A weekly column in which Jake gives
short blurbs about the comics he’s picked up that week. Reviewed in the order
read, which varies but generally by increasing anticipation. Disclaimer: he knows very little about art,
at least not enough to considerably honor such tremendous undertakings, so…yeh,
Contest of Champions #4
Script: Al Ewing
Pencils: Paco Medina
Inks: Juan Vlasco
Colors: David Curiel
Letters: VC’s Joe Sabino
The Contest’s second major battle comes
to a close and many are left wondering where the heroes stand. Stick’s confrontation with Elektra raises
more questions for the team and a new addition looks to change the game, both
literally and figuratively. Ewing
manages to tweak old continuity with enough changes to make them seem both
familiar and different as he weaves it effortlessly into the story. The art team nails each confrontation with
excellent choreography and body language.
If the dialogue (and tradition) is any indication, the first arc should
be drawing to a close in the next few issues.
It’ll be interesting to see how Ewing wraps it up and where the series
goes forward from there.
Survivors’ Club #4
Writes: Dale Halvorsen & Lauren
Artist: Inaki Miranda
Colorist: Eva De La Cruz
Letterer: Tim Robbins
Things take a bit of a swerve as this
issue focus’s on the escapades of the villainous Mr. Empty in the Muskagee
House after he was teleported there last issue.
It’s an entertaining diversion, but one is left wondering how essential
it is to the current plot. After all,
there’s hardly a mention of the protagonists throughout the issue. While it
does give us more insight on Simon Wickman and his experiences there, it’s
possible that such insight was unnecessary as it is present since it might be
something the reader had guessed at previous.
Still, there’s no denying the issues entertainment value. Mr. Empty makes for a darkly humorous focal
point as he attempts to navigate the House from Hell. Inaki Miranda steps in this issue on art and
does a great job, both filling in for regular series artist Ryan Kelly and
putting his own spin onto the work. His
depictions of Mr. Empty’s navigations are delightful and his ability to convey
gross-out horror is spot on. This,
combined with continued excellence from series colorist Eva De La Cruz, keeps
the issue firmly in-line with the rest of the series and maintaining its
quality of excellence.
Writer: Al Ewing
Artist: Kenneth Rocafort
Color Artist: Dan Brown
Letterer: VC’s Joe Sabino
After fixing Galactus last issue, the
Ultimates have set their sights on a new problem: fixing time. One would think that such an immediate
bounce-around would trigger New-Avengers-type reactions, but quite the
contrary. Ewing spends enough time on
the teams downtime to make them feel like a more cohesive unit. Captain Marvel and Spectrum banter about
Carol’s love life and the ever-expanding nature of Monica’s powers. Miss America Chavez doles out some harsh
truths about similarly positioned teams in other universes and we get some
nature of fallout from the team’s actions last month. On the whole, it’s a well-scripted
issue. It also helps that it’s backed up
by fantastic art from Rocafort and Brown.
The splash pages are a wonderful combination of sequential storytelling
and imagery and the team’s star-driven tour through multiple worlds is quite
thrilling. Ultimates picked up in a big
way with this issue.
The Vision #3
Writer: Tom King
Artist: Gabriel Hernandez Walta
Color Artist: Jordie Bellaire
Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles
The Vision tries to save the life of
his critically wounded daughter while his wife continues to deal with strife on
the home front. Also, something awful
happens in Wundegore. So, business as
usual for the series. All kidding aside,
the issue does feel like something of a retread thematically. Maybe its the deadpan, doom-gloom narration
going on at length about an object in the Vision household again. While it might relate more further on to the
main plot, one can’t help but feel like its a bit of wheel spinning on that
front. That being said, the plot itself
moves forward rather nicely, with Vision’s life-endangering surgery on Viv at
the fore. The art, for its part, has
never looked better. Walta and Bellaire
get back to their Magneto roots in the Agatha Harkness scenes and the eerie
facial expressions of the Visions are superb.
This review might have been a bit overly critical earlier on as this is
still an enjoyable entry into one of Marvel’s more unique series.
BOOK OF THE WEEK
The Woods #19
Writer: James Tynion IV
Illustrator: Michael Dialynas
Colors: Joes Gonzalez
Letters: Ed Dukeshire
As monsters descend thanks to the
machinations of Taisho and Casey, the kids of Bay Point must once again put
their lives on the line to save everyone, and it may cost them something
dear. Tynion crafts an excellent story,
making way for excellent payoffs from just about the entire cast. It’s an emotional issue and one that does not
stray away from the horrors of the situation.
All this is wonderfully depicted by Dialynas and Gonzalez who get to
work multiple crowd scenes, intricate monster designs, and emotional interactions
galore. It might be the art team’s best
issue yet as all of their many strengths are on display. While Casey believes everything is going to
plan, it appears that his “ally” Taisho has another game to play. Next issue’s conclusion should be both great
So what did you pick up this week?
Agree or disagree with anything said here? Let us know in the comments.
Labels: Boom Studios, Comic Books, Comics, Contest of Champions, Marvel Comics, Review, Reviews, Survivor's Club, The Vision, the Woods, Ultimates, Vertigo