Thursday, January 16, 2014

COOL SHIT 1-16-14

GRAVEL: COMBAT MAGICIAN #0: FUCK YES! The return of William Gravel! I’ve been a fan of this book since I stumbled upon the first issue of STRANGE KISS at the Graham Crackers in Wheaton. Hot off the fucking press. I only wish that Warren Ellis was still writing it. Don’t get me wrong, I like Mike Wolfer, but Ellis brought a harder edge (and a darker humor) to Gravel. In this one, Gravel expounds on the history of combat magic in Britain, and of course he has to go up against a French combat magician. This is a bit of an odd #0, though. Usually, when Avatar Press does a #0, it’s a smaller book, maybe 99-cents, with a black and white preview, or maybe the first five pages of the first issue with a bunch of artist sketches. This one is fucking massive and comes in at $4.99 with a story of its own, which looks a lot to me like an issue one. There is a great combat log in the back of the book, giving readers Gravel’s history, starting with STRANGE KISS and going through to the final issue of GRAVEL. (Although the order is kind of off, and I can’t figure out why.)

CRYPTOZOIC MAN #3: This is an odd book for me. I can read any comic book with shitty art, just so long as the story is good. I’ve been fond of saying the opposite is not true. No matter how good the art, if the story sucks, I can’t get through it. I’m not saying the story of this book sucks. I just can’t get into it. However, the art is so mindblowingly amazing, I can’t ignore this book. There are so many great images, I found it really hard to settle on the one I wanted to sample for Cool Shit. I think I made the right choice, though.

GOD IS DEAD #5: OK, the gods are still kicking the shit out of each other. That’s not the cool part about this book. You know how the geniuses are trying to create gods of their own to fight the real gods? Well . . . they succeeded with this issue, and not in a good way. That last panel will make you clench your asshole.

NEXT TESTAMENT #7: This is probably my favorite miniseries going on right now, and Clive Barker and Mark Miller have upped the ante big time with this issue. God demands that his new followers fucking BUILD HIM A PYRAMID. When they fuck it up, he gets rid of them all. Next on the agenda? Blacking out the sun and raising a plague of locusts. And he’s acting like he just did everyone a favor. It’s unreal how good this book is.

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