Here’s the list of stuff I read in June and July – this month I have been on comics hiatus due to personal reasons and generally staying busy, so I have a bit of a pile waiting for me whenever I get back to it. In the meantime:
- Ms. Marvel #1-4 – For anyone who hasn’t read the new rendition of Ms. Marvel, you’re missing a great series. The main character Kamala is a teenager who writes Avengers fanfiction and deals with the pains of being a minority in both race and religion. This book has been – at least through the part I’ve read it – both fun and warm-hearted. I really enjoy it, and will continue to read it.
- She-Hulk #1-4 – While the story is the familiar “down on her luck, so here’s a zany cast” kind of tale, the fact that it’s a superheroine who’s going through these dilemmas intensifies how funny it is. It’s lighthearted and quirky, but I don’t like the art. It distracts me enough that I probably won’t read further. Ms. Marvel is also lighthearted and funny, but with the addition of being a bit better written in my opinion (it’s far more complex) as well as featuring art that’s less jarring to my eyes.
- Iron Fist: The Living Weapon #3 – I was already on the fence about this series after the first issue, but in this one it takes a dive for me. I think I may have gotten another issue or two as I’d had a digital subscription, but I cut it off. Once I catch up, if it doesn’t improve, I will drop this series. This is sad, as I love the character of Iron Fist.
- The Hood: A Change From Within #1-2 – This independently-created comic is something I backed when it was on Kickstarter. Its story/writing are solid and the art is beautiful. The Hood tells the tale of a young man who lives in the hood and loses a loved one to the violence there. He then decides to take it upon himself to exact vengeance and justice. As of the first two issues, his story has just begun and he is learning the ropes as it were. I look forward to the continuation, as it’s an atypical spin on the archetypical superhero comic.
- D4VE #5 (end) – The glorious finale of the D4VE series was just as funny and awesome as the rest. I highly recommend it to anyone who likes goofy, oddball sci-fi.
- Zukahnaut #1-2 – A webcomic now available on Comixology. It’s the story of a big green alien who wants to reclaim his life after having wasted so much of it. Zukah is crazy, and now he’s on Earth. Also, he can make vegetables explode for reasons undisclosed.
- Bedlam Vol. 2 – The writing remains enjoyable, but the loss of Riley Rossmo’s art kills me. The new artist seems to be trying to emulate – unsuccessfully – Rossmo’s established style. It’s far too black and thick and sketchy, without some of the sensitivity that Rossmo added. I will continue to read it as I like the story enough to press onward, but every time I read it I wish Rossmo were back on it.
- Parasyte Vols. 1 & 2 – An older manga series that I’ve had part of for a very long time; I finally purchased the end of the series, but because the last time I read the older volumes was a couple years ago, I’m rereading from the top. There are 8 volumes total. It’s a great sci-fi/horror series that is also incredibly thoughtful and sensitive. It generates a lot of self-reflection.
- Pacific Rim: Tales From Year Zero – I wasn’t sure what I was anticipating, but this is a book that’s a mishmash of several characters’ backstories. This shed some light on the many elements left out of the movie, but overall as a stand-alone graphic novel it’s unremarkable.
- Last Day in Vietnam – a classic graphic novel, based on Eisner’s own experiences in Vietnam. Interestingly drawn from the first person with a silent protagonist, in Eisner’s distinct style. Quite a refreshing read given the adherence to a standard comic format as found in most work these days other than the “artsy comics” found primarily among indie creators. I will be reading more Eisner.