Comics (1040)

Gideon Falls is conceptually one of the scariest comic books I’ve ever read, and the very first collected volume is available just in time for Halloween.

Bonehead - now THAT is a title. The word itself alludes to a doltish, neanderthal, half-wit, or stupid person; however, in the context of the story, it refers to a person who belongs to one of many parkour gangs that run around doing cool tricks using only their bodies! All of the aforementioned Boneheads have uniquely decorated helmets that distinguish them from other (different) Boneheads. The book is published by Image Comics / Top Cow and dares to answer the question, “What if The Warriors was made in 2010?”

It’s been nearly three years since I discovered (and subsequently reviewed) the Lumberjanes comic. It’s an amazing title, and I had nothing but great things to say about it. Unfortunately, I missed out on the opportunity to review the subsequent volumes and fell hopelessly behind on the story which is why I was so excited about this volume: a new, standalone Lumberjanes adventure.

Dave Stewart is one of the best colorists in the business. He excels and, in doing so, elevates whatever project he works on, and he was born to color horror. It’s not just about using red, blue, or green; he uses shades of color in ways that not only tell the story, but affect the emotion and mood of the reader - colors that feel unnatural. His work on Gideon Falls is a testament to his talent. When we flash back to see the Sheriff of Gideon Falls, Clara, as a kid, Stewart’s color palette softens and becomes brighter. He brings a different quality out of Andrea Sorrentino’s work as an artist without sacrificing the underlying tension of the book.

There is definitely a televised, serial feel to Matt Kindt and Tyler Jenkins’ newest series, Black Badge. I’m reminded of the TV shows I grew up on in the '80s - The A-Team, Macguyver, and Charlie’s Angels - where there was a hero or group of heroes that went on missions and while the episode specifics were different in what they had to accomplish and how, the same formula was used pretty much every time. This third issue throws a bit of a wrench in the formula, but not quite enough to elevate the stakes . . . yet.

Black Hammer: Age of Doom is committing hard. It’s walking a fine line; on one side, what’s happening right now could be incredibly cheesy and convoluted, and on the other side is a book that is playing with the reality it’s created in a really interesting and intense way. Jeff Lemire has spent so much time constructing the reality of the main characters' situations that when he untied the knot that was keeping it together two issues ago, it hasn’t stopped unfurling. To show just how much reality has shifted, Lemire has brought on a new artist, Rich Tommaso, who has also taken over coloring duties and possibly the lettering. The book has an entirely different feel. Usually, when an artist comes onto a book for an issue or two, it can feel a little weird, but because of the story and tonal shift, it works on a number of different levels, including intellectually, emotionally, and psychologically.

In the opening pages of the second issue of Errand Boys, readers catch up with Jace and Tawnk as they are hurled into space via an unsettling slingshot launch. (Catch my review of issue one here.) The half-brothers are headed out on their first mission together in this issue, which is part of a five-issue galactic action adventure tale from writer D. J. Kirkbride, artist/colorist Nikos Koutsis, flatter Mike Toris, and letterer/designer Frank Cvetkovic.

There’s something incredibly unsettling about stalkers. Maybe it’s the way they creep about in the shadows, watching but rarely being seen. Maybe it’s their ability to dive into the darkest crevices of their obsession’s life, getting to know their victim intimately. Whatever it is, they are just about the creepiest criminals ever.

Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips are changing the landscape of the comic book industry. Their two names are essentially a stamp of quality when it comes to graphic novels and storytelling. Their new story, My Heroes Have Always Been Junkies, is about two people, Ellie and Skip, who find love in a rehab center and decide to run away together. Ellie is self-aware enough to realize that she’s a bad influence, but as their romance grows, mysteries begin to unravel. The question, however, is if the mysteries are worth it in the end.

Issue #2 of Geek-Girl left Summer getting pummeled by one of Maine’s resident baddies after Ruby reclaimed the power-up glasses.  A streak of good luck brings Neon Girl to her rescue, but Summer has to accept that while she didn’t do any major harm with the glasses, she’s a danger to herself without them if she fights crime. Meanwhile, Ruby allows her old friends to entice her back into their circle with a party and drinks at a local bar, but it just can’t stay quiet when the original Geek-Girl is back on the town!


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