For new releases 5-25-22!
We're back, and so is Marvel! Here is the Weekly Round-Up, our top 4 picks of the week! Let's get into it!
HM: Fox and Hare #1, Legion of X #1
Fox and Hare #1 was a fun debut issue, published by Vault Comics! I really love the artwork and the way it flows. I really want to see this world fleshed out more and I think it will within the next two issues!
Legion Of X #1 was highly anticipated for me- of course, because I’m a HUGE X-men and Nightcrawler fan. While it wasn’t the *perfect* issue I wanted, and I still *hate* that Kurt is currently being a cop, there were elements to it that set up possible great developments, both character and story-wise. I’m continuing it in hopes that we see Kurt explore what it really means to be a good person for his people and how he can do that better than policing citizens. Also, please let him get laid soon!
#4: The Swamp Thing #13
Writer: Ram V
Artist: Mike Perkins
Colorist: Mike Spicer
Letterer: Aditya Bidikar
There have been so many big things that have happened in The Swamp Thing series- fantastically and rightfully so! But it was so nice to have an issue that not only set up the next plot but took Levi and Swamp Thing back to their roots. This issue felt very grounding and I think it was necessary both for Levi and for us as readers. I’m not exactly sure how I feel about the next arc starting up, but I 100% trust Ram V to take us in the direction that is best for Levi and this series. Bidikar’s lettering is gorgeous; colored well, text easy to read while looking like it belongs in a Swamp Thing book, and placed so it’s easy to read even with all the glorious art and colors all around! Furthermore, Perkins and Spicer continue to triumph with the art and colors. Their consistency in making The Swamp Thing shine is near unparalleled! I truly hope we somehow manage to get a season 3 of this series- I’m not ready for it to end. It feels like it could have one more arc after this. But time, Ram V’s storytelling, and DC’s willingness will tell!
#3: Blood Stained Teeth #2
Writer: Christian Ward
Artist: Patric Reynolds
Colorist: Heather Moore
Letterer: Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou
I’ll be honest- I have a love-hate relationship with the coloring of this book. While I ADORE the retro yellows and oranges, the extent they are used in this series sometimes feels like too much. Maybe it’s because it’s a vampire book and I’m so used to vampire stories leaning towards black and purples and blues. Either way, whether or not I ever fully embrace the retro yellows and oranges doesn’t matter as much when Heather Moore does a great job with the colors she uses. I will happily disagree on color palette all day if the colors used are applied well and thoughtfully, and Moore does both those things! Story-wise, this issue hooked me more than the first one did. The first one I wanted to be invested in this new vampire world, but I was ambivalent about in the end. I’m so glad I kept going and gave issue #2 a shot. Ward’s unique take on vampires and how they live is refreshing and brilliant. Reynolds’ art and Otsmane-Elhaou’s letters work masterfully together. This is a strong creative team that not only pushes the norm, but challenges the norm, and as a reader and fan, it’s wonderful to see and read. A great pick-up!
#2: Moon Knight #11
Writer: Jed MacKay
Artist: Alessandro Cappuccio
Colorist: Rachelle Rosenberg
Letterer: VC’s Cory Petit
Not a single issue of this MK run has let me down. Not. a. Single. One. My favorite part about this issue is how a secret that’s been built up issue after issue was handled. MacKay handles the interaction between two characters magnificently. This secret wasn’t put there just to be there, it wasn’t there just to shock readers- it was there for character development, and it shows here. Cappuccio’s art and Rosenberg’s colors continue to be near-perfect. In particular, fight scenes and character faces are highlights each time I read this series and Rosenberg’s coloring with all the shadows at any given point? *chef’s kiss*. Cory Petit brings it all together wonderfully with the styling and flow of the letters. I wouldn’t change a single thing about this book (and that’s saying a lot- us fans always have many opinions, right?).
#1: Harley Quinn #15
Writer: Stephanie Phillips
Art: Riley Rossmo
Colorist: Ivan Plascenia
Letterer: Andworld Design
This entire run has continued to impress me, but something about issue 15 of this HQ run just felt like THE home run. Phillips’ narration from HQ’s perspective has hit a new peak- and I didn’t think it could get any better! Her narration alone felt like both the warm hug and the kick in the ass I needed, both as a reader AND a human being.
“The funny thing about masks… we convince ourselves… that our masks can protect us from the world. But if we’re so preoccupied with keeping the world out, we forget that masks can hurt the ones we love the most.”
I STILL get chills from not only how well-written this is, but how well placed each bit of this narration is on the pages. The moment the reader reads “we forget that masks can hurt the one we love the most”, a horrific but magnificent heartbreaking image hits us. Rossmo does the perfect job capturing the image that we all need to see!
And even as HQ and Batwoman are causing chaos throughout the issue, and HQ is as quippy and thirsty as ever (can we blame her?), the emotional impact hits. It’s stayed with me days after reading. This might be my favorite issue of the run now. BRAVO to Phillips, Rossmo, Plascenia, and Andworld Design!
You can find Lauren, Your Friendly Neighborhood Bi, at all her links here:
#4: Something is Killing the Children #23
Writer: James Tynion IV
Artist: Werther Dell’Edera
Colorist: Miquel Muerto
Letterer: AndWorld Design
Atmosphere, atmosphere, atmosphere.
It's something I want to cover in a bit more detail when I get round to reviewing the first deluxe hardcover of this, but time and time again I always feel like what works so well for me in this series is the atmosphere it creates.
In this issue, and over the past few, it doesn't feel like a lot has happened, yet somehow I'm so incredibly intrigued and as wrapped into the story as ever.
I think what's most interesting are the parallels and comparisons to the first arc, but with quite a few different twists and just being that little bit different from the initial Archer's Peak situation.
Between James in the first arc and this new girl being focused on that had an encounter with monsters, that it's a different and seemingly more frightening type of monster, Erica's new status quo away from the Order and the people on her tail. Incredibly compelling stuff to me.
I could talk about the artwork, but it wouldn't be anything I either haven't said already or am going to talk about in the deluxe hardcover review, so I'll save it for that. I will say it's as good as always though.
Gradually building back up to something great here, I'm excited to see where it goes.
#3: Saga #59
Writer: Brian K. Vaughan
Art & Colors: Fiona Staples
Several months ago, one of my favourite comic podcasts, the Comics Collective, did a few episodes on Saga. In those conversations one of the hosts said something that has stuck with me ever since.
"The beauty of Saga is in the quiet moments."
I not only completely agree with that, but think that this is one of those issues of the series that shows it best. The series takes place in such an expansive and open universe, yet it never fails to feel so intimate and emotional when needed. Which I would say is most of the time, honestly.
Hazel once again experiencing the pain of moving on to somewhere new, as she talks about friends entering and exiting her life just as quickly. What that means for her and her family, and how's that evolved over the past 59 issues. All coming together in a very... interesting ending that I'm intrigued to see play out as this arc comes to a close next issue.
This hasn't been the most action packed arc in terms of lots of plot progression, but it's given us some great character moments, and I'm excited to see where the plot threads teased in this arc go as we get further into the second half of this fantastic series.
Story, art, lettering, everything all interesting and fantastic as always, definitely dive into giving this series a try if you haven't already!
#2: Moon Knight #11
Writer: Jed MacKay
Art: Alessandro Cappuccio
Colorist: Rachelle Rosenberg
Letterer: Cory Petit
Wow, I can not get enough of this series. It has been something truly special at times but I thought this issue was so awesome, I absolutely loved it!
One thing I've enjoyed appreciating so much about this run so far has been the artwork. I adore the glow that Moon Knight is given, it just makes the white stand out that much more. Makes him feel almost ethereal. This issue had some fantastically dynamic action scenes, so cinematic and such a joy to soak in and read through. Personally I thought that artwork in this issue was worth the 5 stars alone honestly.
But then the story has been so great. It's been bubbling under the surface, but it's finally coming to the brim in dramatic fashion, I love how I could feel the tension and the drama in the events of this issue. I don't have any experience with Zodiac but it feels like he's been such a great fun villain to Moon Knight, and I thought it was especially fun how Moon Knight managed to overcome one of his plans in this issue.
Someone else pointed out how great it's been to have a supporting cast built up in this run and I couldn't agree more, along with of course Marc himself that's been one of the strongest parts of this book.
Incredible stuff, easily one of Marvel's best books at the moment, definitely worth checking out if you haven't already!
#1: The Department of Truth #18
Writer: James Tynion IV
Art & Colors: Werther Dell'Edera
Letterer: Aditya Bidikar
After several months and an arc of guest star issues that ranged from absolutely chilling to solid but ultimately alright, it was awesome to not only return to the main story arc, but to have Martin Simmonds back on art in full force.
I never know what to expect from this series, and after so much time away I really wasn't sure what to expect, but I was absolutely blown away by this issue.
The main strength of this series, I would say, is the ability of Simmonds and Aditya Bidikar to take Tynion's immense amount of exposition and talking and illustrate it into something fantastic.
Tynion's dialogue and story is chilling enough as it is, don't get me wrong, but in my opinion it's the phenomenal artwork and lettering that just completely elevates it to a whole new level.
It really is like nothing else I've ever read or am reading, and I always love it so much for that. Just such a wild reading experience every single time. It's been steadily bubbling over the past almost a dozen main issues, but there's something grand and epic here that's getting deeper and deeper and I can't wait to see where it continues to go!
Really intriguing and interesting stuff, the art style isn't going to be for everyone but definitely worth trying out if you haven't already.
What were your top picks this week? Let us know what we missed! You never know; your recommendation could end up on our lists in the future!
Come find us both on Twitter and let's talk comics and good times :)
You can find Lauren, Your Friendly Neighborhood Bi, at all her links here: beacons.ai/friendlynbhdbi
You can follow JoeLovesComics over onTwitter for (albeit shorter) thoughts on comics he loves.