Half Year Progress Report: Comics Edition
Normally, progress reports aren’t our strong point but then we weren’t the ones doling them out nor were comic books involved. These progress reports are not graded but are more of a brief rundown of our favorite comics so far. Yes, we know there is still a lot of time left this year and things can change but nevertheless, here is what we’re digging.
Hack/Slash is hands down our favorite ongoing series thus far this year. Cassie, Vlad and the rest of the gang of Hack/Slash Inc. have been traveling around the country, tracking down slashers and exterminating them. Yes, the very same type of slashers made famous by Friday the 13th and Halloween. What Seeley and Leister have been able to do is expand the mythos of slashers. You might think the book is just about the ‘Slasher of the Week’ but it’s so much more than that; it dives into the lives of the characters and their relationships. With the jump from publisher Devil’s Due to Image Comics, we were excited because it meant more exposure for this series.
The premise had us at hello and just four issues in, we’re hooked. Intrepids follows a group of now-adult orphans whose sole job in life is to track down mad scientists and their different inventions. From Cyber Bears to monkey assault teams, there’s no short supply of crazy action. The team is hot on the heels of the mysterious doctor Koi and with issue 4, it’s heading towards the final countdown.
Having to write in the world of 28 Days Later is tough. After all, the movies introduced a new type of zombie to the masses known as the “Rage Zombie.” Add in the fact that the series has to fit in-between the first and second movie, and now you’re talking about a Herculean task of writing and drawing this book. Nelson and the various artists handled this in stride, making it the best licensed property. The series has wrapped and we’re left wondering if there will be a 28 Weeks Later.
Best Indie Publisher: Black List Studios
If your signature book is of a jar with a floating skull on top of a robot body and said robot fights giant monsters, we’re onboard. R13 is a robot trying to find the truth of who he is after being pulled off the bottom of the ocean by fishermen. It also doesn’t hurt that Black List Studios has another series, “The King!” that centers around a Mexican wrestler/Elvis impersonator-turned hit man of both the undead and things that go bump in the night. With the creative team of artist Daniel Bradford and writer Thomas Hall on both projects, you’re definitely getting a team that is passionate about comics.
Best Digital Comic: Double Feature Published by Four Star Studios
With a different genre out each month and names like Mike Norton and B. Clay Moore working on stories, it has to be the best $.99 you’ve ever spent. Each digital issue, as the title suggests, has two features that runs eight pages each but you’ll feel like you’re getting way more than eight pages. Each issue is jam-packed full of extras like commentary and sketches. Double Feature is the result of having independent creators who love to create comics and have fun doing it. The brain child and crew of Four Star Studios, Tim Seeley, Mike Norton, Josh Emmons and Sean Dove, recruited their friends and cohorts on this project, and boy, are they killing it.
Favorite Writer: It’s Just Too Tough to Call
We’re loving Hack/Slash and what Tim Seeley is doing on it but we also love anything that Michael Alan Nelson is doing over at Boom! Studios. Then again Kurtis J. Wiebe is killing it on Intrepids and Green Wake. We just can’t decide.
Favorite Artist: Daniel Bradford
If you couldn’t tell from our ‘best indie publisher’ category, it’s a safe bet that we are enamored with the art of Bradford. We met him at the 2011 Boston Comic Con and told him we hated him because his art is so good (we’re jealous too, if you can’t tell). Anyone whose art runs the gambit of creepy and atmospheric to fun and over the top makes it our favorite of the year.
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