Tag Archives: David Hine

Quick Shots for week 34: My good taste? I left it in the nineties

5. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1 (IDW Publishing)                                       8
This kinda feels like an ultimate take on the Turtles, a new continuity with all kinds of references to what’s happened in the old books. Basically we see the Turtles sans Raphael and Splinter fight this new cat guy, we flashback to a part of their secret origin were we learn of April O’Neill an intern at Stock Gen Research who thinks she’s working on bio-engineering meat. but we soon learn a thing or two about a super-soldier mutagen, from a phone call between the revamped Baxter Stockman and the mysterious general Krang. And we see Ralph eating out of dumpsters and getting ready to open a can of whoop-ass to help another familiar face. Spot on characterization: Michelangelo, after kicking a thug in the crotch: ‘Sorry, no baby gangstas for you dude.’
6. Spontaneous #3 (Oni press)                                                                                              8
This series is taking very interesting twists and turns, although the writing was a little choppy in parts of this issue. Sometimes I didn’t get what the characters were referring to or what happened in a sequence. The reporter, Emily, shares her conspiracy theory with Melvin who’s obviously struck by why he hadn’t thought of it. To top it off we learn that both Melvin and his late father fit into the conspiracy. What really makes this interesting is the relationship triangle between Melvin, Emily and Melvin’s nerdy assistance buddy who is boiling with jealousy for the relationship between Melvin and Emily, while it’s also clear that Melvin is treating the poor guy really bad (in reaction to these things the nerd guy is looking to pay Melvin back) also great is the relation between Melvin and Emily, this weirdly upbeat reporter chick who might be into him a little and thinks that everything that’s happened is cool and fun, while Melvin might very well be too but he is too busy with his own thing and much too serious about it, to see or act upon what’s happening between them.
7. Flashpoint: The Outsider #1 (DC comics)                                                            7.8
It seems that Ifanboy is right. This issue was surprisingly good compared to the rest of the Flashpoint tie-ins (of which I’ve enjoyed a big part).
8. Batman Inc. #8 (DC comics)                                                                                        7.5
Hmmm…. That was weird. At first I was bummed that I saw no Chris Burnum art. After that I’m not sure what I felt. The digital art in this issue varies wildly from panel to panel, some are downright terrible, some are beautiful and some are unintelligible. I really didn’t like the panel that looks like the people were copied out of a computer game, especially those with the plain clothes investors… This issue finally addresses the long neglected idea of Barbara Gordon as a digital Batgirl in Bruce’s Internet 3.0. It’s interesting and could have many more good stories in them (hopefully it’ll stick after the reboot).
9. SHAM comics #1 (Zombie Marge Comix Group)                                                 7.5
A great satire series where golden age comics fallen into public domain are textually re-imagined into sometimes hilarious, sometimes a bit uninspired funnies. I really like the first story about BOZO (Binary Over-Zealous Obliterator) the retro robot. A dope fueled demented killer robot with a Frisbee bolted to his head, who apparently is not programmed to swing THAT way! After the first story the novelty wore off though, and not every story was a winner. Overall it was good for a couple of chuckles and just for reading something else entirely. This issue also contained a story by artist Basil Wolverton which was pretty to look at, which featured erect trees with condoms on them. I think one issue of this was enough for me though…
10. X-men #16 (Marvel comics)                                                                                         7.2
I really want to love this series, but it’s just not letting me. Ghisler writes a great Spider-man though, to Franklin Richards, about debunking the stories about the Bermuda Triangle: ´A good debunking puts hair on your chest.´
11. X-men Legacy #254 (Marvel comics)                                                                        7
They´re in space finally, I´m wishing this series was better.
12. Crossed. Psychopath #3 (Avatar Press)                                                                 7
Really great cover by Matt Martin. The Crossed (extremely sadistic zombie-esque creatures) in this series have a thing for wearing other people’s faces (ala Leatherface). There’s one Crossed woman here though, who wears a cock on her crotch, held together by barbwire… I’m just saying: That’s the kind of story we’re talking about. Story: Survivers picked up a psycho, who is a worse threat then the Crossed, in this one he divides the group. Kills his male companion, and rapes and mutilates the female, while they are sheltering from the Crossed, which he has lead to them. Talking about the deviant… Yep, this was revolting… Boy, this is actually hard to read, it’s so gruesome.
13. Caligula #3 (Avatar Press)                                                                                            6.9
Wow, just wow. Between this and Crossed. Psychopath I’m starting to question David Lapham’s sanity. This was, just so fucking weird. Caligula is portrayed as much more than a mad emperor. He’s immortal and the guy that wants to kill him for revenge, instead gets fucked in the ass by his talking demon horse Incitatus. However, this issue his luck seems to be turning (if only a little).
14. Crossed. Psychopath #2 (Avatar Press)                                                             6.7
Panels framed by the splashes of blood of a minivan driving children over. This makes me uncomfortable reading it next to my wife on the couch…
15. Crossed. Psychopath #4 (Avatar Press)                                                             6.7
Okay, that was it, I felt kinda sick after this although I have to admit it’s easier to take over the top scenes like Crossed swimming in a pool of blood filled by children thrown in a wood chipper, than the rape scene from last issue. I like weird and nasty just as much as the next guy, but this is just too much for me.
16. The Infinite #1 (Image comics)                                                                                  6.5
This one? Also not for me, it’s certainly geared at a certain audience and that’s not me. Impressive how Kirkman and Liefeld have made the most nineties comic ever, though.

For next week, I’m going to try two extra early reviews for Flashpoint #5 and Justice League #1. Also, I’ll be digging out all the DC stuff I hadn’t got around to reading in a while, so expect a DC heavy week.

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Book of the week: The Bulletproof Coffin

This week I’ve had the pleasure of perusing comic book pages graced with the polar opposites in comic book art styles: From the trippy visuals of Shaky Kane, to the instantly classic linework of Art Adams and the wonderfully dynamic photo-realism of Ben Oliver, sprinkled with some Immonen and Kubert. And to top it all off, I read Dark Horse’s Creepy nr. six with art by Nathan Fox, Jason Shaun Alexander, Kevin Ferrera, Garry Brown and (OMG!) Neil Adams.  Really, the art of the comics I read this week was amazing. It goes to show what a very good time it is to be a fan of this medium.

Book of the week: The Bulletproof Coffin
Picked up on a whim because of the wacky title, I was pleasantly surprised by this six issue Image series by David Hine and Shaky Kane. The main ingredients of this book are modern day individualistic animosity, a LSD-trip gone bad, a brilliant satire of the works from publishers like EC, a commentary on creator rights and a surprisingly heartwarming story of never-ending zombie love. I don’t think any summary of this story does it any justice, but let’s just say that it explores what may happen when a comic book reader finds a way into his favorite classic comics like The Unforgiving Eye, Ramona Queen of the Stone Age, Red Wraith comics, Shield of Justice and the Coffin Fly. Each of these characters are superb spoofs on the shockingly sensational silver age comics of the fifties and sixties.

Red Wraith, Ramona Queen of the Stone Age, The Shield of Justice and the Unforgiving Eye

From left to right: Red Wraith, Ramona Queen of the Stone Age, The Shield of Justice and the Unforgiving Eye.Left bottom corner Golden Nugget heroes in better days, with the Coffin Fly on the right. Images from the Bulletproof Coffin, published by Image comics.

The protagonist Steve Newman is a voids contractor with an interesting job perk. The night before his company empties the house of a recently deceased resident, he enters the house to look for any valuables which he may save from ending up as landfill. This is a great benefit for Steve because he is a collector of pop culture paraphernalia. At the beginning of the book he makes the catch of his life, when he finds a stack of comics that are published after the date of the series’ cancellation. He soon mysteriously finds his way into these comics as the masked vigilante Coffin Fly. Roaming the endless plains of the far-flung feature in his Bulletproof Coffin ‘trawling up forgotten artifacts from a bygone age’. This is where he meets the time traveling heroin Ramona  and gets involved in a struggle to save the earth which can succeed only if he reaches the creators David Hine and Shaky Kane…

Not only do the single issues of this series include a pseudo silver age gem, which is read at the same time the protagonist reads them, there is also some bang-up back matter in the first five issues. The first one reprints a retelling of the history of Golden Nugget comics, the fictitious publisher of these mysterious comics that Steve finds, and the team of Shaky Kane and David Hine that made them great. The fact that this story is blatantly ripping of the story of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby ,the creators of the Marvel comics universe, combined with the fact that Kane and Hine are in fact everything but fictional, gives the whole package a weirdly surreal vibe. If you don’t like the meta stuff, stay away from this series. If you do, you’ll find yourself lost in these stories within stories with great mysterious twists and turns around every corner. If you like your comic book art to be exclusively of the mainstream variety, you best not pick this up too. However if you like something else for a change, Kane’s psychedelic combinations of hard lines and harsh colors is very likely something you’ve never seen!

Average scores of the six issues: Art: 8.7  Writing: 8.8     Overall: 8.75