Category Archives: Comic Books

The Best Sequential Art I Read Last Week: August 9 – 15, 2017


Related Content from And There Came A Day:

I am a comic book collector and happy to be one. I might say “proud” if I hadn’t, over a year ago, switched to reading digital as opposed to print comics. I feel a bit robbed of the tactile sensations of the hobby – of the turn of the page, the sneaking look to the panel a page over, the bagging and shorting and stacking and filing. Though I read my comics in a different medium than I used to, I still treat each Wednesday (comic book delivery day to specialty shops around the country) as different from the other days of the week. I subscribe and now, rather than go to the comic store to be handed the books pulled for my “Hold Slot,” I click a button on my iPad and watch them download.

Then I read them.

Rare is the week that I don’t read them all between Wednesdays and some weeks I have, well… let’s just say more comic books in my digital downloads than a grown man should. Comic book legend Will Eisner (creator of The Spirit) is one of the most influential men even to put pencil to drawing board in the pursuit of making comics. So influential was he that the industry awards (think the Oscars or the Emmys or the Grammys) are named The Eisner Awards. He called comic books “sequential art,” perhaps because he became embarrassed by his profession when he had to admit what he did for a living. This is my weekly reaction to the comics I read.

Comics I Read Last Week:

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The best comic I read last week was Mister Miracle #1.

Writers: Tom King

Artists: Mitch Gerads

Please go buy this comic. Please make it sell out. Please… so they will make more…

Actually, you do not need to do that. DC Comics will make more. They will make 11 more. Mister Miracle is 12 issue, in continuity mini series (in the good old days, they used to call this a “maxi series”) that reintroduces Mister Miracle, the love of his life Big Barda, Oberon (I think!) and the New Gods to the world of DC Comics Rebirth.

And what a reintroduction it is.

I have loved King on Batman. Please see any of the Best Sequential Art reviews of done over the last year for the proof. I loved the Vision series he did for Marvel.

The litmus test for me in my love of King, however, is the character Mister Miracle. I have always liked this Jack Kirby creation, but never loved him.

Until now.

What King does in one dense and brilliant issue is hook readers, whether they know Scott Free or not, into the story. One of King’s strengths is to get his readers guessing and there are plenty of plot twists and mini-cliff hangers here to propel us all into the next issue. The writing is top notch. Shock follows laugh follows tears follows shock.

What a ride.

Mitch Gerads is a long time partner of King and the two are well suited to each other. King’s writing tends to take crazy concepts and make them realistic and Gerads’ art bends towards a realistic style. That is going to be great fun in this title because, while most of this issue was earth and domestic based, one can bet (from the conclusion of the book at any rate) that it is going to be a far-flung romp before it is all over.

Mister Miracle was heavily hyped and for good reason. It is a terrific book.

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Filed under Comic Book Pick of the Week, Comic Book Review, Comic Books, DC Comics, Marvel Comics, Weekly Comic Book Review

The Best Sequential Art I Read Last Week: August 1 – 8, 2017


Related Content from And There Came A Day:

I am a comic book collector and happy to be one. I might say “proud” if I hadn’t, over a year ago, switched to reading digital as opposed to print comics. I feel a bit robbed of the tactile sensations of the hobby – of the turn of the page, the sneaking look to the panel a page over, the bagging and shorting and stacking and filing. Though I read my comics in a different medium than I used to, I still treat each Wednesday (comic book delivery day to specialty shops around the country) as different from the other days of the week. I subscribe and now, rather than go to the comic store to be handed the books pulled for my “Hold Slot,” I click a button on my iPad and watch them download.

Then I read them.

Rare is the week that I don’t read them all between Wednesdays and some weeks I have, well… let’s just say more comic books in my digital downloads than a grown man should. Comic book legend Will Eisner (creator of The Spirit) is one of the most influential men even to put pencil to drawing board in the pursuit of making comics. So influential was he that the industry awards (think the Oscars or the Emmys or the Grammys) are named The Eisner Awards. He called comic books “sequential art,” perhaps because he became embarrassed by his profession when he had to admit what he did for a living. This is my weekly reaction to the comics I read.

Comics I Read Last Week:

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The best comic I read last week was Batman #28

Writers: Tom King

Artists: Michael Janin

Michael Janin is back.

Tom King is still writing.

The War of Jokes and Riddles continues.

Batman is one hell of a ride.

Here is the thing: King’s story is just fascinating. The manner in which he is playing his cards – for the very long game – is masterful. He continues to put Batman, a character with an over 75-year publishing history, into situations which are new, unexpected and breathtaking. That accomplishment, in-and-of-itself, is worth the top spot every other week.

What makes Janin’s art such a perfect compliment to King’s writing is how the artist tends toward the realistic. King’s writing, as gonzo as it is, is somehow, someway, rooted in realism. I am not sure of the writer’s process, but it seems as though he asks “what would happen to Batman if…” and then drafts the answers.

Powerful answers.

The focus here in on Jim Gordon and the role he will play in the Joker/Riddler war. Spoiler alert: it is going to be a painful one.

But not as painful as it will be for Batman himself.

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Filed under Batman, Comic Book Pick of the Week, Comic Book Review, Comic Books, DC Comics, Marvel Comics, Uncategorized

The Best Sequential Art I Read Last Week: July 26 – August 1, 2017


Related Content from And There Came A Day:

I am a comic book collector and happy to be one. I might say “proud” if I hadn’t, over a year ago, switched to reading digital as opposed to print comics. I feel a bit robbed of the tactile sensations of the hobby – of the turn of the page, the sneaking look to the panel a page over, the bagging and shorting and stacking and filing. Though I read my comics in a different medium than I used to, I still treat each Wednesday (comic book delivery day to specialty shops around the country) as different from the other days of the week. I subscribe and now, rather than go to the comic store to be handed the books pulled for my “Hold Slot,” I click a button on my iPad and watch them download.

Then I read them.

Rare is the week that I don’t read them all between Wednesdays and some weeks I have, well… let’s just say more comic books in my digital downloads than a grown man should. Comic book legend Will Eisner (creator of The Spirit) is one of the most influential men even to put pencil to drawing board in the pursuit of making comics. So influential was he that the industry awards (think the Oscars or the Emmys or the Grammys) are named The Eisner Awards. He called comic books “sequential art,” perhaps because he became embarrassed by his profession when he had to admit what he did for a living. This is my weekly reaction to the comics I read.

Comics I Read Last Week:

 

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The best comic I read last week was Infamous Iron Man #10

Writers: Brian Michael Bendis

Artists: Alex Maleev

The story of Victor Von Doom trying to reform himself and to make up for a lifetime of terrible deeds has been complex and compelling. The latest issue of Infamous Iron Man is, perhaps, the best yet.

Brian Michael Bendis has, somehow, slipped from top-line status at Marvel Comics and I don’t understand why. He’s handling terrific books in this one, Invincible Iron Man and Spider-Man and he is telling stories in each that are unlike much else on the market. Perhaps one can only be on top of the heap for so long, but if there is some kind of negative reaction to Bendis that is keeping people away from Infamous Iron Man, that is really unfortunate.

This is a terrific book and one that makes me believe that Marvel intends to keep Victor Von Doom squarely in the hero column.

They should. Doctor Doom has never been as compelling as he is here. This issue has some heartbreaking moments, some heartwarming moments, some confusing moments and a cliffhanger that really cooks.

It goes without saying that Alex Maleev, Bendis’ frequent collaborator, is a special artist. While I was not sure that his style was a perfect match for this book, the moodiness with which he renders his characters works very well here. I have found myself loving it more-and-more with each issue.

Infamous Iron Man is a terrific read. I only hope, as I mentioned last time I picked it, that it is not overwritten by the Generations soft re-boot of the Marvel universe.

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Filed under Comic Book Pick of the Week, Comic Book Review, Comic Books, DC Comics, Doctor Doom, Iron Man, Marvel Comics, Weekly Comic Book Review

The Best Sequential Art I Read Last Week: July 19 – July 25, 2017


Related Content from And There Came A Day:

I am a comic book collector and happy to be one. I might say “proud” if I hadn’t, over a year ago, switched to reading digital as opposed to print comics. I feel a bit robbed of the tactile sensations of the hobby – of the turn of the page, the sneaking look to the panel a page over, the bagging and shorting and stacking and filing. Though I read my comics in a different medium than I used to, I still treat each Wednesday (comic book delivery day to specialty shops around the country) as different from the other days of the week. I subscribe and now, rather than go to the comic store to be handed the books pulled for my “Hold Slot,” I click a button on my iPad and watch them download.

Then I read them.

Rare is the week that I don’t read them all between Wednesdays and some weeks I have, well… let’s just say more comic books in my digital downloads than a grown man should. Comic book legend Will Eisner (creator of The Spirit) is one of the most influential men even to put pencil to drawing board in the pursuit of making comics. So influential was he that the industry awards (think the Oscars or the Emmys or the Grammys) are named The Eisner Awards. He called comic books “sequential art,” perhaps because he became embarrassed by his profession when he had to admit what he did for a living. This is my weekly reaction to the comics I read.

Comics I Read Last Week:

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The best comic I read last week was Batman #27

Writers: Tom King

Artists: Clay Mann

There was an amazing run (pun intended) of issues of the The Flash wherein writer Geoff Johns re-told stories of the Flash’s Rogues Gallery to make the villains seem less cartoonish and more, well, villain-like. These were effective and provocative stories – instant classics.

Batman #27 not only reminded me of those stories, it exceeded them in at least two ways: first, it took place in the overall telling of a remarkable arc (“The War of Jokes and Riddles”) and, second, it took one of the most ridiculous villains of ALL TIME – Kite Man – and made him something… more. Something dangerous. Something sad. Something… wrong.

Well done, Tom King. Each month you surprise and delight. I cannot wait for your Mister Miracle title and I will follow you to any book you are on.

King is so good that his work here overcomes the loss of his key artist. Clay Mann fills in for Michael Janin and, while Mann’s work is competent if not inspiring, it is simply not at the same standard as Janin (or rotating artist David Finch for that matter).

But even a sub-par effort on the art cannot detract from what is another special issue in what is a spectacular run.

Tom King should write all the comics.

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Filed under Batman, Comic Book Pick of the Week, Comic Book Review, Comic Books, DC Comics, Marvel Comics, Uncategorized, Weekly Comic Book Review

The Best Sequential Art I Read Last Week: July 12 – July 18, 2017


Related Content from And There Came A Day:

I am a comic book collector and happy to be one. I might say “proud” if I hadn’t, over a year ago, switched to reading digital as opposed to print comics. I feel a bit robbed of the tactile sensations of the hobby – of the turn of the page, the sneaking look to the panel a page over, the bagging and shorting and stacking and filing. Though I read my comics in a different medium than I used to, I still treat each Wednesday (comic book delivery day to specialty shops around the country) as different from the other days of the week. I subscribe and now, rather than go to the comic store to be handed the books pulled for my “Hold Slot,” I click a button on my iPad and watch them download.

Then I read them.

Rare is the week that I don’t read them all between Wednesdays and some weeks I have, well… let’s just say more comic books in my digital downloads than a grown man should. Comic book legend Will Eisner (creator of The Spirit) is one of the most influential men even to put pencil to drawing board in the pursuit of making comics. So influential was he that the industry awards (think the Oscars or the Emmys or the Grammys) are named The Eisner Awards. He called comic books “sequential art,” perhaps because he became embarrassed by his profession when he had to admit what he did for a living. This is my weekly reaction to the comics I read.

Comics I Read Last Week:

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The best comic I read last week was Dark Days: The Casting.

Writers: Scott Snyder, James Tynion II

Artists: Jim Lee, Andy Kubert, John Romita, jr

DC Metal is setting up to be a very exciting, late summer event.

A few weeks back, I selected Dark Days: The Forge as my pick of the week so it did not surprise me at all that, after reading through my books this past seven days, the next chapter in the Dark Days prelude rose to the top of the stack. The same creative team is back: Scott Snyder and James Tynion II writing and Jim Lee, Andy Kubert and John Romita, jr pencilling.

The result is a rollicking good time that takes readers deeper into the mystery surrounding the metal in the DC Universe. This issue also lays out new questions (can the Joker really be on the side of the angels this time?) and a stunning cliffhanger. Snyder has said that he wants this book to be a celebration of all things good with DC in particular and comics in general.

He is off to a great start.

Though frequent Snyder collaborator (and major talent) Greg Capullo will take over the pencils when the Metal series debuts next month, there is something cool about Kubert and Romita, two long-time comic artists whose fathers helped create the industry, handling these early chapters. Not only are they at the tops of their respective games, they are legacy artists and it is special that their work is featured here.

Metal is shaping up to the a special event in-and-of-itself. These first preludes have only served to whet the appetite!

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Filed under Comic Book Pick of the Week, Comic Book Review, Comic Books, DC Comics, Marvel Comics, Weekly Comic Book Review

The Best Sequential Art I Read Last Week: July 5 – July 11, 2017


Related Content from And There Came A Day:

I am a comic book collector and happy to be one. I might say “proud” if I hadn’t, over a year ago, switched to reading digital as opposed to print comics. I feel a bit robbed of the tactile sensations of the hobby – of the turn of the page, the sneaking look to the panel a page over, the bagging and shorting and stacking and filing. Though I read my comics in a different medium than I used to, I still treat each Wednesday (comic book delivery day to specialty shops around the country) as different from the other days of the week. I subscribe and now, rather than go to the comic store to be handed the books pulled for my “Hold Slot,” I click a button on my iPad and watch them download.

Then I read them.

Rare is the week that I don’t read them all between Wednesdays and some weeks I have, well… let’s just say more comic books in my digital downloads than a grown man should. Comic book legend Will Eisner (creator of The Spirit) is one of the most influential men even to put pencil to drawing board in the pursuit of making comics. So influential was he that the industry awards (think the Oscars or the Emmys or the Grammys) are named The Eisner Awards. He called comic books “sequential art,” perhaps because he became embarrassed by his profession when he had to admit what he did for a living. This is my weekly reaction to the comics I read.

Comics I Read Last Week:

 

OneTwoThree

The best comic I read last week was Batman #26.

Writer: Tom King

Artists: Michael Janin

Perhaps I simply should link to my review of two weeks ago when I selected Batman #25 as the best comic I read… all that I said in that review holds true for this issue.

This second chapter of “The War of Jokes and Riddles” is as compelling as the first. It is as well structured. It is as well drawn. Frankly, the first two issues of this arc are something of a master class in how to write well known characters in well known dynamics and keep surprise in play.

If anything, this second issue is better than the first. It propels the story forward. It shocks and it engages.

Janin and King know what they have in Batman: an immense responsibility to one of the most popular characters in all comics. They are not squandering it.

At all.

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Filed under Batman, Comic Book Pick of the Week, Comic Book Review, Comic Books, DC Comics, Marvel Comics, Weekly Comic Book Review

The Best Sequential Art I Read Last Week: June 28 – July 4, 2017


Related Content from And There Came A Day:

I am a comic book collector and happy to be one. I might say “proud” if I hadn’t, over a year ago, switched to reading digital as opposed to print comics. I feel a bit robbed of the tactile sensations of the hobby – of the turn of the page, the sneaking look to the panel a page over, the bagging and shorting and stacking and filing. Though I read my comics in a different medium than I used to, I still treat each Wednesday (comic book delivery day to specialty shops around the country) as different from the other days of the week. I subscribe and now, rather than go to the comic store to be handed the books pulled for my “Hold Slot,” I click a button on my iPad and watch them download.

Then I read them.

Rare is the week that I don’t read them all between Wednesdays and some weeks I have, well… let’s just say more comic books in my digital downloads than a grown man should. Comic book legend Will Eisner (creator of The Spirit) is one of the most influential men even to put pencil to drawing board in the pursuit of making comics. So influential was he that the industry awards (think the Oscars or the Emmys or the Grammys) are named The Eisner Awards. He called comic books “sequential art,” perhaps because he became embarrassed by his profession when he had to admit what he did for a living. This is my weekly reaction to the comics I read.

Comics I Read Last Week:

ThreeTwoOne

The best comic I read last week was 

Secret Empire #5.

Writer: Nick Spencer

Artists: Andrea Sorrentino and Rod Reis 

I have been burned by my own expectations when reading “big, event” comics from Marvel and DC in recent years. These are self-inflicted burns, to be sure. No one forces me to buy these events and no one sets my expectations higher than I.

It was with significant wariness that I approached Secret Empire especially considering that, at the heart of the story was the so-called “Hydra Cap” – the Captain America who believes he has been a Hydra sleeper agent for his entire life. He has taken down the heroes of earth by capturing them, by killing them, by stranding them off planet and he and his Hydra cronies are making their moves at world domination. I saw this description and I thought, eh, I read this before. From DC. When it was called Forever Evil and it was not terrific then.

But I still bought it.

The fifth issue has made me glad I did. It is here that the series has won me over. I am engaged in this story. I am enjoying the twists and turns and I am genuinely curious as to how it will all turn out. Spencer has woven any number of interesting threads into this narrative, and I am very intrigued to see it through to its conclusion. He has me guessing as a read and that is what I want from a comic.

The art in the series has been good, if uneven. I am not sure that Andrea Sorrentino is the right choice for this kind of packed panel, wide screen action. He is a good artist, to be sure, but his style better serves a smaller book, in my opinion.

Rod Reis has a few pages here, too, and they are discordant and set off from the main narrative. The discordance is intentional and Reis’ work is very good, perhaps so good that one wishes the two artists had flipped duties.

I will wait and see what comes out of Secret Empire, if it is the catalyst that shakes up the Marvel Universe or if it all too easily restores the status quo in it.

But, for now, I am interested and this was the book I thought about the most last week.

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