THE BEAUTY / AMERICATOWN / BATMAN / STRING DIVERS / ADAM.13 [Reviews]: Bombshells Over Baghdad!
“It’s ladies night and the geeky feeling’s right! Ohh, what a friiiiight.” Because what if strong, beautiful and talented bombshells actually DID takeover a comic book-driven site (not made especially for women?) And actually didn’t have to show cleavage? It would never happen right? Until now…
It’s GHG’s weekly Fistful of Comics, and these brilliant beauties have us all by the…hey y’alls.
If you could change every insecurity you have about your appearance with one sexual encounter, would you do it? Imagine being able to contract an STD that thickened thinning hair, that faded facial blemishes and melted fat away. That’s exactly what the creators of The Beauty propose. This is a super strong debut for this title that combines society’s obsession with looks and sex.
I’m honestly surprised a story like this hasn’t crossed my path before, as Beauty combines the sensations of science fiction and a detective thriller. There’s two kinds of people on this world, those with The Beauty and those without. There’s a strong resistance against the beauty and two cops are on the chase to find out what is really going on underground. Written by Jeremy Haun (Arkham Reborn, The Darkness) and newcomer Jason A. Hurley, this story could easily pair with something written by Rod Sterling, or conceptualized by Chris Carter in an X-Files episode. The art by Haun and colors by John Rauch (Invincible, Arkham Knight) are eerie and do a fantastic job in portraying just how ugly The Beauty can be. 5/5 Black Lipsticks.
Archaia Entertainment’s launch of Bradford Winters‘ (Oz, Kings) and Larry Cohen‘s (Phone Booth, Cellular) social “What If…the USA is no longer a world power?” comic book, Americatown, couldn’t have come at a more solicitous time with the 2016 presidential political debates going on. The story, originally destined for television, follows an economic collapse that forces U.S. Citizens to illegally emigrate to other countries to find their “American Dream” and set up boroughs in major cities around the globe called “Americatowns.” These enclaves are not so different from the “Little Italies” and “Chinatowns” established in New York City or San Francisco when North America was the bright shining star of hope for the disillusioned. Winters and Cohen create an average man of this time, Owen Carpenter, who leaves his wife and daughter due to a lack of work and embarks on a treacherous journey involving secrecy, smugglers, violence, etc. to establish himself in an Americatown in Buenos Aires.
Colorist Matt Battaglia (Dead Letters, Hellraiser) does a beautiful job capturing the raw balance of desperation and hope in an otherwise roughly illustrated, scattered story that leaves the reader no choice but to ask, “What the hell is going on?”– just like one of the characters in a panel. The story seems to jump from scene to scene without any transition like flashes of memories or a bad dream. Perhaps this reader confusion was the intention of Winters and Cohen because anyone in such a scary situation would be left just as disoriented. As of the end of this issue, it is too hard to conclude whether this intelligent and thoughtful commentary on Americans seeking the American Dream elsewhere will be as promising as hoped, just like the promise of a new life in Americatown for those like Owen. 2/5 Bibles (1 for hope, 1 for mood coloring).
So… ever since I saw the cover of Batman #43, I was a little amused at how different it felt. The first page is graced by Mr. Bloom. A glowing, neon flower in absolute darkness slowly comes to light. Artists Greg Capullo (Spawn) and Danny Miki (Eternals) do a great job at capturing every detail of Mr. Bloom and portraying what is technically the birth/growth of a new villain. (Oh, and Mr. “Not Orlando” Bloom’s colors are totally up my alley, btw!) This new villain is unlike any I’ve seen before–totally fitting, being that everything Bat-related seems to be different.
Like anybody, I’m still not used to the fact that Jim Gordon is now Batman (spoiler alert, from 4 months ago!) and Bruce Wayne is living it Nicole Richie style ala “The Simple Life”. Up until the fourth page I felt as lost as Bruce did when Jim asked for his assistance… I mean, what in the world happened to him?! Thankfully, writer Scott Snyder (American Vampire) does a fantastic job through the audience eyes of Alfred, and an exchange with Clark Kent may have had the answers to MY question! Following Endgame, Bruce has forgotten everything — or at least taught himself to forget everything — and Alfred can’t help his paternal instinct, and prevents Gordon from dragging Bruce back into darkness. And he may have believed those scars have healed when he tells Kent that “Batman died and Bruce Wayne came back.”
We also get a glimpse at The New Batman who, at one point, finds himself having to face Bloom’s men (though we unfortunately don’t get to witness the silly-yet-cool Batmech-suit). Yet in the final scenes, a diabolic, literally larger-than-life Bloom confronts one of Bruce’s A-List villains; it’s all very dark and freaky, as Bloom proves even with a name better served for the Electric Daisy Carnival, he’s definitely someone who should be feared. Seems that just like Mr. Bloom, Bruce was “reborn” and is now “growing” into the man he should’ve been outside of the dark. But of course we’ll see how long that lasts… Can’t wait to see what happens next! 4/5 Bat-Bibles.
My first impression upon reading this comic was WTF: Part Avatar, part all that stuff I slept through in science class, part a really bad acid trip where bats eat your soul–yeah, this is one strange adventure.
Set in a world that has not yet come to be, scientists must band together in a lab and send out their essence in hopes of recovering…stuff. Important science stuff. This is one comic where if I picked it up as a trade paperback and was able to read a huge chunk of the story at once, I might really get to smell what Chris (Zombies vs. Robots) Ryall‘s cookin’; but it was hard for me to really embrace volume one. It’s not a bad book, it’s just not for me. 2.5/5 Stuff.
Last year DC Comics revealed a line of their female characters in retro pinup bombshell statues and variant comic covers. This year and week, they decided to give us these magnificent throwbacks in actual story form. DC BOMBSHELLS #1 by Marguerite Bennett (Angela: Asgard’s Assassin) and Marguerite Sauvage (Sensation Comics) hit the racks this week–and it’s absolutely wonderful. It’s a short digital book, and although some might want to wait for them all to be released together, I highly suggest picking it up sooner. Set during World War II — while most of America’s men are on the front line — it’s up to the women of America to keep the country running; and for our heroines, it’s up to them to keep the streets safe.
First up is The Bat Woman who takes out Joe Chill before he can kill the Wayne family (even thought they arent named, it’s obviously suggested). And although this salvation takes away the original origin of Batman, I’m surprisingly okay with this. We find out Kate Kane is indeed Batwoman, and aside from saving the Waynes, we get an intriguing relationship story between her and Maggie Sawyer; we also find out that Amanda Waller is behind the recruitment of the vigilante baseball player. This issue serves as a introduction to the series where women can — and are — handling all the shit. Even though this issue is written in modern times, it has clearly captured the essence of the 40s with its wittiness and snappy flirtatious art in true bombshell style. Despite my wish for this is to be a bit longer, it’s a definite “must have”. 5/3 Andrew Sisters (yes, not a typo; five out of THREE Sisters :))
Have you ever wanted to read a comic hero who was a strange lovechild of Tarzan and Captain Planet? Neither have I. But somehow Dark Horse picked up this comic by Scott Kolins (The Flash). Adam.3‘s “S.E.E.D.S” (survival enemy epidemic death sacrifice) — an acronym that would only make sense if Mr. Miyagi read it — starts out slow.
The story doesn’t really pick up until almost 7-pages from its digital end. Adam keeps having “nightmares” which seem to be prophetic of the story that is going to unfold in the next issue. His extremely pregnant wife is the only one I really had any connection with, maybe because she is needed in the comic to make the whole idea make sense… Can’t have Tarzan without Jane, right? I’m probably not going to even attempt to read the next one… purely on the bias that Adam.3 was great concept, but was nonetheless poorly executed. Damn it, Dark Horse. Get back into the game. 1.5/5 Jungle Books.