Both Dark Horse Comics and Brian Wood have proved themselves worthy caretakers of the Alien franchise, so one can imagine that more than a few fans welcomed the news that Wood was moving on to another beloved geek franchise with Terminator: Sector War. Set in 1984 and running parallel to the original iconic film in the series, Sector War trades the highways and back alleys of Los Angeles for the mean, gritty, and claustrophobic streets of New York City, and almost, at times, seems like an attempt to analyze Sarah Connor’s plight throughout James Cameron’s 1984 film and then craft an even more difficult scenario for our protagonist to endure and, hopefully, overcome.
It’s easy for me to read 350 pages of a Hellboy comic in one sitting, because the world is so damned enjoyable and diverse. You walk away feeling fulfilled, like you’ve been on a journey. There’s so much mythology that’s being mined; it has a sense of humor that ranges from the dry to the ridiculous and plenty of action to tie it all together, with strokes of pathos littered throughout. Whereas the first volume provided a lot of background for Hellboy’s adventures, including seeing Hellboy as a kid, this one spends a lot of time exploring and expanding the universe Hellboy toils in on a day-to-day basis. Like the first volume and regular series, Hellboy finds himself running into paranormal monsters all over the world: vampires of various kinds; the baba yaga (a Russian witch who comes back as a major villain in the third Omnibus that was just released); and some Japanese spirits whose heads separate from their bodies to eat you. It’s a hoot.
Who doesn’t want to be cool? It’s something we strive for from our earliest years, once we realize that we have a self-imposed responsibility to impress others and be the center of attention. The cool ones, after all, have the best lives, with the best things, and the most awesome friends… or so we let ourselves think.
Shadow Roads, the extension of Cullen Bunn and Brian Hurtt’s The Sixth Gun world, is a mixture of old Western tropes mixed with ghosts, demons, and other supernatural elements. It began with a rip-roaring time and some mystery built into its first issue, as one group of people - consisting of a Native American raised in England, his somewhat buffoonish friend, and ex-singer Miss Abigail Redmayne - fought off hell hounds on a train. Meanwhile, a gunslinger who sees ghosts was seeking out a well-known gunslinger to go after someone called the Hunter. A lot of questions arose: Why were these collections of characters brought together? Why are some looking for each other? Why are the evil hell hounds coming after them? We were left with the promise of the impending destruction of the universe as we know it, if it something wasn’t done.
Junior Braves of the Apocalypse is every doomsday prepper's fantasy come to glorious, undead life. Volume 1 collects the first six zombie-filled issues of the series. The book is fast paced. The action comes out of the box with the suspense nob turned all the way up. It is around 220 pages of horrifying fun that ends with a swift kick to your cold, black heart.
Outpost Zero #2 immediately picks up where the events of the double-sized introductory issue left off. In our first issue, we get a fantastic sense of the environment our characters get to play in. There is a wonderful magnitude to the dystopia of this particular future tale, and the characters are written in a carefully balanced way. Now that the stage has been set for our story, issue #2 begins to unravel the mysterious death of a main character while illustrating what Outpost Zero will ultimately be about.
In the indie comic series known as Scruffy Puppies (written and illustrated by creator Brent J. Trembath), a team of mutant, anthropomorphic canines have became a well-trained, heroic team of combatants who patrol the post-apocalyptic wasteland they call home. Feeling like a cross between Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and The Expendables, Scruffy Puppies feels like one of those special (and weirdly fun) finds discovered while wandering Artist Alley.