March 28, 2018

The Pull List: 14 March 2018, Part 3

If you aren't convinced to read Mister Miracle #7 based on the premise 'Barda gives birth to her baby', then in all honesty you probably do not deserve to read Mister Miracle anyway.

Tom King and Mitch Gerads arthouse superhero hit continues apace, with an issue rich in humour and packed with strong dialogue. There's a wonderful absurdity about the war between Apokolips and New Genesis being put on hold so that the Female Furies can wait in a hospital hallway for Barda to have a baby. King keeps the dialogue dynamic and sharp, and this allows the characters to feel less like superheroes and more like honest-to-god people that simply happen to have powers. Gerads continues to exploit the nine-panel grid format better than anybody since Dave Gibbons. The sense of timing - both comedic and dramatic - created by the format is a masterclass for aspiring comics professionals.

This is one of the comic series that absolutely deserves to be read in an episodic fashion, with each issue pushing forward a broader story while working as a self-contained 20-page work. It is hands-down one of the best books coming out of "the big two" this year. (5/5)

Mister Miracle #7. DC Comics. Written by Tom King. Art and colours by Mitch Gerads.

Under the cut: reviews of Invader Zim, Sleepless, and Vs.

Invader Zim #29
Oni Press. Written by Eric Trueheart. Art by Maddie C. Colours by Fred C. Stresing.
A welcome issue that partially sidelines Zim to focus on his arch-nemesis - and conspiracy theorist schoolboy - Dib. A mission to replace a limited-edition bottle of Poop (it's a soft drink) leads Dib to an underground war of rival soda-powered wizards. Eric Trueheart's script is a good reflection of the series, and Maddie C's artwork manages to replicate the TV series with just a slight personal style impressed upon it. It's great to see a focus on Dib for the next two issues; he's a great character and it gives the book a sense of variety when it might otherwise become a little jaded. (3/5)

Sleepless #4
Image. Written by Sarah Vaughn. Art by Leila Del Duca. Colours by Alissa Sallah.
After a knightly tournament, Lady Poppy and her bodyguard Cyrenic find themselves separated at the feast - with unknown assailants still plotting to assassinate her. This book is building in a nicely subtle and measured fashion, with the exact details of this fictional kingdom and court, its people and the mysterious 'sleepless' bodyguards getting placed down piece by piece as required by the narrative. With beautiful artwork and a stunning sense of tone and character, this book should be on a lot more people's pull lists. (4/5)

Vs #2
Image. Written by Ivan Brandon. Art by Esad Rivic. Colours by Nic Klein.
In a far distant future, wars are settled by rival teams of armoured fighters on mainstream television. For the veteran soldier Satta, that means fighting two battles - winning the war, and maintaining his popularity with viewers. It's a great piece of satirical science fiction, one that's coupled with Esad Ribic's absolutely gorgeous painterly artwork. The design work reflect a Metal Hurlant sort of identity, and the rich colours make everything pop off the page. (4/5)

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