A sideways look at the last three months of the comics verse
Are you missing Moebius?
The late, great Jean Giraud may have gone to that airtight garage in the sky, but never fret, because Goran Parlov has been channelling his spirit in Mark Millar’s new series Starlight. Millar’s homage to Golden Age space heroes such as Flash Gordon, Buck Rogers and John Carter has surprised everyone by not being (a) gratuitously crass and obnoxious and (b) little more than a scripted storyboard for Matthew Vaughn’s next movie. The real draw, however, is Parlov’s art. Stippled rock formations ahoy!
The “Take The Rest Of The Day Off” award for least effort put into a doublepage spread…
goes to Javier Pulido for this ultra close-up of Shulkie’s eyes in She-Hulk #2. Colourist Muntsa Vicente probably did more work here than Pulido. Then again, it’s a LOL moment at the end of a rambunctious girls’ night out story, so who really cares? In other news: mysterious worldwide shortage of green ink continues to baffle experts.
Do consider giving up the day job
Charles Soule, writer of the abovementioned She-Hulk, is surely the hardest-working person in comics today. In addition to his scripting duties on the Jade Giantess’s new monthly, he’s also pounding the keyboard on Swamp Thing, Red Lanterns, Superman/Wonder Woman, Thunderbolts and the upcoming Inhuman. That’s on top of his day job as an attorney. Let’s hope he decides to go full-time in the comics biz, not just so that we can read more of his stuff but so there’ll be one less practising lawyer in the world.
Question: can you tell what’s going on in the panel below from Forever
Is Lex Luthor putting a hand over Nightwing’s mouth in an attempt to make him shut up? “Sshhh, lad, the grown-ups are talking!” Nightwing: [thinks] “Oh man, I wish this guy hadn’t just been eating burritos.” Actually no, it’s Luthor killing the former Robin by suffocating him. Not that you’d know it from David Finch’s artwork. Quite possibly the least dramatic superhero death ever.
Over the years, Garth Ennis has given us more than a few “Holy crap!” moments. There’s been Arseface and armadillo sex in Preacher, Wee Hughie’s unfortunately timed act of cunnilingus in The Boys, and just about any page of Crossed you care to mention. Ennis may well have outdone himself, however, with this image from
Rover Red Charlie #3. Here at Panel Games we’re all for kindness to animals, but you have to draw the line somewhere. Where’s that bottle of extrastrength Optrex? We need to clean our eyes.
While we’re on the subject of human/animal intimacy, who can forget the goat bothering scene in Deadly Class #2? Luckily the image isn’t too explicitly graphic, but what’s shocking is that the disfigured hillbilly bestialist enjoying his post-coital cigarette hasn’t offered the goat a smoke too. Are there no real gentlemen left in this world?
All You Zombies
We love George Romero. King of the zombie flick, the man who single-handedly invented the shambling-undead-apocalypse genre – who doesn’t love George Romero? Without him we’d never have had Shaun Of The Dead or
The Walking Dead. We’d also never have had Brad Pitt’s World
War Z, but you can’t blame George for that. We have to confess, though, that his Empire
Of The Dead miniseries for Marvel is as messy as a disembowelled corpse. Vampires and zombies! Together! Who’d have thought it? Err, well, Max Brooks, with
Extinction Parade. And Dan
Abnett with The New Deadwardians. And Bobby Crosby with his Last Blood webcomic. And David Hine with
FVZA. And... We could go on, but we won’t.
While we’re still all hot and bothered, how about Jonathan Ross’s Revenge? In particular, how about the ageing movie star protagonist’s girlfriend Candy’s fake boobs? As drawn by Ian Churchill, you could bounce a coin off those puppies. Somewhere on Earth-2, Power Girl is looking on and going, “Hmmm...!”
Department of Deferred Gratification 1:
Issue #5 of Matt Fraction’s Sex Criminals has been delayed by over a month. Now, we hope you don’t think we’re mentioning this purely as an excuse to make some smutty jokes. Oh no, not us. But you have to admire the staying power being shown by Fraction and artist Chip Zdarsky. They’re keeping us hanging on, tantalising us. How they’re managing to hold out so long, we don’t know. We can hardly bear the wait, and may go off the boil if the comic doesn’t come soon. Still, a late release is better than a premature one.
Department of Deferred Gratification 2:
Where is issue #2 of Sandman: Overture? Comics readers haven’t been kept in suspense this long since the final issue of Camelot 3000 almost never appeared. Well, you can’t rush perfection, I suppose.
The Incredible Melting Man
“Mummy, who is the melty-face man in issue #10 of
Über? I feel like I should recognise him.” “Why, dear, that’s British World War 2 Prime Minister Winston Churchill, as drawn by Canaan White.” “He looks a bit like Clayface on a bad day. He scares me.” “You shouldn’t be reading Über anyway. It’s gory and violent.” “But Mu-u-um, I’m 43!” “Yes, dear. Bedtime now. Up you go.”
When pages run out!
non-event final panel of The Six Million Dollar Man Season Six #1 is surely the least suspenseful cliffhanger we’ve seen in an age. What happened, writer Jim Kuhoric? Did you forget when your deadline was? Did you lose count of how many pages you were supposed to be delivering so you thought you would just stop the story when you’d run out of room? Maybe you spent too long coming up with awesome Steve Austin bionic powers sound effects like “VRRRREEEETT”, “TEENENENEN” and – best of all – “BANANANA”.
Numbers just ain’t as big as they used to be
The Panel Games office was bemused to receive a press release from an overexcited Marvel announcing the “oversized, landmark anniversary issue” of All-New
X-Men in April. Sounds good. So what momentous issue has the comic reached? 50? 100? 200, perhaps? Nope. 25. That’s right folks, these days it’s a landmark if a Marvel title manages a run of two years without a reboot.
Who’s doing a great job as a French Impressionist?
Who put more green than effort into a splash page?
What is Lex doing to Nightwing?
Who’s jumping on a bandwagon they started? Did this comic simply run out of pages?
How is Garth Ennis leaving a bad taste now? Has Madame Tussauds left its Churchill waxwork too near the radiator?
Did he offer the goat a fag?
Does someone need a counterbalance?