Where to even start.
Beto’s got a good girl future story with Girl Crazy. It’s about a lovesick robot. He takes his time establishing it (then has to hurry towards the end) and finishes the story on a good joke. It’s a very cute story, sort of not what I expected from him.
Then there’s The Fall, from Brubaker and Lutes. It’s this amazing dramatic piece about a working schlub who does something stupid and ends up working for his boss’s wife. Complications ensue. Brubaker has very close, careful third person narration and Lutes’s artwork is fantastic rendering the mundane setting.
Cooper goes a little crazy on Dan & Larry, garnering a lot of sympathy for poor Dan here. It’s gross, it’s funny, it’s great.
Then there’s Nixey’s story about a kid who captures the scary monsters under his bed. Nice art, lots of humor. It gets jumbled, but it’s good.
Girl Crazy, The Lovesick Machine; story and art by Gilbert Hernandez. The Fall, Part One; story by Ed Brubaker; art by Jason Lutes. Dan & Larry, Part Four, Peeling Shell; story and art by Dave Cooper. Boogie Picker; story and art by Troy Nixey; lettering by Sean Konot. Edited by Jamie S. Rich and Ben Abernathy.
Imago‘s finish opens the issue. Arcudi might have needed more time–this installment just gives up, admitting the concept was more interesting than the execution. O’Connell’s art is okay. His faces aren’t distinct enough, but it’s fine for a short story.
Nixey continues the issue’s lackluster vibe with Trout‘s conclusion. In it, Trout (the character) gets his big moment. Except Nixey hadn’t been building toward it except in this installment, so it sort of misfires. Nixey was best when he brought the questing aspect to the story. Without it, like here–an all-action installment–Trout has some good artwork and design, but nothing compelling about it.
Jack Zero reverses the issue’s negative tide a little. It’s got a problematic end, but Zero Boy and Pander do come up with a fantastic resolution to Jack’s trip to the west. Better, they continue coming up with unexpected developments. It’s fine work.
Imago, Part Two; story by John Arcudi; art by Brian O’Connell; lettering by Sean Konot. Trout, Nicky Nicky Nine Doors, Part Five; story and art by Troy Nixey. Jack Zero, Part Three; story by Arnold Pander and Zero Boy; art by Pander; lettered by John Costanza. Edited by Bob Schreck and Jamie S. Rich.
I can’t believe I’m saying it but Snejbjerg’s art messes up this Lords of Misrule. He’s unable to draw a regular person. Instead, the person appears frightening, even though he’s not supposed to be frightening. It’s an okay story–but the art, though great in most respects, doesn’t work.
Nixey’s back on track with Trout, at least as far as the art is concerned. He sort of hurries through this installment, which takes a lot of the charm out of it. I expected him to have a big world for Trout; instead, it’s very constricted.
Jack Zero has another good installment from Zero Boy and Pander–it’s very successful as a Western, a genre I’m not used to reading in comics. The ending is a little ominous though.
Arcudi and O’Connell’s Imago is a Batman and Robin analogue where Robin lets Batman die because he’s an overbearing pain. Mildly interesting.
The Lords of Misrule, Part Three; story by John Tomlinson; art by Peter Snejbjerg; lettering by Annie Parkhouse; edited by Ian R. Stude. Trout, Nicky Nicky Nine Doors, Part Four; story and art by Troy Nixey. Jack Zero, Part Two; story by Arnold Pander and Zero Boy; art by Pander; lettered by John Costanza. Imago, Part One; story by John Arcudi; art by Brian O’Connell; lettering by Sean Konot. Edited by Bob Schreck and Jamie S. Rich.
Posted in Dark Horse, Imago, Jack Zero, Lords of Misrule, Trout
Tagged Arnold Pander, Brian O'Connell, John Arcudi, John Tomlinson, Peter Snejbjerg, Troy Nixey, Zero Boy
The issue opens with Zero Boy and Pander’s Jack Zero, which starts out a little awkwardly… but then quickly establishes itself as a good Western. Pander’s art looks fantastic, bringing a lot of energy to the setting and Zero Boy’s script is thoughtful.
Unfortunately, I can’t say the same about Nixey’s Trout installment this issue. He changes up styles here for effect (a dream sequence) and it loses the charm the previous entries had. It’s confounding and almost adversarial. Nixey doesn’t give a point of entry for the reader here.
Macan and Edwards’s Aliens story is kind of interesting, without being noteworthy (rather good art from Edwards, of course). Macan doesn’t like the sci-fi constraints and wants to tell a human story instead; it’s a little obvious and doesn’t work.
Then Snejbjerg does scripting and art on Lords of Misrule. It’s creepy, with great art, but an awkward finish.
Jack Zero, Part One; story by Zero Boy; art by Arnold Pander; lettered by John Costanza. Trout, Nicky Nicky Nine Doors, Part Three; story and art by Troy Nixey. Aliens, Borderlines; story by Darko Macan; art by Tommy Lee Edwards; lettering by John Workman. The Lords of Misrule, Part Two; story and art by Peter Snejbjerg; lettering by Annie Parkhouse; edited by Ian R. Stude. Edited by Bob Schreck and Jamie S. Rich.
The Gully story from Schultz and Williamson doesn’t have much of a script; with Williamson’s art, who cares about the writing? It’s some otherworldly sci-fi Western thing. Lovely to look at.
White and Snejbjerg’s The Lords of Misrule is a little confusing, but decent. Snejbjerg does a great job with the tone and the art is excellent… he just doesn’t take the time to design it to fit the layers of White’s script. Still, creepy and solid.
Trout’s becoming a new favorite, even though this installment shows Nixey has some peculiar problems with perspective. Lot of charm to it though, very nice characterizations.
Hectic Planet goes on forever here. Dorkin has a bunch of silly sci-fi elements in what should be a human story. It gets tiring after the first page then goes on forever.
Schreck, Rich and Jones have a one page closer. Great art from Jones.
One Last Job; story by Mark Schultz; art by Al Williamson; lettered by Denise Powell. The Lords of Misrule, Part One; story by Steve White; art by Peter Snejbjerg; lettering by Annie Parkhouse; edited by Ian R. Stude. Trout, Nicky Nicky Nine Doors, Part Two; story and art by Troy Nixey. Hectic Planet, Part Three; story and art by Evan Dorkin. Gather Ye Rosebuds; story by Bob Schreck and Jamie S. Rich; pencils by Casey Jones; inks by Monty Sheldon; lettering by Sean Konot. Edited by Bob Schreck and Jamie S. Rich.
Posted in Dark Horse, Gully, Hectic Planet, Lords of Misrule, Trout
Tagged Al Williamson, Bob Schreck, Casey Jones, Evan Dorkin, Jamie S. Rich, Mark Schultz, Monty Sheldon, Peter Snejbjerg, Peter White, Troy Nixey
I’m not sure what Nixey’s Trout is about or if it’s going to be about the events of this installment (in some fantasy land, an elf brings a living nightmare back from his sleep… or something along those lines). Since the writing’s so tied to the confusing plot, it’s mostly about Nixey’s art. He combines a fantasy setting with some disturbing ideas (more than imagery) and creates something quite nice.
Dorkin’s Hectic Planet is about a girl’s mysterious new boyfriend. Some good art, totally fine writing… it’s like “Friends” for nineties hipsters.
Adams’s Monkeyman and O’Brien this time features a giant monster (who’s more detailed than anything else, art-wise) and absolutely no excitement, of course. His script’s plotting is exceptionally anticlimactic from the start.
Finally, Predator from Barr and Kolins. Kolins’s work is very rough here (weak perspective). It’s a pointless story, just Presents giving a licensed property pages.
Trout, Nicky Nicky Nine Doors, Part One; story and art by Troy Nixey. Hectic Planet, Part Two, Shot on Goal; story and art by Evan Dorkin. Monkeyman & O’Brien, Gorehemoth – The Garbage Heap That Walks Like A Man, Part Two; story and art by Art Adams; lettering by Lois Buhalis. Predator, No Beast So Fierce…; story by Mike W. Barr; pencils by Scott Kolins; inks by Dan Schaefer; lettering by Sean Konot. Edited by Bob Schreck and Jamie S. Rich.