Sunday, September 30, 2012

I Reads You Review: ROCKETEER ADVENTURES VOL. 2 #4

ROCKETEER ADVENTURES VOL. 2 #4
IDW PUBLISHING

WRITERS: Louise Simonson, David Mandel, John Byrne
ARTISTS: Walter Simonson, J Bone, John Byrne
INKS: Bob Wiacek, J Bone, John Byrne
COLORS: Jordie Bellaire, J Bone
LETTERS: John Workman, Shawn Lee, Neil Uyetake
PIN-UP: J.K. Snyder, III
EDITOR: Scott Dunbier
COVERS: Darwyn Cooke (A, RI), Dave Stevens (B)
28pp, Color, $3.50 U.S.

Here, we are – the final issue of Rocketeer Adventures Vol. 2.

The Rocketeer is a comic book character created by the late artist and illustrator, Dave Stevens. The Rocketeer is Cliff Secord, a stunt pilot who discovers a mysterious jet pack that allows him to fly. Secord dons a funky helmet, straps on the jet pack, and becomes The Rocketeer, beginning his adventures in 1938, in and around Los Angeles.

The Rocketeer returned to comic books in 2011 in Rocketeer Adventures. Edited by Scott Dunbier and published by IDW Publishing, this four-issue, anthology comic book was a tribute to Stevens and featured Rocketeer short stories (about 8 pages in length) from some of the premiere creators in American comic books. The tributes continue in Rocketeer Adventures Vol. 2.

Rocketeer Adventures Vol. 2 #4 opens with “War Hero,” written by Louise Simonson and penciled by her husband, Walter Simonson. The story finds Cliff Secord fuming about being declared unfit for combat in World War II. Now, he is reduced to playing The Rocketeer in war bond drive theatre, but when the Nazi’s show up, Secord gets his chance to show that he is fit for combat.

In “Cliff Secord, Warlord of Blargon,” written by David Mandel and drawn by J Bone, The Rocketeer travels to another planet and completely misunderstands the rules and regulations. “Fair Game,” written and drawn by John Byrne, takes The Rocketeer to the 1939 World’s Fair (The 1939-40 New York World’s Fair, a favorite setting of Byrne’s). Cliff Secord is unhappy with his traveling accommodations, while his girl, Betty, is on the trail of a possible conspiracy. With royalty visiting the expo, the game’s afoot.

Although I’ve had my reservations about Rocketeer Adventures in its entirety, I am a bit sad about the end of Vol. 2. Some of the entries in these two miniseries have not been special or even amounted to much as stories, but they were fitting tributes to Dave Stevens. If there is ever a short list for most beautiful artwork ever produced for American comics, Stevens’ art has to be on that list or that list won’t be worth shit.

This fourth issue of Rocketeer Adventures Vol. 2 features contributions from two comic book legends, John Byrne and Walter Simonson. The Rocketeer first appeared in early 1982 (at least by the cover date) when Byrne was hitting his stride as a writer/artist, especially on Marvel Comics’ Fantastic Four. Simonson would shortly shake the industry with his revamp of Marvel’s The Mighty Thor. David Mandel and J Bone’s contribution here, (“Cliff Secord, Warlord of Blargon”) is cute, but the attractions here are Byrne and Simonson.

“War Hero” offers more than just seeing Simonson art. The story is written by Louise Simonson, once a prolific comic book scribe, and letterer is produced by John Workman, whose collaborations with Walter make great comics. Simonson, with inker Bob Wiacek, also create some spectacular pages of aerial action.

Byrne’s “Fair Game” is spry and fun, and looks like some kind of adventure, espionage, newspaper movie from the 1940s. The fifth page offers some excellent panel design, and Byrne packs more action in pages 6 and 7 than most comic book creators can get in six or seven pages. It’s also nice that Byrne still uses thought balloons, which have largely become passé, most likely because Alan Moore did not use them in Watchmen. And, of course, you know that all comic books must follow the holy writ that is Watchmen.

If editor Scott Dunbier can recruit more veteran creators who worked and thrived in the 1970s and 80s, then, I hope we have more Rocketeer Adventures.

A-

Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux


Saturday, September 29, 2012

Book Review: Metal Gear Solid: Guns of the Patriots

METAL GEAR SOLID: GUNS OF THE PATRIOTS
VIZ MEDIA/Haikasoru - @VIZMedia; @haikasoru

AUTHOR: Project Itoh
TRANSLATION: Nathan Collins
COVER: Yoji Shinkawa with Kam Li (designer)
ISBN: 978-1-4215-4001-6; paperback, Rated “T” for “Teen”
364pp, B&W, $15.99 U.S., $18.99 CAN, £9.99 UK

Metal Gear Solid: Guns of the Patriots is a novel tie-in to the 2004 Playstation 3 video game, Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots. Guns of the Patriots is an entry in the stealth video games series, Metal Gear, which was created by Hideo Kojima and developed and published by Konami. The novel is written by Project Itoh, which was the penname of the late Japanese science fiction author, Satoshi Ito (Genocidal Organ).

Metal Gear Solid: Guns of the Patriots is the latest episode in the bullet-ridden adventures of Solid Snake, the legendary infiltrator and saboteur. A crack soldier, Solid Snake (or simply, “Snake”) is part of a worldwide nanotechnology network known as the Sons of the Patriots (SOP). The SOP system is a network that controls soldiers via the nanomachines inside their bodies. Time is running out for Snake because he is a clone, and he will soon succumb to the FOXDIE virus (which is programmed to selectively kill specific people). Before he dies, however, Snake will end up spreading the disease to nearly everyone he encounters, in essence becoming a walking biological weapon.

Metal Gear Solid: Guns of the Patriots is set in a time when the world economy relies on continuous war. This war is fought by private military corporations (PMCs), which outnumber government military forces. PMC soldiers are equipped with nanomachines that enhance their abilities on the battlefield, and are thus controlled by the SOP system. Snake’s enemy, Liquid Ocelot (or simply “Liquid”), is preparing to hijack the SOP network, and whoever controls SOP controls the world. With the help of Dr. Hal “Otacon” Emmerich (who is also this story’s narrator) and a host of old friends and “frenemies,” Snakes races around the world from jungle to desert and from the frozen tundra to the ocean to stop Liquid.

Metal Gear Solid: Guns of the Patriots is a light novel, a style of Japanese novel apparently aimed at middle school and high school students, but Guns of the Patriots will interest older readers. This video game tie-in is military science fiction and alternate history fiction. At least as far as I can remember, it’s the best military science fiction combination alternate history book that I’ve read to date. I certainly enjoyed it more than my first military/alternate history sci-fi experience, S.M. Stirling’s perplexing Marching Through Georgia.

Rather than offering some mere action novel, author Project Itoh presents a blend of character drama and political commentary. The author even explains why the idea of equality is actually the cause of war, death, and destruction. Don’t get me wrong: there are some good action set pieces here, and Nathan Collins’ translation deftly captures Itoh’s multiple flavors of battle action. However, Itoh’s novel is a critical look at war, from the perspectives of global economics, international politics, history, technology, culture, and society. This is all played out as character drama with a group of characters in the present and with another group of characters that only exist in the back story or in the novel’s past (many of them dead) whose actions are of perpetual consequence.

When I asked my VIZ Media representative for a copy of this book for review, I did so because something told me that it would be an interesting read. Maybe, it was just a lucky guess, but I was right. Metal Gear Solid: Guns of the Patriots is solid, indeed.

A-

Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux


Friday, September 28, 2012

Albert Avilla Reviews: World’s Finest # 0

World’s Finest # 0
DC Comics

Reviewed by Albert Avilla

Writer: Paul Levitz
Artists: Kevin Maguire, Wes Craig
Cover: Kevin Maguire and Rosemary Cheetham

I feel that an opportunity was lost. There is a good story somewhere in here. This falls short of what I expect out of my Bat-stories. Batman against putting someone in the line of fire… really? Really? I was expecting more of the dark side in this story or should I say the Cat side? Batman should have had this girl ready for action in every way possible; we are talking about Mr. Be-Prepared-for-anything. Huntress gets introduced to crime fighting by beating up two common street thugs. Crank up the danger, a band of ninjas or meta-powered foe; make us think the girl was risking her life. This Huntress didn’t have that gangsta about her that I’m used to seeing. No mean streak. She has a computer in her wrist band, but she's not equipped with a gas mask. I thought that was standard equipment in the utility belt.

I'm all about the old school Power Girl: so let's not even go there. She will be missed, men. This was the biggest wuss of a Batman to ever be printed. His wife is murdered and his daughter is rushing into danger, and he calls Superman for help. The Batman that I know would have dragged his broken body into the facility and did his own ass-kicking. I’m starting to nit pick now.

Two other things I did not like for aesthetic reasons only are Huntress’s ponytail and that ghastly Bat suit. Bruce should ask for his money back. Huntress’ costume had zero sex appeal. Now that I think about it, Dick Grayson's Robin costume was sexier than this most major fail in character design since the New Mutants’ Cannonball with the goggles.

The story ended with "looks like you had an awful day" and "We're going to be friends forever." Come on. Not “‘expletive’ they killed your Mom.” “I got your back. Let’s hunt these ‘expletives’ down.” Even more words that would make a rapper blush, and “let’s waste these ‘even more filthy words’.” I’m just saying end the story with some fire; not with two kick-ass heroines looking like my six-year-old daughter after her puppy died from a hit run by the cops. I read this story in about ten minutes with it leaving no lasting impression on me. Thanks for small favors.

The art was adequate, but no amount of artistic ability could have saved this book. The Superman scenes were great, but the orange hue of the rest of the pages turned me off.

I rate World's Finest #0 – Don't Waste Your Time and Cash.

Albert Avilla Reviews: Green Lantern Corps #0

Green Lantern Corps #0
DC Comics

Reviewed by Albert Avilla

Writer: Peter Tomasi
Pencils: Fernando Pasarin
Inks: Scott Hanna and Marc Deering
Cover: Fernando Pasarin and Scott Hanna with Gabe Eltaeb

The origin of the bad-ass Lantern is here. The story jumps off into hard core action from the get go. Blood splattering, decapitated heads, and Lanterns with their backs to the wall; we get all of this in the first four panels. Guy, the last Lantern standing, gets a beat down from the alien. Xar.

We get to the origin part of the story. Guy is an ex-cop blamed for deaths that he is not responsible for, living in the shadow of his brother the favored son. Guy is despised by his super-cop father for not living up to the family legacy. He saves his brother’s life with Daddy’s cane and a motorcycle. He gets the ring and cleans up the street in one night. Back to Xar where Guy is getting crushed: Guy mans up and blasts the crap out of Xar.

This is a ret-con of a character that I can agree with for many reasons. Guy is a more well-rounded character; not a meat-head jock who just wants to smash through everything. Being a Green Lantern is a tough, thankless job; it takes a person who is committed to the greater good. They are away from their friends and family for long periods of time. It’s hard on relationships. They don’t do it for riches; I never see them getting a check cut to them. It’s a warrior’s life, and Guy is revealed as a true warrior.

The ring didn’t make Guy a hero; the ring is a hero’s weapon. Guy has strong ties with his family, and he is fiercely protective of them, which explains why he is protective of his sector. Guy’s competitive nature originates from a lifetime of competing with his brother for his father’s approval; this now extends to Hal. Guy’s irritating personality comes from a father who didn’t teach him the social graces. This origin gives Guy more depth as a character; readers can relate to him as a hero with flaws. Guy has evolved from a flat character to a multilayered dynamic personality.

The art was cool. The fight sequences were great; you got the feeling that Guy was risking it all to win. There was a feeling of movement in the art. The crowd scene was engrossing; each person was an individual who is the center of his or her own life, not just extras. The skies over Oa were luminescent. I like bright colors in my comics. The art pops.

I rate this issue Buy Your Own Copy.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Jeffrey Kaufman and His "Whore" at Las Vegas Comic Expo

BIG CITY COMICS STUDIO PLACES ITS BET WITH THE LAS VEGAS COMIC EXPO

Big City Comics Studio is proud to announce that it is joining the lineup of comic book industry professionals at the inaugural Las Vegas Comic Expo.

Jeffrey Kaufman, founder of Big City Comics Studio, will be available all weekend, in Artist Alley Space T92 on Saturday, September 29 and Sunday, September 30. Jeffrey will be on hand to sign copies of his graphic novels, TERMINAL ALICE and WHORE, as well as interact with the many fans who will be attending this brand new event.

If you haven’t read WHORE, published through Zenescope Entertainment, you’re missing out on what critics have declared:

"I can’t recommend Whore highly enough." - Geeks of Doom

"From the beginning to the end this tale of a “man-whore to the extreme” is a wild ride riddled with action and women, with tough one-liners and mayhem with Mars smack in the middle." - Broken Frontier

"Artist Turini has the appropriate slick eye for this entertainingly cynical adult actioner and the dirty-minded witticisms flow freely." - Blogcritics

"This book is an adventure from start to finish. Definitely worth checking out." - The Fellowshop of the Geeks

"The writing and scripting is first rate with few holes, no loose ends and an ending I guarantee you can’t see coming.” - Expert Comics' DAMM Lucky

"I found this book to start off as a dark parody that turned into a page-turner that left me stunned at the end." - ComicList

"Whore is the funniest fiction about CIA types since the Coen Brothers’ Burn After Reading" - Comic Book Bin

"The graphic novel you've been jonesing for." - The Hourly Planet

"Get out of your comfort zone and buy this book." - Fanboy Buzz

Las Vegas Comic Expo will run on September 29 and 30 at the Riviera Casino & Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada.


ABOUT BIG CITY COMICS STUDIO
Founded by Jeffrey Kaufman, Big City Comics Studio works with publishers to develop exciting and dynamic graphic novels for the comic book market. Current titles include Terminal Alice (published through Zenescope Entertainment), Totem, Omega One, Dragon Cross, Zombie Sama, as well as Tainted (featuring Batwing artist Chris Cross).

Upcoming projects include the graphic novels Angel Falling and Whore, on sale September 2012, from Zenescope Entertainment.For more information, please visit www.bigcitycomics.com and www.facebook.com/bigcitycomics.

Valiant Comics Offers Six Releases for December 2012

VALIANT Solicitations For DECEMBER 2012

ARCHER & ARMSTRONG #5
Written by FRED VAN LENTE
Art by EMANUELA LUPACCHINO
Cover by PATRICK ZIRCHER
Pullbox Exclusive Variant by DOUG BRAITHWAITE
Interlocking Variants by EMANUELA LUPACCHINO

ALL-NEW ARC! Not even time itself can escape the Eternal Warrior!

No one in the Valiant Universe is more terrifying, more dangerous or more experienced in the art of war than the undying Eternal Warrior. After thousands of years on the battlefield, he's a master of strategy and weaponry, an unrelenting force of nature capable of dismantling entire armies with little effort and less conscience. His brother Armstrong, on the other hand, likes to read poetry and drink beer. Maybe that's why they had such a bad falling out? But now — after years apart — the Eternal Warrior has a new mission: destroy young Obadiah Archer, Armstrong's best-est new buddy and teammate in the war against The Sect. And, like it or not, Valiant’s history-smashing adventure duo will soon feel the wrath of the Eternal Warrior’s fist and steel.

$3.99/Rated T+/32 pgs.
ON SALE DECEMBER 12th!

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BLOODSHOT #6
Written by DUANE SWIERCZYNSKI
Art by MANUEL GARCIA
Cover by ARTURO LOZZI
Variant Cover by TREVOR HAIRSINE

What dark secret connects Project Rising Spirit and Toyo Harada’s Harbinger Foundation?

Bloodshot is the creation of Project Rising Spirit, and for years they’ve loaned him out to the U.S. government for the kinds of insane, blood-splattered missions that only a nanite-enhanced commando could possibly survive. But those will be nothing compared to the horrors that await him inside the heavily fortified walls of PRS itself, whose subterranean levels are populated by failed “projects” that kill and maim for fun. And God help anyone who dares pry open the doors to the “nursery”…

If you’ve been hesitating, waiting for the right moment to jump on board Bloodshot – the series Robot 6/Comic Book Resources calls “simply mind bending” – here’s that moment! After this issue, there might not be too many characters left alive…

$3.99/Rated T+/32 pgs.
ON SALE DECEMBER 12th!

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HARBINGER #7
Written by JOSHUA DYSART
Art by PHIL BRIONES
Cover by MICO SUAYAN
Flamingo Variant by EMANUELA LUPACCHINO

Charlene Dupre feels like she's been on fire since the day she was born.

Too hot to handle, abused and misused, she's turned to a dead-end life on the sleazy side of the New Orleans streets. But when Peter and his strange band of teenagers with wondrous powers walk into the strip club where she works, Charlene discovers the heat that's been burning her up inside is the only thing that can set her free. Meanwhile, Project Rising Spirit closes in on Peter Stanchek, the most dangerous boy in the world. Vengeance, acceptance and fire. Meet the next member of the Harbinger Resistance as “Renegades” begins a brand new chapter!

$3.99/Rated T+/32 pgs.
ON SALE DECEMBER 19th!

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SHADOWMAN #2
Written by JUSTIN JORDAN & PATRICK ZIRCHER
Art & Cover by PATRICK ZIRCHER
Variant Cover by DAVE JOHNSON

Shadowman's first night on the job may just be his last.

Jack Boniface has become the next Shadowman, which would be great if he had any idea what he was doing. But he doesn't and he's out of time. Master Darque has dispatched the terrifying Mr. Twist to destroy Jack, and the demonic creature is tearing through half of the Big Easy in search of his prey. If the Abettors — the mysterious organization that's spent hundreds of years protecting New Orleans — can reach Jack first, he's got an outside shot at making it through the night. Find out if he'll live to see tomorrow when the return of the legendary Shadowman continues this December!

$3.99/Rated T+/32 pgs.
ON SALE DECEMBER 5th!

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X-O MANOWAR #8
Written by ROBERT VENDITTI
Art by LEE GARBETT
Cover by DOUG BRAITHWAITE
Variant Cover by TREVOR HAIRSINE

X-O Manowar and Ninjak unearth The Vine’s ultimate endgame!

Deep within the halls of the MI-6, a sinister plot by The Vine’s alien agents is about to come to fruition. Their goal? Wipe humanity off the map – beginning with X-O Manowar. To get the job done, The Vine has enlisted Ninjak, the world’s most lethal assassin, but by doing so, they may have sealed their own fate. What began as a war between two men must become an uneasy truce…or Earth will fall. Betrayal, death, and a changing of the guard await in this explosive conclusion to the smash hit arc establishing X-O Manowar in the Valiant Universe.

$3.99/Rated T+/32 pgs.
ON SALE DECEMBER 19th!

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X-O MANOWAR VOL. 1: BY THE SWORD TPB
Written by ROBERT VENDITTI
Art by LEE GARBETT
Cover by ESAD RIBIC

Special introductory price! Jump on board the year’s hottest super-hero series for only $9.99!

The beginning of the all-new Valiant Universe starts here! Aric of Dacia is a brash warrior and heir to the throne of the Visigoth people. He has lived his life under the heel of the Roman Empire, but now a far more terrible enemy has come to subjugate him. Taken from his home and family, Aric is enslaved aboard a starship belonging to a brutal race of alien colonizers known as The Vine. If he is to have any hope of escaping and returning to Earth, he will have to steal the Vine’s most powerful weapon – a sentient suit of indestructible armor - and become X-O Manowar!

This volume collects the first four issues of the acclaimed, breakout series by New York Times best-selling author Robert Venditti (The Surrogates, The Homeland Directive) and Eisner Award-winning artist Cary Nord (Conan)!

$9.99/Rated T+/112 pgs.
ISBN: 9780979640940
ON SALE DECEMBER 5th!

Hayate the Combat Butler: Labyrinth

I read Hayate the Combat Butler, Vol. 20

I posted a review at the ComicBookBin (which has free comics).

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Albert Avilla Reviews: Batman and Robin #0

Batman and Robin #0
Marvel Comics

Reviewed by Albert Avilla

Script: Peter J. Tomasi
Pencils: Patrick Gleason
Inks: Mick Gray
Colors: John Kalisz
Letters: Carlos M. Mangual

I like my origin stories to give me insight into a character. The insight that I got from this story is that Damian is a bad little mother-shut-my-mouth. His being scientifically engineered explains why a toddler can kill tigers and great white sharks and why Batman takes him on missions to subdue lunatic villains. Most kids his age can't wipe their butts effectively. What a nurturing mother… Happy birthday, Damian… let’s have a battle to the death. I can understand why the kid is rebellious.

The story takes place during the birthday battle in which Damian earns the right to know who his father is, with flashbacks to other moments that impacted Damian's character. The action is fast moving with gratuitous violence to keep any fanboy satisfied. That little mother-shut-my-mouth is taking out ninjas and Man-Bats from beginning to end. Mama al Ghul even gets to feel the bottom of Damian's size – I don't know 3 or 2? What size does a little bastard wear?

This Robin shatters the mold of what past Robins were. Years from now, when other creators are trying their hand at the Damian character and changing certain aspects of Damian, we'll think back to what Tomasi (@PeterJTomasi) has done and say "they are f’ing up a good character." Tomasi has left his imprint on this character for ages to come. Thank you, Mr. Tomasi, for giving us this little hyperactive, death-dealing monster of a Robin. I'm looking forward to what a Junior Justice League led by this Robin is going to be like. In this age of the multi-issue story arc, it's good to read a good one issue story.

The art helps tell the story. A good comic book story doesn't just come from what text there is. The action scenes are impressive. The art team does a good job of making the little tike look murderous without making it comedic. Talia has just enough of that psychotic gleam in her eyes to make you cover up the old family jewels.

I rate Batman and Robin #0 Recommend It to a Friend.

Albert Avilla Reviews: Avengers Vs. X-Men Round 11

Avengers Vs. X-Men Round 11 (Avengers vs. X-Men #11)
Marvel Comics

Reviewed by Albert Avilla

Writer: Brian Michael Bendis with Ed Brubaker, Jonathan Hickman, Matt Fraction
Pencils: Olivier Coipel
Inks: Mark Morales
Colors: Laura DePuy
Letters: Chris Eliopoulos
Covers: Jim Cheung, Sara Pichelli, Justin Ponsor

It's not issue 11. It's round 11, because a real Marvel throw-down is about to start. If you're going to have about a million characters in a story, then you better deliver the action. This was accomplished big time. Xavier was cool hands in his pockets while holy hell was being unleashed around him. This was an intervention on the cosmic level, and Cyclops wasn't having any of it. The moral compass of the mutant race has become a power mad tyrant willing to do whatever it takes to remake the world in his own image. He's saving the mutant race if he has to kill every one of them to do it. Does he remember that Jean sacrificed herself to stop the Phoenix Force? He basks in the power that he has fought to prevent. He's doing a great job of getting mutants and humans to work together. Olay, I'm going off on a tangent. This has been the best round in the match so far.

Just the art in this round was worth the $3.99. Majestic is the word that comes to mind. The landscapes add to the immensity of the story. The pages are not large enough to contain the action; you can feel the power exploding from the pages. My copy is nowhere near mint, because I've thumbed through it so many times enjoying the art.

I rate this round Recommend It to a Friend.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

DC Comics from Diamond Distributors for September 26 2012

DC COMICS

FEB120252 ABSOLUTE GREEN LANTERN SINESTRO CORPS WAR HC $99.99

JUL120194 ALL STAR WESTERN #0 $3.99

MAY120322 AMERICAN VAMPIRE HC VOL 04 (MR) $24.99

JUN120280 AMERICAN VAMPIRE TP VOL 03 (MR) $16.99

JUL120127 AQUAMAN #0 $2.99

JUL128163 BATMAN #8 2ND PTG $3.99

JUL120150 BATMAN INCORPORATED #0 $2.99

JUL120153 BATMAN INCORPORATED #0 COMBO PACK $3.99

JUL120162 BATMAN THE DARK KNIGHT #0 $2.99

JUL120116 BEFORE WATCHMEN OZYMANDIAS #3 (MR) $3.99

JUL120118 BEFORE WATCHMEN OZYMANDIAS #3 COMBO PACK (MR) $4.99

JUL120131 FLASH #0 $2.99

JUN120245 FLASH TP VOL 02 THE ROAD TO FLASHPOINT $14.99

JUL120141 FURY OF FIRESTORM THE NUCLEAR MEN #0 $2.99

JUL120185 I VAMPIRE #0 $2.99

JUL128164 JUSTICE LEAGUE #12 2ND PTG $3.99

JUL120180 JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK #0 $2.99

JUN120247 LOBO PORTRAIT OF A BASTICH TP NEW PTG $19.99

JUL120204 NATIONAL COMICS ROSE AND THORN #1 $3.99

JUL120251 NEW DEADWARDIANS #7 (MR) $2.99

JUL120201 PHANTOM LADY #2 $2.99

JUL120179 RED LANTERNS #0 $2.99

JUN120283 SAGA OF THE SWAMP THING TP BOOK 02 (MR) $19.99

JUL120133 SAVAGE HAWKMAN #0 $2.99

JUN120248 SHOWCASE PRESENTS AMETHSYT TP VOL 01 $19.99

JUL120146 SUPERMAN #0 $2.99

JUL120235 SUPERMAN FAMILY ADVENTURES #5 $2.99

JUL120119 TALON #0 $2.99

JUL120197 TEEN TITANS #0 $2.99

JUL120193 VOODOO #0 $2.99

JUN120240 VOODOO TP VOL 01 WHAT LIES BENEATH $14.99

DC COMICS/DC COLLECTIBLES

JUL120272 ARKHAM ASYLUM DELUXE TITAN JOKER AF $72.95

JUN120302 BATMAN AC SER 3 CLOWN THUG A (WITH BAT) AF PI

JUN120303 BATMAN AC SER 3 CLOWN THUG B (WITH KNIFE) AF PI

JUN120299 BATMAN ARKHAM CITY SER 3 AZRAEL AF PI

JUN120298 BATMAN ARKHAM CITY SER 3 BATMAN AF PI

JUN120300 BATMAN ARKHAM CITY SER 3 PENGUIN AF PI

JUN120301 BATMAN ARKHAM CITY SER 3 RAS AL GHUL AF PI

MAY120344 BEFORE WATCHMEN RORSCHACH STATUE $149.95

MAY120347 COVER GIRLS OF THE DCU WONDER WOMAN NEW 52 STATUE $99.95

JUN120304 DC COMICS SUPER HEROES WONDER WOMAN BUST $69.95



Marvel Comics from Diamond Distributors for September 26 2012

MARVEL COMICS

JUL120557 AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #694 $3.99

JUN120738 ANITA BLAKE VH TP CIRCUS OF DAMNED BOOK 03 SCOUNDREL (MR) $16.99

JUL120609 ASTONISHING X-MEN #54 $3.99

JUL120667 BLACK PANTHER MAN WITHOUT FEAR TP FEAR ITSELF $16.99

JUL120573 CAPTAIN AMERICA AND BLACK WIDOW #637 $2.99

JUL128093 CAPTAIN MARVEL #2 2ND PTG MCGUINNESS VAR $2.99

JUL120585 CAPTAIN MARVEL #4 $2.99

JUL120654 DAREDEVIL BY BRUBAKER AND LARK ULT COLL TP BOOK 03 $34.99

JUL120604 DEADPOOL #61 $2.99

JUL120668 FEAR ITSELF TP UNCANNY X-MEN $16.99

JUL120590 FF #22 $2.99

JUL120622 FURY MAX #6 (MR) $3.99

JUL120608 GAMBIT #3 $2.99

JUL120625 HIT-GIRL #3 (MR) $2.99

JUL120577 INCREDIBLE HULK #14 $3.99

JUL120579 INVINCIBLE IRON MAN #525 $3.99

JUL120584 JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY #644 BURNS $2.99

JUL120596 MARVEL UNIVERSE ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #6 $2.99

JUL120636 MARVEL ZOMBIES DESTROY HC $24.99

JUL120640 MIGHTY THOR BY MATT FRACTION PREM HC VOL 03 $24.99

JUL120632 MMW INVINCIBLE IRON MAN TP VOL 02 $24.99

JUL120592 PUNISHER #16 $2.99

JUL120548 SECRET AVENGERS #31 $3.99

JUL120593 SPACE PUNISHER #3 $3.99

JUL120641 SPIDER-MAN LIZARD PREM HC NO TURNING BACK $19.99

JUL120624 TAKIO #3 $3.95

JUL120569 ULTIMATE COMICS ULTIMATES #16 UWS $3.99

JUN120730 ULTIMATE COMICS X-MEN BY NICK SPENCER TP VOL 01 $15.99

JUL120575 WINTER SOLDIER #11 $2.99

JUL120619 WOLVERINE #313 $3.99

JUL120547 WOLVERINE AND X-MEN #17 $3.99

JUL120645 WOLVERINE AND X-MEN BY JASON AARON PREM HC VOL 03 AVX $19.99

JUL120618 X-MEN #36 $3.99

JUL120613 X-MEN LEGACY #274 $2.99

JUL120650 X-MEN WAR MACHINES TP $14.99

JUL120610 X-TREME X-MEN #4 $2.99

IDW Publishing from Diamond Distributors for September 26 2012

IDW PUBLISHING

JUN120419 ARCHIE BEST OF HARRY LUCEY HC VOL 02 $24.99

APR120321 DAVE STEVENS STORIES & COVERS HC $49.99

JUL120299 FINE & PRIVATE PLACE #1 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120376 GASOLINE ALLEY HC VOL 01 $49.99

JUL120329 GI JOE A REAL AMERICAN HERO #182 [DIG/D+] $3.99

FEB120388 HAWKEN #6 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120002 HCF 2012 TMNT #1 TRICK-OR-TREAT ED PI

JUN120398 JOE KUBERT TARZAN OF THE APES ARTIST ED HC PI

MAY120448 MAGIC THE GATHERING SPELL THIEF #3 [DIG] $4.99

JUL120364 MARS ATTACKS #4 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUN120412 MEMORIAL HC VOL 01 $24.99

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AUG120455 PENNY ARCADE DECK BUILDING GAME $44.99

JUL120340 POPEYE #5 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120336 SNAKE EYES & STORM SHADOW #17 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120285 STAR TREK TNG DOCTOR WHO ASSIMILATION #5 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120287 STAR TREK TNG DOCTOR WHO ASSIMILATION TP VOL 01 $17.99

JUL120315 TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES ONGOING #14 $3.99

JUL120308 TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES ONGOING TP VOL 03 SHADOWS $17.99

JUL120319 TRANSFORMERS MORE THAN MEETS EYE ONGOING #9 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120323 TRANSFORMERS ROBOTS IN DISGUISE ANNUAL 2012 [DIG/D+] $7.99



Dark Horse Comics from Diamond Distributors for September 26 2012

DARK HORSE COMICS

JUL120043 ANGEL & FAITH #14 STEVE MORRIS CVR $2.99

MAY120011 AVATAR LAST AIRBENDER TP VOL 03 PROMISE PART 3 $10.99

JUL120026 AXE COP PRESIDENT O/T WORLD #3 $3.50

JUL120051 BPRD HELL ON EARTH RETURN O/T MASTER #2 $3.50

MAR120057 CAMILLA DERRICO NO ORDINARY LOVE BUST $125.00

JUN120035 DARK MATTER TP VOL 01 REBIRTH $14.99

JUL120034 DRAGON AGE THOSE WHO SPEAK #2 $3.50

JUL120057 GOON #42 $3.50

JUL120029 MIND MGMT #5 $3.99

JUL120037 STAR WARS DARTH MAUL DEATH SENTENCE #3 $2.99

Image Comics from Diamond Distributors for September 26 2012

IMAGE COMICS

JUL120492 DANCER #5 [DIG] $3.50

JUL120496 DEBRIS #3 (MR) [DIG] $3.50

MAY120605 ELEPHANTMEN #43 (MR) [DIG] $3.99

JUN120466 HACK SLASH TP VOL 01 FIRST CUT NEW PTG $12.99

JUL120382 HAPPY #1 [DIG] $2.99

JUN120558 INVINCIBLE #95 [DIG] $2.99

JUN120476 MILKMAN MURDERS HC (MR) [DIG] $14.99

JUL120509 MIND THE GAP #5 CVR A ESQUEJO & OBACK [DIG] $2.99

JUL120510 MIND THE GAP #5 CVR B CHEN $2.99

JUL120404 NEAR DEATH TP VOL 02 $14.99

JUL120514 PROPHET #29 [DIG] $3.99

JUL120516 SKULLKICKERS #18 [DIG] $3.99

JUL120421 SPAWN ORIGINS TP VOL 16 $14.99

JUL120519 SUPER DINOSAUR #14 [DIG] $2.99

JAN120550 TELLOS COLOSSAL HC VOL 02 $39.99

JUL120438 WALKING DEAD HC VOL 08 (MR) $34.99

JUN120580 WITCHBLADE #160 CVR A CHRISTOPHER [DIG] $2.99

JUN120581 WITCHBLADE #160 CVR B BERNARD & BENES $2.99

JUN120582 YOUNGBLOOD #74 [DIG] $3.99

Comics, Magazines and Books from Diamond Distributors for September 26 2012

PREVIEWS PUBLICATIONS
JUL120007 ANTARCTIC ZOMBIE KID MINI COMIC BUNDLE 2012 $4.99

JUL120008 APE STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE SCOUTS MINI COMIC BUNDLE 2012 $4.99

JUL120009 ARCHAIA COW BOY HALLOWS EVE MINI COMIC BUNDLE 2012 $4.99

JUL120011 BOOM ADVENTURE TIME MINI COMIC BUNDLE 2012 $4.99

JUL120005 DARK HORSE AXE COP MINI COMIC BUNDLE 2012 $4.99

JUL120012 FANTAGRAPHICS SPACEHAWK MINI COMIC BUNDLE 2012 $4.99

JUL120006 GHOSTBUSTERS MINI COMIC BUNDLE 2012 $4.99

JUL120015 HALLOWEEN MINI COMICS MEGA BUNDLE 2012 PI

JUL120010 NEW CRUSADERS RISE OF HEROES MINI COMIC BUNDLE 2012 $4.99

JUL120013 PAPERCUTZ ERNEST & REBECCA MINI COMIC BUNDLE 2012 $4.99

JUL120014 TOP SHELF TRICKY TREATERS MINI COMIC BUNDLE 2012 $4.99

MAY128000 VIZ LITTLE MISS DAREDEVIL MINI COMIC BUNDLE 2012 $4.99

COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS
AUG121190 101 QUESTIONS ABOUT BIBLE & CHRISTIANITY HC $8.99

JUL120908 ADVENTURE TIME #8 [DIG] $3.99

JUL120724 ADVENTURES OF A COMIC CON GIRL #2 (MR) $3.99

JUL121241 AFFLICTED GN $12.99

APR121227 ALIEN ILLUSTRATED STORY LTD SGN ARTISTS ED HC $75.00

AUG120966 AN INSPECTOR CALLS ORIGINAL TEXT ED GN $16.95

JUL120758 ARCHIE & FRIENDS DOUBLE DIGEST #20 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120759 ARCHIE DOUBLE DIGEST #233 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL121169 ASTERIX OMNIBUS HC VOL 06 $27.95

AUG121193 BABYLON TP $16.99

JUN121083 BARBARA GN (MR) $19.95

JUL120854 BART SIMPSON COMICS #75 $2.99

JUL121328 BASALDUA & DEBALFO COVER GALLERY $5.99

JUN120764 BEAR TP VOL 01 IMMORTAL (MR) $14.95

AUG121192 BOOK OF GOD HOW WE GOT BIBLE GN $16.99

JUL121230 CLINT 2.0 #4 (MR) $6.99

JUL120842 CRITTER (ONGOING) #4 $3.50

AUG120856 CROSSED BADLANDS #11 AUXILIARY ED (MR) $3.99

AUG120857 CROSSED BADLANDS #12 AUXILIARY ED (MR) $3.99

JUL120804 CROSSED BADLANDS #14 (MR) $3.99

JUL120807 CROSSED BADLANDS #14 RED CROSSED CVR (MR) $6.60

JUL120806 CROSSED BADLANDS #14 TORTURE CVR (MR) $3.99

JUL120805 CROSSED BADLANDS #14 WRAP CVR (MR) $3.99

AUG120879 CROSSED BADLANDS #4 PHILADELPHIA ED CVR (MR) $5.99

AUG121068 DEAN KOONTZ HOUSE OF ODD GN $10.99

AUG121066 DEAN KOONTZ IN ODD WE TRUST GN $10.95

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JUN121103 DF VAMPIRELLA #22 EXC RISQUE CVR $14.99

AUG121194 ECHOES OF EDEN HC VOL 01 $19.95

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JUL121131 GENSHIKEN OMNIBUS TP VOL 02 $19.99

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JUN120763 HALO & SPROCKET TP VOL 02 NATURAL CREATURES $8.95

JUL120003 HCF 2012 MU AVENGERS AND ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN PI

AUG121170 HEAVY METALS DRACULA HC (MR) $14.95

JUL120875 HELLRAISER #18 (MR) [DIG] $3.99

JUL120820 HERO WORSHIP #3 $3.99

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JUL121302 HIGURASHI WHEN THEY CRY GN VOL 19 MASSACRE ARC PT 1 $18.99

MAY121286 HOLE OF TANK GIRL SLIPCASED HC COLL ED (MR) $99.99

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JUL121303 JACK FROST TP VOL 06 (NOTE PRICE) $11.99

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AUG120961 LADY DEATH (ONGOING) #16 CLOSE UP CVR (MR) $9.99

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AUG121228 LEEROY & POPO GN (MR) $13.95

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APR121057 QUEEN SONJA #32 $3.99

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JUL120951 SHADOW ANNUAL #1 $4.99

JUL120857 SIMPSONS TREEHOUSE OF HORROR #18 $4.99

JUL121176 SIXTH GUN #25 $3.99

JUL120776 SONIC THE HEDGEHOG SELECT TP VOL 06 $11.99

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JUL120973 THE SPIDER #5 $3.99

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JUL120959 VAMPIRELLA #23 $3.99

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APR120800 WHERES MY SHOGGOTH $11.95

JUL121313 WONDERLAND #3 A CVR REYES (MR) $2.99

JUL121314 WONDERLAND #3 B CVR CHEN (MR) $2.99

JUL121308 YOTSUBA & ! GN VOL 11 $11.99

JUL121022 YUMIKO CURSE OF THE MERCH GIRL HC (MR) $19.99

MAGAZINES
AUG121786 COLOR INK DIY ART PERIODICAL VOL 15 $10.00

JUL121362 COMIC SHOP NEWS #1319 PI

MAY121460 FAMOUS MONSTERS OF FILMLAND #253 WALKING DEAD B&W CVR $9.99

JUN121452 HOBBY JAPAN SEP 2012 $16.60

APR121413 MEGAMI JUL 2012 $16.60

JUL121348 NON SPORT UPDATE VOL 23 #5 $5.99

BOOKS
JUN121086 AI NO KUSABI SPACE BETWEEN NOVEL VOL 07 $9.95

AUG121361 ART OF HOWLS MOVING CASTLE HC $34.99

AUG121362 ART OF MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO HC $29.99

AUG121365 ART OF PONYO ON THE CLIFF SC $34.99

AUG121366 ART OF SECRET WORLD OF ARRIETTY HC $34.99

AUG121359 ART OF SPIRITED AWAY HC $34.95

JUN121463 BUGS & DAFFY DESKTOP DUO KIT $9.95

AUG121457 FASTNER & LARSONS TRICKS & TREATS SC (MR) $14.95

MAY121487 FORREST J ACKERMAN OEUVRE SC $45.00

AUG121169 HEAVY METAL 1998 CORBEN SPEC LTD ED HC (MR) $28.95

AUG121280 JUDGE DREDD MEGACITY MASTERS SC VOL 01 $19.99

JUL121403 KICKSTARTER HANDBOOK SC $14.95

JUN121846 LEGO BATMAN VISUAL DICTIONARY HC $21.99

JUL121347 MARS ATTACKS HC $19.95

AUG121364 NAUSICAA WATERCOLOR IMPRESSIONS HC $34.99

JUN121087 ONLY THE RING FINGER KNOWS NOVEL VOL 05 $10.95

AUG121452 RICH LARSONS HAUNTED HOUSE OF LINGERIE 15TH ANNIV ED (MR) $9.95

MAY121408 ROBERT CRUMB SKETCHBOOKS 1982-2011 6 VOL SET (MR) $1,000.00

SEP111253 SENGOKU BASARA SAMURAI HEROES OFF COMP WORKS SC $39.99

AUG121493 SERAPHINA NOVEL HC $17.99

JUN121450 SO YOU WANT TO BE A COMIC BOOK ARTIST ULT GUIDE HC $16.99

Monday, September 24, 2012

I Reads You Review: THE ROCKETEER: CARGO OF DOOM #2

THE ROCKETEER: CARGO OF DOOM #2
IDW PUBLISHING

WRITER: Mark Waid
ARTIST: Chris Samnee
COLORS: Jordie Bellaire
LETTERS: Shawn Lee
EDITOR: Scott Dunbier
COVERS: Chris Samnee with Dave Stewart – regular cover
Dave Stevens – Cover RI
28pp, Color, $3.99 U.S.

In a world where there is a jet pack/rocket backpack that a man can use to fly, why can’t there also be a lost island where dinosaurs still live? This is the world of The Rocketeer.

The Rocketeer is a comic book character created by the late artist and illustrator, Dave Stevens (who died in March of 2008). Cliff Secord is a stunt pilot who discovers a mysterious jet pack that allows him to fly. Secord dons the pack and a metal helmet and becomes the adventurer and masked crime-fighter, The Rocketeer, whose adventures are set mainly in Los Angeles and begin in 1938.

The Rocketeer returned to comic books in 2011 with Rocketeer Adventures. Edited by Scott Dunbier and published by IDW Publishing, this anthology comic book was a tribute to Dave Stevens. The series featured Rocketeer short stories from some of the premiere creators in American comic books. Now, the adventure continues in a new series, The Rocketeer: Cargo of Doom, from writer Mark Waid and artist Chris Samnee.

The Rocketeer: Cargo of Doom opens in 1940 and finds Cliff with troubles on his hands. The Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) may take away his pilot’s license. Sally, the young niece of Cliff’s best pal, Peevy, is now working as a mechanic at Peevy’s. Sally has a mad crush on Cliff, and Cliff’s girlfriend, the bombshell actress Betty, is fuming about the crush and about Sally being around Cliff so much.

As The Rocketeer: Cargo of Doom #2 begins, the mysterious Trask and The Master continue the plot they are hatching out of the docks at the Port of Los Angeles. Cliff learns that he has a new case worker from the CAA, a brawny black man named Earl Garland, who can hit back (unlike the last guy). The Master also makes a move on capturing The Rocketeer and reveals what he has stowed away in his ship’s cargo hold.

In my review of the first issue of Cargo of Doom, I admitted that I was not crazy about the comic book’s cover price ($3.99). I wrote that I might eventually balk at paying $20 to read the entire series. I haven’t balked yet.

This is a good series. Mark Waid offers characters that are more character types than fully-developed characters, but they work for Cargo of Doom. Samnee’s art is still tight and still eye-catching, especially with that killer figure drawing. How could I stop reading this? The Rocketeer: Cargo of Doom is the kind of rousing, fantasy adventure that got me started reading comics.

A-

Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux

Friday, September 21, 2012

Yaoi Review: PUNCH UP! Volume 1

PUNCH UP!, VOL. 1
SUBLIME – @SuBLimeManga

CARTOONIST: Shiuko Kano
TRANSLATION: Adrienne Beck
LETTERING: Joanna Estep
COVER: Shiuko Kano with Florence Yuen
ISBN: 978-1-4215-5002-2; paperback; Rated “M” for “Mature”
178pp, B&W, $12.99 U.S., $14.99 CAN, £8.99 UK

Shiuko Kano is a prolific, female Japanese manga creator. Known for her boys’ love and yaoi titles, she has produced such comics as the “Steppin’ Stone” series and Play Boy Blues. Punch Up! is a yaoi manga series from Kano. The first volume focuses on an unpredictable architect and a construction worker with a fashion model’s looks. Yaoi manga is a subset of boys’ love manga, which features explicit depictions of sex between male characters, and Punch Up! definitely features explicit sex.

At the beginning of Punch Up! Volume 1, architect Maki Motoharu breaks up a fight at a construction site. One of the combatants is a 19-year-old, foul-mouthed, young ironworker named Ohki Kouta. Motoharu takes notice of the hunky, well-toned young hothead. He gets a big surprise when he discovers that Kouta found his lost cat, Shinobu, whom Kouta has named “Nyanta.”

When Motoharu learns that Kouta’s kind act of saving his cat caused Kouta to be evicted, Motoharu offers to let Kouta live with him for until he finds another place. Before long, the new roomies are playing grab-ass, but Motoharu’s fickle ways confuse Kouta. Add old boyfriends and rivals like Ryoji Misonoh, Junsuke Aki, and Shinobu Hishiya, to the mix, and love cannot blossom. Can Kouta the stray cat find love in a relationship with a tomcat like Motoharu? Plus, the bonus short story, “Sweet Train,” finds Aki and Hishiya trying to enjoy a love train.

Punch Up! Volume 1 is a conflict-driven narrative. Both Motoharu and Kouta have past affiliations that cause stress and strife in their relationship. As I read this story, I was sure that at any time I turned the page, I would come upon a break-up scene. The tension that the conflicts and old boyfriends create, however, does lose its starch towards the end of the story, but that is mitigated by the sex scenes.

The characters seem to live by the creed, “Let’s have sex, even if you did just hear me propositioning an old lover.” The depictions of sex are hardcore, but that fits with the story perfectly. The young men in Punch Up! Volume 1 are pretty, but their rough personalities fit the story’s hard hat setting.

A-

Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux

http://sublimemanga.com/


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Review: THE JUDAS COIN graphic novel

THE JUDAS COIN
DC COMICS – @DCComics

WRITER/ARTIST: Walter Simonson
COLORS: Lovern Kindzierski
LETTERS: John Workman
COVER: Walter Simonson with Lovern Kindzierski
ISBN: 978-1-4012-1541-5; hardcover
96pp, Color, $22.99 U.S., $26.99 CAN

Writer/artist Walter Simonson is an acclaimed comic book creator who has been producing work for 40 years. He is a revered figure in the comic book industry, especially for his work on The Mighty Thor and Fantastic Four for Marvel Comics. For DC Comics, he produced comics published in Detective Comics and took on Jack Kirby’s creations in the comic book series, Orion.

Published by DC Comics, The Judas Coin is a new original graphic novel from Walter Simonson. The Judas Coin is basically an anthology of six short stories featuring various DC Comics characters – all heroes, except for one villain who is essentially a co-lead. Each character belongs to specific time period in the DC Universe – from the first century A.D. to the late 21st century. The Judas Coin follows one of the silver coins that Judas was paid to betray Jesus Christ, and along the journey, the coin leaves a trail of betrayal and deception and a pile of dead bodies.

After beginning with Judas’ betrayal and Jesus’ crucifixion, The Judas Coin stops in 73 A.D. for the story “Blood Peace.” Marcus of Rome (also known as the Golden Gladiator) accompanies the Emperor of Rome into the forests of Germania for a meeting that turns out to be a setup for assassination. The coin next appears in 1000 A.D. for the story “Black Blade; Silver Heart.” Jon Rikkson, who is The Viking Prince, and his men sail for the Mediterranean, but they detour into a strange land where the Green Man and his tree-worshipping zealots offer death.

1720 A.D. is the setting for the story “Mutiny,” starring Captain Fear, scourge of the Spanish Main. After his first mate, Bull, mutinies, the most daring and ruthless buccaneer must use his wiles to regain his ship before the sea or the Spaniards claim his life. “Ill-Gotten Gains” is set in 1881 A.D., and finds Bat Lash in the boomtown of Tombstone in the Arizona Territory. Lash has decided to out-play a group of card sharks, but when they catch him, they want to play by the rules, which could mean Lash’s neck.

The cursed coin of Judas moves to the Present Day for “Heads or Tails,” a story in black and white. Two-Face decides to relieve the Gotham Museum of a group of rare coins that it is exhibiting, but he’s not the only crook in town looking to score some ancient money. Can Batman stop them or will he just be caught in the middle, watching an ancient curse play out? Finally, the coin makes a stop in 2087 A.D. for the Manhunter 2070 tale, “An Epilog-2087.” Answering the distress call of a vessel carrying rare coins, Starker the bounty hunter (also known as Manhunter) rides his star-ship deep into space. There, he finds some old playmates who once left him for dead.

Apparently, The Judas Coin began as an idea Walter Simonson had for a graphic novel. In fact, the only reason for The Judas Coin to exist is to give comic book readers something we need on a regular basis – Walter Simonson comics, and that’s a damn good thing. The Judas Coin won’t do much to elucidate and to advance the continuity that is the DC Universe. The body of work that is DC Comics has been created by an inestimable number of writers, artists, editors, and publishers, all with different ideas and many looking to rework the ideas of others.

Walter Simonson and his cohorts, superb colorist Lovern Kindzierski and the great letterer John Workman, take characters and ideas from the DC Comics wellspring and work wonder. The Judas Coin is that thing that makes comic books so alluring, and it’s not continuity. It’s fantastic storytelling that holds the imagination captive.

Simonson gives each story its own style and language – allowing the story to capture the essence of the genre to which it belongs. The Bat Lash tale is a sparkling Western with comic flourishes, like an episode of the old Bat Masterson television series. “The Mutiny” with Captain Fear is an old-school pirate comic book story. The Manhunter 2070 has the comic vibe of Berni Wrightson’s Captain Sternn, and almost seems like it was a segment of the animated film, Heavy Metal.

While I find this entire book to be exceptional, my favorite is the Batman/Two-Face story (“Heads or Tails”). Here, Simonson’s art is in beautiful black and white and is printed in the landscape format, so you have to turn the book sideways to read it. “Heads or Tails” looks like a newspaper comic strip; in fact, the graphic design for this story makes it look like it is part of an actual newspaper. [Readers may notice that Simonson’s art for “Heads or Tails” has a resemblance to the work of Howard Chaykin.]

Wow! The Judas Coin is so good it made me ramble. This is one of the best comics of the year by one of the best, Walter Simonson.

A+

Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux



Tuesday, September 18, 2012

DC Comics from Diamond Distributors for September 19 2012

DC COMICS

MAY120326 100 BULLETS HC BOOK 03 (MR) $49.99

JUL120203 BATMAN BEYOND UNLIMITED #8 $3.99

JUL120165 BATWOMAN #0 $2.99

JUL120113 BEFORE WATCHMEN NITE OWL #3 (MR) $3.99

JUL120115 BEFORE WATCHMEN NITE OWL #3 COMBO PACK (MR) $4.99

JUL120170 BIRDS OF PREY #0 $2.99

JUL120195 BLUE BEETLE #0 $2.99

JUL120140 CAPTAIN ATOM #0 $2.99

JUL120171 CATWOMAN #0 $2.99

JUL120139 DC UNIVERSE PRESENTS #0 (NOTE PRICE) $5.99

JUL120249 FABLES #121 (MR) $2.99

MAY120279 GREEN LANTERN CORPS HC VOL 01 FEARSOME $22.99

JUL120177 GREEN LANTERN NEW GUARDIANS #0 $2.99

JUL120254 HELLBLAZER #295 (MR) $2.99

JUL120123 JUSTICE LEAGUE #0 $3.99

JUL120126 JUSTICE LEAGUE #0 COMBO PACK $4.99

JUN120238 LEGION LOST TP VOL 01 RUN FROM TOMORROW $14.99

JUL120200 LEGION OF SUPER HEROES #0 $2.99

JUL120168 NIGHTWING #0 $2.99

JUN120249 PENGUIN PAIN AND PREJUDICE TP $14.99

JUL120172 RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS #0 $2.99

JUL120149 SUPERGIRL #0 $2.99

JUN120255 SUPERMAN THE BLACK RING TP VOL 02 $16.99

JUL120121 SWORD OF SORCERY #0 $3.99

JUL120261 UNWRITTEN #41 (MR) $2.99

JUL120129 WONDER WOMAN #0 $2.99

MAY120313 WORLD OF WARCRAFT PEARL OF PANDARIA HC $24.99

JUL120237 YOUNG JUSTICE #20 $2.99

DC COMICS/DC COLLECTIBLES

JUN120302 BATMAN AC SER 3 CLOWN THUG A (WITH BAT) AF PI

JUN120303 BATMAN AC SER 3 CLOWN THUG B (WITH KNIFE) AF PI

JUN120299 BATMAN ARKHAM CITY SER 3 AZRAEL AF PI

JUN120298 BATMAN ARKHAM CITY SER 3 BATMAN AF PI

JUN120300 BATMAN ARKHAM CITY SER 3 PENGUIN AF PI

JUN120301 BATMAN ARKHAM CITY SER 3 RAS AL GHUL AF PI

MAY120347 COVER GIRLS OF THE DCU WONDER WOMAN NEW 52 STATUE $99.95

MAY120338 DC COMICS SUPER HEROES GRIFTER BUST $69.95

MAY120340 JUSTICE LEAGUE FLASH ACTION FIGURE PI

MAY120341 JUSTICE LEAGUE FLASH ACTION FIGURE PI

MAY120343 JUSTICE LEAGUE PARADEMON PI

MAY120342 JUSTICE LEAGUE PARADEMON ACTION FIGURE PI

Marvel Comics from Diamond Distributors for September 19 2012

MARVEL COMICS

JUL120545 AVENGERS #30 AVX $3.99

JUL120555 AVENGERS ACADEMY #37 $2.99

JUL128090 AVENGERS VS X-MEN #1 7TH PTG CHEUNG VAR AVX $3.99

JUL128091 AVENGERS VS X-MEN #2 7TH PTG CHEUNG VAR AVX $3.99

JUL128092 AVENGERS VS X-MEN #3 4TH PTG CHEUNG VAR AVX $3.99

JUL120651 CAPTAIN AMERICA AND HAWKEYE TP $12.99

JUL120586 DAREDEVIL #18 $2.99

JUL120642 DAREDEVIL BY MARK WAID PREM HC VOL 03 $19.99

JUL120550 DARK AVENGERS #181 $2.99

JUL120595 DARK TOWER GUNSLINGER MAN IN BLACK #4 $3.99

JUL128002 DEADPOOL KILLS MARVEL UNIVERSE #3 2ND PTG VAR $2.99

JUL128003 DEADPOOL KILLS MARVEL UNIVERSE #4 2ND PTG VAR $2.99

JUN120720 DEADPOOL TP VOL 10 EVIL DEADPOOL $16.99

JUL128004 GAMBIT #1 2ND PTG MANN VAR $2.99

JUL120643 INVINCIBLE IRON MAN PREM HC VOL 10 LONG WAY DOWN $19.99

JUL120675 JOHN CARTER GN TP GODS OF MARS $14.99

JUN120725 JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY TP VOL 02 FEAR ITSELF FALLOUT $15.99

JUL120677 MARVELS AVENGERS AVENGERS INITIATIVE DIGEST TP $9.99

JUL120581 MIGHTY THOR #20 BURNS $3.99

APR120688 MMW ATLAS ERA TALES OF SUSPENSE HC VOL 04 $74.99

JUL120679 MU AVENGERS EARTHS HEROES COMIC READER TP #3 $3.99

JUL120614 NEW MUTANTS #49 $2.99

JUL120560 SPIDER-MEN #5 $3.99

JUL120552 THANOS FINAL THREAT #1 $4.99

JUL120567 ULTIMATE COMICS SPIDER-MAN #15 DWF $3.99

JUL120568 ULTIMATE COMICS ULTIMATES #15 DWF $3.99

JUL120646 UNCANNY X-MEN BY KIERON GILLEN PREM HC VOL 03 AVX $19.99

JUL120621 UNTOLD TALES OF PUNISHER MAX #4 (MR) $3.99

JUL120565 VENOM #25 $2.99

JUL120672 VENOM CIRCLE OF FOUR TP $19.99

JUN120733 WOLVERINE TP GOODBYE CHINATOWN $16.99

JUL120616 X-FACTOR #244 $2.99

JUN120734 X-FACTOR TP VOL 15 THEY KEEP KILLING MADROX $16.99

JUL120684 X-MEN WEDDING OF CYCLOPS AND PHOENIX TP $34.99

IDW Publishing from Diamond Distributors for September 19 2012

IDW PUBLISHING

JUL120371 30 DAYS OF NIGHT ONGOING #10 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120350 BATTLE BEASTS #3 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120334 COBRA ONGOING #17 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120338 DANGER GIRL GI JOE #3 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120291 DOCTOR WHO DAVE GIBBONS COLL TP $29.99

JUL120288 DOCTOR WHO VOL 3 #1 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120343 GHOSTBUSTERS ONGOING #13 $3.99

JUL120297 GODZILLA HALF CENTURY WAR #2 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120295 GODZILLA ONGOING #5 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUN120358 JERICHO SEASON 4 #2 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120352 KISS #4 [DIG/D+] $3.99

MAY120448 MAGIC THE GATHERING SPELL THIEF #3 [DIG] $4.99

JUN120412 MEMORIAL HC VOL 01 $24.99

JUL120369 POUND GHOULS NIGHT OUT #1 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUN120417 SKIPPY HC VOL 01 COMPLETE DAILIES 1925-1927 $49.99

JUL120282 STAR TREK NEXT GENERATION HIVE #1 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120278 STAR TREK ONGOING #13 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120281 STAR TREK ROMULANS TREASURY ED $9.99

JUL120308 TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES ONGOING TP VOL 03 SHADOWS $17.99

JUL120323 TRANSFORMERS ROBOTS IN DISGUISE ANNUAL 2012 $7.99

JUL120303 TRUE BLOOD ONGOING #5 [DIG/D+] $3.99

JUL120305 WOMANTHOLOGY SPACE #1 [DIG/D+] $3.99

Dark Horse Comics from Diamond Distributors for September 19 2012

DARK HORSE COMICS

MAY128261 EMPOWERED TP VOL 03 (MR) $16.99

MAY120063 ANGELIC LAYER TP BOOK 01 $19.99

MAY120066 BERSERK TP VOL 36 $14.99

JUL120048 BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER SPIKE #2 FRISON CVR $2.99

MAY120065 CARDCAPTOR SAKURA DARK HORSE OMNIBUS TP VOL 04 $19.99

JUN120061 CLASSIC MARVEL CHARACTERS SERIES 2 #3 CAPTAIN AMERICA $49.95

JUL120025 DARK HORSE PRESENTS #16 $7.99

MAY120035 EERIE ARCHIVES HC VOL 11 $49.99

MAY128260 EMPOWERED TP VOL 01 (NEW PTG) (MR) $16.99

JUL120028 FATIMA THE BLOOD SPINNERS #4 $3.99

JUL120023 GHOST #0 $2.99

JUL120053 LOBSTER JOHNSON CAPUT MORTUUM #1 ZONJIC CVR $3.50

JUL120038 STAR WARS DARTH VADER GHOST PRISON #5 $3.50

Image Comics from Diamond Distributors for September 19 2012

IMAGE COMICS

JUN120537 ARTIFACTS #21 [DIG] $3.99

MAY120605 ELEPHANTMEN #43 (MR) [DIG] $3.99

JUL128128 HARVEST #1 2ND PTG (MR) $3.50

MAR120489 LIL DEPRESSED BOY #13 [DIG] $3.99

JUL120389 PETER PANZERFAUST #6 [DIG] $3.50

JUL120406 REBEL BLOOD TP (MR) [DIG] $14.99

JUL128088 REVIVAL #1 3RD PTG $2.99

JUL128006 REVIVAL #2 2ND PTG $2.99

JUL120515 REVIVAL #3 [DIG] $2.99

JUL120522 WALKING DEAD #102 (MR) [DIG] $2.99

JUL120438 WALKING DEAD HC VOL 08 (MR) $34.99

Comics, Magazines and Books from Diamond Distributors for September 19 2012

COMICS & GRAPHIC NOVELS

JUN121254 2000 AD #1797 $5.25

JUL121086 ADVENTURES IN CARTOONING CHRISTMAS SPECIAL $9.99

JUN121260 ATOMIC ROBO FLYING SHE DEVILS O/T PACIFIC #3 $3.50

JUL121206 ATOMIC ROBO REAL SCIENCE ADV #6 $2.75

JUN121182 ATTACK ON TITAN GN VOL 02 $10.99

JUL128159 BLUE GN (MR) $14.95

JUN121375 CALL OF WONDERLAND #4 A CVR MYCHAELS (MR) $3.99

JUN121376 CALL OF WONDERLAND #4 B CVR QUALANO (MR) $3.99

JUL121154 CLASSICS ILLUS DLX SC VOL 09 CHRISTMAS CAROL & MUGBY $11.99

JUL121194 DARK COUNTRY HC $24.99

JAN120864 DEAD MANS RUN #3 CVR A PARKER $3.50

JAN120865 DEAD MANS RUN #3 CVR B FABOK $3.50

MAR121028 DF SPIDER #1 CGC GRADED $89.99

MAY121109 DF VAMPIRELLA #20 RED RISQUE CVR $14.99

JUN121106 DF WALKING DEAD #100 ADLARD SGN ED $20.03

MAY121114 DF WARLORD OF MARS #21 RISQUE RED CVR $14.99

JUL120883 EXTERMINATION #4 MAIN CVRS [DIG] $3.99

FEB128277 GALAXY MAN #2 $3.99

MAY121054 GARTH ENNIS JENNIFER BLOOD #17 (MR) $3.99

JUN121377 GFT BAD GIRLS #2 A CVR QUALANO (MR) $2.99

JUN121378 GFT BAD GIRLS #2 B CVR TYNDALL (MR) $2.99

MAY121279 HAVOC BRIGADE TP $12.99

JUN128171 HIGHER EARTH #1-#3 BOOM BUILDER PACK $2.99

JUN121350 HOUSE OF FIVE LEAVES TP VOL 08 $12.99

JUN121383 IRRESISTIBLE #3 A CVR GILL (MR) $3.99

JUN121384 IRRESISTIBLE #3 B CVR FRANCHESCO (MR) $3.99

JUN121208 JEWISH IN AMERICA GN SET VOL 1-2 $24.99

JUL121143 JINN WARRIORS GN VOL 01 DEVILS WAR $19.99

JUL121119 KODT BUNDLE OF TROUBLE TP VOL 38 $14.99

MAY121086 MERCILESS RISE OF MING #4 $3.99

JUN121333 MR BIG TALE OF POND LIFE GN $12.95

MAY121342 NAOKI URASAWA 20TH CENTURY BOYS GN VOL 22 $12.99

JUN120766 NEXT EXIT VOL 1 TP $12.95

JUL120707 NIGHTMARES & FAIRY TALES TP VOL 01 (MR) $14.95

JUL120709 NIGHTMARES & FAIRY TALES TP VOL 03 1140 RUE ROYALE $14.95

JUL120710 NIGHTMARES & FAIRY TALES TP VOL 04 $14.95

JUL120911 PEANUTS VOL 2 #2 [DIG] $3.99

JUL120997 RED SONJA ATLANTIS RISES #2 $3.99

JUL120711 REX LIBRIS TP VOL 01 $14.95

JUL120712 REX LIBRIS TP VOL 02 BOOK OF MONSTERS $17.95

JUN120928 RICH JOHNSTONS THE AVENGEFULS TP $14.99

JUL120902 ROGER LANGRIDGES SNARKED #12 [DIG] $3.99

JUN121186 SAILOR MOON TP KODANSHA ED VOL 07 $10.99

JUL121231 SECRET OF THE STONE FROG HC $14.95

JUN121017 SHADOW #5 $3.99

JUL120856 SIMPSONS COMICS #194 $2.99

JUL121406 SODDIT OR LETS CASH IN AGAIN HC $12.99

JUL120775 SONIC UNIVERSE #44 [DIG/D+] $2.99

MAR120961 VAMPIRELLA RED ROOM #3 $3.99

JUN121051 VAMPIRELLA VS DRACULA TP $19.99

MAR120948 WARLORD OF MARS DEJAH THORIS #15 (MR) $3.99

MAGAZINES
JUL121361 COMIC SHOP NEWS #1318 PI
JUL121428 DOC SAVAGE DOUBLE NOVEL VOL 61 $14.95
JUN121421 DOCTOR WHO SPECIAL #32 $12.99
JUN121443 FANGORIA #317 $9.99
JUL121427 LOCUS #620 $6.95
APR121414 NEWTYPE JUL 2012 $16.00
JUL120600 PRINCESS MAGAZINE 8 $4.99
JUL121429 SHADOW DOUBLE NOVEL VOL 64 $14.95

BOOKS
JUN121237 ASTERIX WHERES ASTERIX SC $9.95
JUN121393 COMICS SKETCHBOOKS PRIVATE WORLDS TODAYS CREATIVE TALENTS SC $44.95
JUL121402 COMP GT FIGURE DRAWING FOR COMICS & GN SC $24.99
JUL121384 JANE WOMAN WHO LOVED TARZAN HC $25.99
JUL121345 ROUGH JUSTICE SC DC COMIC SKETCHES OF ALEX ROSS $24.95
JUL121066 SIREN BEWITCHING ART DAN BRERETON HC SGN ED $34.99
JUL121067 SIREN BEWITCHING ART DAN BRERETON HC SKETCH ED $99.99
JUN121204 WEREWOLVES OF NEW IDRIA SC (RES) $15.95

Monday, September 17, 2012

I Reads You Review: BAD MEDICINE #3

BAD MEDICINE #3
ONI PRESS

WRITERS: Nunzio DeFilippis and Christina Weir
ART: Christopher Mitten
COLORS: Bill Crabtree
LETTERS: Douglas E. Sherwood
28pp, Color, $3.99 U.S.

Bad Medicine is a new comic book series from the husband and wife writing team of Nunzio DeFilippis and Christina Weir and artist Christopher Mitten (Wasteland). Weir described Bad Medicine (which is published by Oni Press) as “a sci-fi/horror medical procedural” that focuses on a team put together by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to “investigate strange diseases and outbreaks that science can't explain.”

Bad Medicine #3 (“Killing Moon” Part 1 of 3) opens after the first strange case, and Dr. Randal Horne gets his next one. Apparently, a police officer shot a rampaging werewolf-like creature in Portland, Maine. NYPD Detective Joely Huffman, glad to get away from the drama at work, tags along with Horne’s team. At the Portland Police Department, they find Officer Wilensky, who shot the werewolf, in distress over the shooting and the subsequent investigation. The team also discovers that the other possible eyewitness to the attack is uncooperative. The investigation takes the team to Deer Falls, a nearby small town where the citizens seem to love the place too much to ever leave.

I can happily say that the first story arc (the two-part “Unseen”) of Bad Medicine was not a fluke, and it seems that the series can remain consistent with the beginning of a second intriguing arc. Bad Medicine reads like a blending of elements of The X-Files, “Fringe,” and “CSI,” but the strongest element about the series is the cast.

However, with this third issue, I find myself having a problem with the series. Most of the first chapter of “Killing Moon” is a set up for the rest of the story. The real meat of this werewolf story comes later, so $3.99 (before tax) is simply too much to pay for the 22-pages of the set-up of a story. Of course, I realize that this is an industry-wide problem. Perhaps, the publisher wants Bad Medicine to be a monthly, but maybe publishing the story arcs as a series of one-shots would give better value for the readers’ money.

B+

Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Friday, September 14, 2012

Review: Steven Heller's COMICS SKETCHBOOKS

COMICS SKETCHBOOKS: The Private Worlds of Today’s Most Creative Talents
THAMES & HUDSON, INC. – @thamesandhudson

AUTHOR: Steven Heller
DESIGNER: Ashley Olsson
ISBN: 978-0-500-28994-5; paperback
352pp, Color and Black and White; $44.95 U.S., $47.50 CAN

Steven Heller is co-chair of the MFA/Designer as Author + Entrepreneur program at New York’s School of Visual Arts. He is the author, editor, and co-editor of over one hundred books on design and popular culture. His works include Handwritten: Expressive Lettering in the Digital Age (with Mirko Ilic) and New Modernist Type (with Gail Anderson).

His latest book is Comics Sketchbooks: The Private Worlds of Today’s Most Creative Talents. A massive book (365 pages, 8.65 x 11.5), Comics Sketchbooks contains sketches, doodles, drawings, roughs, thumbnails, and even comics from some of the world’s most cutting edge and innovative artists and also some emerging talents. Over 80 artists open up their private sketchbooks and notebooks, from which Heller culled the hundreds drawings and samples that fill this fat (and phat) book. Even some artists who do not keep sketchbooks provided roughs and studies for this book.

Readers get a chance to see the thinking and planning and the experimentation, practice, and play behind the work and style of such artists as Charles Burns, Lilli Carré, Drew Friedman, David Mazzucchelli, Gary Panter, and Carol Tyler, to name a few. Readers can see into the sketchbooks of such legends as R. Crumb, Bill Griffith, Victor Moscoso, Bill Plympton, and Arnold Roth. Not every artist in this collection is specifically a comics artists, but according to Heller (in his introduction), all of them make comics as either their primary occupation or as part of their larger body of work.

Admirers, fans, and students of alternative comics and cartoonists will like Comics Sketchbooks. Still, some, like myself, may find this book missing things they wanted, which is a bit ungrateful. Why do I want more?

Obviously, Heller could not get every drawing that he wanted included in this book, for various reasons. One of the reasons is that some artists are self-conscious about opening their sketchbooks. Another reason is that some artists only actively sketch to prepare for upcoming projects, and may, in fact, discard such preliminary drawings and preparatory material once projects are completed.

So, the two pages of David Mazzucchelli just don’t seem like enough, although the sample of his typographical skills almost makes up for that. There are four pages of R. Crumb, but since Crumb has been publishing his sketchbooks and sketchbook material for four decades, the illustrations here won’t seem like anything new.

My minor quibbles aside, there is some spectacular material in Comics Sketchbooks from some major talents, known and little known. The six pages of sketches by Carol Tyler are a doorway into the wonderland that is the talent of this unheralded artist. The offerings from political cartoonist, Ann Telnaes, include several superb sketches of President Barack Obama caricatures. There is no way to prepare for the six pages of Joseph Lambert, which are crammed with drawings. I couldn’t help but return to his section several times.

It would be impractical for me to try to describe all the drawings in this book, all of it good, some of it even stunning, and even a few pieces that are (dare I say it) great. I will tempt some of you by saying that there are a few sketches in here that were proposals for covers for the magazine, The New Yorker, including one by the always fabulous Drew Friedman. This is a good book. Comics Sketchbooks: The Private Worlds of Today’s Most Creative Talents should be on comics fans’ wish lists. Steven Heller deserves some awards recognition, and certainly, at least, an Eisner nomination next year.

A

Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux

www.thamesandhudsonusa.com

The artist and cartoonists included in Comics Sketchbooks: The Private Worlds of Today’s Most Creative Talents:

Sotos Anagnos, Chris Battle, Lou Beach, Kaye Blegvad, Peter Blegvad, Russ Braun, Steve Brodner, Charles Burns, Chris Capuozzo, Lilli Carré, Seymour Chwast, Colonel Moutarde, R. Crumb, John Cuneo, Vanessa Davis, Kim Deitch, Julie Delporte, Eric Drooker, Drew Friedman, Manuel Gomez Burns, Bill Griffith, Robert Grossman, Benoit Guillaume, Cyril Guru, David Heatley, Rian Hughes, Kevin Huizenga, Nathan Jurevicius, Ben Katchor, Denis Kitchen, Jakob Klemencic, Thomas Knowler, Matej Kocjan, Nora Krug, Olivier Kugler, Peter Kuper, Joseph Lambert, Brendan Leach, Etienne Lecroart, Matthias Lehmann, Martin Lemelman, David Libens, Sebastien Lumineau, Patrick McHale, Matt Madden, Javier Mariscal, David Mazzucchelli, Rutu Modan, Saxton Moore, Victor Moscoso, Joanna Neborsky, Josh Neufeld, Mark Newgarden, Vladan Nikolic, Gary Panter, Bill Plympton, Max De Radigues, Laren Redniss, Arnold Roth, Marcel Ruijters, Johnny Ryan, David Sandlin, Seth, Peter De Seve, Robert Sikoryak, Posy Simmonds, Mark Alan Stamaty, Jim Steranko, James Sturm, Joost Swarte, Takeshi Tadatsu, Ann Telnaes, Simon Tofield, Jeremy Traum, Carol Tyler, Andres Vera Martinez, Lauren Weinstein, Tracy White, Signe Wilkinson, Run Wrake, Derek Yaniger, and Danijel Zezelj



Wednesday, September 12, 2012

VIZ Media Debuting 9 Mature Manga Series on VIZManga.com

VIZ MEDIA DEBUTS MATURE MANGA SERIES ON VIZMANGA.COM

BLACK LAGOON, DOGS, NANA, TENJO TENGE And More Launch This Month On North America’s Leading Digital Manga Platform!

San Francisco, CA, September 11, 2012 – VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), the largest publisher, distributor and licensor of manga and anime in North America, tantalizes readers with a digital collection of nine mature manga (graphic novel) series launching this month on VIZManga.com.

From kinetic action and imaginative science fiction to romance and gothic melodrama, these new additions push the boundaries of the manga medium and share an emphasis on creative quality and unique storylines. The newly available manga series, each rated ‘M’ for Mature Readers, include BLACK LAGOON. BUTTERFLIES, FLOWERS, THE CAIN SAGA, DOGS, DOROHEDORO, IKIGAMI: THE ULTIMATE LIMIT, JORMUMGAND, NANA, and TENJO TENGE. Individual volumes start at $4.99 each.

BLACK LAGOON Volume 1 · by Hiroe Rei · Rated ‘M’ for Mature Readers · Available Now!
Lock n' load with the baddest group of mercenaries ever to hit the high seas of Southeast Asia! Aboard their World War II torpedo boat, the Black Lagoon, Dutch the Boss, Benny the Mechanic, Revy Two Hand, and Rock, the salaryman from Japan, deliver anything, anywhere. In the dangerous underworld of the Russian Mafia, Chinese triads, Colombian drug cartels, crazed assassins, and ruthless mercenaries, it's hard to know who to trust. But if you've got a delivery to make, and you don't mind a little property damage along the way, you can count on the crew of the Black Lagoon!

BUTTERFLIES, FLOWERS Volume 1 · by Yuki Yoshihara · Rated ‘M’ for Mature Readers · Available Now!
Choko Kuze is the sensible daughter of a venerable family who went bankrupt. She joins a real estate company as an entry-level office worker, but her eccentric boss is harder on her than anyone else in the company! After hearing him inadvertently call her "milady," she realizes he was the young servant boy she knew as a child. At work he's a tyrant, but after hours he insists on treating her like a lady of the nobility. Is romance even possible for a couple locked in such a crazy role reversal?

THE CAIN SAGA Volume 1 · by Kaori Yuki · Rated ‘M’ for Mature Readers · Available Now!
Delve into the tortured past of Earl Cain C. Hargreaves, charismatic heir to a wealthy family full of secrets, lies and unthinkable crimes. The prequel to the Godchild series, The Cain Saga follows the young Cain as he attempts to unravel the secrets of his birth, all the while solving each new mystery that comes his way.

DOGS Volume 0 · by Shirow Miwa · Rated ‘M’ for Mature Readers · Available Now!
Boasting furious action, switchback plotting, magnetic characters and dazzling art, Dogs tells the story of four individuals struggling to survive a dystopian urban future by gun and sword and courage and luck.

DOROHEDORO Volume 1 · by Q Hayashida · Rated ‘M’ for Mature Readers · Available Now!
In a city so dismal it's known only as "the Hole," a clan of Sorcerers has been plucking people off the streets to use as guinea pigs for atrocious "experiments" in the black arts. In a dark alley, Nikaido found Caiman, a man with a reptile head and a bad case of amnesia. To undo the spell, they're hunting and killing the Sorcerers in the Hole, hoping that eventually they'll kill the right one. But when En, the head Sorcerer, gets word of a lizard-man slaughtering his people, he sends a crew of "cleaners" into the Hole, igniting a war between two worlds.

IKIGAMI: THE ULTIMATE LIMIT Volume 1 · by Motoro Mase · Rated ‘M’ for Mature Readers · Available September 25th
Dear Citizen: Thank you for your loyalty. You've no doubt noticed that the world is a troubled place. People are apathetic, lazy, unmotivated. You've probably asked yourself WHY ISN'T ANYTHING BEING DONE TO STOP THIS SYSTEMATIC DECLINE? Rest assured that measures are being taken. Beginning today, we will randomly select a different citizen who will be killed within 24 hours of notification. We believe this will help remind all people how precious life is and how important it is to be a productive, active member of society. Thank you for your continued attention and your cooperation and participation...

JORMUNGAND Volume 1 · by Keitaro Takahashi · Rated ‘M’ for Mature Readers · Available September 18th
Jonah is a child soldier, born amidst the chaotic conflicts that rage across West Asia, his family lost to a war fueled by weapons supplied by the so-called Merchants of Death--international arms dealers. Despite Jonah's hatred of weapons and violence, he employs both extremely well in the service of high-flying arms dealer Koko Hekmatyar and her band of mercenaries. Their journey through the dark underbelly of the world's arms markets may lead only to damnation, but will Jonah one day make his way back to the light? Only one thing is certain: it's going to be a long, hard road out of hell...

NANA Volume 1 · by Ai Yazawa · Rated ‘M’ for Mature Readers · Available Now!
Nana "Hachi" Komatsu hopes that moving to Tokyo will help her make a clean start and leave her capricious love life behind her. Nana Osaki, who arrives in the city at the same time, has plans to score big in the world of rock'n'roll. Although these two young women come from different backgrounds, they quickly become best friends in a whirlwind world of sex, music, fashion, gossip and all-night parties!

TENJO TENGE Volume 1 · by Oh!great · Rated ‘M’ for Mature Readers · Available Now!
Welcome to Todo High, where the only rule is: get strong or get schooled.

Soichiro Nagi and Bob Makihara have always been the meanest street brawlers around. When they enter Todo High they plan on carving out a reputation as the strongest fighters in their new school – easier said than done in a place that's dedicated to training its students in the art of combat! After realizing they're the new fish swimming in a tank full of sharks, Soichiro and Bob enter the Juken fight club as rookie members. However, the Executive Council – the archrival of the Juken Club – soon launches a surprise attack. Soichiro and Bob have a chance to show their stuff, as long as they don't get curb-kicked in the process!

VIZManga.com is the top website for reading manga and features a rapidly growing library of the most popular manga series in the world, with more than 80 series and 700+ volumes are currently available and new ones added regularly. To learn more about VIZ Manga, please visit vizmanga.com.


About VIZ Media, LLC
Headquartered in San Francisco, California, VIZ Media distributes, markets and licenses the best anime and manga titles direct from Japan. Owned by three of Japan's largest manga and animation companies, Shueisha Inc., Shogakukan Inc., and Shogakukan-Shueisha Productions, Co., Ltd., VIZ Media has the most extensive library of anime and manga for English speaking audiences in North America, the United Kingdom, Ireland and South Africa. With its popular digital manga anthology WEEKLY SHONEN JUMP ALPHA and blockbuster properties like NARUTO, BLEACH and INUYASHA, VIZ Media offers cutting-edge action, romance and family friendly properties for anime, manga, science fiction and fantasy fans of all ages. VIZ Media properties are available as graphic novels, DVDs, animated television series, feature films, downloadable and streaming video and a variety of consumer products. Learn more about VIZ Media, anime and manga at www.VIZ.com.

The Top Shelf Annual $3 Sale Has Started

THE 2012 TOP SHELF MASSIVE $3 SALE

For the next two weeks -- thru Friday September 28th -- Top Shelf (@topshelfcomix) is having its annual $3 web sale. When you visit the site, you'll find 170 graphic novels and comics on sale -- with over 100 titles marked down to just $3 & $1! Each year we use these funds to help clear the decks on our current amazing releases, and “kick start” a full rollout for next year. So, thank you in advance for your support, as we wouldn’t be here without you!

To go directly to the list of items on sale at the Top Shelf website, just click here: http://www.topshelfcomix.com/specialdeals

But here are a few sample sale items:

-- Slashed Prices: The Underwater Welder, Lost Dogs, League 2009/1969, and more!

-- Slashed Prices: From Hell, Blankets (HC&SC), Carnet de Voyage, and more!

-- Slashed Prices: Wizzywig, Lovely Horrible Stuff, Any Empire, Clumsy, and

more!

-- Slashed Prices: Chester 5000, SuperF*ckers, Moving Pictures, and more!

-- Slashed Prices: Alec, American Elf, The Ticking, Far Arden, and more!

-- Slashed Prices: Owly, Korgi, Johnny Boo, Dragon Puncher, and more!

-- $3 Titles: Ax, Lucille, Undeleted Scenes, and more!

-- $3 Titles: Gingerbread Girl, The Homeland Directive, Liar’s Kiss, and more!

-- $3 Titles: Incredible Change-Bots, Night Animals, Underwire, and more!

-- $3 Titles: Voice of the Fire, The Playwright, Fingerprints, and more!

-- $3 Titles: BB Wolf, Three Fingers, The Surrogates (V1&V2), and more!

-- $3 Titles: Pirate Penguin, Okie Dokie Donuts, Pinky & Stinky, Yam, and more!

-- $1 Titles: Sulk (Vols 1, 2, & 3), SuperF*ckers #1-#4, and more!

-- $1 Titles: The Surrogates #1-#5, The Sketchbook Diaries #1-#4, and more!

-- $1 Titles: Lower Regions, Feeble Attempts, Conversations #1 & #2, and more!

-- $1 Titles: Comic Diorama, The Man Who Loved Breasts, Doublecross, and more!

-- $1 Titles: Tales of the Great Unspoken, Black Ghost Apple Factory, Dang!, and

more!

-- $1 Titles: Mephisto & The Empty Box, Hey Mister, Yearbook Stores,and more!

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Please note that Top Shelf accepts PayPal (as well as Visa, MasterCard, Amex, and Discover -- all secure), and that this sale is good for retailers as well (and comic book shops will get their wholesale discount on top of these sale prices).

http://www.topshelfcomix.com/specialdeals