March goes out like a lion with a lot of new books, many of which are courtesy Dark Horse! You’ll find reviews of books from DC, Marvel, Image, Dark Horse, IDW Publishing, Boom!, Valiant, and Dynamite under the jump.
Ghost Rider #1
Felipe Smith and Tradd Moore introduce Robbie Reyes, a mechanic in East L.A. who gets in a little deeper than he realizes. The book owes something of a debt to The Fast And The Furious and Drive, but Moore’s loose, kinetic style lends itself well to this kind of story. Promising, but we’ll want to see an issue or two to see where Smith takes the plot.
Iron Patriot #1
Ales Kot and Garry Brown give Rhodey a new series. Jim Rhodes has chosen to limit himself to operations on American soil, unless they’re search and rescue, which is an interesting direction to take it. The book is honestly better when dealing with Rhodey and his family issues than the superheroics, but it’s high quality work and an interesting book. Worth a look if the plot description piques your interest.
Silver Surfer #1
Dan Slott and Michael Allred deliver a corker of a Silver Surfer book. Allred’s style and sensibility is uniquely suited to the Surfer, and Slott’s script is simultaneously funny and touching; the Surfer means well, but he can be a bit of a pompous ass. In short, it’s a great launch for the book and we can’t wait for the next issue. Highly recommended.
Real Heroes #1
Bryan Hitch goofs on the Avengers in a story where the cast of “The Olympians” gets sucked into an alternate reality where the Olympians were real… and have to stand in. The issue is mostly just setting up the story, and is something of inside-baseball to some degree, but when the book takes off, Hitch delivers the detailed art and action he’s known for. Worth keeping an eye on.
Frank Barbiere and Colin Lorimer add yet another superhero to Dark Horse’s growing Black Sky line. This drops us in the middle of the story, and it’s solid, but it’s a little too vague to fully work.
Randy Stradley and Doug Wheatley, meanwhile, add King Tiger to the mix, and do a lot with a short amount of time. It’s not clear where they’re going yet, but at least it’s a compelling story.
Rocky and Bullwinkle #1
Mark Evanier and Roger Langridge are cut loose on Moose and Squirrel with amusing result. The book is not quite as prone to terrible puns, shockingly enough, but it does keep the basic format of the episode, and it’s pleasantly silly and cheesy all-ages fun. One hopes, though, that Langridge gets to write at some point, even if Evanier knows the show and its style cold; his sense of humor seems uniquely suited to the oddballs in this show.
Star Slammers #1
Walt Simonson’s pulp fantasy gets a reprint. Star Slammers is about as ’80s as it gets, right down to the overelaborate character design and tough-guy dialogue. But it’s a fun read, and Simonson’s always a pleasure. A great throwback for those who love Simonson or ’80s comics.
Jim Zub, Andre Coelho, and Scott Hanna deliver a story of what makes the head of the Suicide Squad, well, Amanda Waller. It’s a solid and well-told story, and surprisingly gritty in light of Zub’s other material, but it’s mostly of interest to fans of the character.
A brief one-shot gets into the fallout of the Ultimate Universe, and sets up their new Ultimate books. Interesting stuff, but probably not crucial if you don’t follow the Ultimates.
Revolutionary War: Omega
Marvel’s eight-part series of British heroes wraps up with a surprisingly sad story. Killpower, a child trapped in a man’s body, was dumped in Hell and, well, it didn’t go very well for the poor guy. It’s a fun wrap-up to an amusing series, and hopefully will lead to a bit more in the future.
Captain America: Homecoming
Fred Van Lente, Tom Grummet, and Cory Hamscher deliver a fairly light-hearted all-ages book about the cinematic Cap cleaning up the old neighborhood. It’s nothing revolutionary, but if there’s a kid looking for Cap books, this will be an excellent choice.
Empowered: Internal Medicine
One of the best superhero comics on the stands gets a special courtesy of Brandom Graham on art. Adam Warren’s usual cock-eyed view of superhero tropes is surprisingly well-suited to Graham’s vivid, distorted style, and the issue is a corker as always, with a troubling payoff for those following the main comic. Highly recommended.
My Little Phony: A Brony Adventure
The subtitle of this, Fandom is Tragic, should really tell you all you need to know, but Mike Moreci and Steve Seeley tackle the fandom anyway, with Ken Haeser and Kewber Baal on art. It’s mostly a story about perhaps not taking your fandom too seriously, although it takes… well, let’s just say it takes a rather unusual turn about halfway through. The main flaw is that it doesn’t really have anything new to say, and mostly seems to exist to draw My Little Pony knockoffs smoking weed. So it’s amusing, but that should tell you what kind of satire to expect.