Reading Pile: 4/10/14

Reading Pile: 4/10/14

Shutter, What If, & Dead Letters

Shutter #1- An impressive first issue with a great set-up, a strong visual narrative, solid characterization, and an overall cohesive and imaginative sense of storytelling. This feels like the next Saga or East of West to me in the string of big Image hits, and the team of Joe Keating and Leila Del Duca knocked this one out of the park. If you just want a fun story with a good female lead and a nice blend of sci-fi and fantasy then you should check this out. Plus the back-up features are pretty great, so the entire package is money well spent. A+

What If? Age of Ultron #2- Keating’s on fire this week because this self-contained What If was one of the best short Marvel stories I’ve read in a long time. It’s a reunion of the New Fantastic Four featuring a maritime theme Wolverine, zen Hulk, retired sub-urban Spider-Man, and a polite child-like Ghost Rider. Ramon Villalobos’ artwork is the perfect quirky fit to the story. The best part is that it virtually has nothing to do with the Age of Ultron. Seriously, they shoe-horned the connection point to Ultron on the first page and then it was like Keating went OKYESGOODLETSGOZENHULKTIME. This is the perfect example of what a good What If series can be and why it should be a regular thing both at Marvel and at DC (Elseworlds). Do yourself a favor and grab this issue if you just want some fun. A

Dead Letters #1- I’m actually much more interested in the art and the actual storytelling than I am the plot and concept. Conceptually I feel like I’ve read similar things before (person trapped in city that’s basically Purgatory/Limbo , dealing with abandonment of God, blah blah blah), and sorry if that seems like a spoiler but it was fairly obvious halfway through the book. Visually, Chris Visions’ artwork is a little rough in some places but is very dynamic and stylistic. I feel that if he tightened up his lines and breakdowns a bit then the story will have a very strong flow that’s supported by his unique style. Christopher Sebela’s scripting was fairly tight as well and he has a strong leaning towards crime and noir storytelling. I think they were a little too eager to give the hook right off the bat without a nicer build-up or sense of mystery. There’s a lot of potential here, it just needs a little fine tuning. B