Review – Teen Titans Rebirth #6: “The Rise of Aqualad”

  • Writer: Benjamin Percy
  • Artist: Khoi Pham
  • Colorist: Jim Charalampidis
  • Cover Artist: Khoi Pham & Jim Charalampidis

With the Ra’s al ghul event behind them the Teen Titans are on R and R for the moment, but that doesn’t last for long when a mysterious figure beings to make a move against them.

The start of the issue we get a clue of the possible antagonist in the upcoming arc, in Del Sur Penitentiary north of San Francisco there’s a breakout and the unknown jailer escapes by jumping into sea after blowing a hole in the walk of his or her cell, I’m pretty sure the person behind this is the main villain so now its just a matter of time when he or she will reveal themselves.

Majority of the issue focuses on Aqulad’s backstory, while the Titans are dealing with a surprise interview from Bonnie Chung of Kare 7 News which was setup by beast boy, we see Jackson Hyde (Aqulad) in his room playing around with his abilities. His mother enters and schools him about using his powers in the open, she is worried about the danger it’ll cause if the public knew who he was. Like most teenagers with powers he struggles with keeping it a secret from his friends. So one night Aqulad decides to reveal his powers to his friend Kenny thinking that it would matter to him, but Kenny rejects him and ends their friendship immediately.

Meanwhile things pick up back at Titan tower with Bonnie Chung finishing her interview with the Teen Titans and is about to leave but something grabs her and takes her to an underwater prison underneath Alcatraz. With Bonnie Chung missing the Titans jump to action, they search and scout area around Alcatraz and come up with nothing, until Beast Boy encounters King Shark, who was the inmate that was hint to escaped in the beginning of the issue.

Conclusion: This was an opener for the upcoming arc the flow of this issue was a little smoother. Like most arcs reaching its conclusion there’s going to be an issue featuring some down time, where the team or individual is doing non-hero actives. However, we do get an introduction of Aqulad, many fans express their concerns about the arc focusing too much on Damian, but this issue doesn’t, and that’s a good sign for future issues.

Links: Order (Digital)

Release Date: Out Now

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

Spider-Man Homecoming (2017) Official Trailer is here!!!!

After many teasers and screenshots, Marvel & Sony pictures have released the official trailer for Spider-Man homecoming. In trailer we get a glimpse of his new suit, the main antagonist Vulture (Michael Keaton) and his band of villains Shocker ( Bokeem Woodbine) and Donald Glovers  who’s character is still unannounced. We also see Iron Man in action as well, he seems to be playing the uncle Ben role to Peter in this film. With DC releasing its justice league trailer recently it was a given Marvel was going to do the same. 2017 is shaping up to be another great year for comic films.

Review – Iron Fist #1 (2017)

Writer: Ed Brisson
Artist: Mike Perkins
Colorist: Andy Troy
Cover Artist: Mike Perkins & Andy Troy

In Ed Brisson’s Iron Fist #1 we get the aftermath of Danny Rand’s decision to leave K’un-Lun, the mystical city is left unprotected and therefore is destroyed. Issue picks up with Danny Rand struggling to find his purpose now that K’un-Lun is gone, his connection to the chi of Shou-Lao the undying and K’un-Lun is what made him the Iron Fist. Becoming the Iron Fist, fighting and protecting K’un-Lun was the path he followed, the path of a warrior. But things have changed, and Danny deals with it by drink and entering street fights for money, just so he can feel that sense of purpose once again.

Midway in the issue he come across a fight name Choshin, from the island of Liu-Shi, he challenges Danny to fight and at first seems to hold his own against Danny, but he stops the match, admitting he would lose if they continued. Choshin offers Danny Rand an invitation to Liu-Shi, and as expected Danny is reluctant to take his offer but quickly changes his mind once Choshin offers to help him find the answers he seeks about his life without the Iron Fist.

Conclusion: After that debacle of a series “Iron Fist” I had questions about Iron Fist and so when Ed Brisson’s Iron Fist was release I figured I would give it a shot. In my opinion felt Iron Fist is more compelling when written darker, and so far, Brisson’s run is going in that direction and I like it. Artist Mike Perkins work is more on the heavy sketch and shade style which gives the issue a darker tone. All in all, this was a solid setup first issue.

Links: Order (Digital)

Release Date: Out Now

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

Review – Liberty: Deception Volume #1

Creator, Producer, Writer: Travis Vengroff
Co-Creator, Storyboards: Adam Cartwright
Sketches and Ink: Raymund Bermudez & Art Shaft Team
Colors: Joana LaFuente
Letters: Eduardo Camacho
Cover Art: Dave Dorman, Eirich Olson

A Terraformed world gone mad, sounds like another day in the dark voids of sci-fi storytelling… or is it? Liberty: Deception drops readers into the shoes of Tertulius Justus, a figure with a uniquely manufactured past that lives in the hearts of the citizens of Atrius.

While Justus doesn’t get a common introduction, his life and reputation are anything but that. Combat Medic and Senior Investigator for the Bureau, Justus takes on the worst of the bunch that want to harm Atrius. Unfortunately, his legend is built on a government propaganda machine that seeks to create new heroes on the front lines that aren’t actually on the front lines at all. Kind of complex but so is Liberty.

Volume 1 throws readers into the depths of Atrius, well within their prison system we find the darkest of offenders or at least it once seemed that way. The story fills with confusion and some levels of deception, soon the story starts to come together through a series of flashbacks to quickly build depth to the story and get a better understanding of Justus and his place in the world. Given the reach of the story there are few if any slow moments through the first issue, pacing keeps readers guessing what comes next and where Justus is going with such a troubled situation.

The issues that follow in the volume continue with character introductions, back story and development so the cast doesn’t feel like a handful of fodder thrown in for cheap drama. Consideration flows through every page to highlight the struggle, the character flaws in their core and physically while bringing together a perfect storm as Justus comes into his own. Readers also learn how those overseeing Atrius have painted a twisted narrative and hold their own vanity in such high regard they’d sacrifice anything to retain it. Enemies of the empire are painted in mutant form, alien from anything they’d know as a complete misrepresentation, the mass manipulation of the media runs so strong the citizens blindly trust anything that comes to their lap.

Unfortunately, there’s a large cliffhanger with Volume 1, while tons of work has gone into the project and talent came from around the world to make it happen, there’s a desire for more and one has to worry when the next bit will come. The story has supplements running in other mediums but with the artistic quality and stylization directing the narrative, it’s hard to just swap mediums and take in the same energy.

One of the biggest things to take away from Liberty: Deception is how refined the read is and how familiar or comfortable it feels even though it’s a completely different piece from what’s come before it. The action, dialogue, and sequences are all well executed and illustrated to tell just the right tension, emotion and direct the narrative along. Given the size of the group behind the project and the distance between everyone, the result shows a remarkable level of consistency throughout. The Liberty: Deception team does note the challenges they had to face but it really did create a much stronger product once it was all said and done. For those looking to explore beyond the everyday book, Liberty: Deception presents an interesting cyberpunk, dystopian future full of twists, turns and of course, deception.

Links:
Kickstarter | Amazon

Release Date: Out Now

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

 

Extended Credits

Continuity, Conway Flashback, Map, ABI Advert: Casey Bailey
Character Design: Eirich Olson
Twitch Flashback: Colin Lorimer
Aemos Flashback: Danielle Otrakji
Reeve Flashback: Deon De Lange
Tales from the Tower Advert: George Kavallines
Atrian Adverts: Arianna Westerfield
Citizen Guide Cover: Sean Thornton
Reeve Endures Poster: Michael Lee-Graham
Motion Comic Production: Brian Stabile & Astro Crow
Soundtrack Composer & Producer: Steven Melin
Concept Design, Creative Consultant: Laurie Thomas
Symbol Design, Chapter Border Design: Matthew Bailey
Digital Renderings, Writer for the Liberty Podcast: Kaitlin Statz
Matte Painting: Dylan Peirpont
Liberty: Deception Logo Design: Stacey Baldini

Review – Super Sons Rebrith #2: Who needs Batman and Superman!!

  • Writer: Peter Tomasi
  • Artist: Jorge Jiménez
  • Cover Artist: Jimenez and Sanchez

With the last issue ending on a cliff hanger I was sure this issue would no doubt be entertaining, and I wasn’t wrong. One of the many bright spots in this run are the characterization and the artwork. Supersons #2 delivers on all those with and more, first off, we get a prologue of Kid Amazo the main antagonist in the future, this kid has a serious anger issues, in a game of hide in seek, he finds and kills a family we are suppose assume is his.

Jon and Damian’s encounter with lex is almost ends early when Damian uses Jon as a decoy. Once again Damian manipulates Jon into helping him, it seems as if Damian doesn’t really care for Jon’s safety, he purposely uses Jon as bait just so he can get access to Lexcorp’s data files, however do find it strange Lex has no idea who Jon and Damian are. After escaping Lex the two dig up some information on a kid name Reggie aka (Kid Amazo).

Tracking Kid Amazo’s last position to a warehouse they investigate and find the family he had murdered in the prologue, right away Jon wasn’t to inform their dad’s, but Damian is determined to prove he doesn’t need Batmans help, the two of them argue and Jon leaves the scene and runs into a little girl who escaped during Kid Amazo crazy hide and go seek game outside the warehouse.

The issue ends with Damian and Jon being watched by each other’s fathers.

Conclusion: The one issue I have is that Jon is pretty much useless, he lacks any development, granted this could be on purpose, it’s still something to note. Damian on the other hand is a complete badass, with Tomasi doing the Batman and Robin runs its not surprising Damian’s the more developed character as of right now. The artwork once again is on point so theres no need to get into details about it, Jorge Jiménez is killing it.

Overall we got some story progression, so hopefully in the future we see the two encounter Kid Amazo, I know I cant wait.

Links: Order (Digital)

Release Date: Out Now

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

Review – Inhumans vs X-Men #6

  • Writer: Jeff Lemire & Charles Soule
  • Artist: Lenil Francis Yu
  • Colorist: David Curiel
  • Cover Artist: Leinil Francis Yu

Marvel’s Inhuman vs X-Men event has seemed to hit its climax, the war between mutants and inhumans hasn’t turned out for the better. Many of the inhuman’s died, all because of a lack of communication between the two groups.

Emma Frost’s grief gets the best of her, we see her transition into hate and anger which in turn cause’s her make decisions that in dangers the X-Men, she no longer cares about saving mutant kind, Emma wants revenge for Cyclops and is hell bend on killing Black Bolt, who she blames for Scotts death. But its revealed that Cyclops wasn’t killed by Black Bolt, he was killed in an accident way before the discovery of the Terrigen Mist.

Young Cyclops reveals that Emma had been lying to everyone for months about it, Storm confronts her about it and she doesn’t deny it, in fact she becomes more unstable. If not for Ahura and the Ennilux, the war would’ve gotten more out of hand.

The down fall of Emma is also the rise of Madusa, she really evolved as a leader in this crossover, with all that was going on Madusa never wavered when things looked grim for them. Medusa’s growth was one of few things that I found enjoyable in this crossover, as for the final battle between the two groups, I found it to be a little lack luster. There was no real lost amongst the two teams, granted Ahura did lose a ship full of Ennilux, but in actuality their deaths played no real significance overall.

For me Inhumans vs X-Men is an average crossover at best, the story reminds me too much of AvX’s, on top of that you never get a real present of danger in this crossover, even with Emma going full on crazy at the end. Marvel had something good with this event, but because it focuses more on action instead of the narrative this crossover is miss.

Links: Preview | Order (Digital)

Release Date: Out Now

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

Review – Super Sons Rebrith #1: When I Grow Up…

  • Writer: Peter Tomasi
  • Artist: Jorge Jiménez
  • Cover Artist: Jimenez and Sanchez

Super Sons: When I grow up features Superboy ( Jon Kent) and Robin (Damian Wayne) as they attempt to be heroes without their parents’ consent, Peter Tomasi and Jorge Jiménez team up to bring a light hearted adventure between the son of the bat and the man of steel.

First off, the artwork in this comic is amazing, Jorge Jiménez work is top notch in my opinion his work is amongst the best today. What makes Super Sons so delightful is the fact it has humor without trying to be, most of the humor is from Damian, from him dressing like a bus driver to him sneaking into Jon’s room, Damian’s maturity is what makes this issue funny, compared to Jon, he’s a season vet when it comes to getting into mischief. Jon is much like his father, as far as doing things the right way, stand up for those who can’t, he’s a little boy scout, as for Damian he’s the total opposite, the kid does whatever he wants whenever he wants.

When Jon is at school Damian appears dress as the school’s bus driver along with being the substitute teacher in Jon’s third period class, the crazy thing about it is that he admits he was actually teaching the class and not faking it, when it comes to smarts Damian has to be one the smartest heroes in DC. As for Jon, he’s pretty much carbon copy of his father when it comes to his values, the kid is like a saint not a bad bone in his body.

Later Both Superman and Batman are called in by the Justice League, and Damian decides to sneak into jon’s room and convinces him to help him solve a case involving break-ins and hacking attempts at LexCrop, when the boys get to LexCrop they are quickly discovered by Lex Luthor himself in his Superman suite.

Conclusion: How will Robin and Superboy escape Lex, better yet, what will Batman and Superman do once they find out, and how will the boys react when that time comes, Super Sons has the potential to be a fun little side arc for two characters that are still relatively new

Links: Order (Digital)

Release Date: Out Now

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

 

Review – Teen Titans #5: Damian vs Ra’s Al Ghul

  • Writer: Benjamin Percy
  • Artist: Khoi Pham
  • Colorist: Jim Charalampidis
  • Cover Artist:
  • Khoi Pham & Jim Charalampidis

In the last issue, we left off with the Teen Titans finding and breaking Robin (Damian Wayne) free from his cell Ra’s al Ghul’s teen assassins Demon Fist put him in, and like classic Damian fashion he blows off with arrogance, I like that fact that Damian still struggles with his old self, it makes his character more interesting, especially when he and Mara confront each other, that is when you see how much has character has changed from when he first arrived, while Mara looks for her grandfather’s approval Damian sees his grandfather for what he is, and that’s crazy mad man who’s willing to use his own family to achieve his goal, When Ras and Mara are together he shows no empathy towards her.

The Demon Fist on the other hand realize this and start to question everything the League of Assassins has taught them, when Damian and company confront them, he informs them of how they were stolen from their families and raise to serve Ra’s. The members of Demon Fist question Ra’s about what Robin has told them, Ra’s doesn’t deny any of it, instead he has the league of assassins attack them. Together the Teen Titans and Demon Fist take out the League ninjas with no problem, at the same time Damian goes one on one with Ra’s, and actually holds his own against his grandfather, the rest of the Titans jump in to help Damian which causes Ra’s to retreat, throughout the fight Mara seems to be conflicted on what she should do, Damian tries to convince his cousin to come with him and for a second it looked like she would have, but Ra’s al Ghul intervenes and takes Mara with him as he escapes.

When it’s all said, and done the Teen Titans and the members of Demon Fist say their goodbyes to one another and everything seems to be good, but then Batman appears and questions Damian about the events that have just transpired, confuse of his father’s appearance Damian asks his father how did he know where to find him and its hinted that Damián’s pet bat was the reason, the issue ends with Batman asking Damian to return to Gotham with him, but Damian decides to stay and be part of the Teen Titans. In the final panel 3 months has past and we see Damian is standing on top of the Titan Tower alone, that’s until the rest of the team joins him, and together they look over the city of San Francisco

Conclusion: I really enjoy Benjamin Percy’s run with the Teen Titans, there’s a good amount of character disposition and action so far, and with Ra’s al Ghul conflict over I’m looking forward to what’s coming next in future issues

Links: Order (Digital)

Release Date: Out Now

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

Review – Inhumans vs X-Men #5: What’s Next?

  • Writer: Jeff Lemire & Charles Soule
  • Artist: Lenil Francis Yu
  • Colorist: David Curiel
  • Cover Artist: Leinil Francis Yu
Courtesy of Marvel.com

The Inhumans have gotten the upper hand on the X-Men and finally located and release Black Bolt from, my biggest issue with this run is how the X-Men despite having a legit reason still come across as in the wrong, while you can debate whether or not that’s true, you can’t overlook this one other problem I have with this crossover, and that’s X-Men/ Mutants turn on each other way too quick. Again, some fans may not see it that way, but for me that’s how I see it.

Inside the World, an artificial time altering environment, Jean and Fantomex continue to battle it out with Karnak, who in the process finds lockjaw and frees him. Back in Limbo Gorgon and Colossus fight concludes with Colossus getting the best of Gorgon, at the same time Madusa and the other royal family members find Black Bolt but are confronted by Havok who threatens to take out the inhuman leader, Havok warns Medusa and company about Emma Frost who he states is the real fight, Back in New Jersey Iso and the other young inhumans decide to help Forge build and use his machine in order to stop the Mist, Grid warns ISO that helping Forge goes against everything Medusa and the royal family have been fighting for.

Sypnapse and Reader teleport to The World and find Karnak meditating after surviving his battle with Jean and Fantomex, together the three of them try to wake up lockjaw. Cyclops, Ms. Marvel, Grid and the others fly to Iceland, but are quickly confronted by the full X-Men team, Back in X-Heaven Colossus finds Havok siting and is surprise when Havok tells him he let Royal family leave with Black Bolt.

The action picks up at end of the issue when the inhumans and Cyclops have it out with Emma and the rest of the X-Men, as they two teams fight Magneto becomes impatient with the senseless fighting and decides to step in.

Conclusion: Now that the younger Inhumans are going to help Forge stop the Mist, I’m interest on how this will affect the Royal family in the future, Medusa feels as if the X-Men have crossed the line attacking New Attilan and taking Black Bolt, when this conflict finally ends you can bet a rift between the inhumans and Mutants will be bigger than before. While still entertaining it still feels less important of an issue , compared to the AvX or House of M events.

Links: Preview | Order (Digital)

Release Date: Out Now

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

Review – Trekker: Rites of Passage

  • Story: Ron Randall
  • Art: Ron Randall
  • Colors: Ron Randall
  • Lettering: Ron Randall
  • Cover Art: Ron Randall with Jeremy Colwell
  • Published by: Dark Horse Comics

Intergalactic politics are never easy, getting caught in the black-ops dirty deeds of a big political storm is even more problematic. Trekker takes readers into the shoes of Mercy St. Clair, a Trekker / Head Hunter that doesn’t mind tangling with the worst the galaxy has to offer. The TPB edition is a full collection that covers a rough dance with the larger world that Mercy has put aside, seeking a simpler isolated lifestyle it’s not long before everything breaks down and her past emerges again.

Trekker spins off into secret government military operations, overthrows of outside territories and a rough ride through space with intense action and gun battles.

Ron Randall creates a complex web of relationships through the pages of Trekker, following Mercy through the pages there’s a huge struggle within as she fights constantly to shut the world and everyone in it out of her life. Creating a character that isn’t ice-cold but carries that on their shoulders because it’s what they know of the world is an interesting read, there’s sympathy and encouragement even while knowing it could all lead to dreadfully bad situations.

The art syncs up perfectly with the scenes, conveying careful energy and gesture to sell just the right read. From Mercy and her partner having some drinks (a few too many actually) to her expressions fighting predators in the wild with everything on the line. When you’re writing and illustrating that’s certainly a unique perk to have. Ron Randall creates momentum in the panels and emotion that helps keep characters alive and readers engaged.

Few moments ever manage to fall out of the constant friction in the story. The characters are flung from one bad scenario to the next all while holding on for dear life, Randall makes sure it’s not an easy ride and even in the most secure of moments, the floor falls right out from underneath Mercy and the reader. It’s unique in the mixture of cultures and a sci-fi manifest destiny gone wrong. Readers see the good and the bad not just in the shadowy government actions but in the people and their inherent desire for more.

Trekker is an interesting read, the art lands on point with carefully crafted pages that blend with the words on each page and give an expanded  understanding of the characters and world. For those looking to mix up their sci-fi experiences Trekker delivers, the character development is a very strong suit for the book and Ron Randall keeps a firm grasp on everything he wants readers privy to during the ride which makes it all the more interesting.

Preview: Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: Out Now

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