*Black Kiss #2 is for mature readers only.
The late eighties in Los Angeles, California. A time of excitement and mystery. In 1988 Sonny Bono is elected mayor of Palm Springs, Coming to America is making audiences across the country laugh, and Ronald Reagan is bumbling around trying to find Iran on the map. An exciting time, indeed. Amidst all of this excitement takes place the story of Black Kiss by Howard Chaykin, one of the most controversial comics of its time. Any story involving pre-op trannies, vampires, sex, stars of the silent film era, the Vatican, prostitution, sex, murder, cults, and hard-edged noir crime makes for a compelling story. There's also quite a bit of sex.
The cover of Think Tank comes with a disclaimer: “DANGER: Reading this book will make you smarter.” While I don’t know if that is necessarily true, the book does raise some interesting questions---and who knows? This is only the first issue, after all, and I did learn a couple of new factoids. Maybe, as the series continues, I actually will rack up a couple of IQ points. Of course, Think Tank’s protagonist doesn’t think much of IQ tests, and he seems way smarter than me, so maybe I should stop speculating and tell you what I actually thought of the book.
Hypernaturals takes place in a far-flung future where the sentient A.I. known as the Quantinuum links all the known worlds and civilizations and keeps each of them running. The Quantinuum's defenders are a team of super-powered individuals known as the Hypernaturals who are hand picked and serve for up to three five-year terms. Seven years ago, the Hypernaturals defeated the threat of Sublime, a man who possessed an intellect far superior to that of super geniuses, whose goal was to destroy the Quantinuum. Now, the latest team of Hypernaturals has gone missing on a routine mission, and it's up to the retired members and wash-outs to form a new team before whatever took out the Hypernaturals comes for the Quantinuum.
Who doesn't love futuristic sci-fi, where the heroes travel from world to world fighting dinosaurs and bounty hunters? Sam Humphries delivers another awesome issue of his action-packed sci-fi series, Higher Earth. Humphries has rocketed to stardom as a top writer at several of the major publishers since the debut of his Image book, Our Love is Real, and he deserves all of the praise he gets, as he is one fantastic writer. He somehow manages to build this awesome new multiverse filled with incredible characters while keeping the book moving at a brisk pace and never shying away from intense, bloody action.
Jim McCann used to work in soap operas, and he told me once in an interview that comics, even superhero comics, are just soap operas with more action. He went on to give examples of how many long-lost twins and comas and bouts of amnesia could be found in both comics and soap operas. Well, it looks like Jim has finally made a true soap opera comic in Mind the Gap, and it is awesome. Like a soap opera, Mind the Gap has a big cast of characters who all have their own secret motives and dark secrets. Unlike a soap opera, Mind the Gap has extraordinary elements like an entire world that takes place in the psyche of coma patients. Yeah, you read that right, this book is trippy.
Harvest is a gritty look at the grimy underworld of blackmarket surgery and organ transplants. A.J. Lieberman spins an interesting tale about a doctor's fall from grace and the criminals who take him in to make use of his unique skill set. The book is filled with all of the drugs, violence, and language that you expect out of a dark crime book, but with its crisp dialogue and very believable characters, it reaches beyond its genre to be a unique thriller with plenty of intense drama in store for the reader. Colin Lorimer's art is fantastic. He uses clean lines that give his characters a very realistic feel, and then colors over them with thick, dark colors adding a very film noir feel to the book. This especially makes the color pop when he adds a bloody red to the scene.
This collection includes the Hellboy stories Darkness Calls and The Wild Hunt, which are parts one and two of the longest Hellboy story yet. Purists might be upset that Mignola isn’t illustrating this series, but don’t despair. Duncan Fegredo’s art works here. In fact, I didn’t realize at first that anything had changed. Apparently, when it was announced that Mike Mignola, the creator of Hellboy, wouldn’t provide the art for the series, there was a bit of an uproar. Although, I don’t think Hellboy would have continued if Fegredo hadn’t come along. Supposedly, the previous book just about wiped Mignola out. I can say that this team works well together, and this feels just as authentic as any other Hellboy comic I have seen. Actually, I would go so far as to say that this is Hellboy at his best.
From Titan Books comes a beautiful, oversized volume of the 1970s war-comic legend, Major Eazy. What’s that you say? You don’t know who Major Eazy is? Well, friend, you might like him, you might hate him, but either way, you can’t ignore Major Eazy.
At San Diego Comic-Con 2012, Fanboy Comics Creative Director Sam Rhodes talked with artist Jason Shawn Alexander about his transition from comics to gallery work, how he initially got his start, and why he will never leave the sequential art medium.
At San Diego Comic-Con 2012, Michael Jai White, Carl Jones, and Byron Minns, the creators of the new Cartoon Network show Black Dynamite, talk about the process of converting the 1996 live action film to an animated series, what they are hoping to achieve with the show, and what goes on behind the scenes.