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Mr. Freeze has No Chill in This Week’s Comic Roundup

Plus the writer of 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles' comics and 'D4VE' suggests his must-read comics.

by Giaco Furino
13 January 2017, 6:52pm

Panel selection from All-Star Batman #6. Illustrated by Jock. Screencap via the author

Each week, The Creators Project seeks out the best and brightest from the comics industry.

Comic writer Ryan Ferrier, author of D4VE, Kennel Block Blues, and many upcoming projects like a two-issue run on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Universe, speaks with The Creators Project about his favorite comics of the week. Of God Country #1, Ferrier says, “Donny Cates and Geoff Shaw have knocked this series debut out of the park, and I think they're going to have quite a run with this one… They've done a wonderful job at rewarding the reader here, starting with a sympathetic, familial gut-punch, and ending in a big, loud, but most importantly fun way.”

Of the new spy thriller James Bond: Felix Leiter #1, Ferrier explains, “I'm genuinely loving everything Dynamite is doing with the James Bond license. Every team on these books has to be having a total blast because they just read so great, like someone's pipe-dream project. Felix Leiter's solo debut is no different. Essentially the issue is one long cold open, the kind we've come to expect from Bond stories, but writer James Robinson feeds in just enough information to keep it really effective and intriguing. Aaron Campbell's art is perfect for the tones of this story — a little less glossy than 007, a little more seedy, but still remarkably attractive. Campbell's authority of the medium and the genre here is on fine display.” He also recommends All-Star Batman #6, reviewed below. Keep an eye out for Ryan Ferrier’s newest work, D4VEOCRACY, out January 25th from IDW Comics.

Reviewed this week: Batman tussles with Mr. Freeze, an amazing new indie about robo-women, a classic manga, and a showstopping graphic novel adaptation of an Octavia E. Butler novel.

All-Star Batman #6

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Cover for All-Star Batman #6. Illustrated by Jock. Photo courtesy DC Comics

In the newest issue of All-Star Batman by Scott Snyder and the artist Jock, Batman heads to Alaska to stop Mr. Freeze from extracting the oldest ice core, which he plans on using to unleash an ancient virus frozen in the ice. Ryan Ferrier also singled out this book as one of his favorites of the week. “Snyder is once again subverting our expectations,” he explains to The Creators Project. “Not of a great Batman story, but this one feels so different. The poetic, prose approach [the issue has no speech bubbles, it’s all through narration and exposition] paired with Jock's stunning artwork is just so beautiful and creepy, really creepy. Snyder and Jock have managed to, seemingly against the odds, find a way to end this issue with a total chest-tightener.”

Grave Lilies #1

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Cover for Grave Lilies. Illustrated by George Kambadais. Photo courtesy Z2 Comics

This new indie comic from writer Cullen Bunn and artist George Kambadais follows five young women who awake from what looks like sleeping pods in an underground bunker after a bomb is detonated over their heads. They don’t have a scratch on them, and they only vaguely remember a past, but they know each other, and know they need to be on the run. Each woman has a special power (though for now they’re mostly alluded to) including healing, interacting with plants, and super-strength. This new comic is a surprise delight, with stunning, restrained, impactful artwork from George Kambadais. Cullen Bunn, always reliable for a killer premise, also writes in this book one of the best introductory pages to a set of characters in modern times, when we see each character with computer loadouts of their prime powers/directives, hinting at a mechanical nature to our heroes. A must-read, for sure.

Manga of the Week: Kikaider Volume 1

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Cover for Kikaider Volume 1. Illustrated by Shotaro Ishinomori. Image courtesy Ishimori Production Inc.

Kikaider isn’t, by any means, a new manga, but it’s featured in this week’s Manga Staff Picks on Comixology, and it’s nice, every now and then, to read the beginning of a manga, instead of the usual “chapter 207” little slices as they release each week. The classic manga Kikaider, originally published in the early 1970s and based on a live-action TV series, is a high-flying action comic that screams classic ‘70s manga. It’s about a scientist who built evil robots, had a change of heart and built a good robot (Kikaider), then disappears, leaving the good robot to defend the world as evil robots attack and swarm. For manga fans who haven’t delved into the Kikaider mythos yet, this is a must-read as it set the groundwork for great works that would come later.

Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation

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Cover for Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation. Illustrated by John Jennings. Photo courtesy Abrams ComicArts.

This adaptation of the classic science fiction/neo-slave narrative novel by Octavia E. Butler is required reading. The adaptation, rendered with care by Damian Duffy and John Jennings, follows the story of Dana, a black woman living in 1970s California, as she and her white husband Kevin are thrust between their present life and Maryland in 1815. The graphic novel, like Butler’s original masterpiece, looks unflinchingly at race and gender in both time periods, with Dana witnessing firsthand the horrors of pre-Civil War slavery. Creators Duffy and Jennings have brought Butler’s work to life with vivid detail, and this new graphic novel is stunning and almost as powerful an experience as reading the original novel.

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Panel selection from Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation. Illustrated by John Jennings. Screencap via the author

What were your favorite pulls of the week? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter: @CreatorsProject

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Tagged:
Science Fiction
manga
dc comics
Batman
kindred
Octavia E Butler
indie comics
This Week in Comics
Comic Review
Kikaider
Ryan Ferrier