Review: Thor #5

Thor #5
Thor #5 by Jason Aaron
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is my favorite issue in the new Thor series so far.

Odin is out of his mind, the All Mother is still trying to protect her kingdom, and Odinson-formerly-known-as-Thor has become surprisingly chill about the whole thing and wants his crazy dad to drop the obsession with getting the hammer back.

Thor herself is just trying to do the super hero thing, fighting crime in NYC and all that. There’s a fantastic dig against all the Lady Thor haters out there that had me cracking up.

If you haven’t picked up this series yet, you’re missing out.

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Review: Captain Marvel #12

Captain Marvel #12
Captain Marvel #12 by Kelly Sue DeConnick
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is the most intense issue the series has had in a while. Cat-napping, black hole TARDIS jokes that never end, and Carol doing very impulsive Carol things that don’t work out when punching things isn’t the solution, accent the tension of the very bad things that are happening.

I’d say that this particular issue could be a great jumping-in point for anyone who isn’t currently reading the series but would like to. It has a little bit of everything, from showing off Kelly Sue Deconnick’s sense of humor to jumping right into a new serious arc.

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Review: Angela: Asgard’s Assassin #3

Angela: Asgard's Assassin #3
Angela: Asgard’s Assassin #3 by Kieron Gillen
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This series is young at its third issue, and I have been waiting for that first issue to come through that finally bursts forth as something I can point to that says “This is what Angela: Asgard’s Assassin” is all about.

She’s still being chased down by Thor, but it also turns out that she has a heart that has sacrificed for what she loves!

Angela is a strange character, raised in a culture with some seriously screwed up values. It makes for good science fiction, but it takes some warming up to wrap one’s head around it. But I think we’re finally at that point, with a glimpse into the history between Angela and her dearest friend Sera.

It is with this issue that Angela’s story finally leaps away from the She-Ra The Movie / Red Sonja mash up feel that had put some serious drag on my excitement for this book. No that there’s anything wrong with that mash up, because I would absolutely read that. But Angela is complicated, and a little crazy. She is definitely driven by very different things than either of those iconic lady warriors, and that difference is the story I’ve been waiting for.

Kieron Gillen starts in this book to make good on that promise.

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Comic Review: Angela: Asgard’s Assassin #1

Angela: Asgard's Assassin #1Angela: Asgard’s Assassin #1 by Kieron Gillen
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

It feels like a good start to what I hope will be a strong series. There’s plenty in here for both fans of Asgard stories and general comic readers, though the dialogue as always is a bit thick for non-Thor readers.

I think this issue effectively establishes some distance from her Original Sin origin story, which was basically the plot of the 80’s cartoon She-Ra pilot (though I admit I kind of loved that). The values she was raised are really screwed up and I like the weird gray area she exists in morally.

This issue does have something of a Red Sonja feel to it, but I know we can trust writer Kieron Gillen to take that aesthetic somewhere new and interesting, if Marvel will allow it. Or put some clothes on her…

I look forward to next issue and reading what Kieron Gillen will do with this character.

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Ben Templesmith’s The Squidder – a review

Covers of the comic book The Squidder Issue 1 and Issue 2Behold the writhing, shuddering horror that is The Squidder, a nightmare made possible by Kickstarter and the darkness of Ben Templesmith‘s brain.

From the horror artist that brought us 30 Days of Night, this graphic story is every post apocalyptic, tentacle-covered horror fantasy you have ever secretly had. It’s Mad Max versus Cthulhu! (Seriously, that’s how Templesmith describes it.)

The story is twisted across the remnants of Earth long after a bloody alien invasion by the Squid that left the broken mess of human survivors as a few scattered lumps of terrified peasantry worshipping their overlords, no memory left of the old world or the war that cost everything.  But there are some who remember, soldiers who have lived too long, still burning with the hate for the Squid. These soldiers were the Squidders.

There are cyborgs, there are grotesque tentacled genetic experiments, plagues, intense sword and gun violence, and giant flying squid overlords.

Ben Templesmith’s art is so creepy surreal that it’s a little anxiety inducing.  He gets horror.  I get chills looking at some of the panels.  There’s something organic about this world of shadows and filth that just drills into you.

If you’re into horror comics, you must read this book.

If you enjoy H. P. Lovecraft or anything even remotely tied to Cthulhu, you must read this book.

You must read this book.

IDW is currently publishing it in a 4-issue run that you can pick up at most comic shops. Issue 2 came out last week.  It will be available in hardback in September, from 44Flood, and is available for preorder now.

A Saturday well spent, and some comics reviews

I love Saturdays. We walked to the diner around the corner for pancakes this morning, and after that we rescued Reed’s vintage Star Wars toys from his parents’ attic (pictures of the diorama coming soon). We even went to the comic book store. I just burned through every single thing I picked up at Austin Books and Comics this afternoon. It was awesome.

The Wicked+The Divine

the wicked + the divineIf you pick up a new series this month, make it The Wicket+The Divine. The writing is fantastic, the art drags you into Rock Star Fantasy London before you know it, and the scope of the story that’s being set up in this issue is mind blowing.  One issue and I’m completely hooked.


She-Hulk #1

she hulk issue 1 2014Funny, smart, and empowering. Worth jumping into. Now on its third printing, I picked this book up at the recommendation of Rachel at Austin Books and Comics. It’s nice when they know what you like.


Godzilla Rulers of Earth #13

godzilla rulers of earth 13Rulers of Earth is the gift that keeps on giving. After the heart-wrenching cliffhanger of issue 12, we are now pulled into a future where Monster Island is well established to the point that the US government can start being jerks about funding the project that keeps us safe from monsters. Keep this book going, guys, please don’t stop.

Ms. Marvel #5

ms marvel #5Kamala Khan starts to learn the hard lessons of hero-ing, and going on that journey with her is so much fun. This book continues to fresh and original, with a rich, interesting set of characters.

Guardians of the Galaxy #16

guardians of the galaxy #14 2014Lots of action, and some Captain Marvel. The story is still spread out around several different threads because of the situation the Guardians are in.

I haven’t really been reading this series until recently. I picked up of GotG #15 a couple of weeks ago mostly because I was confused about the timeline of the crossover with Captain Marvel.  She was featured on the cover of CotG #15, but wasn’t actually in the book.  This time around, however, she’s actually in the story.  It still doesn’t line up with the most recent issue of Captain Marvel, however, so I’m not sure what’s going on.  I haven’t read any of this run of GotG before #15, but since it’s pretty early in this arc I’m piecing it together without too much trouble.  I do want to read the earlier issues, and will do so when my budget lets me.