Archive for November, 2012

[Comic Review] All-Star Western #14

Posted in Comic Review with tags , on November 30, 2012 by Casey Hutton
All-Star Western #14

All-Star Western #14

I’ve been out of this series for quite some time. Having getting into it not long ago and then stopping to wait for the first trade paperback to be released, I’ve missed everything from DC ComicsAll Star Western #7 up until the most recent issue of All Star Western #14.

That being said…I’m not really sure what happened.

When I saw that the concept of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde were going to be introduced into the series, I was excited. Who doesn’t like Jekyll and Hyde? And to have that tied into the old west…it seemed like a rather nifty read.

The story wasn’t horrid, although I’m sure I’ve missed the gist of it while not having picked up previous issues, but it was still enjoyable overall.

Things got a little…lackluster once the Golden Dragons became involved, and the Barbary Ghost and Tallullah go their merry way.

What I found more of an interesting read, however, was the short in the back involving the Native American Tomahawk. That means I’m going to have to go back and pick up All Star Western #13 just to read the first part.

What I found deterred from the book was the art. A fan of at least issues #1-#6…things just didn’t look the same. I loved the rough and sometimes unfinished look of previous editions. This time around, however, it felt like the unfinished lines and inking took over. Thick hairlines on Hyde and the horrid face of Hex are just a couple of the problems I feel this book has. I’m not sure if the team has changed (as I don’t have previous issues in front of me), but it’s not working. The story was enough in concept to save this issue, but, I’m leery of investing in more issues because of it.

Rating: 6/10 Gingered Digits.

Score: Artwork (.5), Character Development (1), Climax (2), Plot Development (1.5), Story (1).

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[Comic Review] Lot 13 #2

Posted in Comic Review with tags , on November 30, 2012 by Casey Hutton
Lot 13 #2

Lot 13 #2

I believe I have lost my excitement for this particular series. Somewhere between issue #1 and Issue #2, DC Comics and its creative crew ran off course.

In Lot 13 #2, the story had promise. With a decent enough leaving point in the previous issue, I was hoping for more substance. With only a glimpse of the ghostly child in the previous issue, we are now exposed to full blown figures, and not just of the child but of other individuals that have a tie to the hotel/motel in which the family the story revolves around is staying.

The artwork isn’t my particular favorite either. It’s very penciled, which in and of itself is not bad. However, a few of the faces of the characters come off as…well…off. One panel in particular, where the sisters are on the sofa texting, the dad says something witty and the auburn-haired sister laughs…she comes off looking like a crazed psychopath.

What this book does do is give of the creepy factor. Some of this is chalked up to the actual artwork, as it works well in this aspect. Although it takes its toll on the living characters, the artist’s style comes to life on the faces and bodies of the deceased.

What I can’t understand is, how the ghastly presences comment on how the young ones can always see, then why does everyone in the place able to see them? The father and mother certainly are beyond their adolescent years.

The cliffhanger, however, is very effective. With the son disappearing for a while and finally reappering in the last panel all bloodied with a “Dad, we have a problem,” style of line…its pulled off nicely!

Rating: 5.5/10 Gingered Digits.

Scoring: Artwork (1), Character Development (.5), Climax (1.5), Plot Development (1.5), Story (1).

[Comic Review] Shadowman #1

Posted in Comic Review with tags , on November 30, 2012 by Casey Hutton
Shadowman #1

Shadowman #1

There’s been a bit of hubbub on the internet concerning Shadowman #1, released by Valiant.

I have to say that this title shows promise. But, it just isn’t there yet.

The artwork by Patrick Zircher and Brian Reber is great. If there is one thing I can say about this title is the art. Some of the double page spreads are done quite well.

The story has its ups and downs. The main character, Jack Boniface, has great potential. With what information they did pass on in this introductory issue, there is a lot of room for him to grow and develop. However, that didn’t really happen here. We catch a glimpse of where he came from and what he’s currently doing. The two stories come full circle as we soon find the he hired an investigator to help find out just who his parents were.

The introduction of the villain (at least for a few issues) was actually quite effective. The grotesque and menacing vibe that is meant to be expressed seems to come through the pages well.

However, the buck stops there, so to speak. The ending of the issue comes way to quick, and the “Shadowman” persona is shoved down our throats in a hurry. And, without much in terms of explanation other than the fact the Jack’s old man had assumed that role in the past.

Valiant has done a great job on its previous titles. I hope that the creative team behind this one can tighten things up a bit and drive it home with the next issue.

Rating:  6/10 Gingered Digits.

Reasoning: Great artwork, some character development (although not necessarily where it counts), ok story, interesting plotline with some serious potential.

[Comic Review] A+X #2

Posted in Comic Review with tags , on November 30, 2012 by Casey Hutton

A+X #2

I have to say that, if nothing else, Marvel’s A+X series is mildly entertaining. Although, not nearly as interesting as the previous issue, A+X #2 comes off a little ‘meh’ in comparison. Perhaps it’s the pairings, but it wasn’t anywhere near as exciting or fulfilling as before.

First, we take a look at a girls day outing with Rogue and Black Widow. This is the better of the two stories in question. The artwork is alright, even if slightly adolescent in appearance. The story is a little poor, but, in the case that is A+X, story isn’t really the goal nor the actual point, as it’s simply a little bit of fluff with a fight involving two named heroes from each group (Avengers and X-Men) and a common villain. There were some tongue and cheek one-liners that made me chuckle.

The second story in this issue involved Kitty Pryde and Iron Man. Not really a pairing I was remotely interested in.  The artwork here also comes off as not nearly as appealing. Again, to each one’s own and my own personal preference isn’t the same as the person next to me. I found the characters to be to stickly or gaunt…almost Ichabod Crane.

However, it’s all in good fun. The lack of story and all action pretense to this series makes them fun, quick reads. Although I’m not really sure what all they are going to have impact on the whole “Marvel Now” concept (which I doubt will be any at all), it still makes them enjoyable. Just be aware, it is exactly what you get, which is to say, nothing to really sink your teeth into. One-shots in all their glory.

One thing of note which disappointed me greatly. Unless there are variants of more than just cover and the inside stories are different, this issue is not the same as planned on Marvel’s website. The second story involves the same characters, however, Rogue and Black Widow replace the story of Spider-Man and Beast (which is why I anticipated this release).

Rating: 1/10 Gingered Digits.

Score: Artwork (1), Character Development (0), Climax (0), Plot Development (0), Story (0).

[Comic Review] X-Men Legacy #1

Posted in Comic Review with tags , on November 29, 2012 by Casey Hutton

I hate to be disappointed.

And thus far…most of what I’ve seen involving the whole concept of Marvel’s “Marvel Now” shtick has been just that.

I don’t know if it’s the fact the company is pushing for the titles to be released now or what, but almost every titled I’ve read feels like it was rushed to get to the printing press.

Truth be told, Deadpool #1 has been the most well-rounded “Marvel Now” title I’ve read. And now, I have not read everything out there.

X-Men Legacy #1

I picked up X-Men Legacy #1 on principle. I want to give Marvel and its titles a chance. However, it seems the more I invest in their products the more I feel like I might be wasting my money overall.

I went into this title not really caring too much about the main character (Xavier’s son). I just wanted to get in on the ground floor of a new title and see what it has to offer.

The artwork is so-so. It’s not my style. Something about it seems unfinished. I can’t put my finger on it, and that’s what bugs me the most.

The story is also so-so. David (Xavier’s son) is essentially in a rehab of sorts…a commune of mutants. With some flashbacking and a few mental lapses, we see why David is where he is.

Unless I have a random itch to add on to my pile, I doubt this will be a series I will continue to follow.

Rating: 4/10 Gingered Digits.

Reasoning: Story (0.5/2), Artwork (1/2), Character Development (1/2), Plot Development (1/2), Climax (0.5/2).

[Comic Review] Nowhere Men #1

Posted in Comic Review with tags , on November 29, 2012 by Casey Hutton

Nowhere Men #1

“What is Your Tipple?”

Nowhere Men #1, released by Image Comics, is an interesting entity. Image is usually on the cusp, or edge, or pushing boundaries and trying new idea and concepts. This title is no different.

In this issue, we meet three of four individuals behind an organization known as “World Corp.” It is a who’s who of the scientific community. Geniuses brought together to supposedly better mankind. Then, we fast forward just a bit to see three of the big names in the organization butting heads over an incident involving the death of two employees. Two are adamantly against the further testing of this particular area of research while the other is staunchly supportive of it. An obvious battle over finances, greed and morality ensue.

Then, we move to another locale where we meet several individuals quarantined for some strange…disease. This is where things get a little hazy and confusing.

Overall, the story seems to be just one big introduction where the reader gets a brief glimpse at more than 15 characters. It’s a head full of information in such a short period of time.

The artwork is nice. It’s not far out there to make it stand apart from others on the shelf, but it’s enough that gives it a lasting flavor. It’s a style I don’t see much of these days, and if nothing else, I’ll be able to link it to these particular artists and even to this particular series.

Rating: 5.5/10 Gingered Digits.

Scores: Artwork (1), Character Development (1), Climax (1.5), Plot Development (1), Story (1).

[Comic Review] All-New X-Men #1

Posted in Comic Review with tags , on November 29, 2012 by Casey Hutton

All-New X-Men #1

I don’t know how much more “Marvel Now” of Marvel’s I can take.

Out of most of the titles rolling out under their new condensing of the universe, this was one of the few I was actually excited about. Between this, Deadpool and Superior Spider-Man…my “Marvel Now” hopes were set pretty high.

Although this title didn’t fall absurdly short of what mark I said, it still fell short.

I liked the artwork. It’s dark and it fits the theme. The panels were laid out nicely, and even though some were text heavy, it still came off as pleasing to the eye.

The story has some serious potential. Cyclops is working with the likes of Emma Frost and Magneto to round up newly developing mutants to help further the cause. It’s up to the remnants of the X-Men to stop him, as his methods aren’t the most people friendly. So, the team cooks up this idea to travel back into time to recruit the old Cyclops to help them.

The story also heavily involves one of my personally favorite X-Men: Beast. Whether or not it stays that way, I’m not entirely sure, but at least for now it made me content.

What I had problems with was how…choppy the story seemed to be. There wasn’t much flow from one actual scene to the next. It made things worse that most often, that’s where Marvel stuck the ads, and at one point this even made me skimming through the pages thinking I had missed something.

This is going to be a title I continue to follow, at least through this initial storyline. After that…well…we’ll see. But, like I said, I have hopes for this series.

Rating: 7/10 Gingered Digits.

Score: Story [Choppy] (1/2), Artwork (2/2), Character Development (1.5/2), Plot Development (1.5/2), Climax (1/2).

[Comic Review] Aquaman #14

Posted in Comic Review with tags , on November 28, 2012 by Casey Hutton

Aquaman #14

I hope everyone in the U.S. enjoyed their holiday filled with poultry-goodness and full bellies. As things settle down yet again, it’s time to hanker down and get back to business as usual.

Between this week and last, a plethora of comics have been released that were on my pull list. Although I doubt I’ll be able to get to all of them, I figure I might as well try to shoehorn as much of the bigger releases and small gems as I can before next week’s onslaught of scheduled releases.

So, without further ado, let’s take a look at DC ComicsAquaman #14.

Now, I’ve been wanting to get into this series from the get go, but, having starting late on the whole “New 52” release schedule, I missed out and have been waiting to find a decent spot to hop on board. With the Aquaman and Justice League crossover story arc (entitled Throne of Atlantis) gearing up with this issue, I figure it’s as good a time as any.

Having not gotten into this series until this issue dropped, I have absolutely no clue on the backstory and direction this “New 52” version is taking.

That being said, this issue did a wonderful job of immersing me as best as possible in its small number of pages. An Atlantean  relic has been taken. Aquaman is aware and has his suspicions, which includes his brethren.

The story itself is dubbed a “prelude” to the story at hand, but it gave me enough of a taste to want to pick up the following issues. I am not a fan of Justice League and probably never will be, but I’m interested enough #15-17 to find out what happens. If the story continues to revolve around the Aquaman character, I’m not going to care that Superman or Batman are in the group.

The artwork here is also amazing. The coloring and inking are balanced nicely and some of the two-page spreads are beautiful in their own right. I’m happy to say that, delving into Aquaman for the first time was not a disappointment.

Rating: 9.5/10 Gingered Digits.

Reasoning: Artwork (2), Character Development (2), Climax (2), Plot Development (1.5), Story (2).

[Comic Review] Great Pacific #1

Posted in Comic Review with tags , on November 20, 2012 by Casey Hutton

Great Pacific #1You know…when I read the blurp about Image’s Great Pacific #1, I have to say I was interested. It’s a series not about superheroes. As a matter of fact…it has nothing comic-ness about it.

It’s about a billionaire playboy who inherits his father’s enterprise. Not given the time of day and seemingly taken as a joke, what he considers serious business (in the form of the environment) is shrugged off. He is, after all, it seems in the oil business, at least partially.

In the end, his death is faked and the book ends with him and a friend coming into view of the plastic continent within the aptly dubbed “Great Pacific Gyre.”

The artwork in this book alright. Is it fantastic? No, but it’s appealing. My only complaint is the attention to detail given to the backgrounds (which appear computer generated…which clashes with the drawn/inked/colored forefront).

The story, however, isn’t bad at all. In fact, given the topic and the lack of what most consider comic book material, it’s intriguing. Is it going to be for everyone? No. But, the concept is unique and kudos for the team behind it for trying to pull it off.

Is it a series I will follow? I don’t know. As of right now, if the following issues fall in a week where my pull list isn’t huge, yes. I will say this: I will make an effort to. Even if it takes an extra week or two to pick up a copy, I’ll most likely end up reading the series in its entirety.

Rating: 7.5/10 Gingered Digits.

Reasoning: Story (1.5/2), Artwork (1/2), Character Development (2/2), Plot Development (1.5/2), Climax (1.5/2)

[Comic Review] Fantastic Four #1

Posted in Comic Review with tags , on November 19, 2012 by Casey Hutton

Fantastic Four #1I wanted to enjoy this title…honestly I did. Unfortunately, this particular roll out into Marvel’s whole new “Marvel Now” line fell a little short of spectacular.

Fantastic Four #1 was not what I had hoped. It felt almost like it was rushed to be put into production. There were several could-have-beens that didn’t quite make it.

Being a new rollout, even though the characters have been around for quite some time, a little backstory would have done well in this issue. Instead, it assumes the reader has already had previous knowledge of the Fantastic Four and all of the group’s escapades.

What this title does, however, is foreshadow quite a bit. With a glimpse of the “future” in the first panel, we find that Franklin Richards saw what is coming their way. And, it involves space. Yep…space.

I do like the artwork here though, and hopefully that continues. There are some layout issues I felt hurt a couple pages, but overall, it was great!

This series is one I will most likely keep reading, at least for a while. I want to give it a chance, and having not been much into Marvel for so long, I want something I can get into that isn’t the Avengers, X-Men or Spider-Man (although Spidey is one of my faves!). It also seems like Fantastic Four and FF are going to be inter-related, as this story continues in FF #1.

Time will tell.

Rating: 5.5 Gingered Digits.

Reasoning: Story (1), Artwork (2), Plot Development (1), Character Development (1), Climax (0.5).