Archive for the ‘Review/Preview’ Category

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Tart volume 1 was a comic I reviewed last year from writer Kevin Joseph and artist Ludovic Salle, I even went as far as to say that this was my favourite creator owned independent comic of last year on my appearance on “An Elegant Weapon” podcast. The book is brilliant I cannot recommend enough that you go speak to Kevin or the publisher WTFlux comics. I recently was lucky enough to look at the next instalment of Tart.

The story picks up directly from the last issue, with the girls of the demon battling team, as they are about to embark on training for their next mission. Both Tart and Gloom are teleported to a beach with Lemon La Morgue to a desert island where they commence their training. Only little do they know this is more than they ever imagined it could be. This also removes the girls from the HQ where their boss goes on her own mission.

Kevin Joseph has once again written an issue of this story that is a great beginning to the next volume of his story. Giving us the main character driven story, while also involving us in all the other cast of this comic, with the identities of the supporting members of the group becoming more apparent, while keeping the story with the main focus moving.

Ludovic Salle on art once more is the perfect choice for this comic. Ludo has a very old school style of drawing the female form. His costume and character design is very much believable, costumes are not all body hugging show as much flesh as possible. The women all wear bikinis at the beach, and everyday clothes while meeting each other. This only emphasises the costume changes for battle as and when they are used. I am not sure if this is a joint decision between Kevin and Ludo but it is well done.

The book on a whole, just makes me sure that this is an independent comic of the highest level, both art and story flow brilliantly together. My signed copy of issue 1 has taken pride of place on my wall (thanks Kevin) I need at some point to get my hands on a hard copy of volume 1.

You can contact Kevin Joseph on his twitter account @bnokj, and Ludovic Salle on his twitter account @hellstrawberry, and also please visit the Tart website – tartwebcomic.blogspot.com

You can also get your hands on Tart volume 1 and pre-order issue 4 at – www.whatthefluxcomics.com/webstore

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Im recently also informed that, if like you are in the uk and want a hard copy of Tart vol.1 or want to preorder issue 4, you can do at ukondisplay.com. As ever please share, comment, and come and chat more to me about any of my reviews, or posts, or just come and chat with me on @jaybwebb on twitter

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When I first met Adam Cheal he introduced me to his horror comic creation “Zyklon B” (see previous post) I enjoyed the book a LOT, even own some of the original art. My signed copy is about to take its rightful place on wall. Now Adam has repackaged and renamed his creation, he is preparing to release “Toxic Storm” on the world.

“We are pleased to officially announce that the Toxic Storm Graphic Novel is going to be released by UK publishing giant Markosia Enterprises Ltd. The book will be released monthly as a four part digital miniseries via Comixology, iverse/comics +, iBooks, Kindle, Kobo, Nook, Sony, and DriveThru Comics with the trade paperback novel to follow shortly after. More information regarding the release dates will be posted on the website as they become available.

www.toxicstorm.com.

Synopsis

Simon Fisher is unjustly convicted and sent to the gas chamber at San Quentin prison. Using occult power, he transforms into deadly toxic gas to escape his fate. Simon embarks on a quest of revenge on those responsible for his condition. Special FBI Agent “Jack Storm” enlists the help of Simon’s former cell mate and mentor “Caleb Fontana” to track him down. Caleb has a hidden agenda and betrays Jack Storm resulting in his death. Through the power of a gemstone obtained from an ancient demon, Jack Storms body is reanimated into a terrifying and deadly alter ego. Roles are reversed as he’s the one seeking vengeance and will stop at nothing to get it. This is a tale of revenge and redemption for good and evil, in a true 80’s B-Movie video nasty style.”

CREATIVE TEAM

  • Adam B. Cheal (Writer/creator)
  • Alberto “Renzo” Rodriguez (Artist)
  • Mike Summers (Colorist)
  • Mindy Lopkin (Letterer)
  • Jimmy Kerast (Cover Colors)

On reading “Toxic Storm #1” I have completely been drawn back into this story. Adam has crafted a horror story, however not in the traditional sense. The characters are believable, and you can completely relate to the emotions and feelings portrayed by the people who are the focus of the story. Adams passion for horror and hero comics shines through on every single panel.

Adam has picked an amazing team to work on his creation, Alberto “Renzo” Rodriguez has taken up quite the task reworking a pre-established comic. “Renzo” has created (and also on some pages reworked some of the previous pages) brilliantly. His art works perfectly with the rest of the team, his style has a dark undertone that works well with the gritty, gruesome prison scenes, and the horrific revenge attacks. Colours from Mike Summers fit the art very well, and Mindys letters just round off the book brilliantly.

Recently I have been speaking to Adam about the recent news that he has now signed a publishing deal with british comics publisher “Markosia”

Markosia was established in 2005 and has become one of the UK’s leading publishers of graphic novels. Based in London, it has gained a reputation for producing a diverse range of comic books and graphic novels that cover almost all genres, with the highest possible production values.

Some of the creators that have worked on Markosia titles include ‘Midnight Kiss’ artist Ryan Stegman (Superior Spider-Man), ‘Starship Troopers’ artist Neil Edwards (Fantastic Four), ‘Of Bitter Souls’ artist Norm Breyfogle (Batman), ‘Dark Mists’ artist Lee Garbett (Batman), ‘Scatterbrain’ artist Szymon Kudranski (30 Days of Night) and many more.

Their varied range continues to impress as the company goes from strength to strength. 2013 promises to be the most exciting year to date for this dynamic company as they embark on a range of thrilling new ventures designed to take them to even greater heights as they strive to take their stories to the masses.

May 4th 2013 will be Markosia’s debut foray into the Free Comic Book Day arena as they showcase a number of exciting titles that will be launched this summer. These include the all ages adventure ‘Endangered Weapon B’, retro sci-fi adventure ‘Project Luna: 1947’, super hero satire ‘Hero: 9 to 5 – Quietus’, supernatural war story ‘Heart of War’ and more supernatural adventures in the long-awaited ‘The Case Files of Harlan Falk’, five years in the making!

These are just five of the exciting new range of titles coming in 2013, with many more in production for the future.”

I have been lucky enough to get a few questions with the man behind the graphic novel series we are all going to want to be part of our collections upon release Mr. Adam Cheal.

Adam, first, I want to say thank you for the opportunity to review your book again. You clearly have a passion for the horror genre, with an anti-hero twist of course. Where did you find the inspiration for this graphic novel series?

We find inspiration in our daily lives, the situations that arise and people that influence and inspire us. As you said, I love horror and always have since I was a kid. I grew up in the house of horrors, figuratively speaking of course. Every one growing up as a kid had one of those houses where you would all pile round and watch horror films. That was my house. We watched Hellraiser, Nightmare on Elm Street, Friday the 13th, Halloween and many other classics. My parents were Clive Barker and Wes Craven. My love of 80’s horror and video nasties is what inspires me most. Horror always takes me back to my happy place.

Where did you find the team you chose to work with on your creation?

When you first get into comic book creating, the path is never as straight forward as just putting a team together and off you go. I made a ton of mistakes and lost quite a bit of time and money before hooking up with a team that had the talent and passion for the book to do it justice. I now only work with people that I have either worked with in the past or come recommended by people I know and trust.

I know from our many chats you are a fan of comics and graphic novels. What made you choose this style of writing over writing traditional literature?

As I said earlier, when I was younger, my main passion was films. I never really read many comics as a kid other than the odd Judge Dredd book. It wasn’t until my twenties that I really discovered the first book that blew me away. A friend put a copy of “Watchmen” in my hand and I was hooked from then on. I read mostly Alan Moore books from then and he showed me the power that sequential art can have. I was always interested in creative writing but made the leap into comics as I feel it’s the perfect bridge between the traditional written word and films.

What stuff do you read now?

I read quite a few now and my taste is still for horror and the dark, the darker, the better. I love Raven Gregory’s take on Alice in Wonderland and read loads of Zenescope books. The independent scene is putting out some incredible books and without the constraints of being publisher friendly, they can show and say what they want, nipples and all!

The publishing company you signed with (Markosia) is a great thing for our UK comic scene, and maybe developing that a bit more. Was it an easy choice to make the decision to sign with Markosia?

Signing with Markosia is a no brainer for me. Anyone that knows me, knows that I am trying very hard to promote the UK comic book scene. That’s one of the things we are trying to do with our British Showcase Anthology coming out later this year. Markosia have been at the forefront of the UK comic book scene for years and have big plans for the future. I am very proud to be a part of that and excited for the future.

I am so pleased that “Toxic Storm” is going to make its way on to the world stage, how does it feel to see something you have worked on for so long to make a move into the big leagues that is the current comic scene?

It’s a dream come true. It’s been a long road and at times you have to question your commitment and wonder if you are on the right path. The whole team involved have worked so hard and it’s great that the hard work has all been worth it. I think that the first time I walk into a comic book store and see a copy of the book on the shelf, will be a magical moment I will remember for all time.

You have always been a huge promoter of the independent comic movement, tell us all about your work on the “British showcase anthology”?

How the book came about is quite something. During the course of getting into making comics, I found that the UK had such a wealth of talent but not much buzz (compared to the USA). One of the things I started doing was writing a weekly column for Comicbooked.com called “British Showcase”. I had met so many hard workers, great artists and other creators that I wanted to help them gain some exposure. The articles went down really well, so I thought, “Hey, why don’t we all pool our resources and make a comic together that showcases our talents over here?” I sent out an email to a bunch of people I knew and respected and the response was mind blowing. Harry Markos from Markosia loved the idea and is working hard to make it something special. The book is a collection of twenty original and unique stories from forty UK creators and its going to rock! The book will launch in October this year.

Although this post is about “Toxic Storm” I know your next project is underway, which I’m very interested in myself, what can we look forward to with that?

I am already working on a new book with artist Russ Leach. It is
called “Terminus at Fenton’s Green”. It’s a Lovecraftian style tale
set in Victorian London with Demon’s, top hats and steam trains. The
idea for this one has been kicking around in my head for a couple of
years after a particularly disturbing nightmare resonated with me for
weeks afterwards. Russ is a great artist and has the perfect
sequential story telling skills to make this something special. Mike
Summers (Toxic) will be working closely with us to give this book a
unique and haunting look. Although this book is a horror, I wanted it
to be something more that that, so its also a mystery. Both visual and
written clues are embedded in the story for the reader to discover.
Once you know the twist ending, the clues are all pretty obvious and
it will make repeat reading allot of fun to see if you can find them
all.

Once again, I want to thank you for the chance to review you work again, and for taking the time to answer my long-winded questions. This is my first ever interview let me know how I have done, ha-ha! Best of luck Adam, you have my full support!

“Thanks J, my pleasure.”

I hope you all take the time to go and contact Adam via his twitter @adamcheal, on the Toxic storm twitter account @toxicstormcomic, also via on at www.toxicstorm.com. I urge everyone to make note of this comic book title, because it’s going to be huge.

Please let me know your thoughts, comments and even if you just want to chat to me @jaybwebb on twitter

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Tart vol.1

Posted: 24/08/2012 in Review/Preview
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I was sent Tart by Kevin Joseph who is the co-creator of the book along with artist Ludovic Salle. The book is published on What the Flux comics, and is available right now via www.whatthefluxcomics.com/webstore.php
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The book is a collection of the first 3 issues of Tart. It follows a young lady called Tart. She travels through many different times and places on earth, and also in the demonic underworld. Where she fights off whatever may stand in the way of her getting the result she needs to complete her mission. We follow her at first on a mission to save a young boy who has been missing for a couple of days. Only her mission takes her way beyond the usual realms of earth and into the demon forest via the Trenchies. A supernatural creature we learn about for a brief time at least. This is where we get to see the flip side of the personality of Tart and how she goes about her business, and the lengths she has to go to, in order to get her mission complete.

The story also leads us back to a snowy French Rivera on her next mission. Only this one is a bit more complicated, as our heroine quickly learns, not only from avalanches but from savage cave children with no means of communicating. We learn more about the character, and more specifically about her abilities, and just what exactly she does when she arrives on a new part of earth. She helps out a family, and believes she is on her way. Only then does she learn that this is not her mission, and she has other business there.
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The writing in this book is very well done. Kevin Joseph has a real passion for his creation, and that shines through on this story. You feel every emotion as you follow the lead character through her progression, and then right at the end he takes everything you feel when you come to the end, and throws it all back up into the air, with the reveal of the next issue. Believe me once you have read the first 3 issues that are collected in this book, you will just want more and more.

The art by Ludavic Salle is amazing, really helps the comic to stand out from anything else I’ve read for a long time. I couldn’t believe the art when I opened the book. The opening pages just transport you to a whole new experience of reading comics. Really helps you to get a feel for the passion that has gone into this book from both writer and artist.

This book stands out to me as something that you could pass on to a family member of a friend that doesn’t read comics or graphic novels, and they would thank you for showing them this book, As long as they are adults, of course.
I really like this book. Kevin (and Larry) I really appreciate you sending me this.

You can contact Kevin via his twitter page, and also can visit the official tart website at tartwebcomic.blogspot.com

Please leave your comments and let me know your thoughts via my twitter page

Jason

Complex #2

Posted: 22/08/2012 in Review/Preview
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Here is my first guest spot on my blog. My friend Jorge Ayau was such a fan of the first issue of Complex issue one that I reviewed on my blog. I thought this may be a good time to have my First guest spot. So I spoke to Michael Malkin and he agreed to send over issue 2 to Jorge, and here is his review.

“Written by Michael Malkin AKA @impulsiveideas and drawn by Kay. First of all let me start by saying that if you haven´t read Complex #01 Review you should probably start here. Now that I´ve gotten that out the way I can start this review.

As you may have read in the previous review things just aren´t what they seem in this complex world. We start with the main character Zachary and some kind of experiment. Now I don´t really want to spoil something but this type of comic just gets into your skin and mind, you are constantly trying to put everything together and why all the actions happening are occurring. As you may have guessed you are in for a surprise. On this issue we get to meet two new characters and start to figure out a little about this world.

Kays Art is top notch the thick lines and black and white tones gives this a very claustrophobic feeling which sets the tone perfectly for the story. Michael Malkin’s has done it again, making you want to read again to see if you missed a clue, because the story is set up like a puzzle, with very subtle hints of things that might happen, but we´ll just have to wait and see where all of this is going. I´m sure as hell going to see what is happening in this Complex world.

I´d like to thank Jay for the opportunity for letting me be a guest at his blog and Michael Malkin for being kind enough to give us a copy of the comic before it is released on Comixology. So there you go, just go buy it. If you haven´t read issue one you can preview it or you can buy it (first issue is 59 pages long, so if you want to start with this series now is the time) I can assure you, you´ll be hooked and left wondering what is stored in the future for this grand scheme.

Read comics, eat well and do extreme sports, peace out.

Let us know what you think, you can reply on the blog or contact us directly at our twitter accounts @Jaybwebb @xamuzaran we can chat, get to know you or simply read my random tweets, see ya later.”

I really appreciate your time Jorge, and being my first guest spot on my blog. For the record I really liked issue 2 of this comic too, and it really is turning out to be an amazing find. My issue 3 review will be out closer to the release date, however until then everyone should go out and get complex #1 on comixology. To catch up for the impending release of issue 2 this weekend.

Michael I thank you for sharing your creation with us, I’m sure I speak for both of us when I say we are both amazed by this story. I can’t wait to see where the story goes, and I would love to gradually review the full series. Thanks again.

Please let us know your thoughts and comments and please contact us via twitter pages.

Jason

Complex

Posted: 14/08/2012 in Review/Preview
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Well I don’t know where to start with this one. Complex is a comic that has never been brought to my attention before, however I noticed the free preview available on comixology and was intrigued. I downloaded it, but never got round to reading it. That is until I was noticed that the creator/writer Michael Malkin put out a tweet about his creation. We exchanged emails and he sent me issue 1 and 2 to read, so I’m writing this with the advantage of being ahead of the times. I also want to be very brief with my explanation of the story, because I really want to encourage everyone to take the time to read this comic. It’s truly is a great story, with brilliant writing, and amazing art.

The story take place in a small place, called “Towne”. We are introduced to a few characters, and all seems to be very normal…at first. We slowly begin to learn that all is not as it seems, and that some of the residents are being held against their will, only they don’t know it. This opens you up to a huge research operation taking place with director Jason Sinclair a the helm. We begin to discover that other than the people being held, most of the people in “Towne” are part of the conspiracy. We begin to see that not only are people being drugged to keep them docile, and to make sure they never remember the truth, they are being forced into believing the lies they are being told about their life’s. Only with the discovery of his “Wife” trying to drug him, does one of the main characters Zach begin to piece together his life, and filling in the blanks that cloud his memory. Then he begins to plan his escape.

Michael Malkin has created a brilliantly complexed story, that at times you may find hard to follow, but honestly once you finish this huge 59 page first issue, things will make sense. On reading this issue I felt I had a lot to process. When I got to the end of the issue however, I realised that actually a lot of info has been withheld from the story and actually it’s just my mind trying to fill in the gaps that makes it feel like there is a lot in this book. it’s a brilliantly written comic that makes you think a lot, but doesn’t actually give you a lot to think about, it just creates that illusion, which makes it such an amazing first outing for this series.

The artist is simply known as Kay, someone that I don’t know a lot about. However this is a brilliant collaboration, and the art is so amazingly dark and eerie that it only adds to the brilliant writing. It’s all black and white, but you really get a sense of the place your transported to, and really shows the docile drugged feeling the characters are suffering at the hands of the research group.

To sum up, this book truly is a perfect combination between both artist and writer, that gives you a lot to process, but not really. It’s just a brilliantly original story, or at least To me it is, that takes you on a journey through a dark and creepy inner workings of an organisation, and just what they might be capable of. I am so glad I got the chance to read before it passed me by completely. Michael I thank you for sending me your creation and I hope my words can help to generate interest for this comic. You will honestly regret not picking up this book.

You can pick up issue 1 on comixology now, and even if your not sure you can download the free preview.

You can get more info on this comic by visiting the Alterna comics and also visiting the Complex

Please leave your comments below and also feel free to contact me on my Twitter

Jason

Hawkeye #1

Posted: 04/08/2012 in Review/Preview
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Hawkeye begins with a huge single page action shot of our hero, which is one of the first and only times we see Clint Barton as Hawkeye. This is a very good thing as it takes you through the story through the eyes of the alter ego of the avenger, showing the non-superhero side of Clint. Matt Fractions writing brings a whole new light to the marvel superhero genre. I have the same problem with a lot of the other Avenger’s books, they all seem to blend together and the writers could all change round and no one would notice. However this new take on Hawkeye is refreshing and I know a lot of people have been surprised by the quality of this story.

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The art by David Aja is on another level, and really gives a complete feel to this issue. It has a very different feel to other marvel books, as it’s not so much of the crisp lines. It has thick black lines, and has a really easy style to it, which makes the whole issue very good to look at.

The comic is a real difference to anything really marvel has put out for a while, which brings a real aspect of moving away from the standard of the other books of the avengers. The art is the real star for me personally, however I don’t want to take away from Matt’s writing. The complete experience of the creative team has given us a great first issue to a story I hope will carry on for a long time. Judging from the previews I think it will.

When I was a kid, he-man and the masters of the universe was the single biggest thing in my life. I always had a sword down my back, and always watched the cartoons. So of course when issue 1 of a new DC comics series of He-man came through the post, I couldn’t contain my inner child.

We begin the issue in a dream, and talk of great power, and great battle between good and evil. Then we come back to the forest of Eternia, where Adam is going about his daily activities as a woodsman. We learn that when he isn’t chopping down trees and such he is a carer for his farther. When he returns to his duties, he is distracted by a bird, who although he hasn’t seen this bird before he knew its name as if it told him himself. After more dreams, Adam has an epiphany and realises he should go away and search for powers of which he dreams.

Only things aren’t what they seem, and we are quickly introduced to the villain of the issue Beastman. Who knows all about Adam and his journey, and has been sent to stop him. This brings out things in Adam that he doesn’t realise are there. After the battle, Adam continues on his journey. This then brings us to a throne room filled with all the evil you could imagine, including the dreaded Skeletor.

This book was always going to have to do a lot to impress fans like myself. The writing by James Robinson may not be to everyone’s liking. However I feel like this was a great method to use as he gives you just enough to keep you wanting more, but not too much to throw out the whole story very quickly. Although it may seem slow to take off, it just makes me more intrigued as to where the story will go in the following issues.

Art by Philip Tan is good, on the few pages we actually get to see He-man and the other heroes and villains of the story have a huge magical feeling to them like they are going to jump off the page. On the pages in between have a completely different feel to them, like its two different books but all wrapped up in an awesome first issue. Although it may not be to everyone’s taste, this is a great introduction back into Eternia and the magical world of my childhood hero.

please leave your comments and let me know your thoughts on my twitter page

Jason