* NOW WITH STAR RATINGS (ala Wrestling Observer Newsletter PPV reports) *
HOW I RATE THE COMICS VIA THE ALAN MOORE SCALE***** Watchmen, Miracleman, V For Vendetta
**** From Hell, Supreme, Swamp Thing, Fashion Beast, League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen (first two series)
*** Axel Pressbutton, Tom Strong
* LoEG: Century: 1969
DUD (or lower) any of his non-comics stuff
1. Silver Surfer #1 (Marvel, 2014) ***¾Writer: Dan Slott/Artist: Mike Allred
No-one will buy it, but I enjoyed this debut issue. Funky and quirky.
2. Real Heroes #1 (Image, 2014) ***¼
Writer: Bryan Hitch/Artists: Bryan Hitch & Paul Neary
I feel like this has been done before...and better. It’s predictable, almost clichéd. Still, Hitch’s art is pretty. I’ll give it one more issue and see where it leads.
3.-4. The Returning #1-2 (Boom!, 2014) ***½
Writer: Jason Starr/Artists: Andrea Mutti (interiors); Frazer Irving (covers)
I got sucked into buying this horror title because I thought the covers were being drawn by Richard Corben. Instead, they’re actually drawn by Irving doing his best Corben imitation. The story itself is okay, but it’s basically a rehash of Revival. Almost blatant in ripping off that yarn, to be honest. The second issue improved on the first – the idea of an undead conspiracy, double-crosses and evil zombies pretending to be FBI agents really got me hooked. I look forward to the next instalment.
5. Scribblenauts Unmasked #1 (DC, 2014 – digital version) **¾
Writer: Josh Elder/Artist: Adam Archer
I got this digital comic via a code in the Scribblenauts action figure I bought at Kings earlier this month. It’s okay – kinda all-ages, but also geared to promote some new video game, apparently. Rather than being the first issue of a series, I felt like I’d been dropped into the middle of a series where I should know and understand all the characters (which I didn’t). Archer’s art is simplistic and underwhelming, lacking the charm of other all-ages superhero titles.
And reading digital still doesn’t impress me – the only thing I like about them is the price (cheap! Or free!).
6. Origins of Reid Fleming, World’s Toughest Milkman (Deep Sea Comics, 1998) ****
Writer/Artist: David Boswell
7. The Eltingville Club #1 (Dark Horse, 2014) ***¾
Writer/Artist: Evan Dorkin
Dorkin really hates comic book culture and people who work in or visit comic shops.
8. Minimum Wage #4 (Image, 2014) *****
Writer/Artist: Bob Fingerman
9.-15. Concrete: Depths (Dark Horse, 2005) ***½
- originally published in Concrete #1-5 and other comics (Dark Horse, 1986-2005)
16.-21. Saga: Vol. 3 (Image, 2014) *****
Writer: Brian K. Vaughan/Artist: Fiona Staples
- originally published in Saga #13-18 (Image, 2013-14)
22.-31. Death (Vertigo, 2014) *****
- originally published in a bunch of different comics (Vertigo, 1989-2003)
Writer: Neil Gaiman/Artists: Dave McKean & many others
32. Starlight #2 (Image, 2014) ***¾
Writer: Mark Millar/Artist: Goran Parlov
33. WWE Superstars #3 (Super Genius, 2014) ***
Writer: Mick Foley & Shane Riches/Artist: Alitha E. Martinez
34. Protectors Inc. #5 (Image, 2014) ***½
Writer: J. Michael Straczynski/Artist: Gordon Purcell & Andrew Pepoy
35.-36. The Royals: Masters Of War #2-3 (Vertigo, 2014) ***½
Writer: Rob Williams/Artist: Simon Coleby
If it wasn’t for the obvious twist in the tale that seems to be clearly signposted, I’d give this miniseries a higher mark. Other than that, a rollicklng alternative WW2/superhero yarn.
37. Miracleman #4 (Marvel, 2014) *****
- originally published in various comics (1983, 1984, 1989)
Writer: Alan Moore/Artists: Garry Leach, Alan Davis
Probably my favourite run of Miracleman stories (featuring “Big Ben, the man with no time for crime”) – and the initial stories in Warrior mag that got me hooked into Alan Moore et al back in 1983.
38. The Fox #5 (Red Circle, 2014) ***½
Writer: JM DeMatteis/Artist: Dean Haspiel
39. Justice League 3000 #5 (DC, 2014) ***½
Writers: Keith Giffen & JM DeMatteis/Artist: Howard Porter
40. Krampus! #4 (Image, 2014) ***¼
Writer: Brian Joines/Artist: Dean Kotz
41. Revolutionary War: Warheads (Marvel, 2014) **½Writers: Andy Lanning & Alan Cowsill/Artist: Gary Erskine (interior), Mark Brooks (cover)
42. Revolutionary War: Omega (Marvel, 2014) *½
Writers: Andy Lanning & Alan Cowsill/Artist: Rich Elson (interior), Mark Brooks (cover)
So after eight less-than-inspiring issues, this damp squib of a maxiseries comes to an end. And what got resolved? Well, they killed Killpower and most of the Super Solders, and brought back the original Death’s Head. Other than that, who gives a fuck?
43. She-Hulk #3 (Marvel, 2014) ****Writer: Charles Soule/Artist: Javier Pulido
44. New Warriors #3 (Marvel, 2014) ***¼
Writer: Christopher Yost/Artist: Marcus To
45. Secret #7 (Image, 2014) ***
Writer: Jonathan Hickman/Artist: Ryan Bodenheim
What the fuck is going on (and will this series NEVER end)?
46. One-Hit Wonder #2 (Image, 2014) ***½
Writer: Fabrice Sapolsky/Artists: Ariel Olivetti; Elsa Charretier & Pieerick Colinet
Olivetti has quit the series so there’s absolutely no reason to buy another issue.
47. Deadly Class #3 (Image, 2014) ****
Writer: Rick Remender/Artist: Wes Craig
48. Black Science #5 (Image, 2014) ****
Writer: Rick Remender/Artists: Matteo Scalera; Dean White
49. Moon Knight #2 (Marvel, 2014) ***¾
Writer: Warren Ellis/Artist: Declan Shalvey
50. Beasts of Burden: Hunters & Gatherers (Dark Horse, 2014) ***½
Writer: Evan Dorkin/Artist: Jill Thompson
51. The Premature Burial (Dark Horse, 2014) ***
Writer/artist: Richard Corben
Beautiful full-colour art, but the adaptation of two of Poe’s better known tales is not up to par.
52. The Field #1 (Image, 2014) ***¾
Writer: Ed Brisson/Artist: Simon Roy
53. All-New Doop #1 (Marvel, 2014) ***
Writer: Peter Milligan/Artist: David LaFuente
54. Guardians Of The Galaxy: Prelude #1 (Marvel, 2014) ***
Writers: Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning/Artists: Wellinton Alves & Manny Clark
The cashing in on the upcoming movie continues in this non-continuity tale that relates to the film, not the comic.