Tag: Dave Stewart

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    Joe Golem is Back With More Pulpy, Supernatural Fun in Joe Golem The Outer Dark #1

    In 2012, Mike Mignola (Hellboy, Lobster Johnson, Baltimore) teamed with Christopher Golden (The Myth, The Boys Are Back in Town) to co-create and co-author the novel Joe Golem and The Drowning City. The tale takes place in an alternate timeline Manhattan, which is currently under thirty feet of water.

    Simon Church is a Victorian-era detective who is kept alive for more than a century via a complex combination of bio-mechanical magic, clockwork gears, spit, and shoelaces. His assistant, Joe Golem, has bizarre dreams that speak to him of a former life. He has visions of being mud and stone and hunting witches. Unfortunately, he can’t quite piece together his own origin.

    Four years after the release of the illustrated novel, Mignola and Guest revisited The Drowning City with a five part prequel comic book miniseries, The Rat Catcher and The Sunken Dead.

    Joe Golem The Outer Dark

    Mignola’s latest book The Outer Dark takes place two years after Rat Catcher. Three Germans on a water taxi attack passengers and police. One of the Germans, Bodo Wegener, escapes after killing two people with his bare hands while screaming in German about the otherworldly voices in his head. The local detectives usually end up on Mr. Church’s stoop when things get a little too weird, and this case is definitely “Simon Church weird.”

    Joe Golem — The Outer Dark Sports an All-Star Creative Team

    Patric Reynolds (Aliens: Fire and Stone, Hellboy and the BPRD: 1954) did the art for Rat Catcher and is also the artist for this new series. Reynolds brings an aesthetic to the project that looks like it’s straight from a pulp mystery novel. The Drowning City doesn’t exactly look like a place I’d want to raise children but I’d definitely want to explore it in daylight.

    Mignola and Golden give us a script that will appeal to fans of horror, pulp, noir, steampunk, monsters and magic. There is enough backstory that a new reader can easily pick up the series. However, if you haven’t already read The Rat Catcher and The Sunken Dead, I’d recommend picking up the hard copy. Readers of series like The Goon and The Damned will feel right at home with Joe Golem.

    Joe Golem: Occult Detective — The Outer Dark #1, Dark Horse Comics, May 31, 2017, Written by Mike Mignola and Christopher Golden, Art by Patric Reynolds, Color by Dave Stewart, Cover by Dave Palumbo, $3.99

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    NCBD Drops The Hammer With Black Hammer #9

    This week’s New Comic Book Day Reviews brings us a quartet of books that we feel comic reader should check out. From Dark Horse we’ve got Black Hammer #9, Valiant brings us their next big story arc with Rapture #1, we take a trip with Peter Quill in Marvel’s Star-Lord Annual #1 and DC brings us home with Detective Comics #957.

    As a reminder these are only a few of the awesome comics that came out this week. 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.

    Black Hammer #9
    By: Jeff Lemire, David Rubin, Dave Stewart

    Black Hammer has to be one of the most exciting “Golden Age” superhero tales in a long time. As it slowly unraveling why everyone is stuck at Black Hammer Farms. Black Hammer #9 delves into how Talky-Walky and Colonel Weird met.

    Distress signals in space never seem to be a good thing, unless it’s meeting your best friend. It’s hard to say that this issue of Black Hammer was a fun read. However, that’s mainly due to what’s been happening throughout the series. It was great to see how Talky-Walky and Colonel Weird met.

    Jeff Lemire knows how to craft a solid story and this entry clearly shows his fondness to the golden age of comic adventures.[Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    Pick up volume 1 of this Love letter to the Golden Age of Superheroes

    Star-Lord Annual #1
    By: Chip Zdarsky, Djibril Morissette-Phan, Kris Anka

    That was a fun ride. I always enjoy annuals for the small break it typically gives us from the norm. Chip Zdarsky’s Star-Lord Annual #1 is no exception.

    In classic Western fashion, our hero finds himself in a small town run by bullies. And we all know Star-Lord isn’t a huge fan of bullies. So what does he do? Joins the Sheriff to take him and his gang down. There’s more to it than that, but I don’t want to spoil it. Star-Lord Annual #1 is a fun ride. While I wouldn’t mind more Space-Westerns with Marvel Characters. The story here ends well and fits into where we are in the comics right now. No, this isn’t any weird Secret Empire tie-in or anything like that. I will say that it does, tie into events that have transpired and this issue did leave me with a sad, but hopeful feeling. Much like great westerns do. [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    Find out what all the Guardians are up to!

    Rapture #1
    By: Matt Kindt, CAFU

    If you’re like me and haven’t read a lot of the new Valiant books, a crossover story like Rapture #1 seems a bit daunting. While I enjoy X-O Manowar, I’m not that familiar with the other fascinating characters in Valiant’s stable. However, Rapture #1 by Matt Kindt is an excellent jumping on point for new readers while still offering something that longtime Valiant readers can sink their teeth into.

    Rapture #1 focuses on four characters: Tama, Ninjak, Punk Mambo and Shadowman. Kindt gives each character a unique voice and the reason these characters come together is compelling. It’s definitely made want to check out some more stories featuring Shadowman and Punk Mambo.

    Artist CAFU knocks it out of the park, making each location feel unique. You’ll feel the stench of death oozing out of the Deadside.

    Rapture #1 is another excellent Valiant comic. This company continues to churn out hit after hit. If you’ve yet to get onboard with Valiant, Rapture #1 is your chance to do so. [Josh P. at TFAW.com]

    Check out all of our Valiant comics!

    Detective Comics #957
    By: Genevieve Valentine, James Tynion IV, Carmen Nunez Carnero, Alvaro Martinez

    Detective Comics #957 is something you don’t often see in today’s comic books: a standalone story. James Tynion IV presents us with a brief interlude between arcs with “The Wrath of Spoiler,” a story that follows Spoiler (obviously).

    The story that Tynion IV tells here is one that is often talked about among creators: Does just the mere presence of Batman bring about crime? Would these villains exist if they didn’t have Batman to challenge them? Spoiler seeks to answer that question as she fights against an updated Wrath and Scorn, a team of villains who are looking to make a name for themselves.

    The art by Carmen Carnero is refreshingly old-school in all the best ways and is some of the best art I think we’ve seen in Detective Comics yet.

    The payoff for this story won’t happen for a few months, but the surprise reveal of a forgotten Batman villain in the last few panels will have the community talking. Don’t miss this issue! [Josh P. at TFAW.com]

    Catch up with Detective Comics and Rebirth with our graphic novels!

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

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    Shaolin Cowboy’s Surf and Turf Battle

    Leave it to Geoff Darrow to begin a new issue (and a new series) with a trio of talking vultures. The triad is circling the remains of a huge battle to find their next meal. And they provide the most intelligent dialogue in the book.

    Shaolin Cowboy’s latest battle, which nearly left him for dead, provides the backdrop for the vultures’ discussion of physiognomy, smorgasbords and cholesterol. Seeing a dead Asian combatant, one of the vultures declares, “It looks pretty fresh, and it’s been awhile since I’ve had any sashimi.”

    Old Nemeses Hell Bent on Revenge

    Shaolin Cowboy: Who'll Stop The Reign? #1 (variant cover)
    Shaolin Cowboy: Who’ll Stop The Reign? #1 (variant cover)

    In The Shaolin Cowboy: Who’ll Stop the Reign #1, Cowboy doesn’t have much to say. That leaves the vultures and less-intelligent humans to fill in the story. That plot revolves around a number of enemies trying to take advantage of Cowboy’s weakened state. Those include the vultures, a warden from hell, and a beer-guzzling crab-human hybrid. It’s quintessential Darrow. And that’s a beautiful thing.

    But it’s detailed artwork that Darrow fans demand. And this issue doesn’t disappoint. While the book doesn’t have the decapitation by chainsaw on a rope that we’ve come to expect from the Cowboy, there’s still plenty to feast your eyes on.

    There are impossible moves where the Cowboy propels himself into the back of a moving car. Bleak mountain landscapes complete with anti-Trump graffiti. And the generous use of two-page spreads with knife-legged dogs as a treat for the careful observer. Darrow creates a visual treat that will leave you coming back for the rest of this four-part series.

    RE-ORDER SHAOLIN COWBOY: WHO’LL STOP THE RAIN #2 AND FIND OUT WHO’S IN HOT PURSUIT OF THE COWBOY

    The Shaolin Cowboy: Who’ll Stop the Reign? #1, Dark Horse Comics, Released April 19, 2017, Written and Art by Geoff Darrow, Colors by Dave Stewart, Lettering by Nate Piekos, $3.99.

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    X-O is Back!

    For our NCBD Reviews this week, we look at two Jeff Lemire books, and Valiant break out a must read #1 with X-O Manowar. Remember to check out all of this week’s new releases and take a look at 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.

    X-O Manowar comics at TFAW.com

    X-O Manowar #1
    By: Matt Kindt, Tomas Giorello, Lewis LaRosa

    One thing I hear daily around the office is that “You need to start reading Valiant, they are doing some amazing things.” I figure there is no better time to jump into the world of Valiant than with X-O Manowar #1, a book that kicks off a brand new story focused on Valiant’s top hero.

    I was immediately blown away the minute I opened the book thanks to the art by Tomas Giorello. Luckily, the art is matched by a gripping story by the renowned Matt Kindt. Even though the last X-O Manowar story I read was in the ‘90s, Kindt makes it easy to follow the story even if you don’t know anything about X-O Manowar.

    Aric, wanting to escape the warfare and carnage on Earth, has fled to another planet to live a peaceful life. However, he ends up conscripted by the local military force and is forced to fight once again. It’s a gritty, engaging tale that is a far cry from what I read in 1992 and it is fantastic.

    Like all good comics, X-O Manowar #1 ends on a perfect cliffhanger with a moment that will make you pine for issue #2 the minute you see the panel. I know I’ll definitely put X-O Manowar on my pull list after this fantastic issue and start paying closer attention to Valiant in the future. [Josh P. at TFAW.com]

    YOU’LL DEFINITELY WANT TO CHECK THIS BOOK OUT TOO — ORDER X-O MANOWAR #1 TODAY!

    Black Hammer #7
    By: Jeff Lemire, Dean Ormston, Dave Stewart

    Did you read superhero comic when you were young? Remember all those Jack Kirby Cosmos adventures? Black Hammer will fit right in! This is one hell of a comic series. With crazy superheroes like Whiptara, and Colonel Weird, fighting the Anti-God. This is great throwback to a superhero era long gone. What really great about this series though is, it’s really more about characters and their lives then about defeating the bad guy by the end of the issue.

    Jeff Lamire proves time and time again how amazing he is at character driven narratives. Along side him in Black Hammer is Dean Ormston doing a fantastic job at spinning the Jack Kirby style. Who can forget Dave Stewart’s colors? I know I’m saying this a lot but, the books screams Jack Kirby and I love it! [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    CATCH UP ON BLACK HAMMER AND PRE-ORDER VOLUME 1

    Extraordinary X-Men #20
    By: Jeff Lemire, Eric Koda, David Yardin

    Extraordinary X-Men #20 is the end of an era and the start of a Resurrxion. With the Terrigen Mists now completely eradicated across the globe, the X-Men are free to leave Limbo and rejoin the rest of the world.

    As you’d expect after the frantic action of Inhumans Vs. X-Men, Extraordinary X-Men #20 slows things down considerably. While there is some action, the X-Men themselves are never in any true danger and the action itself is just a means to tie up a loose end. Which is a lot of what this issue does: The comic ties up loose ends and provides a fitting conclusion to the team. It’s been rare in the last few years that we get to see the X-Men relax and enjoy themselves, and the last few pages of this comic put a smile on my face as they did just that.

    The future for the X-Men is looking up – as Storm herself puts it, “it feels like the end of a chapter… a particularly dark chapter at that.” While Jeff Lemire did a fantastic job on Extraordinary X-Men and is is an excellent sendoff, it’s the future of mutant-kind that has me excited. While this book isn’t necessary reading for those planning on diving into the X-Books with Resurrxion, it serves as a great lead-in to X-Men Prime #1. [Josh P. at TFAW.com]

    FINISH THE EXTRAORDINARY X-MEN SERIES TODAY WITH THIS EXCELLENT ISSUE.

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

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    Crime, Action, Berzerk – This NCBD is intense!

    This week, like every week we’re talking a look a few releases from this week. 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.

    Action Comics #975
    By: Dan Jurgens, Doug Mahnke, Patrick Gleason

    Since Rebirth first launched, the mystery that captured my attention was Mr. Oz telling Superman “You and your family are not what you believe you are.” Adding on to that mystery was the sudden appearance of Clark Kent, Superman’s previous alter ego. For months, DC has promised that their Superman: Reborn event will start unraveling the mysteries surrounding the Man of Steel, and Action Comics #975 does just that.

    While Superman #18 was light in both action and plot, Action Comics #975 wastes no time blowing your mind. After many beautiful splash pages by Stephen Segovia, we learn that the identity of Clark Kent is actually [REDACTED]. I never saw this coming; however, thanks to the backup story written by Paul Dini, it makes perfect sense. In addition to having a huge repercussion on Superman’s life, the reveal promises to progress the overall plot of Rebirth in a significant way.

    If you’re keeping up with DC’s Rebirth event, this book is a must-read along with Superman #18. The reveal of Clark Kent’s identity is something that is going to have comic fans talking for years. If this is only the second issue of this event, I can’t wait to see where Superman: Reborn goes from here. [Josh P. at TFAW.com]

    PICK UP ALL OF SUPERMAN: REBORN

    All-New Wolverine #18
    By: Tom Taylor, Nik Virella, Michael Garland, Djibril Morissette-Phan, David Lopez

    Wow, what an end. Not to say that All-New Wolverine is over. That’s hardly the case. It’s the end of, well, you’ll have to read it to find out. All I can say is this was an exciting issue to read on March 8th!

    It’s been a fantastic ride following Laura Kinney on her way to becoming Wolverine. Tom Taylor has written a great storyline along with the fantastic art from Nik Virella and Michael Garland.

    If you haven’t been reading All-New Wolverine, you really should. This series gives us an amazing strong character with a complex and interesting background. It’s been a heck of a ride for her. I for one, will be staying on this roller coaster. [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    GET TO KNOW THE ALL-NEW WOLVERINE

    Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: 1954 – Ghost Moon #1
    By: Mike Mignola, Chris Roberson, Brian Churilla, Dave Stewart, Mike Huddleston

    Hellboy and the B.P.R.D. 1954 sees Hellboy and company in unfamiliar territory: Hong Kong, China. In a brand new story from Mike Mignola and Chris Roberson, Hellboy and the B.P.R.D. are investigating a paranormal disturbance that takes them deep into the heart of Kowloon. While the story is exposition heavy in the first half, the action comes fast and frantic in the latter half of this comic. As Hellboy finds himself fighting against mythological Chinese creatures, the remainder of his team unearths a far greater threat.

    Handling the art duties is Brian Churilla, a newcomer to Hellboy and the B.P.R.D. comic. Churilla knocks it out of the park with some fantastic artwork on every page – the last page is especially stunning. Not only is this issue a must-own for Hellboy fans, but it’s also an excellent jumping on point for someone new to the franchise. Make sure to grab this one! [Josh P. at TFAW.com]
    PICK UP AND CATCH UP ON THE MIGNOLA-VERSE

    Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys #1
    By: Anthony Del Col, Werther Dell’Edera, Fay Dalton

    I love pulp. No, not the stuff that’s in orange juice, well maybe that too. I mean pulp fiction. As a genre, it’s one of those things that you can get really right, or really cheesy. Both Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys separately are great resources for Pulpy goodness and Anthony Del Col delivered.

    It’s a simple setup. Cops think Joe and Frank Hardy killed their father. Nancy Drew, however, thinks differently. The three team up to prove it. It’s the twists and turns that keep this story going. If you loved movies like Chinatown or tv shows like Veronica Mars (also where is THAT comic?), or if you read the Hardy Boys or Nancy Drew novels as a kid this will be right up your ally. [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    FIND ALL OUR CRIME COMICS AND GRAPHIC NOVELS

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

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    NCBD Gets Loose (Ends) With the Southern Bastards Team

    NCBD Jan 25th 2017

    It’s New Comic Book Day and we’re bringing you some great books from DC, Image, Marvel and Dark Horse! Remember these are just a few of the amazing books that came out This Week. 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.

    Loose Ends #1
    By: Jason Latour, Chris Brunner, Rico Renzi

    Similar to Jason Latour and Chris Brunner other series Southern Bastards, this southern based crime mini-series kicks off with intriguing characters. Although not out the gate the what’s going on, by then end of the issue it’s clear what’s happening. I enjoyed the pace of this issue. Set in a practically empty bar on a North Carolina night. Our cast is small, but you get this feeling that you’ve seen these people before and are watching it unfold.

    Only a 4 part series Jason writes in the back of the book that this story has taken him almost a decade to write. Chris Brunner shows us similar line work to Southern Bastards, but Rico Renzi’s colors pop out more in this series. As a lover of crime comics, I’m looking forward to seeing where this Southern Crime Romance goes. [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    FIND OUT WHERE THE LOOSE ENDS GO

    Batgirl #7
    By: Hope Larson, Chris Wildgoose, Mat Lopes

    Son of Penguin Part 1 finds Barbara returning to Burnside after her trip through Asia. What she finds though is that her in the wake of her starting up Gordon Clean Energy, the neighborhood has quickly gentrified. Rent has doubled, local shops have been pushed out, and the view of the homeless situation is potentially deadly. At the center of it all, the son of Penguin, Ethan Cobblepot…who’s kinda hot.

    Hope Larson captures the new tone of the Batgirl books perfectly. She makes it feel familiar but also shows she’s not afraid to take us somewhere new. Chris Wildgoose handles the pencils and inks, and his pacing and style mix perfectly with Larson’s. Together they create an intriguing story that is not only fun but makes good social commentary on a lot of modern issues. [Mikey N. at TFAW.com]

    ONCE AGAIN, DC PROVIDES ANOTHER ISSUE THAT’S A PERFECT JUMPING ON POINT FOR NEW READERS.

    Star Wars #27
    By: Jason Aaron, Salvador Larroca, Edgar Delgado, Stuart Immonen

    As teased in the previous issue, this issue is a story that Luke is reading from Obi-Wan’s journal, and not just that, but a story that Yoda told Obi-Wan that he’s now relaying. Yoda is responding to a distress call, only to discover a tribe of children with a very unique stone that is strong in the Force. Yoda, being the great Jedi teacher, is determined to help these kids solve the mystery of the mountain, and ultimately bring balance to the Force on the planet.

    Jason Aaron continues to weave a great Star Wars run. It’s clear that he not only wants to push the lore but also have fun with it at the same time. A strategy that has always been what makes Star Wars great. Salvador Larroca continues to show why he’s one of the consistently best and cleanest artists in the business, with visuals of Yoda that are so striking they almost feel like you’re watching a movie. [Mikey N. at TFAW.com]

    BE ONE WITH THE FORCE AND PICK UP THIS SERIES

    Hellboy comics at TFAW.com

    Hellboy Winter Special 2017
    By: Mike Mignola, Chris Roberson, Scott Allie, Paul Grist, Christopher Mitten, Sebastian Fiumara, Dave Stewart, Bill Crabtree

    Packed with 3 stores from 1891, 1961 and 1979. We see different adventures of the B.P.R.D.’s earliest cases. All in connection to winter. Our first tale “The Great Blizzard” shows us how Eddie and Jewell from Rise of the Black Flame acquired a bracelet that delivers a terrible blizzard when worn. In winter 1961, our heroes are shopping for the holidays and are interrupted by a crazed Santa. Then finally in 1979 Hellboy, Liz and Abe are searching for some missing children. Finding them proves they also found something else as well.

    Hellboy Winter Special 2017 is a good read for those who are avid Hellboy readers. I’m sure there are a ton of nods to other stories that I didn’t catch, but that’s the fun of reading these issues. [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    FIND ALL THE LATEST HELLBOY COMICS

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

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    The Long Claw of the Lobster

    Lobster Johnson was first introduced in Hellboy in 1999. He has been a cornerstone of writer’s Mike Mingola’s supernatural world ever since. The Lobster, wearing his signature jacket and goggled helmet, continues to strikes fear into the hearts of both the mundane and paranormal.

    In the standalone adventure Lobster Johnson: Garden of Bones, he stalks the streets of 30s era New York. The Lobster attempts to unravel the mystery surrounding a mob enforcer, And mobster Benny Jeunot may not be quite as dead as the authorities might wish.

    We find The Lobster in a graveyard accompanied by one of his trusted allies, Harry McTell. Harry informs the titular hero about the enforcer in question and how he most certainly can’t be a zombie. Despite Harry’s litany of reasons, The Lobster remains stoically certain about the paranormal goings on.

    An Imperfect Hero on a Mission

    Our hero sends Harry away to search the caretaker’s quarters. Then, The Lobster’s suspicions are given terrifying form. He is assaulted by an enormous attacker that bears a striking resemblance to the late Benny Jeunot. Thankfully, Harry returns in time with a double-barreled surprise for the apparent zombie.

    The duo follow the trail of their attacker and end up at table with three practitioners of a dark art called Fimbakonu. The result is a brutal struggle involving a pack of risen dead and Benny Jeunot. Harry’s quick thinking handily dispatches the revenants. That leaves three necromancers at the mercy of Lobster Johnson himself.

    Garden of Bones is an excellent entry into the Lobster Johnson saga, providing paranormal action layered with the crime-noir that befits the time period.

    GET MORE LOBSTER JONES

    Lobster Johnson: Garden of Bones, Dark Horse Comics, Release date January 11, 2017, Written by Mike Mignola and John Arcudi, Art by Stephen Green, Colors by Dave Stewart, Cover by Tonci Zonjic, $3.99

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    You Choose The Best Comic Book of 2016

    Best comics of 2016

    A lot of amazing books have come out in 2016. With Marvel revitalizing their line, DC’s Rebirth, to so many independent and creator-owned books dominating the stands, 2016 has certainly been a comic book year to remember.

    With that in mind, the staff at TFAW took a look at sales numbers, fan buzz, and our personal favorites of the year to create a list of the 25 best comics of the year. Now we want you, our awesome customers, to vote on this list to decide definitively what the best books of 2016 are.

    Voting will take place from Jan 1st through Jan 31st, so head on over to our  Facebook page  and cast your vote. Let your voices be heard and recognize all these amazing creators and publishers for all their hard work.

    Superman Vol. 01 Son of Superman
    By: Peter J. Tomasi, Doug Mahnke, Patrick Gleason
    The New 52 Superman is dead, but hiding among us for years was the original Big Blue. Now, a world without a Superman is in desperate need for Clark to leave the good life on the farm with Lois raising their son. This story simultaneously brings Superman back to formula, but also takes him in a direction he’s never really been before.

    Bitch Planet Vol. 2: President Bitch
    By: Kelly Sue DeConnick, Valentine De Landro, Taki Soma
    Powerful and gut-wrenching, Bitch Planet continues to explore themes of patriarchy and non-compliance. A must read for SJWs, feminists, and people who truly appreciate comics as an artistic medium.

    Wonder Woman TPB Vol. 01 The Lies
    By: Greg Rucka, Liam Sharp, Matthew Clark
    Wonder Woman has been interpreted in many ways over her 75 year existence. Instead of trying to hide this, Greg Rucka’s approach is to embrace this to try and get to the real heart of who Wonder Woman is. Not just a great jumping on point for new readers, but a definitive take on the character that will hold true for years to come.

    Black Hammer Vol 1: Secret Origins
    By: Jeff Lemire, Dean Ormston, Dave Stewart
    Black Hammer is another in a long line of grand ideas by one of comics brightest stars, Jeff Lemire. This book has a unique take on superheroes and the art by Dean Ormston & Dave Stewart instantly ensnares the reader.

    Rough Riders Vol. 1
    By: Adam Glass, Pat Oliffe
    History in the making! Teddy Roosevelt, Jack Johnson, Annie Oakley, Harry Houdini and Thomas Edison make up an American dream team engaged in an epic shadowy war! Monsters and Mayhem folks!

    The Mighty Thor Vol 1: Thunder in Her Veins
    By: Jason Aaron, Russell Dauterman
    Marvel is changing things up by casting Dr. Jane Foster as the new Thor. The goddess of thunder shines in this series as she comes to grips with heroism and her own mortality. Jason Aaron and Russell Dauterman are the perfect pairing. Also: Loki.

    Divinity II
    By: Matt Kindt, Trevor Hairsine, Jelena Kevic Djurdjevic
    After Abram came crashing home in Divinity vol 1. Spending his entire life in the depths of space, Divinity II tells the tale of Myshka. Still beliving in the Communist ideal. She intends to play a very real role in the return of Soviet glory

    Old Man Logan Vol 1: Berserker
    By: Jeff Lemire, Andrea Sorrentino
    What happens when an older, more gruff version of Wolverine comes to the main Marvel Universe? A whole lot of fighting. He’s on a mission to to prevent a terrible future from happening. Andrea Sorrentino’s art is breathtaking.

    Detective Comics Vol. 01 Rise of the Batmen
    By: James Tynion IV, Eddy Barrows, Eber Ferreira, Alvaro Martinez, Raul Fernandez, Al Barrionuevo
    Batman is notorious for being a lone wolf (bat?), but he’s always had his family behind him. Now it’s time to take the Bat-Family to the next level. Lead by Batwoman, Batman puts together a team of Red Robin, Orphan (Cassandra Cain), Spoiler, and Clayface to be ready for whatever threat comes Gotham’s way.

    Vision Vol 1: Little Worse Than Man
    By: Tom King, Kevin Walsh, Mike Del Mundo
    Vision has the perfect family: a wife, two kids, and a dog. Look elsewhere for over-the-top nonstop heroics; this book proves it’s the little moments that matter. Truly impeccable dialogue and top-notch art await!

    March Book 3
    By: John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, Nate Powell
    The third and final installment in civil rights activist John Lewis’ story in the battle for civil rights in the United States. 1963 was an incredibly turbulent time in America’s history, and John Lewis was not only in the middle of it, but a leader in getting us out of it, long before becoming a congressman. March will remind you there are real heroes in this world.

    Star Wars: Poe Dameron Vol 1: Black Squadron
    By: Charles Soule, Phil Noto
    With crisp and clean art by Phil Noto, Poe Dameron is one of the most beautiful of Marvel’s new Star Wars comics. Charle Soule explores Dameron’s uncanny skills and matching bravado.

    Paper Girls Vol. 2
    By: Brian K. Vaughan, Cliff Chiang
    Continuing where Vol. 1 left off, the misfit group of paper girls from 1988 find themselves transported to present day. Our main characters are forced to look at who they are, and who they may…or may not become. This superstar team continues to tell one of the craziest sci-fi stories currently on the shelves, while staying focused on the heart of any good story, the characters.

    All New Wolverine Vol. 01 Four Sisters
    By: Tom Taylor, David Lopez, Bengal
    With the death of Logan, clone daughter Laura Kinney (X-23) steps up to be Wolverine and the best she is at what she does. This book is bloody, emotional, hilarious, and beautiful. This is one of those unique books that can present adult subjects in a way that people of all ages can understand. Clone or not, All-New Wolverine definitely has soul.

    Dept. H Vol. 1: Pressure
    By: Matt Kindt, Sharlene Kindt
    Not your average murder mystery! An in depth(see what I did there) story taking place on a deep sea research station. Family, lies, secrets and creatures make for a spectacular, well-paced adventure.

    Steven Universe & Crystal Gems Vol. 01
    By: Josceline Fenton, Chrystin Garland, Kat Leyh
    They are the Crystal Gems. They always save the day! If you think they can’t. Here is proof that they always find a way!

    Monstress Vol. 1
    By: Marjorie Liu, Sana Takeda
    A fascinating look at an alternate 1900’s Asia where monsters of god-like power are normal. Witness the journey of one teenage girl struggling to survive while trying to tame her own MONSTER.

    Black Panther Vol. 01 Nation Under Our Feet
    By: Ta-Nehisi Coates, Brian Stelfreeze
    Wakanda under the microscope. On the brink of civil war, treason and terrorist attacks ensue in T’Challa’s homeland. Witness Black Panther fight to save his country from all fronts.

    Mighty Morphin Power Rangers Vol. 01
    By: Kyle Higgins, Jorge Corona, Goni Montes
    “It’s Morphin Time!” This fantastic new series starts after the Green with Evil Saga. Takes us through a different path from the show, one that keeps it at the top of my reading every month. Perfect for fans new and old.

    Saga Vol. 6
    By: Brian K. Vaughan, Fiona Staples
    Set three years after the end of Vol. 5, our story opens with Hazel in kindergarten. For a story that’s followed a family on the run through space since issue 1, Vol 6 shows them living a domestic and stationary life for the first time…and it doesn’t go too well for them. Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples continue to be a dominating power tag team.

    Sheriff Of Babylon Vol. 01 Bang Bang Bang
    By: Tom King, Mitch Gerads, John Paul Leon
    Currently known for his fantastic work on Batman, Tom King and Mitch Gerad’s The Sherriff of Babylon, is a suspenseful crime noir tale set in Bagdad circa 2003. King’s CIA experience in addition to Gerad’s life-like art style gives this series the accolades it deserves.

    Beauty Vol. 01
    By: Jason Hurley, Jeremy Haun
    The first STD that people actually WANT! In this world, The “Beauty”, transforms your body into its most beautiful version. People are literally dying to get it but the public is unaware of the side effects. Detectives Vaughn and Foster are on the case.

    Faith Vol. 01 Hollywood & Vine
    By: Jody Houser, Francis Portela, Jele Kevic-Djurdjevic
    Starting off as a side character in Harbinger back in 2014, we were given a full ongoing series of Faith Herbert this year. Written by the wonderful Jody Houser. This is a series meant for Fan-boys/girls, as Faith herself is as much of a geek as we are.

    Gotham Academy Vol. 03 Yearbook
    By: Brenden Fletcher, Moritat, Mingjue Helen Chen
    Our favorite students go back after their adventures last year, telling tales before everything went to chaos. Gotham Academy is an all-ages series perfectly suited for those wanting to move to Gotham, but are not old enough to drive there.

    Legend of Zelda Legendary Ed GN Vol. 01 Ocarina Time
    By: Akira Himekawa
    Viz does it again. While this is a reprint, if you’ve never read the Manga adaptation of the celebrated N64 game Ocarina of Time, this is a perfect time. Collecting vol 1 and 2, You get the complete tale.

    DON’T FORGET TO VOTE BY THE 31ST

    Honorable Mentions

    2016 had so many amazing titles that it was nearly impossible for us to narrow it down to 25. With that in mind, here are some honorable mentions of books that you should definitely check out. Odds are they made your own personal top 25.

    Batman Vol. 1 I Am Gotham
    By: Tom King, David Finch
    Gotham City has two new heroes, Gotham and Gotham Girl. With these super powered saviors doing what Batman can’t, is he really what Gotham City needs anymore?

    The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl Vol. 04 Kissed Squirrel Liked It
    By: Ryan North, Erica Henderson
    I an age of dark and gritty superheroes, The Unbeatable Squirrel decides to have fun with the universe it lives in instead. Be prepared to smile.

    Dark Knight: A True Batman Story
    By: Paul Dini, Eduardo Risso
    Legendary Batman writer, Paul Dini, was beaten within an inch of his life. This autobiographical tale shows just how these iconic characters like Batman can get us through the darkest of times.

    Serenity: No Power in the ‘Verse
    By: Chris Roberson, Georges Jeanty, Karl Story, Wes Dzioba, Dan Dos Santos
    Set after the events of the previous series, Leaves on the Wind, No Power in the ‘Verse continues the tale of our favorite Browncoats

    I Am a Hero Omnibus Volume 1
    By: Kengo Hazawa
    A slightly crazy artist, and one of the few people in Japan that actually owns a gun, is neck deep in the zombie apocalypse.

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    Buffy stabs her way into Season 11

    New Comic Book Day is here! Buffy the Vampire Slayer kick soff s highly anticipated new season. Along with the super fun adventures of Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur, and Hellboy gets a new mission. Every week we review a select few NCBD books. 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.

    Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #13
    By: Brandon Montclare, Amy Reeder, Natacha Bustos, Tamra Bonvillain, Leonard Kirk

    She’s the smartest girl in the room…well, the world actually. Lunella Lafayette AKA Moon Girl is a nine-year-old prodigy who pals around with a bright red time-displaced Tyranosaurus Rex named Devil Dinosaur.

    Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur #13 kicks off a new story arc “The Smartest There Is,” and serves as a great entry point for new readers. The thing I like most about this series is that it’s just plain fun. Brandon Montclare and Amy Reeder are adept at writing for kids and adults, keeping the language easy, but expertly incorporating nods to Marvel’s history.

    This issue also has a fun dream (or is it a glimpse of the future?) sequence illustrated by Leonard Kirk. This sequence alone makes this issue worth the price of admission. I’m also a fan of the surprise character who pops up on the final couple pages of this issue…

    If you’re looking for a fun and colorful (literally, Tara Bonvillain’s colors are lovely) series to break up the standard capes and cowl books on your reading list, this Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur is highly recommended. [Josh C. at TFAW.com]

    JOIN THE NEW STORY ARC TODAY

    Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 11 #1
    By: Christos Gage, Rebekah Isaacs, Dan Jackson, Steve Morris

    For those new to the series, yes, Buffy The Vampire Slayer has lived on in the form of a comic series for 3 seasons after it’s television ending. Now with Season 11 being the perfect jumping on point for new readers. After the end of their last crisis, Buffy, and vampire boyfriend Spike, are now supernatural crime consultants for the San Francisco police department.

    The bulk of the issue is reintroducing the reader to a lot of familiar faces. Giving exposition hinting at how that character has changed over the course of the last few seasons, making brand new readers to the comic series welcomed. Which is great, because before you know it, the action is turned up to…11 (get it?).

    Christos Gage has been working with these characters since Season 9 (originally on Angel & Faith before taking over the main book). He writes the cast with the same tone fans have come to rely on. Rebekah Isaacs, captures the characters likenesses perfectly. Making it feel like we’re once again seeing some old, familiar friends.

    If you’re a fan of Buffy, Joss Whedon, great female characters, or fun in general. Make sure you’re getting this first issue of another great adventure with the Scooby Gang. [Mikey N. at TFAW.com]

    JUMP BACK ON THE BAND WAGON SEASON 11 IS HERE!

    Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: 1954 – The Unreasoning Beast #1
    By: Mike Mignola, Chris Roberson, Patric Reynolds, Dave Stewart, Mike Huddleston

    Since the end of Hellboy, it only makes sense to go backwards. It all started with Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: 1952. The first mission Hellboy ever went on. Continuing through the years with 1953 and 1954. This is the start of the second mission for 1954 (that we’re shown). Involving a haunted family by a firey monkey.

    Having not read a Hellboy since the end of Hellboy in Hell. After reading The Unreasoning Beast #1, I’m back in the fold. As this is Mike Mignola’s baby, I didn’t expect anything less than a stellar story. Especially with Chris Roberson co-writing. Artist Patrick Reynolds’ style is immediately recognizable and works so well within this world.

    Although the story ends with a happy ending. As much as it can when dealing with the supernatural. You get this eerie feeling we’re not done yet, and it has nothing to do with the fact that there is a second and third issue already solicited. [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    GET HAUNTED BY HELLBOY ONCE AGAIN!

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

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    A Total Eclipse of New Comic Book Day

    NCBD reviews featuring Cyborg, Eclipse, Daredevil and Rise of the Black Flame

    New Comic Book Day Eclipse’s us with great books. From Cyborg, and his origins to Daredevil keeping the peace in Hell’s Kitchen. Remember these are just a few of this week’s new releases that stood out from the crowd. 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.

    Cyborg comics at TFAW.com

    Cyborg Rebirth #1
    By: John Semper Jr., Paul Pelletier, Will Conrad

    John Semper Jr., Paul Pelletier and Will Conrad’s Cyborg Rebirth #1 hits its mark as a fresh start for readers interested in the titular hero – before he hit’s the big screen in Justice League next summer.

    The first part of the comic gives a guided tour of Victor Stone’s life – leading up to becoming the cybernetic superhero – mixed with a present day brawl with an unknown robotic monstrosity. These battle scenes keep the energy going throughout the book and find time to mix in some fun superhero/villain banter: “I’ve never met data that wasn’t capable of being crunched.” Once the backstory segment is finished, Cyborg comes to a startling realization about his father and his own existence.

    We’re given new questions that’ll frame the next part of Cyborg’s journey. What kind of being is he? Is he a man with a few mechanical parts? Or is he a machine imitating a human? And what does our mysterious narrator want with him?

    FAMILIARIZE YOURSELF WITH CYBORG TODAY [Timothy S. at TFAW.com]

    Eclipse comics at TFAW.com

    Eclipse #1
    By: Zack Kaplan, Giovanni Timpano, Betsy Gonia,
    Chrois Northrop, Troy Peteri

    Science Fiction mixed with murder. Someone is out in the day, killing people and David Baxter will have to figure it out – before he becomes a victim.

    What if solar flares caused us to live underground, away from the sun. Could we survive? Eclipse from newcomers Zack Kaplan and Giovanni Timpano give us a glimpse into what the world would look like if that was the case.

    Kaplan does a good job setting up this world quickly, so we can get right into the main plot. On a routine daylight patrol, a body is found and it isn’t there by accident. Eclipse has promise to become a very entertaining and grim look at a post-apocalyptic world that we really haven’t seen before.

    SEE ECLIPSE ISSUES AT TFAW [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    Daredevil comics at TFAW.com

    Daredevil #11
    By: Charles Soule, Ron Garney, Matt Milla

    Dark Art continues as a piece of “art” has been found. Made with over 100 people’s blood, the person who found it wants to make money off of it – this is New York City after all. Our heroe’s everyday persona Matt Murdock as D.A. is asked to make sure that the show doesn’t go on.

    Before the “blood mural” can be shown a new piece is found–this time involving Inhumans. Luckily, Daredevil is en route to let this new assailant know how much he loves his work.

    Charles Soule continues to unravel this new world Matt Murdock has come back to after his move to San Fransico. Along with Artist Ron Garney, and colorist Matt Milla, this Hell’s Kitchen has gotten a lot darker. This story reminds me of the environment during Shadowland.

    DISCOVER EVEN MORE DAREDEVIL TODAY [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    Rise of the Black Flame comics at TFAW.com

    Rise of the Black Flame #1
    By: Mike Mignola, Chris Roberson, Christopher Mitten, Dave Stewart, Laurence Campbell

    Here’s the setup for Rise of the Black Flame: Young girls are disappearing from the British colonized cities of Burma. The trail will lead a group of international adventurers deep into the jungle, to an ancient evil power, wielded by the bloodthirsty Cult of the Black Flame…

    The story starts off with an abduction of a young “English-born” girl. Two local police officers, the seasoned Sergeant McAllister and a young man named Sandhu, have pledged to track down the abductors.

    Their investigation takes them from Rangoon to Bangkok where the two encounter monster hunter/ghost chaser Sarah Jewell and Marie Therese Lafleur. McAllister has encountered Jewell before, and believes they are in search of the same people, so the four band together to enter the jungle for the search for the Temple of the Black Flame.

    This is a really intriguing story that’s captured my attention in a big way. Fans of the B.P.R.D. will get the most enjoyment out of Rise of the Black Flame #1, but the issue also serves as a great entry point and will undoubtedly lead newcomers down a journey that will be only be sated by continuing down the rabbit hole that is the Mignolaverse.

    ORDER THE FIRST THREE RISE OF THE BLACK FLAME ISSUES NOW [Josh C. at TFAW.com]

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

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    Review: Lobster Johnson: Metal Monsters of Midtown #3

    Review of Lobster Johnson - Metal Monsters of Midtown #3

    Lobster Johnson Metal Monsters of Midtown #3The latest Lobster Johnson adventure concludes with a bang — not to mention a few “KRASH”es, “KRANG”s and “BOOM”s — as our hero once again goes head-to-head with the eponymous automatons. This time, however, he’s found a way to level the playing field, having located the secret control station for the decommissioned member of the robotic trio. Now in the virtual driver’s seat of the titanium titan, the Lobster heads downtown, where he finds one of the others waiting for him. What follows is a showdown of colossal proportions, with the two behemoth bots slugging it out while the intrepid Cindy Tynan gives the play-by-play from her mobile radio station.

    As the Lobster works the robot’s controls, we see his sanity begin to slip. This was a peril he knew of beforehand, that of becoming addicted to the mania that overtook Emin Aliyev and the other robot jockeys. When he begins speaking in a long-dead demoniac language, it’s clear he’s become possessed by the ancient Hyperborean spirits that authored this nefarious machinery. Will Johnson be able to win the day without losing his soul? Or will he degenerate into a “fiend” as Emin and his cohorts did?

    In the end, thanks to the help of his capable crew and his own off-the-cuff resourcefulness, the Lobster is able to put the kibosh on the massive mechanical menace, ruling out any loose ends by finishing the job in characteristic fashion: blowing things to smithereens.

    Lobster Johnson: Metal Monsters of Midtown #3, Dark Horse Comics, released July 27, 2016, written by Mike Mignola and John Arcudi, art by Tonci Zonjic, colors by Dave Stewart, letters by Clem Robins, cover by Tonci Zonjic, $3.50.

    Review by James Florence.

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    NCBD: Supergirl and the Suicide Squad Join DC’s Rebirth

    New Comic Book Day 8/17/16

    This week brought a strong group of comics. For New Comic Book Day, we continue catch up with The Punisher and Daredevil as a conflict comes to a head, jump into the new Suicide Squad series, continue reading Jeff Lemire’s incredible Black Hammer series, and check out Supergirl’s Rebirth. Remember, these are only a few of this week’s new releases be sure to check the TFAW website to see even more. We’d love to know what you think of these books too!

    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.

    Black Hammer comics at TFAW.com

    Black Hammer #16

    By: Jeff Lemire, Dean Ormston, Dave Stewart

    We last left Black Hammer with the whole team meeting up to reminisce their past lives with the hero (and their leader): the amazing Black Hammer.

    In this new issue we get to see a glimpse into the background of Gail Gibbons, aka Golden Gail, wherein she was given the gifts of the gods to fight to keep the world safe — or is it a curse? Now Gail, stuck in the body of a nine-year-old, is just trying so hard to get back the powers that she once felt burdened with. We also get to see Walky Talky and The Barbalien trying to get a probe outside the boundaries of the small town that they are trapped in. Also, we get to see a clash with one of their old foes, Doctor Sherlock Frankenstein (best name ever!).

    How will this “family” deal with all the troubles of trying to fit into the small town they’re stuck in, and what steps will they take to find their way home? Are they even in their universe, or are they in a pocket dimension? Could this be an elaborate trap by a villain from their past?

    All that, plus we still don’t know the full story of Black Hammer’s fate. I’m really looking forward to learning more in the next issue of Black Hammer. [Steve M. at Portland TFAW]

    Daredevil Punisher #4

    By: Charles Soule, Szymon Kudranski, Jim Charalampidis, Clayton Cowles

    Daredevil Punisher #4 completes the “Seventh Circle” story, and it’s been a great ride. DD and Punisher have worked together in the past, but they’re at odds this time over a gangster named Sergey Antonov. D.A. Matt Murdock is transferring Antonov to Texas so he can get a fair trial, but Frank Castle thinks he needs to be punished for his crimes.

    Soule wraps up the Daredevil Punisher miniseries in spectacular form, but I won’t tell you how this one ends, folks. What I will say is that it’s really great seeing how far both Daredevil and Punisher will take things, given their conflicting convictions. [Josh C. at TFAW.com]

    Suicide Squad comics at TFAW.com

    Suicide Squad #1

    By: Rob Williams, Jim Lee

    For anyone who wants to learn more about Suicide Squad after the wonderfully fun movie, you should definitely grab a copy of Suicide Squad #1! The story starts off with Amanda Waller’s inner monologue discussing why she assembled the Suicide Squad — she believes that bad can do good, and she’s . . . well . . . somewhat right!

    The group is sent to retract a cosmic cube in space, and as the group battles motion sickness, Williams provides a flashback of how Deadshot landed right into Amanda Waller’s Task Force X. It’s a great first issue, and I can’t wait to see where this one goes. Pick this issue up before it sells out! [Darcey M. at Universal City Walk TFAW]

    Supergirl Rebirth #1 by Steve Orlando at TFAW.com

    Supergirl Rebirth #1

    By: Steve Orlando, Emanuela Lupacchino, Ray McCarthy, Michael Atiyeh

    Supergirl Rebirth serves as a slingshot for those unfamiliar with Supergirl’s past and her place in the DC Universe. The issue starts with a flashback that establishes a potential threat (or possibly ally).

    In the new status quo that is the DC Rebirth, Supergirl only recently crash landed on Earth (like, a few months ago recent), and the D.E.O. is trying to make sure she becomes a hero like her cousin, Kal-El. They’ve assigned full-time handlers Eliza and Jeremiah Danvers to show her the ways of this planet and act as “parents” to her alter ego, Kara Danvers.

    I anticipate good things from writer Steve Orlando; we’re already seeing strong elements of a family drama for this series and I’m excited to see how Kara adapts to Earth and comes to understand our ways.

    Emanuela Lupacchino and Ray McCarthy are already a good pair, and I’m excited to see how they will continue to come together as a team. Their art is similar to that of Terry and Rachel Dodson, and I couldn’t think of higher praise than that. [Josh C. at TFAW.com]

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

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