Sunday, 7 February 2021

Doctor Who Comics Issues 1 to 3


It would seem that the 10th & 13th Doctor cannot stop bumping into each other, fresh from their encounter with the Weeping Angels and Autons in 60's London and their brief encounter during the Time Lord Victorious comic. They are once again thrown together as they both arrive in modern day London, but unfortunately for them its a war torn London overran by Sea Devils that has Rose Tyler as the head of the resistance.

As with all things not everything is as it seems and the Sea Devils are not the biggest threat they are just the hired mussel to keep humans in check, the Skithra from the TV episode Tesla's Night of Terror are the real power bent on world domination. while the 13th Doctor is figuring all this out the 10th Doctor is meeting Rose again who has no idea who he is, despite this they both team up to try and put the worlds to right although the Doctor is not a fan of the rather large gun Rose now has.

It seems that the change the world is linked to the TV episode and the lack of the Doctor being there so both Doctors decide to travel back to that time to sort things out and put time back on track, which is not as easy as it may seem as you will know if you have seen Back to the Future part 2. 

TARDIS issues, mistaken identity and a trip to 1903 New York all make issue 3 an enjoyable read, add  in two Doctors, Sea Devils and various companions and you have a cracking issue in your hands.

The inclusion of the Sea Devils from classic Doctor Who is an inspired decision and makes me want to see them return to New Who, Roberta Ingranata artwork is great with the likeness of the characters being very consistent throughout the issue something that inst always the case. Jody Houser is really hitt her stride with the 13th Doctor storys, I did think I would become tiered of the 10th & 13th Doctor hook ups but she has crafted some wonderful story lines and long may it continue. 

Saturday, 6 February 2021

Future State: The Next Batman

The DC Timeline has been shattered, and the pieces of a dark possible Future State are reflected!

Well that's the blurb from DC out of the way which gives a quick if not detailed explanation as to why we now have a New or Next Batman, which is a problem as this story and others under the Future State banner have branched out of the end of the Dark Knights Death Metal story line. Which if like me you haven't read it you do wonder whats going on and why is the future like this, but in the end I decided to just go with the flow.

Gotham is now a police state controlled by the Magistrate and his or her army of foot soldiers, capes and masks aren't welcome in Gotham and theres a shoot to kill policy for any that are seen. Bruce Wayne is missing presumed dead (read Dark Detective for an answer on that one), so Luke Fox has stepped into the void and taken on the mantle of the Bat.  As you would expect this first issue spends time world building bit its a testament to writer John Ridley that it doesn't slow down the pace of the book, and for a first issue that's setting a tone for what is essentially a 4 issue mini series its surprisingly good.  I particularly enjoyed reading a Batman stripped of all his back-up, no friendly commissioner or sidekicks to help him out which to be honest makes for a refreshing change, and gives the book a Batman Year One feel to it. 

There are two backup storys featuring the Outsiders and the Arkham Knights the latter being the more fun read, just because it has Two-Face and the serial killer Mister Zszsz working for the good guys, well sort of.

All in all its a book thats worth the cost of admission and your investment in characters that will probably be disappearing in around 3 months when the DC Universe reverts back to normal, or will they?

Sunday, 24 September 2017

Meet the Writer:

The Award Winning

Bobby Nash

BEN Books

The first time I came across the author Booby Nash was while listening to a podcast called Earth Station One, Bobby was one of the co-hosts of the weekly show where he was introduced as writer Bobby Nash. After several weeks of listening my curiosity got the better of me and I checked out his work on Amazon, where I purchased one of his books Deadly Games to read on my Kindle.

At that point in my life I was doing a lot of traveling so reading while sat on a train or in a hotel was how I wiled away the hours, it was while quickly scanning through Deadly Games I noted that it tied into another of Bobby's books called Evil Ways, not sure which one to read first I thought I would take a punt and sent Bobby a message via Facebook asking that very question. To my surprise he came back almost immediately with the answer, that they both sit in the same world so although one was written before the other it didn't matter which one you read. Adding that he thought it was a good question so could he use it on his blog quoting me if he needed too, I was blown away by the fact he had not only come back to me but had asked my permission to use my question on his blog. It was the first ever interaction I had with Bobby and it was one that has always stuck with me, I would however discover over the following years communication with his fans is something that Bobby excels at.

Over the years I had many more online, text and email conversations with Bobby which included an interview on this blog about him, his work and how he gets his ideas. In 2015 I was lucky enough to visit a convention in Atlanta and meet up with Bobby, I was a little nervous but my nerves soon went when we met as I found Booby to be the same wonderful friendly, warm human-being he was during or online conversations. 

Now i know that it takes more than being a nice person to be a good writer and to sell books, which is where Bobby excels because he is both. And that is just not my opinion because Bobby is an award wining writer on more than one occasion, and you do not get to be award winning unless your good at what you do. 

I could list all the books and comics that Bobby has written, but I think its more fun clicking on to his links to see his work and believe me there is a vast plethora of work to view. Check his web page, his Amazon page and subscribe to his newsletter Nash News for all the latest news, and if you like what you see try one of his books if you see something that you like. I once encouraged a work colleague to buy one of Bobby's books saying if she didn't enjoy it I would give her her money back, she has never asked me for a penny.

BEN Books

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Day 1 Rome

Not the perfect start we were hoping for, our hotel says it has a problem so we cannot stay there tonight.  I suspect they have overbooked and don't want to tell us, we have been moved into a hotel across the road which is of a very good standard. We have to stay there for one night before being moved back to our original hotel, we have been assured that all our bags will be moved for us and we will be upgraded for our troubles. It's not a major inconvenience but it does mean we cannot unpack until tomorrow, which is a bit of a pain. We are currently in the Domus Romana, and as I said it's  an hotel as good as the one we should be in.
On the plus side we visited the Trevi Fountain, had our first pizza and gelato, walked miles and had a few beers not a bad first day.

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

Back at last

To anyone who read my blog or even looked forward to reading it, (that last sentence may be a stretch) I apologise for my absence over the last seven months.

There has been varying reasons for my absence but in truth the biggest one is I just needed to get my shit together, yes I have had a few health issues but I needed to get myself out of a rut and get back to doing stuff I love again. Not that I haven't been doing stuff I love I just haven't been sharing and shouting about like I used too, well that changes from today and over the coming weeks, months and year I am going to be talking (writing) about all the geeky things I love again.

So hold on to your hats as I share with you the comics you should be reading, TV & films you should be watching and podcasts you should be listening too. Along with any other odd item I decide to throw in, so to anyone that has been waiting with bated breath for my next post (again a stretch) thank you and as Austin Powers once said.


Monday, 26 September 2016

Flintlock #1 An Adventure in the 18th Century (Time Bomb Comics)

Flintlock is the creation of writer and driving force behind Time Bomb comics Steve Tanner, and was brought to life in a Kickstarter campaign earlier this year. Since then Steve has been tirelessly promoting Flitlock around the convention circuit, and having a high degree of success doing so from what I read. Flintlock is an anthology book featuring there independent original story's, that are set within the same time period and presumably the same universe.

Lady Flintlock: art from Anthony Summey, is the first of the strong female characters that dominate this book. The story perfectly highlights the hypocrisy of the rich aristocracy, as their motives to capture the highwayman that has become a thorn in their side. Is shown to be motivated by personal greed rather than public justice, while the highwayman's motives are implied but not fully revealed in this first issue.

Shanti, Pirate Queen: art by Lorenzo Nicoletta gives us the second heroine of the book, who literally runs a tight ship and is not a lady to be messed with or challenged. As she clearly shows as she takes on a slave trader although her motives are not as benevolent as first may seem, and the ending of the story shows she is defiantly not someone who you would want to disappoint

Clockwork Cavalier art by Ed Machiavello takes the book in a steampunk direction as the cavalier fights his way through the criminal element of the day, in a story told through the eyes of two young kids who are at the crossroads of their life.

Although the story's are totally different regarding there environment and characters, the tone and feel that this is one universe has been brilliantly crafted by writer Steve Tanner. The black & white art throughout the book is also a plus as I feel that adding colour, would only dilute the grim and gritty period feel you get from each story. Which brings me to the art work which is excellent across all 3 story's, you can see that a great deal of research has been done to ensure that the time period is depicted as accurately as possible. The different art styles blend together really well, and are not jarring as they sometimes can be in anthology books. Which is as much as a credit the the artists themselves, as it is to the creative team who hired them and put them together

I was a big fan of Stevens work before Flintlock came out having meet him and his wonderful family at a convention a few years back, his work was good then but Flintlock takes his work to a whole new level of excellence. And I dont regret for one minute supporting his kickstarter when it was announced, and I am now eagerly awaiting the release of the next book in the series.

Copies of Flintlock and other books are available from the Time Bomb Comics website

Thursday, 4 August 2016

Aquaman 3


Aquaman continues his quest to build trust between the people of the land, (us then) and the people of the sea the Atlanteans.  Unfortunately for Aquaman this is not an easy task given that Atlantis attacked several city's drowning thousands of people, in the Throne of Atlantis story line that featured in the early days of DC's new 52 (what ever happened to that bright new dawn for DC).
However undeterred by mistrust on both side Aquaman has built an Atlantean embassy  to help build bridges, unfortunately last issue it was destroyed by Black Manta leaving his dreams seemingly in tatters.

Despite this Aquaman is determined to rebuild his embassy and his dream of peaceful coexistence, a dream that is given a blow when he is told his embassy status has been revoked and he no longer has access to his embasy. So it a trip to Washington to speak with the president to try and resolve the situation, but not before he has had a chance to say a proper good morning to his future wife Mera (her words not mine).

So its off to Washington where they both turn up at the White House and ask to speak to the President, now if I had known you could get into the Whitehouse by tuning up in costume I would have given it a go when we visited. A tense meeting  at the Whitehouse between Aquaman, Mera and the Chief of Staff goes from bad to worse, when Aquaman becomes the focal point of blame when an Atlantean splinter group sinks a US ship at sea. This leads to a final panel that seems a little out of sorts for me, given Aquaman is a Justice League member and a visiting king with his queen would he really be treated this way?

Interspersed in the Aquman story is Black Mantas prison van breakout by a new character (to me anyway) of Black Jack, now she looks an interesting character but given she's dressed in black leather and has an electronic eye. I'm guessing she is someone who cannot be fully trusted, a feeling that Black Manta apparently shares with me as he tries to fight his way through her henchmen. Before doing what all villains and heroes do eventually and actually listen to what the other person to say, and given that they both have a common interest an alliance of sorts is agreed for now.

The Aquaman book suffered a little during its new 52 run but its had a solid start so far during Rebirth, but for me this is the weakest issue of the rebirth run so far. Having said that its still not a bad read, and writer Dan Abnett is doing a good job writing a more thoughtful and diplomatic Aquaman. Philippe Briones has the artwork duty on this issue and it is simply gorgeous and worth the price of the book alone, his attention to detail is exceptional and the book is well worth several look troughs just for the artwork alone.

As I wrote earlier Aquaman Rebirth has been a solid read and is certainly a step up from its run in the new 52, it hasn't reached the heights of Geoff Johns run yet but given time it looks like it could get there.