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Comic Preview: 6-Pages Of ’47 Ronin’ From Dark Horse
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RoughJustice   |  
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47 Ronin preview banner

Courtesy of the good folks over at Dark Horse, we have some preview pages for Stan Sakai (Usagi Yojimbo) and Mike Richardson‘s (Cut, Caravan) comic adaptation of the greatest revenge story ever told—47 Ronin.

The legend of the 47 Ronin began in the 18th century as a group of samurai who were set on a course of revenge after their daimyo, Asano Naganori was forced to commit ritual suicide after attacking a man knows as Kira Yoshinaka. The tale has been popularized in Japanese culture as a shining example of loyalty, sacrifice, and honor.

With Sakai behind the helm, the comic will unquestionably be grounded in the classic realistic style that has made the comic creator’s work legendary. Check out the preview pages below and get ready for some cold entrees. You know, because revenge is best served… ah, never mind.

...continue reading »
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Comic Review: Usagi Yojimbo, Vol. 26
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Spartacus!   |  
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Dark Horse Comics: Usagi Yojimbo, Vol. 26Usagi Yojimbo, Vol. 26: Traitors of The Earth
Created Written and Illustrated by Stan Sakai
Introduction by Walter Simonson
Editor Diana Schutz
Assistant Editor: Brendan Wright
Design & Digital Production: Cary Grazzini
Publisher: Mike Richardson
Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: June 27, 2012
Cover Price: $16.99

Well, that’s it. Zombies have officially taken over. First that Walking Dead Stuff, then the Marvel Zombies. Before I knew it they were skulking about the bridge of the USS Enterprise and then that Blackest Night thing, but if they can make it all the way into the pages of Usagi Yojimbo then where else is there to go? Eightball?

Seriously, though, for better or for worse, in spite of the kick-ass cover, the living dead have not infected Stan Sakai‘s Talking-Animals/Feudal-Era-Japan, his samurai rabbit heroes’ morals do not get tested when he has to decide to hack off the head of a bitten loved one; in fact, it takes up a relatively small portion of this volume. As anyone who’s been following this book for years will tell you, anything goes here. Usagi Yojimbo Volume 26 has zombies, hidden fortresses, assassination plots, dudes getting stabbed to death, water spirits, former allys seeking vengece, and an evil wizard that reminded me of a Skeksie from the Dark Crystal. So, yeah, it’s not just ‘Usagi Fights The Zombies’ here. But, by the way, it is there. And it’s awesome.

...continue reading »
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Comic Review: Alabaster: Wolves #2
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Spartacus!   |  
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Alabaster: Wolves #2Alabaster: Wolves #2
Written by Caitlín R. Kiernan
Art and Letters by Steve Lieber
Colors by Rachelle Rosenberg
Cover by Greg Ruth
Designer Amy Arendts
Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: May 9, 2012
Cover Price: $3.50

Suddenly, from out of nowhere, a strange title pounced out of Dark Horse last month and leaped onto comic review sites (including this very one), causing critics to shout their approval for Alabastor: Wolves. People spoke of the art by Steve Lieber and the writing (the dialogue in particular) by Caitlín R. Kiernan as being strong and fresh and unique. What particularly piqued my interest, however, was just how vague folks were in describing what actually happens in the book. Most reviews I read went something like this: “It’s about a little Albino girl who speaks with a southern drawl, walking a wasteland filled with werewolves and other monsters, who talks to a bird and an angel who tells her who to kill. Oh, and she might be crazy.”

“Heck,” I thought, “I can describe a comic better then that.”

...continue reading »
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Comic Review: Star Wars: Crimson Empire III – Empire Lost #5 and #6
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cGt2099   |  
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Star Wars: Crimson Empire III - Empire Lost #5Star Wars: Crimson Empire III – Empire Lost #5 and #6
Story by Mike Richardson and Randy Stradley
Art by Paul Gulacy
Colors by Michael Bartolo
Cover Art by Dave Dorman
Dark Horse Comics
Issue #5 Release Date: March 07, 2012
Issue #6 Release Date: April 25, 2012
Issue #5 Cover Price: $3.50
Issue #6 Cover Price: $3.50

The explosive and amplified conclusion to the Crimson Empire epic is finally here, reaching an ending that makes for a highly satisfying resolution to the series that began many years ago. Star Wars fans who have followed the adventures of Kir Kanos will thoroughly enjoy the last two issues of Empire Lost, a tale that also sets up what chronologically comes next for the New Republic and the Imperial Remnant.

Issues 5 & 6 conclusively tie together the loose ends left from the earlier installments, as Kir Kanos and Mirith Sinn journey to meet Imperial representative Feena D’asta, in an early effort to bring peace between the two major factions. They discover themselves betrayed, as antagonist Ennix Devian begins unleashing his strategy to open up his aim to retake the Empire under his own iron fist and perverted new order. Kanos and Sinn find themselves placed in a standpoint where they must stop Devian’s forces, to help any future chance at peace between the Republic and the Empire.

...continue reading »
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Comic Review: Masters of the Universe: The Powers of Grayskull, Part One
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PS Hayes   |  @   |  
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Masters of the Universe Mini Comic #1Masters of the Universe: The Powers of Grayskull
Part One: The Legends Begins
Story by Scott Neitlich
Written by Tim Seeley
Art by Wellinton Alves
Colors by Michael Atiyeh
Letters by Nate Piekos of BLAMBOT
Cover by Eric Powell
Designer: Justine Couch
Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: April 16, 2012
Cover Price: $22.00 (Only available with Thunder Punch He-Man from Matty Collector
)

In celebration of the 30th anniversary of The Masters of the Universe franchise, Mattel and Dark Horse Comics are releasing brand new mini-comics, just like the ones that were included in the original toy line. Last year at the San Diego Comic-Con when these plans were announced, He-Fans, myself included, literally stood up and cheered. So, does The Powers of Grayskull: Part One live up to the hype? Let’s take a look…

...continue reading »
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Comic Review: Axe Cop, Vol. 3 TPB
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Spartacus!   |  
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Axe Cop Vol 3Axe Cop, Vol. 3 TPB
Written by Malachai Nicolle
Drawn by Ethan Nicolle
Colors by Dirk Erik Shulz
Designer Kat Larson
Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: March 28, 2012
Cover Price: $14.99

There will never be a comic quite like Calvin and Hobbes. For ten years Bill Watterson worked on an extraordinary ode to the trials and tribulations and joy that comes with being an imaginative 6 year old. It was arguably the greatest newspaper comic strip this side of the twentieth century. In part that’s because its main character was allowed to be as selfish and destructive as he was sweet and imaginative, in other words, he was allowed to feel like an actual 6 year old.

Then one day the strip was gone and comics have been trying to fill that void ever since. Other artists and storytellers have tackled friendship and growing pains, but one comic, Axe Cop, has emerged that really captures the sense of play that kids have. The make-the-story-up-as-you-go-along sensibility where dinosaurs, robots, and aliens are casually thrown into a plot. And unlike Watterson who would usually pull back to his real world in the last panel, Axe Cop digs deeper and deeper into its world of make-believe.

...continue reading »
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Comic Review: Ragemoor #1
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The Geeks of Doom   |  @   |  
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By QuestKid32

Ragemoor #1Ragemoor #1 (of 4)
Story by Jan Strnad
Art by Richard Corben
Letters by Nate Piekos
Design by Tina Alessi
Release date: March 14, 2012
Cover Price: $3.50

Ladies and Gentlemen, this is a horror comic! I have long been searching for a horror comic that not only delivers a few good chills, but also maintains a fun, yet serious tone, and I have finally found it in Ragemoor!

Ragemoor #1 tells the story of a castle built 3,000 years before Christ, on the blood, sweat, and tears of Pagans, and the family, or rather, remaining member of the family, who resides in it. But when a distant Uncle comes to claim the castle for his own with dubious intent, we quickly learn that the castle has a mind of its own!

...continue reading »
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Comic Review: Star Wars: Crimson Empire III – Empire Lost #4
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cGt2099   |  
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Comic Review: Star Wars: Crimson Empire III – Empire Lost #4Star Wars: Crimson Empire III – Empire Lost #4
Written by Mike Richardson and Randy Stradley
Pencils by Paul Gulacy
Colors by Michael Bartolo
Cover Art by Dave Dorman
Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: February 08, 2012
Cover Price: $3.50

Now past the halfway mark, Star Wars: Crimson Empire III launches its acceleration to the incoming conclusion of the series. The fourth issue of Empire Lost finds Kir Kanos determined to stop the planned attack of Devian, warlord of a splinter element of the Imperial Remnant fixed on bringing both the New Republic and Grand Admiral Pellaeon’s Empire into his own demented grasp.

Empire Lost #4 kicks off in space, with a New Republic naval force under command of General Han Solo. We’re introduced to a subplot involving a character named Ndigo who is tasked with investigating the disappearance of the New Republic ship Endor, seen at the beginning of the first issue. Trailing this, Kir Kanos – surprisingly – ends up landing on Coruscant, surrendering to the authorities, and demanding to see Mirith Sinn to warn her of Devian’s impending attack.

...continue reading »
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Comic Review: Usagi Yojimbo #143
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Spartacus!   |  
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Usagi Yojimbo 143Usagi Yojimbo #143
Created, Written and Illustrated by Stan Sakai
Cover Colors by Stan Luth
Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: January 25, 2012
Cover Price: $3.50

For going on 25 years Stan Sakai‘s Usagi Yojimbo has been taking its anthropomorphized rabbit Samurai protagonist on adventure after adventure through Edo-era Japan while maintaining a steady rhythm of excellence in both storytelling and cartooning. Usagi Yojimbo #143 is no exception.

We find our hero in a new town and quickly embroidered in a new exploit defending the poor and defenseless against the powerful and bullying. It’s pretty standard fare for many samurai stories, or westerns for that matter. Sakai, of course, makes it worth our while with his richly detailed recreation of feudal Japan. When he sets the plot aside for a number of pages to take us on tour of a soy sauce brewery, showing us the process from soy bean to fermentation, it’s not tangential, it’s part of the fun.

...continue reading »
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Comic Review: Star Wars: Crimson Empire III – Empire Lost #3
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cGt2099   |  
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Star Wars: Crimson Empire IIIStar Wars: Crimson Empire III – Empire Lost #3
Written by Mike Richardson and Randy Stradley
Pencils by Paul Gulacy
Colors by Michael Bartolo
Cover Art by Dave Dorman
Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: December 28, 2011
Cover Price: $3.50

The ongoing Crimson Empire III saga continues, now in its third issue, opening with a surprise appearance by Han Solo – with a story that finally progresses with more action and decision by our main character, former Imperial Guard Kir Kanos, swept and maneuvered into actions that are (perhaps) beyond his control.

Following the previous issue, which was mildly disappointing due to the lack of Kanos, the third issue quickly rectifies this with a great deal of interaction with (and action taken by) our main character. Detained by Boba Fett and delivered into the hands of a rogue Imperial operation (unsanctioned by Admiral Pellaeon), Kanos discovers that the man in charge of the hidden base is a man called Devian.

...continue reading »
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