Everything We Read This Week – 6/17/20

Welcome back to Everything We Read This Week. It’s been a long time. Too long. 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 we read a bunch great comics.  We encourage you to go out (or order in) and find the comics you like, and remember, Read More Comics!!

We reviewed books from DC Comics, IDW Publishing, AWA/ Upshot Studios, Albatross Funnybooks, AfterShock Comics, Boom! Studios, and Image Comics this week. There were plenty more good books out there this week but this list is all we have gotten through so far.

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.

And here are the books we read in alphabetical order:

The After Realm Quarterly #2
Image Comics
Written by Michael Avon Oeming
Art by Oeming
Colors by Taki Soma
Letters by Shawn Lee
Cover Art by Oeming & Soma

The return of this massive quarterly comic is a joy to read. Michael Oeming has crafted a rich story and delivers it in a pleasant matter-of-fact way. The visual narrative is stunning and Taki Soma’s colors are a wonderful compliment to Oemings sharp style. The plot is far reaching but there are elements of deceit and redemption. The chase scenes are exceptionally well done. This is a thick comic but a fun read, and if you are not careful, you may learn something.

Dying is Easy #5
IDW Publishing
Written by Joe Hill
Art by Martin Simmonds
Colors by Simmonds & Dee Cunniffe
Letters by Shawn Lee
Cover Art by Simmonds

This is an ultimately entertaining comic and a very satisfying concluding issue to the (hopefully) first arc for this series. The characters created in this book by Joe Hill are flawed and unappealing generally, but there is this vein of goodness in the lead character that is fully opened in this issue, and it makes the payoff really work well. Martin Simmonds is masterful in this book. There is a clear sense of sequential storytelling that he brings using his signature abstract style. The colors that he and Dee Cunniffe deliver do a lot of heavy lifting in setting the mood of the issue. Overall, we love this story and are hopeful to see a second arc.

Family Tree #6
Image Comics
Written by Jeff Lemire
Pencils by Phil Hester
Inks by Eric Gapstur
Colors by Ryan Cody
Letters by Steve Wands
Cover Art by Hester, Gapstur, & Cody

There are so many fascinating elements to this comic series. The pace is methodical and appropriate. The plot continually unfolds in interesting ways. The characters’ voices are fitting. The panel layouts and story composition are engaging. What might be the best thing about this book is the angular style of Phil Hester’s character portrayals combined with the copious shadowing. This book is a treat. It is suspenseful and intriguing. The limited color palette that Ryan Cody employs only serves to heighten the anxious mood of this comic.

Grumble: Memphis & Beyond the Infinite #2
Albatross Funnybooks
Written by Rafer Roberts
Art by Mike Norton
Colors by Marissa Louise
Letters by Crank!
Cover Art by Norton and Addison Duke

This series by Rafer Roberts and Mike Norton has yet to let us down. In this issue Roberts and Norton continue to raise the bar of excellence. The plot gets complicated, but in as realistic way as is possible when dealing with a planned attack at an interdimensional prison at the other side of reality with a man cursed to be a pug and his half demon daughter. The dialogue is stellar as always. Norton’s use of scale in this issue is fantastic. His character designs are always excellent, but the interdimensional setting provides an opportunity for creative landscapes, and he nails it. Marissa Louise does a fabulous job on colors as always, but in this issue she really leans into the setting as well. The greens that she uses to saturate the scenes are spectacular. As I have said before, the mixed-case that Crank! uses in the dialogue lettering is a subtle hero for this book. We cannot wait for next issue.

Hotell #2
AWA / Upshot Studios
Written by John Lees
Art by Dalibor Talajic
Colors by Lee Loughridge
Letters by Sal Cipriano
Cover Art by Keron Grant

I have to start the discussion of this comic book by marvelling at the work of colorist Lee Loughridge in this issue. Trust me. It is exceptional. With that said, the plot of this book is absolutely bonkers. It is terrifying in interesting ways. John Lees has surprised us with the structure of this series. Each of the first two issues can be read as stand-alone issues, but they don’t have to be, and that is brilliant. Dalibor Talajic delivers this story with the perfect style to slightly mask the abject horror in the subject matter. Sal Cipriano does an excellent job on the dialogue lettering but the sound effects in this book evoke a stomach churning reaction that makes the reader grip the page just that little bit harder. Don’t miss this book.

The Ludocrats #2
Image Comics
Written by Kieron Gillen & Jim Rossignol
Art by Jeff Stokely
Colors by Tamra Bonvillain
Letters by Clayton Cowles
Cover Art by Stokely & Bonvillain

This book is ridiculous. It is uproariously funny and completely nonsensical, while it leads you through an interesting plot. The art is bold and stunning in both detail and the grand scale. This is the kind of care free pallette cleaner of a comic that leave the reader with a smile on their face. However, the subtle plot points are definitely thought provoking if you care to entertain them. I wholeheartedly recommend reading this book.

The Man Who Effed Up Time #03
AfterShock Comics
Written by John Layman
Art by Karl Mostert
Colors by Dee Cunniffe
Letters by Layman
Cover Art by Mostert & Cunniffe

“Beware of Time Travel” is an axiom that should be attached to every post or publication related to how to write fiction. It is tricky. I can go sideways quickly. John Layman does not need those warnings. He has this completely under control, and I have no idea how this series will end. This time travel comic is full of multiple time jumpers (or are they?) who completely fail at fixing the time stream. This book is exciting, funny, beautifully drawn and colored. We are completely enjoying this series.

Resistance #2
AWA / Upshot Studios
Written by J. Michael Straczynski
Art by Mike Deodato Jr.
Colors by Lee Loughridge
Letters by Sal Cipriano
Cover Art by Rahzzah

This book by J. Michael Straczynski and Mike Deodato Jr. explorers a post-pandemic world through the multiple lenses of the survivors and the governments that seek to take advantage of emerging powered humans. It is a beautiful book and has an immensely interesting plot. We are super excited to see how this story unfolds.

Strange Adventures #2
DC Comics
Written by Tom King
Art by Mitch Gerads & Evan Shaner
Letters by Clayton Cowles
Cover Art by Gerads

I find it difficult to review this book. That is because I am acutely aware that I love Tom King’s writing. I am in awe of the partnership that he has developed over the years with Mitch Gerads. I really love this story. It is not happy, nor would you expect it to be. But it does explore the doubt that gnaws at the mind of most humans. “Am I good?” The story structure is engaging and the delivery method is entertaining. The colors in this book are fantastic. The first issue was pre-lockdown, and that may necessitate a re-read. If issue one is pulling the car out of the driveway and cruising through the neighborhood, this issue makes the turn onto the highway and begins the acceleration up the access ramp. Strap in this series is going to be a hell of a ride.

Also, Please check out our New Number Ones from this week featuring A Man Among Ye, and Wynd


We use a 4 star rating system. It is simple and not to be taken too seriously. Everyone has 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
  •  No