Tag Archives: Micheal Heisler

Review of Tomb Raider #1

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By Mariko Tamaki, Phillip Sevy, Micheal Atiyeh, Micheal Heisler

Dark Horse attempts to bridge the gap between the last critically acclaimed Tomb Raider game and its anticipated sequel. Written by Mariko Tamaki, expectations are set high for this mini.

The plot of the issue is pretty standard, a glimpse of the present, flashback to a short time previous (one or two weeks), end on a cliffhanger. If you go in expecting something akin to This One Summer, or even TMNT: Casey and April, you’ll come away disappointed.  The issue isn’t bad, but standard fare. It lacks any of the mundane joy of This One Summer or even the intimate character moments of TMNT: Casey and April. Lara Croft is depicted as a strong, independent and competent woman who seeks adventure in her life. I’m assuming that last aspect based on past knowledge instead of anything in this mini, which is a pitfall in assuming every reader has an intimate knowledge of the character and her (rebooted) world at the expense of characterization. Granted, Tamaki cannot make Lara her own and the market lacks for strong female hero’s unencumbered by romantic relationships or male shadows, but that is all that Lara amounts to in this issue.

The art by Phillip Sevy and Micheal Atiyeh is adequate, but feels dated to me in its line-work. They make good use of grids, broken and overlapping, but nothing stands out aside from the early pages of Lara falling in a cavern and her fighting training. The colors seem to flatten the art and contribute to this feeling like the art is from a decade ago. Video Game tie-ins often lack in either story or art, but Tomb Raider 2016 seems to suffer in both.

A mystical macguffin is teased, which reminds me vaguely of Tomb Raider: Cradle of Life and its clear that Lara will learn more about it next issue before beginning her journey proper. It’s hard to find many positives to sell this issue on, other than fans of Lara Croft or simply wanting a basic female heroine to follow until something more exciting comes along.

Rating: Poor, Fair, Good, Great, Excellent

Disclosure: Publisher Dark Horse Comics provided an advance review copy of this comic to Nothing But Comics without any payment between the site and publisher or agreement on the review’s content.

This Damned Band #6 Review

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By Paul Cornell, Tony Parker, Lovern Kindzierski, Micheal Heisler

I had a dream that I read this issue last month and the band got eaten by demons. I was actually pretty close, the band gets eaten by a giant demon and then meets a smaller version of him that deals out punishments for eternal damnation.

It’s been a tumultuous  adventure for MotherFather on their final tour. Paul Cornell wraps it up as only his mind could with a concert that ends on a demonic sacrifice. As it turns out, Clive had been planning this from the beginning so he could jump-start his solo career post-MotherFather. Browley, for his part, turns the tables and convinces the demon that Clive shorted him and signs his fellow bandmates out of hell. The rest of the story ends sort of abruptly without much explained behind the main story conclusion.

On the art side, this could be the best issue of This Damned Band by Tony Parker. He switches up his style between Japanese painting, 70s psychedelic and classic cartooning. I could cut out pages of this book, blow them up and hang them on my wall they’re so good. The fact that Parker can switch between these styles, making them cohesive as well as distinct is a credit to his skill as an artist. Of course, credit is due to Lovern Kindzierski who uses deep reds and bright yellows to enhance Parker’s pencils and inks. Kindzierski’s colors give the art a demension all its own.

Overall, not entirely a strong finish for this miniseries. Like an actual concert, it seems like Cornell came out rocking but by the end was too tired and wanted off the stage. The art almost compensates for this with beautiful illustrations for the horrific events and making the story more grand then it really is. Maybe  Cornell intended for his script to take a backseat for the art, trusting Parker and Kinzierski to do the heavy-lifting of making the story come to life. However, the resolution of Clive’s betrayal, the camera crew documenting the events, the missing wives and girlfriends, all feel like afterthoughts to a giant demon interrupting a rock concert. It entertains in a basic sense. It’s not a terrible ending but does feel like wasted potential.

Rating: Poor, Fair, Good, Great, Excellent

Disclosure: Publisher Dark Horse Comics provided an advance review copy of this comic to Nothing But Comics without any payment between the site or publisher or agreement on the review’s content.

Power Cubed #4 Review

321689._SX640_QL80_TTD_By Aaron Lopresti, Marc Deering, HI-FI Design, Micheal Heisler

Lopresti ends this mini-series with plenty of the humor and wit that he started it with.

Dr.Cruel reveals his plan for World domination, resurrecting Eva Braun (Adolf Hitler’s girlfriend) who will give him the motivation he needs to rule the planet. Kenny of course stops him, rescues his own girlfriend and hands Dr.Cruel over to the FBI. The book ends with Kenny planning to rescue his father.

This issue was the funniest one Lopresti wrote so far, carrying the self-awareness of a Marvel film. Every insane aspect of the story is acknowledged and poked fun at. None of that overshadows the art which Lopresti also handles.

Giant robots, cartoonish-sized bombs, and a Bride of Frankenstein inspired Eva Bride are all rendered with his usual style of detail and rugged style sensibility. His panel composition also keeps the story moving brisk and understandable.

Overall, Lopresti has proven he knows how to draw and tell a story that he wrote. With some assistance from Deering, HI-FI and Heisler, he has a solid miniseries under his belt that doesn’t take itself too seriously.

Rating: Poor, Fair, Good, Great, Excellent

Disclosure: Publisher Dark Horse Comics provided an advance review copy of this comic to Nothing But Comics without any payment between the site or publisher or agreement on the review’s content.