Friday, May 25, 2012

Renaldo's Reveiws: Star Wars: Darth Vader #1, Resident Alien #1, Rebel Blood #3, Orchid #7

Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Ghost Prison #1 –

Haden Blackman’s story is pretty sound and the sleek and sumptuous art of Agustin Alessio make for a great read. There’s a lot of promise and fear instilled in the cadets being moulded by Gentis in the name of the Empire. Gentis is charged with ensuring Darth Vader has minions to do Palpatine’s bidding and the story revolves around Tohm, a headstrong lieutenant who has nothing but hate for the Jedi. The story is murky with a hidden sense of subterfuge that takes a wicked spin at the final page.
It also plays on the strength and loyalty to Vader himself while carving out a minnow’s name in a galaxy far too big to be an ant. Tohm is well-placed, precarious, yet steeped in an enticing position when he realizes things may not be what they seem. It’s a book about loyalty and detracts from all the mirth and levity I hated in past Star Wars books. With a fitting ending, it resonates well with anticipation for issue 2. (8/10)

Resident Alien #1 –
An alien is the village doctor and he’s part of an investigation team into a murder in the village. What started off as one killing has the makings of a spate of serial killings. Harry’s the alien in question and before a slew of murders perpetuate, he finds himself harmonizing more and more with the patients and his town on the whole. The story by Peter Hogan and art by Steve Parkhouse tries to encapsulate more and more a tale of mystery but here there’s a monotony that can’t be broken. It gets drab at times at severely uninteresting towards the end. The predicament isn’t a lack of creativity but it’s the book…getting too obvious. I don’t know if the creative team is oblivious to the predictability of the book, but I can’t fathom how they let it get this dreary and dull. (3/10)

Rebel Blood #3 –
This gets pretty scary pretty fast. It’s not one of the common iterations in the world of vampires, zombies and viruses…it has a 28 Days Later feel to it but one that’s a bit more gory and lacking that pretentious horror-genre vibe. It’s a pretty solid tone here with Alex Link’s story and the coarse yet powerful art of Riley Rossmo, clearly establishing himself as pure distinguishment on the horizon. It’s a town gone crazy…gone mad…and the eerie vibe hits home hard for the protagonist as he tries to navigate his town and loved ones before he finds them dead from the ravenous infestation in the streets and in the darkness. Very creepy yet very good stuff! (9/10) – and the ‘Enormous’ Preview from Tim Daniel and Medhi Cheggour looks boss!

Orchid #7 –

This has been one of favourite socio-political reads in quite some time. I felt the joy in this as when I skimmed Watchmen as a kid. Tom Morello continues to flesh out a grand story and with Scott Hepburn’s amazing art and the near-flawless colours of Dan Jackson, things are on par when the grand finale looks set to run its course. Opal and her band of Misfits find themselves face-to-face with their grittiest enemies and the tale of General China takes a nice detour here. It’s a cool plot twist in a book that hinges on a rampaging ferocity and never has a dull moment. While it gets a tad bit predictable and expository at the end, China’s mask definitely should be finding its way now to Orchid…and with a very inquisitive last page, I sense a greater rebellion brewing and a very mouth-watering revolt in the making amid diatribes of weary battle-mongers. There’s a lot of action and a true sense of purpose in this book. I endorse fully! (9/10)

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