The Mignolaverse: A Collective of Amazing Artists

          Hellboy20yearsWelcome friends, this week at The Banana Stand I would like to discuss the roster of talented artists that have worked in the Mignolaverse, and why I think it’s an amazing achievement in modern comics.  For those not in the know, the Mignolaverse is comprised of Hellboy, BPRD, Lobster Johnson, Baltimore, Witchfinder, Sledgehammer 44′, and Abe Sapien.  The umbrella term “Mignolaverse” was coined to refer to the books Mignola himself has created.  They all exist in a shared universe with the exception of Baltimore, that is a creation of Mignola and author Christopher Golden, and exists in it’s own world.  In my opinion this universe rivals any other in comics, and is one of–if not THE–greatest accomplishments in the post-Silver Age era of comic books.  The ability of Mignola, editor Scott Allie, and everyone else involved in this corner of comics to coordinate such a feat is a marvelous thing.  Continue reading The Mignolaverse: A Collective of Amazing Artists

Indubitable Issues




Itho checks his watch for…
fsThe Flash #31
After the tantalizing Annual, Future Flash is coming back to the present just as Present Barry Allen is introduced to Wally West. What happens next is anyone’s guess; I just want to see how Venditti and Jensen pull it off.

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Advanced Review: Harbinger #23

Harbinger #23_COVER_ Mico SUAYAN
Mico Suayan

No Spoilers

Harbinger #23 by Joshua Dysart & Clayton Henry with Khari Evans

When we left The Renegades last month, they had just launched an attack on Toyo Harada’s corporate offices in Pittsburgh, hoping to deliver a crippling blow to Harada’s schemes. Things go smoothly at first, until they encounter the psiot Ion. Soon the Renegades are on the defensive as Harada hurtles back to Pittsburgh as rapidly as possible. All of sudden, it seems as though control of the situation may slip out of the grasp of Peter Stanchek, leader of the Renegades.

Having put all the pieces in motion, Dysart does an excellent job of racketing up the tension in this issue. I was on the edge of my seat throughout; indeed, it is one of the most suspenseful superhero comics I have read recently. As always, Dysart does not lose sight of character within the action sequences. I have written in the past about how strong of an ensemble book Harbinger is, how each character feels like an equally vital part of the whole. This emotional connection to the characters keeps the stakes high and very real. When the sacrifice predicted by the title “Death of a Renegade” does occur, it is a powerful experience.

Equally effective is a flashback to an earlier point in the series, when the now deceased Renegade was first understanding his/her powers. This new sequence shows the Renegade coming to terms with his/her new circumstances and vowing to make the best of this fresh opportunity. It is a touching moment, reminding the reader of how great of an individual has been lost.

Harbinger is one of my favorite series, and this month’s combination of action and emotion is a perfect illustration of why. At the issue’s end, not all of the Renegades are in the clear yet; the battle will continue next month, even as the mourning will begin as well. And I shall look forward to seeing how the Renegades handle both.


Batman Essentials: Batman Year 100

BatmanYear100It is not the man that matters, it is the mask.

Batman Year 100 by Paul Pope. I can see this book as a dividing line amongst Bat fans. I can see it being placed on the ground while one fan says to the other, “You stay on your side of Year 100 and I’ll stay on mine. Then we won’t have a problem.” Year 100 is like Batman in a way, some deny it’s existence, it is a legend. Like most Paul Pope books there is more to this book than what you can find on the surface. The man is an artist and art is what he has created with his words and his pictures. This would be the ideal scenario to toss out, “This is not my Batman” and I assure you it has been done many times over. If this is you I would persuade you, not necessarily to give the book another chance but to see it with fresh eyes. This is not your Batman because it is year 100’s Batman, which has not happened yet. This is the Batman of the future and so far in my life I try not to argue with the future, because the future usually wins. After all that is said and done the book still might not be for you, but this article is not whether or not the book is for you. This article is about The Batman of Gotham.

Continue reading Batman Essentials: Batman Year 100