Review – Malefic #2

  • Writer: Dan Schaffer
  • Artist: David Miller
  • Published by: 1First Comics

Malefic left readers off with a bit of trauma, our dear new Doctor Freust took a walk into the supernatural, viewing largely that which could not be unseen. After a brief encounter with Inmate Eleven, things went south in a hurry. Issue 2 picks up from there as our dear doctor takes another stab at life in the throne atop a madhouse.

We see relationships develop along with the staff and some new faces step into the scene, notably the introduction of Eric who plays tour guide into the facility as new inmates are interviewed during these rounds. Doctor Freust does her best to balance the reality she knows against this new world of powers and insanity. If her best is enough to survive is another story, with inmates that make a lifestyle out of obliterating others it’ll take a mix of that knowledge with a side of madness to stay a step ahead.

The story direction for issue 2 falls into a bit of chaos, Doctor Freust is losing the training wheels and going head-on into what this place is really about. Coming to realize she’ll need to be constantly on her toes and even then coming to terms with the fact that some of these inmates are a million leagues above her at this point. She’s not incompetent but there’s definitely a chip that’s going to do more harm than good with this class of company.

Dan Schaffer brings an eclectic mix of art and story to this second installment, moments, moods, and happenings all fall into sync across the pages as Doctor Freust bounces from confidence to confusion and into the depths of madness. It’s a solid continuation of the first issue, building on that pacing while retaining the mix of thriller and horror storyline.

Link: Order (Digital)

Release Date: Out Now

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

Review – Spent

Director: Lisa Mikitarian
Produced by: Sam Mikitarian
Screenplay: Lisa Mikitarian
Studio: Indie Rights

Mortality is a strange thing for people, the power of it can send someone down near infinite paths, in the case of the Schumacher family it’s a little bit of fantasy and exotic wonder as they face one of their family with brain cancer in the final stages. What they weren’t prepared for as they packed their bags and said farewell to the lives they once knew is a sudden twist by Herbert of his terminal diagnosis.

Lonnie is Herbert’s son, a theater worker basically with low ambition, awkward social cues and high hopes for a car saleswoman and the vehicle she’s slinging his way. Evelyn is Herbert’s beloved wife, dabbling in so many luxuries once denied in her life with Herbert behind the wheel with fantasy for beaches and pampering. The duo arrives on screen with their lives ahead mapped out until it all takes a massive detour, the shift causes turmoil for them and their established significant others who find these changes unacceptable to the pampered lives they were anticipating. Bad taste in partners seems to be a running theme between Lonnie and Evelyn, they easily fall into the pressures of their partners and really get the storyline running.

The whiff of half a million dollars in savings upon Herbert’s death drives all four characters in the story into dark and dastardly deeds to get their payout. The future once so certain unfolds in new ways with twists that force Herbert’s family to face the darkness they’ve fallen into. While they want this future they’ve painted so brightly, is murder really an option? The struggle consumes and twists and turns them to really face what it is they’re actually doing and acting on.

Overall the story and delivery are interesting with their own twists and angles, Nick Nerangis plays the unassuming Herbert who takes this second chance with new optimism and light. A light that draws a fair amount of empathy from the audience as his wife and son work their angles in the background, each with such selfish desire. Connie Lamothe and Darren Barzegar both play their family roles with distress, fed up with the status quo and completely unaccepting of the new hand life has dealt out to Herbert. The cast has a very unassuming air to their characters, devious but honest in their inexperience to something like affairs and seducing potential inheritance boyfriends to run away.

Overall the pace of the story could pick up speed but it’s not something that kills the experience, it’s a story of miracles and greed and murder mixed with a dose of love and sometimes that’s messy, actually… it’s probably always messy, that just seems like something that probably would never go well. There’s certainly plenty of twists, guilt, and frustration throughout Spent that make the story such an interesting and entertaining dark tale.  For those looking to take a stroll for something different, Spent delivers with dark comedy and constant surprises from life itself to the Schumacher family and their significant others.

Release Date: December 15, 2017
Platform: VOD and Theatrical (Trailer)

Cast:
Sally Anderson
Darren Barzegar
Erin Harth
Sonya Kalian
Connie Lamothe
Janna Livingston
Nataly Martin
Joe Mayes
Nathan McDonald
Madeline Mikitarian
Nick Nerangis
Hannah Overholtzer
Anna Grace Padgett
Tony Villa

Review – Malefic #1

  • Writer: Dan Schaffer
  • Artist: David Miller
  • Published by: 1First Comics

Stories of insanity always have their own surprises and twists, Malefic is an interesting and modern take on such a tale. A young aspiring doctor, a past tarnished with a bit of shame, cannibalism and a dash of attempted murder. This is the life of our Doctor Freust in Malefic, it’s ugly, gritty and fascinating at once as the young doctor kicks off their debut issue right in the lion’s den without a second thought.

This first issue is a casual introduction that slowly drags Doctor Freust and readers deeper and deeper as events unfold. Having a lead with no issue about bearing it all in their back story with no issue is a welcoming, they know what happened, what it did and they’re not paralyzed by it. It’s just the larger machine and inmates of the facility that do manage that state later on once Doctor Freust realizes what her father was really up to and buried in.

Complimenting this intricate story are pages of art from David Miller, delivering expressionistic styling throughout. From the first pages of Doctor Freust talking in her cell to cannibalistic seductive murder, faces and gestures in these pages are creative and expressive giving life to each scenario. We get a detailed grand picture of the facility, the dark halls and chambers within it and a bit of extreme detail when it comes to inmate habits. But it all acts as a support to the story and the atmosphere of Malefic, even more so when adding in the Diagnostic Spectacles which are just an interesting twist on the real inner demons waiting to make their way out later in the series.

Malefic #1 delivers a bit of everything out of the gate, interesting back story, a horrifying granny figure, devastating loss, an asylum to end all asylums, super-secret religious organizations and more. It’s just packaged so well and delivered in the right portions that it makes for an interesting read especially as we stroll into Halloween season. Can it get much worse for Doctor Freust? Undoubtedly and it most likely will which is a good hook for readers looking for something to tickle/scar their brains.

Link: Order (Digital)

Release Date: Out Now

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

Black Panther Teaser Tailer!!

The hype is real people, Marvel has just dropped a teaser trailer for Black Panther, and fans should will be please with whats coming in 2018. In quick run down we see Wakanda in all its glory, along with the Dora Milaje in action. The main villain Erik Killmonger played by Michael B. Jordan also is shown in action. any concerns fans had for the movie should be answered, Black Panther looks as if it will continue Marvels dominance in its next phase of films, and I for one can’t wait.   

Review – Pitchfork

Director: Glenn Douglas Packard
Produced by: Glenn Douglas Packard, Darryl F. Gariglio, Noreen Marriott
Associate Producer: Shaun Cairo
Screenplay: Glenn Douglas Packard, Darryl F. Gariglio
Studio: Uncork’d Entertainment

Horror is a touchy genre, so much focus on visuals, shock and awe leave viewers almost always expecting something to pop out right at them all the time, with such a high level of anticipation it’s interesting when films play around with the inner workings to deliver something out of the norm. Pitchfork follows a group of carefree college kids as one of their friends faces their parents after coming out to them.

There’s a mix of favorability within the cast, people pulling dirty deeds on each other and generating a sense of wonder on who falls prey first to this beast of the night. Most of the cast are blissfully ignorant of the troubles lurking on the farm, throwing a farm rave of sorts while everything goes down. Oddly enough Pitchfork runs with a long lead into the damage and even when it goes down it’s not a rapid-fire affair, instead, it’s methodical and downright cruel in some delivery but it’s what helps shape the experience.

Pitchfork uses the classic teen slasher experience and twists it around while also dousing the story with a blast of psychological shock on top of all else, it’s what helps define the movie as the events layer into a bloody mess. I can’t say I completely expected the twists and turns the movie took and efforts it made to defy classic staples of horror movies in the mainstream. It’s campy and violent while carrying disturbing twists which grab curious fans from across the spectrum.

While I came into Pitchfork expecting bodies to start dropping in typical fashion, it was anything but that. The film develops its own pacing and general structure that leaves viewers waiting for what lands next.

Cast:
Daniel Wilkinson
Lindsey Nicole
Brian Raetz
Ryan Moore
Celina Beach
Keith Webb
Sheila Leason
Nicole Dambro
Vibhu Raghave
Rachel Carter
Andrew Dave-Collins
Carol Ludwick
Derek Reynolds
Addisyn Wallace
Anisbel Lopez

DVD / Blu-ray release date: May 2nd, 2017

Review – X-Men Gold #2 (2017)

  • Writer: Marc Guggenheim
  • Artist: Ardian Syaf
  • Colorist: Frank Martin
  • Cover Artists: Ardian Syaf

The issue starts off with the X-Men battling it out with Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, the X-Men seem to have the fight in hand but Prestige informs the others the brotherhood members have been manipulated mentally, the person behind this Mesmero, a mutant who uses Hyper-Hypnosis.

Nightcrawler unintentionally teleports Old Man Logan and himself to Mesmero’s location, the fighting between the two groups causes the arrival of Captain America and S.H.I.E.L.D. Captain America warns Kitty Pryde about the increase of negative attention from reporter Lydia Nance and her Anti-Mutant cause.

As for Logan and Nightcrawler, they were capture. Mesmero kept Old man logan and forced Nightcrawler to use his teleport powers until exhaustion. Meanwhile Kitty and Prestige follow up on lead at Gracie Mansion in New York city. The Brotherhood has taken the Mayor, a detective name Elizabeth Kim confronts the two of them about an interview the Brotherhood release. The video features them holding the mayor captive and declaring war on humans, reporter Lydia Nance uses the video to her advantage, she hints at a need of segregation between mutants and humans.

We jump back to Mesmero and Logan, it seems as if Mesmero was trying to interrogate Logan. Instead Logan mocks Mesmero for thinking he can interrogate him, so Logan breaks himself free and takes out Mesmero along with some of the other Brotherhood members. A potential plot twist comes when Prestige uses Cerebro and realizes that Mesmero wasn’t the one who help the brotherhood by protecting their minds, but whoever did is strong enough shield themselves from Cerebro. Issue ends with Logan calling Kitty about some information she’ll need.

Conclusion: They mystery behind the Psi shields on the minds of the brotherhood is interesting, as well as Lydia Nance potentially being the main antagonist, theirs clearly something big in the works and i’m guess the next couple issues we will find out what.

Links: Preview | Order (Digital)

Release Date: Out Now

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

Review – Super Sons Rebrith #3 :When I Grow Up… Part Three: Sibling Rivalry

Writer: Peter Tomasi
Artist: Jorge Jimenez
Colorist: Alejandro Sanchez
Cover Artist: Jimenez & Sanchez

In the last issue, we see Robin and Superboy approach by each other’s fathers, but before that, we are get more back story on Kid Amazo and his family. One thing we find out is that his family all had superpowers and they called themselves the Super Duffys. Back when the original Amazo was taken out by the Justice League, at the time evil Lex Luthor was able to get his hands on a synthetic version of the Amazo program, and was able to turn it into a human virus. The virus effected thousands, eventually a vaccine was made and used, 97% of infected was cure, and the 3% was Reggie and his family.

All of this comes to light by Kid Amazo’s sister Sara, she all tells them Kid Amazo has gotten has hands on the amazo armor that was in lexcorp’s possession. A twist in the issue comes when Sara’s revealed to be an android made by her brother. Sara helps the Supersons fight against Amazo’s android clones, even with Sara’s help Superboy and Robin are still overwhelmed.

Conclusion: Given us a quick backstory about kid Amazo and Sara was good for plot purposes, what makes Supersons so funny is the relationship between Damian and Jon. Despite being in a dangerous situation Tomasi reminds us these two are just children. Look at Robin, teenagers that have experience a lot at a young age usually want to prove his or her independences, Jonathan kent on the other hand is the kid that’s raised with good values but was shelter by those same values, similar to his father. Now that Amazo has made his move to take out robin and Superboy, I expect the final showdown between the three of them in the upcoming issue.

Links: Preview | Order (Digital)
Release Date: Out Now

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

Review – Red Hood And The Outlaws: Rebirth #9

  • Writer: Scott Lobdell
  • Artist: Dexter Soy
  • Cover Artist: Nicola Scott

Red Hood and the Outlaws are closing in on the Bow of RA, the team encounters General Ahmed Heinle, and realize he is the one who has the Bow of RA. The General manages to separate the group by using the Bow of RA, it sends all three members flying, Bizarro ends up in a village that mistake him for superman, from here on we get some interesting plot development through Red Hood and Artemis.

From there we see Jason Todd setting in a cell after being caught by the generals’ men, he demands to speak with the general but not be for revealing his history to Bana-Mighdall and Qurac. It’s the place where the Joker killed him when he was Robin, looking out of his cell he sees the extract building he was killed in. Hood immediately assumes the joker is so how behind his capture.

Finally, we shift to Artemis who also is captured and chained upside down, her captor turns out to be her Amazonian sister Akila. Artemis thought she killed her sister.

Conclusion: There’s a potential plot twist involving Red Hood, no whether that’ll happened is another thing, but its enough to keep me around. Jason seems to be shaken after seeing the place of his death, he starts to questions whether him coming back was for the better

Links: Preview | Order (Digital)

Release Date: Out Now

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

Review – X-Men Gold #1: Back to the Basics

Writer: Marc Guggenheim
Artist: Ardian Syaf
Colorist: Frank Martin
Cover Artists: Ardian Syaf, Jay Leisten & Laura Martin

Life moves on for the X-Men, and in Marc Guggenheim’s X-Men Gold we see the aftermath of their conflict with the Inhumans. The X-Men has been through a lot in the past years, first losing Xavier then having their apparent leaders turn radical. To say the group has been in a funk is an understatement, but in X-Men Gold the future seems brighter with Kitty Pryde as the team’s leader.

The world has the same attitude towards mutants, people still label them as dangerous individuals. But Kitty Pryde along with Old Man Logan, Storm, Nightcrawler, Colossus and Prestige aka Rachel Summers are now what’s left of the main X-Main. This issue focuses on Kitty and how she handles the response abilities a leader of the X-Men faces, at one point she contemplates on rejoining the Guardians of the Galaxy just to get away from all the issues the X-Men deal with daily.

We also get some character development from Storm, after watching a news segment that mentions the X-Men’s fight with the Inhuman’s, Storm expresses her disappointment of how she ran the team when she was leader, Nightcrawler gives her some words of encouragement. The issue ends on a setup battle between the X-Men and the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants.

Conclusion: This was an issue used to establish Kitty Pryde as the team’s new leader, from the jump the team already seems different, mainly because of her personality. In the past when Cyclops, Storm and Emma ran the team it looked as if the X-Men were always on the defense whether it be through violence or prejudice. Kitty brings accountability to the team, we get glimpse of that when she addresses the media and some hateful citizens.

With that said I’m curious to see what Guggenheim is going to do with this team and if he will bring us something different.

Links: Preview | Order (Digital)
Release Date: Out Now

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

Review – Royals #1

  • Writer: Al Ewing
  • Artist: Jonboy Meyers
  • Colorist: Ryan Kinnaird
  • Cover Artist: Jonboy Meyers

Al Ewing’s Royals #1 takes place sometime after the inhuman vs X-Men event, much has changed for the inhumans. With the Terrigen Mist destruction, the future of the Inhuman species is in danger.

The issue starts off five thousand years in the future, we are introduced to an unknown inhuman claiming to be the last of his kinda. Through his monologue, he starts to explain the downfall of Royal family. A lot has changed since the IvX, Iso has become the new Inhuman leader, while she is appointed leader she still addresses Madusa as her queen.

On Attilan, the inhumans are greeted by Noh-Varr aka Marvel Boy, he claims to know a secret about them, a secret that can save the inhuman species. If they want to know this big “secret”, they must travel to Hala the Kree Home world to find out. Medusa is the first to agree, she feels the family has let its people down and therefore should be ones to make it right, after a brief disagreement with ISO over the new mission, all of the royal family agrees including new inhuman member Flint.

Knowing the difficulty of this mission each family member say their good byes to their loved ones, Crystal meets up with her daughter, Gorgon to his son, Swain and Flint do as well. When Medusa approaches Black Bolt, he walks away from her hinting at a potential fallout in the near future between them.

At the end of the issue we get a shocking revelation from Medusa, she’s dying, form what we don’t know but we see its effects, as see her losing her hair.

Conclusion: Form the start you can tell Marvel Boy is using the Royal family for his own personal reasons, with its good or evil, we don’t know, but we do know it involves the being inside a container he’s carrying around with him. The relationship between Medusa and Black Bolt is on the rocks once again, I’m sure in upcoming issues we will find out why. And last but not least is the health of Medusa, what is causing this mysterious illness, why is it effecting her powers, and will she make through this mission.

Links: Preview | Order (Digital)

Release Date: Out Now

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