Monday, January 7, 2019

This Week In Comics: 1/9

Another New Comic Book Day is upon us! It’s time to plan a trip to your local comic shop and take a look at this week’s new comics! Hit the jump to check out reviews of my favorite comics coming out this week.

Disclaimer: I received advance copies of all comics featured this week courtesy of their individual publishers.
Opinions are my own.

Go Go Power Rangers #16 (BOOM! Studios)
The Rangers have swapped costumes and powers...and nothing's working right! Can Trini step up to lead the team and stop Rita from acquiring the ultimate weapon?

We finally get the moment that was promised to us when this arc was first announced: the original Rangers switch colors and weapons! We’ve followed Jason and Trini as the color-swapped pair uncover what Rita is after on an alien planet. This issue, the others join them.

As you can expect, the color switching is morphenomenal. We get some great action as the Rangers are quickly thrust into battle with new weapons. Zack and Kim team up for a combo move straight out of Portal while Billy lets loose and acts adorably unBilly-like. With this issue, Ryan Parrot displays his understanding of these characters unlike any other writer before him.

Unfortunately, this issue also marks the end of the arc and the end of power switching shenanigans. This was still the best issue we’ve had in a very long time. And let’s not forget next story arc to come as Rita prepares to create her Green Ranger. Are we heading toward Parrot’s adaptation of the most iconic Power Rangers episodes ever made?

Go Go has always been about the characters, the teenagers with attitude under the helmets. This arc, and especially this issue, have really done a great job at developing the relationships between the Rangers. Specifically Jason and Trini. The two were the standouts of this arc and their relationship, both romantic and on the battlefield, was hands down the best part of this story.

Click here to order Go Go Power Rangers Vol. 1 and catch up on the story from the beginning. 

Self/Made #2 (Image Comics)
This was one of those stories where the very premise was a huge spoiler, so I spent a month unable to talk about it and even tried to remain spoiler free in my first review. But now that the second issue is here, it’s time to discuss the last year’s surprise breakout hit.

Self/Made began following Amala, a warrior in a fantasy war who joins a hero on his quest. The first issue ends with a shocking reveal: Amala is an NPC in a futuristic, virtual reality video game - and something is wrong with her.

Test after test, respawn after respawn, Amala breaks the rules of the game. She prevents the player from advancing the story. She takes action into her own hands. She even kills the player if she feels she needs too.

This issue introduces us to our true protagonist, Amala’s designer Rebecca. She’s on the hot seat when Amala’s defective nature is revealed to the developers. With six weeks until the game’s release, Rebecca is given one last chance to fix Amala or else her game-changing code will be lost forever.

This is a beautifully weird hodgepodge of different things and I love it for that. We get some cyberpunk VR stuff, which is too be expected, but then there’s some also Silicon Valley tech startup workplace drama. Not to mention a few fun scenes of Rebecca and her superior testing NPCs in very different - yet hilariously effective - ways.

When I usually read a comic, I can tell where it’s going. They’re going to catch the bad guy, slay the dragon, save the world. Self/Made is a book that’s always changing. I never know what’s going to happen next. The first issue was a medieval fantasy, this one was gamer sci-fi, and the next promises futuristic combat against a ghost king? This is the series to watch this year.

Issue #2 is in stores this Wednesday, but you can already click here to pre-order the first volume, out this June. 

Bully Wars #5 (Image Comics)
Skottie Young's all-ages comedy where bullies battle it out to see who will rule the school comes to an end with a big bang. As Rufus and Spencer face the final challenge in Couch Hurt’s labyrinth of chaos. But will their truce stand when all is said and done?

This whole series has really spoken to my heart about relationships between kids in high school. I’ve met kids like Spencer and Rufus in my time at school and Young really captures those personalities perfectly with a flair of hyper-realistic charm.

I’ve enjoyed this series and I’d welcome a continuation with these characters or even a prequel to Bully Wars of the past. Now that the fighting is over, I just want to see them hanging out and going on crazy adventures. Bully Wars is bizarre fun.

Click here to pre-order the complete collection of this fun and zany series.

What comics are you picking up this week? Let me know down in the comments below!