Comic of the Week: Die #6 is the next chapter in one of the best new series in recent memory

By d. emerson eddy — Die was easily one of the best new series to begin late last year. The series taps into the magic and wonder of roleplaying games, both in terms of the mechanics and experience of playing them, as well as the limitless imagination that goes into constructing them. The world-building that writer Kieron Gillen and artist Stephanie Hans have put into creating this world is practically incomparable to anything else. It's deep, incorporating influences from fantasy and literature, which shows even further in the actual working pen & paper RPG that Gillen is developing to compliment the comic.

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Comic of the Week: Knights Temporal #1 is another strong book from AfterShock

By d. emerson eddy — For awhile now, AfterShock Comics has been amassing a very solid library of vastly-diverse high-quality genre comics including horror, fantasy, adventure, thriller, science fiction, and more. The strength of the publisher's catalogue is incredible, and it just keeps growing. Contributing to that catalogue in a number of ways has been Cullen Bunn, who with his collaborators, has given us Unholy Grail, Brothers Dracul, and Dark Ark. Each kind of recontextualizing history and folklore into stories somewhat at the periphery of horror, and in the first two a gritty adventure sensibility similar to something like Conan. Knights Temporal #1 shares some of that sensibility, but feels wholly original.

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Comic of the Week: Justice League Dark #13 is a great microcosm of what makes this series work

By d. emerson eddy — Spinning out of the Justice League: No Justice weekly series and event last summer that redefined crucial elements of the DC Universe's cosmogony and fundamental forces, Justice League Dark has for the past year or so explored DC’s magical corners. Sometimes delicately, sometimes with a giant hammer smashing it to bits in order to forge something new. The series has wonderfully been navigating the connective tissue of the characters filling out DC's “sophisticated suspense” of '80s, the Shadowpact explorations of the '00s, and the weirdness beyond, while building upon a new foundation for whatever comes next. Justice League Dark #13 does…

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Comic of the Week: Why Collapser #1 is a perfect offbeat addition to Young Animal

By d. emerson eddy — Collapser #1 is the second of a new wave of comics from DC's Young Animal, presenting more weird and unique approaches to superheroes. The series introduces us to Liam James, a young man going through a kind of coming-of-age as he tries to find himself, caught between working as a retirement home attendant and a late night DJ trying to make it big. The plot begins when Liam stumbles into weirdness inherited from his mother. It appears to be removed from the standard DC Universe, but there's still a lot to be revealed in this series.

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Comic of the Week: Critical Role: Vox Machina Origins – Series II #1...phew!

By d. emerson eddy —  Critical Role could be considered a kind of cultural phenomenon in mainstream appeal of Dungeons & Dragons, helping bring interest and entertainment to the game, both to playing and to watching others, all through the adventures of a group of “nerdy-ass voice actors” every Thursday night. Critial Role started small with a stream on Geek & Sundry's Twitch channel and has now ballooned into a multimedia juggernaut, a growing company with numerous productions, its own merchandise, and one of the largest crowdfunding campaigns to finance an animated series (it was originally just a special and then ballooned with donations and stretch goals) based on the characters from its first campaign. Critical Role also had a comic series in 2017 that served as an introduction to the characters and a gathering of the team.

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Comic of the Week: No One Left to Fight #1 asks, what happens after the big battle?

By d. emerson eddy — There's been an interesting resurgence of stories recently that endeavor to tell the story of what happens after the happily ever after (or the opposite) at the end of a tale. Basically, filling in the what's next after the end of a story. Not as a sequel or a deconstructionist take on a particularly genre, but an attempt to explore what happens once the big fight, the big world-saving struggle, is over and there's seemingly a jarring absence of purpose. No One Left to Fight #1 embraces that literally in its title, as we're treated to the beginning of the story of what happens when a hero who has saved the world countless times realizes that there's no one left to fight.

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Comic of the Week: Canto #1 is offbeat, thought-provoking, heartrending, and more

By d. emerson eddy — In the past few years, we as readers have become absolute gluttons for unique, personal stories told in comics that come at storytelling from oblique angles, presenting things that are offbeat, thought-provoking, and often heartrending. Stories that embrace the limitless possibilities of comics and tell something new. Canto is one of these stories, catching me off guard with its simplicity and beauty. It's a fable in the vein of Edward Scissorhands or 9, of potential constructs proving that they're more than the sum of their parts.

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Comic of the Week: Hellboy and the BPRD - The Beast of Vargu is a new beginning

By d. emerson eddy — Hellboy and the BPRD: The Beast of Vargu is kind of a new beginning for the title. It does not follow the previous yearly format, and it is not the expected “#26 in a series”, as it essentially becomes the new heart of the Hellboy universe since BPRD itself has now finished. And it does so with the creative team responsible for some of my personal favorite Hellboy stories in the Wild Hunt Arthurian trilogy and The Midnight Circus. It's an interesting and welcome choice to start off this new era with a one-shot tale from Mike Mignola, Duncan Fegredo, Dave Stewart, and Clem Robins, offering an easily accessible tale for new…

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Comic of the Week: Event Leviathan #1, a gateway to an intriguing superhero espionage story

By d. emerson eddy — The “Leviathan” crossover has been building at DC Comics for a while now, starting with the “Leviathan Rising” storyline in Action Comics and then coming to a head two weeks ago in the Superman: Leviathan Rising Special. We've seen the intelligence community in the DC Universe shaken to its core, with entire organizations obliterated, seemingly, by Leviathan. Even that organization itself has seen a kind of upheaval, as Talia al Ghul no longer seems to be its head, and a new unknown character calling himself (or herself, who knows?) “Leviathan” has taken over the reins. To what end no one knows yet.

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Comic of the Week: Thumbs is a brilliant level up by the creators of The Few

By d. emerson eddy — These days it feels like practically everyone is a gamer. Whether it's on a console, PC, or mobile device , we all seem to be playing something. Even businesses have apparently been working in a gamification process for workplace activities, if reports on Amazon practices are to be believed. Indeed, the widespread popularity and acceptance of gaming seems to have permeated Western culture, with all eyes turned to coverage of announcement conventions like E3 and what feels like every kid on the planet playing games like Fortnite, Overwatch, Team Fortress 2, Playerunknown's Battlegrounds, and old stalwarts like Call of Duty and Battlefield.

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