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Weekly Comic Reviews - 28 October 2015

Weekly Comic Reviews - 28 October 2015

Ratings out of 5 stars. These comics are courtesy of Absolute Comics (Plaza Singapura) – Squirrel Girl #1, Uncanny Avengers #1, Black Magick #1, Lady Mechanika #6.


Black Magick

Story: Greg Rucka

Art: Nicola Scott

Image Comics

Greg Rucka is known for his excellent characterization of tough female heroes – Whiteout, Queen and Country, Gotham Central, Wonder Woman, The Question, Batwoman and more recently, Lazarus. Add Rowan Black, the white witch and police detective, to this list. Nicola Scott graced our shores a few years ago when she drew Earth 2. Recently, she did stuff for Alan Moore’s Electricomics and now this. Her style has changed and it suits moody tone of the book. Worth following.

(4 stars)

Lady Mechanika #6

Story: MM Chen

Art: Joe Benitez

Benitez Productions

Joe Benitez draws like the late Michael Turner and this reminds me very much of a Top Cow comic. In fact if you dressed Fathom in steampunk clothes and put her in a Victorian setting, you get Lady Mechanika. This is a cult favourite and will appeal to fans of the Penny Dreadful TV series. This is the end of the current storyline. A new series will start next year.

(3 stars)

KFC: The Colonel of Two Worlds

Story: Shaine Edwards and Tony Bedard

Art: Tom DeRenick

DC Comics and KFC

In 1980, there was a special Superman comic that had the Man of Steel fought against Nick O’Teen. It was produced by the British Health Education Authority. That was one of my prized possessions back then. Superheroes being used by government agencies and commercial companies continue till today. And it ain’t all bad. The folks behind KFC: The Colonel of Two Worlds actually know their comic history well, referencing the seminal The Flash of Two Worlds story from 1961, the first modern day team-up between the Flash and Earth-One and Earth-Two, which introduced the concept of the multiverse. It is no surprize then that the Flash is the guest star of this issue, although the hero who saves the say is Colonel Sanders himself of Earth-Prime (our Earth). The villain: Colonel Sunder of Earth-Three. The art by Tom DeRenick is pretty good. He is obviously influenced by Neal Adams. Get this for free from Comixology.

(3 stars)


Sir Fong’s Adventures in Science Vol 5: The Quantum Bunny

Story/Art: Otto Fong

Ottonium Comics

It’s hard to make a living writing and drawing comics in Singapore. Otto Fong is one of the few doing this for the last few years and he is doing a great job providing edutainment – entertaining stories which are educational at the same time. A former secondary school science teacher (who has also written plays), Otto continues to teach readers about science concepts through his animal characters. This time round, the rabbit Qbit takes centrestage and Otto takes elements from Journey to the West and Pinocchio to tell the story of quantum physics. This comic is done in collaboration with the Centre for Quantum Technologies at the National University of Singapore. Declaration of interest: your truly is the editor. The book will be launched at The Arts House (British Council Gallery) on 31 October at 10 am as part of the Singapore Writer’s Fest 2015. See you folks there.

(5 Qubits!)

Stometika: Diablo Wednesday

Story/Art: Ken Foo

Ken Foo doesn’t like publicity. That’s why this graphic novel was released with no fanfare on 12 August and only available on Comixology. For USD$24.99, you get 247 pages of full-colour gothic Ken Foo. Not the Ken Foo of The Childhood Years or Super Wonderful Life, but the Ken Foo of Freedom Love Forever (also available on Comixology for USD$5.99) – romantic, verbose and one hell of a monster fight waiting for you at the end. Other local artists like Clio and Shawn Siow have tackled the monster gothic genre, but Ken has upped the game with a monster that can give Hellboy a run for his money. Throw in characters like a constable, a priest, a bosomy maiden and a mysterious inn keeper, you will be waiting for the next volume as this one ends with a cliffhanger. If you like Pat Mills’ Requiem Chevalier Vampire, you will enjoy this.

(5 stars because Ken only wants 5 star reviews)

The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #1

Story: Ryan North Erica

Art: Henderson

Marvel Comics

Marvel still owes Steve Dtiko. Squirrel Girl is the last character he co-created for Marvel in 1992 and they are still benefitting from it. No credit is given in any of the Squirrel Girl comics. The character is gaining popularity over the years and there are even academic articles written about her. Ditko has a knack for creating characters that have a huge impact on the Marvel Universe. Not just Spider-man and Dr Strange, but even Speedball was a catalyst for the Civil War storyline. Squirrel Girl is a great character – she is sassy and popular with male and female readers. This #1 is not as exciting as the previous #1 that came out earlier this year. That one she fought against Kraven. This issue reveals more of her family members and friends. But the next issue should be good. A rematch between Squirrel Girl and Dr Doom, the first supervillain she ever fought in her very first appearance.

(3 stars)

Green Lantern #45

Story: Robert Venditti

Art: Billy Tan

DC Comics

Blackest Night was a few years ago and this reads like a continuation of it. Hal Jordan fights the Black Hand again – the cover says it’s the final showdown. We’ll see. Otherwise, Hal Jordan is on the run again, an intergalactic outlaw now. The Green Lantern Corps have gone missing, so that should be the next storyline. The art is Billy Tan is great, nice and clean lines. It’s been a while since we have him on a regular book. This issue came out on 7 October and the next issue will be out next week.

(3 stars)

The Uncanny Avengers #1

Story: Gerry Duggan

Art: Ryan Stegman

Marvel Comics

Another #1 issue from Marvel and you wonder what’s the point. The more things change, the more they remain the same. Deadpool is still the draw here. Spidey quits the team. Capt behaves like Nick Fury and we are still seeing the fallout from the explosion of the Terrigenisis Bomb from a few years ago. Rouge and Quicksilver are just about the only X-Men left in a Marvel team book. And Johnny Storm is here too. A motley crue and a mixed bag.

(2 stars)

From Under Mountains #2

Story: Marian Churchland and Claire Gibson

Art: Sloane Leong and Brandon Graham

Image Comics

Another excellent Image title. Brandon Graham has been stirring things up. Both him and Marian Churchland are involved in the Island anthology and From Under Mountains would not be out of place there. A fantasy story that is a slow-burner. The creators take their time for you to get to know all about the lands of Akhar and its politics. This issue also introduces the eight gods of Akhara, drawn by Graham.

(3.5 stars)

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