The Toking Dead #2 Misfortune
Jeff Homan and Benjamin Bartlett
Interior by Aaron Bolduc, Cover Design by Steve Lavigne, Cover Ink by Steve Mardo, Cover Color by Steve Lavigne and Aaron Bolduc
Additional Design, Graphics and Layouts by Jeffrey Homan
Here we are Toking Dead fans! Issue #2! Now, if you remember, when we left Duke, Tobi and Piper in issue #1 things were getting intense. There had been some crazy explosion. Zombies were everywhere. The guys had started to mutate and Tobi and Piper had gotten their groove on, even though Piper doesn’t usually go for guys. Piper had also been bitten on the shoulder during an attempt to flee the area and yet, she’s not showing any symptoms of anything.
And now that we are all caught up…
In this issue, the guys and Piper start to figure out that their crop of cannabis is slowing the zombies down. But they are quickly running out of crop. Tobi and Duke are mutating at a slower, albeit unpleasant, rate and Piper seems to be immune for a reason that I am not going to disclose. The zombies are quickly figuring out that our three heroes are holed up in the wreckage of their dispensary. And our heroes are quickly finding out that they are running out of crop.
What happens when the zombies eat all of the crop outside? Will Duke and Tobi become full on zombies? And what’s the deal with Piper? Why isn’t she turning?
You’ll have to get your own copy to find out the answers to these burning questions.
I love this series. Even though the guys are dealing with some corporate asshat suing them for their creativity and trying to stifle their free enterprise, they are still able to find a way to give us the quality comic book we so desire and deserve as fans.
This time, they were able to get the legendary Bill Diamond on board. Plus, the artwork in this issue by Aaron Bolduc is nothing short of spectacular. The colors are gloomier, with a more sinister feel, sharper line work and a bolder presence in general. This is different from issue one where the art was softer and smoother to the eye. This time, it grabs your eyes and shocks the images into retinas.
Bill Diamond also introduces “the Ziffits” which, if you are at all curious, you can get the issue and find out what they are. Because I’m not going to spoil EVERYTHING in this one for you.
As always, Homan and Bartlett give us a great dialogue to go with the depictions of horror being splashed from page to page. Without the writing of this series, we would never TRULY get a solid feel for these individuals as characters and they ARE individuals, each unique in their own way.
I still maintain this is a badass series that is truly sparking a conversation that is long overdue. And here’s why. It is in this issue that they guys start talking about the medicinal effects of marijuana and how it is going to save not only their lives but many others. The genius is that that information is being put into the context of this zombie apocalypse and they need to figure out how to use the medical marijuana to their advantage and fast if they are going to live to tell the rest of this tale.
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John Wick (Vol. 1)
Created by Derek Kolstad
Written by Greg Pak
Art by Giovanni Valletta (issues 1-2), Matt Gaudio (issues 3-5)
Letters by Tom Napolitano
Collection Cover by Giovanni Valletta
I initially just grabbed this on a whim without looking through it, thinking it was a John Wick graphic novel. Turns out it’s a trade paper of issues 1-5. Not that that’s a bad thing. I was more or less expecting a graphic novel version of the movie. But this turned out to be different than expected.
First of all, it contains issues 1-5. It’s a gorgeous hardcover that might even be a great collector piece because of the artwork. The artwork truly is fantastic. In the back of the book are all the original covers and alternate covers, each one very well done. However, I think the best usage of color is that which is used to emphasize the violent scenes containing blood, fire, explosions, etc.
Second, still with a basic revenge plot, it seems that this storyline is possibly a prequel to the movie. John Wick is seeking justice for the desecration and destruction of a little village he lived in as a child. Whatever happened to this village caused the deaths of pretty much everyone in the village, including whoever Wick loved or cared about. He even witnessed the destruction first-hand. It is this drive for vengeance that marks his initiation into “The Continental” and the business of such membership.
Also, there are two badass female villains in the story. These chicks are powerful, independent and heavy duty killer characters.
I got through this whole book, all five issues, in one sitting, no breaks. The series is very well written and grabs your attention immediately. There’s action, blood and violence on almost every page, making it chocked full of just the kind of bone breaking and blood spilling we love about John Wick. I do think this is a series I am going to prefer reading in trade rather than in single issues so I’m going to get the next trade when I find it. And I think any action fan or fan of fighting and blood will like this series. Because there’s a lot of both. And the fight scenes/panels are very well done. So it’s definitely worth getting and reading.
GTT #13 The Black Dahlia
Written by Joe Brusha
Artwork by Umberto Giampà
Colors by Fran Gamboa w/ J.C. Ruiz
Letters by Fabio Amelia
This time our friends at Grimm Tales of Terror have put together a fantastic tale, weaving together three of the most horrific crimes in history; Jack the Ripper, the Butcher of Kingsbury Run and The Black Dahlia.
Expertly written, these crimes are intertwined, stitched together over time. We all know of Jack the Ripper, the image of a creepy dude in a dark hat and a long black coat slicing up women in White Chapel, London, England. The Butcher of Kingsbury Run was also known as the Cleveland Torso Murderer, a killer who would decapitate his male victims and mutilate and dispose of their remains, leaving the torso usually intact. And finally, the Black Dahlia. The tragic death of Elizabeth Short, an aspiring actress in Hollywood, murdered and mutilated, her body left out in public severed in half, sprawled in a provocative and humiliating position.
All of these crimes remain unsolved to this very day.
So, the author used a little imagination and took it to a whole new level. What if all these crimes were committed by one person?
Now, I know you’re thinking about the fact that Jack the Ripper was killing in the late 1800s and here we are in the year 2019. Nobody lives that long right? So, how in the hell did they pull this off?
I’m not going to tell you. Why would I ruin the issue for you??? It was the last issue in volume four. You really should give it a go. The artwork is amazing. The story is entertaining and actually comes together really nicely. Plus, it’s a great combination of true crime and traditional horror concepts, ya know, the stuff we normally think of when we think of horror. This was definitely a very well sewn together story of fun, horror, true crime creating suspense and thrill with each turn of the page.