Monday, 31 July 2017

Dark Knight III: The Master Race Review (Frank Miller, Brian Azzarello)

Evil Kryptonians invade Earth. The World’s Finest are scattered. Bruce Wayne is dead. Long live... Batman? This is Dark Knight III: The Master Race. 

I have a lorra opinions on this one and many are spoilerific so if you’re planning on reading this for yourself and are just wondering what I thought of this one, the quick verdict is: nah. I mean, it’s always exciting to read a Frank Miller Batman book considering that if anyone’s responsible for the modern version of Batman we currently have, it’s him, and he wrote two of Batman’s greatest books, The Dark Knight Returns and Year One. But his latter-day Batman stuff has been almost the polar opposite in terms of quality. DKII was an outright disaster and All-Star Batman & Robin gave us the psychotic (yet highly quotable!) Goddamn Batman. 

Sunday, 30 July 2017

Deadpool the Duck Review (Stuart Moore, Jacopo Camagni)

Deadpool and Howard the Duck find themselves temporarily fused after a Cronenberg-esque teleporter malfunction (of course). Deadpool the Duck must figure out how to un-fuse and save their buddy Rocket from space rabies!

Saturday, 29 July 2017

Batman: Arkham Reborn Review (David Hine, Jeremy Haun)

Usually any Batman book with “Arkham” or “Asylum” in the title is Bantha poodoo but I was pleasantly surprised to find that David Hine and Jeremy Haun’s Arkham Reborn breaks that tradition by being surprisingly brilliant. It’s a tale of creepy psychological horror that becomes more enthralling as the strange story of Jeremiah Arkham, the head of the Asylum and descendant of the founder, unfolds.

Friday, 28 July 2017

Venom, Volume 1: Homecoming Review (Mike Costa, Gerardo Sandoval)

I couldn’t care less as I’m not a fan of either Venom or Eddie Brock but it should be noted that the cover of this book is misleading. Eddie, the most infamous host of the Symbiote, is reunited with Venom, they’re saying “We’re Back!” and the subtitle is “Homecoming”, so Eddie Brock/Venom fans (there must be some) should reasonably expect this to be about the pair - Venom being just one example of Marvel probably deciding to go back to the classic incarnation of the character after seeing how returning to the status quo in Rebirth made DC a pile of cash. 

Thursday, 27 July 2017

Shirtless Bear-Fighter! #1 Review (Jody LeHeup, Sebastian Girner)

Shirtless Bear-Fighter is as daffy a comic as the title suggests. Bears invade Major City and for comedy reasons the Army is unable to stop them from rubbing their bear asses (geddit?) on everything. One FBI Agent must get Shirtless Bear-Fighter to come out of retirement for one last job and defeat the bears before the government sends in the nukes!

This first issue sets the silly, campy ‘80s-style action movie tone. Shirtless Bear-Fighter lives in a bear-fur house in the woods and flies a plane made of bear furs – the Bear Plane. He’s perpetually naked and his huge schlong (always in frame) has to be pixelated. Even in his flashback origin, baby Shirtless is bearded with a giant pixelated wang! And his currency is flapjacks and maple syrup.

It’s an amusingly bonkers read that was kinda fun for an issue but the premise started to wear a bit thin towards the end. Like last year’s Grizzly Shark, Shirtless Bear-Fighter’s wackiness could get tedious over its proposed five issue run but this first issue’s not bad and good for some easy laughs.

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Deadpool, Volume 11: Dead Review (Daniel Way, Carlo Barberi)

Daniel Way closes out his epic Deadpool run with this final bumper 14-issue volume (usually that’s about three books’ worth of comics!). Unfortunately it’s a case of quantity over quality. 

Deadpool’s had enough and wants to die once and for all. He discovers a serum that’ll disable his healing factor, make him mortal and allow him to die - but will he go through with it? This is answered immediately with a resounding NO as he goes on a few more pointless adventures and that’s it. 

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

If My Dogs Were a Pair of Middle-Aged Men Review (Matthew Inman, The Oatmeal)

Hurray! Matthew “The Oatmeal” Inman is back with another fantastic and funny pet-themed comic book, If My Dogs Were a Pair of Middle-Aged Men. 

The observations aren’t at all original and any dog owners will be familiar with them: freaking out when you leave, losing their shit when someone knocks on the door, playing with squeaky toys, and eating like slobs, to name a few. 

Monday, 24 July 2017

Dangerous by Milo Yiannopoulos Review

I consider myself a liberal, in that I have more liberal views than conservative, though I do have both; I’m non-partisan and slightly left of centre. But, fucking hell, I’m ashamed of liberals these days, who I’d previously considered more enlightened than conservatives, when I look at some liberals’ behaviour. Antifa (anti-fascists) who hypocritically behave like fascists; so-called progressives who, completely lacking self-awareness, take regressive positions, refuse to listen to opposing views and readily employ aggression to silence dissent; Black Lives Matter who, in attempting to draw more attention to racism, have only made race relations worse and whose many members describe white people in the most horrendous terms - again, hypocritically, being as racist, if not more so, than the people they protest! 

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Captain Canuck, Volume 1: Aleph Review (Kalman Andrasofszky, Leonard Kirk)

A superhero comic called Captain Canuck, like a Canadian version of Captain America? Maybe an indie superhero comic would be better than what the mainstream offers and you could play with national stereotypes. This could be fun, right? WRONG! Oh Canada… 

So this is the relaunch of an allegedly “classic” ‘70s character but, if you’ve never heard of the character up ‘til now like me, there’s a reason for that - unlike maple syrup and Tim Hortons, Captain Canuck suuuuucks! 

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Wolverine: Old Man Logan, Volume 3: The Last Ronin Review (Jeff Lemire, Andrea Sorrentino)

Old Man Logan works fine as a standalone book but as an ongoing title? Nope. And I think at this point Marvel should just stop because Jeff Lemire’s clearly run out of ideas. 

So the unmemorable story of Logan hunting down Lady Deathstrike takes him back to, of course, Japan where he has to fight some arbitrary warrior monks because what else is he gonna do? 

Friday, 21 July 2017

Britannia, Volume 2: We Who Are About to Die Review (Peter Milligan, Juan Jose Ryp)

Antonius Axia, Rome’s first (and only) detective, is back with a new case: temple statues of the gods are coming to life and killing young nobles and a popular female gladiator is somehow connected. Can he solve the case before Emperor Nero loses patience and feeds him and his son to the lions? 

Thursday, 20 July 2017

The Unbelievable Gwenpool, Volume 2: Head of MODOK Review (Christopher Hastings, Gurihiru)

The Unbelievable Gwenpool has nothing to do with Gwen Stacy or Deadpool; she is Gwen Poole, a Marvel fangirl from our world who has inexplicably wound up in the Marvel Universe! Using her unique inside knowledge of Marvel comics, Gwen has survived the strange and dangerous superhero landscape by deposing the giant testicle with a face, MODOK, and becoming the new head of his criminal organisation. She also has a team-up with Ultimate Spider-Man himself, Miles Morales! 

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Shade, the Changing Girl, Volume 1: Earth Girl Made Easy Review (Cecil Castellucci, Marley Zarcone)

I like to move it, move it, move it, I like to… movie it, provie it, shooo… sorry, I think my brain’s broken from too many crappy comics lately! Oh up yours Young Animal. Thank Jeebus this is the last one of these I’ve gotta endure! 

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Daredevil, Volume 15: The Devil, Inside and Out, Volume 2 Review (Ed Brubaker, Michael Lark)

With his best friend Foggy Nelson dead (or is he…?), Matt Murdock breaks out of prison to pursue the killer - a trail that will take Daredevil on a tour of Europe to the puppet master behind it all. 

The second half of Ed Brubaker’s first Daredevil arc, The Devil, Inside and Out, isn’t bad. It’s well-written with Brubaker showing he understands the characters and nails their voices and it’s beautifully illustrated by Michael Lark - it just didn’t do much for me. 

Monday, 17 July 2017

The Dark & Bloody Review (Shawn Aldridge, Scott Godlewski)

Iris is a veteran of the Second Gulf War and spends his days selling ‘shine to his backwoods clientele and being a mediocre husband and father. But he’s haunted by his time in the Iraqi desert and what he and his platoon did - and the demons from that time are coming home to roost… 

I didn’t really know what to expect with The Dark & The Bloody and unfortunately it turns out that it’s a pretty crappy Southern Gothic horror, similar to Wytches and Harrow County. Neither the characters nor the story are in the least bit compelling with the whole thing tediously unfolding slowly. This person is killed off followed by another and… zzz… It took me a while to wade through because I just didn’t care! 

I suppose it’s an imaginative take on the shit America got up to in the Middle East - it’s an original premise, I’ll give it that - and the monster is visually interesting, but I found The Dark & The Bloody to be a bloody unengaging, bland horror.

Sunday, 16 July 2017

Batman: The Chalice Review (Chuck Dixon, John Van Fleet)

I think Chuck Dixon might be the worst Batman writer of all time. If he’s not, he’s definitely in the running. 

Bruce Wayne discovers that he’s related to one of the Grail Knights (of course he is) and is given the actual Holy Grail by one of his descendants. Ra’s Al-Ghul and some other rogues want it - boring shenanigans ensue. 

Tedium would be an upgrade for what I felt when reading The Chalice. No idea why John Van Fleet’s art is so very black (because I’m Batman!) but I was squinting most of the time at the page right in front of me in daylight - not great. 

Predictable, uninteresting, uninspired, and absolutely pointless, it’s easy to see why this toilet paper masquerading as a comic is out of print. Let’s hear it for Chuck Dixon everybody! BOOOOO!!!

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Boy's Club by Matt Furie Review

I think most people are familiar with Pepe the Frog at this point. He figured heavily in the 2016 Election as a meme and his grinning mug has become a symbol of the amorphously-defined “alt-right”. Matt Furie’s stoner comic Boy’s Club is where he originated and I picked it up out of curiosity for what the comics this character featured in were like. That was definitely one of the worst decisions I’ve made in some time - Boy’s Club is 10000% utter dogshit. 

Friday, 14 July 2017

Giant Days, Volume 7 Review (John Allison, Max Sarin)

I’ve just emerged from the longest dry spell of reading any quality books I’d rate four stars or above in years - it’s been over a MONTH! So thank goodness that a new Giant Days arc drops just when I think I’ve got anhedonia. Seven - SEVEN! - books in and this title is still first class all the way. HOW ARE YOU DOING THIS, YOU MAD GENIUS JOHN ALLISON!!!?! Seriously, no other comics series I’ve read has been this consistently good. 

Thursday, 13 July 2017

Daredevil, Volume 13: The Murdock Papers Review (Brian Michael Bendis, Alex Maleev)

Kingpin may have been nicked but he’s got an ace up his sleeve. If the FBI Director cuts him loose, he’ll give him The Murdock Papers, irrefutable proof that the blind lawyer of Hell’s Kitchen, Matt Murdock, is The Man Without Fear himself, Daredevil! 

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Lucky Penny Review (Ananth Hirsh, Yuko Ota)

Penny gets fired from her job and booted out of her flat all in the span of a day. Ooooh, I gets it, the title’s irooooonnnnicccc! So she moves into a storage unit and goes to work at a laundromat run by her friend’s kid brother for comedy reasons. But romance is around the corner in the form of nerdy Walter - could Penny... get Lucky, (ohohoho, nudge nudge)?! 

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Star Wars, Volume 4: Last Flight of the Harbinger Review (Jason Aaron, Jorge Molina)

Rebel sympathisers are starving thanks to a planet-wide blockade by the Empire. Luke and co. plot to hijack a star destroyer to bust through and drop off supplies. The only problem is they have to hijack a friggin’ star destroyer! 

Last Flight of the Harbinger is unfortunately the worst volume yet in Jason Aaron’s Star Wars run - which hasn’t exactly been amazing either! 

Monday, 10 July 2017

The Late Show by Michael Connelly Review

Michael Connelly is labelled a “thriller” writer and it used to be an accurate description for a lot of his books. Ten years ago I loved novels like The Lincoln Lawyer, The Scarecrow and Echo Park for their fast-paced plots with Connelly throwing his characters into tense situations against murderers and sadists. Alas, that’s not the Michael Connelly of today who only seems capable of robotically churning out dull police procedurals like The Late Show. 

Friday, 7 July 2017

Mockingbird, Volume 2: My Feminist Agenda Review (Chelsea Cain, Kate Niemczyk)

Chelsea Cain and Kate Niemczyk’s second and final Mockingbird book is for no good reason very, very loosely tied into Civil War II. I suppose why not? This title is so directionless it’s not hard to see why it got cancelled so early on!

Thursday, 6 July 2017

Moon Knight, Volume 2: Reincarnations Review (Jeff Lemire, James Stokoe)

If you’ve read any Moon Knight comics you’ll know the hero, Marc Spector/Moon Knight, is madder than a box of frogs. He’s completely crazy in the coconut! That’s what Jeff Lemire’s second Moon Knight book is all about underlining - and unfortunately not much else. 

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Cave Carson Has a Cybernetic Eye, Volume 1: Going Underground Review (Gerard Way, Jon Rivera)

Hey, did you know Cave Carson has a cybernetic eye? Who fucking cares?! Certainly not me after reading this shit! 

If his abysmal Doom Patrol series didn’t underline it enough for me, Cave Carson has driven home the point that Gerard Way hasn’t the first clue how to write a decent comic. And let’s not forget his co-writer, Jon Rivera. Two Grant Morrison fanboys who desperately wish they were half as talented as him and demonstrably aren’t even close. I mean, this is straight up incompetent storytelling from first page to last. 

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Star Wars: Darth Vader, Volume 4: End of Games Review (Kieron Gillen, Salvador Larroca)

Kieron Gillen and Salvador Larroca wrap up their disappointingly mediocre Darth Vader run with the instantly forgettable Volume 4: End of Games. 

Maybe because it’s been ten months since I read the last book or maybe because Gillen’s failed to make it memorable, but I’ve no clue what’s going down in this one. Vader’s hunting down a rival called Cylo - who? Whatever. It’s not in the least bit interesting! Ugh, and the Revenge of the Sith flashbacks? Fuuuuck you, Gillen! 

Monday, 3 July 2017

One More Year by Simon Hanselmann Review

One More Year is Simon Hanselmann’s latest Megg & Mogg collection, full of new subversive stoner comedy stories. Like the last one, Megg & Mogg in Amsterdam, One More Year is pretty decent though unfortunately doesn’t reach the heights of Megahex. 

Sunday, 2 July 2017

The Unworthy Thor Review (Jason Aaron, Olivier Coipel)

Ye gods this one’s been a long time coming! THREE BLUMMIN YEARS AGO in the Original Sin event, Nick Fury whispered something to Thor who immediately became “unworthy” and therefore unable to lift Mjolnir the hammer. A lady (I won’t spoil her identity in case you’re not caught up) picked up Mjolnir and became the new God of Thunder. Jason Aaron finally reveals what Fury whispered in The Unworthy Thor - and thankfully it was worth the wait! 

Saturday, 1 July 2017

Batman: The Joker's Last Laugh Review (Chuck Dixon, Scott Beatty)

The Joker’s Last Laugh is down there with the likes of Going Sane and Lovers and Madmen as one of the worst Joker books ever. 

Joker learns he has a fatal brain tumor and, without getting a second opinion or questioning the verdict in any way, decides that if he’s gonna die, he’s gonna take everyone else with him. He organises a prison break (no explanation for why he wasn’t in Arkham) and uses as many supervillains as possible to wreak chaos around the world.