We have some important news to share regarding our Stretford branch and Wowcomix.com!
We have two pieces of news, one positive, the other less so. Let’s start with the positive news…
As long-term followers of Wow Comix will know, we have an online business called Wow Comix World which sells our wares via the internet. We also use the website to pass on news about Wow Comix and its activities. It has been very successful over the last year or so and we are very pleased to say it continues to grow. Due to the increase in traffic on our site (at http://www.wowcomix.com) and given our future plans for the company as a whole, we have now signed on the dotted line for a new set of offices and storage space in Denton, where we will be running all of our online operations from in the future. It will also become our headquarters for the whole Wow Comix group of companies and partnerships.
With this restructure it will allow us to spend much more time overseeing and improving the website operations and will give us time to pursue the growth of other aspects of our business, such as our Wow Events company (look for some exciting announcements in respect of upcoming events soon). We will be moving into these premises in the coming weeks, and the website will be operational throughout this period. Now on to the less positive news. Sadly, we are announcing that Wow Comix Stretford is closing on Saturday 16th April
It does not seem that long ago we moved intoStretford Mall but there is no escaping the fact that our time there has not gone according to plan. We should have known from the start that it was doomed given that we had literally just moved in when the covid pandemic struck and we were forced to shut for months. Since then, we have had several further enforced closures due to the covid lockdowns. Unfortunately, it has never really picked up from there. Despite our fondness for the shop and of course our customers, since we reopened out of the lockdown last year, we have seen a sharp decline in general footfall within the mall itself, particularly through the weekdays and this has, of course, had an impact on the viability of operating there. With recent big increases in utilities charges, business rates, staff costs and other operating expenses it is no longer economic for us to continue in Stretford Mall.
On top of that, what we were not informed about before we moved in, is that there is a planned redevelopment of the mall and surrounding area which will cause significant disruption and would clearly impact our business. In the circumstances, taking all this into consideration, we have come to the conclusion that it is simply not worth staying in Stretford.
There is a break clause in our lease which we have now activated and that will allow us to leave at the end of April. The shutters will therefore come down for the last time on Saturday 16 April.
We would like to thank all of our customers for being such loyal supporters since we moved into Stretford. We are disappointed about the store closure but we do not see this as the end for our business in the area and we do intend to re-open in another location as and when we find a suitable opportunity to do so. In the meantime, do remember that our Bury and Stockport stores are alive and well, with Stockport of course being the closest, just a couple of junctions down from Stretford. You can also shop online with us online.
If you have any further questions, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or via the contact form on the website.
Thats right folks, we are having a big Warhammer clear-out on http://www.wowcomix.com! Please bare in mind these offers are exclusively available on our website, not in-store. You can check out some of what’s available in the sale below, but remember… once it’s gone at this price, it’s GONE! VAMOOSE!
Space Marines Devastator Squad – Warhammer 40,000
Space Marine Devastator Squad
Plastic models require assemble and painting.
5 Space Marine Devastator models
1 can be built as a SM Devastator Sgt (choose from 1 of 3 heads)
Space Marines Scouts with Sniper Rifles – Warhammer 40,000
Operating deep within hostile territory, Scout Squads reconnoitre the enemy’s movements, set ambushes, sabotage supply lines and destroy communications centres in daring commando raids. The task of the Scouts is to strike hard and vanish before the enemy has the chance to retaliate.
This kit comes with a variety of weapons, heads and optional accessories that allow you to personalise the models. One set of legs is also in a kneeling pose so that you can depict a scout ready to take a kill shot.
This 46-piece plastic kit makes 5 Space Marines Scouts each armed with a sniper rifle. There is also an option to arm one with a missile launcher instead. It comes supplied with five 25mm round bases and an Ultramarines transfer sheet.
Adeptus Astartes Space Marine Tactical Squad – Warhammer 40,000
Offering a good balance of melee and ranged fighting along with some impressive resilience, there is a reason that Space Marines are a popular choice for a hobbyists first models. This Tactical Squad is a great starting point and a key components in any Adeptus Astartes army. This 179 piece multi-part plastic kit allows your to build your own 10 man Space Marines Tactical Squad, including options for a Sergeant and Special Weapons marines too.
When it comes to marines in your Tactical Squad you get 11 torso fronts, 10 different leg poses, 16 different heads; 22 shoulder pads; 10 backpacks and 10 sets of left and right arms, making unique poses very achievable. You can add personality to each Space Marine thanks to an impressive amount of optional equipment and heraldry, like combat knives, grenades, back banner, holstered bolt pistol, targeting scopes, parchments and purity seals, ammo pouches, auspex, 3 spare hands and 2 Space Marine transfer sheets.
The Glaivewraith Stalkers are a set of 4 sinister, drifting gheists, each little more than a tattered shroud, a pair of arms and a leering animal skull. The vertebrae of their undead spines poke through their cowls, giving them at least some corporeal shape – however, from the correct angles you can see into the shroud, and clearly observe the negative space where the rest of their bodies should be. Each carries a 2-handed hunter’s glaive, the haft and blade worn through countless years of use, and 1 Glaivewraith can be assembled as a deathbeat drummer holding a drum under his left arm, beating it with the mallet held in his right. They come as 17 components, and are supplied with 4 32mm sculpted round bases – these depict a graveyard scene, with the Glaivewraiths attached via a mist of ethereal vapour.
You’ll also receive a starter brush, perfect for painting the Glaivewraiths, and 6 12ml pots of Citadel paint. This set is now OOP, so grab one while you can!
This set contains: – A 36-page Learn to Play Rulebook – The complete Storm of Celestus warband – a company of Stormcast Eternals. Build your warband with four push-fit, plastic models, cast in coloured plastic to ensure they stand out even when unpainted, plus fighter cards and a number of warband-specific cards that let you unleash their noble strategies in battle. – The complete Drepur’s Wraithcreepers warband – a group of Nighthaunt tormenting Shadespire. Build your warband with four push-fit, plastic models, cast in coloured plastic, and create your decks with fighter cards and a number of warband-specific cards that let you harness their power in battle. – 2 double-sided, fold-out game boards that can be used to assemble your battlefields – Warhammer Underworlds tokens, including objectives, wound markers, glory points, and many more – 8 Dice – 5 Attack dice and 3 Defence dice, enough for the most devastating blows and desperate defences!
As both a Pokemon fan and a lover of all things cute and cuddly, I was doing a spot of cyber window shopping on the site recently and I thought why not share a few of my favorite items? Prepare yourselves for a cuteness overload!
Despite only being officially open since December 2021, the new UK Pokemon Center online store has taken the British Pokemon collectors market by storm with fans rushing to the site to see what awesome exclusive items we can finally get here in the UK! As both a Pokemon fan and a lover of all things cute and cuddly, I was doing a spot of cyber window shopping on the site recently and I thought why not share a few of my favorite items? Prepare yourselves for a cuteness overload!
5. Caterpie Sitting Cuties Plush:
Caterpie has been a favorite of mine ever since the early days of the Pokemon anime, in the third episode of the first season when Ash catches his first Pokemon (that being Caterpie!). Unfortunately Ash’s traveling companion Misty didn’t take too kindly to our little bug buddy, which leads to the sad and lonely Caterpie having a heart-to-heart with Pikachu under the stars. With this adorable plush however, you can now give Caterpie a loving home in all his cute and crawly glory!
4. Pikachu Pokemon Squishy Plush:
As many older fans may well remember, in the early days of the Pokemon franchise our little yellow mascot Pikachu’s design was substantially rounder, an era of Pikachu often referred to by fans nowadays as the Chubbychu or Chunkychu era. This Pikachu Squishy Plush reminded me slightly of Pikachu’s old design, though in all fairness I don’t think he ever let himself go quite as much as this plushie clearly has.
3. Alolan Ninetales Poke Plush:
Since new regional Pokemon forms were introduced in the seventh generation of Pokemon, some of these new takes on well-known Pocket Monsters have had quite a mixed reception from some fans. Some of the new Alolan and Galarian forms have been applauded, while others have been slightly overlooked or even ridiculed in some cases (the moon-faced Alolan Persian comes to mind), but the stunning design of Alolan Ninetales can’t be denied, and with this beautiful Poke Plush having been very recently added to the Pokemon Center UK, you can now have a majestic ice-type Ninetales all of your own!
2. Miltank Sitting Cuties Plush:
If you’re considering purchasing this second pick from the Sitting Cuties line, we should probably warn you that this Miltank may look cute and cuddly, sitting there with the little hint of a smile on its face, but as any fan of the Gold/Silver/Crystal games will tell you, this friendly-looking pink cow should NOT be trusted. It’s probably just biding its time before whipping its team-shattering Rollout move all over again, just like it did when defending Whitney’s reign at the Goldenrod City Gym, so if you want to add this Moo-Moo Milk-giving heifer to your collection, you do so at your own risk…
And finally, last but certainly not least, here we have one of my all-time favorite Pokemon and quite possibly one of the most adorable Pokemon plushies in recent years! Although this little guy certainly has his fans, Spheal has tended to be rather overlooked when it comes to merchandise, so it was a great surprise to see this wonderfully festive plush keychain added to the Pokemon Center store! And as if a ridiculously cute miniature Spheal plush wasn’t enough on its own, he even comes with a little walking stick while wearing a scarf and top hat like the perfect gentleman he is. What more could you want?
You can check all these and much more out right now!
After a few weeks of moving we have finally left our shop at number 3, The Rock! The doors of our brand new shop on Bury Market are finally opening on Monday morning (7/2/22)
After a few weeks of dismantling, painting, and long box hauling we have finally left our shop at number 3, The Rock! The doors of our brand new shop on Bury Market are finally opening on Monday morning (7/2/22), and the people of Bury shall finally be saved from the tyranny of a local comic book shop-less existence once again!
You will now find us on the corner of Bury Indoor Market (Unit 21) and we will be open for business 9am – 5pm, Monday – Saturday! You can access it by either approaching from the indoor market area entrance within the Millgate, or via our main entrance outside the market hall which faces out across Angouleme Way should you be approaching out of the Millgate Shopping Center via Market Parade (The b&m side..), or from walking around the outdoor section of the market itself. It is also conveniently situated opposite one of the main pedestrian subways that lead into the town center. See the map below for a closer look!
Inside the new store, you will find all of the usual wonders that you might expect from us. So of course that means it’s rammed full of great vintage British and US comics, magazines, annuals, mugs, posters, toys, cards, models, and of course many other collectibles and critical reading material!
If you want to keep up with all the going’s on at Wow Comix Bury, make sure you are following us on its own Facebook page and our Twitter! You can also subscribe to us here on Wow Comix World of course where, alongside our customer-led news and reviews articles, we share all the events, photos, products, and other news and updates from all of our shops!
To our online customers, please be aware that we are not re-instigating the in-store pickup option at this moment in any of the stores. If you have any questions on the matter or anything regarding the new store do feel free to contact us via the contact form on www.wowcomix.com.
The process of leaving 3, The Rock brought back a lot of great memories for us as it’s been such an important part of our company as a whole since we moved there, having held our main office and online department in behind the shop front. Over the last few months, these parts of the business have now been relocated to other premises.
However, with closing the doors on the old shop we don’t find ourselves feeling overly sad to leave, simply because we are super excited to be opening some new doors (literally, it has two entrances!) just a stone’s throw away, and we can’t wait to see what you think of it! It opens at 9am tomorrow and we hope to see many of you there over the days and weeks ahead!
3, The Rock Is Dead! Long Live 21, Bury Indoor Market!
This comic gave me everything I wanted. A hero and villain fight, character development, sharp humor, and a great cliffhanger.
Amazing Spider-man #84
Written by: Cody Ziglar Artwork by: Paco Medina
Published by Marvel Released – 5/1/22
THE DOCTOR IS IN!
Otto Octavius makes his sinister return in this issue of The Amazing Spider-man, but is he really such a bad guy? Yeah, he kind of is. However, the real question is: are Beyond worse?
Somehow, Doc Ock manages to slip into Beyond’s offices without tripping any mental alarms in the employees, it’s only when the turtle man (only people who read issue 80 will get that epic reference, and if you didn’t, there’s always my review on this very website you can skim through!) spots his ginormous octopus arms that they realise that they have an A-list supervillain in their office! It’s just a small thing, but the fact they put the turtle man back in the book as a cute little reference is a really nice touch and I can’t tell whether to feel rewarded for reading all these Spider-man comics or sad for paying so much attention, but screw you, Spider-man’s awesome.
So we end up getting another one of those flashbacks with Uncle Ben, where he has a webbed hole in his face, this is about the 4th one I think? And once we jump out of it, it just turns out to be Ben in therapy with Doctor Kafka, who, by the way, keeps on getting younger? Like seriously, if you guys go and look at her earlier appearances in the ’90s and 00’s she even has some white in her hair but over the years, she’s reverted into a 20 something-year-old, what’s up with that? Anyway, we check in on Janine as she and Ben appear to be going out for dinner which is a welcome touch as it shows the readers that these two are ACTUALLY dating, it’s something they haven’t actually done too much with Pete and MJ in recent years, it just makes it feel more authentic when they actually do stuff together instead of just being around each other a lot.
Cody Ziglar seems to have his strong suit set in character realism, in the past few issues he’s written of Spidey, we feel like these people are like us, and not just immortal gods that continue to be caught in an infinite loop of fighting super-powered enemies. Well, we would feel that way if Ben didn’t immediately get dragged into Beyond’s offices to fight Doc Ock! Before he goes though, he has to part with Janine and every scene that these two are in together makes me love them (agape style, not literally), and it kind of breaks my heart that this story is going to end in just 3 months time, I’m going to miss the couple and hopefully if they’re not dead in a Ditch by the end of this saga, they’ll get their own book someday? One can dream.
Octavius has taken Beyond staff hostage as he tries to attain Beyond’s central hard drive with all of the big, bad Intel on the company, let’s just call this the McGuffin of this book. Once Ock gets inside, he also gets a fantastically drawn Spider-man’s foot to the face as Ben shows up to tackle Otto for the first time since the clone saga, and even then it was his female counterpart so this is quite a cool sight to behold. Ock tells Ben that he’s only here for the info and things are looking up when Spidey slaps a mega cool anti-Doc-ock device on Octavius which causes his arms to go limo (insert funny ED joke here). But at this moment, in an incredibly cool moment. Ock just removes his metal companions and destroys Spider-man, using the control panel to barrage him with bullets and sonics, so this just in, Doctor Octopus just whooped Spider-man’s tooshie without his tentacles! And modern marvel veteran Paco Medina makes this brawl look astonishingly sleek, his Spidey looks so fluid and insect-like, he really sells the fast movement of the character and makes it look stunning as he does it.
Ben awakens to Marcus and Maxine Danger, the high up, scary boss of Beyond who assigns Ben to retrieve the Mcguffin at all costs, Ben continues to have problems with Beyond, or at least Maxine’s handling of it, but can’t rebel in fears of giving up his life and Janine’s freedom from prison and so his part in this issue ends with him accepting his mission. On the other hand, Octavius is far from done causing trouble for Beyond because THEY have assumed all of Parker Industries, the company Otto formed during his time as Spider-man (confused? Pick up Superior Spider-man!). His gauntlet begins once this book ends with him storming Beyond tower!
This comic gave me everything I wanted. A hero and villain fight, character development, sharp humor, and a great cliffhanger. Ziglar and Medina make a fantastic team and I’m twitching to get my next fix of two men with animal-based identities fighting about a company that stole one of their businesses assets (which they built whilst they had control of the other’s mind)! Come back into the Spidey corner soon when I blabber on about that for a few paragraphs.
Currently set for release in March this year, Pokemon Battle Academy 2022 is a brand new version of last year’s enormously successful Battle Academy set…
If you’re new to the world of the Pokemon Trading Card Game and you’re looking for a fun and easy way to learn how to play, or you’re a collector who wants to get in on the fun and use your cards to put a deck together and have some exciting battles, then look no further!
Currently set for release in March this year, Pokemon Battle Academy 2022 is a brand new version of last year’s enormously successful Battle Academy set, which brought the Pokemon TCG into a board game setting, perfect for teaching players of all ages the basics of the game. While last year’s Battle Academy set gave players ready-built decks based around Pikachu, Charizard and Mewtwo, the 2022 version gives players the opportunity to learn to play the game with new decks based around the fiery Cinderace and the ever-popular Eevee (and of course Pikachu is still right at the centre of it all with his own deck also featuring in this updated set).
As well as three complete sixty card decks, Battle Academy also comes with tutorial guides/rule books for each deck, a good sturdy game board with all the gameplay areas clearly marked out and plenty of damage counters so you can make sure your opponent knows when an attack lands!
The Pikachu and Cinderace rulebooks contains the basic rules to the game whereas the Eevee rulebook contains more advanced rules and tips/tricks, so once you’ve learned the basics you can build upon your skills and start getting on board with more complex strategies, which makes the set a great choice for both adult and younger players. Once you’ve got the rules to the game down you’ll be able to start putting together a deck featuring your favourites from your own card collection, and with the TCG community being such an active and exciting part of the Pokemon fandom (both online and in-person), it’s definitely worth giving the game a shot and seeing if you’ve got what it takes to become a Pokemon Master!
We have made the decision to move the Bury store into new premises. Our new shop will be open on February the 1st!
It looks like 2022 is starting with a bang for us here at Wow Comix, as we have some news to share that affects those customers who visit our Bury store.
We are moving! That’s right folks, the lease on our existing shop expires at the end of January and we have made the decision to move the Bury store into new premises. By the start of February you will find our brand new shop open within the indoor section of Bury Market (More details very soon).
We’ve been lucky enough to find a shop space which suits us nicely, its a good size in a very busy market area and are we currently hard at work getting the place set up (More long box hauling!). Our current shop will close its doors this coming Saturday (8th January) and we hope to reopen on the 1st February in the new store. It sounds like short notice but negotiations have been going on for several months in the background and we need time to make the physical move. We have enjoyed our three and a half years up on the Rock but there is no time to get nostalgic as we will only be gone for three weeks before we open in our new shop!
So… – Our store at 3, The Rock, Bury will be closing at 5pm on Saturday the 8th of January. – The new store down in Bury Market will be open on February the 1st. – Existing orders for pickup off the website will be posted out instead over the three week period where we will not have a store open. We are offering this FREE of charge and you will be notified about it via email in the coming days.
– Any questions or enquires about the move and the new store please email to email@example.com. – Any concerns or issues in respect of pre orders and store pick ups please forward to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are sorry for any inconvenience caused by all this as we know how much some of you enjoy coming in to browse on a regular basis, but rest assured that you will find all of the same comic goodness down at our new shop, and plenty of new stock to boot!
Graphic novels with up to 70% off and up to 40% off Comics!
To help ease the pressures of it being 2022 (already, blimey!), this January we are offering up a bumper sale on Wowcomix.com!
You will find graphic novels with up to 70% off and up to 40% off comics, alongside discounts on vintage card sets, books and classic British annuals!
Whats more, throughout January, any purchase made over £5 in value will be eligible to be accompanied by a free Marvel comic or poster! All you have to do is make sure that you state which one you would like in the additional comments section of the checkout. If you don’t state, we will send you one anyway, and if you don’t want one then you just have to say. But are you gonna turn down a free comic!? Really?
The latest incarnation of Killing Moon is a nostalgia trip for any fantasy enthusiast, but it’s also so much more than that. It’s a reimagining of a world, it’s an invitation to use and enjoy our own imaginations, it’s a series of great stories presented in a fun and unpretentious way.
Written by: Chris Denton (current run) and Chris Langton (original run)
Art: Neil ‘Bhuna’ Roche (current run) and Mark Roche (original run)
Colours: Darren Stephens
Letters: Bolt-01 (current run) and Vincent James (original run)
Pigdog Press – 2020
Imagine a world of dark legend, home to mad wizards and hooded assassins, where the undead and creatures fair and foul roam free. Against a backdrop of imposing castles, fiery plains and dark dungeons we are invited to travel to this world and meet the intriguing cast of Killing Moon.
Volume one collects the first four issues of the modern run of this excellent title, paired with the original stories from the mid ’80s, presented here for the first time since original publication. To further add to the book, Pigdog Press and the creators have included an interesting and inspirational foreword from Chris Langton along with a history of Moses Valentine and Killing Moon essay. As if that weren’t enough, we then have a stunning back-matter gallery of artwork from numerous small press artists, each offering their own take on the world and characters of Killing Moon.
It’s a really impressive package and makes for a book that stands out. It’s clear from the outset that the guys were keen to meet their promises to their Kickstarter pledges with gusto. I’m certain that, if anything, they exceeded expectations (for those unaware, Kickstarter is a ‘crowd-funding’ platform; a website through which projects can be proposed/presented at various stages of development and the the fans/audience pledge a certain amount to help fund the project’s completion. This is done in a tiered system, offering various rewards on delivery of the end product). I’m certainly very glad to report that the Killing Moon crew exceeded their funding target.
The physical and overall quality of this book is very high; the wrap-around cover is produced on very high quality card stock and the interior pages are a delight to flick through. They have a very pleasant tactile quality and present the contents in a way that should have some of the major publishers blushing and taking notes.
The cover itself has a striking logo and bold, atmospheric art depicting some of the main characters. That it segues from the modern take on the world of Killing Moon on the front through to the original vision on the back is a really nice touch and hints at some of the changes that were made, both in art and narrative. It’s a cover which will instantly appeal to Killing Moon’s target audience while also intriguing others who might have been browsing for something else.
So, first to our main characters, who are perhaps more fitting the mantle of ‘anti-hero’ than hero. They are, after all, assassins for hire operating under the name ‘The Killing Moon’. Ingrid Stensgarrd, Mr. McKie and Jack the cat are led by the grim faced, mysterious Moses Valentine. Ingrid seems to be the newest member of the group and seems well suited for her profession, approaching her work with stoicism and gravitas. Meanwhile, the darkly moustachioed McKie is given to moments of dry humour and seems entirely matter-of-fact in the presence of death. Jack no doubt keeps his own secrets while Valentine is shrouded in shadows and mystery, often serious, always thoughtful and living to his own moral code.
While growing to become quite fond of a band of assassins seems like an unlikely side effect of reading about their exploits, here I am… liking them. While that perhaps says something about me, the development of these characters through the book is a pleasure to follow and we are treated to a colourful and engaging cast of supporting characters too. There is the aforementioned dark sorcerer, a hapless thief of crowns, various skeleton and zombie warriors, a city of entirely civilised orcs under the mountain… the list goes on. It is through their interactions with each other and the other denizens of this world that we come to know Valentine and his band. Each chapter, from prologue to issue four, has its own feel while still very much being part of the greater whole.
‘The Prequel’ opens on sinister happenings in the gloomy halls of a castle. We are introduced to a couple of key figures who are about to set events in motion. Several darkly comic, Monty-Pythonesque exchanges later and we move to the story of ‘The Tyrant Wizard’ in issue one. ‘It began in Merstburg’… wherein the The Killing Moon are approached by the Mayor to rid the town of a necromancer who not only stole Castle Merstburg from their former lord but now uses the town’s dead as his playthings. What follows is a hugely entertaining adventure which feels as if it could be a transcript of someone’s really, really good Dungeons and Dragons session.
The second story, ‘Warning to the Glorious’, follows Ingrid as she stalks a crown thief through the Flaming Fens. It’s a story in which both main characters are relatable and, as such, we’re left on our own when it comes to which side to cheer for (so to speak). The tale is bookended by depictions of Ingrid’s life prior to her joining The Killing Moon, bringing us closer to the character and offering up more intrigue.
‘The Man in the Mountain’ has us following our motley crew as they enter Miwk, an orc city built on cooled lava inside a volcano. The enter at the behest of King Drenkost, whose people are being terrorised by someone known as The Man in the Mountain. As they investigate, it is soon clear that the orcs are under threat from fanatical cultists who seek to eradicate orc-kind. This is a great tale, which I’ll reveal no more of other than to say that again, this feels like it stepped from the pages of an old tabletop role playing game. I mean this as great compliment; it’s full of the things that make fantasy/sword and sorcery stories such good fun.
‘Targets’ is the closing story for the current run, where we find The Killing Moon take on an ancient vampire nobleman. As they set their ambush in a moonlit forest of twisted trees, we start to wonder if maybe they have bitten off more than they can chew…
The creative team have done a fantastic job here and it’s clear that they really care about their comic. It’s a labour of love that is a real pleasure to share in. Chris Denton’s writing is clever and darkly humorous, lending a strong sense of character and setting through dialogue. Each story is accessible and enjoyable either as a standalone or as part of the larger arc, making for a book that can be devoured in one sitting or consumed in small doses. Either way, it’s a fun and engaging read. The narration and dialogue are conveyed by excellent lettering, always clear and sympathetic to the scene and, above all, easy on the eye. The sound effects are also superb; well judged and full of energy.
The art is really great throughout and evokes the atmosphere of each setting by way of bold line work and vivid colours. Action is dynamic and, at times, bloody but is always easy to follow and track. Panel layouts are designed to help and guide the reader through the book, using splash pages for grand vistas alongside smaller, sometimes quick-fire panels for action. Each character is given keen visual identity, with the art enhancing the charisma lent by the writing through dialogue and characterisation. The art team of Neil Roche and Darren Stephens really draw us into their world, each page having been crafted through great care and attention. I found myself transported not only to their world but further, back to Fighting Fantasy game books, to the role playing and video games of the 1980s, to sharing imaginary adventures with friends.
The latest incarnation of Killing Moon is a nostalgia trip for any fantasy enthusiast of a certain age, but it’s also so much more than that. It’s a reimagining of a world, it’s an invitation to use and enjoy our own imaginations, it’s a series of great stories presented in a fun and unpretentious way.
And all of that before we get to visit the original version! Here we move to black and white art and to a different vision of the world of Killing Moon. It’s a post-apocalyptic place, having regressed to a near lawless, low-tech nightmare of a frontier. It’s survival of the fittest, nastiest, most cunning and it’s in this environment that we meet Valentine as he teams with four other assassins to take on a near impossible job. They are tasked with eliminating an overlord type figure and set off, squabbling and plotting as they go.
It’s interesting to see the genesis of the current comic and also to read a story (presented here over two issues) with a different feel. Instead of facing undead monsters and foul magics, Valentine wields his blade against hooded henchmen (one of whom brings a pistol to the knife fight!). This world is, if anything, even more dog-eat-dog and Valentine faces conflict from amongst his companions before he even faces his enemy.
The story moves along at a fast pace, and gives plenty of opportunity for the assassins to use their skills, both with blade and tongue. The artwork is stylish, evocative and full of nostalgic design touches that work well for this type of comic. There’s great use of shadow (there’s a three panel character reveal which is lovely) and each page has nice details to spot.
It’s a shame that the comic never continued beyond its initial run of two; it would have been interesting to see these ideas go beyond this formative stage. Instead, fast forward to present day and the current iteration created by Neil Roche and friends and it’s easy to see why Neil wanted to resurrect his brother’s creation.
Shifting the setting to one more in-step with traditional sword and sorcery/dark fantasy has given the series perhaps more narrative freedom and while Valentine and company seem suited to either world, it is in his current form that he really shines. Gone is the broadsword of old, replaced by a staff, a cat and no small magical prowess to match his martial skill. The pipe smoking happily remains, giving us some cowl-shadowed-Strider-in-the-inn vibes (I’m thinking animated Lord of the Rings film here).
His companions are two equally interesting characters, and Ingrid offers a genuinely strong female lead, thus broadening appeal. Each fan of this comic will have their own favourite character, their own favourite moments, and that’s a really good thing. It means that it’s a comic people can engage with and relate to. It’s a title that will appeal to fans of Conan, Elric, Geralt of Rivia and indeed fantasy stories in general, but it has enough to offer that its reach can extend beyond.
Killing Moon is a really high quality book, created with love and hard work. It’s an expression of its creators’ wish to entertain, and has moments of high adventure, intrigue, dry, dark humour and even the occasional Star Wars quote in the dialogue. It’s packed with gorgeous, sometimes gritty art on every page, supplemented further by some stunning gallery work. It’s just a really cool book to have on your shelf. There’s more on the way too, with Killing Moon Rising, which I’m sure will be something to look forward to. If you can, keep an eye out for the project on Kickstarter and lend them your support.
I feel very lucky that I was made aware of this book, so please allow me to recommend that the next time you visit a comic shop, maybe looking for something a bit different, ask for Killing Moon. Nine out of ten assassins (and cats) prefer it.
Make ANY purchase between now and new years eve on http://www.wowcomix.com and YOU could WIN a whole years supply of The Amazing Spider-Man comic delivered out to your door each month!
We don’t know if you have heard, but this Spider-man chap is making some waves again this winter with the release of Spiderman: No Way Home, and upon hearing that initial reviews were more than kind (phew) we thought that of all the things we could offer perhaps there might be one or two folk keen on taking the plunge into AMS comics in 2022!
Here is your chance! Make ANY purchase between now and new years eve on www.wowcomix.com and YOU could WIN a whole years subscription of The Amazing Spider-Man comic, with every issue delivered out to your door each month!
We mean, there are worse things you could win, right? And whats more, each copy comes freshly bagged and boarded so that you can keep your copies in nice mint condition for future reading!
We will announce the winner on New Years Day 2022, so that means you have two weeks to get an order in and be in with a chance of being a winner!
So once again, entry is automatic upon purchase of any item and the winner will be chosen at random. Please bare in mind that this competition is only open to those residing in the UK.
See below for a little taster of whats coming in through January/Febuary alone!