Star Trek: The Next Generation Through The Mirror #3
Writers: Scott Tipton, David Tipton
Artist: Josh Hood, J.K. Woodward
After Star Trek: The Next Generation; Mirror Broken, it’s only fair that fans get to see the Mirror Universe go head to head with the crew of the Enterprise we all know and love. As with past forays into Star Trek’s Mirror Universe, everyone is a cutthroat version of themselves. It’s been interesting to see where this has taken characters like Data and Troi. At the halfway point of this 5-issue series, the Mirror Universe crew of the ISS Enterprise has already begun to sneak across dimensions to pillage in earnest. Meanwhile, Picard and the crew of the USS Enterprise are increasingly suspicious they may be walking into a trap.
The Tiptons’ writing throughout both Mirror Broken and Through the Mirror have taken some of the more recognizable elements of Star Trek: The Next Generation and masterfully mixed them into the violence and scheming of the Mirror Universe. Lieutenant Barclay’s anxiety gets some amazing treatment in this month’s issue. Josh Hood’s clean lines and dynamic use of close-ups and facial expressions help keep the story moving at a steady clip. As an added treat, backup stories (as well as the covers) in Through the Mirror are illustrated by J.K. Woodward, who illustrated Mirror Broken. Woodward’s stately portraiture style makes for some amazing visuals.
All New Wolverine #35
Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Ramon Rosanas
All-New Wolverine #35 sees the conclusion of the “Old Woman Laura” storyline. In a future timeline, the President of Madripoor (!) dons the tights once more to journey to Latveria. For those who’ve seen the Avengers film or have been feeling a little depressed about Marvel characters in general, this arc has been a shot in the arm. The good guys have almost won, and an ailing Laura Kinney seeks to put Victor Von Doom in the dirt, cementing the elusive triumph Marvel heroes can never seem to grasp. It just so happens that her cloned sister Bellona is languishing in a cell somewhere in Latveria as well.
This is a classic rescue set-up and brings together an all-female team including a grown-up Honey Badger (having replaced her sister as Wolverine) and Hawkeye, along with a surprise or two. The wise-cracking lines between the younger Hawkeye and Wolverine make this three-issue arc worth it alone. Ramon Rosanas’ illustration is lush, highly detailed and leans heavily on some thin, full-page-width panels for some awesome sequences. Taylor’s story hints at the massive events that shaped the world our heroes are in, but for once, it seems, there are at least a few happy endings, though it remains to be seen if Laura Kinney gets hers.
A Walk Through Hell #1
Garth Ennis is famed for books like Preacher and Crossed, genre-defining stories where readers explored supernatural demons as well as the demons that may live within us all. Aftershock Comics’ A Walk Through Hell starts off with deliberately slow pacing but promises to bring Ennis’ strong suit to the fore. The writing is timely and topical, beginning with a brutal act of mass violence, a twitter war overlaid across one of the protagonists’ commute to work, and the spiritual resignation of a nation summed up in a single conversation over lunch with co-workers.
Goran Sudzuka’s panel choreography lends itself to the slow tempo of this exposition, and at the end of the first issue, you know that a new symphonic movement is going to begin immediately in the first pages of issue #2. Our protagonists, FBI officers, march into a darkened warehouse after two missing colleagues, while a truckload of SWAT officers cower after a brief foray inside of a few seconds. This new entry into horror comics may start off slow, but whatever’s inside that warehouse looms large, out of frame in the heavy shadows. It feels like it’s more ready for the reader than the other way around.
Weeks like this inspire deeper dives into the shelves, away from the big publishers. What are your sleeper hits that keep you coming back to the comic shop? When the big labels fall a little flat, what do you find yourself reading? Let us know in the comments!