Capsule Comic Reviews 06/10/15

Best of the Week


Death_Sentence_2_01_Cover_D

Title: Death Sentence:  London #1

Publisher:  Titan Comics

Writer: Montynero

Artist:  Martin Simmonds

Cover Artist:  Martin Simmonds

Review: ★★★★★

One of our favorite series is back with a majestic bang.  After the events that happened in London, the world is a much different place as it tries to regroup.  Weasel is hailed as a hero for the citizens even though what remains of the government doesn’t trust him, while what happened to Verity slowly becomes revealed.  Over in the United States, we are introduced to special agent Jeb Mulgrew who has been undercover for years and has no idea what has happened around the world since he went in.  Montynero has done a wonderful job of tying into the original characters while also moving the story forward with Jeb added to the mix.  What we loved even more so than the story is the art from Martin Simmonds.  While original co-creator and artist Mike Dowling did a terrific job with the first series and is not diminished by this in any way, Simmonds art is absolutely stunning and leaps off the page, proving he is a more than a worthy successor for this story.


UNITY_019_COVER-A_BERNARD

Title:  Unity #19

Publisher:  Valiant Entertainment

Writer:  Matt Kindt

Artist:  Jose Luis;  Sandro Ribeiro;  Alisson Rodrigues;  Jefte Palo

Colorist:  Andrew Dalhouse

Letterer:  Dave Sharpe

Cover Artist:  Diego Bernard, Alejandro Sicat, and Guy Major;  Kano;  Sina Grace and John Rauch

Review:  ★★★★★

This is how you introduce a brand new villain.  At the very start, we are introduced to War-Monger who is telling her origin story to an unknown person.  Her story is light and amusing considering the joy she has had in causing cases throughout centuries.  We even get to watch a medieval version of Unity band together to stop her, imprisoning her for years, which is what we assume causes her to cross paths with the current incarnation of the team.  By the time we find out who she is telling her story to, we know how powerful she is, and know the hero is most likely overmatched.  There were a lot of hands going into the art for the issues, but how it is laid out never felt jarring, which typically is the case in that situation.  Instead everything comes together for a great new arc and great jumping on point for anyone.


The Weekly Rundown


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Title:  21st Century Tank Girl #1

Publisher: Titan Comics

Writer: Alan Martin

Artist:  Jamie Hewlett;  Brett Parson;  Warwick Johnson-Cadwell;  Jonathan Edwards;  Philip Bond;  Jim Mahfood;  Craig Knowles

Letterer:  Jim Campbell

Cover Artist:  Jamie Hewlett

Review: ★★★★☆

Tank Girl is back and just as bizarre and nonsensical as usual.  21st Century Tank Girl is composed of several short stories, none of which have anything to do with one another beyond the fact they star are titular character doing what she can to leave the world in a slightly worse place than she found it.  If you find a ship in the shape of frank and beans and over the top violence hilarious, you’ll be right at home.


Birthright08_Cover

Title:  Birthright #8

Publisher:  Image Comics

Writer:  Joshua Williamson

Artist:  Andrei Bressan

Colorist:  Adriano Lucas

Letterer:  Pat Brosseau

Cover Artist:  Andrei Bressan and Adriano Lucas

Review:  ★★★☆☆

Very surprising to us, normal Brennan has so far survived his blast to the chest and is hanging on, regardless of the amount of blood everywhere.  As Mikey tries to help him, he has other problems to deal with such as a Diviner warping Earth around him.  If that wasn’t enough, his former pregnant girlfriend is slowly making her way to them.  Their parents and the police continue to pop up, but bring nothing substantial to the story at this point as it is more of a reminder they are out there than anything.  Bressan’s art really shines through this issue with the area changing to look like Terrenos, especially Lucas’s colors that make the entire book pop off the page.


Chrononauts04_CoverA

Title:  Chrononauts #4

Publisher:  Image Comics

Writer:  Mark Millar

Artist:  Sean Gordon Murphy

Colorist:  Matt Hollingsworth

Letterer:  Chris Eliopoulos

Cover Artist:  Sean Gordon Murphy

Review:  ★★★★☆

What do you do when your backed into a corner and have run out of time?  Well if you are a time traveler, the answer is quite different.  Corbin and Danny have found themselves imprisoned by their own army who is ready to toss Corbin to his death and torture Danny for information.  Corbin is able to escape, travel the world to find another time suit we find become available at the start of the issue, and come back with an even stronger army moments after being tossed aside.  It’s a very fun way to deal with the problem by using further time travel, even though we do wonder how he was able to find the suit with no technology.  Once again though, Chrononauts is not a book to over think but just enjoy for what it is, which is a great summer action spectacle.


Copperhead08_Cover

Title:  Copperhead #8

Publisher:  Image Comics

Writer:  Jay Faerber

Artist:  Scott Godlewski

Colorist:  Ron Riley

Letterer:  Thomas Mauer

Cover Artist:  Scott Godlewski

Review:  ★★★★☆

Continuing with its great second story arc, we shift from the sheriff’s assault to Boo, who has been captured by the bandits.  He makes a good play for escape, but as out numbered as he is it isn’t good enough.  With help on the trail, things won’t be getting any easier as they enter The Bastion, a safe haven for bandits that doesn’t have a fondness for the law.  We also find out a little more about Clara’s ex-husband who is more deadly and crafty than we coud have imagined as he makes his own daring escape from confinement.  Copperhead has been in its best form yet, excitement at every turn and it makes us craving more and more.


Descender04_Cover

Title:  Descender #4

Publisher:  Image Comics

Writer:  Jeff Lemire

Artist:  Dustin Nguyen

Colorist:  Michelle Madsen

Letterer:  Steve Wands

Cover Artist:  Dustin Nguyen

Review:  ★★★☆☆

With TIM-21 saved from the scrappers, we start to learn more about the supporting cast, especially about Quon and the captain, Telsa.  Things don’t stay quite for long as the scrappers catch up to their ship with a much more advanced one, intent on taking TIM-21 at any cost.  While the issue gives us a new perspective and respect for Telsa, while it also makes us lose respect for Quon, who we hope is not as cowardly and pathetic as he acts.  The real question remains whether TIM-21 had dreamed of the events while he was disabled or if he was in a “robot heaven” of sorts, an idea we bet won’t be answered for quite a while still.


Injection02_CoverA

Title:  Injection #2

Publisher: Image Comics

Writer:  Warren Ellis

Artist:  Declan Shalvey

Colorist:  Jordie Bellaire

Letterer:  Fonografiks

Cover Artist:  Declan Shalvey

Review: ★★☆☆☆

As much as we love Warren Ellis, we do not love Injection yet.  The book is a bit of a mess with lots going on, but little answers or direction for us to follow.  Declan Shalvey’s work is beautiful and the book contains several fantastic scenes, including an incredible, hard-hitting and brutal action sequence that we loved.  However, ask us to tell you about what’s going on or even much about the main characters, we’ve come up empty so far.


insufferable2

Title:  Insufferable #2

Publisher:  IDW Publishing

Writer:  Mark Waid

Artist:  Peter Krause

Colorist:  Nolan Woodard

Cover Artist:  Peter Krause

Review:  ★★★☆☆

The former team of father and son look into the sudden disturbance they both have linked to their deceased wife and mother.  While Nocturnus wants to keep it a private matter while they both investigate it, Galahad already has taken to social media to get help on the matter.  Either way it looks like their former villains are teaming up to cause the two as much pain as possible.  Watching the two bicker while working together does serve as some amusement, but Nocturnus is a bit too mopey and Galahad a tad to arrogant.  The ending ends in a bit of a shocker, literally, but one that we are pretty confident is just a diversion.


Mantle02_Cover

Title:  The Mantle #2

Publisher: Image Comics

Writer: Ed Brisson

Artist:  Brian Level

Colorist:  Jordan Boyd

Covers:  Brian Level

Review: ★★★☆☆

With the Mantle having passed quickly from Robbie to Jen, she finds herself in shock and takes Robbie’s lifeless body to the closest hospital 2,000 kilometers away.  It doesn’t take long for the Plague to track her down and create a wave of death and destruction on his way to kill her.  Luckily, her new-found protectors find her and get her to a safe location, at least as safe as can be for the moment.  The character designs leave a lot to be desired as several of them appear ripped straight out of the 90’s, but we still like the idea of the Plague mercilessly coming after the unfortunate soul who inherit’s the Mantle powers.  With the quick and unexpected swap of Jen to leading role, hopefully we will have a little more time very soon to get to know her a little better and why we should care if the Plague kills her or not.


midnightsocietytheblacklake1

Title:  Midnight Society:  The Black Lake #1

Publisher:  Dark Horse Comics

Writer:  Drew Edward Johnson

Artist:  Drew Edward Johnson

Colorist:  Lizzy John

Letterer:  Steve Dutro

Cover Artist:  Drew Edward Johnson and Lizzy John

Review:  ★★☆☆☆

The world of Midnight Society is mostly like ours but has an underbelly filled with magic and mysticism.  While the world is fascinating right off that bat, the characters so far are another story.  The plot and setup are heavily built up, but the main character Matilda Finn is used to sparingly for us to get a feel for her.  On the other hand Johnson’s art was beautiful, keeping our eyes glued to the pages.  If we get time to further explore Matilda herself, this series could be great.  From the opening salvo, though, it has some areas to catch up on.


rebels3

Title:  Rebels #3

Publisher:  Dark Horse Comics

Writer:  Brian Wood

Artist:  Andrea Mutti

Colorist:  Jordie Bellaire

Letterer:  Jared K. Fletcher

Cover Artist:  Tula Lotay

Review:  ★★★★☆

While Seth may have been the main focus of the narrative, this time we watch his wife struggling to keep their home in order alone.  Of all the issues it is one of the slowest, but in terms of emotions, possibly the most vibrant.  Telling the story of his wife might not be as flashy as watching him wage war, but it is still a very important perspective that Wood was wise to explore.


SavageDragon204_Cover

Title:  Savage Dragon #204

Publisher:  Image Comics

Writer:  Erik Larsen

Artist:  Erik Larsen

Colorist:  Nikos Koutsis

Letterer:  Chris Eliopoulos

Cover Artist:  Erik Larsen

Review:  ★★★☆☆

While we wouldn’t have guessed it previously, Savage Dragon is turning into the perfect cautionary tale of why group, unprotected sex might not be the best idea as our lead character finds two women he might have made pregnant.  If that weren’t bad enough in itself, his little offspring could have enough strength to rip a hole through the womb before birth.  The series has taken a turn from superhero adventures recently, but what it has turned into still has its charms like an early afternoon soap opera you’re not quite sure why you’re watching, but can’t turn away.


Starve01_Cover

Title:  Starve #1

Publisher: Image Comics

Writer:  Brian Wood

Artist:  Danijel Zezelj

Colorist:  Dave Stewart

Cover Artist:  Danijel Zezelj and Dave Stewart

Review: ★★★☆☆

Starve is definitely one of the most unusual books this week.  The series follows fallen celebrity chef Gavin Cruikshank who has left his popular television show and life for the third world.  His contract still has 8 episodes left so his network pulls him out of his exile to come back to the series that made him.  After being gone for several years, things back home have certainly changed. The series certainly has potential due to Gavin himself and the modified world he lives in.  We think the 1% against the 99% has been a bit overplayed by this point, but we’re interested to see where things go.


XO_VALIANT-25th_COVER_NORD

Title:  X-O Manowar 25th Anniversary Special #1

Publisher:  Valiant Comics

Writer:  Robert Venditti

Artist:  Cafu

Colorist:  Brian Reber

Letterer:  Dave Sharpe

Cover Artist:  Cary Nord;  Cafu

Review:  ★★★★☆

In a story we never even knew we needed, the 25th anniversary special brings us the secret origin of Aric’s armor, Shanhara.  We are introduced to the young girl, Shanhara, who received an experimental procedure by her father who was hoping to cure her life threatening disease by bonding her with an armor.  The procedure only worked in a way though, combining the two into a new species for better or worse.  It shows us the origin of how the armor ended up on the Vine homeworld and how a religious fervor was created over it.  The story is much more tragic than we could have imagined, but helps explain how Aric’s armor is special from the others.  While it might be a little dense for those who are not familiar with the character, X-O Manowar fans will not want to miss this great addition into his lore.


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