AM2 Con announces 2013 dates and new pricing

AM2 has been fighting hard over the past 2 years to establish itself as a mass culture event for Anime and J-Music fans across the US. Given the growing success of the show in that span it’s good to see them return for a third time. The convention will jump to August 23-25 at the Anaheim Convention Center just after the major convention season passes through.

Attendees for the 2013 show will need to observe the new price changes.

  • General admission (replacing free entry) – exhibition hall, festivals, panels, workshops and gaming
    • $5 for a single day (pre-order)
    • $10 for all three days (pre-order)
  • Passport admission – All access including passport only events, also front of line preference
    • $20 for a single day (2012 pre-order price)
    • $25 for two days (2012 pre-order price)
    • $35 for three days (2012 pre-order price)

Pricing will increase as the show closes in. Once 2013 hits expect to see these rising $5 at a time until the con arrives in which case it’ll be $20 higher to register at the show for the 2 and 3 day passes and $15 higher for single day passes.

Our advice? Figure out what you really want to do at the show and register as soon as you can, otherwise you’ll find yourself paying a lot more for the hesitation as the months push on.

Register now: AM2 Convention 2013

Review – Uncanny X-Men #17 (AVX)

Writer: Kieron Gillen
Artists: Daniel Acuna & Mike Del Mundo
Art Assist: Diego Olmos
Letters: VC’s Joe Caramagna
Cover Art: Mike Del Mundo
Published by: Marvel Comics

The Phoenix attack resumes against Sinister to stop any plans of his against Hope for his own personal gains.   The group faces incredible odds but the cavalry is riding in to lend a hand in this difficult time for the X-Men, even in their darkest hour full of the most power they’re still a team and need each other to make it through.

The biggest thing that sticks out in this issue is the art, that’s not really a compliment at all as it ages the X-Men in ways I never knew to the point where they look disfigured. It’s certainly not pleasing during the read and it actually pulls away from the experience of the story, while I’m all for experimentation in style and format I can’t say this was the right choice to play.

In story we see Gillen wrapping this story up with a bang, not only is there a conflict between Sinister and the X-Men but we see Unit take a deeper interest as well. Groups battled valiantly against the clones and we see allies colliding as they stage a front against the Phoenix powered clones awaiting them. It certainly gets ugly but the story twists manage to avoid jumping the shark.

As a whole, Uncanny X-Men 17 manages to deliver a solid story arc and additional depth into the X-Men side of this conflict as they gain Phoenix power. Unfortunately the art wrapping up issue 17 is some of the hardest I’ve had to swallow since reviewing Marvel comics. Some things to note, Magneto doesn’t have a Halloween costume helmet made of cloth or vinyl and Psylocke isn’t horribly old or deformed. Also we notice when unrefined illustrations are pushed as final products. One can only hope this trend doesn’t continue forward as it doesn’t benefit this issue in the slightest. There are panels that have a sharp contrast and one can only assume the other team members on the art side had influence there.

Release date: August 22, 2012

Story:★★★½☆ 
Art:★☆☆☆☆ 
Dialog:★★★☆☆ 
Overall:★★½☆☆ 

Review – America’s Got Powers #3 of 6

Script: Jonathan Ross & Bryan Hitch
Story: Jonathan Ross & Bryan Hitch
Art:  Jonathan Ross & Bryan Hitch
Inks: Paul Neary & Jason Paz
Colors: Paul Mounts
Letters: Chris Eliopoulos
Editor: Jeff Mariotte
Published by: Image Comics

Issue 3 of America’s Got Powers is here and we’re fresh off a confrontation between Tommy and his Mom about his role in the games. The fate of his brother Bobby has changed and the stakes just a whole lot higher, unfortunately there’s so many other things going on in this story that issue 3 puts that to the immediate side. Instead we focus on the facility and the endless dirty secrets within, one of which will prove to be one of the most cruel and abusive secrets so far.

The series has been a bit everywhere to help explain background, political interests, personal stories and the mystery of the crystal, for those hoping to hit some stability I’m sorry to say you wont find it. The layers just keep coming and the mystery behind Tommy / Zero is only getting deeper, what power does he hold and why do they so desperately want to find out what it is in the arena. We found out some of those details and honestly they’re really upsetting to say the least, what was a supernatural miracle has turned into dark experimentation.

Ross and Hitch have put together a solid issue, so much so that it’s hard to speak very much on it without spoiling the issue heavily. One has to just know the powers released in this world aren’t contained to any limited group and this gift to the world is only just starting. The only thing to figure out is which side will all of these power users end up on as the larger scope reveals itself, also will there be any real conclusion with only 3 issues left to pass through? The questions keep coming at this point and it’s worrying to think of how this will possibly even wrap up right now.

Release date: August 22, 2012

Story:★★★★☆ 
Art:★★★★½ 
Dialog:★★★★☆ 
Overall:★★★★☆ 

WWE’ 13 News – Latest Roster Trailer And More!!!!

Its been a couple of days since THQ release the Roster for the highly anticipated WWE’13, going with the Attitude Era (1997-2002) WWE’13 will have all the influential wrestlers of that era, with a roster lineup  like this WWE ‘ 13 looks prime to be a one of the best of the series!

Check out the new roster trailer and artwork for WW’13, which hit stores 10.30.12

 Present 

  • The Bella Sisters
  • Eve
  • CM Punk
  • Lita
  • Kharma
  • Kelly Kelly
  • Rey Mysterio
  • The Rock
  • R-Truth
  • Santino
  • Sheamus
  • Sin Cara
  • Primo
  • Epico
  • Triple H
  • Undertaker (with mohawk)
  • Jinder Mahal
  • Wade Barrett
  • Zack Ryder
  • Alicia Fox
  • Beth Phoenix
  • Kevin Nash
  • Kofi Kingston
  • Mark Henry
  • The Miz
  • Randy Orton
  • John Cena
  • Great Khali
  • Heath Slater
  • Hunico
  • Jack Swagger
  • John Laurinaitis
  • Chris Jericho
  • Christian
  • Cody Rhodes
  • Daniel Bryan
  • David Otunga
  • Dolph Ziggler
  • Edge
  • Alberto Del Rio
  • Big Show
  • Booker T
  • Brock Lesnar
  • Brodus Clay
  • Doctor of Funk John Cena
  • JBL
  • Justin Gabriel
  • AJ Lee (DLC)

Attitude Era

  • Christian
  • Dude Love
  • Eddie Guerrero
  • Edge
  • Godfather
  • Hunter Hearst Hemsley
  • HHH
  • Kane
  • Ken Shamrock
  • Shawn Michaels
  • Undertaker
  • Vader
  • X-Pac
  • Lita
  • Stephanie McMahon
  • Trish Stratus
  • Mankind
  • Mark Henry
  • Mr. McMahon
  • Big Show Paul Wight
  • Road Dogg
  • The Rock
  • Stone Cold Steve Austin
  • Shane McMahon
  • Mike Tyson
  • Road Warriors
  • Big Boss Man
  • Billy Gunn
  • Acolytes
  • Bret Hart
  • British Bulldog
  • Cactus Jack
  • Y2J Chris Jericho

More Info At wwe.thq.com

Review – Star Wars – Darth Maul: Death Sentence #2 of 4

Script: Tom Taylor
Art: Bruno Redondo
Colors: Michael Atiyeh
Letters: Michael Heisler
Cover Art: Dave Dorman
Published by: Dark Horse Comics

Ja’Boag places a bounty on Savage Opress and Darth Maul as they hide in the darkness, the result was rougher than he could have anticipated as the hunters took a heavy beating and Darth Maul decided to take the fight directly to the mining company owner. The reasoning behind Ja’Boag’s decision is still in the air but it’s clear he didn’t anticipate the mass destruction that both of these bring into his mine.

Issue 2 takes off with the Jedi arriving just in time to save him from a toasty funeral, the mine has been damaged extensively and Darth Maul and Savage Opress are just getting started on the small army that Ja’Boag attempted to recruit to save him. To say things get ugly is an understatement, fire and fury pour while locals watch from a distance to see retribution striking down at Ja’Boag’s greed.

Back inside, It doesn’t take long for the Jedi to jump into the fray as soldiers start turning into voodoo dolls and losing heads. Honestly, if you thought Star Wars couldn’t get violent, you really need to check these issues out as Darth Maul takes the shock value to the next level with his rage streak. The violence breaks when things get tense and we see a new layer of development begin within the story as the locals come into the picture and expand upon the importance of the Suns and this planet.

With that we have to wait until issue 3 to find out what twist will come next. The thing I tend to hate about these stories is the shortness, I understand they’re under a crunch but we’re 50% done with this story arc and it’s frankly turning into something magical, the Jedi just arrived on the scene and the first confrontation  wrapped and here we are with only 2 issues for it all to close up. Taylor and Redondo continue to nail the movement of the story although I do have to commend Redondo for making some of those fatal attacks so subtle in the pace of each panel. Really, Savage and Maul are brutal people but I’m looking forward to how this continues to develop.

Release Date: August 28, 2012

Links: Pre-Order | Preview

Story:★★★★½ 
Art:★★★★★ 
Dialog:★★★★☆ 
Overall:★★★★½ 

Review – The Walking Dead #101 – Something to Fear

Creator, Writer: Robert Kirkman
Pencils, Inks: Charlie Adlard
Letters: Rus Wooton
Editor: Sina Grace
Gray Tones, Cover Color: Cliff Rathburn
Cover Art: Charlie Adlard
Published by: Image Comics

Walking Dead #101 is here, I really don’t know how to open this given the ending we saw in 100. It was basically one of the highest selling books of 2012 and honestly it was also probably one of the most brutal  events in a comic at the same time. If you’ve been skirting around reading the issues and just getting by on reviews I can’t really stress how hard of a hit 100 is and that if you’re interested just get it and take it in.

That said, 101 is here,  everyone is pissed, Maggie, Carl, Sophia. There’s no way to get past what happened to Glenn and how absolutely screwed they all were the minute Negan’s men showed up to surround them. Given the ammo shortage and everything else going on and the kids in the van, it was impossible to even attempt a last stand in such a case. Now comes mourning, continued rage and of course revenge. The group makes the last leg of their original journey ensure Maggie and Sophia make it safe in their trip. The rest of the concerns fall to the wayside though and it’s an emotional punch for all of them, even Carl.

All isn’t lost in 101, while the group is mentally beaten at this point, they’re still in the fight and a recent  capture makes the possibility of their survival that much stronger. When they said it was a whole new world they forgot to take into account the issue of new threats and greater foes, it’s doubtful that Rick will make the same mistake twice after this incident. The series got violent but it’s about to get much uglier as they buckle down for some large confrontations between Negan and the camps. If only they could also tackle that small issue of ammunition, given they only have a week to prep their shipment for Negan they really don’t have that much time available to them for any new plans.

Compared to 100, The Walking Dead #101 is a shorter trip but the possibilities seem endless for how this battle is going to go forward. Kirkman takes the speed of the issue to a slower pace to let people catch up with the recent trauma while setting the groundwork for the next battle, Adlard continues to deliver on emotion and gestures and as a whole it’s a well-rounded issue that tries to address the immediate fallout that strikes Rick’s group.

Release Date: August 15, 2012

Story:★★★★½ 
Art:★★★★½ 
Dialog:★★★★☆ 
Overall:★★★★☆ 

Review – Star Wars – Darth Maul: Death Sentence #1 of 4

Script: Tom Taylor
Art: Bruno Redondo
Colors: Michael Atiyeh
Letters: Michael Heisler
Cover Art: Dave Dorman
Published by: Dark Horse Comics

Maimed in an epic battle and left to die for over a decade, such things can’t phase the Sith and Dark Maul acts a testament to it. His brother Savage Opress joins to save him and bring him back to sanity after suffering endlessly. The goal of course being a new army and empire and a reign of terror that will not end this time around.

The story picks up with the brothers secluded away on Paklan, not flashing their name about but not doing very much to hide away either. A smug bounty collector arrives on scene and sets the chain of events into action as he hopes to quickly subdue the brothers and make his way to collect his cash payout for their collection. Unfortunately legend of the Sith brothers seems to have escaped this person as absolute fallout is all that follows.

The brothers have a price on their head and given all they’ve dealt with so far, this is really the last thing they need on their plate. They’re not phased by the problem, just annoyed that extra energy has to be spent to clear the path so they can work freely on their dark plans. Nothing spoils plans to build an army and a massive revolt like having a tag on their heads after all. Unfortunately the marker itself is only the trigger to a larger series of events including the Jedi becoming aware of his return when he was resting cozy under the radar to this point.

Death Sentence through all of this action and darkness takes a more mature tone that younger readers might not feel comfortable with, bashing and slashing is the name of the game and even Jedi can’t stop it. Tom Taylor and Bruno Redondo have their work cut out to wrap this small arc up within the next 3 installments, so much potential and it will need to survive being bottled up enough to print. Issue 1 is already out on stands but we’re playing catch up before releasing our review on Issue 2 for everyone.

Release Date: July 25, 2012

Links: Preview | Order | Order Digital

Story:★★★★☆ 
Art:★★★★★ 
Dialog:★★★½☆ 
Overall:★★★★☆ 

Review – Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Ghost Prison #4 of 5

Script: Haden Blackman
Art: Agustin Alessio
Letters: Michael Heisler
Cover Art: Dave Wilkins
Published by: Dark Horse Comics

We haven’t covered the Ghost Prison on Bamfas yet, but it is in contention for being one of the better Star Wars releases of the year, taking a traditional approach in art, story and focusing on Vader puts it in our top considerations for the year. We join up in issue 4 with Vader on the Prism in the midst of all out chaos. Rioters battling away not only for a chance to live but for their pursuit of power, it is a demonstration of complete violence and Vader stands at the top of the pile, putting down anyone who dares oppose him.

While Gentis prepares himself to take his spot as head of the Empire we see that Vader, Trachta and Tohm are getting ready to move after their arena challenge reaches completion and the winners board up. New faces come into the story and while that seems like a given after a mass recruitment it’s only a strong 2 that really make impressions not only on Vader and the crew but on the reader as well. Not only does the payback for the attack on the Emperor seem to be well on the way but it could prove to be a mass obliteration of those in Vader’s path.

Personally I enjoy that most of this has been a character exploration just as much as it has been about action and the unknown. Haden Blackman paints unique narratives that give a sense of danger and struggle, and also these same narratives show how unwavering Vader is at all times as an absolute power. His view on recruitment and personal slaying of anyone who dares step into his arena are signs of how intense he really is especially with the Emperor in recovery.

Agustin Alessio compliments the issue with illustrative work that shines through, while some issues in the series go for a painting impression, we don’t see that. Each panel is incredibly detailed and bold in line usage, expressions run wild and gestures help tell the story that words cannot. Seeing survivors torn apart and barely holding together trying to plea for mercy, it gets in-depth for emotion to say the least and the duo manage to drive the story while feeding off each others creative energy.

Issue 5 is just around the corner, those who haven’t caught this series should really give it a shot, I can say it’s well worth the investment if you want some classic Star Wars drama and Vader showing his cold iron fist.

Release Date: August 28, 2012

Links: Pre-Order | Preview (coming soon)

Story:★★★★☆ 
Art:★★★★★ 
Dialog:★★★½☆ 
Overall:★★★★☆ 

Review – Axe Cop #2 President Of The World

Story: Malachai Nicolle
Pencils, Ink, and Lettering: Ethan Nicolle
Colors: Dirk Erik Schulz
Published By: Dark Horse

The last time we saw Axe Cop he had Goo Cop (a man made of goo) and Junior Cobb (a bow tie wearing gorilla) by his side fighting off all the bad guys. This issue begins with us meeting two bad robot brothers, Bu and Tu, from another planet. These guys are looking for trouble and won’t stop until they find it. Back on Earth, Axe Cop and his crew have their hands full as they meet the new super weird mash-up bad guy, Chee-Rex. I’ll let you use your imagination with this one! After some mouth springs, giant punches and transforming robots, Axe Cop and his friends save someone who could arguably be their biggest save yet; but, it doesn’t end there, oh no, theirs plenty more action. The evil robots devise a plan to make Earth’s citizens believe that Axe Cop is evil while also traveling through the universe destroying planets and picking up allies along the way to complete their evil plan of becoming the worst bad guys EVER! Axe Cop, refusing to sit back and let the robots win, devises a plan to figure out the robots plan and it’s a doozy. The universe is in peril and it looks like it’s only going to get worse!

Robots, the Devil, golden mustaches, there is nothing this issue doesn’t have. Seriously, it’s all in here and it shouldn’t be so entertaining but dammit it is! The next and final installment of “President Of The World” looks to be crazy and Axe Cop and his friends are going to have their hands full. This comic has so much charm and humor it’s unbelievable. Everything in this issue works, the writing is always funny and the art is really great, so much so that you can actually follow the story even if there weren’t any dialog, that’s pretty impressive. This is a must read and can really be enjoyed by anyone of any age. Don’t miss on Axe Cop, in a word its brilliant!

Release Date: August 29th, 2012

Links: Pre-Order | Preview (coming soon)

Story:★★★★½ 
Art:★★★★½ 
Dialog:★★★★☆ 
Overall:★★★★½ 

Review – Angel & Faith Season 9 #13 Family Reunion Part 3

Script: Christos Gage
Art: Rebekah Isaacs
Colors: Dan Jackson
Letters: Richard Starkings and Comicraft’s Jimmy Betancourt
Cover: Steve Morris
Alternate Cover: Rebekah Isaacs with Dan Jackson
Executive Producer: Joss Whedon
Published By: Dark Horse

Still in Quor’toth, our rag-tag bunch has a pretty simple mission, survive long enough to save an enslaved Connor worshiping species and get to safety. Sounds simple enough, right? Faith is doubting their plan and more importantly she’s doubting Angel. She soon realizes that her brain is being jumbled by the weirdness of Quor’toth. Meanwhile, Connor is beginning to see things much more clearly and is beginning to understand his father on a different level. Just as everyone is beginning to figure everything out, hell in the name of Quor’toth breaks loose. While all of this is going on, Sophronia and Lavinia are dealing with their own version of hell back at Giles’ house as Pearl, Nash and Whistler are attempting to have a little “conversation” with them. We quickly see who is really in charge and what they are really capable of. What does Whistler want and will it even matter if Angel, Faith and the rest of the crew are stuck in Quor’toth?

This issue is excellent. There is a lot of action and both of the storylines are full and rich. Christos Gage’s writing is great and the voice of each character is just how it should be. Rebekah Isaacs’ art is brilliant, which is not at all shocking because her work is always amazing. I love both of the covers as well, Steve Morris and Isaacs really outdid themselves on these two. I’m really enjoying this arc and it’s nice to see more of Willow as her own series is going to be starting soon. I also like the comic version of Connor much more than the T.V. Connor, he’s much more likable and not nearly as annoying. This issue is a must read, next month can’t get here soon enough!

Release Date: August, 29th 2012

Links: Pre-Order | Preview

Story:★★★★½ 
Art:★★★★☆ 
Dialog:★★★★☆ 
Overall:★★★★☆