Sunday, December 31, 2017

Star Wars: Darth Vader-Dark Lord of the Sith, Vol.1: Imperial Machine (comic) - Paul's REVIEW

Imperial Machine (Star Wars: Darth Vader: Dark Lord of the Sith, #1)Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Star Wars: Darth Vader-Dark Lord of the Sith, Vol.1: Imperial Machine
Writers: Charles Soule & Chris Eliopoulos
Artists: Giuseppe Camuncoli & Cam Smith
Recent Release Date: December 5, 2017

Synopsis: From acclaimed writer Charles Soule comes a brand-new, exhilarating series exploring Darth Vader's early history. Picking up directly where Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith ends, follow Vader as he receives his legendary red lightsaber and witness Vader's rise to power as a Dark Lord of the Sith! 


Review: This comic picks up right where Episode III left off. Like directly. There's the whole "Noooooooooo" thing and everything. I liked seeing Vader when he is new to being a Sith. It really is Anakin under there still. Throughout the comic, that Anakin begins to fall away. 

I liked the mix of prequel and original trilogy aesthetic. Seeing Vader alongside clone troopers was very cool. The Grand Inquisitor even makes a cameo!

I read the Dark Horse comics that took place right after Order 66 so certain aspects of this comic remind me of those. In this comic, there are jedi who took the Barash Vow prior to the Purge, so they are still out and about in the galaxy. Vader takes this opportunity to take a lightsaber and make it bleed.

I really enjoyed this first volume in a new, ongoing comic series. I am absolutely excited for volume two. I give this volume a 5/5.    


Saturday, December 30, 2017

Star Wars: Screaming Citadel (comic) - Paul's REVIEW

The Screaming Citadel (Star Wars)Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Title: Star Wars: Screaming Citadel

Writers: Kieron Gillen & Jason Aaron
Artists: Marco Checchetto, Salvador Larroca, & Andrea Broccardo
Recent Release Date: October 24, 2017

Review of Star Wars Vol.1
Review of Star Wars Vol.2
Review of Star Wars Vol.3
Review of Star Wars Vol.4
Review of Star Wars Vol.5
Review of Doctor Aphra Vol.1

Synopsis: A rebel pilot and a rogue archaeologist delve into the darkest shadows of the galaxy side by side, as Luke Skywalker reluctantly teams up with Doctor Aphra! The not-so-good Doctor will make Luke an offer he can't afford to pass that leads him to a very rare gathering at the heart of the infamous Screaming Citadel! Will Luke find what he's looking for? Can Aphra be trusted? Or will they both wind up victims of the Citadel's queen? And as this unlikely duo steps right into the lair of one of the most powerful, reclusive and dangerous women in the galaxy, can Han and Leia be far behind them? 


Review: This is the second crossover event in the Marvel Star Wars comics. It brings the ongoing Doctor Aphra and Star Wars series together. I liked the pairing of Luke with Aphra. They play well off of each other with Luke's naive goodness and Aphra's experienced gray morality. I liked when she called him a wannabe padawan. 

There are some well designed characters in this comic. The residents of the Screaming Citadel have a goth bdsm vibe. Luke even gets to dress up. I liked seeing him in something different. 

I want to know more about Sana and Aphra's past!!! Please, Marvel, make a queer love story prequel!!!

The murder droids are wonderful. Having them on the same side as the "good guys" for at least the time being led to some funny situations. 

The last panel intrigued me. I give this graphic novel a 4/5. I am always here for more Doctor Aphra!   


Friday, December 29, 2017

Star Wars: Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi - Captain Phasma (comic) -Paul's REVIEW

Captain Phasma (Star Wars)Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Star Wars: Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi - Captain Phasma
Writer: Kelly Thompson
Artist: Marco Checchetto
Recent Release Date: November 29, 2017

Synopsis: What happened to Captain Phasma after Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens? Writer Kelly Thompson (HAWKEYE) and artist Marco Checchetto (AVENGERS WORLD, PUNISHER, GAMORA) expand Captain Phasma's story and reveal how she escaped the destruction of Starkiller Base. It's the stunning lead-in to this winter's blockbuster big-screen Star Wars film, and everything you need to know is right here! 


Review: Captain Phasma has been the Boba Fett character of the sequel trilogy. She looks bad-ass and intimidating, but she hasn't really proven herself in the movies. This comic, taking place between The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, shows Phasma in her element. We get to see her utilizing survival skills. We get to see her take the role of a leader. The Captain Phasma shown in this comic is what I expected from her when I first saw her design before The Force Awakens was released. 

I liked seeing Captain Phasma covering her own trail. It makes up for her actions in The Force Awakens. I also liked the amount of female characters in this comic. It shouldn't be something to make note of, but unfortunately it still is when it comes to such big brand stories. I really enjoyed and hope to see more of the character Pilot. 

I give this comic a 4/5. I really liked what it did to the character of Captain Phasma. She was shown as a more fully fledged character. It was an interesting, short, survival story.


Sunday, December 24, 2017

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Vol. 4 (comic) - Paul's REVIEW

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Vol. 4Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Vol. 4
Author: Kyle Higgins & Ryan Ferrier
Artists: Hendry Prasetya, Daniel Bayliss, & Bachan
Recent Release Date: October 31, 2017

Review of Vol.1
Review of Vol.2
Review of Vol.3
Review of 2016 Annual
Review of 2017 Annual

Synopsis: With Tommy and Billy trapped in a dystopian version of Angel Grove, they’ll have to join the resistance in the fight against the evil Lord Drakkon if they want to make home. But with Jason, Kimberly, Trini, and Zack batting for control of the Command Center from Rita Repulsa, will there even be a home to return to? It’s the ultimate test of strength and will with an epic conclusion that will send ripples throughout the entire Mighty Morphin universe.

Review: This ongoing Mighty Morphin Power Rangers series is some of the best Power Rangers storytelling that has ever existed. This fourth volume continues the excellence. The story being told is perfect for this medium. I love the easter eggs and visual references sprinkled throughout the series. I am a sucker for alternate realities and parallel timelines so this story has been my kind of thing.

Seeing Aisha and Trini in the same panel was very cool. The styles of Lord Drakkon's army of rangers are so well crafted. I really enjoyed the Zordon story, showing him outside of his time warp. 

I enjoyed the Ongoing Misadventures of Squatt & Baboo more than the Bulk and Skull stories. I always liked Rita's henchmen.

I give this volume a 5/5. This ongoing series is possibly the best storytelling set in the Power Rangers universe.


Saturday, December 23, 2017

Star Wars: Doctor Aphra, Vol. 1 (comic) - Paul's REVIEW

Aphra (Star Wars: Doctor Aphra #1)Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Star Wars: Doctor Aphra, Vol. 1
Writer: Kieron Gillen
Artists: Kev Walker, Marc Deering, Antonio Fabela, Salvador Larroca, & Edgar Delgado
Recent Release Date: July 3, 2017

Synopsis: Following her time in the clutches of Darth Vader, Doctor Aphra has barely escaped with her life. If he ever learns of her survival, he'll hunt her to the ends of the galaxy. But for now, it's time for a return to what she does best. With the droids 0-0-0 and BT-1 in tow, she's off in search of rare artifacts from the galactic center to the Outer Rim and everywhere in between. Aphra's got debts to pay after all. Just as long as she can stay one step ahead of the Empire, some Bounty Hunters and just about everyone else in the galaxy!


Review: Doctor Aphra is the first comic original character who gets her own ongoing series. Aphra shines even more on her own than she did in the other ongoing series. The comic book is the perfect medium for this character with her loose morals, humor, and violence. She's essentially an Indiana Jones with less morals.

Aphra's squad is also featured in this comic. Black Krrsantan, Triple-Zero, and Beetee are all such great, original characters. The murderous droids are hilariously dark. I loved seeing Aphra's backstory and time in school. The Archaeological Association suspending her doctorate being a major plot point in a Star Wars comic is wonderful. Seeing Yavin IV post-A New Hope was also cool.

A Marvel Star Wars original character who is canon queer gets her own ongoing comic! I loved this volume. I hope to see more risks like this. I give this volume a 5/5. I can't wait for The Screaming Citadel and the next volume!


Friday, December 22, 2017

Star Wars, Vol 5: Yoda's Secret War (comic) - Paul's REVIEW

Yoda's Secret War (Star Wars #5)Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Star Wars, Vol 5: Yoda's Secret War
Writers: Jason Aaron and Kelly Thompson
Artists: Salvador Larroca and Emilio Laiso
Recent Release Date: July 18, 2017

Review of Star Wars Vol.1
Review of Star Wars Vol.2
Review of Star Wars Vol.3
Review of Star Wars Vol.4

Synopsis: With one member of the rebel crew captured and imprisoned, we turn once more to the journals of Ben Kenobi and a legendary adventure with Jedi Master...Yoda! 


Review: This volume of the ongoing Star Wars comic has a story focusing on Yoda pre-Episode I and the second Annual, which tells a story about Leia.

The majority of this volume is Yoda's story through Luke reading Obi-wan's journal. It takes place on an interesting world where certain rocks seem to have Force powers. The Force related things were interesting, but it kind of seemed like a Star Trek episode.

The Leia Annual has a nice little story about a new, good-hearted character who is on the outside of the war. I would not mind seeing Pash Davane again in other Star Wars media.

I give this volume a 3.5/5. I liked that part of it took place before the prequels, but it wasn't an interesting enough story for me. I hope this ongoing series picks up some speed. The one-offs have been more interesting to me.


Thursday, December 21, 2017

Star Wars: Poe Dameron, Vol.2: The Gathering Storm (comic) - Paul's REVIEW

The Gathering Storm (Star Wars: Poe Dameron, #2)Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Review of Poe Dameron Vol.1

Title: Star Wars: Poe Dameron, Vol.2: The Gathering Storm
Author: Charles Soule
Illustrator: Phil Noto

Recent Release Date: July 3, 2017

Synopsis: Continuing the adventures of the ace pilot hero of Star Wars: Episode VII The Force Awakens! Poe Dameron faces the wrath of a vengeful Agent Terex! But how does Terex always seem to know what Black Squadron is doing? Could there truly be a traitor in the Squadron's midst? Poe will undertake a secret mission from General Organa escort none other than C-3PO on a dangerous mission to the planet Kaddak! But what will be revealed in a peek into Terex's past?


Review: This second volume of the ongoing Poe Dameron series continues the story from the first volume involving Terex. It fleshes out Terex more as a character, showing his origins at the Battle of Jakku. This is a good completion to the Terex story, unless he comes back in volume three.

The droids absolutely shined in this comic. BB-8 is always awesome, using his skills in creative ways. C-3PO utilized his own talents in this one. We even got to see a Mister Bones reference! Hurray for Snap Wexley!

This was a fun volume. I enjoyed it more than the first volume. I give this graphic novel a 4/5. I will continue to read this ongoing series just for Poe's charm and BB-8's badassness.


Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Cloudia & Rex Vol.1 (comic) - Paul's REVIEW

*I received this book as an eARC from Diamond Book Distributors via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Title: Cloudia & Rex Vol.1

Authors:  Ulises Farinas and Erick Freitas
Artist: Daniel Irizarri
Recent Release Date: November 28, 2017

Synopsis: A lushly rendered supernatural fantasy that follows two girls and their mother who find themselves in the middle of a vast, supernatural exodus. On their journey Cloudia is bestowed the powers of hundreds of different gods, but even those don't help her come to terms with the death of her father.


Review: This comic is a story about a family that gets involved with world-ending gods. The gods in this story come from every religion. It is an interesting concept that each god exists as long as mortals have at least a cursory understanding of them. I liked that the story takes place on December 21, 2012. 

The vibe of this comic reminds me of Saga and Jupiter Ascending. It's the modern world, but there is crazy fantastical things happening. The family gets powers from gods fleeing from their own demise. One girl starts transforming into extinct animals. Another has a phone possessed by gods. I liked seeing these ancient gods interacting with modern technology. 

This is a fun, imaginative, and somewhat messy story. I enjoyed it and give this graphic novel a 4/5. I would definitely read a second volume.


Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Justice League/Power Rangers (comic) - Paul's REVIEW

*I received this book as an eARC from DC Comics in exchange for an honest review*

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Title: Justice League/Power Rangers

Author: Tom Taylor
Illustrator: Stephen Byrne
Recent Release Date: December 12, 2017

Synopsis: Two of the most popular crime-fighting teams of all time collide for the first time when the Justice League faces the Power Rangers!

Something terrible has happened in Angel Grove! When the Command Center is breached and the teleporters are damaged, Zack is flung into another universe, where he's mistaken for a villain by a mysterious masked vigilante. Can the other Power Rangers get to their friend in time to save him from Batman? Co-published with BOOM! Studios and written by INJUSTICE: GODS AMONG US best-selling author Tom Taylor, this book is the crossover event of the year! 


Review: This is a super fun, super hero team crossover comic! The problem with crossover events like this that take two properties from two different worlds/franchises is that there can't be any actual growth or meaningful story. It's just fun to see these characters interacting with each other. 

This comic starts with a destroyed Angel Grove and Superman. This is just the first example of amazing combinations of things from my childhood. Batman is the comic relief in this comic and it works so well. I loved watching the members of the Justice League interacting with each of the Rangers. Zach often gets kicked to the sidelines, but in this story he really shines. I also liked that the Pterodactyl dinozord was the first one shown. Alpha 5 also gets to do some fun things. The Rangers have to wear some different suits at one point in this story and if you are a DC comic fan, you'll love it! 

The final panel really made me want a sequel. These crossover comics can be so creative. I loved the Star Trek/Green Lantern Corp one as well. They are just so unexpected and the combinations work so well. Overall, this was a fun comic story. There wasn't anything too deep or too exciting, but there's plenty of fun. I give this comic a 4/5 and recommend it to fans of both franchises, even if you are only familiar with one on a surface level.