Archive for September, 2009

The Bad Guys Bounce Back


Batman and Robin #4

We briefly meet a villain called the Lightning Bug, just before he gets cornered and killed by Gotham’s newest vigilantes, the Red Hood and Scarlet. Scarlet used to be the innocent kidnap victim disfigured by Professor Pyg’s doll mask, but she’s now joined the Red Hood to treat criminals a whole heck of a lot more lethally than they’ve usually been treated in the past. We get scenes of Dick Grayson and Damian Wayne investigating stuff at yet another GCPD charity event and meeting a mysterious masked guy named Oberon Sexton, the Gravedigger; we see Sasha worrying about whether the doll mask will ever come off; and the Penguin attends a meeting of criminal kingpins, as a masked villain named Santo warns that an assassin named, believe it or not, the Flamingo is coming to get rid of Batman for them. Of course, the Red Hood and Scarlet show up to kill some more crooks — when Batman and Robin arrive to stop them, the next stage of the confrontation is set up.

Verdict: Thumbs up, but it’s not as good as it could’ve been. Everything seems a bit muddy and unclear, including a odd couple of pages of Batman and Robin on a stakeout. I am enjoying the characterization of Sasha and the clues being dropped about the identity of the Red Hood. I’m not sure that Grant Morrison will go with the seemingly obvious choice for Red Hood’s secret identity, but if it’s not the original Red Hood, I suspect a lot of people will be disappointed…


JSA vs. Kobra #4

Finally, some other characters besides Mr. Terrific, Power Girl, Flash, and Green Lantern get some time in the spotlight! Kobra is continuing their seemingly random worldwide attacks, but Mr. Terrific thinks he has them figured out. He gets Jakeem Thunder and the Thunderbolt to teach him everything they can about magic, and they track Kobra to the Rock of Eternity, where he chips a stone off the statue of Hatred from the Seven Deadly Enemies of Man. A JSA squad attacks, but Kobra is able to use the powerful magical energy of the Rock of Eternity strike against the Thunderbolt, and he’s able to escape. Still, it’s not a total loss — the JSA have captured his most trusted confidant.

Verdict: Thumbs up. It’s finally starting to get a bit better. There’s still a ton of emphasis on Mr. Terrific, but it’s great that the much-neglected Jakeem gets a few moments to shine, and Stargirl gets to take on the roll of Team Badass, which we don’t get to see her do very often. Still, the plot is far from perfect — I’m hoping it all comes together in the last two issues.


Sir Edward Grey, Witchfinder: In the Service of Angels #3

Sir Edward is able to scare off the demon, but at the cost of one of the Captain’s assistants. Miss Wolf, the medium, has learned the location of the monster’s bones from her spirit guide — a quick diving expedition in the Thames locates the bones, but to use them to dispel the beast, they’ll have to track it down first. Miss Wolf leads Grey and the others to a storefront church, where they find a whole congregation of corpses — the monster disguised itself as an angel and fed off of their blood. The church’s minister is able to recount the monster’s origin, but while their attending to him in the back room, they accidentally leave the case with the bones in the main sanctuary… and of course, that’s when the monster picks its moment to attack.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Nicely chilling and creepy, with outstanding suspense and beautifully crafted artwork.

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More Guests for the West Texas Comic Con!


Like I said last week, the West Texas Comic Con is coming up on November 7th at the Science Spectrum, but did you know they’re already adding new guests? In addition to Matt Sturges, Will Terrell, and Dirk Strangely, we can now add…

* Josh Howard: writer and artist on “Dead@17,” “Black Harvest,” and “The Lost Books of Eve.” Had you heard that “Dead@17” has been optioned for a movie? You have now…

* Chris Nicholas: sometimes known as Uncle Staple, he’s the driving force behind “Staple!: The Independent Media Expo,” Austin’s annual comics/art/animation/self-publishing convention.

* The Abilene 501st: the Abilene branch of a worldwide “Star Wars” costuming organization operated entirely by fans. Will they be competing in the costume contest? Just in case, you better bring your A-game, Lubbockites.

* The Lubbock Sketch Club: Lubbock’s best and brightest all-access art club is, of course, going to be a very important part of any comic convention in the Hub City.

That’s way, way more special guests than I was ever expecting, so mad kudos to everyone hammering out the details and making the contacts for this. This is looking like it’ll be the best comic convention Lubbock’s seen yet, so y’all better get your calendars marked for the West Texas Comic Con — Saturday, November 7th, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. at the Science Spectrum!

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Don't Bother Me! I'm Playing Video Games!


Hot dog, a new awesome update for City of Heroes! Ya know what that means? Wait, actually, I don’t care if you don’t know what that means — I’m too busy playing on the computer!

Here’s some links, so keep yer yaps shut while Daddy’s busy!

‘Scuse me, gotta fight cybernetic supervillains now. EAT RADIOACTIVE LASER BEAMS, EVILDOER SCUM!

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Dancin’ with the Devil

North 40 #3

Conover County is still overrun with monsters who used to be normal county residents, including a junkyard owner who’s building giant robots, a police dispatch operator who’s been dead for 20 years, a former beauty queen who can see the world through her own photographs, the local goth teen turned spectral instrument of vengeance, and a whole heck of a lot of freaky kids attending the prom. Sheriff Morgan is trying to keep order, but he’s got people plotting against him, and he may stand no chance of stopping the slaughter planned at the high school.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Creepy, bizarre, funny, weird stuff. By this point, I thought all the main players were already on the stage, but I’m impressed that Aaron Williams is both still introducing new, mondo-bizarro characters and advancing the plot at the same time. This is the next-to-the-last issue of this miniseries, but I really hope they’re going to turn this into an ongoing series.

B.P.R.D.: 1947 #3

The Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense has sent four soldiers to Europe to deal with some vampires, and things don’t go well. After a suspenseful investigation of a couple of suspicious coffins in the castle’s crypt, two of the three operatives are attacked and killed by vampires. Meanwhile, the lone operative who’s been taken to the black mass with the witches and vampires is witness to Baron Konig’s undoing and to the terrifying summoning of Hecate herself. But does he survive the experience? Does any of them survive?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Outstanding — and very suspenseful — storytelling from Mike Mignola and Joshua Dysart, along with fantastic artwork by Gabriel Ba and Fabio Moon. Just plain outstanding horror fiction getting made here, on every level from intimate suspense to apocalyptic blood-and-thunder.

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Bite the Wax Tadpole

I’m in a bit of a rotten mood. Nothing real serious, but I’ve taken on some very big, very daunting personal projects, with very scary upcoming deadlines, and I spent most of this weekend not making any real progress on them, even when I tried to work on them. It was a pretty frustrating weekend, coupled with the fact that I haven’t really done anything for fun in a while.

So basically, I’m a bit grim, and I feel like reviewing some comics that just plain bite.


Booster Gold #24

Booster fights Trigon in the future world where Trigon has killed almost everyone. He gets captured with the help of the Black Beetle, but Lex Luthor ends up helping him escape. Luthor leads Booster, Skeets, Rip Hunter, Raven, and the future rebels, including Zatanna, Kyle Rayner, and Green Arrow, to Trigon’s secret vault, which is full of superheroes’ skeletons and a few trinkets. Black Beetle follows them in, grabs a red scarab that he claims will make him invincible, and the rest of the team gives Kyle Rayner a Green Lantern ring. Then Booster, Rip, and Raven return to their original time, where — get this — Booster beats up Deathstroke off-panel so he can impersonate him and save the Teen Titans. Yeah, Booster Gold beats up a guy who can trash pretty much anyone in the DC Universe, and he doesn’t even break a sweat. The backup story with Blue Beetle, for once, isn’t a lot better. Jaime and his friends and family are hiking in Big Bend when they’re attacked by the Black Beetle. Jaime’s been worried that his scarab has been more bloodthirsty, but he just gives in and decides to see if he can kill the Black Beetle.

Verdict: Thumbs down. Once again, there’s no reason for Booster or Rip Hunter to be goofing around in FutureLand, when the only thing they were supposed to fix was in the past. And the utter ridiculousness of Booster beating Deathstroke is just the cherry on a big fat horsecrap sundae. And even Paco talking like Mr. T can’t save the backup story from being a lot of uncharacteristic no-fun.


Models Inc. #1

Hey, ya know what girls want in their comics? A bunch of self-obsessed fictional models talking about clothes and about being famous and about people they don’t like, with minimal action and shallow characterization! Ya know what else they want? A heavily-promoted backup story starring Tim Gunn from “Project Runway” in which he puts on a suit of Iron Man armor that’s on display at a fashion museum and then beats up on bad guys!

Verdict: Nine million thumbs down. I lost numerous brain cells reading the main story, and the backup — listen, I hate to go all continuity-obsessed-fanboy on everyone, but if you were going to display Iron Man armor at a museum, wouldn’t you deactivate it, to keep bad guys from getting it? And even if most Iron Man suits these days weren’t programmed to respond only to Tony Stark, how the heck would some random fashion guru be able to use the blasted thing with any sort of competence? Bad comic. Bad, bad, bad comic.


Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen Special #2

The last issue of this came out last October, and I liked it pretty well. But wow, what a whole year stuck on the shelf will do for ya. Good luck making heads or tails out of this one if you haven’t been following the Superman comics. Superman ain’t around, but Mon-El, from the Legion of Super-Heroes, is filling in and promises to keep Jimmy safe from Codename: Assassin, a guy who is able to fly and kill people with guns. Jimmy is trying to find out — umm, I forget — which leads him to a housefire — he saves someone inside, who turns out to be a former member of Lex Luthor’s Everyman project. He keeps randomly switching gender for some reason. Before he dies, he puts Jimmy in touch with Natasha Irons, who rattles off some stuff about Captain Atom and Breach and stuff. Then Jimmy gets ambushed by Codename: Assassin and gunned down.

Verdict: Thumbs down. Sooo confusing, sooo boring.

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Get Ready for the West Texas Comic Con!


Another Lubbock comic convention? Heck, yeah!

The West Texas Comic Con is happening on Saturday, November 7th from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the main exhibit hall in the Lubbock Science Spectrum at 2579 S. Loop 289, Ste 250. There will be panels and presentations, vendors, artists, comics, costumed folks, and more fun than you can shake a stick at without getting investigated by the Lubbock PD.

Admission fees are cheaper’n dirt, too. Adults pay $4. Kids 12 and under pay $2. Toddlers get in free. And people who come in costume get in free! So keep your Halloween costume for an extra week so you can use it to get into the Comic Con, alright?

“Aww, come on, man! A Saturday in November?! I gotta go tailgating!” No, actually, November 7 is a bye week for Tech! Ain’t no football — so come on down!

Numerous presentations are planned, including a writers workshop, at least one humorous fan panel on “How to Read Comics,” a game show, and of course, the ever-popular costume contest, starting around 1 p.m.

And listen up — this year, there are going to be special guests.

The featured guest: Matt Sturges, writer of “Jack of Fables” and “Justice Society of America.” He’s also worked on “Blue Beetle,” “House of Mystery,” “Shadowpact,” and “Final Crisis Aftermath: Run!” Matt lives in Austin, believe it or not! He’ll be participating in the writers panel and a Q&A session.

Will Terrell will be there, of course. He’s the Lubbock artist who’s worked on “Disney’s Gargoyles” and “The Goblin Chronicles,” as well as helping found the Lubbock Sketch Club. And he designed the convention logo at the top of this post! He’ll be helping out on the writers panel and probably almost everything else. His current big project is the webcomic “Super Zeroes.”

And a guy named Dirk Strangely will be there, too. Dirk does extremely creepy (and often, very funny) illustrations and has written a couple of nicely morbid children’s books. I spent a lot of last night clicking through his gallery on his site, and I’m entirely loving his stuff. I’m really looking forward to meeting him.

So go ahead and make your plans for the West Texas Comic Con — Nov. 7, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. at the Science Spectrum! Be there or I’ll whup ya with sticks!

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Shakeup at DC!


It was just a bit over a week ago that the big news broke about Disney buying Marvel Comics, and now there’s another big shakeup.

Time Warner, which has owned DC Comics for decades, has announced that they’re going to restructure DC, and Paul Levitz, DC’s publisher and president, is stepping down, supposedly so he can focus on writing comic books again.

Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. (WBEI) has created DC Entertainment Inc., a new company founded to fully realize the power and value of the DC Comics brand and characters across all media and platforms, to be run by Diane Nelson, it was announced today by Barry Meyer, Chairman & CEO, and Alan Horn, President & COO, Warner Bros.

DC Entertainment, a separate division of WBEI, will be charged with strategically integrating the DC Comics business, brand and characters deeply into Warner Bros. Entertainment and all its content and distribution businesses.  DC Entertainment, which will work with each of the Warner Bros. divisions, will also tap into the tremendous expertise the Studio has in building and sustaining franchises and prioritize DC properties as key titles and growth drivers across all of the Studio, including feature films, television, interactive entertainment, direct-to-consumer platforms and consumer products.  The DC Comics publishing business will remain the cornerstone of DC Entertainment, releasing approximately 90 comic books through its various imprints and 30 graphic novels a month and continuing to build on its creative leadership in the comic book industry.

In her new role, Nelson will report to Jeff Robinov, President, Warner Bros. Pictures Group, in order to best capitalize on DC Entertainment’s theatrical development and production activities and their importance to drive its overall business with each of the divisions of Warner Bros.

Nelson will bring her expertise and more than 20 years’ experience in creative brand management, strategic marketing and content development and production to ensuring DC Entertainment’s dual mission of marshalling Warner Bros.’ resources to maximize the potential of the DC brand while remaining respectful of and collaborative with creators, talent, fans and source material.  Additionally, Nelson will continue to oversee the franchise management of the Harry Potter property, which she has done since 2000, and also continue to represent the Studio’s interests with the author of the Harry Potter books, J.K. Rowling.  Nelson will segue from her post as President, Warner Premiere but maintain oversight responsibilities of that division.  (An executive succession plan for Warner Premiere will be announced shortly.)

Paul Levitz, who has served as President & Publisher of DC Comics since 2002, will segue from that role to return to his roots as a writer for DC and become a contributing editor and overall consultant to DCE.  This transition will take place as expeditiously as possible without disrupting DC’s business operations.

In his new role, Levitz will be called upon for his deep knowledge and more than three-decade history with DC Comics, both as a comic creator and an executive.  Besides serving as a writer on a number of DC Comics titles, he will be a contributing editor and consultant to DC Entertainment on projects in various media. 

Okay, that’s a LOT of corporate marketing-speak (and there was a lot more that I cut out, too), and corporate marketing-speak is designed to say as little as possible while looking like you’re saying a lot. Basically, all this says is: Levitz is out, Diane Nelson is in, and Warner’s is kinda tired of getting their butts whupped by Marvel’s movies. There’s a lot they’re NOT saying. Sure, we have no idea what really went down, but as they say in the blogosphere: Would it be irresponsible to speculate? It would be irresponsible not to!

First, there’s not much question that this all went down because of the Disney-Marvel deal. The Warner bigwigs opened up their business section one morning, read about Disney’s big purchase, and said, “Hey, don’t we own a comic book company, too?”

At that point, research was done into one of Warner’s smallest properties, and someone came up not happy with what they saw. It would be nice if they said, “Holy cats! They cancelled Blue Beetle?! Teen Titans has turned into a murder parade?! They’re relaunching old characters and then abandoning them again?! These comic books are crap!” But ya know, like Disney, Warner’s almost certainly doesn’t care about comics. Comics are small fry. Movies and video games are where the big money is, and for the past few years, DC’s comic book movies have been, except for “The Dark Knight,” an unrelenting parade of suck. And even then, the pace of production has been ploddingly slow. Marvel had a huge hit last year with “Iron Man,” and they’re already filming the sequel. DC had an even larger hit with “The Dark Knight,” but they haven’t even started pre-production work on a sequel. To be honest, this was probably more about lighting a fire under their film division than it was about comic books.

…except for Paul Levitz. His resignation — and I have little doubt that this was a “resign-or-else” resignation — would not have happened if this was all about movies, ’cause Levitz isn’t in charge of making any movies. It looks to me like Levitz was pushed out because one of the higher-ups at Warner’s didn’t like something about how the comics side of the business was being run. It could’ve just been “Wait, why are Marvels comics more popular than ours? We’ve got Batman, dangit!” But that’s not certain — maybe someone at the top actually reads comics and is tired of seeing DC publish bad comics.

Now what does this all mean for us funny-book fans? With Marvel, I’m figuring Disney won’t care to interfere with the comic book side of things, but I’m not sure that’s the case with DC. Getting rid of the publisher means someone wants some changes made.

If we’re lucky, maybe Dan DiDio will get shown the door, too, and maybe DC’s books will see some improvement.

If we’re not lucky… Well, Diane Nelson doesn’t seem to have any prior experience in the comics biz — it’s all movies, brand management, and marketing. And I think we’ve all seen far too many marketing-driven comics to expect good things on that front. It doesn’t take too great a stretch of the imagination to see that DiDio might actually be very, very happy about this new arrangement — he may be afforded more power than he ever was before…

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Magical Mystery Tour


Daring Mystery Comics 70th Anniversary Special #1

For some reason, I thought Marvel was done with their 70th Anniversary Specials, but I’m very pleased to see that they’re still being released. This one features (along with one of the finest covers I’ve seen in ages) the adventures of a guy called the Phantom Reporter. He’s a normal reporter trying to track down the tough stories, hunting for the leads that will let him discover who killed a childhood friend-gone-bad. But when he gets too close to the truth, the criminal syndicates come after him, and he puts on a gag mask to try to disguise himself, then ends up unleashing ungodly amounts of whupass on the mobsters. And after that, he realizes he doesn’t have to play by the rules of journalism to get at the truth of who killed his friend — he can just hit gangsters ’til they tell him what he needs to know. But his final opponent may be too tough to beat. After the main story, there’s a classic story from the Golden Age about the Phantom Reporter and his multiple secret identities…

Verdict: Thumbs up. Absolutely outstanding noir adventure. You got your mask-and-fedora hero who’s willing to bend the rules, you got a mourning mobster willing to talk to someone who’ll help him get justice, you got a femme fatale who may have dark secrets, you got complete scoundrels running the whole show. They could’ve made this a movie serial back in the ’40s…


Mystic Comics 70th Anniversary Special #1

More noir adventure, this time with a magic twist — namely a Golden Age hero called the Vision, a crimefighter from another dimension who can manifest through clouds of smoke. The mob is desperate to rub him out — after they hear about some weird lights coming from a local professor’s home, they sneak a gangster into the home to work undercover as a gardener, and he soon learns that the Vision is really an interdimensional traveler named Aarkus who has become trapped in our world. An experiment to send Aarkus back to his world is disrupted by the fake gardener, and the resulting accident with the dimensional gateway releases a cosmic monster able to induce horrific hallucinations in any humans it encounters. And again, once the main story is over, we’re treated to an old story about the Vision, this time drawn by Jack Kirby as the Vision faces attacks by werewolves…

Verdict: Thumbs up. Great magical adventure pulp, with a great dose of horror. I loved the creepy zombie who menaces the professor and his daughter, and the hallucinating farm family trying to kill each other are chilling, especially after the Vision banishes their illusions, and they realize they may have already killed another family member. And the backup story with King Kirby illustrating a werewolf story is also wonderful.

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Yours Truly, Jack the Ripper

On this day in 1888, the body of Annie Chapman, the second victim of Jack the Ripper, was found.

That’s as good an excuse as any for us to talk about “From Hell.”

“From Hell” was written by Alan Moore and illustrated by Eddie Campbell. It was originally published spread out across several different magazines, but eventually compiled into a single book in 1999. It’s a gigantic book — almost 600 pages.

It’s about Jack the Ripper, of course. It’s a fictionalized account, obviously, following Inspector Frederick Abberline as he investigates the killings, a group of Whitechapel prostitutes as they slowly realize that they — very specifically, in fact — are being stalked by the killer, and it follows Sir William Gull, royal physician to Queen Victoria and the man behind the gory murders.

Oops, was that a spoiler? No, believe it or not, it isn’t. We know almost from the beginning that Gull is Saucy Jack. This isn’t a whodunit. It’s a whydunit.

I think “From Hell” is my favorite of Moore comics — better than “Watchmen,” “V for Vendetta,” or “The Killing Joke.” I got into it because I’ve always been a horror fan — in fact, I’m the only person in my immediate or extended family who cares for horror, which makes me, well, the only person in my family who likes horror. Anyway, as a horror nut, serial killer stories, and especially stories about Old Leather-Apron, have always appealed to me. And “From Hell” ladles on buckets of horror. Not just gore — and there is a lot of gore, and I mean a lot — but suspense, paranoia, psychological chills. It’s a very scary, creepy story about the best known but most mysterious serial killer in history, and horror fans will absolutely love it.

But on top of that, I’d developed a taste for conspiratorial fiction and stuff about secret societies — books like Robert Shea and Robert Anton Wilson’s “Illuminatus!” trilogy, Umberto Eco’s “Foucault’s Pendulum,” and the more demented style of modern conspiracy theories. And “From Hell” actually manages to scratch that itch, too, because it’s crammed full of conspiracies, esotericism, sacred geography, secret history, weird stuff both subtle and spectacular. In the story, Gull manages to make mystical connections with poet/painter William Blake and 20th century serial killers like Peter Sutcliffe. He sees visions of Adolf Hitler and WWII and even sees the 1990s — he even claims to have created all of it himself, through the murders.

None of it seems like it should have any place in a story about Jack the Ripper, but once it’s introduced, it seems to make perfect sense. I get irritated by Moore’s obsessions from time to time, but it really is a testament to his strength as a writer that he can shoehorn all these unconnected elements into a single story, and it all works.

The full collected edition also includes a gigantic appendix detailing, almost page by page, which elements of the story were based on fact, which were invented, and which were conjecture or theory, and it all closes with an illustrated essay called “Dance of the Gull Catchers,” which distills the entire history of Ripperology, its movers and shakers, and its leading theories and fixations down into a dozen or so pages. And it makes sense, and it’s entertaining. Heck, I remember laughing out loud when Moore made the Jack the Ripper/Cattle Mutilators connection, partly because it was completely mad, and partly because, holy macaroni, it had that perfect conspiracy-theory frission that feels so good to us conspiracy fanboys.

“From Hell” is a near-perfect mix of horror, detective drama, and conspiracy theories. I wish the movie (which I’ve never managed to see) hadn’t put so many people off of the comic, because it’s one of Alan Moore’s best and most ambitious stories.

You can probably find it at your local comic shop right now. Go pick it up.

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The Alternative Meets the Mainstream


Strange Tales #1

You may remember back in 2002, DC put together a project called “Bizarro Comics,” where they let a bunch of independent and small press cartoonists create stories about their superheroes. Well, Marvel finally decided to give that a try. This is the result — Paul Pope creates a story of the Inhumans as Lockjaw repeatedly tries to get someone to give him some dog food. Junko Mizuno puts Spider-Man and Mary Jane in a city of adorable spiders. Dash Shaw pits Dr. Strange against Nightmare. James Kochalka creates a bunch of different colors of Hulk. Johnny Ryan spotlights Marvel’s most embarrassing moments and introduces the Punisher as an academic counselor. Michael Kupperman notes that the Sub-Mariner is always disgusted with humanity. Nick Bertozzi chronicles MODOK’s tragic love life. And Peter Bagge’s near-legendary “Incorrigible Hulk” finally sees print.

Verdict: Thumbs up. This is an outstanding and very funny comic. Dr. Strange struggles not to yawn, Namor craves pizza, the Watcher is a peeping tom, Spidey eats bugs, and Wolverine misinterprets a blue hair. The best stories are Pope’s wonderful story about Lockjaw and the Inhumans, and Bertozzi’s genuinely sad story about MODOK. Best line? “I have to get my evil unicorn.” Best thing about this comic? Marvel is going to release two more issues in the coming months.


Sweet Tooth #1

This is the first all-color comic by Canadian alt-cartoonist Jeff Lemire. It focuses on a kid named Gus who has antlers and other deer-like features. He lives with his dying father in the wilderness — some sort of apocalyptic accident has caused children to be born as human-animal hybrids, and that’s made them all targets, though we never learn if they’re subject to extermination, capture, or something else. Gus has never seen another human other than his father, and when he dies, Gus is left on his own. Can he survive a hostile world he knows nothing about?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Weird, quirky, and sometimes intensely cinematic. Gus and his dad are both wonderful characters, and his dad’s death hits Gus and the reader hard. The scene where Gus meets the deer is short but amazingly cool. And there are a couple of bonus reasons to pick this up. First, it’s just a dollar. Just one freakin’ buck! One measly simoleon! You can afford that! Second, Lemire has an offer for you — send him your copy of the comic with a self-addressed envelope, and he’ll sign the book and send you an original sketch. (Check here for address and other details.)

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