Issue #4 of Cullen Bunn’s Conan the Slayer is juicy goodness. I say this not only because of the awesome violence and gruesomeness brought to visceral life by Sergio Dávil (art) and Michael Atiyeh (colors), but because Bunn approaches the goings on with a rhythm and poetry that gives the weight of myth to Conan’s plight.

Clive Barker’s contribution to horror is difficult to understate. His invention of Hellraiser alone puts him in the horror hall of fame. Sadly, most people aren’t familiar with his other work. Outside a few tepidly received films like Lord of Illusions and Midnight Meat Train, his work is generally more of an undercurrent - informing countless other works, but remaining slightly low key on its own. His books are typically massive tomes, which can scare off readers. The Great and Secret Show is a fantastic book, but it is dense at 670-odd pages. Using the word “overwrought” to describe his books wouldn’t gather many arguments. As it turns out, his voluminous novels might just be meant to transition into comics.

It’s been awhile since Earth Alliance #1 came out – some 14+ months.  So, it took me a minute to remember what it was all about, and I re-read Earth Alliance #1 so I could get some context.  For those of you who don’t remember, Earth and an alien species are struggling over energy source-rich planets diplomatically.  Both the humans and the aliens act kind of like a-holes, and the aliens attack us, starting a war.

Venus is legendary. It is what readers expect when they seek out science fiction. It is what writers dream about being able to create, period. Rick Loverd and Filip Sablik, creators of Venus, capture a premise and never let any momentum slip as Loverd, writer of this magnificent mini-series, generates a heart-pounding tale that will leave readers breathless.

I am called Jack.

There's no more seminal series from my childhood than Samurai Jack.  It was on at a time when I was learning what animation could really be, and this show defined it for me.  Genndy Tartakovsky created many shows with iconic status for Cartoon Network, but Jack's tale is one that stands above all others.  With an incredibly rich aesthetic, there is a trust in allowing the visuals to tell a story with dialogue only interrupting the atmosphere when someone absolutely needed to speak.  In fact, in some episodes there was no dialogue recorded by Phil Lamar as Jack and the irreplaceable Mako as the demon Aku.  I can't describe how perfect a show it was; all I can say is that it's on Netflix, so go and be prepared to be blown away if you've not yet experienced it.

“It’s a tricky thing - weaving the old into the new.”
                Robert Ford to Bernard Lowe
                (perhaps speaking of the show itself?)

I’m a die-hard fan of zombies of all descriptions.  I refuse to admit that we’ve reached “peak zombie” in our pop culture.  That said, I also admit that I’m constantly looking for something fresh in the genre.  This search has led me to 28 Days Later, Shaun of the Dead, The Reapers are the Angels, The Girl with All the Gifts, and so on.

Nothing like the end of the world.  Nothing like it in the world.

Skottie Young brings about the end of Fairyland in the finale of the second arc.  All done, go home.

The next installment of Image Comics' sci-fi mystery, Hadrian's Wall, is here once again in its second of eight parts. With the accidental death of crew member and former friend Edward Madigan, our protagonist Simon Moore has entered the purview of those who live and work on the survey ship, Hadrian's Wall. This, as it was shown in the last issue, is a problem for many reasons and for many people, including Edward's wife Annabelle, who just happens to have an ex-husband – Simon.

Jeff Lemire is less concerned about telling a superhero story and more concerned about telling a story about what being a superhero means, and what it means to have that responsibility taken away. At least that’s what I thought until reading Issue #4. Bit by bit, it’s becoming about even more than that. It’s about inclusion versus exclusion. Where is a person’s place at in the world? What does a person mean to those around them? As Lemiere digs in, these themes begin to resonate emotionally in ways I wasn’t fully expecting after having read Issue #1

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