Bagged and Boarded Comic Reviews: Conan, Eastmen's Zombie War, and more



New comic book Wednesday has come and gone. The dust at your local comic shop has settled. An eerie silence descends as you finish reading your last superhero book of the week. Now it's time for something a little more sinister. Welcome to Bagged and Boarded: comic reviews of the sick, spooky, twisted and terrifying!

Kiss Me, Satan No. 2

The battle for good and evil continues in issue two of this break-neck action/horror comic from Victor Gischler and Juan Ferreyra. In New Orleans the leader of a werewolf pack puts a hit out on an old, blind witch and her followers. Now it's up to Barnabas Black, a fallen angel, to protect the witch and make good with God. He may be quick, but can he escape the chill grasp of the Bone Wrangler?

Bag it or board it up? What a vivid, frenetic comic. Sure, this may look like it was made by people who grew up watching strobe lights and car explosions, but it's that wild energy that pushes this story forward. I don't care who wins or loses, I just want to see more clever villains like the Bone Wrangler. This is good, solid pulp that actually tries to please the audience (and not just the author).

Conan and the People of the Black Circle No. 1

Conan, leader of the hill people and well-feared in the finer regions, is called upon for revenge against dark magicians. The king of Vendhya had his soul nearly stolen and sucked away into the body of a dark demon. His sister, Devi, stuck him through with a dagger to save his soul. Now, with Devi eying revenge for her fallen brother and King, she attempts to draw out the only man savage, strong, crazy, and courageous enough to take on the evil sorcerers who caused this calamity. But will Conan take on the cause for these high society types?

Bag it or board it up? I don't know why I've never reviewed a Conan comic on here. It may be firmly routed in (and the genesis of) the "Swords and Sandals" genre of fantastic fiction, but horror lovers will freak for this. There's evil magic, corpses by the bushel, violent action, and treacherous plots. This new first issue of this series is faithful to the old comics and a great entry point for new fans. Give it a try, by Crom!

Zombie War No. 1

What happens when all the dead bodies in the military graveyards around the world rise and take up arms? Nothing good! This oft-overlooked classic from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles co-creator Kevin Eastmen and Heavy Metal illustrator Tom Skulan asks that question and answers it with blood and guts and gore. A UFO flies through the skies animating all the dead. Now a lone pilot and an alien (yup, for real) have to team up to survive in this ruined world. Finally reprinted, and now with given a full color treatment, this comic crawled onto shelves this week for the first time in years.

Bag it or board it up?

Whoa this comic is amazing. If you haven't read it before, get to it now. This is Eastmen at his most insane with a story that truly goes off the rails. The artwork is messy and grimy. The action is muddy and grim. And I'll admit: I'm a little bit obsessed with the hand-drawn dialogue. I'm so excited that this comic is seeing the light of day again. Hope you dig it too!

The Waste Vol. 1

Three different post-apocalyptic tales from three different authors. The setting is a much less populated earth full of scavengers, weird technology, and mutated creatures and it plays the central role. All stories function around The Waste, and we get three fun tales. First, there's the story of what happens when you try and cheat people one too many times. Second, we see how technology moves on without us (and brings us back to it's cold embrace). Third, we see a small story of the effects of isolation. They don't tie together, but we get a pretty picture of the world at large.

Bag it or board it up? This came out in print a bit ago, but it's finally available digitally through Comixology's indie comic program. It's worth checking out. These are short but sweet. Clean, well told, wonderfully illustrated stories about the end of the world. I've read a lot of apocalypse stories (it's my job, you see), and I've yet to read anything like these. That's saying something. Check it out.