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review 2017-04-27 23:47
Loving this whole run!
Moon Knight (2016-) #13 - Jeff Lemire,Greg Smallwood

This is a detailed look into a man who is mentally unwell, the toll it takes on him, how he can persevere despite this and about him coming to terms with how unwell he is and how he wants to be better.   And it's a tough, draining read each month, but very, very worth it in the end. 

 

I see some of my own struggles in this title, and I know from reading some of the letters that others feel the same.   Lemire has done an excellent job, because despite all this, it's simply a story about hero.   There's action and bargaining and Moon Knight trying to save everyone he can, but it just turns out that 'everyone' includes himself this time around. 

 

And I've been criticizing Secret Empire, but at the same time saying 'I'm still reading Marvel because I think they're doing some important things elsewhere.'   I will most likely buy and read the tie-ins to Marvel for Secret Empire, but not the actual event.   (Because I love Doctor Strange and Deadpool and Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur, and I will read them regardless.   I am not getting into the new X-Men stuff because of the glut of it coming out, and because I'm still peeved over Secret Empire existing.   And the fact that it will be dominating the Marvel universe for the next year or so.   Y'know, usually I'm not fond of the 'and they wake up, and it's all a huuuuge nightmare' scenarios, but I'd take it over me waking up realizing that, hey, it's not a nightmare and Secret Empire exists.)  

 

But what I'm saying is that Moon Knight is one of the best thing Marvel is doing, showing us that people with mental health issues are, y'know, people and heroes and deserve to be seen as something more than just their mental health issues.   More than that, it's pushing for people to recognize that they want to be better, and actively trying to be, something I've been struggling with in particular recently.   And I am not ashamed to say that I nearly weep in relief after reading this each month.  'Nuff said.

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review 2017-04-20 01:59
Descender, Vol. 1: Tin Stars by Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen
Descender Volume 1: Tin Stars (Descender Tp) - Jeff Lemire,Dustin Nguyen,Dustin Nguyen

And now I am going back to comics. I am really having a lot of fun reading comics lately. I didn't read many last year so getting back into comics this year has been a real treat. I heard about Descender on BookTube. I heard it was a pretty good sci-fi novel so I thought I'd give it a try. And I'm so glad I did. 

 

The story follows a boy named TIM-21. He's a robot who has been put to sleep for ten years during an attack by The Harvesters, a group of alien robots set to destroy everything! And the story takes off from there. I'll admit that it's not an original story. We have all seen stories about alien lifeforms threatening to destroy the world and one person being the key to prevent that from happening. However, I love the pacing of this story. It's taking a concept we are all very well familiar with and spinning it to fit this expansive world that Jeff Lemire is creating. The beginning of this volume introduces this world and its characters and sucks the reader in and by the end of it, you just want to keep reading. To find out where this ancient technology came from. I wish I had the second volume to read because I am super intrigued by what's happening so far!

 

The artwork is phenomenal! Dustin Nguyen mixes a realistic, soft style with watercolor and it just blows me away! I love how bright some panels are, with light blues and reds, but then it gets dark when the mood is right for it. He is able to balance the serious tone of the book without making it seem dreary. Well, there is a bit of gore... but it's not all bad! In fact, I think it's pretty cool! I am in love with his art and I cannot wait to see more of it in the future.

 

The characters are incredible! Especially the robots! I love the main character, TIM-21. He is sweet, caring, and empathetic towards his human counterparts. He has a dog-bot called Bandit and it's a DOG ROBOT! Need I say more? Then there's Driller who joins the team after he helps protect TIM from Scrappers, beings who try to get their hands on old parts to sell to the highest bidder. Driller is also loving and charismatic. He doesn't like humans very much, seeking to kill them since he is Driller the Killer, but TIM holds him back by teaching Driller to understand that some humans are there to help them. Still, Driller prefers not to put his faith in humans as much as he can, which isn't really a bad thing considering how humans react towards any sentient beings.

 

Speaking of humans, they are the ones who I didn't really connect with. There's Dr. Quon, the so-call "inventor" of the TIM series. He's a coward, a jerk, and plain compared to the robots. There's Telsa (although she is not really human), who is the captain of the UGC, an organization sworn to protect the universe from the Harvesters. She's tough, gets things done, and intelligent. My one complaint with her is that she keeps the reader at a distance. She does seem to have more than she lets on but as of right now, she's not letting anyone know who she truly is. My hope is that in future volumes, she allows for those around her into her heart. And the final character is Tullis, Telsa's second in command. We don't know much about him yet. Except that he's very loyal to Telsa and follows her every command without question. I'm sure we'll see more of him, too.

 

All-in-all, I really enjoyed this comic. I liked the premise, the atmosphere, the setting, the plot, and some of the characters. In fact, I would have loved this comic if some of the characters I mentioned above were a bit more fleshed out. Other than that, I highly recommend this comic. If you love sci-fi, alien races, fast-paced action, and a story we've seen time and time again done differently, then you should read Descender. Just keep in mind that there's a bit of gore towards then end, if that's something you prefer to avoid in your comics.

 

I really like this comic and I cannot wait to read more of it soon!

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review 2017-04-10 18:42
Roughneck by Jeff Lemire
Roughneck - Jeff Lemire

 

Set in a cold and bleak Canadian town, Roughneck is the story of a retired hockey player trying to put his life back together.

 

The e-ARC I received is mostly black and white, (except for the first 15 pages or so, which have this nice, light blue, cold feeling to them), but from what I've read the final copy will be in color. For me though, the black and white worked quite well.

 

Derek Ouellette is trying to drown his sorrows in alcohol. Being that he already is a tough guy, the drinking doesn't bring out the best in him. Then, when his long lost sister Bethy shows up, (on the run from her latest abusive boyfriend), things get even worse. Derek tries to do the right thing, but can he make it happen? You'll have to read Roughneck to find out.

 

I've not heard of Jeff Lemire before, but I requested an ARC of this graphic novel based on the description alone. I'm so glad I did! I enjoyed the artwork, the isolation of the setting, and the realistic view of the characters. I'm not sure if there are going to be more books about Derek and his sister in the future, but if there are? Count me in!

 

Recommended for fans of cold, bleak settings and tough guy ex-NHL players that can drop the gloves and go in a second's time!

 

*Thank you to NetGalley and Gallery books for the free e-ARC of this graphic novel in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it.*

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review 2017-04-03 09:53
More on the war between robots and humans - enlightening
Descender - Dustin Nguyen,Jeff Lemire

 

 

This third volume is mainly full of flashbacks tracking Andy's, Tim's, Effie's, Tesla's and Driller's backgrounds and origins and leading in each case up to “present-day” events as robots and scrappers clash. This volume does not have a lot of progress in the general plot but deals with these individuals.

 

The characters are developed well and makes the whole experience enjoyable. The artwork can be frustrating some times but is generally work a look. Worth a look, especially if you've read the two previous volumes.

 

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review 2017-03-12 18:07
Perfect ending!
IvX (2016-) #6 (of 6) (IvX (2016-2017)) - Charles Soule,Jeff Lemire,Leinil Yu

This was about a perfect crossover/event.  I didn't read everything related to this, like the X-Men titles, but I did read Uncanny Inhumans since I was, and still am, subscribed to that.   (Although it's being cancelled for Royals and Black Bolt!)

 

It had all the epic battles and drama that I'd expect from a comic crossover, and some of the revelations were not only astounding, but revealed just how damaged Emma Frost really is.  And it's far more damaged than you'd think.   She basically made an enemy of everyone she's ever me with this, and I understand: she kept doing appalling things, but now I find out that they're even more horrifying than I could have guessed. 

 

It's also nice to see that people can realize that they've been played, that the people they've been fighting aren't their real enemies, and make some kind of peace with those facts.   Overall, just stepped up the game and delivered an ending that this event deserves, while starting to set up at least Royals.   (The new series like Secret Warriors, Black Bolt, The Astonishing X-Men, X-Men: Gold, and X-Men: Blue haven't been touched, or at least I don't think they have.)

 

This leaves me more excited for the future of these two franchises, but especially all the Inhuman series.   I may or may not subscribe to Secret Warriors - although I am signed up for Black Bolt and Royals right now.   That being said, Secret Warriors has both Kamala Khan as Ms. Marvel and Lunella Lafayette as Moon Girl - and where Moon Girl goes, Devil Dinosaur is sure to follow.    The call of Secret Warriors is a strong one!

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