MONTHLY ROUNDUP: JANUARY 2021
This monthly series is dedicated to giving brief reviews to ongoing comic series, allowing us to cover more unique comics in our full Comic Book Yeti format while not leaving ongoing series out in the cold. Over time, we may add more to this segment, but for now, enjoy the show.
VILLAINOUS, MAD CAVE STUDIOS
Writer: Stonie Williams
Artist: Jef Sadzinski
Original Article: Villainous #1
Villainous #2 - The art, letters, and design remain expressive and fun in this subversive series. The writing leaves something to be desired, though still manages to make its point and land some great jokes. The pattern of everyone’s first reaction to a given situation being shouting and confrontation makes for a puzzling speed bump in an otherwise pleasant ride.
Villainous #3 - Villainous comes into its own when the action sets in; after two issues of buildup, an explosive fight breaks out that builds character and incorporates much of what we’ve learned about the world thus far. There’s still a general lack of nuance which blunts the social commentary, but if you don’t mind the slightly preachy nature of the exposition, there’s a lot of fun to be had.
Villainous #4 - Stakes are effectively raised in this issue and the action continues to be explosive and dynamic. The underlying issues with character development and nuance are still there, but if you made it this far, you’re surely expecting it at this point. Some of the more perplexing decisions made early on, however, are beginning to pay off in a satisfying way, which is encouraging.
– Wells Thompson, Content Editor
GIGA #2, VAULT COMICS
Writer: Alex Paknadel
Artist: John Lê
Original Article: Giga #1
Everything that was great about the first issue, the characters, the art, the nuance, and the core ideas, are elevated as the story continues. Every panel is breathtakingly detailed and it’s more apparent now than ever before that a ton of love went into realizing this project. If you were skeptical about the first issue being too much set up, know that issue #2 delivers and that you should consider following this excellent series.
– Wells Thompson, Content Editor
ANCIENT NOISE #2, SELF PUBLISHED
Writer: David Crispino
Artist: Tony Gregori
Original Article: Ancient Noise #1
Issue two of Ancient Noise took on more of an adventurous tone with less dark humor, which was unexpected, but a natural progression that’s still effective. Tony Gregori and new colorist Claudia Aguirre continue to impress with dynamic page layouts and action. The central antagonist is given room to shine with plenty of compelling moments and lines.
– Alex Breen, Contributor
DEPARTMENT OF TRUTH #2, IMAGE COMICS
Writer: James Tynion IV
Artist: Martin Simmonds
Original Article: Department of Truth #1
Cole's plunged into the deep end of his new job in issue #2, which features heavy narration from Tynion, scratchy demonic style from Simmonds and great lettering panache from Bidikar. There's one spread that mimics a layout from the first issue, where we read a block of four panels in sequence on the left followed by a quad block on the right. There's enough space down the center of the page in this issue to function as a gap and to indicate a similar read. However, we're meant to read each strip straight across the fold, and it causes some confusion. Overall, the story's esoteric and weird enough to keep our interest through another issue and generate tension for the third.
– Christa Harader, Managing Editorial Director