Review Round-Up - 8/7

August 9, 2013

Every week, Image publishes a bevy of creator-owned comics that our fans are eager to enjoy and the press is eager to review. We’ve got a fast round-up of a few reviews that caught our eye this week, so if you’re on the fence for any of our titles, take a look and see if anything piques your interest.

BURN THE ORPHANAGE #1 - Sina Grace & Daniel Freedman
Joshua Yehl at IGN gave the issue a 9.5, saying, "it's all executed in a wonderfully knowing way that celebrates the culture that Generation Y grew up with."

John Ernenputsch of Comicosity greatly enjoyed the video game references of the issue. "As somebody who grew up on video games of the late 80s and early 90s I feel that I was “in on the joke” so to say, and absolutely loved the book."

Joshua Eubanks of Culture Mass concurs, explaining that the issue “perfectly captures everything that made the "good old days" just that good.”

FATALE #16 - Ed Brubaker & Sean Phillips
Benjamin Bailey at IGN praises the latest issue of FATALE, and was particularly impressed by the atmosphere of the series as a whole. “Fatale is brutal, dark, and horrific and yet, I can't help but welcome each new issue with loving arms. The bleakness and desperation of this title grabs you and doesn't let go. The stories never end well and the characters never find what they are looking for, but that's what makes us love it. “

Hansel Moreno of The Weekly Criss was impressed, too, paying special attention to the work of artist Sean Phillips and colorist Elizabeth Breitweiser: “Sean Phillips takes us from a dorm room to bank robberies to the nightmare dreamscapes of terror addled misfortunates that cross paths with Jo. Sean along with Elizabeth Breitweiser's colors accentuate the subtleties of a passionate kiss, a dark moment of loneliness and countless small moments that make us human.”

INVINCIBLE UNIVERSE #5 - Phil Hester & Todd Nauck
Mr ComicBook of Comic Book Therapy enjoyed the latest issue of INVINCIBLE UNIVERSE, especially Todd Nauck’s work on the series. “INVINCIBLE UNIVERSE #5 might be the best issue of the series to date...Todd Nauck continues to be one of the most consistent artists in the industry. Whenever he pencils an issue, you know you are going to get quality pencils. Characters are expressive, and Nauck adds quite a bit of detail to the surroundings.”

Doug Zawisza of Comic Book Resources had kind words for Nauck’s art, as well. “Nauck's work is animated and agile, filled with just enough detail to be dynamic and informative. The artist has built a world, defined a sprawling cast of characters and continues to add to the fabric of this world in "Invincible Universe" #5.”

Samantha Roerig at Comic Bastards loved the storytelling in MINIATURE JESUS. “I praise this comic for its art. I love the solid blacks contrasting with the bright whites. There is barely any gray which makes for some awesome shadowing effects. It sets the mood up for some very real distinction. I could pick this comic out from anything.”

SATELLITE SAM #2 - Matt Fraction & Howard Chaykin
Jen 'Miss J' Aprahamian of ComicVine praised the juxtapositions in SATELLITE SAM: “It's the comics equivalent of Patrick Bateman listening to Huey Lewis and the News as he murders someone; saccharine pleasantry atop the grim reality of death, and its associated consequences. A funeral isn't the place for kitschy serial TV, and yet, in this case, it's the only place for it.”

Cody Mudge of Read Comic Books particularly enjoyed Howard Chaykin’s visual worldbuilding: “And speaking of backdrops, Howard Chaykin has done a phenomenal job with this book. He has given it a clear image that is totally unique in all of comics. There isn’t any book out there that looks like Satellite Sam and he infuses the book with a visual interpretation of Fraction’s dark humor.”

SHELTERED #2 - Ed Brisson & Johnnie Christmas
Joe Edward Lewis at Geeks Unleashed has high praise for the first issue of SHELTERED, and that quickly leads to kind words about SHELTERED #2: “Sheltered #1 was the near perfect opening issue, akin to that of Brian K Vaughan’s Y: The Last Man. Had it been a one shot, I’d have handed it the accolade of ‘Best Single Issue of 2013’. Gladly, however, it’s a series. And Sheltered #2 is as strong a follow-up as I’ve seen.”

Ricardo Guajardo of The Weekly Crisis digs SHELTERED #2, as well, and says that “the characterization by writer Ed Brisson manages to put the readers into the comic and have them wondering where the story goes next for these teenagers. Artist Johnnie Christmas nails down the look of these folks and makes the environment where they are settled in believable”.

SIDEKICK #1 - J. Michael Straczynski & Tom Mandrake
Rob McMonigal of Newsarama gave this issue his seal of approval. “This is JMS playing with the idea of how things can go very wrong for a hero, and it’s a great start.”

Jim Johnson of Comic Book Resources was excited to see Tom Mandrake’s work once again. “It's also nice to see artist Tom Mandrake return to the superhero genre, as he brings the perfect old-school feel to the flashback portions of the story as well as a realistic but slightly darker and grittier look to the present day.“

TEN GRAND #4 - J. Michael Straczynski & Ben Templesmith
Cody Ferrell of Comic Book Therapy gave the fourth issue of TEN GRAND a perfect score. “Templesmith astounds you with each and every issue. His work creating new creatures to inhabit Joe’s world and the action sequences related to them are stunning. There isn’t a panel in the book that wouldn’t make for an excellent piece of art to hang on your wall. You cannot oversell Templesmith’s work.”

Iann Robinson of Crave also gave TEN GRAND #4 a perfect score, and complimented its creativity. “The sleeper hit of the summer continues to stagger us with its creativity....Ten Grand, with all its demonology, has always been about love. The power of it and what we’re willing to sacrifice for it. In this issue, Joe lays everything on the line for the love of the woman whose loved changed him. Amidst all the darkness of the story, the light of Stracynzki's subtext makes all the difference.”

ACTIVITY #14 - Nathan Edmondson & Mitch Gerads
William Tournas of The Weekly Crisis had some very high praise for the work of Mitch Gerads: “Gerads was stellar on art duties. His art matched the tone of each mission and changed to suit with an amazing flow. I love the way how he lets the slower intense moments linger with you even after you've left the page.”

Cody Mudge of Read Comic Books had similar praise for the characterization work and plotting of Nathan Edmondson. “Edmondson skillfully weaves realism with well-fleshed out characters that the reader quickly identifies with while also heaping on layer after layer of intrigue as seemingly unconnected events begin to tie together.”

THE LEGEND OF LUTHER STRODE #6 - Justin Jordan & Tradd Moore
Russell Johnson of Unleash the Fanboy really liked the final issue of this volume of LUTHER STRODE. “Tradd Moore’s art is a thing of beauty and grace. While I have pointed out the cartoonish style of his art, it’s also a perfect fit for fluid action and excitement. The exaggerations of form can be over the top but it also conveys stunning action. He also pulls no punches with the gore before your eyes but it’s so striking that you can only marvel in the horror. The cover alone is the best of the series as well as for comics this week.”

Hansel Moreno of The Weekly Crisis greatly enjoyed the visual style of the art team. “First off Tradd Moore and Felipe Sobreiro knock this issue out of the park. Brutal fights, gore filled shopping malls and wide eyed terror locked on people's faces left and right. Gorgeous, gorgeous work.”

MANHATTAN PROJECTS #13 - Jonathan Hickman & Nick Pitarra
Roderick Ruth at Read Comic Books loves Nick Pitarra’s work on MANHATTAN PROJECTS: “Artist Nick Pitarra just continues to get better and better with every issue. Pitarra runs the gamut as this issue is filled with detailed, close-up panels of characters and outlandish background scenery. The facial expressions Pitarra draws are filled with lines and effectively convey subtle and unsubtle emotional experiences and let the reader connect with the characters in a seemingly intimate manner.“

David Henderson of Multiversity Comics gave Jonathan Hickman’s writing a few nice compliments, too. “The character interaction between the members of the Manhattan Projects has always been what drives each issue and in this issue we get both quiet, sometimes bittersweet moments as well as Hickman’s famed foreshadowing. While it could be said that less happens here than in most recent issues of the series, allowing the characters to simply stop and talk to each other is, to me, what makes this issue work.”