Friday, November 27, 2015

Friday Slice of Heaven, Slice into the Woods 11/27/2015

Friday Slice of Heaven

This week: The Fade Out, Archie, Saga, and Chew

Welcome back, Donist World denizens! For those of you new to our site, I’m Donist, and I am joined by Donist World CFO the Reverse Obie (my friends’ Boston terrier whose fur recently swapped colors) and by our marketing director / administrative assistant / party planner / lead turkey taster Tulip (my dog, Obie’s sister). As I’ve explained over the past couple FSoH/SitW posts, Obie, through his dabbling in arcane magics mixed with ancient corrupt business practices, has had not just the colors of his fur switched, but a complete overhaul of his work ethic as well…I think I’m kinda okay with the mishap. Okay, so this is going to be a condensed version compared to my usual posts because I spent much of yesterday cooking (with the help of Amy the Intern, Reverse Obie, and Tulip), plus I’m in the final week of my graphic design program and I have a website to build by tomorrow evening. Yikes. Anyhow, I hope all the Donist World Denizens had fantastic Thanksgiving Days free of travel and that you all avoided that Bleak Black Friday BS, and instead chilled out, had some turkey and pumpkin pie, had some great beers, watched some of the phenomenal Jessica Jones, and most of all read some great comics. Take care. Thank you for reading!

***Possible Spoilers Below***

The Fade Out #11
The Fade Out #11 - Written by Ed Brubaker, illustrated by Sean Phillips, colored by Elizabeth Breitweiser, published by Image Comics. Charlie and Gil prove that copious amounts of booze and detective work do not mix.

There is but one issue left of this phenomenal, must-read series that is sure to please all the crime / noir fans, as well as those interested in the seedier side of Hollywood’s history. Brubaker and Phillips masterfully deliver yet another tension-filled issue that had me whipping through the pages, and made me want to shout “No!” at the fact that I reached the end of the issue already, at the cliffhanger ending, and at the fact there is only one more issue left. This is a bad and good thing, Denizens. The bad is that a great comic is soon concluding, but the good is that the comic is ending 100% on the creators’ terms, which leaves me without a doubt that we will receive a completely satisfying ending. I can also tell you that I will be reading next month’s final issue between my fingers as I try to cover my eyes from what is sure to a be fairly messed up finale; I wouldn’t have it any other way.

As I have said with each installment, you need to be reading this series in issue form, as the essays tucked at the back of each issue are well worth the price of admission — this issue included a fascinating essay about Robert Mitchum and dope. If issues ain’t your bag, then there are two trades with the third on the way, but you will be missing the fantastic extras if you choose to go that route. That said, I fully expect a hardcover of the series to drop at some point in 2016, but I don’t know if you will get any sort of bonuses. That said, the main takeaway is that The Fade Out is THE crime comic to end all crime comics, and you need to be reading this phenomenal book. VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Archie #4
Archie #4 - Written by Mark Waid, illustrated by Annie Wu, colored by Andre Szymanowicz with Jen Vaughn, lettered by Jack Morelli, published by Archie Comic Publications. That “#LipstickIncident” we’ve been hearing so much about — y’know, the one that split up Archie and Betty — we find out all about it.

Ever since the “#LipstickIncident” was mentioned back in issue one, I wondered if the reveal of what happened would be satisfying, or if it would ring false, but after reading this issue I am more than happy with the discovery…I’m also a bit sad. I’m not going to spoil anything other than to say that Waid perfectly captures the pressures of being young, of being true to yourself, and of the force of nature that is change. Neither Archie or Betty are wholly to blame for what happens, and seeing the couple together before that one fatefully evening is touching, which makes the split up all the more painful; I will be rereading this issue again later today…just to torture myself.

Wu steps in for Staples this issue and although the change in art style is noticeable, this is not a bad thing, and I was just as invested in the story as ever; Wu is a most welcome addition to the title. If, like me, you wrote Archie off for a fair portion of your life, you done messed up. Archie is heartwarming, laugh-out-loud funny, and relatable, not to mention completely enjoyable. You should be able to easily get ahold of the individual issues of this must-read series, but if you must wait for the trade, it looks like one will be available sometime around March 2016. Don’t wait though. Seek out all four issues of Archie, set yourself up with a soda pop or malt and catchup with these dang fine characters who have been wowing audiences for decades. VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Saga #31
Saga #31 - Written by Brian K. Vaughan, illustrated by Fiona Staples, lettered and designed by Fonografiks, coordinated by Eric Stephenson, published by Image Comics. Hazel is no longer a baby, and seeing as how she was forcefully separated from her mother and father, trust is not easy to come by.

Every break between story arcs of the Donist World Darling that is Saga is never an easy thing; thank goodness this ever-compelling book is back. With the return you get the great Vaughan story, the gorgeous (and I mean gorgeous) Staples art, the two to three full-page shockers, and the crushing weight of having to wait a month(ish) for the next fantastic issue.

There’s a reason why Saga is one of the most successful creator-owned comics — outside of The Walking Dead, of course. You can’t help but fall in love with the characters or avoid becoming completely immersed in the awesome world. At this point, if you have not been reading this not-for-the-kiddies comic, that is one of the best things on the stand, then you must be new to comics, or you just crawled out of your bomb shelter after being born there. Either situation is understandable, and you can catch up with the five available trades and/or the beautiful hardcover. Whatever your preferred method of reading comics, just be sure you are reading this monumental series. VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Chew #52
Chew #52 - Written and lettered by John Layman, illustrated and colored by Rob Guillory, color assists by Taylor Wells, published by Image Comics. Tony and Colby finally learn what the mysterious writing in the sky says…they’ll probably regret the knowledge.

<wheeze, wheeze> Okay. Sorry about that, Denizens. I was just breathing into a paper bag to avoid hyperventilating from the knowledge that the most unique comic on the stands and perpetual Donist World Darling is one step closer to issue 60, which will end the series. I know, right?! It’s kind of hard to imagine a world without Chew, especially since I just reread the first 40 issues (and the two available Poyo specials) as compiled in the beautifully-constructed, slightly oversized Omnivore Editions.

You already know I love the fun / disgusting / hilarious / exciting / ridiculous story and art, and that I do not want the series to end. On the flip side, I have to see how it all ends, so each issue that draws us closer to the finale leaves me conflicted. That’s what good comics do. If you have been avoiding this series yet I have finally convinced you that now is the time to dive head first into the deep end of this great book, then you can do so with the aforementioned Omnivore Editions, or with the less-exciting, yet they’ll-do-the-job trades. Chew is off-the-wall bonkers. You will laugh, you will wince, you might even cry, but most of all it will keep you wanting more more more. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Slice into the Woods

And Now the Most Heavenly Thanksgiving Comics Around - <crickets chirping> <more crickets chirping> Yeah…ummmmmm…if you know of any must-read Thanksgiving-themed comics, then please let me know as I’m totally drawing a blank.

No song this week, Denizens - I know, I know. Sorry. Cooking all day for my family, and finishing up a graphic design degree really put me behind. In the meantime, be sure to watch the ridiculously awesome Jessica Jones on Netflix (I have one episode left to watch!!!), and check out this awesome video from one of my favorite bands, Curve.

(Curve’s “Missing Link”)


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