Memorial Day made this a short week for comics. Typically four day work weeks mean a shorter line up of comic books… but that doesn’t mean we don’t have some good ol’ comic cover love to spread around. Rocketeer brings the classy, Batman enjoys the grit and we choose an eclectic mix of horrific and fluffy fun in this week’s critique.
Rocketeer Adventures 2 #3
By Darwyn Cooke
Brendan: I won’t lie to you, my darlings. I have a thing for propaganda posters. It is entirely due to that bias that I have chosen this piece. I enjoy the simplistic qualities which still portend depth. It also doesn’t hurt that The Rocketeer is just an awesome movie.
Dave: I like this cover as well. I think what gets me is the old school Hollywoodland sign and the smoke at the bottom.
Batman Death By Design
By Dave Taylor
Dave: This is the cover to one of my most anticipated books of the year. It’s going to cost you 25 whoppers, (14 on Amazon.com) but it’s going to be worth it. Since so few books are coming out this week it might be a good idea to purchase nothing and dump it all on this. Notice the use of warm colors at the bottom. It appears this is going to be a technique used throughout the book as seen here:
Aside from it always being cool when a little bit of color is used with a lot of black and white, Sin City being an example, the sketchy style also fits. The dark and shadowed tones suit Batman perfectly and also add a layer of grit. Gotham in the background is also uber pretty and reminds me of the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright or the wonderful cityscape in “The Fountainhead”. Batman deserves to live in a world looking like this:
and we’re finally getting it.
Brendan: The hints of light are magnificent. It really makes this cover much more alive then it would have with just the charcoal (Is that charcoal or pencil? Who cares?) would have. Also, Batman has sexy lips.
Brendan’s Honorable Mentions:
By Joseph LaCroix
Brendan: This cover is awesome because it is both demonic and foreboding without resorting to messy linework or over the top gore. I mean, I guess the heads count towards “gore” but i think they really fall second to the scary goat man. There’s something about the eyes and teeth on that goat that just give me a chill.
Dave: When fiction contains a satyr it becomes 87% more badass. Those teeth are the epitome of freaky and the foreground head collection creates an awesome sense of dread.
Superman Family Adventures #1
By Art Baltazar
Brendan: Yay fun! This cover is happy and playful. The characters are that perfect cartoon version that lets you know the book is going to be filled with nothing but positive feelings. This looks like a great comic to give to a youngin’ you’re looking to get into comics.
Dave: Super happy American Superman Time! I particularly like Krypto. Those concerned eyes make him the only character on this cover who appears to be using his brain.
Batman Annual #1
By Jason Fabok
Brendan: I’m fairly certain the messianic halo that is created by Freeze’s goggle is entirely my catholic schooling creeping up on me, but either way I dig this cover. I also thoroughly enjoy the brickwork and the subtle owl gargoyle.
Dave: Nice! I didn’t even notice that gargoyle. One of the goggles as a Batman halo is a nice touch. They really make the cover pop.
American Vampire #27
By Rafael Alburquerque
Brendan: I picked this cover entirely because of the colors. More so, I love the way the white is blotting out specific sections to really make the colors vibrate.
Dave: I love the colors as well. Green always makes me feel a little sick, so that smile, and the vulnerability of the women, makes this cover very unnerving.
Dave’s Honorable Mentions:
Rocketeer Adventures 2 #3
By Dave Stevens
Dave: Rocketeer is owning this week as far as covers go. I was very close to picking this, for a variety of reasons. First off, read the blue box under the title, “…back when the teeth of justice bit deep into the throat of crime!” Is that badass or what? I love how the bad guys are using Rocketeer as cover, the girl is the perfect example of damsel in distress and the spotlights on the floor along with the darkened city in the background make everything pop nicely. The only reservation I have is Rocketeer’s body language. What is confusing him so much?
Brendan: This cover is awesome. It embodies everything that makes vintage comics cool. That text is downright visceral. It grabs you and makes you want more. The figures are spot on, the colors are great. This is one of those covers that you could put on your wall. Grade A.
Road Rage #4
By Rafa Garres
Dave: This is a perfect example of successfully mixing hard and soft. Check the truck in the background. The very definition of immovable object. It’s cold, heavy and foreboding. The hero at the bottom is scared shitless, and the streaks on the windshield add to the weakness of our hero. It’s hard to see, but if you focus on the bottom left corner you’ll notice the road. Yeah this guy is screwed.
Brendan: I can’t get past that guy’s jaw. It just takes me out of the whole comic. I mean, yeah, everything Dave said is valid but F--K MAN, that jaw.
The Incredible Hulk #8
By Michael Komarck
Dave: Forget this is a silly matchup for a second. In fact, just take Punisher out of the picture with your mind’s eye altogether and realize that is a pretty rendition of Hulk. The blocking really exudes the ferocity of the beast. Liking the glow on Punisher’s face too.
Brendan: Hulk just want hugs! Skull man shoot Hulk! Only make Hulk ANGRY!
I get it. You’re Frank Castle. That’s a giant green monster. But you know what the Hulk is. WHY WOULD YOU SHOOT HIM. DID IT WORK ONCE FOR THE LAST 60 YEARS? HUH? GET YOUR HEAD STRAIGHT, CASTLE.
Where we don’t understand, are insulted by or would rather stab our eyes with acid pops than look at these covers for various reasons.
Nancy In Hell On Earth #3 (of 4)
By Fran Gamboa
Dave: I’m always a fan of comic book cover as movie poster, but this is all over the place. I think what pisses me off the most are the breasts of the angel at top. They don’t look real or right at all. I like the idea of a black and white form covered in blood mixed in with color all around, but there’s too much going on to mean anything. Also what is being bleeped out at top? It must be bitch right? Is it necessary to bleep out bitch on a already mature rated comic?
Brendan: Those tittays are straight up circles. No attempt was made at all. Also, the Krueger-finger guy looks ridiculous, and not in a creepy/scary way. The movie poster motif is cool, but the content is lacking.
By Franchesco Gaston
Dave: What the hell? I hate the angle of this cover. Is a midget taking a photo here? The blood dripping is dumb. There is no way you could get blood dripping like that just from arm wrestling unless one man’s Humeral Capitulum bone is broken or you are the opponent of Lincoln Hawk from classic Sly Stallone movie Over the Top. The figure at left is also lame. It’s like a head on a stick.
Brendan: WOAH WOAH WOAH. This isn’t done by Liefield? I opened this cover and immediately disregarded it as another crappy cover by good ol’ Robbie. Look out, Rob, this guy is gunning for your gig.
Americas Got Powers #2 (of 6)
By Bryan Hitch
Dave: Does anyone else roll their eyes when they look at this? It’s just so obvious: A once weak normal kid has powers and he’s loving it. Oh and the sun, mixed with the heroes flying around in the background create a halo. Seriously? The cover is much too busy, and I don’t get why his hand is inked with so much shadow. This series screams, “Hey Hollywood! Look at this! This is your next movie property! Please pay us royalties!”
Brendan: Despite the attempt at action this cover is pretty boring. Too much space is taken up by the “normal kid” punching something to allow us to see any of the interesting characters in the background. Also, our plucky hero has dead eyes and a fake smile. I don’t like him.
Like what we do here at AIPT? Consider supporting us and independent comics journalism by becoming a patron today! In addition to our sincere thanks, you can browse AIPT ad-free, gain access to our vibrant Discord community of patrons and staff members, get trade paperbacks sent to your house every month, and a lot more. Click the button below to get started!