Posts Tagged "superheroes"
A comiXologist Recommends:
Harris Smith recommends Sensation Comics #1

Wonder Woman has always been kind of the odd girl out in DC’s Big Three.  There’s no denying that she’s a great character, but writers have always seemed to have a hard time figuring out exactly what to do with her.  The immediate appeal of Superman, rooted in his overarching sense of All-American goodness and epic-scale adventures, and Batman, defined by his moody stoicism and hardboiled urban crime milieu, are far easier to pin down than the mythological roots of Wonder Woman, or her conception as a proto-feminist super-heroine by psychologist William Moulton Marston in 1941

Over the years, Wonder Woman has gone through many iterations.  In her earliest stories, she frequently aided the US Army against the Axis during World War 2. Later, in the 1960’s, she gave up her superpowers and learned martial arts, running a mod clothing boutique while also working as a spy. In the 80’s, George Perez’s reboot returned to her mythological roots, and largely defined the character through Brian Azzarello’s New 52 reboot.

It stands to reason such an elusive, yet powerful, character would be well-served by an anthology series, something that lets different artists and writers evoke their own visions of who Wonder Woman is and what she does without necessarily being beholden to ongoing continuity.  After the success of their Digital First series Legends of the Dark Knight and Adventures of Superman, DC has wisely chosen this path with their newest Digital First, Sensation Comics.

The first issue kicks things off with a literal bang as Wonder Woman takes on the villains of Gotham City after the Bat-Family is massacred in an explosion.  Penned and illustrated by two of DC’s top creators, Gail Simone (gailsimone) and Ethan Van Sciver, Sensation Comics #1 is full of breathless, exhilarating action.  In just 20 pages, Wonder Woman takes on the Joker, Two-Face, the Riddler, Mr. Freeze, Penguin and even Man-Bat.  It’s a thrilling start to what promises to be an exciting run of diverse and imaginative takes on a true feminist icon and one of the all-time greats of comic book heroism!

[Read Sensation Comics #1 on comiXology]

For fans of: female leads, superheroes

Harris Smith is a Brooklyn-based comics and media professional. In addition to his role as a Senior Production Coordinator at comiXology, he edits several comics anthologies, including Jeans and Felony Comics, under the banner of Negative Pleasure Publications. He’s also the host of the weekly radio show Neagtive Pleasure on Newtown Radio.

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Kate Kasenow recommends Moon Knight #6

Continuing a long-running streak of brilliant reboots, the newest series of Moon Knight does not disappoint! While issue #6 is the finale of the current creative team, it invigorates the story of Mr. Knight and passes on a truly impeccable story unto the next.

In this issue, we are not lead by Moon Knight at all, but the tragic rise of a would-be antagonist. The plot of this issue really drives forward the idea that as not all heroes are created equal neither are villains and sometimes the best of intentions can lead to the wost of consequences. The character of Moon Knight, especially during this current series, is rife with both personal and psychological issues. The exploration of these issues from both sides—from the perspectives of both protagonist and antagonist, is what makes this series truly shine.

Behind these perspectives, is the seasoned writer Warren Ellis, who’s sparse style really packs a punch—sometimes literally. His characters are often reserved until their thoughts have marinated enough to let the words flow freely, but when they do the story rolls along with them. Each character is full of depth that allows them to exist fully in the dark underworld that Ellis paints with his writing. Backing up Ellis’ words is the fantastic art of Declan Shalvey (dshalv) with colors by Jordie Bellaire (jordiecolorsthings). The mood of the colors is always pitch-perfect and Shalvey’s lines move effortlessly across the page, each one laid out with an incredible sense of design.

This issue is the swan song of an incredible team and isn’t to be missed!

[Read Moon Knight #6 on comiXology!]

For fans of: superheroes, crime, mystery, action

Kate Kasenow is a comics artist from Indiana currently living in Manhattan. She works at ComiXology as a Lead Digital Editor and spends most of her spare time re-reading J. R. R. Tolkien.

A comiXologist Recommends:
Jen Keith recommends Hawkeye #19

Bro. Hey, bro. It’s been a while, bro. New issue of Hawkguy, bro.

On the heels of winning an Eisner award for best single issue (see Hawkeye #11 with an additional Eisner award congratulations to writer Matt Fraction for Sex Criminals) comes Hawkeye #19, which manages to surpass my love for the pizza dog issue. Writer Matt Fraction (mattfractionblog) and artist David Aja (with an extra shout out to Chris Eliopoulos on co-lettering with Aja) continue to push the boundaries with this shiver-inducing exploration of deafness in comics.

Remember that heart-wrenching cliffhanger in issue #15? It’s time to finally find out what happened to Clint and his brother, Barney. With ear damage after an attack by a hitman, Clint’s world is suddenly much quieter. This isn’t Hawkeye’s first experience with being deaf; he lost his hearing back in a Hawkeye mini-series in 1983, and this issue looks into a stint during his childhood as well. We get a peek at Barney and Clint’s history and how their past parallels their present. Stunningly, we get most of this in a beautiful display of body and sign language.

The way this issue unfolds is entirely unique to the medium; you could not find this story told this way in anything other than a comic. It reads like the moments in movies when the soundtrack falls away into a vacuum of silence that drowns out everything, leaving you absorbed completely in the visual narrative. However, because this is comics, that silence is illustrated through a clever use of lettering and lack thereof along with “unsubtitled” sign language. The reader experiences the world on mute with Clint as he struggles to adapt and overcome his condition and its instigators. 

After finishing this issue, I had to reread it because the pacing was so smooth despite the staccato panels of sign language and action that I couldn’t believe it was over. I was devastated, wanted more, and all I could think was, “Aw, comic, no.”

Grab your coffee carafe and some pizza, and go read Hawkeye #19. Ok, bro?

[Read Hawkeye #19 Here!]

For fans of: crime, superheroes

Jen Keith is a Digital Editor at comiXology, comic artist, music addict, and ate enough pizza recently to satisfy even Lucky the pizza dog.

A comiXologist Recommends:
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.

A comiXologist Recommends:
Jonah Chuang recommends Grayson #1

Dick Grayson is dead to the world but alive in our hearts and in this book. As evidenced by the title, Dick has dropped his bird-themed moniker and ventured out on his own. Following the events of Forever Evil, the former Robin/former Nightwing has had his secret identity revealed to the world and as a result, has been forced to be reborn as a secret agent for the mysterious group, Spyral.

When I first heard about this switch, I was disappointed. I thought Nightwing had the second coolest costume of the Bat-family (next to Batwoman) and Dick Grayson was one of the most interesting characters both in and out of costume. However, I’ll admit that this new direction does feel fresh, and proves that Dick’s strong enough to step out of Batman’s shadow.

Grayson is also an excellent title for this book. Sometimes I forget that Nightwing’s “powers” come from him being an amazing physical specimen. For the most part, we only ever see him doing incredible maneuvers in costume, and his acrobatic and martial arts abilities seem like a factor of his suit and gadgets, but seeing Dick channel his inner James Bond really reminds you of the human factor in Gotham’s heroes.

Perhaps my favorite aspect of this book is the supporting cast. Without ruining too much, in this first issue, we’re treated to some pretty spectacular appearances. We get to meet Spyral, one of the trippiest characters I’ve encountered in recent history, then see our hero face off against one very deadly hero from one of DC’s other titles, and finally we see the New 52 debut of a fan favorite pre-Flashpoint heroine.

Grayson #1’s not to be missed!

[Read Grayson #1 on comiXology]

is a Production Coordinator Assistant at comiXology. His favorite Mikaelson brother is Elijah.

For fans of: action, superheroes, espionage

Jonah Chuang is a Production Coordinator Assistant at comiXology. His favorite Mikaelson brother is Elijah.

A comiXologist Recommends:
Michael Crowe recommends Legendary Star-Lord #1

In anticipation of the August 1st release of Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel is launching an all new ongoing series titled: Legendary Star-Lord. The series follows Peter Quill (portrayed on-screen by Chris Pratt), as he traverses the galaxy without the help of his fellow Guardians…at least for the moment

Issue #1 introduces us to the titular character, giving us a peek into the life of an orphan from Earth turned intergalactic outlaw. As someone who is unfamiliar with the cosmic corners of the Marvel Universe, I found this issue to be both informative and, most of all, fun. Writer samhumphries infuses the character with an infectious sense of adventure. Peter seems to relish his alter-ego, Star-Lord, and even the trouble it gets him into. But beneath this facade of carefree bravado and effortless charm lies the heart of a hero. In essence, Quill is a do-gooder who doesn’t always go about doing good in the best ways.

Paco Medina’s art harnesses the outlaw narrative by calling to mind westerns through stunning establishing shots and character designs. Paco also illustrates some seriously cool ships and weapons, exciting the scifi swashbuckler in all of us. The coloring, also by Medina, is rich and vibrant, lending a liveliness to the perils of full time space adventuring and thievery. Together they craft a story that is both intriguing and non-threatening for the uninitiated.  

Also be sure to check out Guardians of the Galaxy: Galaxys Most Wanted #1 and Rocket Raccoon #1 for even more pulse pounding off-world action.

[Read Legendary Star-Lord #1 on comiXology!]

For fans of: superheroesscience fiction, cosmic

Michael Crowe works in digital assets/launch at Comixology. He is also an avid fan of science fiction, action/adventure and horror.

A comiXologist Recommends:
Jen Keith recommends Ms. Marvel #5

Last we left Kamala was in over her head on a rescue mission that wasn’t as easy as the superheroes on the news might make it look. There’s plenty of action and questions coming our way in Ms. Marvel #5. Will Kamala save the day? Is a bathing suit really the ideal superhero costume? And just who is the Inventor?!


The thing that really makes this book for me is that Kamala is just so relatable – she’s not rich or well-trained or a natural born leader…yet. She’s learning that with great power comes great costume design difficulties, arguments with your parents, and a lot of missteps in the superhero-ing business. Just because you suddenly develop powers doesn’t mean you’ll be the cool kid at school or your parents won’t ground you. If you thought trying to figure out who you are as a non-powered teenager was hard, try doing it when you can shape shift into anybody or anything on a whim (and sometimes by accident). That’s one of the best things about Ms. Marvel: we’re seeing not only a superhero being born but a person coming into their own.

Just ask the Young Avengers – it’s not easy putting your feet into the shoes of your idols. Kamala is doing it with charm, luck, and a fair bit of help (and hindrance). Writer G. Willow Wilson (gwillow) and artist Adrian Alphona bring the diverse and entertaining cast to life to endear us to a new chapter in the Marvel universe.

You don’t have to sneak out of the house in your makeshift spandex onesie and domino mask to enjoy this series – go ahead and give Ms. Marvel a chance (she’s certainly taking plenty of her own).

[Pick up Ms. Marvel #5 here!]

For fans of: female leads, POC leads, superheroes, action

Jen Keith is a Digital Editor at comiXology, comic artist, music addict, and really excited about all of these fierce lady superhero titles she’s been reading recently.

A comiXologist Recommends:
Jonah Chuang recommends Thor: God of Thunder #23

Thor: God of Thunder is one of the most worthwhile series of the Marvel.NOW line. Jason Aaron and Esad Ribic are absolutely killing it with their brutal but relatable portrayals of Thor and the cultures of the Nine Realms.

If you haven’t been following along, this series follows two different Thors— King Thor, the All-Father, from the far future and present-day Thor. Both are fighting for the fate of the planet, but in very different ways. All-Father Thor battles against Galactus for the shriveled up husk of Earth, while Thor-of-today struggles against the Roxxon Energy Corp for the future of Broxxton, Oklahoma, the town where the Asgardians have settled after the destruction of Asgard.

The present-day Thor’s story is full of intrigue. There’s a good amount of environmental and corporate commentary. It’s interesting to see Thor, the Avenger, with all his power, stand helpless against corporate lawyers. In this issue, Thor’s adversaries are given physical form in the form of Ulik the Troll and the Minotaur so that Thor can finally bash corporate greed in the face with his hammer.

King Thor’s story is my favorite of the two, mostly because of the involvement of his granddaughters. Atli, Ellisiv, and Frigg first appeared in the Godbomb arc and embody everything you love about the young, brash, brutal Thor from days past. This storyline also shows has the most epic fight scenes, with All-Father Thor just wailing on the massive Galactus. Thor fans might remember being disappointed by the theoretical nature of the Odin vs. Galactus fight back in Mighty Thor as it mostly took place on higher planes. This is not that. It’s the knock-down, drag-out fight you’ve always wanted to see the God of Thunder take part in.

[Read Thor: God of Thunder #23 on comiXology]

For fans of: Superheroes, Mythology

Jonah Chuang is a production coordinator assistant at comiXology. He owns four Mjolnir replicas and was Loki for Halloween in 2011.

A comiXologist Recommends:
Harris Smith recommends The New 52: Futures End #7

The New 52: Future’s End is a superhero comic for people who love superhero comics. Bringing together four of the genre’s top writers, and a score of DC’s most interesting characters, it’s a fast-paced, no-nonsense example of the kind of unpretentious fun that well-written superhero stories can offer.

It would be easy to talk about what Jeff Lemire and Brian Azzarello bring to the book, and they do bring a lot, but if you’re currently a reader of DC Comics, you’re probably already well-versed in their talents. The New 52: Future’s End really belongs to its two most venerable creators, Keith Giffen and Dan Jurgens. Both are master storytellers with a strong sense of character. Giffen specializes in oddballs- he’s written The Omega Men, Justice League International, Doom Patrol, the recent OMAC reboot and is co-creator of Ambush Bug. Jurgens is skilled at bringing out the humanity in his characters over the course of beautifully plotted narratives. In the 80s, Giffen wrote Booster Gold as a bit of a goofball, in the 00s, Jurgens gave him a sense of purpose. These two sensibilities, the absurd and the humane, play off one another nicely throughout Future’s End.

This book also brings something that’s been sorely missing from some comics in recent years- the subplot. There are no fewer than five narrative threads breathlessly running through Future’s End and one of the most compelling things about the series is anticipating what will happen when they all inevitably collide. This is admittedly not a book that’s great to pick up a single issue of, but even if you do, you’ll want to immerse yourself in the entire series. It’s unadulterated comic book excitement.

[Read The New 52: Futures End #7 Here!]

For fans of: superheroes

Harris Smith is a Brooklyn-based comics and media professional. In addition to his role as a Senior Production Coordinator at comiXology, he edits several comics anthologies, including Jeans and Felony Comics, under the banner of Negative Pleasure Publications. He’s also the host of the weekly radio show Neagtive Pleasure on Newtown Radio.

A comiXologist Recommends:
Mike Isenberg recommends Street Angel #1 by jimrugg & Brian Maruca

I was pretty excited when I saw Street Angel #1 on our release line-up for today.  I fell in love with this book when I first read it a few years ago.  Tracking down a copy lately has been difficult, though, so I was thrilled to see it being released digitally.  Hopefully it can reach a wider audience and you’ll all fall in love with it too.

Jesse “Street Angel” Sanchez is an orphaned, homeless, 12-year-old skateboarding martial artist and champion of justice.  She’s Little Orphan Annie with a skateboard; The Yellow Kid with ninja moves.  Sanchez is an immediately likable character; she’s spunky, resourceful, irreverent, and independent.  Her status as a “have not” gives her a healthy distrust of the “haves,” but she’s never cynical; she doesn’t let her poverty beat her down or define who she is.

The book’s writing, by Jim Rugg and Brian Maruca, is very playful.  Issue #1 features a deranged mad science plot, and in the series to come we’ll see time-traveling Spanish conquistadors, a punch-up with the devil himself, and ninjas.  So many ninjas.  Ninjas everywhere, just coming out of the woodwork.

Rugg’s art on this book is gorgeous.  Jesse’s bombastic martial artistry is depicted with the same careful brushwork as are the quieter scenes of her dumpster-diving for doughnuts with her fellow vagabonds.  That the creators really love this kung-fu skateboarding scamp comes across clearly on every page, and as a reader you can’t help but fall in love with her as well.

Issue #1 is just 99 cents from monkeybraincomics.  For that price there’s no excuse not to check this book out.  Open your heart to Street Angel.  You won’t be disappointed.

[Read Street Angel #1 Here!]

For fans of: humor, martial arts, superheroes

Mike Isenberg is an Associate Production Coordinator at comiXology, and the co-writer of FIRST LAW OF MAD SCIENCE.  He lives in Harlem with his cats, TESLA AND EDISON