Saturday, August 25, 2018

Retro Review: X-Patrol #1 (1996) Review and **SPOILERS**

The X is for X-TREEM!

Writers: Karl & Barbara Kesel 
Penciller: Roger Cruz 
Inker: Jon Holdredge 
Lettering: Richard Starkings and Comicraft 
Colorist: Tom Vincent 
Editor: Jaye Gardner 
Chief: Bob Harras 
Cover Price: $1.95 
Cover Date: April 1996 
Publisher: Amalgam Comics


Legend has it that someone at Marvel stole the idea for the X-Men from Arnold Drake and Bruno Premiani’s Doom Patrol, which debuted three months earlier in 1963. While the similarities are glaring: a team of super-powered weirdos hated by the world, led by a creep in a wheelchair, the differences are even more stark. But why split hairs when we can smoosh the two teams together and see how they’d operate as a freakish combo! Find out in my review for X-Patrol #1 from 1996, right here!

Weird Science DC Comics Best Books of the Week 8/22/18

As you are about to see, this may have been one of the most positive weeks we've had here at the Weird Science studios in a long, long time!  It's so nice to enjoy reading comics, am I right?!?  So, here are our picks of Best Books of the Week...

Friday, August 24, 2018

Top 5 Fridays: Top Five New Amalgam Characters We Would Love To See

Yea, I think it's a safe bet that we won't be seeing any new Amalgam books in the near future...or ever.  It's a shame because they are so much fun and I think that people would go nuts for them.  Well, I am not going to let the fact that it won't happen stop me from coming up with some Amalgam characters and teams I want to see.  If you aren't sure what all this means, you take a character from Marvel and another from DC and mash them together to get a brand new, Amalgam character.  If you have any ideas of your own, put them in the comments below.  this is one of those fun things with no wrong answers...unless Eric gets involved!

Retro Review: Doctor Strangefate #1 (1996)

People are Strange

Written by: Ron Marz
Art by: Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez, Kevin Nowlan, and Matt Hollingsworth
Cover Price: $1.95
Release Date: April 1, 1996
Publisher: Amalgam Comics

It's such a great thing that Amalgam Comics even existed.  The 90's were known for a lot of things...grunge, flannel, East Coast vs West Coast Rap...and in the middle of it all, DC and Marvel actually got along.  They came together to publish under the Amalgam imprint and combined their biggest characters into some crazy insane comics. This book is one of them.  I have to admit, I'm neither a huge Doctor Fate or Doctor Strange fan, but the minute I saw this issue, it jumped out at me as one of the coolest among the bunch.  Well, now that I've read it, do I still feel the same?  Let's find out...

Top 5 Fridays: Top Five DC/Marvel Amalgam Comic Books

Back in the 90s, a crazy thing happened.  DC and Marvel got along to the point where they actually teamed-up for some crazy, kick-ass comics.  For those of you who aren't old enough to remember or for some reason weren't reading comics at the time, DC Versus Marvel was HUGE!  I mean, it was the thing that every comic book fan had been clamoring for and would debate about ad nauseam.  Finally, we would get to see which heroes would win against another property's heroes and then we got pissed because there was no winner between Batman and Captain America.  Anyway, for some fun one-shots, both companies put out comics under the Amalgam Comics banner and featured the combinations of characters from both Marvel and DC.  It was a good time and my boy brain could barely handle the excitement.  So for this installment of Top 5 Fridays, I figured I'd look back and list the Amalgam Comics that made me shake uncontrollably with glee.  Let's check it out and remember the 90's fondly...

Retro Review: JLX #1

Team Work

Written by: Gerard Jones and Mark Waid
Art by: Howard Porter, John Dell, and Chris Eliopoulos
Cover Price: $1.95
Release Date: April 1996

What is better than the Justice League and the X-Men?  A combination of both, of course!  The JLX is the result of the DC/Marvel Amagalm Universe and one of the best concepts ever.  I know I keep saying this in these retro reviews, but we all need a bit of this Amalgam action to return right here and now!  I would line up just to throw all my money at it and I can't be the only one.  Enough of Captain Obvious, though, let's get on with the review...

Retro Review: Legends of the Dark Claw #1 (1996) Review and **SPOILERS**

I’m the Best There Is at What I Do, and What I Do is Talk Constantly

Writer: Larry Hama 
Penciller: Jim Balent 
Inker: Ray McCarthy 
Colorist: Pat Garrahy 
Letterer: Bill Oakley 
Associate Editor: Jordan B. Gorfinkel 
Editor: Denny O’Neil 
Cover Price: $1.95 
On Sale Date: April 1996 
Publisher: Amalgam Comics


Hey kids! Have you ever wondered what would happen if Batman and Wolverine had a baby? No? What if they were genetically-spliced into some kind of…amalgamation of the two characters? In 1996, Marvel and DC Comics attempted to answer that question with a series of comics under the Amalgam banner, and one of those comics was Legends of the Dark Claw #1! And I review it, right here!

Retro Review: Spider-Boy #1 (1996) Review and **SPOILERS**

Proof of Concept

Writer/Co-Inker: Karl Kesel 
Penciller: Mike Wieringo 
Co-Inker: Gary Martin 
Colorist: Joe Rosas 
Letterer: Bill Oakley 
Assistant: Glenn Greenberg 
Editor: Tom Brevoort 
Chief: Bob Harras 
Cover Price: $1.95 
Cover Date: April 1996 
Publisher: Amalgam Comics


Oh boy! Here’s an…amalgamation of two great characters at great points in their respective histories! This iteration of Superboy, which was written by Kesel, where he wears the leather jacket and acts as rad is a personal favorite, and this post-Clone Wars period of Spider-Man drawn by Wieringo was a real treat. So this should be the perfect blend of comic book characters at the best points in their careers, right? Right?? Let’s find out in my review of Spider-Boy #1 from 1996, which you can read below!

Retro Review: Lobo the Duck #1 (1997)

Duck and Roll (a Cigar)

Written by: Al Grant
Art by: Val Semeiks and Francesco Ponzi
Cover Price: $1.95
Release Date: June 1, 1997
Publisher: Amalgam Comics

This week I bring you my review of Lobo the Duck #1.  Amalgam Comics was a shared imprint of Marvel and DC which they used to combine some of their most popular characters into one crazy ass character. Some of the cooler ones were the Batman/Wolverine combination, Dark Claw, and the Iron Man/Green Lantern amalgam, Iron Lantern.  However, none of them jump off the page at me like the book I'm reviewing here.  I like Lobo enough and while I never got into Howard the Duck (yes, I did see the movie, but never read the comic), the combination of the two somehow turns this into a must read in my opinion.  Now that I've read it, is it still on the top of my list of Amalgam books?  Let's find out...

Retro Review: Bruce Wayne: Agent of Shield #1 (1996)

Double Agent

Written by: Chuck Dixon
Art by: Cary Nord, Mark Pennington, Steve Buccellato
Cover Price: $1.95
Release Date: April 1, 1996

The Amalgam comics are such a cool concept especially nowadays when the idea of them ever happening again seem like a pipe dream.  Just imagine if DC and Marvel could join up again for things like just makes too much sense and unfortunately, those are the sort of things that always seem to got tossed aside.  Well, we still have the issues from 1996 to reread, and that's just what I did for this retro review.  Here goes...

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Chris and Reggie's Cosmic Treadmill ep. 103 - Marvel Comics' Age of Apocalypse, Part Four! (1995)

Gimme Dat M'Kraan

Greetings, and welcome back to the bleak nightmare that is our near future! In this episode, blink watchers Chris (@AceComics) and Reggie (@reggiereggie) delve back into the alternate present that is Marvel Comics' Age of Apocalypse event, running through the X-Men line of books in 1995! Our Sliders wrap up Gambit and the X-Ternals, X-Calibre, X-Man, and Amazing X-Men, with special attention to Amazing X-Men #4 by Fabian Nicieza and Andy Kubert! We're all set up for the grand finale, folks, so you don't want to miss a moment of this future that (hopefully) will never be!

Throwback Thursday Reviews: Justice League Dark #22 (2013)

The Phantom Psycho

Writer: Jeff Lemire
Artist: Mikel Janin
Publisher: DC Comics
Release Date: July 24, 2013
Cover Price: $3.99

Alright, part 3! We see that Madame Xanadu is still alive after the explosion at her place, by Plastique. Madame Xanadu is strapped to a chair with her eyes blindfolded. She is in the presence of the Outsider. He explains that she had to be taken off the board because of her ability to see the future. He goes on to say that there are so many pieces playing on the board that by the time the heroes have figured it out, he will already have won. Meanwhile, at A.R.G.U.S. HQ Firestorm has successfully created Kryptonite, and the rest of the team looks over Dr. Light's body trying to figure out if some outside factor made Superman kill him. Enter the Phantom Stranger.

Throwback Thursday Reviews: Forever Evil #1 (2013)

Oh, Shit just got real!  Real Evil

Writer: Geoff Johns
Artist: Richard Friend, David Finch
Publisher: DC Comics
Release Date: September 4, 2013
Cover Price: $3.99

We open up this issue with Lex Luthor, flying around Metropolis with the owner of Kord Industries. Thomas Kord?  Where the hell is Ted?  Anyway, Lex wants to buy Kord Industries but Thomas has no plans for that.  Lex gives him another offer, which includes killing Thomas, getting his son hooked on smack, getting his wife to fall in love, and then have the man she fell in love with leave her the day that her son overdoses.  Now that's some good Lex.  But all at once a blur surges throughout metropolis knocking out all electronics.  The helicopter goes down and crashes on the side of LexCorp.  Lex crawls into an office away from the helicopter and sees a man fly in wearing a cape.  Superman?  Oh, he wishes.  Ultra Man comes in breaking into a vault and finding the one thing he came there for.  Kryptonite.  Ultra Man crushes up the rock, and then heat visions it into a vapor and inhales it.  Afterward claiming he is the strongest once again.

Throwback Thursday Reviews: Convergence: Batman and the Outsiders #2 (2015)

Character Wanted

Written by: Marc Andreyko
Art by: Carlos D'Anda and Gabe Eltaeb
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: May 20, 2015

I loved the first issue of Batman and the Outsiders because...I loved the Outsiders.  How could you not?  They were so great and Marc Andreyko did such an outstanding job of introducing them that I instantly fell in love with every member, except maybe Halo.  She was in a coma for most of the issue.  Of course, it wouldn't have been a Convergence tie-in without the Dome going down and the villain is introduced.  That did happen and it set up a battle with OMAC.  Yes, the One Man Army Corps is in the house and ready to cause trouble.

Throwback Thursday Reviews: Convergence: Batman and the Outsiders #1 (2015)

Things are Rough all Over

Written by: Marc Andreyko
Art by: Carlos D'Anda and Gabe Eltaeb
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: April 22, 2015

I do not have a lot of history with The Outsiders.  That's actually a lie...I have none.  In fact, I really only have prior knowledge of two of the team members, Black Lightning and Katana.  I know Batman, of course, so going into this book, I was a little worried about knowing what the hell was going on.  Thankfully, I do have a history with Marc Andreyko and had full faith that he would guide me into the world of the Outsiders with graceful ease.  I also did a little bit of homework, just in case. I read the two-page "catch-up" in the back of the book first and then scoured the interwebs and read a couple of write-ups about the team and their prior adventures.  I know that nobody likes homework, but the little bit I did paid off.  Andreyko doesn't hold threader'srs hand, but even with a little knowledge (it is power, you know!), you'll hit the ground running.  Does this issue make it worth the effort?  Hells Yea!

Retro Review: Superman’s Girl Friend Lois Lane #18 (1960) Review and **SPOILERS**

One Android’s as Good as Another

Cover Artists: Curt Swan, Stan Kaye 
Edited By: Mort Weisinger 
Cover Price: 10 cents 
Release Date: July 1960


“Lois Lane! Lois Lane! We want Lois Lane!” Gah! Ever since Bendis shoved her into a refrigerator or whatever, all I hear every day is how much people want Lois Lane. You want some Lois? Fine! Here’s a whole comic book full of Lois Lane, and she even gets to share the series title with Superman! How’s that for generous? My generosity continues in my review of Superman’s Girl Friend Lois Lane #18 from 1960, which is right here!

DC Comics Best Covers of the Week August 22, 2018

"Covers" By Ice-T

Covers, covers, covers,
Covers, covers, covers,
Covers, covers, covers,
Covers, covers
I am a nightmare readin', funny book fiendin'
King of the comic shop, four-color bleedin'
Living life like Wolverine, quick is my fuse
But I'd still rather smoke cigars and drink brews
DC or Marvel, Dark Horse or Image, no difference
'Cause you can see their covers for zero cents
On the rack, comic covers don't die...they multiply
Covers, covers, covers

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Retro Review: Batman and The Outsiders #1 (1983)

Karate Chop!

Written by: Mike W. Barr
Art by: Jim Aparo and Adrienne Roy
Cover Price: $0.60
Release Date: August 1, 1983

Before I get into the issue itself and it's "heroes for our troubled age", I have to comment on the cover for this issue. Just look at it. It's awesome. I don't know what I loved more...Batman calling the Justice League "Two-Bit" or Flash's stunned look. Actually, it was the two-bit part. Boy, I love covers with word bubbles.

Batman Beyond #23 Review

The Demonic Duo

Written By: Dan Jurgens
Art By: Will Conrad, Davis Baron, Travis Lanham
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: August 22, 2018

We're back to our Scarecrow arc where the last issue I really found myself having a good time for the first time........... Well, in a long time.  I really hope that continues with this issue, especially now that Matt McGinnis has become the Robin Beyond and has joined his brother in battle.  The only problem........ They're battling all of Neo Gotham, who sees our heroes has demonic monsters that need to be killed.  Let's jump into this issue and see how it stacks up.  Let's check it out.

Teen Titans #21 Review and **SPOILERS**

Gizmo is the Bomb!

Writer: Adam Glass
Artist: Bernard Chang
Colorist: Marcelo Maiolo
Letterer: Rob Leigh
Cover Price: $3.99
On Sale Date: August 22, 2018

Holy smokes... an issue of Teen Titans, and I'm actually excited to check it out!  Let's just hope Wallace left his smartphone in his other costume!

Batman: Kings of Fear #1 Review

Healing Factor

Writer: Scott Peterson
Artist: Kelley Jones
Release Date: August 22, 2018
Cover Price: $3.99

When this book was announced, I wasn't sure I was going to review it.  I am a lazy man, you see.  However, since I've been down on Tom King's Batman run, I figured, what the heck!  Things worked out nice for me reviewing White Knight!  So, here goes...

Wonder Woman #53 Review

Shot Through the Heart...

Writer: Steve Orlando
Artist: Aco, David Lorenzo, Hugo Petrus, Romulo Fajardo Jr, and Saida Temofonte
Release Date: August 22, 2018
Cover Price: $3.99

Oh Steve Orlando, we meet again.  When Justice League of America ended, I thought our little dance had finally come to pass, but here we are again.  I'll let you lead as usual, but please, watch the toes.

Detective Comics #987 Review

Blame it on the Pain

Writer: Bryan Hill
Artist: Miguel Mendonca, Diana Egea, Adriano Lucas and Sal Cipriano
Publisher: DC Comics
Release Date: August 22, 2018
Cover Price: $2.99

It's the end of Bryan Hill's mini-run on Detective Comics and I can't be the only one who wishes he was staying.  I've been down on the Bat-books lately and his arrival felt like a shot of adrenaline that got me back up and running.  So, does this issue end it all in kick-ass fashion?  Let's find out...

Damage Annual #1 Review

There Can Only Be One!

Writer: Robert Venditti
Art Team: Aaron Lopresti, Matt Ryan, Hi-Fi
Release Date: August 21, 2018
Cover Price: $4.99

Well, the first New Age of Heroes annual is upon us, one week ahead of schedule, before the actual annuals usually release on the fifth week on the month. Is this a way for DC to get the book some publicity? Is the story so good they couldn't wait to release it? Do we get the answers we've finally been waiting for? Let's jump right into Damage and see what this early surprise has in store.

The Flash #53 Review and *SPOILERS*

Say It Like Schwarzenegger…

Written By: Joshua Williamson
Art By: Christian Duce, Luis Guerrero
Letters By: Steve Wands
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: August 22, 2018

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

The last issue of The Flash seemed to be a bit heavy-handed with a set-up which may have turned some people off to it. However, whether you liked it or not, we are not going to be dealing with that anymore as we have been left off in the middle of a major plot point. This issue should be all about progressing the stories that we have set up in the previous issue. I really like what’s going on with Trickster and The Flash’s new relationship with Commander Cold. There’s a lot about this series that I like right now and I’m excited to see where this issue takes us. Let’s just jump right in and see where things go.

Suicide Squad Annual #1 Review and **SPOILERS**

The Ghosts You Know

Writer: Cullen Bunn 
Artist: Ronan Cliquet 
Colors: Jason Wright 
Letters: Pat Brosseau 
Cover: Paul Pelletier, Mick Gray, and Hi-Fi 
Assistant Editor: Andrea Shea 
Editors: Katie Kubert and Mike Cotton 
Group Editor: Brian Cunningham 
Cover Price: $4.99 
On Sale Date: August 22, 2018


What the…? I didn’t know this was coming. Not like I checked beforehand but…hey! Another issue of Suicide Squad, and with a different writer than normal! That’s something to get curious about. You can satisfy yours by reading my review of Suicide Squad Annual #1, following now!

Mother Panic: Gotham A.D. #6 Review and **SPOILERS**

See ya later, Animals!

Written By: Jody Houser
Interiors Drawn By: Ibrahim Mustafa
Interiors Colored By: Jordan Boyd
Lettered By: John Workman
Cover By: Tommy Lee Edwards
Edited By: Molly Mahan
Executive Editor: Mark Doyle
Cover Price: $3.99
On Sale Date: August 22, 2018

Regardless of the recent note in the back of the Young Animal books penned by the imprint's "curator" Gerard Way, I still feel like we're "turning out the lights" on the little pop-up with this very review.  Maybe we'll be seeing it again come 2019... but, lemme tell ya, I wouldn't start putting my four-dollar bills aside just yet.

Mother Panic has been the surprise MVP during this "season", and is definitely the only book from the run that I will miss.

Let's get to it.