Staff Picks – Week of 20/01/2016

Adventure Time: Ice King #1
Emily Partridge (w), Pranas T. Naujokaitis (w), Natalie Andrewson (a)
Boom! Studios

Will says: Adventure Time’s lonely, short-fused, princess obsessing, king of ice gets his own adventure in this six part mini series. When Gunter the penguin gets kidnapped, Ice King is led to the Wizard City to have his loyal friend returned to him. There are casual cameos from all your favourite Adventure Time cast, but the focus remains on the new and familiar magic users the Ice King runs into. The comic has beautifully encapsulated the tone of an Adventure Time episode and a great episode at that (they’re all amazing anyway right?). A story of excitement and heart, appropriately balanced with humour (ice puns from start to finish yo) and with many layers to keep it an acceptable read for any age. Natalie Andrewson has illustrated it in a style that is very fitting and true to the cartoon, but with it’s own unique twist making it much more enjoyable for the medium of a comic. Ice King is a favourite of mine so I am very glad that this exists! Very excited to see where Ice King’s journey takes him. Excellent first issue guys, no dungeon time for anyone.

Man Plus #1
André Lima Araújo (w/a), Arsia Rozegar (c)
Titan Comics

Chris says: I first remember seeing André’s art on a fill-in issue of Fantastic Four a couple of years ago. It struck me right away, and I knew he was destined for great things. I tagged him on Twitter to say how much I enjoyed it, and a dialogue began wherein he first told me about Man Plus. His passion was evident, and I promised that when the time came we’d record an interview to help promote it. Well, it’s finally here … and it doesn’t disappoint. Although Man Plus wears its Akira and Ghost In The Shell influences on its sleeve, it’s a uniquely Portugese story looking at artificial intelligence and multinational corporations – a rich playground for any dystopian future setting. The story is intriguing, but it’s the art and colors that take centre stage here. André’s architectural background shines through, making Olissipo City a unique character in its own right. There are elements of Juan José Ryp to the art (another creator who I love) and a diverse cast of characters who each have their own back story. You can hear more from André Lima Araújo about Man Plus on this week’s Orbital In Conversation podcast.

Daredevil Epic Collection Vol.13 – A Touch of Typhoid
Ann Nocenti (w), John Romita Jr. (a)
Marvel Comics

Adam says: In print at last as one cohesive volume, this Daredevil run is a stunning lost classic of late 1980s superhero comics. Powerfully illustrated and written with forthright confidence, this is the tale of the ruin of Matt Murdock at the hands of Typhoid Mary. Following the lauded Miller/Janson tenure, Nocenti and Romita prove totally fearless from the outset, introducing characters, themes, subversions, innovations and much more besides to create a beautifully satisfying drama. For an in-depth discussion of this masterwork, see The Orbiting Pod’s Daredevil Special. A Touch of Typhoid stands easily among the ranks of Watchmen, Born Again, or any other great works of 1980s superhero/post-superhero comics. Easily. What sets this uniquely aside, however, is its presentation and engagement with feminism in the context of the time, and a probing exploration of its potential extreme limits. Unmissable.

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