Hey, everybody! Welcome and thanks for joining me for another edition of “Four-Color Bullet!”

At the suggestion of a friend of mine, I went to check out Collector’s Paradise Comic Book Store in the San Fernando Valley, and I tell you, what a great store! Comics, graphic novels, statues, games, autograph signings, collectibles, and my favorite selling point: friendly, knowledgeable, and helpful people behind the counters. Andrew was the guy who helped me out, but everyone there loves the hobby and can steer you to whatever you’re looking for. And if you get there at the right time, you might meet Ethan, one of the friendliest collectors I’ve met in years. A fun young man to talk with, and incredibly educated in comics for a guy his age. As a matter of fact, he was the one who introduced me to Dark Horse’s Black Hammer universe. The store is on the southwest corner of Winnetka Avenue and Sherman Way, in the city of Winnetka. There’s also a second store in Pasadena that I’m looking forward to checking out. If you see the orange motorcycle parked outside, that would be me, so please be sure to say hello!

 

Okay, let’s get to this. Is everybody comfortable? Okay, let’s give it a go:

BRAND NEW ON THE STANDS:

CAVE CARSON HAS AN INTERSTELLAR EYE #1
Writer: Jon Rivera
Artist: Michael Avon Oeming
Colorist: Nick Filardi
Letterer: Clem Robins
DC Comics

“Dad! You may want to turn around… and say goodbye to Earth!”

Cave Carson, the podcasting, cybernetic eye wearing explorer is back in a new adventure!

Cave, daughter Chloe, and Marc Bartow are off to see the “Reverend of Rock,” and Cave’s old friend, Star Adam. They’ve not seen each other for many years, and Star’s impending death has prompted him to reach out to Cave for one last adventure before the end. And Star Adam’s death is where the adventure begins.

Cave Carson is another character from DC’s Silver Age that’s getting a new spin from today’s fresh creators. Rivera, Avon Oeming, and Filardi do a fine job. I’m intrigued and excited to see what happens next. Go ahead and give it a try!

MEANWHILE, OUR STORY SO FAR:

DOCTOR STAR AND THE KINGDOM OF LOST TOMORROWS #2
Writer: Jeff Lemire
Artist: Max Fiumara
Colorist: Dave Stewart
Letterer: Nate Piekos of Blambot
DARK HORSE COMICS

“I threw normal out the door the day I put that damn costume on.”

While visiting his unconsious son, Charlie, in the hospital, Doctor Robinson (Doctor Star) remembers the adventure that took him away from Earth, his wife, his son, and the many years of lost time. He finally comes to a decision that will bring him out of retirement, and hopefully save his son from the ravages of the cancer that is killing him.

I am loving this book. It’s like a love letter to DC’s Starman (a few of them, actually,) as well as the Justice Society. If the current style of gritty realism was around in the 50’s and 60’s, I could see this as a Starman story. The whole Black Hammer universe comes across to me like a deconstruction of the DC books of old, almost like getting a chance to read the old books with fresh eyes. Jeff Lemire’s story is fascinating, and Max Fiumara and Dave Stewart’s art keeps me visually engaged, checking out every bit of panel. Very good stuff!

 

BLACK LIGHTNING: COLD DEAD HANDS #3
Writer: Tony Isabella
Artist: Clayton Henry
Colorist: Pete Pantazis
Letterer: Josh Reed
DC COMICS

“When I need to get people’s attention I can make this suit Superman bright. For stealth operations, I can go the REALLY Dark Knight route. All in the blink of an eye.”

Because of all the situations we’re dealing with in our day-to-day lives, this story is cutting really close to home. Access to weapons that no one really needs, particulary at the power levels they possess, overzealous law enforcement, senseless loss of innocent life; it’s almost like reading today’s headlings on my newsfeed.

But I can’t stop reading it.

Nostalgia aside, Tony Isabella is a fine writer. I’ve mentioned before that I’m a fan from way back, and to me his writing is fantastic. Clayton Henry and Pete Pantazis do a great job on the art and really help drive the story forward. Between this and the Black Lightning TV show, I’m really enjoying what’s being put out.

I CAN’T SAY ENOUGH ABOUT:

SAGA CHAPTER 50
Art: Fiona Staples
Writer: Brian K. Vaughan
Letters / Design: Fonografiks
IMAGE COMICS

This one’s an issue for the grown-ups.

From page one.

And it makes perfect sense.

Collect this book.

Oh! Before I go, let me hear from YOU! Please drop me a line and let me know where you buy YOUR comics. I’d love to check it out (travel distance willing,) and maybe mention YOU and feature the store in a future column. Thanks for reading!

Until next time…

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