Honorable Mention Highlights: December 2021
Refuse x Last Resort Double Shot
One side is a beautiful, near-wordless journey of a woman utterly isolated and striving to get back to her world. The other side is a tongue-in-cheek exploration of how ridiculously exploitative capitalism is, and the complications of being surrounded by, well, yourself. It's a huge book being a double-shot and all, but definitely worth a pick-up.
Gotham City Villains Anniversary Giant
I don't have to say a whole lot about this book. You know why? Because the first story is by Danny DeVito, detailing how The Penguin and Catwoman fell in love, cured COVID-19, and saved the world. See, that's enough.
This book is zany, and fast, and honestly a little disorienting (but in a good way?). While many books struggle to gain speed in the first issue, this one feels almost like they put too much into the opening chapter, but with tech meeting ancient civilizations meeting an entertainingly diverse cast, I think I'm into it.
One-Star Squadron #1
If you aren't Batman or Tony Stark or Oliver Queen, it's unlikely your superhero-ing can serve as a moneymaking endeavor. That is, unless you team up with an agency that helps you live a secure life with a plan (and maybe a pension). I always appreciate a story talking about the mundane surrounded by the fantastic. And what's more mundane than paying taxes?
Lunar Room #1
I think this has a lot of potential to be a cool magical Neo-Noir story, but the first issue didnt entirely hook me. I like the world and the mystery thats building, but the characters were a smidge on the cliche side. Still, werewolves and magic in a gritty city underbelly, could appeal to the World of Darkness crowd and those adjacent.
No Holds Bard #1
SHAKESPEARE AS BATMAN. I love the concept of this, but the delivery is a bit ho hum. It is too aware of the joke instead of just letting the concept be funny on its own. Still, i had fun on the ride, even if there was an occasional eye roll in the mix.
Ms. Marvel: Beyond the Limit #1
I didn't know I needed Ms. Marvel to have her own Spider-esque web of multiverses - but now I do! Giving her a new story to help those unfamiliar get acquainted before her new show hits, I'm excited to see a very multi-faceted tale all about Kamala(s).
Apache Delivery Service #1
This book has a lot going for it - minimalist storytelling, an emotional time period and setting, a diverse cast with a broad experience, and evocative imagery. It's not a "nice" book, but it has potential to be an impactful one.
A King's Vengeance #1
Tonally dark, ultra-violent Adventure Time. This book lays out a fairly basic concept and then delivers with some dope art and cool character design. Nifty book all around.
Hollywood over here, sippin' on Haterade...
Why do so many in Hollywood find it necessary to diss superhero films? Directors, actors, filmmakers - you name it, celebrities of all calibers have decided it's the "posh" thing to do to hate on a whole subgenre of films that make millions of people around the globe, very, very happy. But why? We talk about the who, what, and why of these haters - and why they're inherently wrong for being so rude about the whole thing. Have an opinion, sure, but be kind, folks!
Some of us are much better at losing together.
When was the last time you had a really great time playing a board game, DESPITE losing... a lot? We played this game a bunch of times, lost EVERY time, and STILL are ready to play it again. That's gotta be the best recommendation for a game, right?
It's one of the best Marvel experiences we've ever had.
It's amazing. There, we said it. They learned from past mistakes, righted wrongs, and gave us all the well-executed fan service we so desperately deserved. Truly, Marvel did right by us this time, and now we (im)patiently wait for whatever the future may hold in the MCU.
A totally tubular romp through the stars.
It's been a hot minute since we've had a Powered Gaming! While we went in with relatively low expectations (we can only play as Starlord? really?), the resulting game from Eidos-Montreal was incredibly fun (despite the sometimes game-breaking bugs). A great depiction of characters we know and love, this is one we're glad we put on our to-play list.
What to get the comic lover who has everything?
What do you get for your favorite comic book reader? Well, we've got some ideas! From hard cover editions, to fancy Legos, to the nerdiest of jewelry, we have something for everyone in this year's edition of the holiday gift guide!
Secret Shortbox, Big Willy style.
If ol' Willy S had a box of comics under his (or her...look it up!) writing desk, what do you think would be in there? We have a couple guesses - in fact, that's what this whole episode is about!
Is it perfect? No. Is it as bad as people said? Definitely not.
Marvel finally dove head first into the weird IPs of Jack Kirby with Eternals! This movie has a lot going for it, from beautiful visuals to excellent acting, but stumbles over it's third act and suffers from tonal confusion. We get into the thick of it in this week's REEL EXTRA.
Honorable Mention Highlights: October 2021
Soul Plumber #1
Goodness, this is an ugly book. If you are looking for a polite, clean, puritan reflection on the soul, run very, very far away. Soul Plumber is shockingly relatable beneath the layer of filth, and I'm rooting for the lead.
Chicken Devil #1
Oh my goodness, this book I just one big fiasco and I love. Hot chicken magnate gets involved in crimes because the world around him deems it. Why not? This is the least character driven book I've read, but I kind of love just watching this dude on a log flume of misery and guns. Also, they have a restaurant menu in the back and it looks damn tasty.
Marvel Legends: Black Panther #1
Not much more to say aside from this is a cool look at young Tchalla earning his stripes (do panthers have stripes?) and showing his mobility in the face of a unaccepting world. This book handles heavy topics like racism and capitalism in a delicate way but still delivers a solid message. A great book for young readers.
Batman: The Imposter #1
A prequel/sequel to the new Batman movie? Hard to tell really, as it feels fairly originy but also seems to also reference movie things? Weird flex releasing a sequel to a movie that does not yet exist, but hey, that's DC. They flex more than an insecure, pre-workout addled Chad on a busy day at muscle beach. Still, I like the angle that they are taking with this Batman and this left me kinda jazzed for the movie. Not really a super new story, but still a nice level of grit.
What do you do when the veil between two realities is lifting and demons are co-mingling with humans on a regular basis? You create a new police force, obvi. Our main character is pretty predictable, but the world building keeps me intrigued enough to want to read more in issue #2. And that's really all it takes, isn't it?
DC vs Vampires #1
Well, hot damn Tynion, you're aiming for a Cover B fan club name, aren't you? The cheesiest of names gives way into an excellent, thought provoking book that not only makes sense in the given DC universe, but made me gasp unexpectedly at twists. I am definitely looking forward to the next issue of this one.
Pop Star Assassin #1
When I saw the title, this was NOT the book I was expecting to read. An Elvis impersonator, a waitress, and a psychic vagrant escape from a bar - be sure to stop me if you've heard this one. Oh, you haven't? I'm not surprised. This book is bonkers, but has a lot of potential if you like fast-paced, off-the-wall chaos.
Cross to Bear #1
...Are they Templars? Are they Masons? Is it a brand new cult we've never heard of? What is their real mission? What are they protecting... or who? I love a good secret society, and I love even more when our supposed protag is more fallible than forgivable. Who doesn't love some character depth, amiright?
Winchester Mystery House #1
You've heard the legends. You've probably even seen the movie. But there's something so eerie about the Winchester House that I'm glad it's being given a chance in the comic format. The ability to come from different perspectives, show more intimate details of the house's machinations - there's a lot that can be done here, and I'm very excited to see it go down.
He definitely looked the part, that's for sure.
A new Sony/Marvel movie collab, we finally get to see Carnage on the big screen! Even with all the excitement surrounding the film (including the biggest US opening of the pandemic), the movie is... fine? We have some qualms and some praise, but as Linkin Park so eloquently states, "in the end, nothing really matters..." (Spoiler Alert!)
Cover B Podcast
Chris & Tee host this weekly comic-focused show, providing insight on new comics, entertainment news and more.