Category Archives: Comic Books

My Top 10 Comics…Today

 

books-bookstore-book-reading-159711.jpegWhew! This is a long one, but…sorry? Not sorry. There are so many good comic books out there right now. I used to feel a little weird about making recommendations, because I’m not one of those people who’ve been reading comics since I was a kid. About 4-5 years ago I jumped into comics with both feet, and by both feet I mean Neil Gaiman’s Sandman. After that I was a little lost, but I got some great recommendations from a good friend, and eventually I ventured out on my own.

Most of my reading comes from independent publishers like AfterShock and Image, because finding entry points into some of the historic characters of the big 2 was a little intimidating….I’ve gotten over that now, but I still lean heavily toward the books the independent publishers release.

These are my Top 10 Books as of…today. They’re listed in no particular order. Think I missed something? Let me know. I’m always looking for new books!


bookFUJITSU

1. Fu Jitsu – Published by Aftershock Comics, written by Jai Nitz & art by Wes St. Claire

Fu Jitsu is the world’s smartest boy, and has been for the last hundred years. Wait, what? Fu is an un-aging genius, and has had adventures around the globe and around the galaxy. From Einstein and the Wright brothers, to Gandhi and Johnny Unitas, Fu has met everyone in history while protecting Earth from Robert Wadlow, the world’s tallest man, and his dangerous magi-science.

TheRealm_01-12. The Realm – Published by Image Comics, co-created by Shaun Peck & Jeremy Haun

Fifteen years ago, our world was overrun by creatures of myth; orcs, dragons, and other nameless horrors threw the entire planet into total chaos. Today, the shattered remnants of civilization must fight just to survive in a deadly new era of violence and mayhem. While a powerful sorcerer marshals his forces, a group of warriors embark on a journey to reclaim our world from the growing darkness. An all new post-apocalyptic high-fantasy adventure series from co-creators SETH M. PECK (X-Men) and JEREMY HAUN (THE BEAUTY) featuring colors by NICK FILARDI and letters by THOMAS MAUER.


ImaginaryFiends1

3. Imaginary Fiends – Published by Vertigo, written by Tim Seeley & art by StephenMolnar, Quinton Winter, & Carlos M. Mangual

Agent Melba Li and her imaginary monster partner, Polly Peachpit, continue their search for a missing child, as a twisted conspiracy unfolds in the small town of Maiden Springs. What is the Fraidy Cat? And how can a woman who lives in fear defeat something that lives on it?

Doomsday_Clock_Vol_1_14. Doomsday Clock – Published by DC Comics, written by Geoff Johns, pencils by Gary Frank, colors by Brad Anderson

Doomsday Clock is a twelve-issue comic book series written by Geoff Johns and illustrated by Gary Frank. It began on November 21st 2017, at three minutes to midnight. It is the sequel to Watchmen, written by Alan Moore and illustrated by Dave Gibbons.

Coyotes_01-15. Coyotes – Published by Image Comics, written by Sean Lewis, art by Caitlin Yarsky

Underworld meets Sicario in this new series from SEAN LEWIS (SAINTS, THE FEW) and amazing new artist CAITLIN YARSKY. Hunted by a legion of wolves that roam the border, women are disappearing. The survivors band together to wage war. Detective Frank Coffey is trying to understand this mythic-level bloodbath when he comes across Red, a little girl with a secret and a sword. Ultra-violent and smart as hell, COYOTES transforms the everyday into a myth we can rally behind.

BatmanWhiteKnight16. Batman White Knight – Published by DC Comics, by Sean Murphy

In a world where Batman has gone too far, The Joker must save Gotham City.

He’s been called a maniac, a killer and the “Clown Prince of Crime” but “white knight”? Never. Until now…

Set in a world where the Joker is cured of his insanity and homicidal tendencies, The Joker, now known as “Jack,” sets about trying to right his wrongs. First he plans to reconcile with Harley Quinn, and then he’ll try to save the city from the one person who he thinks is truly Gotham City’s greatest villain: Batman!

Superstar writer and artist Sean Murphy (PUNK ROCK JESUS, THE WAKE) presents a seven-issue miniseries of a twisted Gotham City with a massive cast of heroes and villains that, at its heart, is a tragic story of a hero and a villain: Batman and The Joker. But which is the hero—and which the villain?

GrassKings017. Grass Kings – Published by BOOM! Studios, written by Matt Kindt, art by Tyler Jenkins

From The New York Times bestselling writer Matt Kindt (Mind MGMT) and Peter Panzerfaust artist Tyler Jenkins comes a rural mystery series chronicling the tragic lives of the Grass Kings, three brothers and rulers of a trailer park kingdom, a fiefdom of the hopeless and lost, of the desperate poor seeking a promised land. Eldest brother Robert leads a grief-stricken life, having lost his daughter to a tragic accident, followed by his wife disappearing one morning never to return. When an enigmatic young woman named Maria flees to their community in search of safe haven, Robert takes her in. Will his decision lead to ruin and retribution dooming the Kingdom? Perfect for fans of True Detective Season One or Scalped?

Maestros_01-18. Maestro – Published by Image Comics, written by Steve Skroce, art by Steve Skroce, Dave Stewart

he Maestro and his entire royal family have been murdered. Now, his banished son from Earth will inherit the Wizard King’s throne along with a spell that turns its user into GOD. With enemies everywhere, will this Orlando-born millennial be able to keep his new magic kingdom? From STEVE SKROCE, the storyboard artist of The Matrix trilogy, the artist and co-creator of WE STAND ON GUARD and Doc Frankenstein, the writer / artist of Wolverine, and the artist of Amazing Spider-Man and ALAN MOORE’s YOUNGBLOOD.

Redlands_01-19. Redlands – Published by Image Comics, written by Jordie Bellaire, art by Vanesa R. Del Rey

A brand-new horror book from the minds of Eisner Award-winner JORDIE BELLAIRE (PRETTY DEADLY, Vision, Batman) and critically acclaimed artist VANESA R. DEL REY (ZERO, Scarlet Witch, Constantine) brings you to the sleepy, sunny town of Redlands, Florida. The police are failing to maintain control of their old-fashioned town, and a coven of killer witches plan to take everything from them. This summer, hide your bibles.

GodComplex_01-110. God Complex – Published by Top Cow, written by Paul Jenkins, Bryan Lie, art by Hendry Prasetya

In the futuristic city of Delphi, a young digital-forensics investigator named Seneca finds himself embroiled in the bizarre murders of three church acolytes. Guided by his cryptic mentor, the Ruler named Hermes, Seneca uncovers a stunning conspiracy and a mystery that will turn his entire world upside down. From writer PAUL JENKINS (Inhumans, Wolverine: Origin) and artist HENDRY PRASETYA (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers) comes a unique vision of a digital future powered by mythological gods.

‘Til next time,

Jessica

 

Advertisements

Planet Comicon 2018

q6EwygLASAe8BUvGzhji6wOh my, oh my! I can always count on Planet Comicon in Kansas City to be filled with adventure, and this year was no exception. February 16-18 Bartle Hall filled with geeks of all kinds. I’m not wasting a lot of space here on the impressive celebrity lineup, the phenomenal cosplayers (so many great cosplays!), or the after hours events.  Just checkout their website or facebook page to see all that great stuff, and, believe me, it was amazing. I’m really here for the comic books and their creators, that’s why I go to these things after all.

The Kansas City area is home to a host of incredibly talented creators including Jai Nitz, co-creator of El Diablo; Freddie Williams II, Batman/TMNT; Jason Aaron, Southern Bastards; and so many others there’s a website for creators in the Kansas City, Lawrence & Topeka area. Creators like Nitz have been participating in this show since its inception, 19 years ago. They also pull in creators from across the country: Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo, Marguerite Bennett, Amy Chu, Tom King, Jason Latour, Jae Lee, Matt Hawkins…and if I added all the wonderful people at this show on my list we’d be here for a looooonnnnngggg time. The wealth of talent at this show is heady.

All the creators means you get some really good panels, and this year was no exception. They scheduled so many interesting panels that there was no way we could get to them all.  That was the only disappointment.

When you get Matt Hawkins (Think Tank, Postal), Tom King (Batman), CW Cooke (Solitary), Jai Nitz (El Diablo, Dream Thief), Marguerite Bennett (Animosity, DC Bombshells), and Amy Chu (Red Sonya) together on a panel about writing comics an hour just isn’t enough…not by half. Then there was the drawing comics panel with Jae Lee, Freddie Williams II, and Chad Hardin who manage to talk while they draw some amazing images. There’s always an opportunity to learn something new.

My favorite thing about these events is the opportunity to talk with the creators. These are kind people who are generous with their time. They never hesitate to spend a moment with someone who supports their work, and they’re supportive of those interested in becoming a creator themselves. I never fail to learn something new, and I always walk away inspired. So, this is a big “THANK YOU” to all of the people out there who spend the extra time, support those aspiring to be something more, and for smiling through all the sputtering as we stumble our way through our appreciation for your work.

‘Til next time,

Jessica

 

 

 


Rat Queens

Rat Queens

I looovvveee this comic book.  It features a mercenary team comprised of four women.  Sassy, opinionated, hard partying, ass-kicking women who are heroes when necessary…or when they feel like it…or when the pay is good enough.

Betty, Dee, Hannah & Violet make me the laugh-out-loud-while-reading kind of happy.  The Rat Queens by Kurtis J Wiebe & Roc Upchurch is well crafted and endlessly entertaining.  I went back to it for a reference while writing this and ended up reading most of “Volume One: Sass and Sorcery” again. Fine, I read all of it and started in on Volume Two before remembering adult responsibilities.  In the meantime, I forgot what I’d gone back to look for in the first place. (See, my previous post about my my newly discovered tactic for staying on purpose.)

Wiebe and Upchurch just kept layering on the good stuff with this one.  Well-crafted characters are always a soft spot of mine. Give them a great story arc and I’m an immediate fan.  Allow those characters to break stereotypical molds, and I’m hooked.  Toss in a fun read and a great sense of humor, I’ll never stop reading.  I felt like I should be able to include something that wasn’t positively glowing, but even on a second read through, it didn’t happen. (That’s my reason for reading it again!  I knew I could find one.)

Did anybody ever watch the Saturday morning cartoon Dungeons & Dragons? I did.  I only got to watch a few episodes, because of…well, its a long story (or at least one that has nothing to do with comic books, see look at me, staying on track), but this feels just a touch like that.  It carries the qualities that made me look forward to cartoons.  Maybe I’m feeling a touch nostalgic, because I’m not saying I watched cartoons where I could actually see entrails of disemboweled enemies…yeah, did I mention this book is not for the kiddies?  (No, seriously.)  Foul mouthed, funny, recreational drug using, brave, sexy, violent characters in a story in which all of the above takes place…it is great, just NOT for children.

Volume 3 came out on April 19th, and I’ve been looking forward to it for months.  I have no idea how I missed it when I was at the comic book store.  Does that mean I get to go back?  Hooray!

‘Til next time,
Jessica

P.S.  Wait, you say?  Didn’t she just post that she liked individual issues because of her over scheduled lifestyle?  I did, dear friends, but I’m also just particular enough that I need a matching set. Also, I will set aside the time to read this one cover to cover, adult responsibilities be damned…in theory anyway.


Ah, Sweet Geekery

Friends, I’ve been reading.  Before, this blog would have been filled with reviews of novels, but quite frankly, I don’t have time for that.  It took me a month to read The Shining, and that can only partly be blamed on needing to read during the daylight hours.  I get caught up in books so much I don’t even see chapter breaks most of the time, and before I know it I’m behind on…whatever it is I’m supposed to be doing.

Comic books have proven to be the perfect form of entertainment.  Highly entertaining, action packed, engaging stories and each issue is the perfect length for a short break between…schoolwork, my job, the house, whatever.  I used to advocate the trades because I read through individual issues too fast and became too impatient for the next issue to be released.  Especially, when I often couldn’t find the next issue in my local shops.

Oh, how little did I know!  My over scheduled day loves the individual issues, and I discovered this weekend that Mammoth Comics will order the ones I need, if they can. I get the feeling this is something pretty common and I should have known. (Kind of like that football thing…nevermind. Just forget I mentioned football.) Oh, happy day!  Didn’t think I could get any geekier?  Neither did I.  The funny part is, I’m ridiculously excited by this.  My impatience hasn’t lessened, but I don’t feel the panicky need to buy all the issues at once, just in case I can’t find them later…much.

I’ve written before about how much I enjoy Brian K Vaugh’s Saga.  (Volume 6 is due out soon!)  I also went to the experts at Wizard World’s Comic Con in Tulsa in October to ask for some recommendations.  Thanks to those excellent recommendations, a little venturing out on my own (mostly because I liked the pretty pictures), and a couple of gifts from a friend, and my knowledge is growing.  I still feel like a novice, but I no longer feel like I’m lost in the woods.

‘Til next time,

Jessica

P.S. I’ll be posting some reviews soon.  I promise!

P.P.S. Those individual issues, I’m keeping them in a magazine box-thing that is now full. Any storage suggestions?