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Friday, June 8, 2012

Comic Reviews 6/8/12

The comics reviewed are chosen by David not by That's Entertainment management
or staff. The opinions expressed are his alone. If you have an opposing view you
are welcome to respond to David directly by Email at the address above.

Issue Number: 1
Title Story: A Love Story to Die For
Publisher: Image
Creators: Kurtis Weibe & Aluisio C. Santos
Price (USD): $3.50
Release Date: NOW ON SALE
Genre: Horror/Supernatural
Mature - Comics on the Edge

What if you died and found yourself in a hallway lined with portraits of
different people. The closest portrait is that of you. At the end of the hall is
a bright light coming from behind iron gates. As you open the gates there is
another portrait hanging in the air of a person you have never seen. That is
when the strangest thing happens, and when it is over you are alive again but in
the body of the person in that last portrait. All of your memories are the same;
you are in a new body. This is the situation Jeffrey finds himself in. But there
is more. You see this is not the first time this has happened to him. As the
story opens he is in his thirteenth body. Jeffrey is just the name of the last
one. In fact, for some reason with each body he suffers an untimely death within
days only to repeat the cycle again. So the big question is why is this
happening? Is he supposed to do something to end the cycle? Even stranger he
soon learns he is not the only one that this is happening to. It is an
interesting premise that is handled well. The script is clever in presenting the
situation and developing the character by showing things about him this whole
experience has done to him. There is some humor about it as well to lighten the
seriousness on occasion. As the first chapter ends we were at a point that
suggested maybe he could figure something out but then disaster strikes. This is
a fascinating story that draws you in as it progresses. The art is stylistic and
moves the action along without distracting from it.

As an added bonus there is a backup story called "Drive Time Commute" by Joey
Esposito and Jeff McComsey. It is a story of two commuters who pass each other
daily in their cars. Each secretly desire to meet the other and are unaware that
they actually work in the same building for the same company. It is a classic
love story that has a somewhat comical end. It is a good contrast to the main

Issue Number: 1 (of 4)
Publisher: Action Lab Entertainment
Writer: Dave Dwonch
Artist/Colors: Bill Blankenship
Letters: Dave Dwonch
Price (USD): $3.99
Release Date: NOW ON SALE
Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy

This is a story of four gamers who are working on a breakthrough in video gaming
technology. The gamers are Jason, Maxine, Andrew and Milo. Heading up the
company is Danielle Miyamoto. This breakthrough is a game called The Darkheart
Chronicles. What makes it different is that the players become fully immersed in
a virtual reality world. You don't just pick your character; you become the
character and experience the quest as if you are living it. There have been
problems plaguing the game and the company desperately needs to have it ready
for the Christmas season. The lack of endorsement and support from her father
makes Danielle all the more determined to drive the team to get it done. She is
dating Jason and puts him on notice that the company, and their relationship, is
on the line. That is the set up as the four gamers set out to immerse themselves
into the game to try and find the problems plaguing them. The story is handled
well and spends time on each character and their relationships and
personalities. Each has their own level of nerdness and a lot of friendly
ribbing seems to be constant. Eventually we get to the significance of the book
title. The four "jump" into their characters and the art depicts them as those
characters. In a humorous vein one of the guys ends up mistakenly as a female
character and Maxine has become a rather large barbarian warrior. But an
accident while they are immersed changes everything. When the game is stopped
suddenly our gamers notice something but are still in the virtual reality in
character. Meanwhile the programmed personalities of their characters have
"jumped" into their bodies in the real world. These artificially created people
now have real bodies in the real world - they are strangers in a strange land.
Meanwhile the real people are stuck in the virtual reality. This is an
interesting dilemma. Once they realize what has happened how can they possibly
get out?  What will happen in the real world as the barbarian, warrior troll and
magician walk around in normal bodies?  It is a fun premise with some tension
and suspense. I am really interest to see how Danielle reacts to the Jason who
is not really Jason anymore. I think this is very clever and entertaining. The
art is decent making it worthwhile on all fronts. This is a good comic for
gamers and fans of science fiction/fantasy alike.

Issue Number: 1
Publisher: IDW
Writer: Scott & David Tipton with Tony Lee
Artist: J. K. Woodward
Letters: Shawn Lee & Robbie Robbins
Price (USD): $3.99
Release Date: NOW ON SALE
Genre: Science Fiction

This comic was an instant hit when it hit the shelves. I am told it sold more
copies than the Star Trek and Dr. Who comics normally sell combined. In this
case the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. So what could possibly
bring these two icons of TV together - in a word, the Borg. In TNG time the Borg
have suddenly launched a surprise attack on Delta IV, destroying large cities
and targeting the command and control centers of the defenses. This is unusual
as they usually called for surrender before an attack. Star fleet has people
here but will need a full task force to repel such an invasion. The Prime
Minister of the local government has no choice but to flee and await
reinforcements. In the world of the Time Lord known as The Doctor, he is
currently in ancient Egypt with his human companions Amy Pond and her husband
Rory Williams. The Doctor has involved them is a chariot race and plans to take
them to see the Pharaoh. He knows something about the Royal Vizier that will
save the Pharaoh and his people. In typical Dr. Who fashion there is a lot of
danger and action along the way. Both segments are interesting and the Dr. Who
connection to the Borg is only hinted at. The meeting between characters of the
two shows occurs in the last in the last panel in a location and under
circumstances some Star Trek: TNG fans will surely recognize. While the entire
story so far is interesting and has lots of action it is merely set up and
introduction for what will come. The art is decent enough, especially in
depicting the likenesses of these familiar characters. It is actually a very
appealing painted style. For a first issue I think it hits all the marks it
should and promises more to come next issue. While most readers may have grabbed
it for the tie in to their favorite shows, I think they will find it is more
than up to the task of making such a team-up work. We will see as the story

Issue Number: 1
Title Story: Children of Destiny
Publisher: DC
Writer: Howard Mackie
Artist: Ian Churchill
Inker: Norm Rapmund w/Ian Churchill
Colors: Alex Sollazzo
Letters: Dezi Sienty
Price (USD): $2.99
Release Date: NOW ON SALE
Genre: Super Hero

Most first issues in the super hero genre appeal to me either out of curiosity
or familiarity with the characters. The former reason is the one that made me
look at this book mostly. This spin-off from TEEN TITANS has both familiar and
new characters, at least to me. The cover shows the presumed leader Caitlin
Fairchild with Beast Boy and Terra who are both familiar to long-time fans of
the Titans. Fairchild is the Wildstorm character from GEN 13 that debuted in the
NEW 52 Superboy comic as a scientist working at THE N.O.W.H.E.R.E. facility
where Superboy was cloned. Rounding out the group are newer characters, to me,
are siblings Lightning and Thunder and an alien looking member called Ridge. The
action begins as this group and a few others emerge in the frozen north, perhaps
Alaska. Caitlin has freed these former prisoners of a lunatic named Harvest.
They have all been captives who have been experimented on in the past. This
story is about conflict. There is dissension among the group and even distrust
against Caitlin who was working to help these kids even while being employed by
their tormentors. Some of them will just say thanks and attempt to go their own
way. All of them are still in danger from the task force sent to retrieve them
and the more deadly duo Warblade and Ravager who are not adverse to just killing
them. That is the basic introduction - an escape, dissension among the escapes
and then immediate fighting for survival. One reason I did not continue reading
the TEEN TITANS and to a lesser degree Superboy was this whole theme of the
characters on the run from the evil corporation that wants to capture them. DC
is trying hard to integrate the Wildstorm characters into their various titles
and Caitlin is actually a good fit for this group. But I just can't get into the
overriding plot enough to keep coming back. On the plus side the art is really
nice in every aspect. So I can't give this one an enthusiastic endorsement but
it is certainly worth the three bucks to see if it appeals to you.

Issue Number: 1
Publisher: dc
Writer/Artist: Baltazar Franco
Price (USD): $2.99
Release Date: NOW ON SALE
Genre: Super Hero

I always like to sample the new ALL AGES comics when they appear. I think it is important for the publishers to realize there are many niches of customers and
an important one is younger new readers. Parents often ask what is suitable for
their younger kids to start reading and fortunately there are more and more
titles to choose from all the time. DC has some based on their GREEN LANTERN and
YOUNG JUSTICE cartoons among others and this is the newest title designed to
appeal to both that younger crowd and older readers alike. The style is more
like a cartoon than the mainstream titles and it is appealing in its own way
with distinct characters and bright colors. I am assuming it is all done by
Baltazar Franco because inexplicably there are no credits except for his name on
the cover. As suggested by the title this has all the familiar Superman
characters of note. We not only have big blue but his cousin Supergirl, Conner
as Superboy, Krypto the dog and all the supporting cast including villain Lex
Luthor. The story is done mostly for fun. Perry White seems to be the focus of a
lot of it as an over the top hyper boss that screams a fair bit. The banter
between him and Jimmy Olsen keeps things laughable. Even Krypto lends a bit of
humor late in the story. The first issue is one complete story involving robots
attacking Metropolis. They seem to be a bit more than Superman can handle so the
kids and Krypto show up to lend a hand. Some of the comedy is more subtle. The
three main robots each have a large letter on their bodies but it is not until
very late that our heroes figure out that they stand for the person behind it
all. It is all full of action, fast paced and has a couple of twists with a
natural resolution by the end of the book. There is some filler in the back
including a fan page, a maze puzzle and character sketches of the latest
characters featured in YOUNG JUSTICE. This comic has the right combination of
the elements to appeal to a wide range of enthusiasts. It is certainly a great
comic to give to those beginning readers.

Issue Number: 1
Title Story: First Snow
Title Arc: Night Owls
Publisher: DC
Creator: Bob Kane
Writer: Scott Snyder & James Tynion IV
Artist: Jason Fabok
Colors: Peter Steiberwald
Letters: Sal Cipriano
Price (USD): $4.99
Release Date: NOW ON SALE
Genre: Super Hero

I mentioned last week I don't read that many Batman comics and the big Night
Owls crossover into many titles does not interest me all that much. But this is
an annual and is pretty much a stand-alone story involving Mr. Freeze. Because
this is a NEW 52 title the past continuity does not entirely come into play as
you will see if you read it. This has two main plots. The first plot takes place
in Lowell, Nebraska some thirty years ago, as Victor Fries and his mother are
crossing a frozen lake. They are going to a snowman making contest and he is in
a hurry. She promises him they have plenty of time and their snow man will be
unique. She has a plan to use an apple to make theirs unlike any other. An
incident on the way will change his life forever. This plot moves forward to
just six years ago at a time when Victor is working in Wayne Labs on cryogenic
research. Wayne has directed the efforts to concentrate more on organ
vitrification but Victor is obsessed with the reanimation of previously frozen
humans. After Bruce leaves we learn the reason why Victor is so obsessed. As
this confrontation comes to head we witness the event that brings about the
creation of the villain known as Mr. Freeze. The second plot is in the present
during the Night of the Owls time period. It starts in Arkham Asylum with a
cleverly planned escape and then the beginning of the plot for Victor to get his
revenge on Batman. This is indeed a retcon of the origin of Freeze. It is told
in such a way that without realizing it we the reader are fed believable plot
elements in both stories at first only to have it revealed by the end that
neither one of them is the actual the truth. It is clever and held my interest
all the way. The art carries the elements very professionally with variations in
shading signaling the transitions back and forth with no further need for
editorial explanation.  If you like Batman stories but don't want to be sucked
into a big crossover event this is the perfect story for you.


If you think you know the answer to the trivia question send your guess via
Email to me at and you could win the prize. The first six
correct answers will be assigned a number and a roll of the dice will determine
the winner. You should put your real name in your message so we know who you
are. Prizes must be claimed at our store within 30 days of winning. The prize
will be a $10 credit slip, which will be redeemable for merchandise at regular
retail or in-store ongoing specials only.  Only one prize per person will be
allowed per every 4 weeks. I will be the sole judge of the correct answer even
if more than one answer could be correct. Submit only one answer per Email
please but guess as often as you like.

Last week's trivia question:
The Guardians divided the universe into how many hundreds of sectors?
The answer is 3600. The winner is James Woodruff.

Here was your no prize question:
Who was president of Columbia University before he became President of the
United States?

Dwight David "Ike" Eisenhower was the 34th President of the United States from
1953 until 1961. Prior to that he was a five-star general in the United States
Army. In 1948, Eisenhower became President of Columbia University, a premier
private university in New York. Gregory Goding gets the no prize award this

With whom did Mike Mist share a 3D comic in 1985?

Here is your no prize question:
On March 12th, in 1964, which state became the first state to legally sell
lottery tickets in the USA?

Folks, you never know who among the readers is knowledgeable about the question
so don't hesitate to send in an answer - even days after it appears.

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