I Love Comics (Blah, Blah. Blah…)

*All comics will be rated on a scale from 1 to 10*

Action Comics # 1052
Cosmic Ghost Rider # 1
Detective Comics # 1069
How I Became A Shoplifter # 2
Radiant Black # 22
Rogue & Gambit # 1
Shazam! Fury of The Gods Special: Shazamily Matters # 1
Stargirl: The Lost Children # 4

Cosmic Ghost Rider # 1 – One of Marvel’s breakout starts gets his own title and we get not one but two stories for the price of one. In the opening arc, Frank Castle is living a non-Cosmic Ghost Rider life by working at a local saloon and doing odd jobs, but his quiet life gets disrupted by the appearance of a bounty hunter, the second story sees Frank dealing with a nightmare where he’s facing Galactus so that he can be judged for his past sins. Stephanie Phillips is by far one of the most talented and prolific writers to emerge on the scene but to be quite honest, this felt very hit or miss and I have to choose the latter because, in my opinion, it just felt like Phillips was trying to cram as much exposition as she could into her script; The cosmic western motif doesn’t do the character any justice and It could be easily abandoned as time goes on. This wasn’t the huge reintroduction that CGR needed but I’m hoping that Phillips will find his voice and turn up the energy because, after this issue, it needs it….badly!!

How I Became A Shoplifter # 2– Best friends Ethan and Phil return for another installment that chronicles their petty crimes and mischief over the years. This time, we see Phil attempting to get a tattoo in the summer of 2000, then the two of them accidentally find themselves as heroes while working as busboys at a restaurant in 2001 when they take out a pair of criminals who were trying to rob the place; Finally, Phil tells Ethan that he lost his virginity during a lunch outing in 2002/03…but with a huge twist (**NO SPOILERS**); Tom Breyfogle and his artistic collaborators once again deliver the laughs while examining the days of being a teenager with all three stories in this issue seeing Phil and Ethan at their best, especially since their own criminal antics are sidetracked for this issue (except when they were planning to steal some high end vodka for their crushes, Mindy and Molly); Breyfogle does a marvelous job of letting us witness Phil and Ethan go from teenage adelensce to finding their place in the world with such recklessness but once you get done with this issue, it’s still a fun ride you’ve been taken on while reminiscing about how great the 2000s were. I once told Mr. Breyfogle that this series has taken the brilliance of John Hughes and the sharpness of Kevin Smith made this series special, only with this second issue he also took the influences of both Judd Apatow and Seth Rogen to really raise the bar high to where I cannot wait for the next issue.

Rogue & Gambit # 1– Stephanie Phillips continues to make the best out of her Marvel debut as she takes on the writing reigns of a new series with both Rogue & Gambit for the first time since 2018 as well as 2019’s “Mr. & Mrs. X”; Right away, Phillips wastes no time with both Remi and Rogue as the issue opens up with the former getting wasted and the latter having to clean up his mess. The chemistry between them seems a bit off with the two of them at odds with each other but then things get complicated for the lovely couplet as Destiny, Rogue’s foster mother appears with a mission for the two of them that may bring them together or break them up. What I like about this series is how Phillips finds the perfect balance of both humor and romance while bringing their personalities to the forefront. Carlos Gomez’s artwork is not only vibrant but he manages to capture the facial expressions and slick sequences that hits all the right notes that Phillips was going for in her script. Rogue & Gambit succeeds in being an action-packed rom-com that will attract readers of the current X-Men run and at the same time, win over fans of these two beloved characters. After this issue, it’s best to get ready for the adventure of a lifetime

Shazam! Fury of The Gods Special: Shazamily Matters # 1– This special, obviously a cash-grab to get people interested in the new Shazam movie, sees most of the cast (Zachary Levi, Grace Caroline Currey, D.J. Cotrona, Ross Butler, Adam Brody & Faithe Herman) along with director David F. Sandberg and “Fury of The Gods” co-writer Henry Gayden, team up with various writers and artists to bring together this anthology that gives every member of the Shazam family their moment in the spotlight but also featuring tales set in the first movie while the others are just standalone stories. Most of the stories presented here are charming in their own way (Too many stories involving magical doors are such an overkill) while showing off the writing skills of the movie’s cast (I’m surprised that Meagan Good didn’t contribute a story for this special); “Shazamily Matters” has something for everybody who’s either a Shazam fan or just waiting until “Fury of The Gods” hits theaters but nonetheless, it may or may not win over any DC fan, but for the most part, it is whimsical so you can’t go wrong with that.

Well, that’s it for me this week. Thanks for sticking around and I will see you all next time.

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