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Shawn

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7 hours ago, JohnMcMahon said:

Southern Bastards is some damn good comics, did not expect the first trade to end the way it did and subsequent collections have been just as good.

It is pretty good but I stopped picking it up monthly cause several months go by between issues. TPB #4 is supposedly due out first quarter of next year.

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Just caught up on Royal City. What a great series. Love the style of it. What do you even call this? Drama? Slice of slightly off kilter life? The last page of issue 10 is pretty heavy.

Looking forward to Gideon Falls.

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Gideon Falls #1-This first issue didn't do much for me. The book was described with comparisons to "Lovecraft and Twin Peaks", and I'm not seeing that, so far. It reminds me of a lot of pretty typical horror fiction from the 1990s (not the bad stuff). It could improve, and I'll give it another chance, but for a first issue, nothing grabbed me. 

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Same. It wasn't a bad comic. Liked the art enough. But it just didn't grab me right away. But I'll give it a shot.

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In the days of the Nothingness, many pretenders, usurpers and worthy apprentices came to replace John Constantine. 

 

The latest if these is The Magic Order by Mark Millar and Olivier Coipel.

And I like it.

Take Zatara/Zatana & siblings. Add global conspiracy of magic that has rarely worked in Hellblazer and never in JL:Dark. Smother it with lashings of gorgeous artwork. Oh yeah and no "For mature readers" £#$%words.

@@@@ing good start.

I hope this sustains.

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I liked it too. Hopefully the quality keeps up. I think its already been picked up by netflix judging by the huge logo on the back cover. Hopefully it is being written for the comic first and not just storyboards for a tv show.

In a similar vein, I enjoyed Evan Dorkin's, Blackwood at Dark Horse. It's not as sinister, at least not yet, but the first issue was fun.

 

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Netflix bought out MillarWorld. They can immediately turn any Mark Millar owned property in to a show, if they decide it's worth it.

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Is this one Millarworld? It appears to missing swear offs, mutilation and NC18 splatter thus far.

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Plutona, a fun, quick read, nothing Earth shattering but fun nonetheless.

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6 hours ago, dogpoet said:

Is this one Millarworld? It appears to missing swear offs, mutilation and NC18 splatter thus far.

Yes. Mr Millar pretty much says so in the end pages 

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Just gone through No 1 With A Bullet, which makes some well meant but fairly obvious points about social media and online bullying and fails to construct a very impressive thriller around them. It isn't bad (and at least manages to dodge the terrible gay-bashing cop out I thought it was building towards) but it isn't all that good either, which is a shame.

Nice art, mind.

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Brought the fourth and final volume of Brubaker & Phillips' Kill or Be Killed at the store recently, and binged through the entirety of the series. The beginning wasn't as strong as I had remembered reacting to it when I first read it, but it is a book that improves with every issue.

For those who haven't read it yet, it's Brubaker doing his spin on the Vigilante Genre with a Deal with the Devil tossed in for good measure. A milquetoast grad student fails a suicide attempt, and begins to see a demon who forces him into a deal as punishment for trying to end his life. The deal is take a life every month, or he dies. Over the course of the series, he becomes more skilled of a killer as stakes escalate, while simultaneously losing more of his grip on sanity. Brubaker deconstructs the "one man war on crime" story, while railing about just how much the world sucks today and our helplessness to do a thing about it. Not the most original story to be told, but Brubaker adds enough of his own touches to avoid the whole thing feeling like a retread.

On the art-front, I feel it definitely is the best that the Brubaker/Phillips/Breitweiser collabs have ever looked.

Makes you wonder how a Punisher run by Brubaker would've gone.

If there's much of a niggle, it's that at the end one of the biggest plot threads doesn't get too satisfying of a resolution.

 

As the story progresses, it's questioned whether the demon that our hero made his deal with was real or just a figment of his own unstable mental state... and it's not something that Brubaker ever really provides a definitive answer for. I suppose he wanted to leave it up to the reader to decide, or to explore further down the road if he and Phillips ever decide to return to the series.

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Cemetery Beach #1 (by Warren Ellis)-Wow, reading a description of the series, I didn't think I'd enjoy it. Actually having read the first issue? I definitely do not like it.

It seems like he did this type of plot very similarly in Shipwreck, and did it much better.

Oh, and there were about five pages without any dialogue...otherwise known as the point where Ellis got bored for a while writing the script.

I think he just wanted to write this series so he could describe the concept of cell-phones as if they were new.

Yeah, Ellis has been replaced. Ales Kot does everything Ellis used to do with comics, but does it so much better now. Ellis should realize how this goes, it's just like cell-phones. He's all caught up with the wonders of cell-phones (or doing something he was doing 17 years ago now), while in the meantime, there are smart-phones. Well, Kot is that upgrade, who is working in the world of 2018.

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I don't know when the Free Comics Day was, but yesterday I picked up I Hate Image which is an amusing trek through the Image books as if they were all in the same universe, by the I Hate Fairyland people. 

There is a grayscale (sic) Walking Dead town, and our heroine cries The Nineties Sucked in the middle of Wic+Div Nightclub.

Top amusement: "Eventually you'll come upon a tree. Not like an Oak tree... like an Ellis Tree" "What the FLUFF is an Ellis Tree?" "I feel like I need to be smarter to answer that"

Then it's basically as many Image books referenced as possible.

 

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On 9/13/2018 at 2:07 AM, Christian said:

Yeah, Ellis has been replaced. Ales Kot does everything Ellis used to do with comics

Recommend me some Kot, please!

I don't think Ellis is bored or lazy when he slots in an action sequence!

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I'm not the biggest fan of action sequences carrying a story, myself, but that's ok.

Kot's New World (Image) may soon join this list, after it's completed. It's a five-issue min-series, which is still on-going though, and unlike my first recommendation, I'd like to see where it goes before I give it my nod. Right now though, it is looking like it'll make the list. It's another dystopian future science fiction comic, but not as dark and despairing as his Days of Hate.

OK, Ales Kot recommended reads.....

I think Days of Hate (Image) may be his best work, but that's still on-going, so you'll probably want to wait until the series finishes before picking it up. It's pretty obviously meant to be a critique of the current Trump America, but it's not topical. It's more of a dystopian science fiction story, about a future America that is always possible and just around the corner, rather than some ham-fisted whining about how bad Trump is.

Probably after Days of Hate, I'd recommend Wolf (Image), with some reservations. If you love John Constantine, if you love political Hellblazer stories, and if you feel that JC stories have been bland and ill-fitting for about a decade now, you'll love Wolf. So, what are the reservations? Well, Kot never finished the book. However, if you like Ellis, once again, there are a lot of similarities between Ellis and Kot!

Going back further....one of Kot's earliest series (and the first one that caught reader's attention) was Zero (Image). It's a meditation on human violence, filled with an increasing psychedelic plot-line.

On the same wavelength is Winter Solder (Marvel). Now, I know what you may be thinking about a Marvel comic, but this is not a superhero comic. It's a far future science fiction story that is just plain weird, and it serves as Kot's appeal to peace. It's truly a beautiful piece of work. You don't really need to know anything about the Winter Soldier as a character either, other than it's Bucky Barnes.

Your mileage may vary, but James Bond: The Body (Dynamite) is pretty much the best Bond story I've ever read. I'm not really a fan of Bond, and once again, I thought Ellis' work on James Bond was pretty much the high-point of the character in comics....until I read Kot's mini-series. It's very political.

OK, moving back to Marvel for one more series is Kot's run on Secret Avengers. OK, I know. This may be a hard sell, but trust me. It's insane! The entire story ends up being one big homage to a Jorge Luis Borges story. I am not kidding. It's about as far from typical Avengers fare as you can get, while still being nominally a superhero comic book.

Generation Gone (Image) is another unfinished Kot series, but he plans to return for a second story-arc to wrap up the book next year. I didn't think I'd really enjoy this one, but it's quite good. It takes place in an economically depressed dystopian future, and deals with the rage and frustration of younger people facing an uncertain future. It also mixes science fiction and superhero comics. It's something of a deconstruction of the superhero genre, ala Alan Moore.

Now, these next two are Kot comics I did not enjoy, but that you may want to check out, if you like Warren Ellis and hard science fiction. These two series are science fiction comics done right, but I'm not the biggest fan of these types of plots, myself.

The Surface and Material, both from Image.

So, if you like hard science fiction stories, with lots of future tech, that will remind you of Warren Ellis, I would not hesitate to recommend these two series, even though I did not find them really my cuppa.

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How would you rate Change by Kot? I picked up issue 1 secondhand, but haven't read it, nor have I chased up the remaining issues.

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It's been a long time. I think I did enjoy it at the time, but I also believe it was Kot's first comic book work (or at least anything worth noting). I think he definitely outgrew some of his tendencies that were found in Change. There's nothing wrong with the series. It was pretty wild. It just had the marks of a writer starting out and trying really hard to put as much as he could in to his first project.

He'd channel that manic insanity and turn in a lot better work later, but Change is definitely a fun romp, although I found it somewhat inconsequential also.

I wouldn't judge Kot by that series though. If you hate it, don't hesitate to give something else by him a chance. If you absolutely love it, imagine a writer taking all those ideas he's throwing at the page, and crafting it down to a comprehensive quality.

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Material was an interesting experiment by Kot. Four separate stories playing out page by page over four issues. He cancelled it after those four issues though, though he has said that his plan for the series was to do a new set of stories every four issues so there's nothing that's left unresolved compared to say, Wolf.

I wouldn't say make it your first Kot book, but if you read his longer works and enjoy them, Material might be worth checking out. The trade probably goes for cheap these days.

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Oh, I don't think I even realized it was canceled. I thought that Kot intended it as a mini-series. I wasn't really enjoying it. I don't think I was really paying attention after the first issue. I thought it was meant to have the four different plots converge and make some sort of whole statement, and it never really came together.

I could see people enjoying Material a lot, it just left me feeling alienated from most of the plots. Not because they didn't all work together, like I thought, but because most of the plots didn't interest me, and I didn't get enough of the one plot which I did find worth following.

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