Tag Archives: comics to read

Ms. Marvel 2 Review


We were introduced to Kamala Khan, a beautiful 16 year-old teenage girl, in the debut issue of Ms. Marvel.  Kamala is a Muslim who loves comic books.  She is also mouthy, assertive, and appears to stop at nothing to get what she wants.  She even snuck out of the house to attend a party.  In other words, Kamala Khan is a typical teenager in mainstream America.

But we don’t know how much longer all that will last, as Kamala was mysteriously transformed into Ms. Marvel.  So far she knows that she is able to shape-shift, grow, and shrink in size.

In the current issue of Ms. Marvel, Kamala tries to figure out what has happened to her, while at the same time trying to learn what her superpowers are, and how to use them.  But the most important question is, is it meant to be?  Was she purposely chosen to be the new Ms. Marvel?

G. Willow Wilson is the writer of this title, published by Marvel Comics.  Realistic dialogue,  and phenomenal character interactions.  I especially like the distinctive voices of the characters, Kamala’s family most notably.

Here are a couple of pages from the current issue, showcasing sharp dialogue among Kamala’s family.



The creative art time includes Adrian Alphona (artist) and Ian Herring (colors).  Superb art, especially the transformation into Ms. Marvel.  I especially like the distinctive coloring on both Kamala and Ms. Marvel.  Brown skin vs. white, dark hair vs. blonde.  I also liked the panels where Kamala didn’t realize she shape-shifted back to herself, as she snuck back into her home and faced her brother.   Alphona and Herring makes a great visual storytelling team.

To let their work speak for itself, here are a few pages from the current issue of Ms. Marvel.





Ms. Marvel is more than a superhero comic book.  It also focuses on family values.  Kamala is torn between abiding by the principles upon which she was raised, and that of mainstream society.  The comic is centered around a Muslim family, but there are themes in the book that applies to every family, no matter what culture or religion you belong to.

Last Friday at the shopping mall, I met a lady that was standing outside the library handing out literature.  She greeted me with a smile and asked if I was interested in some reading.  She pointed inside the library, and I saw a small group of women sitting at a table with pamphlets and books.  The lady said they were trying to get out and meet people, and talk to them, because a lot of people don’t know who they are, and what they are about.  They were Muslims.

I said, “You may find it funny, because a lot of people do when they find out, but I read comic books.”  She laughed, leaned forward and said, “I have a secret too!”  She told me what she reads and we burst with loud laughter.  As soon as I mentioned Ms. Marvel, she said they all knew about the book, but didn’t know that it was already out.

I told her that I had been curious since I started reading Ms. Marvel, and wanted to learn more about Muslims in hopes of me getting a better understanding of the story.  I then started telling her about the comic.  She was very excited and asked where she could find a comic book shop.  I told her the locations of the two that are in the area, but I could tell she wasn’t familiar with the streets.  She asked if she could buy it online and read it, because she really wanted to read the book.

I also mentioned a physician that I work with, who’s from Pakistan.  I told her we occasionally discuss world issues.  He will mention what the Quran says, then ask me what the Bible says.  She asked his name and immediately knew who I was speaking about!

She invited me invited me inside the library to meet the other ladies.  She told them that I read the comic, and mentioned my co-worker.  They were all very friendly and said the Muslim community knew about the comic, and they wanted to read it.  I told them I wouldn’t be able to make it to their informational meeting later on, so they let me grab whatever handouts I wanted from the table, including a copy of the English translated Quran.

When I picked my son up from school a few minutes later, we went to the nearest comic shop to look for Ms. Marvel.  We found a copy of the first issue, second print.  I purchased the book, and took it to the group at the mall.  The lady I met and spoke with first wasn’t there.  It was a different group.  But they were already aware of me, and said they would make sure that she read the book first.

By the way, the comic was placed into a Free Comic Book Day bag.  Hopefully that bag will attract new comic book readers!

I have another physician co-worker that is from Yemen.  He purchased a home last summer in a high-demand area.  He was outside building a retaining wall, when he sensed that he was being watched.  Sure enough, he turned and saw his next-door-neighbors staring at him from their fence.

He immediately walked over to the fence, smiled, stuck out his hand for a handshake, and introduced himself.  He killed the heck out of them with kindness.  That quickly ended all the staring and whispering.

When you ask people what they wish for, a lot of them always say world peace.  It’s not difficult to achieve world peace.  We have to be at peace with ourselves first, then be at peace with our neighbors.

I am definitely going to continue reading this awesome new title.  If you are looking for new comics to read, I strongly suggest Ms. Marvel.

Verdict (drum roll please)

There is no doubt that this issue gets 5/5 stars.

Top 6 New Comics You Should Be Reading

Before you say it, yes I know that 6 is an odd number for a list.  We are used to Top 100, Top 10, or maybe even Top 5.  But as you can see, I don’t always follow that pattern.  If you’ve read my list of best comics of 2013, you’ll see that I only listed 2 comics for best mini-series.

There are so many new comic books on the market right now, that it may be frustrating to new readers as to what comics to read.  Current comic book readers can become irritated as well.

Below is my list of the top 6 new ongoing comic book series everyone should be reading.  Or give them a try, at the least.

6.  The Punisher

Publisher:  Marvel
Writer:  Nathan Edmondson
Artist:  Mitch Gerads

5.  New Warriors

Publisher:  Marvel
Writer:  Christopher Yost
Artist:  Marcus To
Color Artist:  David Curiel

4.  Moon Knight

Publisher:  Marvel
Writer:  Warren Ellis
Artist:  Declan Shalvey
Color Artist:  Jordie Bellaire

3.  Afterlife With Archie

Publisher:  Archie Comics
Writer:  Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa
Artist:  Francesco Francavilla

2.  Loki: Agent of Asgard

Publisher:  Marvel
Writer:  Al Ewing
Artist:  Lee Garbett
Color Artist:  Nolan Woodard

1.  Magneto

Publisher:  Marvel
Writer:  Cullen Bunn
Artist:  Gabriel Hernandez Walta
Color Artist:  Jordie Bellaire

All six of these titles are new, ongoing monthly series.  And they are all worth giving a try.

Mighty Avengers #6 Review


Published by Marvel Comics, Mighty Avengers is a character-driven series.  The series  focuses on the interpersonal relationships of the predominantly minority-led superhero team, led by Luke Cage.

Written by Al Ewing, Mighty Avengers #6 is filled with crisp dialogue, and excellent character interactions.  I especially like the interaction between Luke Cage and Blue Marvel.  I also liked the mishaps of Kenny Driscoll, leading up to Falcon’s intro.

I plan to continue reading the series, especially to learn more about Power Man’s abilities.

The art team consists of Valerio Schiti (artist), Frank D’Armata (colors), Greg Land and D’Armata (cover).  Characters are realistically drawn, and I especially like their facial expressions.  They actually match the dialogue.  I didn’t like Luke Cage’s appearance at first.  I felt he looked too hip-hop.  I didn’t care for the ripped jeans, unlaced shoes, chain loop hanging from his belt, and all those rings on his fingers.  But I didn’t complain much, because I know that just because you dress a certain way, doesn’t mean that you behave in that fashion.  And the Mighty Avengers is a team of intellectual characters.

When I blogged about the debut issue, I stated that Marvel had set this title up for failure.  I still feel that way, but Marvel is not acting alone.  There’s someone else that’s also setting  up Mighty Avengers to fail, its readers.

Supporters of this title need to spread the word about the book.  Get on your blogs, Twitter, Facebook, Tumbler, message boards, and other social media sites and get the word out about this book.  Post about your favorite characters or scenes.  This is a character-driven series.  Talk about their interpersonal relationships.

There is always someone looking for new comics to read, and this is our chance to make sure that this title lands in the hands of those readers.

We all know that Marvel will cancel a title in a split second, so we need to bust our asses and get the word out about this awesome book, before it heads to that damn chopping block.

We also need to make sure that we talk about the creative team.  Al Ewing is a great writer.  We are six issues into the series, but he’s still in the shadows.  That’s because people are so busy complaining about Land, and Monica Rambeau’s hair.

Speaking of message boards, stop posting a bunch of nonsense and talk about your favorite comic books before they get CANCELLED.  I rarely visit message boards.  When I do visit, I don’t always comment because I don’t see any interesting discussions.

That was the case recently.  I went to a message board to interact with other fans about the current issue.  There was nearly 40 pages of discussion about the current issue, but the majority of the posts were in reference to Monica’s new hairstyle.

If you are a poster on message boards, please post something of intelligence about your favorite comic books.  Many site visitors feel compelled to comment, so this is your chance to facilitate a constructive discussion.

I posted a link to my blog post about Monica’s hair, and of course most of the responses I received were sarcastic.  Yes I said to leave Monica alone, and she should be left alone.  Talk about the damn story, not a hairstyle.

Bring Ewing out of the shadows, and put him up on a pedestal.  He’s an excellent writer, and it’s time to spread the word about his work.   Schiti is a great artist, and hell, even Land’s art is not unbearable.

I have supported Mighty Avengers since the first issue, and I will continue to support it.  I am going to tweet, Facebook, Tumblr, and blog about this book until I get tired.  I will take a 5-second break, then continue to tweet, Facebook, Tumblr and blog.

I created my Tumblr account a few weeks ago.  I still don’t know what I’m doing, but at least I know how to publish a post.  That’s one more social media site for me to blast my support for my favorite comic books.

I also discuss comic books at the comic shop.  That’s a great way to interact with the store owners, employees, and customers.

Comic book readers, there are people looking for comics to read.  Not just new readers, but readers looking for a jump-on point.  We can help them out by spreading the word about our favorite comics, especially low-profile titles.

Verdict (drum roll please)

Mighty Avengers is an excellent character-driven book that I strongly recommend.  This issue gets 5/5 stars.

Super Corporate Heroes (Vol. 1): Sticky Fingers Review


The title, Super Corporate Heroes, tells it all.  This hilarious comic, the first of four volumes by indie comic publisher, 7 Robots, Inc., grabbed my attention within the first pages.

In this alternate reality, non-profit superheroes is a thing of the past, thanks to powerful companies and wealthy lobbyists.  Superheroes are now required to have a license, and work for an insurance company.  Superhero, Inc. is a large insurance company, and is the only company registered to legally distribute superhero licenses.

The superheroes work for Superhero, Inc. and they receive a paycheck.  They receive their assignments from the call center dispatchers.

People have to pay to be rescued.  If they don’t have rescue insurance, then they are offered a selection of packages by the rescuing superhero.  And superheroes are required to not perform a rescue if a purchase is not made.

The pages below are from the beginning of this hilarious mini-series.  Sir Shroud has to go over the legalities, before he can rescue a man from a burning building.



The people are able to pay by cash and credit cards.  Personal checks are not accepted.  The superheroes travel with a credit card reader, and they even print receipts.

When people don’t make their insurance payments on-time, they are paid a visit by the insurance collectors, Meerkat and Big Brother.  You are forced to pay one way or another.  In other words, pay or die.


You have to pay even if you don’t use your rescue(s).  You sign a legal contract when purchasing rescue insurance.  Therefore you are bound by its terms.  The man in the picture above, getting tortured by Meerkat, refused to pay because he didn’t use any of his rescues.

The package rates are so high, that you’re probably better off handing your wallet over to a thief.


In the case above, the victim compared the price of rescue insurance to the amount the robber tried to steal from him.  The robber said he only wanted whatever was in the wallet.  Since the amount in the wallet was less than rescue insurance, the guy happily gave the robber his wallet!

I was impressed after reading Super Corporate Heroes (Vol 1): Sticky FingersMiguel Guerra and his better half, Suzy Dias, are the writers of this phenomenal story.  Character interactions are amazing.  Although this is a superhero comedy, dialogue is motivational, strong and realistic.  Guerra and Dias mixed comedy with real-life situations, and produced a great story that will have you laughing, angry, and crying at the same time.

Guerra also provided the visuals.  The panels are drawn to perfection and finely detailed.  Character facial expressions are so life-like, my emotions were sparked several times.  When I look at the cute, but arrogant American Icon (who’s always smiling, by the way) I just want to punch him.  Blue Collar can easily generate sympathy from caring and compassionate females.  He’s hardworking and runs his body to the ground, trying to stay afloat with his finances.  I just want to give him a consoling hug.

If you’re looking for new comics to read, I highly suggest that you jump on this indie comic.  This title focuses heavily on politics, about who gets what in a society.  Discrimination, wage inequality, corporate greed and control, and monopoly are some of the themes in this comic.

Some of my favorite characters are:

  • Wyatt Lewis, aka American Icon.  Known as the World’s Strongest Hero, American Icon is the face of Superhero, Inc.  He also receives the highest pay.  But this pretty boy is also the bad boy of the industry.  Some of his many allegations include rape, assault, public urination, and being drunk in public.  I probably don’t even need to mention the paternity suits.
  • Ms. Titanium.  Beautiful, aggressive.  Stronger than American Icon.  Performs more rescues than American Icon, but gets paid less.  American Icon’s pay is twice that of Ms. Titanium’s.
  • Spinlar.  Part spider, part fly.  Very fast.  Has the super ability of shooting webs from his butt!
  • Jack Clementine, aka Blue Collar.  Divorced father of young children.  Works a lot of overtime to pay attorney fees, alimony and child support.  To make ends meet, he takes any job the company gives him, even performing at kids birthday parties.
  • Thomas Walters.  The original American Icon.  Has been in legal battle with Superhero, Inc. over 15 years.  Claims the company stole his identity and profits without his consent.  Walters never registered to be a licensed superhero, so his superhero identity went past the statute of limitation, and into the public domain.  At least that’s how the defendants see it.

With any superhero story, there has to be a villain.  Invisible Hand is the mastermind behind all the mass chaos.  He’s incredibly wealthy, powerful, controlling, and possess superhuman abilities.

For more information on this title or Guerra and Dias’ other creations, feel free to visit their website at www.7robots.com.

I definitely plan to read the entire series.

VERDICT (drum roll please)

There is no doubt that I strongly recommend this mini-series.  Super Corporate Heroes (Vol 1):  Sticky Fingers gets 5/5 stars.

Marvel Universe Ultimate Spider-Man #22


Even though I am not a fan of Peter Parker, I couldn’t refuse my son’s request, I mean command.  He didn’t ask, he TOLD me that I had to read and review this issue because the Guardians of the Galaxy were in it.

Rocket Raccoon and Sam Alexander, aka Nova, takes off on a dangerous mission.  Peter runs after them, not knowing that he would end up in deep-space to help the Guardians save Earth from Korvac and the Chitauri.

This was a fun issue to read.  Star-Lord, Gamora, Rocket Raccoon, Drax the Destroyer, Groot, Nova, and  Spider-Man.  This is one kick-butt team (this is a comic for kids so I’m watching my language).  By the way, apparently Spider-Man wasn’t aware that no one is allowed to call Rocket a raccoon, and he made that mistake more than once.

The script, adapted by Joe Caramagna, is very entertaining.  Character interactions were lively, and Spider-Man was being himself, talkative and annoying (well at least he is to me).  I’m not surprised by this great story, as I follow Caramagna on Twitter.  His tweets are lively, and I enjoy scrolling past that one subject I know absolutely nothing about, HOCKEY!  I had always known of two hockey teams, Detroit Red Wings, and the now-defunct Flint Generals.  Thanks to Caramagna, I now know of a third team, New Jersey Devils.

I enjoyed this issue of Marvel Universe Ultimate Spider-Man, it’s been on the pulls for my son since day one.  Now that Guardians of the Galaxy has made a special appearance, I need to go through his back issues to see what I’ve missed.

VERDICT (drum roll please)

If you are looking for new comics to read for your children, then I strongly recommend this title.  I am giving this fun comic 5/5 stars.

The Phantom Stranger #15 Review


Forever Evil, DC Comics crossover event, is still going strong.  The Crime Syndicate has claimed world domination, and many lives have been lost.  Forever Evil also has a crossover event, Blight.  An 18-part mini-event, Blight’s titles include Justice League Dark, Trinity of Sin: Phantom Stranger, Constantine, and Trinity of Sin:  Pandora.  We’re almost at the halfway mark, as The Phantom Stranger #15 is part 7 of Blight, a dark and gruesome event that involves the supernatural forces of the DC Universe.

We first saw Blight, composed of the billions of sins and evil of the human race, in Justice League Dark #24.  At that time, humankind’s darkness had formed into a dark, giant serpent.  Now it has taken Christopher Esperanza, a young man who Stranger brought back from the afterlife, as its host.

In order for Blight to fully control its host, it needs to destroy remnants of Chris’s human existence, including his family.  The Phantom Stranger plans to free Chris and save his family, but Stranger’s Divine Presence commands him to join, and support Blight.  Stranger confronts a possessed Chris, just as he was about to bring tragedy to his entire family.  Not able to bear witness to Blight wiping out the human presence of Chris, Stranger disobeyed the Presence for the first time.  But it may be too late.  Chris revealed to Stranger that he chose Blight.  Now they are one and stronger than ever.

Meanwhile, John Constantine makes a hologram of the Sea King, in hopes of learning what terrified him before he died and nearly drove Deadman insane.  By the way, Deadman is in the Sea King’s body.  Nightmare Nurse wants to free Deadman, but Constantine refuses to let her break the spell.

Stranger, who is wounded after his fight with Blight, drops in on Constantine, Nightmare Nurse and Swamp Thing at the House of Mystery.  Nightmare Nurse uses her healing powers to help Stranger.  The story ends with Stranger running through a mirror, with the others, including Sea King (remember Deadman’s trapped inside his body) at his heels.

J.M. DeMatteis is the writer of this chilling series.  Crisp dialogue, and phenomenal character interactions throughout the book.  Although a lot of ground is covered at a rapid face, it’s not hard to follow if you’re keeping up with the crossover.  DeMatteis also did a great job with the set-up for part 8, Constantine #10.

Amazing visuals by Fernando Blanco (artist), Miguel Sepulveda (artist), Brad Anderson (colorist) and Guillem March (cover artist).  Realistic looking characters.  The colors and tones produce the ghastly feel that’s needed to experience the full effects of this book.

I began reading The Phantom Stranger with the Forever Evil Crossover.  I plan to read at least the first arc after the Blight mini-event is finished.  If I like it, then I may have to make some adjustments to my current reading list.  But so far, I am definitely enjoying this title.

VERDICT (drum roll please)

This title is perfect if you’re already reading the crossover.  If you have not yet read this title, then I recommend that you read back issues (before the FE crossover) to get a feel for the Phantom Stranger.  Or start with the new arc once the crossover ends.

Great story with superb art.  I’m giving this issue 5/5 stars.