Stranger Reads – Comics Log 2016.7.17, New and Bold Expressions..

Photo Jul 14, 8 36 19 PM 

From the latest Wednesday new comics arrivals, we have fresh stories of interest. This time with a mix of mostly old parts of nostalgia, with interesting twists. Here, are the new interests I now share for this round (with minor spoilers)..


New Super-Man #1 (DC Comics) by Gene Luen Yang, Victor Bogdanovic

A different take on Superman that feels closer to the recent, acclaimed Superman: American Alien series. Here me meet Kong Kenan, who I feel is more than the Chinese Superman. Much of the first issue, we get to know the character; who comes off as immature and a jerk. There is a bit of a tragic back story, which I think lends more to his personality than his powers. The setting in Shanghai gives the storyline fresh possibilities, we also have interesting outside perspectives on the American superhero melodrama. It’s a solid first issue, and a fresh start for anyone feeling confused on the current status of the familiar Superman in its “Rebirth” phase.

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina #6 (Archie), by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Robert Hack, Jack Morelli

I love everything about this issue, which stands apart from the series so far for different reasons. First off, being two flashback tales that stand alone as interesting as the Teenage Witch herself. One involves a pair of cobras, the other is Salem the cat; both under curses that turned them away from human into animals. The dramas of both tales are captivating in their telling, with revelations and personal reflections of their transformations. The changes are more than physical. The art and panel sequences are also fitting, and perfect for readers who like a good story with chilling overtones.

Vision #9 (Marvel) by Tom King, Gabriel Hernandez Walta

Funny thing about the Vision, longtime Avenger and underappreciated Marvel Comics character; he represents the best and worst of a superhero’s potential. He strives to be a good person, but something in his programming goes against his better judgement. From the first issue, we know this family attempt will not go well. This issue, such the plan escalates into a failed emotional investment, through a series of calculated cumulations. To what does he feel, is interesting; being the living android with new feelings. Writer Tom King toys with the emotions of the reader, especially in the end with a dark dramatic moment, that a bit of irony on his creation from another mad robot.

Rough Riders #4 (Aftershock) by Adam Glass, Pat Oliffe

A most ridiculous series that’s has a league of extraordinary gentlemen, from United States history. For those curious and still reading this paragraph, the heroic lineup is Teddy Roosevelt, Anne Oakley, Jack Johnson, Harry Houdini, Thomas Edison. It’s full of cheeky moments and stylish action, with some odd science fiction elements snuck in. Also, part of this makes me wonder why Teddy Roosevelt hasn’t got more fictional comic action, because much of him is quite cartoonish. Much else begs for character development. The art is good throughout, yet not overdone. The series excitement lies in the intrigue as to where it all goes, which I hope is more twisting of historical elements.

Horizon #1 (Image) by Brandon Thomas, Juan Gedeon, Frank Martin

I love the art and concepts at play here. The story is a bit of a twist on the alien invasion plot. Here, we are the aliens looking to invade another planet. Then, we have an alien coming to our planet to learn more. There are some odd twists and strange moments that may confuse the reader, as I had to reread it to fully understand the scope of it all. The pacing is also a little weird, starting with its time being took in the start with a descent and little dialogue. This goes on for nearly a third of the book, until we get to the bones of the story. Then we get some build-up and interest leading to an interesting cliffhanger on where the story goes from here.

Star Trek #59 (IDW), by Mike Johnson, Tony Shasteen, Roberto Orci

What happens when the J.J Abrams directed movie crew meets the original TV series crew? Well, hilarity and confusion ensues to this fantastic so far two-part series finale wrap. There are moments felt more like fan service for those overly nostalgic to the originally crew, and giving a cold welcome to the Abrams version. For much of the Abrams Star Trek, I truly enjoyed the comic series for the freedoms is was given in writing and more integrations with the Prime continuity (with much thanks to story consultant the Trek movie scriptwriter, Roberto Orci). This issue reminds us that all good things must come to end; especially the IDW comic series at times, felt more like a worthy successor to the classic series than the new movies.

That’s all until next time. Did we miss anything on the shelves, that is a worthy read?  Do you have thoughts on the books covered here? Leave a comment below!

Orion T – SW chief writer and seeker of great comic books and all related wonderful things.


Stranger Reads – Comics Log 2016.7.10, The New and Old Friends Among Us..

Photo Jul 09, 10 43 53 AM 

Fresh from the recent Wednesday new comics shelves, are the hot new singles some us nerds get exciting about. I have some latest reads below, with a mix of old and new..


Bounty #1 (Dark Horse), by Kurtis J Wiebe and Mindy Lee

An interesting new series for those who enjoy their Serenity and Guardians of the Galaxy with a lot of old cyberpunk mixed in. Bounty revolves around the work of two intergalactic bounty hunters. It’s action packed and definitely fun for the first issue. However, there is a lot of extra lingo and characters thrown that disjoint the pacing of the first issue. I would love a glossary or appendix to help sort out this, but perhaps learning along the way is part of the fun. Yet, a solid first issue but needs to slow down in future issues so we can get to know the characters.

Silver Surfer (Marvel), by Dan Slott and Mike Allred

I love Michael Allred’s art and Dan Slott’s writing (sometimes). But for the Silver Surfer, I remain a bit reluctant for this combination, and the continued inclusion of his hipsterish companion, Dawn Greenwood. I wish the Surfer would return to his space-faring travels alone as he quotes angst verses of poetic torment and loneliness. What’s funny here is a very meta moment, where a boy questions the dimensioned presence of the Fantastic Four and the Surfer, which has happened for reasons beyond the cosmic awareness of our Silver hero. Overall, a great cheeky issue as the Surfer adapts to Earth life, while taking time for some old school fighting action on the Moon. I enjoyed that balance.

Paper Girls # 7 (Image by Brian K Vaughan, Cliff Chiang and Matt Wilson

Still back to the future as our Paper Girls are stuck in the strange world of 2016. There are deeper mysteries, sorting through the real world familiarities and fantastical. I suppose both are hard to pick apart to any child of the 1980s. While amusing as such is, I think the pacing is a bit lost, as we readers can feel empathetic to the plight of our time travelers. What in the world is going on I would ask, with strange technology and giant monsters. Some new revelations keep things interesting toward the end, loving the fact that things will not be okay. That all is quite rad, with the story continuing to entertain.

Brik #1 (Oni Press) by Mike Benson, Adam Glass, and Harwinder Singh

A great origin story told in great detail setting up the character before the premise begins. Much revolves around the idea of the Golem, with its roots in Jewish folklore and history. But the bigger story is a small neighborhood in Yonkers, New York as locals deal with crooked bullies sent by a crooked real estate developer, leading to an important development sure to excite. Everything here has the worthwhile (though not fully original) ingredients for a great super hero tale, with much potential to reach long-term epic proportions.  The artwork I love, stylish and mood-setting for things to come. I look forward to more Brik.

Faster Than Light #8 (Image,  Shadowline) by Brian Haberlin, Dan Kemp

The series is growing on me, and this issue is heavy reason on why. I love the crazy concept and alien designs brought forth. Much of this issue involves our crew at a bar filled with dangerous looking alien types, much like that in Star Wars. but the conversational tone over differences and happenings makes the universe of Faster Than Light engaging and worthwhile of a read. But it’s still imperative to use the matching UAR app to activate it’s augmented reality features, which contains text that goes far deeper into the universe building Brian Haberlin does so well. My only major criticism is the lack of strong characterization by crew members. I would love a bit more time taken out to build upon the individual crew members, to get to know them better through stories. I’m hoping while on board, we see more of this soon.

Peanuts: Friends Forever 2016 Special (Kaboom!), by Jason Cooper, Donna Almendrala, Vicki Scott, Charles Schulz

This is the very last of the Boom! Entertainment licensed works based on the comic strips of Charles Schulz. The series as a whole has been a fantastic and faithful representation of the original strips. There are a couple heartwarming tales that go beyond the wit and humor of the classics. A story that grows Peppermint Patty’s character as she fights a school dress, code. Snoopy learns the Daisy Hill Puppy Farm is set to close. Both stories and others focus on wonderful bonds and relationships, that I think is the very heart and soul of Charles Schulz’s work. We also have some very funny moments, leading to an end of which feels like a sad goodbye to n excellent and very underrated licensed run.

That’s all until next time. Did we miss anything on the shelves?  Do you have thoughts to add on the books covered here? Leave a comment below!

Orion T – SW chief writer and appreciater of great comic books and all related wonderful things.