New Comic Book Day — Reviews for Punisher, 4001 A.D., Daredevil/Punisher, Beasts of Burden

New week, new comics. For this New Comic Book Day we get Punished twice, go into the future with Valiant, a cat gives us a little present, and the Flash goes head strong into issue #51. As always these are only a select set of new releases that stood out from the crowd. Check out our other blog articles so see our thoughts on other books. Be sure to comment or share our post on Facebook or Twitter if you like our articles!

SPOILER ALERT — We try to keep from posting spoilers, but one may sneak through to our reviews now and again. Read with caution, true believers.

Punisher comics at

Punisher #1
By: Becky Cloonan, Steve Dillon, Declan Shalvey

It’s finally here the book that you’ve been waiting for! In the midst of all the crazy alien invasions and huge battles going on with the Avengers, there’s still street gangs and drug runners slipping through the cracks. Pushing weapons onto the streets and a new drug that makes anyone an unstoppable killing machine. The police can only do so much without crossing over the line. Who will inflict the justice that is sorely in need? Frank Castle “The Punisher“! He is judge, jury and executioner against all injustice in the streets of New York and will not stop until justice is served. In this breakout issue Frank runs into a ghost from his past that will change the course of things to come.

Becky Cloonan (Demo and Southern Cross) picks up were Iconic writers Garth Ennis and Jason Aaron left off with Steve Dillon (Preacher, Hellblazer, Punisher Max). This is a perfect Punisher books with a fresh take from an incredible team. [Steve at Milwaukie TFAW]

4001 A.D. comics at

4001 A.D. #1
By: Matt Kindt, Clayton Crain

New Japan is a group of sectors that hovers in Earth’s orbit, an actual satellite nation, in the future. The A.I. construct who controls the functions and populace of this seeming utopia is called Father, whose champion is known as Rai, who has been jettisoned back down to the Earth. This series jumps right in without requiring any previous investment in the Valiant universe. The artwork is glorious, as you’d expect from Clayton Crain and David Mack, while the tapestry is designed by the phenomenal mind of Matt Kindt.

Valiant are inclined to keep you wanting more, as their events are typically only 4 issues long, as this is. If you thirst for more, you can read the additional tie-ins (bringing the entire saga to only 12 issues, with checklist printed on the back of the issue) to fill your craving for this futuristic amazement! If that doesn’t wet your appetite, check out Rai , X-O Manowar , and Eternal Warrior , all of whom you will glimpse in 4001 A.D. This series already subtly examines the consequences that are linked to heroic actions, and further develops an interesting and new view of the fallout, from when a hero has already made a noble sacrifice. This one is a trip worth taking! [Casey D. at]

Flash comics at

Daredevil/Punisher #1
By: Charles Soule, Szymon Kudranski, Reilly Brown

Netflix’s Daredevil series introduced the MCU, and the world to Frank Castle aka The Punisher. It’s only fitting that we get another taste of that Daredevil vs Punisher story. Taking from Charles Soule’s current series, Daredevil has help from his partner, Blindspot. Let’s be honest here, he’s going to need it.

As Matt Murdock gets ready for a prisoner transport of a Russian Mobster, Frank does his best to punish. Now Daredevil and Punisher have a score to settle. Pitting them against each other, and the Russian Mob. But how does Blindspot react when he’s introduced to the “hero” that is The Punisher? [Martin M. at]

Beasts of Burden comics at

Beasts of Burden: What the Cat Dragged In
By: Evan Dorkin, Sarah Dyer, Jill Thompson

In this One-Shot issue the newest member to the Beasts of Burden comes under scrutiny for their past. Dymphna a familiar, has kept secrets from her group. They intend to find out what she’s been keeping from them. It’s safe to say, it’s more than they asked for!

Beast of Burden has been and still is a fantastic series. Evan Dorkin and Sarah Dyer are fantastic in this series. The fun and creepiness is there, with relatable characters, even though they’re all animals.

Jill Thompson paints her heart out on every page. It’ beautiful to look at. She does this great job with cat reactions in this issue. I can see my cats doing the exact same movement and jumps as we find out friends going on their adventure.

If you like supernatural tales or want a series that only involves animals. Than this “Homeward Bound” meets Constantine is the series for you! [Martin M. at]

What did you think of these books? What should we review next week? Let us know below!

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Review: Star Wars: Shattered Empire

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May 4 2016 at 10:04am

Posted in Product Reviews

star wars shattered empires tpd #1-#4 graphic novelEveryone remembers the closing scene in Star Wars VI: Return of the Jedi. Endor. Ewoks. A funeral pyre for Darth Vader, and his spirit showing up with Obi-Wan Kenobi and Yoda to look on with pride as Luke, Leia, Han, Chewbacca, the droids and even Lando party with the little guys. Rebels win. The Force wins. Huzzah! But then what? What happened in the interim 30 years between the end of Star Wars VI and the opening scenes of Star Wars VII, The Force Awakens?

That’s what Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens from Marvel is addressing, and this terrific graphic novel collects all four issues of Star Wars: Shattered Empires and adds two additions, Star Wars: Princess Leia #1 and the delightful original 1977 Star Wars: #1 in all its retro glory.

The storyline itself really revolves around the Imperial Starfleet, because even with the destruction of the Death Star, the Empire and its regional governors retain their hold on important systems throughout the galaxy, from Core to Outer Rim, because of their remaining military might. So while the exhausted Rebels might seek to have some time off to recoup after their great victory, it turns out that it’s not that much of a victory yet, because the Moffs are busy trying to acquire control over the disarray of the Empire, a dangerous chaos that might prove to be more deadly than Emperor Palpatine’s Empire!

The artwork in the series is excellent, really exciting, notably the battle above Cawa City on planet Sterdic IV, where Rebel pilot Shara again proves her mettle against waves of Tie Fighters as the local residents recoil in terror at the aerial battle. Shara is as dedicated a pilot as you could hope for in the Rebel Alliance. Perhaps too devoted, as her young son Poe barely knows her. Yes, that Poe. Dameron.

marvel star wars #1 comic book coverQuite a lot happens in the four parts of the main storyline, including just about every favorite character having a substantial role, even Luke himself. Luke isn’t teaching young Padewans in this story, however, as referenced in the backstory of The Force Awakens, so there’s still plenty of mystery about who, what and the other specifics of the newly reinvigorated Star Wars universe.

The 1977 Star Wars #1 story is great fun and the artwork, while less sure than the Shattered Empires, is still sufficient to help propel what serves almost as a parallel origin story along. Princess Leia #1, however, is hindered by its art, with too many panels featuring well known characters (Leia, Han, Luke) with faces, postures and body dimensions at odds with the characters we know and love. Particularly when compared to the confident, splendid art of lead artists Marco Checchetto and Angel Unzueta in the Shattered Empires portion.

Still, Shattered Empires is plenty good enough to justify the purchase of the entire trade paperback, and the addition of the original Star Wars #1 is a great bonus. And, heck, you might love Terry & Rachel Dodson and Jordie Bellaire’s art on Princess Leia #1. It just didn’t work for me.

Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens / Star Wars: Shattered Empire is a trade paperback book that collects all four issues of Marvel Comics’ miniseries Star Wars: Shattered Empire, as well as the first issues of Star Wars: Princess Leia and Marvel’s original Star Wars comic series. Shattered Empire: Written by Greg Rucka, Art by Marco Checchetto, Angel Unzueta and Emilio Laiso. Princess Leia: Written by Mark Wait, Art by Terry & Rachel Dodson and Jordie Bellaire. Star Wars #1: Written by Roy Thomas, Art by Howard Chaykin and Jim Novak. $16.99.

Review by Dave Taylor.

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New Comic Book Day – Review of We Can Never Go Home Again & Young Terrorists

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May 3 2016 at 11:14am

Posted in New Comic Book Day

we can never go home / young terrorists cover fcbdIn case you missed it, you should take note of the “M” rating of this Black Mask Studios double-feature for New Comic Book Day. Between the two titles there is profanity, nudity, drug use, sex, and oh-so-graphic violence.

In We Can Never Go Home: Dead Set on Destruction, Morgan and Dale are two teenagers who check into a motel for a little you-know-what, where Morgan briefly meets Duncan, one of our two super-human protagonists. As Dale and Morgan get their shenanigans underway, they are interrupted by a shootout in the parking lot. Taking a peek out the door, Morgan sees Madison, the yin to Duncan’s yang, incapacitating a tactical response team while wearing only a towel and an angry, angry look.

Matthew Rosenburg and Patrick Kindlon have written as perfect a teaser as you can hope for, and Josh Hood’s art is highlighted by the transition of Morgan’s face from shock to elation as she watches the mayhem in the parking lot. We Can Never Go Home volume 1 is out now.

Young Terrorists: Lies From My Father focuses on Sera Solomon, and we see more pieces from her past that helped mold her into an able enemy of the dystopian new world order. From the fighting pit of prison camp Guernica, Sera reminisces through the pain of savage and bloody fights to her youth with her father, who teaches her toughness, brutality, and conspiracy-theory-or-are-they-truths about the world.

The intrigue builds when another “prodigy” of Sera’s father shows up at Guernica for the sole purpose of extracting information from her, and extracting it hard.

Matt Pizzolo’s storytelling continues to be a strong blend of intrigue and action, and Amancay Nahuelpan’s drawings and Jean-Paul Csuka’s art invite you to suffer and celebrate in tune with the characters. Young Terrorists is out now.

We Can Never Go Home: Dead Set on Destruction (FCBD), writers: MATTHEW ROSENBURG and PATRICK KINDLON, artist: JOSH HOOD, colors: TYLER BOSS, letters: JIM CAMPBELL. Young Terrorists: Lies From My Father, writer: MATT PIZZOLO, illustrations: AMANCAY NAHUELPAN, colors: JEAN-PAUL CSUKA, letters: JIM CAMPBELL. Published by Black Mask Studios.

Review by Rob McKinney.

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Review: Negative Space #2

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May 3 2016 at 9:45am

Posted in Product Reviews

negative space #2In Negative Space #2 (Available through Dark Horse Digital or in an upcoming collection of issues #1-#4), we are introduced to the antagonist of this series, and Kindred is demoted to henchman status. Meet the Evorah, a deep-sea race of tentacled nightmares who thrive on negative emotions. Over time, they have come to relish the sadness and despair of humans, going so far as to maintain an undersea museum of relics tied to sadness and pain. Kindred is exposed as a business whose mission statement is to provide the Evorah with the worst emotions humanity has to offer.

Guy Harris has unwittingly stumbled upon the resistance to the Evorah’s designs, learning that his best (only?) friend is involved in the plot to defeat Kindred and their marine masters. Thanks to an unexpected turncoat, a plot is underway to cripple the Evorah with their greatest weakness: positive emotions.

Dragged into a fight he only learned about moments ago, we see Guy go from suicidal to fighting for survival for himself and the human race. Kindred, on full alert and with an idea of the plot to defeat them and their “customers.” The race is on to see whether Guy can deliver a killing blow to the Evorah, or if Kindred will get tired of waiting for his suicidal ideations to come to fruition and bring about his end on their own.

Owen Gieni’s art, as always, provides all the sadness, anger, evil, and hope one can ask for in a character’s appearance. In particular, it’s fantastic to see Guy’s transition from suicidal to intrigued and concerned with his life. Ryan Lindsay’s story continues to flesh out the hope of an optimistic resistance fighting terrors counting on our tendency towards negative emotions.

Negative Space #2, writer: RYAN K. LINDSAY, art: OWEN GIENI, letters: RYAN FERRIER, $3.99

Review by Rob McKinney.

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New Comic Book Day – Review of ROM #0

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May 2 2016 at 1:02pm

Posted in New Comic Book Day

rom #0, free comic book day“Just what are Dire Wraiths? Why are they at war with ROM? And just who is ROM, anyway?”

Good questions, but a better question is where has ROM been all these years? Comic readers of the 80’s and toy collectors alike should be giddy with the return of ROM this summer. Originally a licensed Parker Bros toy slated to be called COBOL after the programming language, it was changed to ROM for obvious copyright reasons. Luckily for comic fans, to generate buzz for the lighted LED toy, Bill Mantlo and Sal Buscema were tasked with making the fairly rigid toy cool for kids on the page of a Marvel comic.

Unfortunately for toy fans, the Comic was much cooler than the toy!

75 issues and some awesome crossovers later, ROM was remembered as a comic SpaceKnight, and not the toy which only sold less than half a million units.

So here we are at New Comic Book Day 2016, with a new launch of a comic that combines ToyFarians (yes that’s you ToyFare readers), 80’s comic kids, and publisher IDW that is based on a character created by the tragically iconic Bill Mantlo.

This 11 page teaser with plenty of additional concept art will not disappoint. If you’ve enjoyed IDW’s relaunch of the Micronauts, then I’m sure you will enjoy ROM’s IDW #0 teaser. Chris Ryall and Christos Gage are bringing ROM into the T+ realm but teens and adults will appreciate David Messina’s artistic skills that balance alien and earthling violence without delving into unnecessary gore.

This is definitely a title I’m looking forward to collecting when issue 1 hits the shelves in July.

Rom #0, by Chris Ryall, Christos Gage and David Messina. Published May 7, 2016.

Review by Luke Howell.

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Review: Doctor Who: Eleventh Doctor, Year Two #8

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May 2 2016 at 9:43am

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11th doctor who, year two, #8Si Spurrier was tasked in Doctor Who: Eleventh Doctor Year 2, #8 to take the writing reins from Rob Williams and as a result, the installment opens with a bit of a rushed finish to the story arc from the previous issue. The Doctor and his four companions have escaped the universe’s best defended prison, but are still being followed through time and space by The Then and The Now. We misplace a companion or two and there’s a massive bar fight starring some of the universe’s ugliest jobbers.

The main focus of this issue is to give background and depth for Abslom Daak’s character. We may have just met the one guy in the universe that the Daleks fear more than The Doctor.

Warren Pleece’s artwork is simple and easy to read. There are no unnecessary details. Almost too few details, if anything. If the reader is unfamiliar with the television series and is completely unaware of Matt Smith’s and Alex Kingston’s portrayal of the Time Lord and his anachronistic archaeologist wife, the characters look great. Try to compare the two live actors from the show to their counterpart images in the comic, though, and you won’t find great likenesses. That’s a little distracting, but the overall effect of the artwork is enjoyable, engaging, and consistent with the television series and genre.

Arianna Florean and Nicola Righi tag team brilliantly to provide us with dark and twisty color for an equally dark and twisty narrative.

An enjoyable chapter in the saga of the loneliest Time Lord, the installment ends with the revelation of a Dalek secret that could end up being the key to proving The Doctor’s innocence and stopping The Then and The Now. Geronimo!

Doctor Who: Eleventh Doctor Year 2, #8, writer: Si Spurrier, artist: Warren Pleece, colorists: Arianna Florean and Nicola Righi, Cover Art: Tod Nauck, $3.59.

Review by Brendan Allen.

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Exclusive Interview: Artist Mark Wheatley

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Apr 29 2016 at 2:44pm

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mark wheatley self-portraitQ: When did you get interested in comics, and what’s the first comic book series you remember really liking?

I was very young. Maybe 5 or 6 years old. The kids in our little neighborhood would trade stuff – toys and comics. I traded something I had for several coverless comics. In fact, these comics also were missing the first sheet or two, so the first 2 or 4 pages of story and the final 2 or 4 were also missing. I enjoyed reading them – I had to imagine the beginnings and endings of the stories because those parts were missing. And every time I read those stories, I would imagine different beginnings and endings. It was good exercise for the imagination.

It took me many years to figure out that I was reading a couple issues of Walt Disney’s Comics & Stories.

A year or two later I traded for two issues of Spider-Man. These comics really caught my imagination. I loved the quirky art by that Steve Ditko guy. And since the stories were continued, I kept reading them in different order in an attempt to get the story to connect and make sense. Again, my imagination was put to good use connecting the plot points! It was a few years later that some kid explained to me that the numbers on the covers were all about what order to read them. I then learned that I was reading two issues that were quite a few numbers apart. So they really did not connect. But that never stopped me making up my own stories to fill in the blanks. I guess I’m still doing that!

Q: First published work?

My first commercial published work was some poster designs that my school system commissioned me to do while I was still in high school. But I had been publishing my own fanzine about comics and science fiction for a few years at that point. The zine was called NUCLEUS and that’s where I first connected with John Workman, Bob Smith, Howard Chaykin, Marc Hempel and a few other guys who also went on to make professional comics.

doctor who, the 9th doctor adventures, art by Mark WheatleyQ: What other artists influenced and continue to influence you and your style?

I’m influenced by anything that is good and even a good deal that is bad! My personal favorite artists are many. In comics, the list includes Steve Ditko, Roy Crane, Winsor McKay, Will Eisner, and really – the list just goes on and on. I think my visual style is informed a bit by N. C. Wyeth, Nick Cardy, Alex Toth and Alex Nino. But I collect old magazines and books for the classic illustrators who worked from the late 1890s through about 1965. And all of this material exerts an influence on my approach to any of my projects. I know that I aim for a different look on each new project that gets a bit closer to the heart of the subject and mood. I don’t know if that comes through in the final work – it might all look the same to my readers.

I will also say that there are a growing number of amazing artists working today who impress me with their drawing and imagination. I stand willing to learn from anyone!

Q: Do you use computers, tablets and software, or are you old-school with pens and a scanner?


I use all of that, and more. But my typical work flow is to draw on the computer in Photoshop, using my Cintiq. At times, I’ll print out that drawing and then pencil and/or ink a version or portions of the image that can then be scanned and brought back into the computer for digital painting. And I even will paint some real media strokes and details that will get scanned and combined with the digital painting. I’ll do whatever I think will give me the look and result I’m aiming for – all within the limits of my deadlines. The hard truth is that there are times when I would like to do the real media elements and instead I have to pull out all the digital chops and get the work done in an hour or two, because digital is faster and allows for easier changes. And since I’ve been doing a great deal of work for TV in the past decade, and TV people ask for many, many, many, many changes, digital is a life and deadline saver!

Q: What are you reading nowadays?

I live in a house full of books. I have read about two thirds of them. And I read constantly. But I never get past the two thirds mark because I keep getting more books to read!

Right now I am reading a history of magazine publishing, THE MAGAZINE IN AMERICA 1741-1990. I am also reading THE ANNOTATED MARX BROTHERS: A FILMGOER’S GUIDE TO IN-JOKES, OBSCURE REFERENCES AND SLY DETAILS by Matthew Coniam, and HAROLD VON SCHMIDT by Walt Reed, I usually am reading a novel, but the long hours I’ve had to work these past few months on a new TV pilot for ABC has interrupted that. Next I’m looking forward to reading THE DRAWING OF THE DARK by Tim Powers. As for comics, I’ve been reading the John Severin edited issues of TWO FISTED TALES.  I also am reading all sorts of magazine articles from the old magazine issues I collect. I enjoy reading about the then current events. It gives an illuminating view of history to read about it while it was happening. Very instructional for seeing how modern events are portrayed in our media and how they might be remembered years from now. Also, it tends to make it very obvious how much of our society is playing out a loop of recurring events for the past 150 years or so.

Q: Favorite comic book -> movie adaptation and TV show?

I was very happy with the first Sam Rami SPIDER-MAN movie. I also thought the first IRON MAN movie was exceptional. I don’t know about TV. Although the 1960s BATMAN TV show is what started me drawing my own comic books. I got all charged up by the BATMAN craze and drew stories that featured a duck version of BATMAN. Probably the best adaptation of anything to TV that I’ve ever seen is THE EXPANSE on SyFy. But that’s from the science fiction novels by James S. A. Corey.

Q: Share some of your work: A first pencil sketch to a finished panel. Do you do all your own inking, coloring, and lettering?

mark wheatley doctor who cover creation

Progression of cover for issue #8 of the 12th Doctor Adventures, Year Two, by Mark Wheatley.

Above is the sequence for The 12th Doctor Adventures, Year Two, Issue #8, left to right, starting with my graphite sketch of Peter Capaldi. It was very simple, but I was mainly going for the likeness that would work with just half the face. Then I scanned the sketch and painted it in Photoshop. Finally, the finished cover from Titan.

FLUFFYPUSS: DOOMSDAY CAT, a new Sunday Comics series by Mark Wheatley.

Comics series by Mark Wheatley.

Q: What’s next for your career?

Right now I am working on a lavishly illustrated YA novel with steampunk master G. D. Falksen. We are two years into the work and should be announcing it in the next few months. I’m also working on the new edition of BREATHTAKER that I did with Marc Hempel. We have fully remastered it and are working on an additional new story together. There will be some major public events tied into the new edition, including a major touring show of the original art to a number of museums. And I just completed work on the SQUARE ROOTS pilot for ABC TV. We will know in May if it will go to series. I’m also continuing to paint covers for DOCTOR WHO at Titan, STARGATE ATLANTIS at American Mythology and THE THREE STOOGES at American Mythology.

Did I mention FLUFFYPUSS: DOOMSDAY CAT? It’s a Sunday Comic I’m launching from Golden Bell Studios and I do it all, from story to art.

And there are even a few more things I’m not yet allowed to announce!

Q: What’s one title you think is a good example of your art / writing here at TFAW?

My current comics work is mostly covers, that I already mentioned.  I think my story, “NIGHTMARE” that I did for the Dark Horse JUNGLE TALES OF TARZAN this past year was nice. But my favorite works are EZ STREET from ComicMix/IDW and BREATHTAKER soon to be out from Titan.

Q: Where were you born, what did you study in college, what are the names of your pets, if you have any, and where do you live now?

I hail from Virginia, where I attended Virginia Commonwealth University. The school trained me to be an art director. And I worked as an AD for three years before I got into comics. I have two beautiful, young kitty cats – Amber & Autumn and they and my lovely wife, Carol live with me here in the wilderness of rural Maryland in our house full of old books.

Q: Do you have any personal appearances coming up?

I do! I hope to see a lot of my fans this summer. I’m preparing for a busy convention season that starts at the Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo, followed by 3 Rivers Comicon, then Awesome Con and the San Diego Comic-Con International and then the Baltimore Comic-Con – oh and FCBD at Redd Skull Comics in Calgary, too!

You can keep track of me and see my latest works at and on Facebook at @WheatleyMarks.

Are you a creative professional in the comic book or graphic novel industry? We’d like to interview you! Please send an email inquiry to Dave Taylor at TFAW as the first step.

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Review: Negative Space #1

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Apr 28 2016 at 9:23am

Posted in Product Reviews

negative space #1 coverIt’s not often that a comic starts out by introducing its protagonist – on page one of Negative Space #1 – wallowing in suicidal depression. This is where we find Guy Harris, sitting a small room surrounded by the clutter of someone who has better (or worse) things on their mind than cleaning house. Most notably is the noose that sits on top of the clutter on his desk. Like all writers do at some point or another, Guy is struggling with writer’s block. Unlike most writers, the piece he is having trouble writing is his suicide note.

Meanwhile, at Kindred Tower, “everyone’s favorite multinational,” Guy’s suicide is the object of discussion. Or, rather, his lack of suicide is; his suicide is so important to Kindred that the company begins working to increase is depression and despair, pulling strings to covertly push him closer to the completion of his note and the utilization of his noose.

Before succumbing, Guy drops by Woody’s house, where he finds the beginning of an answer to why – unbeknownst to him – Kindred is so interested in his tragic end.

The hideous creature on the cover of Negative Space #1 teases at a more exciting chapter than you’ll end up reading, but the story nonetheless pulls you in immediately. Ryan Lindsay’s story and Owen Gieni’s almost emotional art make for relatable characters and the promise of great things to come. In particular, Gieni creates faces that can tell a story without a single word of prose. In particular, look to Guy’s face and feel all the sads. Gieni brings characters to life in a way few artists can.

Negative Space #1, writer: RYAN K. LINDSAY, artist: OWEN GIENI, letters: RYAN FERRIER, $3.99

Review by Rob McKinney.

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New Comic Book Day — Reviews for X-Files, Avengers, We are Robin, & Aliens

Another Wednesday, another set of great comics for New Comic Book Day! This week Avengers take their last stand before Civil War II, X-Files goes back to #1, We are Robin continues to amaze, and Dark Horse brings us back to the horror that is Aliens. Remember these are just a few of this week’s new releases many more came out this week. Check out our other blog articles to see our thoughts on other books. Be sure to comment or share our post on Facebook or Twitter if you like our articles!

SPOILER ALERT — We try to keep from posting spoilers, but one may sneak through to our reviews now and again. Read with caution, true believers.

ALIENS: Defiance comics at

Aliens: Defiance #1
By: Brian Wood, Tristan Jones, Dan Jackson, Massimo Carnevale

In this new chapter of the terrors that are the Weyland-Yutani Corporation, we find that they’re looking to gather the Xenomorphs and use them as weapons. They will be stopped. They must be stopped.

Brian Wood’s story is an interesting departure from what we’ve seen before — instead of surviving, they’re going hunting. The way this issue was built seems like it would also work as a TV or movie script. With a strong foreshadow, then going back in time for an introduction to the characters and places.

Tristan Jones and Dan Jackson do a great team up with the art and colors. I love the emotion that Tristan brings to the characters faces. You can really see disgust and fear exceptionally well in this issue. Dan’s colors give it that dark atmosphere. You can hear the gun blasts, hissing, and screaming from the Xenomorphs in your head, a true testament to the immersion you’ll get with this issue.

Overall, if you haven’t kept up on Aliens, Predator, or Prometheus stuff, Aliens: Defiance #1 is a great to start. If you want to read more, may I suggest Fire & Stone? [Martin M. at]

Avengers Standoff Assault on Pleasant Hill Omega Comics at

Avengers Standoff Assault on Pleasant Hill Omega #1
By: Nick Spencer, Daniel Acuña, Angel Uzueta

This is my favorite Standoff series yet and I will tell you why — all of the events in this issue are cinematic.

Daniel Acuña and Angel Uzueta really nail the head on the coffin with the amazing artwork making it feel like a movie. If you are not keeping up with the Standoff series, this issue masterfully summarizes everything that has been going on.

S.H.I.E.L.D. got ahold of a cosmic cube and made a prison that seemed like reality for most of Marvel’s cruelest villains. However, a special well-known villain figures out the fake reality and uses it to their advantage!

This issue tackles a lot of questions we have about Steve Rogers returning as Captain America next month. It also tells us how all the Avengers from different universes work together as one.

Grab a copy of Avengers Standoff Assault on Pleasant Hill Omega #1 today! [Darcy M. at Universal TFAW]

We Are Robin comics at

We are Robin #11
By: Lee Bermejo, Jorge Corona

We Are Robin #11 is a turning point for The Robins — or what’s left of them. With a homicidal Joker gang on the loose in Middletown High, it’s up to a few to save the many.

Jorge Corona has this cool style that reminds me of Skottie Young’s early work on Deadpool — it works really well for this series. Corona also has a knack of making the environment interesting to explore. Don’t worry, you never feel it’s too cartoony or childish.

Lee Bermejo, who has been on the book since the beginning, seems to have an overall arc that he’s working toward, which is always a plus when reading an ongoing series. Although I’ve only read a few issues of this the series to date, this issue made me go back and read it from the first volume. [Josh C. at]

X-Files comics at

X-Files #1
By: Joe Harris, Matthew Dow Smith, Menton3

Do you still believe? After this issue, I believe something is going on. With a mass shooting at a mall, our good agents are called in for an unknown reason. Why would a shooting spree fall into the line of “X-Files”?

Something is sticking out like a sore thumb and by the end of the issue, Mulder knows it. It wasn’t just an accident that they were sent on this case. There is something more sinister in the background; much like there always seems to be with the X-Files.

If the mini-series that recently hit the airwaves didn’t fulfill your weekly dose of Mulder & Scully, give IDW’s X-Files a read. Something to note is that there is a handy reader’s guide for both the newer stories and the classic comics in the back of this issue. Perfect for any fan looking to explore the comic book continuity. [Martin M. at]

What did you think of these books? What should we review next week? Let us know below!

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Review: Deadpool and the Mercs for Money #2

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Apr 27 2016 at 9:12am

Posted in Product Reviews

deadpool and mercs for money #2 lim variant coverDeadpool and the Mercs for Money #002 follows the story of Deadpool, and his team of mercenaries, attempting to sell a future predicting robot to the highest bidder. As might be expected when dealing with criminals, demons, and megalomaniacs, these negotiations don’t always go smoothly.

Deadpool is, well, Deadpool. Constantly talking to himself, insulting everyone around him, and breaking the fourth wall. The comic also serves to introduce the other members of Deadpool’s team: Stingray, Slapstick Solo, Foolkiller, Massacre and Terror. All the other members apart from Stingray are out trying to negotiate deals for the robot.

The Mercs for Money serve as nice contrast from the Avengers and X-Men, all trying to save the world. The Mercs only care about one thing; money. They couldn’t care less if the world gets taken over, ravaged by war, or even destroyed, so long as they get paid. So, they turn to the highest bidders to sell the robot, all of whom happen to be people that want to do one more of the aforementioned things.

From petty criminals to world domination obsessed executives and megalomaniacal demons, Deadpool ends up with a lot of potential buyers. However, instead of taking the logical route, Deadpool comes up with an idea that’s just about as crazy as he is.

As a first impression, the art style was nice, not too overwhelming. The storyline was well organized and each piece tied back into the larger plot. This comic serves as nice Deadpool refresher, even after the movie. Reading it let me appreciate how accurately the movie portrayed the character, and made me like an already great character even more.

Note that Deadpool and the Mercs for Money #2 has two variant covers. The regular edition can be found here: Deadpool and the Mercs for Money #2, while variant 1 can be found here: Action Figure Variant Cover and variant 2 (shown above) can be found here: Lim Variant Cover.

Deadpool and & the Merc$ for Money #002. Writer: Cullen Bunn. Artists: Salva Espin, Declan Shalvey and Jordie Bellaire. Published March 16, 2016 with two additional variant covers. $3.99 US.

Review by Ben Getchell.

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