Friday, May 25, 2007


It’s another biggie again this weekend, this time with five new number ones from the folks at Boom Studios.

2 GUNS #1 is written by Steven Grant and drawn by Mat Santolouco. Crime-master Grant adapts one of his screenplays for this tasty slice of graphic storytelling, the story of an undercover federal agent who finds himself needing to actually commit a crime of his own in order to save his life. Action, violence, betrayals, snappy dialogue… Grant is one of the only writers working in comics who actually understands how to make this genre work on the page. Part of that is evidenced in the storytelling; this is compressed work, featuring many pages with high panel counts and judicious camera movement that ratchets up the intensity of the scenes. Santolouco seems to have a solid grasp on how to interpret this type of story, and the book is visually appealing as well. The cliffhanger is terrific and takes the story in a fascinating direction, making this one to keep a serious eye on.

Andrew Cosby and Kevin Church write, and R.M. Yankovicz draws, COVER GIRL #1. Alex Martin is your classic out-of-work actor looking for a break when he finally gets one: he saves a woman from a burning car crash and a local new chopper captures it on film. Elevated onto the “A” list, he gets a cherry gig playing a spy from a series of popular novels. However, unbeknownst to him, the woman he saved was involved in some sort of conspiracy, and her pursuers are now after him. The studio’s solution: to avoid Alex looking like a wienie, they hire him a kick ass bodyguard… a female bodyguard. There’s a lot of charm here, and it zips along pleasantly, pace-wise. The only thing that really doesn’t work is that we don’t meet the title character until the final page. Cosby seems to have a decent Midas-touch so far, and Church is a funny guy, so I’m definitely onboard to see where it goes.

Biological warfare from outer space kicks off DOMINION #1, written by Michael Alan Nelson and drawn by Tim Hamilton. A group of random people in Chicago find their lives torn apart as they fall ill and begin manifesting strange powers or metamorphoses. Some go berserk; some destroy themselves; but no one knows quite yet why it’s happening. From the opening frames discussing the history of biological warfare on Earth to the mounting tension as people begin to transform to the absolutely insane cliffhanger, this is a dandy. An extra added happy note: good to see Tim Hamilton’s name in the credit box again, and it doesn’t look like he’s missed a step. At the hart of the story is a guy who hasn’t expressed a power as of yet except resolution to solve the problem. The pleasant thing is that you can’t be quite sure he’ll succeed.

RAY screenwriter James L. White writes HUNTER’S MOON #1, drawn by Dalibor Talajic. A wealthy businessman named Lincoln winds up stuck with his son for a weekend camping trip, instead of the woman he was hoping to have along. Unfortunately, the boy doesn’t like his father much, and dad doesn’t think very highly of his son’s dreams to become a rapper and music producer, either. Things really come to a head, however, when dad gets conked on the head while in the forest and wakes up to find the boy gone. I can admire HUNTER’S MOON in many respects; rare is the form of entertainment that focuses on the relationship between African-American men and their sons. And the story itself is executed well. But it is slooooooooooooow going to get to the final page. The pace here needed serious work. If it doesn’t pick up in the next issue, the mini risks going nowhere.

Or, worse, turning out like SALVADOR #1. Written by screenwriters Mark and Michael Polish and Sebastian Jones, with art by Steph Stamb, this is an unfortunate miss. The story: Salvador is the product of genetic engineering, born very brittle, but light as a feather, which allows him to fly. But I didn’t learn any of that from the actual comic; that’s from the in-house ads for Boom product. There isn’t a single caption or word of dialogue in this book, and you wouldn’t know a single thing about what the story was supposed to be without that p.r. The pictures are pretty, but they don’t flow or do any storytelling. There are inexplicable close-ups, and long shots that are rendered too dark to figure out by the way the book printed. It is the rare book from Boom that offers not even a sliver to recommend about it; even the first CTHULHU anthology, which I panned, had some good to it, and the company has carved out a nice, quality niche for itself. But this is a complete mess; avoid it.

That’s it for this weekend: the good, the bad, and the ugly from Boom. Thanks for reading; I’ll be back throughout the week for site updates after the Monday holiday.

Finishing up the week... a look at Antony Johnston's post-apocalyptic WASTELAND...

The Big Wet begins here.


Thursday, May 24, 2007

Rounding third and heading for home... the great Lewis Trondheim gets another English adaptation of his work, the wonderful all-ages TINY TYRANT.

See why he's one of the few to buy, sight-unseen...


Wednesday, May 23, 2007

It's time to do the humpty-hump, as Wednesday arrives and brings a review of RED EYE, BLACK EYE. K. Thor Jensen took a bus ride to remember in 2001, and it's something you won't quite ever forget yourself...

All aboard!


Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Tuesday brings a look at the SASQUATCH anthology from Viper Comics, so it's bound to be some hairy reading...

Puns are all part of the package.


Monday, May 21, 2007

Manga Monday! The next 400 posts starts off with a reminder to go check out my review of volumes 3 and 4 of STRAY LITTLE DEVIL...

Cuteness abounds!