This week is VERY Image heavy and VERY sci-fi heavy and for good reason!! Apparently Image was just like, “Yo! We’ve got all these crazy good futuristic sci-fi titles right now, you know what would be a great idea? Let’s put them out all at once!” *fwoomph* “Whee! That was fun!” Seriously, almost all of my favorite comics are coming out this week and I am so incredibly excited about it. Also, Saga is coming out even though it didn’t make this list (cause I’m not cool enough to get review copies of it). So yay! Enjoy and I hope your NCBD is as exciting as mine!
Southern Cross #2
Publisher: Image Comics
Writer: Becky Cloonan
Artist: Andy Belanger
Cover Artist: Becky Cloonan
I liked this issue so much better than the first one. I really really enjoyed Southern Cross #2 and I’m so happy and relieved because I so wanted to like this series! I think maybe the reason I liked this issue better was because the protagonist, Alex, became a lot more relatable. There’s nothing wrong with the tough girl exterior that she exuded in the first issue, but I didn’t really feel a connection to her and the other characters weren’t around long enough in the first book for me to get attached. This issue was much different. Alex’s cool exterior starts to slip as things on the ship get increasingly bizarre. The intensity and reality of her emotions were tangible, drawing me in and making me much more invested in the story. Once I felt connected to Alex, I was able to appreciate the events and circumstances affecting her so much more. Southern Cross #2 is an engaging, futuristic mystery that is well worth the read. Somehow, even the colors seemed more fitting in this issue despite the fact that it was an almost identical color palate to the first issue. If, like me, you weren’t quite sure about Southern Cross, give it another go! If you haven’t read it yet, start! And if you loved the first issue, keep on reading!
Publisher: Image Comics
Writer: Jeff Lemire
Artist/Cover Artist: Dustin Nguyen
I spent a full week and a half raving nonstop about Descender #1. My bar was set at King Kong swatting planes from the top of the Empire State building heights going into Descender #2. And #2 raised it even higher! Now my bar is floating around at Hubble and maybe space debris/space station heights? I honestly should have a better concept of what is orbiting this planet, but once we get past our atmosphere, I’m a little clueless. However, that doesn’t stop me from love-love-loving this super awesome, alien vs. robot vs. human space epic! As some of you may know, I’m ALL about origin stories and sympathetic characters. Descender #2 practically had me in tears with its flashback scenes. It was like Edward Scissorhands watching his human hands break and crumble on his own blades all over again. Good golly. And I don’t even know where to begin with the art! It took me about an hour to read this one issue because I had to stop every few seconds to stare at the gorgeousness/show every page to every single person in my vicinity. It was like reading a book at a library story hour. A really beautifully tragic book that would probably not go over well if I actually read it at a story hour. No need to traumatize poor young children, but now I want to make an adult story hour and read it to y’all. Show of hands, who wants me to start making ‘Julia Reads!’ videos? Okay, anyway, Descender #2 was fantastic! In every way possible it was glorious and needs to be read.
The Surface #2
Publisher: Image Comics
Writer: Ales Kot
Artist/Cover Artist: Langdon Foss
Soo, I have pretty much zero idea what is actually going on in this comic at this point, but in one of those Fight Club-y, this is totally awesome kind of ways. Also I definitely called it on the phallic imagery last month. One of the characters, Nasia, straight up says, “I don’t really know what just happened, but I think the projector is a gigantic dick and –.” That pretty much sums up my entire reaction to this issue (sorry mom and dad, just calling it like it is and you always taught me to be honest). As you can imagine, putting a group of teenage lovers into an area that’s probably a hologram and you can most likely change with your mind gets pretty darn nuts. Like I said, I’m not super sure what’s going on, but I like it! Nasia is being talked to by some unseen voices and one of them is maybe an ape? (Speaking of apes, remember when I also compared the projector to the slab in 2001: A Space Odyssey? Well now there are apes everywhere so I’m probably a genius.) So basically, things are crazy and then things are bad and then they’re still crazy, but sad and bad crazy, not funky and flirty crazy. The Surface #2 is very good. It kind of makes me feel like maybe I’m not philosophical or intelligent enough to really understand everything, but I’m just going to keep being proud of myself for getting the Sylvia Plath and Dadaism references and enjoying the comic for what it is to me.
Publisher: Image Comics
Writer: Grant Morrison
Artist/Cover Artist: Chris Burnham
Maybe taking an ancient key that has to be chanted at to work and opening doors with it willy-nilly is NOT the best idea. Although it does make a good story so if you need to impress someone (or write a top-selling comic *wink wink*) go for it, I guess! In all seriousness though, Nameless #3 is great. All hell breaks loose (possibly literally) and the horrorness of this horror comic ramps up to wonderfully freaky deeky levels. I was very happy to catch a quick glimpse of one of the fish people from the first issue again! The ridickydonk dream stuff from that issue is still by far my favorite part of Nameless so I would love to see it make a comeback. Nameless #3 leaves us with more questions than answers, like the middle of a good suspense story should.
Help Us! Great Warrior #3
Publisher: Boom! Studios
Writer/Artist: Madeleine Flores
Cover Artist: William Gibbons
Annnd, she’s back! While I wasn’t over the moon about Help Us! Great Warrior #2, this issue brings back every ounce of charm, humor, and awesomeness that made me fall in love with the first one. The villagers are adorable and blobby, Hadiyah is sassy and badass, Leo is excitable and loyal, and Great Warrior is . . . Great Warrior in all her food loving, reluctant demon fighting glory. But is she really the brave hero we think she is?? You might just have to read and find out! Also, I forgot to mention this last time, but I love that there is an original comic from the web series at the end of each issue. It’s a nice little homage to Great Warrior’s origins and plus they’re super hilarious!
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Writer: Brian Wood
Artist: Andrea Mutti
Cover Artist: Tula Lotay
It’s been a long time since I’ve read a comic that didn’t have something strange or crazy in it. I mean, humans are pretty strange and crazy themselves, but you know what I mean. Rebels is 100% free and clear of aliens, ghosts, zombies, wizards, demons, elves, robots, potato-shaped warriors, fish-men, holograms of flying boats, or anything else out of the norm. It’s just good old fashioned men with guns and it’s pretty refreshing. When I say old fashioned, I really mean old fashioned as Rebels takes place during the Revolutionary War. And no, time travel is in no way involved (amazing, right?). Rebels follows a small, local militia as they fight to defend their land and their lives. It is a great example of historical fiction done right. It’s interesting and engaging, while providing an immersive picture of the time period and the daily struggles of those who lived through similar events. I think it’s sometimes hard for creators to imagine an audience getting hooked on a comic that doesn’t involve the paranormal, but I think Rebels will do just that.