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Home  >  Features  >  Number One Bullet Reviews: August 19, 2015

NUMBER 1 BULLETS: 08-19-15


Welcome to another edition of the All-New, All-Different Number One Bullets, where we get our hands on as many first issues as possible each week and share our thoughts to let you know what new series to follow. You're really going to Welcome Back those Young Terrorists from the House of M!

Joe Kach's riding solo this week, reviewing Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Amazing Adventures #1, House of M #1, Howard the Human #1, Secret Wars: Secret Love #1, Grimm Fairy Tales Presents Van Helsing vs Dracula #1, Welcome Back #1, and Young Terrorists #1. Phew!




Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Amazing Adventures #1 (IDW Publishing)-


(W) Landry Quinn Walker, James Kochalka (A) Chad Thomas, James Kochalka (CA) Jon Sommariva
This new series will feature crazier stories in it's own all-ages continuity that draws inspiration from the hit Nickelodeon cartoon! Featuring backups from some of the finest cartoonists in comics today!

So, looks like IDW has launched another volume of a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comic to tie into the Nickelodeon cartoon. It's a fun issue that does all the right things and hits all the right points ... that the TV show would. Amazing Adventures #1 captures the humor and familial aspects of the show quite well, but struggles to present the aspect of the television series that really shines: the slick action. Still, the characters look great; the story is well-paced and includes a lot of familiar faces. I'm not sure I'm totally sold on picking up the next issue, but if you're a fan of the show or the previous Animated Adventures volume, you'll definitely want to grab a copy. Seeing James Kochalka's name in the credits was definitely a draw, but unfortuantely I didn't find his back-up entry to be all that engaging. (Joe)


House of M #1 (Marvel Comics)-


(W) Dennis Hopeless (A) Marco Failla (CA) Kris Anka
The House of Magnus controls all, having crushed all resistance to their reign. Magneto rules with an iron-fist, while his children and grandchildren live their lives as royals-with all the privileges and pit-falls that come with that title. But is Magneto's control as all-encompassing as it seems? And what happens to a conqueror when there is no one left to conquer?

Secret Wars takes us back to a world where Magneto is King and Mutants reign supreme. These Secret Wars tie-ins have been a mixed bag ... Honestly, I am a little turned off by the fact that both publisher's summer events focused on comics series that are basically alternate reality tales across the board, I'd be lying if I said there weren't some gems. And this is one of them. This issue stands on its own remarkably well, but also reminds us why we all loved the original House of M crossover so much. Hopeless and Failla do an excellent job of staying in that world, and this really does feel like a natural continuation of the saga. A really great read that brought back some great memories. (Joe)


Howard The Human #1 (Marvel Comics)-


(W) Skottie Young (A/CA) Jim Mahfood
Spend a day with Howard, a private investigator and the only human living in city full of animals. But not, like, criminals and lowlifes. We're talking elephants, apes, ducks and kitty cats. Catching a case, grinding a few gears, dodging some bullets and almost getting killed by an anthropomorchic monstrosity. It's just another Monday for Howard the Human brought to you by Skottie Young (ROCKET RACCOON) and Jim Mahfood (MIAMI VICE REMIX). 

So, this is one Secret Wars tie-in that I was looking forward to, both for the character and the creative team. While I wasn't disappointed, the end of this one-shot did leave me a little wanting. Young weaves a clever tale, but suffers due to the shortness of the story. Mahfood's art is exactly what you'd expect from Mahfood's art, and I can't decide if he's the perfect fit for this book or the wrong choice. Over-all, I enjoyed the issue and it really did carry the Noir feel of the classic detective novels that this type of story should contain. But it also very much sat in the world of "crossover filler". (Joe)


Secret Wars: Secret Love #1 (Marvel Comics)-


(W/A) Various (CA) David Nakayama

An honest effort, but I'm really not sure who this title is aimed at or why it's even needed. I get that these types of stories add a bit more variety to your usual superhero fare. Which is awesome. They just weren't very good. The Iron Fist/Misty Knight story resonated a little in that it deals with the hardships and wonders of marriage, but everything else I could have done without. I appreciated that the creators involved come from more of an independent background, but honestly, that may have also been part of the problem. (Joe


Grimm Fairy Tales Presents Van Helsing vs. Dracula #1 (Zenescope Entertainment)-


(W) Patrick Shand (A) Andrea Meloni (CA) Richard Ortiz
Last year, Liesel Van Helsing was attacked by an evil from her father's past... but she survived, and has moved on with her life. Besides becoming the name that vampires in the tri-state area fear, she's also found love - in, admittedly, the strangest places. However, when old friends come calling on her for help, she will find herself pulled into a final conflict with the deadliest vampire of all time...

Well, well, well ... that was my first real soiree into the world of Zenescope Entertainment and it was a fun one! The publisher tends to get a bad wrap regarding their stories due to their salacious cover choices. But, if their books are of the same quality as Van Helsing vs. Dracula #1, then that's an unfair judgment. This issue was a lot of fun, was well-paced, and had me genuinely entertained and intrigued for all 22 pages. The writing didn't rock my world, but it's certainly in the "above average" category of comic book writing. The art is where the title really shined, using a combo of simplistic elegance and emotional nuances. Zenescope fans are definitely going to put this in the "don't miss" category, but I'm actually going to go ahead and recommend this title to horror and vampire fans, too. Never judge a book by its cover, right? (Joe)


Welcome Back #1 (BOOM! Studios)-


(W) Christopher Sebela (A) Jonathan Brandon Sawyer (CA) Jonathan Brandon Sawyer, James Harvey
What's to Love: We believe Christopher Sebela is one of the most exciting new comic writers and his idea of reincarnated assassins who are forever fighting, killing, and loving each other throughout endless lives is another reason why. Plus, Jonathan Brandon Sawyer's (Critical Hit) expressive art style reminds us of Becky Cloonan and Sean Gordon Murphy, and it's just perfect for Welcome Back. What It Is: Mali and Tessa have lived hundreds of different lives throughout time, caught up in an eternal cycle as they take part in a war so old that neither side remembers what they're fighting for anymore. As Mali wakes up in her newest life, she suddenly becomes self-aware and starts to question everything, especially why she continues to fight.  But elsewhere, Tessa is already on the hunt...

Okay, that was pretty damn confusing ... but I really dug it! this takes a look at the concept of reincarnation through a high-concept, Sci-Fi lens. A fast-paced adventure with slick dialogue and captions combined with some really nice art that's a combination of manga and indie flare. The idea of two fighters locked in eternal battle, and yet neither really knows why is very intriguing. Unfortunately, the confused chaos that makes the story appealing also works against it where I felt like I had more questions than I would like to after reading a first issue. Still, I am sure all will be revealed in time and I'm definitely on-board for the long haul with this one. (Joe)


Young Terrorists #1 (Black Mask Comics)-


(W) Matt Pizzolo (A) Amancay Nahuelpan (CA) Tess Fowler, Tamra Bonvillain
From Black Mask Comics. What if "The Smoking Man" from The X-Files were a real person, and his daughter found out what he did for a living? The daughter of an assassinated globalist kingpin breaks out of an internment camp and leads her fellow escaped prisoners in a battle against an elitist conspiracy of shadow governments, megabanks, and military juntas in this edgy and subversive sci-fi thriller. Incendiary writer Matt Pizzolo and striking newcomer Amancay Nahuelpan unleash this tour-de-force that fearlessly assaults politics-as-usual. Young Terrorists continues the legacy of DMZ and The Invisibles as it manically rips the scab off life under the new world order and revels in the pus underneath. 

First off, calling this simply a "first issue" will do it no justice whatsoever. Coming in at a whopping 80 pages, this is more like a graphic novella. But, it's still the first issue of an all-new monthly series from Black Mask. And damn, that was a great read and I can't say I've quite read anything like it. Honestly, I'm having a hard time coming to grips with exactly what went down in this beast, but I know I liked it. A lot. the characters are interesting and unique. The setting is mysterious and intriguing. The action feels so real, even with the artist's "rough" style. I am 100% bought in and need to know what happens next! My main complaint is more about the bigger picture: for an 80-page book, the background on what's going on and why is almost non-existent. In fact, it was the solicit above that gave me a better clue as to what the main plot is, not the issue itself. So, outside of that small hiccup, this is one Hell of a tale. grab a copy, a cup of coffee, and get comfortable. it's going to be a fun ride. (Joe)


Don't just take our word for it! Pick up the issues and share your thoughts below...


More Reviews on MightyVille: 

Number One Bullet Reviews: August 12, 2015

Number One Bullet Reviews: August 5, 2015

Number One Bullet Reviews: July 29, 2015


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