Posts Tagged ‘IDW’

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Amelia is a deeply disturbed woman.  She has these terrifying visions of herself turning into a horrible creature and performing cruel and vicious acts.  She’s seeking therapy for it, and even taking medication, but nothing seems to help.  That’s really all there is to tell about this one.  Oh, I suppose there is one other slightly important detail.  Amelia just so happens to be the First Lady of the United States.

James Tynion IV tries his hand at horror writing with The Eighth Seal.  Honestly, as far as story goes, there really is not a whole lot to work with in this first issue.  Details are few and far between.  There are a few more interesting points that I left out of my synopsis above to steer clear of any major spoilers, but realistically that’s about it.  For me though, it works.  The lack of any concrete details is what makes me want to read the next one.  Tynion dangled the carrot just enough to keep me moving through this issue and waiting for the next.

Now, on to the issue’s real star.  Jeremy Rock’s artwork is absolutely hideous.  Don’t take that the wrong way.  I mean that with as much praise as I possibly can.  The few looks that we get at the creature hiding within Amelia are pants-crappingly terrifying.  When juxtaposed with the clean and smooth lines of the “regular” world, it makes the transition that much more jarring.  I kid you not, during one of the early transitions, I actually jumped when I flipped the page.  To be able to make that happen in a print and paper medium is quite impressive.

This probably isn’t the best first issue of a horror comic that you could ever read, but you could certainly do far worse.  Sparse details keep you in the dark, but Rock makes sure that you know there are some pretty freaking scary things there with you.

The Verdict for The Eighth Seal #1:
5 out of 5

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Until next time,
Stay nerdy, my friends.

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Through some unknown rift in reality, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and the Foot Clan have ended up in Gotham City, Batman’s Backyard.  But the Dark Knight isn’t about to take this one lying down.  He’s hot on the trail of the Foot as they steal their way across Gotham.

James Tynion IV writes a pretty interesting story here that brings a lot of elements from both of these monumental franchises into the fold.  My main concern is whether it’s too much.  This issue did a lot of jumping around and had very quick scenes with little dialogue.  If the storytellers tried to cram this much into the first issue, it makes me think the rest of the series might be kind of overstuffed as well.

Freddie Williams II’s artwork is rough and pretty dark, just like the characters in this story should be.  I really enjoyed it, as he seems to be channeling the original Eastman & Laird Turtles artwork just a little bit, without completely alienating Batman.  It’s a wonderful book to look at, and I sincerely hope the quality holds up for the remaining five issues.

Overall, this is one hell of a nostalgia trip.  It’s not every day that you see two entertainment icons from different universes come together like this, and I do get the sense that both publishing companies and the creators treated this team up with the respect that each side deserves.  It might be a little overstuffed, but hopefully once it’s all said and done, it will be one of those match-ups that  no one ever forgets.  If you grew up with these characters in your childhood, you won’t want to miss this mini-series.

The Verdict for Batman – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1:
out of 5

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Until next time,
Stay nerdy, my friends.

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The October Faction is the latest horror comic from writer Steve Niles, artist Damien Worm, and publisher IDW.  It follows the adventures of the Allan family, the patriarch of which, Frederick, used to be a professional monster hunter.  Frederick’s wife, Deloris, is billed as a “thrill-killer,” and his two children, Vivian and Geoff, are a witch and warlock, respectively.  Still following along?  Ok, good.

In this particular case, rather than go back and review each individual issue, I decided it would probably be more productive to review issues 1-6 (which covers the first full story arc and will eventually be collected into a single volume trade paperback anyway) as a whole.  Doing it this way has its pros and cons, but like I said, the deciding factor was simply expediency.  So, with that in mind, let’s get to it.

Steve Niles is one of the better horror comic writers out there at the moment, and this book is actually his first original ongoing series, so initially I was pretty excited about it.  But, if we’re being completely honest, this one just didn’t really do it for me.  The story concept is very interesting, but over the course of the first six issues it doesn’t really seem to go anywhere.  Some secrets are revealed, new characters are introduced, but it doesn’t seem to be building up to anything incredibly significant.  I’m willing to give Niles a little bit of a pass because I can see where it would be somewhat difficult to transition from writing stories with a clear beginning, middle, and end (which he has been doing for years in mini-series), over to this format, which has to have constantly flowing plot lines running through it.  I stayed with it for the basic premise, and because I wanted to see just where it would go, but the more of it I read, the less interested I became.  I think another aspect that ultimately killed it for me was the main characters.  None of them really come off as likable individuals, which can make it very hard to empathize with them when something happens.

The art in this series from Damien Worm is something that I did enjoy for the most part.  It’s slightly cartoonish and pretty over the top, but it’s also bizarre in a way that works really well with the strange subject matter of the story itself.  Some of the more interesting panels here actually involve a side character who is unknowingly haunted by his former football teammates after they’re killed in a car crash.  The emotion displayed in the character’s face after a secret about the crash is revealed is nothing short of chilling. One complaint I do have about the art is that the action scenes seem to be a little awkward, and for the most part there’s not really any feeling of movement when characters are engaged in a fight.  They’re just kind of… there, looking like a statue of someone punching.

All in all, this series isn’t really bad, it’s just… not good.  I’ll probably stick with it through the next story arc just to see where it goes, but it would have to be pretty spectacular for me to keep up with it after that.

The Verdict for The October Faction #1 – #6:
Meh…

Upcoming reviews:
East of West, Volume 3: There Is No Us TPB
Secret Wars #2
Ultimate End #1
Wytches #1-#6
Mad Max: Fury Road

Until next time,
Stay nerdy, my friends.