The Eltingville Club
All the things: Evan Dorkin
Evan Dorkin and I go back a long time back from when I started finding out that there were comic books that were darkly funny and immediately fell in love with his work right about the same time I fell in love with Jhonen Vasquez’s stuff. While my love of Johnny the Homicidal Maniac has faded, Dorkin’s work continued to make me smile. I’ve loved issues of “Dork” comics and I like checking in on various other things he’s been doing, so it was with high expectations I checked out The Eltingville Club.
Eltingville Club takes place when one of the nerds on the cover finally lands a job at a comic book shop. A lot of the feels in the book hit very close to home as I’ve worked at several comic book shops so far and it always feels a bit like heaven. However, none of the shops I’ve worked at are as smarmy as the one in Eltingville Club, but many of the jokes land. The art in this book is amazing, but somewhere the story gets a little wonky. This book is wordy and looses it’s pacing, but it’s still equal parts a love letter and a F**k Y** to comic book stores that prey on the insecurities of the nerds they service. The book read like the first Clerks movie to me. If you like that movie, give this a shot. If you are looking for an honest making fun of the comic book industry, you’ll be looking for this book. If you are looking for an action book, STAY FAR, FAR AWAY!!! All in all, this book was enjoyable to read and while you navigate your favorite comic store on FREE COMIC BOOK DAY, go ahead and pick this up.
The Massive #22
Taking a pit stop from the rolling waves of the hunt for the Massive Brian Wood gets to tell us some backstory on one of the 9th Wave’s more elusive members. This is a welcome story, but there is still so much dangling over the heads of the characters in the present, I may feel impatient as the next issues focus on the deads of Mary. Mary is an interesting character and deserves her own couple issues, but I hope this doesn’t kill the momentum…
I should have more faith in Brian Woods. Even though this is a landlocked issue, the action is spot on for where it should be. It shows a bit of the world after the collapse that we haven’t seen before. Gary Brown’s art is absent as Zezelj takes the helm. Although I am a huge fan of , this art is still in the same vein and fits well with Wood’s storytelling. If you were looking to start the Massive, this would probably be a fine issue to start on as it’s not in continuity.
Mind MGMT #21
All the things: Matt Kindt
With so much house of cards building, this issue is one of those that jumps out of no where and kind of leaves you scratching your head. There is a lot of action and some of it I felt a little confused by. There were characters being beaten within an inch of their life only to be running off in a few panels. I’m not sure heavy action issues like this are Kindt’s strong suit as it was almost too much. That may sound counter-intuitive to the drought of action that has been seen, but this almost felt disjointed, muddled and forced. I’m not sure where this story is going, but from the super-tight start to where it is now are two very different comics.
Story: Randy Stradley
Art: Doug Wheatley
Blackout is a hero(?) that can duck into weird pockets with this suit he wears. We find out this issue he can drag other people in these pockets but it’s freezing cold and they go blind while in the other dimension we’ll call it. This issue is Scott playing around with his suit and trying to figure out what will. The suit’s power is interesting, but I’m not sure if it can power the book. There’s some secret government contract to make these other suits, like mini-ED-209’s from Robocop.
I’m not sure how long this book will keep going. I almost think instead of making Blackout another played-out anti-hero they could be making him a villain. If anyone had his power, they would be a thief, so make it him trying to out run some cunning super detective. The art in this story is on-point, but the story isn’t holding me. This is issue 2, so don’t start here. I may be missing something, but as of now, there are many other Dark Horse titles I would recommend before this one.
Capt. Midnight #12
Story: Joshua Williamson
Art: Fernando Dagnino
We start out this issue with a bit of Capt. Midnight’s biggest fan pretending to be Cappy as a kid. It’s a nice Segway into the actual story as it gives a bit of background on a character that’s always played second fiddle. In this issue, C. Midnight is going on full offensive against this secret organization. Maybe the offensive isn’t so agro as it turns out the person they are laying siege to may be a benefactor. Some crazy stuff happens at the end, that I wish I could discuss, but I promise no spoilers… But the end of this issue is VERY well crafted.
Captain Midnight has it’s up and down issues and this issue shows that Williamson can craft a story that will hit you in the emotional sweetspot. This issue starts out light and fluffy and ends with grey skies ahead. It’s great when a comic that hasn’t delivered that kind of character development can really knock it out of the park without feeling heavy handed or forced. THIS IS NOT AN ISSUE TO START ON!!! If you need to start a couple issues back, do it, but this isn’t a good one for new readers for many reasons that I can’t get into.
Story: Aron Warner and Philip Gelatt
Art: Brett Weldele
WHERE THE HECK DID PARIAH COME FROM?! The first issue I thought; “hey this is kinda cool.” The second issue brought more depth, character and all good things to an already solid premise. This third issue is laser focused on a character separate from the group in space. His character is so well developed that by the end of the issue, you feel like you know that kid. This respite on earth is a welcomed break from the drama unfolding in Space.
Now, I may still have complaints (minor) that the characters in Pariah are all young, but issues like this show why they are that young and shove a giant “SHUT UP FATTY” sign down my aging gullet. I’m loving this story a lot and look forward to where it goes. When the drama was getting thick, the writer knew where to take it. Fantastic. This is not an issue to start with. Start with number one. My worry is that by collecting this comic month to month, it may loose some of the subtle things Warner and Gelatt are building into it, so in my most honest opinion, wait for the trade. Pariah will keep you coming back time and time again.
Serenity Leaves on the Wind#3
Script: Zack Whedon
Pencils: Georges Jeanty
Yep, Serenity LOTW is a fantastic comic and any fan of Firefly DESERVES to read this. Every page feels like it should. Every character feels in step. I absolutely love this comic-adaptation. I wouldn’t change a thing. I mean, I would love to slap a “and they lived happily ever after” sticker on it for the characters, but that isn’t fun, now is it. There’s really not much more I can say about this issue. If you’re a fan, you’ll love it. I’m not sure how much you’ll get out of it if you are not a fan. If you are not a fan… well… go read something else.
Star Wars Rebel Heist #1
Script: Matt Kindt
Pencils: Marco Castiello
Star Wars RH is a great example of not letting a title alone sell a comic. There’s not secret that I find reading most Star Wars comics a chore at best. Matt Kindt (MIND MGMT fame) has taken one of the Star Wars Franchise BEST characters and made him even better. This issue starts in the slums of a planet I’ve never heard of… yes another hive of scum and villainy and continues to get better and better as the issue goes on. This is the kind of story you want to read about Han Solo. Hands down. I recommend this book to ANYONE that likes Star Wars, especially if you love that scruffy looking Nerf-Herder. This gives you all the Han-shoots-first cunning you’ve come to know and love. Matt Kindt has done a great job with this title and I actually looking forward to reading a Star Wars title for the first time since Dark Empire.
Script: Tommy Le Edwards and Noah Smith
Art: David McDaid
Vandroid is a kitschy take on 80’s cyborg movies. A guy that mods-vans can rebuild himself as a cyborg and violence ensues. The first two issues of this have been kind of fun, now the joke is starting to get old. There are only 2 issues left and I’m not sure it needs that many. This issue, other than the ending, felt like it was a filler issue. If an 80’s throwback title sounds fun (which for most of it, it has) then check out the first issue. If it tickles you, go on to number two… If that REALLY gets you, try this issue. Don’t start here.