Archive | Comics

Steven Dawes

Dept. of Monsterology: Issue 3 of 4 Review

Posted on March 19, 2014 by

Hey there fans of Flames Rising! I gotta tell you, I was pretty excited about diving into issue #3 of the Dept. of Monsterology. So far the issue has been well written, possesses some good, witty dialogue, and the artwork has been spot on in setting the feel and tone of this pulp-supernatural series. Issues 1 & 2 were interesting rides while building up to some serious trouble for both Team Challenger and Team Carnacki. Things were already going downhill for Carnacki by the end of issue #2, and trouble loomed on the horizon for Team Challenger. So how does issue #3 fare?

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Steven Dawes

Dept. of Monsterology: Issue 2 of 4 Review

Posted on January 18, 2014 by

Review by Steven Dawes As a reviewer, I make it a point to not give out any spoilers if I don’t have to. However, after reading issue Department of Monsterology Issue #2 (and #3 once I finish this review), a few spoilers tidbits will have to start coming out. If you don’t want to risk […]

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Steven Dawes

Dept. of Monsterology Issue 1 Review

Posted on December 12, 2013 by

“Officially, it’s the Department of Cryptozoology, Mythological Studies, Parapsychology and Fortean Phenomena. But to the rest of the students and staff at the Dunsany College, baffled by the cloak of secrecy that surrounds the Department and its affairs, it has another, more dismissive, name: The Department of Monsterology. Their brief: to investigate the dark and unexplored corners of our world – the places we’ve forgotten, lost or believe to be mythical. And to study those things that may still be lurking there.”

Looking at the cover of “Dept. of Monsterology” from Renegade Arts Entertainment, I knew right off the bat that it had potential. The color palette is minimal and bleak, with plenty of blackness and shadows mixed in to compliment the mysterious tone of the comic.

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I, Vampire Vol. 1: Tainted Love

Posted on March 13, 2013 by

When the New 52 launched I, Vampire was one of those titles I was recommending to everyone. Written by Joshua Hale Fialkov (Echoes) and penciled by Andrea Sorrentino (X-Files/30 Days of Night crossover) there was so much packed into the first issue I just knew this comic was going to be a big hit. And it was a big hit until issue #2 hit the shelves and nothing really happened. Then nothing really happened in issue #3, 4 or 5. Then something really bad happened in issue #6 but it was okay because I didn’t really care about the characters. I, Vampire Vol. 1: Tainted Love collects the first six issues of this disappointing series.

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Justice League Dark, Vol. 1 In the Dark Review

Posted on February 20, 2013 by

DC Comics’ New 52 has had about a year and a half to find its footing and one of the nicer aspects of the “reboot” is DC’s revived focus on supporting the supernatural side of the DC universe. Along those lines the famed Justice League has been divvied up into numerous teams (and titles) with each focusing on different aspects of the JL’s mythos. While Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and their closest friends handle the big threats the Justice League International team stumbles about handling other… less important… threats. So who handles the ghosts and goblins of the DC universe? That would be Justice League Dark.

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The Strain Vol. 1 Comic Review

Posted on January 1, 2013 by

There was a point in my life, oh lets say about a year ago, when I was sick of vampire comics. The typical blood sucker story seems to just get played out when done over and over again. Sure there is some good horror and gore in those books, but the stories are so blah and easily passable. Then I get this little catalog sent to my house called Previews, and I see the cover to The Strain #1 listed in it. I’m instantly thinking, “Great, here we go again.”

Being a horror nut though, I check out issue #1, and wouldn’t you know it, my head fell off. That first issue had something new, something fresh and something I needed to enjoy a vampire comic again (seriously, the last one I really enjoyed was Devil from Dark Horse).

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Monica Valentinelli

Hack/Slash Issue #18 Review

Posted on October 3, 2012 by

The Case of the Killer and the Questing KingHack/Slash Issue #18 dives into a character we haven’t seen very often — Cat Curio. The stand-alone story, dubbed “The Case of the Killer and the Questing King,” was written by James Lowder. This issue marks his writing debut for the series he typically edits.

Who is Cat Curio? Cat was first introduced as a little girl in Hack/Slash: The Series #23. After surviving her slasher encounter with Samhain, she was in a coma for many years, and is now an adult. That time lost means that she errs on the side of naivete and has some amount of emotional immaturity. This story and the alternate cover, which where done by Matt Merhoff, highlight her Nancy Drew-like tendencies when she falls into an oh-so-easy manipulative trap set by her “hero,” a super spy (and merchant) named Brendon Mannix Joyce.

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Lenore: Swirlies Review

Posted on September 28, 2012 by

“Everyone’s favorite cute little dead girl is showcased in all her morbid glory in this all-new collection of the timeless comic strip from Roman Dirge! Return once against to the dark, surreal world of Lenore, the girl with a knack for unintentional mayhem and occasional wanton destruction in this fourth volume that includes the extremely rare #13, beautifully and painstakingly illustrated by creator Roman Dirge himself.”

They say that good things come to those who wait, so you better believe that this book is pretty damn good when it takes 5 years to come out. Collecting the rare #13 of Lenore Vol. 1 and issues #1 – #3 of Vol. 2, this book is a perfect starting point for someone who is new to Lenore.

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Riven Graphic Novel Review

Posted on September 26, 2012 by

“Katya has been in a coma for five years, and when she awakes, everything has changed. Now she is a gorgeous teenager with a mysterious, gruesome past, becoming aware of a growing, terrifying power inside her body, triggered by the touch of the full moon, eager to break free . . . Can Katy solve the mystery of her blood-drenched nightmares before they become reality?”

Okay, seriously, WOW! When I read the solicit on this book, I knew to expect something good, but I didn’t know it was going to be this good. This book has the words “Turn me into a movie” written all over it.

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Deadworld: War of the Dead Review

Posted on September 18, 2012 by

Holy $*!+! That about sums up what just happened at the end of this GORE-Geous and ARGH-Mazing book. Collecting the mini series, that was showcased during Deadworld Month in August from IDW, this book captures the same spirit as what came before, and leads readers into the future of this Dead’verse.

The artwork by Makkonen is beautiful. I said it when I read Slaughterhouse, and I will say it again, Sami’s style is so perfect for this series. His character designs have a very creepy edge to them, placed into his dark backgrounds and my eyes just melt with joy.

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Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse Book 2: The Chosen Review

Posted on September 14, 2012 by

The Horsemen are back, and you better be strapped in for what is about to go down. Book 2 is a balls to the wall non-stop thrill ride that is going to punch you in the face and not look back. Following the events of the first book, Helldiver, The Chosen shows the rest of the formation of the group that will save Earth from its impending doom. You would think that the visuals could not get any better than they were before, but they did. Each page is alive with such vibrant color. The art by Bisley is so GORE-Geous. His character designs are flat-out jaw dropping, and the amount of detail in each panel is stunning. There is no way in Hell (pun intended) that this book could look any better. His designs for the Horsemen alone, left a craving in this decapitated head for posters, t-shirts and so much more.

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Horror in the West Comic Review

Posted on September 5, 2012 by

Well now we got ourselves a bit of a situation here pardner. You see ol’ Decap he is not to big on Western Comics, but he does love his Horror Comics, so what on Earth could he even like about Horror in the West? How about everything! This is one great looking, great reading, hootenanny of a good time! The artwork in this entire collection is GORE-Geous. I will admit that they set the bar high starting with sam Agro’s style, but no story in this ever let me down. Personally I prefered the art styles of Agro, Brian Evinou, Chris McFann and Dan Simon the most, but again they were all great.

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Trench Coats, Cigarettes & Shotguns #1 Review

Posted on September 3, 2012 by

I ask myself, just based on this title alone, what is there not to like? Nothing, I like trench coats, cigarettes and shotguns, so how on Earth could this book not entertain me? The artwork by Neudorf is great, and it was all summed up at the very end in a GORE-Geous decapitation scene. Of course I am going to point that out, why wouldn’t I. What I liked most about this art style was that it all seemed to be done on wood, using paint. I really enjoyed his technique. There were some panels where I found things to be a little to jumbled, but if you stare at it, you can figure it out just fine.

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Koma Graphic Novel Review

Posted on August 30, 2012 by

I don’t even know how to start this review without just saying, Book of the Year front-runner. I was so blown away with what happened on these 280+ pages that I feel like trying to sum it up will only come across as a gushing love letter to the creators. So let’s do just that. I went into this book not knowing what to expect, well I expected to read about a little girl and her new Monster friend, but instead I was introduced to a world that was so imaginative and original. If I even try to compare this to anything, and keep in mind that I am just basing this off of the overall feel I had when I was done reading this, I would have to say Spirited Away.

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Frankenstein Agent of S.H.A.D.E. Volume 1: War of the Monsters Review

Posted on August 28, 2012 by


When DC decided to reboot their entire universe there was a great deal of cheering and moaning heard around the world. Whether you consider the reboot to be a success or otherwise there are two things that most readers consider to be positive angles on the issue. One, the reboot has provided a decent place at which to introduce newcomers to the DC universe. Two, it is nice to see little used characters brought to the forefront with their own titles.

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Billzilla

Flash Fire Mini Reviews: Deadlands Comics

Posted on July 18, 2012 by

Visionary Comics brings the weird west world of Deadlands to full-color life with a series of comics by a variety of artists and writers. Five different issues featuring five different main stories combine to give readers the full-bore Deadlands experience. Combining elements of the classic Western with Steampunk – a fairly natural fit, as it happens – and horror, Deadlands offers a unique experience to gamers. It was only natural that such a two-fisted, four-color setting would make the jump to a more visual medium – comics.

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Horrors: Great Stories of Fear and Their Creators Review

Posted on June 20, 2012 by

Horror is a particular genre which lures the masses into its embrace and then pushes us to the very edge. A well written story can invoke pure terror. A well filmed movie can make us scream even though we know we are safe from the horrors on the screen. A carefully crafted ghost story can bring us to the absolute limits of fright and leave us lingering there, sleepless for days on end. Although many dream of crafting the kinds of masterpieces which tear at our very psyches few ever reach that lofty goal. Those who do become nothing less than legends.

In the graphic novel Horrors: Great Stories of Fear and Their Creators writer Rocky Wood and illustrator Glenn Chadbourne have given dark life to their own dark tale.

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Rachel Rising Vol. 1: The Shadow of Death Review

Posted on May 31, 2012 by

“Rachel Beck wakes in a shallow grave and claws her way free as a mysterious woman watches from a bluff. With no memory of the night before, Rachel enlists the help of Aunt Johnny, the town mortician, to find her killer. But when repeated attacks send her to the morgue, Rachel’s ability to wake from death again and again prove to be a blessing and a curse, and the eerie town of Manson will never be the same! Collects issues #1-6.”

Oh Terry Moore, you wow me on all levels. Rachel Rising was a title in which I did not know what to expect when it came out, and honestly I still don’t know what to expect because it is such a mystery. Within the pages of Volume 1, I was treated to GORE-Geous artwork and a story that left me needing more!

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Deadworld: War of the Dead #1 Review

Posted on May 28, 2012 by

The zombies have over run the Earth! A small outpost, remnants of a twisted scientists’ scheme to defeat the plague holds out against the army of King Zombie. Their secret weapon are the Lepers-victims of a bizarre experiment that left them with dead flesh in breathing husks with skin that even zombies won’t touch. This new series of Deadworld is perfect for new readers to join in the frenzy of what has been called the “grand-daddy” of all zombie comics.

Welcome back my old friend. It is about damn time that we meet again. The last time we saw this cast of characters in Deadworld, was with the highly praised Slaughterhouse OGN. The events that will unfold in this series are picking up around one year after that.

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Flames

Chicks Dig Comics Review

Posted on May 25, 2012 by

If someone had handed me a copy of Chicks Dig Comics when I was younger I would not have known what to do with it. Growing up as a comic book nut during the 80s and 90s I never saw girls reading comics so the title alone would have thrown me for a loop. While my brother and I devoured stories about the X-Men, Captain America and Superman my sister wanted nothing to do with them. I spent a lot of time in my local comic book shop and I cannot recall ever seeing a woman in that little hole in the wall.

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11 Tales of Ghostly Horror

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