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Archive for the 'Gregg Senko' Category

AfterShock Comics Unleashes ‘Artemis & the Assassin’

Aftershock Comics released a new title this past week and it has been on my radar since Tuesday to get that story under my belt. Like so many around the globe, I’ve been relegated to working from home for at least a few days, which has mean no drive to work. Considering my commute is an hour each way, that time has been spent catching up on some much needed reading and Aftershock’s latest effort, Artemis and the Assassin, was destined to be part of that. Created by Stephanie Philips (Descendant), this series is already off to a heart-pounding start.

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‘X-Ray Robot’ is Curiously Magnetic

One can always rely on the smaller publishers (Image, Dark Horse, etc.) to create some of the more curious and quirky stories in the comic book world. Dark Horse is no exception with its latest effort, X-Ray Robot. As the old adage goes, you should never judge a book by its cover, but I found the sci-fi-heavy, pop culture-laden front of issue #1 to be so much in my wheelhouse, that I could not deny a chance to at least read what the book’s description was all about.  Once I saw dialogue about inter-dimensional travel and the origins of the universe, I was all in to kick back and see what this title had to offer.

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Dark Horse Fires Off First Issue of ‘Bang!’

Looking for a break from your standard super hero tales? Tired of interdimensional villains trying to step on Earth? Dark Horse has a flavor that is off the beaten path, though not one that hasn’t been done before. Written by Matt Kindt (X-O Manowar) with artwork by Wilfredo Torres (Black Panther), we delve into a tale of espionage and cryptic novel-writing in Bang! that will throw you for a loop before you can say ‘Agent Thomas Cord’.

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Superman: Red Son (4k Blu-ray Review)

In 2003, DC Comics did a total 180 with the world’s most popular superhero. The mega publisher released a three-issue mini-series titled Superman: Red Son. The Mark Millar-written tale (also known for his work on Kick-ass) could be construed as a “what if” in the sense that instead of Kal-El landing in Kansas after the destruction of Krypton, his escape pod crashed in the Soviet Union. Clark Kent is a name you won’t see in this story. Superman, however, is a name you’ll hear as he serves under USSR communist leader Josef Stalin in DC’s latest animated feature, Superman: Red Son directed by Sam Liu.

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‘Bloodshot’ Eyes Prize Above Mediocrity

Back in 1989, a startup comic book publisher known as Valiant had arrived on the scene. The company made it a point to offer up characters a little more complex than your average super hero as these newly developed personalities had allegiances and demeanors that were not always so clear cut. Some of their more premier characters and successful titles include X-O Manowar, Ninjak, Turok: Dinosaur Hunter and one in particular known as Bloodshot. The story of Bloodshot featured an expert soldier maimed by war and reclaimed by science only to build a better soldier. With a repeatedly wiped memory and the ability to take a ridiculously inhuman beating, Bloodshot has become the first Valiant character to hit the big screen.

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DC’s ‘Plunge’ is No Routine Dive

Debuting in February under DC’s Black Label (for readers age 17 and older), comic book writer/creator Joe Hill proudly released his latest effort, Plunge. Hill is best known as the mastermind behind the best-selling Locke & Key series, which is now a popular Netflix series. Plunge offers up a very different feel from its mainstream predecessor, though there is no less suspense in this nautical adventure. At two issues in, things are ramping up in this superbly paced story.

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Honey and Blue Make Their Musical Mark

February is a cold, cold month here on the north coast. Most people are hunkered down somewhere indoors, save for your skiers and other winter sport aficionados. It is certainly a little out of the norm to see any kind of outdoor gatherings, let alone a festival. Wait, festival? Here? In Cleveland? Uh, yeah. The Brite Winter Festival entered its 11th consecutive year and is dotted with various food trucks, ice carving demos, and of course the highlight of the event, the music.

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Coin Releases Third Album ‘Dreamland’

Last week, Nashville-based indie rock band Coin presented the world with their third album, titled Dreamland. The band’s first outing, a self-title record, was a largely upbeat, go-after-it-and-get-it feel accompanied with a couple tunes which occasionally slowed the pace. The second album, How Will You Know if You Never Try, featured an array of songs that seemed to have matured from its predecessor. That is not a negative connotation by any means as they were two, for the most part, different sounding records that validated the Coin’s multi-faceted persona. With the close of February comes Dreamland, the band’s first album in nearly three years.

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New Marvel Titles & Free Comic Book Day

With Free Comic Book Day a little over a month away, comic book publishers are busy promoting their titles that will be released on the fan-favorite, unofficial holiday. Until then, there is still plenty to get excited over, especially from the good folks over at Marvel who always have a slew of new titles up their sleeve. With a new series released this week, free titles on the horizon and an old face getting his own series this spring, there is indeed plenty to prepare for, Bub.   Snikt!

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‘Goalie’ Tells Real Life Story of Terry Sawchuk

Directed by Adrianna Maggs, who is best known for her writing on TV series like Frontier and Saving Hope, the film Goalie takes audiences behind the scenes of late NHL goalie Terry Sawchuk. Sawchuk’s career took place from 1949 to 1970 where he was a seven-time all star and four-time Vezina Trophy winner (best goalie). In that span, he amassed 103 shutouts and 445 wins eventually supplanting him in the Hockey Hall of Fame. Still, his accolades on the ice were never medicine for his off-ice struggles. Maggs guides us through Sawchuk’s tragic story.

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Darth Vader Returns to Marvel

Technically he never left, but the black-clad Sith Lord has had two ongoing monthly series from Marvel in recent memory with this being the third. The most recent was the 25-issue series that was absolutely brilliant from start to finish (and one I hated to see come to an end). While that prior series took place during the tale end of Order 66, the new series picks up during the events of The Empire Strikes Back when he and Luke faced off in person for the first time.

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Swamp Thing: The Complete Series (Blu-ray Review)

DC Comics has made a concerted effort to release some top tier programming on their streaming DC Universe platform.  Amidst their growing library of shows include Doom Patrol, Teen Titans, both of which are live action, and the insanely fun Harley Quinn cartoon.  Within that list of title is the king of the green, defender of the bayou, Swamp Thing.  The live action series debuted in 2019 and was unfortunately cancelled after one season, largely due to budget issues.  To put it plainly, the show got too expensive.  Swamp Thing comes out on Blu-ray this Tuesday, February 11th, and I had a chance to check out ahead of time. Let’s take a look how the ten-episode, two-disc series looks.

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Gregg’s Tremendously Tantalizing Top 10 Films of 2019

This list had me worried at the end of the summer.  It was rather sparse and I wondered if, for the first time, I wouldn’t have a sufficiently laid out list of top ten films on the year.  Once autumn arrived, however, movies started surfacing in theaters that would largely construct the upper half of the list below.  While I did miss out on Knives Out and Uncut Gems, I did manage to sneak in the Jumanji sequel at the end.  Funny and fun, yes.  As good as its predecessor, no.  Thus, those are three movies not on the list.  With that being said, there were plenty of others to pull from in the pool of 40+ films I experienced at the theater in 2019. Before we get to the ten on my list, here are some films that stood out in one form or another.  I laughed, I cried, I fell asleep.  We covered the emotional spectrum in films released this year.

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The Best Comics of 2019

I do long for the days of Robert Venditti writing X-O Manowar.  I also miss the ongoing Vader series dearly.  Alas, all good things must come to an end, but fear not!  Each year the comic book industry provides new surprises as well as continuity of greatness.  In addition, it is important to mention the case of two landmark achievements in 2019.  Both the series Detective Comics and Marvel Comics each reached their 1,000th issue this year and both were done very differently.  The former was a collection of short Batman stories, while the latter was a massive collection of one-page stories ranging from Daredevil to Darth Vader.  Personally, I found nothing to be gained by a story contained on a single page, but to each their own.  Enough talk, onto the awards!

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Gregg’s Top 10 Blu-rays of 2019

Happy Holiday, folks! This time of year means the WSB staff opens the floodgates on their top 10’s. While I didn’t experience the treasure trove of films in the theater this year I had hoped for (by quality, not amount), the list of quality Blu-rays was lengthy, but alas, narrow it to ten we must. I did finally experience what WSB-founder Blu-ray Brian has been stating for some time now about Disney Blu-rays. While I absolutely loved Captain Marvel as a film, the audio on its Blu-ray release was incredibly mundane and severely disappointing. Shame on you, Disney. Off the list it went. Rest assured, however, there were plenty of titles clamoring to make our lists and while Captain Marvel on disc was left in the dust, there is more than enough entertainment to fill out ten impressive releases.

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Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order (PS4 Review)

“It will be a day-long remembered.” While Darth Vader can be quoted as saying that, I want to borrow it for the recent release of the latest Star Wars game, Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order from EA. When attending Star Wars Celebration this past April in Chicago, I had the privilege of attending the live panel discussing the game. It is, after all, Star Wars, so it’s going to have that massive attention right there. On top of that, fans of the franchise have wanted a solo player game for ages. The last Star Wars title I can remember that fit the bill was Force Unleashed II and that was nearly a decade ago. Games like the recent Battlefront and Battlefront II had single-player scenarios, but those titles are online multi-players more than anything. Ask, and you shall receive, though, as we now have the solo Star Wars game we have been after. Now that it has been out slightly over a week, here’s a look at Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.

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‘Coin’ Spends Talent on Great Music

A few months ago I wrote about Fitz & the Tantrum’s new album and how I discovered this impending release after seeing them live this past summer. The band that had opened for them was a group out of Nashville called Coin. I was already an established Fitz fan, but Coin was previously an unknown ensemble to me. That evening certainly changed a few things in my musical world.

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DC Delivers ‘Year of the Villain: The Joker’

DC has been releasing one-shot issues of various villains throughout 2019, each a single tale dedicated to one baddie. All going under the heading Year of the Villain, we have thus far been graced with issues covering the Riddler, Black Adam, Sinestro, Black Mask and Lex Luthor. The latest addition to this doom-dealing lineup is none other than the most popular DC villain, the Joker. Hot on the heels of the successful motion picture of everyone’s favorite clown (sorry, Pennywise), we go back to the ink and paper roots for Batman’s arch nemesis.

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