Four comics reviewed this week and all are team-ups! Remember these are only a few comics that came out THIS WEEK! Check out our other blog articles so see our thoughts on other comics. Be sure to comment or share our post on Facebook or Twitter if you like our articles!
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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.
By: Steve Orlando, Brian Ching, Michael Atyeh
Escape from the Phantom Zone Part One kicks off an arc that I’ve been dying to see since Rebirth started. A Barbara Gordon and Kara Danvers team up.
The concept is simple. The Tychotech company in National City is unveiling a new clean energy concept to the world. As Supergirl, Kara has been invited due to her attachment to the technology used. Of course, something goes wrong and the machine goes haywire sending Barbara’s friend Ben into the Phantom Zone. Naturally, Batgirl and Supergirl head into the Phantom Zone to find him and get him out.
Writer Steve Orlando did pull off something that I didn’t see coming. The villain who turned-on the machine was Magog, who hasn’t made a ton of appearances (that I’m aware of) since Kingdom Come. Brian Ching does a good job with this world and has since Rebirth started. Michael Atyeh’s colors are perfect for any “Super” book: Nice and bright. [Martin M. at TFAW.com]
By: Dan Abnett, Brett Booth, Benjamin Percy, Mike McKone
Since the beginning of Rebirth, Titans has always stood at the center of it all thanks to Wally West, the one hero who kickstarted this whole event. With Titans #11 and the first chapter of The Lazarus Contract, Wally and the rest of his team find themselves set to change the DC Universe yet again.
Like all great Titans stories, Titans #11 centers on Deathstroke, who seeks to bring his son back from the dead. Slade believes the key is through Wally West and time travel, which could have potentially devastating effects on the already fragile state of the universe. In particular, the last page of this comic will shake things up in a big way for both the Titans and Teen Titans.
Titans #11 is the start of yet another exciting mini-event for DC Comics and looks to shake everything up once again. The superstar writing team of Ben Percy, Dan Abnett, and Christopher Priest are well on their way to knocking this one out of the park. [Josh P. at TFAW.com]
The Unbelievable Gwenpool #15
By: Christopher Hastings, Myisha Haynes, Paulina Ganucheau
Weird team-ups! Hijinks! 4th-wall breaking! It’s all here in The Unbelievable Gwenpool! This whole series is nothing but obscure adventures and breaking the 4th-wall, and no surprise, it’s been awesome.
Gwenpool’s friend is trapped is a gem, and she’s working with Hawkeye (Kate Bishop) to help free him. Well, first she’s got to get her friend back from Ghost Rider, then save him from the dwarves that want the gem. Then, she has to somehow get him out, all while Ghost Rider does his thing and Kate Bishop a.k.a. Hawkeye, just shoots arrows.
This is a really fun series that you can’t take seriously at all: It’s zanier than good ol’ Deadpool. Less blood and guts, but more wacky fun. [Martin M. at TFAW.com]
Secret Warriors #1
By: Matthew Rosenberg, Javi Garron, Tradd Moore
i>Secret Empire #1 revealed a shocking truth about the state of the Hydra-controlled world: Inhumans were being rounded up into camps. While this is only touched on briefly in that book, Secret Warriors #1 dives headfirst into the subject.
Writer Matthew Rosenberg assembles a dream team of Inhumans for this latest incarnation of the Secret Warriors, including Ms. Marvel, Moon Girl and Quake. The comic features equal amounts mystery, suspense, drama, and action, and Rosenberg nails all of it. Artist Javi Garron does a fantastic job bringing the characters to life.
If you’ve read the solicits for Secret Warriors, you won’t find any surprises in this book. However, if you’re following Secret Empire #1 or you’re a fan of the Inhumans, I highly recommend this book due to its strong writing and the impact it’s going to have on Secret Empire as a whole. [Josh P. at TFAW.com]
What did you think of these books? What should we review next week? Let us know below!
Ghost Rider is back, and as usual, he’s ready to kick some bad guy booty.
If you’ve been watching Marvel’s Agents of Shield TV program this season, you know at least part of the story. Mechanic Robbie Reyes is haunted by the spirit of his evil uncle, who forces him to exact vengeance on Los Angeles’ worst criminals. And he gets to do it using a pretty rad ride–a haunted muscle car. And his head catches on fire.
In Ghost Rider #1, artist Danillo Beyruth gets the honor of penciling the flaming head. Although his , his passion is clearly for the car, which is simply gorgeous. Likewise, his drawings perfectly depict the raw, urban feeling of East LA.
This initial issue paces itself, setting up future stories while giving us a sense of who is who in Reyes’ world. The story gets its comic relief–and most likely an eventual comrade–in Amadeus Cho’s Hulk. Cho make friends with a rat infected by some purple rock creature, which after the fun and games, becomes the villain for this story arc. And another hero makes a surprise appearance at the end. This could set up a romantic interest for Robbie in the future.
But writer Felipe Smith gets to spread his literary wings a bit more. He introduces a new villain in a B story drawn by Tradd Moore. In this standalone tale, we see a lot more of what makes Ghost Rider the anti hero we love, There are chains, hell portals and a flaming car.
That story alone makes this a ride worth taking.
Boy, did we get a lot of great product reviews last month! As part of our monthly Product Review Contest, we’ve picked people who submitted product reviews and are awarding $25 gift certificates to the people who posted them.
Matthew from Macon, GA is the first of this month’s winners. Here’s one of his reviews for our $3.00 Grab Bag Graphic Novels:
You can not go wrong when ordering this. I always get a grab bag with my other purchases they’re affordable and fun–you can get some very good books this way. I just wish there was a DC graphic novel grab bag!
Leonardo from Doral, FL also wrote a few reviews last month. His review of the Fables Vol. 17 TPB was succinct, but it piqued our interest in the book:
Once the North Wind is dead, which cub will be his heir? And Bufkin is the leader of something, he doesn’t know what. Amazing TPB.
Megan from Idaho wrote a review of the New 52 Batman, Incorporated #1. While her review isn’t exactly a ringing endorsement, it that doesn’t make her review any less useful to a potential reader:
After hearing so much about Batman, Inc., I was excited to read this first issue. But honestly, I was disappointed. The art is great (no complaint there!) but the story is just so… weird. It’s like someone mixed Batman and Robin with Alice in Wonderland. Bottom line: if you liked all the pre-New 52 issues, you’ll probably like this one too. But if you’re looking for a classic Batman story, check out a different series.
And with all the craziness leading up to and during SDCC last month, we were delayed in our choices for June’s Product Review Contest Winners. These three folks wrote outstanding reviews during June.
Matthew from Portland, OR typed some words on a screen and they magically appeared on our website for the Batman: The Court of Owls HC:
A good anthology book is hard to find these days but Dark Horse Presents never fails to deliver. I’m usually more into story than art, but the art was mind-blowing. I’m looking forward to the Night of Owls conclusion.
Paul from Australia put a lot of thought into his review of the Ghost Rider Danny Ketch: Addict TPB:
Danny Ketch: Addict tells the tale of just how Danny came to be in the service of the rogue angel Zadkiel. It also kicks off the premise that there are many Ghost Riders all over the world. I enjoyed this TPB, it’s not overly long, but it tells a pretty good story and makes a very nice addition to the Johnny Blaze Ghost Rider Heaven’s on Fire storyline. Recommended if you’re a fan of the Ghost Rider and want to know why Danny Ketch is sapping the power of the other Spirits of Vengenance.
Once you see Khalifa’s review of Meanwhile Pick Any Path 3856 Story Possibilities, you’ll know why we picked his review. Here’s what he had to say:
A great experiment of using comics as a medium for the Choose Your Own Adventure genre. The book makes use of tabs on the side of each page to lead the reader to the next page. The story is fun and simple, suitable to anyone as young twelve but the humor kept my twenty-six year old self entertained until the end. The story involves a young boy who works as a lab assistant for a day and his adventures with each device he finds in the lab. The reader’s choices can be as simple as choosing an ice cream flavor to choosing whether or not to operate a doomsday device. One of the main themes of the story is time travel so expect to go in circles and create paradoxes. Overall, Meanwhile is a fun read for children and adults alike and my only complaint is that there isn’t any more books like it.
Thanks so much to everyone who’s written reviews in the past couple months and throughout the years. You are good people. 🙂
So submit your reviews and help your fellow collectors, and us, sort out the “HOT” from the “NOT”! Who knows, you may be one of next month’s winners.
HOW TO SUBMIT A PRODUCT REVIEW:
It’s simple! Just visit any product page and look for this:
Click on it and our product review form will appear in a popup. Just fill out the pertinent information and submit your review, and you’re done! We’ll take a look at your review and get it up on the product page soon thereafter!
There’s also a really easy way for you to call up everything you’ve ever ordered from us and review it. Simply log in to your account and go into the Order History Section. Next to each item, you’ll see a “Review it!” link.
Questions? Comments? Let us know below!
I gotta say, I still love superhero comics. I enjoy checking out Spider-Man, Batman, and The Flash on a regular basis. I identify with these characters because they seem to grow as I’ve grown up. I can relate to the characters and understand why these books are still popular today.
I was thinking about that the other day and that got me thinking about characters that I just haven’t gotten into. Follow me on this journey, and maybe you can shed some much needed light on these characters for me.
For one reason or another, I’ve never been able to get in to Ghost Rider. It’s not been for lack of trying either. I’ve thumbed through a few issues and even read a trade or two, but the Ghost Rider bug just hasn’t bitten me. Sure, the guy (or gal) has a flaming skull and rides a badass chopper–I can get behind that because it’s awesome. I see the allure there, and understand Johnny Blaze’s motivations behind entering a deal with Mephisto, but beyond that, I just don’t get it.
I should dig the Spirit of Vengeance. I mean vengeance, that has much more catharsis than justice, right? I should be way more into Ghost Rider than I am into Batman. The reason why I’m not is still lost on me. Maybe it’s just because I have no interest in Hell. I’m not a fire and brimstone kind of guy. I don’t really relate to Johnny Blaze either. His character just doesn’t matter to me. That and I can’t scratch the image of Nicholas Cage out of my head whenever I try to crack an issue.
I’m excited about the stuff they’re doing in Flashpoint, but I haven’t been able to shake the weird feeling that Cyborg is out of place. He’s a C character at best, and it seems like he’s been given the keys to the pre-relaunch kingdom.
His back story is typical of other superhero comics. His parents were scientists. He fell in with a bad crowd. He got injured, and his dad saved his life with cutting-edge technology. He’s had a hard time adjusting to how society treats those who are different. Cool, I get that. I just don’t understand why he’s still around. Also, why is he always teaming up with other people? Do his superpowers come with a severe need for belonging? Maybe it’s just because he can’t support a monthly title of his own. If you’re big on Cyborg, more power to you. I want to be there with you, but it just hasn’t happened yet.
I love the X-Men. I love that the characters are so diverse and that they’re bonded by the fact that society hates and fears them. I dig that. I even enjoy its variations, like X-Force and Alpha Flight. I still find myself unable to get in on X-Factor, though.
I think my disdain for the book stems from the characters. I haven’t read the old X-Factor stuff, but I’m pretty friggin’ sure I’d read any superhero comics with the original team’s lineup of Angel, Beast, Cyclops, Jean Grey, and Iceman. But with the current lineup of Madrox the Multiple Man, Wolfsbane, Shatterstar, Richtor, Siryn, and Layla, I fail to see the appeal. Sure, I’m intrigued about what happened to the Madrox baby and all the fallout that probably happened as a result, but it hasn’t been enough to push me over the edge.
Do you love Ghost Rider, Cyborg or X-Factor? Good. I’m looking for a little education and maybe you can help. Have any recommendations for good stories to read starring any of these characters? I’m willing to do some required reading, all I need is a little guidance. Who knows, maybe this time next month, I’ll have one of these titles on my pull list. Please post your comments below. 🙂
Do you wanna party with the Spirit of Vengeance? We’re proud to announce a release party for Ghost Rider #1 with local artist Matthew Clark. Join us at TFAW’s Hollywood location at 4133 NE Sandy, Portland, OR, July 13 from 7 to 10 pm. Come meet the artist and get your copy of Ghost Rider #1 signed, while enjoying complimentary food and beer (with valid ID). Copies of Ghost Rider #1 will be available for purchase at the signing, including the blank variant!
Ghost Rider #1 marks the return of Johnny Blaze, the Spirit of Vengeance, and a brand-new host, following the events of Marvel’s Fear Itself saga. As the Marvel Universe reels from the chaos unleashed in Fear Itself, the stage is set for everyone’s favorite embodiment of hell on wheels to ride forth and set the world on fire! Can an unsuspecting populace survive the aftermath? You’ll have to pick up a copy to find out!
Artist Matthew Clark has had a long and impressive career in the comics industry, having worked for Harris Comics, IDW, DC Comics, and Marvel Comics. He has lent his considerable talents to a score of titles, including Outsiders, Wonder Woman, Teen Titans, and now Ghost Rider. Matthew is also a founding member of Portland, OR-based Mercury Studio.
Are you a fan of Ghost Rider? Post your comments below!