Comics

Comic books and graphic novels

Fri
16
Oct

Monsters Run in Mary's Family: The Adventures of Mary Shelley's Great-Great-Great-Great-Great-Granddaughter

Mary: Advs of Mary Shelley's GGGGG-Gdaughter

Sixteen year old Mary Shelley carries a 197-year-old burden. She's the great, great, great, great, GREAT granddaughter of the original Mary Shelley -- you know, the lady who invented the science fiction genre with her story about a doctor who revives the dead? Right, that Mary Shelley, and that book. And ever since that fateful publication, the Shelley lineage has been populated with authors, including modern Mary's grandmother (recipes) and her mother, Tawny, who writes a mega-successful mystery series about a crime-solving sleuth, also named Tawny.

Mary is the one next in line, with the expectations that she, also, will find her voice and take up the pen. But there's a problem with that.

She doesn't want to. In fact, she doesn't know what it is exactly that she wants to do, but she knows it isn't that.

Wed
14
Oct

Justice League Annual 2 a Much Welcomed Single-Issue Story

Justice League Annual 2

If you've seen any of my livestream rants on our YouTube channel, you know I regularly decry the loss of the "one and done" comic books, issues that contain a fully realized story--no continuations, no reference to extra-titular events. So, seeing as how Robert Venditti has complied with that in his delivery of "Death Trap," the story contained in JUSTICE LEAGUE ANNUAL #2, it behooves me to not only read it but to review it for others as well.

Tue
13
Oct

DIE!NAMITE Shambles Along Trail Blazed by Marvel Zombies, DCeased

Die! Namite #1

As soon as I saw the design for this first issue -- a zombified Red Sonya and the "how did they not think of this before" title, DIE!NAMITE, I knew -- absolutely knew, I say! -- that this was going to be a Johnny-come-to-lately knockoff of the inventive and entertaining DCEASED, a hanger-on for the fans of THE WALKING DEAD still pining the demise of that series. It was obvious -- obvious, I'm telling you! -- that they were going to give their licensed characters the zombie treatment, present them as a threat to surviving heroes, and wrap it all up in the five-issue allotment scheduled for the run. But, what the hell, it could be fun.

Mon
12
Oct

Batman: The Joker Warzone #1 a Mixed Anthology to Set Up 2021

Batman: The Joker Warzone

With an event as big as Joker War, spanning as many titles as it did, it's easy to slip in a few stories here and there, some shorts that just didn't fit into any of the established titles. That's where the one-shots come in, like BATMAN: THE JOKER WARZONE, telling stories that happened behind and between the scenes.

Fri
02
Oct

Ways Comic Books Can Improve Writing Skills

Comic Books Influence Writing

Having good writing skills benefits a student during his academic life. The skills remain just as significant, if not more, once you enter the job market. Reading comic books is a useful and exciting option for kids, as well as adults, to polish this skill. Here are some benefits of comic books.

 

 

Reading Comprehension

Sun
27
Sep

Talking Craft with NYT Bestselling Graphic Novelist Kazu Kabuishi

Amulet Kazu Kabuishi

Between FLIGHT, COPPER, paperback cover illustrations of the Harry Potter books, and eight volumes of the best-selling graphic novel AMULET (with a ninth in the works), writer/artist Kazu Kibuishi is a role model for not excepting or expecting anything but success. His canny understanding of storytelling, as well as of where the market swings are in comic book culture, have made him an expert in the artform, capable of speaking on subjects from the most esoteric anime to your run-of-the-mill superhero arc.

Critical Blast is joined by UNSTITCHED creator Justin Dutton to spend an hour with Kibuishi discussing these aspects of the graphic novel industry, and what traits make for stories that stand the test of time -- and remain evergreen sellers in bookstores. Check the video below for all the details.

Thu
24
Sep

Neotheric: The Return of the King Irreverent Clash of Genres

Neotheric Cover

Sixty-five million years ago, dinosaurs disappeared from the face of the Earth.

Yesterday, four of them came back -- crash landing into the Mayberry-esque town of Riverside Junction in the same ship that took them away millennia ago.

Tue
22
Sep

One Thousand Issues in the Making: Detective Comics #1027

Detective Comics 1027 - J Scott Campbell variant

The ten-dollar-comic is rapidly becoming a regular thing at the local comics shop. True, it's been reserved for these 80th aniversary specials, but as we continue marking that particuar milestone, we'll soon have overlap with 80th anniversaries of later characters and 85th anniversaries of the ones we just celebrated. So the bottom line is to get used to them.

Fortunately, with books like DETECTIVE #1027 -- this one celebrating the 1000th issue of the title since the introduction of Batman -- you get a collection of really good short stories featuring the world's greatest detective. Unfortunately, it doesn't lead off with them -- all the more surprising given the Bat-experience of the writers.

Mon
21
Sep

This T.E.D.D.Y. is Ready for the Boogeyman. Prepare to Get UNSTITCHED!

Unstitched 1

Eleanor isn't having an easy time of it lately. The new baby brother seems to constantly be taking more and more of mom and dad's time, taking away from her play time and her story time.

But Eleanor has a bigger problem,and she doesn't even know it. A dark and evil force has set his sights on her, and she's going to need a special defender, an experienced knight, to fight on her behalf to keep her safe.

Enter Muffins: Muffins is a T.E.D.D.Y. -- a Terrifically Effective Dreaming Defender. Yeah! Unfortunately, Muffins is not a fully-trained T.E.D.D.Y. but rather an over-eager rookie, who overheard there was a threat when he eavesdropped on his teacher speaking with the Dream King in Dreamland. Ready to prove he's got the stuffing of the greatest T.E.D.D.Y. ever, Muffins takes a shooting star to Earth and lands in Eleanor's bedroom.

Fri
18
Sep

DC UNIVERSE TRANSFORMS INTO DC UNIVERSE INFINITE, THE ULTIMATE COMIC BOOK SUBSCRIPTION SERVICE

DCUniverse Infinite

BURBANK, CA (Sept. 18, 2020) – Calling all comic book fans to Explore the Multiverse! DC today announced the evolution of DC UNIVERSE into DC UNIVERSE INFINITE, a premium digital comic book service set to launch on January 21, 2021. With access to more than 24,000 comic books at launch, DC UNIVERSE INFINITE subscribers will also encounter digital-first comics, member access to DC fan events, as well as a steady stream of recently released comics six months after their physical versions hit store shelves. Following its initial launch, DC UNIVERSE INFINITE will begin expanding globally in SUMMER 2021.

Tue
15
Sep

Joker War Enters Final Stages in Batman #99

Batman 99

I've been ambivalent about this whole "Joker War" going on in the BATMAN books. Tynion's run has been a welcome change of pace from the eternal misery of the previous eighty issues, and the premise of the arc has been a solid one. Basically, Joker has always known the identities of the Batman family, and has taken advantage of a long-planned heist that puts him in charge of the Wayne fortune -- as well as the company and real estate, giving him access to not just the money but the research and development areas -- that is, the weaponry of the Batcave.

Thu
13
Aug

Did Bill Willingham Fabricate Embezzlement Accusations Against Stephanie Cooke?

Willingham Cooke Embezzlement

The Short Answer 

No.

The Longer Answer

On July 30, 2020, our esteemed competition in reporting on comics and entertainment, Bleeding Fool, published the second part in their ongoing series of articles investigating the so-called "Whisper Network,"  And while the bulk of that article continued to delve into the secret Facebook group, Women in Comics, it led with a blockbuster accusation that had been completely excluded -- and, in fact, in the case of one website, completely deleted -- from coverage. That accusation came from comic book writer Bill Willingham (FABLES, ELEMENTALS), when he claimed that Stephanie Cooke, working at the time as his assistant, embezzled in excess of $10,000 from his accounts.

Thu
13
Aug

Terminus Media's DOMINION a "Star Wars in Narnia" Biblical Adventure

Dominion Fall of House of Saul Book 1

Biblically-inspired comic book stories are not a new thing. One could argue they go as far back as Superman himself, as an allegory to the tale of Moses. But that doesn't mean some of them can't feel like a new thing, and when they do it truly captures the imagination and runs wild with it.

This is the case behind DOMINION: FALL OF THE HOUSE OF SAUL, created by Dr. Barron Bell and co-written by Daniel Hancock. It's very much a re-interpretation of the Old Testament book of I Samuel, beginning with Saul already established as king and having  beaten the armies of the Amalekites one year prior. However, DOMINION gives this story a twist in that it is told using anthropomorphic beasts in an extra-galactic setting, making it a "Star Wars in Narnia" event.

Tue
11
Aug

Latest Dave Sim Project Blends Humor, Photorealism to Address Social Issues

You Don't Know Jack Dave Sim

Dave Sim, the man behind the legendary run of CEREBUS, has a new project wrapping up on Kickstarter, with artist Carson Grubaugh. YOU DON'T KNOW JACK! TWO-FISTED COMIC STORE MANAGER is a by-product of the collaboration of Sim and Grubaugh on his other work-in-progress, THE STRANGE DEATH OF ALEX RAYMOND. During the latter project, Grubaugh, an art professor, drew on one of his students as a model for the piece -- Jack VanDyke, a comic store manager.

Tue
11
Aug

Joker War Spills Over into Detective 1025

Detective Comics 1027 2020

The Joker has struck his biggest blow against the Dark Knight -- he has taken all the billions of Bruce Wayne and has assumed control of Wayne Enterprises, including all the attendant Batman technology. Bruce Wayne has been exposed as an embezzler, redirecting Wayne Foundation funds into financially supporting Batman's war on crime -- which is, in fact, true, since Bruce Wayne set up several shell companies to hide the fact he had been doing exactly this for years.

Now Gotham City is under seige, with Batman and the police being the last line of defense against the Joker and his minions, armed to the teeth with Batman-weaponry. The new Wayne Foundation lawyers are also pressing things on the legal end -- against the police and the press, silencing all opposition as best they can.

Fri
07
Aug

Two GI Bros Crash on Paradise Island During Monster Hunt in Ravage: Kill All Men #1

Ravage Kill All Men Redux 1

RAVAGE: KILL ALL MEN began as a Kickstarter campaign under the Cautionary Comics banner. It was loudly heralded and brought with it high expectations, due to the gravitas lent to the series by writer Chuck Dixon who joined Benjamin Henderson in crafting the story. The dynamic and sexy cover by Geebo Vigonte and Lorenzo Thellier D'Auzers also no doubt moved units to the success of the crowdfunding campaign.

Since then, the title has shifted its masthead to Fanatic Comics, and is getting a second "redux" printing through an Indiegogo, which is still in the offing.

So lets dig into this offering, both external and internal, and deliver the breakdowns.

Fri
31
Jul

Bill Willingham Reaffirms $10K Embezzlement Claims Against HMH's Stephanie Cooke

Stephanie Cooke Bill Willingham Embezzlement

In the hotly anticipated second installment of Bleeding Fool's exposure of the Women In Comics Facebook group, colloquially referred to as the "Whisper Network" came surprise allegations from FABLES creator Bill Willingham against Houghton Mifflin Harcourt's Stephanie Cooke of embezzlement "in excess of ten thousand dollars."

The claim dates back to 2015 and references the period when Cooke was Willingham's assistant. Willingham reconfirmed that this is still an open case, hampered by the fact that Cooke had since moved back to Canada.

Thu
30
Jul

Engineward Posits a Post-Earth Civilization

Engineward #1 from Vault Comics

In the distant future, long after the humanity has fled planet Earth, people live in a desert environment threatened by gigantic reptilian monsters. Water is a precious commodity, rationed and dole out by an elite faction called Celestials, who live in excessive luxury and fashion themselves after the zodiac.

On this world, a team of archeologists has recovered an artifact from the days of arrival, a metal head found in the face of a mountain near the site of the rusted out shell of a crashed spaceship. The discovery is taken as a prize by the team leader, Ichabod, to a plucky young engineer -- called an engineward in this evolution of the English dialiect -- named Joss, who is excited about the relic and what it might teach them about early Earth -- or "Oert" as it has etmologically transformed.

Thu
23
Jul

Villainous a Mad Good Comic from Mad Cave

Villainous 1

Matilda Anderson is having the best day of her life: she's been accepted into the Coalition of Heroes' intern program as a sidekick under her new code name, RepTilly, due to her lizard-like physiology.

The Coalition of Heroes is a vast organization, and the super-powered people working for it get tasked to do jobs from the mundane to the extraordinary. When RepTilly gets assigned to the most high-profile hero of the team, Showdown, she's over the moon -- even when she finds her training program includes things like taking out the dry cleaning, dusting the office, and sending flowers to his many girlfriends. Whatever it takes, she'll do it to become a full-fledged superhero and do battle against the evil Shadow Order.

Tue
21
Jul

Chris Ryall Leaving IDW To Start New Publishing and Entertainment Venture

Chris Ryall

Focused On Developing New Voices Alongside Industry Veterans

Transitions To Advisory Role At IDW Publishing

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