Saturday, September 15, 2018

Retro Review: Detective Comics #474 Review (1977) - "The Deadshot Ricochet"

Secrets and Lies

Written by: Steve Englehart
Art by: Marshall Rogers, Terry Austin, Jerry Serpe, and Ben Oda
Cover Price: 35¢
Release Date: September 27, 1977

Continuing on with my retro reviews for Batman Day 2018, I thought I'd do a couple in a row from Steve Engelhart’s run from the late 70’s starting with this Deadshot one-shot.  It's cool seeing Deadshot, his new getup and an origin flashback as well, but the big thing about this issue to me is Silver St. Cloud.  Why you ask?  Let's find out…

Retro Review: Detective Comics #27 (1939) - The Bat-Man: "The Case of the Chemical Syndicate"


Written by: Bill Finger
Art by: Bob Kane
Cover Price: 10¢
Release Date: May 3, 1939

There is a good chance that most people reading this review have read this issue.  It is the first appearance of Batman, a classic and an issue fans of Batman, dc comics and comics, in general, should check out.  That being said, it is Batman Day 2018 as I write this and it feels silly that we have done a load of retro reviews and not Detective Comics #27.  That fets remedied right now…

Weird Science DC Comics Best Books of the Week 9/15/18

Another week and another bunch of score.  While the rumor around town is that we are an overly negative site, there were some pretty high scores this week.  Sure, there were no 10/10s but it's not Halloween yet and we aren't passing our perfect scores like fun size snickers...yet?!?  Actually, if we start giving out 10/10s, I would equate that to the one house on the block that is passing out full sized candy bars!  I love that house so much!!!  Now that I am hungry for candy, let's see what made the Best Book list...

Friday, September 14, 2018

Retro Review: Saved by the Bell Summer Break #1 (1993) - "Racing Fever" & "Weighting for Love"

Hey, hey, hey, WHAT is going on here?!?

Writer - Angelo De Cesare
Penciller - Hy Rosen
Inker - Ken Selig
Letterers - Jorge Pacheco & Grace Kremer
Colorist - Rayme nee
Publisher: Harvey Comics

Review by: Chris

Now, you don't need me to tell you that the Internet can be an awful, depraved, and terrifying place.  I mean, where else can you find out that the term "A.C. Slater" is not only a proper noun... but also a verb.  As in, if one were so inclined, they may engage in the act of "A.C. Slatering".  I've recently heard folks make passing reference to this in conversation at one of my normal online haunts... now just what in the hell does it mean?  Does it mean you act sexist toward your frizzy-haired drug-addict "Momma"?  Does it mean you bake the meanest boxed birthday cake in class?  Or does it mean you repeatedly point to your crotch while "dancing"?

Retro Review: World’s Finest #81 (1956) - "The True History of Superman and Batman"

I’m Calling a Do-Over

Written By: Edmond Hamilton
Art By: Dick Sprang, Stan Kaye
Cover Price: 10 cents
Cover Date: March-April 1956
Review by: Reggie


I’ll bet you’re wondering why I reviewed issue #82 of World’s Finest a couple of weeks ago, but I’m reviewing the issue that preceded it now. Well, I’ll tell ya: quit asking! I picked that other issue pretty much at random, and only after nosing around a little bit did I find that issue #81 had one of my all-time favorite Superman, Batman and Robin stories from the cusp of the Silver Age. It’s got everything! Time travel, reckless use of public property, misogyny and general mistrust of women—all the components of a great comic book! So let’s dispense with the preamble that you stopped reading two sentences ago and dive right into World’s Finest #81! Read On!

Thursday, September 13, 2018

The Paybacks #4 Review

The Beginning of the End of the Beginning...

Written by: Donny Cates and Eliot Rahal
Art by: Geoff Shaw, Lauren Affe and Michael Heisler
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: December 23, 2015

I love comic books.  I guess that should be evident since we spend so much time dealing with comics each and every day on our site and then have a 5+ hour podcast each and every week.  Yea, that does sound a bit depressing, but that's why we started the Just for the Hell of It Mondays thing that this comic is a part of.  We get to actually pick a book to review and thus, can pick something awesome and enjoyable like this series...The Paybacks.  I am so in love with The Paybacks that I just started lobbying to allow comic reviewers to marry comic books.  Don't look at me like that, people should be able to follow their hearts!  I've already started writing my vows and everything.  Here is a sneak peek..."The Paybacks, I remember hearing about you online and I while you sounded cool and all, I just didn't know how cool until I actually took the time to read you myself.  I laughed at the idea of love at first read up until then, but you made me a believer.  I still remember that first time that I took you upstairs and pulled down my..."  Okay, it does get a little personal from there on out so I'll stop.  I understand if this is taking a bunch of you by surprise and believe me, I know what all of you are thinking, "Hey Jim, aren't you jumping into this a little too fast, you haven't even finished reading and reviewing the series, yet?"  Well, did they say that to Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries?  Britney Spears and Jason Alexander?  Carmen Electra and Dennis Rodman?  I think not!  Anyway, I'm here to review The Paybacks #4 and afterward I may pronounce my love with my kickass rendition of Whitney Houston's I Will Always Love You...

The Paybacks #3 Review

Dial M for Murderousness

Written by: Donny Cates and Eliot Rahal
Art by: Geoff Shaw, Lauren Affe and Michael Heisler
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: November 18, 2015
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

I already loved this series after the very first panel, but last issue Donny Cates and Eliot Rahal showed me that this book is hardly just a goofy satire of comics, but a legitimately awesome superhero comic in its own right. It ended with a cliffhanger that was so good that it upset me that I had to wait to review this issue.  Damn Weird Science and our DC Comics only policy!  Well, away we go...

The Paybacks #2 Review

Squatch is Totally Happening!

Written by: Donny Cates and Eliot Rahal
Art by: Geoff Shaw, Lauren Affe and Michael Heisler
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: October 21, 2015
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

I really enjoyed the first issue of the Paybacks and for those not in the know, The Paybacks are a superhero team that now function as super-repo men and women for an as yet, unknown benefactor.  I really can't do it justice, but believe me, it is a hilarious satire of superhero comics that had me legitimately laughing out loud.  You know, actually laughing out loud, not just LOL.  It all ended with a bit of a mystery that had me back for more.  Was my return visit just as fun?  Let's find out...

The Paybacks #1 Review

I Just Had It Stuffed

Written by: Donny Cates and Eliot Rahal
Art by: Geoff Shaw, Lauren Affe and Michael Heisler
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: September 16, 2015
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

Gail Simone tweeted that she needed a place to start reading anything and everything Donny Cates.  I told her to go back to the good old days of 2015 and read this book, The Paybacks.  This is one of my favorite series and is easily the funniest satire I've read since Terry Pratchett...which this comic reminds me of in its own special way.  So, since Gail got me to thinking about it, here is my review for The Paybacks...

Retro Review: Elfquest #1 (1979) - "Fire and Flight"

Fly By Night Away From Here

Written by: Wendy and Richard Pini
Art by: Wendy Pini
Cover Price: $1.50 (Free to look at if you knew Randy Widmann)
Release Date: April 1, 1979

If you have listened to our podcast, you may be aware of my running joke about Elfquest.  Believe me, it's really about upsetting Eric and has nothing to do with this book or its creators.  In fact, Elfquest is a book that I've wanted to read since Randy Widmann showed it to me in 7th-grade homeroom over thirty years ago.  We were both into Dungeons and Dragons (Blue Expert Set) so he knew I'd certainly be into Elfquest.  He was probably right, but I want you to go back to the sentence with "Randy Widmann" in it and pay particular attention to one important word...Randy SHOWED Elfquest to me.  He didn't hand it to me, he didn't let me page through it, he didn't let me read it.  He showed me the cover and a couple of pages, but he would not let me get closer than a desk length away.  Why?  Because it was his older brother's comic and his older brother was a real asshole.  To tie this into our website, Chet from Weird Science always reminded me of Randy's brother, Ron.  Yes, he was that much of a dick.  So, Randy showed me Elfquest and told me how great it was, but I never got to read it...until now!  Whatever you guys do, don't tell Eric this story because I have so much fun getting him upset over Elfquest and it's creators, Wendy and Richard Pini.  I know that's a horrible thing to admit, but I'm a pretty horrible guy.  Now that we are in agreement on that fact, let's get on with my "Just for the Hell of it Monday" review of Elfquest #1 Fire and Flight.

Note:  This issue and so many more are available for free Here at the official Elfquest site.

Retro Review: Animal Man #1 (1988) - "The Human Zoo"

I Want To Be An Animal

Written by: Grant Morrison
Art by: Chris Truog, Doug Hazelwood, John Costanza, and Tatjana Wood
Cover Price: $1.25
Release Date: September 1988

When I jumped into the New 52, Animal Man was a favorite of mine.  Reggie told me a couple of times to check out Grant Morrison's time on the book and while I heard it is the definitive run, I haven't until now.  I am guessing this is the start of a bunch of retro Animal Man reviews.  Was it good?  Let's find out…

Chris and Reggie's Cosmic Treadmill ep. 106 - Captain N: The Game Master #1 (1990)

Blowing On the Comic Book Does Not Make it Better

Ready player one: start! In this episode, gamers Chris (@AceComics) and Reggie (@reggiereggie) dive into the weird world of Videoland when they read Captain N: The Game Master #1, published in 1990 by Valiant Comics! After a brief look at the history of video games and Nintendo, our Italian plumbers read all four stories in the issue, providing creator biographies whenever it "seems" applicable. After a short break, the guys return to provide an exhaustive history of Valiant, thanks to exhaustive research by Ryan McLelland, and talk about some of Nintendo's less popular innovations. It's more fun than you can shake a joystick at, and you won't even need to put your quarters up!

Throwback Thursday Review: Smallville: Harbinger #1 (2014)

Magically Delicious

Written by: Bryan Q. Miller 
Art by: Daniel HDR 
Cover Price: $0.99 
Release Date: January 3, 2014

The DEO and Steve Trevor need a Magicks expert and Zatanna may just fit the bill.  She is touring in London and her show is being ambushed by a heckler and maybe something more sinister.  It's hard to use word magic when her mouth is covered, but lucky for her, London's favorite magic man may be able to lend a hand.

Throwback Thursday Review: Smallville: Titans #1 (2013) Review

Written by: Bryan Q. Miller
Art by: Cat Staggs
Cover Price: $0.99
Release Date: October 4, 2013

Here at Weird Science, I am not the Teen Titans fanboy.  That honor goes to Eric who has spent hours debating on what Beast Boy's true color should be.  However, I am a digital comic fanboy.  I love the weekly release of bite-sized stories that don't have to fall into the New 52 continuity.  I like fun comics and there are a bunch of those titles in the digital-first lineup.  Smallville: Titans is just

Throwback Thursday Review: Smallville: Lantern #1 (2014)

Beware My Power...

Written by: Bryan Q. Miller
Art by: Marcio Takara
Cover Price: $0.99
Release Date: March 14, 2014

With everything that went down in the "Alien" mini, you would think that Bryan Q. Miller would give readers a little breather before hitting us hard with goodness.  Well, he kind of does.  The issue starts with a little Zod flashback (with classic "kneel before" line in tow) and also a great scene from Argo with some Flamebird name dropping.  These two scenes are bound to pay more dividends in the future, but play second fiddle when "it" flashes across the page.

Throwback Thursday Review: Batgirl #27 (2014)

Sweet Dreams

Written By: Gail Simone
Art By: Robert Gill
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 15, 2014

Gothtopia has started, and that means Batgirl is smack dab in the middle of it, or for this issue Bluebell.  Now if you've been reading Gothtopia, you need to understand that at this point, this story doesn't matter to the main Detective Comics story.  But you know what it is?  It's great, so sit back and let me.....

Throwback Thursday Review: Batman and Robin #23.4 - Killer Croc

Killer Croc 4:  This Time It's Personal

Writer: Tim Seeley
Artist: Francis Portela
Publisher: DC Comics
Release Date: September 25, 2013

Cover Price: $3.99

Holy hell it's the end of Villain's Month and we got through it relatively unscathed.  But before we can close the book on this DC Event, we have a few more stories to look at and remark over.  Right now it's Killer Croc.

Throwback Thursday Review: Convergence: Superman #2 (2015)

Oh, Baby!

Written by: Dan Jurgens
Art by: Dan Jurgens, Norm Rapmund and Brad Anderson
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: May 6, 2015

I loved last month's Convergence: Superman and was so looking forward to this month's finale.  Dan Jurgens did such a fine job setting up both parts of the story that even if I wasn't familiar with the character's home worlds and stories, I still could follow every bit of it and become fully invested in what was going on.  The best part?  This was the only book in the entire Event where I actually had feelings of wanting both sides to win.  Sure, Pre-Flashpoint Superman and Lois were on the top of the list of favorites (Lois is pregnant for Christ's sake), but Flashpoint Thomas Wayne and even Subject One Superman were sentimental favorites as well.  However, the crazy cliffhanger last month had me wanting Superman to kick some serious ass and I was not disappointed.  Was the rest of the issue as good?  Let's find out...

Throwback Thursday Review: Convergence: Superman #1 (2015)

This is a Job...

Written by: Dan Jurgens
Art by: Lee Weeks
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: April 8, 2015

I am still getting a grip on this whole Convergence thing.  I've come to the conclusion that like all the Events before it, I will just judge each issue on its own merits and not get caught up in what makes sense with the where, what, when and how.  I don't know if it's that approach that helped or the fact that I'm a huge Superman and Lois Lane fan, but I really enjoyed this issue.  It also helped that of the Convergence books I've read so far, this one makes the most sense with the where what when and how.  Come with me on a journey to Gotham City where a wannabe Batman is making his rounds...

Throwback Thursday Review: Animal Man Annual #2 (2013)

A-Man's Loss

Writer: Jeff Lemire
Artist: Travel Foreman
Publisher: DC Comics
Release Date: July 31, 2013

Cover Price: $4.99

Animal Man Annual #2 isn't a book about a superhero.  There isn't a villain. No one saves the day.  Animal Man Annual #2 is about a Father's loss and what he will do to get one last moment with his boy.

DC Comics Best Covers of the Week: September 12, 2018

NOW That's What I Call Covers! vol. 68

There were so many good comic book covers coming out of DC Comics this week, I had to cut one and slap another one here in the intro! Now you're cooking with gas, boy! Is that a good euphemism for comic book publishing? I'm not sure, I think some gas is probably involved.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Sideways #8 Review

Sideways Indeed!

Storytellers: Max Raynor, Trevor Scott, and Dan DiDio
Art by: Max Raynor, Trevor Scott, Daniel Brown, and Travis Lanham
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: September 12, 2018

I really hate this book, I really hate this issue, and I don't want to read anymore. But I do it for you. The people.

Titans #25 Review and *SPOILERS*

Welcome to TV Land!

Written By: Dan Abnett
Art By: Brandon Peterson, Guillem March, Denis Medri, Ivan Plascencia
Letters By: Dave Sharpe
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: September 12, 2018

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

Our last issue of Titans left us with kind of a bad taste in our mouths. It wasn’t horrible but it didn’t exactly “wow” the audience. The cliffhanger was alright but there was a lot of the same stuff that we’ve gotten over the last two issues. A team that is pretty depressing and constantly bickering with each other. Don’t get me wrong, I think that a Titan’s book can have those themes occasionally but I just personally feel that a Titans books should be at least fun. I know that these characters are older now but this is basically an extension of the Teen Titans brand and I want to enjoy this book when I read it. That just hasn’t been the case in recent issues. However, hopefully that will change as we jump into this next issue.

The Flash #54 Review and *SPOILERS*

The Strength of Sacrifice

Written By: Joshua Williamson
Art By: Christian Duce, Luis Guerrero
Letters By: Steve Wands
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: September 12, 2018

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

Say what you will about The Flash but I’ve really been enjoying these last couple issues. I really like the new forces that we are dealing with. I like how we are getting to know Trickster better. I like that The Flash is working with Commander Cold and that their relationship is in constant turmoil. I’m really invested in this story so far and I cannot wait to see where it ends up. Where we left, the Strength Force had affected Barry and turned him into a hulk of a man. Commander Cold has just turned on him seeing no other option but to stop both him and Trickster permanently. Lets jump right into our newest issue and see how things turn out.

Supergirl #22 Review and *SPOILERS*

Breaking and Entering

Written By: Marc Andreyko
Art By: Kevin Maguire, Sean Parsons, FCO Plascencia
Letters By: Tom Napolitano
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: September 12, 2018

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

We started this new Supergirl run last month and the first issue really blew me away. It was really great and it immediately got me invested in the series and Kara’s story. That’s something that I’d wager Orlando never did in his previous run. The story was set up with Kara leaving Earth in search of answers to who Rogol Zaar was and how he was able to destroy Krypton. Thanks to the assist from Hal Jordan, Kara knows that the Green Lantern Corps has redacted files on Zaar’s axe so she is traveling to Mogo in order to find answers. Will she find them or will she find herself on the wrong side of the galactic peacekeeping force? Let’s jump in and find out.

Wonder Woman #54 Review and Spoilers

Preparing For War

Written by: Steve Orlando
Art by: Raul Allen and Patricia Martin
Colors by: Borja Pindado
Letters by: Saida Temafonte
Price: $3.99

Release Date: September 12, 2018
So, Wonder Woman, eh? I've been a Wonder Woman reader and fan for a lot of my life and it's always an honor and a privilege to read and review her adventures. The last couple of issues have seen Diana team up with Artemis and the new Aztek in order to free her aunt Atalanta from the clutches of Tezcatlipoca, the Shadow God and sworn enemy of Aztek and the now-defunct Q-Foundation. While the art for those two issues (by Aco) was astonishing and there were some rather nice ideas thrown into the mix, it's safe to say that the story's resolution, depending as it did on a somewhat hackneyed 'let's-all-band-together' Maguffin and a typically Orlando-esque quantity of technobabble ("I'm hacking a weapon from a higher plane of existence and hoping I don't lose my mind, okay?" – Hmmm. Passive-aggressive technobabble at that), left much to be desired. It's a good job, then, that this issue, the creative team lowers its sights a little and decides to tell us a tale that's more grounded in political reality.

Let's find out how they get on…

The Wild Storm: Michael Cray #11 Review and Spoilers

Penultimate Preparations

Written by: Bryan Hill
Art by: N Steven Harris, Dexter Vines, and Nelson Blake II
Colors by: Ross Campbell
Letters by: Simon Bowland
Cover price: $3.99
Release Date: September 12, 2018

One of the more interesting things about this series is seeing how it has developed during the course of its run, transcending its initial two-and-done format and becoming a more complex and ultimately more satisfying read as a result. This is the fifth issue of the Constantine and Diana Prince story arc and, although the overall pace has been glacial at times, the dramatic weight this arc has accrued so far is both palpable and impressive. This issue starts with Cray about to find out the truth about the creature in his head and Constantine preparing to summon something through a nexus of magic portals located at key points around the globe. Will Cray be able to stop that from happening? Will he be able to do something about the thing in his head?

Let's find out…