Everything We Read This Week – 10/30/2019

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 the always interesting fifth Wednesday, and we read a bunch of great comics. One of the little things we noticed is that publishers are doing a better job of crediting the complete creative team on the covers. Hopefully that will also translate into appropriate compensation. Go out and find the comics you like, and remember, Read More Comics!!

We reviewed books from DC, Marvel, Dark Horse Comics, Valiant Entertainment, Vault Comics, and Image 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.


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:




 Not Good


And here are the books we read in alphabetical order:


Batman Annual #4
DC Comics
Written by Tom King
Art by Jorge Fornes & Mike Norton
Colors by Dave Stewart
Letters by Clayton Cowles
Cover Art by Lee Weeks

Tom King’s plot for this Annual is wonderful. It is a perfect encapsulation of everything that Batman is. This book displays the emotional aspects that flow through King’s run on Batman, but most interestingly, this annual can serve as both a fan service and a new reader introduction. Jorge Fornes and Mike Norton combine to deliver dynamic and exciting images in this modified anthology. Dave Stewart’s consistent hand on the colors manages to eliminate a jarring change in artists. Cowles’ excellent lettering is a key part of the reading experience. A great DC Annual.

Conan the Barbarian #10
Marvel Comics
Written by Jason Aaron
Art by Mahmud Asrar
Colors by Matthew Wilson
Letters by Travis Lanham
Cover Art by Esad Ribic

Aaron’s long set-up finally begins to come to fruition in this issue. This issue is packed with some very good narrative. The visuals are well done by both Asrar and Wilson. This issue is as rewarding as the previous nine have been. If you haven’t been reading this series, this is a perfect jump on issue.

Excalibur #1
Marvel Comics
Written by Tini Howard
Art by Marcus To
Colors by Erick Arsiniega
Letters by Cory Petit
Cover Art by Mahmud Asrar & Matthew Wilson

Hot #1

Tini Howard is proving her ability to handle difficult characters in a group setting to be supremely powerful. This new “Dawn of X” book is ostensibly a Betsy “Don’t call me Psylocke” Braddock story, but the use of the characters chosen for this book are excellently developed. I am not upset with the portrayal of Apocalypse at all. Marcus To and Erick Arsiniega do a great job of installing some great emotional beats into the art of this book. Definitely a good read.

Invisible Kingdom #6
Dark Horse Comics / Berger Books
Written by G. Willow Wilson
Art by Christian Ward
Letters by Sal Cipriano
Cover Art by Ward

We are super excited for the return of this series. The first arc is available in trade and we highly recommend it. The synergy displayed by Wilson and Ward in this book serves to deliver a complete narrative. It is full of emotion, excitement, stress and anticipation. This book is easily one of the top new books of the year, and this first issue of the second arc is a great compliment to this series.

The Last God #1
DC Comics / Black Label
Written by Phillip Kennedy Johnson
Art by Riccardo Federici
Colors by Sunny Gho w/ Dean White
Letters by Tom Napolitano
Cover Art by Kai Carpenter

Hot #1

Wow. Johnson delivers a well crafted introductory story in this issue. The development of the world that this story takes place in is complete but efficient. The conflict in this tale is well defined and excellently paced. Federici and Gho are a fantastic team. The panel designs are a definite highlight to this book. The camera focus and panel designs are a tremendous asset to the delivery of the narrative. Well done all around.

Manor Black #4
Dark Horse Comics
Written by Cullen Bunn & Bryan Hurtt
Art by Tyler Crook
Colors by Crook
Letters by Crook
Cover Art by Crook

The conclusion to this story is well done with room for more. The dialogue in this book is very well done. It feels natural and appropriate. Crook’s facial acting is a perfect compliment to that. The slightly impressionistic style that Crook uses for the visuals in this book is a perfect choice considering the handling of the reality of magic in the narrative. This is a strong story with great art.

The Plot #2
Vault Comics
Written by Tim Daniel & Michael Moreci
Art by Joshua Hixon
Colors by Jordan Boyd
Letters by Jim Campbell
Cover Art by Hixon

I am glad I waited until after Halloween to read this book because it is frightening. The story exploration that happens in this issue is intriguing. The character development is well crafted. Hixon’s art is haunting, and Boyd’s colors create a suspenseful mood. This family horror story is developing into a must read book.

Relics of Youth #2
Vault Comics
Written by Matt Nicholas & Chad Rebmann
Art by Skylar Patridge
Colors by Vladimir Popov
Letters by AndWorld Design
Cover Art by Patridge

The plot to this intriguing book continues to unfold. The story devices used to open this issue are well done. The art and overlay panel placement make for an interesting read. We are definitely on board to see where this story leads. The characters are engaging and the story we laid out.

Roku #1
Valiant Entertainment
Written by Cullen Bunn
Art by Ramon F. Bachs
Colors by Stephane Paitreau
Letters by Dave Sharpe
Cover Art by Dave Johnson

Hot #1

We only reviewed two of the three books that came out this week with Cullen Bunn as the writer, but we are glad this is one of them. This next exploration into the Roku character is very interesting. The story is full of action and mystery. The line art is beautiful, but the panel layouts bring a deceptively captivating element to this book. A really good read.

The Sandman Universe Presents: Hellblazer #1
DC Comics
Written by Si Spurrier
Art by Marcio Takara
Colors by Chris Peter
Letters by Aditya Bidikar
Cover Art by Biquis Evely & Mat Lopes

This is an excellent John Constantine book. Spurrier has an excellent handle on the character’s personality and voice. Takara’s visuals augmented by Peter are impressive. The story is impressive, and if this is where the new ongoing series is headed, I am even more excited for that.

SFSX (Safe Sex) #2
Image Comics
Written by Tina Horn
Art by Michael Dowling
Colors by Chris O’Halloran
Letters by Steve Wands
Cover Art by Tula Lotay

This is an excellent comic base on subject matter alone. Taking the challenge of accurately portraying the sex work industry is inspirational. The story, however, is compelling. The art is captivating, and we are hooked on this book. The added factor of the characters opposing a sexually repressive regime increases the draw to this book. You should be reading this book.

Test #5
Vault Comics
Written by Christopher Sebela
Art by Jen Hickman
Colors by Harry Saxon
Letters by Hassan Osman-Elhaou
Cover Art by Hickman

The conclusion to this story is nicely delivered. The psychedelic trip through identity and the concept of self worth consistently raises thought provoking points. Jen Hickman’s art is hypnotizing. Hassan Osman-Elhaou’s gorgeous lettering is a critical part to navigating the complex narrative. This was a great book.