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411’s Comic Reviews: Kick Ass #1, Invincible #144, More

February 22, 2018 | Posted by Steve Gustafson
Kick-Ass 1

Hello and welcome to 411mania’s weekly Comic Book Review Roundtable! Each week we’ll be serving up a warm dish of reviews from Marvel, DC, and anything else that captures our interest. What did you pick up this week? Let us know in the comments.

Want to write a review? If you can write at least one review a week, consistently, email me at [email protected]!

Yesterday we asked, “Marvel vs. DC – Who’s Your Favorite?”

Now on with the show!

Doctor Who: The Lost Dimension Book One

Preview by Stephen Gustafson

Doctor Who: The Lost Dimension is the most epic Doctor Who event ever, as every incarnation of the Doctor – and friends and enemies old and new – unites to push back the threat of the Void: the empty space between universes that has inexplicably become sentient… and hungry!

Written and illustrated by a stellar line-up including Nick Abadzis (The Tenth Doctor, Laika), Cavan Scott (The Ninth Doctor, Star Wars: Adventures), George Mann (The Eight Doctor, Warhammer), Rachael Stott (The Twelfth Doctor), Adriana Melo (Ms. Marvel), Mariano Laclaustra (The Eleventh Doctor), Leandro Casco (The Eleventh Doctor), Iolanda Zanfardino (The Punisher) & Cris Bolson (Red Sonja).

Betrothed #1

Review by Stephen Gustafson

From writer Sean Lewis (The Few) and artist Steve Uy (Uncanny X-Men, Avengers Initiative, Grumpy Cat) comes a sci-fi series, with a fun mix of Archie and Saga, that HAD to be told at AfterShock!

The most unique and engaging comic books are coming from AfterShock. Betrothed premise reads great on paper and even better when pictures are added.

I’ll admit I’m not the biggest sci-fi fan but this book had a great mix of action, intrigue, and a host of engaging characters.

What can you expect? Kieron and Tamara are both seniors at the same high school. They’ve never paid much attention to each other, even though they are the only kids at school who are orphans. On the eve of their eighteenth birthdays, they discover a lifelong secret: in a dimension far away, they are each the leader of an army that is at war with one another…and what’s more, when they turn eighteen, they’re to be Betrothed or Fight to the Death!

Sounds good to you? Then run, grab the issue, and enjoy the ride!

Rating: 8.0 out of 10

The Walking Dead #176

Review by Stephen Gustafson

“NEW WORLD ORDER,” Part Two An audience with a different kind of Governor.”

Issue #175 introduced us to the Commonwealth, a big reveal for Michonne, and kicked off the new story arc, “New World Order”.

The follow up in #176 gives us a little more information on the situation and while it gives us an idea of where things are headed, we still have plenty of questions. The Commonwealth is a welcome new slice to the world. Here we have a group who has not just survived but thrived. Or so we are shown.

The only hiccup in the issue is Robert Kirkman’s pacing. Instead of drawing out the mystery and tension, we’re shown a little too much, too soon.

I do enjoy seeing how our bad of survivors is viewed by others, and the previous issue did that as Eugene, Michonne, and the gang came off as crazed and reckless.

With The Walking Dead you know what you’re getting. This new direction is filled with potential and add much needed energy as it plays out.

Rating: 8.0 out of 10

Kick Ass #1

Review by RobF

Kick Ass #1, presented by Mark Millar and John Romita Jr, has a tenuous relationship with the original title at best. Other than the costume there is little resemblance. While it’s admirable that the authors attempted something different, they badly missed the mark.

The issue focuses on a woman named Patience. She was a soldier sent into Afghanistan and came home to find out her husband left her for a girl and let her with a ton of debt. Needing a job, she becomes a waitress, but it’s not enough to pay for her and her children. To make ends meet, she decides to don the Kick Ass costume and rob a crime lord named Hoops.

This version of KA misses the mark in several places. First, whereas the original experienced altruism through the suit, a normal guy does well if you will, Patience main motivation is money. Why she picked the costume has yet to be revealed. Second, the story gets dragged down trying to address several social issues. Lack of support for veterans, single parent families, sexism and drugs are all pushed so hard and handled so superficially it’s hard to care about any of it.

While this book shares its predecessor’s well-known traits-shock value and over-the-top violence-its missing a vital component: someone to root for. Patience fails to generate the sympathy needed to make us want to root for her. It feels like Millar stacked the deck in order to make you root for her.

As I have stated in previous reviews I am a sucker for any Romita art so let’s just say I love it and move on. It’s a shame the subject matter does not match up.

In the end there is little to recommend her, unless you are a die-hard Romita completist. While It has a new character, she is hardly a character to root for nor is the action a must-see.

Rating: 4.0 out of 10

Invincible #144

Review by John Pumpernickel

“The coward dies a thousand deaths, the brave but one’…. (The man who first said that) was probably a coward…. He knew a great deal about cowards but nothing about the brave. The brave dies perhaps two thousand deaths if he’s intelligent. He simply doesn’t mention them.”
― Ernest Hemingway, A Farewell to Arms

“The End of All Things”. The conclusion. Final issue. Everything since issue one has been building to this.

Robert Kirkman’s opus leaves you satisfied, yet sad, since the ride was so enjoyable. The 12-part finale feels like it could continue with another issue but when it’s time to go, it’s time to go.

Whenever a TV show comes to the end, too often they try to wrap everything up with a nice, bright bow. You get to know the characters, good or bad, connect to the story, and then it comes to a close.

Invincible was a long journey and I looked forward to every issue. Mark Grayson is one of the most fully realized superheroes on the stands and we felt his ups and downs, grew to love (or hate) his supporting cast and villains, and invested in the books welfare.

A final issue isn’t hard to rate. If you were a fan of Invincible at any point in its run, you owe it to yourself to pick this up. If you haven’t heard of the book or ever read it, you owe it to yourself to pick up an issue and find out what you’re missing. Either way, #144 is a worthy send off to a great superhero.

Rating: 9.0 out of 10

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