So it comes. With the release of this issue, we begin what is dubbed as the final year of this series. That likely means with two more arcs, along with a few specials, this series will be officially wrapped up. This is bittersweet, since this has been a great series, but now we finally get the answers we've been waiting a long time for. There's been a lot of speculation about how this series is going to play out, and to finally be on the precipice of reading it is very exciting.
Comic book creator/writer Andre Owens and his publishing company, Hiro Unlimited, have recently released a new title called The Bovine League #0, a delightful combination of the Justice League, the Avengers, and Chick-fil-A's cow-centric advertising campaign. Noted as the introductory issue of an ongoing series, The Bovine League introduces readers to a team of genetically altered superheroes - who just so happen to be cows - as they protect Earth and the galaxies beyond from threats large and small. Geared towards younger readers, the 14-page mini-comic gleefully follows the superheroes as they endeavor not only to defend their charges from evil monsters, but to bring together humans and genetically altered beings into a joined community of peace and understanding.
Jeff Lemire is an endless source of intriguing and complex stories. Reading Gideon Falls #1, his newest book from Image Comics, I couldn’t help but feel he and I have been inspired by many of the same things. We both have a penchant to dive immediately into the biggest questions that we all face as humans. In this first issue, we see religion, order, chaos, and madness all wrapped into what appears to be a dark, subversive mystery that seems to revolve around a place that may or may not exist. Gideon Falls inhabit that esoteric place that David Lynch finds himself.
The world of Black Hammer is becoming more and more fully realized with every issue under its umbrella. Doctor Star and the Kingdom of Lost Tomorrows is the second off-shoot series from the main Black Hammer comic (The first was Sherlock Frankenstein.), and it pulsates with the humanity, melancholy, and the kind of dangerous curiosity in discovering something new that tends to either reward cats or kill them. The world of Black Hammer is a beautiful discovery, Jeff Lemire’s curiosity to explore the mythos of superheroes in a different way is our reward. Black Hammer is relevant and - a descriptor I use rarely - it’s important.
Kaleidoscope City is a love letter to the city - to the energy of it and the loneliness that can be found within its crowded world. Marcellus Hall has put to page his memories: his feelings of his early adulthood becoming lost in the idea of finding something new and exquisite with every step taken, hoping that something will excite and define you, perhaps even recreate you. To the point where the artist in the book literally draws himself landscapes to realize.
Dan Vining, author of The Next and The Quick, is back with a new novel titled NightSun (Vireo/Rare Bird Books) and blends science fiction and noir into a Dystopian narrative. Set in the near future of 2025, Los Angeles is a drought-stricken city in crisis, where emergency and law enforcement units have taken the air due to severe traffic congestion that has thoroughly taken over the surface streets.
Over the past two decades or so, ever since the tragic events that took place on September 11th, 2001, the post-apocalyptic genre has exploded in popularity. While the reason for the apocalypse may change with each tale, whether it’s zombies, climate change, or nuclear weapons that lead the world to its fate, these stories smartly always tend to focus on the human experience in this new, harsher world and how we’d treat each other once the walls of civilization have crumbled. The Warren Hope: Vol. 1 (written and illustrated by Scott “Fuzzy” Joseph) continues this trend, but also offers an uncommon twist on the premise.
One more issue left. This issue, the one I’m writing about, is the penultimate issue of the team of Matt and Sharlene Kindt’s underwater murder mystery opus. A story that in 23 issues has spanned the distance from outer space to the depths of the ocean. In its trajectory of discovering who a murderer is and why they murdered, we follow a group of scientists exploring the unexplored for answers, and we have done most of this in the headspace of Mia. Mia is the daughter of the head scientist who was murdered. Mia is the hero of our story, and she has gone on as arduous a journey through her memories as she has through the crumbling underwater research labs and caverns full of strange creatures. As far as I can tell, Mia’s memories and Mia’s experiences can’t be trusted. Her understanding of the truth is subject to just that: her own understanding of it. This has occurred on numerous occasions. This is why - knowing full well that twenty-three issues is a lot to weigh when you’re approaching the reveal of something - that I don’t fully trust her analysis of the situation. This is why I’m worried for her.