Friday, November 30, 2012

Friday Slice of Heaven, Slice Into the Woods 11/30/2012

(Sung to the tune of Motley Crue's "Shout at the Devil")

There's a book that'll leave you sad with fright
Please don't turn the page
What'd I tell you
Indeed it is Chew
Holey moly
It's all the rage

Legend is the Stuff
I just can't get enough
Thor swings that hammer round
I, Vampire make you quiver
Hulk will deliver
Strong, green, mean come on

Read read read
Read some good comics
Read read read

Your Honor, I would like to state, yet again, for the record, that my client, one Obedicus "Obie" Maximus, who is CFO of Donist World is innocent of the charges brought against him here today. Please know that he is also my friends' dog and is of the breed known as the Boston terrier, which makes him simply adorable. Am I right ladies and gentlemen of the jury? Just look at the little cuss. How can something so cute be guilty of anything other than cuteness?! If your going to charge him for being cute, then I'll throw myself upon the mercy of the court and let him do hard time for his crimes, but unfortunately that is not the case. What is that Your Honor? Understood. Tulip--who is my dog and director of marketing/party planner/administrative assistant/personal stenographer--would you be so kind as to read back Obie's alleged crime. Yes, Your Honor, I understand that you don't speak Boston terrierese, but anyways, yes, Obie allegedly took a wiz on a police vehicle that was parked near our local comic shop, and believe me when I say his is deeply sorry for the act...for which there is no proof that he committed. I would further state--uh...yes, I do realize this is only just a ticket, and that we are not in a courtroom and that the "jury" is just a bunch of drunk college kids and hobos. I--yes, here's the $40 for the won't happen again. <whisper> Obie...stop snapping at that weirdo. I don't want to pay for any more of your nonsense. Anyways folks, as I prepare to have another discussion of right and wrong with my CFO, have a look at this week's...

Friday Slice of Heaven

***Possible Spoilers Below***

Chew #30
Chew #30 - Written by John Layman and illustrated by Rob Guillory, published by Image Comics. What the?!? Are you kidding? I just...crap. I was not expecting that at all. Not spoiling this issue is going to gosh darn near impossible, as I was expecting a different...outcome...than the what goes down in this issue; at least a different outcome for a different person. If anything, the foldout cover/poster (very nice touch by the way) hints at what's to come. Still, John Layman is a very, very, very mean man, but regardless this a great issue.
Toni Chu (Tony Chu's sister) is set to be married to Paneer. As she picks out her wedding dress, she imagines her perfect wedding day: guests fighting, chog licking, folks looking to hookup, a fat naked guy dancing on a table after eating an hors d'oeuvre aphrodisiac prepared by a cibolocutor. It's every girl's dream; too bad it's not going to happen. An abduction puts off all plans, and a visit to Tony--who's still in the hospital--provides an incredibly touching scene with a sucker-punch-to-the-stomach memory from Caeser that goes straight for the tear ducts. Now go grab a drink and a smoke while you sit alone in the dark to ponder this issue.
Again, I was not expecting this issue at all. Layman has gone to the dark place before, just have a reread of the storyline that put Tony in the hospital to begin with. It's cool, I'll wait while you reread it. Okay, now read this issue. Now doesn't all that torture and forced cannibalism seem like a nice day spent catchin' catfish at ol' McGillicutty's fishin' hole. This is not to say that this issue is all doom and gloom, you will still find the laugh out loud wackiness that makes this series so special, but what happens after the silly parts is where the horror aspect of this series comes screaming back to the forefront. Issue to issue, Layman and Guillory have done a wonderful job of giving each character their moment in the spotlight and now that...arggghh...let's just say that despite the grotesque nature of Chew you still end up loving and caring for many of the characters. If you follow this comic, you will be affected.
Guillory continues to deliver immensely humorous and giggle-worthy pages, especially the splash page of the naked fella dancing on the table, but it is the next splash that made me gasp and the double-page spread that actually made me angry over what happened. However, it was a single panel of Caesar recalling a memory from his childhood that changed anger to sadness. The implications of what goes down will push certain characters onto certain paths that will carry them through to the final issue #60 as scores are settled and multitudes of questions (hopefully) answered. For a story that has been fun and ridiculous for most all of the past thirty issues, there has always been a dark undercurrent threatening to come to the surface. That darkness and horror is revealed with this issue. Although I did not see these events coming, they make sense in the grand scheme of the story and have me anxious to see the repercussions. Layman is still a very, very, very mean man. VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

The Stuff of Legend:
The Toy Collector #2
The Stuff of Legend: The Toy Collector #2 - Written by Mike Raicht and Brian Smith and illustrated by Charles Paul Wilson, published by Th3rd World Studios. Ah-ha! I knew this issue was coming out this past Wednesday and there were no mixups at the LCS, so right on time. The last monthish's issue of the The Stuff of Legend showed up in my pull as a total surprise. You see, my handy-dandy Comixology Pull List app didn't let me know this was coming, probably as a result of the naming convention used on the series. Bah...that doesn't matter. What matters is that I have the latest issue of The Stuff of Legend and you know what Donist World readers? You should have a copy yourself of one of the best and most underappreciated comic books on the stands.
As Princess (Indian Princess) and her people search the train wreckage for Jester's (Jack-In-the-box) body, little does she know that she is being watched by Filmore, the Boogeyman (disguised as a young boy) and the very boy she had originally set out to rescue. Meanwhile, Rebecca (Alice in Wonderland-style toy doll) has found the half-dead clown warrior and seeks to bring him back to full health. Harmony (metallic music box dancer) and Quackers (wooden toy duck) along with a group of animals seek to rejoin Max (teddybear) who now rules over the majority of the wild animal toys. Percy (piggybank) finds himself in dire straits, but luckily the boy comes to the pig's rescue. Finally, Max, Scout (a real life puppy), and their animal crew climb a treacherous mountain in search of a magical night light said to ward off the Boogeyman, but their journey will not be as easy as they had hoped.
Despite the often dark and dreary nature of the fantastic The Stuff of Legend series, I'm always filled with joy to find it in my pull. Raicht and Smith continue to steer the reader deeper into their world that is alive and rich with a host of fascinating characters, and trust me, there are many. Even the secondary characters like Rebecca (who I hope to see much more of in the future) and the ex-villain Fillmore get their brief moment to play their part. Then there's the toys' boy, who begins to show his good nature and is no longer content to run and hide in fear. The boy's abduction is what set the toys on their rescue quest, and to be honest he has been the only character I have not liked; this issue changes that.
Wilson III's art is wonderful in how it can transition seamlessly from a touching moment shared between Harmony and Quackers to a scene of horror as Percy is about to be cooked and eaten. His illustrations are only enhanced by the design and colors of Jon Conkling and Michael DeVito who give the book its unique look, leaving you to feel as if you were holding an antique. The Stuff of Legend is a tremendous accomplishment of story, art and production and remains one of the best books on the shelves. I fear that not enough people are reading this hidden treasure of the the comic book world and if you have not tried this book, do yourself a favor and at least pick up the first trade. VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Thor: God of
Thunder #2
Thor: God of Thunder #2 - Written by Jason Aaron and illustrated by Esad Ribic, published by Marvel Comics. <sigh> All right. Fine. I'll add this to my pull even though it carries a $3.99 price tag for only 20 pages of material and is littered with ads that break up the flow of the story. You see Donist Worldists, just over a year ago I was all set to drop all Marvel books. Then came Daredevil, Captain Marvel, Hawkeye and now this piece of Norse god awesomeness which succeeds in getting me all riled up. Dagnabbit, Marvel. I was close to saying, "I wish I knew how to quit you," but with kick-ace books like this, that thinkin' is a thing of the past.
Young Thor sails across the ocean accompanied by a Viking hoard to battle Slavs and, more importantly, to challenge their gods. Thor finds his Slavs, but their gods are nowhere to be found. What he does find is one of their mighty flying steeds which is covered in blood. Seizing control of the great beast, Thor sees one of his would-be foes, only he no longer has his head. Then the butcherer of gods makes his presence known and the god of thunder finds himself fighting for his life against a remorseless killer. He barely survives the encounter. We also catch a glimpse of today's Thor and the Thor of the future.
For a comic book that used half of its pages for a brutal fight, I found myself entranced with building tension at each turn of the page. Fight scenes are difficult to pull off and do well, and Aaron did just such a thing with this fantastic issue. Equally important to this issue's success is the characterization behind this brash, younger version of the hero I grew up reading and adoring. Aaron beautifully captures the spirit of a naive god who is definitely out of his league when faced with something he never contemplated could ever exist. The dialogue is great and the transition from young to present to future flows perfectly with each change in time period. Ribic's artwork is simply stunning. Whether detailing closeup expressions or the fearsome action of battle, the reader is left feeling as if they were watching each scene in real life. Ive Svorcina's colors take already gorgeous art and give it even more depth and urgency, leaving me to wish I could watch a video showing just how they made each of these lovely pages.
There you go, Marvel. You did it. You done got me good. I'm in for this Thor: God of Thunder book that Aaron and Ribic are making so damn's also kinda scary, which is great, too. No, I don't mean scary because of the God Butcher's groovy speedo. I mean scary, scary. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Other Heavenly Items: 
Indestructible Hulk #1
Indestructible Hulk #1 - Written by Mark Waid and illustrated by Leinil Francis Yu, published by Marvel Comics. Aarrgh! Marvel NOW? Marvel NOW has me buying more books I didn't intend to buy. It didn't help that Mark Waid wrote this one either. All it took were a couple good reviews and I had to give it a shot. I'm glad I did. $3.99 though...
A Hulk and a SHIELD agent walk into a bar...or rather, Bruce Banner walks into a diner to find Maria Hill exactly where he knew she would be. He's been doing a bit of soul searching and he has a doozy of a two-tiered business proposal for the SHIELD director that she simply cannot let pass by. She agrees and the next thing you know, the Hulk is giving the Thinker something to think about.
Waid gives us a great first issue with a cool concept that makes Banner a character worth reading about, and he has the Hulk actually being utilized for what he does best...SMASH! Yu provides some great character moments and some intense action scenes. I'm not sure if Banner read What Color is Your Parachute and upon completing his "flower" found what truly makes him happy, or if he saw his fate in a burnt piece of toast. Whatever it is, Waid captured something in the character that made this former Hulk meh-sayer into a believer. RECOMMENDED!

I, Vampire #14
I, Vampire #14 - Written by Joshua Hale Fialkov and illustrated by Andrea Sorrentino, published by DC Comics. Note to self: never name anyone, or any thing for that matter, Mishkin. I, Vampire continues its dip into the original story's characters from the '80s, which is great for fans of the original series, and might pose slight confusion for those unfamiliar with the older material. In short, Deborah Dancer and Mishkin (the hombre) have/had history with both Mary and Andrew. They also kinda got the short end of the stick, which is all new readers really need to know.
Andrew Bennett is building an army and it's up to John, Mary and new player Deborah Dancer to put a stop to him. Fire, animal cruelty and seduction abound, and John has an idea that may or may not work in bringing Andrew and Tig back to their senses. nice not to have any guest stars, crossovers or events. Fialkov gets to do what he does best: deliver an emotional horror tale consisting of solid characters the reader can care about. Sorrentino has solidified himself as one of my favorite artists with beautifully illustrated and moving expressive characters while delivering the full-monty of creepiness to the page. A great comic that shines when unencumbered. RECOMMENDED!

Slice Into the Woods


No comments:

Post a Comment