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Home  >  Features  >  Number 1 Bullets Comic Reviews: April 20, 2016

NUMBER 1 BULLETS: 04-20-16


Last week, some amazing new titles were released, including STAR TREK: MANIFEST DESTINY #1, HOT DAMN #1, JOYRIDE #1, FOUR KIDS WALK INTO A BANK #1,DIVINITY II #1, GWENPOOL #1, and MOON KNIGHT #1! Let's take a look...




4.0 Stars

A new Star Trek mini-series set in the JJ-verse, STAR TREK: MANIFEST DESTINY #1 is published by IDW comics and co-authored by Mike Johnson and Ryan Parrot with art by Angel Hernandez. Set during the five year mission to explore deep space the Enterprise is lured into a trap by a ruthless Klingon commander set to prove himself against the flagship of the Federation. The writing was spot on and the characters felt right in line with their movie counterparts. The quips between Spock and Kirk were great and McCoy's grumpiness was captured extremely well. The pacing was quick with good panel flow and the plot was an engaging start to a new story. The Klingons were barely featured in the two most recent movies so it is nice to see them explored more in this universe. The art by Hernandez depicts accurate representations of the actors and his ship art is really detailed with a great new design on the classic D5 battle-cruiser. This was a solid action packed Star Trek story that was far more engaging than the recent ongoing title has been, fans should check it out.


HOT DAMN #1 (IDW Comics)-

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IDW Comics is on the express elevator to hell with HOT DAMN #1 by Ryan Ferrier with art by Valentine Ramon. It is rare that someone comes up with a truly new idea in comics, but the creative team for HOT DAMN have re-invented the concept of Hell in a way that really surprised me. Hell is re-imagined as a dark and dirty city full of demons and lost souls, the latter being the focus of the story; Ted Graham. Sent to Hell for living a degenerate but fun lifestyle, Ted now finds himself with a demon sponsor facing an eternity of therapy and reflection. In this world Hell is not about punishment, rather it is about coming to grips with what you have done in your past life and acknowledging those feelings. This is a really fascinating book that does not have the most gripping plot with regards to the main character but the ideas and the world in which it is set is really something new and fresh. Coupled with the grim art from Ramon that really captures not only how gross Hell is but also how ruined and broken the people who inhabit it are. This is one readers should really check out, it is unique in the best way and full of imagination.


JOYRIDE #1 (Boom Studios)-

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Coming from Boom Studios, JOYRIDE #1 is a carefree tale about two young people who just want to see the stars. Written by Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly, teenagers Uma and Dewydd live in a future in which the Earth has erected a dome over the entire planet that not only blocks out hostile aliens but also hides the stars. They long to take a chance and experience the wide open of space and to do so they hatch a plan to catch a ride on the dark side of the moon just outside of the dome. As with all adventures nothing goes exactly as planned. One overly dutiful young woman, one alien who turns out to not be a kind as anticipated, and one robot who who is all result in the commandeering of a vessel and the beginning of the ride of their lives. JOYRIDE #1 is not overly dystopian nor does it try to convey a deeper meaning than the free spirit of youth and the longing to see the universe at large but that is fine because it is just a blast to read. Uma's hopefulness is infectious and you can't help but smile and root for her. The art by Marcus To has a definite manga influence that works perfectly with this scifi setting. I really enjoyed this book, it is something fun and light hearted in a sea of comics trying to see which one can be darker and grittier than the next.


FOUR KIDS WALK INTO A BANK #1 (Black Mask Studios)-

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Published by Black Mask Studios, FOUR KIDS WALK INTO A BANK #1 is the first of a five issue miniseries that follows four awkward middle school students whose curiosity get them in over their heads. Written by Matthew Rosenberg with art by Tyler Boss, this was a great first issue that hits all the marks. The four kids are instantly endearing in their own way and in just a few short pages readers will have a solid grasp of each of their personalities. The confident girl, the awkward tall boy, the quiet one, and the obnoxious fat kid. The writing is great and their interactions with each other flow naturally, especially Paige who comes out as the leader of this strange little tribe. It really felt a lot like The Goonies, a group of kids confronting a group of ex-cons and deciding to take it upon themselves to investigate and get to the truth of what is going on. The art by Tyler Boss offers simple backgrounds with highly detailed characters that convey emotion and subtlety very well, it's not the most beautiful pencil work but it really fits the tone of this book and works well. I really enjoyed this title and will definitely stick around to see what kind of trouble this group finds themselves in and how it changes them.


DIVINITY II #1 (Valiant Comics)-

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Matt Kindt returns for a second volume of Valiant Comic’s DIVINITY. In the first mini series readers were introduced to three cosmonauts who journeyed to the edge of the universe and encountered a source of raw power that would change them all. Abram Adams was the first to embrace this power and returned to Earth leaving his compatriots stranded. Volume 2 follows the course of action that Mishka took and how different her life before and after the incident played out. This is a book about contrasts. Men vs women, past vs future, country vs individuals, and Russia vs The USA. Mishka is the polar opposite of Abram Adams. She is dedicated to the communist cause through and through, and her return to Earth will have vastly different consequences than that of her comrade. The story telling in this first issue was gripping, full of small details in the flashbacks that show exactly how Mishka became who she is and why she is different from all those around her. The art by Trevor Hairsine is equally detailed, panels are laid out in such a way as to slow down and speed up segments of the story and to draw readers attention to small details. Everything about this book is just fantastic. The art and the storytelling are engaging from start to finish and it is shaping up to surpass the first volume on just the basis of the novelty of the idea alone. Even if you missed the first volume check this book out, it brings you up to speed organically and you will not feel like you are missing a part of the story.


GWENPOOL #1 (Marvel Comics)-

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Probably the strangest comic you will read this week is Marvel's GWENPOOL #1. The only thing stranger is that when you are finished you will be shocked that despite how ridiculous it is you really enjoyed it. Written by Christopher Hastings, GWENPOOL #1 is the odd story of a young Marvel fan who gets transported into the comic universe and takes up hero mercenary work to pay the bills while having the time of her life. The prologue is drawn by Danilo Beyruth and works as a character introduction full of fourth wall breaking exposition over the top action. The main story is drawn by Gurihiru and I find his cartoonish art style to be a far better fit for the character. Expectations can be hard to manage and GWENPOOL sat at the bottom of my review pile due to complete lack of interest but once I got into it I really did like it. The character is fun and completely over the top, reveling in violence and the chance to interact with her favorite comic book characters. She takes on a merc job, gets a cool costume, and even has a 'tech nerd' side kick to help her out. She is living the dream until the book takes an unexpected dark twist at the end and brings her falling back down to her new reality. For those on the fence about this one just go check it out, I think it will bring a smile to your face as long as you don't take it too seriously.


MOON KNIGHT #1 (Marvel Comics)-

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We are nearing the end of the All New All Awesome All Different Marvel relaunch and we are seeing some of the most anticipated titles finally come out. For myself that is MOON KNIGHT #1 by Jeff Lemire and Greg Smallwood. The best Moon Knight stories are the ones that directly deal with Marc Spector's questionable sanity, and Lemire jumps right into the deep end with this first issue. Marc finds himself committed to an old insane asylum straight out of the 1950's completely with abusive guards and electroshock therapy. Or is he? The book goes back and forth between different versions of what could be real. If this is an asylum where are other people from Marc's past in there as well? Why is Khonshu constantly telling him to wake up? Why is he having visions of the world taken over by the ancient Egyptian god Set? Who knows, but its awesome. The story and art is so fragmented the reader has no idea what reality is and the sense of being lost as you read it really pulls you into how terrifying it must be to really have no sense of where or when you are, to question your own eyes. The art by Smallwood is sketchy and slightly erratic bringing readers further into the sense of crazy that prevails in this title. I really enjoyed this book and it is one of the best of the Marvel relaunch. If you were a fan of the 2006 Moon Knight re-launch or the more recent arc by Warren Ellis you really need to check this one out.


Don't just take our word for it. Grab the books yourself and let us know what you think!


More Reviews on MightyVille:

Number 1 Bullets Comic Reviews: April 6, 2016

It's a DEADPOOL Comic Review-A-Palooza!

Number 1 Bullets Comic Reviews: March 30, 2016


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Which New #1 this week are you most excited about?

SIDEWAYS #1 (DC Comics) - 15.8%
DEATH OF LOVE #1 (Image Comics) - 5.3%
KICK-ASS #1 (Image Comics) - 5.3%
STAR WARS THRAWN #1 (Marvel Comics) - 5.3%
ATHENA VOLTAIRE 2018 ONGOING #1 (Action Lab Entertainment) - 5.3%
BABY BADASS #1 (Action Lab - Red Zone) - 5.3%
BLACK BETTY #1 (Action Lab - Danger Zone) - 0%
CHARISMAGIC VOL 03 #1 (Aspen MLT) - 0%
COLD WAR #1 (Aftershock Comics) - 0%
REGULAR SHOW 2018 SPECIAL #1 (BOOM! Studios) - 0%
XENA #1 (Dynamite Entertainment) - 0%
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