Tag Archive: Mike W. Barr

Star Trek 6 (September 1980)

Barr gives the Enterprise crew a mystery to solve. Unfortunately, it’s almost the same mystery as one of the television episodes. It’s like Barr took out one part just to make it fit… Continue reading

Star Trek 5 (August 1980)

This issue's better than the last, with Spock kidnapped by Klingons and Kirk trying to figure out how to resolve the situations. No Dracula appearance–maybe Mike W. Barr didn't like that idea either… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 3 (January 2006)

It’s too bad the last issue of IDW’s Maze relaunch is easily the best. The problems still remain–Padilla is a boring artist who doesn’t bring any personality to anything, not characters, not setting.… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 2 (December 2005)

It’s a beauty pageant mystery–with Jennifer oddly chosen as one of the judges (are detective agency owners really such community figures)–and I’m surprised Barr hasn’t already done this one. All of the previous… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 1 (November 2005)

And The Maze Agency is back again, with Mike W. Barr still writing, of course, but with a fresh new look. Ariel Padilla and Ernest Jocson update the protagonists for the oughts and,… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 3 (1998)

It’s a rough, rough issue. First there’s the storyline. Barr does this whole Bettie Page thing with a magazine trying to find an old model. Three show up, so there’s the investigation to… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 1 (July 1997)

The Maze Agency returns in black and white and it really fits that format. The inherent moodiness offsets the genial romance stuff. The mystery itself is an odd riff on Brandon Lee’s death… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 23 (August 1991)

This issue’s incredibly confusing. Barr spends too long setting up the story–Gabe and Jennifer have to go to a biosphere to solve a murder but there’s already drama with the client. It’s Barr… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 22 (July 1991)

Young Jason Pearson handles the pencils. He tries very hard to compose interesting panels, which he usually does, though often a few details get forgotten. He can’t draw hats, for example. The mystery… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 21 (June 1991)

It’s an odd issue with Barr trying to do something on gay rights–Jennifer’s secretary has his father come out to meet his boyfriend for the first time, just as there’s some psycho killer… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 20 (May 1991)

John Calimee and Michael Avon Oeming bring something of a cartoon style to the characters. Not in a bad way–exaggerated expressions help the mystery aspect–but they don’t bring anything to the setting. The… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 19 (March 1991)

Barr tries to do something really big with Gabe and Jen this issue in their personal life. He sort of hints at it throughout, then reveals it in the finale. It’s not much… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 18 (February 1991)

Scott Clark has the most ambitious layouts of a Maze artist for a long time. There are all these different little sequences, sometimes only taking a half page, where he crams in visual… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 17 (December 1990)

It’s a religious cult mystery, along with some teenage lovers–one being the daughter of Jennifer’s friend. Barr doesn’t pause on his contrivances (it’s not just the daughter, but also Gabe’s religious history), just… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 16 (October 1990)

Mary Mitchell is an odd choice for the comic. If her lines were messier, it might work better but she has a very cartoony, clean style. All of a sudden The Maze Agency… Continue reading

The Maze Agency Annual 1 (August 1990)

The annual has three stories. The first has Rick Magyar, Darick Robertson and William Messner-Loebs illustrating a Spirit homage. It’s a lot of fun; Barr’s script for it is very fast. Gabe’s on… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 15 (August 1990)

Barr does an amazing job pacing out the narrative this issue. He opens with Gabe and Jennifer, but moves quickly to Lieutenant Bliss. She dominates the issue–the first time a supporting cast member… Continue reading

The Maze Agency Special 1 (1990)

It’s a busy day for Gabe and Jennifer in this Special issue. What makes it special–besides the three interconnected stories, the reprint of Barr’s ashcan for Maze Agency and the extra pages–is the… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 14 (July 1990)

More bad art from Phipps. I’m not sure, but I think he’s getting worse. Like Barr thinks he’s getting better so he can handle more stuff–this issue there’s a lengthy “trial” sequence and… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 13 (June 1990)

This issue might have the worst Phipps art so far. It’s incredibly bad, but also very precise. So each bad panel pokes at you as you read it; the hands are off, the… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 12 (May 1990)

Hughes is back this issue; he concentrates on mood more than faces, which is odd for a detective comic. At least it seems odd for Maze Agency. Oh, there are some good shots… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 11 (April 1990)

Between Phipps’s awkwardly cherubic faces and the forgetful coloring (sometimes faces don’t get done, sometimes they get overdone–I assume it’s a printing issue and not Michele Wolfman’s fault), this issue isn’t much to… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 10 (March 1990)

Robb Phipps takes over as penciller this issue (Magyar stays on inking thank goodness). He’s not good, not bad. His scale is off, with people, settings, especially hands, but he’s competent. Maze feels… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 9 (February 1990)

So, for those who don’t know, Ellery Queen is an amateur sleuth, created in 1928 or so, and has had numerous print, film, television and probably radio adventures. This issue of Maze celebrates… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 8 (December 1989)

Barr does a lot better introducing Jennifer to Gabe’s world than he did introducing Gabe to her’s. Gabe lives in a crappy New York apartment with an assortment of interesting neighbors. Bringing glamorous… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 7 (June 1989)

I’m not sure what does more damage this issue, Barr’s melodramatic writing or the art. Greg Shoemaker’s so bad, it doesn’t make any sense to mock him. He’s just not ready for a… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 6 (May 1989)

Joe Staton, wow. Odd body shapes, oddly shaped faces, visual oddities abound. About the only place Staton didn’t do something strange is on location. They aren’t the best street scenes, but they’re better… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 5 (April 1989)

Barr establishes a bad first here–he has his leads accuse an off-panel suspect. The reader finds out the suspect’s identity at the confession. Overall, it’s a troubled issue. The format keeps it going,… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 4 (March 1989)

One of the most impressive things about The Maze Agency is how Barr manages such a large cast. He has two leads, one or two regular supporting players and then all the murder… Continue reading

The Maze Agency 3 (February 1989)

The art is good here, it doesn’t even matter when it doesn’t make sense. Hughes comes up with these lovely pages for the investigation scenes–Gabe and Jennifer are touring New York state to… Continue reading