Bullet Reviews, The Tuesday Tradition continues! This week: Dark Shadows #12, Fairest #11, Indestructible Hulk #3, Mara #1, Star Wars #1, Todd: The Ugliest Kid On Earth #1, and The Walking Dead #106.
DARK SHADOWS #12 (Dynamite)
Well, a year in and we get to enjoy one of the staples of the Dark Shadows story: time travel. But this time it’s a little different. This issue focuses on the demon’s entry into the world and taking over the body of Barnabas Collins. He wants the body of Barnabas because, as a vampire, he’s strong enough to be a host for the monster. What the demon didn’t know what that Barnabas has recently been ‘cured’ of his curse through a talisman he wears around his neck. But not only does that work against the demon, it also works against Barnabas who has his soul ripped from his body and cast into the darkness. While this is going on, Quintin is still having to deal with David’s female friend, now a vampire, and the evil vampire Lockwood is still terrorizing the living. As bad as these things are, it gets worse for Barnabas because as he’s falling into the darkness he hears the voices of family calling him back. Once he returns to the land of the living he finds two things: 1) he isn’t in his own body anymore, and 2) he’s in the year 1984 and the world is about to end!
Reading this series I’ve learned what it must have been like when the show was on TV and people would run home from school just to catch it. This series is everything the show was and nothing the movie was and I love it like that! Once again I have to say if you’re tired of glittery-emo-geek vampires then this is the series you’ve been waiting for! -Skott Jimenez
FAIREST #11 (Vertigo)
Another amazing cover. But that isn’t anything new, both this series and Fables have a legacy of amazing covers. We continue the story of Rapunzel and her ‘children’ which I’m now wondering if they are children as we generally think of them as or if they are the things in that well. Regardless, Lauren Beukes is doing an absolutely amazing job on this story and I’ll be sad to see it end.
I’m being totally honest here. I expected the story to be decent but had no idea there would be so many layers to it. Rapunzel was never really the focus of any stories before so I never really got to know her. Now, however, she’s become another favorite in a long list of favorites from the Fables Universe. There is more to this lady than we originally thought, I had no idea what she went through before. She’s trying to find her children as well as reliving her past in Japan with the Japanese Fables where she was trying to save a friend who, in modern times, is trying to kill her. there’s a lot going on here but nothing it jumbled, certainly another Fables Classic in the making!
Seeing how Rapunzel ‘inspired’ Ju-On is astounding and watching her end up in that situation is heartbreaking. -Skott Jimenez
INDESTRUCTIBLE HULK #3 (Marvel NOW!)
Waid and Yu continue to impress me with the ongoing story in this title. The Hulk finally has a purpose that can be utilized for good, and Banner also has a purpose although with a secret agenda behind it all. Banner now works for SHIELD, and the Hulk has become a weapon for SHIELD. This issue really shows that the Hulk truly lives up to his “indestructible” adjective – not even a T-1000 Terminator can survive a dip within molten metal. Well, guess what? A big green angry dude can! AIM decides to kidnap a scientist, and SHIELD swaps him for Banner when the AIM guys aren’t looking. It’s back to basics – AIM vs SHIELD but instead of AIM creating some Modok-like weapon to attack SHIELD, they instead are on the receiving end of what SHIELD is now calling their own WMD. This is probably one of the best books from Marvel NOW! that has come out, and it really is due to Waid’s writing. They have given him Leinel Yu for this arc, and we know that Walt Simonson is on board soon as well. It’s a strong art talent that is coming to this title and will keep it going strong. I haven’t liked much of the Hulk stories that have come out in past years, but this one is killing it. -Kelly Cassidy
MARA #1 (Image)
Brian Wood has done something that was next to impossible I would have thought… took a comic about volleyball and made it fun. Seriously. The book takes place in the future where competitive sports has hit a whole new high. The world still balances on war in various areas and international conglomerates still support various enterprises to make themselves look good. Here, we have the star of the Cuban Girl’s Volleyball Team arriving in the United States for a major tournament. Wood buts current marketing strategies to shame for professional sports and it becomes more of an entertainment extravaganza – think WWE and classic WWF style intros. And somehow he is able to express that on the printed page thanks to artists Ming Doyle and Jordie Bellaire who join him on this venture. Although it seems like this is a story about business, that’s when things get weird. It really wouldn’t be fair to say how, as that would mean you may not get the book – but you really should. I took a risk at a book about volleyball, but would say not too much of one with Brian Wood’s name attached. It did not disappoint. -Kelly Cassidy
STAR WARS #1 (Dark Horse)
I already talked Brian Wood, and now I do so again. This time, though, he’s taking those iconic characters we all know and love and are continuing their saga. Yes, Brian Wood is taking on the Star Wars universe and the book was one of my favorites of the last few weeks. The story in this first arc takes place between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back so it’s a time familiar to all Star Wars fans. And it’s obvious that Brian Wood is a definite Star Wars fan. The book mostly covers Leia and Luke, with a little bit of Han and Chewie, who I think make a larger part of the story to come. The characterizations are perfect for the attitude, and I loved it. The art comes and goes, though, at times. Artist Carlos D’anda and colorist Gabe Eltaeb do a great job, but in all cases it’s not Star Wars. Their scenes in space with the ships – gorgeous. Their people, though, come off hit and miss in some cases. I’m more looking at the Han and Chewie scenes. Chewie seriously looks like a big dog in some, not a Wookie – his eyes are too human, his nose is that of a dog, and his mouth has no depth to it on his face. A few of the scenes remind me of Rebekah Isaacs in Buffy which isn’t a bad thing, but just didn’t suit the tone of this title and seems to differ a lot from the details of the spacecraft. Plus, at one point, the Emperor looks like a vampire, again from Buffy. But the scene of Vader walking… menacing. With all that, it’s still a solid story when it all comes together. The best thing about this book is that Vader knows the name Skywalker for some reason… and begins a quest to find out why. -Kelly Cassidy
TODD: THE UGLIEST KID ON EARTH #1 (Image)
I wasn’t going to pick this one up, but it was on the shelf, staring at me, taunting me. I’d heard nothing about it, but then figured, why not? And I gave it a shot. To be honest, I’m still not sure how I feel about it. I’ve read it a couple of times and I just don’t know. By its title, I assumed that Todd was going to be some humor series, a fun book. It turns out that it’s more of a complex book than I would have imagined. Todd is a kid who is apparently so ugly he wears a paper bag on his head. His mother makes him do this. There’s a bully who picks on Todd and, when caught, makes everything Todd’s fault… so much so that his mom starts to bully Todd even more afterwards. We have a police chief that is so much on edge he pulls a gun on his own daughters because they are playing with dolls. It’s an interesting read, and with the cover having a quote from actor Danny Trejo (Machete), it caught my attention. Alas, the art didn’t do it for me. The same characters from one angle to another look so different that it takes away from the story completely. Faces have no alignment in some spots and it’s just not for me. I’m not saying it’s bad, but it’s not my style. It’s like one of those late-night cartoons on Cartoon Network – not Futurama-like, but on even later. The cover art was great, and that’s what got me to give it a shot, but on the inside… I don’t think I’ll be picking up issue #2. it was that much of a detriment to me. -Kelly Cassidy
THE WALKING DEAD #106 (Image)
This is the sort of issue of this series that I like. There isn’t a whole lot of action but there is certainly a lot of foreshadowing of what might be coming. Negan still has Carl and Rick has no idea. As far as Rick knows Carl is just missing. But by the end of this issue he learns where his son is and we are all left in the dark as Negan remarks about seeing what he’s done to Carl. Considering this is a man who has no problems burning another man’s face with an iron, I have to wonder what new hell Carl is going to experience.
The comic book series is a great way to ease the pain of a two month hiatus for the TV show. Plus we get to see Andrea being more human than she is in the show, lol.
Check out Scorpio’s full review for this issue, it pretty much covers all the bases!
Well, that’s what we thought about some recent comics. Now it’s your turn! Comment below and let us know what YOU think!