As we move farther from the end of Critical Role's first campaign which ended after 115 glorious episodes, we also move farther away from the time between the start of the show's streaming episodes and the time spent by the cast prior to becoming a full-fledged phenomenon. During that time, the group met, began their journey as an adventuring party, and had their own share of dangerous antics.
For the moment, this seems to be the end of the main story arc to Black Hammer, Jeff Lemire and Dean Ormston’s love letter to superhero tropes and mythologies. (Although, with Black Hammer / Justice League and another Black Hammer mini-series promised for the end of the year, there will be plenty more to come!) In this love letter, they stripped away the “super” from our heroes, and we watched as some embraced being normal, while in others the trauma of not being who they were meant to be played out.
Killswitch is the all-new and exciting cyberpunk series by Jefferey and Susan Bridges from Action Lab: Danger Zone. Issue one introduces us to a future where Augurs, powerful telepaths, are feared and persecuted but brutally used for their powers. Major Regula, a woman who turned in her own brother for being an Augur and is revered by the masses, becomes disillusioned by what she sees and puts her career and life on the line to help the captive Auguers to escape from their confinement.
There’s a lot of heart in Ronin Island, and as Kanichi and Hana find their separate paths, the goals shift and change in a way that could very well put them at odds with each other. Hanichi and Hana are the same, but they have been taught that they are different. Both are fierce warriors, having just come of age, but because Hana is from a poor farmer’s family, and Kanichi is from a rich Samurai family, they are different. At least, this is what they’ve been told their entire lives, and as far as we can tell, it’s stuck.
I am in awe of Jeff Lemire. He has managed to take the heart and pulse of two very different comic book worlds and find their mutual centers. Everything is unexpected. I’m looking at characters in ways that I haven’t before, finding new ways to understand them and care about them. It is magical.
Author and independent comic book creator Russell Nohelty is returning to the scene of the crime with Ichabod Jones: Monster Hunter #5. A continuation of the series that started it all for Nohelty, Ichabod Jones: Monster Hunter #5 also sees the return of original artist Renzo Podesta. Ichabod may be dead and buried, but, like many comic creators before them, Nohelty and Podesta refuse to let their hero rest in peace.
The Duff meets Dungeons & Dragons. Clueless meets Conan. Princess Diaries meets Percy Jackson. Sword and sorcery meets high school romance. Such are the appropriate descriptors for R. Litfin’s The Lost Noble, the first book in her Chronicles of Royal High series which combines elements of high fantasy with young adult sentiments.
It's happened before. It will never happen again. So goes the final issue of the years-long epic, The Wicked + The Divine. After several years of exploring this world of gods, secrets, lies, and a weaving story, this beloved series is coming to a close. As someone who has followed this series since its first issue, this is a bittersweet moment for me. I've loved this series since issue #1 and have followed it through every twist, turn, and big reveal. While the contents of this issue are important, I think the bigger picture to look at here is the celebration of this crowing achievement of media, storytelling, and creativity.
In Jason Aaron and Dennis Hallum’s Sea of Stars, gone is the cynicism and coldness of modern-day sci-fi that has ramped up ever since Ridley Scott’s Alien and Blade Runner. Instead, they’ve embraced that gee-whiz, sci-fi pep of the '50s and '60s. This is an adventure split in two.
I always enjoy James Tynion IV’s work on popular series like Detective Comics and his other ventures over at DC, but where he truly excels to me as a writer - where his voice as a creator is amplified - is when he releases one of his horror or sci-fi series at BOOM! Studios. Memetic, Cognetic, and Eugenic took the sort of body horror aspects from David Cronenberg and spun some truly great, socially relevant horror stories. Something Is Killing the Children looks like it’s the next in this sort of socially aware horror series, and he doesn’t wait to get into it.