Sunday, November 11, 2012

New Release Reviews For Dark Horse, for 7 November, 2012

Article first published as Dark Horse Comics - New Release Reviews For November 7, 2012 on Technorati.

So much time and attention is focused upon the immediate and the future, and so little time is taken to reflect upon the past. The comic book industry, for as massive and cash infused as it is, was built by artists who didn't reap its rewards and are suffering years later. The Hero Initiative, a non-profit focused on helping creators who have fallen on hard times, is working deal with this.

Publishers are helping, as well. Monkeybrain Comics is donating all profits from the month of November to The Hero Initiative.  Co-founder Chris Roberson reason is to thank those creators for all the joy they've brought to the world. Monkeybrain Comics looks to be bringing some joy, as well.

Dark Horse Comics is bringing some joy this week, with four new releases that are excellent in quality. Titles are scored on a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being the very best possible. We take the time to read these books so your time isn't wasted.

47 Ronin - Issue 1

This series, from the longtime creator of Yosagi Yojimbo and the publisher of Dark Horse Comics, is truly excellent. Based upon, arguably, the most important story in Japanese history, this is a nice fit for Stan Sakai and and Mike Richardson.

It focuses on the role of honor in a period where the impact of samurai was diminishing. Though, there is little in the way of samurais in this issue, tension explodes exponentially. The artwork is impressive and the coloring helps to differentiate all the new characters.

Score: 8.5 out of 10

Criminal Macabre: They Fight By Night - One Shot

This recapped an arc serialized over several issues of Dark Horse Presents. It's a typical story about Cal MacDonald just barely hanging on in circumstances way out of his control. It reads better collected than serialized. Even better, it hints at a bigger threat for MacDonald than before. Artwork is rough but it seems to work. The cover is very topical, given the election, yesterday.

Score: 8.5 out of 10

Willow - Issue 1

Willow finally seems to be getting her own chance to shine, which is great. This story suggests that Willow may have been the most important character in the Buffyverse. There is a fun little Wizard of Oz theme to this story, which is pretty amusing if you consider her history.

And the creative team does a decent job of bringing new readers up to speed. The interior artwork is excellent, and the David Mack cover is stunningly beautiful.

Score: 8.5 out of 10

Colder - Issue 1

What an unusual and fascinating comic. It's not clear if it's a good comic but it is very different. It's extremely disturbing. If the cover doesn't affect you, your body temperature must be the same as the possible protagonist.

Nimble Jack may take the trophy as most horrific antagonist on the stands. Some of this is his action. Mostly, it's the fine work of the art team to simply make him creepy. There's a mystery to this story, and it seems pretty interesting.

Score: 7.5 out of 10

This is a great week for comics and a great month for The Hero Initiative. Everything from Dark Horse is worth a good, long look. Stop back next week for more New Release Reviews.