Photo

"Judge Dredd Mega City Two City of Courts #1-3" Alright, I’ve been putting this off for a while now because I wanted to savor it a little. As everyone who reads on here knows, Ulises Farinas is my favorite artist working in comics and I’ve been wanting to do it justice. But finally I just thought, what the fuck, justice should be swift (ZING Dredd pun), les just dew it. 

Douglas Wolk is mostly known to me as the dude who knows EVERYTHING about Judge Dredd in the history essays he writes for each issue of Swierczynski and Daniel’s current run on IDW. How can he know alla that shit from 30 years ago? Then one day it dawned on me, I’m the Wolk of Punisher (minus the talented and/or published writer/creator part). I too, have crammed my brain with useless, inconsequential, yet somehow fascinating trivia and a comic book that has been considered pulp crap for almost half a decade.  This is my kinda guy. 

So what happens when you team up the writer who can throw in every minor detail from 40 years of comics continuity with the artist who’s known for sketching in every minor detail he can fit on a page?  Fucking brain overload, that’s what. I can’t read these damn books. I get through two pages, then spend 5 minutes playing “where’s waldo?” with the 20 some odd pop culture references per page, and another 5 looking up Dredd history on google to try to figure out “What the fuck is Stom again?”.  Seriously, I have to read each issue 3 times by the time I finish it the first time. And I still have no idea what’s going on.

Which seems to be kind of the whole point. Its a non-linear linear comic book. Basically, this book WANTS you to get distracted in the details and come back to the plot when you get good and ready. Its a mind-trip, there is literally nothing like it in print. I freakin’ love it. These have been riding my nightstand for weeks, I pick them up whenever I’m ready to fall asleep to search out some more details (and look for that street name Ulises promised to throw in for me, he’s not off the hook) and try to figure out why Judge Dredd has the deepest continuity in comics yet never hit like Batman.

Anyway, Highly Recommended, Double RAW. Gets it.

Photo

"Deadpool #27" Talk about bang for your buck, there’s literally a main story and 12 minis featuring writers and artists all throughout Deadpool history. Two Frank Castle Appearances, once in a photo booth set with Elektra at the wedding and once in at bachelor party. You decide whether its yo thang do what you wanna do:

DP: “I can garrote someone, but I can’t tie a tie.”

Boy: “What’s a Ger-ate?”

Man: “Its a — a ‘surprise tie’, son.”

The second story features face sucking mind control aliens that look like a dong and balls. Every single panel has them censored out, but they’re killed by cutting off the dong.  My kind of classy right there.

Well worth the money, funny as hell. No matter how hard dork ass cosplayers and internet memes try to ruin the character, he keeps coming back hard, just like the Simpsons in the mid 90s. RAW, recommended!!

Photo

"Lone Ranger #23"  If I was a comic book writer, I would write the Lone Ranger. I would hire Francesco Francavilla to draw all my covers, Esteve Polls and Marc Rueda to do the art, and Ande Parks to write the stories.  And since they did all the work, I guess I wouldn’t get any credit for it, either. Which is why I’m the Best Damn Unknown Writer in Comic Books right now. 

I don’t understand why everyone isn’t in love with a western done right. Or a book that so doggedly sticks with the original morals and code of the character. Every issue could be ripped right out of an episode of Have Gun Will Travel. Or vice versa. Wonderful book, RAW, go get it!

Photo

"Daredevil 1.5: 50th Anniversary Issue" Jesus shit, please never let Bendis write a woman’s journal ever again.  I haven’t read anything that made me feel this shitty since the Diary of Anne Frank.  Its almost worth the price just to cringe as Bendis staggers through a 5 page prose description in character of a woman finding her lady feelings and falling in love with Daredevil and having his baby. Seriously, a 5 page written diary entry on how to be in love with Daredevil by smelling natural. Its every bit as spectacular as that sounds, just imagine if I tried to write reviews on Yoga With Your Cat books in character as a first person Female Vagina. Not even a male vagina, either, a straight up female vagina. That’s how fucking awful this was. (PS that’s not going to stop my new female vagina yoga book review tumblr: "Lotus Petal Pussy Dreams". Nobody steal that.)  

As for the Mark Waid section, I’m not spoiling anything here but its set in the far future, and it isabsolutely silly in the wake of Bendis’s legendary Daredevil: End of Days from last year.  It just doesn’t even begin to compare. I think we’ve all learned a valuable lesson here: Bendis gets to write future stories from now on as long as its comics. Waid can write whatever he wants as long as its not Bendis’s future comics. And any comic that makes you think of cats and pussies as separate nouns at the same time as Anne Frank is a prime example of How Not to 50th Anniversary A Comic Book. 

Photo

"Punisher #4"  Old School for sure. There’s some kind of complicated plot going on with cartels and bombs/terrorism that I have to constantly refresh myself on, but you don’t have to, basically its an excuse to keep Frank distracted while the B plot kicks in with the Howling Commandos. I don’t really give a shit about Electro, but he’s never looked better, The Mitch Gerads is doing a hell of a job on his artwork, especially the coloring.  Domino… I see the theme here is blue people.  This is a LOT like the early 90’s Pun and especially PWJ, I was reminded of the early focus on teamups (Domino / Black Widow?), and some of the wildly complex setups Baron had as an excuse for chaos. Edmondson’s Frank is a little more pleasant and a lot less insane than Baron’s, let’s give it some time.

My only very minor complaint: time to wrap it up. No Punisher story in the history of the character hasn’t crapped out after 6 issues, and that was even with Ennis at the helm.  Pun works best in short sharp arcs where you can build to a climax then reset for the next go round, the only way I can see this changing is if they’re going for a major character turn, and this time around isn’t a character driven book, we’re churning plot points by the page.  Think of it this way, Lethal Weapon was badass, but you try to turn it into Lord of the Rings and you get Lethal Weapon 4.  Loving everything so far, I just hope we’ve moved on by the time we get to issue #8. Or even the long lost art of the one-shot….

Bonus points to Nathan Edmondson for bringing back the Murder Kite from Carl Potts’s War Journal #2.  What’s it feel like to have a writer that’s read issues from more than one decade? Damn refreshing. Highly recommended, my favorite Pun series for many years. RAW!!

Photo

"Iron Fist: The Living Weapon #1" Somehow I’m not familiar with Kaare Andrews’s work, as I read over the list of his work I managed to slip by most of ‘em. I can tell when somebody is busting their ass, though, and he’s definitely doing that here as writer, art, and color. He must have spent a vera time putting all this together, the layout and art design are 100%polish and quality. Notice the folded page filter he uses on the flashback scenes, its a technique that gives you a feeling of something happening in the past by simulating age of the paper medium rather than the message. Most people won’t even notice it, but the level of attention to detail, and more importantly non-traditional detail, is something I think the visual artists will appreciate (of which I am not one, jealous). 

The story is building, this was more about establishing a tone. I enjoy character and theme driven stories much more than plot driven, if you’re the same way you’ll eat this up. Question: How can so many ninjas can hang from a helicopter?  Answer: Because they’re beautiful as flaming snowflakes when everything gets explosive. If you think that’s a bad answer you’re not going to like this, but if you think that’s the perfect zen answer you’ve found yourself a new book.  Even the backstory of the death of his father is reduced to the drama of a moment, rather than a complicated tale.

Its artistic, so not everyone’s going to like it, but I give it a big plus. RAW, go get it. 

Photo Set

"X #12" "Judge Dredd #18" FSD’s First Double Ought Review!! Which actually means two zeros in Mathematics, but also means badass in Shotgunese!! Basically what happened here was I didn’t want to have to try to spell Duane Swierczynski's name twice, because every time I copy it down I burn about 200 braincells (or two double ought if we want to be old timey).

Also, these books have a pattern. X gets the holy everloving shit kicked into and back out of him. Also Judge Dredd should probably be dead what with having no breathable atmosphere. I’m sensing a pattern here, I’m assuming both were written around the time D-Swiz also got the number two kicked out of him paying taxes, and decided to pay it forward.

Two of the best hard action books on the market folks. Both tie back into some deep continuity while still building their own path (is X’s cape still alive like in the 90’s? What’s with Dark Judges’ return?). Double Ought Raw! As in the shell, not like in Math. Go get ‘em.

Photo

"Thunderbolts 24" Its kind of like watching Anaconda again as a comic book, with some occult stuff. We did this a couple years ago when Red Hulk was fighting all the resurrected Central American Gods. Not much Frank in this one. The theme this time is no one can see Hulk be Hulk, it gets a bit contrived because there’s no real reason for it, but it is good to show some restraint. Paco Diaz and Israel Silva do a hell of a job on the art, though.

Photo Set
Photo

"Silver Surfer #1" Every once in a while the comic gods send down a book that you can sum up in 3 words. Everyone knows exactly what the book is about, and immediately knows whether they’re going to like it or not. I don’t even have to give you a review on this one, I can just throw these 3 words out there and save you a lot of reading time:

Dan Slott’s Nexus 

If you don’t know who Dan Slott is or have never read any Nexus, go do that first, then come back.

Mike Baron, you should call up Marvel and ask them if they’re ready to get serious about how wild they want to go with this.