Graphic Novels Read in February 2015


Beware… Citizen Science! (2015) Will Perkins, Mike D. Perkins (215 Ink)

Reviewed at The Comics Alternative



The Complete Peanuts 1950-1952 (2014) Charles M. Schulz (Fantagraphics)

Reviewed at The Comics Alternative



Brass Sun: The Wheel of Worlds (2014) Ian Edginton, I.N.J. Culbard (2000 AD)

Edginton and Culbard do a fantastic job of world-building in Brass Sun: The Wheel of Worlds. The story is engaging, the characters well developed, and the art as wonderful as we’ve come to expect from the prolific Culbard. My biggest complaint is that the volume’s ending and resolution seem very rushed, but hopefully there’s a lot more story to tell in upcoming volumes.



The Sculptor (2015) Scott McCloud (First Second)

McCloud is such a huge name in comics, anytime he comes out with something, it deserves attention. Having said that, I can’t give him and the book the attention they require just yet, but I hope to write a complete review for the blog soon.



Star Trek: Harlan Ellison’s The City on the Edge of Forever: The Original Teleplay (2015) Harlan Ellison, Scott Tipton, David Tipton, J.K. Woodward (IDW)

Although I love the version of “The City on the Edge of Forever” that aired on the original Star Trek TV show, Harlan Ellison’s initial story was very, very different from the episode we’ve enjoyed for all these years. If you’ve only experienced the original broadcast version, I urge you to try this one. The story is harder-edged, yet contains just as much devastating emotion and humanity. The gorgeous painted illustrations are reason enough to pick up this volume.



Batman Eternal, Vol. 1 (2014) Scott Snyder, James T. Tynion IV, John Layman, Ray Fawkes, Tim Seeley, Jason Fabok, Dustin Nguyen, Guillem March, Mikel Janin (DC Comics)

It seems I’m reading fewer and fewer superhero books these days. I hope to soon explore the reasons why, but one of the prime reasons is that there’s very little at stake in a comic that’s been around for 75 years. (Or perhaps I should say there’s too much at stake.) It just seems that everything that can be done has been done and the constant parade of major “events” just don’t seem to satisfy. Batman Eternal is hugely ambitious, but probably too much so. The creative talent here is simply incredible. (Just look at the names!) Yet for me, the creators threw too many elements into the mix and the story grew more and more convoluted. Or maybe I just read this at the wrong time…



Corto Maltese: Under the Sign of Capricorn (1970/2014) Hugo Pratt (IDW)

Previously discussed here



Capote in Kansas (2005) Ande Parks, Chris Samnee (Oni Press)

Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood became a sensation when it was published in 1966 and filmed in 1967. I remember when I was in high school ten years after the book and movie, people still spoke about the story in hushed voices. Capote in Kansas is less about the murders and killers and more about Capote, how he tried to get the full story while attempting to fit into a place he clearly didn’t belong. Parks and Samnee capture this beautifully (in stunning black and white) by showing us Capote as he struggles through this strange landscape of rural Kansas, trying to get to the truth while struggling with ghosts of his own, those of the killers, and those of the victims. It’s a shame more people haven’t discovered this graphic novel. It’s a winner.



Meteor Men (2014) Jeff Parker, Sandy Jarrell, Kevin Volo (Oni Press)

My heart is totally with Meteor Men the same way it was (and is) with films like Close Encounters of the Third Kind, E.T., and Starman, movies that all came out in roughly a 10-year period in the late 70s/early 80s. It’s probably not fair to compare one art form with another, but Meteor Men shares a similar nostalgic, “sense of innocence” vibe with those films. On the surface, the book is a standard “alien lands, befriends a local teenager, but here comes the military to blow them away” type of story, yet it contains several wonderful moments, some of which may surprise you. Definitely worth a look.


Be sure and tell me what you read and enjoyed last month!

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