ROYALS: THE MASTERS OF WAR #1
So, this is Vertigo… The following review of this exceptional comic rests sourly on the shoulders of a particular Monsignor.
Having not read anything from DC’s creator-owned imprint for some time, Moody — out of left field, perhaps — asked this Apostle to review this comic. Whether Royals has to do with the entire “war” theme of our 3 books, or just to change things up from being straight Marvel, I’m not sure. I’m just thankful I got the opportunity to read a title that harkens back to the greatness of early Fables and Y: The Last Man.
Royal‘s opening pages could be the opening for any pre-credits successful big budget movie, with louder-than-life action but realistically executed panel work by Simon Coleby (The Authority). This is also a beautiful piece of comic literature gold thanks to Rob Williams (Daken: Dark Wolverine, Star Wars Rebellion). For someone who nearly blew up within the ranks of Marvel, it’s odd it took this long to hear from him.
And, boy, do we hear him loudly now…
Set during the beginning years of WWII, Royals finds Prince Henry of England going against his father’s wishes to enter the war on the side of humanity — instead of sitting it out. In this world, being part of royalty means more than just having gold-plated toilet seats and crowns; royalty here, means having superhero blood. The higher your placement on the thrown (yes; cue Jigga & Yeezy), the more powerful you are.
Although Royals: The Masters of War #1 makes this three 5-Bible comics in a row (joining the likes of She-Hulk and Punisher), only time will tell whether the next five issues will make this limited series a certifiable classic. And that time should absolutely be worth the wait for a reiteration of the tried and true super-hero story.
WINTER SOLDIER: THE BITTER MARCH #1
Walking back from my favorite comic shop in the valley, I couldn’t feel more excitement with this fact: the Winter Soldier is back! Little did I know then, that the only Bitter March I was going to experience was the death march once I found out I had been had…
With Rick Remender (Uncanny X-Force) writing and Roland Boschi (Ghost Rider) drawing the goods, this had all the start of an amazing comic. And with five strong years of the new Captain American villain — thanks to Ed Brubaker — Winter Soldier has easily become an Apostle fav. Unfortunately, this is not the return I was waiting for.
This mini-series (which now makes me wonder if it was forced upon Remdawg due to the upcoming film) primarily revolves around a wager between Agent Ran and Nick Fury. Not only is it a weak premise, but — yup! — James Buchanan Barnes doesn’t appear until late in the issue. As much as I try to be optimistic for the series, the weak foundation and subpar art doesn’t offer many hopes.
Sorry to sound so.. bitter.