New Comic Book Day Top 5: Aug. 31st

Hello Revuers! It’s time for another installment of New Comic Book Day Top 5. In this segment we look at our top 5 most anticipated titles that are coming out tomorrow. All of the titles we are about to list we highly recommend you check out! Let’s dive right in:

5: Justice League #9

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Now before you get all confused, this is a continuation of the JLA story author Bryan Hitch started during the New52. It is not the Justice League from DC Rebirth. In this title Bryan Hitch does both the script and the art. Making this book feel very cohesive. Honestly before Rebirth this title was the only DC title I consistently had on my pull list. It’s nice to see that DC is letting Bryan Hitch take this series to fruition as he had set up a very interesting antagonist in Rao. This i a title I would recommend you pick up if you love great story telling.

 

4: Tokyo Ghost #10

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Tokyo Ghost is an examination of what it means to be human in a world dominated by instant gratification and television screens. It asks the question “What will we become”? Written by Rick Remender with art from Sean Murphy, Tokyo Ghost i a special comic. It takes a much more critical look at our future than most comic book series’ and paints a not so pretty future. Speaking of paints, The picture of the cover above is actually the variant cover done by Dustin Nguyen. I included it because I think it’s one of the most beautiful covers I have ever seen.

 

3: Spider-Gwen #11

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This series from Jaston Latour, Robbi Rodriguez and Rico Renzi has been a stable on my pull list ever since Edge of Spider-verse 2. The world that Latour, Rodriguez and Renzi get to play in is so fresh and interesting to me. Much like the Ultimate world was in the beginning, Spider-gwen’s world is up for re-imaging. Want an African-American women as Captain America? Well now we can have that. The possibilities are endless. There is a reason why everyone fell in love with Spider-Gwen, and if you ever read even one issue, you will understand.

 

2: Future Quest #4

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Future Quest from Jeff Parker, Aaron Lopresti and Steve Rude is easily the best of the Hanna-Barbera reboots. A fun thrill ride Future Quest delivers all the action, dinosaurs, cavemen and team ups you could ask for. In this issue the team races the forces of F.E.A.R. to find a source of magnificent power. Who will reach it first? You’ll have to read to find out.

 

1: Monty the Dinosaur #1

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Coming in at the top spot this week is Monty the Dinosaur #1. Published on Action Labs and brought to us by the creative talents of Bob Frantz (writer) and Jean Franco (Art), Monty the Dinosaur is a tale a dinosaur (surprise) who after living in secret for a long time, reveals himself to Sophie, a loving 10 year old girl who try’s to see the good in people, or in this case a dinosaur. I’ll admit that I am a sucker for cute things, and this seems like the cutest title in recent memory. I love the premise of this story and the artwork looks incredible. I can not wait to pick this title up.

 

So there you have it, our most anticipated books that are coming out tomorrow. Did your most anticipated books make the cut? Tell us in the comments below. We would also love to see you list of most anticipated comics!

 

-Andrew

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Tales From the Pull List (Jul. 27th): A New Hope (Larson)

Hello Revuers. This week marks another big victory for the DC Rebirth initiative. Once again I found my pull dominated by DC comics. I counted and I have purchased more DC comics in the last two month than I did all of last year. What has changed with this initiative? There’s hope. Well that, and the comics have been consistently good across the board. I haven’t read a single title that I didn’t like. This week I have three to review. A bit of a light week for me.

 

Pick of the Week

Batgirl #1: What I disliked most about the New 52 was the grit and darkness. With rebirth there’s hope figuratively, and in the case of Batgirl literally. New writer Hope Larson brings with her a freshness to Barbara and a new direction for the character and title. While the previous volume of Batgirl (worth a read) was set in Burnside, this volume has Batgirl gallivanting across Japan on what she thinks is a vacation. But as we all know, superheros don’t have vacations. Barbara runs into her old childhood friend Kai, when she discovers that he is her roommate at the Hostel she is staying at (what a coincidence). Kai asks Barbara what she is doing in Japan and we learn it’s to meet a childhood hero of hers named Fruit Bat. Fruit Bat was a Japanese superhero from the 20’s who is still alive and lives in Japan with her son. Fruit Bat was Barbara’s idol and she is determined to find and meet her. Barbara and Kai do just that (after a series of hi-jinks and comedic situations). However, upon meeting Fruit Bat a stranger attacks Kai ask vaguely for the “formula”. Batgirl intervene and defends Kai, but she is too slow. The assailant would have gotten away if not for the 104 year old Fruit Bat who proves that she still has the moves. Blocking a thrown ninja star and causing the villain to flee. After the skirmish Fruit Bat collapses and Batgirl rushes to her side. Fruit Bat states that Batgirl needs to let go of her past and find a new teacher. This leads Batgirl to…..MMA? We will find out in the next issue. The creative team is rounded out by artist Rafael Albuquerque and color artist Dave McCaig. The artists bring a creative shift from the previous volume of Batgirl, allowing this new volume to shine in it’s uniqueness. The art from Albuquerque is fantastic, helping the reader gather a real sense of emotion from the facial expressions and creating a sense of motion with great line work. The color from Dave McCaig is high contrast, with many panels featuring bright backgrounds behind earth tone figures. This causes the characters to pop and adds a sense of motion to the art. Rating 8.5/10

 

Buy

The Flash #3: This issue features the emergence of many speedsters in Central City. Not all of them want to be good, as the issue tells us. In fact some want to use their new found powers selfishly. The Flash struggles with what to do with all the new speedsters in the city, as he feels responsible for creating them. As he finds out that the speed force storm that created all the new speedsters was drawn to Central City by him. At the end of the issue we are introduced to a new villain named Godspeed. Who almost August, The Flash’s new sidekick. Unlike all the other new speedsters, Godspeed appears to have some control over his powers. Implying that perhaps these powers aren’t new to him. This issue saw some character development for Wally West and a cameo by Iris West. It also showed August learning and adapting to his powers. The most interesting aspect of the issue though was how much The Flash enjoys being a mentor and enjoys teaching others how to use the Speedforce. With the introduction of more speedsters this role for Barry, mentor and teacher, really solidifies him as the main character of this book.  Rating: 8/10

Nightwing #1: This issue opens up with Nightwing completing a mission for a international version of the Court of Owls. In the Nightwing Rebirth issue we learned that this new court of owls had manipulated Nightwing into working for them by threatening to kill Robin via a bomb that they had implanted into his head. What the Court doesn’t know is that Nightwing was able to remove the bomb, and now is only pretending to work for them in order to learn more about their organization and bring them down from the inside. In this issue we learn that the Court of Owls is unhappy with the results that Nightwing has had the last few missions and have acquired a partner for him. A mysterious new character named Raptor. Nightwing goes to the designated meeting place planning to tell Raptor that he has no interest in a partner, but is promptly beat down by this new character. At the end of the issue Raptor tells Nightwing that everything Batman had taught him was wrong, and that he needed a new mentor. Overall the issue was quick paced and intriguing. Rating:8/10

 

 

-Andrew

Prez #3

There’s been a quiet stirring of revolution in the land of DC Comics, and we’re seeing that pay out in spades with books like Starfire, Doctor Fate, Justice League United, Bizarro, and Prez. A spin-off of a short-lived title introduced in the early 1970’s, the original Prez series detailed the life of “The First Teen President of the U.S.A.!” While only running for four issues (with a fifth appearing later in Cancelled Comics Cavalcade, it was one of those signature oddities of DC comics in the 60’s and 70’s that resonated with a generation of comics readers. But, like Sugar and Spike, Prez was destined to be a vision of times past – not something that could be brought into the present continuity or marketplace.

Enter the DC You, the continuity reboot of the New 52, that throws hard continuity to the wind and lets creators run a little more freely through not only the established DC Universe, but also lets them embrace the bizarre – which, I’m pleased to report, Prez does without hesitation. Again, the story of a teenager elected president, Prez this time around stars Beth Ross, known as ‘Corndog Girl’ due to an unfortunate incident with a fryer caught virally on the web. Also involved is the original namesake of the title, Preston Rickard, as her Vice President. In 2036, the United States is a place of excess and little – it’s a living, breathing dichotomy of the haves and have-nots. Workers are timed on their breaks, their speed is clocked to ensure that they are operating at peak performance, and are subsequently fired if what they dispose of during bathroom breaks isn’t deemed to be fitting of the time taken in the restroom.

It’s pure madness. Gameshows are held for people to win money still, but the ultimate prize can only be won if you’re willing to shoot yourself. American imperialism is rampant, and we invade countries and destroy villages that we think are the aggressors, without proof. Everything is bought and sold. Everything, and everyone a commodity. It’s a bleak look into our future, and it’s not something that we can really say is too far away from (an admittedly ultra-shocking version of) our reality. We live a life of digital indulgence, and our society avoids responsibility to worship at the altar of reality stars and celebrity spokespeople.

That’s where Beth steps in. Tired of the hand life has dealt her, Beth immediately becomes a force for improvement and an inspiration after experiencing a deep personal tragedy. As she is a teenager and a Washington outsider, she’s able to form a Cabinet for her presidency that features the correct people for the job – favors aren’t used to fill positions with substandard candidates, instead, scientists are placed in charge of the expansion of the sciences! Corrupt ambassadors to the United Nations are fired. And Beth, who could have handled this all by phone, instead does everything face-to-face. She’s a driving force of good in an otherwise incredibly corrupt society.

Personally, I love this series thus far, and at three issues in, there’s not a bit of it that I can find a lot of fault with. The characters are wickedly over the top, except for the two that count the most – Beth and Preston. The artwork is bright, quirky, and has such great pacing and panel manipulation that the book feels like it’s a television show with how it moves throughout the page. I was worried for awhile that we weren’t going to see past six issues of this incredibly niche title, but in a Facebook post on the 27th of August, Dan Didio of DC Comics stated that the final six issues will be solicited at a later date. It’s not a guarantee, but it’s at least shining a light that we’ll see more in the future from Beth Ross. Give Prez a shot if you haven’t yet – is it quirky? Absolutely. Is it for everyone? Certainly not. But it’s definitely for me.

-Jay

Meet the Press

Hello Revuers! I have breaking news. Our very own Andrew Horton will be at Cincinnati Comic Con on September 12th and 13th.  If you’ve been dying to meet one of the writers behind (hopefully) your favorite comic book blog now is your chance. Andrew will wearing a press pass with Deja.Revue printed on it. Also if you need any more motivation the list of comic creators who will be in attendance is astounding: Cameron Stewart, Brendan Fletcher, Tony Moore, Phil Noto, Brian Ewing, Bill Willingham, Cullen Bunn, Rick Remender, Raw Fawkes…… The list goes on and on. Truly the amount of comic talent they have assembled is staggering. Especially for the very modest ticket cost of $21 for a day pass and $35 for a weekend pass. So if you want to come meet Andrew and talk comics or life for awhile, all while meeting some of the best creators in the game, then go to Cincinnati Comic Con. Here’s a link:

http://www.cincycomicon.com/Welcome.html

Guest Review: Action comics #43 by Girl-on-comicbook-world

Today we have a special guest review from Girl-On-Comicbook-World. She consistently puts out great material, from comicbook reviews to movie reviews to Opinion pieces. I strongly recommend you go check out her blog. I made her name clickable and you can also click hereor here. Seriously, check out her blog, it’s in my weekly rounds. With out any further delay here we go:

Action Comics #43 Review
Writer: Greg Pak and Artist: Aaron Kuder

Action Comics #43 continues the adventures of the newly depowered, with a now public identity, Superman. Greg Pak continues to prove that he understands the heart of this character through this street-level story, which involves Clark teaming up with his neighbours in Metropolis…whilst they fight Shadow Monsters!!!

Now I know not everyone has been loving this new status quo that has fallen on Superman, and would prefer to be seeing the traditional Superman stories. But here’s the thing, sometimes you need to throw your character into new and different situations in order to deconstruct the character and find out who they really are at heart. And that is exactly what the “Truth” story arc has been doing so far across the Superman books.

The one thing that is imperative to understand about Superman’s character is how he see himself. He doesn’t view himself as a god, or somebody who has the answers to all of life’s problems. He views himself as a guy who grew up on a farm, one day found out he was an alien, and then suddenly had to deal with all the responsibility and expectations that came with that. And because Clark is inherently a good person, he was more than willing to accept his situation and embrace becoming Superman. But at the end of the day he is farm-boy Clark Kent, who would prefer to be hanging out with people, not hovering over them like some arrogant god.

The “Truth” story arc has stripped away what made him seem like a god, his powers, secret identity and costume, and forced the world and audience to see him for who he really is, Clark Kent. And Action Comics #43 explores that, as we see Clark face-to-face with the people of Metropolis, working alongside them.

The issue opens up with Clark punching a cop. Yupp, he punched a cop! But to be fair the cop is actually a Shadow Monster, so all good! But before realising that the cop was in fact a monster, Clark had a moment of struggle, he’s Superman, he shouldn’t be punching cops. But because the cop, Binghamton, was using extreme force on a peaceful neighbourhood, Clark snapped. And that’s the thing about Clark, at his core he will always strike to protect people, and with him being less powerful than he was before, he feels like he needs to overcompensate a little.

After his battle with Binghamton we see a beautiful moment with the people of Metropolis. Clark gives one of his classic inspiring speeches, telling everyone that together they can protect each other, because they’re all Superman now.
There are a bunch of twist and turns in the book, including a shocking revelation about what’s going down in City Hall. All in all Action Comics #43 is very much a character driven story that is deconstructing who Superman is at his core. Even if you aren’t a fan of the Superman character, I would definitely recommend picking up Pak’s Action Comics “Truth” run because it really has been a fascinating story, showing how both Clark and the world reacts when Superman has a public identity.
Kuder’s art as always is great and expressive (although sometimes Clark looks weirdly wide but ehh). The splash page featuring the neighbourhood really gave us a great sense of humanity and diverse community through the character designs and body language.

Overall Action Comics #43 was another great issue by Pak and Kuder, diving deeper into the humanity of Clark. Rating: 8/10.

Tales From the Pull List (Aug. 12th): We are living in a (Im)material world

Pick of the Week:

Phonogram: The Immaterial girl #1: So full disclosure: I own the first two volumes of Phonogam, and I have read them both numerous times. When I found out that they were making another volume of it I freaked out. I marked the day on my calender, and stared longingly at it. With this hype I had built, a worrisome thought crept into my mind: what if it didn’t live up to the hype I had created in my own head? What if the beauty of what it had been overshadowed what it will be. I am happy to report that it lived up to the hype I had created for it, and then some. The issue is a nostalgia filled roller coaster of emotion. Gillen’s script is so good that at times it hurts. The art by McKelvie and Wilson holds up to its standard of excellence and more.  Wilson has cemented (in my mind at least) his status of the best color artist in the game. Seriously, is there a better creative team than Gillen, McKelvie, and Wilson? I dare you try, I know you’ll fail. Go buy this issue.If you haven’t read the previous volumes of Phonogram you will still enjoy it. If you have you’ll enjoy it even more. Rating: 10/10

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Injection #4: More of the back story is explored in this issue, but the answers are coupled with more questions. Ellis, Shalvey, and Bellaire craft an excellent issue with lots of character development. With more of the background being revealed you finally get a sense of what’s going on, and that in and of it’s self is exciting. Not as much action this issue as the bulk of it was dedicated to back story. An almost antithesis of issue three really. I’m excited to continue this series and see which bends first: Science, or magic. Rating: 7/10

Gotham Academy #9: Another strong showing for my favorite series from DC. Could there be a wolf at Gotham Academy? Or something more sinister? This issue builds on the mystery that surrounds Olive’s mother while providing plenty of action in the for of a man bat and a wolf man(?). We discover that certain people are excellent at science, and that they may or may not have a secret layer. The creative team of Cloonan, Fletcher, Kerschl, Lapointe, and Msassyk continue to deliver month after month. At this point if you aren’t reading Gotham Academy you might want to re-evaluate your life. Rating: 8/10

A-Force #3: She-hulk finds herself in the midst of trouble after jumping threw the portal from the end of issue two. Will she be able to make it back to her team? Whats the meaning of the portals? What’s causing them? All these questions are, more or less, answered in this issue. I’ll keep this mini review spoiler free though. A-Force continues to be a fresh air in what is starting to feel like an aimost-stale mega event. The only titles I read from Secret Wars is Secret Wars and this title. I am glad it’s continuing after Battleworld is no more. Rating: 7/10

Secret Wars #5: Speaking of Secret Wars, the main title continues to surprise me. I know I’ve said it before but Jonathan Hickman is a genius, or a mad scientist. One of the two. In this issues we see the repercussions of the shocking end to Issue 4 (no spoilers, just know that it was indeed shocking). We learn more of how God Doom was able to save what fragments of the muti-verse that he did save (with the helm\p of a very special someone). Truly the exploration of how battleworld came to be is fascinating to me. It’s clear that this event was months, no, years in the making. The art by Ribic continues to astound. All in all a great addition to a great series. Rating: 8/10

Skip

Starfire #3: Honestly the only reason I got this issue is because I pre-ordered it months ago. I can see why other people like it, it’s just not for me. Rating: 3/10

Descender #6: This issue really fell flat for me. Which is a pity because I’ve really enjoyed the overall series. I hope that Jeff Lemire can turn it around for the next issue. Rating: 5/10

Tales From The Pull List Jun. 17th: In a (Justice) League of their own

Hello Revuers!  Its that time of the week again. This week there were quite a few comics I was excited about. It turned out not to be as great as j had thought it would be though, as many comics didnt live up to my expectations. I also wanted to let you all know that I will not be posting for the next week or so. I am getting married Saturday and will be on my honeymoon until next saturday. So enjoy the list!

Pick of the Week

Justice League of America #1: Story: Bryan Hitch Art: Bryan Hitch & Wade von Grawbadger In what was otherwise a disappointing week, JLA #1 was a success. I dove right in without a vast knowledge of the DC universe,  and even less about the latest event: convergence. Despite this I was able to follow along without being to confused. The book opens up with the death of superman, or should I say A Superman. Someone, or something, is killing Supermen from across the multiverse,  and only Superman (THE Superman!….?) can stop it. By doing…nothing.A mysterious company summons superman to a meeting to warn/threaten him of what was to come if he didnt protect himself. Hitch did a good job at portraying the JLA (which featured Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Aquaman, and Green Lantern) as not being to over powered, and making the story interesting. The art job was great as well, Hitch and Grawbadger did a good job of using scale to make panels feel bigger than they were. Overall a good start to the series and I look forward to the next issue.

Rating: 7.5/10

Buy

The Fiction #1: a fun start. The art really is what carries this book, but the story is intriguing as well. I am interested in seeing what comes next. Which is always a good sign for a series that just started.

Rating: 6/10

Dr. Fate #1: Another DC title that I really enjoyed this week. I came in with next to no knowledge of Dr. Fate and still enjoyed myself. The art was different than most DC titles, but was similar to that of Constatine Hellblazer, from last week. However, I feel like the art was more successful here and really maintained a consistent tone throughout

Rating: 6.5/10

Black Canary #1: Coming in I had high hopes and expectations for this one. While it was decent, it didnt live up to the hype in my head. The art was good, but not fantastic. The story was ok, however it felt kind of rushed and squeezed together. It could of been just a result of unrealistic expectations from me and for that reason I am going to continue the series.

Rating: 5/10

Southern Bastards #9: This Issue serves as the start of a new story arch. It picks up with the surprise ending of issue 8, and is een through the eyes of the sheriff. Jason & Jason continue to play with my emotions and make me sympathize with horrible individuals. If anything this series has struck home with me that even seemingly terrible people may have a story that can move you to tears.

Rating: 7/10

Skip

Martian Manhunter #1: I bought this because I thought I liked the Martian Manhunter as a character. Turns out I was wrong.

Rating: 4/10

Runaways #1: I have not read the original volumes of Runaways. From what ive heard its very different than this. I hope so.

Rating: 3/10

Thors #1: This issue had promise, but didn’t deliver in my opinion. It tried to read like a crime comic, but the only crime I felt was the theft of my $3.99 Rating: 2/10