The Reading Pile #33
Seems like it’s been forever, but it hasn’t. Most of these books I really liked, so I don’t think you’re going to find much criticism here. Lots of great stuff coming out these days, so let’s jump right in.
Writer: Dan Watters
“I was starting to hope the world beyond was gone. All dust outside these walls.”
Things start out conventionally enough when our protagonist, Izzy, who looks like she could be Death’s (of Sandman fame) trashy sister, goes on the run with her vulture companion, trying to escape her death sentence from the EarthEater.
Things get downright bizarre when the middle of the book introduces a strip club and a stripper who, literally, strips off her flesh to reveal her organs. Bizarre.
Cut to EarthEater having a funny confrontation with the fine gentleman who put the contract out on Izzy’s life and we close with Izzy reuniting with Casandra, a former love interest of Native American descent.
Did not expect this to be so good; I loved it.
“It rises as smoke, see? The pain. All gone. Nothing to remember. Happy ashes.”
Verdict: Loved this book.
Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Artist: Pepe Larraz
Well, I think I’m in the minority, but I didn’t love this. It was suspenseful, the art was good and the last 3 pages hint at an epic war between man and mutant to come in following issues. I just get so annoyed by all of the graphic design, chart crap Hickman puts in all of his books now. It just distracts from the comic.
Verdict: good, but annoying graphic design charts interspersed throughout.
Writer: Brian K Vaughn
Artist: Cliff Chiang
“A paperboy treats every other paperboy as his brother.”
I loved this. Nothing fancy about this issue, just a pre-cursor to the first issue, which threw us immediately into the Paper Girls’ lives. Issue 30 shows the girls meeting and starting their paper routes. This is NOT the ending I was expecting and the final pages gave me chills. Thank you Brian K. Vaughn and Cliff Chiang; when this book was on it was as good as anything being published.
Verdict: Appropriate ending to a very strong series.
Albatross Funnybooks, 7/31/2019
Writer: Eric Powell
Artist: Bret Parson
So something weird happened and issue 5 shipped before issue 4. Eric Powell posted on his social media that it was a screw up on Albatross Funnybooks end and apologized. Well, these issues are largely episodic so there was no big foul here. This issue’s art looked a hell of a lot like Eric Powell, but it’s actually Bret Parson.
Not my favorite issue, storywise, if I’m being honest though there are lots of subtle hilarities going on. These hooded, demon, looking creatures are peddling the devil’s drink, Beezlebooz, which is some sort of devil cod infested brew. Kind of silly. Frankie gets taken and demonized and Goon eventually saves him.
There’s lots of little funny asides and the art is very good, just not my fav issue.
Verdict: I liked it, but maybe not the best issue for the uninitiated.
Writer: Jeff Lemire
Artist: Mike Deodato Jr.
Some Jeff Lemire stuff I love: Black Hammer and Trillium are fantastic books. Other stuff, like Royal City, I don’t like so much. The covers (take your pick both A & B covers were great) for Berserker Unbound are quite striking, so I picked it up.
This art is cool; maybe a little too slick in places, but it’s very cinematic while still feeling like a comic book. Book is like a cross of Conan and Frank Miller’s 300.
Zamon’s Beard, y’all! The excrement just got real as our protagonist gets sucked into a magic portal and ends up in “the outskirts of a modern city.” I’m real interested in issue 2, all of a sudden.
Verdict: Strong debut and so worth your time.
Writer: David Brian Andry
Artist: Ale Aragon
- Starts out with a dad leaving his young children, one being a one legged girl, whilst he goes out to find help. Help? From what? Also, something about chirpers (locusts) and waves.
- Father goes out into the wilderness and we cut to a young boy checking traps; caught a rabbit, he did.
- Runs into a crazy, Mad Max looking wanderer who wants a chirper; Dad has a jar of them. He takes a chirper out and all hell breaks loose. Some kind of “wave” is in motion; not fully comprehending everything yet; as is the intention.
This was good: suspenseful, nice story and art that really leaves you wondering what will happen next.
Verdict: Worth your time!
Batman Curse of the White Knight – this picked up right were the first volume ended without missing a beat. Very enjoyable.
Samurai Grandpa – Another quality book from Source Point Press. Nothing fancy here, just a grandpa wanting to avenge the death of his murdered son, but I loved it. Artist, Shawn Daley, really excels and did the art for a local book called Leash Baby Kung Fu that I really dug. And, of course, he was the artist for Ogre, too.
That’s it for this issue. Thanks if you’ve read this far.
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