Tag: Robert Venditti

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    Black Panther and the Crew Kick Off

    This week Black Panther and the Crew starts, Alien Day comes a little early, and The Prism of Time begins in Hal Jordan and the Green Lanterns for New Comic Book Day. Remember this was only a small batch of what 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 Panther and the Crew #1
    By: Ta-Nehisi Coates, Butch Guice, John Cassaday

    I wasn’t sure what to expect before reading Black Panther and the Crew #1. I knew of Ta-Nehisi Coates from his excellent run on Black Panther but I was worried that Marvel was spreading Black Panther too far, too fast. Imagine my surprise to find out that despite being a prominent part of the title, Black Panther doesn’t make an appearance in the issue at all.

    Rather, the issue follows Misty Knight (and a surprise guest!) in a story that hits close to real world events while still fitting nicely into the Marvel Universe. Coates expertly captures the tension that exists today in places like Harlem, making the issue informative as well as interesting. Since this is a Marvel book, you can expect some action, and artist Butch Guice does an excellent job depicting it.

    Black Panther & The Crew #1 offers something different than your standard Marvel comic and is highly recommended. I’m eagerly anticipating to see just how Luke Cage and Black Panther figure into the story. It’s not a book that was on my radar before but I’m immediately adding to my subscription; after you give it a read, I guarantee that you’ll feel the same.

    If you like this comic, you’ll love Coates’ work on Black Panther!

    [Josh P. at TFAW.com]

    Aliens: The Original Comics Series Volume 2
    By: Mark Verheiden, Den Beauvais, Sam Kieth

    Before we got Alien 3 in theaters, we got Dark Horse’s Aliens Comics. And oh boy were they exciting! I remember reading these as a kid in excitement for the next movie. Seeing Hicks, Newt and Ripley all together fighting against Xenomorphs, I couldn’t wait for the next movie! Alas, we got David Fincher’s Alien 3 instead.

    This rerelease hardcover contains the original Dark Horse arcs: Aliens: Nightmare Asylum and Aliens: Female War. It also reverts back to the original character names, which were changed in printings that came AFTER the release of Alien 3, from what I understand.

    Nightmare Asylum, by writer Mark Verheiden and artists Den Beauvais and Sam Kieth, tells the four-part story about militarizing the Xenomorphs and what Hicks and Newt do to stop it.

    In the second story, Female War, Ripley is forced back into the fray to protect Newt.

    This beautiful hardcover collection is a must have for Aliens fans! There’s no better way to celebrate Alien day on 4/26!

    MAKE SURE TO CHECK OUT ALIENS: DEAD ORBIT COMING SOON!

    [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    Hal Jordan And The Green Lantern Corps #18
    By: Robert Venditti, V Kenneth Marion, Mikel Janin

    Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps #18, like many of DC’s current titles, represent a rebirth of the Corps. Back in their home universe, the Corps unites under John Stewart, whose first order is to unite both the Green Lanterns and the Yellow Lanterns together to form one supreme space force. As you can expect, tensions are high and bad blood soon turns into spilled blood.

    Just when things couldn’t look any worse, a surprise visitor lands on the Corps’ doorstep. This mystery man will be very familiar to fans of The CW’s Legends of Tomorrow!

    Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps #18 is an excellent jumping on point for newcomers. Past events are succinctly explained and the focus is more on the future than on the past. This arc is shaping up to be one of Robert Venditti’s best and will impact the Corps for years to come. If you’ve ever wanted to check out this comic, now is the best time!

    Check out Green Lanterns to see how this arc impacts Jessica Cruz and Simon Baz!

    [Josh P. 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: Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps: Rebirth #1 – One Ring to Rule Them All

    Review of Hal Jordan and the Green Lanterns Rebirth #1

    hal jordan green lantern corps rebirth #1I was looking forward to Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps: Rebirth #1 quite a bit before getting my hands on it. Sure, we may all have our favorite Lantern. Sure, it may NOT be Hal Jordan. But we all have a spot in our heart for that brash pilot who paved the way for the lantern corps to be what it is today.

    Right away, Venditti catches readers up on a little origin for new readers as well as where we have last seen the mighty Hal Jordan in his most recent book. As a reader who hasn’t read many lantern comics since the New 52 happened, this was greatly appreciated. Venditti quickly brings readers up to speed while still asking questions that would keep any reader turning the pages. All the while, Hal Jordan still holds on to that messiah complex that makes him so accessible to the every-man.

    Venditti gives his readers a preview of what is to come without letting too much slip in terms of spoilers. All we know as readers is that Hal is back in action, and he is connected to the rest of the corps in ways that will excited us as we dive further into the series. This issue promises us that yes, Hal will be at the forefront of the book, but we as readers also get to explore our favorite lanterns and their connections to each other.

    With Ethan Van Sciver delivering brilliant art as always, connecting the dots between Hal and the rest of the lanterns is going to be an epic ride if the series is going to be anything like this rebirthing issue.

    Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps: Rebirth #1, written by Robert Venditti, art by Ethan Van Sciver, and colors by Jason Wright. Published July 13, 2016.

    Review by Alex Mitts

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    NCBD – Captain America, Spider-Gwen, X-O Manowar & Cryptocracy

    Each week we take a look at a small selection of New Comic Book Day books. From this week’s new releases we’re looking at: Spider-Gwen, Captain America Steve Rogers, a new Dark Horse series Cryptocracy, and the start of Valiant’s final arc of X-O Manowar. 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.

    Spider-Gwen comics at TFAW.com

    Spider-Gwen Annual #1
    By: Jason Latour, Chris Brunner, Chris Visions, Robbi Rodriguez

    Our first Spider-Gwen Annual is in the bag. We get five stories in this double-sized book, and I gotta say, it was a ton of fun! I know, the Parker story is tragic, but seeing it from this other Earth’s (I believe it’s Earth-65) side is really cool. I like seeing how events were different.

    The first story is the wrestling story retold, wherein the 616, Parker tries to win money, and Uncle Ben dies. This time, Spider-Gwen is trying to win it all. Wrestling against She-Hulk.

    Captain America makes an appearance, but this is definitely a different Cap than we’ve had before with a very different backstory. Similar to some events, but overall a cool, different take, with lots of nods to the 616 characters.

    I don’t want to spoil the fun of these other stories. I will, however, say that I want to see some of these heroes and villains more regularly.

    If you haven’t been reading Spider-Gwen and you love the quirks of Deadpool and Spider-Man. This series is really a must read. [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    Captain America comics at TFAW.com

    Captain America: Steve Rogers #2
    By: Nick Spencer, Jesus Saiz

    THE TRUTH IS REVEALED!

    After last month’s mind blowing ending, we get plenty of answers in this issue. Nick Spencer lays it out all out for us with the utmost detail and makes it all worthwhile. It is not simple but it is not complex either. What it is, is ENTERTAINING. Spencer’s writing continues to be humorous where needed and moves us right along. His arc here is sure to be an epic story.

    I am fighting the urge to spoil anything here because there are so many cool aspects to cover within these 32 pages. In addition, I am quickly becoming a fan of the art by Jesus Saiz. His layouts and facial expressions really have a way of connecting the reader to the emotions laid forth by Spencer’s words. Great Job fellas! [Sean W. at Milwaukie TFAW]

    Cryptocracy comics at TFAW.com

    Cryptocracy #1
    By: Van Jensen, Pete Woods

    Welcome to Cryptocracy (noun [Plural Cryptocracies] 1. A form of government where the real leaders are hidden or merely unknown).

    Forget the Illuminati, Freemasons, and The Knights Templar This is what is actually running the world: nine families and a few thousand followers/agents (not all human by the way).

    In this introduction, we find that a botched job in Chicago calls attention to something much bigger. Someone or some group is looking to take it all over. Van Jensen created a great first issue for us. Along with Pete Woods’ art, I’m excited to see where Cryptocracy takes us, and how they are involved in some of the world’s most mysterious events. Definitely recommended for conspiracy enthusiasts and readers who enjoy Greg Rucka’s Lazarus. [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

    X-O Manowar comics at TFAW.com

    X-O Manowar #47
    By: Robert Venditti, Joe Bennett, Kano

    Long ago in the year 2012, we saw the relaunch of the Valiant universe with the release of the first issue of X-O Manowar. It filled me with hope that my favorite independent comic book characters of the ’90s were back.

    I was blown away at the respect and heightened level of intensity in which the new Valiant were delivering. X-O Manowar, the flagship character, and the comic book was truly something amazing; and with new life infused, it was sure to go in a bold new direction. Here we are, at what could be the final arc of the story, and I can’t help but feel that there is still a much bigger picture in play. This issue does not make a new reader feel too lost, although it would probably not be the best place to start.

    The events that have led us here are all culminating in a solid example of what makes the character X-O Manowar so enduring. This issue, along with all the rest leading up to the finale at #50, comes polybagged with a microprint of X-O inside—some of which will be the actual original artwork, others regular prints! This is a really cool sendoff, and I hope that it isn’t the end completely. I absolutely recommend this series as a whole. [Casey D. at TFAW.com]

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

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    New Comic Book Day — Review for Batman, Supergirl, X-O Manowar, & Power Rangers

    It’s a big New Comic Book Day . With the end of Snyder and Capullo’s Batman Run, our comic intro to TV’s Supergirl, Tommy’s seduction to evil in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, and we dive further into Valiant’s 4001 A.D. Remember these are only a few of this week’s new releases. Check out our other blog articles so see our thoughts on past books. Be sure to comment or share our post on Facebook or Twitter! 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.

    Batman #52 By: Scott Snyder, Riley Rossmo, Greg Capullo

    In the final issue of the New 52 Batman, we get insight into the part of Batman’s life that we haven’t been able to see. We all know what made Bruce Wayne the Batman. Events drove him to be the scourge of the criminal underground in Gotham and the rest of the DCU. In this new issue, though, Batman faces a new villain that is trying to steal one of Bruce Wayne’s secrets. It’s unsure what could it be–documents of his time as Batman? A list of the Bat-family’s identities? Even worse, the identity of other superheroes?–and tension is high until the final emotional pages. In this perfect end to a truly exciting 52 issue run. Which introduced us to the Court of Owls, the amazing events of Year Zero, Joker’s return in the terrifying Death of the Family, the “final” battle between Batman and his greatest enemy in Endgame, and his return in Superheavy. This issue shows us what is most valuable to both Batman and Bruce Wayne. Realizing that if disappearing is the first step, this issue shows us what the final step is, too. I can’t wait to see what comes next in Rebirth for our favorite caped crusader! [Steve M. at Milwaukie TFAW]

    4001 A.D. X-O Manowar #1 By: Robert Venditti, Clayton Henry, CAFU

    Set 100 years from now, New Japan launches its new utopian city into the sky causing a shockwave that kills millions. The UN takes a page out of Pacific Rim’s playbook and gets to work on weaponized suits of armor to combat the threat of New Japan’s devastating and callous A.I. program, Father. What they don’t realize is that Father has anticipated and prepared for this. This provides a nice background for Valiant’s massive crossover event. Robert Venditti and Clayton Henry find all the right ways to hook readers in. Venditti’s dialogue and descriptions are honed in giving the story maximum effect. Henry delivers the chilling imagery of a society putting every resource into one ultimate weapon. This triumphantly builds up the X-O Manowar suits and Father. Two key players in the main 4001 A.D. story. If Valiant’s crossover seems daunting to jump into, this book will be a nice way to get your feet wet and get a taste for the stories ahead. Plus, it has giant robots fighting against a flying city while a pink cyber assassin kills people by turning them into binary code. What more could you ask for? [Tim S. at TFAW.com]

    Adventures of Supergirl #1 By: Sterling Gates, Bengal, Cat Staggs

    If you’re familiar with the popular CBS series Supergirl, then you’re in for a treat. Since this is a number one, old and new fans will quickly fall in love with this series. This issue gives you a good idea of what type of superhero Kara is, and what her biggest values are. Similar to her well-known cousin, she believes in helping and saving everyone no matter what the cost. Overall, she believes in hope. We start off in the middle of a major fight scene between Supergirl and Rampage. Kara is not going down without a fight. She soon realizes Rampage only gets stronger with each punch she takes. As Supergirl feels like she has won, she is brutally mistaken. Supergirl is knocked out, kidnapped and her sister’s life is in grave danger. Kara wakes up in a place she’s never been with people that know more about her than she knows about them. Will she be able to save her sister? Will she be able to defeat Rampage once and for all? I guess you have to read Adventures Of Supergirl #1! [Darcey M. at Universal Citywalk TFAW]

    Might Morphin Power Rangers #3 By: Kyle Higgins, Hendry Prasetya, Jamal Campbell

    Three issues in already, for me this is a top read, and even now I can’t wait for more. Let me explain what’s been going on: post-Rita creating the Evil Green Ranger, our gang of Power Rangers saved him. Although Rita still has her witching ways, trying to break Tommy down by manipulating what he sees, hears, and dreams. She’s trying to break him, and doing a good job at it. Kyle Higgens is leading me into this new, “updated” version of my childhood. Don’t think that I mean it’s gritty and dark. It blends the original mythology/charm with the spice of today’s storytelling standards. It’s incredible & every month I get excited to read it. Don’t get discouraged if you never watched Mighty Morphin Power Rangers back in ’93. You can very easily pick this series up and connect with these heroes. Boom, Kyle, Hendry Prasetya and Jamal Campbell all do such a good job bringing back this universe. [Martin M. at TFAW.com]

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

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    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 #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. #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 TFAW.com]

    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 TFAW.com]

    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 TFAW.com]

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

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    New Comic Book Day — Reviews for MMPR #1, Green Lantern #50, Black Widow #1 & Predator #1

    We’re back again with reviews of a few books that we really enjoyed from this week’s new releases. Check out our other New Comic Book Day blog articles to see our thoughts on other books. Be sure to comment below or share our post on Facebook or Twitter if you want us to do more of these types of reviews!

    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.

     	
Predator Life & Death comics at TFAW.com Predator: Life & Death #1
    By: Dan Abnett, Brian Thies, Rain Beredo, David Palumbo

    The next Predator/Alien/Prometheus event begins and stirs up some blood in Predator: Life & Death #1. This issue gives us a basic set we need. Where are they, why are they, and the hunt itself.

    Looks like the Wayland-Yutani Corp wants to start some more terraforming of planets but before they send their people down, they send the USMC to make sure there are no pirates already taking the planets resources (yeah, pirates–guess they learned from LV-426).

    It’s a good setup to what could be a fantastic Predator story. The pacing is good with strong characters. Brian Albert Thies’ art works very well, accompanied by Rain Beredo’s colors. I look forward to finding out more about this planet, its secrets, and why this mysterious ship is there. [Martin M. at Milwaukie TFAW]

    Black Widow #1
    By: Chris Samnee, Mark Waid

    This is one of the best hooks for a series I have read in awhile. Black Widow #1 is packed with action and so many questions that you just have to read the rest of the series. I fell in love with the art and color scheme as how well it matches the tone of the first issue. Mark Waid is back at it again, and has ceased to disappoint me every series he creates.

    Natasha is not a character that will disappoint you in any way, shape or form. She plays by her rules, no matter what those might be. If you love espionage, action, and one of the best female spies in the Marvel universe, I highly recommend picking up this issue immediately! [Darcey M. at Universal TFAW]

     	
Green Lantern #50 comic book review at TFAW.com Green Lantern #50
    By: Robert Venditti, Billy Tan, Juan Gimenez

    Everyone has differing ideas of when their life took a turn, and when they were their best version of themselves–able to overcome adversity despite the odds. This experience of inner conflict is regularly explored in the DCU. Hal Jordan faces himself at one of his lowest points in Green Lantern #50. This all happens because of the magic of the DC Multiverse and the return of Hal’s previous incarnation as Parallax.

    Hal has other plans and this Multiversal bleed appears to be leading him to some strange new Rebirth along with the rest of the DC Universe! If the rest of the DC titles begin to experience this change, shifting them towards something familiar yet new, the entire Rebirth initiative will be something quite tremendous to witness. [Casey D. at TFAW.com]

    Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #1
    By: Kyle Higgins, Hendry Prasetya, Matt Herms

    It’s been about two months since issue MMPR #0 first hit the shelves and after reading Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #1, I can tell you that it’s still really good. Kyle Higgens does a great job developing the characters we grew up with in a way that feels the same as they ever were but, updated so that new readers won’t get lost in mythology.

    I really, really enjoy Hendry Prasetya’s character designs and Matt Herms’ colors. Even the small glimpse of a past foe was a really cool nod to the show. If you’re a Power Rangers fan–old or new–this is a great comic for you!

    PS: Be sure to pick up the MMPR #1 TFAW Exclusive Variant (pictured here); only 500 were produced, and they’re going fast! We teamed up with one of our Sean “Cheeks” Galloway (Hellboy Junior, WoW: Pandaria, Teen Titans Go, Wednesday Comics) for what we think is a pretty incredible cover. [Martin M. at Milwaukie TFAW]

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

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    New Comic Book Day — Reviews for Ms Marvel, Harrow County, The Flash & Jonesy

    From new series to longtime and recent favorites, this week had a strong crop of new comics. We picked a few of this week’s new releases that we thought were standouts. This is the fifth of our seven-part series of New Comic Book Day blog articles. Be sure to comment or share our post on Facebook or Twitter if you like our articles!

    SPOILER ALERT — We try to keep as many spoilers under our hats as possible, but a nugget may sneak through to our reviews.

     	
Harrow County comics at TFAW.com Harrow County #9
    By: Cullen Bunn, Carla Speed McNeil, Tyler Crook

    This issue of Harrow County sees Eisner-winning creator Carla Speed McNeil (Finder, No Mercy) join the team for an issue that takes a pause from our story thus far to focus on one of my favorite characters, the Skinless Boy.

    You can see Bunn’s pacing himself in this issue, letting the story slowly unfold to reveal yet another piece of the puzzle. Even if you haven’t been following the series thus far, I recommend that you check out this issue–you won’t be disappointed. As far as art, I think Carla Speed McNeil was an inspired choice for this issue.

    While different from series artist Tyler Crook’s art, McNeil’s work is haunting in her own right. You can tell she’s been a fan of the series from the get-go, because it’s clear a lot of love went into each and every panel. [Josh C. at TFAW.com]

    The Flash #48
    By: Robert Venditti, Jesus Merino, Ivan Reis

    Barry Allen is brought in to a task force assembled by the Central City Police Department to bring in the Flash! As if that weren’t bad enough, the other members of the task force include the Rogues: Golden Glider, Mirror Master, Weather Wizard, Trickster, and of course, Captain Cold.

    It’s going to be a hard time escaping the team that includes the alter-ego of the Fastest Man Alive. Luckily he is in a position to sabotage the efforts of his would-be captors. He’s going to need to think quickly on his feet, which wouldn’t normally seem like much of an issue for the Flash, if only he could keep traction to stay one step (or thousands) ahead. They say that lightning doesn’t strike twice, but the creative team has been electrifying with this arc of The Flash. [Casey D. at TFAW.com]

    Jonesy #1
    By: Sam Humphries, Caitlin Rose Boyle

    Jonesy seems like a typical teenage girl: She’s cute, lovable and we can all relate with her everyday struggles in high school. However, there is one little thing makes Jonesy unique from all the others . . . she’s got a wacky super power and a pet ferret!

    While dealing with the biggest event for high school, the dreaded Valentine’s Day grams, Jonesy starts to show her super-secret superpower throughout the school day. People start to catch on but she doesn’t care! She is taking charge and taking no nonsense from anybody in this issue but soon ends up finding her sole purpose is to teach her high school a lesson.

    I love how relatable and funny this issue is and it makes you wonder, what is she going to do? What’s her superpower? Well, Jumpin Jehosaphat! Better get to reading issue Jonesy #1! [Darcey M. at Universal TFAW]

    Ms Marvel #4
    By: G. Willow Wilson, Nico Leon, Cliff Chiang

    Life can be tough for a teenager: you have school work to get done on time, friends to keep up with, family to keep happy — and then there’s always being an Avenger. That seems to cut into all of the other time. In this issue of Ms. Marvel, Kamala has to find a way to balance her home life, school life, and trying to earn confidence from Captain America and Iron Man. No problem at all, right? Especially with some help from her friend Bruno and something he’s been working on in the science lab.

    Yet again, G. Willow Wilson continues to put her amazing and unique spin on an original character, and Nico Leon’s art adds incredible depth to the world of Ms. Marvel and everyone in it. You also read more of Ms. Marvel’s adventures in All-New All-Different Avengers, on shelves now. [Steve M. at Milwaukie TFAW]

    What did you think of these books? What should we review next week? Let us know below! Be sure to share these posts on Facebook or Twitter if you want us to continue this series of posts. 🙂

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    Robert Venditti Takes Us Inside Valiant’s New X-O Manowar

    X-O Manowar ComicsWhat would it be like to be a man from the 5th Century–in control of technology that far outstrips anything the 21st Century has ever seen? That’s the question put forth by X-O Manowar, an original comic book series from Valiant Entertainment.

    Originally debuting in 1992 from Valiant Comics, X-O Manowar focused on Aric of Dacia, a man at war against the ancient Roman Empire. When he’s kidnapped by aliens and held prisoner, Aric fights his way free, discovers a suit of X-O Manowar-class armor, and returns to Earth–only to discover that 16 centuries have passed in his absence. Without family or friends–and possessing the most advanced technology known to man–Aric must find his place in the world.

    Sound interesting? You’re in luck: 10 years after the second X-O Manowar series concluded, Valiant Entertainment is relaunching their major superhero titles this spring and summer, starting with X-O Manowar–with New York Times-bestselling author Robert Venditti and famed artist Cary Nord!

    We had a chance to ask Venditti some questions about his involvement in the series and what he’s most looking forward to–read on, below. Plus, enjoy a six-page preview of X-O Manowar #1, out May 2.

    Enter our X-O Manowar Contest now to win one of 10 QR Voice Variant Cover Editions of X-O Manowar #1 signed by Robert Venditti!

    TFAW.com: How did you become involved with Valiant Entertainment, and X-O Manowar?

    X-O Manowar #1 Page 1Robert Venditti: Warren Simons, Executive Editor at Valiant, reached out to me last June. He told me about Valiant’s plans to relaunch their line, and I was immediately interested. He sent me a bunch of material on Valiant’s characters–and I did some researching on my own–and X-O Manowar resonated with me. There were a lot of Valiant characters, both heroes and villains, that I was interested in, but I had to start somewhere!

    TFAW.com: What attracted you to this story?

    RV: So many things. There’s such a strong core concept driving the book, and the blend of historical fiction and science fiction isn’t something you see very often in comics. I also liked the idea of writing for a shared universe. Most of my work to date has been creator-owned, so taking on a new challenge like this will allow me to try a different style of writing.

    TFAW.com: Were you familiar with the original series at all?

    RV: I wasn’t overly familiar with the character, but that speaks more to my inexperience with comics in general. I didn’t start reading comics until around 2000, so beyond general pop culture awareness, I wasn’t really aware of any of the established universes or characters. I’ve done my homework now, though. I wouldn’t take on a project like this without having a solid understanding of the character’s history.

    TFAW.com: How have you updated X-O Manowar, if at all?

    X-O Manowar #1 Page 2RV: We’ve used the original Valiant run as the basis for our story, but we’ve expanded on it and added to it in ways that will hopefully let the series resonate both with longtime fans and readers who are new to the character. We spent a lot of time fleshing out The Vine, the alien race who abducts Aric from his own time and is ultimately responsible for him coming into possession of the X-O Manowar armor. We’ve also added some new abilities to the armor, including one that will be the key to the first year of the series.

    TFAW.com: The original premise was of a primitive man who ends up wielding extremely advanced technology. What are the most intriguing wrinkles of that scenario to you?

    RV: Aric is at the same time the world’s most primitive and most technologically advanced person. It’s a wonderful dichotomy, and it lends itself to all kinds of storytelling possibilities.

    TFAW.com: What do you think are the key traits of our hero, Aric of Dacia?

    RV: He’s a skilled warrior and a born leader, but his battle prowess and charisma have not yet been tempered by experience. So while he has the best intentions, things don’t always turn out the way he’d hoped. A Visigoth by birth, he also grew up in a time when his people didn’t have a homeland to call their own.

    X-O Manowar #1 Page 3They were a nomadic culture, forced to get by on what they could scratch together from within the boundaries of the Roman Empire. Take a character with that type of background and give him command of the most powerful weapon in the universe, and you have a recipe for telling exciting, action-packed stories. You also have an opportunity to see Cary Nord draw some really incredible scenes.

    TFAW.com: Will X-O Manowar be encountering any of Valiant’s other heroes soon?

    RV: Absolutely. One of the big attractions of writing a project like this is you have access to a huge catalog of characters. A big part of my initial pitch focused on the ways X-O Manowar can interact with the rest of the universe.

    TFAW.com: What’s the atmosphere like at Valiant Entertainment right now?

    RV: There’s so much energy at the home office. You can feel the enthusiasm of the staff. Everyone is genuinely proud of the books, and it’s reflected in the effort they’re putting into getting the word out.

    TFAW.com: What are you most looking forward to with this project?

    RV: Working with the writers and artists from Valiant’s other titles to build the new universe. The team they’ve assembled is so rich in talent and experience, and I look forward to talking through ideas with them. It isn’t often that you get the chance to not only relaunch a character, but also help shape an entire universe, and I’m not taking anything for granted.

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    We want to thank Robert for giving us the inside scoop on X-O Manowar! You can pre-order X-O Manowar #1 and #2 from us today and save 20%. Plus, save 35% on Harbinger #1, Valiant’s second series relaunch, by Joshua Dysart and Khari Evans!

    Make sure to enter our X-O Manowar Contest to win one of 10 QR Voice Variant Cover Editions of #1 signed by Robert Venditti!

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