Rapid Reviews: New Comics for the Week of 10/4/2023

Welcome to our latest Rapid Reviews column.

This week we have some debut issues and an issue number two to discuss. We have a mix of publishers represented here as well a good sampling of different genres in this week’s reivews.

For all the New Number Ones that came out this week check out our weekly rundown Here.

Our reviews are spoiler free and focus on the positive aspects of comic storytelling in each issue. You can find all of these books at your Local Comic Shop now or wherever you get your comics.

The Devil That Wears My Face #1
Mad Cave Studios
Written by David Pepose
Art by Alex Cormack
Colors by Cormack
Letters by Justin Birch
Cover Art by Cormack

We always enjoy it when the mood of the comic meshes with the season. This comic is meant to be read at night by candlelight with the cool wind whipping at the windows. Alex Cormack has become of master of setting the mood of the narrative with his visuals and nails it once again in this debut issue.

This is creator-owned veteran David Pepose‘s first release in the Indie space in couple of years, and Who Boy! does he cook up a doozy of a story. The story is captivating, and he carries common perceptions of the topic into the story, which allows him to get to the narrative without spending a lot of time explaining the setting and scenarios. The pacing and dialogue are well done.

Justin Birch did an excellent job with the lettering in this book. Strong but fairly standard balloons and text make up the majority of the dialogue in the issue, but when called for, Birch dials up excellent special balloons and SFX to really enhance the experience.

Overall, this is a fantastic first issue with a fantastic reveal and set up for the rest of the series.

Fire & Ice: Welcome to Smallville #2
DC Comics
Written by Joanne Starer
Art by Natacha Bustos
Colors by Tamra Bonvillain
Letters by Adriana Maher
Cover Art by Terry Dodson & Rachel Dodson

It is truly enjoyable when DC Comics releases in continuity comics that don’t take themselves so seriously. That was one of the important aspects of the success of DeMatteis & Giffen’s Justice League. This book has taken that approach for a new generation of readers.

Joanne Starer and Natacha Bustos take the setup from the first issue of this series and boost it by seamlessly adding an interesting and wacky supporting cast. The dialogue and character interactions are easily accessible for the reader and serve to further a worthwhile story of finding one’s place in the world.

Tamra Bonvillain, Ariana Maher, and editor Andrea Shea round out a fantastic crew of women working on women led comic that should be on everyone’s pull list.

G.O.D.S #1
Marvel Comics
Written by Jonathan Hickman
Art by Valerio Schiti
Colors by Marte Gracia
Letters by Travis Lanham
Cover Art by Mateus Manhanini

This is Jonathan Hickman’s latest grand endeavor in the Marvel universe starts off with a really good issue. The ability to introduce a set of new characters and give them heretofore unknown integration into an already existing landscape is not easy to do well. Hickman does that while illuminating those characters unique traits and voices.

Valerio Schiti and Marte Gracia absolutely knocked it out of the park, to borrow a timely baseball reference, with the art in this issue. There is a heavy stillness that Schiti conjures for the quieter scenes where the characters are talking to one another, and he is a master of producing coiled tension in his characters visuals. However, when all hell breaks loose? Wow! The art for the confrontation scenes is just spectacular.

While not perfect, this was a great issue, and I am looking forward to this series.

Star Trek: Holo-Ween #1
IDW Publishing
Written by Chris Sequeira
Art by Joe Eisma
Colors by Charlie Kirchoff
Letters by Clayton Cowles
Cover Art by Francesco Francavilla

We are in October and Halloween themed comics are coming at us in large numbers. This book is a the start of a four-issue four-week mini-series. (That is a lot of hyphens for one sentence.) While this is not a zany romp, it is super fun.

There is a nice bit of terror in this story involving the TNG crew. The setup is well done and accessible. Joe Eisma‘s art is the perfect match for this story. This should be fun Trek.

Transformers #1
Image Comics
Written by Daniel Warren Johnson
Art by Johnson
Colors by Mike Spicer
Letters by Russ Wooten
Cover Art by Johnson & Spicer

Phenomenal! This book exceeded expectations. I am not a hugely obsessive fan of Transformers in general. In my experience they have been “fine.” Something inside my brain said that this combination of Daniel Warren Johnson and the creatures from Cybertron would rock. I was right.

This is a fantastic jumping on point for any comic reader. It is the beginning of an emotional and explosive story. Mike Spicer knows how to light Johnson’s pages and Russ Wooten brought his A game to the letters of this book. I am lost for words to say just how excellent this comic book is. I can’t wait for the next issue!!