Sunday, October 9, 2011

Vampires in Alaska~ "30 Days of Night, Night, Again" by Joe R. Lansdale

Published by:  IDW
Release Date:  December 6, 2011
Writer:  Joe R. Lansdale
Artist:  Sam Keith


Fleeing the site of a secondary vampire infestation in the cold, wilds of Alaska, a band of survivors arrive at a climate change facility during the final days of a long period of extended daylight. The inhabitants of the research compound are trying to determine the nature of a strange object found in the ice when the survivors arrive, leading to a frightening and bloody confrontation between humans and vampires - and an odd and unexpected guest!

Written by acclaimed horror writer Joe R. Lansdale and featuring horrifically beautiful art by Sandman co-creator Sam Kieth! 

The Dame's Blood Dripping Review :

There's a connection between October, 1943, the Nazi submarines..and a vampire hunt taking place in 2004 desolate, Alaska.  It's not clear even slightly, however, until the discovery at the end of this blood and guts graphic novel.  Still, we have to wait until the next in the series to find out exactly what that connection is...and I, for one am hanging on tethers until then.  Well, not literally tethers, those you can see first hand in this gorgeously pictured gothic cum graphic novel.  Vampires loving to string humans up, after all.

What I love best and hate most about "30 Days of Night..." is the gore.  I'm an admitted vampire lover.  And, let's face it, it's the gore, the vicious throat-ripping, blood-dripping that charges us up.  We don't like to admit it.  It's not something we like to share over dinner and in groups with our vampirish reading friends.  But we know it deep in our hearts.  That being said, it was difficult to see in Sam Keith's colored drawings.

His vampire queen wasn't beautiful in the traditional sense.  She's monstrous.  Not much to recommend her in physical attraction.  What she does have is power over the men and a sympathetic side when she talks about her hunger.  But, I wish she'd wipe her mouth after "dinner!"

I felt more for the leader of the non-vampires, Trudy, who was encouraging them on a search to find those left behind for the vampires to chew upon.  She's the beautiful one on a good mission...but that can eventually get boring, can't it?  I'm waiting to see...

This is a graphic novel series I'm going to be collecting.  It's gorey, it has some really x-rated language which means I can't recommend it to everyone, but it has a storyline that appeals to the vampire lover in me.

For those of you who harbor the vampirish in all forms, you may want to sneak this one past the wimps in your association.

4 blood-curdling stars


Saturday, October 8, 2011

"Fallen Skies" Dark Horse Comics Series Is Fantastically Painted and Written!

Published by:  Dark Horse Comics
Digital Comics
Creators Are:
Writer~Paul Tobin
Artist~Juan Ferreyra
Colorist~Andrew Dalhouse
Cover Artist~Juan Ferreyra
Based on TV program from DreamWorks Television
Starring Noah Wyle

1# in the Fallen Skies series

This comic/graphic art series is fantastic!  You can actually visit Dark Horse Comic's website and get a preview of this first book in the series, which is just amazing.  As far as I can tell, at this point there are about 6 books so far.  I may be incorrect about that, it was difficult to tell.  At any rate, here's a little blurb about the series from the site:

In the heart of Boston, following the devastating events of an alien invasion, history professor Tom Mason and his sons Hal, Matt, and Ben are just trying to survive. After an extreme firefight with the aliens, Ben gets kidnapped. Determined to get his son back, Tom joins forces with the 2nd Mass, a militia group that is taking the fight against the aliens. But with the group’s munitions supplies running low, Tom must locate an old friend to equip himself and his team in order to ensure the survival of the human race!
  • Based on the 'Falling Skies' television program from DreamWorks Television and starring Noah Wyle!
  • Executive Produced by Greg Beeman and Dark Horse alum Mark Verheiden!
Fallen Skies #2

This is the most beautiful of the covers, I think, from artist Juan Ferreyra. Andrew Dalhouse, the colorist for the series, has also done a superb job of making Ferreyra's drawings come to life.  It does justice to the work we see within the pages of both of the comics I read.  I'm agog at the range of drawing and conceptual imagery the artists have.  There's a lot of pure entertainment just in that fine detail in this series. 

The characters are not only well defined in drawing but they also come alive with their vocabulary.  Writer, Paul Tobin knows just the right thing to have them say to keep our interest whetted.  Pictures alone cannot do this...can't tell an absorbing dystopian story of this kind without the development of characters and relationships.  It all works in Falling Skies.

The aliens are such a wonder to observe!  The claw-suspended brainiac aliens themselves are called "Skitters" by the survivors, and their gigantic, robotic battle/weapons are called "Mechans."  I loved seeing every detail of these creatures.  Such imaginations...but not so far-fetched that one couldn't imagine them being real and the "mechans" being easily made by a capable scientific world such as ours.  Hmmmm   

I loved the humor in this series, too.  Lest we forget that comics are supposed to be comical...the picture of an alien-as-deer-head on the front of a truck was killer!  LOL

I'm a new convert to comics/graphic novels.  Dark Horse Comics is actually the conduit I've chosen to lead me through my baby steps.  My experience has been very positive.  I love the quality, the variety of choices and the ease of shopping with them directly from their own website.  I also love the comics and creators they use...absolutely excellent quality all around.

Look for my other reviews on Dark Horse Comics coming very soon!

*  Do you have any memories of favorite comics from days past?   I used to love Superman when I was a young teen living in Augsburg, Germany, as a military tv!! :]

5 stars for fun and fabulosity!


Friday, September 30, 2011

"Carbongrey Vol. 1: Sisters At War" Stunning Comic Published by Image Comics

Title: Carbongrey Volume 1: Sisters At War
Published by:  Image Comics
Pages:  96
Trade Paperback
Release Date:  Sept. 27, 2011

Book Overview :

To a noble family twins are born; Mathilde and Giselle, the Sisters Grey. For centuries the Greys have protected the Kaiser, ruler of Mitteleuropa - but this is a different time. At the dawn of the Industrial Age a great war rages. When the Kaiser is found dead Giselle is accused of his murder. Pursued by her sisters and hunted by the enemy, Giselle must unravel the prophecy of the Carbon Grey before history itself is rewritten. Carbon Grey Volume 1: Sisters at War includes all three issues of the sold-out first arc, plus deleted scenes, concept art, and additional new content.

Artists and Writers:

Story~Hoang Nguyen, Khari Evans, Paul Gardner, and
           Mike Kennedy

Art/Cover~Hoang Nguyen, Khari Evans, Kinsun Loh

About Image Comics and Graphic Novels:

What is Image Comics?

Image is a comics and graphic novels publisher formed in 1992 by seven of Marvel Comics' best-selling artists. Since that time, Image has gone on to become the third largest comics publisher in the United States.

Who are the Image founders?

Image Comics was originally founded by seven artists: Erik Larsen, Jim Lee, Rob Liefeld, Todd McFarlane, Whilce Portacio, Marc Silvestri, and Jim Valentino. Of those seven founders, only six opted to become full partners: Larsen, Lee, Liefeld, McFarlane, Silvestri, and Valentino.

Who are the current Image partners?

There are currently five partners in Image Comics: Robert Kirkman, Erik Larsen, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri, and Jim Valentino.

What's the difference between a comic book and a graphic novel?

Comic books are typically 32-page periodicals. Graphic novels are published in book form and are generally much longer than a standard comic book. Some graphic novels compile serialized comics stories, while others feature completely new material.
What kind of comics and graphic novels does Image publish?
Image comics and graphic novels cover nearly every genre, sub-genre and style imaginable. Image offers science fiction and romance, horror and crime fiction. Historical fiction, humor. You name it; Image has it—and all by the finest artists and writers working in the medium today.

Where can I buy Image comics and graphic novels?

Image comics are primarily sold in comic book specialty shops. To find a comic book shop near you, we recommend using Diamond Comics Distributors' free Comic Book Locator. Image graphic novels are also sold at bookstores. Check your local Yellow Pages for a listing of bookstores near you.

Can I buy Image graphic novels at my local bookstore?

Yes, and if a title isn't on the shelf at your local bookstore, most Image graphic novels are available for backorder.

The Dame Ponders:

For purposes of my first blog entry, I've chosen a comic/graphic novel publisher whose artists and writers appeal to me. I love the cover of the comic, and I love the fantasy concept written on the cover, too.  Both of these things draw me in immediately.

I also wanted to take a moment to educate my friends and followers about the differences between graphic novels and comic books; and, how they can contain the same level of artistic and writing abilities.  There are as many similarities as differences.

"Carbongrey..." is an exciting new series introducing two beautiful protagonists in a struggle against societal circumstances, and it takes place in a time that is altered from my reality. In general, I often have difficulty with science fiction that has altered realities and odd names.  But, this comic seems less daunting. 

Primarily, for me, if the artwork from cover and all in between isn't beautifully rendered and painted, I have no interest in the book.  Furthermore, I'm not interested in storylines that aren't witty, well thought out, and fun to read as they move the story along. 

Since graphic novels and these new forms of comic books are new to me, I'm just beginning to appreciate the level of work that goes into them.  In the past, I considered them juvenile  "junk" reading.  I have found I was wrong on both counts!  Times have changed, and this art form has developed to a superior degree.  I even understand, now, why people collect them!

I'm encouraging all of my friends and readers to go to a book store, search for the graphic novels and comics section, and take a few minutes to browse.  It's time to go on a discovery mission.  We get bogged down in our safe modes too often, which, in this case makes for our missing links to advances in illustrations and quick-fix reading!

Let me know if you found something to read in this section of your book store, or if you're willing to look. 

Do you already read and enjoy graphic novels, manga or comics?  I'm looking for special visits by blog reviewers!  Let me know if you want to be a guest blogger sometime.

Thanks for stopping by my newest blog.  Looking forward to reviewing this interesting genre with you in mind.