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RE: What comic book are you reading right now?

 
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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 24/2/2013 10:26:42 AM   
sanchia


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I started reading 2000AD about two issues into that story. The twist at the end didn't have a massive impact on me as I didn't really know the characters at that stage. It is a great lead up to Necropolis though.

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 24/2/2013 12:31:39 PM   
Nexus Wookie


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From: the Godcity
Damn i wish i read it when it first came out. You're right, it leads up pretty seamlessly to Necropolis. I'm gutted in a way because if i read it in order a lot of things would've made sense in Necropolis. Which is why i am going to give it another read, its been a while - just after i'm done reading Incubus. Henry Flint's artwork is jaw-droppingly good.

And i still have a chapter to go on The Incal! Its the longest i've taken with a comic, not because i'm uninterested - far from it. Its because you cannot rush something with the name Moebius attached to it!

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 25/2/2013 7:54:31 AM   
Chojin


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Joined: 29/6/2007
From: Bedfordshire


Absolutely brilliant! Marz has taken the Witchblades inconsistent and confusing history and made it into an interlinked history with other Top Cow titles. It was so refreshing suddenly seeing a title 'reborn' in this issue with Sara seeing the past users of the Witchblade and how it was created. Some brilliant art in this issue as well from lots of guest artists.

12 issues into the Marz run and I can confirm the review were correct, it gets so good from 80+

Guest art like the below showing the original Darkness and Angelus conceiving the Witchblade and the first wielder. Loving the title at the moment.



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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 26/2/2013 7:42:47 AM   
Chojin


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My second or third reading, I forget which. Another thing I forget is how damn good it gets in the second half. I really want Hulk to kick some arse now! But i've read WWH and didn't really rate it :(

Home:



Only 3 issues until i'm finished with the second compendium - I need the third one!

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 26/2/2013 9:13:08 AM   
Nexus Wookie


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Does the MGNC's Planet Hulk contain all the excellent extra's that were available in the collected trade, Chojin? i hope they do include those because that in itself was an enjoyable read.

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 26/2/2013 5:59:21 PM   
Chojin


Posts: 4810
Joined: 29/6/2007
From: Bedfordshire

quote:

ORIGINAL: Nexus Wookie

Does the MGNC's Planet Hulk contain all the excellent extra's that were available in the collected trade, Chojin? i hope they do include those because that in itself was an enjoyable read.


IIRC the first part contains some fact files on the planet and species - and the second volume has the amazing fantasy backup strip which is semi-related but not essential. None of the prelude issues are included where he actually goes into space and gets betrayed. It starts from the first official planet hulk issue. Still an enjoyable read but i think the prelude issues would have been a nice touch.

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 26/2/2013 8:52:12 PM   
Nexus Wookie


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Chojin


quote:

ORIGINAL: Nexus Wookie

Does the MGNC's Planet Hulk contain all the excellent extra's that were available in the collected trade, Chojin? i hope they do include those because that in itself was an enjoyable read.


IIRC the first part contains some fact files on the planet and species - and the second volume has the amazing fantasy backup strip which is semi-related but not essential. None of the prelude issues are included where he actually goes into space and gets betrayed. It starts from the first official planet hulk issue. Still an enjoyable read but i think the prelude issues would have been a nice touch.


It would've been nice. Hmmm...i might have to look but i think the TPB collection also didn't have the prelude. I'm glad to hear they included the other stuff though, Planet Hulk is a really fun read.

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 26/2/2013 10:15:28 PM   
juanvasquez


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I've fallen behind with this somewhat, but this has got to be my favourite series of comics. Although I felt vol 4 wasn't quite as good, this is definitely a return to form, and continues to be one of the more original comics I've read.

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 27/2/2013 7:28:50 AM   
Chojin


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From: Bedfordshire


and that's the second compendium done. I will be ordering the third for sure. Mike Choi's art is just amazing. But first, I gotta make a start on The Darkness Compendium V1. Loving Top Cow at the moment.



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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 28/2/2013 1:00:19 PM   
Nexus Wookie


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Joined: 24/9/2011
From: the Godcity
Wow the artwork above looks fantastic, Chojin. As for me...




(Warning: Spoilers)

Wow.

The Cover is absolutely superb, Brian Bolland does a stellar job indeed. I love the black background, makes the image of Dredd more potent and striking. Its great to see Bolland back again for cover duties, an artist who for me ranks high amongst comic industry legends.

Judge Dredd: Wolves Part 2; i enjoyed Part 1 in the last Prog but wasn't overly bowled over by Andrew Currie's artwork. However, i take it back. I haven't had this much fun with a Dredd story since Peter Doherty's work a couple of months back. Its a joy just scouring the panels looking for a familiar face. Jeremy Paxman's cameo was the highlight for me! On top of Paulie and Trigger's appearance in the last Prog. And i'm sure i saw the the, ahem, big breasted woman on page 5 somewhere else too....hmmm? Currie's rendering of the Judicial planes and the transport/ buses are especially good. The carrier craft on page 3 reminded me of that awesome drop ship in Aliens ("we're in the pipe, five by five"? Yeah that one!). The only jarring character has to be the depiction of Hershey, who looks like a 14 year old girl a la Natalie Portman in Lon, but overall i was mighty impressed. The story is also really enjoyable, it'll be interesting to see how this one developes in the next instalment, especially Dmitry's spot of bother with Paulie er - Luka i mean!

Savage is also another enjoyable fare. I won't talk too much about Goddard's artwork for want of sounding repetetive...ah what the hell. I love goddard's b&w artwork - stunning is an understatement. Things are developing really nicely, especially Savage's new target. That goes for all wars in a way (and i'm sure Pat Mills is showing this), things aren't always as black and white as we are lead to believe. The Volgan's talking about signs and symbols, the Swastika and the Freemason signature - was interesting. Especially Steeleye's assumption that the Quartz' are members of the secret society themselves. On top of that there is of course the issue with that bastard sniper. And lastly, it was nice to see my borough getting name checked (Tower Hamlets)! Really looking forward to next week.

Ampney Crucis was also a joy to read. The opening page was nicely done by Simon Davis, i felt a little sorry for the Babbagist priest. Last few pages were also terrific. I have a theory that Ampney's dad is actually Ben Affleck the morning after his Oscar win for Argo!

The Red Seas continues to entertain me with unequable measure (other than the other strips in the Prog!). Steve Yeowell's artwork is magnificent. Stand out moments? Erebus' head over arse fall and the last page. Wow. Odin and Thor be praised (not forgetting Huginn and Muninn!).

Now Strontium Dogs, oh man. Stellar stuff indeed. The opening page was thrilling not to mention visually arresting thanks to the magic of Carlos Ezquerra's ink. The colour pallete throughout the 6 pages were very reminiscent of Necropolis. It was also graphic too, Kid Knee's shooting of a norm being the main one. He, much like his father has always been a bit of an arsehole in my view. Also affecting was the next page....
The last page was superbly done especially Johnny Alpha's war cry. Things are looking very bleak indeed for both Muties and Norms. This being the last Stronty for now, I look forward to the concluding series soon. It hasn't always been plain sailing, we've had our ups and downs, but its been a fun strip nonetheless.

So all in all an outstanding Programme - the best by far since the new year.

5/5

P.S, Happy birthday Tharg!

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 28/2/2013 8:09:44 PM   
Chojin


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definately not as good as it was. The fights are boring with one punch lasting half the volume and it constantly references boring scientific theory and literature. I want to see Robots punching each other into little pieces, not theorizing and quoting science in the middle of a fight. This used to be a beloved title of mine, but it's kind of lost its way....

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I can tell this is an Ennis title. Some great dark humor, a great anti hero and the Silvestri Art make this a fun read

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 1/3/2013 5:21:38 AM   
Nexus Wookie


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Does The Darkness tie in with Witchblade, Chojin? I have to admit that seeing all the awesome stuff you posted on here, i was a little intrigued and downloaded a couple of issues over at comixology, looks very interesting if you ask me! Also i remember Battle Angel Alita from my Manga reading days and i still have a soft spot for it. I read James Cameron was close to directing a film version, but opted for Avatar instead. I wish he'd gone with plan A, would've made for a far more interesting film.

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 1/3/2013 7:43:13 AM   
Chojin


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Joined: 29/6/2007
From: Bedfordshire
quote:

ORIGINAL: Nexus Wookie
Does The Darkness tie in with Witchblade, Chojin? I have to admit that seeing all the awesome stuff you posted on here, i was a little intrigued and downloaded a couple of issues over at comixology, looks very interesting if you ask me! Also i remember Battle Angel Alita from my Manga reading days and i still have a soft spot for it. I read James Cameron was close to directing a film version, but opted for Avatar instead. I wish he'd gone with plan A, would've made for a far more interesting film.


Yeah The Darkness does tie in but very loosely at the start. When Marz takes over Witchblade he kind of takes over and rewrites all of the origin stories and makes them interlinked without losing any chronology so it's not like a cheap retcon. The only good thing about the early Witchblade stories is the art from Michael Turner who stuck around for the first 25 issues. After that between issues 26 - 79 the art has its ups and downs but the story really suffers from not having any sense of direction.

If you're looking to start reading Witchblade I would really recommend the initial Marz arc of issues #80-85 which is a self contained story which gets you up to speed. The Choi art is also just beautiful to look at. Or if you're like me and want to be a completionist, the first compendium in Hardback format is available from Forbidden Planet online for about 37. You won't find it cheaper anywhere else......at least 50+ elsewhere, they seem to be selling it cheap for some reason and still haven't lowered their price. But a warning, the book is so huge and heavy you won't be able to read it on the go and home reading is the only real option!

And yeah I love BAA. The first 9 volumes were great, and even the first part of Last Order was really interesting - but its just big flashy fights now without the flash.It needs to get back to basics, it's getting a bit of a mess now. Honestly used to be one of my favorite manga :/

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 1/3/2013 10:27:48 AM   
Nexus Wookie


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Thanks for the info, mate. The artwork is indeed superb (and i'm a person who lives for art) Will definitely look into.

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 1/3/2013 10:42:45 AM   
Harry Tuttle


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I started reading No Man's Land vol 3 last night and to be honest it's a bit of a slog. There are bits I like, mainly the interaction between the Bat family and the introduction of Cassandra Cain as Batgirl but it does also make you wonder how civilisation would cope under similar extreme situations. The main problem I have with it though is that it's the whole thing is so implausible. Some of the writing is piss poor as well. I laughed through most of the issue where Bane returns to Gotham, it's just so ridiculous. I haven't even come across the Azrael issues in this volume yet and they've been uniformly awful in the previous volumes so I'm kinda dreading them.

I'm only about a quarter of the way through it at the moment and then there's another volume to go through. I really wish I hadn't bothered with the whole storyline now but what's done is done.

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 1/3/2013 8:12:50 PM   
Vadersville


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I'm currently working my way through Volume 4 of NML. I started off enjoying No Man's Land but I think each volume has dropped significantly in quality. There's still some gems in each book, but this whole storyline has been very drawn out and amazingly inconsistent, in terms of both writing and art. It amazes me just how many times the same story has been told (an ordinary citizen standing up against overwelming odds, to be put to the brink, when all hope is lost, stand by their principle, just to be saved by a member of the Bat family at the last possible moment). Were there no editors at DC then? No? Just like now then really, ay? Another thing is just how little Batman actually features. At first seeing stories from different people's points of view was an interesting change of direction but now I can't help but think its just a lazy, over-used gimmick. I bought a Batman book so show me some Batman already! I'm still glad I started the arc as I missed out on most of it first time round and its influence has been felt alot recently with DKR and Arkham City but I'm finding it a real grind now. I feel about No Man's Land the same way I feel about War games. an interesting idea, that was overdone and at times poorly written (more so with WG) and poorly drawn that long overstayed its welcome. Except with NML, I still want to like it. We'll see how Volume 4 pans out...

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 2/3/2013 1:58:02 PM   
Nexus Wookie


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Joined: 24/9/2011
From: the Godcity
JUDGE DREDD VS ALIENS: INCUBUS



For me, crossovers are a bit of a hit or miss. There's been some poor stuff over the years, but also memorable ones such as the first Alien vs Predator story (the films in comparison...well lets not go there).
And then there are of course the Judge Dredd crossovers (Judge Dredd vs Batman, Predator vs Judge Dredd). But Incubus was my first foray into the Judge Dredd crossovers...and what fun it was too!

I'll be honest, my decision to buy this collection was more to do with the fact it was illustrated by Henry Flint, one of my favourite artists working in comics today, rather than the fact it's Old-Stoney face up against the galaxies most terrifying monsters ( much as i love the Alien films). But what surprised me reading the collection was that the the story by Wagner and Andy Diggle was so strong. Maybe not on the same strength as America or The Pit, but still a damn enjoyable read. And of course the artwork......

Lets just say when my eyes graced Henry Flint's awesome artwork for the first time, i felt i had died and gone to Zarjaz heaven! But i'll start with the story first. The reason why Incubus is such a joy to read is the characters, whether it be the Verminators (pest controllers), or Judge Dredd and his team, especially the character of Sanchez (I believe this was her first appearance in 2000ad, we see her later in the Origins storyline). She brought a bit of humanity to the 'unhuman' nature of the Judges. You can see she is scared by the Alien catatrophe but slowly she developes along the way until she comes out stronger by the end. Her character reminded me of Anderson in the recent Judge Dredd film, a character also who also harbours doubt and fear but developes into a tough nut toward the end. The villain of the piece was also quite memorable, sort of like the 2000ad version of Two-Face. We learn about his motives, and how he became the 'daddy' to the xenomorphs! His base of operations which is located in the ruins of the old world beneath MC1, is a visual delight. With remnants of New York like a graveyard, the skyscrapers side by side like giant headstones, it is here the outcasts and muties dwell.

Which brings us nicely onto the art; Henry Flint does a stellar job indeed. This being one of his earlier works, at first i noticed some similarities between his style to that of Carlos Ezquerra's with the 'obsessive' details and line works, but Flint makes the style pretty much his own. Looking at his work now, especially his work on The Cold Deck (Trifecta) and comparing it to his earlier stuff such as his fabulous work on ABC Warriors and this comic, you can see how he has matured as an artist and how he has devoloped his style. I commented on his blog recently and he was kind enough to get back to me, he said that his inspiration was from earlier black and white works on 2000ad, and it shows - he is one of the most versatile artists around and you can see several influences from that period in his work over the years. But now he has mastered his style to the point his recent works and especially his work on the Chaos Day storyline, can only be called his own. Its the Henry Flint style.



There were a lot of standout moments in the comic; the Alien skydive with a series of panels depicting an Alien falling from a great height before exploding into a fireball mid-air and crashing down into the ground, leaving a huge hole in the process. The depiction of this thrilling moment was expertly conveyed by Flint, panel by panel. There was also some really nice artistic touches such as the opening panel. We see rows of 'power towers'; structures which resemble the Aliens with their iconic hissing mouths. Not to mention some injokes such as the Harry Dean Stanton block! Also, i don't know if anyone who has read Incubus before noticed, but i swear the tech guy 'Benson' looks like Sly Stallone! It probably serves him right that he gets to do the gruesome work; punishment for crimes commited in another life perhaps?

I was surprised by how fun this comic was, it was well written, funny, tragic, beautiful - everything you'd expect from a strong writer such as Wagner. And of course Flint, his artwork - especially for the Aliens- some of the best i've seen. There was a nice foreword by Simon Pegg in this trade, as well as a 'deleted scene' with some nice sketches by Henry Flint. Overall it was a nice package by Rebellion. On this evidence i am looking forward to reading the other crossover stories, notably Judge Dredd vs Batman. Now excuse me while i give this comic another read...

5/5


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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 2/3/2013 5:07:51 PM   
Chojin


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Joined: 29/6/2007
From: Bedfordshire
If you want the best crossover with Aliens/Predator definitely check out Batman Vs Predator. Kubert art is incredible and it's got a solid story. The two sequel series aren't anywhere near as good but the first is the best Aliens/Predator crossover you could read



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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 2/3/2013 5:28:38 PM   
Nexus Wookie


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From: the Godcity
Noted.

Artwork looks fantastic, Chojin. This i definitely gotta see!

EDIT: just having a little trouble trying to locate a copy, seeing as its quite an old title i might have to settle for one of the used copies at Amazon. I wonder why DC never reprinted this title?

< Message edited by Nexus Wookie -- 2/3/2013 8:59:18 PM >


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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 2/3/2013 6:27:38 PM   
rich


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The Crow

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 3/3/2013 7:34:40 AM   
Chojin


Posts: 4810
Joined: 29/6/2007
From: Bedfordshire

quote:

ORIGINAL: Nexus Wookie

Noted.

Artwork looks fantastic, Chojin. This i definitely gotta see!

EDIT: just having a little trouble trying to locate a copy, seeing as its quite an old title i might have to settle for one of the used copies at Amazon. I wonder why DC never reprinted this title?


http://www.eruditor.com/exec/books/item/9781852864460.html.en?cart=9781852864460&PHPSESSID= (7.64) but I haven't used this site before!)

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Batman-vs-Predator-Collected-Edition-by-Dave-Gibbons-Dark-Horse-Comics-1993-/251235887070?pt=UK_Books_Comics_Magazines_Graphic_Novels_ET&hash=item3a7ed367de

The above is the version I have, it's on very nasty money saving paper but it does the job. The other options are the 3 standard print issues which are the same quality as your everyday comic book print. Or to locate the prestige format 3 issues. They sold for about 3.75 each back in '97 . The difference being the pages are glued not stapled - much like Batman/Aliens, Superman/Aliens if you've read any of those original versions. From looking around you're looking at 12+ for all three prestige issues.

As for my reading:



Moving along quite quickly, it's a very fun read at the moment. I'm just not looking forward to when Ennis and Silvestri leave the title. I hate when writers/artists are swapped out all the time :/

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 3/3/2013 3:00:18 PM   
Nexus Wookie


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From: the Godcity
Thanks for the link, Chojin - much appreciated! As for me..



Judge Dredd Megazine #333



Another enjoyable Megazine! First up, the cover. One word, awesome. One of the best Megazine covers, if not the best since i came on board. I love the colour palette, red goes really well with black making the image really striking. Henry Flint has now officially progressed from artdroid to artgod.

Judge Dredd: Night Mayor on L.M Street; i couldn't help but chuckle at the title! :D, story (by Alan Grant) revolves around a mayoral election taking place in MC1. However one of the candidates isn't playing fair. The artwork by Anthony Williams was not bad, however i can't say i was too fond of it especially his depiction of Dredd. On page 2 the close up of Dredd (with the shading) makes him look like he's grown a moustache a la Douglas Fairbanks! It was a fun strip nonetheless.

Comics Roundtable: Horror; a nice article interviewing 2000ad's Ian Edginton, Jon Davis-Hunt and Arthur Wyatt alongside writer Dan Lockwood on their views on horror in comics. It was an interesting read, especially hearing about what they thought of Ennis' Crossed - a comic not for the squeamish. It was nice learning about how each of them have tackled horror in the past, and the best methods of using it effectively in the medium. Its also made me want to check out some of the stuff, like Cradlegrave.

Trifecta/ Best Laid Plans by Michael Molcher; a look into one of the greatest comic events of last year. A nice read, and one thats got me dying to read Trifecta all over again.

Hondo City Justice: Revenge of the 47 Ronin Part Two; hugely hugely enjoyable. The undead ronin are wreaking havoc in Hondo City, and Judge Inaba is up to her neck trying to contain the threat. Mike Collins' artwork is oh so good, the opener was beautifully rendered as we are taken back in time to Japan circa 1702 AD. The Black Sun Empress was both beautiful and terrifying in the same measure. I'm really enjoying this strip and hope to see more next month.

American Reaper II Part 2; excellent stuff. I can't understand the hate for this as its really well wtitten, and goes along at a cracking pace. I can see how the 'artwork' can put off someone (as it did me at the start), but i soon got acquainted to it. It makes for a change in my opinion, and we can start to see Clint Langley's input more this month. I love the whole set up, interesting main character and intriguing premise not to mention the wisecracks and action. The stand out in this episode was the exchange between the prisoner, Don and the professor esp. as the professor would shortly be transplanted into the criminals body! This brings up a whole can of worms such as the moral aspect of the procedure and doubts; would the professor's wife be comfortable seeing her husband inside the body of a serial rapist and murderer? The strip is full of fascinating ideas and engaging moments like the one highlighted, and i for one love it!

Interrogation: Karl Richardson; a nice article on Karl, and his artistic influences and process. Followed immediately by...

Judge Dredd: The Lost Cases/ The Last Judda; where we see Karl Richardson's impressive art in action. I'm not too familar with the Judda storyline, i've read what happens and know the summary but have yet to read the actual story from start to finish. Nevertheless it was an okay read (the Judda turning up at a comedy club the highlight for me) but the monotone artwork was the thing i enjoyed most out of the two.

So overall an excellent issue, and one i thoroughly enjoyed. But wait...hold on, i almost forgot about the floppy! Which would've been tragic seeing as how awesome a read it was!

A.H.A.B; the story set in a far flung future was based on Moby Dick, instead of whales we had the Kohenyu; giant whale like creatures flying (or is it floating?) through space. And instead of Ahab we had A.H.A.B; a alien robot whose empty shell is inhabited by a human (sorta like an Avatar), he's a devious, conniving bastard who won't stop at anything to wipe all the Kehanyu's from existence. Our protagonist is Ishmael or 'Izzie' as she likes to be known. She is a scientist who's goal is to save earth and mankind from the Ebola virus, but in order to do this she has to extract fluids from the Kohenyu's tear ducts, but A.H.A.B has other plans....

I have to say that it was a really fun read. I went through the floppy in no time at all and by the end wished there was more! Richard Elson's artwork is absolutely superb. I loved his work on Kingdom, and its pretty much the same here.



A two page spread of the magnificent Kogenyu, when we see it for the first time - is magnificent to behold. I loved the design of the futuristic ships and vessels, and the last pages in particular when we see the Kohenyu queen -was superbly rendered, not to mention the colour palette throughout the story, it was a really eye catching read. Coming back to the design, the main ship is shaped almost like a boat (which was no doubt a concious decision), and its slim line nature and front reminded me of the U.S.S Sulaco in Aliens.

It was a really enjoyable read, and to top it off we had three short tales at the end, Future Shocks: Spare Parts being the most entertaining out of them. Definitely one of the better floppies - quality-wise i hope to see more like this. Excellent stuff overall, A.H.A.B, Hondo City and American Reaper the stand out for me.

5/5



< Message edited by Nexus Wookie -- 9/3/2013 9:37:44 AM >


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Post #: 1132
RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 5/3/2013 7:37:18 AM   
Chojin


Posts: 4810
Joined: 29/6/2007
From: Bedfordshire
Work:



I wanted to re-read this from the start. It's only my second read-through but it should make the 4-6 month wait between volumes a bit easier. Looking forward to reading this again :)

Home:



Quite confusing...The other two issues of this mini series were in the first Witchblade Compendium so I was a bit lost going through this, as I was when I was reading that Compendium. Luckily it doesn't last long and from #11 it will be back on track.

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Post #: 1133
RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 7/3/2013 7:21:14 PM   
indysgill


Posts: 5137
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: relic hunting


Actually reading Vol 1, but the cover to that is nowhere near as good as this one.

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 7/3/2013 8:07:26 PM   
Nexus Wookie


Posts: 2326
Joined: 24/9/2011
From: the Godcity
Wow. That looks awesome!

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Post #: 1135
RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 7/3/2013 9:22:42 PM   
Nexus Wookie


Posts: 2326
Joined: 24/9/2011
From: the Godcity
The Incal



For me, Mbius is a god.

Ever since i was a young boy i had been fascinated by his artwork. I was an avid reader of Asterix and Tin Tin at a young age, and it was around that time that i came upon an article in a magazine about Mbius. I remember being fascinated by it and the corresponding artwork with the article- it was then that the name of Mbius became forever imprinted in my mind. As a teenager i carried on reading comics, my tastes had varied by then and i was more interested in sci-fi literature and comics (not to mention films aswell). Two of my favourite films growing up were Blade Runner and Alien. After digging further i was surprised to see Mbius' name attached to both projects. Ridley Scott (an accomplished artist himself) was a big fan of the French artist and looking at the films you can clearly see his influence on them stylistically. The concept art he did for these films (especially Alien) was superb. My attempts at finding Mbius comics however proved futile due to the rarity of it and any i did come across were always in French.

Anyhow, fast forward many years later and finally someone had the decency to publish one of Mbius' famous works; The Incal. U.S publisher Humanoid released a hardback edition of The Incal, but on closer inspection it proved to be an unfaithful translation because some of the panels had been re-coloured, so it could be more 'palatable' to U.S readers, not to mention the censoring of nudity. Both these poor decisions in my view tatamounted to sacrilege. Would someone re-colour the Mona Lisa to make her appear more appealing? I very much doubt it. Then why the need for this I do not know. Thankfully readers in the U.K seem to have more sense because a more faithful translation was released by SelfMadeHero; with the colouring and nudity intact. And this is the version which i managed to purchase and had the previlage of reading.
To understand The Incal, first you have to understand a little about its writer Alejandro Jodorowsky. He came to prominence via his acid western El Topo and later, Holy Mountain. But his dream was to direct Frank Herbert's Dune. I say Frank Herbert's Dune but Jodorowsky's version was to be very different from the novel. He had gone so far as assembling all the artists (Mbius among them) and actors (i use the term loosely, afterall I doubt Pink Floyd or Salvador Dali had any acting credentials to go along with their main talents). But alas, due to financial collapse it was not meant to be. Jodorowsky was left devestated, almost everyone agree's that it would have been one hell of a film. But all was not lost; he decided to team up with his colleague Mbius and release his own version of Dune via the comic format. And thus, The Incal was born.

But how best to describe The Incal? It is very hard to put this masterwork into one category. I feel The Guardian newspaper summed it up perfectly; 'a dance on the edge of meaning and meaningless' ( http://m.guardian.co.uk/books/booksblog/2011/jan/25/alejandro-jodorowsky ) and i wholly agree. Like i said you cannot lump the work into one category- so dense is its story. It's like a dream, a journey, a song, a poem, an odyssey and at heart, a comedy. And my, what a journey it is too - unlike anything i had ever read before. Not forgetting awe-inspiring, bordering on the mindboggling moments; From sun devouring black eggs, a child who turns into a spaceship, giant Jellyfishes to John DiFool's intimate encounter with a mass of gloop and soonafter a meeting with the ultimate light - or god himself; The Incal is a visual and literal assault on the senses.

We first meet our protogonist, John DiFool in some 'trying' circumstances as he is dropped headfirst into 'Suicide Alley'. Slowly we backtrack to find how he came to be in this predicament. When we first meet him John DiFool is quite unlikeable as a character. A class R detective, he is a coward who likes nothing more than drinking himself to a stupor and sleeping away his life with Homeo-whores ('replicant' hookers). But then he encounters The Incal; a mysterious object that beckons him to a higher calling in life. During the course of his journey he starts to realise how a decision which may seem insignificent comes to have a larger bearing on the galaxy. In tow is his ever faithful companion Deepo; a 'concrete seagull' who is the closest thing to a friend he has and provides the comics light reliefs. And on their trail; a wide array of dangerous and colourful characters from the wolf headed 'Kill Wolfhead', the 'Metabaron'; the greatest bounty hunter in the universe to the bird like alien race, the Berg's and the insane Clone Prince.

A journey which starts at the upper levels of the world soon descends into the very core of the planet, where we meet others along the way, such as Animah the Rat Queen. It is here, due to an impending attack by some mutants, Kill and the Metabaron, characters who are at first unfriendly to DiFool put their differences aside to help one another (one of the aspects i loved about this story), against much powerful foes such as the mutant hordes and the possessed Prince.



But all these dangers seem trivial in comparison to The Darkness; an all consuming evil so great that only the power of The Incal stands in its way. And thus begins a journey through many worlds, space and time in an epic adventure quite unlike anything i had ever witnessed.

The story by Jodorowsky is no doubt the doorway to this intriguing world, but Mbius' artwork is the key which makes it all a possibility. No other artist at the time could've matched Jodorowsky's 'mind-warping' storytelling, but Mbius proved a perfect match; drawing the 'prophet's' visions down on parchments was like second nature. Each feeding one another ideas, until the collaboration bore this magnificent work, a work of breath taking artistry, vision and guile. Reading it i was left dumbstruck on several occasions, awed by Mbius' majestic artwork, seering itself into my brain. The level of his artistic miracle growing in strength page after page, panel after panel. Whether it be the details of every rubbish piece in the depth of DiFool's world, or the astonishing detail of the arena and its occupants in the Bergs' home planet, or the magnificent yet deadly water world, Vitavil H20, concealing a beautiful mystery at its depths - the comic is full of stunning moments which just takes the breath away.



Reading The Incal it is clear to see how its influence reaches far and wide. Filmmakers and artists have been influenced by it, most notably Luc Besson who was sued (unsuccessfully) by Jodorowsky for copying some of the ideas from the comic for his film, The Fifth Element. While i myself thought the similarities were very loose (other than the whole dark vs light storyline and some vehicle, costume and character design) you can still see Mbius' influence on the film, even the colour palette which is reminiscent of his comics. The Incal also reminded me of Brian K Vaughan's sci-fi series, Saga. Both having weird and wonderful characters and settings and even a few similarities between the character 'The Will', a fearsome bounty hunter who seems very close to The Metabaron of The Incal. Or even Brandon Graham's Prophet series seems like it is paying tribute to The Incal at times (e.g, Prophet's 'Vagina Chicken' encounter is evocative of DiFool's liasion with the Proto-Queen). What is clear and without question though, is that this comic has influenced so many people since it was released in 1981. But a word of caution; The Incal might not be catered for everyone's taste. There are moments when it does get very surreal especially midway through, and reading it can be tricky at times because of the way the speech bubbles (or boxes) are arranged, but if you can persevere and not rush it (which is key) - then the reward is one of the most enjoyable, memorable and enriching.

5/5

Edit: impqueen if you're reading this, then you'll probably know that i recommend this book to you wholeheartedly!

< Message edited by Nexus Wookie -- 9/3/2013 9:43:56 AM >


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Post #: 1136
RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 8/3/2013 7:52:07 AM   
Chojin


Posts: 4810
Joined: 29/6/2007
From: Bedfordshire


Nowhere as good as when Ennis/Silvestri were on board. It's taken a bit of a nose dive after the first 6 issue run

Edit: Just noticed Ennis is still with the title, not sure how much influence he had though.

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 8/3/2013 10:02:45 AM   
sharkboy


Posts: 6274
Joined: 26/9/2005
From: Belfast
quote:

ORIGINAL: Chojin

If you want the best crossover with Aliens/Predator definitely check out Batman Vs Predator. Kubert art is incredible and it's got a solid story. The two sequel series aren't anywhere near as good but the first is the best Aliens/Predator crossover you could read




Agreed - the Batman/Predator book was excellent (though I must confess to liking the sequel too! In fact, I'm pretty sure these were included in my big comic giveaway last year)

Did you ever check out the Superman/Aliens ones? The first was the best of the two storylines - Supes gets faced with the moral dilemma of whether or not to wipe out the alien hive while coming to terms with the fact that his encounter with the extra-terrestrial nasties may have been just a little too close.  Good stuff!

Anyway, I've just caught up with the last few issues of Chew.  I'll not spoil it for anyone, but fuck me, that hit me like a blow to the solar plexus.  Brilliant writing and artwork from the Chew crew that moved the whole title up several notches. 

< Message edited by sharkboy -- 8/3/2013 10:05:08 AM >


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Post #: 1138
RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 8/3/2013 5:41:47 PM   
Chojin


Posts: 4810
Joined: 29/6/2007
From: Bedfordshire
I've got the first SvA series in it's original format but haven't read the sequel series. I did quite rate the first series, but as we've both agreed Bats vs Predator is the best of the lot by a country mile

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RE: What comic book are you reading right now? - 13/3/2013 9:12:39 AM   
Nexus Wookie


Posts: 2326
Joined: 24/9/2011
From: the Godcity
I just finished reading Stickleback, in one sitting last night. Once i began to get sucked into this H.P Lovecraft/ Charles Dickens'/ Edgar Allan Poe/ Boschian version of London in the early 1900's, i couldn't escape! I love Ian Edginton's works, such as for Leviathan, Brass Sun and Red Seas, and this is up there with his best. And D'Israeli's artwork is just awesome. I 'm looking forward to the new series which'll be starting next week in the Galaxy's Greatest Comic.

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