Archive for Massive

Jesus Camp

Punk Rock Jesus #2

Chris, the supposed clone of Jesus, is the focus of a monumentally successful reality TV show — and also a figure of great controversy, with scientists denying his divinity and Christian fundamentalists demanding either his release from the island where he and his mother Gwen are kept — or his death. Slate, the slimeball who runs the show, sets out faking some miracles on Chris’ behalf, while Gwen starts to drift into depression and alcoholism. Dr. Epstein announces that she’s conveniently pregnant with a girl — she claims she’s used her cloning expertise to get around her inability to have children. Gwen wants to see her parents again and persuades Thomas McKael, the show’s taciturn Irish security chief, to take her on a secret field trip. But there’s no way to take one of the stars of the most popular TV show in history out into the world without attracting a lot of attention.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Sean Murphy’s art is just fantastic, and the characterization he’s doing is also great fun. Slate is turning into a wonderfully despicable villain, and even minor characters, like the hacker, Tim, are given good personalities. This is great fun, so far — hope it continues being so enjoyable.

The Massive #3

The Kapital repels some pirates trying to board the ship, we get a quick flashback of how Callum Israel and his crew decided whether to stick to nonviolence after the global disasters destroyed the environment and the economy, and everyone docks back at one of their secret bases, a small town called Unalaska. Plus we get more details about some of the catastrophes that have befallen Earth’s populace in the last few years.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Excellent storytelling, good development of characters, strong mood and worldbuilding. I know, that’s all kinda dispassionate, but I feel like I have to say more about this than just “Me like comic, it am fun.”

American Vampire: Lord of Nightmares #3

Dracula — who may not be the historical Dracula, but is at least the leader of all of the Carpathian vampires — has been awakened and is able to control the mind of Gus, Felicia Book’s son. Agent Hobbes believes he’s trying to turn Gus into his new Renfield — a human servant who is utterly dominated by the vampire’s will. The Soviets think they can contain Dracula, but they don’t know how much danger they’re in. And Felicia and Hobbes run into a vampire organization called “The Firsts” which consists mainly of the last surviving members of vampire clans killed off by the Carpathians.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Not bad — lots of vampires, lots of mystery, good action. The only problem has gotta be that the Carpathian vamps just aren’t as charismatic and fun as the American ones…

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The Rising Tide

The Massive #2

Callum Israel and the crew of the Kapital continue to search for their missing shipmates and for their sister ship, the Massive, which vanished during the world’s environmental and economic breakdown — all while trying to avoid attack by pirates off the coast of Kamchatka. Amongst all this, we also get flashbacks to the crew’s visit to a partially submerged Hong Kong, as well as some quick looks at all the different ways the ecological collapse messed the world up.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Still a fascinating look at how the world goes on after the world ends. Great tension in Kamchatka and action in Hong Kong, and the brief looks at how the Crash affected everything from ships at sea, satellites in the skies, and fuel supplies in North America.

Atomic Robo Presents Real Science Adventures #4

More short stories in this Atomic Robo anthology. The Sparrow runs into serious trouble behind German lines. Robo learns that Bruce Lee has some more tricks up his sleeves, and he tries to pick up his comic book habits from his youth during the grim-and-gritty ’90s. Plus a visit to a Japanese Atomic Robo, and a look at Jenkins’ past.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Good stuff all around. Not quite as amazing as the previous issue of this book, but still a lot of fun.

Batman #11

Batman faces off with Owlman, who claims to be his brother, Thomas Wayne, Jr. For the most part, Owlman repeatedly cleans Batman’s clock, while Bats gets a number of pretty lucky breaks. Then Bruce and Dick Grayson sit around and try to figure out whether Owlman was really who he said he was.

Verdict: Ehh, sorry, but thumbs down. It was a slugfest, followed by a talkfest, and neither one was particularly entertaining.

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Massive Attack

The Massive #1

In the first issue of this new series (though it got some short previews in previous issues of “Dark Horse Presents,” the ecology of the planet is finally falling apart due to environmental damage, leaving billions of people starving and dying. Into the chaos of this new world sails a small ship called the Kapital. Its crew used to be part of a radical environmental group called the Ninth Wave, but their old mission has mostly solved itself — not a lot of whalers around anymore, and mass fishing operations have disappeared. Of course, that’s not a lot of comfort in a world where everything’s dying.

The crew of the Kapital — Callum Israel, Mag Nagendra, a woman who just goes by the name Mary, and a few others — have new missions — survive, and try to find their sister ship, a larger vessel called the Massive, which vanished mysteriously during a storm. The crew of the Kapital doesn’t think the Massive has been destroyed or sunk, because they keep getting brief radar signals that appear to be the Massive, but they’ve never managed to track down or communicate with it.

Unfortunately, there’s a great deal of desperation in the world, and the Kapital must keep an eye out for marauding pirates — and though Callum Israel wants them to remain a pacifist ship, the rest of the crew recognizes that they don’t have that luxury anymore. Can they avoid their enemies, find supplies, find their sister ship, and still have a chance to save the earth?

Verdict: Thumbs up. A great set-up for a new series. Excellent mood, too, with the ever-present and ominous fog helping to bring home the idea that the Earth’s environment and atmosphere have undergone critical and potentially deadly changes. We get some small background on the current state of the world, but most of the emphasis here is on characters, dialogue, and plot developments. And the art’s nice, too. So this one goes in the Win column

Saucer Country #4

There’s so much stuff going on in this issue — Governor Alvarado’s ex-husband recounts his outlandish post-hypnosis memories of his abduction by aliens, but Professor Kidd recognizes the name of the hypnotherapist — a UFO fanatic and publicity hound who may have implanted false memories under hypnosis. The governor’s bodyguards clash with the Secret Service. The hypnotherapist has some shady contacts with a paranoid talk-radio host and a conspiracy-minded ex-military man.

Verdict: Thumbs up — really, this issue felt like a bunch of tiny stories that were there mostly to advance the main plot — no serious developments or action sequences or freaky stuff. But I still liked it. Sometimes, you just gotta do an issue that’s a little slow for the sake of plot advancement. Besides that, the dialogue is nice, the characterization seems very good, and I’m still quite happy with how things are going.

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