One Mad Dog

[The Walking Dead Volume 2: Miles Behind Us] – (Robert Kirkman, Charlie Adlard)
September 29, 2010, 7:41 am
Filed under: 8 Stars, Charlie Adlard, Cliff Rathburn, Robert Kirkman, The Walking Dead

The second volume in the Walking Dead series has a change of artist, although the original artist Terry Moore still does the cover.  Charlie Adlard has done a good job of capturing the look of the characters but doesn’t have the same level of detail as Moore’s work and as such the art is a little less impressive.  The story carries on from the bombshell ending of the first volume and sees our heroes set off to find somewhere new to live. On their travels they encounter new survivors, all who have some strange sort of back story, and of course Zombies. We also have the big bombshell of a pregnancy for one of the survivors.

Just like the first book, characters don’t seem to live very long in “The walking Dead” and in “Miles Behind Us” several key characters get rather surprisingly killed off.    The book continues to paint a great picture of the mental torture and tension experienced in a realistically portrayed zombie apocalypse. It finishes on another great cliffhanger to make you want to read the next volume. [ISBN-13: 978-1582407753]. 8/10

[The Walking Dead Volume 1: Days Gone Bye] – (Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore)
September 28, 2010, 10:18 pm
Filed under: 9 stars, Robert Kirkman, The Walking Dead, Tony Moore

The Walking Dead is Robert Kirkman’s remarkable tale of a Zombie apocalypse seen through the eyes of small town sheriff Rick Grimes.  This first T.P.B explains Rick’s back story and introduces him to a small band of survivors that include his wife and kid.  This book does an excellent job of portraying the despair and break down of humanity. The secret to the books power is that it puts regular people into the roll of heroes, a position they are neither ready for or particularly good at.

Tony Moore’s gray scale artwork is excellent and portrays the desolation really well.  The art is realistic rather that the usual over the top Zombie fare. The pacing and action is spot on and it leaves you hungry for more. This book was the start of a phenomena and is a must read for all comic and zombie fans. [ISBN-13: 978-1582403588]. 9/10

[Army of Darkness Omnibus 1] – (John Bolton, Andy Hartnell, Nick Bradshaw, James Kuhoric, Sanford Greene, Kevin Sharpe, Robert Kirkman, Ryan Ottley, Filip Sablick, Shawn Spurlock, Robert Place Napton, Michael O’Hare, Paul Azaceta, Nick Acs)

This Omnibus collects A movie adaption by “John Bolton” and four story arcs from the ongoing series – “Ashes to Ashes”, “Shop till You Drop (Dead)”, “Ash vs. Re-Animator” and “Old School”. It also contains the shorts stories presented in “Tales of the Army of Darkness” and a complete cover gallery.

The movie adaptation does a good pretty good Job of capturing the story of the “Army of Darkness Movie” but the art is a little uninspiring and if you have seen the movie many times, like I have, it is a bit too familiar to make the read that interesting.

“Army of Darkness Ashes to Ashes” Follows on from the end of the first book (Movie) with an altogether more interesting art style. It is quite cartoony and reminiscent of the “Metal Slug” video games or scooby Doo but it fits perfectly with the slap stick nature of Ash’s exploits. The story follows the same formula as the movie and is full of the corny one lines Bruce Campbell is so famous for. “Army of Darkness Shop till you drop dead” and “Army of Darknessvs Re-animator” follow the same formula with what seems to be progressively insaner plots including time travel and crazy monsters. “Army of Darkness Old School” has a bit of change in art direction to a more serious dark and grainy style. The story isnt quite as zany as the other installments and it harks back more to the Living Dead era. The art style is a lot closer to what you would expect in a Horror Graphic novel rather than the comic style elsewhere in this omnibus. Definitely ‘Old School”
“Tales from The Army of Darkness” is a bit of a mixed bag both in terms of content and artistic style but there is something in there that will appeal to most people. I particularily enjoyed the artwork of “Filip Sablick” and “Michael O’Hare”. One of my favorite comic book authors “Robert Kirkman” pens one of the stories and it is pretty good too.

The full selection of covers at the end are a very nice bonus and feature some fantastic artwork.  [ISBN-13: 978-1606901007] . 6/10.

[Haunt] – (Robert Kirkman, Todd McFarlane, Ryan Ottley, Greg Capullo)
May 15, 2010, 4:08 pm
Filed under: 7 stars, Greg Capullo, Haunt, Robert Kirkman, Ryan Ottley, Todd McFarlane

I am a Robert Kirkman fan and a  Todd McFarlane fan so I had to pick this book up. This TPB collects Collects Haunt issues #1-5 and it was only $9.99 (great value). The book has the look and feel of a cross between a top cow TPB like Witchblade or the Darkness and of course spawn.  Tod McFarlane’s artwork looks great printed on nice quality glossy paper stock and really jumps off the page. The rest of the art is nicely done too.

Haunt is based on two brothers that just don’t get along, one  is a less-than-perfect priest, the other is a government agent.   When the agent brother is killed he comes back to haunt  his brother to avenge his killing and protect his wife. The possession takes the form of a creature  pretty much like the Witchblade but with hints of spawn. The first collected edition does a good job of setting the plot and establishing the heroes and villains. The main plot is about a strange scientist trying to develop super soldiers, his missing notebook and the struggle to own that missing book. It flows nicely and has plenty of action although at times I had to turn back pages as the plot jumped around a bit and I though I had skipped a page. A good read.  [ISBN-13: 978-1607061540]. 7/10

[Battle Pope Volume 4 : Wrath of God] – (Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, Val Staples)
April 26, 2010, 12:27 am
Filed under: 7 stars, Battle Pope, Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, Val Staples
The final book in the series follows on in the same vein with its crude and funny style. In this book Battle Pope ends up fighting with God himself which is pretty Bizarre. A very enjoyable series. [ISBN-13: 978-1582407517]. 7/10

[Battle Pope Volume 3 : Pillow Talk] – (Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, Cory Walker, Val Staples)
April 26, 2010, 12:24 am
Filed under: 8 Stars, Battle Pope, Cory Walker, Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, Val Staples
The third volume in the Battle Pope Series is as good as the first two volumes. It is still just as offensive and funny and the art is spot on. This volume introduces Santa and Mary as new characters to great effect. Mr. Vaughan is overdue a visit from the Spanish Inquisition I think :-). Definitely not recommended for sensitive religious types. [ISBN-13: 978-1582406770]. 8/10.

[Battle Pope Volume 2 : Mayhem] – (Robert Kirkman, Matthew Roberts, Tony Moore,Val Staples
April 26, 2010, 12:21 am
Filed under: 8 Stars, Battle Pope, Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, Val Staples
Battle Pope is lewd, Crude and offensive. It is also pretty funny and a very entertaining read even if you are a Catholic. The artwork fits the story perfectly and the large list of characters are superbly drawn. Battle Pope is like a comedy punisher with an over active sex drive. His partner who also happens to be the son of God is a meek and mild Hippy type that is apparently hung like a grand national winner. Volume two is as good as the first Volume and that makes it a great read. If you are sensitive and easily offended please stay away but for us hardy types it’s a great way to while away an hour. Extras are pretty good too. [ISBN-13: 978-1582406527]. 8/10

[Battle Pope Volume 1: Genesis] – (Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, Val Staples)
April 26, 2010, 12:15 am
Filed under: 8 Stars, Battle Pope, Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, Val Staples
I really enjoyed this book even though it could be considered quite offensive. Just like the great religious parodies “Life of Brian” and “Dogma” it pokes a bit of fun at organized religion but does so in a light hearted slapstick way. This color version of the collected books 1 to 4 is gorgeous to look at and the drawing is excellent. The script is fun and witty and the action never lets up. If I can make one criticism it is that the book is a little short. [ISBN-13: 978-1582405728]. 8/10.

[Brit – Volume 1- Old Soldier] – (Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, Cliff Rathburn, Val Staples)
April 22, 2010, 3:21 pm
Filed under: 7 stars, Brit, Cliff Rathburn, Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, Val Staples

Fans of Robert Kirkham should feel right at home with this Trade paperback as it reads much like his other work. It is a story of an indestructible old age pensioner, his young stripper wife, a corrupt government and his battles to save the world. The TPB contains three Brit story lines all of which are very good. The usual Kirkham whit is prevalent throughout and the artwork is very good although at times it is pretty gory (not as outrageous as Battle Pope). I am not usually a big fan of the superhero stuff but this is just different enough for me to enjoy.[ISBN-13: 978-1582406787]. 7/10

[Brit Volume 3 : Fubar] – (Robert Kirkman, Nate Bellegarde, Bruce Brown)
April 12, 2010, 4:01 pm
Filed under: 7 stars, Brit, Bruce Brown, Nate Bellegarde, Robert Kirkman

The Brit series progresses along at a blistering pace in this volume and the story is a non stop roller coaster of thrills. It still amazes me how superhero books manage to to create any sort of tension when the basic premise is that the hero cannot be killed.  FUBAR does a great job of fleshing out the characters and filling in a bit of back history. I particularly enjoyed the story of how Brit became invincible. The dialog is witty and well written and has the usual Kirkman style even though this book was actually written by Bruce Brown.

Volume 3 is printed on really nice paper and the artwork and color really jump off the page. Even the cover has a high quality expensive feel.  The artwork itself is really nice to look at  but I really don’t like the way Bellegarde draws faces. Everyone looks kind of grotesque with their mouths twisted and deformed. It is a shame really because this book really does look good. Collects Issues 7-12 (ISBN-13: 978-1607060611). 7/10