Tag: David Messina

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    Review: ROM #1

    Review Rom #1

    ROM #1 (cover)ROM the Space Knight first appeared in print in December 1979 as a crossover between Marvel Comics and Parker Brothers in an attempt to build interest in a spaceman toy that Parker Brothers had designed. It’s not as strange as that sounds. Transformers, Care Bears, Sectaurs (I had them all, by the way), GI Joe, Masters Of The Universe, Pound Puppies, and My Little Pony all have similar origin stories. The toy flopped, but Marvel was able to draw the backstory into a 75 issue run that lasted until February 1986. The franchise sat largely dormant for three decades until Free Comic Book Day 2016, when IDW publishing gave us ROM #0 and announced a reboot of the series.

    The first comic book I ever owned was ROM #66. I remember the day I bought it, after riding my sister’s new red ten-speed bicycle to the grocery store to get bread and milk for my grandmother. I don’t remember why I was riding my sister’s bike. I do remember smashing that bike into the back of a parked mail truck on the way home because I was reading ROM #66 while riding hands-free. I sat on the curb and finished the book while the mailman yelled and cursed at me. I don’t know what that guy’s problem was. After I finished the story, I headed home with a loaf of smashed bread, a leaking gallon of 2% milk, a potentially broken nose, and what was left of my sister’s bike. True story, although if my sister ever reads this and asks me about it, I’m sticking to the story I told that day. Something about ninjas, if I recall correctly.

    ROM’s story began when an alien race of shape shifting space sorcerers known as Dire Wraiths invaded the peaceful utopian society of planet Galador. In a desperate attempt to fight the Dire Wraiths off, the Galadorian ruler called on the citizens of Galador to volunteer for the Spaceknight program, sacrificing their own humanity to become cyborg warriors. The Spaceknights’ humanity was stored on Galador until such time as the Wraith war would end and they could reclaim it. ROM was the first to volunteer and undergo the transformation.

    When the Solstar Order drove the Dire Wraiths from Galador, ROM chased them back to their home planet to finish them off. The Wraiths used their best weapons, deception and black magic, to escape ROM’s wrath and scatter throughout the galaxy. ROM felt responsible for allowing the Dire Wraiths to spread throughout the galaxy and decided not to reclaim his humanity until the entire species had been found and banished to Limbo.

    ROM #1 picks up right where FCBD ROM #0 left off. In case you missed that one, IDW has kindly reprinted that 11 page story here for your convenience. In his quest to rid the galaxy of the Dire Wraiths, ROM follows the Wraiths’ trail of destruction to a heavily infiltrated planet Earth. Cooper’s Mill, the first town ROM finds on Earth only has one real human living in it, a soldier suffering from PTSD named Darby. All the other inhabitants are Wraiths disguised to appear human. Oddly, even with this level of Wraith infestation, ROM finds no Wraith hives and no signs of planetary subjugation. Further analysis is needed.

    There is an obvious throwback look and feel to the new series, but some tweaks have been made to update ROM’s look and technology. This may seem a little nit-picky, but classic ROM never had fingers. Not sure why they changed that detail, but it was the first thing that I noticed. The new armor also has a lot more detail and lines in it than the classic version. There was something about the old design that was very classic and clean. I know they’re trying to put their own stamp on the franchise, but it’s going to take some getting used to. On the whole, Christos Gage, Chris Ryall, and David Messina have done a slick job bringing this nostalgic title into the 21st century.

    ROM #1, IDW Publishing, released July 27, 2016, written by Christos Gage and Chris Ryall, art and color by David Messina and Michelle Pasta, letters by Shawn Lee, $4.49

    Review by Brendan Allen

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    Free Comic Book Day – Review of ROM #0

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    Review by Luke Howell.

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    WNR: One Moment in Time, Time Masters #1, Charmed #1 & So Much More!

    It’s SDCC 2010, and while Josh and Elisabeth are getting you cool news from San Diego, I’ve got your weekly peek at what’s new.

    cover image for The Walking Dead issue 75

    It’s still July, and that means it’s still Image Month here at TFAW, so I’ll kick things off with The Walking Dead #75. Tensions are growing between Rick and Douglas and it’s anyone’s guess how it will end up. I felt a little surprised by how quickly I reached the end of the issue, but was pleased to find that there is a color back-up story and a picture gallery of the cast of the upcoming AMC series. If, like me, you’re a latecomer to The Walking Dead you’ll be able to get closer to caught up with the latest TPB. The Walking Dead Volume 12 hit shelves today too, collecting issues 67-72. The survivors finally reach D.C., and things look like they might calm down for a little while. The art and writing in The Walking Dead is excellent all the way through. I have to recommend it. If you’re unconvinced by me, check out our interviews with The Walking Dead creator Charlie Adlard and Cliff Rathburn.

    Dark Horse features Janet and Alex Evanovich’s entry into the comics world with the graphic novel Troublemaker Book 1 this week. This hardcover, with art by Joëlle Jones, is the third adventure of Alex Barnaby and Sam Hooker, following on the New York Times bestsellers Metro Girl and Motor Mouth. The art is crisp and vibrant and builds a great sense of environment that adds to the story. The story itself is full of action, mystery, and voodoo. Check out our exclusive interview with Janet and Alex Evanovich, and then go pick up their book.

    cover image for Charmed issue 1cover image for True Blood issue 1

    Also making a crossover into comics this week are Charmed #1 from Zenescope and True Blood #1 from IDW. The Charmed Ones continue on into happily ever after with Paige teaching at the school and Phoebe and Piper trying to deal with the kids. Of course, happily ever after isn’t always what it’s cracked up to be. The story is as strong as any Charmed episode so it’s well worth it for any fan to pick it up. If you prefer vampires to witches, stop in to Merlotte’s for this first issue of True Blood. This one seems like a first issue worth picking up. The action starts right up with some truly well-drawn beasties and blood, and while the dialog is a little rough, you still want to read on. The exclusive David Messina poster included in this issue is a nice touch too.

    DC offers up Time Masters: Vanishing Point #1.  This is the first of a six-issue miniseries that sends Superman, Green Lantern, and Booster Gold through time with Rip Hunter in the search for Bruce Wayne. I’ll be honest with ya, I haven’t been following Batman’s adventures.  I had no problem getting into this story though, and I plan to follow it.  Dan Jurgens does a great job with the time travel story and all the details that go along with it.  The art is bright and dynamic and the pacing of the story builds plenty of interest.  Order this one, and while you’re at it go ahead and get in your pre-orders for the rest of this story.

    For the Lantern Fans, there are two new hardcovers this week as well. Blackest Night: Tales of the Corps and Blackest Night: Rise of the Black Lanterns continue the Blackest Night collection.  You can order them and a ton of other Blackest Night stuff from our Blackest Night page.

    And not to leave the Mighty Marvel off this week’s list there is the Lady Deadpool one-shot pitting Wanda Wilson against Captain America in a fight over the right to enjoy Food Porn. That’s right, Lady Deadpool is fighting for your rights to watch the cooking channel and enjoy your bacon-wrapped porkchops! As always the not-so-subtle satire of a Deadpool story is worth reading, though this one-shot doesn’t have quite the same feeling to the writing as most of the other Deadpool titles running currently.

    cover image for New Avengers issue 2

    If Deadpool isn’t your kind of story, The New Avengers #2 has a bit more superhero action in a story that may just end the world as we know it. The entities after the Eye of Agamotto have possessed Luke Cage to try and get it, and the New Avengers trash Avengers Mansion trying to stop the possessed Cage, Dr. Strange, and Daimon Hellstrom. We still don’t know who is after the Eye, but if they get away with it Everything may just be over. This story is action, start to finish. Heroic Age indeed.

    Finally, not to be forgotten, or possibly to be un-forgotten, Amazing Spider-Man #638 starts One Moment In Time. Will Peter and MJ’s life be set right again? This issue is an interesting mix of new story and art with panels and pages from ASM Annual #21 in which Peter and his bride-to-be prepare for a wedding now undone. This issue started a bit slowly, but it picked up steam by the end. This one isn’t an ideal jumping-on issue, but if you are or have been a Spidey fan pick it up and see where it goes.

    What do you think of these titles? What are you going to read this week that I didn’t mention? Leave your comments below.

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    Angel: Only Human #5

    Angel Only Human #5 available for pre-order Great news for Angel fans! We’ve got Angel: Only Human #5 up at TFAW.com! As Gunn faces down the last of The Scourge and makes a desperate last stand, Illyria faces off one last time with her old “pet,” Baticus. How do you defeat a demon who keeps growing back all his parts?

    But it’s the gruesome discovery that Gunn makes that could change the entire game. Don’t miss the epic conclusion to this exciting story from team Lobdell/Messina.

    Angel: Only Human #5 arrives tomorrow, and we couldn’t be more excited to see what happens. Due to a communication error with our supplier, Angel: Only Human #5 wasn’t offered as a pre-order at TFAW.com (or any other comic book shop) until today.

    Normally, when comics arrive in our warehouse, the every day low pricing kicks in and the pre-order savings disappear. Not the case with tomorrow’s release of Angel: Only Human #5.

    Order by 11:59PM (PST) December 27, 2009 and you’ll save 20% regardless of whether you place a pre-order or in-stock order.

    We do, however, urge you to place a pre-order now so the issue will ship according to your pre-order shipping schedule. You’ll save on shipping that way.

    Note to Subscribers: Even if you have a subscription to Angel: Only Human, you’ll want to manually order your copy of Angel: Only Human #5 because it was not picked up in the subscription process at the end of October. We apologize for the inconvenience.



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