My first fully penciled image for Comicopia that was published as the Back Cover for issue #64 (April 2001). – Susan Storm Richards – aka The Invisible Woman of Marvel’s Fantastic Four.
I actually drew this piece while I was in college back in the eighties, and just did a few touch ups before sending it off to Copia. Clearly based on John Byrne‘s work and style – in fact at this stage the only way I was learning to try and draw was by doing copies of his work. Never did get the face right. The eyes are so far apart…
Although I have been making my compulsory regular visits to the kind folks at Austin Books, it’s been over a month since I did one of these round ups of what’s sitting on my reading stack of four color fun. So without any further delay, lets pick up a few comic books:
- Amazing Spider-Man #679 (Marvel) – Still the one Marvel book I pick up on every visit to the store. Writer Dan Slott and the team continue to produce entertaining stories of a modern-day Peter Parker while managing to respect the character’s rich legacy and spirit. If only other franchise titles could learn from this one.
- American Vampire #23 (DC/Vertigo) – Scott Snyder has managed to do the almost impossible, make a vampire story interesting and relevant again. No sparkles here – just good old plain horror with a savage twist. The current arc is set in the 1950s and has that James Dean vibe running through it. Highly recommended.
- Dark Horse Presents #8 (Dark Horse)- Unlike the majority of the American comics buying market I love anthology books (must be from being raised in British comics). I have found this incarnation of DHP a little hit and miss, but there is usually something to like in almost every issue.
- Doctor Who #14 (IDW) – My buddy Tony Lee may no-longer be writing the book, but I must admit that this first arc from new writer Joshua Fialkov which drops the Doctor and companions into the middle of the movie Casablanca, along with a bunch of aliens, is an inspired idea. Wish I’d thought of it!
- Fantastic Four #602 (Marvel) – Alien invasions,! Galactus towering over Manhattan! This is classic cosmic FF style old-school adventure with a modern scientific twist from Jonathan Hickman and Barry Kitson.
- Fatale #2 (Image) – Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips latest noir crime story with an apparent supernatural twist. These guys have reinvented noir crime comics in recent years, and this latest entry in the genre is just as compelling as all the others.
- Green Hornet Annual #2 (Dynamite) – I just like the Green Hornet (but not THAT movie version) and will pick up most stories he appears in. Some work, some don’t – but I tend to give them all a try.
- The Last Phantom #10 (Dynamite) – Again another character that I pick up no matter what. Overall I’m enjoying this take on the character by Scott Beatty – maybe not the way I’d write him, but it’s an interesting perspective on what it means to be “The Ghost Who Walks.”
- The Lone Ranger #2 (Dynamite) – This pretty much completes the trifecta of “characters I’d love to write one day” currently published by Dynamite. The first issue in this new series of the original masked man by Ande Parks kicked off in impressive style, and I’m looking forward to seeing where he takes this story arc.
- Rachel Rising #5 (Abstract) – Reading a horror story written and penciled by Terry Moore seems a little at odds as he is such a nice guy – but as with all his other work, he weaves a compelling tale that just makes you want to pick up the next issue.
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #6 (IDW) – I’m really enjoying this reboot of the Turtles franchise – these aren’t our cartoon Turtles, but a re-imagining of the seminal title that kicked off the 1980s independent comics boom. It’s good to have them back.
- The Twelve #9 (Marvel) – How long is it since issue #8 ? – November 2008! – During its initial run in 2007/8 this was one of my favorite books and I’ve been waiting for it to resume – will it stand up to the expectations of my memory after a gap of just over two years?
- Uncanny X-Force #21 (Marvel) – OK I’ll admit I’m not a big fan of Rick Remender’s stories on the whole – but as this arc focuses on the Captain Britain Corps – it becomes a must read.
- Witchblade #151 (Top Cow / Image) – Over the last seven years writer Ron Marz turned Witchblade from a T&A pin-up book of dubious quality into a well developed character driven dark fantasy tale. With this issue new writer Tim Seeley takes over and I’m interested to see how he handles picking up the baton from another writer after such a transformative run. No easy task.