Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Jimmy's Bastards

written by Garth Ennis
illustrated by Russ Braun
published by Aftershock Comics

Aftershock Comics is getting all the good writers!  Damn here we have a new Garth Ennis story!  A whole new character creation. I guess I have to say I fell in love with Ennis during Hellblazer. So I make a point of reading his stories when I can.

This story centers around a un-likeable character named Jimmy Regent. He caught me off guard from page one. I didn't quite understand what I was getting into. My initial thought was that this was an Archer rip off sort of character but that's not quite it. Although there's glaring similarities, Jimmy himself isn't really anything like Archer except for the stereotypical Bond qualities (dashing super agent, playboy, alcoholic).  He's a lucky 007 in a ridiculous world. Things just happen to work out for this Jimmy Regent and he's 100% confident that they will. At least, in the beginning.

My favorite part of this book was the gadgets area where we get to see a tiny little roving unit known as the Micro Aggressor that is remotely driven around and shouts "THESE PEOPLE!" repeatedly. It's meant to incite groups of people. Hysterical.

There's a point later in the issue that kinda gets to me. Regent gets a new partner. She's a tough, yet beautiful lady of color and Regent points this out by asking if she has had any "token work". It's not this as the joke carries out appropriately and isn't actually offensive but funny social commentary. What gets me is his partners attitude to other women. I see this so often in books, movies, comics and while I will agree that there are women who exist to look down on other women for being pretty, and wrongly judging them to be stupid because of it, I TRULY am so tired of this character consistently making its way into stories. It's tired and played out. I think it actually reinforces the idea that people should continue to judge women on their appearance: Pretty and flashy clothes? DUMBASS FLAKE. Business suit & modest wear? STUCKUP PRUDE. It's just exhausting, what year is this?

Yet in the end of the issue we're rewarded by all this show of masculine prowess with a hysterical look at Regent's greatest foe of all time!!  OH I WANT TO SPOIL IT... okay I won't.. I won't...


Monday, June 19, 2017

Beautiful Canvas #1 & 2

written by Ryan K Lindsay
illustrated by Sami Kivela
published by Black Mask

Here's another Black Mask comic book review for you. This one written by Ryan K Lindsay, his first title with the label. I have read everything Lindsay has published with a favorite being Negative Space published by Dark Horse in 2016. The first issue of Beautiful Canvas is currently available at a comic shop near you. You can grab your copy of issue #2 on July 26th.

The story largely centers around hit woman Lon who's complicated life is further complicating her relationship with her girlfriend Asia. The story is told through different Lon's eyes, memories and sets of Lon's victims and pursuers both living and dead. However something truly odd is thrown into this crime story, mutants... superhuman mutants to be exact. It's at this point that this reviewer cannot tell if all this is taken as reality or if Lon is losing her marbles. I'm taking it on faith that this story portrays a reality of super humans and humanoids.

The story is nowhere near linear so you are really going to have to be paying attention. This isn't a passive read although every segway is separated by a new titles and character introduction in the form of retro movie commercial announcement : "So and So stars in Something Vague but Witty".

There's a lot of eerie imagery throughout the story. One moment your witnessing a heartfelt embrace between two lovers and then lurking in the background you see this bloody, ghostly figure... and as a side note, there's nothing more unnerving than ghost children!

The story is illustrated with a pop art style which can be more-so attributed to the color pallet rather than the actual line work. Beautiful and bright yellows, fuchsia's, purples and blues come together to draw the eye to each panel.

If you are ready for something out of the ordinary then I highly suggest checking out Beautiful Canvas.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Interview with Jason Copland on KILL ALL MONSTERS OMNIBUS

written by Michael May
illustrated by Jason Copland
Published by Dark Hose Comics

Welcome back Comic Book Junkies! Once again I've taken to the word processing app to bring you a fantastic interview with one of my favorite comic book artists. Today I bring you and interview with Jason Copland who is going to tell us all about the new KILL ALL MONSTERS OMNIBUS available at comic book store near you on July 19th, published by the prolific Dark Horse Comics. 

KILL ALL MONSTERS has been a long running labor of love, an action packed clash or monsters, robots and humanities fight for survival! Here's my interview with Jason Copland.

TFQ: My number one question is when is the omnibus coming out and what stories /vol does it compile. I know that this story had been going on a very long time. Since 2013? Does it include all stories, even ones previously published by labels other than dark horse? Also, what age group is this story aimed at? I only remember reading it a really long time ago and I thought it was all ages but can't remember.

Jason: I know, right? It feels like forever for the book to finally hit the shelves. But the Kill All Monsters Omnibus is indeed hitting comic retailer shelves on July 19th and larger bookstore retailers on August 1st!

Dark Horse Comics has done an amazing job putting this 368 page hard covered tome together! The book will include everything we have done concerning the main story plus the Dark Horse Presents story from last year and a never seen 40 page one shot that introduces an new robot. The book is aimed at an all ages group.
Kill All Monsters Print

TFQ: What can fans expect to find in this omnibus? Have you and Michael included any creator or process material?

Jason: The book doesn’t contain any process material, unfortunately. We do have pinups, though! Johnnie Christmas, Otis Frampton, Brian Level, Jeff McComsey and Frankie B. Washington have flexed their creative muscles and supplied us with absolutely amazing images. It’s always a thrill to see how other artists interpret your creations and these guys blew us away with what they came up with.

TFQ: Can you tell me a bit about how this story was initially conceived? How did you get involved with Michael May for this project and how did you begin to collaborate on this project?

Jason: I met Michael online via a now defunct comics message board. We had similar interests in comics and movies and I mentioned I was looking to drawing something cool that featured robots and monsters. A mutual friend had come up with a basic concept of a world overrun with monsters and a group of people determined to fight back but he wasn’t interested in writing the actual story. Michael and I dug the premise and we used it as a springboard to help get us moving.

The actual collaboration process between Michael and myself is fairly dull to describe. We tend to work quite independently. Michael goes off and writes the script. Once I get the script, I design characters/monsters/setting/etc and start drawing the pages. We trust each other fully, so we tend to just stay out of each others’ way.

That said, I do suggest pacing options if I feel like the page needs to breathe differently than the script is describing. But we talk those ideas over and come to an agreement.

TFQ: What is your favorite part of Kill All Monsters? What part was the most fun to illustrate?

Jason: The fight scenes are my favorite parts of the book. Those are so much fun to draw! I even make sound effect noises as I draw those panels. Hahaha!

TFQ: Do you expect to create more stories in this series in the future? Do you feel this omnibus marks a closure or a new beginning?

Jason: We will definitely be making more Kill All Monsters stories. The ending of the 40 page one-shot in the book hints at the continuation of KAM beyond the omnibus. Plus, this is a book that has everything I’ve ever wanted to draw: robots and monsters. How could we not make more?

TFQ: Can fans purchase any of the original art from the series?

Jason: I’m very open to selling the original Kill All Monsters art. People interested just need to drop me a line on Twitter at @jasoncopland and we can work out the details.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

The Magical Twins

written by Alejandro Jodorowsky
illustrated by Georges Bess
Published by Humanoids

The Magical Twins is written by Alejandro Jodorowsky and  illustrated by the amazing George Bess who also illustrated Jodorowsky's Son of  a Gun and The White Llama. However this time, Bess has used his powers in a whole new way. When you compare the artwork side by side, you can immediately tell the approach to Magical Twins has an exaggerated style. Characters have bigger eyes, expressions and friendlier, often goofy faces because this story is meant for a young audience. Apart from the actual character design, the coloring also lends itself to children by utilizing a flamboyant color pallet.

This is the first all-ages Jodorowsky story I have ever read. I actually can't think of a single story previously written by Jodorowsky that was intently written for a young audience. Most of Jodorowsky's work sits completely in the adult world and wouldn't be suitable for anyone under 13 (15 if you're a particularly strict household, I however don't think teens need that kind of censorship).

As you can guess this book doesn't hold Jodorowsky's usual themes which generally include sexuality, violence and tragedy, etc. I've seen many comparisons to Greek tragedy when people talk about Jodorowsky's work. The Magical Twins fits more appropriately in the realm of Greek Mythology. Although I don't feel there is any real lesson to be learned (except maybe that parents aren't always trustworthy), the journey's focus is on turning enemies into friends. This makes sense as you can't really have children running about murdering everything with magic, well you could, it just wouldn't be a children's book anymore. The ending however is where I am slightly confused. And here I'll warn you to read no further as I'm going to SPOIL the ending:

The Twins reach their goal only to discover that the trials they were set out to concur were put in place by their parents as a giant test. You know, cause parents always set their children out on dangerous, terrifying tests in order to ensure they haven't gotten soft living in the palace. So essentially, while I'm not surprised that Jodorowsky's idea of a children's story includes a lesson about not trusting your parents, I have to question what he was thinking. Maybe he was just laughing about it. Actually I am picturing him snickering in his writing area.

Whether children actually pick up on the less than positive meaning behind the ending of Magical Twins, they will love the beautiful illustrations, and exciting, action packed pages. No matter what gender your child identifies with, this book positive roles with both boy and girl being capable, brave adventurers!

Monday, June 5, 2017

BabyTeeth #1

co-creator & writter Donny Gates
co-creator & artist Garry Brown

This is the first advanced written review I've done in a long time. Tomorrow BabyTeeth #1 hits the shelves from Aftershock Comics! I have been eating up the Aftershock lately. Really enjoying their releases and BabyTeeth is no different. As you can likely assume from the cover, BabyTeeth is going in the direction of paranormal horror and I love me some paranormal stories. Of course, I don't think I've enjoyed anything from that genre since Hellblazer but those are just really big shoes to fill.

The story of BabyTeeth is narrated by a teenage mom who's having a delightfully, unexpected baby. As you can imagine its no normal child. I love the cover of this issue honestly, pentagram on the pregnancy test stick? Pretty awesome.

I wonder why the antichrist is being born to an unwed teen? Generally these types of Damian-esq stories, you have a really nice couple who's burdened with the demon child. I'm really hoping that this isn't immaculate conception although we aren't told who the father is or even where the child is in present day, or what year the story is being told from. Lot's of questions and that's good for an initial issue.

I have to say I'm not completely in love with the artwork. Yes I really liked the cover and I do actually enjoy a lot of Garry Brown's work (Black Road, Catwoman, The Massive, Daredevil), some of the panels in this book feel rushed. Has the feeling that it's more of an afterthought when I'm use to having the feeling that creator owned type books are a labor of love. However, the artwork as a whole doesn't feel like that, just a few panels. I am particularly fond of the panel of the baby with the black eyes however.

All in all, I am looking forward to seeing where this story goes. I wanna see how it differs from other stories of this nature like The Omen and Rosemary's Baby. So far the atmosphere in the story feels completely different and that is a good thing.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Advanced Comic Book Review: Winnebago Graveyard

Hello Comic Book Junkies!  Today I bring you my advanced review of Winnebago Graveyard by Steve Niles and Allison Sampson. Please bear with me for a few weeks as the quality of my videos will suffer while I wait for my new computer to be built. Then I will have smashing beautiful videos !