Graphic Novel Review Bites: Cover Ladies

Not all of these graphic novels worked out for me, but I definitely love to see powerful ladies on the cover, who aren’t there *just* to be ogled for their assets.

young terrorists

Young Terrorists, Volume 1: Pierce The Veil by Matt Pizzolo and Amancay Nahuelpan 

With thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This is the story of a group of young terrorists, as the title indicates, intent on overthrowing the current questionable political world order. The description is enticing, as is the provocative cover image, but the first volume does not quite offer the promised pay off. Instead, it focuses on a long building up on the characters, with a slowburn of the plot occurring in the background. This isn’t necessary a bad thing, however the execution simply did not work well for me in this case. The book is unapologetically filled with sex and violence, with great emphasis on the latter, especially with the focus being on a young woman who has had to claw her way out of prison and now is involved with some kind of fight club. Other young people join the fray through various means. Each of their stories is, superficially, unique and filled with potential, but despite the length of this first volume, we don’t get to see enough of them and their purpose within the greater whole. Plus, as mentioned, we don’t really get to see much of the greater whole, either. Presumably that will come in the next volume, but I don’t care enough about the characters this book tried so hard to build for me to continue on.

5966d-new2stars

angelaAngela: Asgard’s Assassin, Vol. 1: Priceless by Kieron Gillen and Marguerite Bennett 

An Angela figurine sits on my bookshelf since the days when I used to collect just about everything Image. I never cared for the Spawn comics that Angela spawned from, but I did read her miniseries and was very excited to learn that she’d become a part of the Marvel universe. I did not read her introduction via the Guardians of the Galaxy, but that group does play a part here and reveals a slightly less steely but no less deadly side to Angela, injecting just the right amount of humour into an otherwise dark and focused story of a woman with a very significant mission that puts her at odds with both of the worlds that have rejected her. Initially, the story starts out a bit confusing, though as her friend Sera weaves the angel’s tale, things become a bit clearer and the twists and turns the story takes as Angela forges her path become easier to follow. The panel art is very good, but I was far more interested in the various artist interpretations and painted covers that peppered the pages. Angela is one of the many scantily clad warrior women that permeate the comic industry, but, unlike other such characters, I found that every artist here captured the essence of her undaunted spirit, rather than waste time simply and uncreatively objectifying her.66dea-new4stars

Drones*Drones by Chris Lewis and  Bruno Oliveira

With thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This book is trying to be a satirical look at terrorism in the Middle East and the drone technology used to target it, through the spectrum of western society’s penchant for turning anything into gross entertainment. An interesting, thought-provoking, and challenging approach to a serious topic, but the execution is an utterly confusing failure. I spent a good chunk of my time trying to tell the characters apart, and ultimately failed to find the humour in the terrorist-themed hotel and the various antics that go on within it.
5966d-new2stars

captain marvelCaptain Marvel, Vol. 1: Higher, Further, Faster, More by Kelly Sue DeConnick and David López

I really don’t know Captain Marvel save from her days bound unwillingly to Rogue. She was, at the time, very angry, but also extremely competent. Now, meeting her again for the first time, I love the impetuous soldier who strongly believes in doing the right thing, but doesn’t always realize that her help is not necessarily wanted when she just walks all up in the house like she owns it. But Captain Marvel is not without humility and she *is* still a soldier who knows when to take orders. The Guardians of the Galaxy make an appearance in this series, as seems to be the in thing these days, cashing in on the movie’s popularity. Though Marvel has, disappointingly but unsurprisingly, pushed back the date of the Captain Marvel movie, it’s never too early to get to know this incredible and inspiring hero.
66dea-new4stars

witchbladeWitchblade Rebirth Volume 1 by Tim Seeley and Diego BernardFred Benes

Witchblade is soon coming to a close. I have a lot of fond memories of this series for many reasons, but I probably should have kept them as that, instead of trying to pick it up again now. Following the events of Artifacts, Top Cow’s universe has undergone a big shake up and many of its cast members are starting their lives over. Sara Pezzini, wield of the mystical Witchblade, is among them. Now a Chicago private detective, she struggles with her new role and the annoying beat cop who always wants to bust her chops. An investigation leads to Pez being accused of murder, but of course, there’s more to the story. By that, I mean a group of people seeking immortality through an alien symbiote, and a coven of witches who want all the power. Interesting things are happening in this story, but not interesting enough to impress me. It’s a whole lot of ghastly bad guy of the week after phenomenal cosmic powers, with little depth to their purpose, and lots of extra skin. Pez is still her badass self, and it’s great to see her in better control of the Witchblade, but like I said, I’ll just stick with my nostalgia instead of joining Sara Pezzini on her rebirth.

7496c-new2-5stars

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