Swear-In Jar


Prez #3

Beth Ross is about to be sworn in as the new President of the United States. Her vice president is Preston Rickard, who is so hated in Washington that no one will ever assassinate Beth, just to keep Rickard out of the Big Chair. Beth decides to build her cabinet out of the smartest people in the country, including a Neil DeGrasse Tyson analogue and an unemployed foreign policy expert. But the powers-that-be are hoping to assassinate Beth after she takes her oath of office but before Rickard does — will her presidency end before it even begins?

Verdict: Thumbs up. I love the story, but a lot of the really great stuff in this issue is background. We follow factory drone Manny Esposito as he gets used and abused by the megacorps that run the world, and that gives us a ton of info about this future version of America. And the distressing thing is how close it really is to the current version of America. Business, politics, and media are getting more and more sociopathic and corrupt as time goes on. How long will it take for the world of this comic to look like the our own world? Heck, all we need to do is develop better hologram technology, and we’re there. Let’s just call it now — this is the sharpest work of political satire currently being produced in comics. In fact, there’s a pretty good chance that this is the best political satire being produced in any medium right now.


Hellboy in Hell #7

Been a while since we saw the last issue of this, hasn’t it? The previous issue came out about 15 months ago — I’d actually thought the series was over. But Mike Mignola is apparently still hard at work on it. This issue has Hellboy suffering from a parasitical infection of his very soul, which is causing him to waste away. After a brief vision of his love Alice, who tells him that the world is dying but will be reborn in England through a new World Tree, his new doctors take him for treatment to Dr. Hoffman, who is being persecuted by Dr. Coppelius, who possesses great supernatural powers, as well as an even greater grudge. Hoffman thinks he can devise a cure, but Hellboy will have to hold off Coppelius…

Verdict: Thumbs up. It’s always great to see Mignola writing and illustrating Hellboy. A number of great things in here, too — the creepy recitation of the Three Witches’ speech from “Macbeth,” the glorious glimpse we get of Alice, and a golem yelling “Halibut!” — so it’s certainly worth picking up.


Lumberjanes #17

Abigail is dead-set on destroying the monstrous Grootslang — and she really can’t destroy it. It’s much too powerful, and after it gets done killing her, it’s going to go wild on everyone else it can, too. While Rosie tries to save Abigail, the girls are researching how to stop the Grootslang. Turns out it loves jewels, and they’ve found a gigantic stash of jewels in Abigail’s cabin. But what if it can’t be bribed? There’s sure to be trouble then…

Verdict: Thumbs up. Great story all the way around — great drama and humor, great characterization and conflict, great humor. And a great, understated cliffhanger, too.

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