Monday, January 17, 2011

Comic Quickies or New Beginnings

I've been up to plenty of new comic reading lately, I just haven't had much chance to share.  This week's edition of Comic Quickies features four titles that all share something in common, they are either the first issue of a new series or the first issue in a new story line.

Who Is Jake Ellis #1: This comic was easily my pleasant surprise of the month.  This one looked cool in the previews, and the issue itself exceeded my expectations.  The comic begins with a deal gone wrong, and some shady business men trying to kill our main man Jon.  As Jon makes a nifty escape, the comic comes to a full stop and replays the last fifteen seconds, this time showing the same exact opening scene, but with Jake Ellis, Jon's invisible guardian-angel-type-dude, in the picture this time showing the role he played in aiding Jon's escape.

From there the issue speeds along with great pacing.  Jon is pretty much on the run for reasons not totally clear yet, aside from the few details that could be parceled out from the opening scene.  I gotta say that I got totally sucked into this one, and I'm most likely on the hook for the duration of the five issue series.  I wanna know more about what is going on, and definitely wanna know who is Jake Ellis.

Infinite Vacation #1: Another debut here.  Infinite Vacation takes a fairly common comic idea: that there are millions of alternate universes all populated with the same people but where in one world a guy might be a janitor, in another he might be president.   In Infinite Vacation people have the ability to download an app to their smart phone and buy their way into one of their own alternate lives.  The changes don't have to be as extreme as switching from a janitor to the president, you could simply switch to the universe where you had the balls to talk the pretty girl who smiled at you in the coffee shop.

The main guy in Infinite Vacation, Mark, seems to be pretty bored with his own existence and switches lives about nine times a day, in the top 20th percentile for switching.  I get the feeling Mark is your typical bored rich kid, since it is pretty costly to make changes to other yous.  One cheaper option, that Mark uses quite often, is to simply visit other universes and hang out with say, the Mark who decided to open a surf shop in Tahiti.  Mark seems like a pretty confused guy who is looking for the happiest way to live his life, but things get even more confusing when Marks from the alternate realities start getting killed soon after our Mark visits them.

The concept behind Infinite Vacation is pretty interesting, but I'm not sure how it will sustain a full on monthly series.  I definitely enjoyed this first issue, and I'm interested to see where this one is going.  I'm not totally in love, but I'm willing to pick up a few more issues to give it a shot.  I gotta add that there is some seriously trippy art work in this comic.  Very pleasing to the eye.

Chew #16: There's strange alien writing in the sky, the future's uncertain, and the end is likely near, but that doesn't stop Tony Chu from trying to figure out what the hell the alien writing means.  Sure, everybody is on edge, including Tony's partner John Colby, who has taken up heavy drinking, but they need to find a guy named Daniel Migdalo who might be able to translate the alien script.  You see, Migdalo is voresophic, which means he gets smarter with the more food he eats. Since Colby is out of commission, Chu teams up with agent Velenzano to try and track down Migdalo.  As you might expect from Chew, things end poorly for Chu.

It looks like Chu and the other FDA agents have been forced to switch their focus from the chicken prohibition to dealing with the strange Alien writing.  An interesting side story that takes place in this issue is that of the former fried chicken restaurant Mother Clucker's.  It looks like with the help of D-Bear the restaurant will be reopening its doors.  I'm excited to see what this little story thread leads to as it parallels the main story line.

The Sixth Gun #7:  After an epic opening storyline that filled the first six issues, The Sixth Gun begins the Crossroads storyline.  The opening pages of this issue find Becky and Drake Sinclair laying low in New Orleans.  Becky is still bound to the 6th gun, and Drake is in control of four others.  The final gun is still in the hands of Miss Hume, but she seems to be out of the picture for the moment.  This new issue introduces a potential new player, Kirby Hale, a pretty boy who flirts with Becky at a saloon, then single handedly destroys a gang of thugs after getting called out for a standoff.  Hale comes across as the golden boy hero, but knowing Cullen Bunn's writing style, Hale could end up being the exact opposite of what I think he is.

Drake Sinclair's voyage through the creepy ass cypress swamp is shaping up to be one hell of a supernatural adventure.  It is nice to see the story moving forward, but I can't say that I have too big of a clue as to where it is headed.  All signs point to more greatness though as Bunn sets the table nicely.  Definitely one of the best on-going titles out there. 

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