Reviews

Reviews of comic books, graphic novels, books on comics, and other comic-related media.

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03-michael-mckean.w529.h352.2xBetter Call Saul vs “Slippin’ Jimmy”

Here we are, back in the world of Better Call Saul, where the themes of ethics and fraternal loyalty are firmly in the foreground. We learn a little more about Chuck’s specific medical condition, and… [more]

hqdefaultHonest Bees and a Critique of Capitalism: Jupiter Ascending

I loved the design of this movie. Jupiter Ascending feels like someone took Dune (the book) and mashed it up with every Tor book cover, then seasoned it with the kind of contemporary science-fiction design that rarely makes it into movies. [more]

coverMud, Myth, and Metaphor in Matt Phelan’s Storm in the Barn

An exploration of narrative therapy and myth-making in Matt Phelan’s The Storm in the Barn, a beautiful graphic novella about a young boy who’s getting older but not growing up in the terribly bleak conditions of the Dust Bowl. [more]

BCS coverA Look at Better Call Saul, The Comic Book

The first Better Call Saul comic book I’ve had the chance to read is an online comic, available freely from AMC, titled “Client Development”. It tells a story from the Breaking Bad days, covering scenes… [more]

ArrowArrow Season 3 Episode 15 Review

The League of Assassins has loomed large over the third season of Arrow. Malcolm’s attempts to escape the death sentence he’s been saddled with has been the motivating factor for much of the season’s overarching… [more]

cdn.indiewireJames Bond and Class Politics: Kingsman

Kingsman: The Secret Service is a killer action flick with a cool aesthetic, great actors, and a surprisingly vivid thematic bent. [more]

iris2015-02-20-13h34m51s242The End of Gamera

So not only is this the last of Kaneko’s trilogy it’s the last Daiei Gamera movie and the last Gamera movie distributed by Toho, all of which is sort of a big deal. So even if this isn’t the last Gamera movie I’ll review it’s still a bit of a milestone. [more]

Rasputin 005 (2015) (digital) (Son of Ultron-Empire).cbr - Page 11Rasputin Comes to an End of Sorts in Issue #5

One of the questions with historical fantasy books like Rasputin or Manifest Destiny is how close they’re going to parallel the true recorded history. In the case of Manifest Destiny, they follow the general outlines… [more]

better-call-saul-chuck1Ethics and Brothers in Better Call Saul Episode Four

Better Call Saul is going to be a show about ethics. At least, that was the prediction of some of my fellow Breaking Bad scholars that emerged from our conversations last week in Albuquerque. I… [more]

tv-better-call-saulDon’t Underestimate Jimmy on Better Call Saul

It’s easy to forget, when watching Jimmy McGill/Saul Goodman in action, that he’s one of the smartest guys in any given room. Jimmy’s street-tough use of language, his lack of “cool”, his too-formal suits all… [more]

MovieReviewJourneytotheWestConqueringtheDemons14Journey to the West Kicks Ass With a Giant Foot

There are fat suits and demons and cartoonish feet and attempts at actual emotion all scrambled together into one movie. [more]

3x14 (4)Arrow Season 3 Episode 14 Review

Episodes that delve into the past are a dangerous business. They tread the same fraught ground that prequels tread, trying to find enough compelling, new story to justify an examination of a time that the… [more]

FalloutThe Flash Season 1 Episode 14 Review

If there’s one thing you can say for The Flash, it’s not scared to swing big. The first season is just past the halfway mark and the series is already delving into time travel, nuclear… [more]

jennifer_s_body06Spotlighting Underrated Films: Jennifer’s Body (2009)

I have a soft spot for brave-but-flawed movies that are rewarded for their efforts with Worst Movie of the Year awards. Jennifer’s Body has its problems, but it is one of the best “mainstream” films… [more]

Manifest Destiny 013 (2015) (Digital) (Minutemen-Acan).cbr - Page 1Manifest Destiny #13: Bird is the Word

It’s good to be back on the river with Manifest Destiny. After a fairly obvious break in the action in the previous issue, the boat is moving again and the men (and women) of the… [more]

Southern Bastards 007 (2015) (digital) (Minutemen-Faessla).cbz - Page 1Southern Bastards #5-7: Changes of Character

Jason Aaron and Jason Latour are the George R. R. Martins of metaphorical realist fantasy comics set in the south. They aren’t afraid to take sudden dramatic right turns, to lose characters that you would… [more]

counselor2015-02-06-13h43m22s236No Country for Old Men vs No Country for Old Men

A comparison of the Cormac McCarthy Novel and the Coen brother’s adaptation. Both are fantastic and unique works of art, but how successful an adaptation is the film? [more]

Love LetterMining for Meaning: A Review of My Bloody Valentine

Filmed in the formerly abandoned Princess Colliery Mine in Sydney Mines, Nova Scotia and infamous for having 9 minutes of the movie cut by the MPAA for violence and gore, My Bloody Valentine is a… [more]

counselor2015-02-04-19h12m45s233Sex and Rotten Tomatoes: On The Counselor

So every single person on this planet of earth hated Ridley Scott and Cormac McCarthy’s The Counselor. The thing is they’re all just completely wrong. This movie is great and horribly underrated. [more]

3x13 (3)Arrow Season 3 Episode 13 Review

There are some obvious flaws with “Canaries.” Thankfully, a good portion of those flaws show up early and then fade away before too long. Most of the issues arise from story lines and scenes where… [more]

featuredimageMORAV: The Future of Robot Warfare According to Fon Davis

MORAV is an indie comic (and soon-to-be live-action series) that mashes giant robots with modern warfare to deliver an action-packed but surprisingly deep product. Behind-the-scenes is the behind-the-scenes man himself – Fon Davis, a miniatures designer who has worked on “The Matrix,” “Star Wars,” “Interstellar,” and other monumental films. [more]

better-call-saul-season-1-character-portrait-saul-odenkirk-590Better Call Saul Grows and Deepens in Episode 2

The second episode of Better Call Saul had some of the pacing problems that were an issue in the season premiere, but still manages to carve out a unique path through the world of Breaking… [more]

1x13 (2)The Flash Season 1 Episode 13 Review

The mark of a successful long running television show is the way it can reinvigorate an old formula. TV is a medium that thrives on repetition, particularly in the American network model of broadcast. When… [more]

menace2015-02-02-19h14m11s68Dead Cousins: On Menace II Society

“Now O-Dog was the craziest nigga alive. America’s nightmare. Young, black, and didn’t give a fuck.” [more]

thirst2015-02-09-16h20m48s233Chan-Wook Park Does Vampires: Thirst

Thirst is wonderful director Chan-Wook Park’s vampire movie. It’s a fascinating project filled with symbolism and gore. [more]