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Showing posts from May, 2015

Memorial Day Plans? - - - go to a Comics Flea Market

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If you have ever wondered what the person who runs this blog is like, you have an opportunity today to meet me in person.  I will be trying to downsize my comics collection by selling some classic sets and single issues at bargain prices.  You can find me at the Memorial Day Collectibles Sale at Captain Blue Hen’s parking lot.  Details are below . . . .Please stop by and chat - - I’d love to meet you . . . . . !!

Free Comic Book Day 2015: Book Reviews, Part Six

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STEAMPUNK GOLDILOCKS #1 (ANTARCTIC PRESS) Story and Art by Rod Espinosa (reprint from October 2014) www.antarctic-press.comSTEAMPUNK GOLDILOCKS is a clever and engaging re-imagining of the Goldilocks and the Three Bears fairy tale complete with archaic gadgets and other trappings of the steampunk mythos. In this version, Goldilocks partners with Miss Muffett to undertake secretive missions for the Dark Queen. They are expert thieves and are assigned to retrieve a “golden bear” artifact from a secure bunker guarded by a family of ursiforms (armored bears that resemble a cross between Iron Man and Predator). Traveling in a huge tank that resembles a Civil War era Ironclad, the two young schemers penetrate the security system. Goldilocks gets inside, and following the plot outline of the fairy tale, she also discovers the porridge, drinks, chairs and beds and tries them out. This version has an ending that won’t disturb any younger readers.COVER APPEAL: As much as I like this cover, I wo…

Free Comic Book Day 2015: Book Reviews, Part Five

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NEIL GAIMAN’S LADY JUSTICE FCBD (Super Genius Comics) Based on a concept by Neil Gaiman. C. J. Henderson, writer. Michael Netzer, penciler. Rick Magyar, inker. Alex Wald, color. Ken Bruzenak, letterer. Painted cover art by Daniel Brereton  www.supergeniuscomics.com          I can imagine several FCBD attendees saw the Gaiman name on the cover and snatched this one up, only to groan and be discouraged upon opening up the book and discovering that he did not write the story. Hopefully, they continued on, read the story, and were pleasantly surprised at the quality of both script and art. In fact, this book is so good that I’m going to recommend it right now, before I finish this first paragraph!          Super Genius Comics is a new imprint, a new venture from Papercutz (great graphic novels for young readers), aimed at an older audience. For their debut titles they have chosen to reprint in trade paperback collections for the first time some classic books from the former Tekno Comics (…

Free Comic Book Day 2015: Book Reviews, Part Four

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GRONK / HERO CATS FCBD 2015 (Action Lab Comics) Gronk = Art & Story by Katie Cook, Colors by Heather Breckel. Hero Cats of Stellar City = Kyle Puttkammer, Writer/Creator. Marcus Williams, Pencils/Colors. Gronk is a cute, lime green, young and small female monster with a nice tuft of sandy California hair on top. She left monster society because she didn’t fit in well and was very curious about the human world. She meets up with a single female in British Columbia who lives in a home with a large Newfoundland dog and a fuzzy kitten. Gronk is welcomed into their family and does her best to fit in. In “A Cake Walk In The Woods, “ Gronk tells a story of when she tried to make friends with the bigger monsters by baking for them. The untitled Hero Cats story does not give a lot of background information but gets right into the action. Things have changed in peaceful Stellar City since the introduction of Galaxy Man (who the Hero Cats are spying on.) Not sure if he is good or evil, the c…

SUPERGIRL TV series to debut on CBS in November 2015

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Thanks to the good folks at Under The Radar Magazine (which I highly recommend) I was able to watch an extended (seven minutes!) preview of the new SUPERGIRL series coming this fall to CBS TV.     Based on this one preview, (which has some spoilers, so avoid watching if that bothers you) Supergirl shows a lot of potential. Appealing actors and actresses. Teenage angst.  Coming to grips with changes.  Learning to handle responsibility and powers.  Secret identify, or shared with a select few or shared with all?  Humor.  Drama.  Sappy emo background music (well, that I can do without. I’ll tolerate it if everything else is good.)   I’m looking forward to watching this.The only conflict is it will air on Monday nights in the same time frame opposite Gotham on Fox TV.  Time to set the DVR to record. http://www.undertheradarmag.com/news/watch_first_trailer_for_new_supergirl_tv_show_to_air_on_cbs_this_fall/Video courtesy CBS TV and Under The Radar magazine.

FCBD 2015: Free Comic Book Day book reviews, Part Three

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TERRIBLE LIZARD #1 FCBD EDITION  (Oni Press)  Written by Cullen Bunn. Illustrated by Drew Moss.  Twenty-two page story. Terrible Lizard is a light-hearted and amusing tale of a friendship between a teenage girl and a T-Rex dinosaur pulled out of space-time.  This is an all-ages story that really does offer something for everyone. Jessica Anders is a typical teenage girl, part tomboy and mischievous. She’s lonely and bored with her life at Cosmos Labs.  Her single father is a respected scientist dedicating too many hours to a temporal displacement project.  Due to the impatience of the military funding his research, a lab accident brings several dinosaurs and giant monsters from their time-line into the present.  Teenage girl and T-Rex  (nicknamed Wrex) instantly bond. She becomes its’ champion/defender and the favor is returned.COVER APPEAL:  With a tiny girl riding on the back of a huge dinosaur, there is just enough of a cartoony look to the cover to appeal to the right audience wit…

FCBD 2015: Free Comic Book Day book reviews, Part Two

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SAVAGE DRAGON LEGACY FCBD #1 (Image Comics) Writer/Artist Erik LarsenSavage Dragon is one of the longest running titles in super-hero comics. It is one of the original flagship titles from the then-upstart Image Comics back in the 1990’s. Erik Larsen is the sole creator, and has remained scripter and artist on this title since Issue #1 - - an impressive accomplishment.           Larsen is heavily influenced by Jack Kirby, and his art style, which is not a deliberate mimic or copy, shows traces of that influence throughout - - from the way the feet are drawn, over-sized punches that move to the front of the panels, 1970’s sound effects, and Kirbyesque monsters and villains. His story-writing ability also has a 1970’s flavor to it, except when it comes to sexual situations (but none mentioned in the FCBD edition).          The mantle of power and responsibility has moved from the original Dragon to his son, Malcolm, who takes on the same position with the Chicago Police as his father he…

FCBD 2015: Free Comic Book Day book reviews, Part One

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Editor’s Note: After posting my initial article on the FCBD books last week, I was preparing to begin posting reviews the very next day. Then, work and other obligations made for some very long days and no time to read and review. I hope to catch up soon. Please keep watching this space. For a guideline on how I am grading/ranking these books, please go to the Archives and read the article from Thursday, May 07, 2015.HIP-HOP FAMILY TREE THREE-IN-ONE: FEATURING COSPLAYERS (Fantagraphics) Hip-Hop Family Tree writer/artist Ed Piskor. Cosplayers writer/artist Dash Shaw           There is a ton of reading in the FCBD offering, a full 58 pages of material. Ed Piskor, a big fan of the hip-hop genre of music, took it upon himself to chronicle the history of this musical variation from roots and beginnings to later trends. He features many of the prominent artists and players in the development of hip-hop and most of his facial renditions are spot-on.          While I respect the genre of hip-…

Free Comic Book Day 2015: Evaluating the books

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For many years  I have written about the value of Free Comic Book Day (FCBD), and emphasized the opportunity it presents for comic shop owners to promote their business as well as grab the attention of new and younger readers.  For one of the best examples of how to pull this off, go to the BC archives and read my May 2010 detailed report  of FCBD at Captain Blue Hen Comics in Newark, Delaware. photo courtesy free comic book day organization          By the same token, FCBD is an opportunity for comics publishers to draw attention to their products and create interest, hoping to obtain new readers as well.  After reading your 2015 FCBD pick-ups, how well do you think they did?          Thanks to the kind folks at Captain Blue Hen Comics I have a big stack of FCBD titles and will be reviewing and evaluating them.  I’m going to revive a 20 point rating system that I haven’t used since the last time I had a big stack of FCBD books. Keep in mind that these are the opinions of one and…

More creators to participate in Baltimore Comic Con 2015

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from the official press release . . . . .Legendary DC Creators Chiang, Fradon, Levitz, and Tomasi Come to BaltimoreBALTIMORE, MARYLAND - May 4, 2015 -  Join us in Baltimore's Inner Harbor the weekend of September 25-27, 2015 for the 16th annual Baltimore Comic-Con! Held at the Baltimore Convention Center, we are proud to announce the appearance of legendary DC Comics creators Cliff Chiang, Ramona Fradon, Paul Levitz, and Peter Tomasi. A Harvard graduate with a joint degree in English Literature and Visual Arts, Cliff Chiang began his career as an assistant editor at DC before moving over to the creative side. He has provided art for titles such as Human Target, Beware the Creeper, Green Arrow/Black Canary, and Wonder Woman. You can find his pencils gracing DC Comics covers for Batgirl and Batman Eternal. Beginning her extensive comics career in the 1950s, Parsons School of Design graduate Ramona Fradon is responsible for artwork in many comics, past and present. She spent much of …

Illustrator Bautista nominated for Manning newcomer award

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from the official press release . . . . .THE LIFE AFTER ARTIST GABO NOMINATED FOR RUSS MANNING PROMISING NEWCOMER AWARDGABO RECOGNIZED FOR HIS WORK ON CRITICALLY ACCLAIMED SERIESPORTLAND, OR May 1, 2015 – Oni Press, Portland’s premier independent comic book publisher, today celebrates a Russ Manning Promising Newcomer Award nomination for Gabo, artist on The Life After.Gabriel "Gabo" Bautista is an Eisner and Harvey award-winning colorist and illustrator located in Chicago. He has previously worked on titles such as Will Eisner's The Spirit, Elephantmen, and All-Star Western. Gabo's work on the Oni Press comic The Life After, as illustrator and colorist, has earned him this nomination.“I pretty much fainted when I heard the news, and then I saw the other nominees and I fainted again,” says Gabo about the nomination. “I am so incredibly honored and thrilled to be standing next to such brilliant artists. I owe all credit to my editor Ari Yarwood, the rest of the Oni Pr…