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Comic Review: Doctor Who: The Tenth Doctor #5
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Doctor Who: The Tenth Doctor #5
Written by Nick Abadzis
Art by Elena Casagrande, Alice X Zhang
Colors by Arianna Florean
Letters by Richard Starkings, Jimmy Betancourt
Covers by Verity Glass
Titan Comics
Release Date: December 17, 2014
Cover Price: $3.99

The beauty and wonder of Doctor Who is that each series has a unique flavor to the stories. Doctor Who: The Tenth Doctor #5 follows the adventures of Ten right after he and Donna Noble part ways, and it feels every bit like a true David Tennant-era episode.

In the issues leading up to this one, the Doctor stopped by New York City and was drawn into a fight between aliens who feed on fear and were launching an invasion of Earth. They made their way here through the washing machines at Gabby Gonzalez’s family laundromat, and she soon teams up with the Doctor to fight off the invasion. Once that’s taken care of, Gabby joins the Doctor on a trip to Ouloumos where she can join a creative community and flex her artistic skill. This, in true Who fashion, gets her mixed up with an alien that has a viscous clone trying to destroy the art gallery, the Doctor, and Gabby.

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Comic Review: Conan The Avenger #8
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Conan The Avenger #8
Written by Fred Van Lente
Art by Brian Ching
Colors by Michael Atiyeh
Letters by Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Cover art by John Picacio
Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: November 26, 2014
Cover Price: $3.50

Conan The Avenger #8 is the second part in “The Damned Horde” storyline that was started last issue. Conan and a VERY mixed up army set out to rescue the sister of one of their own, who’s being held prisoner by a weirdly SOUTHERN villain. I wasn’t aware that Cimmeria had a Mason-Dixon line.

Writer Fred Van Lente delivers another solid issue of Conan. There’s a lot going on this issue, and if you haven’t read part one of this story, I suggest you do so before picking up this issue. First, because it’s awesome; and second, just so you’re up to speed on Conan and his mission, allies, enemies, and victims. This… is the fun part of the story. Where all the action is, where the plan is set into motion. Also, we get to find out a little bit more about the “bad guy” behind all this, as well as the “damsel in distress” that was introduced last issue. There’s some great classic Conan characterization in this issue. Van Lente proves that Conan is many things besides a barbarian. In fact, he’s a LOT more: strategist, leader, motivator, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

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Comic Review: Conan The Avenger #2
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Conan the Avenger #2
Written by Fred Van Lente
Art by Brian Ching
Colors by Michael Atiyeh
Letters by Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Cover art by Killian Plunkett
Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: May 28, 2014
Cover Price: $3.50

WOW!!!! Comics don’t get much better than Conan the Avenger #2!!! It’s got EVERYTHING you could want or hope for in a Conan comic book.

I’ve enjoyed Fred Van Lente’s books in the past a great deal, but I had no idea he had such great ideas and stories for Conan in him. This is a Conan that we don’t get to see that often. Usually he’s fighting off other barbarians, pirates, or monsters, but here we get to see him tackle the spirit world. How can he kill something that’s all ready dead? The answer will surprise you! Beyond all this awesomeness, there’s a really great story, with just enough hopelessness for the character the reader believes that this might be the adventure he doesn’t walk away from, even though we know better. The villains are believable, and that’s what made me actually get nervous for Conan a couple of times. And, Van Lente throws in some pretty great “classic Conan” moments.

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Comic Review: Conan The Avenger #1
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Conan The Avenger #1
Based on the work of Robert E. Howard
Script by Fred Van Lente
Art by Brian Ching
Colors by Michael Atiyeh
Letters by Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Cover by Iain McCaig
Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: April 23, 2014
Cover Price: $3.50

By Crom! Now this is how a Conan story should read! Conan The Avenger #1 has everything you would expect from Robert E. Howard himself. Now granted, it is based upon a synopsis Howard wrote but never completed, but the vast majority of this is original…and awesome! It isn’t just that the writing seems appropriate, it’s that it’s paired perfectly with art that reminds me of the Conan comics from decades ago. Read on my friends for more information.

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Comic Review: Conan and The People Of The Black Circle #1
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Conan and the People of the Black Circle #1
Written by Fred Van Lente
Art by Ariel Olivetti
Letters by Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Cover by Ariel Olivetti
Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: October 23, 2013
Cover Price: $3.50

Based on a couple of panels of preview art I saw, I was set to love Conan and the People of the Black Circle #1. Painted! And Ariel Olivetti‘s Conan looked like a real badass. I even pulled up my online pull list to put it in this week’s basket.

But then I got my advance reading copy and with each successive page, my initial enthusiasm waned. There’s something just”¦missing here. It felt flat overall, lacking dynamism and fluidity, with some pages containing only three or four illustrations per. There were some compositional elements that made it seem like the characters weren’t looking/reacting to each other. It also appeared that a profile illo of the evil sorcerer was repurposed three times, and not for dramatic effect.

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