Wednesday Adventures 12th June

comic, Comic spotlight, First Impressions, Uncategorized

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A brief weekly rundown of recommendations of new releases I’m intrigued by, excited for and will be grabbing off the shelves to curl up with every new comics day before delving into them later in the week!

Have you hugged your local comic store owner today?

 

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Silver Surfer Black 1- Marvel Comics

The last, big run on the sentinel of the spaceways was an absolute delight. From the start Slott and the Allred’s acknowledged it’s debt to Doctor Who,citing it as an influence for the series and very quickly it became apparent that it was the guy with the silver surfboard who was giving us the weirdest, most spectacular and quirky sci-fi adventures, rather then the chap with the blue box. It really cemented them as maybe my favourite recent team to work on the character, that is until this week and the release of Silver Surfer black with the talents of super star writer and artist team of Donny Cates and Tradd Moore.

Cates has been quietly writing his way around the entire encyclopedia of the best Marvel characters as well as penning some new creations with Cosmic Ghost Rider and demonstrates a firm grasp on seemingly all of them to this point,leaving me eager to see what his has in mind as the “silver surfer fights for his soul” and returning the character to his more introspective roots after Slott took him on adventures flights of fancy. Moore is the perfect artist to play around with the already weird and wonderful cosmic corners of Marvel, and anyone who enjoyed his work on Ghost Rider and the deeply idiosyncratic and kinetic look he gave to Robbie’s world should check out this series.

 

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Friendly Neighbourhood Spider-Man 6- Marvel Comics

If both the comics and movie versions proved anything, there can never be enough Spider-men,but with Miles Morales now also residing in the Marvel Universe proper, is Spider-byte one webhead too far? Nah!

Even with so many about the writers have excelled in giving them their own distinct personality and tone of stories around them from Silk to Superior to Gwen and while a younger version of Spidey was last seen kicking around an alternate universe with his Uncle Ben during Spider-Geddon,Marvel have been unusually tight lipped about the secret identity of this ensy weensy Spider leaving fans of the web-head theorising and speculating on another Spider character in the Marvel Universe. Tom Taylor and Juann Cabal have been giving us a much more down to Earth Spider-Man returning to his roots as a local hero which should be perfect to explore his relationship to a new member of the Spider family rather then a splashy punch ’em team up. Although, that would be nice too if they can swing it!

 

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The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl 45- Marvel Comics

Ratatoskr is back! As the War of the realms rages across marvel entire line, the squirrel girl team have found themselves with an easy slam dunk, returning to arguably one of the runs best villains and the most organic feeling tie in to the Asgard themed event with the Norse chaos squirrel teaming up with Doreen against the Asgardian hordes.

While I tend to lean towards newer comics or ones still early in their runs in Wednesday Adventures,I’m keenly aware that this weeks 45th issue puts us only five issues away from the end of this hilarious and downright touching series. Squirrel girl has established her appeal as more than just an obscure fan favourite now turning up alongside Ms Marvel in the recent Marvel series and has carved out a unique niche among the rest of the heroes as throughout North’s tenure she has sought to get out of situations through dialogue and compassion. While it’s obviously to stop every story ending with Doreen just punching out the bad guy, it really helped to make her adventures stand out among her more well known peers. Here’s to the last five issues to come!

 

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“Gravity’s just a habit that you’re pretty sure you can’t break” – Low G fun in Henderson and Garbett’s ‘Skyward’

Uncategorized

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“Don’t stop,Can’t stop
Until you feel it goin’ down
I wish I had said the things you thought that I had said
Gravity’s just a habit that you’re pretty sure you can’t break”

“I’m tired of dystopias. I think we’re all fatigued by them” claimed John Henderson in a recent interview about his debut comic , Skyward “This is a world where something terrible happens, and then humanity moved on.” Created with artist Lee Garbet, Skyward is certainly a comic more in line with societies tenacious nature, peoples’ tendency to pick up the pieces and just, you know, get on with it. Certainly as far as dystopias are concerned, it’s been a long time since one we’ve breathtakingly dangerous yet appealing. Dare I even say…cool?  Truthfully I didn’t initially pick this up when it was released, it took a few days of daydreaming about the simple yet alluring premise of Henderson and Garbet’s world, the double page spread of our young protagonist Willa leaping gracefully and effortlessly between Chicago’s skyscrapers that I was compelled to pick it up. It stuck with me and made me smile the way a half remembered dream does. The fact that flying is a sleepy time staple only reinforces this even further in a book already created to appeal to that child like fantasy of flight, that sense of wonderment at seeing and experiencing the world a new.

Henderson succeeds in delivering to us with both a dystopia and a joyous story too, achieved in part through the flip in perspective from how a story like this would usually be presented. Henderson choosing to present a post “G-Day” world not through the eyes of the more experienced Nate, but instead his high spirited daughter Willa as she leaps and bounds across the windy cities skyline, using places and spaces as they were never intended to be used all the while sporting an unshakeable smile and and sense of delight. Born just after the Earths gravity diminished, Willa knows only this strange new world, which to her is now simply just ‘the world’ not matter how strange it is. Even in her first appearance as a child she seems perfectly calm and wide eyed floating around her nursery. Early on we see relics of the old world treated with humour and derision, stuffy artefacts best left in a boring and dusty past. It’s a compelling way to present a story about the distance and differing experiences between generations using a sci-fi setting. Hinting at friction between conflicting world views, in particular her scientist father who is literally being held down in this new world by the past and personal tragedy while his daughter makes the best of it, setting up the dynamic that looks like it will be at the centre of Skyward going forward.

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Although a regular length comic, most readers will find themselves breezing through Skywards debut issue in a matter of minutes and might feel a little slight to many, but it’s mostly down to the light and speedy pacing, not surprising when Henderson hails from a TV background (most noticeably, the fluffy yet impossible not to enjoy Lucifer). To me at least it’s perfectly suited to a story focused around movement and low gravity. It feels like there are countless things that could be explored in this environment and this issue hits the perfect balance needed for a first instalment, setting up likeable and intriguing characters and showing just enough of the world to want to see more without falling into a front heavy exposition trap with the bulk of this task left up to Garbett to show visually.

Gabbet’s art captures the quick paced, gravity defying parkour like action and free flowing movement of it’s characters and even in the comics few dialogue filled pages, favours character designs that only further serve to illustrate the subtle difference in this world, presenting the effects of the low gravity world in visually inventive ways. Willa’s hair billows and flows about and when embarrassing herself in front of her legless coworker slumps upside down onto the ground in an exaggerated show of embarrassment and defeat. His pages are filled with small background details of the differences in this world such as impossibly high up advertising signs, entrances and safety ropes that are just begging to be explored in future issues.

Although feeling like a breezy and slightly light read at times, Skyward’s first issue still packs in all the joyful exuberance of a hazy, dimly remembered flight dream brought to the page with a stylish and youthful flair.

Skyward issue 1 released April 18th with Issue 2 to follow on 23rd May

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