Harley Quinn #1 Review

Phillips does an incredible job of showing us a complicated, multi-faceted character, that has too often been played for laughs at the expense of some real depth. Here, she is angry, smart, compassionate, violent and, yes, funny…

Writer: Stephanie Phillips
Art: Riley Rossmo
Colours: Ivan Plascencia
Letters: Deron Bennett
Released: 23/03/21

Published by DC Comics

Reviewed By Bryan Lomax


The first story, “Welcome Home”, in Harley Quinn’s new solo series, from writer Stephanie Phillips, offers a fresh take on the character. With the recent movie, Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn, a film which I actually really loved, having been helmed by a female director, it’s nice to see DC Comics following suit, allowing one of their most beloved female characters to be tackled from a female perspective.

Phillips does an incredible job of showing us a complicated, multi-faceted character, that has too often been played for laughs at the expense of some real depth. Here, she is angry, smart, compassionate, violent and, yes, funny.

There isn’t much story to speak of within these pages if I’m being honest. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing at this point. Phillips just takes the time to set the scene, show us where Harley is at in her life right now, and give us a sense of her place within Batman’s world going forward.

She is a character trying to make amends for her past sins and, as Harley herself points out during one specific moment, “Everyone does love a good transformation story”. And seeing such a flawed character striving to earn redemption is definitely the kind of story I am drawn to.

The artwork by Riley Rossmo will take some getting used to for me. It’s not the kind of work that I usually go for, with exaggerated features, which often feel as though you have entered somebody’s fever dream. However, it is entirely in keeping with the character of such an often unreliable narrator as Harley.

We are introduced to a character, named Kevin, who could very well go on to become Harley’s side-kick. I can certainly see the potential there and there is something endearing about Harley taking someone under her wing who may just be crazier than she is.


Verdict:

A suitably chaotic first issue in this solo series for fan favorite Harley Quinn.


Review by Bryan Lomax, 16/07/21


Get BOTH issues of DC Future State: Harley Quinn for only £5 now!

We are offering you the chance to grab both of Harley Quinn’s Future State issues for only five pounds!

FUTURE STATE: HARLEY QUINN, PART 2
Harley Quinn has gained Jonathan Crane’s trust, everything is going according to plan, and she is getting close to making her escape. But Black Mask and his gang are continuing to undermine the Magistrate and push Crane closer to the edge, where he will become the Scarecrow once more. Will Harley be able to defeat the Scarecrow and stop the Black Mask Gang? If she’s going to secure her freedom and save Gotham’s future, she’ll have to!

FUTURE STATE: HARLEY QUINN, PART 1
In a bold move that rocks Gotham City, the Magistrate has imprisoned Harley Quinn! The villain—once known as the Scarecrow, now a pawn of the Magistrate—taps into Harley’s knowledge of Gotham’s villains and the Black Mask Gang for his own dark purposes. Crane and his bosses think they have Harley Quinn defeated and her spirit broken, but they are sorely mistaken—and Harley will have her revenge. Written by rising star writer Stephanie Phillips and drawn by fan-favorite artist Simone Di Meo, the next era of Harley Quinn begins here!




Deal only on http://www.wowcomix.com!

DC kicked off 2021 in some style with their huge Future State event, seeing a whole new catalogue of writers and artists taking on some of the biggest characters within the DC universe and telling tales of what their futures may hold!

We are offering you the chance to grab both of Harley Quinn’s Future State appearances for only five whole pounds! (Including bag and board)
The comics are 1st print, which if you are scouting around, you will know these are becoming a little harder to track down now that the event is over!

Grab yourself both while stocks last! Remember, you can opt to click and collect in one of our stores if you wish, just state the store in the comment box when you reach the checkout!

Check it out HERE!


Pre-order Batman ’89 this week and get Superman ’78 for only £2!

That’s right folks, Batman ’89 and Superman ’78 are on the way, and what better way to celebrate the revisiting of these absolute classics…


That’s right folks, Batman ’89 and Superman ’78 are on the way, and what better way to celebrate the revisiting of these absolute classics than to offer you the chance to save a little and pick up Superman ’78 #1 for only £2 when buying the two!

You will also find the variants on the website, however this offer is for these standard covers, which are pretty cool looking I must admit.
Is it just me or does the idea of revisiting this era leave you with a little nostalgic grin? I mean, that looks to me like Gene Hackman and Margot right there, and… and that is very much a Keaton chin of course on the Batman cover.

It’s going to be a trip down memory lane by the looks of it! Get onboard and pre-order now, the offer only extends until the end of the week!

Find the deal right HERE on our website.

What is HOT in Wow Comix stores this week?

Take a peek at some featured products from across our stores this week!


WOW COMIX STRETFORD

Warhammer section fully re-stocked!

Lots of great 40,000 and Sigmar sets available in our Stretford store. Check out the great value starter sets and for those of you needing that extra shade or two will be happy to see that our paint rack is back to being fully stocked too!

WOW COMIX STOCKPORT

Full Sets

A load of great value and collection worthy full sets are on display in Stockport right now. Stories such as the iconic All Star Superman, Civil War, Green Lantern Rebirth and Alien: Earth Hive, and many more are all in excellent condition and waiting for you now!

WOW COMIX BURY

Super Sized Batman Funko needs new home!

As much as we would love too, we can’t keep this guy hanging around, he’s just too big and he’s blocking out our R2-D2 display, so you can take him home for only £90 this week! (That’s the cheapest anywhere around!)

COMIC OF THE WEEK!

The New Mutants #98 – First Deadpool!

A fine copy for reading or grading, only a faint crease in the bottom right hand corner would keep this beauty of the absolute top tier with regards to quality. Copies like this are going for between £350 and £450 right now, and over the next we days we are offering it too you for only £200!!! Head to our Stockport store to have a look!



Detective Comics #1038 Review

Fans of The Penguin will be pleased to know that the nefarious birdman is starting to rear up as a key player in this story. Again, it’s not exactly clear how he’s going to figure in to the plans of Hue Vile, but he will undoubtedly have his own agenda.

Detective Comics #1038 Review by Bryan Lomax


Writers: Mariko Tamaki (“The Neigborhood Part 5”) and Meghan Fitzmartin (“March of the Penguin”).

Art: Viktor Bogdanovic and Daniel Henriques (“The Neighborhood Part 5”), with Karl Mostert (“March of the Penguin”).

Colours: Jordie Bellaire

Letters: Aditya Bidikar (“The Neighborhood Part 5”) and Rob Leigh (“March of the Penguin”)

Released 22/06/21
Published by DC Comics


The Neigborhood Part 5 sees Batman battling Mr Worth in the sewers beneath the city streets of Gotham. It is the perfect setting for their showdown given the themes that were explored in the previous issue. Everything that is wrong with Gotham is represented by these two men, whose struggle now rocks the city at its foundations, threatening to bring it crashing down on top of them.

image courtesy of DC Comic News

The artwork by Viktor Bogdanovic depicts the two men as titans, though I feel, excessively so in the case of Mr Worth. This guy looks like he’d make Bane appear modest in size.

I’m still enjoying the mystery that writer, Mariko Tamaki, manages to convey, particularly in regard to the character of Hue Vile, who has yet to reveal just precisely who/what he is and what his endgame might be. However, I do feel that Tamaki’s writing gets a bit choppy at one point, with Mr Worth seemingly having given up the fight with Batman, only to announce to the world that he still wants him dead. It leaves me wondering if there was a page torn out with a missing scene on it.

Reporter Debbie Donovan finds herself in hot water by the end of this issue. As I expressed in my review for Detective Comics #1037, she is a character that has grown on me, so I’m really routing for Batman to save her come issue #1039.

Huntress is a bit lost in this one, like Tamaki didn’t quite know what to do with her, while Batman is off fighting Mr Worth. She gets to save a cyclist, leading to a humorous exchange between the two, but it’s a scene that could have been cut without having any impact on the overall narrative.

Fans of The Penguin will be pleased to know that the nefarious birdman is starting to rear up as a key player in this story. Again, it’s not exactly clear how he’s going to figure in to the plans of Hue Vile, but he will undoubtedly have his own agenda.

Cobblepot is a survivor. He changes and adapts to the times, which means that, while he’s never quite top dog he always manages to hold a seat at the table of the criminal underworld. This is highlighted in the short story, “March of the Penguin”, by Meghan Fitzmartin, which reminds us that, while Oswald Cobblepot is quite easy to laugh at, he is also quite easy to underestimate. Because of this, it is impossible to predict just how the character will play into the events of Tamaki’s story moving forward, which is, ultimately, what makes him an interesting character.


Verdict:

Writer Mariko Tamaki leaves us with more questions than answers in the fifth chapter of this highly engaging mystery thriller.


Review by Bryan Lomax, 03/07/21

Batman #109 Review

The Ghost-Maker character, created as a twisted mirror image to Batman himself it seems, certainly has a lot of potential to go either way as hero or villain.

Batman #109

Writer: James Tynion IV

Art: Jorge Jimenez and Ricardo Lopez Ortiz

Released: 01/06/21

Published by DC Comics

It’s been quite a few years since I picked up a Batman comic from my local comic book store. In many respects issue 109, from writer James Tynion, was probably not the best place to begin my re-entry into the world of the Dark Knight. It doesn’t help that this is the fourth part of a larger story, but I am introduced to at least three fairly major characters and, quite frankly, I’ve no clue who they are. A quick internet search filled me in on what I needed to know however, so even without the rest of the story that precedes this issue, there is no need to be kept in the dark.

The events that take place within Batman #109 created more than enough intrigue for this thirty-year Batman fan that it is a testament to Tynion’s writing that I was interested enough to even do said internet search. The Ghost-Maker character, created as a twisted mirror image to Batman himself it seems, certainly has a lot of potential to go either way as hero or villain.

The artwork in the primary story, part four of “The Cowardly Lot”, is fantastic. At one point, on page 16, artist Jorge Jimenez invokes the spirit of the late, great, Norm Breyfogle, which is always a plus in my book.

The artwork for the secondary story, chapter three of “Ghost-Maker”, while perfectly fine, didn’t really excite me in the same way and I felt it was a bit too cartoony for a Batman comic. It would be much more suited to something like Scott Pilgrim in my personal opinion. Even so, the writing by Tynion rises above it enough to make me want to go a little deeper into his work.

Verdict –

Fantastic artwork from Jorge Jimenez really compliments the intriguing character development, from writer James Tynion, igniting a desire to seek out more of both men’s previous work.

Review by Bryan Lomax, 13/06/21

Detective Comics #1037 – Review

It’s an effective little story, revealing that not all of Batman’s allies are by his side for the same reasons.

Detective Comics #1037 – Review by Bryan Lomax


Writers: Mariko Tamaki (“The Neigborhood Part 4” & “Exclusive”)
with John Ridley (“3 Minutes”).
Art: Viktor Bogdanovic (“The Neighborhood Part 4”), with Karl Mostert (“Exclusive”) & Dustin Nuguyen (“3 Minutes”)

Released: 08/06/21
Published by DC Comics


Things are really heating up in “The Neighborhood Part 4”. The Huntress, having found the murderer of her friend, Mary Knox, is thrust into an investigation of the parasite that has now killed him. The parasitic antagonist that has been claiming lives throughout these last four issues is the perfect metaphor for writer, Mariko Tamaki, to explore the theme of corruption in Gotham City.

Tamaki brings the character of Mr Worth to the forefront as he goes all out in his pursuit of revenge against the man he believes is responsible for his daughter’s murder: Bruce Wayne. Worth represents much of what is wrong with Gotham. He is the flip-side of the same coin to Bruce; a man with money and power, who uses it to signal virtue on the one hand, whilst infecting the city with corruption on the other. He demands results from the mayor whilst paying off the police to look the other way.

This is a theme that Tamaki explores further in the four-page short story, “Exclusive”, which sees reporter, Deb Donovan, reluctantly cruising in and out of a high society charity ball. Donovan is a character that is fast growing on me. She is one of those rare female characters in comic books who is defined by her personality rather than sex appeal.

“3 Minutes”, by Dustin Nuguyen, takes the themes set up by Tamaki, the almost viral spread of immorality throughout Gotham, and redirects the focus of it upon Batman himself. The story is essentially a short conversation between Alfred Pennyworth and Lucius Fox, during the early days of Batman’s career, which calls into question Bruce’s decision to take on a child partner. Is Bruce, in effect, just as contagious as men like Mr Worth? It’s an effective little story, revealing that not all of Batman’s allies are by his side for the same reasons.

Viktor Bogdanovic takes over pencil duties from Dan Mora, who covered Parts 1-3 of “The Neighborhood”, which is a shame as I was really rather enjoying Mora’s haunting depiction of Gotham. I am also a sucker for continuity. Even so, there’s some very nice artwork on display here, with Bogdanovic not veering too far away from the tone that has already been established.


Verdict –

Writers Mariko Tamaki and Dustin Nuguyen explore the theme of corruption, in three powerful stories, that compliment each other very effectively. Great stuff!

Review by Bryan Lomax, 20/06/21