Writer: Jeff Parker
Artist: Kyle Hotz
Marvel Comics | TPB | $19.99
from the official press release . . . . . . . . .
Valiant is proud to announce that Christopher Priest and M.D. Bright, the acclaimed creators of Quantum and Woody, will reunite for Q2: The Return of Quantum and Woody – an all-new, five-issue mini-series bringing the original world's worst superhero team into the 21st century.
Set wholly in the original continuity of Priest and Bright's groundbreaking Acclaim Comics series, the new mini – which represents the return of both creators to monthly comics – will pick up in the modern day, launching an older Quantum and Woody into an all-new adventure set 20 years after the events of their original series.
“Soon as Doc and I started hashing out the plotline, we got into a huge argument. It was just like old times. Happy to be back on the goat,” said Priest.
"It's enormously exciting to have Priest and Doc return to the iconic characters they made famous," said Valiant Executive Editor Warren Simons. "Over the years, the legend of the original series has only grown, and they're about to unleash a fearless new chapter in the lives of Quantum and Woody."
Whatever happened to the world's worst superhero team? Twenty years past their prime, the unlikely crime-fighting duo known as Quantum and Woody have long since parted ways and retired…until a middle-aged Quantum suddenly reappears with a brand-new teenage partner—and his wisecracking ex-best friend gets mad. Now Woody is out to break up the all-new, all-different Quantum and Woody and put an end to Quantum's recklessness and child endangerment…just as Quantum sets out to bring down a shadowy, globe-spanning agency of freelance spies and assassins. As Quantum's plan crumbles right through Woody's fingers, will the former friends set aside their differences…and their age…and their numerous health difficulties…to join forces one last time without driving each other crazy?
A veteran writer and editor with more than 35 years experience in the comic book industry, Christopher J. Priest has written nearly every major character in comics, with notable runs on series including Action Comics, Amazing Spider-Man, Black Panther, Captain America, Conan the Barbarian, Deadpool, and many more.
M.D. Bright began his career in comics in 1978 and has worked consistently on some of the industry's most popular and enduring titles ever since. One of the all-time definitive artists of Green Lantern, Iron Man, and G.I. Joe, Bright has also contributed to Batman, Captain America, Thor, Wonder Woman and countless others.
For a long time, we have been reading the book reviews of Michael Clarke, as his interests lie across several genres, including weird fiction, horror, dark fantasy, sword and sorcery, science fiction, mystery, crime, detective, and pulp adventure. These are genres that we here at BC Refugees also have an appreciation for. We are glad to announce that Michael Clarke has joined the list of new contributors to BC Refugees, and will be posting many of his reviews on our blog site. Here’s a little bit about Michael in his own words:
“To go back to the beginning, this all started in my pre-school years when parents and other relatives would often read aloud to me - - everything from Golden storybooks to comic books. I learned to read from comic books, and soon progressed to reading Hardy Boys and Tarzan novels. When I discovered some library collections during my middle-school years, I devoured everything from classic science-fiction to classic classics (Ivanhoe, etc.) to Conan The Barbarian, Fahfred And The Grey Mouser, Theodore Sturgeon, Harlan Ellison and Robert E Heinlein. All this reading was interspersed with a generous sprinkling of assorted comic books.”
“Marvel got me through my high school years, except for ninth grade when I decided that girls would not think my reading comics was cool - - so I quit and (sob!) gave away or discarded enough classic books that I could have retired several years ago If I still had them to sell at today’s prices. My absence from reading comics only lasted about 14 months. I spent some time in home recovery, in bed for awhile after wisdom tooth surgery and complications. That’s when I started reading comics again, and kept at it right through college (although very limited, due to finances). I kept reading through my first full-time job, marriage (an understanding wife), and the birth of our first son. When we moved to a higher cost of living area in the 1980’s I quit again for budgetary reasons. That also lasted about fourteen months, when the financial situation improved and I could afford to spend some money on comics again.”
“I’m still married to that wonderful woman, and my two sons are now fully mature adults. I’ve got a respectable collection of comics, books, movies and music and keep adding to it. I think I have amassed more items of popular culture than I can read, listen, and enjoy in my remaining years. I think it’s a compulsion among us collectors. Others (less kind) would call it a sickness.”
“I’m really excited to be a part of BC Refugees, to share my thoughts on various works, and hope the regular readers of the blog will appreciate my contributions.”
“ I think that about covers everything that might be of interest. Oh yeah, almost forgot = I was on track for a career as a brain surgeon until a sled riding accident split my head open at the tender age of seven years, forcing me to re-evaluate my career path. One little incident can have ramifications for a lifetime!”
VAMPIRE VIXENS OF THE WEHRMACHT “If You Want Blood” one-shot (Bump and Grind Comics, August 2013, second printing with foreword by film maker Paul Campion) Writers: The Emperor + Alex Ronald. Artist: Alex Ronald. Letterer: Jim Campbell. Original Concept: Alex Ronald. (Parental Advisory, Adult Content) Limited print run, but digital copies are available from http://www.vampirevixens.co.uk/
If you can’t figure out what this comic is about from that title, then I’m guessing you’ve been living for decades in a cave without a DVD player and no access to cable television. VAMPIRE VIXENS OF THE WEHRMACHT is a fast-paced horror comic driven by action, rooted in World War II history, and dripping with blood, gore and tantalizing sexual imagery. What makes it work is a light-hearted approach to the subject matter, all in fun but never silly or stupid. You may find yourself laughing at several of the scenarios or chuckling at the devilish dialogue.
VAMPIRE VIXENS OF THE WEHRMACHT debuted at the Glasgow Comic Con in July 2013, and is the brainchild of primary creator Alex Ronald. Ronald is a former comics illustrator who worked primarily in British series back in the 1990’s, and this marks a partial and very welcome return to the comics format. The one-shot story was well-received and the first printing sold out at the festival, with stock of the second printing almost depleted. Digital copies will continue to be sold through the shop on the webpage noted above.
What impresses immediately with the opening prologue pages is the photo-realistic style of Alex Ronald and how he uses inks and color to add the appropriate shading and depth. Dimensions and proportions are spot on and stand out when intended. Ronald is also very adept at illustrating male and female anatomy along with depicting naked pagan rituals.
The action begins in 1940 London, with fears of an imminent German invasion by Hitler’s forces. After learning that the Nazis have revived and enslaved four ancient female vampires (from a site in Tunisia, Africa), Winston Churchill (perfectly portrayed here) forms the Special Occult Executive team. A core member of that team (we are only introduced to two members) is one of the Nazi vampire women, now freed from Hitler’s enslavement through the mysticism of necromancer Aleister Crowley.
The other member of the team is Morris, a chaplain as well as “a former member of the Royal Marine Commandos and a Vatican-sanctioned exorcist” and obviously appalled and offended by who he’s been teamed up with. He’s frequently in argument with the former Nazi tool, and has to keep this vampire vixen under control as she continually taunts and tempts him with sexual puns and innuendos. We never learn her name (Libyenah) until 22 pages into the story, but it’s doubtful that any readers will fail to remember her character. She is adorned in leather (a sleeveless vest with no shirt, just a big zipper down the center) and below the waist wears only a lock-free leather chastity belt that features a cheek-free back. In her kinky boots with lots of buckles, she is a real temptress, leather clad, sexy, and packing a firm load of sass.
The British also employ a team of psychics who uncover a Nazi plan for a supernatural attack on England. They are four elderly, hat-wearing ladies sipping tea while they channel Nazi spirits. They will remind many Monty Python fans of the sketch where The War of the Roses is reenacted by members of a women’s tea club, swinging their handbags in fierce battle and screaming their lungs out.
The new SOE team must sneak into the Black Forest in Western Germany, interrupt a midnight satanic coven (naked witches and naked Nazis) in order to steal away a small portion of Adolph Hitler’s anatomy that was removed by his mother during childhood, a spherical object that is apparently a power source for the supernatural forces that will be turned against England. The battle that ensues is full of blood and bullets complete with exploding body parts. Libyenah get extra credit for her impromptu choice of creative weapon.
VAMPIRE VIXENS OF THE WEHRMACHT is worth your attention. You will be entertained, amused and possibly stimulated. Alex Ronald, please come back for more. Another one-shot issue is in the planning for late 2014, in a chapter titled “Arses High”.
Alex Ronald currently resides in Glasgow, Scotland and was a regular artist in the 1990’s for the British comic 2000 AD, mostly drawing the character Judge Dredd. He also spent some time working for DC Comics, as an artist on LOBO. Since 2000, he’s been mostly involved in the computer graphics industry as a digital 3D modeler and 2D concept painter, working on TV commercials, video games, films and kids TV shows. Some of his other work can be viewed on his blog at http://alexronald68.blogspot.co.uk/.
When asked why he chose a WWII story of vampires and Nazis for his return to comics, Alex responded: “Painting blood thirsty vampire women, wartime action and gore is my therapy after all the nicey, cutesy day job artwork. It’s also a throwback to all the war comics I used to read as a kid in the 70’s (but in a very X certificate fashion).”
We welcome our new reviewer, Jim Dietrich, to the BC Refugees blog. Jim is also an avid comics enthusiast, and serves as DC counterpoint to Ken’s Marvel inclinations. Jim is a critical but objective analyst, whose eye for detail and underlying themes is always something to look forward to in his reviews. With our other new reviewer (Ken) and also Kita Roberts , Jim can be heard regularly on From The Booth, the official podcast of Captain Blue Hen Comics in Newark, Delaware. http://www.captainbluehen.com/category/podcast/
We’ll let Jim tell you more in his own words:
“Jim is an electrical engineer working in the telecomm industry, but that's just his day job. When he's not typing this paragraph, he's a frequent comics reader (has been since the 80's), and co-host of the From The Booth podcast along with new BC Refugees contributor Ken. Of course, he is also a husband and proud father 24/7. “
"I'm always on the lookout for new pulpits from which to preach the gospel of good comics, good movies, and good sci-fi. That's why I jumped at the opportunity to be a part of BC Refugees," Jim thought as he typed his....thoughts. "I look forward to being a contributor," he added, intelligently.
We welcome our new reviewer, Ken (let that last name be a mystery for now), as a regular contributor to the BC Refugees blog. Ken, or Ken of From The Booth as he likes to include in his byline, is an avid comics enthusiast, partial to Marvel but very open to all publishers, likes to cosplay (just for fun, no competitions) in his Wolverine outfit plus others, and has become a regular attendee at comics conventions where he and his podcast partner manage to obtain several choice interviews with creators. He can be heard regularly on From The Booth, the official podcast of Captain Blue Hen Comics in Newark, Delaware. http://www.captainbluehen.com/category/podcast/
Please welcome Ken to our website.
“I started reading comics (X-Men and Batman) when I was seven, and have been reading them on and off ever since. Over a little more than two decades of reading, I’ve amassed a collection of over 8,000 comic books (not including trades or hardcovers). “
“I mostly read Marvel but I know enough about DC to fake it and find my pull sheet is increasingly populated with third party publishers and non-capes and tights books.”
“For the past two and a half years, I’ve been a regular co-host of Captain Blue Hen’s official podcast, From The Booth, where I talk about everything nerd and pop culture related.”
THE PHANTOM STRANGER # 1 - 8  TRINITY OF SIN: THE PHANTOM STRANGER #9 -10 (DC, December 2012 – September 2013)
It was the fabulous art of Brent Anderson that first captured my attention, in a style highly evocative of DC’s classic HOUSE OF MYSTERY back in the Wrightson era. Also, not being well versed on the character of The Phantom Stranger it seemed a good time to check out the New 52 version.
Dan Didio does a workmanlike job on the series. The opening story arc is a good one, although Didio’s style reads just a bit too much old-school. It seems that The Phantom Stranger has assumed the persona of a normal family man and keeps his off-hour activities secret from all. The first story arc lasts three issues and is a nice introduction to the Stranger’s wife and kids. Along the way he encounters Doctor Thirteen and The Haunted Highwayman. Story and dialogue improve immediately in Issue #4 with the addition of J. D. Dematteis writing the script from Didio’s plots. A long story arc begins here with the abduction of the Stranger’s (a.k.a. Phillip Stark) family in a complicated plot that includes Justice League Dark, Pandora, The Spectre, and the Question just for starters.
Gene Ha takes over art responsibilities for one issue, but it’s the cream of the crop. If you only pick up one issue, make sure you get THE PHANTOM STRANGER #6. The Phantom Stranger enters a high-stakes poker game with three demons that must been seen and read to be believed. The imagery and story are awesome, and this makes my short list of the best single-issue stories of the year 2013. From this point forward, the stories become more engaging and convoluted. The Stranger dies, visits Hell, Limbo/Paradise, and Heaven; confronts his inner demons and angels; and lays the groundwork for the path forward.
Things kick into high gear with Issue #9 when DeMatteis takes over all writing responsibilities. He takes it to another level, a metaphysical one that asks deep questions about spirituality. Issue #11 begins the crossover Trinity War, which is where I get off. I’m already too involved in a few other epics right now.
Editor’s Note: HARBINGER is our favorite Valiant title. We haven’t written much about it here recently, but that will be remedied soon. In the meantime, here is the latest news . . . .
from the official press release . . . . . . . . . ..
Valiant is proud to announce that acclaimed artist Clayton Henry (Harbinger Wars, Archer & Armstrong) has signed on as the publisher's next exclusive artist for the launch of "Resistance" – a brand new story arc beginning this January in Harbinger #20.
Henry joins artists Doug Braithwaite (Unity), Trevor Hairsine (Eternal Warrior), and Cary Nord (X-O Manowar), as well as New York Times best-selling writer Joshua Dysart (Harbinger, Bloodshot and H.A.R.D. Corps) and acclaimed colorist Brian Reber (Unity), as the latest addition to Valiant's roster of exclusive talent.
As revealed today in an exclusive interview at Comic Vine, the best-selling Harbinger Wars creative team of Dysart and Henry will reunite for "Resistance" – an all-new jumping on point that will lead Peter Stanchek and the Renegades into the final act of their crusade against Toyo Harada…and introduce an unlikely new ally into their growing battle against the Harbinger Foundation.
Peter Stanchek and his team of teenage superhuman outlaws have decided that the best defense is a strong offense. Pursued from coast-to-coast by their would-be overlord in the Harbinger Foundation, the Renegades are about to launch a strategic strike on Harada's secret empire – and they'll start by revealing to the world just what kind of power they've been hiding all along. The ace up their sleeve? A seemingly normal teenage hacker named Ax…who knows exactly what Harada has been up to since day one...
As the latest installment of the MUST READ VALIANT campaign, Harbinger #20 is a perfect introduction to the series that Comic Vine says "[will] leave your jaw on the floor."
"This arc will be incredibly new-reader friendly... We've built a lot of great jumping-on points into the previous issues, but this will be the easiest one yet. If you've haven't read the book, this is the one to try. If friends haven't read the book, this is the one to hand to them," Dysart told Comic Vine.
Other recently announced MUST READ VALIANT milestones include Quantum and Woody #5 by award-winning writer James Asmus and rising star Ming Doyle; Shadowman #13 by the all-new creative team of Peter Milligan and Roberto De La Torre; and Bloodshot and H.A.R.D. Corps #18 by fan favorite creators Christos Gage, Joshua Dysart and Bart Sears. HARBINGER #20 (NEW ARC – RESISTANCE)