Afterlife with Archie #6
Written by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa
Art by Francesco Francavilla
Published by Archie Comics
After a small hiatus, Aguirre-Sacasa and Francavilla are back with their breakout hit Afterlife with Archie. If youre following the story so far, we return from the break with a break from the zombie plague infecting Riverdale and instead focus on where Sabrina Spellman has been. Its a setup issue for her own solo series, which is one of my most anticipated comics of the year, and it is BANANAS. The creative duo take things to another level by introducing Lovecraft as an actual character in the universe and a few more of his creations are along for the ride. This comic is so much better than it should be, its ridiculous. Aguirre-Sacasa has created a truly horrifying world that is laced with the mystery and sensuality of a Hitchcock film. Francavilla is one of the best artists around and his two page splash that serves as the conclusion of this issue is magnificent. Do not sleep on this title.
Star-Spangled War Stories #1
Written by Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray
Art by Scott HamptonPublished by DC Comics
Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray are quite the duo. Theyve revamped numerous comics for DC and have always managed to take old and dated titles (like Jonah Hex), give them a modern twist, and turn them into addicting and interesting reads. Nothing changes here. I will be the first to admit that I am over zombies. Theyre played out in almost medium. But this is something different. Gray and Palmiotti bring us G.I. Zombie and its a little crazy. The idea of various monsters working with the government is nothing new but the presentation of the idea in this comic is leagues ahead of anything else that is out there. G.I. Zombie is partnered with an undercover agent who are infiltrating a motorcycle gang in the swamps of Central City. Things get real dark, real fast, and it makes for a fun read that will leave you wanting more. Gray and Palmiotti quickly establish their main players and give them all distinct and unique personalities. Partnered with Hamptons art, a personal favorite of mine since his work on Simon Dark, its a perfect grindhouse comic. Its smart, its sexy and its gritty. Everything we love about horror in a tidy 22 pages.
The Goon: Occasion of Revenge #1
Written by Eric Powell
Art by Eric Powell
Published by Dark Horse Comics
If youve never read The Goon, youre missing out. Eric Powell has created a pulpy monster fighting character that is on par with the likes of Hellboy and Doctor Strange. This first issue of four can be a little confusing to new readers but its still easy to catch on if you just keep on reading. Its a little wordy, as Powell is definitely a fan of the romance in horror, and that is definitely not a bad thing. His story is poetic, its buildup is fluid but not rushed with a solid climax. Goon and his crew are an instantly likable and eccentric crew and the villains Powell introduces the reader to are a creepy ensemble. Its hard not to love the comic because its such a wonderful mix of pulp horror and a mobster movie that its too fun to judge. As long as we get some answers to the numerous questions that arose in the first issue, this promises to be another solid mini from Powell and The Goon.
The Twilight Zone #7
Written by J. Michael Straczynski
Art by Guiu Vilanova
Published by Dynamite Comics
JMS continues his tale of the city waitress who can see the future and her quest to stop the death of thousands. While this issue is a bit more action packed and progressively more heartfelt, it still fails to hit its mark. The messages just seem too forced and the exposition and plot movement is all moving at a snail speed.
Perhaps if this wasnt under The Twilight Zone banner it would be easier to forgive, but compared to the original, these stories are just too dull. While Vilanova brings a certain amount of realism to the comic, Straczynski just cant capture the magic of the series that made it such a hit.
Written by Tim SeeleyArt by Mike Norton
Published by Image Comics
A lot happens in this issue. Every single plot line moves forward, in separate directions, and each one is more twisted and intriguing as the other. With issue twenty two, Seeley and Norton reach Lost level heights of head scratching mystery moments. Every time you think you have something figured out, a new puzzle is there for you to solve. Seeley is turning Em into a very sympathetic tortured character while Dana is becoming a true hard boiled detective while off in New York. Some twists presented will lead to some very interesting plot points, not to say those dont exist in the dozens at this point. Norton and Seeley balance sex and violence in the introductory pages before hitting his full force with some brutal crime scene investigating. Needless to say, Revival is only getting better.