Comic Review: Tokyo Ghost

Published: July 5th, 2017
Written by: Rick Remender
Art by: Sean Murphy, Matt Hollingsworth

Image Comics, 257 Pages

Review:

I wasn’t aware of this when it was being published but having found out about it recently, I wanted to give it a read, as it unites the writing of Rick Remender with the art of Sean Murphy, whose Batman: White Knight was one of the best comics I’ve read in the last few years.

Also, this kind of borrows from anime, manga and Philip K. Dick stories. It has an Akira meets Blade Runner feel even if the story is wholly original and its own thing.

Remender, overall, penned a good and engaging story. It took a few issues for it to click for me but even if it started out a bit slow, Murphy’s art held my attention.

As the plot builds and this universe gets richer and more complex, you do find yourself immersed in this world. And frankly, that’s what you want from a comic book and Remender did his job.

My only issue with the plot is that the two young lovers’ codependency sometimes felt a bit overbearing. However, it’s kind of supposed to, I guess, as it is a big part of who the main characters are and where they need to go in their lives. There are lessons to be learned within these character flaws and Remender succeeded in bringing the lovers’ story to a proper close by the end of the ten issues.

I liked the villain, the plot twists and the neo-noir vibe that really channels classic noir narrative tropes.

The story does have a lot going on and that may be jarring early on, as things seem to jump around a lot, but it all comes together rather well.

Sean Murphy recently stated that he’d only do art for stories he writes going forward. However, it’d be cool to see him team up with Rick Remender on another project in the future.

Rating: 7.5/10
Pairs well with: other comics written by Rick Remender and other comics with art by Sean Murphy. Also, it’s influences like futuristic anime, manga and the stories of Philip K. Dick.

Vids I Dig 069: Cartoonist Kayfabe: Image Comics ‘Grand Design’, The Pitch Proposal

The Cartoonist Kayfabe guys (Ed Piskor & Jim Rugg) discuss what the Grand Design treatment could look like for the original Image Comics titles.

Comic Review: The Maxx (Original 35 Issue Run)

Published: March, 1993 – August, 1998
Written by: Sam Keith, Alan Moore, Bill Messner-Loebs
Art by: Sam Keith, Chance Wolf, Tony Kelly, Kell-O-Graphics

Image Comics, 840 Pages

Review:

I used to love The Maxx when I was a teenager. I never fully understood it, as I was young and it was a batshit crazy comic book at times but it always captivated me. I became an even bigger fan of the comic book after the animated TV series and because it was being put out by Image, which had my undying allegiance, at least in the first half of the ’90s.

What always drew me in was Sam Keith’s art. He has a style all his own and it was unlike anything I had seen before it. Sure, lots of people have come and gone and mimicked Keith’s style but no one has quite hit the mark for me in the same way.

Reading this now, I’m not as captivated by it but I still enjoyed it and it was like a trip down memory lane for me. It brought me back to where I was at 14 years-old when I first picked it up.

I think what initially made me fall in love with the comic was how dark it could be. I hadn’t experienced that in comics, really. But moving on from standard superhero books like the ones from Marvel, DC and the earliest titles from Image, The Maxx was where I came to understand that comics can be so much more than that.

This deals with some tough subject matter but it does so in an interesting and satisfying way.

I don’t think that Keith’s style will resonate with everyone that picks The Maxx up but for long time comic readers that haven’t given it a shot, it’s definitely worth a look.

Rating: 8.5/10
Pairs well with: other ’90s indie comics that were a bit out there like MadmanBoneScud, etc.

Talking Pulp’s Pull List – 3rd Quarter, 2019

This is my personal pull list as it stands, right now. From month to month it changes, as I read a lot of limited series stuff but I figured that doing a quarterly update would be cool for my readers that keep up with current comics.

So this is what I have my local comic shop pull for me each month, most of which I will review every time I get to the end of a story arc.

I’ve broken them out by publisher and alphabetized the list to make it flow easier.

And if there’s anything you like that I’m not reading, tell me in the comments.

But, as you can see, my list keeps shrinking.

Marvel Comics:
-Absolute Carnage
-Conan the Barbarian
-Daredevil
-Dead Man Logan
-Guardians of the Galaxy
-The Immortal Hulk
-Savage Avengers
-The Savage Sword of Conan
-Silver Surfer Black
-Spider-Man: Life Story
-Symbiote Spider-Man
-Venom

DC Comics:
-Batman and the Outsiders
-Batman: Curse of the White Knight
-Deathstroke
-Detective Comics
-Doomsday Clock
-Justice League Odyssey

Dynamite Entertainment:
-Red Sonja
-Red Sonja: Birth of the She-Devil
-The Shape of Elvira
-Vampirella

Image Comics:
-Spawn

IDW Publishing:
-Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder In Hell

Dark Horse:
-Stranger Things: Six

Vids I Dig 052: Razörfist: Your ’90s Comics Are Shit and No One Wants to Buy Them

From The Rageaholic/Razörfist’s YouTube description: ’90s Comics: Because feet are for wimps.

My Two Cents: Say what you will about ’90s comics but Razörfist makes some pretty solid f’n points. My love is mostly due to that brooding bitch named Nostalgia but a lot of the stuff I’ve revisited has left a somewhat bitter taste in my mouth, which has weakened Nostalgia’s once powerful grip.

Comic Review: Michael Allred’s Madman, Vol. 1

Published: July 23rd, 2008 (collected and reprinted)
Written by: Mike Allred
Art by: Mike Allred, Laura Allred

Tundra Publishing, Dark Horse Comics, Image Comics (reprint), 294 Pages

Review:

I’ve had a few issues of Mike Allred’s Madman in my comic collection since the ’90s. I never had a complete story arc, however, so I never got to give it a real read.

I figured I’d check out the first collected volume, which collects his first two miniseries.

The first story is in black and white with nice grayish blue shading. The second arc is in full, vibrant color. Regardless of the presentation, both stories that were included here were a lot of fun and the art was pulpy and terrific.

Allred has a good sense of humor that works well for the character and this series. In some ways, it reminded me of the experience I had reading Rob Schrab’s Scud: The Disposable Assassin or Doug TenNapel’s Creature Tech.

While Madman is a product of the ’90s comic book industry, it feels timeless. I let my friend’s kid read this as well and she thought it was pretty damn funny even for modern teenager standards.

Madman is energetic, endearing and just a really cool comic. I dug the hell out of it and plan on completing it by collecting all the floppies out there.

But that could take some time and I don’t want to hold off on jumping into volume two, which I will do in the very near future.

Rating: 9/10
Pairs well with: later Madman collections, as well as other work by Mike Allred. Plus, Rob Schrab’s Scud: The Disposable Assassin and Doug TenNapel’s Creature Tech and Bigfoot Bill.

Comic Review: Gødland, Issues #1-6

Published: July 27th, 2005 – January 4th, 2006
Written by: Joe Casey
Art by: Tom Scioli

Image Comics, 140 Pages

Review:

Gødland is a comic book that I’ve wanted to read for awhile now. I’ve become a fan of Tom Scioli’s art style and I also like his contributions to the Cartoonist Kayfabe channel on YouTube. The guy is a wealth of knowledge and his style is heavily influenced by Jack Kirby and the classic “Marvel style” of the ’60s and ’70s.

This series is wholly original but it is a fantastic homage to the legacy and work of Jack Kirby, primarily his cosmic and mythological stuff like his Fourth World saga, The Eternals and 2001: A Space Odyssey.

I have been working to track down all the single issues of this comic but I figured that I’d give the first six issues a read, as they are free to Comixology Unlimited members.

From the first panel, this series just kicks off on the right foot. It’s got that old school style, it’s humorous but also has the feeling of something mythical and epic. It feels right and it’s just cool.

As always, I liked Scioli’s art here and I thought that it meshed well with Joe Casey’s writing. I also like that this feels kind of raw but also pure. Ultimately, it’s just a really unique comic book for something that came out in the mid-’00s.

Now this series stretches on for 37 issues, so this is just a small sample size of the whole shebang. But this does set things up nicely and I want to read the other 31 issues after this.

I don’t think that this is a comic book series that will resonate with everyone but for fans of Kirby’s cosmic comics, it’s a fantastic throwback to that style of art and storytelling.

Rating: 7.25/10
Pairs well with: cosmic Jack Kirby stuff and Tom Scioli’s other work.