The realities of Hollywood are a strange thing. It can chew you up and eat you alive. For Farrah Durante, this is becoming more and more obvious as the middle-aged actress does everything she can to land her next big role. This is further complicated by a terrifying force that has attached itself to her and doesn't have much of an affinity for the culture Farrah has surrounded herself with.

I love reviewing new comic books . . . first books of new series that are teetering on the brink of either breaking big or breaking bad. There is something special about feeling “in the know” when something is too awesome to keep to yourself.

Every youngster wants the chance to be chosen for an incredible quest to save the world, but what if you sort of stumble into it thanks to a wacky family friend, a mysterious house, and a vacation in one of the US’s most haunted cities? Lucas and Parker Chance’s family vacation to see their ‘Aunt’ Ruby in New Orleans introduces them to Nicole “Cole” Wells and a quest to help preserve the balance between good and evil.  There are clues to find, puzzles to decode, nefarious villains to evade, and, of course, more than a few beignets to enjoy in this fun YA romp that doubles as a love letter to a sultry city of the Deep South!

Dear God.

Betvin Geant and Kay have consistently produced a thoughtful, engaging, and thoroughly entertaining book in Rise of the Antichrist.  What’s incredible is that every issue has managed to up the ante in scale and scope, mining the source material and creating a depth of character that drives the plot.  The premise of a man with powers and a history of mental illness assuming the role of the Savior makes for an unusual hook, and what makes it truly interesting is the fact that the story rides the fine line between deranged superbeing and actual son of God.  Michael manages to always find an answer through his faith, but it’s never overtly evident whether these are actually signs from a deity or the result of a mind searching for answers and finding them in itself.  This issue ramps all of these things to 11 and leaves us with one hell of a final page.

Alternate history or speculative fiction stories deviate from a particular pivotal point in history to explore a “what if” scenario. What hopefully results is an intriguing and riveting examination of the effects of that diverging point. For writer J.H. Sanderson, the summer of 1978 was his point of departure. While President Jimmy Carter sought peace in the real world, in Sanderson's allohistory, a moment of aggression sparked off World War III between the US and then superpower, the USSR (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics). In Dangerous Gambles and Renegade graphic novel series published by Compact, Sanderson explores the struggles of a conventional modern war on US soil: food and various everyday sundries require ration coupons, curfews are instituted, and regular blackouts give rise to networks of marketeering, all under an overarching threat of invasion and nuclear annihilation.

In a world riddled with death, despair and giant man-eating monsters, one man does his best to not let the apocalypse get him down!

Three-year-old, London-based, independent publisher Dead Canary Comics is at it again! With a catalogue of comics that touches on bounty hunters, ancient demons, superheroes, frogs, and Shakespeare, Last Driver explores a post-apocalyptic wasteland created by the minds of writer C.S. Baker (The Fitzroy, Reddin) and revered illustrator Shaky Kane (The Bulletproof Coffin, Judge Dredd Megazine). The dynamic duo are joined by letterer Paul Clark-Forse and colorist Boo Cook. Artist Juan José Ryp rounds out the creative team by capturing everything about Last Driver into a fantastic cover.

It’s been way too long since the last issue of Future Proof. Issue #11 involved the mysterious figure from previous issues (apparently called “Umbrella Man”) stepping out of the shadows and organizing a crew of time-traveling supervillains that included Jim Morrison and Amelia Earhart. So, you can see why I’ve been anxious to see how the story continues. Rest assured that this issue does not disappoint.

And so, too, must all things end, and what then?

Have you had that moment when a story finishes, regardless of the medium, and you find yourself disoriented?  Like you’re caught between the place you were in the tale and the world in which you pay your taxes and do your grocery shopping?  You take a deep breath, your focus having been so completely in that other place that you scarcely breathed, and whatever compelling part of the story that drew you so far in lingers awhile, overlaying your reality like an AR game.  This is the feeling that some of the greatest stories I’ve read have left me with, and every one of them lingers into the “waking world” (for lack of a better term), because the truth that lays at the heart of them was powerful.  Rick Remender has assembled just this sort of tale from top to bottom, and the finale is wonderfully executed.  There's a breath after the last page where you'll need that moment to remove yourself from that world, and the cautionary tale within will stick with me for a really long time.

Hello, faithful readers!  WAY back a year or so ago, I read and reviewed a comic called Blood and Gourds.  It was this crazy mish-mosh of greedy corporate fat cats doing bad things with hill-billies, hot farmers’ daughters, and tourists all mixing it up with angry, hell-ish… produce.

“Mia glanced toward the window in the kitchen.  It was too dark to see anything outside now, so it was just this rectangle of blackness reflecting back the candles and lanterns inside the cabin.  She took another swallow of beer and said, very quietly, ‘I think I killed someone when I was thirteen years old.’ “

Most people do it the first time when they’re teenagers.  Not me… The first time I ever did it was at work.  Honest.  In the glass conference room with ten other people.

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