Can you think of your favourite horror story?
Restarting The DC Universe was something everyone knew was coming. The New 52 Universe as a whole was classed as an absolute failure. Most of the 52 original series’s were cancelled early on with only the big hitters staying strong.
Arguably the strongest of The New 52’s Universe was Batman. Reason? Two names: Snyder and Capullo.
The end of that duo has come to a close however. Snyder still writes Batman but instead of the main series, he is writing All-Star Batman with the highly competent and infamous artist John Romita Jr.
That left people wondering who would write for the new main series? Who could possibly take over from where Snyder left off? Tom King.
Tom King may not be a comic book house hold name, his latest work before Batman included The Omega Men and Grayson. But now he has been given the honor of writing Batman and if he succeeds well, then he may end up joining Snyder in becoming a quintessential Batman writer.
No pressure right?
The story much like Snyder’s first New 52 Batman story introduced new characters.
On the verge of a heroic death, Batman is ‘saved’ by two new superheroes: Gotham and Gotham Girl. At first we know very little about these characters except that they can fly, they are stupidly strong, in fact they seem to mirror a lot of Superman’s abilities.
Batman is faced with a dilemma, it’s Batman’s usual dilemma; can they be trusted?
Batman knows the limits of being just a man, the walls that come up with having no powers, the ease of pain and death. He does contemplate the idea that these two ‘heroes’; Gotham and Gotham Girl could succeed in ways he feels he was ever able to.
Things are made complicated (of course) when famous villains come out to play.
You have to give King some credit, it’s his first story arc with Batman and for all intent and purposes, he knocks it out of the park.
It’s not perfect of course with a few little things holding the story back from being amazing. In the third arc there are a few things that happen off panel, we are meant to assume certain things have happened because that’s what has been told to us, but actually seeing these confrontations take place would have led to more empathy and understanding of where and why the characters are the way they are.
Now, a comic book writer is nothing without a good artist to express his vision and King is blessed to have somebody as good as David Finch to bring his story to life.
Finch has had a history of drawing Batman with his previous work being the Batman: Dark Knight series and it’s clear this man knows what he is doing. Gotham is just as much a character as Batman and some of the art here is top notch. Each characters psych is well presented in each panel, whether it be a panicked Gordon or a distressed Alfred, we feel what they feel because the art is so well done.
Everyone is naturally going to compare King’s work with Snyder’s and King is obviously aware of that. Tom King is not Scott Snyder so if you’re expecting that then maybe just read All-Star Batman. Tom King is however the man responsible for Batman Vol 1: I Am Gotham. A good, sometimes great story that shows clear confidence in the future narrative to come.
It’s a worthy read for anyone calling themselves a Bat Fan.
Written by: Landry Q. Walker
Art by: Chad Thomas
By James Kochalka
Zine-Age Mutant Ninja Turtle:
By: Caleb Goellner, Chad Thomas, and Noah Sciver
The Meeting of the Mutant Animals:
Written by: Matthew K. Manning
Art by: Chad Thomas
Freaks and Frogs:
By Ben Costa
Donnie Finds a Relic:
By Sina Grace
Reviewed by: Tyrone Burns
It’s thirty years this year since the pilot episode of TMNT aired across the world and through those years it has experienced a lot of ups and downs and surprisingly it wasn’t until 2012 that TMNT really hit big again with all ages when Nickelodeon aired a brand new series of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
For years people had been begging for a TMNT series that had in its soul the same magic that made the original show such a hit. Of course if you watch the 80’s series now it’s hard not to find that it has aged like most 80’s cartoons have: Badly. So the challenge everyone involved had with the show was to make it feel like a worthy successor to the original but with enough modern freshness to bring in a brand new audience.
It became a big hit, not just to children but to adults too and it is this series that has sparked off the comic book series “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Amazing Adventures.
It would be hard for me to talk about this comic book and not mention the art by Chad Thomas. It perfectly complements the television series in much the same way Dean Rankine’s Simpsons comic book does the TV series. Each character is exactly as you know them with only Splinter being the exception. He looks great but not exactly like his TV counterpart. The Turtles personality comes off brilliantly in each panel even down to the exaggerated “chibi”features often seen in the animated series.
The volume is split into six stories with the first issue being the highlight. The Fab Four with master Splinter must team up with their archenemy Shredder to take on an old Ninja and friend of both Shredder and Splinter who calls himself Zodiac. I found the story gripping as it delved more into the history of ninja’s before the Turtles in a half shell were born. That made each moment exciting!It felt just like the TV show which is all any fan could want.
It was sad then that the other stories bar “The meeting of the Mutant Animals” didn’t succeed in the same manner. They were all enjoyable but lacked the same stakes and character growth. “Volcano Time”was fun, with a good look into the type of comic book stories Mikey himself would make.
These characters have existed for so long because of how relatable they are. Four turtles with four distinct personalities, we all know a “Michaelangelo” in our lives or a “Raphael” type. Sadly the lack of many strong female characters has held the series back from appealing to a larger audience but even still, this is a series strong in people’s hearts and for good reason; the series showed you can kick ass as a ninja but still be a walking fail button like Mikey or a nerd like Donny. They are not perfect, but we love them for that.
If the 2012 series (still ongoing) appeals to you and you just can’t get enough, than I would recommend this comic series to you. However if you are looking for deep, rich stories that extent the universe in more ways than just ‘filler’ type content than this might not be the TMNT series for you.
Booyakasha turtle fans! What a time to be living in. There is so much TMNT content out there now and I can’t get enough of it.
Though this series is Silk’s first solo comic, it expects you to know a little bit about who she is. So here is a small rundown.
Young teenager Cindy Moon was bitten by the same radioactive spider that had bitten Peter Parker. When her powers started to manifest, she was taken from her family and trained by a man named Ezekiel Sims. It’s soon after, the totemic predator “Morlun” tracks down Cindy for reasons not yet understood. In order to protect Cindy from his machinations, Ezekiel hides her in a bunker at the bottom of his tower. Free to go when ever she pleases, out of fear of Morlun, Cindy realising there is enough food and magazines to keep her busy for a long time, chooses to live alone in this bunker for good.
A decade later, Peter Parker learns of Cindy Moon and goes to free her. When hesitant to leave in fear of Morlun, Peter reveals to her that that Morlun is dead. After leaving the bunker, Cindy’s first quest was to find her parents. It would be failed attempt-after-failed attempt as Cindy’s parents are no- where to be found.
Working at the “Facts Channel” for JJJ (Jay Jonah Jameson) Cindy hopes her job and her new secret identity “Silk” will help her on her quest to find her parents.
I know what your thinking, “another spider-person!” Don’t we have too many already? Peter’s Spider-Man, Mile’s Spider-Man, Spider Woman, Spider-Gwen and the million Spider-Man clones from different universes.
What were Marvel thinking making another wall crawler?
The truth is, in the last few years Marvel have been making some amazing new characters and it’s not really been their powers that has made them so relatable, but the brilliant writing behind them.
It’s clear in his writing of Silk, Robbie Thompson used the recent Ms. Marvel as inspiration. The story is neither complicated nor convoluted. The art is simple yet expressionistic. We get to see in the mind of Cindy Moon, her inner monologue is expressed on every page allowing for humour and greater insight.
As mentioned the story is fairly straightforward. Cindy’s brother got mixed up in the wrong crowd; The Goblin Nation. It has left his mind ill and sick. Cindy wants answers and she is willing to fight any Goblin King-wannabe to get some.
Meanwhile, Black Cat is up to something. Cat and her gang are stealing tech from all over the city. Cindy has been hired by Shield’s Mocking Bird to infiltrate Black Cat’s gang and find out what her motives really are.
The key to making these types of comics enjoyable seems to be in the tone. Keeping things lighthearted without it coming off too childish or young in theme.
Cindy is a great new character. Thankfully it isn’t her powers that make her a welcome addition to Marvel but her attitude, her personality, and drive. Being locked up for over a decade has left her a little naive with how to handle situations. It’s not that she acts stupid or foolish, but is always the optimist. She seems to have a thing for smells as much as everyone she encounters leaves her holding her breath in disgust. She is funny but in a different way to Peter. Where Peter shows the stupidity in his opponents and often their attire, Cindy makes fun of herself and her predicaments. Though implied to be a young adult, her absence from society for over a decade has left within her a drive often lost in adulthood.
The supporting characters even appearing regularly never really left any imprint. Black Cat was her normal self, though now appearing in more of a gang leader role, and Peter appears in the third quarter to basically tell Cindy she is doing everything wrong. The only possible exception is JJJ who showed Cindy his rarely seen softer side when he worries about her absence at work.
The Goblin Nation are an interesting group of villains, with each new member being someone either an outcast or a rebel. Like any cult, they target the feeling of belonging. It’s quite dark when you think about it, but the comic manages to handle it in a light manner.
The art by all three artists is good with Stacey’s Lee’s contribution being my favourite. It really set the tone for the rest of the comic. The expressions are exaggerated and the colours are beautiful and vibrant. Sadly, it made Tana Fords art dull by comparison, which is sad because as a stand-alone her art is brilliant, but as a follow up to Stacey it just didn’t have the same life. Veronica Fish did the last two issues, it’s not quite as stylised as Lee’s however, it does bring back the tone I liked so much at the beginning.
Marvel seem to be on a roll with their new characters lately, especially with their female ones. This first volume of Silk is proof that Cindy Moon has a place in Marvels pantheon of heroes. It’s fun, engaging with a touch of heart.
Though I’m not bold enough to say she is my new favourite Marvel character, I will say this: “She is my new favourite “webhead” next to Parker and a hero I will be reading more of!”
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