Posts Tagged "michael crowe"
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Michael Crowe recommends Hip Hop Family Tree Vol. 2

Writer/Artist Ed Piskor (edpiskor) continues his epic journey through musical history with Hip Hop Family Tree Volume 2. Combining his passion for the musical genre with his mastery for creating comics, Piskor takes us on an encyclopedic journey through the growth of a uniquely American art form.

The 1980s were a time of expansion for the genre, across the country and the globe. This volume guides us through the continued rise of early hip hop originators alongside the birth of new acts inspired by these legends. It examines the intermingling between the uptown hip hop scene and thee downtown punk rock scene. It also documents the cultural exchange between New York arts culture and Hip Hop street culture. Piskor does a wonderful job of reminding the reader that this culture is more than the music. Hip Hop is an interdisciplinary art form that combines dance, visual art, musical production and lyrical genius to create an infectious form of modern art that’s craved en masse from Compton to Paris.

Ed Piskor’s art is stunning and his attention to detail is phenomenal. The pages appear to be printed on old textured paper. Each page pops despite the desaturated nature of the colors and the halftones used add even more texture to the pages. The result is a comic that feels straight out of the 80s. This attention to the aesthetic of a time is especially noticeable when flashing forward to the present. He illustrates these panels in a modern, highly saturated style common today. Piskor’s characterizations of classic players in the game are also unforgettable, and will evoke an immediate recognition from even a casual follower of hip hop culture.

For those interested in learning even more Piskor includes a bibliography and a discography to accompany the history he thoughtfully unravels for us. After you’ve finished reading and grooving be sure to pick up Hip Hop Family Tree Volume 1 to learn about the birth of Hip Hop and Wizzywig, Ed Piskor’s debut graphic novel about hacker culture.

[Read Hip Hop Family Tree Vol. 2]

Michael Crowe works on the digital assets/launch team by day and writes comics and prose by night. He’s an avid consumer of comics and all things sci-fi.

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Michael Crowe recommends The Kursk #1

Tired of stories about fictional characters? Then pick up our newest Comixology Submit book:

The Kursk #1 is a story about honor and duty for your nation. It’s also a story about relationships, be they international, marital, or fraternal. It is the real story behind a nearly forgotten headline and a way to immortalize all those who were lost on August 12th 2000.

Originally written as a play, Sasha Janowicz’s script recounts a real life tragedy; the sinking of the Russian submarine K-141 Kursk. The story centers on two young officers, Rashyd and Dmitry, as they prepare to depart on a three day training exercise. This first issue captures the mundanity of life, before tragedy strikes. It also introduces us to the joys, fears and passions that drive these characters. A sense of foreboding hovers over everything; we already know what fate awaits them.

Andrea Montano’s art, rendered in a soft grayscale, is haunting. It evokes the feeling of an old, blurry, well worn photography. This style lends a timelessness to the tale, although the events happened only fourteen years ago. Andrea adeptly illustrates the many kinds of ships, submersibles, and weapons featured in the narrative. Each character is handled with the same attention to detail. Every face is unique, representing a life lost or ruined by the unexpected. The cover, designed by Slawomir Nietupski, reflect the sensibilities of the interior. Immediately the atmosphere is established, inviting the reader on a journey deep into the heart of tragedy. Together, this creative team effortlessly translates this story across mediums; from the stage to the page.

[Read The Kursk #1 on comiXology]

For fans of: drama, history

Michael Crowe works on the digital assets/launch team by day and writes comics and prose by night. He’s an avid consumer of comics and all things sci-fi.

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Michael Crowe recommends Spider-Man 2099 #1

The Spider-man of 2099 has found himself stranded in the present…with no way home. What’s a spider to do 85 years away from home? Fight vintage crime, of course! Miguel O’Hara is now more determined than ever to preserve the safety of the future by defending it’s past. But with present day challenges and future threats slipping through the timestream, that’s easier said than done.

Spider-man 2099 #1, written by Peter David, is a perfect reintroduction of a fan favorite character. This issue, part slice of life and part superheroics, follows Miguel as he adjusts to his new life in this time period. The writer is able to forge a very clear voice and identity for Miguel; distinct from the countless other heroes who have worn the red and blue. He also introduces us to a sassy new character, Tempest, who may surprisingly prove to be the first friendly face in an unfamiliar time. The art, by Will Sliney (wsliney), is emotive and dynamic. It also manages to capture a true New York City vibe, reminding readers that the city is as much of a character as any person in the book. The colors, done by Antonio Fabela, compliment the art and add a warmth and vibrancy to the characters and backgrounds; the colors pop and glow.

To find out how Miguel got his extraordinary powers check out Spider-man 2099 Vol. 1, first published all the way back in 1992! Then pick up Superior #17, 18 and 19 to see how he ended up a Spider-man out of time.

[Read Spider-Man 2099 #1 on comiXology]

For fans of: ActionSuperheroes

Michael Crowe works on the digital assets/launch team by day and writes comics and prose by night. He’s an avid consumer of comics and all things sci-fi.

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Michael Crowe recommends Flash Gordon #3

Not since watching the original 1930’s serials with my Father when I was a child have I been so enthralled and captivated by a Flash Gordon story. It is clear that everyone working on this title cares deeply about the source material.

Jeff Parker’s writing captures the very essence of these characters while adeptly updating them for a new era. Flash Gordon is at the top of his game, showcasing what it means to be a true hero. He leaps into action at a moments notice to fight any injustice he sees, for better or for worse. Dale Arden, once a helpless, screaming, fainting damsel in distress has been re-imagined as a gutsy, street smart reporter who can more than handle herself. Dr. Hans Zarkov, rocket engineer extraordinaire, receives an added layer of alcohol fueled sassyness to compliment his notorious intellect. The art, by Evan Shaner (docshaner), is explosive while also lending tenderness and emotional depth to each character, panel after panel. Jordie Bellaire’s (jordiecolorsthings) coloring infuses the empire of Mongo and its varied planets with a richness and liveliness that complements the exotic worlds we travel to with Flash and crew.

This book is truly unrivaled, nothing else delivers pulse pounding pulp stories with such aplomb. To find out exactly how Flash, Dale and Zarkov ended up stranded on the strange worlds of Mongo check out the preceding mini-series, King’s Watch, written by Jeff Parker and illustrated by Mark Laming. Be sure to pick up Flash Gordon #3 if you’re a fan of classic heroes, sci-fi action/adventure stories, and want to know what has inspired science fiction classics for over 80 years.

[Read Flash Gordon #3 on comiXology]

For fans of: Action, Science Fiction

Michael Crowe works on the digital assets/launch team by day and writes comics and prose by night. He’s an avid consumer of comics and all things sci-fi.

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Michael Crowe recommends Merrick: The Sensational Elephantman #1

In Merrick: The Sensational Elephantman #1, writer Tom Ward and artist Luke Parker (la-parker-illustration) expertly handle a fictionalized take on the historical person, Joseph Merrick. Merrick first came to prominence in the 1880s as a human curiosity known as “The Elephant Man.” From an early age Merrick exhibited growth abnormalities which became progressively worse over time. Large bony growths spread across his body enlarging and deforming his right arm, both his feet and his head. Disowned by his family and unable to find traditional ways to support himself, Merrick was forced to exhibit his afflictions to make a living.

This first issue throws us into the midst of Merrick’s life as a human oddity, exploring the kind of rejection and abuse he experienced during his short and difficult life. But beneath this rather straight retelling of history lurks a dark story of mystery and the occult. The book is drawn in a style that pays homage to Mike Mignola, writer/creator of Hellboy. Not only does this choice set the tone of the larger narrative that is yet to come, it also draws interesting parallels between Merrick and Hellboy.

Ward and Parker work seamlessly to create a book that is both gorgeous and well researched. They are able to delicately weave together fact and fiction, creating a something that is respectful of Joseph Merrick. In the story, Merrick is able to not only retain, but also affirm, his own humanity and self worth despite the cruelty often inflicted on him by society. For this reason the reader is able to see Merrick as a hero unlike so many people in his time who saw him as, at best, a freak. 

[Read Merrick: The Sensational Elephantman on comiXology]

For fans of: Biography, Supernatural

Michael Crowe works in digital assets/launch by day and writes science fiction stories/fights crime by night. 

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Michael Crowe recommends Doctor Spektor: Master of the Occult #1

Doctor Spektor: Master of the Occult #1 from Dynamite Entertainment is the latest in it’s revival of classic Gold Key heroes. The original series ran 24 issues pitting our hero against such classic horror baddies as vampires and mummies; he even found himself transformed into a werewolf for a short time. Sadly the Doctor was last seen in print in 1977. But, with some help from writer Mark Waid and artist Neil Edwards, Adam Spektor seems to have stolen a page from the book of the dead and risen; born anew for the 21st century.

In this modern incarnation Adam once again battles the forces of darkness, but no longer behind closed doors. Instead he clashes with them for the entertainment of millions. On screen, the cocky and charismatic star stuns audiences with ever more daring defeats of monsters around the world. Off screen personal demons threaten to swallow him up, if not for the vigilance of his manager Lenny and his personal assistant Abby Horne. Adam is going to need all the help he can get as new revelations tear his life apart and drag him further down the rabbit hole. Things are about to get very real for Americas favorite reality star, can he actually be the hero television has made him?

Be sure to check out this and the rest of Dynamites Gold Key Universe heroes including Solar: Man of the Atom, Turok: Dinosaur Hunter, and Magnus: Robot Fighter.

 [Pick up Doctor Spektor: Master of the Occult #1 here!]

For fans of: superheroes, pulp, magic

Michael Crowe works in digital assets/launch by day and writes science fiction stories/fights crime by night.