Archive for the 'sexualized comics' Category

06
Aug
07

Speak of the Devil #1 of 6

Art and Story by Gilbert Hernandez

Dark Horse Comics $3.50

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Val is a popular school athlete, she has great friends and she has supportive parents, even if her over-sexed step-mother is closer to her age than her father’s. Yet, she is unsatisfied and bored with her life. She has taken to wearing a devil mask and black jumpsuit and spying in people’s windows late at night. This kind of activity is much more related to her real interests and she gets a real thrill out of the danger of it.

Everytime I’m in the larger comic shop in Loves Park, I always notice issues of Love and Rockets, the art looks wonderful and it looks like a cute human interest comic, but the cover price is something like seven dollars, so I have yet to pick one up. Gilbert Hernandez and his brother are the minds and hands behind Love and Rockets and, because of this issue, next time I see the comic, I intend to pick up an issue. The art style of this is great, simple, thick lines that form full-bodied women reminiscent of the 1950’s when it was okay for women to eat. While the art certainly stresses sexuality, it would be odd if a comic book about a peeping Tom(or in this case Jane) was overtly pan sexual. It helps that the women are nice to look at, Hernandez knows how to draw an appealing-looking woman in black and white, but the covers for this series are wonderful, the kind of thing I’d love to have a big print of to hang on my wall.

As far as the story goes, I really like it. It’s a fast read and it says a lot to me without being too long-winded. Hernandez seems to making a statement about repressed suburban sexual identities in the sterilized, living in denial style of Christian America. Val’s parents seem to be clones of the Cleaver family from the 1950’s, but the second they’re alone, the fuck like crazy. What’s interesting about Val’s obsession to watch(this includes predominantly watching her father and step-mother have sex) is that she is popular and attractive, obviously capable of actually HAVING sex, yet this seems to disinterest her. I think this says something about our culture, but I haven’t decided what. Hernandez’s Speak of the Devil is a very potent and interesting mixture of repressed sexuality and a refusal to become complacent with the boringness of what is expected of us socially. I’ll be very interested to see where this mini-series goes.

06
Aug
07

Grimm Fairy Tales #16

Written by Ralph Tedesco and Joe Tyler

Art by Andrew Magnum and Roland Salvidor

Zenescope Entertainment $2.99

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Little Miss Muffet
Sat on a tuffet,
Eating her curds and whey.
Along came a spider,
Who sat down beside her,
And frightened Miss Muffet away

Well, that’s how it was when I was a kid. This, of course, is not a story by the Grimm brothers, in fact, no one is sure who wrote the little rhyme that was first published in 1805, in a book titled Songs for the Nursery. Yet, Little Miss Muffet is the title and main focus of this issue of Grimm Fairy Tales.

Sela, the main character of the series, who is given the power to change people’s lives at the beginning of the series(which I missed, this being only the second issue I have read) by telling people who have lost their way and are a danger or annoyance to humanity old stories to fix their lives, has been abusing her power. Giant spiders are sent to chase her down and demand answers, along with zombies, ghosts and other beings you wouldn’t normally see in the comic shop bitching about all those damned World War Hulk tie-ins. We are given a short history of all the people she’s tried to help, but ended up killing, including those nazi pigs(literally) from last month’s issue.

The issue wraps up by showing Sela over a grave, reminiscing about someone she tried to help, but Sela says she couldn’t, in defiance of the cliched old Chinese man who has been reviewing her life for her ever since the spiders tracked her down in the middle of the issue. Over all, not as enjoyable and fun as last month, but it’s trying to add to some larger story(I think/hope). Otherwise, as a new reader, it made no sense to me. In fact, I had to go to Wikipedia –¬† http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grimm_Fairy_Tales_%28comic_series%29 – to get the full story, because I didn’t know there was any continuity to this comic at all. Previous to this issue, I believed the series to be fairy tale themed one shots that use a lot of sex appeal and violence to modernize the old stories. Well, I’m still correct about the latter. This issue stars giant breasts, skimpy clothes, zombies, giant monster-like arachnids and trying-to-be-creepy scenes. It co-stars Sela.

04
Aug
07

New comics for August 03, 2007

I’m a week and a half behind, so this week I ended up picking up quite the pile. I was glad to see so many great issues in my pile this go around. I was particularly excited about walking dead, which is already reviewed, batman, dark tower and JLA. I’ll be putting up several reviews per day and working my way through my pile over the next several days.

Action Comics #853 – Kurt Busiek(w), Brand Walker, Livesay, Lee Loughridge(a)
Batman #666 – Grant Morrison(w), Andy Kubert, Jesse Delperdang(a)
Black Panther #29 – Reginald Hudlin(w), Francias Portela and Val Staples(a) Arthur Suydam(c)
Black Summer #1 of 7 – Warren Ellis(w), Juan Jose Ryp(a)
Chronicles of Wormwood #6 of 6 – Garth Ennis(w), Jacen Burrows(a)
Countdown #39 & 40 – Paul Dini, McKeever(w), Jim Calafiore and Jay Leigten(a)
Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born #7 of 7 – Peter David and Robin Furth(w), Jae Lee and Richard Isanove(a)
Deathblow #6 – Brian Azzarello(w), Carlos D’Anda, Henry Flint(a)
Fallen Angel #18 – Peter David(w) and J.K. Woodward(a)
Futurama # 32 – Ian Boothby(w), Mike Kazaleh and Andrew Pepoy(a)
Grimm Fairy Tales #16 – Ralph Tedesco and Joe Tyler(w), Andrew Magnum and Roland Salvidor(a)
Justice Society of America #8 – Geoff Johns(w), Fernando Pasarin and Rodney Ramos(a)
Metal Men #1 of 8 – Duncan Roleau(a & w)
Midnighter #10 – Keith Giffen(w), Chris Sprouse, Karl Story, Randy Mayor(a)
Raise the Dead #4 of 4 – Leah Moore and John Reppion(w), Hugo Petrus, Marc Rueda and Ivan Nunes(a)
Speak of the Devil #1 of 6 – Gilbert Hernandez(Spider-Man Fairy Tales #3 of 4 – C.B. Cebulski(w), Kei Kobayashi, Christina Strain(a)
Star Trek: Klingons Blood Will Tell #4 – Scott and David Tipton(w), David Messina and Elaina Casagrande(a)
Star Trek: Year Four #1 – David Tischman(w), Steve Conley, Leonard O’Grady(a)
Uncanny X-Men #489 – Ed Brubaker(w), Mike Perkins and Andrew Hennessey(a)
Unholy Union #1 – Ron Marz(w), Michael Broussard(a)
Walking Dead #39 – Robert Kirkman(w), Charlie Adlard, Cliff Rathburn(a)
Welcome to Tranquility #9 – Gail Simone(w), Neil Googe(a)
Wetworks #11 – J.M. Dematteis(w), Joel Gomez and Trevor Scott(a)
World War Hulk #3 – Greg Pak(w), John Romita Jr, Janson, Strain(a)
World War Hulk: Ironman #20 – Christos Gage(w), Butch Guice, Dean White and Gerald Parel(a)
World War Hulk: The Incredible Hulk #108 – Greg Pak(w), Leonard Kirk, Scott Hanna and Chris Sotomayor(a)
World War Hulk: The Irredeemable Ant-Man #10 – Robert Kirkman(w), Phil Hester, Ande Parks, Bill Crabtree and Val Staples(a)
X-Men #201 – Mike Cary(w), Humberto Ramos, Carlos Cuevas and Edgar Delgado(a)

01
Aug
07

Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter: The First Death #1 of 2

Written by Laurell K. Hamilton and Jonathan Green

Art by Wellinton Alves and Color Dojo

Marvel Comics/Dabel Brothers Productions  $3.99

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Apparently the Guilty Pleasures adaptation of the novels have been pretty successful. I even saw that the people at Borders had posted up a comic book rack with the comics in the horror section where Hamilton’s novels are. That made me pretty happy, because there seems to be this hard separation between a large amount of comics and traditional literature readers. Being avid fans of both, I like to see everybody conveign and have a good time with a good story. Hamilton must have been happy with all of the sales, because, to my knowledge, she has no real history writing comic scripts, yet she designated this story, with 100% new material, for a comic book and helped write it herself.

The First Death is a two-parter that promises never before seen story and appears to occur before Guilty Pleasures, as Anita says she’s never been in the all male, all vampire strip club that she spends so much time in in the miniseries. It took me awhile to get into the miniseries, something like five or six issues, but I finally liked it. I think it was the dense amount of narration and long speech bubbles that made it hard to get through. Until this year I’d been mostly reading superhero comics, which have little important dialog, and sitting down with a comic book and spending a half an hour reading it felt strange and entirely out of place. But now I’ve rather enjoyed it. The writers manage to get a huge amount of story into an individual issue by using tactile, relevant dialog only and using the hell out of narrative boxes. It achieves a much more complex and detailed story than one is used to seeing in most comic books, especially one with a Marvel logo on it. Personally, it’s a welcome change.

Though Brett Booth did the cover and was the art supervisor of this issue, he doesn’t actually do the inside art. This was kind of disappointing for me, I’ve become a fan of his pretty quickly. At first I found his art to be kind of weird, disjointed in a way that made perfect sense, but it looked different. His sharp, detailed designs just stood out from the pages of Guilty Pleasures. Then I bought the first volume of Magician’s Apprentice and got to see six more issues of his work, by the end of the second issue, I really liked his stuff. Instead, in this issue Alves uses a softer, more gentile approach to character designs and uses a more generalized, less detailed attention to the little things. This, accompanied by less colors, results in paler characters and dull backgrounds.

The story focuses on a series of child murders, which is proven to be done by vampires. Anita is called in to help the police with their investigation and, as part of finding suspects, she attends Guilty Pleasures, a male vampire strip club, for the first time. This also serves as her introduction to Jean-Claude, the vampire who runs the club, with his victorian style clothes and hyper-sexualized masculinity that makes Anita incredibly uncomfortable. This book isn’t bogged down by the unnecessary inner-dialog of odd, out of place sexual thoughts that Anita has that plagued the Guilty Pleasures series, which makes for a much better read. Along with a generally more focused plot line and a faster pace, The First Death looks to be a pretty good read, better, I should say, than the first mini-series.

25
Jul
07

Grimm Fairy Tales #15

Written by Joe Tyler & Ralph Tedesco

Art by Joe Dodd, Justin Holman and Lisa Lubera

Zenescope Entertainment $2.99

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This issue was the first of the actual Grimm Fairy Tales series that I’ve picked up, I decided to add it after getting the Return to Wonderland series added to my pull list. I’m glad I did, because these comics aren’t very contentional in the way that they’ve been adapted to tell these old fairytales. You can view the covers for, and in the process figure out what the issues are about, here – http://www.zenescope.com/bookpages/grimm01.htm Each issue seems to be a one-shot focused on a fairy tale, usually written by the brothers Grimm. They’re done well, as far as hyper-sexualized violent artwork goes, and they’re written pretty solidly as well. As a side note, they’re are incredibly fast, this issue took less than ten minutes to read.

This issue is dedicated to the story of the three little pigs, or so I thought. According to the Zenescope website, it’s actually about little red riding hood and her success in eluding the wolf. In this version of the story, a female teacher goes to check on her poorly performing students at their homes, the students, who happen to be skinhead nazis, try to attack her, but she turns each of them into pigs. Each of them flee the scene and hide from the wolf, hiding in homes of obvious constructs, but the wolf eats them all. It was a sharp and quick little issue, if nothing more than a fun rouse on an old story.

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