Sunday, August 29, 2004

Quick Reviews

Strangehaven; Soap Opera; Rock 'n' Roll; Hawaiian Dick; Ultra

Strangehaven #16
by Gary Spencer Millidge
While time is taken to move several of the plotlines forward--notably the murder investigation and Maureen's attempts to rid herself of her husband--fully half of the issue is devoted to a heartwarming little side story about a downed WWII figter pilot who is reunited with his wife after 60 years. It's more blatently supernatural than just about anything we've seen yet, and bolsters Paul's claim in the previous issue that Strangehaven is some sort of nexus of reality. Plus, Millidge gets to stretch his artistic muscles and give us some nifty pictures of WWII-era aircraft. Though irregularly published, Strangehaven is one of the best books being done today.
Rating: 4 (of 5)

Soap Opera
by Emily Blair
With her friends all graduated and gone off to college, Megan no longer has a life in her sleepy town. So she turns to her favorite television soap, where Jenny, her favorite character, has been reduced to a bit part. When a friend comes back to town for a visit, and then invites Megan to visit her in the city, Megan realizes just how disconnected she has become. Near as I can tell this is the first comic by Blair, and it's good stuff. The art may be a bit weak on occasion, but it's done with commitment and the storytelling is strong, especially her use of light and dark to subtlely set the tone.
Rating: 4 (of 5)

Rock 'n' Roll
by Fábio Moon, Gabriel Bá, Bruno D'Angelo, & Kako
An essentially wordless story told in three parts, Rock 'n'Roll gives us a quick and satisfying tale of a girl's abduction and her boyfriend's mission to get her back. Each part is done by a different contributor (with Kako providing the interstitial chapter spreads), making for a book whose multitude of styles fight against its narrative somewhat. The star of this book is Moon, whose work on the second chapter is downright gorgeous--just check out that opening two-page spread and the attention to detail that he brings to his fine linework.
Rating: 3.5 (of 5)

Hawaiian Dick: The Last Resort #1
by B. Clay Moore & Steven Griffin
Moore and Griffin are back with another tale of Danny Byrd, private eye in post-war Hawaii. This time Byrd is involved in a case that traps him between two rival mobbed-up hotel developers, and you can be sure that he's going to be roughed up, shot at and lied to, and there'll probably be a chase or two as well. Griffin's art is as gorgeous as ever (how could anyone possibly pass up a cover like this!), which is a bit of a shame as it appears that fr the remaining three issues another artist will be brought in and Griffin wil only provide the colors (as well as the covers).
Rating: 3.5 (of 5)

Ultra #1
by Jonathan & Joshua Luna
Three women coming home from a ladies' night out decide to stop off at a fortune teller to get their fortunes told. And that's pretty much the plot of this first issue that promises to look at the personal lives of super-heroines. It looks good, and I'm intrigued enough to stick around for at least another issue, where hopefully the story will become apparent.
Rating: 3 (of 5)

No comments: