Space, Why You Gotta Be Like That?: Kaptara, Issue One

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KAPTARA #1 IMAGE COMICS
ARTIST: KAGAN MCLEOD WRITER: CHIP ZDARSKY
COLOR ASSISTS: BECKA KINZIE EDITING: THOMAS K
PRODUCTION: DREW GILL

Despite being three words splashed atop the credits page, I think the above image summarizes the goals of Kaptara rather well. It’s a book with ideas epic enough that they require a welcome, but said welcome is brightly colored, skewered and generally wacky-looking. Image already has its fair share of space-based stories (not even just Saga, which Kaptara advertised itself as the gay version of- there’s also Roche Limit, The Fuse, and Southern Cross, plus some I’m probably forgetting), and Kaptara aims to set itself apart by being a lot more fun. It certainly succeeds on that front, but whether that success is seamless or forced depends on which aspect of the book you’re looking at.

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Feeding Time: ODY-C, Issue Four

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ODY-C #4 IMAGE COMICS
WRITER: MATT FRACTION ARTIST: CHRISTIAN WARD
FLATTER: DEE CUNNIFFE LETTERER: CHRIS ELIOPOULOS

Of all the stories from The Odyssey, its opening tale of Odysseus tricking and escaping from the Cyclops may be the single most famous. It’s a classic story of a clever hero proving himself more intelligent and more powerful than an angry, savage villain. But its level of notoriety means that ODY-C would have to shake things up a bit to create any major surprises, and while writer Matt Fraction has certainly changed up more than just the gender identities of the people involved, it’s Christian Ward’s art that packs the biggest punch.

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“But that one scares the life outta me.”: Saga, Issue Twenty-Seven

Untitled Saga is inherently Hazel’s story, but her age has always meant that the tale always seemed to be just as much about her parents. In that way, it’s somewhat odd that we haven’t seen more flashbacks of their early lives; there’s many a hole to fill in both their backstories. This month’s issue takes a step to remedy that by taking Marko on a trip through his past instigated by tainted Fadeaway, and it’s an amazing distillation of many of Saga‘s most important themes into one short issue. Continue reading

Worth The Blood: Southern Bastards, Issue Eight

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SOUTHERN BASTARDS #8 IMAGE COMICS
ARTIST: JASON LATOUR WRITER: JASON AARON
LETTERER: JARED K. FLETCHER

If I can say one thing about Southern Bastards, it’s that it has developed an incredibly defined atmosphere. Few other books can compare to it in terms of sheer intensity; when you’re in an issue of Southern Bastards, you are in it, deposited in a world richly defined and, more often then not, full of dread. This month’s issue closes the arc that gave us the backstory of the feared Coach Euless Boss, and it’s a brilliantly delivered piece, primarily due to the beautiful artwork of Jason Latour.

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“It’s too late for that now.”: The Woods, Issue Twelve

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(Spoilers!)

The Woods has always been an emotional book. This makes sense: it’s about a group of teenagers going through a long-term traumatic experience, their entire world being shifted on a dramatic level during one of the most stressful times in a person’s life. Being pushed and pulled by otherworldly forces beyond their control doesn’t make things any easier, and it means that The Woods #12 needs to function not just as an ending to the book’s first act, but also as a set piece in the lives of many of its characters. James Tynion IV and Michael Dialynas thankfully deliver, giving us an issue that changes the face of their story massively, not just by changing the course of the plot but by changing the course of the character’s lives. In doing so they ask their readers questions about the characters we’ve followed for the last year- many of which they leave obviously and purposefully ambiguous.

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