vrijdag 10 februari 2017

Argo Comics Double Shot #1

Argo Comics is one of the most trustworthy publishers of indepent superhero comics out there. Not many publishers manage to put out so many books a year. This one is a partnership of Argo Comics and Excelsior Quadrinhos, featuring characters from both universes.
The All-American and Artillery face terrorists at the Olympic Games. Sensei X and Ninjana’s dinner plan’s go wrong when they face some nasty thugs. There's also the Weaponaire and Avatar who fight vampires!
All stories are short and to the point. Nothing deep, but fun action-packed stories to wet your appetite for these characters. The art can pretty much stand up to the big publishers and the coloring is awesome.
Check this book out if you want some old-fashioned superheroic fun.

vrijdag 27 mei 2016

Earthling # 2

In this second issue we get a glimpse at the origins of Earthling and a better idea of his universe. This series takes place mainly in The Netherlands, or a version of it where most signs are in english ;-).
We get to meet Holland's very own version of Superman and Captain America in The Flying Dutchman who servers as a perfect example for us why Earthling exists and what sets him apart from other heroes. Where most heroes worry about the big villains our vegan superhero takes care of the animals who are endangered. He is more interested in justice than the law, which will be sure to have him clash with some of the superheroes we meet this issue.
The whole idea is more fleshed out than #1 which seemed to be more about the flash-bang end of the concept. This one's writing is really better than the first issue.
The artwork is spectacular, definitely up to Marvel or DC standards. Of the two artists contributing I prefer Bien Flores' work which looks a bit more timeless than Jim Jiminez'.
Cool artwork, cool new heroes and a message. This is what comics should be about!

donderdag 21 januari 2016

Earthling # 1

How can you make your superhero comic stand out from the mass-production of Marvel and DC? Well, it helps if you can make it identifiable to a certain niche group. If you can do what Stan Lee did for Spider-Man did for nerds, or Milestone did for African Americans you might be on to something. We need more diverse heroes in age, race, sexual orientation and beliefs. Here is such a prime example. Meet Earthling, the vegan superhero, created by Dave Brink.
In this first issue we meet this hero who seems to be a cross between Wolverine and Animal Man. A ferocious champion for animals he can be quite zealous in his approach which has him clashing with emotion bending superheroine Miss Lovechild and a bizarre supervillain.
We also get a look at his "universe'' where unregistered heroes are called ''radicals'' and a superhuman is named an ''ultravalid'' instead of mutant or meta-human. There's a Fantastic Four-like team cleverly called Fource Majeure in a brief appearance as well. All these elements really managed to capture my imagination.
The art by all artists (Dave Brink, Bien Flores, Izik Bell) is very good, at a Marvel / DC level for sure as are the colors. There's a certain nineties style to it that suits the story well. The story is exciting and bold and a good set-up for I hope a lot more.
And hey, there's no reason why Earthling couldn't be the mascotte for straight edge punk bands into veganism that  Judge Dredd or Lobo are for metalheads.

For more information about this comic go to


dinsdag 2 juni 2015

That BulletProof Kid # 1-3

The USA isn't the only country where cool superheroes are born. This series from Australia is proof positive!
We follow the adventures of superhero /  teenager Anthony Fischer who reminded me more of Richard Rider (the old Nova) then Peter Parker. That is, he's not a geek but pretty much a regular kid (wearing punkrock outfits which I dig). There's a lot scenes at school and at home so we get a pretty good idea of Anthony and his friends.
Okay, there's a lot of superhero stuff as well of course. Fischer is Bulletproof, a young superhero who teams up with some other heroes on a regular basis. There's an organisation that seems to be keeping tabs on the superheroes called The Tribunal that doesn't trust our hero and a villain in the Darkseid mold called Maux that will be sure to challenge our hero in issues to come.
While most other superheroes aren't very iconic and the artwork isn't always as solid as a book by the Big Two there's a lot of energy to this series that I dig. The writing is pretty solid and I like the fact this is 100% no-frills honest to gosh superheroes.
If you liked Invincible, but thought that book became too crazy and violent this is the book to pick up.

vrijdag 2 januari 2015

Force # 1 (Zyon Comics)

What drew me to the cover of this book was the perfect blend of old school and new school comics in the character design. I was pleased to read in the introduction the writer of this series has a fondness of real, true heroes.
In this first issue we are introduced to Force and a few aliens. There's also a nice pin-up of other cool looking Zyon Comics characters. It seems there are more superheroes in this universe, although they don't seem to be very popular with the public.
The art is really good, almost good enough to be Marvel / DC. Although I am drawn to the characters and intrigued by the story it is a bit short to get a really good feel for the direction this series will be going. I do think good things can be expected from the Zyon Comics universe.

woensdag 21 mei 2014

Heroic # 1

Another cool superhero comic funded by Kickstarter... The brainchild of Andrew Collas this is the start of a new superhero universe that looks pretty cool.
We witness how a hero called Lady America announces she is quitting her job at the funeral of a hero called Guardsman. What happens next to her will surprise you, but I won't tell you here so as not to spoil anything.
Turns out the Tony Stark of this universe is called Doc Titan, a shapechanger. It's clear he seems to have his hand in a lot of nasty stuff.
As an "egg" is stolen from a secret facility we soon learn there's a superhuman inside who is hunted down by a cool bunch of supervillains... Luckily it seems there's some superheroic help on the way.
I liked the way this story is not a spoof, not a deconstruction but surely dark enough to have a very modern feel to it. The superhero names are pretty clever and cool.
The art is done by 3 capable artists, but I liked the art by Oliver Castenada the best.
Looking forward to the second issue.

donderdag 27 februari 2014

Q & A with Ian Healy

Ian Healy has brought us a number of cool superhero novels in his Just Cause universe. He's coming out with a new one in april, JACKRABBIT. I interviewed him about the book.

Tell us - what is 'Jackrabbit' about?
Jackrabbit is a tale about how the fate of the entire world rests on the shoulders of a couple of seventeen-year-old kids and how they respond to an unimaginable threat. When a nonhuman god and his minions from beyond the realm of human imagination invades both the dimension known as Gods' Home and the Earth, it violates the most basic, sacred laws of the deities. It falls to the only two gods who still have the ability to summon Heralds, the God of Rabbits and the Goddess of Bluebirds, to select their Heralds and send them off to save the world. If they fail, it means the end of not only the Earth, but of the domain of human gods as well.

To readers of what comics will it appeal?
Jackrabbit certainly has some very cosmic qualities to it that would appeal to readers of Thor or the New Gods. On the other hand, the lop-eared hero himself is very grounded and almost self-aware that he's a character in a story. For people who like the goofy fun of the Amazing Spider-Man, or Blue Beetle, Jackrabbit will seem familiar and comforting to them.

Where can we find the book? 
Jackrabbit will be on sale at all online retailers in both ebook and print formats on April 1, 2014. Before then, you can sign up for the Goodreads Giveaway for a chance to win one of three signed ARCs https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/81665-jackrabbit or you can preorder the ebook editions from Kobo http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/jackrabbit and Smashwords https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/406990

How do you think superheroes work out in prose, and why did you decide to take a stab at it? 
I think superheroes work just fine in prose, because the stories have to be about real, believable characters. Just because they happen to have superpowers doesn't mean the stories have to lack in other aspects of reality. I strive to make my superhero tales about people first and foremost, and their powers are just special effects or tools. Most of my stories could be re-edited to happen entirely without any kind of powers and still work.
I've wanted to write superheroes since I was a kid. Now, at least, I have an idea of what I'm doing.

Who is your favourite comic book hero, and who's your favourite creator?
I think my favorite hero of all time has to be The Question (DC), who wasn't defined by his lack of powers so much as he was by his insatiable curiosity. A close second would be the Booster Gold and Blue Beetle (Ted Kord version) partnership. Those guys had the best friendship I've ever seen in comics, and the sheer wackiness of the situations they got into never failed to bring a smile to my face.
My favorite creator is Alan Moore, because with Watchmen, he showed me that comic books could be about far more than just heroes punching bad guys. He made me want to write stories that were as powerful as his.

What is it about superheroes that appeals to people so much and why are there so many comic book movies now?
Superheroes are the contemporary equivalents of the legendary heroes of old like Hercules, John Henry, Paul Bunyan, and Wild Bill Hickock. Humans always dream of characters far more powerful than we are. It gives us something to strive toward.
The main reason there are so many comic book movies now is because the first few made mad money. Studios only care about the bottom line. If Christopher Nolan's Batman movies had tanked, or the Avengers had tanked, I promise you there would be virtually no superheroes on the big screen now. Eventually the wave will crest, like it did in the '90s with the Joel Schumacher Batman films, and then superheroes will be absent for awhile (Until somebody of influence picks up a copy of Just Cause and realizes that it would be a phenomenal movie!).

For more information about Ian Healy go to: