Wednesday, April 24, 2013

New Release Reviews For IDW Publishing, for 24 April, 2013

Welcome back to New Release Reviews for IDW Publishing. We're about 10 days away from Free Comic Book Day and this looks to be a fun year. IDW Publishing appears to have a special Transformers comic book they're giving away. This one still focuses on the Generation One characters so that should be a treat for all you old-schoolers.

Until then, IDW has a couple of new releases to temp you with.  As always … 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.

My Little Pony Micro-Series : Rarity - Issue 3

This edition of the Micro-Series continues to be just like all the other issues in this series as well as the main one. They're fun tales with just the pitch perfect amount of drama and adventure for the expected younger readers.

Still there is some background humor that makes things enjoyable for parents or less traditional older readers. The Animal House bit was quite funny. This story we see the lover of finer things, Rarity, about to have a breakdown as she prepares her new fashion line.

Some of the other ponies help book her a spa vacation at a holistic center. It turns out that the center isn't very organized and her vacation turns into new work. The interior artwork is it's usual great self. The near dozen covers have different art styles but they're all very good.
Score: 7 out of 10

Transformers More Than Meets The Eye - Issue 16

This issue was pretty solid. But not quite as solid as last issue and there were several reasons. The biggest stumbling block to this series has been its lack of direction. Yes they're on some quest but there's been little in the way of external conflict so all the obstacles they've had to overcome have been ones they accidentally created. Though fairly clever and humorous, things have been flat. And Overlord was a great source of conflict. This issue dealt with the aftermath of that battle.

Everything else was a wide range of emotions. Ultra Magnus' memories were confusing. Rodimus Prime came across as arrogant. The Act Of Transition was rather touching, as was much of the mourning going on. The exile sequence was just confusing. The issue's art was average and the coloring was not appealing at all. The covers varied in quality, mostly being OK.

Score:7 out of 10

G.I. Joe - Issue 3

This issue is all about trickery. Whether it's the bad guys using their technology to trick the Joes into revealing classified information or it's the good guys tricking COBRA into doing what they want, it's a rip-roaring good time. The creative team waste no time getting to the action and there's an extremely shocking moment in the opening. However, things aren't quite what they would seem at first glance.

This story isn't just punching and shooting. There are incredibly sweet and sentimental moments with the character you least expect it from. It's not quite clear if it's true but it sure is entertaining. And isn't that the real truth? Brief moments of dialogue give all sorts of insight into some of the villains, as well. The complexity of the characters are a real joy given what less skilled creators churn out.

The interior artwork is adequate in that it keeps the story moving forward but doesn't add much. The covers are rather unusual as most have a lot of style but not a great deal of skill. However, the historical cover that focuses on the contributions of long-time writer Larry Hama is fantastic.

Score:8 out of 10

True Blood - Issue 12

This is the second part in a mini-storyline and things should be better once its over as it is a very mopey story. The creative team present flat characters and suggest that there is high degrees of emotion on display. They are wrong. The only emotions are anger and lust though they're handled pretty poorly. Interior art is fine. The cover art is stylish but lacking in skill. The photo cover is just OK. Not for kids or people who don't watch the show.

Score: 6 out of 10

Judge Dredd - Issue 6

This was a remarkably talky issue of this series. We're never going to be against dialogue that adds to to the plot or character development, but this was a bit much. One could argue that the Juvenile Psi stuff was important as it shows just how uncomfortable Dredd is with dealing with matters outside of his academy training.

Honestly, though, it mostly felt like it was meant to plug holes in the story as he just ends up shooting more of them later in the issue. It's a bit unusual to see children getting killed by adults in most media so this was surprising. Yet it was still rather dull, thankfully.

The best thing about this issue is what it hints at ... possibly the appearance of Judge Death? The interior artwork is adequate. It's pretty clear and it tells the story well enough. The covers are fantastic. The main one looks painted and it's great. The other cover by veteran artist Dave Sim is amazing, though individuals who aren't familiar with his art may not be as impressed.

Score: 7 out of 10

So, all in all, this wasn't a bad week. Nothing was awful. Unfortunately,  nothing really screamed "take me home!" Perhaps next week there will be something on the stands that does. So, thanks for reading and be sure to check back next week for more New Release Reviews for IDW Publishing.