Holiday Edition! – 12/25/2012

Hi there folks, Robert McClelland/Rob Wrecks here. I just want to say thanks to Wicked Comics for allowing IndieComiX articles to be featured here. And may your Christmas have been a great one!

Before we get to the reviews, I wanted to take a moment and say a few things. Mostly that I hope you’ve all had a great Christmas filled with all sorts of goodness. It is my hope you’ll enjoy this special batch of reviews. And lastly I want to thank all of you for the support you’ve given to IndieComiX. Also want to thank the likes of Michael Pruitt, Derrick Crow, Warren ‘Dubz’ Wesson, and Jesse Brown for all the great reviews they have added to the site. As well as a huge thanks to good folk such as Charles Xavier of Trash Mutant, Vicki Locey, Essential Webcomics, David Paul, and Jay Katz of InvestComics. Anyways… Merry Christmas everyone! Now… Let’s get it on!

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Brimstone and The Borderhounds #3
Hound Comics
Created by: Brimstone and M.H. Carnevali
Story by: M. H. Carnevali
Pencils by: Sajad Shah
Inks by: Allen “Vandal” Chickering
Inks, Colors, and Letters by: Thiago Castro
Reviewer: Robert McClelland

Summary: Time for a showdown! The notorious and previously executed serial killer, Christopher Farquis (a.k.a Mr. Hostile), has been hunted down by the same Detective responsible for capturing him nearly a decade ago; NYPD Detective William Altar. Now in a confrontation with Mr. Hostile, Detective Altar and his SWAT team are faced with a potential new threat… BRIMSTONE. Now the only question for Detective Altar is, who is Brimstone and whose side is he on…

Review: Its time to get a little bloody with a dash of excitement! Not only was this a fairly great read from start to finish, readers also get to see past events that would eventually help set up things currently going on in the present. Showing that even back then that Mr. Momma’s Little Nutso was just as crazy. And a little too smart for Officer Altar’s own good, not to mention his family’s. I have to wonder though if Momma’s Boy is responsible for her death. Or if it was just old age. Suppose we’ll never really know. The cover’s art is very nice as well. I like how Officer Altar is positioned between Brimstone and Momma’s Boy. As its practically giving a small taste of what’s in store for readers. Carnevali’s writing is just absolutely fantastic. I’m happy he’s been with this book in the time its been around. As I really don’t think anyone else aside from Brimstone himself could do a good job with the characters we’ve been shown so far up to this point. Sajad’s art as well continues to be pretty awesome too. And regarding Mr. Momma’s Boy, I’m kind of thinking his mom might have been a bit nuts too. If you’ve yet to read this, you’ll soon see what I mean! And if you have already read this, you might agree with my assessment.

Brimstone’s witty remarks is another feature I am liking about the title. I think he could give Spider-Man a run for his money in that area! The use of special Hell based abilities is a nice touch. As it makes things much more dangerous for Altar and his cop buddies. And Brimstone himself to a degree. And I would have to strongly agree with a statement Brimstone makes about Mr. Nutso’s momma. Since what else could she be but that? I know she wouldn’t want to be someone I’d want to be around! Some of the familiarity Brimstone seems to have with Mr. Nutso is a little surprising. But when I think about it, considering where’s been after his death years ago and Brimstone being where he is. It would make some sort of twisted sense that there would be some familiarity. As I go through this book again as I write this review. In one particular scene with Brimstone, it has this well.. Jesus Christ vibe to it. Which I suppose would be kind of fitting after the revelation Altar has. Pity the vibe gets ruined by what happens in the end. Despite my dislike of cliff hangers, I honestly have to say that they ended issue 3 with a real bang! Which means you know for a certain things will be even much more intense in the next issue! If you haven’t yet, don’t hesitate to grab this. Otherwise you’ll be missing out on what possibly could be your next favorite comic! To grab this issue, head over to the Hound Comics website!
5 out of 5 Stars.

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Sticks & Bones: Home Is Where The Hearth is #1
Wolfswood Press
Writer: Valya Dudycz Lupescu
Illustrator: Madeline Carol Matz
Reviewer: Robert McClelland

Summary: Home Is Where the Hearth Is is the first chapter/issue in the graphic novel STICKS & BONES. Issue 1 tells the story of Yaroslav, a displaced house spirit in America looking for a new home. At its heart, this is a fairy tale about love and transformation, and the sacrifices we make to find our place in the world. The 24-page comic will be beautifully illustrated with fully painted pages by Madeline in a style that echoes the art of Czech Art Nouveau painter Alphonse Mucha.

Review: Now I admit that the cover for this book had me thinking the man was a Werewolf. Especially with how he looks. But I quickly learned how wrong I was. This book actually had me doing a bit of research to see just what exactly a Domovyk was. As I honestly hadn’t been sure if it was just something Lupescu had creatively come up with or was something used from a bit of folklore. And they say you can’t learn anything from comics! Shows who ever said that once upon a time how wrong they are! Now I admit that seeing Yaro with a heart at the beginning of the story was a bit alarming. As I honestly thought he was a murderer to begin with. But as the story went on, I again realized how wrong I was. And for those of you who enjoy a bit of art in a museum. Madeline Carol Matz’ artwork is beautifully done in an art style form. I honestly wonder how long it took her to do that as well for this book. If you’re the type who doesn’t enjoy this kind of art in a comic, then you are missing out on a nice little read. I rather like the idea of a house spirit that isn’t a possible danger living in a sort of harmony with me and the house. Its a really neat concept and thank you Wikipedia for having the answers I needed! Yaro’s profession being what it is, which I kind of consider as a moon lighting sort of thing. Is a really neat way to try and find himself a new home.

Even if a lot of the time it sadly doesn’t work out for him. I bet that’s caused some huge issues for those special ladies afterwards. If this were any other story, I honestly think he would have gotten to be very lucky with the girl who’s house he’s working on. Even if she is married. While I enjoyed the story and learned something new. I did find this to be a bit sad due to what Yaro has to do. What he does with his own heart and the out right pain he feels regarding it is also pretty saddening too. I honestly wouldn’t mind possibly seeing more of Yaro down the line. Not to mention getting to see what Anya’s life is like after having met Yaro and the events that happened. This is definitely something to read and add to your collection if you enjoy a good story that involves the use of folk tales. To find out how to pick up your own copy, head over to Wolfsword Press!
5 out of 5 Stars

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Lil’ Hero Artists
OmniLegend Publishing
By Nana Kumi-Amankwah & Nick Vollmer
Reviewer: Derrick Crow

Story: This tale revolves around the adventures of young Jason & Jamie Deroga and their pals Sally Yola & Ken Sable, who are by chance caught up in a fantasy adventure where art and creativity are the greatest weapons of all. (from Lil’ Hero Artists collection)

Review: What can I really say about this series? It was billed as an all ages book and it really reads like one. In fact, I can tell you right off the bat I didn’t really care for this story once I was halfway through it, but in its simplicity lies a bit of charm to be had.

That charm being the ideas that I don’t think were full realized here. And it had a lot of really good ideas; it just seemed the creators were more interested in telling a small self-contained children’s tale than a fully filled out world as this could’ve easily been an ongoing story with a sequel and more world building.

As the ending is very rushed and a lot of questions remained unanswered. Why were all of our main characters truly chosen? Couldn’t it just have been any old siblings and their friends? The prophecy that foreshadows their arrival is very vague on that and doesn’t give us a real reason as to why these are the four kids that are chosen.

And the prophecy itself betrays the very summary of the story we’re given, because there is a prophecy these kids aren’t thrust into it by chance, it was their destiny.

The villain is pretty underdeveloped and I would’ve loved to have seen him come back for a sequel, in fact there is actually a lot to love here just the execution I felt was off as the story comes off being pretty cliché, rushed and given no time to properly explain anything.

As a story for kids, I would have no trouble showing this to my kid someday when I have one, as a story for people of all ages to enjoy I don’t believe adults could really get a kick out of this. There just isn’t enough substance in this story for an adult to enjoy. And the ending pretty much beats the moral of the story over your head like a lead balloon.

The art is actually pretty decent for the subject matter, I found myself truly impressed with the look of the big bad and the big monster, Scorpinib that shows up in this thing. Though there were places where I feel like they could’ve polished it up a bit more.

The lettering also impressed me in some places, but in others I could tell where there was a typo or a grammatical mistake and there were often time where half the text was cut off from I don’t even know what was causing it. And so I wished they had read and looked over their story a bit more thoroughly before releasing it.

Over all, Lil’ Hero Artists does in fact have a lot of potential, I liked the ideas presented and I liked the theme/moral of the story, even though I never wanted it force fed to me. It’s simply that the execution fell pretty flat for me and it was hard to keep my interest after I began to notice the story tropes and the clichés.

However, I did catch what I took to be a few homages to Sailor Moon, an old 90’s anime that I used to watch as a kid. That did make me quite happy and I hope I’m not reading too much into it.

With all this being said, I give Lil’ Hero Artists:
2.5 Artilouix Medallions out of 5.
To find out where you can grab yourself a copy, head over to the Lil’ Hero Artists website!

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Deadzone: Greatest Hits (Of Pain and Rage)
Plan ‘B’ Comics
Writer and Letterer: Keith Braun
Pencils: Roman Morales III
Inks: Greg Harms
Colors: Kyle Chaney, Jr.
Story Editor: Lauren Re
Reviewer: Robert McClelland

Summary: The controversial watch dog/vigilante Deadzone submits more brutal deluxe, bone-blasting justice in this “Greatest Hits” issue narrated by Deadzone himself as he discloses detailed personal insight to his mission goals, origins and views on society.

Review: Now you’re probably wondering where issue 4 is since I last reviewed issue 3 of this book. But not to worry folks, not to worry at all. As Greatest Hits essentially is issue 4. At first I wasn’t too sure what to think of the story because it shows some happenings from the first issue. But luckily for me, Mr. Chaney did a bit of explaining for me after I asked about appearance from the first issue and it made a lot more sense to me afterwards. Keith delivers yet another nicely written book, showing the readers just why Deadzone does what he does. Roman’s art also delivers once again for Deadzone. From the bloody gore Deadzone inflicts on the bad guys to his rather awesome armor.

Roman never fails. Having read this, I kind of view Deadzone’s mission as taking back the American Dream and making it pure again for the folks of America. Sure his way might be a bit violent and liable to end gruesomely in his own death one of these days. But at least he’s willing to risk that. So if you’ve been looking to get insight on how Deadzone thinks. This is the book for you! Heck you might just find yourself rooting for him even more once you’ve read about his reasons for what he does. However, my only real gripe with this book is that its too short. But don’t let that stop you from picking this up at the Deadzone website!
4 out of 5 Stars

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