Comic Frontline Live #139: i-Evil?!

Every week the Comic Frontline crew unites to do a LIVE Show through Google Hangouts where we discuss the news and comics of the week and have some fun while doing it!

This week, the crew is down by three and discuss: Artemis returns! Arrival on new Valiant book! Runaways cast! Luke Cage heads to the Big Easy! Black Lightning strikes on CW! Iron Fist trailer! Stranger Things 2 trailer, and more!

Plus Worst Pick, and The Top 5 comics of this week, Most Anticipated 3 comics for next week, let your voice be heard in our weekly poll and more!

Vote In The Poll: https://goo.gl/8iFsXP

Mike’s Jem #1 Review:

Mike’s Strawberry Shortcake #1 Review:

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Comic News Insider Episode 744 – CNI’s Best of 2016!

Comic News Insider: Episode 744 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

It’s our Best of 2016! And just like last year, Jimmy sits down with The Beat’s Heidi MacDonald and good pal Jon Hoche to go over their 2016 favorites in comic books, TV and film. They didn’t read or watch everything released that year, so it’s just the Best of what they did read/watch. Fun discussions on great comics, their creators, TV shows, films, actors and more. What were your favorites last year? Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love! Also, get a hold of us!

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Comics Alternative for Young Readers: The Best of 2016

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Great Minds…

Gwen and Andy both are astounded that the end of the year is almost upon them, and with that in mind, they’ve picked their favorite books of 2016 for young readers. The Two People with PhDs each picked five books in the children’s category and five books in the intermediate/young adult (YA) category, but something odd happened: their lists were almost identical!

In the children’s category, Gwen and Andy both chose the following four books, many of which they have already discussed on previous episodes.

Andy diverged by picking Bert’s Way Home, by John Martz (Koyama Press), the story of an orphan named Bert who’s no regular orphan, but an orphan of time and space, stranded on Earth after a cosmic accident.

Gwen’s final pick in this category was Blip! a TOON Level 1 book by Barnaby Richards about a robot whose vocabulary consists of only one word (“Blip”) as he tries to find his way through an unfamiliar planet.

In the Intermediate/YA category, Gwen and Andy also agree on their first four titles:

  • March: Book Three, by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, and Nate Powell (Top Shelf), the third and final book in the March trilogy. March: Book Three is also a noteworthy book in that it recently won the prestigious National Book Award for Young People’s Literature, becoming the first graphic novel to win the award.
  • Camp Midnight, by Steven T. Seagle and Jason Adam Katzenstein (Image)
  • Paper Girls, Vol. 1, by Brian K. Vaughan and Cliff Chiang (Image)
  • Snow White, by Matt Phelan (Candlewick Press)

The two people with PhDs also had the great pleasure of interviewing Matt Phelan on the show last month. You can listen to that interview here.

Andy’s final choice was Mighty Jack, by Ben Hatke, a title previously discussed on the show back in August.

For Gwen’s final choice, she picked Delilah Dirk and the King’s Shilling, by Tony Cliff (First Second), a book previously discussed by Derek and Sean in its original webcomics format. This volume picks up where the first volume, 2013’s Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant, left off.

At the end of the show, Gwen mentioned a new all ages wordless comic that she learned about on Dr. Debbie Reese’s excellent American Indians in Children’s Literature blog, Jonathan Nelson’s The Wool of Jonesy: Part I, published by Native Realities Press. Here is the blurb from the publisher’s website:

Written and illustrated by Diné artist Jonathan Nelson, The Wool of Jonesy #1 tells the first story of Jonesy the Sheep and his adventures out on the rez. As Jonesy heads out to explore life after high school he finds himself discovering and dreaming. The wonderfully illustrated story gives young and old alike a simple and enchanting view of reservation life through the eyes of an amazing character!

Readers can check out Debbie Reese’s review.

Gwen and Andy hope that these titles might be considered for gift for the holiday season. You really can’t go wrong with any of these titles. We can’t wait to see what great comics are in store for us in 2017. You can be sure we’ll pass all the information along to you. Happy reading!

 

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Comic Frontline Live #122: Will the Real Cyborg Please Stand Up

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The Frontline crew returns with a unique episode this week (once again battling audio issues)! Two of our members couldn’t make it, but the rest of us discuss a light week of news before diving into some viewer comments and our Top 5 picks!

Of those comments, we discuss our dissatisfaction with Marvel, and the reasons why we want to love it, but can’t. And we also give tips on being a YouTuber.

Plus worst picks, plugs, and more!

Find more on www.ComicFrontline.com and www.YouTube.com/ComicFrontline

Video Version: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T52RiZys33M

Comic Frontline Live #113: Diversity NOW!

The crew is back with a full cast as they discuss the latest in comic and related media news, discuss Top 5 picks, and the new titles coming from Marvel NOW! in October!

Find more at www.comicfrontline.com and www.youtube.com/comicfrontline

Video Version:

Comic News Insider Episode 684 – The Beautiful Ones!

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Comic News Insider: Episode 684 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

Reviews: 4 Kids Walk Into A Bank #1, Aloha Hawaiian Dick #1, Dept H #1, Joyride #1, Game of Thrones S6 premiere, Lucifer S1 finale

Jimmy is joined in studio by frequent co-host Emily Edwards! They talk about their love of Prince before heading off to see Purple Rain in the theater (Emily’s first time!). News includes: The Inhumans movie has been pulled from its 2019 release date, Pearl Mackie will be the new Doctor Who Companion, an “outlandish” new Voltron: Legendary Defender comic mini-series is coming and will tie-in to the upcoming animated series, Guardians of the Galaxy 2 cast Nathan Fillion as Wonder Man, the new X-Men: Apocalypse trailer confirms the return of Wolverine, and Emma Stone has been cast as Cruella de Vil in upcoming spin-off film Cruella. Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love! Also, get a hold of us!

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Comics Alternative for Young Readers: Reviews of Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales: Alamo All-Stars, The Nameless City, and Paper Girls, Vol. 1

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Of Conflicts and Outsiders

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This month on The Comics Alternative‘s Young Readers series, the Two Hep Cats with PhDs Talking about Comics review three new releases that are different in terms of setting and genre, but take on a common theme: the conflict that can occur when the inhabitants of a city or a region are confronted by outsiders who wish to stake their claim on the land itself or to alter the daily lives of the indigenous people who have lived there for a very long time.

Andy kicks off the show by introducing readers to another volume in Nathan Hale’s popular historical fiction series for middle school readers, Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales. The newest installment, Alamo All-Stars, presents a gripping tale of the battles that ensue among a number of groups who vie to take possession of the landmass that would eventually become the US state of Texas. As with other volumes in the series, the text begins as Nathan Hale, the captured Revolutionary War spy, extends his life by entertaining those British soldiers who are ordered to hang him for treason against the king. As Andy points out, even though the Alamo All-Stars focuses most specifically on the events leading up to and just after the battle at the Alamo in 1836, readers are encouraged to compare 19th-century immigration debates that set off conflicts between the Mexican government and the US immigrants, known as Texians, to the debates that continue today in relation to Mexican immigration to the US. In addition to highlighting Hale’s ability to put forward a complicated geopolitical conflict in ways that are engaging and even, at times, gently humorous, namelesscity_insideAndy and Gwen point to the useful resources for young readers, including a bibliography of history texts on Texas and Mexican history, and helpful resources for teachers and parents, including study guides that are available from Amulet Books’ website.

Next, Gwen introduces Faith Erin Hicks’s highly anticipated first volume in a fantasy graphic trilogy, The Nameless City, published by First Second and geared towards a middle-grade and high-school audience. The prologue introduces the reader to Daidu, a bustling city that sits in a strategic stretch of land that links a major river to the ocean. The narrator, a young explorer, notes that while “the City is named over and over” by conquering forces from the neighboring Dao, Laio, and Yisun Empires, no one has been able “to name it for long,” so the indigenous people have chosen to call it the Nameless City and to call themselves “the nameless.” As the story unfolds, Kai, the son of a prominent general from the Dao Empire, the city’s current ruling power, travels to the Nameless City in order to train to become a warrior. However, Kai is more fascinated with books and learning and soon becomes acquainted with Rat, a homeless orphan whose parents were killed during the Dao conquest. Andy notes that while the friendship that grows between the characters might first appear to be right out of a clichéd “different side of the tracks” plot, Hicks’s storytelling is far more sophisticated. As the narrative progresses, Rat and Kai learn from each other and join forces to encourage the city’s rulers to see beyond their dismissive view of the indigenous culture. papergirls_insideBoth Andy and Gwen admire Jordie Bellaire’s accomplished and effective work as colorist, and they point out Hicks’s ability to depict characters in motion in ways that are both visually stunning and effective in moving the narrative along.

The show concludes with a review of the first volume of Brian K. Vaughan and Cliff Chiang’s teen sci-fi series, Paper Girls, a collection of the first five issues of the Image Comics series. Set in 1988 on the day after Halloween, the story follows four twelve-year-old paper carriers who find themselves caught in the midst of what appears to be an alien invasion. Gwen praises the realism of the setting and the convincing portrayal of female adolescence as strengths of the series, and Andy emphasizes how the darker side of the 1980s emerges as the text unfolds. While some of the violence and language marks this as a series for older teens, the two PhDs suggest that these elements add verisimilitude to the text. They also advise parents that while there are other Vaughan texts, such as the Runaways series, that would be a good follow up for teen readers, there are other titles that Vaughan has written that are definitely more appropriate for an adult audience. Both Gwen and Andy highly recommend Paper Girls, Vol. 1 and are eager to see what happens next in the series.

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Comics Alternative, Episode 162: Reviews of Six Recent #1 Issues

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“There’s a lot of liquid and goo in this first issue”

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For the past several weeks the Two Guys with PhDs have been looking mostly at book-length works, trades, original graphic novels, and archival collections. This week, Andy W. and Derek thought that they’d catch up with their single-comic-book-issue reading by focusing on six recent #1 titles:

  • Paper Girls – Brian K. Vaughan and Cliff Chiang (Image Comics)
  • Monstress – Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda (Image Comics)
  • The Goddamned – Jason Aaron and R. M. Guéra (Image Comics)
  • Klaus – Grant  Morrison and Dan Mora (BOOM! Studios)
  • Snow Blind – Ollie Masters and Tyler Jenkins (BOOM! Studios)
  • James Bond – Warren Ellis and Jason Masters (Dynamite Entertainment)

The guys note that there’s an embarrassment of riches to choose from, as there have been many recent first issues from some powerhouse creators, including Brian K. Vaughan, Jason Aaron, Grant Morrison, and Warren Ellis. For the most part, each of the titles from these writers is a home run, although Andy is not quite impressed with Klaus, feeling that it’s a little too formulaic. The guys also note that The Goddamned isn’t for those with Puritanical sensibilities, James Bond breaks free of the property’s Hollywood shackles, and Paper Girls visits the 1980s in a fun and non-stereotypical way. (Plus, Derek is glad that there are no Goonies references anywhere to be found.) Snow Blind is a great first issue, as well, setting up what promises to be an intelligent four-issue crime/noir miniseries…although given the potential in this inaugural issue, this story seems that it could go on for more than four installments. And both Andy and Derek are bowled away by Liu and Takeda’s Monstress. Not only is the storytelling sophisticated, intricate, and intelligently populated, but there is over sixty pages of story in this first issue. The guys are used to oversized #1 issues from Image — in fact, they’re getting spoiled by them — but the amount of material in this comic goes above and beyond! Finally, the guys wrap up my commenting briefly on some of the other recent #1 issues that they could have included in this episode, such as Greg Rucka and Nicola Scott’s Black Magick (Image Comics); Garth Ennis and Keith Burns’s Johnny Red (Titan Comics); Mike Mignola, Christopher Golden, and Patric Reynolds’s Joe Golem: Occult Detective (Dark Horse Comics); and Sam Humphries and Tommy Patterson’s Citizen Jack (Image Comics). And then there are the various Vertigo #1 issues that have been coming out recently. But that’s the subject of another podcast!

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Top 5 Comics Podcast Episode 66

Comic book round table. This week, we have – Paper Girls #1, Doctor Strange #1, Batman and Robin Eternal #1, Survivor Club #1, Avengers #0 2015, and more ………..

Run Times –podcast logo 66

News In Comics….? – 4:41- 7:05

Paper Girls #1- 7:16- 27:40

Doctor Strange #1– 27:40- 48:19

Batman and Robin Eternal #1– 48:19– 1:02:53

Survivor Club #1– 1:02:53- 1:14:33

Avengers #0 2015 – 1:14:33- 1:28:52

Books to watch – 1:28:52

*** If you would like to ask a question of our panel you can email at – top5podcast@hotmail.com ***