Posts Tagged With: Trade Paperback Collections

Review: Jack Kirby’s Galactic Bounty Hunters Paperback Collection

jack-kirbys-galactic-bounty-hunters-tpbTitle: Jack Kirby’s Galactic Bounty Hunters Paperback Collection

Publisher: Marvel Comics’ Icon Imprint

Cost: $19.99

Storytellers: Jack Kirby (concept), Lisa Kirby, Michael Thibodeaux, Steve Robertson and Richard French (developers and writers) with Michael Thibodeaux, Karl Kesel & Scott Hanna with Jack Kirby and Mike Royer (artists)

A love letter to Jack Kirby, this series focuses on Mainframe, a retired member of the Galactic Bounty Hunters who becomes a comic creator and starts a family. Jack Berkley is a famous comic creator, using his previous adventures with the GBH as fodder for his comic stories. When one of his former enemies seeks out Jack’s evidence on his mother, Jack’s son Garrett is kidnapped and whisked away on an intergalactic journey, learning that his father isn’t a “joke” and that he was once the hero Mainframe. Suiting up and getting his old team back together, Jack seeks out his captured son and goes all out in order to defeat Slugg and stop the evidence keeping Slugg’s mother in prison from being destroyed!

A very short synopsis, but one that sums up this amazing tale. While some of Kirby’s art is used in this collection, most of it is not Jack’s but the artists do an amazing job of coping his style and giving the whole trade a great feel. I wish this collection had been in hardcover, as that is my preferred way to collect trades, but just having this is great. I really love the Kirby esthetic, which includes his writing style, which this does a fine job of mimicking, and his character designs, with their unique costumes and color pallets. The story here is great, allowing all of the members of the GHB to shine and giving us some father-son realizations in the process. We even get a cameo from Captain Victory, which is amazing!

Each of the six collected issues is massive, allowing the story to breath. Also included is a bunch of art and interviews with the creators behind this collection, which adds more depth, if reading that stuff is your thing. All-in-all, what can I say, I’m a Jack Kirby fan and even though he didn’t writer or draw this entire collection, with his daughter at the helm, if fells as if he had!

Recommended

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Review: Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers Volume One Paperback Collection

mighty-morphin-power-rangers-vol-1Title: Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers Volume One Paperback Collection

Publisher: BOOM! Studios

Cost: $19.99

Storytellers: Kyle Higgins (writer) with Hendry Prasetya (art) and Matt Herms (colors); The Ongoing Adventures of Bulk & Skull: Steve Orlando (writer) with Corin Howell (art) and Jeremy Lawson (colors).

Taking place after the Power Rangers free Tommy from Rita’s clutches, the Green Ranger is the newest member of the team. Tommy is having some problems with adjusting to taking orders and his new life in Angel Grove. Tommy keeps having visions of Rita, who derides him, driving him to take risks and disobey orders. This is all part of Rita’s plan to use Scorpina to gather the chaos energies of the Green Ranger in order to open a portal. Sending Putties after Tommy while at home,  Scorpina is able to make an imprint of the Dragon Dagger, which Rita uses to take over the Dragonzord. After the battle with Scorpina and the Dragonzord, the Rangers capture her and bring hero back to their base. The Rangers are angry at Tommy, who is constantly disobeying orders and getting himself into trouble, but it’s all too late as their anger activates the fake Dragon Dagger and opens the portal, destroying the Ranger’s base.

This is a fun and fantastic read, especially if you love the Power Rangers! I watched the original series, back in the day, and really enjoyed the concept and action of the show, while the dialogue is painful, especially today. But with that said, this series takes what I liked about the series and amps up the action and set-pieces, and gives us much better character interaction and dialogue, and frankly, a much better story! The art is also great, feeling a bit anime at times, and seeing as how the Power Rangers have a connection to Japan anyway, this fits. The main story is more serious than anything Power Rangers I’ve every read.

The back up feature focuses on the goofballs that are Bulk and Skull, and their attempts to get the girls to join their Power Ranger club. While it’s odd and the art doesn’t hold up to that of the main story, it’s still fun and reminiscent of the Bulk and Skull adventures seen on TV series.

All-in-all, this is a great collection, filled with great art and fantastic two fantastic stories, and I can not wait for this story to be continued.

Recommended

 

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Review: Warhammer 40,000- Damnation Crusade Paperback Collection

Title: wh40k-damnation-crusadeWarhammer 40,000- Damnation Crusade Paperback Collection

Publisher: The Black Library

Cost: $14.99

Storytellers: Dan Abnett and Ian Edginton (writers) with Lui Antonio, Greg Boychuk, Daniel Lapham, and Kevin Chin (artists)

This large paperback collection tells the story of three different warriors of Black Templar, one of many chapters of Space Marines in the Imperium of Man. Brother Gerhart is well respected Battle Brother, but some believe that he seeks too much glory, while Neophyte Raclaw is a new recruit, from a barbarian planet, who is trying to prove his worth to his master and the Emperor. Lastly is the Dreadnaught Tankred, a venerable warrior, whose body is gone but his mind and essence is placed in a living sarcophagus-of-sorts, and is made into an engine of destruction, one which is rarely called on, unless the circumstances are dire. This story skips between the three protagonists, showing us different battles and military engagements, but never really wh40k-dc-begin-issue-1giving us a sense of when these events occur or if, somehow our three heroes will ever meet. There are a lot of battles and many different enemies, from Xenos to Chaos, and our three heroes do their duty and protect mankind from these threats. It isn’t until the last issue that you come to understand that the three heroes will never meet, because they are the same individual, and that this story is being told out of order, hoping between the different time periods. Raclaw is his name when he was a barbarian and a neophyte and when he becomes a full-fledged Battle Brother, is takes his fallen master’s name of Gerhart and when he is grievously wounded, he is preserved and placed in a Dreadnaught and become Tankred and continues his service to the Emperor.

Wow, I did not see this ending coming! I had expected that the three separate stories would merge at some point, but I never guessed that they were all the same Space Marine. Up until the ending this was only an alright story, focusing heavily on battle with many different confrontations at that. The art is great, better than expected, because I’ve heard wh40k-dc-end-issue-1that some of the Warhammer and Warhammer 40,000 comics can be “hard on the eyes”.

I can not recommend this collection enough! I you love 40K or enjoy unique science-fiction, then this is the book for you. If I had two complaints about this collection, is that, first, the issues aren’t clearly defined, but if you’ve every read a comic or a comic collection, they you can probably guess where each issues ends and begins and second, you don’t get any additional content such as a cover gallery or behind the scenes art, but what you do get for $15 is well worth it. If they released this in a collector’s edition with some additional content and a hardcover, I would most certainly buy it!

RecommendedI was able to find some of the covers online, but you’ll have to wait until tomorrow to see them!

 

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Drax Volume 1- The Galaxy’s Best Detective Paperback Collection

Drax Vol 1Title: Drax Volume 1- The Galaxy’s Best Detective Paperback Collection

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Cost: $15.99

Storytellers: CM Punk and Cullen Bunn (writers) with Scott Hepburn (artist)

I’ve already reviewed most of this paperback collection here, as part of Marvel’s new Timely Comics line of introductory titles. That one-shot collected the first three issues of this series and this collection adds two more, giving us Drax #1-5.

This series focuses on Drax, the green-skinned mercenary from the Guardians of the Galaxy, and his adventures on his own. When the Guardians split to go their separate ways for a while, Drax decides to continue his quest to kill Thanos, the being responsible for killing his family. After borrowing a busted ship from Rocket, Drax finds himself stranded on a fringe planet with nothing to do. Teaming up with a local barkeep and the former herald of Galactus, Terrax, Drax must uncover a mystery that involves missing items and people, all of which somehow involves the dragon, Fin Fang Foom!

This collection is great! I really loved the story and can’t wait to see where our hero ends up next. The book is funny, serious and violent, and can definitely be picked up and enjoyed by those who have only seen the Guardians movie. The art is fantastic, having a cartoon-like quality to it. My only complaint is the price of this collection! Having already spent 3 bucks on Timely Comics one-shot, I felt that almost 16 dollars was way over priced for only 5 issues. I’ll admit to grabbing this one, for cheap, on Amazon, but only because I already own/read the first three issues. However, you you’re new to this series, this collection is a must, especially if you loved the character of Drax from the Guardians of the Galaxy movie!

Recommended

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Review: Pretty Deadly Volume 1- The Shrike Paperback Collection

pretty-deadly-vol-1-tpbTitle: Pretty Deadly Volume 1- The Shrike Paperback Collection

Publisher: Image Comics

Cost: $9.99

Storytellers: Kelly Sue DeConnick (writer) with Emma Rios (artist)

Pretty Deadly is a magical/mythological tale with a western skin, it tells the story of a little girl, who is wearing the skin of a vulture, who is being chased by death. To say anything more would give too much away…if I actually understood what was going on in this one!

After reading Monstress, this paperback collection was recommended. I love the fact that Image Comics publishes inexpensive first volumes, in order to ease entry into a new title, but I really feel that this title doesn’t deserve your money!

I really have no idea what I just read (REALLY!), as both, the story and the art, are a bit hard to follow at times. While the overall art is beautiful, I feel that it doesn’t help the narrative. There were time that I had a hard time knowing where to read, as there are plenty of pages without the standard panel layout. I’ve read “artsy” comics before, but this one will only appeal to a few. While I do prefer my four-color adventures to feature super-heroes, I have been trying to step out of my comfort zone and give something new a shot, and this title didn’t appeal to me at all. It may appeal to some, but I think you should just…

Pass

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Review: Montress Volume 1- Awakening Paperback Collection

Monstress Vol 1- AwakeningTitle: Montress Volume 1- Awakening Paperback Collection

Publisher: Image Comics

Cost: $9.99

Storytellers: Majorie Liu (writer) with Sana Takeda (artist)

Fist off, I’m going to say that I love this inexpensive, first trades from Image! This book has nearly 200 pages, collecting the first six issues of this series, for only $10…that’s a steal!

Anyway, the story of Monstress, takes place in a alternate world of steampunk and magic. The story follows Maika Halfwolf, a young girl looking for revenge after a war between humans and the magic folk. Maika has something inside of her that everyone wants, some to use, others to kill, and all she wants is to avenger her mother and free herself of her hunger, which is caused by the “thing” inside of her.

The book is fantastic! The art is incredible and the story is interesting, keeping you on your toes and making you want to learn more about the world and these characters. The best comics, for me, are ones with very interesting and different setting. If I find myself thinking about how I could run this as a D&D game or wishing that there was a world supplement, then you’ve got me. The story, and setting, blend all kinds of different genres, including fantasy, Asian myth, steampunk, and Lovecraftian horror all in one incredible package. Although, I can see why this title my turn a few off, as it comes out of the gate with all kinds of new vocabulary and references to events that you know nothing about yet, but I ask you to stick with it, at least through this first collection. There is a lot in here and it’s well worth the time and price!

Recommended

 

 

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Review: Silver Surfer Volume 3- Last Days Paperback Collection

Title: Silver Surfer Volume 3- Last Days Paperback CollectionSilver Surfer Vol 3- Last Days TPB

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Cost: $17.99

Storytellers: Dan Slott (writer) with Mike Allred (artist) and Laura Allred (colors)

This paperback collection contains issues 11-15 of Silver Surfer (2015). While the first three issues of this trade to connect, albeit loosely, issues 14-15 (and yes, the end of 13) mainly deal with the fallout of Secret Wars (2015). While I didn’t not finish that miniseries, you don’t really need to know much about it to understand these issues. Also, this is the first Silver Surfer collection that I’ve read in a while, so I wasn’t familiar with Dawn Greenwood or this, much beloved, series. With that said, while I probably should have started with the first volume, I really enjoyed this collection.

Now to be honest, I only grabbed this trade because someone had recommended issue #11, which involves a time-loop, and a cleaver use of panel arrangement to tell the story. You even have to “fold” a page to break the time-loop effect, saving the Silver Surfer and Dawn. It’s truly genius storytelling and needs to be seen/read to be believed. I grabbed the trade, instead of the individual issues, because it was cheaper to do so, especially on Amazon (I had a gift card). I enjoyed the other issues, but having not read the previous issues or the Secret Wars event, they didn’t stand out like the time-loop issue.

With both great art and storytelling, I definitely feel this book is…

Recommended   Now if only Hasbro or Diamond Select can give us an action figure two-pack of the Surfer and Dawn!

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Review: Spidey All-New Marvel Treasury Edition

Spidey- All-New Marvel Treasury Edition

Title: Spidey All-New Marvel Treasury Edition

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Cost: $15.99

Storytellers: Spidey 1-3: Robbie Thompson (writer) with Nick Bradshaw (artist); Spider-Man 1-2: Brian Michael Bendis (writer) with Sarah Pichelli (artist).

A large image for a large collection! This is Marvel’s first Treasury Edition in years and I had to own it. I have three other Treasury Edition: two from Marvel, a Fantastic Four and a Thor, and one from IDW’s Star Trek Reboot series. I love the oversized panels, which allows for easier reading and a better look at the incredible art. This All-New Marvel Treasury Edition collects the first three issues of Spidey and the first two issues of Spider-Man. Both series are great, giving us very different tales of two very different teenaged Spider-Men. Spidey follows the early years of Peter Parker, only set in the present, while Spider-Man shows us how Miles Morales is dealing with being a Spider-Man in a new world. The Spider-Man issues don’t give us much, being only two issues, but the larger print size does give us a great view of our hero’s battle with Blackheart. The Spidey issues shine and feel like they were crafted to be told in a larger format, especially the second issue, where Peter has to go up against the Sandman. There are a lot of double-page spreads and out-of-the-normal panel placement, which is great for a Treasury Edition.

My only complaints are the paper quality and the issues chosen. While the paper is great, consisting of a standard magazine glossy style, which somehow feels thinner and more flimsy in the oversized format. I was always afraid I was going to tear or severely crease a page: definitely read this one while it is flat on a table. And while I loved the stories provided, I would have rather had all five issues be devoted to a single series. The cover and title of this Treasury Edition is title Spidey, and I would have loved to have more Spidey issues and maybe get a second Treasury Edition devoted to Spider-Man.

All-in-all, this is a great collection, if you have the room to display or care for such a large book. I love Marvel’s old Treasury Edition and hope to see them continue to publish more of them in the future. I would love to see Marvel give both Weirdworld series and the Dan Slott / Mike Allred Silver Surfer series the All-New Marvel Treasury Edition treatment!

Recommended

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Review: Turok, Dinosaur Hunter Volume 1- Conquest Paperback Collection

Turok Dinosaur Hunter ConquestTitle: Turok, Dinosaur Hunter Volume 1- Conquest Paperback Collection

Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment

Cost: $16.99

Storytellers: Greg Pak (writer) with Mirko Colak and Cory Smith (artists)

Turok is a young native exile, whose parents were killed by mysterious, as yet unidentified, people/creatures/animals. The other natives of Manhattan, circa 1210, believe that Turok is a freak or a witch of some kind. Andar and his friends constantly make Turok’s life a living hell and even bring the boy before their tribe’s elder. However, before things can be settled, Holy Knight make their way across the ocean and bring their dragons, er…dinosaurs, with them. The knights capture the village and use the dinosaurs to hunt down the escaped Turok and Andar. Eventually, with Turok’s skills and learning how to work together, Turok and Andar are able to defeat the knights and free what is left of the tribe.

A rather short read, but still entertaining! While you probably guess that I will compare this to the Original Valiant Universe Turok, seeing has how I’m a huge Valiant fan, but actually, I never read any of Turok’s own comics from the 90’s. I loved the Dark Horse reboot of the character, several years ago, and the animated movie that was released, but much like a certain ‘Robot Fighter’, I prefer the original Gold Key stories. Probably the thing I disliked the most about this series is the lead character! I do not like this new version of Turok, including everything from appearance, to age, to personality. I think that every other character is more interesting, especially Andar and his sister, Kita. The story is decent, but I do miss the Land of the Lost feel from both the Valiant and Dark Horse interpretations of the world. The art is good, nothing special, but fits the series. All-in-all, I’m really mixed on this one, but ultimately it’s not all that bad, if you want a quick read!

Recommended

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Review: Fantastic Four Epic Collection- The World’s Greatest Comic Magazine Paperback Collection

FF Epic Collection TWGCMTitle: Fantastic Four Epic Collection- The World’s Greatest Comic Magazine Paperback Collection

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Cost: $34.99

Storytellers: Stan Lee (writer) and Jack Kirby (pencils) with Dick Ayers, Sol Brodsky, Joe Sinnott and Steve Ditko (inks)

This is a collection of the first 18 issues of Fantastic Four, by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. Their run on this title, which lasted for 102 issues, is widely considered to be one the most influential runs in comics. Within these pages, we get to witness the first appearances of not only the team itself, which consists of Mister Fantastic, the Invisible Woman (Girl at the time), the Human Torch, and the Thing, and are introduced of two FF support characters, Alicia Masters and Willie Lumpkin. This series also re-introduces Namor, the Sub-Mariner, to the Marvel Universe and sees the creation of several reoccurring villains, like the Mole Man, the Skrulls, Doctor Doom, the Puppet Master, the Mad Thinker and his Awesome Android as well as the Impossible Man and the Super-Skrull. In addition, we also get the creation/mention of unstable molecules and the Fantasti-car and get the first Marvel Super-Villain team-up, within these first several issues.

If you collect Silver Age Marvel comics, you probably go after one of two series, The Amazing Spider-Man and Fantastic Four. Both of these series populated the Marvel Universe with heroes and villains and established the House of Ideas as the powerhouse it is. While I like Spider-Man as a character, I never did get into his book, but I do love the FF! The FF are Marvel’s first family and first Silver Age heroes and this series quickly demonstrated that both Stan Lee and Jack Kirby were comic book superstars. While it can be difficult to read some of the old Silver Age comics, I just love these early stories. I don’t think the book gets really good until later, but it’s always good to see where things start. I’ve read these issues before, but in Marvel’s old Essentials collection, which were printed in black and white in order to make the collections affordable. Which is probably the only major problem I have with these new Epic Collections, at about $35, they can be pricey for some fans, who may not want to read the “old, boring” stories. Still, if you enjoy Silver Age storytelling and want to get in on the ground floor of an amazing run, this is the place to start!

Recommended

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