Dark Horse Presents 100 1 (August 1995)

Where to start…. Miller opens the issue with sort of a “ha ha, you can’t say it’s misogynistic because it’s intentional” Lance Blastoff! story. Killing dinosaurs, eating meat, those are the things women really need whether they know it or not. The writing’s crap—no shock—but Miller at least draws the dinosaurs. Bennett and Guinan’s Heartbreakers returns after fifty issues and is no less boring. Sometimes it veers towards interesting territory, but it’s setup for more adventures. Bennett and Guinan avoid the human factor in the new ground situation. Art’s decent. Pekar and Sacco’s thing is, besides being pointless, fine. French’s … Continue reading Dark Horse Presents 100 1 (August 1995)

Dark Horse Presents 52 (July 1991)

The Bacchus story is a really upsetting story of Simpson, Bacchus’s sidekick, and his journey through hell. I’m not up on my Dante, but it seems like it follows Inferno a little bit. It’s a good story, but it’s a real downer and very different from the other Bacchus entries so far. The Heartbreakers story features some really dumb plot developments. But Bennett may have gotten the narrative to a good starting point. Finally. Then there’s Sin City—two installments in and I’m really sick of it. Half the story looks like Miller’s drew Batman then replaced him with Marv (trench … Continue reading Dark Horse Presents 52 (July 1991)

Dark Horse Presents 51 (June 1991)

I’m having trouble figuring out the big deal with Sin City. I mean, it looks cool and all, but isn’t Marv on the run from the cops a lot like that issue of “Batman: Year One” with the Batman running from the cops. The narration’s overbearing and all… but it’s fine as a stupid diversion. It’s relentlessly unrealistic. Unfortunately, Harlequin wraps up this issue. Gaudiano tries out three different styles, all to great success. He introduces more design to his work here and it’s very successful. Csutoras comes up with a great close for the story (it seems to be … Continue reading Dark Horse Presents 51 (June 1991)

Dark Horse Presents 50 (April 1991)

Heartbreakers is a little better this issue. Bennett and Guinan still don’t have a good sense of what makes a story interesting. This one implies it had potential to be interesting on the second to last page. Hughes and Story do a few pages, riffing on the idea of pin-up pages. The writing’s far from perfect, but it’s Hughes doing regular comics. It’s technically outstanding, though some of the jokes require a lot of close attention. Csutoras and Gaudiano continue Harlequin. Some of this installment features Gaudiano’s best art so far. The story continues to be somewhat indescribable and very … Continue reading Dark Horse Presents 50 (April 1991)

Dark Horse Presents Fifth Anniversary Special (April 1991)

This special is far from an accurate representation of Dark Horse Presents. Everything looks very professional. The Aerialist and Heartbreakers installments are both long needed establishments of the series’ ground situation. I even liked the Heartbreakers one (Bennett’s writing is far stronger from the clones’ perspective, versus their creator). There’s also lots of disposable stuff–Concrete, The American and Black Cross are all weak, though Warner’s art is better on Cross than I’ve ever seen it. Chadwick and Verheiden use their stories to blather about American culture. Of the two Miller’s–Give Me Liberty and Sin City–I almost prefer Sin City. Liberty‘s … Continue reading Dark Horse Presents Fifth Anniversary Special (April 1991)

Dark Horse Presents 37 (March 1990)

Thank goodness there’s a Bacchus in here because otherwise it’d be a complete loss. Guinan’s art continues to be acceptable on Heartbreakers, while he and Bennett’s writing just gets worse and worse. Some of the issue is with them trying to do too much in such a short amount of pages… But mostly they just can’t write it. They can’t make their characters matter, so they try to make their ideas matter. Except it’s a bunch of theoretical ideas, so… as usual… who cares? Speaking of bad, Davis is now changing the hairstyles for the protagonists between panels on Celia … Continue reading Dark Horse Presents 37 (March 1990)

Dark Horse Presents 36 (February 1990)

The Aliens vs. Predator story is most impressive for Norwood’s illustration… but not of aliens or Predators. The story opens on some alien world and it’s just breathtaking. Once the actual story starts (Stradley’s two conversationalists talking about hunting experiences while Predators hunt aliens), it can’t compete with those visuals. Still, for what amounts to shameless self-promotion, these prologues are very successful. Davis’s Delia & Celia features a number of young women “playing” the two leads. Davis can’t maintain faces for them to the point he must have been photo-referencing. Each panel, they get a new, distinct face. The writing … Continue reading Dark Horse Presents 36 (February 1990)

Dark Horse Presents 35 (December 1989)

The Predator story opening the comic gets it off to a good start (it’s really just part of the prologue to the first Aliens vs. Predator series). Stradley writes an excellent conversation about social Darwinism between these two pilots, which Norwood then adapts into something featuring Predators fighting for dominance. Well, it was probably the reverse, right? Marvel style? The first Heartbreakers story is mildly incomprehensible–it’s packed with detail, all about cloning, interoffice politics and the future. I like Guinan’s art, but I can’t tell if the soldiers are all supposed to be identical clones. His visual reference all seems … Continue reading Dark Horse Presents 35 (December 1989)