I’ve always been a little bewildered when it comes to the Silent Hill franchise. Sometimes the stories are smooth operating machines with clear characters, conflicts and conclusions. And then again sometimes you come across a book like Dead Alive, and don’t have the slightest clue what the hell is going on. Oh, how I wished this one hadn’t been so abstract, but hey – we’ll get through it!
The Vulturions aren’t exactly marquee menaces in Spider-Man’s world. They’re actually two-bit hooligans who joined forces to claim power and riches after their eventual leader, Honcho duped an imprisoned Adrian Toomes (better known as The Vulture) into spilling the technical secrets of his by-now infamous wings. When Honcho gets out of the slammer, he does so fully prepared to assemble four pair of wings, one for he and the thugs in his crew.
Fred Van Lent is one of hell of a writer, and as it just so happens, Guiu Vilanova is an excellent artist. Together these two deliver an absolutely unmissable story: Weird Detective. If crime noir, bleak horror and Lovecraft influence is a mixture you can wrap your head around, you may actually fall in love with this book.
Redneck looks absolutely awesome, and we’re grateful that Skybound is offering us some more insane horror to absorb!
Warning: This review contains spoilers, so if you’ve yet to read Joe Haldeman’s novel, or this particular issue, be leery of the facts divulged.
Joe Haldeman and Marvano join forces to deliver a riveting adaptation of Haldeman’s own Hugo Award-winning science fiction novel of the same name, and while this may be a different medium, it’s a captivating piece of work all the same; Haldeman has maximized the effectiveness of a modern masterpiece, and that not only opens his story up to a demographic that may have missed his novel, it’s also worth serious applause. This is a true masterwork of fiction, plain and simple.
In a space age dystopian hell, one man rules an entire body of the living. Those trapped on the prison ship, Empyreon are slaves to an all-powerful and profoundly ruthless leader known as Khaal. He is, for lack of a better term, a tyrant, and there is no escaping him for the prison Empyreon is the only existing ship in the galaxy.
With Johnny Blaze’s origin story out of the way (see Marvel Spotlight), Marvel opens up and gifts the spirit of vengeance his very own book, and it’s a winner through and through. Released way back in September of 1973, Ghost Rider was one of the more popular horror titles post-code for Marvel Comics, who’d been hot and cold with genre titles for years thanks to the lunacy of the Comics Code. But the code’s stranglehold continued to loosen sometime around 1970 and Marvel got right down to introducing all sorts of killer monster books. While there are a few vintage titles I love, none had the staying power (or sales) of Ghost Rider, who remains a hot commodity today.
A handful of Predators, Judge Dredd himself and some nasty aliens all find themselves in hostile rural territory. We already know that the gung-ho Judge Dredd plans on trekking into the rugged terrain to investigate. But inside those secluded wooded areas something sinister brews. Evil scientists, man-hunting animals, and a new threat altogether is going to give Dredd all he can handle.
I can’t praise Jeff Lemire enough for what is nothing shy of an immediately captivating tale of sacrifice and heart ache, isolation and frustration. It’s about life in exchange for death. It’s about fallen heroes, all but forgotten by a world that once loved them. It’s about The Black Hammer, the one who gave his life so that Abraham Slam, Golden Gail, Barbalien, Colonial Weird, Talky Walky, and Madame Dragonfly could continue to live… continue to breathe.
This is a tale about a young woman, once proud to be the daughter of the Hero of the Streets, and her mission to find those heroes long forgotten. For she knows, in her heart, that they’re out there… somewhere.
Dramatic enough for you?
Honestly, Black Hammer is an amazing book that instantly pulls the reader into a world occupied by polarizing and infectious personalities. Their conflicts are unique but united as a group. Their opinions on their state of existence differ, but there’s a familial beauty to this group that leaves us comic geeks falling in love. It’s an amazing piece of work.
Dean Ormston’s artwork is also perfect. A throwback to a simpler age, Ormston’s got variety in his hand, but he’s decorated this story the way it should be, the way a 50s science fiction film might look on page. And in some ways, that’s kind of what the story is: a science fiction experience lived by a handful of heroes of no use today, trapped in a one horse town with little to do… other than survive.
Lemire, coupled with Ormston deliver what has to be recognized as one of the most inspired Dark Horse titles to ever see release. Ever. That’s a powerful statement, but you don’t find the perfect book very often.
Look into issue #1 of Black Hammer right here.