Skyworld: Apocrypha

SKYWORLD

ONE WORD: BANGIS!

What a way to start a great epic story. I still can’t get over how good it felt to me, as a reader, the way the storytelling and the art seemed to compliment each other. Whenever “Makabo” narrates, it was like poetry being vividly described by the panels. I hope that you guys can hear me clap right now because Mervin Ignacio and Ian Sta. Maria deserves it.

THE STORY:

Quick fact here . . .I almost believed it! (The part about the Skywold and how it was almost forgotten before the Spaniards came to our shore) Going back to the story now. 😛 The world building was loosely based on some Filipino folklore mainly the characters like the tikbalang and aswang. It was like a two-door closet style of telling a tale. When you open it, inside you can find the back story. Read it and you’ll get what I mean. 😀 The characters? Makabo; a kick-ass tikbalang, Rianka; diabolical and deceitful aswang, and Kaptan; a winged-god would take you to a place like no other, Skyworld.

THE ART:

It’s really a challenge to be an artist of a Pinoy graphic novel. You have to be creative enough to express the story with what you got. Publishers are still wary to go all out (hardcover, glossy paper and colored). With that said, although it would have been nice to see Skyworld in full color, it didn’t hinder the artist to show how great a story Skyworld is. My fave part is when Rianka deceived Kaptan. They just let the panels tell you the story.

OVERALL:

Again, BANGIS! That sums it up.If you see a copy of this comics, you better grab it. I waited for Komikon just to have one. A perfect mix of Filipino folklore, lyrical storytelling and panel by panel action packed sequential art to satisfy your craving for Pinoy komiks.

Trese Book 4: Last Seen After Midnight

The long wait was over, TRESE 4: Last Seen After Midnight was launched October 08, 2011 at Bestsellers Robinson’s Galleria. I just got to say that THE WAIT WAS SO WORTH IT. I was sick but flu and headache wont stop me from grabbing a copy of my latest TRESE fix :P. Luck even gave me a poster of Trese (Bianca King poses as Alexandra Trese) because I so deserve it. Hahaha. Congrats to Budjette Tan and KaJo Baldisimo for paving the way and being brave to follow their dreams even though the obstacle seemed to be insurmountable. Trese is now getting the attention it rightfully deserves. 🙂

Budjette and Kajo signing the poster that I've won during the raffle. SWEET!

 The book is divided into four cases. Each case is great on its own way, in art and story. Alexandra Trese shines brighter in all of the pages, nobody could ever surpass how badass this girl is. The entire story was well executed and the art was just amazing. Trese being black and white didn’t even hold it down but instead makes it more effective. My hands are itching to type spoilers just to tell how great this pinoy graphic novel is, but I wanted the readers to experience it same way I did. Just one thing though, “WANTED BED SPACER”, BEST CASE EVER! Well, on second thought I hope more great cases come along for Alexandra Trese. hehehe

I’m not that good with words but I hope all my blabbering here is enough for those who are not that into reading komiks to grab a copy. Graphic-fiction format way of storytelling might surprise you and you might even end up enjoying it. The story and the art are fantastic and I would really be saddened that someone didn’t read it because he/she is not into komiks. It’s your loss. 😛  

Reading Buddies: A Monster Calls (Part 1)

Ok, I’m late again on posting my stuff, as usual. This should have been posted a week ago. Sorry guys. 😛 

Here are the questions and my answers:

1. “You’re a good boy,” Conor’s mother tells him. “I wish you didn’t have to be quite so good.” (p. 17) What do you think she means by that?

I think it means that the mom felt guilty. Conor was doing everything for her instead of the other way around. I remember when I was still young, I asked my mom why she does the simple things like folding my shirts, keeping my closet organized and cleaning up things for me when I could do it on my own. She told me that it makes her feel happy when she does these things for me. She said that she likes taking care of me. In Conor’s case, her mom can’t do that because of the cancer. Instead of Conor being a regular kid, he tries to take care of his mom by not disturbing her when she is resting. Because of that, she might feel like she’s taking away Conor’s youth. I hope I’m making sense. :))

2. Lily was once Conor’s closest friend but now he can’t forgive her. Why? Is he right to feel betrayed?

Lily might be Conor’s closest friend before but many things happened and some of it he wants to keep to himself. I don’t think it’s betrayal that Conor felt. He just wants to be left alone to think things through. I just hope that Lily would be there when the time comes that he needed someone to be there.

3. The monster talked about 4 stories, 3 from him and one from Conor. The one from Conor should be the truth. What do you think is this truth? (Feel free to speculate 😀 To those who’ve read this already, you can write what you first thought this truth was.)

I think that the fourth story that the monster wants to hear from Conor is when he loses his mom. He can’t admit it right now, like when his grandma told him that he would soon have to live with her. He won’t accept it. He wants her grandma gone because he knows that the both of them are ok on their own, he and his mum.  So, the monster wants the story and it would be the truth. No denial, he has to accept that his mom would die and that’s the truth the monster is looking for.

DC’s New 52: First Two weeks releases (Part II)

BATMAN & ROBIN #1
Written by Peter J. Tomasi
Art by Pat Gleason
Cover by Pat Gleason

To be honest, this is the first issue that I’ve ever read with Batman and Robin. A kid being subjected to a world of crimes and killings does not entice me on reading it before. But a lot of YA dystopian novel kind of prepared me and set my mind into thinking that this is just ok. And let me just tell you, I’ll be picking up the next issue because I’m interested to know more about this sick kid, son of Batman, great in combat, and he would not even think twice of killing bad guys. The name is Damian Wayne. Some of my favorite lines coming from him are “Life’s a battlefield, father. Good people meet horrible fates the same as the bad ones” and “grief and remorse are a disease of the weak. You wage war and destroy your enemies before they destroy you.” It’s just some lines if you think about it but coming from a 10-year-old kid? Hhhmmnnn

ANIMAL MAN #1
Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Travel Foreman & Dan Green
Cover by Travel Foreman & Dan Green

This is also the first time I’ve ever heard of Buddy Baker – Animal Man. So I read this with a clean slate on my head and an open mind. I didn’t even picked it up immediately like Action Comics #1 fresh out of its delivery box. The ravings of other comic enthusiast did and I’m glad I listened to them. At first, the I was distracted by its art. A bit rough for my taste (the first half, just want to clarify that) but the story telling was flawless so I continued reading. The info dump at the beginning was a bold move too but I liked it. It gives me a feel as what and who Buddy Baker is. The dream sequence erases all my doubt to the capacity of the artist to pull this through. Great job there, both the writer and the artist. And the ending was just . . . freaky. Hehehe. I’m definitely gonna pick up the second issue. 🙂

Candor: In This Town, You Are What You Hear . . .

Oscar Banks live in a perfect town, Candor. Nobody leaves Candor. Why would you? Everything you needed is already there. The messages make sure of that. Who would not want perfect parents or perfect kids, healthy living and zero-crime rate? But what if someone wants to be different? To not be perfect . . .

 The idea of subliminal messages being used for brainwashing was already out there. I remember way back high school, other says that many listens to Eraserheads (Local Filipino band) because it uses subliminal messages, hahaha :P. Going back, Candor was the first novel I’ve read that used it. Pam Bachorz makes you believe that it is real. The main character, Oscar Banks, seems to be in control of his mind. He founds a way to block the messages. He still pretends to be the model candor boy. He follows the messages like “the great are never late”, “respectful space in every place” and “always strive to be your very best”. Then something makes him change his mind . . . Great storytelling and plausible world building. At some part while reading it, I wanted to cover my ears. Maybe someone’s trying to brainwash me. 😉    

READING BUDDIES: Before Reading A Monster Calls

It was MIBF when I bought Patrick Ness new book, A Monster Calls. My friend Tina told me how good the book was and I quote her when she told me “I’m sure you’ll like it”. Looking at it by the time I got home, with a scarecrow-like illustration of what I think would be the monster, I told myself that I wanted to read it differently because it looks so out-of-the-box, it looks special. With that in mind, a tweet from a friend telling me that the book I’ve been pushing to other readers of our group was being reviewed. It was a great way to share/review a book that you think a group of your friends would like. Suddenly I got an idea, why not do it with this book? We do have a group at goodreads.com with a reading buddies thread. We read the book together but instead of posting our comments in the thread, we post it on our blogs. We read an assigned chapters every week. after 3 days, Tina would send us questions about the said chapters and we would be posting our answers every friday. We would be linking every blogs that would join us reading the book, so that our readers could see different points of view about it. I just hope That it works out. 🙂

On Spotlight: Miles Morales, the New Spidey!

Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #1
Written by Brian Michael Bendis
Art by Sara Pichelli and Justin Ponsor
Lettering by Cory Petit
Published by Marvel Comics

The new Spidey, Miles Morales, is out now. Amidst the release of DC’s new 52, I think this issue will not go unnoticed. I know that the press release of the half-black, half-latino web slinger caused a havoc to Peter Parker fans but I think after reading Spider-Man #1, Miles Morales would do just fine.

What do we know about Miles Morales:

We do know that Miles Morales is poor. His parents are good people who wants the best for him so they take a chance in a lottery that could win him a slot to a good school. Sara Pichelli could really draw emotions and with that we could say he is a meek and humble kid. After winning a slot Miles said “It shouldn’t – – all these other kids. Should it be like this?”, we already knew that he’s got a good sense of what’s right and wrong.  

What I like about it:

Story

This issue did not start with web-slinging, crime-fighting, cars-exploding panels and I like it.  Brian Michael Bendis takes time to introduce you to what environment Miles was in. It focuses on his family and on how it would affect him as to what he would become, I think :P. You could feel the warmth and love of a parent to their son on this issue. Bendis is making us know that the family would play an integral part to this series.

Art

Sara Pichelli should also be praised with how this first issue turned out. She accomplished to put real emotions to the characters on how exactly they should look like at every panel. Another one is on how unique every character was drawn. It shows that she really put time on the details. The color was also spot on. It helps to transcends what Pichelli has drawn.

Overall

It was a great first issue and it would be a mistake to not buy it because you don’t want Marvel’s decision of killing Peter Parker. With just the first issue, Bendis already got me caring and rooting for Miles Morales. Great job guys! 🙂