Happy Planet of the Apes Day!

Planet-of-the-Apes-Tee

 

Beware the beast Man, for he is the Devil’s pawn. Alone among God’s primates, he kills for sport or lust or greed. Yea, he will murder his brother to possess his brother’s land. Let him not breed in great numbers, for he will make a desert of his home and yours. Shun him; drive him back into his jungle lair, for he is the harbinger of death.

 

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Life After reading this will be better

 

There’s really only one book that I care about this week. Maybe not the only one I care about, but the only book I really want to talk about. (Mostly because it’s hot and I spent all weekend killing spiders and blowing up pies with fireworks). Alright, you could say I got lazy, but I’ll never be to lazy to sing the eternally lauded praises of

Life After #1 By Joshua Hale Fialkov and Gabo-It’s a grand premise centered around some matrix-esque themes of being the only one truly awake in the infinite loop of life. But instead of that loop taking place in a computer generated existence, our protagonist finds himself journeying through the clutches of heaven, hell, and every other layer taught to you by your catechism teacher. The high concept of life, death, struggle against the mundane, and you know, saving the world, is back dropped with a snarky Hemmingway as a guide, and first-season-of-Lost questions that get you jacked up to read every issue because you need to know what’s happening! why is this happening?! I’m so curious and excited to find out what’s happening! The expert hands of Fialkov (Bunker, The Ultimates) and somewhat new to the scene, but no less brilliant hands of Gabo, give holy life to a book that is high energy goofy, juxtaposed with serious moments of salvation.  And covers are drawn by Nick Pitarra! (Manhattan Projects) This is a must must must buy! I guess I’ll talk about some other books, lightning round style!

Spread #1-Cthulu monsters, meets zombie reincarnation, meets Lone Wolf and Cub.

Shutter #4-More monsters! Some friend, some foe. But Kate stands her ground!

Grayson #1-I don’t know the last time I mentioned a DC book on this thing, but Tim Seeley (Revival) is writing this back from the dead character in an unexpected way.

Not the Israel My Parents Promised Me TP-This is the final memoir of the esteemed curmudgeon, Harvey Pekar, and a timely one at that. Illustrated by J.T. Waldman, Pekar reflects on growing up in a pro-Israel household, and his gradual realization that the current state has come a long way from the biblical ideal he grew up with. Considering the current resurgence of major conflict in the region, Pekar’s interweaving tale of history and dissatisfaction couldn’t come at a better time for those looking to get a little bit of a history lesson.

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Review: Wolverine & The X-Men Volume 8

300px-Wolverine_and_the_X-Men_Vol_1_38Wolverine and the X-Men vol 8
Jason Aaron w/ Nick Bradshaw, Pepe Larraz, Todd Nauck and more
Marvel $14.99

Ever since Days of Future Past dropped a few weeks back, I’ve been reading a lot of older X-Men comics these days. The Chris Claremont era is considered by many as  the golden age of X-Men, and up until this summer, I had only read the Dark Phoenix Saga, Days of Future Past, and a bunch of stuff involving Arcade, because I’m the type of dude who likes Arcade. So I fired up the ol’ Marvel Digital App and decided to do some summer reading.

I’m definitely digging what Claremont, David Cockrum, John Byrne and Paul Smith have done with the X-Men and all the drama and high stake action that ensued. But there’s a lot fun and light hearted characters moments in those issues as well, which I really like. Which is why I think is one of the reasons I’ve really dug what Jason Aaron’s done on Wolverine and the X-Men.  Aaron’s chose to channel the more fun and insane of Claremont’s X-Men run, and it makes for a much more different and off beat type of X-Men that what I’m used to.

xmenDon’t get me wrong. The Grant Morrison run of New X-Men is still my favorite era of X-books, but that book was pretty dark most of the time. Unless your idea of fun is psychic affairs, which is only excusable if your name is Emma Frost. Which if it is, please contact me, I have about a dozen or so questions.  Aaron’s WaTXM was a book that wasn’t afraid to take chances, be it bring back and semi-redeem some terrible villains (terrible in the sense of both morality and quality!) or turn Wolverine into a clown in Frankenstein’s monster’s MURDER CIRCUS!

Also if you’re not down with a monster owning a Murder Circus, we can never be friends.

wolverine_3The  final volume of Aaron’s run tells 2 tales: the A plot involving the students of the Jean Grey Academy befriending two new students who are secretly spies reporting to Mystique. The B plot involves Wolverine investing the idea of SHIELD producing mutant hunting Sentinels, which brings him face to face with Cyclops, whom he hasn’t been on the best of terms with in forever, despite the fact that CYCLOPS WAS RIGHT! #biased. In addition to those stories, Aaron wraps up a few other lingering plot lines of the junior X-Men graduate into full fledge X-Men, in a cute story that MORE IMPORTANTLY involves Doop vs Nazi Bees. Or and there’s an Infinity tie in annual starring Kid Gladiator drawn by Nick Bradshaw that a fun done in one that really showcases how in sync theses 2 creators are with each other. Plus Kid Glad has run ins with Bruce Banner and Thor, which goes as exactly as you would hope it would.

Aaron’s scripts are also blessed by some fantastic artists in this final volume. The aforementioned Nick Bradshaw and Chris Bachalo swing by to draw a few pages, as do other returning artists like Ramon Perez and Tim Townsend, but the bulk of this trade is drawn by Pepe Larraz. Larraz’s art reminds me a lot of Alan Davis, only a little more looser and raw. I’m excited to see what he’s capable of in the future with more experience.

wolverine_xmen_1Since Aaron’s departure, Wolverine and the X-men was relaunched under Jason Latour, who’s working with Aaron on “Southern Bastards” for Image. Aside from writing that book, Aaron is still working on Thor: God of Thunder, the Original Sin maxi-event, and recently wrapped up his time with the X-men with the first arc of Amazing X-Men. I haven’t read the new series yeah, but Aaron’s going to be a hard act to follow up on. His run on Wolverine and the X-men was strange and wonderful, and Volume 8 is really a celebration of that. I’m hoping we get to see this side of Jason Aaron again sometime down the road.

 

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Troy’s Toys, but With Comics: Rocket Reviews

 

000_4318.jpeg.square-true_maxheight-285_size-285 STK644226Legendary Star Lord/Rocket Raccoon #1

Sam Humphries/Paco Diaz (LSL)/ Skottie Young (RR)

Marvel $3.99 each

In case you somehow missed it, or are still in denial (which yo, I GET), Marvel/Disney has a Guardians of the Galaxy movie coming out next month. This usually results in a title reboot, but since the proper GOTG book is only 2 years old, Marvel has decided to go the always questionable spin off route, and give both Peter Quill & Rocket Raccoon books. And given the fact that Rocket Racoon’s preorder numbers were somewhere in the 300k range (100k from Loot Crate), that was an incredible smart move by Marvel.

And what’s the most surprisingly about these titles is how great they are while being so incredibly different. The Legendary Starlord is easily the best Han Solo comic on the market, (sorry not sorry Firefly) until Marvel puts out a proper Han Solo book next year, and Rocket is space adventure under a Chuck Jones filter, (if Daffy Duck was a raccoon that murdered people). Both are great debuts, which is no surprise given the talent involved.

Skottie Young, who’s finally on everyone’s radar thanks to those Young aka Baby Variants that Marvel’s been putting out over the last 2.5 years, is a fantastic fit for Rocket Raccoon. The script is fun, and it’s nice to see Young get a chance to flex his writing muscles for a chance, as the results are very much what I wanted. It’s a super-cartoony looking book, which only proves how diverse and wonderful Marvel’s current crop of artists are, as Rocket #1 ends up being a species swapped Scott Pilgrim of sorts. It’s very loosely tied into the current events of GOTG, making it perfect for new readers not reading Bendis’ book. As far as debuts go,  Rocket’s up there with Ms Marvel with Marvel’s most accessible and fun book launched in 2014.

The Legendary Starlord, by the talented team of Sam Humphries and Paco Diaz, is a little more  rooted in current Marvel continuity, and looks more like a traditional Marvel book, but isn’t any less enjoyable. Humphries’ dialogue is slick, and he balances action, humor and Quill’s tragic past quite nicely. Diaz’s art is slick and clean, making it look a gorgeous looking book. Hopefully Sam and Paco will stick around on this title for awhile, because this take on Starlord is off to a great start.

 

Both Rocket and Starlord are super fun books that are accessible and worth checking out if you’re looking for some fun books to add to your pull list.

 

Woods_003_coverA-620x400The Woods #3

James Tynion IV/ Michael Dialynas

Boom!, $3.99

If case you missed it, I really liked the second issue of the Woods, but found it heavy on the tropes. Luckily, that’s not the case for issue 2.

Issue 3 is very much more in the vein of the 1st issue, which makes for a happy Chris. There’s some horrifying visuals, one involving a weird growth that has more or less confirmed my belief that nature is evil. There’s more character growth that’s shown by actions and not spelled out for the reader which I appreciate. Oh and more Space Bears, which is VERY important to me.

It’s the type of horror comic I want to be reading at the moment, which is a credit to Tynion, Dialynas and BOOM!. The cast is likeable (well most of them at least), the hook is solid, and it looks and reads great. There’s some brutal stuff in it, but nothing that turns me off from reading it. And some really weird things that make sense, given how gonzo the premise is. The Woods is the type of book I expect from Image, but am glad to see a company like BOOM put out. More awesome creator owned books by different publishers is always good for comics.

 

 

 

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I almost forgot to send this

Anyone do anything cool last week? Doing anything cool this weekend? That’s cool. Hey, no, I figured you were busy. It’s cool. We’ll catch up next week. Oh yeah here’s some comics. Yeah I’ll talk to you later. Say “Hi” to Steve for me!

 

Twelve Gems-What do you get when you cross Heavy Metal with your high school math composition notebook full of drawings of spaceships and sword-wielding babes? Obviously the answer is Twelve Gems! Originally done around 2010-2012, it’s getting an official release from Fantagraphics and taking the sci-fi world by storm. Follow Furz, Venus, and Dogstar as they travel the universe, unraveling adventures and mysterious while they help Dr. Z retrieve the legendary Twelve Gems of Power. But anyone named Dr. Z is probably not the most trustworthy person in the world (since it’s a few steps below Professor X). Hilarious, eye-catching, and a really fun read. I’ve been waiting about 2 months since I first read it for this book to finally come out so I can shove it in everyone’s faces and make them eat it. I mean read it.

 

White Suits #4-The conclusion! Will all the answers about the deadly white suits that agent Anderson and former suit Prizrak have been searching, and killing for, finally be answered? Even if it’s not answered, Toby Cypress will still probably knock your socks off with the art that he pulls off in this book. He could just draw a pile of socks and you could probably feel the cotton and smell the stink lines. Always action packed, always inventive. Coupled with Barbiere’s succinct, puply writing, I want these two to make comics until my children’s children are born as wifi ports.

I Am Rosa Parks-Allow me to soapbox for a moment (it’s my column and can do whatever I want). A serious problem is the lack of diversity in children’s books. In formative developmental years when children are mostly visually learning how to read, it’s done in tandem with pictures and words. And when the majority of characters within books are represented by only one race, gender, family structure, etc. we do a lot of harm to what a child grows up thinking is normal v. not normal. Prolific and award winning novelist, comic author, and TV show writer, Brad Meltzer is taking a stab at a line of books that profile American icons that show kids who heroes can be. The first book features Rosa Parks in a lively retelling of her story about standing up to racial segregation in the South; teaching kids to stand up for themselves. Thus endeth the soapbox.

 

Luba and Her Family-The newest Love and Rockets collection from Gilbert Hernandez’s half of the dynamic comic duo’s decades sprawling family saga. This volume obviously focuses on the life of Luba, her sisters, moving to the states, and their ensuing family dramas, and joys. Volume 10 of the Love and Rockets library bids farewell to the town of Palomar as Luba and her family emigrate to the United States and make new lives for themselves. The L&R Library is the most comprehensive collection of the series, and I don’t need to tell you how important these artists are to the universe of comics, you just need to know it’s out!

 

The Field #3-The past two issues, and the first half of this one, have mostly been car chases and gun battles between groups that are all after this one guy. For completely unexplained reasons! Until nooooow! I was happy just enjoying the shit out of this comic even if everything was a mystery. The crazy characters, the idiomatic language, and beautifully rendered trekkie knockoffs. In fact, the reveal of why all these crazy groups are after The Source, reminds me quite a bit of a certain time looped TNG episode…Whether or not it’s inspired from that, this book gets better and better with every issue; art, story, violence, everything (and it already started out pretty great). Brisson and Roy are unstoppable Canadian comic book war machines, powerhouses, hockey fiends? I’m just assuming.

 

Wonton Soup COLLECTION-James Stokoe’s Wonton Soup worked its way into my hands when it was first released in 2007. I was still in high school, and don’t think I was ready to handle the Technicolor, hyper-lined art, that has become the signature Stokoe look. And by couldn’t handle, I mean it did severe brain damage to me because after that I just wanted all of the comic books. Thankfully since then he gained some traction with books like Orc-Stain and Godzilla: Half Century War. In Wonton Soup, a champion chef turned space trucker gave up fame and fortune for reasons unknown, but has to pull out his greatest knife skills when he gets into trouble and finds himself in a cook off to end all cook off’s. Originally put out in two volumes, the first when went out of print a few years ago, depriving new generations of reprobates from having good comics. FINALLY Oni has put them into one big beautiful book to put you into maximum comic overdrive.

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Horror Boobs presents The Abomination @ Alamo Drafthouse

Join those vidiots Horror Boobs once again, 8PM this Wednesday July 2nd at Alamo Drafthouse Yonkers for a VHS screening of Bret McCormick’s monster mash The Abomination! Oh yeah, and tickets are only a buck!

ABOMINATION

 

Prepare to puke! Shot on Super 8mm in Poolville, Texas and crammed with neon barf, disembowelments, and ambitious latex monsters, THE ABOMINATION is a benchmark in D.I.Y. trash-gore insanity. Cody lives with his mom in a wood-paneled shack. Mom devotes her life to shady evangelist Brother Fogg. Mom hacks up a tumor. The tumor infects Cody. He coughs one up, too. Soon, the tumors multiply. They infect the entire house and take form as The Abomination — a bloody vagina monster that hides in a washing machine and tears people in half! With no ties to rational thought, THE ABOMINATION falls somewhere between the calculated gross-out of STREET TRASH and the hallucinogenic dream-world of H.G. Lewis’s THE WIZARD OF GORE. This movie heaves with mismatched post-dubbing, constant jump cuts, and tape-manipulated synthesizers until it EXPLODES with the stench of wet cow intestines, burning Bibles, and pissed jeans. It’s psychedelic anxiety, 1980s style. (Joseph A. Ziemba)

Tickets only $1! Hosted by Matt Desiderio (Horror Boobs) and Mike Hunchback (Seminal Psychosis).

Bring your tapes! We’ll be set up for a tape trade, with rare VHS tapes also available for sale.

Horror Boobs Presents The Abomination
Wednesday July 2nd 8PM
Alamo Drafthouse Yonkers
2548 Central Park Avenue Yonkers, NY 10710
Tickets are only ONE DOLLAR so buy them in advance, this will sell out!
Get your tickets HERE.
Join the facebook event page HERE.
Click HERE to see some guy trying to sell his boxless VHS of The Abomination for ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS!

 

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Troy’s Toys But With Comics: On time for a change

8435Outcast #1

Robert Kirkman/ Paul Azaceta

Image $2.99

Severe lack of Andre 3000 & Big Boi, despite being set in the dirty south. -11/10.

 

Now that my mandatory Outkast joke is made, I’ll attempt to be serious about Outcast, aka that new Robert Kirkman joint. I’ll be honest, despite KIRKMAN being arguably one, if not THE, most powerful man in comics, his books have done nothing for me as of late. The Walking Dead is misery porn, and Invincible, despite looking great, has hit Mark Millar levels of misogyny. That being said, artist Paul Azaceta is the dude who drew one of my favorite modern Spider-Man stories, $2.99 for 48 pages is a mega bargain, and worst comes to worse I can probably sell this book for double or triple digits once/if the TV adaption hits Showtime.

That being said, I dug Outcast #1. Despite it feeling KIRKMAN wrote this book straight for  a TV  adaption ( again, not unlike Millar), it’s a solid first issue. The script is fairly straight forward (our lead Kyle is an accidental exorcist, but there’s a twist!), and Azaceta draws the hell out of it. Paul, with Elizabeth Bretweiser‘s amazing colors, really do a great job setting up the book realistic yet creepy scenes well, doing  West Virginia proud. And when this book needs to be spooky and brutal, they really get the job done. There’s a bunch of stuff that may make more squeamish readers cringe,  pushing that Mature Only rating. It’s a gorgeous book, and I’m glad Kirkman’s level of success is giving another great artist some major exposure.

While Outcast is not my type of comic, it’s one that may appeal to you. And again, $3 for 48 pages is definitely worth it ( Oppose to Marvel’s bullshit $5 20 page comics). Hopefully the quality of the scripts match the quality of the art sooner than later.

 

download Saga #20

Brian K Vaughan, Fiona Staples

Image $2.99

 

Vaughn and Staples continues to twist that dagger they planted in their readers hearts after that last issue reveal. The book adds another tragedy to the current arc, and man, it’s bad times for everyone.

 

That being said, it’s misery handled well. Much like Sex Criminals #6 there’s some humor and general cuteness sprinkled throughout the book, which kinda cushions the blow when the bad times happen. And the half of dozen new characters BKV & Staples introduced last issue continue to get fleshed out, even though most of them are gonna lead to more BAD TIMES.christears in the near future.

So yeah, Saga continues to be a modern masterpiece despite destroying the emotions of its’ readers. Good job team Saga :(

 

portrait_incredible (3)Ms Marvel #5

G Willow Wilson, Adrian Alphona, Ian Herring

Marvel, $2.99

 

There’s a bit of dialogue in this issue that reminds me that Hurricane Sandy issue of Hawkeye. Since it was delivered by Kate Bishop, I now desperately want Lady Hawkguy & Ms Marvel to be BFFs and have awesome ward adventures.

 

Now that I’ve pitched my fan fiction, let me talk the actual issue. First off, holy crap, the final page of this issue may have just introduced my new favorite ridiculous Marvel villain. And I think this is the first Marvel comic of the last 5-10 years that actually had a training montage. Wilson, Alphonsa and Herring haven’t deliver a mediocre issue of Ms Marvel yet, and the streak Continues with issue 6. It’s a solid ending for the first major arc and it sets up the future of the book quite nicely.

And man, this book continues to look amazing. It’s bright, crazy expressive and just a fun comic. It’s perfect for both new readers and jaded Marvel readers looking for a lighter fun read. It’s literally the perfect all ages Marvel book that takes place in the main 616.

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Troy’s Toys But With Comics Belated Edition part 2

wicked-and-divine-620x400The Wicked + The Divine #1

 Kieron Gillen/Jamie McKelvie/Matthew Wilson

Image, $3.50

Despite not being familiar with half the bands mentioned in the comic, I REALLY dug Kieron Gillen & Jamie McKelvie’s 2 installments of Phonograms. And now that they’re done with their 14 issue run of Kate Bishop an her cosplay friends ( aka Young Avengers),  the pair have returned to Creator Owned Comics with Wicked + The Divine.

 

W+ t D is the tale of reincarnated gods and pop stars. So yeah it’s A LOT like Phonograms in a way, at least in concept.  Hey even Gillen admits that’s in his letter at the end of the issue, but the actual execution of the material makes all the difference. Unlike the casters that cling to the shadows in Phonograms, these gods are out there in public, letting the world know that they’re out there and operating on another level.

 

Jamie McKelvie and Matt Wilson are arguably 2 of my favorite artist/colorists working in comics today, and they are absolutely divine (HAR HAR) in this kick off issue. McKelvie’s line work is fabulous, and his facial expressions and the emotion he can get his characters to convey are all top notch, as usual. But it’s Matt Wilson who’s really upped his game here. Between the results of what happens when Luci snaps her fingers and how the character’s makeup and eye liner looks, it’s hard to name a colorist as skilled as Wilson working in comics today.

 

As for writer Kieron Gillen, he’s nothing short than brilliant. His dialogue is sharp, giving each of the characters a distinct voice that makes them stand out a bit. And while the plot is fairly straight forward, it’s incredibly engaging and ends on a solid cliffhanger. This is Gillen at his strongest, and it’s something that readers benefit from.

 

Wicked + The Divine is a stellar debut by one of the best creative teams with a working relationship in comics today. Anyone who loved Phonograms & Young Avengers, or was stupid enough to skip over them, needs to read this book immediately.

 

3898273-sex+criminals+02Sex Criminals #6

 Matt Fraction and Chip Zdarsky

Image $3.50

Sex Crims is back, in what is arguably the most Matt Fraction issue to date. What the means is that there’s a lot of self depreciation,  paranoia and some bleakness to this issue. Not exactly what you’re expecting from a sex comedy, but something that only helps the narrative and help flesh (HAR HAR 2) out the characters.

 

On the joys of Sex Crims that while it’s an extremely lewd funny book, it’s also incredibly honest and smart. This issue really shows that, as Jon, our male lead steps into the spotlight. Despite being a man who poops in plotted plants and freezes time every time he climaxes, he’s also a man suffering from most realistic difficulties, that help make his easier to sympathize with.

 

This issue isn’t all doom and gloom tho. While Chip  Zdarsky can sell the more dramatic bits of comic with the greatest of ease, he’s also a gifted cartoonist who can hide a ton of jokes hidden in the panels. At this weekend at Heroescon, Fraction described the process as MAD magazine esque and there’s no better description of it.The letter column remains something crucial to one’s enjoyment of Sex Criminals. It’s a fascinating look at what kind of community has been built around this book, and is something genuinely enjoyable.

I’m glad to have Sex Criminals back, and I’m curious as to what direction the book is taking with this volume seemingly focusing on Jon.

 

300px-Uncanny_X-Men_Vol_3_22Uncanny X-Men #22

Brian Michael Bendis, Chris Bachalo, Tim Townsend

Marvel $3.99

 

Gah. This issue comes so close to be a perfect end to the X-Men Vs SHIELD arc, but it hampered by a guest colorist who’s style is lighter than what we usually get with Chris Bachalo. It clashes with Bachalo & Tim Townsend’s (and like 4 other dudes) heavy black style, and does not compliment it as well as it should.

 

It’s a real shame, because everything else about this issue is great. We finally get some answers to some long brewing questions, and 2 other characters get a nice return to form. It’s a rewarding book for long time readers, and it definitely sets up the potential for some cool stories for the future.

 

As for the reveal as to who has been sending Sentinels after Cyclops’ renegade X-Men, it works in terms of the actual identity. The execution is a bit lacking, as the motive for said villains is a tad lacking. Of course Brian Michael Bendis could be planning to touch upon that in a future issue, it’s just a little weak at this moment.

 

Overall the X-Men Vs SHIELD story arc was a fun little romp.  Nothing ground breaking, but a fun story that looked great and read well. A shame about the colors in that final issue, but overall a good time.

 

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Look what i did!

Yikes, there’s a lot of heavy hitters out this week. From old to new. Indie to mainstream. Black and white to two-tone, to hyper-color. There’s something for everyone this month. Stop hating and get with the program!

Ritual Three: Vile Decay- It can seem blasé (read: lazy) to say that someone is an “exciting” artist. What does that really mean? Are they doing something new or different? Does the art itself illicit an excited energy? Are you so excited when you see something new by that artist that you want to vomit? If you’re talking about anything by Malachi Ward, the answer is yes to all of the above. Known for working on the Brandon Graham mega-project, Prophet, and for the notoriety gained from The Scout put out by Study Group Comics (which is seriously one of the best independent publishers in the business. you can read their stuff online for free. do it. you’d be an f’in fool not to). This new stand-alone sci-fi weaves together a grandmother’s recollection to her grandson about how the world simply went bad. Ward’s settings and characters are gracefully drawn, with an element of Charles Burn’s other (but still similar) worldly eeriness. I’m getting a little comics hyphy just thinking of it being in my hands this time next week. And if you’re in the NYC area, he’ll be attending a release party at Bergen Street Comics on June 25th, so you can gush in person!

Judgment Day- Joe Orlando is often lauded as the nicest man in comics. He’s been passed for a while, so I can neither confirm nor deny this praise. But what I can tell you is that his technical skill, editing abilities, breadth of work throughout the industry’s formative years, and the subsequent influence that he left on everyone that ever picked up one of his comics, is true to the core. Anything of his you can find is worth a look, but Fantagraphics has included his EC work, some of the first professional comics stories he did. Most of the stories in this collection are scripted by Al Feldstein, and they highlight Orlando’s most prolific sci-fi stories; including the titular story that spoke out against the racism of the early ‘50s in which these stories were published. Orlando is true comic book history, and his work is legendary.

 

Amazing World of Gumball #1- Truth time, I’ve never watched Gumball. It’s been on Cartoon Network for about 5 years, and I’ve had no TV for about 6, so there’s that. But it’s new form just had comic book life breathed into it by Frank Gibson (who I’ve written about previously for his work on Baby Fiona and Cake, and Tiny Kitten Teeth), and one of my all time favorite web cartoonists, Tyson Hesse. He does this little thing called Boxer Hockey, and when I started reading it about two years ago I never thought I would get so emotional about a stupid little comic about a group of friends who play a field hockey type game in their underwear, essentially using frogs as pucks. But I did get emotional, and I still read certain panels that make me misty eyed. Whether it’s Nickelodeon studio work, or little cartoons of his poodle on twitter, no one has made cute cartoons that have had as much of an influence on me than Hesse has.  Sometimes you follow an artist to whatever project they work on, whatever the story is, and Hesse is one of those artists.

Pirates in the Heartland Vol 1: Clay Wilson- If Joe Orlando and his contemporaries set precedence’s for the future of superhero and action comics, S. Clay Wilson is without a doubt a parallel of that mark in the alternative comics world. R. Crumb, who is cited as every other alt cartoonists main influence, lists Wilson himself as his great comix influence and contemporary. Hailing from the middle of nowhere, sometimes called Nebraska, Wilson ended up in San Francisco after an army stint, and quickly unleashed the underground art scene with his wild dreams and nightmares of gore, sex, body parts and general bedlam. This first of three hardcover volumes attempts to catalog his comics that appeared in publications like Zap, Pork, Insect Fear, and Arcade Magazine. Part biography, part retrospective, part collected chronicles of a comic legend, this is a huge undertaking that pays off in every way you could expect, and a million ways you couldn’t. Stay tuned.

New Avengers Annual #1There’s a lot of simple reasons to pick this book up. Frank Barbiere is writing it. Marco Rudy is doing the art. And it’s all about DR. STRANGE! Everyone’s favorite world-saving, evil magic slaying, sorcerer is staring in his own book. He’s heading back to his Himalayan roots to help some techno-monks (the name of my new hip-hop crew) defeat an evil they summoned that’s beyond their control. It’s oversized Dr. Strange, I think that’s all you really need to know…

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TromaDance hits Brooklyn this weekend!

Forbidden Planet is a “proud” sponsor of the 15th annual TromaDance!

The TromaDance Selection Committee is please to announce the final schedule for the 15th annual TromaDance Film Festival to be held for the first time in New York City at the PaperboxNYC (17 Meadow St, Brooklyn 11206) on the 27th and 28th of June.

The schedule, which celebrates Tro-mazing independent films from all around the world, is proud to host the world premiere of Finnish director CHRZU’s ‘Nightsatan and the Loops of Doom’, the New York premiere of the vampire festival favourite ‘Chimeres’ directed by Olivier Begiun and a special screening to wet your cannibal appetite of’Evil Feed’ directed by Kimani Ray Smith.

With 38 shorts and 4 features across a wide range of genres, there is something for every lover of independent cinema! But don’t just believe us, check out the tro-mazing line up and come see for yourself! The best part is, it’s FREE!

untitled

And don’t forget about the after party, featuring local bands ‘Dawn of Humans’, ‘Hellbent Hooker’, ‘Mannequin Pussy’ and ‘Netherlands’. Our first year in New York City is going to be our best year yet!

Stay tuned to the Official TromaDance website and Troma Facebook page for more surprise announcements! Mark June 27th and 28th on your calendar and come celebrate this milestone year with us at the Paper Box in Brooklyn, NY for what will surely be a Tro-Mazing week-end of independent art!

The Paper Box is located at 17 Meadow St, New York, NY 11206

 

I’m probably most excited about Science Team, the new flick from the madmen behind FP fave The Taint.

See you there!

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Troy’s Toys, but with Comics Belated edition part 1

Hey gang, sorry for the late of updates since Year Zero, but between Special Edition NYC and Heroescon (and the best BBQ), I haven’t been near a keyboard in awhile. Hopefully I’ll be all caught up with things by Wednesday.

sa4Secret Avengers #4

Ales Kot/Michael Walsh/Matthew Wilson

Marvel $3.99

This month: Hawkeye, Nick Fury Jr, and a bunch of disposal SHIELD agents hunt a “The Fury” in a lawless Chinese City that disappeared 20+ years ago. It’s an Alien parody of sorts that’s high concept comics at its finest. Also Fury hunting the Fury sounds like slash fic, no I am not sorry for that joke.

While Ales Kot & Michael Walsh cut back on the comedy for an issue that’s more action-sci-horror, this comic is still entertaining as hell. There’s some laughs thanks to  MODOK mad science team  and the Hawkguy, but for the most part this comic plays it straight to help sell the horror/action aspects of the books. And it succeeds because the final product results in a brutal fight scene that also raises the question of how much Maria Hill and MODOK are the same in some aspects.  In terms of methodology, not so much visually. There’s also some weird stuff in this issue that SHOULD be considered a joke, but is played completely straight, making Secret Avengers that much more of interesting read.

While Kot continues to deliver top notch dialogue and plot, Walsh & colorist Matt Wilson continue to shine on this title. Kot channels some Chris Samnee this issue, and while the action scenes aren’t as dynamic and unique as the previous issue, they’re still strong enough to sell how creepy the Fury is. Wilson’s dark color palate really helps set the ton for this issue, primarily using blue, purples and blacks. Again, Aliens homage y’all.

Tradd Moore supplies another excellent cover to another excellent issue of Secret Avengers. While not as quirky as the last one, the stakes are raised with issue #4, which is another solid comic by this creative team.

 

portrait_incredibleAll New X-Men #28

Brian Michael Bendis/Stuart Immonen, Wade Von Grawbadger/Marte Gracia

Marvel $3.99 

Nothing says father’s day like the X-Men of the past fighting the Son of Charles Xavier right?

Daddy Issues aside ( J/K, this comic has a ton of them), this chapter continues to give more much needed characterization to the future brotherhood that could have helped improve the overall quality of Battle of the Atom. The Future Brotherhood’s motivations are fleshed out more, and amongst the reveals is how certain characters are alive, and why they’ve been acting the way they are. It’s some really good stuff by Bendis, who really gotten this book back on track as of late.

And while Bendis regains his footing, Stuart Immonen continues to impress. While his art has never really faltered at any point in this run, there is two particular pages, a double spread and the final page reveal that are great, and shows how well this creative team works together. The colors especially, because despite this book primarily drowning in red, are super sharp.

TLDR: Business as usual with this title. Which is good, because business is good comics.

 

 

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The Jeff Ayers Super Awesome Fun Day Mask in action!

If you stopped by the store yesterday, which you probably did. Either because of new comics or our mega signing. You probably noticed something a little special in the newest issue of The Weekly Planet. If for some crazy reason you have yet to stop by FP this week, watch and learn!

 

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6/18/14 Signing Bundle Package

In case you missed it, FPNYC is hosting a rather large event Wednesday the 18th of June. It’s kind of a big deal.

Forbidden Planet NYC Paul Pope signing Escapo

We’re extremely fond of all five of these gents, and as an incentive for you to pick up all five books we’re promoting Forbidden Planet’s bundling them all together at a discounted price the day of our event! Normally a full set of Escapo, Fear My Dear, Shackleton, Thomas Alsop #1 and Minimum Wage #6 would retail for about $69…

We’re bundling the full set of books (SIGNED) for $45! That’s nearly 35% OFF! Crazy pants.

PLEASE NOTE: There are only a limited number of these bundles available! They go on sale at the shop at 8am Wednesday morning.

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Nick Bertozzi Signing Shackleton at Forbidden Planet Wednesday 6/18/14

NY Times best-selling comics artist Nick Bertozzi Forbidden Planet NYC signing

 

Come by Forbidden Planet NYC Wednesday, June 18th, and get your copy of Shackleton signed by NY Times best-selling artist Nick Bertozzi!

About the book (which is GORGEOUS, by the way):

Ernest Shackleton was one of the last great Antarctic explorers, and he led one of the most ambitious Antarctic expeditions ever undertaken. This is his story, and the story of the dozens of men who threw in their lot with him – many of whom nearly died in the unimaginably harsh conditions of the journey. It’s an astonishing feat – and was unprecedented at the time – that all the men in the expedition survived.

Shackleton’s expedition marked the end of a period of romantic exploration of the Arctic and the Antarctic, and this is as much a book about the encroaching modern world as it is about travel. But Nick Bertozzi has documented this remarkable journey with such wit and fiendish attention to detail that it’s impossible not to get caught up in the drama of the voyage. Shackleton is a phenomenal accompaniment to Bertozzi’s earlier graphic novel about great explorers, Lewis & Clark.

And here’s a pic of the back cover I snagged off the First Second blog…

First-Second-Shackleton

Nick is just one of our many esteemed guests that night, along with Paul Pope, Dean Haspiel, Chris Miskiewicz, and Bob Fingerman. It’s gonna be a heckuva shindig. Hope to see you there!

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