Independent Comic Reviews 4-17-12
Written on Tue, Apr 17, 2012 by Kyle
Our Comic Reviews are back! A few of these titles were picked up at C2E2… and one of them was sent to us by one of our fans.
Super Mom #1
Written by Scott Bachmann, with art by Scott Simmons. Collecting the pages from the web comic by the same name. we get the first 20 pages printed here from their webby home. This is a pretty light-hearted story that revolves around a female hero named Paragon… that retired after having two children, so she could play an active role in raising them. This issue spends plenty of time building the relationships and dynamics of both parents and their children, and how their lives work.
Along with Paragon we also spend a lot of time with her husband Leon, a successful sci-fi writer, and their two children Mark and Gail. While Paragon (aka Liza) has dedicated herself to attending soccer games and washing laundry, she also takes the time to save the world when absolutely necessary. My favorite part of this story is the mix of real world problems (like the married couple trying to align time so they can have a couples night) coupled with the out-of-the ordinary (like damaged satellites!). With a few sprinkled lighthearted moments and good family jokes… this makes for a fun book, as long as you aren’t looking for ‘strictly action’.
Underneath #1 & 2
Written by Tom Stillwell with art by Jim Terry. As a Chicagoan, I find this to be a fun series… since it has a lot of Chicago history involved. The story begins with the Potawatomi Indian tribe in what would one day become Chicago. The second issue also gives us a look at what really caused the Chicago fire. The premise is simple: there are trolls running loose in Chicago and only a select few people know about it. Our story follows an office worker (Terry) who is saved by a couple of derelicts that protect the city from said trolls.
While Terry learns the ins and outs of ‘Troll history’, the trolls themselves are organizing the local gangs and gathering sacrifices for some kind of rite. The story has a definite sci-fantasy feel that blends well with the real world and the problems within it.
Written and drawn by Stephen Coughlin. This story is a bit of ‘Madagascar’ mixed with a ‘who done it’ murder mystery. Following the lives and communications of the animals along with some of their handlers… the story revolves around the brutal killing of a new panda brought to the animals’ sanctuary. Usually allowing most animals to wonder and interact they are quickly sectioned off. After that we follow both humans and animals as they try to figure out who was responsible… and more importantly… why.
With 4 of the 5 issues we see a glimpse of who might be involved but there is still a lot left to be discovered by the end. The series has good interactions between the characters…the ‘who’s-who’ becomes a bit confusing at times. Coughlin deliveres a solid product though… as the series as a whole is well written.
If I were to nit-pik a bit… I had some trouble determining who the book is really written for. With some subjects (like gritty details of a death, and a bit of sexual humor) this seems very aimed at adults. The fact that we primarily follow the animals does seem to make me think the book might be targeted towards younger readers. Elsewhere in the book, a few leaps are taken with science without giving any credible explanation. Those slight problems aside, it is a compelling story with a lot of plot threads spread about the book. Suffice to say? I look forward to seeing how it all ends.