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54 minutes | 7 days ago
The Stack: X-Corp, Time Before Time And More
On this week's Stack podcast: X-Corp #1MarvelWritten by Tini HowardArt by Alberto Foche Time Before Time #1Image ComicsWritten by Declan Shalvey and Rory McConvilleArt by Joe Palmer Wonder Woman #722DC ComicsWritten by Becky Cloonan and Michael W. ConradArt by Travis Moore Giant-Size Amazing Spider-Man: King’s Ransom #1MarvelWritten by Nick SpencerArt by Rogê Antônio, with Carlos Gomez & Zé Carlós Buffy the Vampire Slayer #25BOOM! StudiosWritten by Jeremy LambertArt by Valentina Pinti The Joker #3DC ComicsWritten by James Tynion IV, Sam JohnsArt by Guillem March, Mirka Andolfo Ice Cream Man #24Image ComicsWritten by W. Maxwell princeArt by Martín Morazzo Rorschach #8DC ComicsWritten by Tom KingArt by Jorge Fornés Heroes Reborn #2MarvelWritten by Jason AronArt by Dale Keown with Carlos Magno, Ed McGuinness Geiger #2Image ComicsWritten by Geoff JohnsArt by Gary Frank Superman #31DC ComicsWritten by Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Sean LewisArt by Scott Godlewski and Norm Rapmund, Sami Basri Karmen #3Image ComicsBy Guillem March Batman: The Detective #2DC ComicsWritten by Tom TaylorArt by Andy Kubert Spider-Man: Spider’s Shadow #2MarvelWritten by Chip ZdarksyArt by Pasqual Ferry Seven Secrets #8BOOM! StudiosWritten by Tom TaylorArt by Daniele Di Nicuolo American Vampire 1976 #8DC ComicsWritten by Scott SnyderArt by Rafael Albuquerque Birthright #49Image ComicsWritten by Joshua WilliamsonArt by Andrei Bressan Justice League: Last Ride #1DC ComicsWritten by Chip ZdarskyArt by Miguel Mendonça Magic #2BOOM! StudiosWritten by Jed MacKayArt by Ig Guara Future State: Gotham #1DC ComicsWritten by Joshua Williamson and Dennis CulverArt by Giannis Milonogiannis The Silver Coin #2Image ComicsWritten by Kelly ThompsonArt by Michael Walsh Proctor Valley Road #3BOOM! StudiosWritten by Grant Morrison and Alex ChildArt by Noami Franquiz Black Hammer Visions #4Dark Horse ComicsWritten by Mariko TamakiArt by Diego Olortegui SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. Don't forget to go to https://www.Manscaped.com and use the promo code FANSIDED20 to get 20% OFF YOUR ORDER AND FREE SHIPPING!Support the show: https://www.patreon.com/comicbookclubSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
41 minutes | 14 days ago
The Stack: Heroes Reborn, The Good Asian And More
On this week's comic book review podcast: Heroes Reborn #1MarvelWritten by Jason AaronArt by Ed McGuinness The Good Asian #1Image ComicsWritten by Pornsak PinchetshoteArt by Alexandre Tefenkgi The Invincible Red Sonja #1DynamiteWritten by Jimmy Palmiotti and Amanda ConnerArt by Moritat Eve #1BOOM! StudiosWritten by Victor LaValleArt by Jo Mi-Gyeong The Swamp Thing #3DC ComicsWritten by Ram VArt by Mike Perkins The Last Witch #5BOOM! BoxWritten by Conor McCreeryArt by V.V. Glass Star Wars: War of the Bounty Hunters AlphaMarvelWritten by Charles SouleArt by Steve McNiven Nocterra #3Image ComicsWritten by Scott SnyderArt by Tony S. Daniel Batman #108DC ComicsWritten by James Tynion IVArt by Jorge Jimenez, Ricardo Lopez Ortiz DIE #16Image ComicsWritten by Kieron GillenArt by Stephanie Hans Suicide Squad #3DC ComicsWritten by Robbie ThompsonArt by Eduardo Pansica Beasts of Burden: Occupied Territory #2Dark Horse ComicsWritten by Evan Dorkin and Sarah DyerArt by Benjamin Dewey Bliss #7Image ComicsWritten by Sean LewisArt by Caitlin Yarsky Green Lantern #2DC ComicsWritten by Geoffrey ThorneArt by Dexter Soy and Marco Santucci Wynd #6BOOM! StudiosWritten by James Tynion IVArt by Michael Dialynas Fear Case #4Dark Horse ComicsWritten by Matt KindtArt by Tyler and Hilary Jenkins Batman/Fortnite: Zero Point #2DC ComicsConcept by Donald MustardWritten by Christos GageArt by Reilly Brown Dead Dog’s Bite #3Dark Horse ComicsBy Tyler Boss SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. Don't forget to go to https://www.Manscaped.com and use the promo code FANSIDED20 to get 20% OFF YOUR ORDER AND FREE SHIPPING!Support the show: https://www.patreon.com/comicbookclubSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
41 minutes | 21 days ago
The Stack: The Marvels, Robin And More
On this week's Stack podcast: The Marvels #1MarvelWritten by Kurt BusiekArt by Yildiray Cinar Robin #1DC ComicsWritten by Joshua WilliamsonArt by Gleb Melnikov Shadowman #1Valiant ComicsWritten by Cullen BunnArt by Jon Davis-Hunt Helm Greycastle #1Image ComicsStory by Henry BarajasArt by Bryan Valenza and Rahmat M. Handoko Black Widow #6MarvelWritten by Kelly ThompsonArt by Rafael de Latorre Batman/Superman #17DC ComicsWritten by Gene Luen YangArt by Ivan Reis Summoner War: Legacy #1Image ComicsWritten by Justin JordanArt by Luca Claretti Beta Ray Bill #2MarvelBy Daniel Warren Johnson Action Comics #1030DC ComicsWritten by Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Becky Cloonan & Michael W. ConradArt by Daniel Sampere, Michael Avon Oeming Crossover #6Image ComicsWritten by Donny CatesArt by Geoff Shaw X-Men Legends #3MarvelWritten by Louise SimonsonArt by Walter Simonson Harley Quinn #2DC ComicsWritten by Stephanie PhillipsArt by Riley Rossmo Deadly Class #45Image ComicsWritten by Rick RemenderArt by Wes Craig Miles Morales: Spider-Man #25MarvelWritten by Saladin Ahmed, Cody ZiglerArt by Carmen Carnero, Natacha Bustos The Department of Truth #8Image ComicsWritten by James Tynion IVArt by Martin Simmonds BRZRKR #2BOOM! StudiosWritten by Keanu Reeves and Matt KindtArt by Ron Garney Shadecraft #2Image ComicsWritten by Joe HendersonArt by Lee Garbett Once & Future #18BOOM! StudiosWritten by Kieron GillenArt by Dan Mora The Comic Book History of Animation #5IDW PublishingWritten by Fred Van LenteArt by Ryan Dunlavey SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. For up to 15% off, please visit https://earthechofoods.com/minutemedia and use code MINUTE15.Support the show: https://www.patreon.com/comicbookclubSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
38 minutes | a month ago
The Stack: Way of X, Batman/Fortnite And More
On this week's comic book review podcast: Way of X #1MarvelWritten by Si SpurrierArt by Bob Quinn Batman/Fortnite: Zero Point #1DC ComicsConcept by Donald MustardWritten by Christos GageArt by Reilly Brown The Many Deaths of Laila Starr #1BOOM! StudiosWritten by Ram VArt by Filipe Andrade HAHA #4Image ComicsWritten by W. Maxwell PrinceArt by Patrick Horvath The Mighty Valkyries #1MarvelWritten by Jason Aaron and Torunn GrønbekkArt by Mattia De Iulis and Erica D’Urso Nightwing #79DC ComicsWritten by Tom TaylorArt by Bruno Redondo Radiant Black #3Image ComicsWritten by Kyle HigginsArt by Marcelo Costa Alien #2MarvelWritten by Phillip Kennedy JohnsonArt by Salvador Larroca Justice League #60DC ComicsWritten by Brian Michael Bendis, Ram VArt by David Marquez, Xermanico The Old Guard: Tales Through Time #1Image ComicsWritten by Greg Rucka and Andrew WheelerArt by Leandro Fernández and Jacopo Camagni Eternals #4MarvelWritten by Kieron GillenArt by Esad Ribić Catwoman #30DC ComicsWritten by Ram VArt by Fernando Blanco UltraMega #2Image ComicsBy James Harren Specter Inspectors #3BOOM! BoxCreated and written by Bowen McCurdy & Kaitlyn MustoArt by Bowen McCurdy Stray Dogs #3Image ComicsWritten by Tony FleecsArt by Trish Forstner Crimson Flower #4Dark Horse ComicsWritten by Matt KindtArt by Matt Lesniewski Post Americana #5Image ComicsStory and art by Steve Skroce Orphan and the Five Beasts #2Dark Horse ComicsBy James Stokoe SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. For up to 15% off, please visit https://earthechofoods.com/minutemedia and use code MINUTE15.Support the show: https://www.patreon.com/comicbookclubSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
57 minutes | a month ago
The Stack: Locke & Key/Sandman, Batman, And More
On this week's comic book review podcast: Locke & Key/Sandman: Hell & Gone #1 IDW Publishing/DC Comics By Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez Batman: The Detective #1 DC Comics Written by Tom Taylor Art by Andy Kubert Spider-Man: Spider’s Shadow #1 Marvel Written by Chip Zdarsky Art by Pasqual Ferry Home #1 Image Comics Written by Julio Anta Art by Anna Wieszcyk Wonder Woman #771 DC Comics Written by Becky Cloonan and Michael W. Conrad and Jordie Bellaire Art by Travis Moore and Paulina Ganucheau Darkhawk: Heart of the Hawk #1 Marvel Written by Danny Fingeroth, Dan Abnett, Kyle Higgins Art by Mike Manley, Andrea Di Vito, Juana Ramírez Jenny Zero #1 Dark Horse Comics Written by Dave Dwonch and Brockton McKinney Illustrated by Magenta King Rorschach #7 DC Comics Written by Tom King Art by Jorge Fornés Guardians of the Galaxy #15 Marvel Written by Al Ewing Art by Juan Frigeri Doctor Who: Missy #1 Titan Comics Written by Jody Houser Art by Roberta Ingranata American Vampire 1976 #7 DC Comics Written by Scott Snyder Art by Francesco Francavilla, Tula Lotay, Ricardo López Ortiz Jules Verne’s Lighthouse #1 Image Comics Written by David Hine and Brian Haberlin Art by Brian Haberlin The Joker #2 DC Comics Written by James Tynion IV and Sam Johns Art by Guillem March and Mirka Andolfo Home Sick Pilots #5 Image Comics Written by Dan Watters Art by Caspar Wijngaard Superman #30 DC Comics Written by Phillip Kennedy Johnson and Sean Lewis Art by Scott Godlewski and Sam Basri Birthright #48 Image Comics Written by Joshua Williamson Art by Andrei Bressan Sweet Tooth: The Return #6 DC Comics By Jeff Lemire The Scumbag #7 Image Comics Written by Rick Remender Art by Francesco Mobili Proctor Valley Road #2 BOOM! Studios Written by Alex Child and Grant Morrison Art by Naomi Franquiz Karmen #2 Image Comics By Guillem March Black Hammer Visions #3 Dark Horse Comics Written by Chip Zdarsky Art by Johnnie Christmas SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
41 minutes | a month ago
The Stack: Magic, Green Lantern And More
On this week’s comic book review podcast: Magic #1 BOOM! Studios Written by Jed MacKay Illustrated by Ig Guara Green Lantern #1 DC Comics Written by Geoffrey Thorne Art by Dexter Soy and Marco Santucci The Silver Coin #1 Image Comics Written by Chip Zdarsky Art by Michael Walsh Beasts of Burden: Occupied Territory #1 Dark Horse Comics Written by Evan Dorkin and Sarah Dyer Art by Benjamin Dewey King in Black #5 Marvel Written by Donny Cates Art by Ryan Stegman Venom #34 Marvel Written by Donny Cates Art by Ivan Coello Jonna and the Unpossible Monsters #2 Oni Press By Chris and Laura Samnee The Swamp Thing #2 DC Comics Written by Ram V Art by Mike Perkins Seven Secrets #7 BOOM! Studios Written by Tom Taylor Art by Daniele Di Nicuolo The Immortal Hulk #45 Marvel Written by Al Ewing Art by Joe Bennett Dead Dog’s Bite #2 Dark Horse Comics By Tyler Boss Batman #107 DC Comics Written by James Tynion IV Art by Jorge Jimenez and Ricardo Lopez Ortiz The Last Witch #4 BOOM! Box Written by Conor McCreery Illustrated by V.V. Glass America Chavez: Made In The USA #2 Marvel Written by Kalinda Vazquez Art by Carlos Gómez Fear Case #3 Dark Horse Comics Written by Matt Kindt Art by Tyler Jenkins Suicide Squad #2 DC Comics Written by Robbie Thompson Art by Eduardo Pansica Nocterra #2 Image Comics Written by Scott Snyder Art by Tony S. Daniel Geiger #1 Image Comics Written by Geoff Johns Art by Gary Frank Far Sector #11 DC Comics Written by N.K. Jemisin Art by Jamal Campbell Crime Syndicate #2 DC Comics Written by Andy Schmidt Art by Kieran McKeown and Bryan Hitch Bliss #6 Image Comics Written by Sean Lewis Art by Caitlin Yarsky SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. Full Episode Transcript ThanAlex: What is up, everybody? Welcome to The Stack. I’m Alex. Pete: I’m Pete. Alex: And on The Stack, we talk about a bunch of books that have come out this week. Tons of books out this week. Lots of number ones to get through. Pete: Tons. Tons. Alex: So let’s jump into it talking about Magic. Number one from BOOM! Studios written by Jed MacKay, art illustrated by Ig Guara. This is a bit of a reinvention of the classic universe people probably know from Magic: The Gathering and the card games. It takes a bunch of Planeswalkers, essentially magic folks and otherwise, has them attacked, spoiler over the course of the issue, and they end up having to band together. I got to tell you, I obsessively collected Magic: The Gathering cards as a kid, but I don’t think I ever paid attention to the mythology. So I didn’t know a lot going into this, but I still, as usual with the Jed MacKay book, enjoyed it quite a bit. What did you think, Pete? Pete: Yeah, I thought it was cool. It definitely seemed like I was like, “Oh, there’s a lot more going on than I know about.” But I wasn’t sure. But, man, loved the Medusa character for sure. Alex: Well, the thing that I really liked about this, and again, this is a spoiler for the issue, but it sets it up as this very typical fantasy world and then wrecks everything about halfway through the issue. And I thought that was- Pete: That was really hard. Alex: Yeah. I thought that was a really bold, fun move. It’s basically saying, “Oh, this fantasy world that maybe you know from card games, from books, I assume, and otherwise, don’t worry about that. We’re going into our own story. We’re doing our own thing.” So just kind of just follow it from there. Pete: Why did you say, “I assume.” Are you worried that people do magic for real. I’m thinking are you talking about them? Alex: No. I assume there are magic novels, but I don’t know. Pete: Oh, okay. I see what you’re saying. Okay. Okay. Alex: Yeah. I just don’t know enough about this world, but [crosstalk 00:02:02] Pete: I thought you were throwing shade to magicians for a second. Alex: Oh my God. I never would. They would come after me. Green Lantern, number one from DC Comics written by Geoffrey Thorne, art by Dexter Soy and Marco Santucci. In this, we are getting the Oa’s on the Green Lanterns, dealing with the new status quo of the universe. There is a new United Planets, as we’ve seen over the Superman books and otherwise, and that is affecting things here where they’re trying to decide, “Hey. If we’re the United Planets, if we have our own police force, what do we need the Green Lanterns for?” Of course, things go a little wrong over the course of this issue. Pete, now you’re not the biggest fan of Green Lantern other than a book we’re going to talk about it a little later at The Stack. But what did you think of this one? Pete: Well, first off, I want to just say a couple of nice things about the book. Really love the start, very crazy heavy action, kind of love this kind of who done it. And then, a spoiler, fun killing one of the floating large shirt tail peep know-it-alls. I’ve always wanted to do that. So I’m glad it finally happened in this book. Alex: Can I just interrupt? It’s weird to me that you don’t like the guardians given you love short people and they are very short. Pete: Yes I do. I love short people very much. Know-it-alls, I have a problem with. Also, the whole flowing large shirt thing bothers me. And I also hate how they look like you with the giant heads and always talking about how smart they are. Alex: What the fuck. How dare you? Also, thank you. I would love to look like [inaudible 00:03:46] Pete: I’m sure you would. Also, you would look amazing in a flowing gown. I mean, how are you going to have a Green Lantern number one and not have Far Sector in your shit? It’s the best Green Lantern of all time and you’re going to have a Green Lantern number one and- Alex: Here’s the thing, she is in, and this is a little bit of a spoiler from the title, a Far Sector. So there’s no reason for her to come back to the main planet for this. I will say I kept going back and forth in this issue where I thought based on the cover, “Okay. This is going to focus on the new teen Lantern character and what’s going on with her.” It doesn’t completely. She plays into it, but there’s so much going on here that there were things that I felt like, “All right. I don’t quite get this or why this is here or what’s going on.” But by the end, so much was set up that I felt like, “Okay. We have a solid. This is just throwing everything at the wall. Let’s see what sticks going into the second issue.” Pete: All right. Alex: Next up. Let’s talk about one of my favorite issues of the week, which I know Pete probably didn’t like, as well. We’re starting off so well here, the Silver Coin number one from Image Comics, written by Chip Zdarsky, art by Michael Walsh. It’s creepy, but it’s supposed to be creepy. I love this book. This is a new horror anthology from a bunch of folks like Chip Zdarsky and, I think, well, I should probably look up who else is on it. But there’s a bunch of folks that are contributing and they’re each, I think, going to write a different issue as it follows this evil cursed silver coin through different situations. Alex: Here, we get a rock and roll tale that ends in a very Tales from the Crypt style way. Love the art by Michael Walsh. Like you said, creepy and terrifying in exactly the right way and viewers just dread into it. Chip Zdarsky writes a good rock and roll tale. I enjoyed this quite a bit. I didn’t know what to expect going in, but I like this. I was always a sucker back in the day for Tales from the Crypt and shows like that, and this channels those very well. Pete: I agree. I definitely agree. It does have a fun Tales from the Crypt feel. It’s also going to be cool to see how this moves forward, but this first story is just kind of the classic band selling their soul to the devil to kind of make it big. But it’s got a very kind of interesting, it’s not that in all the right ways. And, I think, it’s the way they kind of leave it with the coin is very cool to see how this is going to keep moving forward. So as creeped out as I was and how much I knew Zalben enjoyed it, I still enjoyed this. And, I think, not only did I enjoy it, but I’m looking forward to see how the next one goes. Alex: They call them comics, but they’re not very funny. Pete: I don’t know what you’re doing, but please, stop. Alex: That was my Crypt Keeper. He was always doing like [crosstalk 00:06:48] Pete: Yeah. Yeah. That was pretty good. My bad. My bad. Alex: Thank you. Let’s talk about something I do think you liked because this is one of your favorite series out there. Beasts of Burden: Occupied Territory number one from Dark Horse Comics, written by Evan Dorkin and Sarah Dyer, art by Benjamin Dewey. If you haven’t followed the series, this is about a bunch of dogs and other animals that investigate supernatural mysteries. Here, we’re getting a tale from back in the day of a sheep dog back in World War II, I believe, who is looking into a simile supernatural mystery there. Man, I love this series. It’s so adorable and terrifying at the same time, the perfect mix. Pete: Okay. So a couple of things I want to ask. So here’s the hard part for me about Beasts of Burden, okay? Beast of Burden, love the story, love the idea but, originally, Jill Thompson on the art, who does these amazing water colors and you get that in kind of the fold Beast of Burdens created by Evan Dorkin and Jill Thompson. So then, I feel weird about supporting this book. Okay. It’s the same writer. It’s the same title. I should be supporting this book, but it’s not this amazing watercolor artist. I love Sarah’s art. I think this is very cool, different take. Alex: Benjamin Dewey did the art. Pete: Oh, I thought it said Sarah Dyer. Alex: I think Sarah Dyer wrote it with Evan Dorkin. Pete: Oh, my bad. My apologies. Alex: That’s all right. Oh, sorry. Go ahead. Pete: Regardless, art is clean. It’s a different take on it, all of the same characters we love. The story is great. But I kind of have this thing of like, “Should it be okay that I’m still reading this book? Or is it betraying Jill and her amazing work?” Talk me through this, Zalben. How should we do this? Alex: I mean, I sort of had the same thought process as you because Jill Thompson’s art is so gorgeous and so necessary to this book that I was thrown initially, when I saw Benjamin Dewey’s art. I do think Benjamin Dewey’s art is real good, as well. Pete: Oh, yeah. Alex: It’s super fun for a flashback tale. Yeah. I don’t know anything that might be on behind the scenes. It’s entirely possible given artistic schedules, maybe Jill Thompson is working ahead on something else that takes place in the present. And, excuse me, Benjamin Dewey is doing this thing because it takes place in the past. I don’t think Evan Dorkin was like, “Screw you, Jill Thompson. I’m doing my own comic at my own time.” or anything like that. So I don’t think it’s anything you need to feel bad about necessarily. But Jill Thompson is great, so it’s okay to miss her art at the same time. This is super fun. Alex: You don’t need to know anything about Beasts of Burden to jump into this. All you need to know is talking animals, supernatural mysteries. There’s a terrifying last page here that maybe out loud I’d go. So it’s good stuff. Next up, King in Black number five from Marvel, written by Donny Cates, art by Ryan Stegman. I thought this was worth talking about in a block with Venom number 34 from Marvel, also written by Donny Cates, art by Iban Coello because they’re both ends of the era leading directly into the next status quo for Venom and I believe Donny Cates leaving the title after this. King in Black wraps up. They made King in Black saga. Venom number 34 interweaves with it a little bit and sets up, spoiler, a new status quo for Flash Thompson. Pete, go ahead. Pete: What was the order reading this? Because I read King in Black first and then I was like, “Oh, I think I should have read Venom first.” I just want to [crosstalk 00:10:29] Alex: We are simpatico here. I had the same thought process where I got to about page five of King in Black and thought, “Wait, did I miss something? What’s going on here?” Pete: Yeah. Yeah. Alex: So I think Venom number 34 happens concurrently with King in Black. So you kind of can read them in any order, but probably you should read Venom number 34 first, then King in Black number five. Pete: Yeah. Because I did the opposite and I was like, “I shouldn’t have done that.” Because reading Venom, it’s kind of like, “Oh, I know what’s going to happen.” So read King in Black number five first, then read Venom. Okay. But let’s kind of go in that order, King in Black. First off, Donny Cates did this epic giant tail and I feel like was really impressive. All the stuff with the son was great. This was a giant kind of epic event, but also had a lot of small, amazing moments, a lot of great Flash Thompson moments, a lot of, “Holy shit, look at the size of that sword. I’ve never seen Silver Surfer with a giant sword before. This is fucking cool.” It just got even better. I really love this book. I really loved how it ended. It ended so well I wanted to go back and reread the whole thing again. Man, this was really a lot of fun and I was surprised at how much it covered and how much happened in it. Alex: I did appreciate that the ending here brought it back around to Eddie Brock and Venom. I thought that was a really good sense of focus under the event both in King in Black number five and Venom number 34. I think he gave a nice crest to the story he wants to tell, though there’s probably at least one more issue going on there before he really wrapped things up. Yeah. I also appreciate the fact I really identified with people throughout this event being like, “Ugh, is this a Venom thing? I hate symbions. This sucks.” Because that’s my general feeling going into it but, like you said, Donnie Cates and company made it feel very cool and big and fun throughout the event. So good times. Pete: Yeah. Also, it’s a great book to pick up if you’re like… I love comics where someone’s mostly free falling and just kind of thinking about things and then there’s flashbacks and stuff because they really [crosstalk 00:12:51] Alex: Are you a big Tom Petty fan? Then check out King in Black number five and Venom number 34. Jonna and the Unpossible Monsters number two from Oni Press by Chris and Laura Samnee. This is a almost mostly silent series at this point. It’s all ages as well about a girl looking for her sister who has gotten lost in the wild with the unpossible monsters in the title. Beautiful, beautiful book. I want more of it every time is my only thing. I kind of want to wait until there’s a trade. And then maybe hand it to my kids and say, “Hey, check this out.” But gorgeous. Pete: Yeah. I mean you and your kids this, and you’re a cool dad. You’re winning. This is a really amazing book. Art is, I mean, I say it all the time, but it’s worth it alone. It’s just so fantastic. Love the role building. Love the pace of this. Storytelling is unbelievable. Touching, badass, all the right things. Yeah. I can’t get enough. Yeah. It does read quick and I’m sure I’ll read it a lot better than the trade, but man, single issues have been a lot of fun. Alex: Let’s move on then to talk about the Swamp Thing number two from DC Comics, written by Ram V, art by Mike Perkins. We have a new Swamp Thing here who is investigating some weird doings out in the desert. We had the setup, but not exactly the explanation in the first issue. Here, the new Swamp Thing is exploring his powers and abilities a little bit more and tangling with somebody new and very, very bad. This book is gorgeous. Absolutely gorgeous. Mike Perkins’ art is incredible. And Ram V is really leaning into that. This, to me, feels like, I feel like you’re going to yell at me here, Pete, but this feels like on par with the first couple of issues of Batwoman by J.H. Williams III. It’s just breaking the layouts, playing with it, playing with the format feels really engaging and dark in a very similar way. Pete: Yeah. That’s hell of a praise. That’s really fantastic praise. Okay. I agree. It’s absolutely gorgeous. This is a lot of fun. Swamp Thing can be hit or miss for me. I enjoyed this issue a lot. I didn’t enjoy all the human stuff as much, but I really thought this was cool. And also, we got to talk about this. You guys don’t go to central park in the middle of the night because there’s full grown dudes being born out of trees and I’m glad Swamp Thing is finally talking about it. It’s fucked up and someone needs to look into this because it’s not right, man. It’s just really messed up. Alex: I’ll tell you what, I’ve been to The Ramble at night and I don’t think that’s what dudes are doing in trees. Pete: Well, that’s what’s happening in this comic book. Alex: Great book. Seven Secrets number seven from BOOM! Studios, written by Tom Taylor, art by Daniele Di Nicuolo. Pete: I mean, Seven Secrets number seven. I mean, that’s you. Alex: We still don’t know what the secrets are, but in this issue, our main character has wandered off the road into the land of fairy [crosstalk 00:16:08] Pete: We don’t know all the secrets. We know a couple. Alex: We don’t know anything. The secrets are still secret in this book. We know they’re important, but we don’t know what they are or anything about them, which is kind of wild. But we do know more about the main character, about where he comes from, another really good issue of this very fun title. I’m enjoying it. How about you, Pete? Pete: Yes. Absolutely. Art’s amazing. Paneling is fantastic. And if you’re going to do a glowing horse with a fish tail, this is just the peak that which all should be measured. This is very creative. Very cool. Interesting paneling, amazing storytelling. Yeah. This is just really kind of creepy and tripped out in all the right ways. It’s one of those things where you got to be like, “All right. I’m definitely going to find out the secret in this issue.” But they do such a good job of keeping you busy in all the right ways. I’m impressed by this book. Alex: By the way, the thing you mentioned, the horse with the tail of a fish, like they say in the book, it’s called a sulky, which is where the expression taking a sulky comes from. Pete: Oh my God. You’re such a dad joke. It’s ridiculous. Alex: The Immortal Hulk number 45 from Marvel, written by Al Ewing, art by Joe Bennett. In this issue, the Hulk is once again, dead, killed by the U-Foes, trapped in the land below grid, I always forget what the name is. But it’s Joe Fixit and the dumb, very flabby, kid Hawk being trapped by the leader while back on earth, things are going wild. I’ll tell you what, not only do I love this book, like we talk about every issue. Not only are all the designs absolutely terrifying and the amount that Al Ewing and Joe Bennett are building into the mythology, rather fascinating. But I don’t think any other book, since a Brian K. Vaughan book like Saga, consistently on the last page out loud makes me go, “Oh, here we go.” Every single time out of the gate. Pete: Yeah. I mean, I wish I could, after reading this book and all the crazy thing, is I wish I could have been on this pitch meeting for Marvel. Can you imagine how you’ll be going, “All right, listen. I’m going to take Hawk and I’m going to twist them and I’m going to turn them. And it’s going to be so gross and so fucked up, it’s probably going to turn a lot of people away. But if people check this out.” I mean, this keeps getting weirder and more fucked up, yet I’m having such a great time. I don’t know. I don’t know how to describe this to somebody. I don’t know what’s going on. I love the last page. I can not wait to see what’s happening. I don’t know. I’m so confused. I’m so grossed out. I love this book. I love the way it starts with the quote every time. And then it gets all sorts of fucked up. This is some groundbreaking, really cool shit right here. Alex: This is one of the most epic Hulk rods of all time. And it’s so exciting to be able to be reading that right now. I love it. Next up, let’s talk about one that I know you really liked a lot, Dead Dog’s Bite number two from Dark Horse Comics by Tyler Boss. Now this is one we missed talking about the first issue of this, which I really regret because Tyler Boss, great artist. We know him from 4 Kids Walk Into A Bank, which he did with Matthew Rosenberg and other things. Pete: The Burgee. Alex: This is about a woman who is investigating a disappearance. It’s weird. It’s funny. The panel layouts are great. I loved it. Love this issue. Pete: It’s really impressive. This is very, very creative in all the right ways. The Boss is killing it here. I mean, it kind of takes a little bit of like gives me that Hawkeye feel with a little bit of, God, what was it, King’s Vision with the different panelings and stuff here. But it’s got this great Indie kind of creative field, but just the paneling and the logos and the different stuff that they’re doing. I mean, I’m enthralled watching someone put money in a machine to try to get soda out. How can you do that? How is that enthralling? Yeah. I’m just really, really impressed with how creative and fantastic this book is. The scene where she goes and sits down with their mom at the fucking lunch table. Oh my God. This is crazy. I cannot wait to see how this kind of unfolds or gets explained. This is fantastic. I’m completely on board. Alex: Me, too. I want to go back and read the first issue at this point. I feel bad about missing it. This is great. Next up, Batman number 107 from DC Comics, written by James Tynion IV, art by Jorge Jimenez and Ricardo Lopez Ortiz. In this issue, we’re continuing to find out about how Batman is dealing with the new status quo of Gotham City. Scarecrow is on the move. Other forces are, as well. And the backup story is about Ghost-Maker. What’d you think, Pete? Pete: All right. I’ve never seen Scarecrow so badass portrayed in a Batman book in a while. This is very interesting and cool. Tynion’s doing unbelievable stuff. The art’s fantastic. The Harley Quinn stuff has been so enjoyable. I think just kind of sprinkled throughout this Batman run and I think in a great way, and then we kind of get this new lady in red with green plant dogs who loves roses, so very intriguing. Tynion has done introducing a lot of different new characters with Ghost-Maker and now this lady in red. This is interesting to see what’s going to be happening here for Batman. Yeah. I’ve been enjoying it. Alex: I’m going to throw a theory out at you. So there’s a character named Simon Saint, who we know is tied to the magistrate program that we saw in the future state books that essentially takes over Gotham and turns it into a police state, potentially in the future. Is Simon Saint Scarecrow? Because there’s a scene in the book where- Pete: Don’t you fucking spoil this for me, you son of a bitch. Alex: No. I have no idea. But there’s a scene in the book where Simon Saint is looking outside and Scarecrow almost seems to be talking into his mind standing on a gargoyle. We’ve previously seen Scarecrow in his office sitting there in the darkness and it almost seems like maybe there’s a split personality thing going on there. Pete: Oh, interesting. Alex: Just a thought. Whatever it is, love this book. I’m glad James Tynion has the, whatever you call it, handcuffs off or something like that and is able to just go wild in this book. It’s great. Next up, The Last Witch number four from Boom! Box, written by Conor McCreery, art illustrated by V.V. Glass. As a little bit of a note, we’re going to have Conor McCreery on our live show in a couple of weeks, so definitely check that out. I know you and Justin are going- Pete: For real? Alex: For real. I love giving you news on our podcast. Pete: Oh, man, that’s great. Dude, this book has been fantastic. I cannot wait to talk about this. Alex: Yes. We’ll talk about this one, then. We have our young witch is continuing to learn magic as she goes on a hunt for other witches. Here, we meet a refugee from Ferry who seems to be working with her. Maybe he’s not, necessarily. What’d you think about this issue? Pete: Yeah. Really great set up. I mean, first off, the girl’s grandmother’s just fantastic. What a badass. Alex: You love a grandma. Pete: There’s nothing better than a badass grandma, all right? I don’t know what it is, but it’s glorious. Yeah. So just interesting. Alex: That’s the thing that you love about grandmas, Pete. They keep getting older and so do you. Pete: Okay. Great. Stop being creepy. Yeah. Yeah. It seemed like a interesting kind of dude tagging along on this. Amazing kind of last page reveal on that. Yeah. Love the art. It makes it seem like it’s this kind of all ages, innocent thing, but there’s really a lot going on underneath the surface. So I’m very intrigued by this. Love all the main characters. It does such a great job of giving you story, giving you fun, giving you action. Yeah. I can’t wait to see how this all unfolds. Alex: I like the V.V. Glass art in particular on this book. It really feels like sort of a, Don Bluth isn’t exactly right, but it’s very classic animation style where you could almost feel like it’s moving between the panels. It’s very nice. Next up, America Chavez: Made in the USA number two from Marvel, written by Kalinda Vazquez, art by Carlos Gomez. In this, we’re continuing to find more about the origin of America Chavez and it is not what we thought it was. We’re definitely in retcon territory here, folks, where we find out there’s a family after she left the Utopian Parallel that adopted her and kept her for a while. We get to see how she started to develop her characters and there’s the hint that everything she knew was wrong. I’m really enjoying the series quite a bit. And I say this as somebody who likes the concept of America Chavez a little better than the solo series I’ve seen. I’ve always liked her in a team book, but haven’t quite understood the character out of here. This is so far and we’re in the early going, maybe my favorite American Chavez story so far. Pete: Oh, cool. Yeah. I agree. This is really great. I feel like the art’s fantastic. We’re getting just enough backstory where it doesn’t feel like too much. It’s done so well with the kind of back and forth. I also really liked her with Spider-Man. That was great. Yeah. It’s very interesting how we’re kind of slowly getting her backstory, I would say a lot more in this issue, which is good. I’m very interested to see how this goes. I like how she’s moving about the world solving kind of things, trying to figure stuff out. Sometimes when that’s done, it can seem forced but it feels really natural here. Yeah. I mean, going into old-timey arcade place at night, that’s just not a smart idea. Nothing’s good is going to happen there. Alex: Next up, Fear Case number three from Dark Horse Comics, written by Matt Kindt, art by Tyler Jenkins. Pete, you read this book and we missed it, right? What’d you think about this one? Pete: Yeah. I thought this was creepy in all the right ways. Very interestingly drawn. I love the kind of pencil kind of take on it. A lot of really powerful panels. And I just kind of finding things out with the characters here. Really love the last page, oh, shit kind of reveal. I think this is very interesting to see how each one of these fear cases kind of unfold. I think it’s really well done. The art’s fantastic. Alex: Next up, Suicide Squad number two from DC Comics, written by Robbie Thompson, art by Eduardo Pansica. This is continuing the assault on Arkham storyline, which finds the Suicide Squad trying to liberate Talon from Arkham Asylum just as seemingly Scarecrow is, not Scarecrow, excuse me, joker’s fear toxin is being released throughout it as we’ve seen in a couple of other comic books. As usual with Suicide Squad, a bunch of people die. It’s very dark. There’s complicated and morality here. I think this is a really good classic Suicide Squad story with some very nice superhero art by Eduardo Pansica. What do you think, Pete? Pete: Yeah. I agree. I think this is really cool. Also, I’m glad that in Suicide Squad, the comic, we’re getting more Peacemaker here getting us ready for the movie. Really an over the top kind of person. So I think having what’s his face playing it is going to be very- Alex: John Cena. Pete: Yeah. Alex: Can you smell what John Cena is cooking? Pete: No. No. No. You can’t see me, okay? But I also really love the pulp fiction heart attack moment. I thought that was fun. Alex: Good stuff. Next up, I don’t know anything about wrestling. Nocterra number two from Image Comics, written by Scott Snyder, art by Tony S. Daniel. Pete: Just for the audio podcast, I was waving my hand in front of my face like John Cena does. Alex: Okay. All right. Why does he do that? Pete: Because you can’t see him. You can’t see. Alex: Is that where the Drax [inaudible 00:29:26] came from? No, that’s Dave Bautista. Nevermind. Pete: Yeah. Alex: They’re different people? Pete: Yeah. Alex: Okay. Pete: See how it works is they’re different people. Alex: Okay. I don’t see people. Pete: Wow. Alex: I just don’t see people. I don’t see things. Okay. Nocterra number two written by Scott Snyder, who we had on the live show. He talked quite a bit about this as well, as many spoilers for Nocterra number three, which was very cool and very fun. So check out that live podcast if you hadn’t. In this book, we’re continuing our journey through a world where it’s always night and it’s filled with horrific creatures. Tony S. Daniel’s art is stunning here as usual. Just great action scenes. They’re fighting a terrifying villain named Blacktop Bill. This is great. This is like duel on sci-fi steroids is what I’d compare it to. You love this issue too, right? Pete: Oh my God. Yeah. And I love Blacktop Bill. Yeah. And also, really amazing art, bold choices. We talked about that Batman issue with him but two solid pages of all black, bold, bold choice. I was like, “Wait, did this not download right? What’s going on here?” Yeah. I think this is really getting crazier and crazier. Yeah. This is just really over the top fun. Yeah. It kind of reminds me of having metal in all the right ways where it’s like, “Oh yeah, this is just gonna be completely non-stop trucker fucking.” Yeah. This is fun. Alex: Well, I also like the fact that it’s not delaying or an issue too. We already know a ton of information and things about the world. Pete: But it’s so much to know. That’s the fun part. Alex: Well, exactly. But it’s the sort of story where it feels like, “Oh, okay. These are things that you kind of drag out and get to an issue 12.” But nope. We’re getting them in issue two. And that’s awesome. Next up. Let’s chat about Geiger number one from Image Comics, written by Geoff Johns, art by Gary Frank. Now, before we get into it, I do want to mention, this was initially at the top of our stack. We moved it down here because if you haven’t read it, there was a big interview with Ray Fisher from Justice League talking about his treatment from Geoff Johns. There were a lot of quotes in there. There were a lot of back and forth. We don’t know anything necessarily about it. Certainly, we want to listen to every single viewpoint and understand what went on. Alex: As the story continues, we will continue to discuss it and find out more about it. But as is, I felt like it was still potentially worth talking about a Image Comic book from Geoff Johns and Gary Frank that’s coming out. So we’ll see. Maybe we’ll scrub this from the podcast later, if more things come out. But as is, let’s talk about the comic as the comic and as it is. So that all said, this is a new issue from this team who’s worked on Doomsday Clock as well as a lot of other things. Here, we’re getting an original property set in a post-apocalyptic world where one man has been seemingly affected by the radiation and gained radiation powers. The world, specifically, Las Vegas here has been split into different ruling factions as the outside of the world is not safe. What’d you think about this book, Pete? Pete: Yeah. I don’t know about all that shit. This is kind of news to me. Alex: Again, I love giving you news right on the podcast. Pete: Yeah. So, hopefully, we’re not enjoying something that’s whatever. I don’t know what to say, but just looking at this comic as a comic and hopefully… All right. My point is that this is very cool idea. I’ve very much enjoyed the action. I thought the glowing man was really badass. I’m very interested to see how this kind of all enfolds. This two-headed dog is my favorite. This is really very, very cool. You got the broady kind of villain. So if everything’s okay, I’ll be interested to see how this all unfolds. Alex: Yeah. Sorry I threw you there, Pete. I can see you’re really struggling with it and that is totally fair. I think the thing that I would say about this is Gary Frank’s art is meticulous as always as well as of layouts. I do think a lot of the problems that we had with Doomsday Clock, which got very in its head about the whole Watchmen of it all. There’s a lot of themes and ideas and images that I think do get hit on and in a certain way, and not a necessarily bad way recycled here, but it feels much more wide open. It feels a little looser, both in terms of the storytelling and the plotting. And it’ll be interesting to see, potentially, if everything gets clear, what this team does away from DC Comics. This is something that we talked with Scott a bit about as he is on his Rumspringa from DC Comics right now, about how you don’t have the corporate responsibility. You don’t have the things that you need to write because you’re serving a greater master here. Alex: So again, we’ll see what happens. If anybody has any feedback or questions about any of this, we, of course, are happy to chat either at email@example.com at Comic Book Live on Twitter or in our page here on Slack. We’d love to get your feedback on whether we should be covering this comic or not. But again, we like to cover number ones. We like to talk about this. This is a big superstar team, so it was worth throwing in there. Maybe not as the first comic book in The Stack. Next up, let’s move to happier climbs with Far Sector number 11 from DC Comics, written by N.K. Jemisin, art by Jamal Campbell. Another fantastic issue of this book that just gets bigger and bigger every issue out of the gate. Pete, this is the Green Lantern you like. Go ahead. Pete: I mean, it sets the bar higher and higher with each issue and then continues to meet that bar and go above it. I mean, it’s just fantastic. 20% ring to save 20 billion. I mean, come on. This is exciting stuff. Everything has been unfolding in such a cool way. The art alone is worth the pickup. It is gorgeous in all the right ways. Characters designs are new and fresh, breaking this mold of stereotypical people and what they should look like. I love every single minute of it. Alex: Well, I say this every issue, but I don’t think you can undervalue the fact that Jamal Campbell has drawn every issue of Far Sector, as well as N.K. Jemisin writing it, and they make a great team together. I know it’s not always possible with the monthly schedule of comic books, but I love that they have been able to continue together and kept this world consistent and build on it and make it look weirder and more interesting every issue out of the gate. It’s great. This book is great. And I’m really curious to see if it ends with issue 12. Is it going to continue? What’s going to happen? Because it’s such a fun interesting premise that they’ve set up here. One little side note- Pete: Am I to go and take over Green Lantern? We don’t need Green Lantern. We got Far Sector. Alex: There you go. One little side note I’ll mention, I checked out, because I love this book so much, I read N.K. Jemisin’s The City We Became which is a novel. It’s awesome. I know everybody probably already noticed this, but just in case you haven’t checked it out yet, it is, I don’t even kind of want to spoil it, but it’s about people who become living cities and it’s not the same themes. But you can kind of get a sense of similar things that she’s trying out here in Far Sector. Particularly as a new Yorker, I love it because it’s based in New York. It’s so of New York. Such an awesome book. Alex: Again, I’m sure a lot of people have read it who are listening to this, but if you’ve only checked out our comics, definitely read that, as well. It’s well worth it. Next up, Crime Syndicate number two from DC Comics, written by Andy Schmidt, art by Keiran McKeown and Bryan Hitch. I think we were a little split on the first issue of this because it takes a more satirical look at the Crime Syndicate, at the evil Justice League. Here, we get them fighting Starro and we also get a backstory for Owlman. What’d you think about this one, Pete? Pete: It’s interesting. It’s cool. I mean, the Flash, shirtless Flash, with the crazy chain pants was hysterical. So fun. Alex: I like this a little better. I felt the humor was a little strained in the first issue, but it hits more of its rhythm in this one. I like the backup story here. Bryan Hitch’s art is always pretty good. So I was ready to jump ship after this issue, but I think I’m more than willing to check out a third issue after this one. Pete: Cool. Alex: Next up, Bliss number six from Image Comics, written by Sean Lewis, art by Caitlin Yarsky. We are, I think, getting towards the end game here as we finally find out a big secret from the past of the father and son who were trying to find each other in this world where gods run a muck. There’s some great bits here with one god that the son is palling around with, this turtle god who hangs his mouth open the entire time. There’s some very dark and emotional stuff that happens as well. What did you think, Pete? Pete: Yeah. This is just really unbelievable. Fantastic storytelling. This has been a real roller coaster of rooting for them or not rooting for them. It seems like really evil, but then the other side to him. We’ve got the AOC on the cover with the old balance of power there, the scales. Yeah. I really think this is a very interesting, cool world and it’s really done very well. The art and the characters are weird in all the right ways. Yeah. We find out a lot about the family in this. This is great. This really continues to be a book that you’re like, “What is this going to be?” every time you pick it up and it doesn’t disappoint. Alex: Totally agree. And that’s it from The Stack. If you’d like to support us patrion.com/comicbookclub. Also, we do a live show every Tuesday night at 7:00 PM to Crowdcast and YouTube. Come hang out. We would love to chat with you about comic books. iTunes, Android, Spotify, Stitcher, or the app of your choice to subscribe, listen, and follow the show. At Comic Book Live on Twitter, comicbookclublive.com for this podcast and many more. Until next time, we’ll see you at the virtual comic book shop. The post The Stack: Magic, Green Lantern And More appeared first on Comic Book Club.
30 minutes | 2 months ago
The Stack: Beta Ray Bill, Shadecraft And More
On this week’s comic book review podcast, we’ve got: Beta Ray Bill #1 Marvel Written and art by Daniel Warren Johnson Shadecraft #1 Image Comics Written by Joe Henderson Art by Lee Garbett The Other History of the DC Universe #3 DC Comics Written by John Ridley Art by Giuseppe Camuncoli Silk #1 Marvel Written by Maurene Goo Art by Takeshi Miyazawa Crossover #5 Image Comics Written by Donny Cates Art by Geoff Shaw Strange Adventures #9 DC Comics Written by Tom King Art by Mitch Gerards and Evan Shaner Avengers: Curse of the Man-Thing #1 Marvel Written by Steve Orlando Art by Francesco Mobili The Department of Truth #7 Image Comics Written by James Tynion IV Art by Tyler Boss The Flash #768 DC Comics Written by Jeremy Adams Art by Brandon Peterson, Marco Santucci, David Lafuente Ghost Rider: King in Black #1 Marvel Written by Ed Brisson Art by Juan Frigeri Two Moons #2 Image Comics Written by John Arcudi Art by Valerio Giangiordano Future State: Superman vs Imperious Lex #3 DC Comics Written by Mark Russell Art by Steve Pugh Decorum #7 Image Comics Written by Jonathan Hickman Art by Mike Huddleston Batman/Catwoman #4 DC Comics Written by Tom King Art by Clay Mann SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. Full Episode Transcript: Alex: What is up y’all? Welcome to The Stack. I’m Alex. Pete: I’m Pete. Alex: And on The Stack we talk about a bunch of books that have come out this week. Kicking it off with one I know that Pete is very excited about. Beta Ray Bill number one from Marvel comics, written and art by Daniel Warren Johnson. Now, D.W.J., As I like to call him, he is the creator of Murder Falcon, which is one of your favorite books ever. Pete: Yeah. Alex: I don’t know how you feel about Beta Ray Bill though. So how’d you feel about this book? Pete: Well, yeah. I’m not the hugest Beta Ray Bill fan, but this was a lot of fun. This was really awesome. Art style [google 00:00:54] gave Beta Ray Bill a grittiness that was nice. Yeah, I very much enjoyed this. This was sad. This was not just badass Beta Ray Bill. Alex: You okay? Did you die there for a second? Pete: Yeah. There’s some real pain going on. And yeah. Also, Fin Fang Foom, one of my huge favorites in this as well. So, this was a real treat, this book. And the back matter is magical. Alex: This very briefly and tangentially ties into the King in Black storyline, which has symbiotes attacking the Marvel universe here. They attack Asgard, Beta Ray Bill fights them off, kind of. And sparks up, or re-sparks up a little bit of a romance with Lady Sif. But I agree with you, as he did in Murder Falcon, he brings big action with big monsters, but also a deep well of emotion here. It’s very sad for Beta Ray Bill. Art is great, the writing is great, the emotion is great. I’m all in on this book. I am a sucker for Beta Ray Bill, and I think D.W.J. does right by him. So, I’m very excited to see this going forward. And like you said, there’s a great interview that he does with Walter Simonson in the back of the book, which is super cool as well. Pete: Yeah. It’s nice to see him geek out about this and hear about New York in the seventies and the different kinds of people working on stuff. It was a pretty awesome interview that they put in the back and yeah. I mean, the art, the storytelling is really unbelievable, but Beta Ray Bill… Kind of a cursed character and they’re really tugging on that and playing with that. And he’s not cool with Thor. It’s not a fun relationship right now. So I’m glad they’re getting to air that out a little bit. I’m very interested to see how that all unfolds. Alex: I agree. Next up, Shadecraft number one from Image comics written by Joe Henderson, art by Lee Garbett. In this new comic book, a girl finds out that shadows aren’t quite what they’re cracked up to be. It ties into an emotional thing from her past that you find out towards the end of the issue. I really liked the setup. I thought this was a good, fun horror book. The art from Lee Garbett was particularly good. The shadow creatures were interesting. I’m curious to see where this goes going forward, because it feels like it really gets to the setup by the end. But I’m in, what was your take Pete? Pete: Yeah, I agree. I think the art and the storytelling is fantastic. Setting this up in a very interesting way. I really love the last page reveal twist. Very cool. And yeah, as this kid, I was scared shitless of… if you saw a shadow move by the… or a branch at the window or something. This really plays on that fear of moving shadows and how it’s hard, especially at night, to get away from shadows. I mean, that’s just… That’s tough. Alex: I got to be honest, Pete, it sounds like that wasn’t just a problem when you were a kid. Pete: I don’t think we have time to get into this, but- Alex: No, Pete- Pete: It’s a great book. Alex: That’s been the long game on this podcast this whole time, is to finally get you to confront this fear that you have. Shadecraft number one, check it out. Next up, The Other History of the DC universe number three from DC comics. Written by John Ridley, art by Giuseppe Camuncoli. The first two issues have dealt with the black American experience in the background of the DC universe. Here, we’re dealing with the Asian American experience through the lens of Katana and her whole history. What did you think about this one, Pete? Pete: This is very powerful, really amazing. I was very moved by it. I thought it was really done well. The storytelling is so powerful. The art… Yeah, just kind of the balance of these stanzas, these powerful stanzas, that really hit you versus the comic book art. Really creates this moving, powerful stuff that DC is doing with these books. I’ve been really enjoying this series. The Other History of the DC universe stuff has just been really impressive. Alex: Giuseppe Camuncoli’s layouts in particular, are really excellent. John Ridley’s writing is great. It’s super, unfortunately, timely, given that we are discussing the Asian American experience and violence towards it, in particular, right now. But it’s a necessary- Pete: Stop Asian hate. Alex: Yeah, it’s a necessary read, like the other two issues of this book, but also very entertaining and weird in a certain way. I don’t know much about Katana’s history, necessarily. There are little bits here and there. I was like, “Oh yeah, I guess I do that kind of thing”. But what John Ridley is doing here is, like with X-Men: Grand Design, I think was the name of the book, he’s taking the entire history of the character and trying to make narrative sense out of it. Which is nearly impossible, but he does it here in a very emotional way. And that’s nice to see. Pete: Yeah, Katana is one of my favorite characters. Always a big fan of Katana. So it was nice to see, all the different stories paid homage to, with this interesting narrative running throughout all of it. It was really well done. Alex: Moving from one timely book to another, in a very different way. Silk number one from Marvel, written by Maureen Goo, art by Takeshi Miyazawa. This is a all-Asian team working on a Korean American superhero, which is something that I don’t think we’ve seen before for Silk, necessarily. I could be wrong. Nobody jump into my mentions if I got that incorrect. But at the very least, it’s great to see that, as Silk is in a new status quo here. Working for J. Jonah Jameson, at whatever his latest rag is. But I thought this was really fun. I don’t have too much affection, necessarily, for Silk as a character. I’m fine with her. She’s been fun before. There’s been some good storylines, but I thought this was a really nice, very clear setup with a good supporting cast. And I’m interested to see where it goes in issue two. Pete: I completely agree. I feel like this is a great use of Silk, the character. I feel like they really do a great job of giving her a lot of fun action splash pages, as well as setting up a very cool, interesting story arc. And the fashion stuff is fun and pulled off well, and what’s not to like about sitting down to have tea with a giant cat like creature? I think this is a very interesting, cool book, and I’m excited to see where it goes Alex: Next up: Crossover number five from image comics written by Donny Cates, art by Geoff Shaw. In this book, we’re getting towards the end of the first arc here, as Madman and Power… house. I don’t remember the name of the other team. Basically. It’s Donny Cates taking all of his books, mashing them up together with tangentially other books. They’re all heading towards this big dome where the crossover event has happened and it’s all coming down. What did you think about this issue? Pete: Well, first off you got- bless you. You got Madman with a giant sword. So what’s not to love. This is- Alex: A sword. Pete: It’s a lot of action, it’s a lot of over-the-top stuff, but also, a lot of intense shit goes on here. Oh man, I don’t want to spoil anything, but man, it gets, it gets real dark, but- Alex: I want to hear it. Spoiler warning. What was the thing that, you thought in particular, got really dark? Pete: Where the guy shot the girl? Alex: Oh, that hasn’t happened yet. That’s the cliff hanger at the end of the book. He hasn’t necessarily shot her. Pete: Well… He’s crying. It says, “I can”. And it looks like it’s seconds before the bullet is released out of the chamber. Alex: Yeah. Well, we’ll see what happens next issue, I guess. Pete: Oh my God. Alex: I guess we’ll see what happens. One thing that I really… that I thought was super fun in the book, is Donny has come up with this concept, where all of these different superheroes have been cut apart and mashed back together by scientists on Earth, quote-unquote. And they’re called amalgams, which is very funny to anybody who knows about the Amalgam universe. He’s having a blast here and it’s so creative and so fun. There’s a great splash page laid out that mashes up panels from God Country and Madman comics. Very neat. I liked it quite a bit. Alex: Next up, Strange Adventures number nine, from DC comics written by Tom King, art by Mitch Gerads and Evan Shaner. Here, a report has come out about Adam Strange from the Justice League. Not exactly indicating that he is a villain, but certainly not precluding that fact. That’s what we’re dealing with here. As the Pykkt invasion of Earth continues and lots of questions swirl in the background. I’ll tell you what, I think we talked about this with an earlier issue. It’s interesting this is coming out now, but it seemed very clear to me that, at least tangentially, King is writing about the Mueller report in this issue. Did you get that sense as well? Pete: I have no idea what’s going on and when it comes to King, ever. But it was crazy to see Superman and Batman in this issue. Alex: So, this report comes out and it’s the vague sort of indictment that Mueller did in the heavily anticipated Mueller report. Where there were a lot of crimes mentioned, but ultimately there said, “Well, it’s up to the people who prosecute to do it”. Right. And that’s exactly what happens with Adam Strange here. It’s very interesting, particularly given now we’re past the Trump presidency, though, obviously not the aftereffects of it. To see him take Adam Strange and put him in that place. To the point… there’s a panel late in the issue where they zoom in on Adam Strange’s face on a TV screen and it looks almost exactly like Trump on the television. So that was kind of fascinating to me. I think it’s sort of part of the publishing schedule that has gotten pushed back so far. But I am curious to see where this hits on, given that it is skirting those ideas. You’re looking at me like I’m a crazy person right now. Pete: I am looking at you like a crazy person, because we’re on issue number 9 of 12 and we still don’t know what the fuck is going on. Alex: Well- Pete: Nine issues deep. Alex: I mean, that’s how a mystery works Pete. Pete: Yeah, but let’s talk- Alex: Unless it’s Columbo, in which case they reveal it first and then he figures out how it happens. Pete: Okay. But, regardless, just thinking about how great of a writer you have to be that, for nine issues of a story, you have no fucking idea what’s going on. That is very impressive. Alex: Well, I just got one more question for you, Pete. Pete: Oh my God. Alex: All right. Next up, Avengers: Curse of the Man-Thing number one from Marvel. Written by Steve Orlando, art by Francesco Mobili. In this, we are getting a new threat to Man-Thing who, spoiler, beats Man-Thing right at the beginning and the Avengers have to take him down. This is one of these new formats, limited series that Marvel has been doing, where a new hero is going to interact with Man-Thing or this story in a different way. Here we get the Avengers. Next issue is going to be Spiderman, presumably the X-Men after that and other things. But this is also Steve Orlando moving over to the Marvel universe. What was your take Pete? Pete: Well, Orlando is always a fun, crazy creative person. So this book, I thought did a great job of representing himself here. Man-Thing, getting ripped apart here was so over-the-top and very interesting. Especially because you realize, these chapter things are like parts of his skin that maybe was ripped off. But I think this is a very interesting, unique kind of cool event that’s happening and I’m digging it. Alex: I like it too. I thought it was super fun. And it’s Orlando doing his regular weird ideas, but infusing them into the Marvel universe. He brings in some fun stuff from Jonathan Hickman’s run on X-Men and mixes it in here in a fun way. This is good. I like this. Pete: I agree. Alex: And he seems to be redefining what Man-Thing is in the Marvel universe. That should be interesting to see going forward. Next up, The Department of Truth number seven from Image comics, written by James Tynion IV, art by Tyler Boss. In this- Pete: You think we should even talk about this, because Justin’s not here? You know what I mean, maybe we should- Alex: Justin does love this book. Pete: Maybe we should skip it. Alex: So we’re getting another flashback this issue as Lee Harvey Oswald continues to find out more about the Department of Truth. Here, we find out about the foil guy, the doc who wears foil on his head. We find out about the men and black and the little gray men and their play into the history of the secret history of America. As usual, great stuff in this book. I am loving it. Pete- Pete: Yeah, I agree. Alex: You took off your headphones, what is going on right now? Pete: Hey man, sometimes you wear headphones for too long. It can start to get like… Feel like you’re [crosstalk 00:14:37] Alex: Are you listening to me through your forehead. What is going on here? Pete: Dude, it’s a podcast. Take it easy, all right. I can hear you just fine. Alex: All right. Pete: All right. So I really am like… This is such a kind of thing we’ve heard about the men in black, we’re familiar with this kind of tinfoil thing, but this is done in a way that makes sense. I really appreciate all the details and all this stuff going on in this book. I think it’s done in such a kind of way with the stylized flashbacks, with the shading and the info. I think this is really a great mix of genres and telling the story. I’m continued to be impressed with this. It’s too bad Justin’s not here to get his thoughts on it. I’m having a blast and I might just start wearing a tinfoil hat. Alex: Hey, speaking of which, this is more of a note for Pete’s forehead than his ears. And Pete’s forehead, you’re looking great. Don’t tell his ears, okay? Because they’re looking a little busted, to be honest. Pete: Don’t you say shit about my ears. Alex: You couldn’t hear that. That was through your forehead man. All right. Moving on to the Flash 768 from DC comics. Written by Jeremy Adams, art by Brandon Peterson- Pete: Here we go. Alex: Marco Santucci… What does that mean, “Here we go”? Pete: Here we go. The fucking Flash. Alex: Well… So we’ve been talking about these books that have come out of DC Future State. A lot of the teams from Future State were giving previews of what’s going on in their main books of their return. So I think it has been interesting to talk about them as they have come back. This one is weird. Pete: Yeah. Yeah. We’re still talking about it. Flash and that tricky Speed Force, man. [crosstalk 00:16:28] Sometimes you run so fast, you run out of your clothes and then that’s a whole thing and- Alex: It happens. So here’s the deal with this book. So the thing that confused me for the first half of this book, is we have the setup of Barry Allen is giving up being the Flash. So we could work with the new multi-verse people and explore what’s going on with there, after the fallout from Dark Nights: Death Metal. All makes sense. Now, Wally West is the new Flash, he’s been promoted. The first half of this book, reverses on that in a very weird way, where Wally says, “Nope, actually… Forget about that tease. I don’t want to be the Flash. Barry Allen. You’re the Flash”. Barry’s like, “Sounds good. Let’s have a race. I’ll take all of your speed”. Alex: So that’s fine, but very confusing, given everything that’s happened previously. It isn’t until the second half of the book that we get to the real concept. That’s where things, in my mind, start to get really fun, where Wally West is lost in time. We basically get this quantum leap thing, where he’s jumping to major points in the Speed Force, he’s inside of their bodies. Pete: How are they- Alex: And Barry Allen is the Iggy. Is it Iggy from Quantum Leap? Pete? Pete: I don’t know. Alex: Ziggy. Ziggy. The Ziggy, Dan Hedaya. Who’s like, “Oh man, you’ve got to turn back, Wally. What are you doing? Ah, if you change this, that’ll change everything”. And then Wally says, “Oh boy”. Pete: That show came out in the fifties, I think, bro. Alex: It’s a great show, with a perfect finale, and you watch your mouth Pete. Pete: I’ll have to take a time machine back. It was just insane to me that these, all these fucking Flashes and there’s the Speed Force, but nobody can figure it out. And it’s so tricky yet. They’re running the whole time and you got a fucking treadmill, but… I don’t know, man. Alex: I enjoyed the second half of the issue because I am a sucker for Quantum Leap and I want to see more of that. So we’ll see how it goes. Next up, Ghost Rider: King in Black number one, from Marvel. Written by Ed Brisson, art by Juan Frigeri. This is also a very weird, interesting issue because, technically, it’s a King in Black tie-in, but really it’s tying up everything that’s been happening in Ghost Rider for the past couple of years and wrapping a bow on that. It’s much more about that to the point that, the Ghost Rider characters, at certain points, are standing in the middle of symbiote-stricken Manhattan being like, “Eh, let’s figure out this other stuff instead”. Pete: Yeah. There’s still a crazy amount of standing around talking for all the demons that are trashing the place. Alex: But still, pretty fun, I thought. What did you think about this one, Pete? Pete: Yeah, it was fun. I mean, they’re having fun discussions about their names. Mephisto blows, but still, some fun stuff in there with that. Yeah. It was nice to see Ghost Rider up in this… the Penance Stare, with the old damnation stare. That was cool. Fun little twist on trusting, not trusting the devil. It’s just fun. It’s a good book. You know what you’re going to get into with it. And it’s over-the-top in all the right ways. Alex: Next up, Two Moons number two from Image comics written by John Arcudi, art by Valerio Giangiordino. This book, we love the first issue of. I might be getting this wrong, but I believe it’s basically taking indigenous myths and mixing them with the Civil War for a very horrific, supernatural tale. How do you think the second issue held up to the first one? Pete: It’s really tripped out in all the right ways. It’s very magical. Spooky, cool. The Native American stuff is amazing. It’s very, very well done. Some interesting storytelling stuff. And I really loved where it ended too. Alex: This is a absolutely gorgeous book. Absolutely gorgeous. I like the writing, but really, the art in particular and the designs of the… I don’t even want to call them monsters. They’re more mythical creatures, is stunning throughout. Highly recommend picking this up. This is one that, it feels a little bit like, I don’t know. It’s very Vertigo to me, I think. And it’s the sort of thing that I think would be good to jump in on in the early issues to really get a sense of it because it’s that good. Alex: Next up, Future State: Superman VS. Imperious Lex, number three from DC comics written by Mark Russell, art by Steve Pugh, not Florence Pugh, like I initially thought. It’s Steve Pugh. This is the very last, I believe, of the Future State books. Probably cutting in a little late here, but so fun and such a good story. Love Mark Russell. This is a future Superman, as you could tell, from the title. Battling Lex, who has taken over a planet, as usual. It’s very satirical as you’d expect from this team. If you read the first two issues, you know exactly what to expect here, but I loved it. This is one of my favorite Future State books. I’m so glad they got to finish it off, even if it was a late. Pete, you’re nodding your head. What’s going on? Pete: I mean, this is just like, what if Lex Luther was stuck in the Wall-E movie? It’s a little too crazy for me, but I appreciate what they’re doing. Alex: It’s so funny. The characters are so funny. Louis Lane is so funny. Lex is so funny. It’s great. He just sets up these Rube Goldberg machines of ridiculous satire and pays them off in such a fun way. I like it quite a bit. Next up, Decorum number seven, from Image comics. Written by Jonathan Hickman and art by Mike Huddleston. Alex: This is really bringing together everything that’s been going out in the book in a big way that these weird crystalline creatures that showed up that seemed, at first, unconnected from the Assassin’s Academy that was going on in the other side of the book. Last issue, that finally came together, where the crystalline creatures gave a mission to the assassins to find this egg that was being hidden, which I believe was the third element, that was just thrown in there. Here, our main character stumbles on that egg, opens up the egg, finds a hot dude with no head. Very funny. This is great. I can’t believe how well this has come together. And Mike Huddleston’s art is stunning across the board. The way that he’s bringing all of these different art styles together, often on the same page, is ridiculously impressive. Pete: I agree with you, Alex. It’s worth it alone for the art. It’s really unbelievable. Sometimes… Just a dude with part of your face. But I think this is really tripped out, weird, in all the right ways. And it’s really telling a very interesting story, but the real hero here is the artist. The pages and everything are just amaze balls. Alex: And in classic Pete fashion, I got to bring up a book that we didn’t throw into the stack, because I didn’t want to get into a fight about it. But, X-Men number 19. Also by Jonathan Hickman, it is a master work. It is so good. It’s one of the best issues of the series ever, it’s amazing. You get the X-Men trapped in this vault, traveling through time. This incredible X-23 Laura story throughout. So good. Read it. Just pick it up right now. Don’t listen to whatever Pete has to say. And moving on to our last book- Pete: Wait, that’s so unfair that you didn’t even put it out there. Like it was something we could read- Alex: Here’s the thing, Pete. [crosstalk 00:24:25] I’ve got to be honest. I’ll pull back the curtain here. I got to be honest. I read the book because I was like, “Ah, I want to read it anyway because I liked the X-Men books, but I’m not going to send it out to Pete because Pete’s just going to be like, ‘Fuck X-Men. These islands are having sex. Stupid. What’s going on? I don’t like it'”. That I would just set it out. It would just be a big argument. So I was like, “I won’t send it out”, but then I read it. I was like, “This is legitimately one of the best issues of the series ever. Would Pete like this, because it’s about Laura X-23, who he loves”. And I was like, “I don’t know. I got to weigh that against Pete just yelling because it’s X-Men. What do we do here?” Pete: Why wouldn’t you trust me to appreciate a good X-23 story? Alex: Trust you? I’ve known you for 15 years, Pete. Pete: Oh my God. You’re the worst. You didn’t believe in it enough to put it out there for us to review. You were like [crosstalk 00:25:20] yeah, you didn’t believe in it. So it’s hard to take your recommendation after you didn’t believe in something enough to send it to me and just- Alex: I’ll tell you what. I will send it to you. You could read it, and then you can tell me off-air what’s going on. Pete: Okay, great. That’ll be great for everybody. Alex: I think so. Tell you what, check out our podcast off-air, where you visit me and Pete in person and ask us comic book recommendations. Last but not least, Batman/Catwoman number four from DC comics. Written by Tom King, art by Clay Mann. Pete, sounds like you’re loving this. You got to explain to me what’s going on. I feel like the Pete of this particular book, because I’m lost. Pete: Okay. First off, love the bat and cat double page, spread title page, mansion, advent calendar thing, that just sets up the mood for this creepy, fun world that we’re in. And then starting off with Batwoman beating up Penguin and wanting to know where mom and the Joker are. What an interesting start, just grabs the reader all the right ways. But bat and cat are fighting. You know, cat’s been doing some things without bat’s knowledge, she knew he was going to get mad, but she didn’t tell him until last minute. Now bat’s mad. So how are we going to move forward? I also really loved how the Penguin is drawn like Danny DeVito. That makes me very happy. What do you want to know? I think it’s great. Alex: Listening to you talk about it is my experience reading it, because I just cannot keep track of the timelines. Pete: There’s like three different timelines happening at once. Alex: No, and I know that. You’ve got the Mask of the Phantasm timeline. You’ve got the very early bad cat stuff going on. Pete: Right. Alex: And then you’ve got the future cat stuff where she’s killed the Joker and is dealing with it, with Penguin. And there was their kid, who was the new Batman. So I get all that. Pete: Batwoman. Alex: There’s the transitions between them that just throw me, and I’m sure there’s a point to it. Maybe they’re doing something about memory and how memories are very fluid and go from one time period to another- Pete: Yeah, because it’s also like cat and bat always have this thing about a disagreement about when they first met. Alex: Yes. So I get all that, but you look at a book like Strange Adventures, also from Tom King, where you have- Pete: Also confusing. Alex: But, even if it jumps between timelines of the same page, you’ve got Evan “Doc” Shaner and Mitch Gerads. So there’s a delineation between the timelines. So you’re able to follow, okay. Here’s where we are at any given point. It is disorienting for me to read this book, and I still, and I know I’m harping on this. I don’t know what the Phantasm has to do with this. Pete: That’s going to be the fun, but also it is going to make sense. And I think it’s going to be one of those things where it will be very interesting to get the trade, because there could be… it could make that much more sense, reading it all together. Alex: Absolutely. And I’m more than willing to follow it until the end. It’s just- Pete: And you should follow it, because it’s amazing art and writing and like such a fun, interesting story with these two characters we know and we’ve heard stories… for all time about them. Alex: I trust these creators. So I’m going to follow it until the end. I’m just having a hard time comprehending it as of now, that’s what I’m saying. Alex: And that’s it for The Stack. If you’d like to support our podcast and other podcasts we do, patrion.com/comic book club. Also, we do a live show every Tuesday night to Crowdcast at YouTube. Pete: Sure do. Alex: Love to chat with you about comic books. iTunes, Android, Spotify, Stitcher, or the app of your choice to subscribe and listen to the show. Comic book club live.com for this podcast and more. Until next time, we’ll see you at the virtual comic book shop. But I’m saying that just to Pete’s forehead, not to his ears. The post The Stack: Beta Ray Bill, Shadecraft And More appeared first on Comic Book Club.
34 minutes | 2 months ago
The Stack: Alien, Harley Quinn And More
On this week’s Stack podcast: Alien #1 Marvel Written by Phillip Kennedy Johnson Art by Salvador Larroca Harley Quinn #1 DC Comics Written by Stephanie Phillips Art by Riley Rossmo Firefly: Brand New ‘Verse #1 BOOM! Studios Written by Josh Lee Gordon Art by Fabiana Mascolo Teen Titans Academy #1 DC Comics Written by Tim Sheridan Art by Rafa Sandoval Once & Future #17 BOOM! Studios Written by Kieron Gillen Art by Dan Mora Action Comics #1029 DC Comics Written by Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Becky Cloonan and Michael W. Conrad Art by Phil Hester, Michael Avon Oeming HAHA #3 Image Comics Written by W. Maxwell Prince Art and Cover by Roger Langridge Batman/Superman #16 DC Comics Written by Gene Luen Yang Art by Ivan Reis Crimson Flower #3 Dark Horse Comics Written by Matt Kindt Art by Matt Lesniewski Detective Comics #1034 DC Comics Written by Mariko Tamaki, Joshua Williamson Art by Dan Mora, Gleb Melnikov The Scumbag #6 Image Comics Written by Rick Remender Art by Bengal Barbalien: Red Planet #5 Dark Horse Comics Script by Tate Brombal Story by Jeff Lemire and Tate Brombal Art by Gabriel Hernandez Walta Stray Dogs #2 Image Comics Written by Tony Fleecs Art by Trish Forstner Post Americana #4 Image Comics Story and Art by Steve Skroce SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. Full Episode Transcript Alex: What is up, y’all? Welcome to The Stack. I’m Alex. Justin: I’m Justin. Pete: I’m Pete. Alex: On The Stack, we talk about a bunch of books that have come out this week, kicking it off with a very scary book called Alien #1 from Marvel, written by Phillip Kennedy Johnson, art by Salvador Larroca. This is a big deal because this is the first of the Fox properties that is coming to Marvel. We have Predator coming down the pike. Alien is here now, and we had Phillip Kennedy Johnson on the live show talking about this book a couple of months back now when he first got on it. So he teased that, if you want to go and listen to it, but all of the teasing aside, what’d you think of this one? Justin: I thought this was great. Really captures the vibe of the Alien movies while being a compelling new story where you really feel alongside the characters. Mistakes are made. Classic Alien thing where somebody really fucks up with these things. You don’t get a lot of mistakes with the alien people. Alex: The thing that I thought was really fascinating about this as a fan of the Alien franchise, and to get into spoilers for the book a little bit … It’s about a military guy. He ended up getting captured by aliens, escaped. We don’t know exactly how yet, but this is years later. He’s retiring, trying to reconnect with his son. Definitely a theme Phillip Kennedy Johnson is playing with with his books right now with fathers and sons and connecting through this and through Superman. Alex: So that’s interesting, I think, just from a reading perspective, but here, the son is a civilian, and for fans of the Alien movies, it’s such a big deal when they go to Earth in this book. When they go to Earth, you see very little of it, but you see people on Earth. You see what’s going on with society. You see civilians involved, and just from that fan perspective, I kind of geeked out about that beyond the fact that it seems like they’re doing really interesting, weird stuff with the mythology in this comic book. Salvador Larroca’s aliens in particular are terrifying. The pacing of it is alarming and upsetting in the right way. I really dug this book a lot as well. Pete, what did you think? Pete: Yeah. I agree with you. I thought the aliens looks amazing. There’s a lot of great kind of splash page shots that are really powerful. The Bishop. I’m always creeped out by Bishop, and so it was creepy to see Bishop back. Yeah, and it was a very interesting story that we got to kind of see the son’s side of why he doesn’t care about what his father’s been doing, and then we know the father’s side. So it was very interesting perspective, and I think that’s a cool way to, as Justin said, to put kind of a fresh spin on something that we’ve seen a lot of. So yeah. I thought this, as far as the first issue is concerned, does a great job of giving you something that you know and love with a little bit of newness to it. So I think well done. Justin: What I think they capture well here is the sins of the corporation in Alien are always what keeps making people act poorly, and that’s what gets everyone in trouble. In this, it’s all about human mistakes, and it’s just the aliens are there as the force of nature that makes them pay for their mistakes, and it’s just really great. Alex: Absolutely. Really bowled over by this book. Next up, Harley Quinn #1 from DC Comics, written by Stephanie Phillips, art by Riley Rossmo. This is a great team for this book, Riley Rossmo in particular on a Harley Quinn book. So much fun. Really like the tone here. Very different from the past couple of runs of Harley Quinn. I thought this was very enjoyable. What was your guys’ take? Pete: Yeah. I agree. I thought the art was amazing. Really great story as far as the first issue goes. Does such a great job of grabbing the reader and getting kind of this take on Harley, and I think it’s a nice take. I’m a huge fan of the animated series, but I don’t want every comic to be like that. So this is, I feel like, a different enough take where it still feels like Harley Quinn, and I love the art and the storytelling. I think this is a fantastic first issue. Justin: Yeah. I think what this book … I mean, the art is so cool. It’s fun how Batman is such a presence in it, and it’s a little bit more of a Batman that is likable and sort of like just “Look. I’m just trying to keep an eye on you, Harley. So don’t screw around.” Pete: He’s like a dad. Batman’s like a dad of Gotham. Justin: Yeah. Uncle Batman, and I really like this Harley because it’s not like it’s a huge change where she’s like “I’m good now.” It’s the same character who’s just like “I’m trying this out. I don’t know. Let’s just see,” and she’s sort of having fun with it, and I feel like that preserves the original spirit of the character. We talked about this on the live show this week about how Harley Quinn spun out of Batman: The Animated Series and how wild it is that a character like that can just explode and have so many iterations in all these different mediums, and now to see her back here sort of having that spirit of the original while also being the new character is great. Alex: Totally agree. Next up, Firefly Brand New Verse #1 from BOOM! Studios, written by Josh Lee Gordon, art by Fabiana Mascolo. We’ve had effusive praise for Greg Pak’s run on the main title. This is a different artist, a different team, and it’s jumping forward, I believe, 25 years in time to showing us the descendants of the original Serenity crew, what’s going on with them now. So what’d you think about this? Does this hold up to the high quality of the other Firefly books? Justin: Well, I think, what I like about it is that they’re taking a lot of swings. They keep moving with the Firefly story, just like “Hey. Let’s tell the most interesting story no matter what the continuity really is. Let’s just keep moving,” and for them to move from the past to the present into the future, or I guess, not in that order, but it’s great to see, like “Oh, yeah. I’m so curious about this. What’s going to happen where? What are these characters like?” They feel spiritually like the old Serenity crew, but they’re all new people. Alex: Pete? Justin: It’s like meeting your friends’ friends, and they’re nice. Pete: Yeah. I thought- Alex: Pete, I know you’re probably put off by the fact that Greg Pak wasn’t on this, who you love, but go ahead. Pete: Yeah. I was kind of like “Wait a second. What’s going on here?” The Pak was killing this, but yeah. I like the way it kind of starts. I think it’s a great kind of story, a good take, but it’s one of those things where it’s like when you have a to-do list and you just sleep instead of doing what you’re supposed to be doing, you’re putting everybody on the ship in jeopardy. That was just kind of crazy, but yeah. I enjoyed it. I thought the art was good. I thought it was fun. Justin: So you’re bothered by the chores, that no one’s doing their chores. Pete: Well, I’m just bothered by how casually they woke up, and they were like “Hey. Did you fix the engine?” and they were like “Well, I thought you were going to fix the engine.” Then it’s like … We’re on a spaceship. You can’t just be that casual. Justin: What’s the chore wheel like in your household? Pete: It’s a lot of chores, man. All right? It’s a lot. Justin: What happens if you don’t do it? How does it break out? Did you get your chores done today, for instance? Pete: Yeah. Yeah. Just barely. Just barely. Alex: Oh, boy. Justin: Stakes high. Alex: Teen Titans Academy #1 from DC Comics, written by Tim Sheridan, art by Rafa Sandoval. This is exactly what it sounds like. The Titans are opening up a school in Titans Tower. Meanwhile, the Teen Titans are off doing Teen Titan stuff, and these are the Teeny Titans who are signing up. Maybe some day they’re going to be Teen Titans or Titans. I said all of those words quite a bit. What’d you think about this book? Justin: Great enunciation from Alex. Hit all of his consonants really well, and that was borderline tongue twister. Pete: Yeah. I thought this was a fun story. I ship Nightfire. So I feel I’m happy that they’re still out doing- Alex: Just trying to slip that in there, Pete. Justin: Dropping that knowledge. Pete: I feel like it was a little busy, but they have so many people on Teen Titans. I kind of feel like that’s going to happen, but overall, I thought it was a really solid first issue. Justin: I’ll tell you what, Pete. I ship Nightfire, especially in this issue. I would normally definitely be a Batwing or Nightgirl, Nightacle. Is that the right- Pete: [crosstalk 00:08:57]. Alex: Nightacle. Justin: Nightgirl is not the right answer, I don’t think. Alex: Nightacle? Justin: Oraclewing? Alex: Orwing. Orwing. Justin: Orawing. Alex: Batdick. Justin: Good. But I agree. I feel like there have been a lot of books like this. Marvel does this a lot where they’re like “Let’s take our magic characters and make a school about them. Let’s have all these young mutants be in this school,” and often it feels like the stories feel very next door to the main storyline, and this feels like a Titans books, and it’s just now there’s these gradations between all the different Titans. There’s the Titans, the Tiny Titans, and the Teeny Titans, and there’s the tall Titans, the tiptop Titans. Alex: What did you think- Pete: Guys, stop. Alex: What did you think about them having to be called Mr. Nightwing? That was pretty weird, right? Justin: What I liked about it was it felt like kids who hadn’t made a plan about “Oh, what should we call ourselves?” and then someone was like “Oh, you’re Mr. Nightwing,” and they’re like “Okay,” and then they have to go with it. Alex: What’s your first name, Mr. Nightwing? Pete: Yeah. Justin: Uh, Dave? Alex: Oh, god. I’m Dave Nightwing. Yeah. This is okay. I’m usually a sucker for these books. I thought this was all right. I liked Rafa Sandoval’s art, just good superhero art across the board. Always very appropriate for Titans. I don’t really know anything about the Red X, which is the big mystery here. So felt like a bit of a deep dive for anybody who is outside that continuity, but I like some of the characters. I’m definitely going to tune back for issue two and see what happens. I don’t know what I’m talking about. Justin: Another binge read. Alex: Once & Future #17 from BOOM! Studios, written by Kieron Gillen, art by Dan Mora. Pete, I was a little worried about you this issue, because not as much grandma as there usually is- Justin: Yeah. Alex: … but still- Pete: Yeah, but you still- Alex: … there’s a dragon. There’s a lot of action. Pete: But you also got smoking grandma. Grandma’s smoking in this. So that’s- Alex: Smoking hot is what you’re saying, right? Pete: No. That’s not what I’m saying. Alex: Okay. Pete: But yeah. I like this- Alex: I ship Petema. Justin: Petema. Pete Smokingma. Smoking Petema. Pete: A lot happens in this issue. We kind of get all the pieces on the board. It was great to kind of finally see plans collides and everybody else kind of come together, kind of revealing what’s going to happen moving forward. This is just non-stop glorious. Every issue is unbelievably drawn. The stories are fun. The characters are great. The art’s unbelievable. I don’t know why you aren’t reading this book. Justin: I am, because we all read. We read a lot of comics, and I like this book, but I will say I think I need a little gear shift. I feel like we’ve been in this- Pete: What? Justin: I feel like we’ve been in- Pete: I’m not going to stand here and let you … This is an unbelievable comic. Okay? End of story. You can’t put in your bullshit. This comic is fantastic. Justin: I- Alex: Well, hold on, Pete. Just to jump in, Justin, I hear what you’re saying. I actually think they got there with this issue, because I’ve been feeling that as well. It’s a lot of the grandma wandering around and being like “You don’t know what’s going on with these stories. There’s a lot of stories,” and the son being like “Stories? Come on,” and then everybody’s kind of wandering around and yelling at each other about magic stuff and stories, but this issue, what we got … It really feels like it’s heading towards the endgame here. We finally know they’re looking for the Holy Grail. The bad guys wanted to essentially wipe everything clean and destroy the world. The good guys, of course, want to stop them. They get a dragon, and we get this very propulsive ending of them on a dragon chasing after … I’m honestly forgetting whether it’s Gawaine or Galahad who has been turned into a centaur, and I think that’s part of the issue you’re getting at, where it’s a lot of these names being thrown out there, but I like this ending, and I’m very excited for the next issue off of this. Justin: Yeah. I mean, I like where it’s going, and honestly, the stuff with Rose felt like the most interesting. She feels like she’s operating sort of on her own, but it’s just like you’re saying. It feels like grandma and her son, #PeteMissesGrandma, #SmokingHotGrandma … It feels like they really are just like “Oh, here we go again. This story’s crazy, but we have to keep doing it,” and so I’m just ready, and the Merlin stuff was interesting. I liked that, but even he’s a little like “I’ve already got this all figured out.” So I think I just need a little refreshment with that. Pete: Unbelievable. You’re unbelievable. Alex: Well, let’s move on then and talk about Action Comics #1,029 from DC Comics, written by Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Becky Cloonan, and Michael W. Conrad, art by Phil Hester and Michael Avon Oeming. In the front story, we’re getting a tale of Superman and his son, as we talked about a little bit earlier. In the back story, we’re finding out what’s going on with Midnighter after Future State. This directly picks up on that in a very surprising way. What’d you think about this one? Pete: I thought this was a very touching story. Love the kind of like Superman taking about being a human and this whole father-son back and forth stuff. It’s really speaking to me. I very much enjoyed this. The Midnighter story is freaking me out. Justin: It’s different Midnighter. Pete: Yeah. Yeah. I love how stylized the art is. I think it’s a cool take on Midnighter, but I’m nervous to see how this is all going to unfold, and I don’t like the fact that they’re not talking to each other. You know what I mean? You’re supposed to be able to talk to your partner. Justin: Are you talking about him and the computer in his brain? Pete: No. Him and Apollo. Justin: Yeah. What I will say is it is a very different take on Midnighter, but it feels like Apollo is still the one who’s knocking on the door at the end. Pete: Still the one. Justin: That’s what I’m saying. So that must give you some reassurance, and the front story, I thought, was great, really keying in on this idea of fathers and sons, and sons losing fathers, and fathers realizing that the sons are realizing that they’re eventually going to lose their father. It’s just great idea and echo storytelling, and then the last couple pages, setting up the sort of creepy Warworld Rising stuff, I’m into. Alex: I’m into it too, and I like how they are tying in the DC Future State stuff. Now, the other thing … This is news that I believe leaked early this week before they were going to let it out, but it seems clear now in retrospect how they’re setting this up with Superman potentially being taken off the board so that John Kent is going to move into the Superman role. We got this Midnighter backup which seems like it should be unrelated to a Superman thing, but it turns out that DC is going to be launching some sort of a Superman and The Authority series by Grant Morrison with art by Mikel Janin- Pete: What? Alex: … which this seems to be setting up directly, in my mind. We don’t know much more about it other than that, but that certainly seems to be where they’re going, and that is very cool. Justin: Yeah. I mean, Grant Morrison back in the game? Not sort of existing on the periphery being like “Hey. Did you think I could make this Green Lantern book weirder?” and then he does. That’ll be interesting. Alex: Yeah. That’s great. It’s also great to see Michael Avon Oeming on a regular book as well. I really like his stuff on Midnighter, and that’s a lot of fun. Let’s move on, talk about Haha #3 from Image Comics. Justin: Haha. Pete: Oh, here we go. Justin: Hoo-ah. Alex: Hoo-ah #3, following the adventures of Al Pacino in Scent of a Woman land. It’s been a great ride. I can’t believe we’ve gotten here. The continuity has been very dense, but really getting that back story of how did he find the scent of a woman? How did he come up with hoo-ah? It’s been a wonderful ride, and [crosstalk 00:17:04]. Justin: How did he come up with hoo-ah? Alex: It is written by W. Maxwell Prince, art and cover by Roger Langridge. I love this team. I was so excited about this. This is a anthology book where W. Maxwell Prince is taking his regular creepiness from Ice Cream Man and applying it specifically to different types of clowns. This issue, we get a mime issue, a mime who is friends with a robot. Justin: Love a mime. Pete: The worst. Alex: Roger Langridge, one of my absolute favorite creators. He did Thor: The Mighty Avenger. He did Snarked is the book that he did that was all a riff on Lewis Carroll stuff. That is awesome. He did an amazing Muppets book, if you never checked it out. It’s definitely much more surreal and fantasy based than the previous two issues that were very realistic and dark takes, but man, I love this book. It was so good. Maybe my favorite of the week. What did you guys think? Justin: Favorite of the week? Pete: I hated it. Justin: You hated it? Pete: Yeah. I don’t like mimes. I think they’re creepy, and this proves my point. Justin: Wait. Rank sort of the clowns, the different genres of clown, in sort of least scary to scariest. Pete: Well, first off, I think … No offense to Alex’s wife, but I think that [crosstalk 00:18:21]- Alex: But I hate your wife. Pete: Yeah. I think- Alex: No offense to your wife. I hate your wife. Pete: No. Your wife is an unbelievable person. I don’t know how she puts up with you. Justin: Wait. You’re considering wife a different genre of clown? Pete: No. I just don’t want to speak poorly of clowns, and Alex’s wife was an amazing clown. That’s a separate category. I want to try and make that clear. Alex: Just to be clear before you get to into it, Pete, of course we’re going to break this into the four types of the clown, the Whiteface, the Tramp, the Auguste, and the character. So go ahead. Pete: I don’t know what- Justin: Dropping clown husband knowledge. Pete: I don’t know what was just said- Justin: Auguste. Pete: … but- Alex: The Auguste. Pete: … to answer your question, Justin, clowns do freak me out. I think, sometimes you can see the sadness in their eyes, and that can be very painful, and then mimes- Justin: So give me the power rankings. So you got your mimes. You got your- Pete: Yeah. The mimes are the creepiest of them all. Justin: Really? Pete: Yeah. Justin: Why is that? Because they’re not talking? Pete: Yes. I don’t trust people who don’t talk, and I also … Well, and you have some- Justin: Too skinny. Pete: But also, they’re- Alex: Wait. Sorry. Is it that they wear stripes so they look like they just got out of prison? Pete: No. No. That makes them look French, but I think that- Alex: All French people just got out of prison. Go ahead. Justin: Yeah. Pete: Oh, that’s an awful thing to say. Yeah. I don’t trust mimes, and clowns can be scary is my long-winded point that you kind of dragged out. Alex: Justin, what about you? What did you think about this issue? Justin: It was great. It’s very fun. it’s like- Pete: Wait. It’s fun? That was fun? Justin: This whole issue is very fun. I would love to see this- Pete: People died. I don’t know what … What do you mean? What’s fun? Justin: Hey. I got news for you. People die all the time. Pete: Oh, don’t be that guy. Justin: But not robots. Think about that. I’d like to see the script of this comic to see the process, really, how they put this together, because the visuals are so good. They do so much of the storytelling, and it’s just a fun, nearly silent issue where we touch on, I don’t even know, just how the world sucks, finding moments whenever you can despite the weird circumstances of developing an act and becoming friends with a robot, how the dancing frog can live, can truly live if you do it right, and it’s- Pete: The poor WB frog. Justin: Yeah. Alex: Great book. Definitely pick that up. Next up, another one of my favorites of the week, Batman/Superman #16 from DC Comics, written by Gene Luen Yang, art by Ivan Reis. In this book, we’re getting two tales told simultaneously of Golden Age, I think, I would say, Superman and Batman through film … not strips, but old-timey film reels. On the top, you got Superman. On the bottom, you got Batman. Like they say at the beginning, you can read them separately. I kind of recommend reading them together, because, spoiler, they actually start to tie together at the end there. This is a very cool, really fun issue that I enjoyed quite a bit. Justin: Yeah. This issue, I feel like, really just stands alone. I mean, I know it is tying into a larger story, but it really is just a super innovative way of telling these two stories, and you sort of think one thing, and then there are some reveals later on that you’re like “Oh, huh. Okay,” and like Alex said, things sort of come together in the end. Just a really innovative issue, I thought. Pete: I’m glad you guys liked it. Alex: Pete, you’re so negative this week. Pete: Not really. Alex: Okay. Well, let’s move on then to Crimson Flower #3 from Dark Horse Comics, written by Matt Kindt, art by Matt Lesniewski. Pete, lots of people die. There’s a lot of blood in this one as our main character hones in on her target. What’d you think about this? Pete: I very much enjoyed this. I thought this was a really great villain reveal. We thought it was kind of like one villain, and then kind of through the villain monologue, you got to see kind of how dark and twisted this villain actually was. So yeah. I really liked it. I like these scarf powers, and I think the art’s creepy and twisted in all the right ways. It’s a very interesting, cool book, and again, it’s like there’s not a lot of … There isn’t too much dialogue. So it’s not a heavy read. I very much enjoyed this. Justin: Yeah. I like this a lot. The art is really cool. I wish we had talked to Matt Kindt about this book. Pete: Yeah. Alex: We messed up. Justin: Yeah. We messed up, because we had him on the live show recently, and this would have been a good one, because I think maybe we had just read the previous issue, which I think we all enjoyed. Yeah. It’s hard to pin this story down. It’s a really unique story. it’s a revenge tale, and the art really just really showcases the storytelling that’s happening here in a way that is really surprising. Alex: This is probably the wrong thing, but the art almost feels like a medieval tapestry come to life in a certain way in terms of how- Pete: Oh, interesting. Alex: … it’s laid out and the way that they have these stories inside of stories inside of stories. Very fascinating book. I highly recommend picking it up. Justin: Yeah. Alex: Next up, Detective Comics #1,034 from DC Comics, written by Mariko Tamaki and Joshua Williamson, art by Dan Mora and Gleb Melnikov. This is telling a story of a kind of poor but still doing okay for himself Bruce Wayne. What’d you think about this one? Pete: I- Alex: I mean, he’s doing fine. They’re making a big deal about “I don’t have my money. I only have 18 Batcaves and this really nice apartment in a good part of Gotham. That’s it. Pete: Yeah. Justin: Yeah, and he’s like “It’s crazy. I have neighbors now,”- Pete: Yeah. It’s- Justin: … and it’s like “Yeah. I know. We all have neighbors, asshole.” Pete: Yeah. It’s weird to see Batman kind of dealing with people, but I do really love the art. I really loved the moment where the bad guy sees Batman and is like “Crap.” That was just fun. Yeah. I think it’s an interesting story. I really like the backup as well. I feel like it’s a great package. Justin: It’s a great package. Pete: You love a good package. Justin: Yeah. I like this a lot too, and oddly we’ve talked a lot about Batman: The Animated Series, but this feels like Batman is warming up a little bit and becoming more like that Bruce Wayne from Batman: The Animated Series, where he has to talk to people and he has to be like a normal person sometimes, and maybe that’s what it’s like when you lose money and come back down to Earth and get with the people. Bruce Wayne, get with the people. Meet your neighbors. Alex: Oh, I thought you were going to say something else after that. You said “Meet your neighbors.” You went up, and then- Pete: Yeah. Yeah. I thought- Justin: Meet your neighbors. Pete: [crosstalk 00:25:49]. Justin: That’s what I’m saying. Do it. Go do it. Pete: [crosstalk 00:25:50]. Alex: Oh, that was it. Okay. It was a punctuation point. Justin: Meet your neighbors. Alex: Yeah. Good story. Let’s move on, talk about The- Justin: Alex, go meet your neighbors. Alex: I would love to, but coronavirus. The Scumbag #6 from Image Comics, written by Rick Remender, art by Bengal, dealing with the last arc. Here, we got our main Scumbag is now a super celebrity. He has blown the lid on all the things he’s done to save the Earth while having a big party in his new mansion, and then new threats come his way. What’d you think, Pete? Pete: Yeah. I feel like this is Remender having a lot of fun, a lot of cool metal references going on here, which was fun. Yeah. I mean, talking crack pipe. I mean, who doesn’t love that? But yeah. It was just tough because I felt like we had gotten somewhere with Scumbag as a character. It seems he regressed a little bit. I felt like he kind of did some things where he was doing things for the better of him, himself, and the team and moving towards being a hero, but now with this, it’s kind of like he went backwards a little bit. So that part’s a little frustrating, but a lot of really fun art, crazy, over the top, just stupid stuff. Justin: But what I like about this is Remender knows to bring this character back to sort of what he is, and yes, there’s a hero in him, but we don’t want him to be the hero yet. He has to continue to be the hard partying Scumbag, and that’s what he is as he’s thrown into a different superhero situation, which I’m excited to see how that plays out. Alex: Next up, I know this is one of Pete’s favorite Barbalien, Red Planet #5 from Dark Horse comics, script by Tate Brombal, story by Jeff Lemire and Tate Brombal. I cannot say that last name. I’m so sorry. Art by Gabriel Hernandez Walta. This is about the Martian Manhunter-esque part of the Black Hammer universe. He is gay. He is dealing with that. He is also dealing with being trapped on his own planet at some point. Pete, talk about this book. Why did this one strike you in particular? Pete: Well, it’s a very powerful book. I mean, you got people fighting for their rights, what they believe in. There’s a lot of great protest moments. There’s very powerful page with blood spilled on it. They’re saying a lot of great stuff in this book. They’re talking about the collective. They’re talking about us as humans trying to grow and fight for things. It’s very, very powerful, very cool. Love the imagery and the art, and it’s just really well done. Justin: Yeah. I mean, I agree. I feel like we’ve been talking up the Black Hammer sort of side universe so much lately, and it really is just like this great, creative explosion that’s happening over in the Dark Horse universe, and this story … We’ve been talking a lot about the sort of episodic series, and this is just a great standalone story that has blown out that really takes you along for a great ride. Alex: Really good book. Definitely agree. Next up, one of the darkest books of the week, Stray Dogs #2 from Image Comics, written by Tony Fleecs, art by Trish Forstner. So we reviewed, really liked, I think, the first issue of this book, which took a bunch of dogs, brought them together, and it turns out that maybe their owner is murdering women and stealing the dogs. We get deeper into that mystery this issue. I think you kind of called this out last issue, Justin, but it very much feels like Law & Order Don Bluth or something like that, and it’s kind of upsetting to read, in a certain way. Justin: It is upsetting, because these dogs are witness to this killer who is continuing to kill. I mean, we don’t know that for sure yet, I guess, but the way it’s like all these dogs, definitely drawn in the style of the Don Bluth Disney, very cute, lovable dogs that are just like “We’re in a dog story about dogs just trying to get by and then fall in love and then eventually go home and have Lady and Tramp children,” but instead it’s like this super dark … The dogs are witnessing and realizing that their current owner is a killer. It’s so dark, and I was so surprised by this, and it’s great. Pete: Yeah. It’s very interesting, kind of this thing of what if the person who is raising you, taking care of you, feeding you, all these things, is a horrible, horrible person? It’s like, what do you go on? Do you go on the fact that “Oh, but they provide for me, and they’re nice, and they take me out,” and all these things, and then “Oh, but I don’t see the murders”? It’s very interesting perspective. It’s very messed up and done in this adorable art that makes it even darker, but it’s this tale that hopefully these dogs can hopefully get to the bottom of and make a difference, but man, it’s a crazy start, for sure. Justin: Yeah. I mean, I say this a lot. I hope these dogs can solve that human murder. Pete: Yeah. Alex: Last but not least, Post Americano #4 from Image Comics, story and art by Steve Skroce. In this issue, our heroes, I guess, have been captured. One of them has reconnected with their mom, and entering the fray is what looks like a superhero and a werewolf. I love this book so much more than I think I would every single time out of the gate, because it’s just so weird and funny and violent in exactly the right way, and I keep going into it thinking “This will be the issue. This will be the one that turns me. This is when they’ll go too far,” and they never do. It just skirts that line perfectly. Justin: Well, and I think this issue does a great job of having this heartfelt reunion between our mother and daughter characters here, and it’s really sweet and taken very seriously, and then the back half of the issue or back third of the issue is this wild nonsense superhero showcase. Pete: Yeah. It’s completely over the top, tons of violence. Each issue is crazier than the last, and you’re like “Oh, they can’t top that,” but then this issue does, and it kind of makes fun of itself in the process, but man, really fun. Great read. The art’s fantastic. A lot of cool characters. I mean, I love the car. I thought the car was so great. Such an awesome entrance, but it did hurt when that mint issue #1 got trashed by the guy in the tie. That hurt. Alex: Good stuff. If you’d like to support our podcast- Justin: Heartbreaking. Alex: … patreon.com/comicbookclub. Also, we do a live show every Tuesday night at 7:00 PM to Crowdcast and YouTube. Come hang out. We would love to chat with you about comic books. iTunes, Android, Spotify, Stitcher, or the app of your choice to subscribe and listen to the show. On iTunes, leave us a comment and rate us. We would appreciate that quite a bit. @ComicBookLive on Twitter. Comicbooklive.com for this podcast and more. Until next time, we’ll see you at the virtual comic book shop. Justin: Send in the mimes, those cooky, spooky mimes. The post The Stack: Alien, Harley Quinn And More appeared first on Comic Book Club.
35 minutes | 2 months ago
The Stack: Ultramega, Black Knight And More
On this week’s comic book review podcast: Ultramega #1 Image Comics By James Harren Black Knight: Curse of the Ebony Blade #1 Marvel By Si Spurrier & Sergio Dávila Orphan and the Five Beasts #1 Dark Horse Comics By James Stokoe Catwoman #29 DC Comics Written by Ram V Art by Fernando Blanco Radiant Black #2 Image Comics Written by Kyle Higgins Art by Marcelo Costa The Amazing Spider-Man: King in Black #1 Marvel Written by Jed MacKay Art by Michele Bandini, Alberto Albuquerque Nightwing #78 DC Comics Written by Tom Taylor Art by Bruno Redondo Orcs! #2 Kaboom! By Christine Larsen The Trials of Ultraman #1 Marvel Written by Kyle Higgins & Mat Groom Art by Francesco Manna, Eduardo Ferigato and Gurihiru Justice League #59 DC Comics Written by Brian Michael Bendis, Ram V Art by David Marquez, Xermanico Snow Angels #2 ComiXology Written by Jeff Lemire Art by Jock SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. Full Episode Transcript Alex: What is up, everybody? Welcome to The Stack. I’m Alex. Justin: I’m Justin. Pete: I’m Pete. Alex: And on The Stack, we talk about a bunch of books that come out this week, but not Head Lopper. Justin: Yeah, what the fuck, man? Alex: Never Head Lopper, never, ever. [crosstalk 00:00:22] They barely lop any heads anymore in that book. [crosstalk 00:00:28] Justin: It should be Head Notper because they’re not lopping anything up. Alex: It’s a very good book. We’re just not talking about it in The Stack. Instead, we’re going to kick things off, talking about Ultramega #1, from Image Comics by James Harren. I think you actually said it best on the live show, Justin, so I don’t know if you want to just take it from here, but I think you totally nailed my thoughts on this book. Justin: Yeah. And so this book is a take on Kaiju, sort of a dark take. I’ve never been a Kaiju guy in comic book form. Pete: Really? Justin: Just in the comics, I feel like a lot of them are sort of similar to what we’ve seen before. And this book is such a dark take on it. You’re in this character’s head, it’s just such a fresh version of this type of book. I loved every bit of the story and so many surprising moments and especially where it lands by the end. This was definitely the… Caught me off guard and was the most surprising and exciting book of the week for me. Pete: Wow. Alex: Pete, what about you? Pete: I loved it. The art’s unbelievable. This is a real epic book. Unbelievable battles, super gross. Yeah. The storyline is really creative and different. It’s dark in all the right places, creepy and gross looking in all the right places and huge and intense and others. And it’s just really, really well done. Justin: [crosstalk 00:01:56] Sorry, before you get there, Alex, one last thing, it’s also the rare book that goes hard. It doesn’t just set up the premise and then sit in it and be like, “Tune in next week.” Kind of a thing. It goes hard at the ideas and really pushes it. Alex: The basic premise of the thing. And this gives away the first couple of pages, which I think are surprising and exciting in and of themself as they slowly spool out the story. But I’ll do this just to tease people about it and then not talk about what happens probably in the last two thirds of the book. Well, the general idea is this weird eye creature or space being gives three people powers to turn into giant beings kind of called, at least one of them is called Ultramega. And they are able to identify a Kaiju virus that has embedded itself in people, but the catch is when they approach those people, when they see it, it activates that virus and they turn into these giant Kaiju and then they need to fight them. And it’s kind of what the world deals with after that. But as Justin was mentioning, it spins in these crazy, crazy dark directions that are so good. Alex: Art wise as well, Pete, I don’t know if you’re going to take exception to this, but this reminded me in a really pleasant way of Daniel Warren Johnson and his work, just because all of the action. I think this was the thing as well that really shocked me about this book because I’m also not a huge Kaiju fan most of the time, is how clear and unique the action felt across the board, how well it was staged. Great. And it just builds too, over the course of the book. It starts with these big fights and they only get huger by the end. It’s amazing. Pete: Yeah, it really is impressive. I guess I’m the only guy who likes Kaiju but that being said, I agree with Justin with the way that it moves. This book, it feels like they really sat on this book a little bit before releasing it and went over it again and again, and tightened and made all these different things because the way it… It’s just a powerhouse from start to finish. Alex: And the creator talks about this a little bit at the end, we should also mention it’s an oversized book. I might have the page count, but it’s at least 60 pages or so. Justin: Yep. 62 pages of comic action. Alex: Yeah. [crosstalk 00:04:12] And he talks about this in the end where he says, I know, normally it felt like you should be doing 20 ish pages of a book, but there’s so much more he wanted to say in this first issue that he just jammed it all in there and worked on it and it’s totally worth it. This is an incredible book. Definitely pick it up. Easily the pick of the week, but lots of other good things on The Stack so keep listening to our podcast because here we go. [crosstalk 00:04:34] Justin: Yeah, don’t shut it off just because we got a banger. [crosstalk 00:04:36]. Alex: Comic book shop. Pete: No, I mean, that’s how I would listen to it. I would just be like, “Well, all right, looks like this is the one they recommend. That’s on you, dear. I’m going to go to the shop.” Alex: Well, stay tuned for our even more pick of the week that we’re going to have [crosstalk 00:04:51] Justin: Oh, nice. Way to sell it up. P.T. Barnum. Pete, when you listen to albums back in the day were you’re like, “Oh, great song, smash. I’m done with this shit.” Pete: It’s all right, man. Justin: You’re like Pearl Jam Ten or Pearl Jam One, throw the rest away. I don’t care about the rest of these songs. Alex: Black Knight: Curse of the Ebony Blade #1 from Marvel by Si Spurrier and Sergio Davila, we read the Black Knight King in Black One Shot, enjoyed that. But I think our general impression was it felt like, “Ah, this is really just setting up a Black Knight series.” Surprise, it was in fact setting up a Black Knight series. And what you get here is also a very dark take on a classic Marvel character. Justin, you’re a fan of the Black Knight. How’d you feel about this one? Justin: I love the Black Knight and this was another great book. They do a great job in this book of specifically setting up a Black Knight as sort of the dark side of a Thor. Black Knight famously an Avenger, sort of a mid-tier Avenger who wasn’t a super big hero, but was around a lot in different eras of the Avengers. And in this, he feels that. He’s like, “I wish I had friends. I wish I could hang out with the Avengers.” It’s sad. Pete: Yeah. It’s got to be tough. You’re so close yet so far away. Justin: Yeah. Well, he was in, he’s in the Avengers. [crosstalk 00:06:13] Pete: That’s what I mean, but they won’t hang out with him. Justin: Yeah. It’s a bummer. They only call him for the real fucked up missions. But in this, there’s a great moment in here where Thor can’t pick up Black Knight’s sword, the Cursed Ebony Blade, because he’s too pure and he’s like, “You have to have a darkness. It has to feel your shadow.” Which I thought was just a great comparison as Thor was just throwing his worthy hammer in the air. And then you have this blade that is too dark for anyone to pick up but our guy Dane. Pete: Which is surprising, because you would think with Thor’s drinking, he would have a little bit of a dark side, but apparently not. Justin: Yeah. He’s a social drinker. Pete: Well, it’s interesting, the way the conflict that he has and the way that he has to use kind of the darkness inside of him. It’s not the goodness that he uses to fight. It’s the dark side. It’s kind of like the anger. So I very much related to that. And it was very cool. Like this moment of him trying to deal with his emotions and talk things out in a way that he can be okay with who he is and how he battles and stuff like that. I thought it was very interesting and cool. Alex: I like this book quite a bit too. Let’s move on and talk about Orphan and the Five Beasts #1 from Dark Horse Comics by James Stokoe. Pete, I don’t know why you need your Head Lopper when you got your Orphan and the Five Beasts. I mean, come on, you got an angry fighter, you got a bunch of lopping going on. That’s got to satisfy you. Justin: This is right over the Pete plate right here. Pete: Yeah. I mean, this was great. Don’t get me wrong. This was a lot of fun. The thigh master or whatever it was really fucking bad-ass. Just kind of the cloak dude who is just really great at fighting. I very, very much enjoyed this book. Alex: And just to be clear, we like Head Lopper. I’ll stop pretending that I’m slamming it over the rest of the podcast. Justin: Love Head Lopper. Alex: But this is exactly what you wanted, to have James Stokoe, I’m trying to think how to describe it, but just like quest to kill five increasingly, probably deadly villains who have killed this ronin’s master sort of story. You kind of know what you’re in for, but it’s the regular requisite James Stokoe insane art. This is very fun. It’s very enjoyable and it looks great. Pete: Yeah. I also really liked the kind of setup. Sometimes we get a set up of like, “I have to avenge because of this or whatever.” And it’s sometimes interesting, but sometimes kind of typical. This is a very kind of cool a story to kind of set up how this is all going to go down, this whole you make a promise to, “Okay, I’ll give you this power, but then you’ve got to come back and learn the right way to use it.” And I thought it was a very cool setup for [inaudible 00:09:07] and for all this unbelievable fighting and action. Justin: This feels like it’s at the intersection of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, the classic, Usagi Yojimbo and Ball Z, Dragon Ball Z. And that intersection is actually where Pete lives. If you’re ever looking to send some mail to Pete, that’s the address. Pete: Yeah. I definitely get my mail there. There’s no question. Alex: Let’s move on and talk about Catwoman #29 from DC Comics written by Ram V., art by Fernando Blanco. In this issue, Catwoman is running shit downtown, but there’s some different forces who are closing in on her at the same time. A couple of things that I’ll throw out to you guys right at the top here, first of all, I sort of felt this last week, but I felt this even more this week, I am really appreciating Future State even more based on the fact that DC set up these art teams, kind of gave them two months to play around and figure things out and then put them on the permanent titles. And that pays off here with a really good, beautifully drawn story. I haven’t read Catwoman in a really long time, but I like this quite a bit. On the flip side of things, I am wondering, and I know there has been blow back, should they have renumbered these to #1? Justin: Wow. Pete: Oh, my God. Jesus Christ. Justin: I’m surprised they didn’t, to be honest. But I do think coming out of Future State, which was all #1s and #2s, I get why they just kept going. And I appreciate that a little bit more because I think Future State was sort of the bait to get you to sign on to these books with these great new creative teams. And I want to say, I feel like Ram V. is having a moment. Pete: Yeah. Ram V.! I agree. I really liked this book. I like how the villain is a kind of similar to Ghost in the Ant-Man movie. I also love this kind of strung out Riddler a little bit who’s hooked on that Ivy. You know what I mean? A very interesting take. There’s a lot going on in this book, which I appreciate. This is a very cool Catwoman book. The art’s fantastic. Alex: I particularly like playing in this villainous side of the world. Catwoman always straddles this weird line, particularly now that she’s canonically with Batman, has fallen more on the side of the heroes, but you do have all these characters in Gotham that have been on both sides. You have Poison Ivy, you have Harley Quinn, you have Catwoman, you have Riddler. All of these ones that are like, “They’re bad, but are they really that bad?” To throw those into a book together as a cast and throw them against even worse villains, I think is a great place for Catwoman to be as a character. Justin: I feel like the move there is to make them sort of selfish heroes, as opposed to villains. They’re like heroes who do what they want as opposed to just always saving the day, which I think makes for a more interesting story. Alex: I agree. Moving on, Radiant Black #2 from Image Comics written by Kyle Higgins, art by Marcelo Costa. We loved the first issue here, it was about a guy that discovers a weird black hole over a train track, gets some powers, felt very much invincible, even though it’s a different story and it’s a different character. And it had a lot of the sense of that, that in my mind continues with the second issue, which finds him having breakfast with his dad multiple times, meeting up with another person with similar powers and fighting them. Great. I had a good time reading this book again and I’m very into it after two issues. Pete: I would like to point out though, kids out there, if you see a floating black hole, you shouldn’t go towards it and try to grab it, okay. That’s a bad idea. We don’t want to encourage that kind of stuff. Justin: And that’s a PSA we’ve done for years. We’ve put that out there on public radio and… We’re the big don’t touch the black hole guys. Alex: What’d you think about this book, Justin? Justin: Nice, great question, Alex. I like the second issue a lot. I was fine with it in the first issue. And I think the second issue has made me like it more where we get into the character a little bit. It does feel like Invincible a lot without sort of the epic, worldwide storytelling. This is very much about this kid who wants to be a writer and failed and has to go back home and he’s using his under the radar or his like, I need to figure out my life, “super powers” of being an Uber driver to aid in his super heroics. And I think that’s cool. Pete: Yeah. I think this is not only stylistically very cool. And I liked the outfits and when they’re suited up, how that all looks, it looks really looks amazing. But I also like the person inside the suit and the struggles with what’s going on. And yeah, you don’t want to deal with your parents. Sure, you got to talk to them around mealtime, but otherwise, parents, fuck off. You know what I mean? I got shit to do. So I appreciated the check-in stuff. But I’m very interested to see now that he has a plan, how this is all going to go. Alex: Think it should be interesting to follow. Next up, The Amazing Spider-Man: King in Black #1 from Marvel written by Jed MacKay and art by Michele Bandini. In this, we’re getting two stories. The first one has Spider-Man feeling super guilty as I think, frankly, he should about everything that’s happening in King in Black. Teaming up with Reptil, who is one of the characters from Avengers Academy and then Avengers Arena, I believe, as well. And then the backup story shows us what’s happening from Reptil’s perspective and kicks off a new Reptil series that is coming later in the year, which is pretty surprising. Justin: And you got the Querque on the art there, the backup story. Alex: The Querque? Justin: Yeah. Albuquerque. Alex: Oh, was that Rafael Albuquerque? Justin: You’re god damn right it is. Alex: Is it? Are you sure about that? Justin: That’s all I’m fucking looking at right here. That’s what it says. Alex: All right. Justin: [crosstalk 00:15:15] story. Alberto Albuquerque. Alex: Alberto Albuquerque. That’s not Rafael Albuquerque. Justin: You’re right. It’s a different, but it’s still… Pete: A different Querque. Alex: Well, thank you for giving him credit, regardless. I appreciate that. Pete: Yeah. Classic. Classic. But let me just ask you something. Alex: Yeah. What? Justin: It’s about time… Throw the question. Pete: Nick Spencer is completely off this book now? Alex: [crosstalk 00:15:46] This is not Amazing Spider-Man. This is a King in Black One Shot. What emotions are you going through right now? Justin, can you talk about this book? Because Pete’s [crosstalk 00:15:59] You are all over the place right now. Pete: I was just hoping that this was the start of something fresh and new. Justin: Pete came with such joy. He’s like “I got the Querque. I got Jed MacKay, Nick Spencer and Alex just devastated. [crosstalk 00:16:18] One, two punched it. Pete: Yeah. That was a combo I wasn’t ready for. Justin: Let me just say also, let’s keep in mind that our podcast is the main news source for Pete LePage. He doesn’t get his news anywhere else about anything, not just comics, but truly every bit of news he gets is right here. Alex: Every morning he opens up The Stack podcast and he’s like, “Ah, what’s happening to the world today.” Pete: But the comic itself, a very touching kind of a classic Spider-Man story, very moving. I really enjoyed all of it. I thought this was a great kind of little guy versus big monsters. I thought this was such a great Spider-Man story. And I think that this is for me, one of the… I feel like this is a great example of why Spider-Man is great. Justin: I liked this book a lot as well. I’m a big Jed MacKay fan, the writer of this. He writes the Black Cat book- Pete: Brother of Adam MacKay, right? Justin: That’s not accurate. Again, not accurate. Just guessing about stuff, not working right now. Jed MacKay’s Black Cat book. I’ve been a huge fan of, so it was great to see him taking on this Spider-Man book. And I agree, starting with Spider-Man feeling guilty about bringing the Venom suit back. We’ve all felt bad when we brought like a suit back from somewhere and it devastated the world. Whether it’s with mobs or just starting a fashion trend, it caused problems. Alex: Yes. Just to stay in order, Justin, Pete, go ahead. Justin: Reptil, as a character, got a lot of love in this issue. I did not see that coming and leading up to Reptil #1. Okay. Let’s give it a try. Alex: It’s fun. He could turn into dinosaurs. That’s pretty cool. I like this issue quite a bit as well. Let’s move on to another big surprise though. In retrospect, given the team and it shouldn’t necessarily have been. Nightwing #78 from DC Comics written by Tom Taylor, art by Bruno Redondo. Alex: I’ll tell you straight up, when I read this book, I was like, “Oh, another Nightwing book. Here we go.” First couple of pages, I was like, “Holy shit, this is great. Why is this so good?” And then we got to the credits and I realized, “Oh, that’s why it’s so good.” [crosstalk 00:18:38] This team is great. So this is Nightwing is back in the costume. He doesn’t have the memory loss, which he pokes fun of a little bit in the middle of this issue, which is very fun, but he is back in Blüdhaven dealing with all that entails. Barbara Gordon comes to visit him. It was a big spoiler for the issue, but I’ll mention this because I’m sure Pete wants to talk about this in particular. The major feature of the issue is Alfred turns out to have been a billionaire and leaves all of his money to Nightwing. Pete, how did you feel about this? Pete: The letter was so touching and so moving. I really loved it. Yeah. How heartbreaking is it that the Alfred wrote him a letter every year because of the business that they’re in and how crazy their life is. I was just so moved. I thought it was such a touching letter. Yeah, this was one of my favorite issues for the week. I love the humor in it. The fun bit about having Dick for a name, the dad bit, the Alfred with the dishes moments there. I got choked up for that. And then the whole fucking John Wick of it all, you don’t fuck with dogs, man. Don’t fuck with somebody’s dog. That is just disgusting, as Nightwing put it. And yeah, it was just really just blockbuster fun. Yeah, I was just [crosstalk 00:20:09] Alex: Is that a joke on the fact that Blockbuster, the character, appears in here? Pete? Justin: Yes. Pete: Yeah, yeah. Justin: He’ll say yes. Now that you said it. Alfred the butling billionaire. Who would have thought? This guy was just butling for the fun of it. The love of the game. Pete: When the Waynes died, they must’ve been like, “Here’s a shit ton of money to raise our… Just in case.” Alex: And he was stealing it, he was stealing it from Bruce Wayne. Justin: Yeah he stole that money. Alex: Every year, squirreling away a little bit of Bruce Wayne’s money. Justin: Here’s what he’s doing. He’s telling the Wayne’s that he’s buying these expensive English cucumbers, and he’s buying some shitty fell off the back of a truck cucumbers and pocketing the difference. [crosstalk 00:20:53] Pete: I’m not going to sit here and let you fucking… Alfred is nothing but an angel. All right? That house of insanity and he’s the only sane one, all right? [crosstalk 00:21:04] So don’t fucking talk shit about Alfred. Alex: Justin’s making a little bit of sense here because that might explain why Batman never eats any of the soup that he gets him because it tastes like shit. Justin: It’s trash soup. Because he’s not buying the high end stuff, he’s not buying the Progresso, he’s buying like… Huh? Pete: Don’t you fucking say that. Alex: [crosstalk 00:21:24] or whatever. Even Bruce is like, “Oh, this is bad.” Pete: [inaudible 00:21:31]. Alex: “I don’t like this.” Justin: Wait, Pete, are you telling me you’re like Alfred cooks the best food? Pete: Yeah. Justin: You know that for a fact? Pete: Fact! Justin: He only made little sandwiches and soups. It’s not like he was bringing out like a dinner. Pete: You don’t know what he was doing while we weren’t looking [crosstalk 00:21:48] Alex: What do you think his worst dish was? The thing when all the bat family [inaudible 00:21:53] And they’re like, “Oh, he’s making his lasagna. That’s bad.” Justin: “Master Bruce, I prepared your favorite French toast.” Justin: “Oh, Alfred’s French toast.” Pete: Yo, he’s dead, you fuckers. Where’s the respect? Alex: “It’s just too eggy.” Justin: There’s no cinnamon in it. Put a spice in it. For god sakes. Justin: [inaudible 00:22:20] He doesn’t even buy the good maple syrup. He buys the shitty stuff. Pete: You don’t know that. Don’t say that. Alex: It’s not even maple. It’s not from Vermont. It’s not B grade. Pete: Don’t you fucking… Alex: It’s Log Cabin. Justin: [inaudible 00:22:33] Log Cabin syrup. Pocketing the difference. Justin: [crosstalk 00:22:36] Justin: And then he’s given this difference. He gave it to Nightwing in this issue and that’s continuity right there. That’s the truth. Alex: I don’t want to downsize just to get back- Pete: I hate talking comics with you guys. It’s the fucking worst. Justin: That’s crazy because you do it a lot. Pete: All you do is just fucking kill my dreams and hopes. You take everything that I like in an issue and just do bits until it’s not fun anymore. You’ve killed Foggy Nelson for me and you can’t fucking leave Alfred alone. The fucking guy just died and I still can’t get any enjoyment out of… Justin: What do you think Foggy’s worst dish is? Alex: All of them. Justin: “Hey, Matt, I made dinner tonight. It’s a bunch of old gum.” Alex: I was doing the old man laugh. Where he’s going… Pete: [crosstalk 00:23:36] Please leave me alone. Justin: I love Nightwing. I love this issue. Tom Taylor is also on a great run of books. It’s great to see Nightwing, get back to some of the old stuff. Being in Blüdhaven, sort of carving out his own area away from Gotham. Pete: Great use of Blockbuster. Justin: Great use of Blockbuster. Barbara’s in this issue, touching on his relationship with Alfred, which I do think despite what I said about how just God awful his lasagna was. Pete: Fuck you. Justin: He did have a great connection with Alfred. And I love seeing that here on display. What’s he going to do with that money? Just buy some cool spandex? Alex: I don’t know. Justin: Blow it on spandex? Alex: I do want to shout out also Bruno Redondo’s art. There is a gorgeous, gorgeous two page spread that happens earlier in the issue where Nightwing is jumping off a roof and it’s the classic Batman jumping in front of the moon thing. But it’s him jumping in front of the sun. And I thought it was just such a smart, awesome thing to do to delineate Nightwing from Batman. Loved it. Let’s move on to a book that I’m betting Pete liked as well. Orcs! #2 from BOOM! By Christine Larsen. Just a bunch of orcs, doing fun orc stuff. Pete, how did you feel about this one? Pete: Yeah, we loved to the first issue of this. I like this kind of this team up, if you will, of characters. I also love the love of story in this. People will risk a lot for a great story. I can appreciate that. The torture I go through so I can read comics is real. I thought this was fun. I also love the dedication that the person wears an eye patch and has two eyes just for the love of the game. That was really fun. I think the art and storytelling is great. I love the mix of cute and gruesome things. I like where this is going. This is exciting. Justin: Yeah. The story within the story stuff is really fun. This reminded me of, this is a hyper-specific reference, but in the movie Willow, all the brownies, the little people that ride along, that’s what this book reminds me of. Pete: Really? Justin: The orcs are sort of like a version of those guys. Alex: Yeah. I can see that. I think it’s a fun book. People should definitely check it out. Next up. The Trials of Ultraman #1 from Marvel, written by, again, Kyle Higgins and Matt Groom, art by Francesco Manna, Eduardo Ferigato and Guri Hiru. We checked out the first issue of this book. And haven’t checked in in a while. Obviously, this is a new story of Ultraman. It was interesting reading this in the same week as another Kyle Higgins book and another Kaiju book. How do you think it stacked up in comparison? Justin: I wish I had read this one first, before I read Ultramega, because Ultramega felt so genre breaking that this felt very within the genre. And if you’re a fan of Kaiju books, I think this is a great version of that and it’s setting up a lot of interesting twists and turns on it and a potential new villain that I was surprised. I thought it was the backup story. I thought it was an advertisement for another book. And then it tied right into to this book. So yeah, I like this, but it definitely feels like just a fun new version of a Kaiju book. Pete: Yeah. I thought this was kind of a comparison regardless of what is better or whatever. I thought this was a cool take. It felt different enough where I wasn’t like, “Oh, this is kind of too similar.” I enjoyed where this was coming from and the perspective, I also like the start of this book. Yeah. I like what this is setting up. It’s not as long as the other one. It’s a little bit shorter, but they do a good job of keeping it simple, teasing the story, putting all the things in place. I’ve followed it well, I understood what was going on. Thought it was great art and storytelling. I think this is good. Alex: My favorite part of this book is still the insert pages. I think these are the ones that Guri Hiru is drawing where it’s instruction manuals for what to do for the Kaiju organization or if a Kaiju attacks. They’re super fun. They’re super cute. I like that quite a bit. And it really breaks- [crosstalk 00:27:52] Justin: The Kaiju steps. Alex: Kaiju steps. There you go. I enjoy those quite a bit. Agree with you guys. Otherwise, next up, Justice League #59 from DC Comics written by Brian Michael Bendis and Ram V., art by David Marquez and Xermanico. So the front story is Brian Michael Bendis on Justice League for the first time. Backup story is Ram V. doing Justice League Dark. What’d you guys think? Pete: I thought it was a fun issue. It’s kind of a setup issue, but really love the story and the art and Green Arrow wants more out of life. Justin: It’s interesting what the take here. This feels like a Black Adam book in a lot of ways. And re-introducing one of Bendis’ characters right, at the end. Alex: Naomi. Yeah. Justin: Yeah. So I don’t know, that got me a little bit, like this feels like a very Bendis move where I don’t know what the story is going to be about. It feels like it’s like him being like, “Here’s some stuff I think is cool.” And I want it to be a little bit more of like, “Here’s an idea that I’m excited to create for these characters.” The art’s really beautiful in the front story. Good Aquaman issue if you’re an Aqua fan, but I don’t know what the direction here is. It feels like it’s almost like, “You like the Justice League? Well, here’s a totally different bunch of people who are going to operate like the Justice League.” The Justice League Dark backup by Ram V. I thought was great. Spin this off and make it a book. Pete: Yeah. Alex: I agree. I really liked the backup. That was dark and weird and interesting in a very different way than James Tynion did the book, which I loved. But it was interesting to see this change and this more mythical take on the characters. For the front story, like this better than the Legion of Superheroes. I thought that was very messy. There were too many characters going on. It’s surprising that Justice League feels like it has less characters and is more focused. So that’s a little ridiculous, but the characterizations are good and fine. I don’t know. Like you said, there’s a lot of Bendis isms in the book and I would like to see what he does going forward, but it felt a little derivative down to basically doing the New Avengers cover on the cover here, but with the Justice League. And if he’s going to do that, New Avengers felt different because it was Bendis coming in and doing his Bendis thing on Avengers for the first time. You don’t necessarily get this here. I want him to do something bolder and more exciting. Justin: Yeah. If you want to do the New Avengers for Justice League, give us that hit, give us that swing and have all these new characters introduced and have it be that because that’s still a story that sticks right in the memory because it was such a big new change for the Avengers. Instead, it feels like sort of a middle ground here. Pete: I agree. Alex: Last one, let’s talk about Snow Angels #2 from ComiXology written by Jeff Lemire, art by Jock. We liked the first issue of this one, I believe, quite a bit. Takes place in a post-apocalyptic world where everybody lives in a snow filled trench. A family, a father, and two daughters is being chased by a guy named The Snowman. That picks up this issue. Pete, you’ve always been scared of snowmen. What did you think of this one? Pete: Yeah. I mean, what’s great is snowmen themselves are scary, but this is a nice heightening of that idea. Yeah. I think this is a great… First off an amazing team. And this is very action oriented, which I very much enjoy. And this does a great job. Each issue kind of leaving you really wanting more. I think this is a very intense, kind of reminds me of that horror movie where nobody can talk or whatever. So I think this is really fun. Very creative. Love the way it ended. Love the art. Alex: A Quiet Place? Is that what you’re thinking of? Pete: Yeah, A Quiet Place. [crosstalk 00:31:55] Justin: Oh, I thought We Have To Talk About Kevin. Is that what it is? Pete: No, it was A Quiet Place. Justin: Nice. Either way, this book, everyone’s skating really hard in this book. Pete: You got to skate hard, bro. Justin: You got to skate hard. So that was stressful. Great pace to this book. And a lot of just tense, a lot of tension. And I think A Quiet Place is a good comparison, I think. Alex: I would compare it to The Mighty Ducks, which is a movie with skating in it. Justin: That’s true. That’s true. And Pete, I know you love this. It’s sort of a cutting edge with less romance. Pete: [inaudible 00:32:31] Alex: This is a great book. Definitely pick it up. You have another point you want to make Pete. What’s up? Pete: Yeah. I just wanted to, while you’re wrapping up, while I was waiting for Head Lopper to come through, I did read Superman Red & Blue #1, and I just wanted to say, really fun, love the coloring, really amazing art. The Boy Who Saved Superman, a story by Wes Craig and Jill Thompson. So amazing. The art was unbelievable. His water colors and the little Clark Kent stuff was very, very adorable. Alex: I love how you act like, “Well, I have no say in what happens in this show.” Justin: And then you secretly just review stuff at the end. That’s nice. You take control in a way that I just would never be so audacious. Pete: Well, thank you. Justin: I would like to review my dinner that I made earlier, it was… But taco night, obviously… Pete: Couldn’t have been better than what Alfred would have prepared. Justin: Yeah. I made Alfred’s trash lasagna. Alex: Foggy’s famous pile of worms. And that is it for our Stack podcast. If you want to support us, patreon.com/comicbookclub. Also, we do a live show every Tuesday night at 7:00 PM to Crowdcast and YouTube. iTunes, Android, Spotify, Stitcher, or the app of your choice to subscribe and follow @comicbooklive on Twitter, ComicBookClub on YouTube, comicbookclublive.com for this podcast and more. Until next time, we’ll see you at the virtual comic book shelf. The post The Stack: Ultramega, Black Knight And More appeared first on Comic Book Club.
50 minutes | 2 months ago
The Stack: The Joker, Children Of The Atom And More
On this week’s Stack podcast: The Joker #1 DC Comics Written by James Tynion IV, Sam Johns Art by Guillem March, Mirka Andolfo Children of the Atom #1 Marvel Written by Vita Ayala Art by Bernard Chang Karmen #1 Image Comics By Guillem March Wonder Woman #770 DC Comics Written by Michael W. Conrad and Becky Cloonan, Jordie Bellaire Art by Travis Moore, Paulina Ganucheau Non-Stop Spider-Man #1 Marvel Written by Joe Kelly Art by Chris Bachalo Proctor Valley Road #1 BOOM! Studios Written by Grant Morrison & Alex Child Art by Naomi Franquiz American Vampire 1976 #6 DC Comics Written by Scott Snyder Art by Rafael Albuquerque Deadpool Nerdy Thirty #1 Marvel Written by Joe Kelly, Skottie Young, Kelly Thompson, Fabian Nicieza, Gail Simone, Daniel Way, Gerry Duggan & Brian Poeshn, Rob Liefeld & Chad Bowers Art by Cerardo Sandoval, Aaron Conley, Kevin Libranda with Bob Quinn, Patch Zircher, Michael Shelfer, Paco Medina, Scott Koblish, Rob Liefeld Home Sick Pilots #4 Image Comics Written by Dan Watters Art by Caspar Wijngaard Rorschach #6 DC Comics Written by Tom King Art by Jorge Fornés Thor & Loki: Double Trouble #1 Marvel Written by Mariko Tamaki Art by Gurihiru Black Hammer Visions #2 Dark Horse Comics Written by Geoff Johns Art by Scott Kolins Superman #29 DC Comics Written by Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Sean Lewis Art by Phil Hester, Sami Basri Eternals #3 Marvel Written by Kieron Gillen Art by Esad Ribić Birthright #47 Image Comics Written by Joshua Williamson Art by Andrei Bressan Luna #2 BOOM! Studios By Maria Llovet Sweet Tooth: The Return #5 DC Comics By Jeff Lemire The Immortal Hulk #44 Marvel Written by Al Ewing Art by Joe Bennett Specter Inspectors #2 Boom! Box By Bowen McCurdy and Kaitlyn Musto The Amazing Spider-Man #61 Marvel Written by Nick Spencer Art by Patrick Gleason The Last Witch #3 BOOM! Box Written by Conor McCreery Illustrated by V.V. Glass SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. Full Episode Transcript: Alex: Hey. What’s up, everybody. Welcome to The Stack. I’m Alex. Justin: I’m Justin. Pete: I’m Pete. Alex: On The Stack, we talk about a bunch of books that have come out this week, and let’s kick it off with the clown prince of crime himself, The Joker #1 from DC Comics, written by James Tynion IV and Sam Johns, art by Guillem March and Mirka Andolfo. This is the first time ever the Joker has an ongoing series. So of course, it’s mostly about Commissioner Gordon. I mean, this is reliably good. It’s James Tynion, Guillem March. His art is gorgeous, as usually, even with the swerve here that it mostly is not about the Joker. It’s still a really good story. I liked it quite a bit. What’d you guys think? Pete: Yeah. I was really impressed. I thought it was very interesting because it’s like “Okay. Joker #1. What are we going to get here?” and I was really impressed with the choices that they made with this comic. Also, we’re still getting this kind of Punchline kind of backup story in this, which is great, and it’s going to be really interesting to see how this Punchline thing unfolds, but yeah. As far as Joker #1, I thought they did an amazing job of getting you excited for this big kind of arc that they’re telling. I think, as far as this first issue is concerned, it does its job really well. I am very excited for more. Justin: Yeah. I really like this version of Commissioner Gordon, or ex-Commissioner Gordon. We get to see a nice flashback of when he was in the Chicago PD before he got busted down to Gotham, and it reminded me a lot of Scott Snyder’s Detective Comics run, sort of where he was plucked from that. Pete: Oh, yeah. With Jock. Jock was doing the art. Yeah. Justin: Yeah. He was plucked, and Francavilla, Frencesco Francavilla, was doing the art on that for a little bit as well when he was dealing with his son and being suspicious of him becoming a murderer. Pete: Yeah. That whole restaurant scene was just so- Justin: A hundred percent. Pete: Yeah. Justin: In this, we get a little … There’s some reflections of that here in the story as well, and it’s just a great story, and I really like the idea that it’s not a story where we have to watch the Joker being a crazy person the whole time. It’s this sort of- Pete: Or there’s three or four Jokers or … You know what I mean? Justin: Yes. This sort of detective story where we’re following Commissioner Gordon make some hard choices that I’m curious to see how plays out. Alex: It’s good storytelling across the board. If you were hesitant at all, definitely pick it up. Next up, Children of the Atom #1 from Marvel, written by Vita Ayala, art by Bernard Chang. This is an interesting take on what’s currently going on with X-Men to show us several characters that seemingly have decided not to go to Krakoa and instead be regular teenagers in high school while fighting crime as mutants. There’s, of course, a little bit of a twist there, but what did you think about this first issue? Justin: I’m curious what Pete thinks of it, because we get to see perhaps a Cyclops that he can really get on board with. Pete: Yeah. It was an issue of a comic book. Had some X-Men in it, which is great. Justin: True. Pete: There’s some fighting. Yeah. I liked a couple of the characters. Art was really good. Justin: Interesting. Not sort of a non-take there, really. I like this story a lot, especially in the larger context of the X-Men universe right now. This feels like a simple, standalone series where we’re going to follow these characters and whatever is up with them. They feel like sort of mutant wannabes, almost, trying to find their place by replicating the original X-Men in a fun way. It’s drawn really nicely. It was cool. Great reveal at the end. Alex: Yeah. I like the fact that we’re getting to see outside of Krakoa and what’s going on there, because this is a part of the world that we need to find out more about of and their reaction to things. So I am curious, given the twist at the end in particular, where this is going to go, but Vita Ayala is always reliable as a writer, but Chang’s art is good. These characters are interesting. I’m excited to read the second issue. Alex: Next up, Karmen #1 from Image Comics by and art by Guillem March. This is a very different take on an angel dressed in sort of a skeleton thing straight out of Karate Kid, right, Pete? You know what I’m talking about. Pete: I do know what you’re referencing, but I feel like this costume is a little bit more elaborate than that one. Alex: Slightly more elaborate because it actually is her skeleton, but she is visiting with somebody who … They don’t come out and say it, but has recently died or is about to die and takes her around as a ghost to sort of show her the world. It’s not quite clear to me what this book is going to be about going forward yet at this point. There’s a tease of something a little bit more at the end here, but it’s always a pleasure to see Guillem March’s art. Justin: Great art, and this feels like something that is like a labor of love, like something that the amount of time and focus put into this book is just palpable. It’s beautiful, and it’s sort of haunting in the way the story unfolds. I thought this was great, and yeah. Love the art. Pete: Yeah. It’s very sad and very powerful, and yeah. I mean, it’s kind of a twisted tale about something that is just … Whoa. Everybody okay? I thought that was a fire alarm going off there. Alex: It’s all right. Justin: No. I didn’t hear anything. Alex: I mean, I will say, to that point, not to interrupt you, Pete, but I do want to mention for anybody interested in picking this up, trigger warning for suicide in this book, potentially. They don’t come out and say it, but it’s pretty clear what’s going on there. Also, there is a fair amount of nudity. So this is not a book that should go necessarily handing to kids, but go ahead, Pete, if there was anything else you wanted to say. Pete: Yeah. It’s kind of a dark tale, but they’re kind of putting a bright kind of light on it. So I’m very interested to see how this all unfolds and what the point of this is, because it’s a little fucked up, but yeah. I mean, it’s not something you can read in the subway or something. You have to read this by yourself somewhere, but it does a great job of grabbing the reader’s attention, and I’m curious to see kind of how it all unfolds. Alex: Pete, did you take this one to your reading hole? Pete: Yeah. Yeah. Alex: Me too. Yeah. I got in my hole, just crawled up, and read that book so nobody could see me. Justin: I made a reservation in Pete’s reading hole, and I still haven’t really got my arrival date. Alex: Oh, you got to try the cheese puffs there. They are to die for. Justin: So good. Alex: Wonder Woman #770 from DC Comics, written by Michael W. Conrad and Becky Cloonan and Jordie Bellaire, art by Travis Moore and Paulina Ganucheau or Ganucheau. Excuse me. We talked about this a little bit on the live show. This is coming out of the Future State stuff. So Wonder Woman had this new status quo where she pulled herself back from being sort of a guardian of the universe type thing but instead has found herself in Valhalla in the Norse afterlife fighting the same fights over and over again. That’s the front story. The back story is showing us young Wonder Woman. I thought this was phenomenal. Justin: This was one of my favorite books of the week. Really great. I was really curious, reading all the stuff coming out of Future State, where Wonder Woman was going to land. It felt like it was going to be just not a fun place, she was going to be doing something different, and this was such a breath of fresh air. Diana sort of doesn’t know what Wonder Woman is. She doesn’t have her powers. She’s just being a warrior in its purest form. There’s a mystery unfolding behind the scenes. There’s some romance here, perhaps. Really just a great story top to bottom. Really caught me off guard. Alex: Pete, you were very patiently raising your hand. What’s going on? Pete: All right. So I’m a huge fan of Wonder Woman, but it was weird. I know there’s a lot of different kind of mythology, historical and non-historical, wrapped up with Wonder Woman. So it was like I was like “Asgard? Wonder Woman? Why am I fighting this in my brain?” It’s this weird Valhalla. I know it should be okay, but to me, it’s like I associate it so hard with Marvel that it was hard for me to be like “Yeah. This is cool. Wonder Woman’s walking around Marvel right now. This is totally fine. There’s nothing wrong with this.” Alex: Yeah. I get what you’re saying, but it’s definitely a very different take than Thor stuff over in Marvel, certainly. I agree with you. It is nearly impossible for comic books to divorce Norse mythology from Thor and the Thor comics books and Loki and et cetera, but those existed beforehand. They definitely time immemorial, and this feels like a more mythological take on Norse mythology than exactly what’s going on, usually at least, in Marvel comics. So I got over it by the end, but I was definitely there with you at the beginning with it, Pete. Justin: Thor was a different dude. He had a red beard. So that’s totally different. Pete: Sure. Sure. Sure. Yeah. Yeah, but that aside, I really thought this was a great start for this new team. I feel like this is really cool. I also really liked the backup. I thought that was fun. I’m excited for this. Alex: Well, let’s move on to one that you’re very excited for as well, Pete, Non-Stop Spider-Man #1 from Marvel, written by Joe Kelly and art by Chris Bachalo. Pete: Come on. Alex: Of course, this is taking Spider-Man and putting him in the position of Alexander Hamilton in the musical Hamilton, because he is going non-stop. Pete: Don’t ruin this for me, you fucking piece of shit. Justin: My favorite song from Hamilton is Non-Stop. Alex: Really? Justin: Yeah. Alex: Oh, interesting. Pete, you love this book. This is the fast and the furious of Spider-Man books. It’s sort of the total opposite of what’s going on in Amazing Spider-Man. No real soap opera going on here, just complete balls-to-the-wall action with brief interludes to give you backstory about what’s going on. Talk about what you liked about this book. Justin: Even those interludes are happening pretty fast. This is a smash opera, which is Pete’s medium of choice. Pete: Yeah. I love this. There’s no time wasted. It’s all non-stop. It’s all happening. During a fight scene, which is such a great idea, don’t waste time like “Oh, let’s go to a coffee shop and fucking talk about our feelings.” No. It’s all action. It is just non-stop. I loved it. The art alone is worth picking this up. Unbelievable. Just so fun how Spider-Man’s falling but counting the stories by having this inner monologue. I needed this Spider-Man, because Nick Spencer’s fucking killing me on that other Spider-Man book, and I just needed a light, fun Spider-Man Spider-Man book that isn’t doing a bunch of weird shit. So I really needed this book, and the art is just so good, and I love the pace of it. I love the action. Every single page was glorious, and then the backup story with not your mom’s Zemo here. This is a new Zemo here that’s just has a lot of sass, got some backtalk, really owning the fact that he’s rocking a purple mask in a fun way, and it’s all about that drip. Justin: He does love that drip. Yeah. I first opened this book, and I was like “Surely there’s going to be a couple stops in here.” None. Pete: No. Why do you need stops? What do you need stops for? It’s an express train. Justin: It’s an express train. Pete: You go on the local if you want some fucking stops and look around. Justin: Pete, what did you think of the backmatter where the editor, Nick Lowe, talks about how, in every single page, he’s getting his relationship with Mary Jane annulled. Pete: That’s not true. Justin: That’s how non-stop it is. Pete: That’s not true. Alex: Non-stop annulments. Yeah. Pete: That’s not true. it’s not true at all. Alex: This is the perfect team- Justin: It is true. Re-read it. Alex: I would say this is the perfect team for this book. Joe Kelly, great at this sort of thing. Chris Bachalo, great at this sort of thing. This is fun. Like you’re saying, Pete, this is the opposite of what’s going on in Amazing Spider-Man, and it’s a nice little treat after reading that. Pete: It is a nice treat. Come on. Justin: Yeah. No. I really enjoyed it. Chris Bachalo’s art’s great. It’s great to see him on a book like Spider-Man where you get to see- Pete: It’s phenomenal. Justin: There’s so much going on. The panels are crooked. When I got to the end, I was like “This surely can’t be the end,” and there’s a whole other story. So the stops kept not stopping, you know? Pete: Yeah. Exactly. Never stop stopping. What’d you guys think of the backup? Justin: Fun. Alex: The Baron Zemo backup? Pete: Yeah. Alex: I love Zemo. I don’t know what it is. I just love that guy. Pete: Yeah. I didn’t know you were such a Zemo head. Alex: I love Zemo. Pete: But this- Alex: I can’t explain it. Pete: How do you- Alex: No. Actually, I can explain it. It’s because Under Siege, Avengers: Under Siege, is probably my favorite Avengers storyline. I was like “Yo. I’m sold on this guy. This guy-“ Justin: Avengers: Under Siege is your favorite Avengers story? Alex: Absolutely. Justin: Wow. Pete: Wow. Justin: There it is. Pete: How do you feel- Justin: You love a real loose mask, huh? Pete: How do you feel about this updated Zemo a little bit? He’s got a little sass. Justin: You keep pushing his sass. Pete: Well, it’s just I haven’t seen the Zemo, and Zalben’s a Zemo head. So I’m wondering if he’s like “This is my Zemo,” or like he feels cool with it. Alex: No. It’s straight out- Justin: Pete, have you- Alex: If anything, it’s old Zemo. He’s got the loose mask back again instead of the tight mask. Pete: Sure. Yeah. Alex: His neck’s getting some air. Pete: Right, but I mean, the way he’s talking is not how Zemo normally talks. Alex: It’s fine. Justin: Pete, this story focuses on a drug called A Plus. Have you been taking some of it? Because you seem hyped. You’re non-stop right now. Pete: Dude, I am non-stop, and I needed a book like this to get me hyped. Alex: Let’s move on then and talk about Proctor Valley Road #1 from BOOM! Studios, written by- Pete: Oh, boy. Alex: … Grant Morrison and Alex Child, art by- Pete: What? Alex: … Naomi Franquiz. What? Pete: I kept the whole time reading this being like “I can’t believe this is written by Grant Morrison. It looks like such a nice, wholesome book, and I can’t believe Grant Morrison is doing this shit.” Alex: Yeah, and then you got to the end, right? Pete: Oh, yeah. I did. Alex: So this is about a bunch of kids who hear a legend about a place called Proctor Valley Road, where a bunch of people seemed to die. Like Pete’s saying, it starts relatively like just regular teen fun movie for three quarters of the book, and then things get messed up by the end in a really big way, spinning out into some mythology. It doesn’t feel like a Grant Morrison book at all, I would say- Pete: It doesn’t. Alex: … but Justin, what did you think about this one? Pete: It’s easy to follow. You can understand. It’s impressive. Justin: Well, I think the biggest difference why it doesn’t feel very Grant Morrison is the art. The choice of the artist, Naomi Franquiz, is very different, feels very not Grant Morrison, but I think it sort of plays against type a little bit in a good way, because the horror comes at you in such a different way by the end. I feel like you get in the heads of the characters very quickly, and they’re all fun, likable, smart characters. Has sort of Scooby Doo vibe with the collection and the era of characters here. Alex: Now, I don’t want to jump on you too much, but the artist’s name is actually Franquiz, and that’s a great segue to start up my Fran quiz. First question. Who played the nanny on the hit TV show The Nanny? Pete: Fran Drescher. Alex: Correct. That was the whole quiz. I can’t think of another Fran. I’m sorry. Justin: Oh, that’s good. Most famous Frans are Fran Drescher. Pete: I do want to talk about that podcast we were on, at some point. That was kind of crazy. Alex: Let’s just skip by that and instead talk about American Vampire 1976 #6 from DC Comics, written by Scott Snyder, art by Rafael Albuquerque. Here- Pete: The Querque. Alex: … shit is going down, and we’re heading towards, I would say, the endgame of American Vampire at this point as our heroes finally close in on the thing that’s going to let them beat the Tongue, the demonic entity that’s trying to take over the Earth, and things go horrifically wrong. I like this issue. I also like every issue of this book. Pete: Holy twists and turns, Batman. This is some shit. Justin: Holy twisted tongue. The Tongue always wins. Can’t beat the Tongue. Pete: Yeah. Wow. Yeah. This was very impressive. Alex: That’s what I always say to my wife. Pete: Oh, my god. Don’t be creepy, you fuck. Yeah. American Vampire just continues to impress. You think like “Okay. I got a handle on what’s going on.” Nope. No. You do not. Yeah. I think this is a really solid, great issue. The Querque is just killing it on the art. It’s a lot of fun and really crazy and over the top. Justin: Really making that nickname work. What is so great about this book and a lot of Scott Snyder’s stuff is he always had another gear. This series, there’s such a big cast. It’s like “Oh, right. These are all … I remember how all these characters work together,” and in this issue and throughout this series, they’ve been in an ever-worsening situation, and in this issue, the situation somehow gets much worse, and he focuses the cast down to the characters we care the most about and the twists and turns that happen there. He’s masterful at timing the big story moves, and this is another great example of that. Pete: That guy’s a great writer. Alex: Good stuff. Deadpool Nerdy 30 #1 from Marvel, written by Joe Kelly, Skottie Young, Kelly Thompson, Fabian Nicieza, Gail Simone, Daniel Way, Gerry Duggan, and Brian Posehn, Rob Liefeld, and Chad Bowers, art by Gerardo Sandoval, Aaron Conley, Kevin Libranda, with Bob Quinn, Patch Zircher, Michael Shelfer, Paco Medina, Scott Koblish, and Rob Liefeld. Basically, anybody that you can imagine having something to do with Deadpool over the years was pretty much involved in this. This was a bunch of short stories all set on different birthdays that Deadpool is happening. We’ll turn it over to Pete, our Deadpool expert. Pete: Yeah. This is nice. This is just a who’s who that’s put their fingerprints on Deadpool coming back to tell some fun stories, and that’s exactly what it is. You’ve got everything from Rob Liefeld making fun of pouches to just insane party birthday things. Yeah. It’s crazy. It’s Deadpool. It’s over the top. It’s fun. It’s also like the art styles are very different for all these different stories. There’s a lot of really funny stories in this, a lot of funny ideas. Yeah. The No Chill story was really fun. Yeah. I believe Deadpool would hide guns in different ice cream shops all over the country. Why not? Yeah. It’s a ton of fun. It’s a lot of great art, and it’s one of those collected stories that I think is worth it. Justin: I’ve been celebrating Deadpool’s birthday every year. So the fact that he’s hit 30 is just a real boon. I’m cutting loose like crazy over here. I thought this was fun as well. I want to give it up for the Skottie Young story, Baby’s First Cable, which is very fun. Kelly Thompson’s Best There Is was really, really good, and the Fabian Nicieza story, I thought, was very good as well. Alex: That’s the one that I wanted to call out in particular. The thing that I really liked about this book is it’s very easy to do a bunch of goofs with Deadpool, but Fabian went for something much serious and much darker, and I think people forget that Deadpool stories can get really dark sometimes. Pete: Oh, yeah. Justin: Yeah. Alex: So that was great. I was very trepidatious going into this, because I don’t usually love collections. They feel like a mixed bag, but they got the right creators working on it, and this is good. If you’re a fan of Deadpool at any point in his history, I think this is kind of a must-pick-up. Pete: Yeah. Alex: Next up, Home Sick Pilots #4 from Image Comics, written by Dan Waters, art by Caspar Wijngaard. This is so good. This book is so good. Pick up this book. Justin: It’s so much better than it has any right to be, out of the gate just coming out hot with this story about some teens who are in a band, the Home Sick Pilots. They go into a haunted house. One of them becomes this ghost gatherer of these haunted objects, and this is sort of the all fight issue where things are coming to a head. It’s so much action. It’s beautifully drawn. The premise is so strong, and it has this sort of intense loneliness about it as well that I really like. Pete: Yeah. I mean, if you would have tried to explain this story to me, I’d be like “You’re out of your gourd. This doesn’t sound good,” but it is so well done, so creative, so different. The art, the storytelling, the paneling … It all works so well. This is such a crazy unique story, and some really unique characters. Yeah. I just continue to be impressed. This is one of those ones where you get it and you’re like “Man, I hope it’s going to be as good as the last issue,” and it fucking delivers. Alex: I think a lot of it has to do with Caspar Wijngaard’s art, honestly, where the character designs are so unique. We talked about this in the last issue, but there’s a VHS something ghost, zombie, I don’t know, monster. I don’t know exactly what’s going on, but it’s so terrifyingly and beautifully drawn. One of the main ghost is this horseshoe ghost, has a horseshoe head. Again, absolutely terrifying. We find out more about the mythology here. There seems to be an outside group that kind of has maybe ghosts trapped in TVs that are strapped to their chests that are tracking down ghosts. So there’s so much going on in this book, but it- Pete: Then the haunted house double-page spread thing was fucking insane. Alex: Beautiful. The fact that everything is very distinct in terms of the look, in terms of the coloring of the book … Fantastic. Pick up this book. I cannot wait for the next issue. Next up, Rorschach- Justin: Don’t trust VHS tapes. Switch to Betamax. Alex: I only use LaserDisc, personally. Pete: Oh, wow. Alex: Rorschach #6 from DC Comics, written by Tom King, art by Jorge Fornés. In this issue, we’re continuing to work our way back through the history of our cowboy character, who was killed back in the first issue. Here, we find out how she met the Jack Kirby-esque artist who later went on to don the mask of Rorschach. This is good. I was not quite sure about it going in or what was going on, but like we talked about with the last issue, I think that really started to indicate where the story is going and sell me on it. I like this quite a bit. Pete: Yeah. I was a little worried this was going to be like that Eminem song, like “Dear Stan, my biggest fan.” So I’m glad that she didn’t kill herself in those letters or whatever, but man, this was a really great idea and well pulled off. I have no idea what’s going on in this Rorschach book, but I’ve been really impressed with all the different issues, and it’s the classic King thing where he’s like “Oh, yeah. I’m just going to give you just enough information to pick up the next issue.” That guy is a master. Alex: Pete, it’s interesting you brought that up, because you know Tom King wrote the Eminem/Punisher crossover that was in XXL. Pete: Oh, I know. It’s a fucking great issue, man. Alex: He didn’t write that, but … Justin: Wow. Pete took that bait very quickly. Pete: Yeah, but it is a great issue regardless of who wrote it. Alex: Is it? Pete: It was Eminem who wrote it. Justin: I like this issue of Rorschach a lot. I feel like Tom King is trying to say something about American with this book in a really smart, subtle way, almost as if to say … Here’s what I think he’s picking apart. In the original Watchmen book, it was all about how bringing the world together via the squid monster was a necessary thing to prevent everyone from world war from killing all human, if you were to believe that plan, and this is about how society is drifting apart and what sort of in a very personal in these personal stories, and we get to sort of see that happen in this story following these two characters who are corresponding via letter, and then we’re hearing the presidential debate underneath it all, between Robert Redford and the conservative candidate, and it’s just really good. I am always excited to see what the next big idea he’s getting to is. Pete: I’m not sick of this Robert Redford bit. This is fun. Justin: Not a bit. Alex: Not a bit. It’s real. It’s happening. Thor and Loki: Double Trouble #1 from Marvel, written by Mariko Tamaki, art by Gurihiru. This is an all-ages title showing Thor and Loki as teens? 20? Pete: Double trouble. Alex: Something like that, and just- Justin: Something. Alex: … playing some tricks on each other and having a good time. I know I’m a sucker for this sort of thing, but what did you guys think of this book? Justin: It’s fun. It’s fun to see, I mean, the inherent dynamic between Thor and Loki where it’s like “Oh, you can’t trust Loki,” but Thor always does because Thor’s a sucker for Loki. This feels the most natural of that, where they’re young, they’re sort of daring each other, and it goes instantly and horribly wrong in a fun, all-ages way. Pete: Yeah. I thought this was cute and well done in all the right ways. Even though it’s an all-ages, it’s still a very enjoyable book to read. It’s kind of fun to see them depicted this way and the kind of team-ups and mischief they get into. Yeah. It was a good book. Alex: Next up, from all ages to no ages, Black Hammer: Visions #2 from Dark Horse Comics, written by Geoff Johns, art by Scott Kolins. This is very exciting to me, personally. I don’t want to speak for you guys or the world at large, but to see Geoff Johns and Scott Kolins, the team for The Flash and many other things, collaborating on a very hardcore horror book that’s set in the Black Hammer universe, I thought, was very neat. I was a little worried about it. I wasn’t sure how it would play out, but I thought it was horrifying and well written, and I liked the little twist there. It felt like a Tales from the Crypt episode. I was very happy with how this book turned out. What did you guys think? Justin: Yeah. It felt like just classic, classic comics, comic horror with a lot of great execution. We don’t know who the bad guy is right out of the gate, and then it’s like “Oh, this is bad. Oh, maybe everything’s bad.” It feels like we end in a place where it’s just “Oh, this is just awful across the board for everyone,” which is very true to classic horror comics, I think, in a good way. Love the art. This series is so good. Next up, in April we get Chip Zdarsky and Johnnie Christmas teaming up. This has been one of my favorite anthology series to pick up. Pete: Yeah. It was creepy in ways that I wasn’t ready for a little bit. It was just like this white dude who has got a POC in the back and gets pulled over by the comics and then is like “Hey. I’m white. So you don’t fucking question me,” or whatever. So it just sucked that so far we haven’t got any … The poor kid gets really completely fucked over and then turned into something monstrous. I hope that there is a kind of redemption arc for that character a little bit, but yeah. The team and art is unbelievable. Alex: All right. Fair enough. Next up, Superman #29 from DC Comics, written by Phillip Kennedy Johnson and Sean Lewis, art by Phil Hester and Sami Basri. This is the new era for Superman that Phillip Kennedy Johnson on our live show a couple of weeks back. So it’s exciting to finally see it come to fruition. Here, we are finding out about Superman fighting an enemy that he can’t quite beat, or at least can hurt him in a certain way, and we find out from his son that this enemy might in fact kill him, which is, I would say, a big deal for comic books. What’d you think about this issue? Pete: Yeah. I mean- Justin: Has the death of Superman ever been a big deal for comics at any point? Alex: I don’t remember it in my lifetime. Pete: Yeah. I think that there’s some real touching father-son shit going on here, and that Amanda Waller, man. She’s up to something. Somebody should be watching her or paying a little bit more close attention, because- Justin: Wow. Strong viewpoint, Pete. Pete: Then there was a weird kind of backup where I was like “This just looks like The Goon,” but yeah. Alex: I don’t know. That was Bibbo, right? Pete: Yeah. Yeah. Justin: Bibbo. Alex: Bibbo. Yeah. That was Sean Lewis writing about Bibbo. He’s writing this backup story about the other folks that live in Metropolis while the Superman stuff is going on. We get a little Jimmy Olsen. We get a little Bibbo. We got some weird villains. I thought that was fun. Justin, what did you think about this book? Justin: I really like Phil Hester’s art. Phil Hester Green Arrow was a book he sort of was on for a long time, and I feel like his style really fits here in the DC universe to me for whatever reason, and I feel like this is … The Johnson Superman era has begun. I’ve really been liking the work he’s done on Superman, and this takes the continuity of Superman and his son sort of both being Superman at the same time and adds this sense of dread over top of it in a way that I thought was just really good, really smart. Alex: It- Pete: Also, it was really impressive how cool Superman was about his own death, and his son knows, but he wasn’t going to push him on it. He’s really slow playing that pretty well, and I was like “Wow. I would have been like ‘Yo. Fucking son. Tell me when I’m fucking dying here. Help me out. What the fuck. I’m bleeding out my arm and you’re being casual.'” Justin: Well, I- Alex: I mean, that feels classic Superman. Justin: Superman feels like … We know his greatest weakness is Kryptonite, but his second greatest weakness is not playing Coney ball with him, which really seems to break his god damn heart. Pete: Yeah. That was heartbreaking. Yeah. Oh, come on, man. Alex: What are the rules there? Pete: If he’s dying- Alex: How do you play Coney ball? Pete: … play Coney ball. Alex: Come on. Justin: It’s probably a lot of throwing a pine cone while you’re flying or something and trying to catch it. Pine cones sharp. Alex: Yeah. Some day. Some day we’ll get a game of Coney ball. We’ll get the rules. It’ll be a lot like Calvinball, but I guess we’ll have to find out. Eternals #3 from Marvel, written by Kieron Gillen, art by Esad Ribic. Here, we are finding out more about the Deviants in particular, the antithesis of the Eternals, as they are dealing with a spiraling-out-of-control murder mystery of their own. How’d you feel about this issue? Pete: Well, first off, the art is just glorious. It’s really beautiful. Lot of amazing character designs and stuff like this- Justin: It’s like someone took- Pete: … the facial expressions. Justin: It’s like someone took the … Sorry to interrupt you, Pete. Someone took the- Pete: No problem. Justin: He-Man characters and put them in epic Renaissance paintings. Pete: Yeah. Yeah. Justin: It’s so beautiful. Pete: It’s really impressive. It’s almost like a watercolor tone to it. It’s really great. Yeah. I’ve been enjoying. Eternals really wasn’t my bag for a long time, but this new kind of reboot is doing its job in getting me excited about a movie that maybe … I don’t know. Justin: Wow. Alex: Good conclusion there. Justin: Way to play it cool. Alex: Strong conclusion. Justin: Playing it very coy. That movie’s been announced and talked about for quite some time. Pete: Well, I don’t know when it’s actually coming out. You know what I mean? So that’s why I was trying to be like … Alex: I do think somebody mentioned this on our Patreon Slack that it feels like it’s Kieron Gillen’s X-Men, and I think that’s accurate in a way because he’s using these text pages to break everything up, but he’s maybe the only person other than Jonathan Hickman that is using that convention in a successful and exciting way. There’s a page here where the computer, who narrates the entire book, talks about how many Deviants actually exist, and they kick to a double-page spread of just names of Deviants, and it’s like “Page 10 of 7,947,” or something like that, and it plays so well because it’s this oh-shit moment of the Eternals … There’s probably 10 of them, and they getting killed off, and their enemies, the Deviants, are innumerable at this point. It’s great. Justin: Did you guys have any favorites from the Deviant page you wanted to highlight? Alex: [Corbadorbadugal 00:34:14]. Pete: [inaudible 00:34:17] that shout out. Justin: I’m going to give it up for some of my favorites from the page, [Smokewheel 00:34:22], [Bottleshirt 00:34:22], and [Dabgnorts 00:34:25]. Pete: Oh, yeah. Dabgnorts. How could I forget about Dabgnorts? Justin: I went to college with a Bottleshirt. So I feel like I know that dude. Alex: Not to keep plugging stuff, but you can go back a couple of months in our feed, and we talked to Kieron Gillen before he launched Eternals where he talked about it quite a bit. That’s in the Comic Book Club feed. So check that out. It was fun to chat with him about this stuff. Alex: Birthright #47 from Image Comics, written by Joshua Williamson, art by Andrei Bressan. We are getting to the endgame here. Here, our heroes are going after people whoa re picking the detritus of the magical battle, the climax that we had finding the God King Lore, and that leads to probably what actually this final arc is about, which is brother versus brother. What’d you think about this one? Pete: [crosstalk 00:35:17]- Justin: Can I love this book more? Can I talk about this book possibly any more in my life? I’ve given this a shine up on every single issue of this series because I love it so much, and this was great. In the midst, the fact that this is the epic end to this epic story and we still get this great, quiet bar scene between these two warriors talking about just how shit went down and the difficulties of being a rage-fueled werewolf … Did anyone on this podcast identify with that character? Anybody? Any hands going up here? Pete: I’m sure. I’m sure there was a lot of people that did. Alex: Me? Me? Was it me? Justin: You are the rage werewolf of the show. Alex: Okay. Justin: Don’t let anyone tell you different. Alex: Awoo. Pete: Yeah. I agree. This continues to just be unbelievable. Yeah. It’s crazy because it’s like “Oh, I thought this was wrapped up,” but it continues to go on in such an enjoyable way that I don’t want it to end, but yeah. I just think this is artistically and creatively one of those books that’s going to stand up over time. Alex: I agree. Next up, Pete’s favorite book of the month- Justin: Month? Alex: … maybe year, Luna #2 from BOOM! Studios by Maria Llovet. This is about a- Pete: Don’t put your weird shit on me, motherfucker. Alex: Listen, man. Maria Llovet makes some gorgeous art. That is what I am going to say. This is about a woman that is getting into a strange cult and getting sucked deeper and deeper. Justin, what did you think about this one? Justin: I like this. It’s crazy how much this is like the other book, the Brian Azzarello book. Alex: Faithless. Justin: Faithless. Yeah. Just in almost every way. So it’s a little weird to have this being out so soon after we’ve been talking about the other one, but I like this independent of Faithless. I think this is a good book. It’s sort of like the country, the unplugged version of Faithless, where there’s a lot of vests with no shirt underneath, looking in old books and playing some fun acoustic guitar. Alex: Faithless too fancy for you? Check out Luna, now from BOOM! Studios. Justin: A hundred percent. Even bad boys have a soft side. Luna, from BOOM! Studios. Alex: Next up, Sweet Tooth: The Return #5 from DC Comics by Jeff Lemire. We are at the second to last issue of this book, a rebooted Sweet Tooth. We find out some big revelations and twists in this issue. Pete, there’s a big, angry elephant. What did you think of this one? Pete: Yeah. I really enjoyed the elephant. Yeah. We got the kind of reveal, the evil master plan in this. Yeah. I think it does a great job of leading us, being like “Oh, what’s going to … Tune in next time.” Yeah. I think this is a great book. The art’s fantastic. It’s really raise the stakes. I can’t wait to see what happens in the next issue. Justin: Pete, how did you like the zoo? I really enjoyed the elephant. Pete, how’d you like the circus? I really enjoyed the elephant. Pete, how’d you like your safari? I really enjoyed the elephant. That’s all I hear from you, Pete. Alex: Hey, Pete. How were your animal crackers? I really enjoyed the elephant. Pete: The elephant. Yeah. Justin: Pete, how do you enjoy- Pete: See, the elephant animal cracker is a little bigger. So you get more cracker. That’s why it’s more enjoyable. Justin: Pete, how did- Alex: Did you bite off the legs first, or the trunk first? What did you go for? Pete: It depends on the mood, you know? Some days are a trunk day. Other are the legs. Justin: Uh oh. He’s in a real trunk mood. Pete: Yeah. Justin: Pete- Alex: Yeah. Oh, I can’t eat carbs today. It’s trunk day. Justin: Trunk day. Pete, how did you enjoy the animal in the room that no one wanted to talk about? I really enjoyed the elephant. I mean, if you like Sweet- Pete: I love walking into the room and talking about the giant elephant. You kidding me? Justin: Believe me, I’ve known you for so long I can’t hide an elephant
38 minutes | 3 months ago
The Stack: Infinite Frontier, America Chavez And More
On this week’s comic book review podcast: Infinite Frontier #0 DC Comics Written by Joshua Williamson, James Tynion IV, Scott Snyder, Brian Michael Bendis, Becky Cloonan, Michael W. Conrad, Joelle Jones, Tim Sheridan, Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Geoff Johns, Geoffrey Thorne Art by David Marquez, Jorge Jimenez, Alitha Martinez, Mark Morales, Joelle Jones, Stephen Byrne, Rafa Sandoval, Jordi Tarragona, Jamal Igle, Alex Maleev, Todd Nauck, Dexter Soy, Howard Porter, John Romita Sr. and Klaus Janson America Chavez: Made In The USA #1 Marvel Written by Kalinda Vazquez Art by Carlos Gómez Batman #106 DC Comics Written by James Tynion IV, Joshua Williamson Art by Jorge Jimenez, Gleb Melnikov Demon Days: X-Men #1 Marvel Story and Art by Peach Momoko Suicide Squad #1 DC Comics Written by Robbie Thompson Art by Eduardo Pansica Wiccan and Hulkling: King in Black #1 Marvel Written by Tini Howard Art by Luciano Vecchio The Swamp Thing #1 DC Comics Written by Ram V Art by Mike Perkins Nocterra #1 Image Comics Written by Scott Snyder Art by Tony S. Daniel Crime Syndicate #1 DC Comics Written by Andy Schmidt Art by Kieran McKeown, Bryan Hitch Jonna and the Unpossible Monsters #1 Oni Press By Chris Samnee and Laura Samnee Sea of Sorrows #4 IDW Written by Rich Douek Art by Alex Cormack The Comic Book History of Animation #4 IDW Written by Fred Van Lente Art by Ryan Dunlavey SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. Full Episode Transcript Alex: What’s up everybody. Welcome to The Stack. I’m Alex. Justin: I’m Justin. Pete: I’m Pete. Alex: And on the stack, we talk about a bunch of books that come out this week, and we’re going to kick it off with a big one. Infinite Frontier, number zero- Pete: Oh, man. Alex: … from DC Comics. Nice, simple lineup of names here. So let’s go through it. Written by Joshua Williamson, James Tynion IV, Scott Snyder, Brian Michael Bendis, Becky Cloonan, Michael W. Conrad, Joelle Jones, Tim Sheridan, Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Jeff Johnson, Geoffrey Thorne. Art by David Marquez, Jorge Jimenez, Alitha Martinez, Mark Morales, Joelle Jones, Stephen Bird and Rafa Sandovall, Jody… Oh, there we go. Jordi Tarragona, Jamal Igle, Alex Maleev, Todd Nauck, Dexter Soy, Howard Porter, John Romita Sr. and Klaus Janson. Alex: Now this is your requisite, post-event check in with the entire DC Universe. What’s going on? What’s happening with everybody? What’s everybody’s new status quo now that the continuity has changed. So we kind of know how this one goes, but the framing here is that Wonder Woman has maybe ascended to be a higher being, she’s trying to decide about that. Alex: And so she’s taken a look in on the new state and the multi-verse post Dark Nights: Death Metal. How’d you feel about this book? How’d you feel about the status quo? What jumped out at you? Pete: For me, I thought the Bat cycle was sick. Cool green Lanterns thing. And love the last page, but what is happening now with DC? Alex: Wait, what do you mean Pete? Pete: Well, like we were really enjoying these DC kind of what if books, and now it’s just all over and- Alex: Well so- Pete: … and it all- Alex: … Phillip Kennedy Johnson, when he was on the show, talked about this a little bit. He said that the Future State things are, and they talk about this in this book a bit as well, but not as explicitly, that they’re a possible future or a possible futures. These are places the continuity may be going or may not, but they’re not ignoring them. Alex: And you can see that a little bit in the Batman story that teases the magistrate storyline. That plays later in The Stack Podcast where we’re going to be talking about Batman 106, where that plays in a big way. But that’s what we’re getting here is these new status quos, these new setups, they might head towards these disasters that we’ve seen in Future State, but also maybe not. We’ll have to see what happens. Justin: … And I really like that. I liked the confidence with which DC moved forward through Future State and into this where it’s like, “Okay, all that stuff happened, you read it, and then we’re not going to dance around it. We’re just going to jump into the books and we’re going to start to pepper those things in, those things that we like, those things that-“ Pete: Maybe though? Justin: … I appreciate that though. It really- Pete: Why do you appreciate that? Because they’re saying, “We may do something that you really enjoyed, we may not. Go fuck yourself.” Justin: … I love that. I like- Pete: Really? Justin: … I enjoyed what we saw, and then if they- Pete: I very much enjoyed it, but I would like to know if I’m going to get some of it or not. Justin: Well, then you continue being a fan, I think is the real… Like, if you keep talking about the things that you loved, I think they will do those things. And the things that people didn’t like, they won’t do those things. And we [crosstalk 00:03:21]. Alex: You heard it here first, true believer. You’re going to have to check in every week to find out whether the adventures of your favorite superheroes are going to turn out good, bad, or something in between. Excelsior. Justin: I can’t. Pete: Mr. Magoo? I can’t hear anything you’re saying. Alex: Just imagine. Me, Mr. Magoo. Imagine this in the DC Universe, Future State. Pete: All I see is The Lost DVD thing. And I don’t hear anything you’re saying, because I’m just focused on The Lost DVD question that popped up. Alex: Here’s the big twist, Pete, that Lost DVD thing behind me has been here the whole time. Justin: Wow, I don’t know if that’s- Pete: Well, that’s not true. Justin: … a direct quote from Lost- Pete: That’s not true. Justin: … but even if it’s not, I don’t want to hear it. I like the Batman stuff I think is really fun here. It’s interesting that Grifter is now just fully part of the Bat Universe. The Bat Universe feels fairly large right now. Alex: Yes. Justin: And- Alex: Well, and you get to see more of that in Batman 106 as well. It’s a big cast, but I agree with you. I like how James Tynion is playing with it. I like the potential threat of The Magistrate. I love the reveal at the end here of what Scarecrow looks like right now. That’s pretty terrifying. What’s up Pete? Pete: So you guys are just okay with the fact that we just got two months of amazing stories and now like, “Eh, done.” “Maybe we’re going to do something-“ Alex: They told us. That’s exactly what was happening going in. Pete: … You can tell us that. But then when you fall in love with it, as you’re reading it and buying these, and then have it maybe show up or maybe be taken away, it’s just- Alex: This is the same thing that happened to you with Titania when you went to Europe, Pete. It was supposed to be two months. And then you were like, “Okay, let’s head home, baby.” And she’s like, “No, I live here. I cannot come with you, Pete.” Pete: Did you say Titanita? Alex: Titania. Pete: Oh. Alex: Come on. You know the name of your ex-girlfriend, Titania, who you met in Belgium. Pete: Yeah, sure. Justin: Titania. Famous. Famously, a real person’s name. Read a little Midsummer Night’s Dream over there? Alex: Titania. Pete: No, I don’t know? Alex: Oh, man. Justin: I’m curious what Green Lantern’s going to do. They introduced the Teen Lantern here, which, okay, a little up in the air there. Flash really puts a flag in like, “We’re fully back to Wally West as the main Flash,” which Alex, you must love. Alex: Great. Feeling a little conflicted after the past couple of years of storyline there. But I will say one thing that I was very happy about was Geoff Johns and Todd Nauck, back on Stargirl. They’ve been going all in on that since the series came back. They’re going to another story I think, coming up, another comic. That’s great. It’s just fun. They capture the tone perfectly. I’m really enjoying it. And I really like what they do here. Setting up Pat as connected to The Seven Soldiers of Victory, which is something from the TV show, where they’re doing the very smart thing of creating stories that work in the DC continuity, also work for fans of the TV show. I think that’s very, a nice thing to do. Justin: How hyped were you when Darkseid’s knee-high boot slammed on The Spectre’s head? Pete: Ah, spoiler dude. Jesus. Alex: Let’s talk about the end of the book. Always. Great to see John Romita Sr. and Klaus Janson’s art on stuff. Pete: Yes. Alex: That’s awesome. Justin: Agreed. Alex: Who cares about Darkseid? To be totally- Pete: What are you talking about? Alex: … blunt about it? There’s been so many Darkseid stories. I appreciate the idea that like- Pete: There’s a ton of Joker stories. Alex: … “We’re bringing it back to basics. It’s Darkseid versus the whole DC Universe. None of this crazy perpetuous stuff. We’re just going to clean it up. It’s just going to be a slam bang slab fest. Let’s have a little bit of a fun time here guys.” That’s great. But at the same time, I’ve read so many stories of Darkseid versus the DC Universe. If he had been away for a while, that would be a different thing. But we’ve had so much Darkseid in different iterations. He’s been on a justice league team. His daughter has been hanging around. If it was a character that was gone for a while, I feel like the impact would have been much greater. But as is, I was like, “All right, this is very nice art, happy to read this. I’m sure this will be fun.” But this is not the cliff hanger I think it was meant to be. Pete: Oh, I completely disagree. I was so happy to see Darkseid at the end of it, because I was just… First off, it’s a zero issue. So fuck you for putting all that shit in a zero issue. Fuck you. That is not a Zero Issue. There is so much important that happens in that issue. It’s unbelievable. Justin: Oh, I thought you were going to drop a beat, drop a little rhyme there. Pete: [crosstalk 00:07:50] It was a spam phone call. Alex: We put it in a zero issue. Don’t blow it in a tissue. Pete: Please don’t be the white guy, beat-boxing and trying to rhyme. That’s just awful. Alex: I mean I think- Pete: Stop it. Alex: I think that was- Pete: Stop. Alex: … I think that was really good. Pete: No. I… In all this madness, to see Darkseid, I was like, “Yes. Okay. Now we can get to a storyline. I understand what’s happening here. I don’t know why there’s all this other madness going on, but I can understand this.” So I felt really good about that ending and it got me excited to read the first issue. What the fuck? Justin: Does Darkseid always look like he’s crumbling to you guys. I feel like he’s like a gritty sidewalk. He’s like concrete that’s slowly just crumbling out. Like, he needs a good moisturizer? Pete: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Alex: Do you think that’s how to stop him? Pete: We all need a good moisturizer. Alex: Send him to a spa day? Justin: Yeah. A solid pressure washer would really take him down I feel like. Pete: No, man. Alex: Just give him a cream called The Pro-life Equation. It would just really smooth him out. Let’s move on and talk about America Chavez: Made in the USA, number one from Marvel. Written by Kalinda Vazquez. Art by Carlos Gomez. So this is, of course, bringing back a solo title for America Chavez. It is revamping her origin quite a bit, adding some new details, some new threats. What’d you think about this book? Justin: I like this. America Chavez is such a unique, her power set is so weird. And so I like… And her origin is so specific with her coming from another earth and sort of wandering into our world. And then most recently on the Avengers West Coast team. Very fun. I think this book’s great. Pete: Yeah. I agree. I really thought this was a fantastic first issue. Gets you excited for this world and what’s going on. I really like the character. Also, super nice of her, in the middle of a mole battle, to answer questions from somebody with just a camera that… like an old camera, not even like a cell phone. So I was very impressed with her and how she handles herself. Yeah, I think they did a great job of getting me excited for more. I think this was a really solid first issue. Love the art, love the writing. Alex: It probably helps that this starts out in Los Angeles, but it definitely feels of a piece with the work that Kelly Thompson did on the West Coast Avengers title, on the Hawkeye title as well. You got Kate Bishop cameo in here. But it moves off into its own thing, but it has that sense of fun, that sense of weirdness. It’s great. I really enjoyed this book quite a bit. Alex: Let’s move on to the book that we talked about a little bit earlier, at least teased a little bit earlier, Batman, number 106 from DC Comics. Written by James Tynion IV and Joshua Williamson. Art by Jorge Jimenez and Gleb Melnikov. This is the new status quo for Gotham City, Batman chilling out in a basement with Ghost-Maker, fighting crime. Until some new and old villains are coming for him and things are tightening quite a bit. This is, I thought, great. Justin: Yeah, I agree. I really- Alex: Pete, you have a question though. You raised your hand. Pete: Yeah. I just… You love a good commercial in the middle of the comics. So I was just wondering what you thought of The Oracle eating Ruffaloes? I thought that was a nice nod to Mark Ruffalo who may, or may not be- Alex: Dude sadly died and was made into potato chips? Is that what you’re talking about? Pete: … Yeah, exactly. Justin: Tragic. Pete: I’m just wondering, because you love when they change the, instead of ruffles, they… So they were cute with that. Just wondering usually, you enjoy that. So I was just wondering… Alex: Yeah, I wish there was a little bit of a Hulk crunch on there, that would have really nailed it. But I guess, wrong universe, you couldn’t go do that. Justin: Hard to do that, yeah. Alex: Yeah. But yeah, that was my big takeaway from the book as well. So thank you, Pete. Pete: Yeah, yeah. Yeah, it was cool to see Batman working with Oracle. Just, she’s super caszh that she can fight crime and eat chips. I mean, that’s pretty awesome. But it was also interesting, this Ghost-Maker and Batman dynamic. To see how casual they are sometimes is a little jarring, but it’s fun. It’s a new kind of dynamic. And I like the new villain who didn’t get their reveal out before they got punched in the face, was cool. Yeah, I think the Demon or Detective was fun. So it should be interesting to see how this all unfolds. So I’m in. Justin: Yeah, and the way that this spins directly out of the Future State stuff to have this villain, this scientist setting up the Magistrate program, that they really used a ton in the Future State, but never really resolved. So I think that’s cool. And we get to see that build up. I do miss… I think it’s strange that Ghost-Maker is replacing Robin, basically? In a weird way. We get a Robin backup here in this issue, which I also thought was cool. Pete: Oh, that was awesome. Justin: Now after you’ve had a long day of fighting crime, do you go home and spar with your buddy? I think I’d be like, “Come on, man. Let’s [crosstalk 00:13:09].” Alex: Sure, if you’re a chef, you’re cooking all day and then you go home and you eat. Same thing. Justin: Cooking and eating is actually two very different processes, Alex. Alex: No, I don’t think so. I don’t think so. Pete: Maybe a chef goes home and orders food, because he’s so tired of cooking. Alex: We talked about this quite a bit, but James Tynion’s run has had these weird stops and starts. It’s been so good across the board, but it was supposed to be a very short storyline. Then it got expanded. Then it got interrupted by the Future State and Dark Nights: Death Metal stuff. So, this feels like a new fresh start for him. And I’m really hoping this time it gets to be whatever ongoing story he wants to tell, because he’s such a good storyteller. I don’t want to see another event come in, or another switch, or something like that. I want to see what is the long form story that James Tynion has to tell about Batman. Pete: I was very confused, because the Batman one was the first time I saw the cover and I was just like, “What happened to the last event?” The cover was… I was just like, “What is going on?” So, I’m glad we got in, in the Zero Issue. Alex: Well, let’s move on to something you probably like, Pete. Demon Days: X-Men, number one from Marvel Comics. Story set by Peach Mamoko. This is a very different take on the X-Men. What’d you think Pete? You like this book? Pete: Well, yes, I did very much the art- Justin: Huge X-Men fan, Pete LePage. Pete: … Normally, yes. The art is absolutely glorious. It is just almost like a painting here. I’m a sucker for watercolors. I just love it. The character designs are so cool and unique. It’s got this kind of like old style [inaudible 00:14:53] meets new. I’m very, very much into this. It was really cool. And the wolf is Wolverine named Logan. I was in it to win it, and they really delivered on this first issue. Justin: I agree. The art is very… it’s really beautiful here. I thought it was interesting for an X-Men book to have Venom be the villain, and Hulk be here? Is what I took the big red demon to be. Pete: They’re two characters in Marvel, so. Justin: Yeah, but I don’t know if you follow the X-Men really, but they’re traditionally not associated with them. Alex: Well, that was the thing that was- Pete: Sure. Alex: … confusing to me. I read this book and not once did any island fuck another island. So it didn’t feel like an X-Men book to me, to be honest. Justin: I think it was implied that Japan was fucking another- Pete: Go on. Go on- Justin: … the Philippines. Pete: … name one other island. Alex: I was going to say, yeah. Justin: I was trying to name a neighboring island, because the islands don’t travel to fuck, they fuck the neighboring islands. Alex: I can picture the map. See, we got into your head. It’s just Japan, and there’s nothing around you except ocean. [crosstalk 00:16:02]. Pete: Absolutely nothing. It’s nothing. Justin: A lot of ocean. Pete: Oh, yeah. Justin: Right. Alex: There you go. Yes. Very good book. Let’s move on to talk about Suicide Squad, number one from DC Comics. Written by Robbie Thompson. Art by Eduardo Pansica. This is bringing in a little bit of the upcoming movie with Peacemaker. The thing that I thought was kind of fascinating about this, we didn’t talk about this- Justin: Kind of? Alex: … this happens in Infinite Frontier, number zero. Continues in the Batman issue. But big event, pretty much everybody in The Arkham Asylum is killed. Seemingly by Joker Gas. Turns out later it’s actually the Scarecrow faking Joker Gas, including most of the inmates, including potentially Bane, among other folks. But the Suicide Squad issue takes place the same time as that. They’re trying to break Talon out of Arkham Asylum when The Gas comes, and that’s what we’re playing with here. I like this. I thought Robbie Thompson writes a good Suicide Squad. I think the danger is there. The unnecessary deaths are there. So it hits all the bases. And Eduardo Pansica’s art is real good. Justin: I can’t believe we lost Film Freak so early on in his career. Pete: Yeah. Justin: RIP. Pete: I mean, I agree. I thought this was really great issue, and hopefully, the movie will be just as enjoyable. It’s fun because all the Peacemaker dialogue in my head, it was John Cena speaking those lines. I didn’t like the Superboy reveal, did not like that. That was scary. I thought it had a really great ending. And then it was also weird how Waller was like, “I’m tired of losing.” Alex: She loses a lot. Justin: She loses a lot. I love the page of Superboy was great, I thought. The kryptonite shackles and the- Pete: It made me sad. Justin: … It’s sad. It is sad. Because Superboy is a hero and he’s entrapped. Alex: Sorry about that, Pete. I hope you get past that. Let’s talk about Wiccan and Hulkling: King in Black, number one from Marvel. Written by T.D. Howard. Art by Luciano Vecchio. This is following up on the Empire event. They are married now, they’re ruling space, and of course, some goop dragons bash their way into their honeymoon and they have to deal with that. Lots of fun stuff in here. I always like a good Wiccan and Hulkling book. And I think T.D. Howard captures their voices quite well. Justin: Yeah, and this book- Pete: Agreed. Justin: … I liked that this was just a fun book. It wasn’t trying to do a bunch of stuff. It was like, “Okay, we’ve seen… We know where these two characters are, but we haven’t actually seen them be married and be ruling. So let’s just do that and have it be a fun tie-in.” And I think it was very successful at that. Pete: Yeah, I completely agree. The lightheartedness added to this big kind of a King in Black event was really cool. I really love the interaction of the guy who’s holding up the little orb. And there are a lot of really cool moments, fun, little moments. I also like how, when they get the robot present, they think it’s just a champagne delivery robot, which is just a fun thing. Pete: And then just to see them together is great. I think this is just… The art’s fantastic. There’s just enough action. The balance with fun and give us some good relationship moments. This is just a great book from start to finish. You kind of know what you’re going to get a little bit, and they really deliver on it and don’t let you down. I was very happy with this book. Alex: Next up, The Swamp Thing, number one from DC Comics. Written by Ram V. Art by Mike Perkins. This is a new Swamp Thing with a new M.O. New villains, new weirdness, same old horror. Justin, I think you’ll love this one. Justin: [crosstalk 00:19:49] loves plants, that guy. Alex: And we should mention, on the Future State beat, this is the team that wrote The Swamp Thing: Future State book that was so excellent. Here, they’re dealing with an entirely different Swamp Thing, entirely different story. But I think if you like that, and that book was great, it was very exciting to see them taking on this one as well. Justin: Yeah, I agree. The Future State book was very sort of clinical. It got into some… It was about Swamp Thing building his children and how he did it in this future Earth. And this brings some of that clinical wraparound to this series. And then we just get into some brand new characters, some mythology building. I think it’s the same sort of green versus the rot situation in a good way. But a brand new character, who’s Swamp Thing. We don’t, he doesn’t seem aware of that he is Swamp Thing. And we’re getting that slowly told over the course of this first issue. Really nice art. This book reminded me of early Starman, both in- Pete: Ooh, really? Justin: … the writing and the art style. So I’m here for it. Pete: Couple of things Justin, if you don’t mind, since- Justin: I do mine, so let’s just do one thing from you Pete, if possible. Pete: … Oh, okay. All right. Great, great. So if it’s just one thing, I guess I’ll just pick the… It starts off with a plane being grabbed out of the sky by a giant, let’s say, beanstalk. Like, that’s really high up. I mean that- Alex: No, no, no, no. Pete: … I mean, to grab a plane- Alex: Okay, so the guy- Pete: … out of the sky- Alex: … Can I clarify this one? Pete: … I’m talking to Justin. Alex: Oh, okay. Pete: I’m having a conversation with Justin. He’s the Swamp Thing expert. Trying to get some clarification here. Justin: Are you familiar with- Pete: No, go ahead [crosstalk 00:21:34]. Justin: … one of the other major beanstalk storylines, Jack versus Beanstalk? Pete: Right, right. I’m very familiar. Justin: That beanstalk went very high up. It went so high up there were giants living there. Pete: Yeah, that’s what I thought. Justin: So, beanstalks- Pete: That’s why I said beanstalk, because that’s the only thing that I know that could reach a plane in the sky. Alex: There are big, tall, terrible giants in the sky. Justin: That’s true. That’s the point Alex wanted to make. Alex, not very religious, but he does believe that giants dominate, live in the sky in the clouds. [crosstalk 00:22:04] Alex: The lyrics I know from Into the Woods, I say out loud, whenever I can. No, it was not a beanstalk, Pete. The new Swamp Thing was riding on a plane. He was having nightmares. And in his nightmare, he pictured himself exploding into plants out of the plane, not a beanstalk- Pete: No. Alex: … rising to the plane. Pete: I thought [crosstalk 00:22:23]. Alex: No, but then basically, Swamp Thing powers exploded outwards while he was still on the plane, causing it to break. Fantastically drawn panel. I love that. So terrifying. But it turns out he’s just having a nightmare there. Pete: Oh, okay. All right, so- Justin: He’s made of plants though? Alex: Yeah. Pete: … All right. So question number two then will be for both of you guys, since you both seem to be experts. Alex: Okay. Pete: One of the reasons I had to move out of New York City is because anytime you’re walking in central park, there’s always people popping out of the trees. And at first I thought it was like a [inaudible 00:22:54] of elves, just when the elves got too big, they got kicked out of the trees. Justin: Yes, this all- Pete: But it turns out it’s Swamp Thing. Justin: … this all checks out so far. Pete: I just… That part… The book to me was a lot creepier and scarier than I was ready for. I’m just wondering, have you guys, in Central Park, seen the people popping out, or? Justin: The people popping in the park, people popping in the park. Let me say Pete, I feel like, so you wanted a book that was more focused on beans and elves? And this book just didn’t really have that for you. Pete: Well, no. I mean, Swamp Thing can be kind of a horror story type of thing, but there’s also a lot of great stories that Swamp Thing does where it’s got a little heart, a little love, that kind of stuff in it. But I was just… They weren’t straight horror for this issue. So I was a little- Justin: Well, I think they’re going to… Pete: … taken aback. Justin: Once we get to know the character, I think that you’ll find the heart there. And The Swamp Thing, also a great history of horror. Have you guys ever grown beans? Pete: Yeah. Alex: No, but I will say that when you’re walking out and somebody pops out. That happened to me one time, and he showed me things, many beautiful things that I hadn’t thought to explore. Justin: A hundred percent. Let’s let that hang in the air for a little bit longer. Nice. Alex: Pete, any other questions? Pete: Nope. No, thank you for filling those. I appreciate it. Alex: Absolutely. Justin: Anytime. Alex: Anytime. Let’s move on to talk about Nocterra, number one from Image Comics. Written by Scott Snyder. Art by Tony S. Daniel. Now we had Scott on the live show a couple of weeks back to talk about this very book. He teased it. It’s all about a post-apocalyptic world where there’s no sun and a girl who lives in it, who used to be blind that is now the only one who can lead them. Justin: I’m just a post-apocalyptic girl living in a post-apocalyptic world, Alex. When will you understand that? Alex: I thought it was great. This is Scott Snyder’s big wild storytelling matched with Tony S. Daniel’s superhero art. There’s… I love the idea of a post-apocalyptic world where it’s 13 years later and people are like, “Time to dress crazy now. Let’s do this.” Justin: I can’t wait for the apocalypse when it’s like- Alex: What? Justin: … “All right, dude. Now you can wear lights on your head and stuff.” Like, “Get loose with your fashion.” Alex: We’re living in an apocalypse right now and I’m dressed the same as I always have. Pete: Oh, boo. Justin: Exactly. You’re not taking advantage. Alex: I’m not. [crosstalk 00:25:21]. Pete: I tell you, the truck lights in this is amazing. I hope that catches on and truckers start really lightening up their trucks like that. So that’s magical. Justin: Yeah, when will the truckers catch on? I like this book a lot. Really fun world that’s created here. Scary. You ride along with your, this, our main character here, and really feel for her. It’s fun. Pete: Art’s great. Really think it’s a very interesting, cool story. And they do such a great job of getting you excited for this world and trying to figure out all the things that have gone wrong. A lot of really cool, interesting moments. I did want her to look a little bit more like a trucker and less like a superhero, but then whatever, that’s cool. Alex: No, but I think that’s what you do with Tony S. Daniel. He’s an amazing superhero artist. So you lead into that, and you get wild designs, and you give people superhero costumes, and you make that work. It’s Scott playing to Tony S. Daniel’s strengths, the same way that he does to Jock, or the same way that they do in Undiscovered Country to Giuseppe Camuncoli. Just leaning into those artists and what they can do. And then following this pass down. I think that’s what works here, and it’s fun. Justin: I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone utter the phrase, “I wish that person looked more like a trucker.” And I appreciate it. Very rarely said thing. Alex: Next up, Crime Syndicate, number one from DC Comics. Written by Andy Schmidt. Art by Kieran McKeown and Bryan Hitch. Here we’re getting a semi-satirical look at the crime syndicate and their world and how they come together on the newly revamped Earth-3. What’d you think about this one? Justin: These people love crimes. It’s our heroes, but they love crimes. Alex: This didn’t really hit for me to be honest. There’s some bits that I liked it at, but- Justin: Maybe you didn’t get it Alex, but it’s the heroes that you know and love, but then they love crimes. Alex: My favorite page is the backup story for which is, I don’t remember, Ultraman? Is that what he’s called? The Superman add-on? Pete: Yeah. Alex: Ultraman’s origin, it’s a riff off of All-Star Superman. And you get the first three panels are kind of the same. And then the last one is, it shows the Kents and it’s like deranged psychopaths or something like that? Pete: Yeah. Alex: That’s funny, that made me laugh. But then I feel like it didn’t quite follow up from there, the rest of the story. I wanted to go wilder and darker this book, personally. Pete: Really? Alex: Yeah. Pete: I thought it was too dark for me. Seeing a Superman figure, this Ultraman guy, be so douchey and so… Abusing, his power in such an awful way, it was just so scary and against everything that I want out of a superhero. Like throwing a newspaper truck in a high rise of a skyscraper, through the office glass, just because someone wrote a story about you? Go fuck yourself, you fucking superhero. I have thicker skin, Jesus’ age. But yeah, I think that’s the point of it to just show how evil and douchey people can be I guess? But yeah, to me, it was a little too dark and I wish they took it back a little bit. So I guess a little different from [inaudible 00:28:39]. Justin: I agree with Alex, I wanted to go further. It felt like it was heading for that tone of a Mark Russell book, but it doesn’t quite go that far with the satire. I agree with you also, I did like the backup. Felt like a little bit more in that sort of fun, irreverent tone taking on the Superman origin. Alex: Let’s move on and talk about one that I bet Pete liked, Jonna and the Unpossible Monsters, number one from Oni Press. By Chris Samnee and Laura Samnee. This is a- Pete: Aww. Alex: … all ages title. Pete: They’re writing a comic book together. Alex: They’ve been working together for a while. Pete: Sure. Great. Alex: Pete, talk about what you liked about this book. Pete: First of all, words, don’t need them. This book proves that. A lot of amazing panels with barely any words. The art’s unbelievable. Love the character design. Such a cool, interesting world. And also kind of a nightmare, I’m sure, for you parents to yutes over there, that has to be like your worst nightmare. You’re watching your kid, then all of a sudden you get taken out or get a bump on your head, and now you don’t know where your kid is. I mean, that has to be like your worst nightmare come true. But yeah, I really, really enjoyed this. I think it’s such a solid first issue. I can’t wait to see where this goes. Justin: I agree. This was very fun. It reminded me, maybe I have Bone brain, given what we’ve talked about lately, but they reminded- Pete: Yeah, you do. Justin: … me of Jeff Smith’s Bone. Alex: Come on, everything can’t remind you of Jeff Smith’s Bone. Justin: That’s not, the times I’ve mentioned Bone in the last couple of podcasts we’ve done have not been because something reminded me of it. And this legitimately does. It has that really smart paneling, good storytelling, some heart to it. I liked it a lot. Alex: I thought this was really good as well. Just classic storytelling. Like you were saying, Pete, from the Samnees. I think they did a great job. If you’re looking for something fresh and new, check this out. Next up, Sea of Sorrows, number four from ITW. Written by Rich Douek. Art by Alex Cormack. This is continuing a increasingly bloody and deadly- Pete: Oh, man. Alex: … mermaid saga. Bunch of folks trapped on a ship. It’s like Under Siege, but with killer mermaids. I think that’s a fair way of putting it, right? Justin: Ooh, that’s nice. When does she sing, Part of Your World? I just feel like I just don’t know how they’re going to work it in? Alex: It just hasn’t come yet, but there’s a couple of more issues to go in the mini series. So I’m sure it’s coming. Justin: I like this book. It’s got such a great tone to it. I mean, obviously, Under Siege is… A lot of huge fans out there of Under Siege, especially Under Siege Two. Alex: Dark Territory? Yeah, of course. Pete: Oh, my god. Justin: A hundred percent. Way to drop that you’re a huge train fan. So the fact that those- Pete: Are you guys talking about fucking Seagal movies over here? Alex: Yeah. Justin: Specifically- Alex: Always. Justin: … Under Siege Two. Alex, when you got into Under Siege Two, did you come at it as an action movie fan, or more about from a train fan? We were just wondering. Alex: No, I was more of a people-popping-out-of-a-cake fan. That’s kind of where I started with Under Siege. Pete: Oh, come on, man. Alex: Then I sort of went from there. Pete: Nice. Justin: A lot of people come to it from there. Alex: So, yeah. You should check out my letter box list of that. Pete: Oh my God. Yeah, this- Alex: Movies with people popping out of cakes. Pete: … Anyways, back to the comic. So this is like- Justin: Back to the comics? Never! Pete: … It’s very scary, very intense and the paneling, and just the action, and the design of this really does such a great job of really getting into this frenzy like, “Holy, what’s going to happen?” All these things are kind of happening at once to this ship. And just when you think like, “Okay, I got a handle on this evil mermaid.” It keeps getting heightened levels and levels of how scary she actually is. This is really just a horrifying, amazing comic that really creeps me the fuck out and makes me never want to go on a boat again. Justin: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Alex: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Justin: Yeah, I agree. It’s good horror. When the mermaid opens or body mouth, do you feel like it’s very Little Shop Of Horrors and perhaps the song coming out of the mouth is some sort of Suddenly Seymour style song? Alex: No, it reminded me a little bit of the end of the first act of Into the Woods. When they’re saying, “Into the woods, we have to go, I hate to leave a have to though.” That’s mostly what it reminded me of. Justin: Interesting. [crosstalk 00:33:11]. Alex: Not related, but just always, that’s always in my head. Justin: It’s true. Alex: Last one to talk about, The Comic Book History of Animation, number four from IDW. Written by Fred Van Lente. Art by Ryan Dunlavey. This is a guinea for Pete, because not only is it about the rise of the Studio Ghibli films, it’s also about the rise of animation on Saturday mornings with GI Joe, with He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, She-Ra, all of that good stuff. As usual- Pete: Yeah, don’t forget She-Ra. Alex: … super well-written, super fun to read, super informative. This is just a great- Pete: Gem. Alex: … book. Pete: I mean, Fred Van Lente is just knocking it out… It’s so informative. And the art is so creative and cool. This really does such a great job of teaching you things about things that you already know and love in such a fun, creative way. I really want this to be like an animated podcast or something. This is just so- Justin: Ooh, yes. Pete: … so cool that I don’t want this to stop. I want to learn all things in this format, and I want to learn it from these two. I was just so impressed by this. I grew up in this time and just learning all of this stuff is really crazy. As a kid I just love Saturday mornings. And yeah, this is just so hilarious. The Superman sitting down at like a Hollywood place with Fred, from Scooby Doo doing the finger guns? Hysterical. I love Skeletor in this. Just I just so many amazing, cool things. I [crosstalk 00:34:42]. Alex: Well, and Pete, I have a question
47 minutes | 3 months ago
The Stack: BRZRKR, Stray Dogs And More
On this week’s Stack podcast, we’ve got reviews for: BRZRKR #1 Boom! Studios Written by Keanu Reeves and Matt Kindt Illustrated by Ron Garney Stray Dogs #1 Image Comics Written by Tony Fleecs Art by Trish Forstner The Amazing Spider-Man #60 Marvel Written by Nick Spencer Pencils by Mark Bagley Two Moons #1 Image Comics Written by John Arcudi Art by Valerie Giangiordano Future State: House of El #1 DC Comics Written by Phillip Kennedy Johnson Art by Scott Godlewski Future State: Aquaman #2 DC Comics Written by Brandon Thomas Art by Daniel Sampere Future State: Legion of Super-Heroes #2 DC Comics Written by Brian Michael Bendis Art by Riley Rossmo Future State: Superman vs. Imperious Lex #2 DC Comics Written by Mark Russell Art by Steve Pugh Future State: Suicide Squad #2 DC Comics Written by Robbie Thompson, Jeremy Adams Art by Javier Fernandez, Fernando Pasarin Future State: Dark Detective #4 DC Comics Written by Mariko Tamaki, Joshua Williamson Art by Dan Mora, Giannis Milonogiannis Future State: Batman/Superman #2 DC Comics Written by Gene Luen Yang Art by Scott McDaniel, Ben Oliver & Steven Segovia The Department of Truth #6 Image Comics Written by James Tynion IV Art by Elsa Charretier Faith #1 BOOM! Studios Written by Jeremy Lambert Illustrated by Eleonora Carlini X-Men #18 Marvel Written by Jonathan Hickman Art by Mahmud Asrar Something is Killing the Children #15 BOOM! Studios Written by James Tynion IV Art by Werther Dell’edera Nailbiter Returns #10 Image Comics Written by Joshua Williamson Art by Mike Henderson Firefly #26 BOOM! Studios Written by Greg Pak Art by Pius Bak Crossover #4 Image Comics Written by Donny Cates Art by Geoff Shaw Skulldigger: Skeleton Boy #6 Dark Horse Comics Written by Jeff Lemire Art by Tonci Zonjic Ice Cream Man #23 Image Comics Written by W. Maxwell Prince Art by Martín Morazzo Crimson Flower #2 Dark Horse Comics Written by Matt Kindt Art by Matt Lesniewski Post Americana #3 Image Comics Story and Art by Steve Skroce You Look Like Death #6 Dark Horse Comics Written by Gerard Way Art by Shaun Simon The Scumbag #5 Image Comics Written by Rick Remender Art by Wes Craig Rain Like Hammers #2 Image Comics Written and art by Brandon Graham SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. Full Episode Transcript Alex: What’s up, everybody? Welcome to The Stack. I’m Alex. Justin: I’m Justin. Pete: I’m Pete. Alex: And on The Stack, we talk about a bunch of books that have come out this week, or do we? Or do we? Justin: Way to create some intrigue. That’s right. Alex: Because the first book that we’re going to talk about is a book that doesn’t come out until next week, but we’re going to do a spoiler-free review of it. It is- Justin: A preview review. Alex: Preview review. It is Berserker #1 from BOOM! Studios, written by none other than Keanu Reeves and Matt Kindt, illustrated by Ron Garney. Pete: Oh, no wonder. Justin: I’ve been following Keanu Reeves’s comic book work for a long time, and it’s great to see just a brand-new book with his name on it. Alex: Yeah. It was great. Pete: That was driving me fucking crazy. I did not notice that he wrote this. Alex: Wait. Really? Pete: That’s hilarious. Yeah. I was like- Alex: You were like “Oh, it looks like Keanu Reeves in this book?” Pete: … “Why does the guy look so much like fucking Keanu Reeves?” Oh, that’s hilarious. Alex: Well, I mean, I got to say, I mean, who knows how much he was sitting down at his typewriter being like “Scene one. Berserker. Open on me”? But a lot of times, I feel like there are these insert-style comics that just don’t work. They’re star vehicles. They’re trying to set up a movie, and they just … They’re not comics. They’re pitch sheets, and that’s pretty much it. That’s not what this is at all. Not only do you have Ron Garney’s phenomenal art throughout- Pete: Yeah. Justin: I love Ron Garney, and I feel like he hasn’t been doing enough stuff lately. So it’s great to see his work here. Alex: So that’s great, but also you got Matt Kindt, who knows his way around an intrigue storyline, a sci-fi storyline. Again, we’re going to skirt spoilers but not get into any here. But even though the main character is clearly Keanu Reeves, this is a really interesting sci-fi story. It’s a great action story. A lot of times, they just step back and let Ron Garney do his thing. I was very surprised and very impressed by this book. Justin: Yeah. It’s one of those books that when you’re reading the first bit of it, it’s like “I see what this is,” and then by the end you’re like “I was completely wrong. It’s totally different, and I am excited by where it landed.” Alex: Pete? Pete: Yeah. I mean, I’ve been reminded numerous times not to give away anything, but man, that ending. Am I right? Oh, shit. No, but yeah. The art and action is phenomenal. This is definitely in my wheelhouse, less dialogue, more action. Come on. Alex: It’s really good stuff. I mean, this is already a huge selling comic book. I think they sold 600,000 copies, making it the best-selling original property comic book in like five years or a decade or something like that. I’m forgetting what the exact stat is. Pete: Wait. It hasn’t come out yet. What are you even talking about? Alex: Well, the way comics book work, Pete, is that people pre-order them through their comic book shops in order to guarantee that they’re going to be there. So that’s what they’ve been doing. So they sold that many copies to comic book shops. So obviously, big deal. People are really excited. The thing that I think is not a happy accident, but happy surprise about it, is that they’re going to get what they paid for. They’re going to get a good, very cool comic book. So I’m excited for everybody to check it out when it hits stands next week. Justin: Exactly. Next week. If you love The Lake House, you’re going to love Berserker. Alex: I’m sending that directly to BOOM! Studios. That’s their pull quote. Justin: Two great Keanu [crosstalk 00:03:36]. Pete: I don’t know if I’ve seen that, but okay. Justin: It’s not a spoiler when I say the mail is in the mailbox with this comic. Alex: Hold on. Hold on. Let me try this. Pete: Oh, my god. Alex: If you love Always Be My Maybe, check out Berserker #1 from BOOM! Studios. Pete: Wow. Wow. Justin: The comic book club bump is coming for Berserker right now. Alex: Has he done any other movies, Keanu Reeves? Justin: Keanu Reeves? I can’t think of any. Pete: A ton. A ton of movies. Justin: Well, there was Bill and Ted’s Excellent Lake House. Pete: Right. Alex: Bill and Ted’s Excellent Always Be My Maybe. Justin: Yep. There’s that. I think that’s the whole thing. Alex: I think that’s it. Anyway, this book is great. Definitely pick it up if you haven’t, or pre-order it if you haven’t already. Next up, here’s a book that’s actually out this week, Stray Dogs #1 from Image Comics, written by Tony Fleecs, art by Trish Forstner. So this is about, as you can tell from the title, it’s not like stray … I honestly thought, because it was an Image book and it was called Stray Dogs, and it’s like “What’s up? We’re a bunch of criminals called the Stray Dogs.” No. It’s literally stray dogs. There’s still a crime element. There’s still a mystery element, but I was surprised about this. I’m curious to hear what Pete thought in particular. Justin: Yes. Pete: All right. So first- Justin: Because he’s a cat guy. He’s a cat guy. So- Pete: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Thank you. But I saw that cover, and I was like “Oh, this is going to fucking break my heart,” and it did. It’s got some feels in this thing, and I was really impressed with the story. I thought maybe it was just going to be cute dogs, which would have been fine, but yeah. I thought it really ended well. It sets up this whole arc. I’m impressed with this, and I can’t wait for more. I’m really on board here. Justin: This book also surprised me, and I did … The last third of it is so good. They assemble like an Avengers: Endgame level group of mid-period Disney dogs here. This is like your Fox and the Hounds, your 101 Dalmatians, your Lady and the Tramps. They’re all here, and I don’t think we want to spoil it, maybe, but I think there’s going to be some bad dogs in here. There’s going to be some good girls and some bad dogs. Pete: Oh, my god. Love it. Alex: Yeah. Good stuff. Again, a nice surprise. Let’s move on with our next book, and I’m going to tell you what it is, and then I’m going to give you a little peek behind the curtain here. Okay? So our next book, before the shouting begins, is The Amazing Spider-Man #60. Pete: Oh, fuck you. Justin: Oh, no. Alex: Hold up. Written by Nick Spencer, pencils by Mark Bagley. Now, we’ve been talking a lot about Amazing Spider-Man, the Last Remains storyline, this whole thing about Kindred, this villain that turns out to be Harry Osborn, who’s been [inaudible 00:06:18] Spider-Man in the background. Pete: But- Alex: Hold on. Let me just finish what I’m saying, and then I’m going to allow you to shout, Pete. But I think we kind of agreed that it sort of started to fizzle at a certain point. They’re dragging out the Kindred reveal for too long. I’ve still been reading it. I’ve been reading each issue because I like Spider-Man and I enjoy reading it, but I haven’t felt like … We don’t need to talk about the same story [inaudible 00:06:43] again and again. So before I set down the stack for this week with the choices of issues, particularly Marvel, I was like “Well, let me just read and see what happens in Spider-Man,” because the cover of this is Mary Jane and Peter surrounded by the centipedes from Kindred, and I read this book, and I was like “Oh, we got to talk about this.” Justin: Yes. Alex: We have to talk about this, because I want to hear Pete shout. Go ahead, Pete. Pete: Okay. So first off, to kind of peek behind the curtain a little bit, Zalben has been pushing the envelope for how many fucking comics we talk about, and he sends out this ridiculous list that we have to read all these comics. Alex: Nobody is forcing you to do that. Pete: Hey. I love reading comics, but I got a full-time job. We got other stuff going on, and he keeps pushing the number. He said “Oh, we’ll cap it at 20.” Alex: I never said that. Pete: Hasn’t been capped at 20 in a long time. Alex: I never said that. Pete: So then he gives us this giant fucking list, and then goes “Oh, two more,” and guess what one of the fucking two is. Amazing Spider-Man, and I was like “You motherfucker. Always pushing.” Justin: This is not the shout I expected to hear, just FYI. Alex: Not at all. Justin: Imagine tiny- Alex: [crosstalk 00:07:50]. Justin: Imagine- Pete: I was saying that “Oh, there has to be a reason he pushed this,” like “Oh, just these two Marvel. No big deal. We’re just going to just do two Marvel because we got so many other comics,” and I knew. I knew Spider-Man had to be a fucking doozy. Otherwise, he wouldn’t have fucking pushed it through, and yeah, and here we go again. Here we fucking go again. You want to open a fucking wound and fucking relive some nightmares? Well, guess what. We got fucking Mephisto, and it’s going to fucking relive some god damn nightmares. Justin: Here’s the thing though, Pete. First off, let me say, imagine little Pete LePage, Petey, as we call him- Pete: No. Justin: … dreaming of his future as an adult, and your biggest complaint right now is that your friend is making you read too many comics? Little Petey LePage would drive his little big wheel right into a brick wall if he heard that. Alex: “You’re telling me this is my job?” I mean, well, let’s not go that far. Justin: Well, not technically a job, but it’s like- Pete: You get paid to do a job, asshole. All right? Alex: That’s what I’m saying. Pete: We’re not … Yeah. So I do have a job where I work and get paid, and then we go this out of the love of our hearts, and then one person keeps fucking pushing the envelope by overloading us. Justin: I love comics. I would read more. Give me more. Alex: I agree, and to clarify, we said we would cap it at 50 to 75 books a week, tops. Justin: Let’s talk about this Spider-Man book, because let me see- Alex: No. I don’t think so. Can you also give us a peek behind the curtain, Justin? Justin: Yeah. Pete: Yeah. Give us a peek behind the curtain, Justin. Justin: Sorry. The only curtain I’m behind is a shower curtain, and it’s sheer. It’s invisible. I’m nude in front of you all, all the time. I’m [crosstalk 00:09:33]. Pete: Gross. Justin: Just a little imagery to preface this review. So this book though, Pete … It’s got Peter and Mary Jane being as close as they’ve been in a decade. Pete: Yeah, and then it does the classic bullshit where Peter leaves and then Mary Jane’s got some weird shit going on with the villain. Justin: Well, here’s the thing. To your point, Alex, I actually didn’t really like a lot of the lead up to the reveals here. I feel like Nick Spencer used to have a really good Spider-Man and a really good Peter Parker. It felt like it was back to the very core of the character, struggling to get by, has a bunch of roommates that he shouldn’t be hanging out with, messing up all the time, and now it’s like it’s so sentimental. It’s this sort of sanctimonious Peter Parker that we see a lot over the course of the years, but it’s not the fun Peter Parker, and it’s too melodramatic for me, and then by the end of it, I was excited about the reveal at the end of the book and even the stuff that Pete’s talking about with the villain. At least that’s interesting, because this Peter Parker’s not a person I’m loving right now. Alex: Well, and that’s the point of the book, right? I think they’re taking a really long time to get around to it, but what is nice about this issue is it feels like one of those classic Ultimate Spider-Man issues that Brian Michael Bendis would do, where it’s just a conversation, and in this case, it’s Peter talking to Mary Jane. She’s trying to help him through the stuff he’s going through, and he says exactly what you’re talking about, where he’s like “Why is my life like this? Why am I still in this place that I’m in? What is going on here?” and by the end … Spoiler, but we’ve already spoiled it. The revelation is it’s probably Mephisto all over again fucking with Peter Parker’s life. Probably, there’s no way around. If they don’t loop back to One More Day at this point, I don’t know what he’s doing in this storyline, but that’s fascinating to me, what direction they’re going in. It’s nerveracking, but it’s fascinating. Pete: Yeah. Well, I’m not fascinated, but I did really like the part of MJ talking about this exercise that helps you kind of work through shit, and I thought that was very cool to have a superhero kind of do a therapy exercise and be like “Hey. Therapy’s okay. It’s okay to talk about your feelings in a safe space and get it out and see what it feels like to say these things out loud.” I thought that was very powerful and very cool, but then you got to fucking ruin it with Mephisto shit, and it’s like, either we’re moving on and that bullshit happened and somehow we have to live with it and move forward, or you better fucking undo that bullshit and then we can get back to our lives. Fucking make a choice, man, because I’m sick of this shit. Alex: All right. Well, let’s move on to Two Moons #1 from Image Comics, written by John Arcudi, art by Valerio Giangiordano. This is set in the Civil War following a soldier who starts seeing some demons or something. We’re not 100 percent sure what’s going on, but the art in here is terrifying and scary. Pete: He sees the monster from Critters is what it looks like. Alex: But it’s just somebody’s head, to be clear. Justin: Yeah. He’s got a critter on his head. Pete: Yeah. It’s a critter head. Alex: Classic critter head. Yeah. Yeah. Justin: You guys both sort of felt like you were saying something that you shouldn’t be saying, for a second. Alex: I mean, in my family, when I grew up, we were never supposed to say critter head. Justin: Yeah. Say it three times, and then you have yourself a critter head. I like this book as well. This was a good sort of scary story in a time we don’t see very much, especially from this perspective. Pete: Yeah. I mean, the art’s really unbelievable. This is a very interesting story. It’s also the take about the nurse getting upset about the fact that when you run out of ammunition, they’ll use whatever scraps of metals they can, and then kind of her reaction is very interesting and very intense. So I think this is a really kind of interesting, original idea set in a shitty time period. Alex: Sure. There you go. Couldn’t disagree with that. Let’s move on to our Future State block, as we’ve been doing all the past couple of weeks, talking about everything that’s come out from Future State. I’ll list the books, and then we’ll talk about some of our highlights. We’ve got House of El #1, Aquaman #2, Legion of Superheroes #2, Superman vs. Imperious Lex #2, Suicide Squad #2, Dark Detective #4, and Batman/Superman #2, and to give you a little peek behind the curtain here, it’s interesting that Pete was complaining about too many titles being in our stack, because at least the past two weeks we’ve talked about the Future State block, Pete has read extra titles from DC and then talked about them on the show. Justin: Yeah, and dropped them in. Alex: There you go. So Pete, any extra titles you want to talk about here? Pete: No. No, but if we would like to peek behind the curtain, I think you’re a piece of shit. Alex: All right. That’s fine. Justin: Again, here’s me, nude behind a very crystal-clear sheer curtain. Alex: Pete, what jumped out at you? What did you like this week? Pete: All right. Well, I liked a lot of things, but the one book I didn’t want to like, but then the sappy ending kind of got me in the feels, was the House of El #1. Sometimes we get in the house of stuff. I don’t know. Justin: Yeah. You don’t like houses. Pete: Yeah. I don’t like houses. I don’t like the kind of historical Superman shit where everybody is talking about their logos and all the weird shit. It doesn’t get me excited, but I was really impressed with this book because I read it like “Harumph. I don’t want to like you,” and then it won me over. I would say one of my favorites was Batman/Superman- Justin: Here. Wait. Can we talk about that real quick? Pete: Sure. Sure. Justin: Sorry. Sorry, but I loved this book. I know I feel like I’ve been on a Phillip Kennedy Johnson love fest, but man, this is another great book by him that is just a hundred percent fun. It’s mixing a lot of the stuff he does in The Last God with a Superman-focused version of the Legion, and it reads like just a great Legion book with all these different version of Superman kin that are out there trying to just save the world and maintain their household and mix in with these sort of light fantasy elements. It’s just a great book. Alex: Pete, what about you? You were about to call out Dark Detective, I believe. Pete: Well, I have been enjoying that, and yes, I did love Dark Detective #4. Very intense. I love this no more shadows, like “Oh, shit. What does that mean?” Also, great backup story. I thought this was a very intense, cool Batman book. I’m very excited to see where this goes. Anybody else want to jump in on this one? Alex: Yeah. Sure. Was that not the one you were going to call out? I thought that’s what you started saying. Pete: No. It was Batman/Superman #2. Alex: Oh, okay. Sorry to put you on the spot there, but I do really like the backup. We talked about this last time, this Joshua Williamson and Giannis Milonogiannis, and they’re doing basically Red Hood, but Akira, and it’s super fun. I had a blast reading that. But you want to talk about Future State Batman/Superman #2? Justin: Real quick. Alex: Oh, yeah. Justin: It’s very funny seeing the Red Hood hood on him, where it just goes right to the … It’s just such a weird looking thing, but this has been one of the best version of Bruce Wayne that I feel like we’ve seen in Batman comics in a long time, this Dark Detective series. Pete: Yeah. Yeah. It’s really cool. But Batman/Superman #2, really unbelievable action. I really am loving the kind of mystery and the kind of who-done-it with this team up. I love it when Batman and Superman get along, but I also like it when they fight, and I feel like this was a really cool, great kind of fight between Superman and Batman, and I thought this was really cool. Alex: Yeah. It’s a good book as well. For me, man, it’s tough. Again, a very good week for books from Future State. All of this stuff has been really good. It’s a little bit of a tie. There’s one that eked it out a little bit more. Future State Superman vs. Imperious Lex #2 is kind of my number two here, written by Mark Russell, art by Steve Pugh. Super fun. Great Lois Lane in this book. As usual, just hilarious and pointed satire from Mark Russell. So really enjoyed that book, but the one for me that killed it was Aquaman #2. Justin: A hundred percent. That was mine. Pete: Yeah. That’s what I was going to … Yeah. Alex: Everybody was leading up to that, written by Brandon Thomas, art by Daniel Sampere. Again, like I said with the first issue, I am not an Aquaman fan. I don’t usually like an Aquaman story. This is god damn amazing, and if you didn’t tune in to the first book, the first issue of the book, it was all about this confluence of oceans from the universe that former Aqualad, now Aquaman, and Aqualass, who by the end of the book, spoiler, is Aquawoman, have gotten trapped in. They get separated. Aquaman is imprisoned most of the last book and then finally finds out that Aqualass is alive at the end, and then we loop back and find out what happened with her. The action is so big. Everything that happens is so emotional and creative. I was blown away. Justin: I agree. This book was so good. Of all the books in Future State that I would want to replace the main title going forward, it’s this. I want to see these characters going forward and seeing where they go next, because it’s so good. Pete: The let go moment was so nice. Justin: Yeah. Pete: Yeah. I mean, I don’t know how cool a water leg would be, but man, they really sold it in this book. Alex: It’s a fish leg. It’s not a water leg. It’s a fish leg. Pete: Oh, okay. My bad. Justin: I mean, a fish leg would be much worse, because that shit … You’ve only got like two days max on that things. Pete: Before it starts smelling? Alex: Yeah. Justin: Yeah. Alex: Don’t microwave it. Not in the office. That’s all I’m saying. Justin: Oh, definitely. Alex: That would be gross. Justin: [crosstalk 00:19:49] case of scallop- Alex: All right. Let’s move on and talk about some other books. Justin: One last thing I want to shout out. Alex: Oh, yeah. Please. Justin: We didn’t talk about Legion of Superheroes #2. Want to shout out Riley Rossmo’s art on this. I’d love to see a Legion book with Riley drawing it. Alex: Absolutely. Moving on, one of your favorites, Justin, The Department of Truth #6 from Image Comics, written by James Tynion IV, art by Elsa Charretier. Justin: Oh, what an accent. Alex: This is a switch up of artists for the book- Pete: Yeah. I was going to say. Alex: … and also a switch up of time periods, as we jump back in time and find out the origins of The Department of Truth. This is a awesome issue that continues, personally, to remind me of a vintage Vertigo book, where it’d be like five issues, take a break, show us some times passed thing, and then go forward with the ongoing story. So good. Justin: So good. This book is doing just such a great job of fleshing out the world of the series sort of slowly and really easing into it, and this book does a great job of sort of bringing into focus in the sort of micro with the flashback story. It’s sort of a double flashback. We flashback to right after the Kennedy assassination, and then flashback to Doubting Thomas and sort of the origin of rewriting the world with a new truth, and this book is one of my favorites on the stand right now. If this were a religion, I would believe in it. Alex: Wow. Pete: Oh, shit. Wow. Justin: I’m not a religious guy, but this is the closest. I’m like “I could buy this. I could buy this fully across the board.” Pete: Wow. That is crazy. I think it’s really impressive that this book can look so different from kind of book to book and still feel like a part of the same story. It’s really impressive what they’re pulling off here creatively, artistically. They’re taking some big swings at some big ideas, and they are killing it. It’s really impressive. Yeah. The paneling, the art, the way this story flows. This is a really, really impressive book that is tripping me the fuck out. Alex: This employs a technique that I usually hate in storytelling, but it completely works here, where they have a story in a story in a story. In this book, Lee Harvey Oswald, who in our current time is the head of The Department of Truth goes to his first day there, finds out the origin, so you have one … I think this is the reason it works is the art style changes with each level of the story, where it goes back in time, he’s reading the origin of the story of The Department of Truth, and then one of the characters in the story starts telling the story to the other character, and then the art style changes again. It’s just these multiple layers that feel very purposeful versus the usual accidental employment of that technique. Fantastic book. Definitely pick it up. Alex: Let’s move on and talk about Faith #1 from BOOM! Studios, written by Jeremy Lambert, illustrated by Eleonora Carlini. This is a weird book that I was no expecting- Justin: This is a weird book. Alex: … that follows Faith as she’s trapped in a movie theater, and there’s some Watchers watching her, strange stuff going on. What’d you guys think of this one? Pete: Yeah. It’s fantastic art. It was a little confusing because we kind of had this shadowy figure behind the main character. So I was having a hard time follow what’s happening, because I was so worried about her present, in-the-movie-theater self. So it was hard to kind of let go of that and follow the story, but yeah. This is interesting. Unbelievable art. Some great action. I’m not quite sure what’s happening though. Justin: Yeah. I mean, I agree. Really expressive art, I thought was … There were so many good little horror moments, and Faith’s reactions throughout are great. I don’t know much about Faith in the background. I don’t have faith. Alex: You got to have faith. Justin: Yeah. That’s the thing. Pete: The faith, the faith, the faith. Justin: But I believe in the comic book we just talked about before this one. So yeah. I didn’t know much about the character, but it was a good read. Alex: Yeah. Moving on, X-Men #18 from Marvel, written by Johnathan Hickman, art by Mahmud Asrar. Give you a little peek behind the curtain. I felt like Pete would be pretty mad about Amazing Spider-Man. This one involves Laura, Wolverine, which Pete likes a lot. So I thought this would be kind of like a gimme, like balance the scales a little bit. So this is as three of the X-Men characters wander into a weird future place, as they usually do in this run of X-Men. What’d you think about this one? Justin: The Vault. Pete: Well, I’m curious about something. So why is she called Wolverine now? You know what I mean? I know Wolverine died for a little bit, and I know she was X-23, and that’s cool, but then when they were referring to her as Wolverine, I was like “Why? What’s-“ Justin: Well, because Wolverine doesn’t … He’s on the moon popping something else besides claws. So he’s not really … Pete: You don’t have to be an asshole when I ask a question. You could just answer it. Justin: I mean, I think there’s some truth to that. Alex: There’s more than on person named Pete. Justin: Wow. Pete: Yeah. Yeah. Justin: That’s true. Pete: Got that, and there’s also more than one person named Pete LePage, but what’s your fucking point? Alex: My point is, when I search for Pete LePage, the other one comes up. Pete: Okay. So it’s okay that she’s called Wolverine is what you’re saying? Alex: Yeah. It’s fine. It’s not a problem. Justin: I like it. I like her as a character. I like her as the Wolverine. I think Logan can just be Logan now, and he can go do all of his Logan stuff. Pete: That’s cool. I just didn’t know. I was like “Maybe I missed something,” like the passing of the Wolverine mantle or whatever. I love X-23. I have no problem with her being Wolverine. I was just like “Oh, they’re straight just calling her Wolverine now.” Justin: Well, I think they’re both called Wolverine. I think it’s just like they’re both Wolverines. There’s no reason to differentiate. Pete: Then I was like “Is Wolverine a title of the fucking muscle when you going on …” I don’t know. I was just wondering if maybe I’d missed something that you guys knew about, but usually, as usual, I ask you something and you just make fun of me. So all right. Alex: Oh, Pete. Justin: I’m not making fun of you. We’re explaining an important plot point in the X-Men universe right now that Wolverine fucks in the moon. Pete: Cool. Cool. Alex: It did stand out to me too, to be totally- Justin: The gravity’s only one-sixth. So he’s floating a little bit. You know what I’m talking about? Alex: To be totally fair, it stood out to me too as son as they called her Wolverine, and then I was like “All right. They’re calling her Wolverine,” and I kind of moved on from there rather than sticking with it. This is a good story. It’s crazy that they introduce this whole villain team to eliminate them in one issue, but that’s classic Johnathan Hickman at this point. Justin: Well, these guys have been around. The Vault was introduced a while ago. In fact, I feel like Hickman is oddly … He keeps sort of edging on the Vault. He’s like “Look. The Vault. Watch out for them,” and then in this issue, they go in there and wreck shit. So it’s weird what’s happening here. I thought this issue was great. This issue reads like an annual standalone issue where they’re just like “Let’s have a fun mission,” and it’s a great tactical mission. I love Darwin and Synch. Great. It’s all so smartly done, but I think, in general, I’m like “What’s the next move here with the X-Men?” and there are no clues. It’s hard to read the tea leaves. Alex: No. It’s definitely the sort of thing that I think we’re going to look back at it in 15 to 30 years when Johnathan Hickman is done with this run and be like “Okay.” Pete: Yeah. “Oh.” Alex: “I get it it.” Pete: “I see now.” Yeah. Yeah, but- Justin: “Oh, The Vault.” Pete: The art’s amazing, and the kind of thinking-man Sentinel thing was really awesome to kind of see as well. Yeah. I think it was really cool to kind of like “Oh, we’re going to send you on this mission. You guys sweep the Vault,” and you’re like “Okay. No big deal. How long will that take?” and then they realize a Vault is a whole fucking city. Pretty cool kind of “How are we going to do this?” moment. I don’t know how any of this makes sense, but I thought it was a cool issue. Alex: I agree. I’m glad to hear that too, Pete, because you’ve been very down on the X-Men. Let’s move on and talk about another James Tynion book, Something is Killing the Children #15 from BOOM! Studios, written by James Tynion IV, art by Werther Dell’Edera. Justin, I’m curious to hear from you because this is the end of the story that they’ve been telling for 15 issues at this point. They wrap things up. They leave things open for the next story, but that’s kind of where we are, and you’ve been very back and forth about it. So how do you feel about this as a whole? Justin: James Tynion’s a great storyteller, but I guess I still have the same feeling where I’m like “Oh, that was the whole story.” I thought there was going to be, I guess, more of a crescendo in here. I like all of the storytelling. The art in this book is fantastic. The eating of gummy worms has never been so gross. Pete: Oh, man. Yeah. Alex: Maybe you want some gummy worms, I’ll tell you what. Pete: Yeah. You’re so creepy, dude. Justin: Yeah, but you see regular worms, you’re like “Yum, yum, gummy.” Alex: Put those in my mouth. Give me some of those sweet dirt dudes. That’s what I call them. Justin: But yeah. That’s my- Pete: I don’t know. This felt like a ending that wasn’t an ending. It felt like an ending that’s like there is a bigger story to tell here- Justin: For sure. Pete: … and hopefully they will get to tell it, because this is a really great world. I’ve loved every single issue of this. Art’s unbelievable. Love the character designs, and this cool … I feel like this is what our life is going to be like eventually. Since we’re all going to be wearing masks, it’s going to be just down to what does your mask say, and that’s your gang affiliation or your kind of tribe, if you will. So I feel like this is a book of the future before we even know it. Alex: It’s surprising to me because a lot of this specific issue was them talking about houses, which you’ve already got on record as not liking in this very podcast. Justin: Yeah. This guy hates houses. You want to see the apartment of El, the condo of El. Pete: Yeah. Alex: Nailbiter Returns #10 from Image Comics, written by Joshua Williamson, art by Mike Henderson, another surprising ending for a series here as we wrap up Nailbiter returning with some big revelations for the series. How’d you feel about this one? Pete: I loved it. I thought this was a cool kind of end but also tease to the to-be-continued thing at the end. That was pretty neat, but I mean, you guys have kids. So you tell me. When you guys sit around the fire to tell stories, do their faces go blank like that? Is that a normal thing that happens? Justin: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Pete: Oh, man. That’s got to be tough. Alex: Every parent knows that. When you’re about to have the kid in the hospital, they talk you through the birthing process. They also talk you through the fact that, hey, when you sit around a fire, kids are going to have no faces. Pete: Oh, wow. Well, I’m glad that you had the heads up on that, because as somebody who didn’t know that, that was pretty scary. Justin: Well, that’s because they’re listening so hard, and so the rest of their features just fade away because the ears are really the focus. It’s just using your resources. Alex: This book was fun. I had a blast reading it. It’s definitely a big action movie versus the overall dark mystery that the first one was. Super fun, and I’m glad that they kept it to 10 issues and pretty much done, kept the story really focused. I had a good time. Pete: Yeah. Justin: I agree, and it really got into some dream logic dreaminess that I really appreciated throughout this whole series and in this issue as well. Pete: Also, it’s great for people who collect eyeballs, you know? Alex: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Justin: Yes, which I think we all do, and great nail biting. We got some biting of nails. Alex: Good stuff. Pete: Finally got some nail biting in this one. Yeah. Alex: Next up, Firefly #26 from BOOM! Studios, written by Greg Pak, art by Pius Bak. The last issue we called a fresh new start for Firefly. It was taking us after Serenity, the movie, moving us forward here. The cliffhanger at the end of the last issue was it looked like Wash was alive. Here, spoiler, not exactly. There’s a good twist on it. I loved the twist with Wash, actually, and I think this is a great … Without spoiling exactly what happens, this is a great way of pushing the story forward, and it feels like a tried-and-true sci-fi idea that’s going to pay really good dividends with the characters. I think it’s neat. Justin: It’s so- Pete: I’m going to go out … Oh, go ahead. Justin: You go. Pete: I was just going to say I’m going to out on a limb and just say Greg Pak is a fucking phenomenal writer. He makes great choices. I’ve just not yet read something from him and not been impressed by it. Even though we knew what kind of happened, the whole thing needed to be explained to us. I was really impressed. I thought this was a fun book. Amazing art. Really cool. Justin: How is it on that limb, Pete? Because I feel like you’ve been out on the Pak limb for years. Pete: Yeah. Yeah. It’s just me out here. Loving the Pak. Justin: I think your parents conceived you out on the Pak limb, and you’ve just been birthed there. Your parents heard about the facelessness around the fire, out on the limb, and now here you are, still living on the limb. Pete: Nothing like limb living. Justin: Limb living. I think it’s so smart that they did a long story in the past. It was great. Greg Pak really understands the characters and really put them out there, and then to jump forward in time where we get to sort of collect them again is super fun. Well done. Alex: Yeah. I agree. Next up, Crossover #4 from Image Comics, written by Donny Cates, art by Geoff Shaw. In this issue, we’re picking up with our adventurers who met Madman, the character, from Mike Allred and Laura Allred, last issue. He is going to help them get inside the dome that has covered Denver, I believe, if I remember correctly, and locked in a bunch of comics characters. We again get a bunch of cameos and fun stuff in this issue. We also get some shout outs to Donny Cates and, I believe, Geoff Shaw’s own work as well. This is great. This is a blast to read, and even Donny Cates self inserting himself here is super fun. Justin: I mean, it’s great to see Madman in action. That guy can yo. Alex: Yeah. Yo, yo. Pete, you got to be happy. There is a Stay Puft Marshmallow Man in this issue. Pete: Oh, yeah. You got to love that. I also impressed with the art here, because it has the kind of dot, kind of old-timey kind of comic book style, which is really interesting with Madman, with kind of more vibrant characters as well. It’s just really cool to see them all standing in a room. So I’m glad we got that moment. The kind of torture shit freaked me out a little bit, but man, really great story. Fun stuff. Alex: Good stuff. Next up, Skulldigger Skeleton Boy #6 from Dark Horse Comics, written by Jeff Lemire, art by Tonci Zonjic. We’ve been talking about a lot of the Black Hammer books. We kind of missed this one in terms of reviewing. So I figured it was worth catching up with the last issue here. I’ll tell you what. I … This is all me … forgot about Tonci Zonjic. Amazing artist. Justin: Yeah. Great art. Alex: I was so happy to read this again. I was like “Oh, my god. I’m sorry I forgot you. You’re so good.” Pete: Yeah. Justin: Yeah. It’s so dynamic. It almost has a little Darwyn Cooke to it, but a little bit of just great, I don’t know, Greg Capullo style action. Really good, and the story was great. I feel like the Black Hammer universe is just prime time right now. Pete: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, I agree. The panels, the layout, the way the action flows. Really, really fun and impressive, but also some really touching moments, like the look on the kid’s face. They just keep just showing the kid’s face, so different in each panel in the way that it’s just kind of colored. Really impressive, the way they can kind of show emotion through this still panel here. Yeah. I was just really kind of moved by this. I thought it was a really solid issue. Justin: The last page, which is almost like an epilogue to the book, just a standalone splash page, was so emotional and great. Pete: Yeah. Alex: We’re not really talking about the plot here, because we didn’t read the previous five. This is the last issue, but the fact that they can get across enough of the emotion and story in one issue that is the last one to people who have not read the previous five is very impressive. Pete: Yeah. Alex: &n
45 minutes | 3 months ago
The Stack: GI Joe, Snow Angels And More
On this week’s comic book review podcast: GI Joe: Castle Fall IDW Written by Paul Allor Art by Chris Evenhuis Snow Angels #1 ComiXology Written by Jeff Lemire Art by Jock The Immortal Hulk: Flatline #1 Marvel Written and Art by Declan Shalvey HAHA #2 Image Comics Written by W. Maxwell Prince Art by Zoe Thorogood King in Black #4 Marvel Written by Donny Cates Art by Ryan Stegman Batman/Catwoman #3 DC Comics Written by Tom King Art by Clay Mann Savage #1 Valiant Comics Written by Max Bemis Art by Nathan Stockman Guardians of the Galaxy #11 Marvel Written by Al Ewing Art by Juann Cabal Stillwater #6 Image Comics Written by Chip Zdarsky Art by Ramón K. Perez Future State: Superman Worlds of War #2 DC Comics Written by Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Brandon Easton, Becky Cloonan & Michael W. Conrad, Jeremy Adams Art by Mikel Janin, Valentin de Landro, Michael Avon Oeming, Siya Oum Future State: Immortal Wonder Woman #2 DC Comics Written by Becky Cloonan & Michael W. Conrad, L.L. McKinney Art by Jen Bartel, Alitha Martinez Future State: The Next Batman #4 DC Comics Written by John Ridley, Vita Ayala, Paula Seven Bergen Art by Laura Braga, Aneke, Emanuela Luppachino Future State: Catwoman #2 DC Comics Written by Ram V Art by Otto Schmidt Future State: Nightwing #2 DC Comics Written by Andrew Constant Art by Nicola Scott Future State: Shazam #2 DC Comics Written by Tim Sheridan Art by Eduardo Panic Thor #12 Marvel Written by Donny Cates Art by Nic Klein Excellence #10 Image Comics Written by Brandon Thomas Art by Khary Randolph Once & Future #16 BOOM! Studios Written by Kieron Gillen Art by Dan Mora X-Men Legends #1 Marvel Written by Fabian Nicieza Art by Brett Booth Aria: Heavenly Creatures Image Comics Written by Brian Holguin Art by Jay Anacleto with Brian Haberlin The Last Ronin #2 IDW Story by Kevin Eastman, Peter Laird and Tom Waltz Script by Tom Waltz & Kevin Eastman Layouts by Kevin Eastman Pencils & Inks by Esau & Isaac Escort, Ben Bishop and Kevin Eastman Black Widow #5 Marvel Written by Kelly Thompson Art by Elena Casagrande w/ Rafael De Latorre Sabrina: The Teenage Witch #5 Archie Comics Written by Kelly Thompson Art by Veronica Fish and Andy Fish SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. Full Episode Transcript Alex: What’s up, everybody. Welcome to The Stack. I’m Alex. Justin: I’m Justin. Pete: I’m Pete. Alex: On The Stack, we talk about a bunch of books that have come out this week. Let’s kick it off, because we got a packed stack. Justin: Oh, yes. Alex: [crosstalk 00:00:19] G.I. Joe: Castle Fall from IDW, written by Paul Allor, art by Chris Evenhuis. I got to tell you, never in a million years would I have expected that a G.I. Joe book would be at the top of my personal stack, but that’s where we are. This book is what a lot of what this book has been leading up to. Cobra has taken over the entire world. Finally, G.I. Joe gets an in to fight back. It doesn’t go exactly how you think it’s going to go. There’s a big twist there. This book is great. Justin: I got to say, I mean, I was not allowed to watch G.I. Joe as a child because they had guns in their hands. Pete: Here we go. Jesus Christ. Can we talk about G.I. Joe one time without you dropping that? Justin: What? I’m just saying. It was just sort of an introduction to say that I also love this book. I also wasn’t allowed sugary cereals, which led me to enjoy a lot of Grape Nuts. Pete: And you also had to drink well water, and your teeth are falling out. Alex: Don’t spoil. The next book we’re talking about is Grape Nuts #1, which is also very good. Justin: That’s going to be good. It’s going to be good. Just put a little honey on it. No. This book is so good, and what I love about it is they’ve been building up to it over the course of all these smaller issues and books to get here, and each one, for the most part, has been excellent, and the fact that they’re building this whole little universe around G.I. Joe is something that … Again, I don’t know if I said. I never watched as a kid. Pete: Oh, my god. Fuck, I hate you. I mean, this is great. I mean, you get to see Roadblock fucking pick up a fucking giant cannon of a gun and just fucking shoot. It was great. Yeah. The art’s really good. The storytelling, the plot’s impressive. It’s a lot better than a lot of the cartoon’s plot, but I thought this was- Alex: Not all of it. I would say like 50 percent of the cartoon’s plots. Most of the cartoon’s plots were very good, as we all know. Pete: Sure. Sure. Because we all watched them as kids. Alex: I never watched it. Justin: It must have been fun for you, Pete, to see your favorite Joes, like soup can, hub cap. Pete: So far you haven’t named one. Justin: Dance party. Pete: Nope. Justin: Hat hair. Hat hair is so good in this issue. Pete: No. Justin: He’s so good because he’s like [crosstalk 00:02:30]- Pete: Did you see? My favorite scene in the issue is when load-bearing beam really brings the hurt down. Justin: That guy is so tough. Pete: [crosstalk 00:02:39]. Justin: He’s got the weight of the world on his shoulders. Pete: I’m the only one who knows the names, and you guys are still doing bits. It’s just ridiculous. Alex: Well, what I love about this is I, again, I have no interest in G.I. Joe particularly because of the names, because they’re so silly and over the top, but every character is so distinct, from the art, to the writing, to their motivations here, including the villains as well. The way that they fleshed out Cobra here and made them interesting rather than just going “I’m a serpent name, and I have a mask, and I’m evil,” and that’s pretty much my whole impression of Cobra Commander. I think there’s two of them, right? Pete: Oh, my god. Justin: No. There’s more. You need 20 minutes. Alex: There’s Destro and also Cobra Commander? I don’t know how this works. Pete: Okay. All right. Destro does not talk like that. Alex: Everyone’s shit. Pete: There’s Serpentor. Alex: I’m Destro. Pete: Oh, my god. All right. You are killing me. Alex: I’m the Baroness. Pete: Okay. All right. First off, let’s back up the truck. If you’re going to do bits about their names, know the show, because one of the funniest things is they would do PSAs after the show, and there would be a character whose name is Barbecue, and he has a flamethrower on his back, and then he’s like “Hey, kids. If you have a house fire, you should run away,” and it’s like “Hey, Barbecue. How did that house fire start? You have a flamethrower, and you’re standing next to a fire. This isn’t cool, man. You shouldn’t set people’s houses on fire and then teach kids about fires.” Justin: It’s very funny to me that you were like “Justin, you’re making fun of this by saying the names you said. If you said the name Barbecue,” who’s the hero you like’s name, because when I said hub cap, you were like “That’s stupid,” but you said Barbecue, and you were like “That’s good. Hub cap is bad, but Barbecue-“ Pete: I mean, Snow Job’s a real … That’s a real name. Justin: What about tippy toe? I really like tippy toe. Pete: Oh, my god. Alex: This book is fantastic. Definitely pick it up, even if you don’t know anything about G.I. Joe. Alex: Moving on to Snow Angels #1 from ComiXology, written by Jeff Lemire, art by Jock. I said this on the live show, but I’ll stick with it. That team is on a book, and you’re in no matter what, but thankfully this book is great and weird anyway. It’s about a world, maybe a world, that has been covered in ice. All that exists is this snow trench. There’s a family, a father, and two daughters who are skating through the trench for one theirs 12th birthday, and things get weirder and deadlier and more dangerous from there. This feels like the perfect gelling of these two creators’ tastes. Pete: It seems like it’s Snowpiercer 2, where after the train’s gone, now they’re just living on the tracks. You know what I mean? And that’s where this takes place. Justin: Withering criticism from Pete LePage. Alex: But you say that about anything that involves snow. You said that when you saw the Michael Keaton vehicle Jack Frost as well. Justin: Yeah. No. Pete: The Michael Keaton vehicle. Justin: When the Weather Report came out, Pete screamed at the TV. It’s like “Snowpiercer. Get out of here.” I like this book a lot. You said it best, Alex. It’s such a great combination of these two creators’ work. A lot of great blood splatters on this, and very few snow angels, and ice skating is hard, and these characters do it constantly. Pete: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, growing up in upstate New York, you needed to kind of … You might as well put skates on, because you’re walking around so much ice, but I did really … All joking aside, I really love the last-page reveal. The art’s unbelievable. This is a very unique, cool kind of world that we’re kind of thrown into here. I thought it was an amazing first issue of getting you established with what’s going on and then kind of raising the stakes. I thought this was really fantastic book. Alex: Next up, the Immortal Hulk: Flatline #1 from Marvel, written and art by Declan Shalvey. This is another, as you can probably tell from the title, spinoff of the Immortal Hulk doing one-shot stories about him here. Bruce Banner meets one of his old teachers. Things don’t go that well over the course of the issue. How do you think this held up to the high standard of Immortal Hulk? Justin: I like this a lot. Declan Shalvey has been talking about this book a lot online. There’s a lot of pride and just love for this book coming from the creator. So I really appreciate that, and it’s a great story. It feels like a classic Hulk story that we haven’t seen in a while, because the main book has been so focused on just straight-up horrifying imagery. So this takes it back a little bit and really says “Hey. Be nice to your teachers, because they might come at you from some gamma-irradiated vision and really fuck up your life if you’re not careful.” Pete: Yeah. Teachers will haunt you for the rest of your life, man. You got to be careful. Justin: Yeah. Alex: Totally agree. Haha #2 from Image Comics, written by W. Maxwell Prince, art by Zoe Thorogood. This is the second issue, of course, from the creator of Ice Cream Man. It is an anthology about clowns. Here, we’re getting to meet a character who … It’s not revealed until the end of the issue exactly what she’s doing, but as a child, she ran away with her mom, who had a bit of a psychotic break and thought she was a clown, wanted to go away to a fun time happy land. Things do not end up fun time or happy. How’d you feel about this one? Justin: So good. Haunting. We love W. Maxwell Prince’s work on Ice Cream Man, and to see it sort of grounded in a weird way … I didn’t expect this series ostensibly focusing on clowns to be the more grounded version of his storytelling, but it really is. It’s sort of real-world stories of people going off the map a little bit with their choices, with clown imagery, and there’s such a melancholy to all of this work, and I really like that. Alex: Pete? Pete: Yeah. This is so haunting and messed up in ways that I wasn’t ready for. This mother-and-child-like relationship was very scary to me, and I kept waiting there to be kind of fun moments, and so far it’s just a fucking nightmare, and I’m scared to keep reading this comic, because it was like … I feel like Ice Cream Man kind of encouraged this, and I’m a little worried about what the payoff is going to be. Justin: Encouraged it. Alex: I don’t think there’s going to be a payoff. I think it’s just an anthology of stories. Pete: I think maybe the people reading it will slowly start to go insane and then paint their faces like clowns and then die horribly. Justin: I guess the payoff is when you show up to do the show in full clown, which honestly I think we’re pretty close to. Alex: What if all of these people in this book joined together in some sort of book, all of these crazy people who are clowns forming a group together. It would be some sort of insane clown posse. I mean, just to throw something out there, I feel like that’s maybe how it could work at the last issue. Justin: Huh. That’d be quite a league of extraordinary clowns. As long as they aren’t fueled by some sort of small-market soda, I think we’ll be fine. Alex: King in Black #4 from Marvel, written by Donny Cates, art by Ryan Stegman. This is a big issue here where once again Donny Cates redefines the Marvel universe, does a little bit of the old retcon action to come up with an explanation for something that has not made a lot of sense. Eddie Brock is lying dying. Dylan Brock, his son, has been trapped by Knull, the King in Black. All of the heroes are trying to fight back, and they finally get a foothold here as we enter the endgame of this title. What’d you think about all the twists and turns? Justin: I love the reveal at the end of the issue. When I first started reading comics, and I will spoil this sort of twist at the end right now, but Captain Universe was what was on the stands right then. Spider-Man had just had the Captain Universe powers, and he was recovering form that, being sort of de-powered. I think the first Spider-Man issue I ever read, he was shooting upwards into space, having just lost the Captain Universe powers, and trying to web himself to a passing airplane, and so to have that make sense and maybe join the Marvel universe with Eddie Brock at the helm I thought was great. It was crazy to see the heroes turn it around so hard in this issue. Pete: Yeah. I really thought this was great. Lot of cool reveals in this issue. The good guys are getting their butts kicked for a long time now. It’s nice to see what kind of cards we’re going to play here. So I was really, really impressed with this issue, a lot of cool stuff, and I can’t wait to see how this whole thing unfolds. I went from being like “What is this?” to really I’m bored with this kind of event. So I feel like it was really cool, and then the backup story, the Demon Days, was also really cool as well. Alex: That was very fun. That seems to be a title that we’re going to see going forward that is a Japanese, I would say, art-style-inflected X-Men tale, which I thought was kind of neat. Justin: Yeah. Pete: Yeah. Alex: Next up, Batman / Catwoman #3 from DC Comics, written by Tom King, art by Clay Mann. We’re continuing this time-hopping story of Batman and Catwoman as they fight a war on three different fronts. I like this one. I felt like I had a better handle on what’s going on in this issue than I did necessarily in the first two issues. How’d you guys feel about it? Pete: I love this. I thought this was really amazing. I love the kind of tone that’s even set up in the beginning with the double play, the double-spread title page of Bat and Cat. I think this is such a cool area to explore. If the Bat and Cat are together, how do they exist? You know what I mean? Is Catwoman have to be more good? Does Batman have to try to be more bad? How do they exist? Pete: I think this is a very interesting position to put Batman and Catwoman, and the kind of reveal of Joker in the money suit … I lost it. I thought that was so funny and hysterical, and that whole “Paul Fleischman is dead. Oh, god. No. Who’s Paul Fleischman?” … I’m really having a lot of fun with this book. I’m very, very impressed with it. Yeah. I can’t say enough nice things about the art and everything that’s going on. Justin: Yeah. The art is so stylized. It’s so composed in such a specific way, especially a story that moves around so much. It’s so nice to see the art really reflecting a meticulous design style, but yeah. This reminds me of, oddly, the last episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, the jumping between- Alex: Oh, okay. I can see that. Justin: … jumping between different eras, telling one story, because it almost feels like in this comic that the characters are aware of the time jumps. I don’t think they actually are, but it feels like they’re very complicit in telling the story in this particular way, and I think that’s what allows it to hang together so well as opposed to … Because it’s jarring, jumping between the different time frames in this. There’s very little visual direction, but there’s just so much emotional direction where we’re seeing so much happen at once, and at the same time, we’re introducing Mask of the Phantasm here, which is a horrifying character [crosstalk 00:14:58]. Alex: I got to say that’s the one thing for me that is not quite working about this book is I really like the Phantasm. It just right now feels like this element that I don’t quite get how it fits in and how it’s part of the story. Pete: Just wait for it. All right? Don’t- Alex: I’m sure. Yes. I know. It will pan out, and it’s fine, but the Joker stuff in both the past and the present seems to connect. I get that the Phantasm is this outside thing, but it’s such an out-sized presence, perhaps given because of its real-world weight of Batman: Mask of the Phantasm being the best Batman movie, that I felt like “Oh. This is its own story. What is going on with the Phantasm? Why are we not telling this story? Why is this only one third of the book?” Pete: Yeah, but- Justin: I think that is that exterior pressure, because to me, and I’m someone that didn’t … I didn’t watch that when I was younger. So it’s not something I revere maybe as much. So just seeing the imagery that’s there to be scary as opposed to being like “Look. I’m this character you know,” … I think it’s working. Alex: All right. Fair enough. Pete: Yeah. I agree. Just because something was amazing, don’t let it hurt this story before we get what it’s about, but I understand what you’re saying and it makes sense. I’m just so happy we’re getting this story, because we got little teases of it, and then DC was like “No. We’re kind of doing something else.” So I’m so glad that, in this Black Label thing, we get this story that we were kind of given a little bit and then taken away. So I’m just so happy right now with what’s going on in this book. Alex: Next up, Savage #1 from Valiant Comics, written by Max Bemis, art by Nathan Stockman. In this, we are picking up with Savage, a wild little boy who was left in a dinosaur land and came to the present. Now he’s a social media star. Don’t worry. There’s still dinosaur battles in this book. I thought this was a lot of fun. What did you guys think? Pete: Yeah. I- Justin: Yeah. This … Pete: Go ahead. Justin: This is a lot fun. It reminds me of back in the day, the Ultraverse line of comics. This feels like strong pitch, strong concept, mixing a classic sort of comic book trope with a modern spin on it, and then the story’s just really fun. Pete: Yeah. I agree. It’s fun to see kind of Savage exist now and how that would kind of look a little bit, but I’m glad that we still get to kind of see Savage do what Savage enjoys doing- Justin: What Savage do. Pete: … and it was … Yeah. The art’s unbelievable. This is a very visually pleasing book, and it really delivers. Justin: Oh, pleasing. So pleasing. Pete: Yeah. Alex: Pete’s not having any of it tonight. Justin: Yeah. Alex: All right. Let’s move on, talk about- Justin: He’s displeased. Pete: Also, I’m very excited. We talked to Cullen Bunn about Shadowman, and we get a little peak of this in this. So I’m very excited about what that’s going to be like. Alex: There you go. Guardians of the Galaxy #11 from Marvel, written by Al Ewing, art by Juan Cabal. In this issue, this is the second-to-lat issue, I believe, of this run on Guardians of the Galaxy. They are facing down dark olympian gods. Star Lord has been through some very weird stuff that’s affecting him here. I know we haven’t really can keeping up with this book. So what’d you think about this issue? Justin: I feel like the Guardians of the Galaxy are the most emotional team in comic books. They’re an emotion-first team, and this book is it. All the characters are just wide open talking about what they’re going through, and they’re like “We have to fight, but I really want to talk about this,” and I appreciate that. They’re fully therapeutic. They’re getting it out there. They’re telling it like it is, and the art’s wonderful. It really is a ragtag group of characters. Just it’s used very well. Alex: Yeah. Pete? Pete: Yeah. I mean, it’s a lot of fun. Art’s unbelievable. Yeah. Alex: Great. Great stuff. Stillwater #6 from Image Comics, written by Chip Zdarsky, art by Ramón K. Pérez. This is a big flashback issue kicking off of the cliffhanger from the last issue where a bunch of military dudes were right outside the town where nobody dies. In this issue, we find out how they got there, what’s going on with it. As we talked to Chip Zdarsky about on the live show, the danger and the action ramps up in a big way in this book really quickly, which I continue to find very impressive. Justin: Yeah. He’s really done a good job of setting up a very explosive environment, the politics of Stillwater. Now we have these military guys on the outside of town. Our main character sort of doesn’t want to be there, is unsettled. That combined with Ramón Pérez’s very pastoral art, I think, makes for just a nice juxtaposition, and I like this book a lot. Pete: Yeah. I agree. Just when you think “Okay. This is what’s going,” it really amps it up even more. Art is unbelievable, and the kind of going between times, the adjustments it makes there, but also just in its storytelling and its panel movement … I cannot believe “Okay. Oh, sure. Yeah. Nobody dies. Okay. Oh, yeah, but now we’re going to deal with this thing.” It’s like “Wait. What?” It just keeps kind of keeping the action going, and it’s crazy in all the right ways. Alex: All right. Now it is time for our Future State block as we have been doing the past couple of weeks. We’ve read through every single issue that came out from DC in Future State this week. We’re not going to talk about all of them, but we’re going to talk about some highlights, but if you’re wondering what came out, we got Future State: Superman: Worlds of War #2, Immortal Wonder Woman #2, The Next Batman #4, Catwoman #2, Nightwing #2, and Shazam #2. So let’s call some stuff out. Pete just dropped something on the floor. I don’t know what’s going on. Pete: Yeah. I just accidentally dropped a pencil. I- Justin: A pencil? Pete: Yeah. Justin: Oh, no. Alex: Were you writing on your phone with a pencil? Pete: No. Justin: But Pete, what about your sketching? Pete: [inaudible 00:21:27]. Alex: Not a lot of people know this, actually, but Pete does these very funny caricatures of us during taping The Stack, and it’s a delight. Justin: You got to release those, Pete, because honestly, you’re like the Colossus, famously a painter, of the podcast. Pete: Sure. Sure. Anyways, so I really liked The Next Batman #4. I mean, having a black Batman is a great idea, but the part where Batman’s just like “Listen. I’m going to be real with you guys,” I was like “Oh, this is so much fun,” but I really like how this is different. You know what I mean? Because Batman in this book has parents and is willing to maybe stab his mom to get what he needs to get done and keep Gotham safe, and I don’t know if our Batman would do that. Pete: So it’s nice to see this Batman really stepping it up and be like “Sorry, ma. Sometimes you got to stab somebody for your beliefs,” and I don’t know. I just think this is … The Future State here, I’m still having a lot of fun with the choices that they’re making with these heroes, and this, The Next Batman, I’m having a great time with. Justin: Well, it wasn’t my favorite of the week, but I want to throw it to Nightwing #2, just piggybacking on Pete’s comment, because Nightwing #2 features of this new Batman and Nightwing, and I love the dynamic that’s created here, where our new Batman is sort of deferential to Nightwing. He’s like “I’m just sort of figuring this out right now,” and Nightwing’s like “I get it,” but our new Batman refuses to leave his side despite the fac that Nightwing … It’s a great flip of the dynamic of Batman usually being in the leadership role and Nightwing being more of a sidekick. I just hadn’t seen that before, and it really caught me off guard in a good way. Alex: So what was your favorite of the week then, Justin? Justin: Superman: Worlds of War #2. This story- Pete: Oh, yeah. Can we talk about it? Justin: This story by Phillip Kennedy Johnson at the front end of this book is so fucking good. He just boils down Superman and Clark Kent to just … I’ll tell you about what happened if you haven’t read it. There are these two kids are sort of in Smallville exploring the area. They walk to the original Kent farm. In this world, obviously Superman’s revealed that he’s Clark Kent. Justin: So they’re trying to find the original Kent farm, because everybody knows he’s Superman, and the main girl is recounting an article she read that Clark Kent wrote about the town, and it’s so good, so interesting, about a soldier that went to war and how it affected his life, juxtaposed with images of Superman on Warworld just fighting, sacrificing everything to free some people who have been captured on Warworld against Mongul, and it’s just … It’s beautiful. It’s drawn beautifully. It’s so smartly written. It’s so good. Pete: I want to take a moment just to talk about the art alone. I mean, unbelievable, just absolutely. The character designs, Mongul and Superman, their faces … Just it fits so well with the story in such a great way. The paneling, the art flow … It’s really, really well done. I was really impressed with this book. Alex: I’m surprised, Pete, that you didn’t call out Michael Avon Oeming’s art on the Midnighter story towards the back of this book, because we get kind of a little Midnighter going through time, and that seems exactly your jam. Pete: Oh, yeah. Yeah. I mean, yeah. If we can talk about that for a little bit, I mean- Justin: No. I’m so sorry. We just ran out of time [inaudible 00:25:19]. We don’t have time to talk about it. Pete: Yeah. I thought that was unbelievable. Obviously, I’m a huge Midnighter fan, but just what a cool concept, and Oeming … His art is just fantastic. Justin: I particularly like the old and young Midnighter versions that Oeming draws here. Alex: Super fun. It was really hard for me to choose, this week. I think, again, this is a very strong week for the Future State books. I kind of want to go for Immortal Wonder Woman #2 just because- Justin: Another great book. Alex: … I think it was a gorgeous story, Becky Cloonan and Michael W. Conrad, art by Jen Bartel, of Wonder Woman being the, I guess, second-to-last person in the universe, and it’s just, like a lot of these things, a mission statement on Wonder Woman and what she means, but the one that I kind of left until the end and that I was like “Oh, right,” … The first issue of this was awesome, Shazam #2- Justin: I knew you were going to say it. Pete: Yeah. Alex: … by Tim Sheridan and Eduardo Pansica. Fucking great. So good. Justin: Dark. Dark take. Alex: Oh, so dark. This is like the darkest Shazam story I’ve ever read in my life, but I love it, and I love the cliffhanger that it ends off up on, the way that the characters are drawn, just terrifying throughout, of Shazam and Billy Batson being split apart, where it leaves off, where it’s leading into this Future State Black Adam book. Just put it in my veins. I’m having a blast reading it. Justin: I agree. I liked that too, and I know we weren’t going to talk about all of them, but I got to throw it out to Future State Catwoman #2 as well- Alex: Great. Justin: … because it’s a great story. It’s a train robbery. We get to see Batman, Bruce Wayne, show up. Everyone thought he was dead. Catwoman reunites with him, such a great moment, great action. Onomatopoeias there for some reason, but it’s very cool. It was just great. Alex: Yeah. I’ve been reading this book. The fact that it’s all set on a train, did you feel like it was more of a Snowpiercer kind of book? Justin: Oh, yes. That’s what. I was like “Where’s all the snow? They should be just piercing each flake?” Pete: I did want to ask. In Immortal Wonder Woman, the art is so amazing, and I was like “What is this reminding me of.” It reminds me a little bit of She-Ra: Princess of Power on Netflix. The way the art kind of jumps off the page is really impressive, and I really liked it. Alex: Good stuff. Justin: It reminded me a little bit of the Green Lantern book that we love so much, Far Sector. Pete: Oh, yeah. Alex: All right. Let’s move on, because we have a lot of other books to talk about. Thor #12 from Marvel, written by Donny Cates, art by Nic Klein, another one of my favorite books of the month, because you got Throg and Lockjaw in a huge fight with Donald Blake, who has [crosstalk 00:28:03]. So much fun just fighting through dimensions, just a blast to read, also so dark, but great. Pete: The art and the way Throg is drawn … Some of the action stuff is just so phenomenal, like him catching the hammer. I had so much fun with this book. I didn’t know it would be this great. I was really, really impressed. This was such a great comic. Justin: I mean, time to redo your frog power rankings- Pete: Yeah. Dude, are you kidding me? Justin: … because Throg’s rise, overtaking the WB frog, Kermit the, really just jumping in here with a big hammer swing. Alex: I want to give a particular shout out though to the first double-page … I think it’s a double-page [inaudible 00:28:48], or maybe it’s a single page, which shows a dissected, cut-open frog- Pete: Oh, no. Justin: Yeah. It’s the first page of the issue. Alex: … with Throg’s narration, and it’s talking about the legacy of Throg and all the things that he’s done and how he’ll always be remembered, and you’re reading that, and you’re like “No. What happened? What did I miss? This is terrible,” and then if you flip to the next page, it’s like “But he will not die today,” and you’re like “Oh, you son of a bitch, Donny Cates.” Great, just a great, fun little feint right there at the top of the book, just delightful to read. Justin: Well, it’s very fun to have Throg be such a badass but also Throg get his little tail-less ass kicked in the middle of the issue, but Donny Cates is having so much fun in all of his work, really, but this issue particularly, and then the last panel I thought- Pete: Oh, man. Justin: I thought it was so cool, and this is a shout out to anybody, I don’t know, for maybe one person who listens to this podcast, but Odin at the end of this issue looks like Key lime pie Steve, who drinks in B61 back in the day, a bar I used to bartend at, so much that it took me out of the issue for a hot sec. Pete: Wow. Alex: That’s amazing. Let’s move on to another book then, Excellence #10 from Image Comics, written by Brandon Thomas, art by Khary Randolph. We’ve been loving this book, which is a very different, very spectacular take on magic. In this book, our main character is still on the run, still in bigger trouble every single issue. As we talked about with the last couple, they not exactly stepped away from this, but sort of layered this in without explicitly saying how much this book was about race and racism, and now they’re starting to hit it hard, and it is so good. Pete: This is phenomenal. I mean, the art and the paneling and the storytelling is great, the action sequences. I mean, there’s this one page where someone gets just Street Fighter punched and is like “Fuck what you thought.” I’ve wanted to do that to somebody for so long. It’s just so great, so much fun. Justin: Sonic boom. You want to sonic boom someone. Pete: Oh, man, do I. Justin: Yes. I mean, I agree. The way this comic approaches race is so smart, so good, but I don’t want to lose the other side of it. The way this comic approaches magic is also just a philosophizing about it and really going deep on all of the subjects that are sort of on the table in this comic. It really just is such a smartly written book and beautifully drawn. One of my favorites. Alex: Next up, Once & Future #16 from Boom! Studios, written by Kieron Gillen, art by Dan Mora. Pete, there’s a badass grandma in this one. You want to talk about this book? Pete: I mean, if you’re not- Alex: You love grannies. Pete: If you’re not reading this book- Alex: You’ve got a real grandma fetish, one might say. Go ahead. Justin: Yeah. Pete: If you’re not reading this book at this point, I don’t know what’s wrong with you. This book is just magic. Every time, every issue, unbelievable art, unbelievable storytelling, action packed, twisting and turning stories that you know and love in different ways. Yeah. I cannot wait for this to be a movie or a TV show. I need more Once & Future in my life. Justin: “If you’re not dating a badass grandma at this point, what are you doing with your life,” Pete says and wonders. This is maybe the most consistent comic book on the stands right now, and I mean that in a good way. Alex: Yeah. I agree. This issue continues to be great, unfolding the mythology of the book. Super, super fun. Alex: Let’s move on to one I’m very excited to chat with both of you about for very different reasons, X-Men Legends #1 from Marvel, written by Fabian Nicieza, art by Brett Booth. Here’s what this book is. First of all, this is a new book that Marvel is launching which finishes or continues stories that are in continuity. This is an in-continuity X-Men story that Fabian Nicieza began almost 30 years ago and never got to finish about the third Summers brother, which, spoiler, we get confirmation here is in fact Adam X the X-Treme. Justin: Finally. Alex: Finally. So the thing that I’m very curious about is this felt like the perfect synthesis of things that the two of you like about X-Men. Pete, it’s a bunch of X-Men killing each other and fighting each other in classic style. Justin, Adam X the X-Treme is in it. What’d you guys think about this book? Justin: I will not rest until Adam X the X-Treme is hanging out on Krakoa, because this guy’s going to be the number-one get on fuck island. Alex: Didn’t you like him? Am I wrong about that? Justin: No. I mean, it’s a very ’90s character. He’s a backwards- Pete: It’s Justin turned up to 11 is what it is. He’s got his hat backwards. He’s doing hand stands, wearing tight T-shirts. This is all Justin. Justin: That’s very funny, Pete, and maybe makes me rethink a lot of my self worth, but yeah. I mean, I do like the character. I liked the introduction of this character back in the day, and so I appreciate that they’re going back and making it real, and also this comic looks like it happened already. This looks like it’s straight out of the ’90s. Pete: Yeah. That’s what I thought. Justin: [crosstalk 00:34:20]. Alex: I got to tell you. When I was putting together the stack and sending stuff to you guys, I looked this is, and I was like “Is this a reprint? What’s happening? Is this a reprint? What’s going on?”- Pete: Yeah. That’s what I thought. Alex: … and I did way too much research for just sending you guys a comic to be like “I got to make 100 percent sure this is actually a new book and not something that came out 30 years ago.” Justin: But let me say the meticulous dedication to the poses that Cyclops is in are straight out of the ’90s. Cable shows up here for sort of no reason. The Starjammers are in this, and it’s like “Oh, of course. Why not?” They’re just hanging around. It’s perfect. It’s a perfect version of what it is. Pete: I thought this was a reprint, and then I scrolled down. I was like “Oh. Jordan D. White. This is real. Let’s go.” Alex: What’d you think, Pete? Pete: This was just ’90s, over-the-top stuff, and I was just like “You know, it’s a fun blast from the past,” like “Oh, I remember when comics-“ Alex: What do you want, Pete? What do you want out of an X-Men book? Justin: What makes you happy? Alex: I don’t even understand at this point. Pete: You know, I was like “Yeah, but we’ve evolved from this. Why would you go back here?” Justin: What? Just because hub cap and tippy toe and the other Joes aren’t in this, can’t you enjoy this for what it is? Pete: First off, G.I. Joe and X-Men are completely different. How dare you? Alex: Are they? They both have very stupid names. Pete: Sure. Sure. That doesn’t mean that they are stupid though. Justin: That’s true. The thing is, all the X-Men are named non-compound words, and all the G.I. Joes are named compound words. Pete: Yeah. Yeah. Alex: Great. I’m glad we settled that. Let’s move on and talk about Aria: Heavenly Creatures from Image Comics- Pete: Oh, here we go. Alex: … written by Brian Holguin, art by Jay Anacleto and Brian Haberlin. This is a very Top Cow book. Pete: What is this? What did you make us do here? Alex: It’s a very Top Cow book. It’s about- Justin: Perhaps the most Top Cow book. Alex: Yes. It’s a fairy teaming up kind of with a witchblade, but not exactly a witchblade, in Victorian times, and it’s a little bit sexy, but not too sexy. So you can feel okay reading it but be like- Pete: No. You shouldn’t. Alex: … “Oh, this is sexy.” Pete: You shouldn’t feel okay reading it. Alex: I don’t know. I enjoyed reading this. I was surprised how much by the end I was like “Yeah. This is silly, but I’m having a fun time.” Justin: Alex has been missing watching soft core pornography, apparently- Pete: Yeah. I think so. Justin: … because that’s very- Pete: This is just fucking boob comics. Justin: Alex, because you put this in the stack, you should have to go read this on the Subway right now. Pete: Yeah. You should. Yeah. You should- Justin: You should have to go ride the Subway and read this. Pete: … [crosstalk 00:36:54] up and down the line. Yeah. Alex: Yeah. Watching a little Skinemax on my phone while I’m doing it. Justin: Just listening. Just listening to the Skinemax. That’s all you need. Alex: Yeah. Okay. Pete: Yeah. Watching USA Up All Night. Alex: Great. Justin: Pete. Alex: Thanks for the review, guys. Justin: No. I mean, the heart of this book … This book is … It has such a vibe. Pete: It’s just boobs. Justin: Well, but there is a lot of that, but it has such a vibe, which I recognize that, and the art is so specific to what it is. I liked reading it. I’m not shitting on it, but it’s very funny that you’re like “This is good,” because there’s a lot of poses where people be showing off their bodies. Alex: Me? No. I’m not saying it’s good, necessarily. I’m just saying I had fun reading it. Justin: This is the- Alex: There’s a big Victorian werewolf who eats people. What? Justin: Yeah. That part’s cool. This is the OnlyFans of comic books, if you want to get in on that. Alex: The Last Ronin #2 from IDW, story by- Pete: Here we go. Alex: … Kevin Eastman, Peter Laird, and Tom Waltz, script by Tom Waltz and Kevin Eastman, layouts by Kevin Eastman, pencils and inks by Esau and Isaac Escorza, Ben Bishop, and Kevin Eastman. This is, of course, continuing the story of the last turtle left alive. We got a cliffhanger in the last issue that April O’Neil is also alive, and we find out a lot more about that here. Pete, over to you. Pete: All right. So first off, you can’t have enough varying covers. You need varying covers. you need tons of them, and you need like 20 pages of it. No. I’m just so happy that Eastman and Laird have teamed back up to give us another turtle book. I could give a shit if it’s any good or not. This is good. I’m loving every single moment of it, and it goes back to the black-and-white stuff. I am just in heaven, and it’s just so great. I feel like I’m back in time and a little kid reading this in my bed. So it’s just glorious, and I don’t care if anybody doesn’t like it or not. This is just my jam. Justin: It’s very funny that you say you feel like you’re a little kid reading this, because this book is about being old, the images of Michelangelo, no longer a party dude, where he’s just super wrinkly, he’s all wrinkles, and they’re just like “Remember? Oh, it’s so great to be alive. Now we’re old. I have a robot hand.” It’s a wild read, but it’s good. Alex: Yeah. I like this a lot. Definitely when it got to the flashback portion and the old-school turtles title, I was like “Oh, Pete’s going to like this.” Pete: Oh, my god. It was so great. Alex: &n
45 minutes | 3 months ago
The Stack: Radiant Black, Sweet Tooth And More
On this week’s comic book review podcast: Radiant Black #1 Image Comics Written by Kyle Higgins Art by Marcelo Costa Sweet Tooth: The Return #4 DC Comics Written and art by Jeff Lemire Eternals #2 Marvel Written by Kieron Gillen Art by Esad Ribić Low #26 Image Comics Written by Rick Remender Art by Greg Tochhini Rorschach #5 DC Comics Written by Tom King Art by Jorge Fornés Daredevil #27 Marvel Written by Chip Zdarsky Art by Marco Checchetto and Mike Hawthorne Birthright #46 Image Comics Written by Joshua Williamson Art by Andrei Bressan Black Hammer: Visions #1 Dark Horse Comics Written by Patton Oswalt Art by Dean Kotz Future State: Dark Detective #3 DC Comics Written by Mariko Tamaki, Matthew Rosenberg Art by Dan Mora, Carmine Giandomenico Future State: Teen Titans #2 DC Comics Written by Tim Sheridan Art by Rafa Sandoval Future State: Robin Eternal #2 DC Comics Written by Meghan Fitzmartin Art by Eddy Barrows Future State: Superman/Wonder Woman #2 DC Comics Written by Dan Watters Art by Leila del Duca Future State: Green Lantern #2 DC Comics Written by Geoffrey Thorne, Robert Venditti, Josie Campbell Art by Tom Raney, Andy Tong, Dexter Soy Future State : Justice League #2 DC Comics Written by Joshua Williamson, Ram V Art by Robson Rocha, Marcio Takara Future State: Kara Zor-El Superwoman #2 DC Comics Written by Marguerite Bennett Art by Marguerite Sauvage Critical Role: Vox Machina: Origins: Series III #1 Dark Horse Comics Written by Jody Houser Art by Oliver Samson Thunderbolts #2 Marvel Written by Matthew Rosenberg Art by Juan Ferreyra Undiscovered Country #12 Image Comics Written by Scott Snyder and Charles Soule Art by Giuseppe Camuncoli and Leonardo Marcello Grassi The Last Witch #2 BOOM! Box Written by Conor McCreery Art by V.V. Glass American Vampire 1976 #5 DC Comics Written by Scott Snyder Art by Rafael Albuquerque Black Panther: King in Black #1 Marvel Written by Geoffrey Thorne Art by Germán Peralta Bliss #5 Image Comics Written by Sean Lewis Art by Caitlin Yarsky Orcs #1 Kaboom! Written and art by Christine Larsen Home Sick Pilots #3 Image Comics Written by Dan Watters Art by Caspar Wijngaard SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. Full Episode Transcript Alex: What is up, everybody? Welcome to The Stack. I’m Alex. Justin: I’m Justin. Pete: I’m Pete. Alex: And on The Stack we talk about a bunch of books that come out this week, kicking it off with Radiant Black number one from Image Comics written by Kyle Higgins, art by Marcello Costa. This is of course, as you could probably tell from the number one and totally new book. And the premise is a Downer’s luck author who has not gotten jobs for a while, heads back home, encounters something weird and may or may not become some sort of a superhero, pretty typical setup. But I really liked how this was executed personally. I thought the designs were great and I’m very excited to read this going forward. What did you guys think? Pete: I agree. I was really impressed with this setup. I mean just seeing this guy cry when he goes through early, really makes you, “Oh, you’re rooting for this person.” And then just the way he falls into is very interesting. And the design of the suit and stuff is really fantastic. I think this does a great job of getting you excited for a new series. Justin: Yeah, this had some vibes of invincible to me very much Early Kirkman stuff. Pete: Sure- Justin: And both in the writing and the art. And yeah, it was an interesting launch. I was very triggered by a writer who struggles to work- Pete: Wow- Justin: Because that’s a constant stress. Pete: The douchey friend reminded me of you. Justin: Oh, that’s so interesting. The animal, I think it was some hamster or rat that was dead next to the tracks. It reminded me of you. Pete: Oh, wow. That’s really fucked up. Alex: So in the back matter, Kyle Higgins talks a little bit about how he was inspired while he was writing Power Rangers- Pete: Yeah- Alex: And that really firmed a bunch of stuff up in Bye-Bye and for the- Pete: Yes, big time- Alex: About the world what is going on here. But I think what he’s done is he found a really grounded way of taking this Power Rangers concept, making it feel afresh, make it feel new. And it’s a lot of fun. I’m excited to read more of this. Alex: Next up Sweet Tooth return number four from TC Comics so written and art by Jeff Lameer. We get some big answers here about what’s been- Pete: Yeah- Alex: Going on with this rebooted- Justin: Yeah- Alex: Sweet Tooth. Justin, I know you’ve been concerned about the end game here. So how did you feel about this issue [inaudible 00:02:34]? Justin: This issue did a lot for me. I think we got to learn a lot of the backstory here and what I love about the take here, and it reminded me of a lot of the later stuff. The later arcs on the original Sweet Tooth. The way that Jeff Lameer combines in the writing, the ideas of scientists who become religious fanatics, breaking that dichotomy between science and religion and showing that the real danger is when fanatical people actually have the tools they need to cause real problems for the planet. Justin: That’s when we as a society get into trouble. I think it’s on display again here. And this is such a great issue to really flash out the mythology. We get to hear a little bit of why the people in charge of this newer world are motivated to do what they do and it’s great. Pete: I thought the stuff about the shirt was very sweet and touching. Alex: There’s some stuff about Sweet Tooth shirt, particularly that was such a big thing back in the old book. And that gets called back here. I agree, really good issue, very excited to see how this all starts to wrap up, going over to a Turtle’s number two from Marvel written by Karen Gillan, art by [inaudible 00:03:48] where we left off in the last issue, Thanos was attacking some of the members of the Eternals. So one of the Eternals had been murdered. Usually not a problem. It turns out it is a little bit of a problem here- Pete: There’s a problem- Alex: But you get some big revelations and explanation of what’s going on. One- Pete: Yeah- Alex: Of my favorite things about this book is it is revealed. I don’t know if it was real to the first issue, but it’s revealed here in a very funny and very Karen Gillen way that the person who is narrating this, is the eternal machine that helps resurrect the Eternals, but that machine is broken. And just the way that is executed, the way that tells the story of the series feels so unique and exciting to me. Pete: Yeah. I was- Justin: Totally the narration is funny, it’s sort of irreverent. It feels like you’re hearing the Karen Gillan, basically make fun of the characters in the book that he’s currently writing, which I think is so great. Pete: Yeah. I was really impressed with this. You got a big Eternals movie coming out from Marvel. So I feel like this does a great job of getting people excited for that. Eternals to me never really was something I could latch onto, but I’m really into this book. I think it’s a really cool setup of a what’s the problem is and what’s going on and what’s going to happen. And I’m really looking forward to it. Art’s fantastic. A really fun time jumps stuff here. Yeah. And even there’s sweet touching moments where they make mistakes. And I was really impressed with this. This is a really solid book. Justin: And their R is so good. It feels so big mythology while also having great comic book action at the same time. This comic is really just delivering on all the fronts you want. Alex: Well, on that note, let’s turn a bit to low number 26 from Image Comics written by Greg Takini- Justin: Oh, here we go- Alex: This is the last issue of this book. Justin, this has been one of your favorite books for a very long time. How do you think it wrapped up? Justin: Great. Just so good. Rick Rimenda. I don’t know how, I mean, we talked to him about this book a few weeks ago and it was on the podcast. And I don’t know how he writes his books. When does he think of the ending? Because he really does such a good job with endings in a lot of his work. He’s able to tie up the character arcs, the emotional arcs as well as just the central theme and leave you thinking and feeling a certain way, in his last issues, it was same with Black Science. Justin: And this issue is just beautifully done. You see that… And I don’t want to spoil too much of it. Because I think you really need to read this and take it in. And I want to reread the entire series to really get every ounce of story out of it. But it’s about a family at the end of the day. And you get to see that land in a way that is tragic, heartbreaking, but beautiful and sentimental at the same time. Pete: Yeah. I mean, this is the sweetest most moving way Rimenda could kick you in the nuts. He’s still going to get you, but this is done so well. And it’s so moving. It’s really impressive. The art is just… A lot of times when you’re dealing with different worlds, different ideas, the art can get too crazy, but it’s done in such a way that it shows grace and beauty and different things. Pete: The layering to it is really impressive. There’s different characters that aren’t human that are very humanized, it’s really amazing and impressive the way this all ties in. This got really weird at times, but man, does he land this so well. Justin: And he- Pete: He does it so well, it really does make you want to be like, “Wait, I want to go back and see that beginning again.” Justin: If I may just get your jacket book quote correct. I think it’s a beautiful kick in the nuts that makes you turn and say thank you to the nut kicker. Pete: Right. Justin: Peel the page. Alex: Next step Rorschach number five from DC Comics written by Tom King art by Hori Fornace. I hesitate to say it was my favorite issue so far, but this is the one to me that really felt like- Justin: Yeah- Alex: It pulled back the veil on what’s happening potentially where this book is heading. We’ve had this guy investigating this mystery. There was an attempted presidential assassination, but somebody dressed as Rorschach and somebody dressed as a cowboy. Alex: The first couple of issues have been really building up, was investigator looking through this mystery. And if I was to purely speculate for a bit, we found out that this cowboy character has been going up to people and telling them, “Hey, you are the reincarnation of Rorschach. His energy with Dr. Manhattan Blue is hemp, has gone into various people. You and Rorschach, come with me, let’s do vigilante justice.” Pete: That’ll pick up line. Alex: That’ll pick up line. I think whether that is true or not, that’s what’s happening to our main guy, right? He is going to get to a place where either he becomes Rorschach or even thinks he is Rorschach and maybe starts to think this is true. Justin: Well, he believes that he’s Rorschach at the end of the day. I think that’s just smart. Alex: Well specifically because the theme that Tom King is dealing with here is conspiracy theories. And I think this is a little bit about how the deeper you get into conspiracy theory, the more things start to look like conspiracy, and the more it starts to become believable, whether you’re investigating it or whether you’re the one who’s putting it out there. Justin: Yeah, I think that’s such a smart take because my takeaway from this issue specifically… I mean, last issue, we talked about this a little bit because it was tricking people into believing certain things and them taking it to the extreme where they end up- Alex: Right- Justin: Believing it above everything else in their lives. Also very topical thing going on in our real world. And in this, this issue is about masks. And then we have this character who’s running for president to try to take down a Robert Redford who’s won for like five terms in a row. And he’s shitting on wearing mask because he is so comfortable believing a bunch of nonsense maskless. Justin: And the people that wear masks are quote unquote, hiding their beliefs, their identities, whatever, yet this person is so brazen and out there saying nonsense. He doesn’t have to hide even the craziest opinions that he has. That was my takeaway from this, is just, the people that wear the mask are maybe the people to trust more so. Pete: I agree with… It’s all been, a lot more is solidified, click into place here. Tom King, just piece meals information as he twists and turns stories. But this is one of my favorite issues for sure. And the last couple of panels, just absolutely fantastic. And so cool. Yeah, I thought this was a great issue and I’m very excited for more. Alex: I agree, next up Daredevil number 27 from Marvel written by [inaudible 00:11:20] who is on the live show this very week, talking about this book, art by Marco Maketto and Mike Hawthorne. This book we’re dealing with the King Black crossover while Electra is filling in for Matt Murdock fighting on the streets of New York. Matt is trapped in prison and has been infected by [inaudible 00:11:36] the God of the Symbionts. So we’re getting these dual stories going on and they’re both very good. Justin: I was really impressed with this. I thought the way they handled Matt Murdoch’s belief in religion and God when it came to, what the fuck is, the King of black, what’s his name there? Alex: Knull. Justin: Knull, thank you. Yeah, I thought that was so great. And so well explained in such a way that really felt like Matt Murdoch character. I was really impressed with that. It was crazy to hear, to be like, “Yeah, religion, I don’t know.” Because it really felt like he was coming from a place, for this, but I guess he just really gets in the head of his character so well. Justin: But yeah, I thought this was really a great, fantastic, hold it up over time issue of Daredevil, really interesting. It’s all of the characters really doing their own thing in their own way, right down to kingpin and a lecturer as Daredevil. I was really impressed with the art and everything that happened in this issue. Pete: It’s really rare when a book can continue its story through a crossover and the crossover actually enhances a lot of the themes that we’re dealing with. Justin: Yeah. Pete: And this book really does it. And the only thing that was missing was a scene where Foggy was sitting alone in his apartment, which is what he does a lot. And a symbiont comes up, jumps on him and then the symbiont is like, “Eh nevermind.” And just goes on to just someone else or just to wrap around a mouse or whatever. Justin: Yeah. Well, Foggy wins again. Alex: Next up Birthright, number 46 from Image comics written by Joshua Williamson and art by Andre Bresson. This is kicking off the final arc of this book. As we start to wrap up this story here, everybody’s picking up the pieces by finally taking down the God King Lore. We get some flashbacks back to the world that Mikey and friends were living in for a very long period of time. What’d you think about this? I think we felt like everything wrapped up really nicely in the last couple of issues. And now we have more Birthright. Justin: We have this and four more issues. This is another one of my favorite books coming to an end in a great way. The fact that we had the big battle the land of the last arc, we get to see a nice epilogue an emotional- Alex: Oh yeah- Justin: Epilogue, which is what again, about family and about what it means, despite all the crazy shit going on in our lives. What do we chase after when the going gets tough? And in this case, family, I love this book. Pete: It’s really dawning on me that family’s important. I think comic books might be right. It’s crazy. No, I agree, Justin, this is really impressive. What they’re doing afterwards, this huge thing, it’s kind of like, okay, onto the next adventure. No, they’re really sitting in this aftermath, exploring other things that maybe they could have talked about more while all this madness was happening. I was really impressed with the relationship stuff in this, very moving, this book continues to be amazing. Alex: Next up Black Hammer visions never went from Dark Horse Comics written by Patton Oswalt art by Dean Cots. This is the first issue of course, of this anthology telling stories about the Black Hammer characters from creators. Other than Jeff Lameer, we’ve been really big fans of the miniseries, they’ve been rolling off here. These are these one-shots. Alex: I thought this as usual was absolutely great. This is a one-shot story that mixes up Black Hammer and Ghost World of all things and awards as a coda to Ghost World while still telling a story of Gail for the Black Hammer universe. Absolutely wonderful. I was completely surprised by this. Did not see this coming from Patton Oswalt at all. Really good one-shot comic book. Pete: Patton Oswalt, really getting into the comic book game. Justin: Yeah, I was really impressed with this. This wasn’t just a comedian doing bits. This was really smart, very moving stuff, such a cool story, the way everything tied in and fit with this world. I was really impressed with this. I really liked the setting of it. I thought it was great. The art’s glorious. Alex: Yeah, really good stuff. Next, oh God. Pete: I agree as well. Sorry. Really got into the fact that he was able to bring Ghost World into it, was clearly something that he loves. He’s got some Amy Mann quote lyrics from at the end of the book and still be telling a story that fits seamlessly into this world and is fun, funny with good reveals. It’s really great. Alex: Let’s jump into our Future State block, where we talk about all of the books that have come out for future change. Justin: Oh yeah. Alex: And just to read down the list this week, we’ve got Future State, Dark Detective, number three. Future State Teen Titans, number two. Future State [inaudible 00:16:38], number two. Future State Superman and Wonder Woman, number two. Future State Green Lantern number two. Future State Justice League, number two. And Future State [inaudible 00:16:46] Superwoman, number two. I got to admit, I’m a little slightly with Pete here where they definitely hit me this week where I was like, “Oh, there’s a lot of books we’re reading, oh boy.” Justin: Yes. It is a lot, but- Alex: Fuck this guy- Justin: The stories are, so they get to- Alex: [inaudible 00:17:01]- Justin: Go off in a lot of different directions. And if we’re going to dive into our faves I’m going to give it up for Future State Justice League number two, which I really liked the way they went here by having the white Martian takeover. And it became about all the different heroes identities, and the fact that they need to connect with each other or else nothing, or else they’re just weaker as a team. And I liked that as a theme, it was something I didn’t see coming really in the last issue they laid it out and this really paid it off. I thought it was just really well done. Pete: Yeah. I completely agree. I love Justice League, amazing art, The White Martian story was great. And also having Joe, the new Green Lantern, he was the best Green Lantern of all time. It was just fantastic. And it made the book so much better and the backup story was great. Magic is hope motherfuckers, I thought that was great. I thought [inaudible 00:18:03]- Justin: The Justice League dark story. Pete: Yeah. Alex: The other thing I mentioned that I thought it was interesting about this week is we’re getting two things here, right? One, we’re getting the wrap-up of these future state stories, but also we’re getting teases for what’s down the road. And DC has started to announce that some of these titles are continuing in different forums. For example, Wonder Woman is continuing as Wonder Girls, or we’re going to get that there. Alex: I think, I’m forgetting which other ones are going to continue, but certainly there’s teases at the end of a couple of these for how they’re going to flesh out in different storylines. Green Lantern number two ends with the tease of Green Lantern 2021, which does seem again, Joe, from- Pete: Oh, yeah- Alex: Fire sector is going to be fighting Hell Jordan in the subway. So that should be fun to watch. Justin: Yes. Alex: The one that- Justin: Great crew- Alex: Really jumped out to me, I love the first issue of this, and I love the second issue of this too. Future States Superman, Wonder Woman, which is of course, teaming up the characters, but sending them off on these very different stories, Superman fighting Solaris, [inaudible 00:19:00]. Wonder Woman trying to have a race around the universe with the Sun God from her culture. I just really liked how these characters related. I thought there was a fun tone to it. The art was really nice as well, and it felt like an enjoyable all ages title, but with these new Superman, Wonder Woman characters and it made me really delighted to potentially follow them going forward. Justin: I agree. And this felt really mythological, the whole thing felt it could have been something in the back of an Edith Hamilton book that you read in school and were pleasantly surprised how much a comic book it was. Pete: Oh, wow. I really liked Kara Zor-El Superwoman, number two. The art was just so phenomenal and I really liked the character design for Superwoman amazing, just cool [inaudible 00:19:57] like dragons. Very enjoyable. I’ve been enjoying that series as well. Alex: Now let me ask you Pete, at the end of this book we leave Kara Zor-El buried next to her dog Krypto. Pete: Right. Alex: Would you feel if you were awesome shared a grave with them a dog, would you be like, “That’s it.” Or in your case, I guess it’d be a cat. Pete: Well, currently, I mean, don’t put shit like that out there. I don’t want my cat to die, but- Alex: I’m not saying your cat’s going to die, but someday it will. Pete: Oh, that’s fucking heartbreaking, man. Justin: Is your cat like a [inaudible 00:20:32] where if your cat dies, you have to be buried alive with the cat? Alex: Yes. Pete: I hope not. I don’t want to do that, but yeah, I love that. I thought that was super sweet. Alex: Sorry man your cats live at will, it’s going to happen. I have your cat’s [inaudible 00:20:51]- Justin: You can’t sign it with a [inaudible 00:20:52]- Pete: My cat can’t read. So it’s going to be fine. Justin: The cat doesn’t have to read, [inaudible 00:20:57]- Alex: I explained it very clearly to your cat, your cat agreed- Justin: Put a little ink print. Pete: [inaudible 00:21:03] my cat then, I’ll see you in court. Justin: Lapage versus Whiskers of some sort. All the way to the Supreme court, what’s your cat’s name? Pete. Pete: It’s a very long name. I call her Caboots. Alex: Why are you being secrective about this? Justin: Do we not have time to get into this? Pete: It’s a very long name. Justin: Okay. Are you worried about threading tape on it? Because I talked to the engineer and we actually have the tape. We can run it. So go ahead. Lay out the whole name, I guess. Pete: Okay, fine. It’s kitten NASCA of the Valley of the wind Lapage Thomas. Justin: Aw, that’s very cute. Alex: That’s very cool. Pete: I call her Caboots. Justin: Well, I look forward to visiting your grave in the Valley of the wind. Pete: Nice. Justin: Your shared grave. Alex: Alright. Why don’t we move on from Future State and talk about critical Role Vox Mac- Pete: Wait- Alex: Oh, there’s other things you wanted to talk about? Pete: Yeah it’s- Alex: We’ve got also Dark Detective. We’ve got Teen Titans. We got [inaudible 00:22:07] Turtle. Pete: Yeah. I wanted to talk about Dark Detective. I really thought it was a great issue. Justin: It’s great. Pete: I love this tech Batman versus future Batman. The two designs are really cool and it’s fun to see them go head to head. And to [inaudible 00:22:27] guys so drones are scary and I’m just putting that out there now. Drones are going to be very scary in the future. Justin: Yeah. You mean the nano drones that are hovering right around your head even as we speak. Pete: Yeah. I’m sure they’re out there, but also I checked out a DC Love is a Battlefield. [crosstalk 00:22:47]. There was very durable. They did a lot of coupling up for Valentine’s day. And Tim Seeley did a Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn love story. It was just so great. So touching. Justin: It is amazing how you do this every week and in such an odd way. I really liked Dark Detective as well. The front story has been one of my favorites of this run. And just a quick rundown of the rest, Green Lantern too, I thought the setup for the next issues, I was really into the Green Lantern 2021 coming forward with how Jordan felt like a nice starting point going forward. And I liked the Robin Eternal issue here as well with Tim Drake, really suffering from some juicy Lazarus problems. Alex: I agree. Next up, critical role [inaudible 00:23:37] series three, number one from Dark Horse Comics written by Jody Houser, art by Oliver Samson in this book, we’re getting a bunch of fantasy stuff is happening. What did you guys think? I’m sorry. I’m just not very familiar with critical role. So I read this and I was like, “Yes, this is a fantasy world.” But funny. I get it. Pete: Yeah. I think this is a fun adventure book, a bunch of people teaming up going on adventures. Joining fight clubs. I thought the arts fantastic. Some fun storytelling. I thought this was a cool team to get behind. I’m very excited to see where this goes. Justin: Yeah, I agree. I was concerned with the fight club that they fight in teams and how do you really judge on a team? If we were to fight another trio, how would we know we were an evenly balanced team? Pete: If we won, we would be good. Alex: So Pete is the tank, right? Justin: Yeah, that’s what we say off mic. Alex: Justin, you’re the thief, you’re quick and sneaky. Justin: That’s okay. Alex: And I’m white like [inaudible 00:24:45]- Pete: You’re the evil mastermind. Justin: You’re the baby hands- Alex: Baby hands. Justin: Every trio has them- Alex: Crucial. Pete: The tank, the thief- Justin: Yeah, you’re a boss baby [crosstalk 00:24:55]- Alex: I’m a muscle. Pete: Justin’s [inaudible 00:24:58]- Alex: I’m a boss baby back in business. Justin: Now streaming on Netflix- Pete: Justin’s a face man. He can talk his way into anything. Alex: There we go. Justin: We’re quite a trio. None of those things we’re fighting by the way just so we’re clear. Alex: Thunderbolts, number two for Marvel Comics written by Matthew Rosenberg, art by Van Ferrari. This is tying into the King and Black event. Lots of goopy stuff going on this week- Justin: Goopy- Alex: More [inaudible 00:25:21] to come. Here we get a bunch of villains, have tried to rescue maybe, or work with Norman Osborn to find out some information from him. So they spent a lot of time in Raven Croft. I always want to say Arkham, but it’s not Arkham, it’s Raven Croft. Justin: It’s close. Alex: And it’s super fun as usual. Justin: How could you mix those two up Alex? How would you mix those two things up? Alex: They’re two- Justin: It’s impossible. There are two very different in [inaudible 00:25:45] in two very different universes. Alex: You right, I’m sorry. Super fun bits in here, in particular. And I feel Matthew Rosenberg is just writing for the bits for some of these things where just, what is it? Mister Fear says something to Kingpin. He doesn’t realize he’s of the zoom and Kingpin is, “Hey, Taskmaster you’re here.” And he’s, “Yeah.” He’s like, “Okay, punch Mister Fear.” And he punches Mister Fear, Norman Osborn getting too close to the zoom and his whole face filling it, just fun, it’s a fun book to read. I had a blast reading it across the board. Pete: Yeah. I think he does great on team books. This was fun. I also really to see Taskmaster around, so I thought this was a lot of fun, great kingpin stuff. The art’s great. This is just a fun book. Justin: Yeah. It’s a great mix of real good comic storytelling, good fights. Character-driven stuff, even characters we don’t really see a lot. I really liked this new star character that the series that we read six months ago now. Seeing her hair, it’s great. Really well-written but also very fun, funny, and still tying into this goopy old crossover. Pete: And also, you got to be wary if you just find… Nobody’s just taking a nap in the bush. You got to be careful. That’s all I’m saying. I don’t want to give things away, but that was creepy. Alex: I hope this comic continues. I don’t know if it will, but this is the sort of thing where I could see Wilson Fisk having a bunch of villains going on disposable missions. Most of them getting killed, not coming back alive, betray each other. It’s suicide squad without the bombs in the head, but it’s fun to read and he’s writing the hell out of it. So I’ll definitely read more. Alex: Next up Undiscovered Country, number 12 from Image Comics written by Scott Snyder and Charles Soul art by Giuseppe Camuncoli and Leonardo and Marcello Grassi. This is tying up the second arc of this book, unity in a huge fashion, propelling us into the next arc of the book. This is a wild ride as usual, incredible visuals throughout. Justin: Yeah. Alex: Particularly with this issue, we had Scott on the show a little while ago and he was talking about how he and Charles are writing the movie. I do not know how they’re writing a movie of this. It’s just so big. Everything that happens. Justin: It would be crazy to boil this arc down to one set piece. Because that’s what it would have to be, sort of. I would think. Pete: I don’t know how- Justin: The comic, you get the emotional beats are here, it’s wild storytelling. There are so many ideas here. I mean, it’s the same stuff we always compliment this book about, but they just continue to really find the balance of giving this… In this book, there’s this very wild escape. It plays a Super Mario kart race for a portion of it. But then you get this really great heartfelt moment where to the main characters, the brother and sister are talking to their images of their parents and it’s great. Pete: Yeah. There’s so much to this comic. There’s so much happening. It can be a little crazy, but man, does it deliver? And the big monster aspect in this issue was just glorious and so cool that a six shooter was really crazy. This was really cool also, they thought this place that they’re out was one thing and it turned out to be something different, really great ideas going on in this book. Pete: I mean, I did think it was a little bit like, “All right, when it’s these young kids.” And they’re like, “This is old technology, the first iPod, how do you even use this?” I was, “Okay. All right.” But really impressive fun stuff. Art’s really unbelievable. This continues to be such a scratch your head, what’s happening, but then delivers really well. Justin: Yeah. And the last page reveal is just a hundred percent fun. Alex: It’s great stuff- Justin: It’s like, “Okay. Yeah, let’s get fun.” Alex: I’m in, I’m on board. Love it. Can’t wait for the next arc. Next up, The Last, Witch, number two for BoomBox written by- Justin: Oh man- Alex: Connor MCcury art by [inaudible 00:30:09]. You guys have been buzzing about this book. Pete: [inaudible 00:30:13]. This book is buzzing. This book is so good- Alex: Buzzing. First. So we got a girl in a small town heading off to a witch’s tower. Just wants to check it out a little bit, things pick up and this issue where I was, “Did I miss an issue? Is this issue, number three, what’s going on here?” Because this is insane from the first page with witches eating people and powers and everything. What do you guys about this book in particular? Pete: Well first off, the art is really unbelievable. It feels like an amazing animation and still form… The characters designed in the witches and the faces and the different kind of glowing things in them are really cool. This is moving, it’s intense, it’s sentimental. The little part where the kid is like, “I told you, it was so awesome.” Yeah, I’m really impressed with this book. I didn’t think I would like it so much. The grandma smoking a cigar is glorious. Justin: You love a good grandma, who doesn’t love a good grandma? Alex: You love a grandma. And you Pete, you know that’s a blunt dude, you know she’s [inaudible 00:31:20]. Justin: She’s far from [inaudible 00:31:22] bro- Alex: She even says, she’s like, “Let’s get this Juniper going around the room.” Justin: Honestly. I know we’re joking about it, but Pete, you are very into grandma’s and comics from this to watching Future. I’m sure there’s a couple of others I’m forgetting- Alex: And real life. He loves a grandma. Justin: You should release your own podcast where you count down the top 10 grandmas of all time. Pete: Oh that’d be cool. I could do it. But yeah, I think this book really took me by surprise and is really impressive. I cannot wait for more. Each issue continues to give us such a great movement for the story. Yeah. I’m really impressed. Justin: I love the art in this a lot. It reminds me of some classic Ralph [inaudible 00:32:08] animation style getting in like, the old habit series back in the day. And to your question earlier, Alex, why we think it’s such a buzz, buzz, buzzy book. It moves quickly. It’s both fun, lighthearted, welcoming us into this world. It’s scary at times. But it’s always just driving the story forward in a well done, confident way. It’s just a good book. There’s a little mystery going on at the end. We get a lot of mythology building here and cabins in the woods. Watch out. Alex: Yeah. All right, everybody that has been our buzz-buzz busy [inaudible 00:32:48] book of the week. Let’s move on and talk about American Vampire 1976, number five from TC Comics written by Scott Snyder, art by Rafael Albuquerque. Talk about things getting big- Justin: [inaudible 00:32:59]- Alex: In this issue, our heroes are fighting a bunch of giants, encounter a council of vampires, tons of mythology dump in this issue are going on here as we’re on to the end game, seemingly of American Vampire. Another great issue, but it’s just wild to me that we are so far into the road of this book and they’re still laying down huge pieces of the mythology. It’s very impressive. Justin: Yeah. And it all fits. It all feels very deliberate and they’ve done a great job of setting up a villain that is worse than everything else we’ve seen it before. And the way that they’re able to keep, Skinner’s such a central part of this character just by the fact that he’s been devamped and he’s just sort of, “Ah, I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m just hanging around.” And he’s still such a fun character, is great. Pete: Yeah. Scott Snyder knows what the fuck he’s doing when it comes to writing comic books, because this is really impressive, so well done. After all these arcs you would think that maybe the ideas would get a little, “All right, we’re going to try.” But man just delivers hard on every issue. The last panel reveal on this was really unbelievable. I can’t say enough about the art. These two teaming up is just magic. Alex: Next up Black Panther, Keegan Black, number one written by Jeffery Thorn art by Jermaine Peralta in this issue, as you can probably imagine these symbionts are attacking Wakanda and they start to fight back. What’d you think about this issue? Another book that feels it was inspired by, “Hey, what characters have black in their name? Let’s put them in the Black King and Black Event.” But personally I think it panned out a lot better than you might expect based on that. Pete: I was really impressed with this book. Also, I didn’t expect to get choked up but there was a moment where Black Panther and Siri see each other and give each other a hug. And I got a little choked up because I was, “That’s never going to happen in TV or movies and we’re never going to get to see that.” And it got me a little bit, which I wasn’t ready for. Justin: It’s funny you say that Pete, because I was thinking the same thing. It’s so rare, I think in a comic book, where from the adaptation to the movie has such an effect on reading the comic book going forward. Because I do feel, when I see Black Panther, I’m just, “Oh, there’s a loss there.” Pete: Yeah, It’s tough yeah- Justin: I view the character in the way that it’s never happened to me before. And I just can’t imagine it has happened before. And to see this, I don’t know, does that harm the Black Panther character in the Marvel universe? The fact that Chadwick Boseman was such an icon for the role and then died. And is it going to stay with us for forever? I guess would say. Pete: I wonder because it’s like, the comic came first. They should be able to do what they want, but man, it was just… I was having a hard time reading it. I was really getting choked up and being, “Ah, I don’t know, what did you just say? Series Black Panther and not kind of deal with it just so you don’t have these kinds of reactions.” But that doesn’t seem fair. Alex: I do think there’s something to be said. I agree with you guys. I had the exact same reaction emotionally and there was a brief thought of you’re saying, Pete, should they retire to Tchala as Black Panther for a while? Which sounds insane. But just to get around that uncomfortable sad reaction that you have, but I would say no, you keep it going because it is a tribute to how powerful he was as the character that even though he passed away in a very untimely manner, the character continues and it does pay a tribute to him by continuing to exist, by continuing to have these ventures. And as long as they keep being good and they keep treating the character in a good way, that does pay tribute to Chadwick Boseman’s performance in a back way as well. Pete: Now I do want to talk a little bit about this issue, not you know talking about that. I thought this was a great issue of Black Panther, lot of cool things and the call back to one of Black Panthers enemies was such a cool idea to help stop this menace. I was really impressed with the writing on this and there’s really cool, beast showdowns here. Yeah. Wow. What an awesome issue. What amazing art. This was really cool. Alex: Next up Bliss, number five from Image Comics written by Sean Lewis, art by Caitlin Yarsky. In this issue, we’re getting a bunch of backstory about what’s going on with our father character who was going up against the main antagonist of this book. We find out how he broke out of the hold of this drug. I guess you can call it a drug. Bliss, how he worked his way forward. Meanwhile, we’re following his son as he is trying to track down his dad, I believe. Still some incredible imagining coming out of this book, even five issues in. Justin: This reminded me of, and maybe this is a stretch. Do tell me. It’s a reverse never-ending story? Alex: Oh wow. Interesting. Justin: I guess it’s just like the never ending story. The dad is going on the adventure and the kid is [inaudible 00:38:35] hearing the dad adventure. Pete: That’s a way to reverse Everett Dick story, as [crosstalk 00:38:43]- Alex: You said, the kid being directed to the drug, it’s the dad and then- Justin: What I was thinking about was the fact that it’s the dad going on the adventure and the kid is hearing this stories- Pete: Riding a dragon means drugs. And then- Alex: I always describe, I don’t know if you guys do this too, but I always describe 13, going on 30 is a double reverse pig. Pete: Exactly. And you talk about that a lot, especially in your work as a critic. Yeah. Alex: I try to relate everything back to 13 going on 30 if I can. Pete: Seven a movie. Yeah, I thought this was a really beautiful issue. Unbelievable. This story continues to move forward in a great way. You go from absolutely hating this dad to maybe there’s something that could be done. Yeah, I’m just really impressed with this story. And then fun kind of join us next time. And they got the AOC with the scales of justice. I thought that was crazy cool. Alex: What? Pete: The character designs are very interesting. Justin: I will say to Pete’s point, I don’t think it’s actually AOC, but the woman in the preview for next issue looks just like AOC. Pete: It’s AOC dude. Alex: Next step Orcs, number one from Kaboom written by and art by Christine Larson. This is pretty much you could do that you could expect from the title. It’s a bunch of adventure in Orcs. [inaudible 00:40:07] it’s Kaboom, it is very all ages. I thought this was a delightful, fun book to read with some great character designs. I enjoyed this quite a bit. Pete, I imagine given its similarity to other things like Head Lopper and whatnot, you might’ve liked it as well? Pete: Oh, I really loved it. I especially loved the first story, thought it was really cool. It’s fun to see things that are cute be violent. But man, it was fun- Justin: Yes. Are you Soggy or Jimbo that little bunny? Pete: Yeah. I think that… Don’t call him little. You [inaudible 00:40:41]- Justin: Oh, I thought you weren’t going to take the bait and then you did. [crosstalk 00:40:45]- Pete: It was like that fish that swims by, and you’re, “Wow, I missed it.” And then it’s, “What’s that? Is that a worm?” Justin: [crosstalk 00:40:53]. Fish. I love worms. I’m a fish. I love worms even though I never encounter them because I live in the water. But let try that worm it’s exotic to me, because it lives over the ground. P
39 minutes | 4 months ago
The Stack: Runaways, Man-Bat And More
On this week’s Stack podcast: Runaways #33 Marvel Written by Rainbow Rowell Art by Andrés Genolet Man-Bat #1 DC Comics Written by Dave Wielgosz Art by Sumit Kumar Specter Inspectors #1 BOOM! Box Written by Bowen McCurdy Art by Kaitlyn Musto The Immortal Hulk #43 Marvel Written by Al Ewing Art by Joe Bennett Future State: Superman of Metropolis #2 DC Comics Written by Sean Lewis, Brandon Easton Art by John Timms, Valentine De Landro, Cully Hamner Future State: Wonder Woman #2 DC Comics Written and art by Joëlle Jones Future State: The Next Batman #3 DC Comics Written by John Ridley, Brandon Thomas, Paul Jenkins Art by Laura Braga, Sumit Kumar, Jack Herbert Future State: The Flash #2 DC Comics Written by Brandon Vietti Art by Brandon Peterson and Will Conrad Future State: Swamp Thing #2 DC Comics Written by Ram V Art by Mike Perkins Future State: Harley Quinn #2 DC Comics Written by Stephanie Phillips Art by Simone DiMeo and Tony Infante Deep Beyond #1 Image Comics Created by Mirka Andolfo, David Goy, Andrew Broccardo and Barbara Nosenzo The Legend of Shang-Chi #1 Marvel Written by Alyssa Wong Art by Andie Tong Chained to the Grave #1 IDW Written by Andy Eschenbach & Brian Level Art by Kate Sherron Far Sector #10 DC Comics Written by N.K. Jemisin Art by Jamal Campbell Star Wars: The High Republic Adventures #1 IDW Written by Daniel José Older Art by Harvey Tolibao Luna #1 BOOM! Studios By Maria Llovet The Comic Book History of Animation #3 IDW Written by Fred Van Lente Art by Ryan Dunlavey King in Black: Marauders #1 Marvel Written by Gerry Duggan Art by Luke Ross Transformers: Beast Wars #1 IDW Written by Erik Burnham Art by Josh Burcham King in Black: Black Knight #1 Marvel Written by Simon Spurrier Art by Jesús Saiz Fear Case #1 Dark Horse Comics Written by Matt Kindt Art by Tyler Jenkins Sea of Sorrows #4 IDW Written by Rich Douek Art and Colors by Alex Cormack SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. Full Episode Transcript: Alex: What’s up y’all. Welcome to The Stack. I’m Alex. Justin: I’m Justin. Pete: I’m Pete. Alex: And on The Stack, we talk about a bunch of books that have come out this week- Justin: Yes. Alex: And we’re not running away from this many reviews. In fact, we’re running towards them, starting off with Runaways number 33 from Marvel- Pete: Oh, I see what you did there. Okay, I see. Alex: Written by Rainbow Rowell. Justin: [crosstalk 00:00:25]. Yes, that’s what we thought. That’s what we knew. Alex: I know, it was a little tricky there, but there you go. Justin: No, we’re running toward them. Alex: Yes, this title has been sporadic to say the very best, but I think it is always welcome when it returns. We’re cutting in on our kids. Some of them are going to high school, some are not. They’re trying to balance responsibilities. This run by Rainbow Rowell has been so good and I am so happy whenever it comes back. Justin: I agree, it’s so well, each scene really stands out. The characters are so well thought through, the art’s great. I love this story. It captures adolescence and also the superhero side of it at the same time. It’s one of my favorites. Alex: Pete. Pete: I mean, I really liked it until the man-handling of Wolverine. And then I was like, “Eh, right.” But the art’s unbelievable. It’s some really great storytelling. I think it is fun. I really liked the gib. Justin: You think Wolverine could beat a Doombot? Doombots are so strong, there’s no way. Alex: They really are, and Wolverine’s so short. Justin: He’s so tiny. Pete: Oh, I hate both of you. Justin: Doombots are robot dooms, which is good, doom’s good and robots are cool. Alex: One of the things that I think is particularly impressive about this book is usually you don’t see this sort of second resurgence. I mean, not to get too lofty about it, it’s maybe not quite on the same level as bringing back the X-Men or anything like that. But you certainly had Brian K. Vaughan launching Runaways, petering out after a little while. Sorry, Pete, I know you don’t like me saying that. It just came out. Pete: Yeah, use a different expression. Justin: No problem, it LePage’d out a little. Alex: LePage’d out. Pete: It’s not funny. Alex: And then they took the characters and they split them up and put them on other teams and use them in different ways. It’s kind of amazing that they’re taking them back and making them work so well and it makes me very happy. Let’s move on to another book, Man-Bat number one from DC Comics written by Dave Wielgosz, art by Sumit Kumar. This is following the Man-Bat, some bad stuff is happening to him. He’s trying to be a hero, but it just doesn’t work because he’s just a Man-Bat. Justin: He’s just a Man-Bat. Alex: What’d you think about this book? And as a follow up, who asked for this? Pete: Yeah. I mean, it’s a little weird. I mean, also it’s kind of, he’s a scientist that doesn’t do science. He just thinks that flying around like a Man-Bat is going to win the day. And I don’t see how that works, but the art- Alex: You walk around as a human all the time, Pete, what is that doing? Justin: Good call. Pete: Burn? I don’t think so. But yeah, the art’s great. Alex: Justin, what’d you think about this one? Justin: Thought you were going to say more. I mean, this strikes me as a different … Man-Bat in the DC Universe right now feels very much like the Justice League Dark character. And I really liked that iteration of Man-Bat who’s this sort of loopy scientist who’s obsessed with darkness, but also trying to make his science into sort of mad science. And so this take is different. And I missed the other one reading this, but I do like the art and it feels very much like a classic Batman: The Animated Series take on Man-Bat. Alex: I do think I was obviously being very glib with who asked for this because I don’t think anybody was necessarily demanding a Man-Bat series. It was confusing. Pete: I’m sure there’s people out there who love the Man-Bat. Alex: I’m sure. It’s the sort of thing that felt to me like if it came out at Halloween, I’d understand what was going on here, as is I think well-written good art. I like it. I don’t know what its long-term prospects are necessarily. But as an individual book, if you like the character, I think you’ll be happy. Justin: But here’s the thing, if you go up and you’re like, “I love Batman.” You’re like, “Let me try this other version of the words.” Alex: Yeah, that’s true. There’s also a book coming out next week we’re going to be talking about called Bat Bat and a book after that called Madman. Pete: Wait, wait. Justin, let me just, so if somebody walks into a comic book shop and they say, “Hey, I like some Batman,” and they say, “We’re sold out, but would you like to try some Man-Bat?” And you think that’s how Man-Bat sells? Is that what you’re saying? Justin: I mean, yes. Pete: Okay. I think so. Justin: All right. If you walk into a grocery store and you’re like, I’d like some pineapple and they’re like, “No, we have regular apples and some pine nuts.” You’d be like, “I’ll take it.” Pete: I don’t know if you would. Alex: Yeah. You can make them at home. Look at it on Epicurious. All right. Specter inspectors number one for BOOM! Box, written by Bowen McCurdy, art by Kaitlyn Musto. This is I think another win for BOOM! Box, just a fun story of a bunch of ghost investigators who encounter something even more terrifying than what they expected. This book is a delight and I am completely on board. Pete: Oh, I couldn’t agree with you more. I love this book. I really thought it was cool set up, took some great turns. I was really impressed with this. The art’s storytelling is really a lot of fun. Yeah, I think it’s great. Justin: I agree. It really surprised me with how like it’s … I think there are a lot of books like this in this art style where it is sort of character driven, like these people are trying to do this and they haven’t figured it out. But this really like, the art pays off on the comedy side and the character and relationship side. And then the story itself is super fun as well. I really like this. Alex: Yeah, good stuff, excited to follow this book. Next up, The Immortal Hulk number 43 from Marvel written by Al Ewing, art by Joe Bennett. In this issue, a lot of stuff going on, but Joe Fixit is on the run hiding out, the U-FOES are training and getting ready to fight the Hulk. And of course it all goes down by the end of the issue. I don’t know what more to say about this book than it is great. Justin: Well, let me say, to me this was a good reset issue, where if you’ve been a little lost lately with all the different sort of stretchy Hulk with eyeball hands and stuff, this is a good restating of what the premise, where it’s like, at the beginning of the issue Joe Fixit says, “All the other Hulks are gone. Now it’s just me, Joe Fixit, and dumb Hulk, we’re in the body.” It’s back to sort of the basic whole premise, except instead of being a smart scientist, he’s not a smart grifter and he’s on the street. Pete: I would say he’s doing pretty good. Justin: He’s not as smart as Bruce Banner though. Pete: Oh, well, sure. Justin: And I think he is doing good, but his whole thing is being a good grifter as opposed to being a scientist, and he is. Pete: He is a good grifter. Justin: And I love this. He’s a good grifter. And would you rather be a scientist? Pete clearly hates science and loves grifting and that’s what he worships. Alex: I mean, this book is great, it’s fantastic. But I really liked the Joe- Justin: When you’re sick, Pete, you don’t go to a doctor, you go to a three-card Monte person. Pete: Yeah, exactly. You see a guy in the back of a restaurant who take a look at it and he can tell you what’s going on. Justin: He’s like, “Right here, follow the diagnosis, follow the diagnosis. Here we go. Here we go. Here we go. Here you go. Here we go. You have a irritable bowel syndrome.” Pete: I think that I could have used more Joe Fixit on the streets. I thought this was fun. But that being said it was very cool to see him still have to kind of fight for the underdog and do what was right. So yeah, I very much enjoyed this. Also Alpha Flight cameo was great. I mean, this was a lot of fun, it continues to be amazing. Justin: Doc Sampson is Sasquatch somehow. Alex: Good stuff. And just to work off of what Pete said, as I always say, Joe Fixit in the streets and loose Hulk in the sheets. Pete: Oh my God. Justin: You do say that too many times. Alex: Too much. Justin: I love the U-FOES and they do a great job here as being the villains. And we get to sort of actually find out who they are and what they do. Alex: Let’s move on to our future state block. We’ve been doing this for the past couple of weeks, as DC has been trucking through their look at a possible glimpse of the future of the DC Universe. As usual with this, these are the titles coming out this week. There’s Superman of metropolis number two, Wonder Woman number two, Next Batman number three, The Flash number two, Swamp Thing number two, Harley Quinn number two. And we read all of those, but call it what you like. Pete, what was your favorite title of this bunch this week? Pete: Ooh, favorite title. Alex: This is a big surprise because we’ve only done it for the past four weeks. Go ahead. Pete: Yeah. Big surprise. Big surprise. Justin: I have an answer if you want to think. Alex: Yeah, go ahead, Justin. Pete: No, Harley Quinn number two. I’m really impressed with the writing and the art on this. And it continues to be really great. Alex: This is written by Stephanie Phillips, art by Simone DiMeo and Toni Infante. In this book, Harley Quinn is working for Scarecrow trying to take down Black Mask. There’s plenty of twists and turns throughout the book. Justin: Scarecrow is like a cop essentially. Jonathan Crane on the side, the quote unquote good guys. And Black Mask is the bad guy and that gets a little confusing. My take on this book, these two issues felt like an episode of Batman: The Animated Series if Harley Quinn were the central character. [crosstalk 00:10:03]. Pete: Or Harley animated series. Justin: That’s sort of what I’m saying in a lot of ways, but it’s not like the Harley Quinn animated series, it’s like Batman: The Animated Series [crosstalk 00:10:13]. Alex: I thought it was sort of like Scarecrow. It was sort of like a Scarecrow the animated series, is what I’d say. Pete: It’s nothing like that, how dare you Zalb? Justin: A lot of hard takes. I just think there was sort of a lesson at the end. The characters are having fun, even though they were fighting each other. I enjoyed this. Alex: What about you, Justin? What was your favorite title of the week? Justin: This- Pete: Justin if you need me to go while you’re thinking I can do that. Justin: Do not need you to go, you just went. Pete: Oh, okay. All right. Well, if you just need some time, I could- Justin: No time necessary. I’m ready to talk in three, two, one, talk Justin. I really enjoy, there are a lot of weirder titles out this week. And the two that I want to highlight are The Flash, Future State: The Flash number two and Future State: Swamp Thing number two, are my two picks. Alex: Flash number two written by Brandon Vietti, art by Brandon Peterson and Will Conrad. Swamp Thing number two by Ram V, art by Mike Perkins. Take it away Justin. Justin: Flashed number two just like heartbreaking. These two issues were so good, so unexpected. You have Wally West as this villain who is maybe possessed by this spirit and Barry Allen who’s lost his powers to trying desperately to track it down and save him while also stopping the killing spree that’s going on against the other speedsters. And it was just such a good two-part story. I think this is a great standalone just Flash story that is absolutely tragic, but really gets to the core of what Flash’s powers are. It’s not just running fast, it’s hope. Alex: Hmm, interesting. And Swamp Thing, what about that one? Justin: Swamp Thing, totally different like this post-apocalyptic parable about Swamp Thing who created his own offspring through the green, built them. We get to see through both of these issues how meticulously he built them and even their biological features. And then at the end, this is a spoiler, but he sacrifices them for the sake of humanity because he knows that humanity has a soul and the plant children he created do not. And another like- Pete: That part was heartbreaking dude, what was that? Justin: … [crosstalk 00:12:28], heartbreaking thing. Pete: What was that dude? Justin: It was great. It was just like both, that’s why I put them together, both the Flash and Swamp Thing did what you want across over like this to do, take your characters, get to a core value that they have and show it in a new way, a new unexpected way. And I think both these books did that super well. Pete: Oh, go ahead. Alex: Go ahead Justin, bearded Justin. Pete: Pete. I’m Pete. Justin: I’m shaved Pete. Pete: I just wanted to say I’m still enjoying the new Batman. I really liked the backup, so the Black Lightning, Katana and the signal. Justin: Yes. Alex: I was going to call this out. I haven’t gotten to talk yet, Pete. Justin: He hasn’t chosen yet Pete. Alex: But [crosstalk 00:13:10] whatever, take all your picks. Pete: Justin got to say two. Alex: Sure. Future state: The Next Batman number three written by John Ridley, Brandon Thomas, Paul Jenkins, art by Laura Braga, Sumit Kumar, and Jack Herbert. I agree with you, the outsider’s backup has been excellent. Justin: So good. Alex: And that’s one where it ends, it’s not quite as apocalyptic as Swamp Thing or anything like that. It definitely feels like, what I want out of these where it feels like, oh, this is a pilot. I want to see more of this. I want to see more of this world. And the big one for me is Future State: Wonder Woman number two, written in art by Joëlle Jones, which obviously has a lot of heat at it. We talked about this before. Was this something that was a kind of adapting- Pete: It’s so hot right now, it’s so much heat. Alex: It’s so hot right now, they’re adapting for [crosstalk 00:13:53]. But this new Wonder Woman heading to the underworlds rescue, whatever compatriots. And I know I said this the last time, but I’ll repeat it as well. It feels revolutionary to the Wonder Woman mythos in the same way the brand Azzarello and Cliff Chiang’s run did. And it’s the sort of thing that I absolutely want to follow going forward. Pete: I just, the one part that bothered me about that book was she rips off the bones of the arm of the boat person, taking them across. Doesn’t say sorry, nothing. Alex: She does, she says, “Oops.” Or something like that. Pete: Oops is not sorry, you know what I mean- Alex: It’s fine, there was such a [crosstalk 00:14:31]. Pete: … you still got to roll the boat. Alex: She takes Sharon’s bone hand off, throws it to [inaudible 00:14:35] to distract him because he’s a dog, it’s a very cute funny bit. Pete: It’s funny but that guy still has to row a boat with now less bones and only one arm and she doesn’t help out at all, doesn’t even offer to row or nothing. Justin: Rowing a boat with less bones is a problem, I agree with you. And she doesn’t offer to row. He is an undead spirit. But let me also say Pete, once you don’t have skin, your bones are up for grabs. Pete: Wow. That’s a rule? Justin: That’s a rule. Watch out, keep [crosstalk 00:15:04], keep your skin. Alex: I don’t know the last time you’d been to a cemetery, but if you look they have a sign outside that says up for grabs. Pete: Wow. Alex: Every sector. Justin: Bunch of loose bones in the cemetery. They got a bone box. Pete: They shouldn’t have loose bones at the cemetery guys, it doesn’t make any sense. Justin: It’s like give a penny, take a penny, but you just take bones. Pete: What? Justin: There are extra bones. Pete: What? Give a penny, take a penny, oh my God. Justin: Are you using all your bones right now, Pete? I don’t think so. Alex: You have so many head bones. What are you using them for? Justin: So many bones. Alex: Are you playing piano? Pete: The piano? Alex: The piano. Justin: We got fucking Mozart over here using all his bones. Alex: That’s what he was known for. All right. Moving on from Future State, let’s talk about Deep Beyond number one from Image Comics created by Mirka Andolfo, David Goy and Andrea Broccardo and Barbara Nosenzo. I’ll tell you.,I really liked a lot of what Mirka Andolfo has been doing an Image Comics, but this comic is bonkers. I don’t think bad bonkers, just hard to hold onto exactly what’s happening in the plot bonkers. Pete: Yeah. Justin: There’s a lot going on here. This book to me read like a Rick Remender book where … read like two Rick Remender books both happening at the same time. Alex: Yes. Justin: And that’s not to say I didn’t like it. It has a lot of elements that I like. Pete: Also there’s weird soap opera in there as well. Alex: It takes place in maybe a post-apocalyptic future where the sun or gasses outside or something killed people. Justin: Pollution. I think pollution fucked us up. Alex: Yeah, pollution fucked us up. And we’re explaining it much more straightforward than it actually is. But there’s a bunch of different characters that get involved there. Some of the characters you’re following at the beginning don’t survive, even a quarter way through the book and then it jumps over to another situation. It is the sort of thing that feels like by the second issue it might’ve calmed out a little bit and focus, but there’s so many ideas at play here. Again, it’s hard to hold onto something. The art, very good and gross though. Justin: Beautiful. Yeah. I liked the art and to your point, Alex, I like the sort of propulsion into the second issue. Alex: Yes. Justin: But yes, a little confusing. Alex: Agreed. Moving onto The Legend, and I’m going to pronounce this wrong, Kevin Feige pronounced it a different way and now it’s really gotten into my head. We’ve called him Shang-Chi, but it’s something else where you actually pronounce it, Shang-Chi or something like that, number one from Marvel written by Alyssa Wong. I’ll look it up. Art by Andie Tong. This is a one-shot focusing on the character, clearly teeing up the movie that’s coming at some point. And this pits him against Lady Deathstrike. I thought this was a lot of fun, just a good actiony book. Justin: A 100%. This feels like if you are excited about the Shang-Chi movie, then you can read this and feel. I think you’re going to get a lot of the elements of the movie right here in this book. Pete: Yeah, I love this. The art’s unbelievable. The action of course is fantastic. Great to see Lady Deathstrike, not associated with Wolverine kind of doing other things. And yeah, I’m very excited for this and more of it, so I hope this does well. Alex: Let’s move on and talk about another book that I think was a little hard to hold onto, but there’s still some exciting elements into it. Chained to the Grave number one from IDW written by Andy Eschenbach and Brian Level, art by Kate Sherron. The thing that I really like about this book is it’s mostly about a dude who died, sort of probably bad cowboy, is resurrected by his wife. And is like, “Hey family, let’s go on a voyage of vengeance to take out the people who killed me.” That’s the straightforward part. There’s a lot of other stuff happening in this book, but the art sale is good. Pete, you had to love the big guy. He’s a big hulking guy with half a face and he wants to kill people, right? Pete: Yeah, I thought it was great. I mean at start it was a little weird, the blow job in front of the kids, but we’ll move right past that. And just kind of talk about a lot of the twists and turns. The art’s really unbelievable. But the character design is really cool. I’m excited for more action and to kind of find out what’s really going on. Justin: This reminded me of … I forget the title of the book. And I think we’ve talked about it a lot. The woman who lives in the house and the house has a bunch of … there’s blood everywhere all the time. Alex: Oh, yeah. We consistently forget the title of this book. Justin: Yes. And I knew it last time when you didn’t know it, and I now don’t know it. It was- Alex: Murder house. Justin: Yeah. Pete: [crosstalk 00:19:41] murder house. Justin: It’s like House of Sorrows or something like that. But stylistically the art also reminds me a little bit of Chew in a good way. And yeah, this is, it’s fun. I agree. It’s a good read and I really wish I could remember the name of that book that I try to think of. Alex: I think I read about House of Sorrows or something like that. I’ll introduce the next one, you can look it up if you want. Far Sector number 10 from DC Comics, written by N. K. Jemisin, art by Jamal Campbell. We gush over every issue of this book. I thought this was a particularly good one. And it jumped out to me once again how important it is that not just the writer, but also the artist has stayed consistent for 10 issues on here. It’s made it a really cohesive package following our main Green Lantern. She has been imprisoned and shit goes down this issue. This feels like a lot of what this title has been leading towards. There’s been a lot of stuff happening in the background on this weird planet that she’s been living on. And it’s all coming to head in terms of a revolution. It’s all coming crashing down. Great stuff. This was honestly I think one of my favorite issues of this book so far. Justin: Agree, to get all these answers. Pete: And that’s saying a lot. Justin: Yeah, it is. To get all these answers in this book is so good and sort of restating the thesis, we get a nice lead in page at the top of this issue to really remind us of exactly what’s happening. So many great ideas, so many just … The premise and the philosophies on display here are so good. Pete: Yeah. I mean, it’s hard to keep coming up with different things to say about how amazing this book is, but the stories continues to impress. The art is so creative and unbelievable. Just every time I pick it up, I’m like, I’m worried it’s not going to be as good as the last issue and it continues to be dope as fuck. Alex: Next up Star Wars: The High Republic Adventures number one from IDW written by Daniel José Older, art by Harvey Tolibao. We talked about the first issue of Marvel Star Wars: The High Republic. This is part of that expansive overarching story set much earlier in the Star Wars timeline. This one is for all ages readers, which is what IDW does with the adventures one. I thought it’d be interesting to check in with this particularly compared to the Marvel book. What did you guys think about this one? Pete: Well, I really liked it. I thought it was really cool the way it was kind of split and the story kind of comes together, very, very cool. I liked the art, it was very interesting kind of fresher take on Star Wars. We’re used to a certain style and seeing people a certain way. It was a nice kind of like creative take, it felt like it was a grittier Star Wars which I appreciated. Yeah, I thought it was really cool. Had a great ending that got me excited to read more. Justin: Well, you know we love this timeline page. But the last book we talked about extensively where they list all the movies and TV shows in timeline, it’s very satisfying to just look at that. Alex: Speaking of satisfying, what do you guys think of hot Yoda? That’s something we’ve got a little sense of in the Marvel book, but definitely more here. Pete: What? Alex: This is a buff Yoda. He’s a little jacked, probably has some abs under that robe going on. Pete: What are you talking about? Where’s the robe? Alex: And he is ready for action. He’s young. Justin: He’s got abs on his forehead. He’s got abs above and below his lips. He’s all abs. Alex: He’s young, dumb and full of [inaudible 00:23:17]. Pete: Oh my God, that was awful. It was weird how people were like, “Hey, maybe we should think about this.” And Yoda was like, “No, fuck it, we’re in too deep, let’s roll.” Alex: It was surprising for a kid’s book that he said fuck it in the text. Justin: Let me say seriously about this, what I like about the choices here, the art is very … it feels very much like a fantasy book. And I think that’s a smart choice for a comic about Star Wars. We’ve seen this sci-fi version of the Star Wars world a lot, to see the fantasy version of it is worth a lot of the roots of the Jedi and everything are, there have laser swords. And this was a very cool version of that. And I like the ongoing monologue from our young force sensitive character that we meet through in this book. Alex: The other thing is we get a sense of the bad guys, which we didn’t really get in the Marvel book yet. There’s this overarching force of evil. They seem to be augmented in some way that are going to play into this whole high republic story that they’re telling, so that was kind of neat. I assume you guys have not as well, but I haven’t read the novel by Charles Soule necessarily yet, which I think deals with them a little bit more, but that should … it’s interesting. And it’s not as young aiming as you might think. Justin: A 100%. Alex: Speaking of things that are not as young aiming, let’s talk about Luna number one from BOOM! Studios by Maria Llovet. Now, Pete, you’re a huge fan of the book Faithless by Brian Azzarello and Maria Llovet. This is following a different girl who also gets fucked by some magical creatures. Pete, what did you think about this one. Pete: So Zalben you’re like, “Listen, I got to find something that’s creepy enough, but artistically driven enough where I don’t feel so dirty reading it.” Alex: Here’s the thing, we are still in lockdown. I can not go to the museum of modern art and jerk off there anymore, so I got to find out. Pete: You mean the museum of sex to jerk off. Alex: I can’t go there. Justin: I sadly know he goes to the museum of modern art or the natural history museum. He goes to any museum. He just loves naked. Alex: I go to the [inaudible 00:25:28] sometimes in the temple of [inaudible 00:25:30]. Pete: Oh my God. Alex: There’s room in this tube I shout. Pete: Oh my God. Justin: The publishers of this book are like, let’s listen to Comic Book Club, see if we have a good quote for the book. No, they mostly talk about one of their hosts jerking off at a museum. I really liked this book. I think Maria Llovet’s art is great. And yes, a lot of her books focus on an innocent woman getting slowly deeper into some sort of mystical- Pete: Sex cult. Justin: … thing where there’s sex involved. But it plays really well and I think this one makes sense. She’s the writer and artist so it feels very much like she’s taking ownership of this story. And the tone that her art sets is so good. And so I want to watch it. I want to put it on the wall of the museum. Alex: Well, I’ll do something to that. Pete: Oh my God. Don’t do that. Justin: See you there. Alex: Yes. I agree with you, her art is fantastic. It is particularly psychedelic here. It’s about this character that travels, I think to the desert though, it’s not 100% clear and maybe take some LSD or something like that. It goes into some very weird visuals. It’s not dark and devilish like Faithless is necessarily, it goes in a different direction. But it’s gorgeous stuff, it’s a little sketchier. I mean that literally like the lions are a little looser than say [inaudible 00:27:07] or something like that. But great, I really enjoyed this book as well. Let’s move on, talk about the Comic Book History of Animation number three from IDW written by Fred Van Lente and art by Ryan Dunlavey. And this one we’re continuing- Pete: We should get them on the show because I’d love to talk to them about this book man. Alex: Pete, we just have them on our live show which is available as a podcast. Pete: We should have them back, I want to talk about this issue. Alex: All right. Well, in this issue, we’re continuing to deal with the Disney revolution, delving deeper into Looney Tunes, as well as Fleischer creator of the Superman cartoon and other things. Another great issue of this book, imperative, fun. I’m having a blast reading this. Justin: Yeah. Getting into all these characters that we know you got some Mr Magoo in here, you got your [inaudible 00:27:55], you got your Daffy, you got your Wile E. Coyote, just all your favorites are here. The anecdotes that they incorporate into the story are so good. And this is getting into prime time of this type of cartooning. Pete: Yeah. And what’s great is not only is it amazing art and fantastic storytelling. We’re also learning stuff and it’s cool. Good to find out about all this, this way. Yeah, I’m having a blast with this, really impressive. Justin: [inaudible 00:28:26]. Alex: Let’s move on and talk about [crosstalk 00:28:28] King in Black: Marauders number one from Marvel written by Gerry Duggan, art by Luke Ross. In this issue, the marauders are heading to New York sensibly on a mission to rescue the X-Men who have been taken over by Knull the King in Black, but they run into a couple of snags along the way. I thought this was really well done. This is a great book that stands as a one-shot story, tells you enough that you need to know about the marauders while feeding the ongoing story there. You don’t necessarily need to be reading King in Black, but you get enough of a sense of it. That’s a really hard balancing act, but I think they walk it perfectly here. Justin: Does all that, also telling this tragic story about human trafficking. It covers a lot of bases and it’s just a testament to that, really heads up storytelling to be able to do all that in an issue seamlessly. Pete: Yeah. I was really impressed with this book. This I think so far is my favorite X-Men book that I’ve read of this new kind of era. And I really enjoyed it. I thought there was a lot of great action, a lot of great kind of commentary by the quote unquote heroes. I thought this was really fun, amazing art, great action. And I love the ending, I thought was so powerful and cool. Man, Magneto dude, that was really crazy with the whole skipping a rock thing and talking, that was unbelievable. Justin: I also love Magneto at the end. He sort of like laying down in the air hardly. He’s not hovering in a menacing way. He’s feels like he’s sort of reclining in a way. I was like, “Yeah, of course he’s going to sort of lay down a little bit. He’s just tired superhero.” Alex: Yeah, he’s got a lot of stuff going on. Justin: Sort of. Alex: Speaking of a bunch of tired superheroes, let’s talk about Transformers: Beast Wars number one from IDW written by Erik Burnham, art by Josh Burcham. This is a reboot of the classic Transformers: Beast Wars franchise with the transformers heading to earth in dinosaur times, taking the form of dinosaurs. Most of the book though is spent with robots- Justin: And other beasts. Pete: Yeah, other beasts. Alex: Other beasts, sometimes fruit bats or whatever, I don’t know, gorillas, anyway- Justin: Optimus Primal. Alex: If this is what you’re into, this is the fuzziest the transformers have ever been. Pete: Yeah. Beast Wars were big kind of like bringing the transformers back to popular kind of like cartoon Saturday’s styles. And I was a little, I missed Beast Wars. I was kind of done with transformers at that point. Justin: You grew up, you grew out of it. Pete: I grew out of transformers little bit although- Justin: You’re a big boy, you don’t like it anymore. Pete: I don’t know about all that. But yeah, Beast Wars kind of missed me. But I kind of felt like Zalben when he was reading a transformers book and you were like, “I don’t know who’s who,” and it was a little confusing because I wasn’t as familiar with these transformers. It was a little hard in the beginning with them. By the end I thought it was pretty cool. Alex: Like Optimus Prime and Megatron? Pete: No, there were other versions. Alex: I knew who they were Pete. Everything was very obvious. Pete: Well, there was a book that you were like weren’t … I don’t know if it was Power Rangers or- Alex: No, I couldn’t tell any of them apart, they were all robots in this book. Justin: Well, they’re in disguise. They’re in disguise as cars, so it’s hard to tell who is who. Pete: Not in this one. Justin: If I could turn into a car you’d be like, “Who’s that car? Is that Justin?” Pete: I would know. Justin: I don’t know. Alex: I always do that when I’m walking on the street. Justin: You’re like, “Which car is Justin and which car Pete?” Alex: I try to start a podcast with every car. Pete: Oh man. Good luck. Justin: Yeah, good luck. I loved Beast Wars when the show is on. Pete: Okay, here we go. Justin: Of all the cartoons, Beast Wars got into this very philosophical place with the transformers, they were chasing their sparks, they were trying to find out if essentially they had souls, it was so good. And this comic feels like it’s maybe going to get there, I hope it does. This issue really set the stage for that, and I hope they really honor the depth of storytelling they did on this cartoon that Pete was too good for. Alex: Next up, here’s what I’m sure Justin enjoyed a whole lot. King in Black: Black Knight number one from Marvel written by Simon Spurrier, art by Jesus Saiz. The reason I call it, you like the Black Knight, right? Justin: I like him. I like his role in The Avengers, and I feel like he … and I do like him, I’m not saying I don’t. But back in The Avengers he was this sort of like, ah, I don’t know what I’m doing. I think he was sort of a precursor to the Hawkeye-effication of so many Marvel characters where he was like, “Yeah, I’m sort of a shit head, I don’t shave, but I put my helmet on and I have my glowing sword. What are we doing today?” And this is a little bit that, but a little bit not that. It sort of had a wobbly beginning, it felt like the premise was really in your face and I didn’t really buy into it until about halfway through the issue. But at the end of it, I thought it was a good issue. Pete: Yeah. I really love the way this ended. It got a little bit weird at some points, but I love the action. I loved kind of like the whole backstory and why Knull is after the swords and all that kind of stuff like that. I very much by the end of it and I’m very excited for the next issue, I thought this did a great job of laying the groundwork to get you pumped for more. Alex: Yeah. I mean, to that point, the next issue is I assume ongoing series for Black Knight that is going to pick up here. So to your point, Justin, to me it felt like this is probably stuff that Simon Spurrier is going to deal with more heavily in the series once he gets to it. But he’s kind of playing around with ideas of throwing there, but can’t go all the way, because it was just this one crossover issue where somebody was like, “Hey, what are the characters that say black in their name, have them do a King in Black thing, let’s go.” Alex: But it’s good issue. And the art is good and it brings us fun characters. And to your point there’s some fun action by the end. Last but not least, Sea of Sorrows number four from IDW written by Rich Douek, art and colors by Alex Cormack. We had Rich on our show a couple of weeks back. What? Pete: Did you say the last one? Alex: Yeah. Pete: We didn’t do Fear Case. Alex: What is Fear Case? Did you make that up? Pete: No, that’s the … are you serious? Justin: What is Fear Case? Pete: Fear Case number one by Matt Kindt. Alex: Oh, no, I missed that one. Do you want to talk about it, Pete? Pete: Yeah, I would love to. Alex: Great, go ahead. Pete: Okay, I’m sorry. Just I’ve been waiting to talk about this book. I’m very excited about it. This is cool. This is like the setup of this kind of like FBI hazing of like, okay, here is this case that nobody can solve. We’ll let you rookies work on it for a little while. And it really builds it up as like this epic all-time thing that nobody can figure out. And you’re like, “How can this thing be going on for so long?” But really kind of lays out this interesting mythos and very high stakes. I love the art. It’s like sketchy, but cool in this way, that is kind of great. I feel like fits with the story because it’s a little dark and telling this kind of epic tale. I was really impressed with the art and storytelling. This is a fun who done it, what’s going on? How are we going to all figure this out? I thought this was amazing first issue that really got you excited for a bunch of stuff. Justin: And I want to talk about Hat Dance. Pete: Oh, okay. Sure. Hat dance number one or which one? Justin: Number 607. You guys haven’t been reading Hat Dance. Alex: I want to talk about [Miles 00:36:35] Friends number one. Pete: Oh, Miles’ friends. Yeah. Justin: I think you’re talking about Cinderella and I’m here for it, [inaudible 00:36:43]. Alex: Two movies honestly. There’s a whole thing going on with Cinderella, there’s a thing going on with the mouse and the cat. I don’t know, bring it together some way guys. Sea of Sorrows number four from IDW, written by Rich Douek, art and colors by Alex Cormack. In this issue, we are finally getting some hardcore, absolutely gross mermaid attack action here, spoiler, but they reveal what these mermaids look like and it is absolutely horrifying. The slow tension has been build
47 minutes | 4 months ago
The Stack: South Side Serpents, Captain Marvel And More
On this week’s comic book review podcast: Riverdale Presents South Side Serpents #1 Archie Comics Story by David Barnett Art by Richard Ortiz Captain Marvel #25 Marvel Written by Kelly Thompson Art by Lee Garbett The Department of Truth #5 Image Comics Written by James Tynion IV Art by Martin Simmonds Firefly #25 BOOM! Studios Written by Greg Pak Art by Pius Bak Future State: Suicide Squad #1 DC Comics Written by Robbie Thompson, Jeremy Adams Art by Javier Fernandez, Fernando Pasarin Future State: Superman vs. Imperious Lex #1 DC Comics Written by Mark Russell Art by Steve Pugh Future State: Dark Detective #2 DC Comics Written by Mariko Tamaki, Joshua Williamson Art by Dan Mora, Giannis Milonogiannis Future State: Legion of Super-Heroes #1 DC Comics Written by Brian Michael Bendis Art by Riley Rossmo Future State: Aquaman #1 DC Comics Written by Brandon Thomas Art by Daniel Sampere Future State: Batman/Superman #1 DC Comics Written by Gene Luen Yang Art by Ben Oliver Post Americana #2 Image Comics Written and art by Dave Skroce Daredevil #26 Marvel Written by Chip Zdarsky Art by Marco Chechetto & Mike Hawthorne Monstress #31 Image Comics Written by Marjorie Liu Art by Nana Takeda The Other History of the DC Universe #2 DC Comics Written by John Ridley Art by Giuseppe Camuncoli Nailbiter Returns #9 Image Comics Written by Joshua Williamson Art by Mike Henderson X-Men #17 Marvel Written by Jonathan Hickman Art by Brett Booth Spawn #314 Image Comics Written by Todd McFarlane Art by Carlo Barberi The Last God #12 DC Comics Written by Phillip Kennedy Johnson Art by Riccardo Federici Something is Killing the Children #14 BOOM! Studios Written by James Tynion IV Art by Werther Dell’edera Strange Adventures #8 DC Comics Written by Tom King Art by Mitch Gerards and Evan “Doc” Shaner An Unkindness of Ravens #5 BOOM! Studios Written by Dan Panosian Art by Marianna Ignazzi Colonel Weird: Cosmagog #4 Dark Horse Comics Written by Jeff Lemire Art by Tyler Crook SUBSCRIBE ON RSS, ITUNES, ANDROID, SPOTIFY, STITCHER OR THE APP OF YOUR CHOICE. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER, AND FACEBOOK. SUPPORT OUR SHOWS ON PATREON. Full Episode Transcript: As Alex: What is up everybody? Welcome to The Stack. I’m Alex. Justin: I’m Justin. Pete: I’m Pete. Alex: And on The Stack, we talk about a bunch of comics that have come out this week, kicking it off with Riverdale Presents: South Side Serpents from Archie Comics, story by David Barnett, art by Richard Ortiz. This is part of a slate of comics that Archie has started releasing that aren’t exactly in continuity with the shows, but they include the characters the way they appear on the show. They’re kind of like halfway between the monthly comics and the shows themselves. This with a Madam Satan one-shot spinning off and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina that we talked about. This one of course is spinning off of Riverdale [crosstalk 00:00:46]. Pete: I wish I would’ve known that before I read it, because I read it and I was like, “Holy shit, everything’s going to change.” Alex: Yeah. Well, no, it’s out of continuity. Pete: They killed some people in this comic. Alex: They straight up killed some people. I got to tell you, I mean, to start there, I was surprised how hardcore this was. Justin: Me too. This book went hard from beginning to end and I will say, “I like this.” To me, I mean Archie Comics for a decade has been taking big swings with a lot of their choices, a lot of their … especially their one shots like this and they’re limited series. But with this like putting it in between Riverdale featuring Toni Topaz here which was great. And then having both Hot Dog show up drawn like Hot Dog from the Double Digest. As well as a murder happening involving Hot Dog, I was like, “Okay, we’re going for it here.” Alex: So the plot of this book if you haven’t picked it up is that Jughead is tasked by FP to go rejuvenate the serpents, FP can see that they’re getting older. He wants them to go out, get some young blood in there. Things go very, very wrong. The thing that I think this book did so well is the serpents are way too friendly on the TV show. They’re supposed to be the most hardcore biker gang, but they was like, “We’re hardcore, we’re fucking helping out with community service. And now we’re going to assist the police department. Look how hardcore we are.” Here they’re an actual biker gag, and they’re treated like an actual biker gang. And it works really well to the devastating end of the book. Pete: Yeah. Justin: Yeah, I agree. It was also nice to take you back to this time in Riverdale, we’re all Riverdale fans, and to sort of position us sort of earlier, this was like season two Riverdale it felt like, was really fun as well. Pete: Yeah. Alex: Good stuff. Definitely check. Oh, go ahead. Justin: Wait, Pete’s going to weigh in. Pete: I really liked this. I loved all the action, it moves really well. It feels like Riverdale, but it has its own kind of flavor, which is cool for the comic. And I thought the art was great and the storytelling was really impressive how well this moved. I had a great time. Justin: A lot of biker gangs have a crown that the head of the gang wears. Alex: This is true, like the hell’s angels. Justin: Yeah, fairy famously, and some anarchy. Alex: [inaudible 00:03:17] biker gang that we can name which is, what is that, Justin? Justin: That biker game, there’s the wheels, the wheelies. Pete: The Wheelers. Justin: The wheelers, that’s it. Alex: Yes. Captain Marvel number 25 from Marvel written by Kelly Thompson, art by Lee Garbett. This is a title that we haven’t talked about too much, but as it is hitting an anniversary issue, we do like Kelly Thompson in particular here on the show, I figured it was worth talking about. Captain Marvel is trapped in a post-apocalyptic future where the son of Namor and Amara has lead ways everything, using captain Marvel for his evil plan. As usual with Kelly Thompson book, I thought this is a lot of fun. I had a blast reading this. What about you guys? Pete: Yeah. I mean, as parents, you have to feel that if your son or daughter stabs a stuffed animal dolphin, you better address that early. Otherwise that’s really going to get out of hand and lead you [crosstalk 00:04:14]. Justin: Well, the question is, at least in my household is it during stabbing practice or is it [inaudible 00:04:19]. Pete: Oh, oh, oh. Justin: Because if it’s during stabbing practice it’s good. Pete: It’s fine. Alex: I’ll tell you what, quarantine school has been weird. Justin: Yeah, they’re doing a lot of real post-apocalyptic lessons are going around. Obviously Pete you’re not a parent, but there is a lot of zombie preparation- Alex: Smart. Justin: … how to, like early cannibalism stuff. Pete: Is it like machete upkeep and stuff like that? Alex: [crosstalk 00:04:44] and the teacher on the Zoom was saying, “Okay first graders, are you distilling your pee properly so you can drink it?” Pete: Oh my God. That’s so creepy. Justin: That’s why it’s really important to potty train them, so you don’t lose that precious pee. Alex: What’d you think about this book, Pete? Pete: I loved it. Oh, that was gross. Justin: Precious Pete. Pete: Oh man, I don’t want it. Yeah, I really liked this, a lot of over the top action, which I enjoyed. Fun kind of Namor a story, classic tale of raising somebody who is going to murder their father. It was just classic fun stuff. You guys have to be worried about that, getting murdered by your own kids. That’s got to be something that waves on you. Alex: You keep throwing this back on us. Pete: I mean, that’s something that you got to be worried a little bit about as a parent that you’re raising the person who’s going to kill you. Alex: I’m much more worried about you killing me Pete than I have my kids at this point. Justin: 100%. Pete: Oh well, that’s smart. Justin: That’s the real threat, keeps us up nights. Alex: Speaking of thi