Sunday, December 19, 2010

Comixology: First Impressions and Comic Reviews

I've been trying out Comixology on my Droid. There's a few hundred free issues to sample out (mostly first issues).

For this first set of reviews I've stuck to free downloads.

WALKING DEAD #1 (Free)
(Robert Kirkman/Tony Moore; Skybound)


Rick Grimes, Sheriff of a small town in Kentucky awakes in a hospital. Comatose after being shot while on duty, Rick finds the world abandoned of all things living and is faced with walking undead, who attack him on sight. He returns home to find his family, son Carl and wife Lori, gone. He meets his new neighbor, who points him towards Atlanta. After retrieving supplies from the abandoned Police Station, Rick sets off to Atlanta to search for his family.

This is pretty much the flagship title right now for Comixology. With the series going "same day digital" and the AMC show garnering lots of praise, they couldn't ask for a better draw to the app.

The comic translates very well to the "guided view" technology. I was very impressed with how seamlessly it transitioned from panel to panel. One thing you discover is how most minor details that get overlooked become more prominent when you focus on each panel at a time. It's also a benefit to a book like DEAD because it helps build and maintain suspense.

There's not much that I can add about the comic itself that hasn't been said everywhere else. Robert Kirkman just happened to tap into a growing fad and make it so engrossing that all the other zombie comics become pale imitations.

The difference I think is that it's a drama about people first and a zombie comic second. The book focuses on the characters with the zombie apocalypse stuff adding interesting scenarios to bounce those people off of.

I highly recommend WALKING DEAD to anyone with an iPhone or Droid. With the tv series between seasons right now this would be the perfect time to read the comic and get ready for what's to come.
I've already purchased #2 and plan to follow it on Comixology.
5 out of 5 stars. Read it!

VINCENT PRICE PRESENTS #1 (Free)
(Darren Davis/Chad Helder/Rey Armenteros; Bluewater Comics)


Vincent Price, one of classic Hollywood's most famous scary men, made a name for himself in classic mysteries and thrillers throughout the 1940's, 50's and 60's. Now Vincent Price Presents comes to Bluewater Productions as their first on-going, monthly series, featuring adaptations of some of Price's films as well as developing frightening new stories with his estate. Welcome back to the macabre world of Vincent Price!

I had mixed feelings about this one.

The art, which appears to be mostly painted, has moments where it shines. Then there are the moments where it distracts.

The story itself seemed like it started with an interesting idea but the execution I think suffered from being forced to fit within one comic.

I think the art would have been better if the comic was shorter but the story would have improved if it was longer. Go figure.

I don't think I'll be getting the next issue anytime soon. I give it 2 out of 5 stars.

THE STUFF OF LEGEND: PART 1 (Free)
(Mike Raicht/Brian Smith/Charles Paul Wilson III; Th3rd World Studios)


The first half of The Stuff of Legend #1, a full 25 pages, FREE from Th3rd World Studios!
The year is 1944. While Allied soldiers storm a beach in far-off Normandy, in a child's bedroom in Brooklyn, a small group of toys loyal to their human master fight an unseen war to save him from every child's worst nightmare - The Boogeyman.


I must say that this comic was very impressive.

While not a lot happens in part one (really!), we get introduced to the main cast of characters in a way that is both charming and informative.

The art in LEGEND is fantastic. It's very detailed and shows up nicely in the app with an appearance that it's fully rendered in pencil.

I recommend STUFF OF LEGEND to anyone that likes Pixar films as this could easily be adapted into one.
I give it 4 out of 5 stars. Read it!

ABYSS #1 (Free)
(Kevin Rubio/Lucas Marangon/Nick Schley/Andrew Dalhouse; Red 5)


The world's greater super-villain, Abyss, has been killed, and that's the start of the story? Comedic, dysfunctional and heroic adventures begin when oblivious billionaire heir Eric Hoffman inherits his father's fortune, killer robot and infamous legacy. From the creator of the parody film web phenomenon, TROOPS.

Another comic that would translate well into an animated feature is ABYSS. It reads much like it was geared to be a series on Cartoon Network.

While the concept of child-of-villain becoming the opposite of what their parents were may not be a new one, Rubio does manage to milk it for all the comedy he can.

The art is very polished and professional looking and conveys the cartoony feel of the world quite well.

Great for fans of Marvel's RUNAWAYS or SENTINEL.
I give it 3 out of 5 stars.

ACTION PHILOSOPHERS: AYN RAND! (Free)
(Fred Van Lente/Ryan Dunlavey; Evil Twin Comics)


Writer Fred Van Lente and artist Ryan Dunlavey read and explain and make fun of philosophy so you don't have to! Their hilarious, best-selling Action Philosophers comic book series has won American Library Association and Xeric awards and is used in classrooms across the globe to introduce the world of history's greatest thinkers in a hip and humorous fashion! But don't take our word for it! Read this FREE SAMPLE and see for yourself, starring the controversial founder of Objectivism!

Hmmmmmm....

I liked the indie-esque art in this comic but...

Um. That's it.

Wouldn't mind seeing the artist do something else.

Docu-comics just don't do it for me.
2 out of 5 stars.

There's the first batch of reviews.
I'll be posting these as I read more comics on Comixology.
I've purchased my first "pay" comic (WALKING DEAD #2) today and I'm deciding on four others for this week. I'll let you guys know how it turns out.

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