Archive for Atomic Robo

Cute as Hell


Itty Bitty Hellboy #1

Do I really need to introduce this one? It’s Art Baltazar and Franco doing Hellboy in the style of Tiny Titans. Of course we’re all going to love it, right?

Rasputin and his not-really-nazi minions plot to replace their dishwasher box fort with the much larger refrigerator box fort owned by Hellboy and his friends. Roger the Homunculus constantly loses his underwear. Johann Kraus keeps sneezing himself out of his containment suit. Herman von Klempt hops around on his preserved head. And we get treated to the sight of Karl Ruprecht Kroenen wearing only Roger’s underwear. Ewwwww!

Verdict: Thumbs up. Again, it’s the Tiny Titans guys doing Hellboy. Everything here is awesome, and if you’re not getting it, I have no idea what’s the matter with you.


Atomic Robo Presents Real Science Adventures #10

The evil Triumvirate makes plans to destroy the economy and take over the country with the technology they’ve stolen from Tesla, but they’ve become overconfident, so Tesla and his associates in the Consortium of Science are easily able to sabotage their plans. But the Consortium is a bit overconfident, too, and they’re much more vulnerable than their enemies.

Verdict: Thumbs up. I’m really loving this story. It’s so cool to have a pulp adventure tale starring people like Nikola Tesla, Harry Houdini, Winfield Scott Lovecraft, Wong Kei-Ying, Charles Fort, George Westinghouse, and Annie Oakley.

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Crystal Light


Atomic Robo and the Savage Sword of Dr. Dinosaur #2

Atomic Robo and a small team of his Action Scientists are trapped deep underground, captured by the diabolical and loony Dr. Dinosaur, utilizing his beloved crystals to enslave an assortment of rock monsters. Dr. D plans to dump them all into a lava pit, just for the sake of being a crazy dinosaur, then blow up a giant nuclear weapon that he believes will dial time backwards to the age of the dinosaurs. But Robo manages to bluff him into thinking he’s stolen a vital component of his bomb, allowing the Action Scientists to make an escape, no matter how brief. Meanwhile, Majestic-12 is planning on shutting down Tesladyne permanently.

Verdict: Thumbs up. It should be enough for me to say “It’s Atomic Robo and Dr. Dinosaur,” but too many of you lunatics aren’t reading this. So basically, it’s hilariously written, there’s fantastic art, great action and dialogue and characterization, intrigue, suspense, cleverness… and it’s got Atomic Robo and Dr. Dinosaur running around the Hollow Earth. If you’re still not reading this brilliant series, you probably only read crap from Rob Liefeld and Greg Land.


The Movement #4

The cops of Coral City are getting ready to execute Katharsis, and the Movement and their allies invade the police department to get her back. And better than that, we finally learn more about the backstories of most of our main characters.

Verdict: Thumbs up. This book has had trouble finding its legs, but it definitely helps to learn more about who our heroes are and what makes them interesting. It’s too bad we had to wait four issues for this, but getting this out of the way is a good way for the comic to start becoming more interesting.

Today’s Cool Links:

  • DC Comics is run by stupid people if they think they can survive by blowing off great artists because they won’t write for the Dumb White Manchild market.
  • And the rot has reached a lot of prominent creators, who all seem to be afraid of writing for anyone but the Dumb White Manchild market.
  • And the comic creators who aren’t complete cowards seem to be asshole sociopaths.
  • Things in the comics biz have definitely gotten bad when you compare them to psycho clowns — and realize you’ve insulted the clowns.

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Robots! Dinosaurs! Science!


Atomic Robo and the Savage Sword of Dr. Dinosaur #1

Huzzah! New Atomic Robo! And more Dr. Dinosaur! It’s the greatest day in history!

In the aftermath of the “Ghost of Station X” storyline, half the planet thinks Robo is an arms smuggler, even though he’s been cleared of all charges, and his population is way, way down. He hears about reports of cryptids sighted in Venezuela, realizes it’s near the site of Science City, where the Nazis ran their space program, so he takes a small team out to investigate. And while Robo is out of town, someone ships Tesladyne a nuclear bomb. Whoa, what? Someone’s trying to frame Robo! And in Venezuela, Robo and his team run into… DOCTOR DINOSAUR! (Not too shocking, since his name’s in the title.)

Verdict: Thumbs up. It’s Atomic Robo! It’s Dr. Dinosaur! WHY IS THIS NOT SELLING BILLIONS OF COPIES RIGHT NOW?!?


The Green Team #2

While the Riot, a team of weird and possibly cloned villains, attack Mo Qahtanii and his new, incredibly wealthy friends, J.P. Houston slips actress Cecilia Sunbeam a technodisk that outfits her with a cybersuit similar to the one that Commodore Murphy is wearing. Unfortunately, neither Comm nor Cecilia has a clue how to operate a cybersuit. Cecilia and J.P. end up falling into the Hudson, and Comm ends up stopping his set of enemies with an old version of the Batmobile that he bought. Comm ends up crashing at Mo’s place, where he learns that Mo has been his primary rival for auctions of superhero gear, mostly in an attempt to learn more about Comm and how to become financially successful. And J.P. and Cecilia crash at a fancy hotel, where we learn that they’re secret lovers — and Cecilia learns something unfortunate about the cyberarmor’s effects on her.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Definitely better than the first issue. A lot more character work, even if what we learn is that Cecilia is shallow and rich, J.P. is headstrong and rich, Comm is idealistic, a bit stupid, and rich, and Mo is spectacularly innocent and naive and rich. Still, nice action, fun art, and a lot more fun to read.


X-Men #2

Arkea, John Sublime’s technology-possessing twin sister, has possessed the electronically-enhanced body of Karima Shapandar, the Omega Sentinel. She smacks Beast around but has a bit more trouble with Rogue. Kitty Pryde is sent after her, since she’d be able to phase through her and destroy the electronics of her body. Arkea makes a strategic retreat, and the X-Men take off in pursuit.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Nice action, beautiful art, fantastic characterization. Nice to see Rogue back as a superstrong bruiser, and mohawked Storm is just endlessly badass, even when she doesn’t throw a single lightning bolt the entire issue. And Jubilee is just amazingly grand. I’m really enjoying this one so much so far.

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Friday Night Fights: The Secret of Time Travel!

Gaah, just ain’t had a lot of time to find some more battles (I’ve been trying to spend more time doing fun writing, as opposed to blog writing, which is frequently not fun), but Friday Night Fights waits for no one, so here we are.

So tonight, here’s Atomic Robo Free Comic Book Day 2009 (which you can and should read right here) by Brian Clevinger and Scott Wegener, as we get to witness the first meeting between Atomic Robo and his arch-nemesis, Dr. Dinosaur!






All hail Dr. Dinosaur! ALL HAIL DR. DINOSAUR!

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Girls, Girls, Girls


X-Men #1

A lot of new high-profile comics shipped this week, and this was one of the most anticipated. A new X-Men comic (by writer Brian Wood and penciler Olivier Coipel) with an all-female cast — a lot of people have been pretty excited, and the usual morons have been very furious. So let’s check it out.

We start out with a focus on Jubilee, fleeing from an unknown pursuer with an unexpected baby in tow. She calls the X-Mansion for help before boarding a train and is met on the way by Storm, Rogue, and Kitty Pryde. While they’re all catching up on old times, the baby — an orphan who Jubes has been taking care of — touches a speaker and somehow causes the train to run out of control, but Rogue saves the day by basically throwing the whole train off its tracks. Meanwhile, the guy who was chasing Jubilee shows up at the Jean Grey School for Higher Learning — it’s a guy called John Sublime, a sentient, body-switching bacteria who has periodically opposed the X-Men. But he’s not here to fight this time, he surrenders to Rachel Summers and Psylocke. He says the X-Men are the world’s only hope to stop his sister Arkea, a sentient techno-virus. But can the X-Men stop a threat they’re not even aware is hiding among them?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Seriously, great writing, great art, lots of fun from beginning to end. All the main characters are women? Who cares? It’s a fantastic comic, and if you’re going to wimp out on reading this because it doesn’t have enough penises to keep you happy, you’re an idjit.


Atomic Robo Presents Real Science Adventures #8

While the evil cabal known as the Triumvirate makes its plans to take over America using technology stolen from Tesla, two members of the heroic Consortium of Science are working to foil more of the Triumvirate’s henchmen. Sharpshooter Annie Oakley and master physician (and martial artist) Wong Kei-ying engage in a running (and fighting and shooting) battle with some thieves on a train as they try to stop them from stealing another one of Tesla’s amazing inventions. In addition, we get a flashback to one of Robo’s earliest adventures, as we discover how he and his team of Action Scientists defeated the giant cyber-mummy in Egypt.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Like you had to ask? Annie Oakley? Teamed up with one of the greatest martial artists in history? There’s just no possible way that’s not going to be a thumbs up.

Today’s Cool Links:

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For Science!


Atomic Robo Presents Real Science Adventures #7

It’s been a while since we saw an issue of this comic. And it looks like we’re getting a bit of a format change. Instead of an anthology of short stories orienting around Atomic Robo, this is going to be an ongoing tale about the Consortium of Science from Real Science Adventures #3, a partnership of real-life scientists and adventurers from the late 1800s.

So this issue focuses on eccentric genius Nikola Tesla and industrialist George Westinghouse during the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893, where Tesla plans to debut a new scientific breakthrough that will allow mankind to easily access free power anywhere on Earth. But his demonstration doesn’t go as planned — he’s attacked on stage by a trio of thugs who attempt to kill him (the bullets are deflected thanks to the electrical wonders he’s working with) and do manage to steal some of his equipment. The culprits? A trio of wealthy villains: Frank Reade Jr., Jack Wright, and Robert Trydan, who aim to use Tesla’s technology to take over the country. Clearly, the rest of the Consortium of Science will need to be brought in to foil the villains’ plans.

Verdict: Thumbs up. The Consortium of Science was such a grand idea when it originally appeared, and I’m thrilled that there’s going to be a new story about them. I’m also sorta jazzed by the fact that at least two, if not all three, of the villains are actually characters from old pulp-action fiction series — it’s kind of keen to see how the boy geniuses of the past ended up as the adult villains of the, um, also past…


Daredevil #25

Matt Murdock meets up with another guy who’s been given the treatment that gave him his own super-sensory abilities. Unfortunately, he’s not a schmuck who’s been deranged by sensory overload like the mob he encountered a couple issues back — he’s a trained martial artist who calls himself Ikari. So Daredevil spends most of this issue fighting for his life, hoping that his greater experience with his abilities will give him enough of an edge to pull out a victory. But what if he’s wrong?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Fantastic action and suspense, and a great way to introduce a new nemesis for the Man without Fear.

Today’s Cool Links:

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The Hero Sandwich List of Favorite Comics for 2012

Well, 2012 is almost over, and I’m absolutely delighted to see it go. This has been, without a single doubt, the absolute worst year of my life.

My grandmother died in January — she was 100 years old, but nope, you’re never prepared for that, never, never. Three friends died of cancer. We lost Ray Bradbury. I was diagnosed with diabetes. “City of Heroes” was shut down.

Oh, I know, there are lots of ways it could’ve been worse. Lots of people have gone through more horrible things this year, and I’ve got it relatively good. My family is healthy and happy. I have a job that keeps a roof over my head, food on the table, and comics in the longboxes. I’ve lost about 45 pounds since July, and my health is overall pretty good.

Nevertheless. It’s been a deeply unpleasant, depressing, sorrowful year, and I won’t be at all sad to see it end.

And ya know, this hasn’t been a very good year for comics, either.

We’ve had to sit through DC firing Gail Simone from “Batgirl” for no apparent reason (and then hiring her back when they realized that she was much more popular than anyone else at the company); DC shutting down “Hellblazer” so they can try to turn John Constantine into a superhero; fans responding to the (truly awful sounding) Amazing Spider-Man #700 by making serious death threats against writer Dan Slott (Pff, like Slott came up with that? Joe Quesada and Alex Alonso probably thought that one up, then assigned him to work on it.); DC just straight up being a dick to Alan Moore almost all year long with the (mostly ignored by readers) “Before Watchmen” comics.

And dominating geek news for the entire year has been the bizarre hostility in comics and gaming toward anyone who isn’t a straight white male. In a lot of ways, the gaming industry has been far worse with the hating-on-everyone problem, but the new obsession with Fake Geek Girls is largely focused on the comics fan community, especially cosplayers. Tony Harris’s bizarre misogyny helped play it up, but DC and Marvel have had more than their fair share of He Man Woman Hater moments, too. Really, would you be particularly surprised if Dan DiDio announced he was firing all the female creators at DC?

I’m probably forgetting some really important awful moments for comics, too, but there have just been so dang many of them…

Even the year’s major successes — the films of “The Avengers” and “The Dark Knight Rises” — were really to be attributed more to the skill, talent, and imagination of movie studios than to comics publishers.

DC, of course, has been the leader in bad comics and bad decisions. Marvel’s been a bit better, but has still shown too much enthusiasm for dull crossover events and poor judgement. The independents have been better than both of the Big Two — and yet I’ve still felt mostly bored with the comics that’ve been released this year.

I went through my pull-list earlier this year and stripped a lot of it out. I was tired of spending so much money on comics, of having to find storage space for all my books. And a lot of what I got rid of was actually pretty good. Scott Snyder’s Batman comic, for example, got pulled off my list. It was just fine, Snyder’s still a fantastic writer, and his work on the Dark Knight is just plain some of the best work anyone’s done with him for years. But I still took it off my list because I wasn’t excited about it. It wasn’t a book I looked forward to getting anymore. There were lots of comics like that — The Massive, Dark Horse Presents, Dial H, Demon Knights, Fatale, Frankenstein, Morning Glories, Popeye, Saucer Country, Unwritten, even B.P.R.D. — and I don’t really regret taking any of them off the list.

So what are my picks for my favorite comics of 2012? Here they are, in alphabetical order…


American Vampire

Still the best and most gloriously visceral horror comic we’ve got. Great characterization, art, and plotting make it a winner every issue.


Atomic Robo

Possibly the most consistently fun and entertaining comic out there. Any comic fan who isn’t reading this is utterly, utterly mad.


Avengers Academy

Cancelled long before its time, I loved this one for the great characterization and for its refusal to fall into the same boring traps as other teen-oriented comics. Random, shock-value deaths were avoided, and the heroes got out of plenty of problems by talking instead of fighting.


Axe Cop

This remains one of the best humor comics you’ll find — the Nicolle brothers are still hugely imaginative, funny, and audacious, even years after they started their comic.



Month after month, the best art you’re going to find in any comic book on the stands.



Probably the best pure superhero comic out there. Mark Waid’s Daredevil is fun, charismatic, clever, action-packed, and just all-around fantastic. And the art is usually pretty darn good, too.


The Goon

Rude? Yes. Hilarious? Yes. Unexpectedly emotional? Yes, yes, yes. Eric Powell would probably kick my ass for saying it, but he’s got more heart than any other comic book creator.


Love and Capes

This superhero sitcom is light on the action, but heavy on the humor, awesome characterization, and brainy storytelling. I would like more of you to read this, please.


Punk Rock Jesus

An amazing story combining religion, punk rock, politics of all stripes, science fiction, and our global obsessions with pop culture and entertainment. Sean Murphy deserves to win all kinds of awards for this.



A very fun modernized re-telling of Lewis Carroll’s “The Hunting of the Snark.” Great characters, dialogue, humor, and action, all wrapped up in a very friendly all-ages bow. I want Roger Langridge to make more and more comics, that’s all there is to it.


Wonder Woman

This isn’t really a superhero book at all — it’s part horror comic, part urban fantasy, part reboot of the ancient Greek myths. Half the fun of this is seeing what bizarre new forms the Greek gods and monsters will take.

So that’s what I’ve got for this year. I left off a lot of good comics — books that debuted in only the last few months, books that were cancelled in the first month or two of the year, books that were of unquestionably high-quality but which were nevertheless boring me when I finally dropped them.

What can we hope for in the future? I’m sure not dumb enough to try to make predictions, but I’d like to think that, after a year this bad, there’s nowhere the comics industry can go but up. Unfortunately, my optimism bone done got snapped off, and it wouldn’t shock me a bit to see things get even worse in 2013.

Hold on to your hats, and pray for miracles.

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Queens of Outer Space

Womanthology: Space #3

This anthology of all-women-created comics about science fiction continues. We get “Centipede” by Robin Furth, Carli Idhe, Ronda Pattison, and Robbie Robbins, about a space smuggler’s deadly — and squicky — cargo; “Countdown” by Rachel Edidin and Sophia Foster-Dimino, about some girls making their own pretend rocket and the journeys it takes them on; and “The Vesta” by Jennifer DeGuzman, Leigh Dragoon, and Robbie Robbins, about a crew member on a spaceship and how she tries to escape its overprotective influence. And we also get an essay by Trina Robbins about Lily Renee, a cartoonist who fought the Nazis her own way during World War II.

Verdict: Thumbs up. This is my favorite issue of this series so far — all the stories are great, the art is great, and the whole thing remains a powerful reminder that, no matter how badly DC wishes comics could be their own secret all-boys club, women have their place in the comics biz, too.

Atomic Robo and the Flying She-Devils of the Pacific #5

With the renegade Japanese soldiers preparing to destroy America by dropping a gigantic earthquake bomb on the country. Luckily, Atomic Robo and the She-Devils of the Pacific are working hard to prevent that. Not that it’s particularly easy. It’s a furious battle from the first page almost to the end. Of course, they’ll succeed… but who will survive?

Verdict: Thumbs up. I love just about everything about Atomic Robo.

The Hypernaturals #6

So there was once this guy named Chernovski, and he was basically omnipotent. He destroyed the universe and immediately regretted it. So he fixed everything back up, then had Clone 21, the last person alive, completely forget him — which caused him to cease existing. But now Clone 21 has remembered Chernovski again, and not only is the most dangerous creature in existence on the loose again, but the remaining members of the Hypernaturals are in dire danger of being killed by alien supervillains. And what is the evil Sublime up to? Is he causing the crisis or trying to end it?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Fun science-fiction superheroics, with great dialogue and art, blistering action, and big, brain-busting ideas.

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The Last Samurais

Atomic Robo: The Flying She-Devils of the Pacific #4

Robo has been captured by renegade Japanese soldiers who never accepted Japan’s surrender at the end of World War II — and they plan to destroy America with their secret weapon: Project Chokaiten. What’s Project Chokaiten? Well, it’s an earthquake bomb. Sounds unlikely, but they already sank She-Devil Island with a one-percent yield bomb, so they figure a full-powered one dropped in the San Andreas Fault should do some extreme damage. The She-Devils manage to rescue Robo before the Japanese scientists cut him apart but after the rest of the Japanese fleet heads for the American coast with Project Chokaiten. Can Atomic Robo and the She-Devils catch up to the Japanese fleet in time?

Verdict: Thumbs up. As always, great action, humor, dialogue, and drama. Atomic Robo is the best dadgum comic book in the universe, and if you ain’t reading it, you are stone crazy.

Ame-Comi Girls Featuring Batgirl #2

In the Ame-Comi version of the DC Universe, there basically aren’t any male superheroes or villains, so while you’ve got Barbara Gordon as Batgirl, she was never inspired by Batman. Other differences? Batgirl has a Robin — her cousin Carrie — and Jim Gordon is in a wheelchair.

So Batgirl and Robin are out on the town beating up Poison Ivy when they get ambushed by Catwoman and Harley Quinn. They manage to capture Batgirl and drag her off to meet Duela Dent, this universe’s version of the Joker, who is also hanging out with the Cheetah who attacked Wonder Woman last issue. Can Robin rescue Batgirl, or will she be on her own against five different supervillains?

Verdict: Thumbs up. The art isn’t as cool as it was last issue, when Amanda Conner was running the pencils. But all in all, it’s still a good story, with lots of action, humor, and fun.

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All of the Robos

Atomic Robo: The Flying She-Devils of the Pacific #2

It’s 1951, and Robo is stranded on She-Devil Island in the Pacific Ocean. His experimental plane was attacked by sky-pirates, but he was rescued by Captain May Carter and her Flying She-Devils. Looking for answers about the pirates, Carter takes Robo and Val, a Russian pilot, on a flight to Pete’s, a bar located on a beached aircraft carrier. The crowd at Pete’s is deeply unfriendly, but Pete and his shotgun keep the party civil. They find an old man who claims the pirates were flying “ghost planes” and gives them a lead on where they hole up. But when they find the airstrip, Robo ends up detonating a booby trap. He’s fine, of course, and they return to She-Devil Island to find that the She-Devils’ ace mechanic has disassembled Robo’s experimental plane engine for spare parts. And after that, the ghost planes are back. With bombs.

Verdict: Thumbs up. As always, a solid, fun story, with great personality, dialogue, artwork, and surprises. Do I have to keep ordering y’all to go read this comic? Well? Just go read it!

Atomic Robo Presents Real Science Adventures #5

Another batch of short stories and continuing tales from the Atomic Robo-verse. The British secret agent Sparrow faces certain death at the hands of the Nazis; Robo spends a few weeks hiding out in rural China in 1942; Bruce Lee takes a break from training Robo to whup some kung-fu gangsters; Robo meets up with an old Nazi war criminal; and Robo investigates an ominous Bloop.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Favorite story? Definitely the one about the Bloop, but that’s ’cause I’m a total sucker for spooky real-world stuff like that. But the whole thing is great. It’s a great concept — Brian Clevinger does the writing, and a bunch of different artists put their own spin on it.

Today’s Cool Links:

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