Everything We Read This Week – 08/7/2019

Welcome back to Everything We Read This Week. This is the place that we make our weekly trip through this week’s pull-list. It features mostly spoiler-free brief analysis and commentary of each book.

This week was we open a new month of comics. Through some quirkiness, we noticed that there are an inordinate number of books that start with D in this week’s list. Also, there are a lot of Issue #2’s in the list. Unrelated to these oddities,  we were able to read some excellent comics by a variety of publishers. Some important series began, and we have the reviews for you. Find the comics you like and remember, Read More Comics!!

We reviewed books from DC, Marvel, Image, Dynamite, Dark Horse, and AfterShock Comics this week. As always, we hope you might find what we say interesting enough to try some of these comics. Don’t forget we welcome comments on these and any other comics that you read. Feel free to leave a comment and get the conversation moving.

Also, Don’t forget to check our hotlist of new books debuting this month over here. You will see books that we were looking forward to with the designation Hot #1 by them. There are a few of them out this week, and they are really good.

DISCLAIMER: 

There is a 4 star rating system. It is simple and not to be taken too seriously as everyone gets their own impressions of art. These ratings are just to give our readers an idea of what we thought of the book, and they will be on the generous side normally. So don’t expect to see a lot of 1 Stars. After all, it’s not often that you have a bad book on your pull-list.

The rating system is as follows:

Great

 Good

 OK

 Not Good

 

And here are the books we read in alphabetical order:

 


Batman #76
DC Comics
Written by Tom King
Pencils by Tony S. Daniel
Inks by Daniel, Sandu Florea, & Norm Rapmund
Colors by Tomeu Morey
Letters by Clayton Cowles
Cover art by Daniel & Morey

For a single issue in a larger story arc, this is a fantastic comic. First of all, it is gorgeous. Daniel and the inkers crafted a superb superhero story. It is full of striking power poses and excellently executed action sequences. Facial expressions of the characters are amazingly rendered. For a book that is heavy on superhero and villain characters, Daniel is the perfect artist.

King’s story is just captivating. There is a complete story told in this issue, but the overarching conflict is discussed and clarified in appropriately placed cutaway scenes. The dialogue sparkles, and the emotion that the words evoke is enhanced by the art. This is high quality storytelling.


Berserker Unbound #1
Dark Horse Comics
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Mike Deodato Jr.
Colors by Frank Martin
Letters by Steve Wands
Cover art by Deodato & Martin

Hot #1

Mike Deodato Jr.’s art in this book is glorious. The character designs, camera angles and panel layouts are all spectacular. The story is interesting and intriguing. The time lost barbarian feels like it has been done, but Lemire’s talent gives us hope that the story will be told with a freshness that keeps us on board. This is an excellent first issue.


Coffin Bound #1
Image Comics
Written by Dan Watters
Art by Dani
Colors by Brad Simpson
Letters by Aditya Bidikar
Cover art by Dani

Hot #1

Excerpt from our Preview Review:

Once you start this book, it is like your are on treadmill. You can’t get off, and then when you have finished, you need to get your bearings and reset to your own reality. The book is engrossing and captivating. The character of Izzy is immediately likeable, even though I am pretty sure she would not reciprocate. The mind bending reality that the narrative creates is complemented by excellent and challenging dialogue. What a tremendous achievement this book is!


Daredevil #9
Marvel Comics
Written by Chip Zdarsky
Pencils by Lalit Kumar Sharma
Inks by Jay Leisten
Colors by Java Tartaglia
Letters by Clayton Cowles
Cover art by Julian Totino Tedesco

 

Zdarsky’s insight into the tragic, tortured soul that is Matt Murdock is what keeps this book at the top of the read pile every month. The profound sadness and loneliness that oozes through every panel is an amazing achievement. There is not a massive superhero moment in this book, but there is definite movement in character development. The art in this issue is excellent, and the colors are perfectly rendered. Cowles lettering is well executed and placed. Everyone involved should be proud of this issue.


Dead End Kids #1
Source Point Press
Written by Frank Gogol
Art by Nenad Cvitcanin
Letters by Sean Rinehart
Cover art by Chris Madd

Hot #1

Excerpt from our Preview Review:

This book is an intense read. There is an overarching sadness that permeates the book and perhaps the winter season that the book is set in has something to do with that. Frank Gogol has evolved from his previous work on Grief, and turned in a gripping story of loss, and all the emotions that go along with that. Besides the emotional component, it’s a pretty damn good mystery. This is only the first issue, and we are psyched to see what comes in the later issues.


The Death-Defying ‘Devil #1
Dynamite Entertainment
Written by Gail Simone
Art by Walter Geovani
Colors by Adriano Augusto
Letters by Simon Bowland
Cover art by Riccardo Federici

Hot #1

Gail Simone does not disappoint. Her take on the public domain pulp hero, The Death Defying ‘Devil, as trademarked by Dynamite, is excellent. He is safe in her hands, and her partnership with Walter Geovani is already clicking on all cylinders. The colors by Augusto are beautifully rendered. The first issue does a good job of setting up a conflict and introduces the character in subtle but clear ways for the new reader.


Descendent #4
AfterShock Comics
Written by Stephanie Phillips
Art by Evgeniy Bronyakov
Colors by Lauren Affe
Letters by Troy Peteri
Cover art by Juan Doe

This book is full of engaging characters, intriguing mystery, and now Holy Crap Flaming Lizard Woman!!!! Sorry that was a little spoilery, but go get this book. Phillips takes it to the next level with this issue. The narrative is entertaining and funny. Then you turn the page, and it knocks your socks off. Bronyakov is doing some amazing work in this. The far too often unsung Lauren Affe is just killing it in this issue. Go get it already.


DIE #6
Image Comics
Written by Kieron GIllen
Art by Stephanie Hans
Letters by Clayton Cowles
Cover art by Hans

One of the best books of the year returns from hiatus with a thunderbolt. Gillen is at the top of his game, and Hans’ art is just breathtaking. The majority of this issue is full of clarifying backstory that is done in a clever and unassuming way, and then “Bolt of Lightning” on the last page. I cannot recommend this book enough. If this is the only book you can read this week, that would be ok.


Future Foundation #1
Marvel Comics
Written by Jeremy Whitley
Pencils by Will Robson
Inks by Robson & Daniele Orlandini
Colors by Greg Menzie
Letters by Joe Caramagna
Cover art by Carlos Pacheco, Rafael Fronteriz & Matt Yackey

Hot #1

This new series by Jeremy Whitley and Will Robson is off to a solid start. There is some excellent writing in this book. Character introductions during an in-flight narrative with a clear and complete mission get things moving in the right direction. The art is a great fit for the tone of the story and looks great. Looking forward to more.


House of X #2
Marvel Comics
Written by Jonathan Hickman
Art by Pepe Larraz
Colors by Marte Gracia
Letters by Clayton Cowles
Design by Tom Muller
Cover art by Larraz & Gracia

Let us discuss comic art for a second. It is the marriage of lines and color in the most exquisite way that evokes emotion. Larraz and Gracia achieve that in this book. The action filled sequences generate real angst in the reader, and the quiet character moments are wonderful. Hickman’s writing allows for the visual display to move the audience in this way. And then he keeps on dropping bombs that blow the firmament of mutant mythology to shreds, and incomprehensibly, I am loving it.


Lois Lane #2
DC Comics
Written by Greg Rucka
Art by Mike Perkins
Colors by Paul Mounts
Letters by Simon Bowland
Cover art by Perkins

My comic store dealer told me people aren’t reading this book because of the title. They are foolishly missing out if that is the case. Rucka is writing the heck out of this book. The Perkins’ visual narrative is excellent, and Paul Mounts work on the coloring is phenomenal. This is a good gritty story full of suspense and the occasional biting social commentary. Never judge a comic by the title. This is an excellent comic book.


No One Left to Fight #2
Dark Horse Comics
Written by Aubrey Sitterson
Art by Fico Ossio
Letters by Taylor Esposito
Cover art by Ossio

Look. This book is great fun. It is loud, gaudy, and over the top in all the most excellent ways. It is also beautifully rendered and written with a great purpose. Esposito’s lettering style in this book is also perfect for the tone of the book. This is a book that I would not have expected to love as much as I do. This issue takes everything that we learned in issue one and moves the needle further towards a massive conflict. Don’t miss out on this one.


Sea of Stars #2
Image Comics
Written by Jason Aaron & Dennis Hallum
Art by Stephen Green
Colors by Rico Renzi
Letters by Jared K. Fletcher
Cover art by Green & Renzi

Saving the best for last? An argument could be made there. This book is amazing. Simple panel styles with large white borders are a deceptively important part of the feel of this book. The art by Green is gorgeous, and Renzi’s tones are fantastic. The writers are crafting an incredibly interesting story that has legs. Fletcher’s lettering is like another character. On second read, you realize how much the lettering really made this issue so much better that the standard awesome it might have been. Everyone should be reading this book.

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