Flash Gordon Annual 2014 Written by Chris Eliopoulos, Ben Acker, Ben Blacker, Jeff Parker and Nate Crosby
Art by Chris Eliopoulos, Faith Erin Hicks, Lee Ferguson, Jeremy Treece, Craig Rousseau
Colors by Jeremy Treece, Marissa Louise, Omi Remalante
Letters by Chris Eliopoulos, Simon Bowland,
Cover art by Marc Laming & Jordan Boyd Dynamite Entertainment
Release Date: November 26, 2014
Cover Price: $7.99
Flash Gordon Annual 2014 is a really more than just an annual. It’s a love letter to the franchise from the creators that all had their work published in it. And, boy, there sure were a lot of them. With five different stories covering the whole Flash Gordon universe, almost nothing goes untouched. But, is it worth the $7.99 price tag and your time?
So, The Last of Us: American Dreams, is based on a recent hit video game. This has been happening a lot lately. Like, a lot a lot.
It’s also co-written by Neil Druckmann, who is the writer for the aforementioned video game: The Last of Us. He is the creative director for the game and has written for a few other big budget video games. Now, the story lines of video games have come a long way since Doom, or even Quake. In 1998, when Half-Life was released, it was hailed as a landmark in storytelling in an FPS. Since then, the quality of the story has become more central to the quality of game. You know this, I know this, anyone that is even remotely into gaming knows this, and I don’t need to make this a recent history recap. Still, this smacks of a commercial cash-in, and one that serves only to sell a new action figure, or some such, and eke out a few more dollars from the beleaguered masses. Hooray.
But it isn’t. Not really, anyways. Faith Erin Hicks (Friends With Boys), has been gaining popularity for a bit now, and while I wouldn’t say this is the culmination of that, she isn’t Alan Dean Foster, or a similar warm body contracted for a product tie-in. What she and Drukmann have managed to create is a teenage-rebellion story enmeshed in the post-apocalyptic world of a zombie-infection outbreak.
Zombies Calling Written and Illustrated By Faith Erin Hicks
Slave Labor Comics
Cover price: $9.95; On sale now
Do you believe that zombies will take over the world someday? Do you spend a lazy evening watching Shaun of the Dead or 28 Days Later for the fortieth time? Did you know that a spork can be a handy weapon when the zombies come? Do you insist on buying every zombie movie and comic book the day it’s released? Do you eat, drink and breathe all things zombie? Or wish that George Romero was your grandfather? If you do then Zombies Calling is right up your alley.
Already noticed for her online comic Ice, which was nominated for a Joe Shuster Award in 2006, it was Zombies Calling that actually earned Faith Erin Hicks the prestigious award in 2008. This 104-page graphic novel, the first print work to be released by the newcomer, is set in an urban college town in Canada. That’s where we find our protagonist, Joss, enjoying a lazy evening watching zombie movies with friends. She has an obsession with all things British; from the slang she uses right down to the Union Jack tank top that she always wears. However, she also has the normal trials of a college student — exams, financial aid, and what not. Her dorm-mate, Sonnet, is the intelligent, Gothy, level-headed member of the group. Then there is Robyn, the cute (but somewhat clueless) boy who rounds out the crew. Each is recognizable to the reader; we’ve all known these guys. They’re at every university and coffeehouse in any college town.