Tag Archives: dark horse comics

[Words and Pictures] Conan: Queen of the Black Coast

We’ve arrived at what’s going to be the last of these columns for a while, quite possibly for good. But we’ll get to the signing off bit at the end. First, a comic that feels kind of fitting as a coda to this whole rambling discourse about the medium.

Why fitting? Partly because it’s heroic fantasy – Conan, THE heroic fantasy some might say – and that’s a sub-genre my own prose writing has often ventured into, so it feels kind of right that I finally get around to talking about it in this here column.  Oddly, compared to horror or science fiction at least, secondary world fantasy in general is a speculative genre that hasn’t acquired really hefty traction in the comics medium.  The reasons for that aren’t entirely obvious to me, but in any case Conan is an exception, having a loooong list of comics in his history.  This volume of which we speak today is the first in a continuing run by writer Brian Wood, paired with a succession of interesting artists.

More importantly, it’s fitting because this is an adaptation of a story about a character who has been the subject (victim might be more apt) of several adaptations in the film medium. It therefore gives me a chance to parade my pro-comics bias by insisting that this is a better and more interesting adaptation than any Conan movie has been.
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Words and Pictures: B.P.R.D. Plague of Frogs

Generally speaking, the physicality of comics is quite a big deal to me.  I don’t get the same satisfaction from reading this stuff digitally as I do from the paper and ink version.  To be honest, if money was no object I’d be reading all my favourite series in hardback, since a hardback collection or graphic novel that’s had care and consideration lavished upon its production is one of (my) life’s minor delights.

Alas, money is an object, so my collection of hardbacks is strictly limited.  The most satisfyingly chunky and heavy of all are the four volumes of B.P.R.D. Plague of Frogs.  You could kill a decent-sized rat with one of these things.  Possibly even a small dog.  You can get the story in other more modest formats but I happened to get the first volume in hardback, and couldn’t bring myself to switch thereafter.  (Hang-ups about format continuity = sign of slightly nerdy fanhood, I suspect).

Fortunately, I’ve not regretted that choice, since it’s been a very entertaining and interesting fictional journey.

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COMIC BOOK REVIEW: Star Wars #1 by Brian Wood and Carlos D’Anda

REVIEW SUMMARY: The first issue of Dark Horse Comics latest Star Wars offering, returning to the characters from the original film.

MY RATING:

BRIEF SYNOPSIS: Shortly after the battle at Yavin IV, both the rebellion and the empire struggle to recover from their losses and make headway in their campaigns. A rebel scouting party is ambushed, leading to the conclusion that something threatens the rebellion from within.

MY REVIEW:
PROS: An interesting glimpse at our heroes, and some great scenes communicating just what a galactic rebellion entails.
CONS: Uneven pacing, with a lot of soul-searching and catch-up information interrupting the narrative and sapping the story of momentum. By issue’s end the story has barely started. It fails to feel like a continuation of the movie.
BOTTOM LINE: An imperfect first issue showing hints of promise, but its too early to judge. Not quite up to the standards Dark Horse has maintained with the property.

Warning: spoilers ahead.
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VIDEO: Dark Horse Comics Presents Age of Reptiles: Tribal Warfare

Dark Horse Comics and Geek and Sundry keep pumping out some pretty cool motion comics.  I like these more than the ones I’ve seen from Marvel in the past (Iron Man Extremis or SPIDER-WOMAN: Agent of S.W.O.R.D.) – I think the animation style is just better.

Today, we have Dinosaur Porn-er, I mean, Age of Reptiles: Tribal Warfare.

About Age of Reptiles: Tribal Warfare:

From Ricardo Delgado–a prolific development and storyboard artist who has worked on such hit films as Men in Black, The Incredibles, WALL-E, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, and the Matrix series– an epic tale about the most unlikely cast of characters: dinosaurs. Since that first foray into the world of sequential art–which earned him an Eisner win for Talent Deserving of Wider Recognition–he has returned to his critically acclaimed Age of Reptiles again and again, each time crafting a captivating saga about his saurian subjects.

Check it out after the jump!

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VIDEO: Dark Horse Comics Presents The Massive: Part 1

Another stellar motion comic from Dark Horse and Geek and Sundry.  This is the beginning of a new multi-part adaptation of The Massive from Brian Wood (Channel Zero, Generation X, DMZ, Local).

About The Massive:

What does it mean to be an environmentalist after the world’s already ended? In The Massive, Callum Israel—leader of the Ninth Wave oceanic activist group—asks himself this question everyday, a question that cuts to the core of his identity. In a post-war, post-crash, post-disaster, post-everything world, nothing is certain and ideologies are meaningless. But the mission remains: search this crumbling world for answers to the cause of the “crash,” and keep up the hunt for their missing sister ship, the Massive, lost and adrift in the chaos. But, before the crash, the members of the Ninth Wave were defined by different missions, different stories. Stories that united them in a common goal. Stories about the ocean…

Check out Part 1 of The Massive after the jump.

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Dark Horse Comics Presents: The Strain

From director Guillermo del Toro and novelist Chuck Hogan, and based on the Dark Horse comics series The Strain, comes a new motion comic on the Geek and Sundry Youtube channel.

When a Boeing 777 lands at JFK International Airport and goes dark on the runway, the Center for Disease Control, fearing a terrorist attack, calls in Dr. Ephraim Goodweather and his team of expert biological-threat first responders. Only an elderly pawnbroker from Spanish Harlem suspects a darker purpose behind the event–an ancient threat intent on covering mankind in darkness…

Check it out after the jump.  Warnings for mild language and gore.
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Motion Comic: Hellboy: The Fury Part 6

From GeekandSundry and Dark Horse Comics comes a new Motion Comic – Hellboy: The Fury. Continue reading

Motion Comic: Hellboy: The Fury Part 5

From GeekandSundry and Dark Horse Comics comes a new Motion Comic – Hellboy: The Fury. Continue reading

Motion Comic: Hellboy: The Fury Part 4

From GeekandSundry and Dark Horse Comics comes a new Motion Comic – Hellboy: The Fury. Continue reading

Motion Comic: Hellboy: The Fury Part 3

From GeekandSundry and Dark Horse Comics comes a new Motion Comic – Hellboy: The Fury. Continue reading

Motion Comic: Hellboy: The Fury Part 2

From GeekandSundry and Dark Horse Comics comes a new Motion Comic – Hellboy: The Fury. Continue reading

Motion Comic: Hellboy: The Fury Part 1

From GeekandSundry and Dark Horse Comics comes a new Motion Comic – Hellboy: The Fury. Continue reading