available opportunity. It's super heroes as they would actually be in the real world; arrogant, selfish, power-drunk bastards with no concern for anyone. It's wonderfully violent and depraved, with engaging characters and terrific dialogue, often extremely hilarious, all topped off with some poignant social commentary (and lots of boobs). It's Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson at their best.
The first 22 issues have already been collected, so get your ass down to The Vault and start reading.
Saturday, March 28, 2009
Go pick up the Crisis On Infinite Earths trade instead, which is a fine example of how this sort of thing should be done.
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
The characters are fun (Leticia Pope, the kiss-my-ass government agent and Archibald, our smoking goofball alien buddy) and the few story tidbits have piqued my curiosity. Templesmith's art is, as always, amazing and he delivers the gross stuff with his trademark zeal. If the creators can properly expand on the concept without falling prey to cliches (an easy thing to do with this subject) then we could have a winner. The burning question this issue leaves me with is... did I really just see a guy with a cute, little puppy grafted onto his "nether regions"?
So we were picking on Curtis last Saturday down at The Vault about things being a little "thin" around here and I happened to mention that I wouldn't mind dropping by for the occasional long winded diatribe about this or that comic. So he said "Sure!" and here we are. So who is this Jamie A.K.A. Moneyeyes anyway?
1. Vault patron from its inception. It is my home away from home and all its employees are my extended family.
2. Comics reader for 25 years. I know my shit, believe it!
3. Master (not) storyteller and writer of fiction.
That about covers it, anything else (FBI investigations, supposed links to organized crime, accusations of bizarre human mutation experiments) is completely superfluous.
I'm gonna try to keep this weekly, so check back often. Now let's talk about some comics.
Sunday, February 22, 2009
4 (out of 5) over-used parentheticals and asides,
-sanford c bledsoe iii
Saturday, February 14, 2009
Joe Kelly (I Kill Giants, Ben 10) knows how to use swear words. I've got my eye on this son of a bitch; I Kill Giants and Four Eyes are must reads and now, so is Bad Dog. Werewolf Bounty Hunter and his born again, alcoholic, shit-heel partner hunt down low-lifes, though they themselves are low-lifes. I can't think of anybody doing better dialogue in comics right now than Joe Kelly across his titles. Does it bother you that "Dog the Bounty Hunter" is already a thing, that in fact the terrible theme song for that show acutally uses the words "I am the dog / the big Bad Dog"? No, it doesn't. Get over it.
One thing: Diego Greco, making his American Debut with this title, gives the whole thing an overall more cartoony effect than is cool. The titular Bad Dog looks more like a golden retreiver than a fucking werewolf and that is upsetting. Nevertheless, read this shit, you'll be back for more.
Sunday, February 1, 2009
criminal vol. 4 came out this week.i re-read the story therein and it is still fuckin awesome.all the volumes are seperate stories.....you dont have to read them in any order.if you're not reading criminal then fuck you.
Saturday, January 17, 2009
I'm gonna call this awesome already! It's an online series that will debut on sony pictures "CRACKLE" site.Zoe bell (stuntwoman premiere,baddest in Death Proof!) plays Zoe,a hitwoman who suffers some extreme head trauma (see fig.1) that causes her to see the ghosts of people she's killed......and they want revenge! To get herself some peace she starts killing of the people who originally contracted her...or she's hallucinating,crazy, and on a rampage! Either way, seems awesome to me!The episodes will be 8-10 min. and premiere every week for ten weeks.I think my rabid respect and fandom for exploitation films and Mr.Brubaker is no secret, show yer support.watch these as they premiere and scwoop up the ineveitable dvd later this year! they'll be like a video comic issue every week!talk to yer fiends about it!come into the comic shop and yell with us about what happened each week,and what will happen next! I expect hilarity,brutal action,and great line delivery!
Friday, January 9, 2009
ALRIGHT!!! did y'all see that! nixon is president!third term! world wide nuclear war is ineveitable! the owl is a dumpy man longing for his glory days! the comedian is shooting at JFK! things that are only hinted at in the comic are fully expanded on the screen.....i think! we'll see,and by that i mean i will definateley be seeing this for sure.....opening day style.and not in a fanboy/comic book anthropoligist way.yes,truly jazzed.i'm excited as a comic and film fan....and i will be making a t-shirt with watchmen written in kanji,yeh thats happening.
-when i first saw this my eyes got big and blank,and my nose started gushing blood.....so pumped i turned into a manga technique to show aroused excitement.whew...its's been quite the morning!
-trailer courtesy of traileraddict