“You think the Badlands are fair, boy?! You forget yourself, Dez — Remember Hancock’s Fourth Law!”
“Y-yes, sir… ‘A Scout always obeys his scoutmaster without question.’”
“Good. Then accept my judgment. See Kit as motivation, not a threat. Besides… I thought you two were like brother, were you not?”
“… Some things change, Father… Not all friendships last forever…:
James Stokoe is a monster of a creator: a creator’s creator. His artwork is tremendous and detailed, and his stories are strange and epic. Orphan and the Five Beasts is exactly those things while paying heavy homage to the manga and anime from the era of Fist of the North Star.
Aside from The X-Men, I’ve never seen Grant Morrison tackle a series that felt more directed at a teenage audience, but he - along with co-writer Alex Child and artist Naomi Franquiz - have given Proctor Valley Road that look and feel. Even the shenanigans of the teenage girls presented here feel very geared towards a younger, but learned, audience.
Guillem March’s Karmen #1 is a wonderful curiosity. The design alone of our eccentric angel, Karmen, who is portrayed on the first cover by Milo Manara (You can see his influence on March’s work.) is remarkable, but it is her effervescent, over-the-top behavior that puts her on track with being one of my favorite depictions of afterlife beings - the other being Death from The Sandman. Yes, and we're only one issue into the series.
There have been times in my life where I’ve felt lost, sincerely alone, or wanted some direction or meaning in life. That obviously doesn’t make me punk, but it does mean I know where Ami is coming from. Ami is our protagonist in Home Sick Pilots, and - like I have in the past - she has committed herself to something very strange to help shake her of those feelings. For me, growing up in mid-sized, middle-American towns, it was becoming a geek: D&D, Magic the Gathering, comic books. For Ami, it was befriending a haunted house that gave her powers to knock about and collect all of the ghosts that have gotten away over the years. The other thing that can happen when you are in the state of personal turmoil such as Ami is that you can be taken advantage of. I know this feeling, as well.
I love Matt Kindt’s work, but there’s something uniquely special about Fear Case. Maybe it’s the fact that Kindt and Tyler and Hillary Jenkins (This being the third comic that they’ve worked on together.) have just found a way to jive that other creative teams don’t get the opportunity to.
In this adult fantasy, millionaire racecar driver Curtiss Hill is not only a fierce competitor, but an excellent driver. The world looks upon him as a generous philanthropist and all-around good guy, but Curtiss has a dark side where he’s much willing to do anything to win, even cheat. His chief competitor is Rowlf Zeichner, an equally gifted driver, but the two have one major difference: Dino, Curtiss’ mechanic. Dino is a genius whom Curtiss takes for granted until the war that has been quietly playing in the background becomes personal and Dino disappears. Did I mention that all of these characters are dogs?
What I love about Jeff Lemire’s world of Black Hammer is that he isn’t precious with it and lets other creators play in his sandbox. That’s ultimately what Black Hammer: Visions is. How much say Lemire has over which stories are being told, or whether that lies on editor Daniel Chabon’s shoulders, or a combination of the two, I don’t know. This could also be their opportunity to grab some of their favorite voices to map out one issue's stories. Any way you shake it, it doesn’t matter. So far, it's great!
Set in Peru some time in the near future, Puno picks up where Manu ends with Canela (a.k.a. Lila) making a deal with a local thug in order to leave the country. The last of her gang that may have had something to do with the destruction of Lima, known as Lima Roja, she may be the key to finding an old friend (Limón) who is now known as Marco Poma. In this world where bio-technology is the norm, there are hints that Marco may have become more than the sum of his parts. His mere existence threatens the military and the government who will stop at nothing to track him down - even the violent and horrific assault on a village of indigenous people. But to do what she needs to do, Canela has some tough choices to make.