Steven W. Alloway, Fanbase Press Contributor

Steven W. Alloway, Fanbase Press Contributor

Tales to Admonish is the latest creative endeavor from Australian author Andrez Bergen, who recently brought us Who Is Killing the Great Capes of Heropa? With words by Bergen and art by Matt Kyme, the comic hearkens back to the Silver Age style, with a vibe that’s part tribute, part tongue-in-cheek. Even the title is a spoof of Marvel’s '60s comic series Tales to Astonish, and the '60s vibe is present throughout, in the artistic style and in other, more subtle ways.

Trouble seems to follow the Doctor around wherever he goes. True, he oftentimes goes bounding eagerly into it headfirst, but even when he tries to plan an innocent daytrip with an old friend, it somehow can’t help but devolve into playing The Most Dangerous Game with a rebel contingent of intelligent ant-beings.

Buzzkill is probably every ultra-conservative parent’s nightmare. The main character is a superhero who gains his phenomenal powers through the consumption of massive amounts of alcohol. Will the impressionable youth of America read this comic and think that binge drinking is cool?

This month’s issue of Doctor Who Classics is all over the map. So far, each single issue has covered no more than two different stories. This one has three, which makes the pacing a little frenetic.

There are dozens of deep and thought-provoking questions that swirl around the themes of Turbulence by Samit Basu. Some of the simpler ones include, “What if you suddenly got what you wanted most in the world?” and “What would you do if you had superpowers?” Of course, just about every comic, movie, novel, and story ever written about heroes has tackled these, but Turbulence takes it further. These simple questions lead to the bigger question, “What if you really had a chance to change the world?” Which then raises the question, “Would it be worth the cost?” Because there’s always a cost.

And, finally, my favorite question of the book, raised less directly, but perhaps the most pertinent of all in terms of the story’s themes: “What’s the difference between a hero and a villain?” The answer to that one may seem simple at first, but after reading the book, you might not be so sure.

The Danger Girl team is at it again. In their previous adventure, Danger Girl: Trinity, the three main heroines (Sydney and Sonya Savage, and Abbey Chase) were all in different parts of the world, dealing with different obstacles, and it took them four issues to find their way to one another. Now, in Danger Girl: The Chase #1, they’re all together and working on an important assignment.

The Steampunk Originals collections gather stories of steam-powered adventure from all different writers and all different artists, with all different styles, flavors, and focuses. In both volumes, there are strong points and weak points, but there’s definitely something for every Steampunk fan. There are airships and automatons, mad scientists, zombies, samurai, humor, social commentary, and much more.

The important question of this film isn’t so much “Who is Delsin?” but rather “What is Delsin?” As in, what is the film itself? Both the plot synopsis and the trailer hail it as a documentary. The synopsis begins by describing a horrific shooting in Tampa, Florida, as if it’s a real event, and one that we may possibly have heard about on the news. They interview a number of real people throughout. Brothers Pete and Paul Guzzo, the director and screenwriter, respectively, go out of their way to make it seem like the things in this film actually happened.

It’s hard to tell what’s going on at any given time in The Vale. First of all, the main characters tend to speak in varying degrees of an accent that I can only describe as “British Thug.” An accent which is spelled out phonetically on the page, so that a statement like, “My parents are in there,” would be written as “Ma rents iz in dere!” While it’s usually at least somewhat evident from context what they’re saying, this style of writing can still be challenging to puzzle through, particularly when they start talking in obscure slang. It’s a stylistic choice, though. I get that, and it helps to establish the characters and the world they’re living in.

Who Is Killing the Great Capes of Heropa? by Andrez Bergen is a noir-style mystery set in a world of superheroes. It’s pretty hard to go wrong with that combination. But, more than that, it tackles some deeper issues, like good and evil, reality and fantasy, free will, the nature of humanity, and, more importantly, the grey areas surrounding all of these things.

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