It’s a shorter pull list for us this week at Nerdophiles. Sam continues to enjoy John Flood, and finds that she prefers James Tynion IV’s The Woods over his UFOlogy series that limps to a close this week.

Jackson continues to enjoy the subversion of 90s tropes in Midnighter (and shares his favorite 90s comics moment if you read to the end of his review).

What did you read? What series have you been enjoying? Let us know in the comments!


Sam’s Reads

John Flood #4 (of 6)

johnflood4Author: Justin Jordan
Artist: Jorge Coelho
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Source: BOOM! Studios DRC

This book just gets better and better with each issue. It’s so fun and quirky that even though it’s pretty formulaic when you get right down to things just never seem to get old. I think it’s just because John Flood is such an eccentric character. As Berry says, he can’t be sure any of his world is real because of what the CIA did to him. So he lives his life differently from other eccentric detective sorts.

Having caught up with the killer in the last issue, John found himself fighting one on one with him in a burning building. After a bit of exposition tying the two together through the experiments done on them we learn that it’s not the CIA that’s behind them. And while they may have similar origins they are very different creatures all together. Luckily Berry manages to save John and Sandy – their victim – calls her cop husband and the fire department. The killer escapes and John gets taken into custody.

We pick up with John explaining himself to Detective Andy in the interrogation room that we first saw in the first issue. So we’re starting to come full circle. John explains his whole crazy plan to Andy while the rest of the city implodes into chaotic violence around them. Turns out – that’s a diversion. John goes to the police department because it’s supposedly ‘safe’ to buy time to draw our killer to him. Aaaaaaand that’s where we end everything. Damn cliffhangers.

UFOlogy #6 (0f 6)

ufology6Author: James Tynion IV & Noah J. Yuenkel
Artist: Matthew Fox
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Source: BOOM! Studios DRC

Initially I was a big fan of this series. I love James Tynion IV, the book looks amazing, and the premise sounded strong. But unfortunately this is one of those books that just didn’t live up to the hype for me.

This final issues wraps things up for the most part. The kids defeat the bad guy and the aliens recover their tech and start on their way home. Malcolm comes to terms with his mother’s abandonment – though it turns out she’s actually alive and something else happened to her. (Of course, none of that gets built upon so it doesn’t really matter and, honestly, would have been better left with her just abandoning them.) Becky warms up to the idea of college and looking into careers in fields other than law enforcement.

And it all feels rushed. The story got confusing and convoluted at times. It went down paths that were effectively useless to the story. I liked Malcolm and Becky a lot. Their development was what made this book interesting. If the story had focused more on them and less on the alien mystery it would have been great. As it is, we got a pretty lackluster end to a book that started out great just five issues back.

The Woods #17

woods17Author: James Tynion IV
Artist: Michael Dialynas
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Source: BOOM! Studios DRC

On the other hand, The Woods continues to be a a decent read. Everything at Bay Pointe has basically gone to shit. The New Londoners are leaving – with the obvious exception of Sander – because they don’t want tot get mixed up in Casey’s dealings with the horde. Isaac is in a coma having every one of his insecurities taken advantage of by an evil manifestation of Adrian’s ghost that may or may not actually be Adrian. Karen refuses to talk to anyone. Casey has won the student body election and the kids’ only hope at figuring out what he’s got planned is for Calder to go play spy.

Everything is dark and dangerous and terrible. Which is great. The book took a pretty big time jump during which everything went just fine. It’s about time that the kids face their newest challenge. What I love is that even though the horde are clearly meant to be bad guys the New Londoners aren’t exactly the good guys either. They never have been.

From planning on forcing the students to join their armies to effectively creating their own worst enemy, they’re not exactly the best people around. What’s going to be interesting is to see how Bay Pointe emerges from this latest crisis and the sort of community they are truly going to become.

Seriously, this series just continues to up the ante and I love it.


samstaffpic2Sam Wildman is a co-founder and co-editor at Nerdophiles. She’d hang with John Flood. He seems cool. Crazy. But at least he’s never boring. Follow her on twitter @samaside.


Jackson’s Reads

Midnighter #6

300360._SX640_QL80_TTD_Author: Steve Orlando
Artist: ACO
Publisher: DC Comics

2015 has been a year of many things in comics but none more so than an increasing demand for diversity, both in characters and creators. While DC hasn’t made the same waves as Marvel and Image in pushing its more diverse slate of characters, it deserves recognition at least for the continued excellency of Midnighter.

I’ve said before that Steve Orlando, ACO and Stephen Mooney and Alec Morgan’s Midnighter has been a wild ride, mostly by putting its central protagonist in increasingly insane situations. Midnight continuously faces stakes rarely seen in other superhero comics and in this week’s #6, he’s in an increasingly personal one. After he and his boyfriend Matt are targeted by a crew of Multiplex dupes, Midnighter heads down south to protect the people who’ve come under the gun because of his sexuality.

In a lot of ways, Midnighter #6 plays off the conventional storylines about characters coming out or dealing with their families. Here, the lovers are more concerned with taking down homophobes and assassins while a story about sexuality and a culture of silence bubbles away in the background. ACO is back on art duty in this issue and he’s gained a reputation for emphasizing the sex appeal of the characters here and it lends the same over-the-top thrills as the brutal violence.

However, the book is at its strongest when it starts to break down story tropes. As Midnighter starts to lose his edge and realize he’s up against something he can’t fully understand, ACO’s tight, computer lined art breaks down into something looser and more splintered in a thrillingly bizarre way. By the issue’s end, when the final twist is pulled and the story’s villainous puppet master is revealed, there’s a sense that readers have been been as thoroughly manipulated as the protagonist. It’s a thrilling reversal of expectations.

It’d be easy to label Midnighter, like its central character, as a relic of ‘90s excess but Orlando and his host of artistic collaborators have made a comic so consistently surprising in its portrayal of sex, sexuality, and bone-shattering violence. It’s precise, purposeful comics at its best and it deserves to be one of the biggest comics being published right now. Honestly, I don’t know what else to say. Are you currently reading Midnighter? If the answer is no, go read Midnighter. I’ll wait. I’m still going to be here. I don’t have a lot else to do, guys.


AslO75XCIAExmT4Jackson Adams is a staff writer at Nerdophiles.  His favorite moment of ’90s excess is when Captain America turned into a wolf and fought Cable and Wolverine. Follow him on Twitter @JacksonInACup.


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