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Justice League #26 Review

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Writer: James Tynion

Pencils/Inks: Javier Fernandez

Colors: HI-FI

Published By: DC Comics

Justice League 26 walks us down 3 narrative paths that are all working separately to ultimately solve the same problem, each in its own way. The problem our heroes are dealing with seems to get bigger and more complex with every passing issue, from dealing with the people of the world embracing Lex Luthor’s message to accept doom in their hearts, handling the fallout from the destruction of the Source Wall, to the raise of Perpetua and much worse her makers who are said to be Cosmic Gods of the Omniverse who will judge all the Multiverses and deem which are worthy or not  at the banks of final judgement, so you know another epic Crisis for our heroes to face, no big thing.

In this issue we shift the creative team of Writer Scott Snyder and Artist Jorge Jimenez from the previous story arc and put this story into the capable hands and minds of Writer James Tynion the Fourth and Artist Javier Fernandez. This shakeup of the creative team is nothing new to this current run of the Justice League as we’ve had a back and forth collaboration between Snyder and Tynion all throughout the series and I think because of that were always given a fresh take on the current mission that is noticeably different but also familiar and they mesh together well as they push the story forward.
The first of the three paths we follow in this book shows us Martian Manhunter floating above the world as he takes in all the information he has gained on a mysterious person being called the Cloaked Man, a person who would come and make peoples cruelest desires a reality. Martian Manhunter uses his skills as a detective to piece together clues that have been scattered across the world and as he reflects on what he’s learned he believes he knows who this person is and where to find them. I found this portion of the story to be the most interesting and I love how it was written through a narrative driven perspective that really made it feel like an old time mystery with the weight and scale of a modern day epic.

The second path we walk down brings us to the center of the Multiverse in the Hall of Heroes were our Justice League has gathered several other Justice Leagues and teams from the farthest corners of the Multiverse to unite to discuss the problem they’re all dealing with the effects of the Source Wall falling and the void that is eating away at every edge of the Universe in creation. This section of the story tries to gather as many heroes and cameos into the panels as possible and honestly it made this part of the story the most fun as it was packed with so many deep cuts from a Flash who looks like Jay Garret to Batman Beyond, Kingdom Come Superman and my favorite Captain Carrot of the Zoo Crew. Storyline wise this path also felt the heaviest as we see just how big of a problem our heroes are dealing with given the fact that they have sought the counsel and help of essentially every hero in the Multiverse and if that isn’t serious, I don’t know what is.

The final plot we deal with follows Kendra Saunders and Mera as we see how the Justice League is preparing on earth for the Crisis to come and the war our heroes will have to face to save our Universe and the greater Omniverse. This final section of the issue was my least favorite because to me it seemed like it was mostly Kendra and Mera bickering and brooding back and forth argued about what they each feel is the league’s best course of action. I did however enjoy the panels of this story that showed several members of this new bigger Justice League Unlimited and how each are playing their part to help, research and train their hardest to be as ready as possible for whatever they will all have to face,

Aquaman #49 Review

Writer: Kelly DeConnick

Artist: Viktor Bogdanovic

Colorist: Sunny Gho

Aquaman is Dead! Arthur is still trapped in the depths of Mother Shark, a telekinetic dream-like state that quickly turns into a nightmare. Mother Shark explains that everyone who dies by the hands of the sea, their memories become part of the great coral reef. Many questions still nag at Arthur – Who is the mysterious red-haired woman? What is her motive? Why did she kill him? Arthur does not care about Mother Shark’s warnings… madness and pain are a small price to pay to become whole.

Arthur hesitates for only a moment. Why is he worthy of resurrection? What makes him so special? Why? He is King of Atlantis, protector of the deep, and he died to save all of earth’s oceans and life itself. Mother Shark continues to put Aquaman through the metaphorical fire and flames, torturing him with visions of his past, his and Mera’s past. One of Arthur’s greatest fears is alive and well and playing right in front of him like a knife in the heart he must endure.

For Aquaman death is only the beginning – he has sacrifice everything for his people and he is paying the ultimate price for it. One of the things I love about this story is the continued focus on the Old Gods and the ocean mythology. This issue is a must read, a lot of important ground work is being set up for the future of this run.

King Thor #1 Review

King Thor #1 

Writer: Jason Aaron 

Pencils: Esad Ribic 

Colors: Ive Svorcina 

Letters: Joe Sabino 

Seven years in the making…King Thor made his first appearance in Thor: God of Thunder #1. Since then The All-Father has fought Gorr the God Butcher, Galactus, Phoenix Wolverine, and Final Doom. He also helped defeat Malekith the Accursed in The War of the Realms. King Thor has faced some of the deepest and darkest villains in the blackest voids of the cosmos. 

King Thor #1 starts off a four issue miniseries that reunites legendary creative team (Jason Aaron and Esad Ribic) behind the comic book run that started it all Thor: God of Thunder. Highly recommend rereading, tons of references spanning the entire seven year epic. 

King Thor #1 picks up right where Thor #16 ends. King Thor arrives back in the future, speaking to himself of regrets and his failures then bang a blast from Loki wielding the Necro-Sword! 

This book cannot be contained! Aaron and Ribic come together and hit another home run! This issue gives me everything I ever wanted and more. A slow build with the Granddaughters of Thunder and Shadrak God of (spoiler), then BAM! A full in your face epic battle to the death, brother against brother, God against God Butcher! I promise you this is a story for the ages. The last page will have all Thor fans screaming!

Batman Who Laughs #7 Review

Writer: Scott Snyder 

Artist: Jock 

Colorist: David Baron 

Letterer: Sal Cipriano 

Through the fire and through the flames the fate of Gotham is coming down to an epic final battle with Batman vs. Batman, the one Who Laughs, the sick and dark twisted perversion.This Batman is from Earth 22 of the Dark Multiverse. He actually crossed that thin red line and snapped the Joker’s neck, releasing the poisonous toxin that made him his worst enemy. See Dark Nights: The Batman Who Laughs #1 by James Tynion. BMWL entered our universe in The Metal event by Scott Snyder, James Tynion and Greg Capullo, just to name a few. See Dark Nights: Metal #1 – 6).

The crippling endgame that is the “Last Laugh” is all but forgotten. The drones that are rigged for contamination must be stopped by James Gordon and his son, rocking some pretty awesome super suits, but that will not stop the Grim Knight. Pay close attention to this fight, it is very crucial to the very last game changing page. 

With absolutely no healthy blood cells left, issue six ends with BMWL stabbing Batman through the heart with the serum. The blood flows together in a classic game of red light, green light; Bruce has seconds to fight off this poison or let this suicidal gambit take full fruition. Only one way to shot gun through this issue is to pay very close attention. This issue was an epic ending to one of my favorite Batman stories of all time. Must read for any Batman fan. 

A very important lesson can be taken away from this story “knowing is half the battle” not only can you learn from your failures, but the failures of your evil doppelganger from a Dark Multiverse. 

Aquaman #50 Review

Writer: Kelly DeConnick 

Artist: Robson Rocha & Eduardo Pansica 

Colorist: Sunny Gho 

Letterer: Clayton Cowles 

In the wake of Mother Shark, Arthur is finally made whole. Almost. In the last issue we saw the big reveal, Mera Queen of Atlantis, is with child a true heir to the throne. With Arthur at an absolute loss for words, only fears rise to the back of his mind – will he be a good father? Will he do what his mother never could? Put the child first or be at mercy of the throne? 

A tale of wonder grows upon us as Arthur returns to Amnesty Bay. His home that he has been gone away for, for so long. This issue starts with a history lesson about the first light house in Amnesty Bay, constructed by Captain Maurer, after his crippling guilt for crashing his ship and killing his crew (definitely the makings for a villainous origin story). Arthur arrives with his old God clan while being greeted by another God who he’s very familiar with. 

This story is growing very political with all the issues Queen Mera must face to rule her kingdom correctly. Has she finally found a suitor? The title is on the cover so it is no mystery, Black Manta has returned! The murderous arch nemesis who was thought to be sacrificed along with Arthur in Drowned Earth is back and he’s meeting with an old friend. This book was beautifully written and full of emotion – a must read for all Aquaman fans.

My Hero Academia Chapter #235: Tenko Shimura Origin Review

By Kohei Horikoshi

    The big bad boss battle continues! Deep in the heart of Deika City the Meta Liberation army continues to hold their own against the League of Villains. This villain centered story arc has taken its time to shine some light on each of our favorite villain’s backstories and now we’ve reached none other than the sinister young boss himself, Tomura Shigaraki, as he engages in battle with the leader of The Meta Liberation Army’s leader: Re-Destro. 

    While the chapter begins with a pause in the action between the two titans, an exchange in words gets Shigaraki to reflect on his childhood; and that’s where things get interesting. Flashback to 5-year-old Tenko Shimura (now Tomura Shigaraki), a kind child who loves to simply “play hero” but is scolded by his father whenever caught doing so. Without giving away all the details, we start to see the slow progression of Tenko’s downfall to villainy. In an effort to try to cheer him up his older sister Hana brings Tenko a photo from their father’s office of his paternal grandma, its none other than the famous heroine Nana Shimura. When his father walks out after noticing the disturbance in his study, he erupts in anger, striking his son repeatedly in a blind rage. 

    Horikoshi does an amazing job showcasing just how deep Tomura Shigaraki’s hatred for heroes goes. Nana Shimura being an absent mother and putting hero work before her family developed a deep hatred for heroes in her son. Her goodbye letter to him was an added touch that almost makes you feel bad for the guy. I believe these are the event that will spawn Tomura’s Quirk Manifestation, and most of us know how that will turn out, poor little Corgi… I love the way Horikoshi draws Tomura as an adult in the beginning of the chapter, his chapped lips and sunken eyes give him that added creep-factor every great villain needs. Another one of my favorites his how utterly badass Re-Destro is looking now that he’s using his quirk to encompass his entire body. 

    Though it’s been a while since we’ve seen our heroes over in UA, this villain centered arc has been terrific. This current fight reminds me of two final bosses from a video game duking it out against each other, a super-villain super-fight. My Hero Academia is one of the absolute best manga/anime out right now, and most fans of the genre would agree with me. Right now you can read all 235 current chapter on the Shonen Jump app for only 1.99, along with 100’s of other great manga. Chapter 236 drops this weekend 7/21 so download the app and catch up now!

Green Lantern #10 Review

Writer: Grant Morrison 

Artist: Liam Sharp 

Colorist: Steve Oliff 

Letterer: Tom Orzechowski 

Quest for The Cosmic Grail. He is Risen, the Mad Lantern is here, The Qwa-Man. Where we left off in the last issue, Hal discovered that the devil wizard he was fighting was none other than Abin Sur. That name is of importance because if not for Abin Sur, Hal Jordan would not be a lantern, in his death it gave birth to Hal Jordan’s journey. This isn’t the same Abin Sur, this Green Lantern is from earth 20. The flood gates are open, the Qwa-Man is a Multiversal threat. 

In classic Hal Jordan fashion, he beats the breaks off his former predecessor from a parallel earth just in time to help him stop the Mad Lantern. Where there is one there is many – The Magic Lantern, The Flashlight and the Batman Green Lantern. Yes, there is a Batman Green Lantern to also help put an end to The Qwa-man. Many more lanterns join the ranks to assist our heroes and when all is said and done they will go somewhere DC fans have not been in a long time, it’s a wild ride so hold the hell on! 

As someone who is a big Multiversity (Grant Morrison) fan, I was in absolute awe of this issue. There were so many familiar faces that I haven’t seen in years; it was truly an amazing spectacle. Make sure you take your time and focus on the art. There is about several splash pages that really make you go on a cosmic mind trip. Morrison and Sharp continue with another undefeated issue. A must read for all Multiverse and Green Lantern fans!

Detective Comics #1001 Review

Writer: Peter J. Tomasi

Pencils: Brad Walker

Inks: Andrew Hennessy

Colors: Nathan Fairbairn

In the wake of the phenomena that is Detective Comics #1000 we had a series of great stories but only one had a major reveal that will send shockwaves throughout the rest of the comic run. Enter the Arkham Knight! A villain some may be familiar with via the 2015 smash hit video game. We surely are in for a treat with MEDIEVAL!

This dark and mysterious issue was a steady flow of buildup and terror while continuing the trend of a great detective story. In what feels like one of the ten plagues of Egypt that is hitting Gotham city, darkness and disease blankets Gotham in biblical proportions really setting the tone for the threats to come. Batman will need to pull back curtains and shed light to this nightmare.

One thing I really enjoyed about this issue is that it gives you just enough to build the story but keeps the wheels spinning of the guessing machine. You have to solve the mystery along with Bruce – hopefully this trend keeps up. We also see an almost forgotten “Bat” character that I think fans will truly enjoy.

DCeased #6

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Writer: Tom Taylor

Artist: Trevor Hairsine & Neil Edwards 

Colors: Rain Beredo 

Letters: Saida Temofonte 

Editor: Ben Abernathy 

All hope is lost when Superman sacrifices himself to stop the fastest zombie alive. With that being said, he says goodbye to his son, his mother, and his wife Lois Lane along with his adoptive home world. That is the price of being earth’s champion. Our Man of Steel flies into the deepest darkest voids of space hoping to fade into that good night, expelling all of his heat vision so he can float powerless into the infinite black.

We start this issue with Diana pounding away with a hammer and anvil forging some kind of God-killing weapon. Moments surrounding our fallen Kryptonian comes hurling towards earth not bringing hope, but fear and death. Superman fallen in the previous issue to the anti-life infection, is coming to kill the rest of humanity. Wonder Woman, the Greek goddess, the God Killer has something to say about that. This issue sets up the battle of the heavy hitters; only one will be left standing.

This entire mini series has had many fans (myself included) reaching for the tissue box. It is deeply touching and compelling this issue is no different. Tom Taylor (Injustice, X-Men Red) is firing on all cylinders. This whole series has been so fresh and creative with emotional writing along with paralyzing and terrifying action scenes, which make this a recipe for one of the best limited runs of the decade.

10/10

Aquaman #48 Review

Writer: Kelly DeConnick

Art: Viktor Bogdanovic

Inker: Daniel Henriques

Colors: Sunny Gho

We pick up right after Aquaman fought and defeated Namma the Salt God, with the help of the Old Gods he remembered his powers and ability to speak to ocean life. The Father Ocean brings him his lost trident, slowly but surely the King of Atlantis rebuilding the pieces of his former life. The Old Gods are performing a ritual to bring the rest of Arthur back.

No more dragons, no more Old Gods. Andy must enter the Mother Shark himself and become one with the Sunken Forest, which is an inception-like dream state where he must purge himself of Andy and bring back Arthur. Aquaman must fight through the memories and flashbacks to become complete. He remembers his mother’s love and her selfless sacrifice to keep him alive. He recalls his friends from the Justice league and then finally asks the Mother Shark about the mystery red-haired woman he keeps seeing. Love is pain and pain is love; Arthur may not like the answer he gets in this last page monster reveal.

This issue was easily one of my favorites of any Aquaman comic book run. The focus of life, death and rebirth. The magic of life that clings to the King, the true warrior spirit we see within Arthur, as he endures unbelievable pain and torment is truly poetic. To have everything he has ever loved and holds dear taken from him and still he fights.

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