Archive for Axe Cop

Too Many Barbarians!

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Groo vs. Conan #1

I just can’t resist the concept. I really loved the old Archie Meets the Punisher crossover from a couple decades ago, mixing serious comics with funny comics and meshing cartooning with dramatic art. So Sergio Aragones’ pea-brained barbarian Groo the Wanderer meets up with Robert E. Howard’s Conan of Cimmeria — “black-haired, sullen-eyed, sword in hand, a thief, a reaver, a slayer, with gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth” — that’s just so weird, and I just don’t care.

While Conan heroically scales a tower, defeats a wizard, and rescues a fair maiden, Groo ends up getting tricked into helping some corrupt politicos and associated troops rout innocent villagers from a beloved local bakery. And wrapped around this story are our writers, Sergio Aragones and Mark Evanier, getting mixed up in a riot at a comic shop. Sergio is injured and taken to a hospital, where he’s injected with enough drugs to get him hallucinating that he’s Conan himself and fleeing the hospital to find some evil to fight.

Verdict: Thumbs up. It’s a thoroughly weird story, which means I’m basically required by law to love it.

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Daredevil #6

In this Original Sin crossover, Uatu’s exploding eye has revealed a secret from Matt’s past — at some point, his beloved father Battlin’ Jack Murdock beat Matt’s mother, who is now a nun called Sister Maggie. When Matt returns to New York to quiz his mother about what happened, he discovers that she and two other nuns have been arrested after spray-painting peace slogans on the walls of a military base that was testing chemical weapons. But they haven’t been arrested for vandalism — in fact, no one is telling anyone what they’ve been arrested for. No one has read them their rights, and they’ve been given no legal counsel. And a military tribunal has ordered them extradited to Wakanda. Wakanda? What the heck? T’Challa is no longer in charge in Wakanda, and no one claims to know anything about the case. Matt ends up sneaking into Wakanda’s Manhattan embassy to find some evidence about what’s going on — and walks right into a trap.

Verdict: Thumbs up. The usual great writing and art. Thankfully, only a minimum of connection to the Original Sin series, as most of the emphasis is on the mystery of why Matt’s mother has been reasonlessly arrested. And it’s an excellent mystery — it definitely has me looking forward to the rest of this storyline.

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Axe Cop: The American Choppers #3

Everyone meets Axe Cop’s real father, who was a general on General Planet and who sent Axe Cop to Earth as a baby to escape the destruction of his home planet. He brings Axe Cop back to life, and the whole team returns to Earth to fight Captain Axe’s evil uncle and Satan himself. They kill Satan twice — and then throughout the universe killing all of the Space Satans.

Verdict: Sorry, but thumbs down. Too self-aware, it repeated too much stuff that’d been done before, Axe Cop’s new origin was a groaner. I thought the most interesting parts were when the characters, who’ve always been focused exclusively on chopping off bad guys’ heads, actually made inquiries about deep philosophical and theological questions. But those moments were few and far between.

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Mighty Avengers #12

Long story short: the Mighty Avengers of the 1970s take on the Deathwalkers, ancient wizard-kings, former wise rulers corrupted by human sacrifice. They want to destroy the world, and only our heroes stand in the way. But will Earth’s Mightiest Heroes stand a chance against impossibly powerful sorcerers?

Verdict: Thumbs up. It’s mostly a slugfest, sure, but it’s a good slugfest.

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Monkey Shines

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Silver Surfer #3

So the Silver Surfer is running around the Impericon in disguise, hiding his silver coating and cosmic power, while he looks for Dawn Greenwood, who has been helping save all the prisoners. The Surfer and Dawn find the Never Queen’s stolen heart, which is powering the Impericon. Once it’s disconnected, the Surfer will have to power the Impericon himself to keep it from collapsing before everyone’s evacuated, and Dawn takes possession of the heart, which shrinks down into a creepy drumming monkey toy, for some reason. Can the Surfer save everyone on the planet? Can Dawn save the Never Heart? Can they stop the Incredulous Zed from executing the Never Queen?

Verdict: Thumbs up. An outstanding, adventuresome, humor-filled story with wonderful artwork. It has great moments big and small, but perhaps my favorite is Dawn giving the Surfer’s board a name. Hope it sticks, too.

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Axe Cop: The American Choppers #2

Axe Cop and his team are being attacked by axe monsters, and they’re too powerful to fight off, forcing the team to flee, disguising themselves as campers. Axe Goat infiltrates the villains’ hideout and discovers they’re actually all demons. The demons and axe beasts attack again, all backed by Satan himself. The axe beasts turn on the demons and take over their bodies, and the American Choppers have to flee again. They all go to visit Captain Axe’s uncle, who kills Axe Cop with poisoned cereal. Is Captain Axe a bad guy? Can anyone save Axe Cop?

Verdict: I hate to say it, but thumbs down. It’s all a little too self-aware, which may be an ongoing problem now that the writer is getting old enough to be aware of how goofy these stories are. And self-awareness is really not a good thing for this series.

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Speedy Reviews for a Sick Day/Holiday

Well, I feel like complete garbage, especially considering that I get to spend a holiday sick instead of, you know, being well. So I’m going to finish these as quickly as I can so I can go away and feel like garbage somewhere else.

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Axe Cop: The American Choppers #1

Axe Cop gives up being President of the World so he can go back to fighting bad guys. He teams up with Super Axe and Captain Axe to defeat the Food Force Three and a bunch of alien monsters, then sing a song and eat some ham. They team up with Axe Girl, her mother, Axe Woman, Ralph Wrinkles, and a goat with axe horns to become… the American Choppers! But can they stop a bunch of evil axes controlled by demon lumberjacks?

Verdict: Thumbs up. So fantastically weird and funny.

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Daredevil #3

Daredevil easily whups the Shroud’s ass, then learns that it was all a scheme to get the Shroud an audience with the Owl so he could kill him. But Matt has a different plan, involving Matt just walking right into the Owl’s mansion with a subpoena. But things never work out like they plan. Meanwhile, we learn a little more about the mystery of Foggy Nelson’s “death.”

Verdict: Thumbs up. Beautiful art and a delightfully convoluted story — and Foggy Nelson! I was getting worried about Foggy…

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Velvet #5

Most of this issue is a flashback to Velvet’s ex-husband, a fellow super-spy like Velvet, and how she maybe killed him or maybe didn’t because he was maybe a double-agent.

Verdict: Thumbs up. It doesn’t get the overarching mystery cleared up, but it’s a well-told and beautifully illustrated story, soaking in action and espionage coolness.

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A Voice in the Dark #7

Zoey finally breaks down and murders again — and she pulls off a couple perfect crimes — except for one little serial killer eyewitness…

Verdict: Thumbs up. As always, amazing artwork. Fantastic focus on the tension and intricacy Zoey’s planning and execution of her murders.

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The Witcher #3

Geralt the Witcher encounters bunches of monsters, doesn’t trust Vara the succubus, and is strangely trusting of Jakob the hunter.

Verdict: Ehh, don’t know. It’s wonderfully moody, but it just didn’t entertain me much. It felt oddly predictable.

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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…

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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.

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Atomic Robo

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

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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.

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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.

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Batwoman

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

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Daredevil

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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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Snarked

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.

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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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Axe Lunacy

Axe Cop: President of the World #3

The end of this miniseries has Axe Cop facing off against the evil Water Queen, a Goo-rilla, and the stunningly impressive Every Man, who can turn into, well, everything. All at once. All that, plus Axe Cop gets his head chopped off, Junior Cobbb punches and shoots someone at the same time, and the Earth is destroyed!

Verdict: Yes, of course it’s a thumbs up. Anyone who doesn’t thumbs-up this mad brilliance needs their head examined. The writing is excellent, and the artwork is phenomenal.

The Hypernaturals #4

While Thinkwell, Bewilder, and Prismatica match wits with the imprisoned Sublime, Clone 45 finally gets his powers back, and Halfshell and Shoal fight off some gangsters and prevent a high-rise disaster. But Sublime has terrible plans for everyone, along with an unexpected accomplice.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Seems fine to me. Plenty of action, devious plots, and far-future superheroic shenanigans.

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An Axe to Grind

Axe Cop: President of the World #1

Hot dog! I was not expecting a new Axe Cop series! Y’all remember Axe Cop, right? Art by 31-year-old Ethan Nicolle and written by eight-year-old Malachai Nicolle, these brothers turn out some of the craziest, funniest, most awesome comics around at the Axe Cop website. And sometimes, they put out some regular comics, too.

When last we saw Axe Cop, the dedicated crimefighter had wiped out all the bad guys and had been made president of the whole wide world, with a direct prayer line to his personal pal, God. Now he’s gotten his new executive mansion, the Gold House, built in Axeville, Washington, and people are asking when or if the bad guys will ever come back. After checking up with God, Axe Cop announces that the bad guys will be gone from Earth for one million years! But that means the bad guys will be back eventually, so Axe Cop sends all the other crimefighters and superheroes in a time machine to one million years in the future.

Meanwhile, Axe Cop adds two new members to his crimefighting team — Goo Cop, a blob of green ooze who is able to control minds with his goo and needs Axe Cop’s help to save his family, and Junior Cobbb (yes, with three B’s), a talking gorilla who grow to giant size, has robotic gun fists, and can shoot anything he wants out of his tail. He needs Axe Cop’s help to save Planet Weird Gorilla (where gorillas stand on their tippy-toes and get dumber and weirder as they grow older) from an invasion of Evil Robotic Penguins.

Can Axe Cop save everyone? Will the heroes be able to stop the bad guys when they return after a million years? And what’s going to happen if the bad guys… don’t show up?

Verdict: Thumbs up. So much wonderful, mad fun. Beautiful artwork by Ethan, too — a lot of attention always goes to Malachai, ’cause hey, eight-year-old comics writer. But Ethan’s artwork is just plain awesome, every single panel. Be sure and pay close attention to all the wonderful details, too — lots of funny bits hidden away in the background…

Superman Family Adventures #3

Aliens are attacking Metropolis! Jimmy Olsen goes to call Superman on his signal watch — but why does he keep getting the Super-Pets instead of the Man of Steel? Fuzzy the Super-Mouse gets some training in his powers from Krypto. And Lois Lane gets a little suspicious about Clark Kent’s similarities to Superman, so he has Superboy send a Superman robot to help preserve his secret identity. But when more than one robot shows up, things are going to get a lot more confusing.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Cute, funny stories and artwork. I think it’s great that these are basically classic Silver Age stories, just tweaked to make them funnier than they were before.

Today’s Cool Links:

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The Hero Sandwich List of Favorite Comics for 2011

Well, everyone else is doing end-of-year best-of lists, so I reckon I will, too. What’s Newsweek magazine got that I ain’t got, right? I mean, the way magazine readership has been falling, there’s a decent chance that I’ve got more readers now. ZING! Oh, Newsweek, you know I kid ’cause I love.

Anyway, this is not a list of the very best of all comics. I haven’t read all comics. I haven’t even gotten close. This is my list of the comics I read that I enjoyed the most.

Also, I don’t think I could manage to say which of these is the best — so I’d rather just arrange them in alphabetical order.

So here we go: The 16 comics I enjoyed reading the most in 2011.

American Vampire

This series by Scott Snyder is still carrying the torch for serious vampiric horror with great characterization, boundless imagination, and really awesome bloodsuckers.

Atomic Robo

One of the best comics out there — this one packs in action, humor, and mindblowing science into something that is always fun. Fun cameos by the famous and infamous, and an incredibly cool lead character.

Avengers Academy

Thank goodness someone still remembers how to do a good teen comic. You can do teen angst without it turning into a bloodbath. This series combines a great concept with outstanding characterization.

Axe Cop: Bad Guy Earth

The most audaciously imaginative comic of the year, thanks to its seven-year-old writer. Loved the drama, loved the action, and laughed out loud at the humor.

Batgirl (pre-Reboot)

Stephanie Brown’s tenure as Batgirl was marked by great writing, excellent action, and a very strong sense of humor. Stephanie is still MIA in the new DC, unfortunately.

Batman comics by Scott Snyder

Whether it was on Detective Comics prior to the Reboot or on Batman afterwards, Snyder wrote some of the most engrossing tales of the Dark Knight.

Batman Inc.

Reading Grant Morrison’s Batman has been a treat for years, and it was fun to watch him create the new Batman megacorp.

Batwoman

J.H. Williams III’s writing has been fine, but his art is simply breathtaking. This was absolutely the most beautiful comic book on the stands in 2011.

Daredevil

Daredevil? I’ve never cared for Daredevil in my life. But this one is a blast. Writing and art are incredible. Humor, action, characterization — and again, fun. You can make a pretty good comic if you make it fun, ya know?

Dungeons & Dragons

Did anyone ever expect a D&D comic to be this good? Excellent dialogue, humor, action, drama, suspense — all while doing a pretty good job spotlighting the RPG it’s based on. Best fantasy comic of the year, right here.

Hellboy: The Fury

Mike Mignola has enjoyed another excellent year of comics, and I could’ve put almost any of his B.P.R.D. comics in here, but this one — Hellboy’s last hurrah — was really something special.

Knight and Squire

Paul Cornell’s miniseries focusing on London’s version of Batman and Robin was fun storytelling, along with a quick course in British pop culture. Excellent characters and adventures, and a wonderfully created setting.

Secret Six

Gail Simone’s awesomely epic series of supervillains occasionally doing the right thing had some of the funniest, saddest, most dramatic, most astounding moments in the comics world. Absolutely grand characters, too. Losing this series was one of DC’s biggest mistakes of the Reboot.

Supergirl (pre-Reboot)

After years of being the DC Universe’s version of the useless mallrat in a belly shirt, several creators finally realized they could make the character awesome by treating her more like a real person instead of an MTV stereotype. Yes, DC, character is everything!

Tiny Titans

The best all-ages comic on the market. Still can’t believe they’re going to let something this awesome go.

Xombi

One of the weirdest comics to come out this year. There was usually at least one really mind-blowingly weird thing in every single issue. Beautiful art, too, along with great writing and dialogue. It was a joy to read.

And one more little category? How ’bout Publisher of the Year? DC and Marvel are out — they’ve spent the past 12 months pandering to the worst in comics, cancelling great series, and randomly insulting their readers. IDW, Dark Horse, Red 5, Image, all the other independents came close, because they’re doing more of what good comics publishers should be doing — gunning for new readers, pushing the artistic and storytelling envelopes, making excellent comics.

But I think the Publisher of the Year is Archie Comics. What? But I don’t read any Archies! But Archie is doing even more than the other independents to push the creative and social envelope. They’ve gotten lots of publicity with their Archie marries Betty/Veronica comics, but they also had a great crossover with the Tiny Titans. And who would have ever imagined that staid, conservative Archie Comics would end up being the most progressive comics publisher — whitebread Archie Andrews has recently dated Valerie Brown, the African-American bass player from Josie and the Pussycats, and Kevin Keller, Archie’s first openly gay character, has become more popular and more prominent in the comics. Archie Comics is outpacing all the other independent publishers and rocketing past the Big Two in terms of how much they’re moving the comics industry forward.

So there we go — 16 grand, fun comics series. And I think I’d still have to declare 2011 one of the worst years for comics we’ve seen in a long time. Almost half my list is made up of comics that were cancelled, will be cancelled in the next few months, or are in continual danger of being cancelled. DC enjoyed a nice sales surge in the first few months of the Reboot, but the numbers on many of their series are already dropping back to more normal levels. And they spent months alienating and angering long-time fans in one public relations disaster after another. Not that Marvel has fared much better — they’ve been cancelling comics hand over fist. The independents have a better track record for producing good comics — but of course, they’ve also had more trouble getting those comics sold.

2011 has been an awful, terrifying, depressing year for comics fans. I’d like to tell you that I think 2012 is going to be better. But I don’t think I’d get my hopes up very high. No one’s learned any lessons from this year’s catastrophes, and I’m not even sure the Big Two are even capable of doing anything other than shooting themselves in the foot.

Let’s just hope the non-comics portions of 2012 will be better for all of us. Y’all stay safe, buckle up, call a cab if you need to.

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Holiday Gift Bag: Munchkin Axe Cop

The holidays will be here before you know it, and we’ve still got more gift recommendations to dig through! Can we finish all this stuff before Christmas? Today, let’s take a look at Munchkin Axe Cop!

If you pay any attention to gaming, you probably have heard of Munchkin, a humorous card game put out by Steve Jackson Games. The basic concept focuses on munchkins — power-mad, cheating, power-gamers who play roleplaying games to WIN instead of playing to have fun. The first game spotlighted the fantasy genre, but the company has come out with plenty of other expansions, with emphasis on science fiction, martial arts, pirates, zombies, goth vampire roleplayers, Westerns, Cthulhu, and of course, even superheroes.

The basic gameplay is the same over all the games: players “kick down a door” by flipping over one of the Door cards, which usually reveal some sort of ridiculous pun-based monster that you have to fight. If you can beat it (by matching your level, plus your bonuses and equipment, against the monster’s level), then you get to draw a Treasure card (which usually has ridiculous pun-based treasure, armor, and weapons) and you go up a level. Of course, your opponents can interfere in the battle, either by helping you fight, or by helping the monster. The first player to level 10 wins and gets to cruelly taunt the losers.

Well, the newest expansion is Munchkin Axe Cop, based on the utterly mad webcomic by Ethan and Malachai Nicolle. All the artwork is by Ethan, the 30-year-old big brother, while the game design is by game industry legend Steve Jackson. And of course, the insane concepts and characters — the cop who keeps turning into different things when blood spills on him, the man wearing the baby costume, the dinosaur with chaingun arms, the baby with a unicorn horn, the nonconformist bunny, the duck who shoots exploding eggs out of his butt, the super-cop carrying a fireman’s axe — are by seven-year-old Malachai.

So how does this play out once you get the cards out of the box? Well, I can tell you you’ll have the most fun if you’re playing with people who are already familiar with Axe Cop. If you pull this game out after Christmas dinner to play with your family, your grandmother, Uncle Ned, and Cousin Merle will probably be pretty confused about the game where one of the villains is made of candy, a flute is considered a dangerous weapon, and Abraham Lincoln is an Explosion God. Better stick with Monopoly with folks who are unfamiliar with either Munchkin or Axe Cop.

But for people who are pretty clued in about the goofy cutthroat fun of Munchkin and the delirious lunacy of Axe Cop? Those folks are gonna love it, and they’ll probably love it as a Christmas gift. It’ll run you about $25, but that’s a lot of cards and a lot of fun.

Munchkin Axe Cop from Steve Jackson Games. Go pick it up.

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Axe Crazy!

Axe Cop: Bad Guy Earth #3

This may be the craziest and most awesome thing in existence. I’m not sure there’s even any way to describe it rationally. But there’s an army of intelligent talking animals, an evil version of Axe Cop’s team, so very many bizarre transformations for Dinosaur Soldier, Axe Cop’s team getting killed, revived, and then smooshed together into a composite super-monster, the eradication of every axe on Earth, and Axe Cop’s amazing and hilarious prayer to God after he’s named the President of All Presidents.

Verdict: Thumbs up. A HUNDRED BILLION THUMBS UP. This is just ridiculously awesome and insane. Ethan and Malachai Nicolle are geniuses.

Atomic Robo and the Deadly Art of Science #5

So Jack Tarot has been captured by Thomas Edison’s robot, and Atomic Robo and Helen attempt a rescue that also ends with them captured and taken before a gloating Edison, who reveals that he plans to use a crystal skull and a great deal of his beloved direct current to make himself immortal, at the cost of killing everyone in New York and possibly the world. Is there anyone who can save the day? Maybe Robo’s creator, Nikola Tesla?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Crazy, wonderful, pulp-science fun. Great art, great dialogue, great humor, great action. Has there ever been a bad issue of Atomic Robo? If there has, please don’t tell me about it.

Today’s Cool Links:

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It’s a Trick, Get an Axe

Axe Cop: Bad Guy Earth #2

Ya know, I’m not sure I can even describe the plot here. Axe Cop and his allies save the dinosaurs from aliens, the evil Psychic Brothers have basically taken over Earth and attack Uni-Smart World, Sockarang meets his supposedly-dead mother, and there’s time travel galore. I mean, the plot doesn’t matter as much as the impossibly awesome details of the story. How do the bad guys beat Uni-Smart World, where everyone has a magic wish-granting unicorn horn? They put magic traffic cones over the horns. What do the Psychic Brothers use to attack our heroes? Truckchucks, which are nunchucks made out of semi trucks. How do you defeat good Vikings? With a world full of evil baseball players. What was so special about the year Zero Thousand and Zero? I’ll save that little surprise for you to read yourself.

Verdict: Thumbs up. It’s really hard to believe how jaw-droppingly bizarre and awesome this story is. You know it was written by a six-year-old kid, right? Six years old!

iZombie #12

Aww, Mike Allred has the issue off, so we’ll have to suffer through some random fill-in artist who — what’s that? Gilbert Hernandez? Co-creator of “Love and Rockets“? Well, that’ll at least be interesting. And it is pretty cool — like reading a L&R/iZombie crossover issue. Our focus is on hip 1960s ghost Ellie just prior to meeting Gwen for the first time — she hangs out in the cemetery with all the other ghosts, and they tell stories to each other and argue. Ellie reflects on what her own life was like, giving us a nice origin story for her.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Fun story — several fun stories, in fact — and wonderful artwork.

Love and Capes: Ever After #3

We’ve got three storylines running through this issue — Abby and Mark fixing up their new home, and later attending Abby’s class reunion, and Darkblade and Amazonia going through relationship stress over his continuing friendship with Abby’s sister Charlotte.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Nothing particularly fancy this time, just solid cartooning, funny jokes, and good dialogue, characterization, and interpersonal relationship design.

Today’s Cool Links:

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