Category Archives: Image

Comic Review: Saga Volume 1

Saga Volume 1

Written by Brian K. Vaughan

Artist Fiona Staples

Lettering & Design Fonografiks

 

 

 

If you have a social media account then you have probably seen a post or two about Brian K. Vaughan’s book Saga. Over the past few years, I’ve seen the hype but never took the time to read it. Recently, I picked up volume 1 in trade paperback. This book consists of the first six issues. Let me tell you I’m so glad I started reading this book.

Saga is a space version of Romeo and Juliet with many twists. Two soldiers from opposite sides of an interstellar war (Alana and Marko) fall in love, they risk everything after the birth of their daughter, Hazel. Throughout the story they are continually being hunted. The world Brain K. Vaughan has created is simultaneously laughable, wild and emotionally grounded.

One of the main elements I enjoy in this book are the characters. There is a Royal family constructed of humanistic robots with TVs for heads, babysitting ghost, and a lying cat ( a giant cat that serves as a lie detector) and so many more.
The art in this book by Fiona Staples is brilliantly breathtaking. The panels flow so smoothly complementing Vaughan’s writing. Brilliant colors are found throughout this book, as well.
One thing I should mention is this book is not for children. It’s an adult graphic novel. If you can handle a lot of adult topics ( explicit sexual scenes, violence, and language) then I say, pick up this book you will not be disappointed!

By  Fred Etten

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TPCCafe Ep 142 Val Kilmer Manatee

TPCCafe S3 Ep 142 Val Kilmer Manatee

Well gang Scott and I are back but this time the sound is a little off. I still hope you enjoy the show. Also I have forgot my cheat sheet so I forgot what stories we talked about so…….surprise.

Enjoy the show.

Check out this episode!

Days of Hate 1# of 12 – Image

I had heard a bit about this title before I read it and really wasn’t sure what to expect going into it. It’s actually a very “down to earth” book. I mean that, in that there is a focus on relationships, and how they are effected by political ideology as opposed to just the ideology by itself. It’s set not too far in the future, and sadly enough you can see seeds being planted in this reality now for this type of timeline, possibly, to come to fruition.

This first chapter takes us to a world that is simmering with the tensions of a societal civil war looming over it. The characters that we are introduced to have the same type of lives in many ways as characters you would see in “the Walking Dead ” now. No black and white answers. Only shades of grey. One of the most pleasant surprises of the book is that it didn’t seem one sided.All the characters you encounter are “humanized ” in some way by writer Ales Kot .They may not be the most savoury of individuals, but you are at least introduced to their point of view even if you don’t agree with it.

Sadly enough, this may very well be where the U.S could be heading in the next 10 years. Many of the source elements in this book already exist within our society now. We have always associated large-scale bombings and targeted assassinations with other parts of the world.This book brings those apparatuses to local problems in the U.S to great effect. Ales Kot puts a very human face on a very violent solution.

Artist Danijel Zezelj compliments the writing with a shady, murky style befitting a shady, murky story. There is a “splash page” at one of the pivotal moments of the book I thought was beautifully done. Lots of “charcoal fingerprint” shading was done around the edges of the art that fit the tone of the book wonderfully.If your a fan of the X-Men books I can see some definite similarities if you are looking  to try some “non-superhero” reading with that same “us against the world” vibe.

There were a few comments made about enforcement apparatuses that I believe were a bit harsh, but they are not made COMPLETELY without merit, and this is a future alternative. I  enjoyed this first issue and will be putting in my pull list. Next chapter drops Feb.28th/2018

P.S Drop back by on Jan.25th .I’ll be taking a look at X-Men :Blue Annual #1

 

 

Standing In Line For Todd McFarlane Autograph

Note: I had plan on releasing this as soon I returned home for the Calgary Expo. Well that was the plan but I got hit by the con bug and was out for few days. Well better late then never.

So it is day two of the Calgary Expo and my son and I got in to The Big Four building so he could get a hologram print, which he never bought.  So I thought WTF why not get in line to get a couple books signed. Todd was schedule to be signing  from 1pm to 7pm. Yeah that is a large amount of time set aside for signing.

BUT………

Time was passing and the line, well the line I was in hardly moved. Now before you think I am bitching i am not. Todd was spending time with each person coming to get his autograph. It may only a few minutes but nevertheless he was taking the time to meet his fans.

I got Stan Lee autograph last year. The line was larger and his time was short but man they scuffled you through. It may have been because they were worried he may bite the dust at any minute. He didn’t folks.

Though some folks are annoyed I have not seen any leave. That is all because of the fact that it is Todd McFarlane and this maybe some folks only chance to see him. I am one of those few.

A big thanks to Todd for spending his time meeting his fans.

Oh I have no plan on selling my signed copies. They are for my personal viewing. Well until I die and then the books will go to my son or daughter.  After that??????

P.S. I waited 3 hrs to get these two books signed.  Worth it.

God Country – Image – Issue #4 – Review and a few thoughts

I have a granddaughter now. Like Emmett, I pretty much would follow her to hell to bring her back too if she was taken from us. That’s what this 4th issue delves into. A trip to hell. Balegrim has taken something very precious to Emmett and he wants her back.

I’ve heard rumors that this is only a 6 issue series. Rumors , I say because like butt holes it seems everyone has one. There might be a hint to that in this issue as (minor spoiler) the trip to hell isn’t near as long as you’d think it would have been. It does the job but I could have stood to see more exploration of this version of hell. There’s a bit of foreshadowing of things to come in the form of a dangerous looking animal surveying the scene so maybe there’s another trip back there in the works.

I’ve liked that Donnie Cates has kept the cast of characters in this book relatively small so that you get a decent fleshing out of their personalities and insight into what makes them tick. There’s a really compelling 3 page run in the book that examines our characters relationship with god and how that can be judged and questioned in the face of strife .Some really good dialogue here. The development of the “non god” relationship between Roy and Janey has been an interesting and necessary subplot to the book.

The main hero of this chapter is Valofax in that he is able to be the strategist and warrior that we forget Emmett is not really ready to be. Interesting nod to “Lord of the Rings: Return of the King” here also. We’re also reminded in this chapter that although Emmett has the power of the gods now, he still has ties to his humanity that can be used to hurt him when need be. I think is an important plot point for this hero to have.

A majority of the media spotlight has been shone on Donnie Cates writing for giving this book the popularity it deserves .However, Geoff Shaw’s art has played a huge part , by being able to convey  a combination of the country simplicity and regal war of the gods feeling of Donnie’s words .His wispy attention to detail in facial features covers every nuance of the characters emotions during the story, and his beautiful renderings of contrasting landscapes, whether the barren slate of hell, or the rustic home style of Texas have brought such a warm and  unique feel to this book. The shades of shadowy dark inking used in this book lends a sense of foreboding to the story that has worked since issue #1.

Book 5 is due out May.17th.Highly recommend this.

Story: Donny Cates

Art: Geoff Shaw, Jason Wordie, John J.Hill

Colorist: Jason Wordie

Letterer: John J Hill

 

 

 

 

Image Comics- Black Cloud #1- Review and a few thoughts.

 

Wasn’t sure what to make of this after the first read. Read it the second time this morning and things started to come together. I hope so anyway. At this point I may be reading this issue all wrong.

First, I should point out that the first three pages are beautifully drawn and coloured. Greg Hinkle has drawn really great art there. The book itself is the beginning of a story which seems to involve, for lack of better term, on dream weavers. The story focuses on Zelda(I got that from the solicitations as I don’t think she is referenced as anyone other than “Ms. Barrett in the story)and her making her way in the world by giving the world the drug it always wanted…….the ability to make their dreams come true. Bringing along Zelda as their guide is just part of the deal.

These worlds of dreams seem all interconnected which COULD make for a story that would rival the magical world of Harry Potter if done right. More than once during the story there are references to her coming from “below” and there seems to be more than a few references to someone from above who seems to be a nemesis of hers with props such as water and lightning bolts involved. At this point I’m beginning to think that this is the beginning of a saga about temptation and a struggle of good vs Evil. I’m not really sure Zelda is on the side of the angels…..yet.

Greg Hinkles art has kind of dreamy, rustic, dark , yet elegant feeling to it and when I read the book the second time I could feel the style growing on me. Colorist Matt Wilson did a beautiful job specifically on those first 3 pages and throughout the book he was able to weave the bright blues, browns and  shades of oranges of the Technicolor real world, with dull greys and blacks of a persons dream state(Except Bowie, who always dreamed in Color)

Over all I enjoyed the writing style of Jason Latour and Ivan Brandon although sometimes I felt like I was missing a lot of information about this world they are creating ,but like any good writer would plot……all in good time. There was a nice hook for the next book as someone is after Zelda and whether that be a specific nemesis or just a general guardian against what she is doing with the dream world remains to be seen. One thing that has been established is that Zelda is a power to be reckoned with in this dream world and it’s citizens have a lot of respect for this “old blood”. Lots of questions by the end of this chapter. Will pick up the next chapter off the shelf. If you enjoy the mystical and the feeling of something bigger this may be a book for you.

Next chapter is on sale May.10th

Story: Jason Latour & Ivan Brandon

Script: Ivan Brandon

Art: Greg Hinkle

Color: Matt Wilson

Lettering : Aditya Bidikar

Image Comics – God Country #3- Review – A few thoughts

 

Hi Folks, just a few thoughts on the latest issue of “God Country” that I just completed. Chapter 3 was very much a lull before the storm chapter……. and then that storm showed up. The pacing for this book has been very well done. Hats off to Donnie Cates for able to tell what is becoming an epic tale with just the right amount of hills and valleys.

These are not perfect characters. Which makes them even more endearing and relatable to the reader. Valofax, which is basically a talking sword, has a social awkwardness you might find in a 12 year old boy, instead of a living weapon that has seen the lives and deaths of millions across the Cosmos. That age old awkward, generational  relationship that some fathers and sons have is on full display here also .It just happens  to be playing out during a time of gods and demons. Donnie Cates nails this back and forth dialogue so wonderfully that I can’t help but wonder if it is coming from life experience.

We had a new member of the cast show up this issue in the evil of Balegrim. His show of force was just enough of an introduction  to sow the seeds of curiosity on how he plays into all of this bigger picture. At this point in time I have no idea where the story is going next and I am looking forward to that aspect each month now. Minor spoiler for this story. It’s going straight to hell……..I think. Either way…….As a grandfather, I too can relate to the one thought that was blazing through Emmett’s head “You do not F*ck with the grandkids”….

Geoff Shaw’s  art continues to help set the tone for a great look for this book. When I see his work the terms “Rustic”, “Grainy” and “windswept” comes to mind and his characters sharp features help convey the story panel to panel. He’s got a solid future ahead of him. Jason Wordie also has kept the colors of a darker nature . The darker black inks have been plentiful  to help convey the almost somber feel that the tale has sometimes.

If EBAY is any indicator people are beginning to show a lot of interest in this series. If you find a copy in your local store I would scoop it up as I suspect it may not be there much longer. Numbers were hitting $50.00….. sold for the 1rst issue on line.

Issue #4 is slated out April 19th.This is a good story. Please check it out if you have a chance. Cheers.

Writer: Donnie Cates

Artist: Geoff Shaw

Colorist: Jason Wordie.