DC Comics had a slew of announcements in regards to Young Animal & Vertigo. The previously announced Young Animal/DC Crossovers will be called Milk Wars and feature crossovers of Shade with Wonder Woman, Mother Panic with Batman (naturally) & Cave Carson with Swamp Thing, in addition to the previously announced Doom Patrol/Justice League crossover. In addition, writer Magdalene Visaggio of Kim & Kim and Quantum Teens are GO will team with artist Sonny Liew of The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye, The Shadow Hero & Liquid City for an Eternity Girl title through Young Animal. Vertigo also announced two new series in correspondence with their 25th Anniversary. Those are Motherlands by writer Si Spurrier (Cry Havoc, The Spire) and artist Rachael Stott (Dr Who, Star Trek) and Deathbed by writer Joshua Williamson (The Flash, Birthright) & artist Riley Rossmo (Batman, Constantine The Hellblazer) More details at Comics Beat
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Afterlife with Archie #9, “It’s finally back! As with Sabrina last week, the folks at Archie Comics are gracing us with another long delayed gem. I hope this signals that things are back on track and we can expect these books with some regularity, because they are some very good comics Continue reading Indubitable Issues & Pull Lists (5/23/2016)
Issue #4 of Cry Havoc is the type of book that exemplifies so much of what I love about comics. Continue reading This Weeks Finest: Cry Havoc #4
Writer Si Spurrier of Cry Havoc, The Spire & Marvel Zombies will be releasing a new creator owned series at Boom! with artist Dylan Burnett titled The Weavers. More details at CBR
BOOM! and writer Si Spurrier produce yet another great creator owned series in the writers Weavers, a gangster horror comic that defies expectations throughout it’s debut.
Weavers is the story of a crime family with deadly spider powers that shoot out of their hands and mutilate their foes. It follows a new Weavers member that is inexplicably brought into the organization through no fault of his own and forced to prove his allegiance. Like the writers work on The Spire & Cry Havoc; Weavers is packed with content, ideas, story, character work and engaging dialogue. Spurrier’s writing is engaging in just about every measure for the debut with it’s mix of wonder, humor and horror that’s come to be expected from the writer. Weavers jumps out the gate with an expansive cast and intricately detailed plot but Spurrier makes the comic flow naturally and with ease in his trademark style. He’s quickly becoming one of comics most interesting writers and is doing so almost exclusively on his own creations. Artist Dylan Burnett has a loose and rough cartoonish style in his work that is equally affective in it’s monster design as it is in showing conversation between the books different actors. Colorist Triona Farell uses dark blue hue’s for the urban setting while contrasting it with a vibrant bright and sinister looking red that is a treat for the eyes and gives the book a level or pronounced excitement every time she mixes bright and muted color tones.
Weavers is another highly original idea that Spurrier and co execute to near perfection with his gift for writing comics and the art teams singular style of visual storytelling.
The debut issue of Cry Havoc is one of the most interesting and creative works that writer Si Spurrier, artist Ryan Kelly & their team of multiple colorists has ever done. It’s a strange time lapsed story about ancient myths & modern warfare and it weaves between all those things expertly.
Cry Havoc is about a young musician who get’s bit by, and then becomes, a werewolf while she is playing her violin on the street. She is then recruited by a group of military contractors with similar abilities to terminate a deadly rouge member of their organization. More and more, writer Si Spurrier has been refining his strengths as a writer and it really shows in Cry Havoc. His dialogue continues to be among the best in the medium, his idea’s are wholly singular and he weave’s a plot together effortlessly. As a writer, he is moving past the “up & coming” distinction to become a fully realized talent and one of comics most singular creative voices. Artist Ryan Kelly does some of his most unique and innovative visual story telling of his career on Cry Havoc. An illustrator that has always been sound on a technical and narrative level, his layouts and perspective are next level here. Adding to that is the fantastic color work or Nick Filardi, Matt Wilson & Lee Loughridge, each of whose coloring work give’s a totally different aesthetic to their respective section of the comic. It’s a brilliant conceit that is executed to near perfection by the trio in giving each time period it’s own unique voice just by contrasting each of their individual coloring styles.
Cry Havoc is a cut above in a way that could only be done by the collection of the creative talent assembled for this series. Even by Image Comics standards, this is an impressive debut issue that feels like nothing I’ve experienced before. Smart, fun, haunting and overall brilliant, Cry Havoc is the full package.
By Rob Williams, Si Spurrier, Micheal Fraser, Gary Caldwell
The Doctor’s past has caught up to him, in more ways than one.
During the Time War, as his “9th incarnation” the War Doctor, he unleashed destruction across hundreds of planets and destroyed countless lives to stop the Daleks. Today, as his “13 incarnation” the Doctor and Alice are being sentenced for his crimes against the remaining survivors of the Time War who are nearing extinction. Before the end, they intend to see the Doctor punished!
This is a top-notch plot by Williams and Spurrier, exploring the Doctor’s more ignoble actions and their repercussions. No allowances are made by the Doctor either, he knows he was wrong but can’t let himself be executed. It makes for a fascinating story where there are alot of morally grey areas.
On art, Micheal Fraser turns in a style not unlike the previous artists who depicted the 11th Doctor, Boo Cook and Dave Taylor. Fraser’s is somewhat looser, with more shadows and highlights that with Caldwell’s colors create a flatness to the art. It makes for interesting visuals when he alternates between that and detailed facial close ups. He also lets his imagination fly with the weird storytelling devices he’s given, like the Doctor and Alice facing the Then-And-Now, or running down a hallway with TV monitors of the Doctor’s judge.
Fraser’s crowd scenes leave something to be desired though. With his art’s flatness, the lack of details in spectators faces makes the art seem unfinished rather than a stylistic choice. It takes something away from the story in that regard.
On the whole, this is a great issue for Whoivans and especially Matt Smith fans who miss his tenure as the Time Lord. The story is intriguing and well-paced, combined with an usual abstract style keeping in spirit with past visions.
Rating: Poor, Fair, Good, Great, Excellent
Simon Spurrier may not be a household name, but I assure you he has the talent to be. Spurrier is always right on the brink of writing a popular book, but it just never seems to take off. I think 2015 is Simon Spurrier’s year to show us what he has. Spurrier received a story spot in Secret Wars Journal Issue #2, he started a BOOM! series called The Spire, which has been well received and now he’s paired with big time artist Kev Walker in one of the most entertaining Secret Wars tie ins.
Kev Walker has this amazing gift to turn the comic world’s attention onto lesser known writers. Back in 2013 he was placed on a book that should not have worked; the hunger games with Marvel characters. At the time, Dennis Hopeless had not written anything that grabbed my attention but I knew Kev Walker’s pages usually look good so I tried it out. Avengers Arena became one of my favourite comics of the year and in turn Dennis Hopeless became a name I will always check out. It is a little early to tell but I think Kev Walker has succeeded again here with Marvel Zombies. The creative layouts, wide eyed characters and pouring rain panels are beautiful to look at. The clean, sharp panels allow Spurrier to have free rain on bringing these characters to life. This book feels very similar to Avengers Arena and that is high praise.
The story is of Shield Section Commander Elsa Bloodstone who was transported into the middle of the Deadlands and must find her way back to her domain. Elsa is an extremely sarcastic woman, never letting down that guard, never allowing anyone to see what is really inside. Taught to abandon all emotion for the mission by her father, Elsa’s journey back is filled with sarcastic comments in the face of danger, splashed with flashbacks of her lacking childhood. Along this journey she finds an abandon child with the unfortunate issue of memory loss. Elsa is not what you would call mothering but it’s very enjoyable watching her give this kid the gears as they make their way out of the Deadlands.
Marvel Zombies is one of the most enjoyable Secret Wars tie ins for me. Kev Walker is brilliant as usually, providing some great looking pages and Spurrier is taking full advantage of this artist pairing. Just as Elsa this book is funny on the surface with a little heart underneath.
With the debut of Si Spurrier & Jeff Stokely’s The Spire, Boom has released yet another fantastic debut creator owned series in 2015, cultivating one of the strongest new lines of comics publishing this year. Spurrier & Stockely worked with Boom before on the imaginative Six Gun Gorilla a few years prior but The Spire represents a great evolution in their style, one that she’s them applying their unique voice to a more European style comic with fantastic results.
The Spire is a highly imaginative and densely creative world building exercise about a monolithic society built on a mountain, with the classes segregated by tiers in distance upwards. Non-humans are discriminated against and thus lower on the mountains tier system. The story follows a female detective who is cased with solving a mystery for the new monarch on the death of her former child care provider. She is a bad ass, no shit taking, non human with the ability to grow thin white tentacles out of her back. There is also some weird looking angel things and this:
Which appears to be information related to the monarchy somehow that will reveal more of itself in further issues. It is all profoundly enjoyable and fascinating because of the books superb world and character building.
Spurrier & Stokely construct such a rich texture in the series opening issue and it makes for a series that feels immediately inviting. This is a series where you want to spend all your time exploring it’s world and hanging with it’s character. Sure Spurrier’s plot point may have been done before but look at that pic above again, your going to see that and tell me there isn’t more to this story then what’s been revealed so far? And one more time, look at that illustration above, Jeff Stokely is a fucking monster. His style is reminiscent of Brandon Graham or James Stokoe in it’s detail and playfulness. It’s art that is equal parts immersive and fun in just the right measures.
Spurrier & Stokely make for a great team and this is the best work the two have ever done. The Spire #1 is hugely entertaining debut issue and the beauty of it all is, it’s only just started.