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review 2016-07-24 14:26
My Little Rabbit by James DeSantis
My Little Rabbit - James DeSantis,Kelly Smith

My Little Rabbit by James DeSantis is a short horror story about the battles a woman takes to deal with her own fears.


Her mother's nickname for her had been 'my little rabbit'. Yet, the horrifying clown chasing her is using that name as a weapon.

It both was frightening and intriguing. I gave it five stars.

 

I received a complimentary copy from Barnes & Noble. That did not change my opinion for this review.

 

Link to purchase: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/my-little-rabbit-james-desantis/1121100597

 

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review 2016-04-04 00:07
Lucifer, Book One (Lucifer New Edition #1) by Mike Carey
Lucifer, Book One - Neil Gaiman,Ryan Kelly,James Hodgkins,Dean Ormston,Peter Gross,Chris Weston,Scott Hampton,Mike Carey

Lucifer, having quit his job as hell's keeper, is happy running Lux (his piano bar). Lucifer is offered   a mission to stop a creature which is providing wishes for mortals, because God does not want to get involved.  As a boon, Lucifer requests a letter of indulgence from God, which gives him access to an alternate dimension outside of creation.  Of course there's a catch. When Lucifer enters the portal, though he will effectively become a God,  he cannot return.  Lucifer, not satisfied with the deal decides to take action to make it more to his liking, thus drawing attention of the angels and Amendial in particular, who is determined to go to war. If that were not enough a whole host of supernatural beings are determined to use the portal for their own ambitions.

Let me start off my saying that if you pick up this comic in the hopes of a connection between it and Fox's show Lucifer, you will be sadly disappointed.  Vertigo's Lucifer is a far cry from Fox's and the storyline itself is vastly different, even though both use some of the same characters.

As a protagonist, I must say that I found Lucifer very engaging.  He's always one step ahead of everyone who is out to get him.  Even when he arrives naked and unarmed in the "realm that knows no mornings", Lucifer is able to outwit his adversaries by playing their own game. No matter who proposes to bring an end to him, Lucifer is always more than ready to deal with them, making deals when necessary, sometimes using force and other times, simply being more cunning.  He makes for a very interesting protagonist, even if he is the classic antihero.  It's very difficult not to root for him.

Much of this comic concerns predestination.  God supposedly knows how each situation will turn out because of predestination. This gives rise to the question as to whether anyone truly has free will? Lucifer is determined to be an independent agent whatever the cost and this is why he actively questions what the catch is with his letter of indulgence.  If people are just playing out the roles they have been given, then choice is all an illusion.

My biggest problem with this comic are the moments of transition. Carey randomly introduces characters and they suddenly disappear, as Lucifer moves onto something else.  Several pages later, the character may or may nor appear again, forcing the reader to try and remember not only who this character is but why they are relevant.  At times, I actually was lost and had to go back and search for the initial introduction of said character to figure out how they fit in.  Book one has absolutely no flow to it whatsoever and I can imagine reading it as individual comics (how they were first released) would have made it that much more difficult to follow.

Carey introduces several marginalized characters to the story and unfortunately every single one of them is problematic.  Ray is a young gay Indian man and he is infatuated with a young man who unbeknownst to him is a White supremacist.  Though Ray's family does not know about his sexuality, his friend encourages him to ask Karl for a date.  When Ray finally works up the courage to ask Karl out, Karl uses it as an opportunity to set Ray up to be beaten up by his White supremacist friends. Karl stops just short of sodomizing Ray with a broken bottle. Later, a guilty Karl calls emergency services. While Karl waits for help, he is confronted by the angel Melios about his actions.  It seems that Karl attacked Ray because he was disturbed by his attraction to him. I am sick to death of the idea that gay bashing is the result of a closeted gay man.  Not only was the beating of Ray graphic and visual, to then have it arranged by another gay man is beyond problematic. In fact, this little snippet of the story is absolutely toxic. Neither Ray or Karl are major characters in this story and Ray's bashing seems to exist for the soul purpose of having Jill Peterson (Ray's friend) realise that she is magical now and able to see the different paths of destiny and exact punishment. It's Jill who kills Ray's attackers save Karl, promising to get to him later.  We never learn if Ray survives or if Karl gets the justice he deserves.  It's just a small little subplot for the growth of Jill's character. Need I say what's wrong with this?


Most of the storylines for marginalized people are simply small asides and yet Carey manages to insert toxic tropes.  When it comes to people of colour, the most obvious example is that of Musubi in the realm that knows no mornings. All of the characters in this world are Asian and some definitely fall into the inscrutable Asian stereotype. They are all drawn in a way that's absolutely racist. Musubi, who is a demon, first appears as a geisha like creature and she bathes Lucifer and even offers him a happy ending.  I could have done without that racist representation. It turns out that it's all a ruse because Musubi intends to kill Lucifer.  Naturally, Lucifer talks her out of killing him and instead kills her, only to resurrect Musubi later to become his servant.  To be clear, an Asian female demon was imprisoned by her own people and saw being a servant to Lucifer as freedom. Yeah for progress.

 

 

 

Read More

 

 

Source: www.fangsforthefantasy.com/2016/03/lucifer-book-one-lucifer-new-edition-1.html
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review 2016-02-20 10:05
The Merc with the Mouth
Deadpool Classic, Vol. 4 - Joe Kelly;James Felder

Okay, when I purchased this graphic novel (or to be more precise - comic book) I had heard a rumour that there was going to be a Deadpool movie, however I had heard that rumour floating around ever since the first Wolverine movie had been released. Mind you, my exposure to Deadpool was basically from that one movie and it wasn't until I recently saw the film that I realised that he was actually some guy that ran around in a red suit (though I was well aware that he talked an awful lot, namely because there were some hints to that regard in the Wolverine movie, particular when Logan makes a comment at the end, upon seeing his mouth sewed up, that they had finally worked out a way to stop him from talking).

 

Anyway, having now seen the film (and while I wouldn't jump up and say it was outstanding, I can say that I did enjoy it, though I suspect that my sense of humour isn't anything like the sense of humour that the bulk of the audience had – mind you when I did go and see it I have to say that the cinema was absolutely packed), I thought it only appropriate to finally dust off this book and give it a read (not that it was gathering dust, but I decided to hold off reading it until after I had seen the movie). As can be expected it was somewhat different to the film, and I guess I do prefer to watch superheroes on the big screen as opposed to reading the comics.

 

I guess the reason I suggest that is because comic books can be an incredibly expensive habit. In fact I still remember friends who would visit the local comic book store and walk out with huge numbers of comic books. In fact they would know when the next edition of their favourite comic would appear in the store, and the owner would know exactly which ones they wanted, and have them sitting under the counter waiting for them. The thing about comic books is that they are written in a serialised form, and always, without fail, end in a cliff-hanger. There is no such thing as a comic book with a single story because, well, it sort of makes you want to buy the next one because you want to find out what happens.

 

As for this comic, as you can probably guess, it is about Deadpool. Actually the first part has the origin story where he visits the Weapon X program to find a cure for his cancer only to be turned into a mutant freak. Because the process failed he is then thrown into a pit known as the Deadpool where he is tormented by this brute whom he calls Francis (namely because it is the brute's real name, and Deadpool has this annoying habit of stirring people up simply to get a reaction). The second part of the comic is a serial where Deadpool saves the world from this entity that wants to take away humanity's free will because it is our free will that generates suffering; thus if we no longer have free will then we will all live in blissful peace. This is an interesting comment because it raises the question as to whether we can live in harmony with each other and have free will. I suggest that it is possible, however we as humans seem to always want to take the selfish road, and it is the selfish road that inevitability leads to suffering.

It was probably a good thing that I did see the film before reading this comic because I had inevitability jumped into the series somewhere in the middle and didn't know who half the characters were (the only character I had any vague familiarity with with Deadpool, and of course Francis). At the least movie gave me an idea of some of the other characters, such as the blind lady whom Deadpool lives with, though she seems to play a much greater role in the comics than she seemed to in the film.

 

I guess the final thing I wanted to say was the nature of his character – Deadpool is an anti-hero, which are the type of characters I actually quite like. Wolverine is also an anti-hero, and is portrayed as such in the films. I guess the thing with anti-heroes is that they know they aren't perfect, and they don't try to live this high and respectable life, but when it comes to the crunch they will step out and save the world. Deadpool does show this part of him in the book, however he also does something that other heroes wouldn't – he kidnaps a precog and uses his ability to see the future to strike it big at the casino (and angers another supervillain in the process).

Source: www.goodreads.com/review/show/1551728499
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text 2015-07-13 19:57
I'm on issue 31
Deadpool Classic, Vol. 5 - Joe Cooper,James Felder,Scott McDaniel,Joe Kelly,Pete Woods

This volume ends at 33.   I can't do it right now.  I'm skimming over most of this issue, so going to come back to it later. 

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text 2014-08-18 02:32
Reading progress update: I've read 200 out of 1160 pages.
Deadpool by Joe Kelly Omnibus - Shannon Denton,James Felder,Ed McGuinness,Joe Kelly,Aaron Lopresti,Bernard Chang,Stan Lee,Pete Woods

This is an approximate update, no page numbers. Loving it though

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