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Comic Spotlight: Locke & Key: Small World Deluxe Hardcover
Waerloga69   |  

Locke & Key: Small World Deluxe Hardcover header

Locke & Key: Small World Deluxe Hardcover
Written by Joe Hill
Art by Gabriel Rodriguez
Colors by Jay Fotos
Letters by Robbie Robbins
IDW Publishing
Release Date: February 15, 2017
Cover Price: $14.99

Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez are back to give us a short one-shot tale of the creepiest family in comicdom. In the Locke & Key: Small World Deluxe Hardcover we are given not just the twenty-four pages of story but also a lot of background information and setup from the creators. In fact it spans seventy-two pages altogether; that’s a lot of extras!

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Comic Review: Onyx #1
PS Hayes   |  

Onyx #1 review header

Onyx #1
Written by Chris Ryall
Art by Gabriel Rodriguez
Colors by Jay Fotos
Letters by Shawn Lee
Cover art by Gabriel Rodriguez, Ashley Wood, Charles Paul Wilson III, Alan Robinson, and Sal Buscema
IDW Publishing
Release Date: July 1, 2015
Cover Price: $3.99

At the end of Onyx #1 you’re going to hear a bit of a thud. That’s the mic dropping.

Writer Chris Ryall finally brings this labor of love to shelves of comic stores around the world, and boy, can you tell that Ryall loves this book. There’s some comics that I read where I can tell that the creators are just showing up to collect a paycheck, then they’re outta there and on to the their next project. Not so with Ryall and Onyx.

It’s the year 2083 and Earth has more than a few problems. Overpopulation. Lack of food. Lack of space. Oh, there’s also the small issue of an alien invasion, too. Thankfully, along comes the galactic warrior Onyx to help save the planet. Unfortunately for Onyx, the International Global Defense Corps isn’t that keen on Onyx and decide to try and put a stop to it.

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Comic Review: The Disciples #1
Night Hob   |  

The Disciples #1
The Disciples #1
Written by Steve Niles
Art by Christopher Mitten
Colors by Jay Fotos
Letters by Thomas Mauer
Black Mask Studios
Release Date: May 27, 2015
Cover Price: $3.99

Part bounty hunter saga with nods to Alien and Firefly, The Disciples starts off with a slow build that turns into a big bang in the first issue of what may shape up to be a very exciting series.

The Disciples #1 starts with three companions heading to Ganymede, one of Jupiter’s moons. It and the other moons in the solar system have recently been colonized in a Gold Rush-style land rush. Ganymede was settled by a religious cult (that started in Florida, obviously). One of the members of this cult is the daughter of a senator, and our three heroes have been sent to bring her back. Of course, the start of their journey doesn’t go as planned, and right from the beginning they encounter one creepy-ass alien who does not seem to come in peace.

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Comic Review: V Wars #3
Maximus Prime   |  

V Wars #3 review header image

V Wars #3
Written by Jonathan Maberry
Illustrated by Alan Robinson
Colored by Jay Fotos
Lettered by Robbie Robbins
Covers by Ryan Brown and Kevin Eastman
IDW Publishing
Release Date: June 18, 2014
Cover Price: $3.99

Can one man change the ideals of two warring factions? In IDW’s V Wars #3, written by Jonathan Maberry with illustrations from Alan Robinson, the humans and the vampires continue their bloody onslaught against each other.

Taurus Harper, a soldier whose entire platoon is slaughtered by an anarchist V-Cell, is recruited to the V-8 squad – the elite military force known for taking out vampire threats quickly and efficiently. As Professor Swann gets to know Taurus, he is overwhelmed by the man’s genuine humanity and understanding that not everything about the V-War is black and white; however, Taurus himself may not be all that he seems.

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Comic Review: Wraith #5
Chris Murphy   |  

Wraith #5 cover by Charles Paul Wilson III

Wraith #5
Welcome To Christmasland
Created & Written by Joe Hill
Art by Charles Paul Wilson III
Colors by Jay Fotos
Letters by Robbie Robbins
IDW Publishing
Release Date: March 26, 2014
Cover Price: $3.99

Wraith #5 is… well it’s another in a very strange story that really feels like it should be enjoyed while partaking in a hallucinogenic substance… or it was written while enjoying some. Wraith continues the journey into Christmasland as we see what Manx’s little psychotic children get up with a sex criminal and discover a little more about how one can escape this perpetual Noel Hell.

I’ll be honest with you all, I didn’t have high hopes for this book, but it did grab my attention and kept it. The art is unique and while it’s not what one would consider high quality by mainstream standards, it’s absolutely fitting for the book. Manx’s children are drawn in a way that will fuel nightmares, and the sporadic blood splatter that Charles Paul Wilson III and Jay Fotos have devised is downright jarring at times. I’ll never look at an ordinary pair of scissors the same way again, I promise you that.

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Comic Review: Mars Attacks Judge Dredd #1
TheRawrMonster   |  

Mars Attacks Judge Dredd #1Mars Attacks Judge Dredd #1
Written by Al Ewing
Art by John McCrea
Colored by Jay Fotos
Lettered by Tom B. Long
Covers by Greg Staples, John McCrea and Jay Fotos, Loston Wallace and Stephen Downer, Nav! and Thomas Mason
IDW Publishing
Release Date: September 11, 2013
Cover Price: $3.99

Mars Attacks Judge Dredd #1 starts in a dark room with shadowy figures, talking about the mega-mafia. It quickly devolves into an argument about who is in charge, until a man shows up and says he is the only person to control the mega-mafia. A month later, Judge Dredd gets called in to help the North Sector with their troubles with the mega-mafia’s new plans.

The art, by John McCrea, is all over the place, sometimes clear as day, sometimes looking like a photograph from the ’40s. It works well with the writing though, and doesn’t interfere with reading the comic. The writing, by Al Ewing, doesn’t stand out in any way; it is clear and coherent, but not much else.

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Comic Review: The Colonized #3
cGt2099   |  

The Colonized #3The Colonized #3
Written by Chris Ryall
Art by Drew Moss
Covers by Nelson Daniel, Jay Fotos, Gabriel Rodriguez, Dave Sim
IDW Publishing
Publication Date: June 5, 2013
Cover Price: $3.99

The Colonized is essentially a Zombies Versus Aliens yarn, with humans caught in the middle. Or, more accurately, it’s a Zombies Versus Humans story with aliens caught in the middle. Whatever the case, the third chapter of the new IDW series finally grabs plot fundamentals and puts them to use in a tale that sends up and borderline-parodies the stereotypes of 1950’s horror and sci-fi movies.

Set in the rural remote town of Carbon Falls in Montana, the humans are essentially a community of separatist militiamen that wish for zero interference from the Feds, though the focus of their community is (somewhat ironically) on sustainability and all-things-green. A group of aliens launch their plan to make contact with humanity, though their efforts are messed up by the coincidental event of the dead rising from the graves to feast on the living.

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Comic Review: Locke & Key: Omega #5
Waerloga69   |  

Locke and Key: Omega #5Locke & Key: Omega #5
Written by Joe Hill
Art by Gabriel Rodriguez
Colors by Jay Fotos
Letters by Robbie Robbins
Covers by Gabriel Rodriguez, Shane Leonard
IDW Publishing
Release Date: June 5, 2013
Cover Price: $3.99

There are comic books out there that I read strictly because the art is just so fantastic it must be seen to be believed. There are also those that I read because the story is so riveting or the writing is so phenomenal. Well, Locke & Key: Omega #5 is firmly housed in both those categories. I cannot stress enough how awesome this entire series has been. From the very first comic to this current issue, nothing has ever changed my initial opinion of “WOW!”

First and foremost is Joe Hill, author extraordinaire. Brilliant and twisted are the first two words that come to mind when I think of him. Not in an over-the-top horrific way, but in a subtle, never-saw-it-coming kind of way. His characters are all so richly developed and so very damaged in one sense or another. Tragedy is commonplace and almost to be expected with the Locke family (the main protagonists of this series), they’ve seen so much of it and it never seems to let up. And just as in real life, the characters grow stronger and closer throughout most of it…really instilling the reader with the feeling that this family intends to endure and conquer whatever they come up against.

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Comic Review: The Colonized #2
Maximus Prime   |  

The Colonized #2The Colonized #2
Aliens and Humans Versus Zombies
Written by Chris Ryall
Illustrated by Drew Moss
Colored by Jay Fotos and Nelson Daniel
Lettered by Tom B. Long
Covers by Dave Sim and Zach Howard
IDW Publishing
Release Date: May 1, 2013
Cover Price: $3.99

Zombies and aliens and separatists, oh my! Chris Ryall and Drew Moss are back and they’ve surely picked up the pace since issue number one. If you enjoyed the first installment of this rollicking adventure, you’re sure to delight in the mayhem that ensues in The Colonized #2.

The self-governing town of Carbon Falls has recently been overrun by a horde of zombies and a crashed alien spaceship. Carbon Falls’ appointed leader, Hux, continues to butt heads with self-proclaimed leader, Randy Roy; their ideals, southern drawl, and an armory of weapons force the men into a standstill as they discover that the alien’s malfunctioned tractor-beam was the cause of the zombie outbreak. Eventually deciding to hide the aliens until the group can help them leave Earth, they make their way back to the home of Hux’s recently deceased father. Randy Roy — still heated that the aliens “caused” one of his friends to die — triggers a ruckus when he makes a violent decision. Startling discoveries are made and if all of these peculiar characters weren’t enough, someone else is secretly roaming around their territory as well!

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Comic Review: The Colonized #1
Empress Eve   |  

The Colonized #1The Colonized #1
Zombies Versus Aliens
By Chris Ryall
Art by Drew Moss
Colors by Jay Fotos
Letters by Tom B. Long
Cover by Dave Sim
Varient cover by John Byrne
IDW Publishing
Release date: April 10, 2013
Price: $3.99

The title The Colonized might not immediately grab your attention, but its subtitle, “Zombies Versus Aliens,” sure will – at least that’s what did it for me. The Colonized #1 kicks off a new four-issue miniseries from IDW, where, you guessed it, it’s a battle between zombies and aliens!

A spaceship carrying friendly aliens on a mission of peace is about to make first contact with what they believe is humankind. The little green men initiate their tracter beam, about to meet and greet an Earthling, only to find that what they’ve pulled in is neither dead nor alive – it’s a zombie!

Down on the surface in the U.S. state of Montana, as a militia of separatists mourns the loss of their leader, the aforementioned alien spacecraft crash-lands nearby, shocking the mourners, who come face-to-face with not only the outer spacemen, but the reanimated body of one of their own!

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