Comics

Comic books and graphic novels

Sat
09
May

Front Lines - Secret Wars 1 & Convergence Week 5 (Part 1 of 2)

By Mike Maillaro and Mike Weaver

Front Lines is Critical Blast's weekly look at the "reality changing" events going on in the DC and Marvel universe.  For the first month, we had a little bit of a cushion as we were only talking about Convergence. But now Secret Wars is in full swing too, so May is going to be a VERY busy month for your Front Lines team.


Secret Wars

Fri
08
May

Shades of Grey: From the Outside Looking In

These are some things I've noticed in my past few months as strictly a fan and not a guy doing any sort of coverage of the comics industry. (I am not using sarcasm tags, so hopefully the sarcastic ones stand out and I don't have to shake my head that the point went over someone's head):

 

 

 

 

Thu
07
May

Open Mike Night - Secret Wars

By Mike Maillaro and Mike Weaver

Maillaro: Team Open Mike continues our mad quest to cover the front lines of Marvel and DC's huge crossovers.  This week, we hit Secret Wars (both the current one, and a quick glimpse back at Secret Wars 2).


Secret Wars (2015) #1

Wed
06
May

Critical Blast Best Television Show of 2014: The Flash

CW Flash Best TV Show of 2014 Critical Blast Grant Gustin

There's a reason why the CW is the #1 broadcast network on Tuesday nights among men 18 to 34, and that reason wears a red uniform. His name is Barry Allen, and he is not only The Fastest Man Alive, he's a ratings bonanza.

Grant Gustin is accompanied by an ensemble cast that has made THE FLASH one of the must-watch series on television. His premiere episode outpaced every show in CW history to become their most watched telecast ever, pulling in more than 13 million viewers across all viewing platforms.

It's no surprise, therefore, that THE FLASH won handily in the voting for Best Television Series of 2014. But it wasn't without some pretty stiff competition. Close on its heels was ARROW, followed by BBC's DOCTOR WHO.

Tue
05
May

Swords of Sorrow is the summer crossover you SHOULD be buying!

Swords of Sorrow is Dynamite’s big summer crossover.  I am actually very worried about it getting overshadowed by events like Convergence and Secret Wars. I have talked extensively about my love of Dynamite's other crossover series like Masks and Legendarry. Swords of Sorrow seems to be very much in the same vein, though this time it will be featuring an all female cast. The first two issues come out this week, and I was happy to get the opportunity to review them early.


Warning! These reviews contains quite a few spoilers!

Swords of Sorrow #1

Written by: Gail Simone
Illustrated by: Sergio Davila
Cover by: J. Scott Campbell
Colored by: Jorge Sutil
Lettered by: Erica Schultz

Published by: Dynamite
Cover Price: $3.99

Tue
05
May

The Longbox Short-List - Week of May 6, 2015

Marvel Secret Wars Longbox Shortlist Critical Blast

Welcome back to Critical Blast’s weekly look at what new comics you should check out each week.   Just a warning, I make these picks pretty much a week BEFORE I actually get to read any of these comics, so if something is a stinker, I take no blame on that.  Let's get to it!

Comics Shipping This Week

Secret Wars #1 - Or as I like to call it "The Elephant In the Room." I have ZERO interest in this series, but since I enjoy quite a bit of Marvel's books, I feel like I have to buy it just to know what's going to happen to the books I enjoy reading. Jonathan Hickman holds basically no appeal for me. Sorry to sound so cynical, but I am expecting Secret Wars to be a huge disappointment.

Mon
04
May

Science fiction meets spy games in Valiant's Dead Drop

Dead Drop #1

Written by: Ales Kot
Art by: Adam Gorham
Cover by: Raul Allen
Colored by: Michael Spicer
Lettered by: VC's Dave Sharpe

Published by: Valiant
Cover Price: $3.99

Warning! This review contains quite a few spoilers!

Sun
03
May

Front Lines - Convergence Week 4 (Part 2), Secret Wars 0, Divergence

By Mike Maillaro and Mike Weaver

Convergence:  Infinity Inc #1 by Jerry Ordway and Ben Caldwell

Worlds Featured: Metropolis (Pre-Crisis Earth 2) and Atlanta (Hex)

Sat
02
May

Front Lines - Convergence Week 4 (Part 1 of 2)

by Mike Maillaro and Mike Weaver

Convergence #4

Summary: This issue starts with Telos explaining what’s going on to Earth-2 Dick Grayson.  Brainiac saved these cities and tasked Telos with terraforming this world for them.  But, Telos needs to decide who would make a strong society worthy of this world.  So he decided to have them all fight it out.   He wraps the paralyzed Dick Grayson in some kind of liquid metal that helps him regain his mobility.  

Fri
01
May

Heathen, a Kickstarter Graphic Novel You Need To See

Heathen by Natasha Alterici -- Back it on Kickstarter!

I love to browse Kickstarter for cool new inventions, clever board games and exciting graphic novels. Recently I came across Heathena new graphic novel project from Oklahoma-based artist Natasha Alterici. After reading the synopsis, I immediately backed her project. I then contacted Natasha to learn more about the project, her interest in comic books, and herself. 

Tell me a little about yourself and how you came to be doing a Kickstarter for this graphic novel project? What drew you, no pun intended, to the comic medium? And who are done of your artistic influences? Your style on Heathen reminds me of Ashley Wood, which isn't a bad thing!

Fri
01
May

Open Mike Night - Fantastic Four #645 & Team America #12

Fantastic Four #645

Tue
28
Apr

Zenescope takes us back to Oz one last time (Oz: Reign of the Witch Queen #1)

One of the things Zenescope is known best for is they have a variety of series that are modern day versions of various classic and fairy tale stories, most notably their Grimm and Oz lines. So, when I heard that Oz: Reign of the Witch Queen was supposed to be a very good jumping on point for Oz, I decided to check it out.

Before I get into the review, I do want to say that one of the early impressions I had about these books was that they had done a lot of cheesecake redesigns for the characters. In fact, when you search for “Zenescope Grimm” on Google, one of the first images that comes up is this: 

Tue
28
Apr

The Longbox Short-List - Week of April 29, 2015

Convergence Multiversity NCBD comic books

Welcome back to Critical Blast’s weekly look at what new comics you should check out each week.   Just a warning, I make these picks pretty much a week BEFORE I actually get to read any of these comics, so if something is a stinker, I take no blame on that.  Let's get to it!

Comics Shipping This Week

Mon
27
Apr

The Charmed Ones prepare to take on The Old Ones (Charmed Season 10, Issue 7)

Charmed Season 10 #7

Written by: Pat Shand
Art by: Dimat
Cover by: David Seidman
Colored by: Valentina Cuomo
Lettered by: Christy Sawyer

Published by: Zenescope
Cover Price: $3.99

Warning! This review contains quite a few spoilers!

Even though I just reviewed Charmed a few months ago, this was supposed to be a good jump on issue for new readers, so I decided to give it another shot.  This story was mostly a stand alone story, though there was a lot here that provided closure to hanging story threads, and a lot of setup for future storylines too.

Sun
26
Apr

Front Lines - Convergence Week 3 (part 2 of 2)

Convergence: Justice League of America #1 by Fabian Nicieza and Chriscross

Sat
25
Apr

Front Lines - Convergence Week 3 - (Part 1 of 2)

DC Comics Convergence Critical Blast Review Front Lines

Convergence Week 3 by Mike Maillaro and Mike Weaver

This week, we have Pre-Crisis Gotham City, New York City (Kamandi), Gotham City (Red Rain), Central City (Tangent), Durale (OMAC), and Pre-Crisis Legion Metropolis as our combatants...though I will say up front, you don’t get to see much of these characters in many of the tie-ins.


Convergence #3 by Jeff King and Stephen Segovia

Fri
24
Apr

Marvel Teams Up With Telltale Games

Very interesting news posted by Gamespot this morning:

Today during a special event in San Francisco, Telltale Games and Marvel Games announced a partnership for a new game due out in 2017.

The event is ongoing; we'll have more details on the new game as they become available.

Telltale has also published a blog post about this announcement, though it doesn't offer much in the way of specifics.

"Announced this evening in San Francisco, we're excited to reveal an all-new partnership with the incredible team at Marvel Entertainment. We'll be teaming up on the development of an upcoming Telltale game series project set to premiere in 2017!"

Source: Gamespot

Thu
23
Apr

Open Mike Night - Runaways Vol. 1 & the Iceman Controversy

By Mike Weaver and Mike Maillaro

Runaways Vol. 1 - Pride and Joy

Written by: Brian K. Vaughan
Art by:  Adrian Alphona

Published by: Marvel

 

Thu
23
Apr

DC Super Hero Girls: Message Received

DC Super Hero Girls

UPDATE (7-7-15): The official website for DC Super Hero Girls is now up and running with full character bios! Head on over to dcsuperherogirls.com to check it out!

DC couldn't have picked a better time to make this announcement. Whether it was planned to do it now, or they saw an opportunity and seized it; it's genius.

On the heels of fans raging about the lack of Black Widow on Marvel's Avengers: Age of Ultron merchandise, DC announced they would be creating an entire line of merchandise and media dedicated to young girls.

DC Super Hero Girls is a new effort to nurture the growing female audience and invest in the future of their strong female characters.

Tue
21
Apr

The Longbox Short-List - Week of April 22, 2015

Welcome back to Critical Blast’s weekly look at what new comics you should check out each week.   Just a warning, I make these picks pretty much a week BEFORE I actually get to read any of these comics, so if something is a stinker, I take no blame on that.  Let's get to it!

Comics Shipping This Week

I'm going to preface this week's column by saying this is one of the weakest comic weeks I've had in a long time.  Very few books jumped out at me as MUST TALK ABOUT!  And even the few I did, were real stretches.  The only book that I am real excited about is Uncle Scrooge #1...

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