Christina Brookman, Fanbase Press Contributor

Christina Brookman, Fanbase Press Contributor

The cover for 1 Night On Earth is compelling to say the least, with gritty, faded newsprint text and an image of a woman manning a jackhammer, a night cityscape behind her. This is no ordinary construction worker, however. The cover looks more like a cover for America’s Next Top Model, where they have taken a strikingly gorgeous woman and grunged her up, safety goggles around her neck, tousled hair blowing in the wind, tight, little white top, holding a jack hammer with her chin angled to the side, as she stares piercingly into the distance. In my imagination, the cameraman lays on the ground in front to capture this shot. All of this with the comic’s promise of “5 cities. 5 Stories. 1 Night.” The message is cryptic, yet direct, and still illusive. For me? Alluring. This cover made me want to know - what’s inside? What secret, mysterious stories await my discovery?

Golden Age tells the story of Rosa, a young girl in Northern Italy in 1946 who discovers an old, anti-Nazi comic on a dead solider and proceeds to train to be the superhero in the comic. I was confused what the authors' intent for the comic was. Was this a political commentary piece? An exploration of how children cope with fear? What was the story? After Rosa finds the comic, not much action is explored other than a couple of quick training sequences with her best friend and sidekick. The comic ends with Rosa running home, so she isn’t late for dinner. It doesn’t necessarily need more violence or action, it just needs to clearly establish a purpose. For me, this did not happen. I also felt that the authors worked too hard to mimic a young girl’s voice, and, instead, the tone comes off monotone and stagnant. Golden Age has the promise to be a rich, sweet tale of childhood and coping with fears. Instead, it leaves the reader wondering what the intent for the comic was and where the authors meant to take the reader.

"Never forget!"

RoboChuck embodies what a great comic can and should be: simply put, the visual telling of a story. So many times, however, the focus lays solely on the artwork, and the script takes a back seat, not just in structure, but in language. Chris Callahan has knocked it out of the park on all fronts with his first issue of RoboChuck. This comic contains political satire, commentary on the comic industry, witty dialogue, complex and purposeful plot lines, as well as a main character you grow to love.

The Walking Dead meets Milo and Otis on crack! What more could a comic geek ask for, particularly with the rise in zombie lore interest in novels, TV, movie and comics? However, this is a comic with an amazing premise that doesn’t seem to have decided who its audience is.

“When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.” ~Alice

When I first heard the title Alice’s Bloody Adventures in Wonderland, I was ecstatic, eagerly anticipating a stronger, less innocent/naive Alice, a role model of strength and intelligence for young girls like I associate with Katniss from The Hunger Games. But, this is not that adaptation, and, in retrospect, it would dishonor Lewis Carroll’s original piece to make Alice a heroine in that sense. Raul Alberto Contreras has created a world that resembles a hybrid of Quentin Tarantino’s sometimes seemingly unnecessary violence and Judd Apatow’s crass humor . . . and I must admit, I kind of like it.

“A special thanks also to those who said I couldn’t do it; you drove me to prove you wrong.” – Jeff Palumbo (Chimera writer and publisher)

Chimera:"A thing of immortal make, not human, lion-fronted and snake behind, a goat in the middle, and snorting out the breath of the terrible flame of bright fire."- Homer, The Iliad

The title cover is a haunting image of demons and people screaming surrounding a man in a pool of light green/mint color, like a fog emanating from his belt. The man is wearing a black police rescue vest and badge. He stands striking a pose eerily similar to the Marlboro man, with the moon behind him and the light green fog acting as a cowboy hat and holster for his gun. The beautiful shading and colors ad dimension and life-like quality to the images. Our cowboy resembles a young Clint Eastwood, and his beard stubble is so life like, I felt if I reached through the screen and kissed him, his beard might really scruff my face.

Have you ever hidden under your bed with a flashlight, just so you could keep reading past bedtime, so you won’t get in trouble? A tradition, continued into adulthood. You keep telling yourself,  “I’ll stop at the end of this chapter,” but then, at the end of the chapter, you have to know what is coming next. “Just one more chapter. I promise, this time, just one more chapter.” But, it never ends, does it? Next thing you know, it's dawn, you’ve finished the book, and you can’t tell which feeling is stronger: pure exhaustion or an overwhelming sense of loss that your new friends and their world is gone forever. You no longer can share in their adventures, their story is over, but you must go on without them, because your life story is still being written.

When I offered to review Thrud the Barbarian, I must admit, I had not heard of the series. I jumped at the opportunity thinking, “Oh, like Conan the Barbarian - tons of epic blood and gore. This will be great!” Not that I’m a violent women, or so my counselor reassures me, just spunky. Well, when I opened the collector’s edition, bracing myself with eager anticipation for the graphic novel version of Dexter, I wound up reading something quite different . . . and a lot better.

As Halloween is fast approaching, the Fanboy Comics staff and contributors decided that there was no better way to celebrate this horrifically haunting holiday than by sharing our favorite scary stories! Be they movies, TV shows, video games, novels, or anything other form of entertainment, members of the FBC crew will be sharing their "scariest" stories each day leading up to Halloween. We hope that you will enjoy this sneak peek into the terrors that frighten Fanboy Comics!

“An interpretation of events based on Baniszewki v. The State of Indiana 1966”
“I used to love the carnival . . . ” –Silvia Likes (An American Crime)

Writing about what the scariest film ever created is is like trying to choose your favorite dessert when looking at a giant buffet of gourmet treats. There are so many classics in different genres worth mentioning, typically horror - Psycho, Nosferatu, Silence of the Lambs, The Shining, Let the Right One In - but I am going to talk about a film that sent chills up my spine, horrified me, made me question humanity, and realize . . . I can be scared, truly scared.

I think any comic involving battling aliens has amazing potential, and, to top it off, Mickey Lam (story/art/lettering) has made his hero a science teacher - even better! It’s an incredible undertaking to not only develop the story, but write the dialogue, design the lettering, and illustrate the entire comic. While Lam’s debut comic book is, in my opinion, still in the developmental phase, I hope we continue to see his work develop, because he has a vivid imagination and is a talented visual artist.

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