Tag Archives: Aftershock Comics

Weekly Comic Haul, May 23, 2018: Detective Comics, Star Wars, Delta 13

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

I’m Rob, and these are the comics I spent my hard-earned money on this week…

Detective Comics #981
James Tynion IV’s run ends with this issue. As a longtime fan of characters like Tim Drake, Stephanie Brown, Jean Paul Valley, and Cassandra Cain, I’m so proud of what he was able to do on this book. There’s a reason he’s my favorite modern-day Batman writer. If you want to dive into this series, don’t skip on anything. Go all the way back to Rise of the Batmen.

Justice League: No Justice #3
So in last week’s issue, we learned that the heroes “from the main four teams” that aren’t in these makeshift groups are being held in stasis by Brainiac. That’s his fail-safe, apparently. And somehow the only hero of any merit left is Green Arrow. A bit convenient, wouldn’t you say? It does what it’s designed to do, which is explain why no other heroes are around to help. But still.

Star Wars #46
As you’ll see, this was a big Star Wars week for yours truly. I’m still ready for this Mon Cala story to be over. And for someone other than Salvador Larroca to be drawing it. But I’m obviously still forking money down for it. So in the end, they win.

Star Wars: Poe Dameron #27
The opening scene in this book is downright touching. Expect to see it in Panels of Awesomeness soon. I don’t want to give away much. But it takes place shortly after The Last Jedi, and involves Leia and Chewie.

Star Wars: Darth Vader #16
This one is a few weeks old, but a buddy of mine has been on me to catch up on Vader. He wasn’t wrong. This one also takes place on Mon Cala, but it occurs shortly after Revenge of the Sith. It’s a little bit slow at certain points. But Charles Soule and Giuseppe Camuncoli know how to deliver the action. If you’re a Star Wars fan, it’s worth the read.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Urban Legends #1
This series is actually a reprint of the TMNT stuff Image published in the late ’90s. I’ve always been curious about it, mostly because of the big changes they made to the status quo (i.e. Donatello becoming part-robot). But I haven’t had the chance to read it until now. All I’ll say is, you can definitely tell this is a ’90s Image book. I’m not sure if I’ll keep picking it up. But this one certainly entertained me.

Delta 13 #1
I hadn’t even heard about this series. But Steve Niles’ name piqued my interest. After reading the first issue, it seems like there might be something good here. I was hoping for a bit more of a hook. But it’s officially on my radar.

Babyteeth #4
I ordered this issue from my local comics shop (Shout out to Rockhead’s Comics and Games in Kenosha). Realistically, I could have bought the trade. Or worse, pirated it online. But I wanted to read it issue by issue. So far, I haven’t been disappointed.

Email Rob at PrimaryIgnition@yahoo.com, or follow Primary Ignition on Twitter.

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Weekly Comic Haul: May 16, 2018: Batman, Flavor, “Shattered Grid”

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

I’m Rob, and these are the comics I spent my hard-earned money on this week…

Flavor #1
I picked this one up for the sake of sheer curiosity. Flavor was advertised as The Hunger Games mixed with world-building akin to that of Hayao Miyazaki. Based purely on how it looks, I might throw Hell’s Kitchen in there as well. I mentioned this to Mrs. Primary Ignition, who doesn’t read a lot of comics. She promptly exclaimed, “That sounds amazing!” If it’s got her sold, it’s at least worth a look.

Batman #47
I’m not big on Batman using guns. It feels like a cheap trick to me. Or “cheap heat,” as they’d say in the wrestling world. “The Gift” introduced us to such a Batman. In an alternate timeline, of course.  But I’m nonetheless enjoying the story. It’s a tremendous spotlight for Booster Gold, who’s been a favorite of mine for a long time.

Dead Hand #2
Kyle Higgins had a double-header this week. The next chapter of “Shattered Grid” (more on that in a moment), and this baby. Dead Hand #1 surprised many a reader with a twist on its final page, leading us into this sophomore issue. This noir spy thriller is packed with plenty of intrigue, which is based a little more in reality than one might think.

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #27
Higgins’ second outing of the week. I’m not big on the way “Shattered Grid” is prominently framed like a multiverse story, as opposed to a time-travel one. But it’s nonetheless amazing to see all these Rangers from all these eras getting to meet one another. I can certainly appreciate the use of Lauren Shiba from Power Rangers Samurai. She was about as underutilized as any Ranger in the show’s 25-year history.

A Walk Through Hell #1
I’ve been diving into the AfterShock Comics library in recent months. Babyteeth, Her Infernal Descent, Animosity, Black-Eyed Kids, etc. So I picked this one up for that reason above all else. I know very little about what to expect here, which is probably what they’re counting on. I know its about FBI agents investigating a mall shooting. That’s about it…

Justice League: No Justice #2
Someone needed to clarify this for me the other day: These four cooky teams aren’t staying together full time. They’re just here for this miniseries, and then the new Justice League book launches next month. That’s a little bit of a disappointment, as we’ve got some really interesting combinations here. Either way, No Justice has me picking up a Justice League book for the first time in a few years.

Gideon Falls #3
I wasn’t sure if I was going to stick with Gideon Falls after issue #1. But I found myself drawn back to it as the weeks went by. I’m grateful for that, as the characters have only gotten more interesting. Jeff Lemire, Andrea Sorrentino, and the Gideon Falls team have given us something irresistibly haunting.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #72
This book has had its share of flaws. But it’s still one of the best TMNT runs ever. Dave Watcher’s art has a nice gritty texture to it. And Ronda Pattison’s colors are gorgeous as always. The Toad Baron character is a lot of fun too.

Email Rob at PrimaryIgnition@yahoo.com, or follow Primary Ignition on Twitter.

Panels of Awesomeness: Babyteeth #2

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

CREATORS: Donny Cates (Author), Garry Brown (Penciller/Inker), Mark Englert (Colorist), Taylor Esposito (Letterer)

THE SCENE: A secret organization called the Silhouette realizes that a new antichrist has been born. One of its members, this old dude whose name we don’t know, insists the group take action to kill the infant. Something they’ve apparently done multiple times before.

WHY IT’S AWESOME: Firstly, Babyteeth is a damn good series. At least as far as I’ve seen. I’ve made it to issue #3. Check it out.

What sold me on this panel was the line work on this guy’s face. Garry Brown isn’t exactly going for photorealism in his work, But the age he puts into this character is extremely believable. You’ve also got the shadowing effect, Brown and Englert actually blend quite nicely with the age lines. It makes it seem like he’s a creature of darkness himself. And considering he’s talking about killing a baby, that’s not exactly far-fetched.

Email Rob at PrimaryIgnition@yahoo.com, or follow Primary Ignition on Twitter.

An Alters #1 Review – The Costumes We Wear

Alters #1, 2016, Brian StelfreezeTITLE: Alters #1
AUTHOR: Paul Jenkins
PENCILLER: Leila Leiz. Cover by Brian Stelfreeze.
PUBLISHER: Aftershock Comics
PRICE: $3.99
RELEASED: September 7, 2016

By Rob Siebert
Editor, Fanboy Wonder

There’ll be some debate as to whether Chalice, who we meet in Alters #1, is actually the first transgender superhero. But it almost doesn’t matter. For many readers, that’s exactly what she’ll be. This comic invites readers who’ve never read about a trans character. That’s a great thing. Alters has tremendous potential to expand the boundaries of inclusiveness in comics.

Charlie is a young man in the process of transitioning into a woman. He’s already begun hormone therapy, but his parents and two siblings aren’t aware yet. As if that wasn’t enough, he’s also an Alter, i.e. this universe’s equivalent to a mutant or metahuman. Since his powers have manifested, Charlie has made his public debut as the female superhero Chalice. But our heroine has already made an enemy of the tyrannical Matter Man, who demands Chalice surrender herself, or else.

Alters #1, Leila Leiz, face paintLike any debut issue for a series not connected to a mainstream superhero universe, it’s vital that Alters use these first several pages to make a case for itself. At this point, they just want to get you back next month, let alone a regular basis. To make their case, Paul Jenkins, Leila Leiz, and our creative team get pretty blatant with their storytelling. We get a scene where Charlie’s best friend checks out a girl’s ass. We get a scene where our traditional-looking American family goes to a baseball game (shown left).

We also get some lines that are a little on the nose, a la: “Did Charlie get his ass beat again? Bet you five bucks it was some chick!” Our characters have a tendency to use the words “boys” and “bro” when referring to each other. But to be fair, perhaps I’m noticing it more given our story.

I’m not sure if Jenkins is going for a theme about “costumes” here. But there’s something to be said for Charlie feeling uncomfortable in the body he was born in, but feeling truly alive and vibrant when either dressed as a woman, or decked out in female superhero gear. There’s also a great shot of the family at the baseball game, with a man in face paint in the foreground. Again, not sure if that’s a visual metaphor about the different “faces” people put on. But it makes all the sense in the world.

Alters #1, transformation, Leila Leiz, There’s still a lot we don’t know about the way this world works. We know the flamboyant Matter Man is a bad guy, gathering fellow Alters into his group. On the flip side we have the super genius Octavian, who seems to be sheltering Alters and studying their powers for the betterment of the world. Essentially, they’re this book’s Charles Xavier and Magneto. I can only assume they’ll be fleshed out as the story goes on.

The only negative I can hurl at this book from an artistic standpoint is that it gives us a case of “panel duplication.” Our introductory shot of Matter Man is later repeated during a big monologue toward the end. Not the biggest offense I’ve ever seen, but enough to merit a mention. I hate to do it, as Leila Leiz otherwise does a fine job here. Her characters move very naturally, and she’s not afraid to get provocative. Though not so provocative that it becomes exploitative. At times this book is, quite frankly, sexy.

Alters will get me back for issue #2. This series had a lot of great potential coming in. To its credit, it lived up to it. But so much more can be built. Hopefully this is the start of something special.

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