Dead Inside 5 (May 2017)

Dead Inside #5

Arcudi brings Dead Inside to a rather unsatisfactory conclusion. He’s got a big reveal for the mystery, he’s got a resolution for the ongoing prison riot; neither come off well, especially not when he ties them together so absurdly. Fejzula runs a little wild with the art–the loose lines don’t matter because the resolution is already taking the book off its rails. And the awkward, happy-go-lucky denoument doesn’t help anything either.

CREDITS

Writer, John Arcudi; artist, Toni Fejzula; colorist, André May; letterer, Joe Sabino; editors, Cardner Clark and Daniel Chabon; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.

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Dead Inside 4 (March 2017)

Dead Inside #4

It’s an unpleasant issue; well, it’s more rough than unpleasant. Bad things happening, page after page, as Arcudi moves Dead Inside towards its conclusion. And it’s hard to say where it’s going after this issue. Some really nice art Fejzula, some nice twists from Arcudi. Again, not reinventing the wheel, just solidly rolling it.

CREDITS

Writer, John Arcudi; artist, Toni Fejzula; colorist, André May; letterer, Joe Sabino; editors, Cardner Clark and Daniel Chabon; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.

Dead Inside 3 (February 2017)

Dead Inside #3

It’s another completely solid issue. Arcudi does the police investigation well–there’s a lot left over from previous issues, but he’s able to get in a big surprise from material just introduced here. And Fejzula’s art looks a little different–a little rushed maybe–but it comes together pretty quickly. It’s downright sweet and sincere at times. I started this issue unimpressed with the professionalism of its production, ended it very happy to have it.

CREDITS

Writer, John Arcudi; artist, Toni Fejzula; colorist, André May; letterer, Joe Sabino; editors, Cardner Clark and Daniel Chabon; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.

Dead Inside 2 (January 2017)

Dead Inside #2

The comic continues to be interesting and diverting. Arcudi knows how to write this mystery, he knows how to work in all the cop stuff; Dead Inside does its job, so long as its job is just to be a decent cop comic. However, having Fejzula on the art sort of promises something else, something more. And this issue doesn’t deliver. Fejzula loses personality as the thing goes on and hits Arcudi’s too cheap cliffhanger.

CREDITS

Writer, John Arcudi; artist, Toni Fejzula; colorist, André May; letterer, Joe Sabino; editors, Cardner Clark and Daniel Chabon; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.

Dead Inside 1 (December 2016)

Dead Inside #1

While Dead Inside doesn’t reinvent the wheel–the protagonist is a divorced, hard-drinking female detective who can’t get anyone (male or female) to listen to her about a suspicious death and possible conspiracy–it’s solidly executed. John Arcudi’s script moves things around, has some surprises. Toni Fejzula’s art style is different–the mundane is visually disturbing. It works out well enough.

CREDITS

Writer, John Arcudi; artist, Toni Fejzula; colorist, André May; letterer, Joe Sabino; editors, Cardner Clark and Daniel Chabon; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.

Rumble 1 (December 2014)

Rumble #1

Right off, it’s fairly clear the focus of Rumble isn’t going to be the writing. Not for the reader, anyway. Writer John Arcudi does have some amusing, incisive dialogue. The opening exchange between a bartender and customer has its high points. But it isn’t going to be a talking heads comic.

It’s also not going to be an action comic, because artist James Harren doesn’t spend a lot of time on the act. His panels are somewhat static, very much snapshots in how Harren catches the characters moving.

In those panels, Harren creates an expressive world for Arcudi’s slightly off characters to inhabit. There’s a whole lot of mood; even though Harren’s style is playful, there’s an ever present danger. Maybe because of the giant swordsman chasing down a barfly.

There’s not a lot of meat to Rumble. Arcudi does fine, but Harren is the reason to read the comic.

B 

CREDITS

Writer, John Arcudi; artist, John Harren; colorist, Dave Stewart; letterer, Chris Eliopoulos; publisher, Image Comics.

Batman: Black and White 1 (November 2013)

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With the exception of the Neal Adams story, this first issue of Batman: Black and White is excellent.

Sure, the Chip Kidd story–with some nice Michael Cho art–is a little much on the Silver Age cuteness, but it’s a decent story.

The Adams one is about Bruce Wayne realizing the criminal justice system is unfair. It’s undercooked in both the art (though Adams’s pencils are nice, they’re not inked) and definitely the story. He just tries too hard.

The Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy story from Maris Wicks and Joe Quinones is probably the biggest surprise. It’s delightful.

John Arcudi and Sean Murphy do a “Batman loves his car” story, which has some great art and nice Alfred banter.

Finally, Howard Mackie and Chris Samnee do the most traditional story. Mackie’s got a good villain reveal, but he tries too hard. Lovely Samnee art though.

It’s good stuff.

CREDITS

Don’t Know Where, Don’t Know When; writer, Chip Kidd; artist, Michael Cho; letterer, Dezi Sienty. Batman Zombie; writer and penciller, Neal Adams; letterer, Erica Schultz. Justice is Served; writer, Maris Wicks; artist, Joe Quinones; letterer, Rob Leigh. Driven; writer, John Arcudi; artist, Sean Murphy; letterer, Sal Cipriano. Head Games; writer, Howard Mackie; artist, Chris Samnee; letterer, Jack Morelli. Editors, Camilla Zhang and Mark Chiarello; publisher, DC Comics.

Wednesday Comics 12 (23 September 2009

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One should never hope for too much from finales. Especially not from an extremely uneven anthology series like Wednesday Comics.

Batman’s bad. Kamadi flops. Superman apparently only remembered after twelve installments he had a wife at home.

Deadman is okay. One of the better mediocre strips. Green Lantern is bad. Metamorpho is lacking; Gaiman tries too hard for nostalgia.

Teen Titans is awful, Adam Strange is great. Supergirl is cute again, but Metal Men goes out too dreary. I still have no idea what story Caldwell told with Wonder Woman.

Sgt. Rock’s lame again, but in a syrupy way now. Good Flash comic, though confusing, and an almost okay finish to The Demon and Catwoman. Hawkman is severely lacking too.

The winner of Wednesday Comics is easily Paul Pope for Adam Strange. The losers are just as easy–the inept team of Eddie Berganza and Sean Galloway for Teen Titans.

CREDITS

Batman; writer, Brian Azzarello; artist, Eduardo Risso; colorist, Patricia Mulvihill; letterer, Clem Robins. Kamandi; writer, Dave Gibbons; artist, Ryan Sook. Superman; writer, John Arcudi; artist, Lee Bermejo; colorist, Barbara Ciardo; letterer, Ken Lopez. Deadman; writers, Vinton Heuck and Dave Bullock; artist, Bullock; colorist, Dave Stewart; letterer, Jared Fletcher. Green Lantern; writer, Kurt Busiek; artist and colorist, Joe Quinones; letterer, Pat Brosseau. Metamorpho; writer, Neil Gaiman; artist, Mike Allred; colorist, Laura Allred; letterer, Nate Piekos. Teen Titans; writer, Eddie Berganza; artist and colorist, Sean Galloway; letterer, Nick J. Napolitano. Adam Strange; writer, artist and letterer, Paul Pope; colorist, Jose Villarrubia. Supergirl; writer, Jimmy Palmiotti; artist, Amanda Conner; colorist, Paul Mounts; letterer, John J. Hill. Metal Men; writer, Dan DiDio; penciller, Jose Luís Garcia-Lopez; inker, Kevin Nowlan; colorist, Mulvihill; letterer, Lopez. Wonder Woman; writer, artist, colorist and letterer, Ben Caldwell. Sgt. Rock; writer, Adam Kubert; artist, colorist and letterer, Joe Kubert. The Flash; writers, Brendan Fletcher and Karl Kerschl; artist, Kerschl; colorist, Dave McCaig; letterer, Rob Leigh. The Demon and Catwoman; writer, Walt Simonson; artist and colorist, Brian Stelfreeze; letterer, Steve Wands. Hawkman; writer, artist, colorist and letterer, Kyle Baker. Editors, Chris Conroy and Mark Chiarello; publisher, DC Comics.

Wednesday Comics 11 (16 September 2009)

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Azzarello writes Batman as a rube while Risso tries to ape Sin City as a Batman. Gibbons once again summarizes the action too much on Kamandi. Sook’s barely got anything to do.

Superman is bad. As usual.

Deadman’s okay, Green Lantern’s awful. Ditto, respectively, for Metamorpho and Teen Titans. Hope respectively, in that sense, means Titans is the awful one.

Good (not great) Adam Strange. Poor (not terrible) Supergirl.

For the first time, Garcia-Lopez is too busy on Metal Men. All the large scale action hurts it. And Caldwell breaks out of his little panels for Wonder Woman. It’s a mistake.

Sgt. Rock is okay, The Flash is great. Demon and Catwoman sucks–it’s Simonson’s fault. Stelfreeze just doesn’t have anything good to draw.

Awesome Hawkman–the art’s astounding. Baker really outdoes himself.

Wednesday Comics is wrapping up. Shame most of the creators have no idea how to close.

CREDITS

Batman; writer, Brian Azzarello; artist, Eduardo Risso; colorist, Patricia Mulvihill; letterer, Clem Robins. Kamandi; writer, Dave Gibbons; artist, Ryan Sook. Superman; writer, John Arcudi; artist, Lee Bermejo; colorist, Barbara Ciardo; letterer, Ken Lopez. Deadman; writers, Vinton Heuck and Dave Bullock; artist, Bullock; colorist, Dave Stewart; letterer, Jared Fletcher. Green Lantern; writer, Kurt Busiek; artist and colorist, Joe Quinones; letterer, Pat Brosseau. Metamorpho; writer, Neil Gaiman; artist, Mike Allred; colorist, Laura Allred; letterer, Nate Piekos. Teen Titans; writer, Eddie Berganza; artist and colorist, Sean Galloway; letterer, Nick J. Napolitano. Adam Strange; writer, artist and letterer, Paul Pope; colorist, Jose Villarrubia. Supergirl; writer, Jimmy Palmiotti; artist, Amanda Conner; colorist, Paul Mounts; letterer, John J. Hill. Metal Men; writer, Dan DiDio; penciller, Jose Luís Garcia-Lopez; inker, Kevin Nowlan; colorist, Mulvihill; letterer, Lopez. Wonder Woman; writer, artist, colorist and letterer, Ben Caldwell. Sgt. Rock; writer, Adam Kubert; artist, colorist and letterer, Joe Kubert. The Flash; writers, Brendan Fletcher and Karl Kerschl; artist, Kerschl; colorist, Dave McCaig; letterer, Rob Leigh. The Demon and Catwoman; writer, Walt Simonson; artist and colorist, Brian Stelfreeze; letterer, Steve Wands. Hawkman; writer, artist, colorist and letterer, Kyle Baker. Editors, Chris Conroy and Mark Chiarello; publisher, DC Comics.

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