May 15th, 2024

Rob's Picks:

Doom #1

Jonathan Hickman takes a break from writing some of Marvel’s best ongoing titles to give us this epic one-shot. When Galactus gives in to his world-consuming hunger and threatens to destroy all, the galaxy’s heroes rise to stop him, and fail. This leaves only one with the strength, intelligence, and will to do what they could not. Who is this most superior being, what man could possess such power? DOOOOOOOOOM! Aided by Valeria Richards (daughter of Reed and Sue), Victor Von Doom must travel the galaxy and acquire some of its mightiest powers for the final battle. Hickman’s writing lays a solid foundation for this comic, but artist Sanford Greene (Bitter Root) steals the show, making the weight of this titanic conflict felt and putting his own spin on Kirby-style cosmic/sci-fi tech. Like last year’s Timeless #1, this is a huge issue that puts the spotlight on one character with an outrageously epic story built just for them.

Redcoat #2

Our first outing with Simon Pure, AKA the Redcoat, was an extended preview of sorts, introducing players and teasing things to come more so than diving into narrative. With issue #2, the style, tone, and story take shape. The immortal Redcoat, who has spent over a century of life in relative obscurity, is the target of occultists who somehow know who and what he is. To find out who they are and what connection they have to the group that first blessed/cursed him with eternal life, Simon takes the help of a very old friend and an ingenious young man. That young man’s name? Albert Einstein. This book and its protagonist/narrator keep things light with a brand of cheeky humor that underlays every moment but never undercuts the story or our investment in it.

Uncanny Valley #2

After a first issue that played it straight and took time to ground itself, only to go full-on bonkers in the final pages, Tony Fleecs and Dave Watcher return with a #2 that doubles down on both the serious and the silly. This is an incredible two-man juggling act. In the hands of a lesser team, the contrast of the two tones would ultimately elevate one over the other; every moment of pathos undercut by the obligatory final quip, or humorous scenes brought to a halt by out-of-place sentimentality. With this team, comedy and sentiment are executed with equal care and balanced so that one elevates the other. Picking up where we left off, with Oliver on the run with his newly discovered grandfather, a Yosemite Sam-like character called Pecos Pete. Finding out you’re a quarter cartoon on your mother’s side is the kind of revelation that creates more questions than it answers, and Oliver is suitably confused by this and the nature of reality/cartoon interaction in general. But more than this, he is a realistically hurt child, wounded by all the secrets kept and angry at the family that kept them. Family relations take a back seat when more nefarious toons arrive, requiring the young man to embrace his heritage if he wants to get out alive.

Solomon's Picks:

Uncanny Valley #2

The next installment of this clever new story was released this week and it was fantastic! By Tony Fleecs and Dave Wachter, Uncanny Valley focuses on a boy named Oliver, who is somehow mixed with Human and Cartoon DNA. After the surprising life-altering events towards the end of the last issue, Oliver is on the run with his grandfather, who is teaching Oliver more about how his Cartoon-Based powers and attributes work. I’m loving the hectic-but-grounded energy that this second issue has given us, with some sort of looney event happening every couple of pages to interfere with Oliver’s “Human” perspective on life. With classic western-animation references littered throughout the story, and a beautiful art style, I can definitely recommend this story to anyone who is browsing for a new read!

Doom #1

A groundbreaking one-shot centering everyone's favorite genius, Dr. Doom! Given to us by Sanford Greene and Jonathan Hickman comes Doom, a compelling story set after a battle many fans have dreamed of—a VS between Doom and Galactus. I won’t give away too many plot points as this is a book I think works well when you enter it blind, but just know that Doom’s character is handled perfectly, the story is so enjoyable that this being a one-shot is my only real complaint, and the illustrations this book provides are top-notch. My favorite part of this issue would definitely be the opening pages, which feature a clever reference to none other than MF DOOM! Definitely a book worth picking up for yourself, and copies are flying off the shelves so grab one today!

Venom: Separation Anxiety #1

A new throw-back Venom story created by David Michelinie and Gerardo Sandoval, Separation Anxiety features exceptional art and shows us a Venom that most fans are already familiar with. Venom and Eddie have a score to settle with Peter, and they are going through great lengths to find Spider-Man and carry out their plan. They stumble upon an old colleague who requests their aid and skills as a photographer, however, they obviously run into some issues that require them to apply Lethal Force. The characterization of Eddie and Venom was great, and even managed to sneak some humor between the two into the story in a way that wasn’t too distracting from the overall story. The art is definitely a major selling point for this book, with the character designs working well for everyone and the action-panels having a glorious look to them that adds a sense of flare. All-in-all, I loved this book and can’t wait for the upcoming issues!