THE MONSTER MEN #3

“Heart of Wrath Part 3”
Writer: Mike Wolfer
Artist: Roy Allen Martinez

Townsend follows the underground passage on the trail of Virginia. Virginia is at the other side talking to Number 13 who speaks English as well as German. Their conversation is interrupted by a British soldier. He shoots Number 13 who we learn is named Otto. The soldier takes Virginia back to this compound. Townsend comes on the body of Otto and continues on the trail of Virginia. He meets up with her and her captor just outside the compound. He surrenders and they are taken inside. A fight ensues with Townsend going one on one with the mysterious Chinese Ju-jong. Townsend kicks his butt but before Arkwright can have him shot, Otto comes to the rescue. He bursts up from an underground tunnel and tears up the place. Sing Lee arrives to give covering fire to Townsend and Virginia. They escape the compound and decide to leave for home. At the end Arkwright goes into the cellar and finds Dr. Vogel. He also finds that their experiments have escaped. As he leaves we see that behind Vogel’s back are the keys to the cell.

The end of another ERB miniseries. This was good in that it had plenty of action and some good artwork. It really didn’t do much to answer any questions. About the only thing occurring is that the two groups got to meet and find out a little about each other. We still have no idea of what Arkwright’s plan is. Why they are there? Otto or Number 13 seems to have learned German from Dr. Vogel. Vogel also is helping the experiments escape to freedom. Of course I knew that this intricate story wasn’t going to be resolved in three issues. I was right for Island of Terror is the next series in The Monster Men. Looking forward to the next installment sometime in the future.

THE MONSTER MEN #2

“Heart of Wrath Part 2”
Writer: Mike Wolfer
Artist: Roy Allen Martinez

The British soldiers from the other compound come to check out the Maxon compound. One of them is killed and taken away by Number 13. The other soldiers find Sing Lee and think he is a pirate. They blame him for the disappearance of their comrade. Townsend and his Lascars get in a firefight with the soldiers and drive them off. After the battle they notice that Virginia is missing and it looks like she was taken by Number 13 through an underground tunnel. Meanwhile back at the other compound we learn that Dr. Vogel is in the employ of Lt. Arkwright and are continuing Maxon’s experiments. They managed to buy the formula from an old colleague of his. Arkwright wants the subjects to be limited mentally so they don’t get to powerful. Arkwright also believes they are almost to the point of perfecting the method to create men for his purposes. At the end we find out Virginia went willingly with Number 13.

This issue gives us some answers about the other compound. It also gives us more questions on what their end motives are and who is really behind the experiments. Number 13 has managed to get Virginia to come with him as Townsend gets in a fight with the British soldiers of Arkwright. A well done story with a mystery in the jungle and some action. The author left much to be resolved in the conclusion but I feel that he is up to the task.

THE MONSTER MEN #1

“Heart of Wrath Part 1”
Writer: Mike Wolfer
Artist: Roy Allen Martinez

Townsend Harper, Virginia Maxon and Sing have come back to the island where Dr. Maxon conducted his experiments in creating life. They wanted to find out if Number 13 was still alive. They have found out and 13 tried to kidnap Virginia. Now they debate their next moves. Should they leave or stay. If stay should they try to help 13 or is he too far gone and should be killed. A storm is coming so they barricade themselves in the old compound to ride it out. Meanwhile on the other side of the island there is another compound. One with soldiers to guard it and run by a German scientist. It also has monsters kept in the cellar cages. Number 13 comes in at night to feed them but the creatures are loyal to a Lt. Arkwright and threaten to tell of him.

The first in a new series from one of Burrough’s lesser known works. A sort of Island of Dr. Moreau. It starts off introducing the reader to the protagonists and their motives and past history. It introduces Number 13 who eats human body parts and speaks German. It also introduces us to this mysterious compound with a German scientist and English lieutenant. This compound also has hideous creatures and is up to experiments that Dr. Maxon did. Wolfer once again gives us a continuation of a Burrough’s story that feels like he would have written it. The characters are interesting and the setting gives the reader a sense of mystery. Another entry in the Burrough’s universe that I eagerly await more of.

STARRING SONYA DEVEREAUX #1 VIOLET VIXEN

“Violet Vixen The Sage Continues…”
Writers: Todd Livingston & Nick Capentanakis
Artists: Brendon & Brian Fraim

Sonya and her pal Jessica are reading for a part in the break room of a vape shop. Jessica wants to read for a female part and the producers suggest the part of Sonya’s mother. Jess doesn’t think that a 25 year old can play the mother of a 26 year old and storms out angry. Sonya invites her to a sports bar for lunch while they wait for another audition. While there Sonya shows her the new Violet Vixen movie.

So we are introduced to Persephone Winkle who is an online vegan chef. She bakes carrots and stuff. One day she was gathering ingredients and a UFO kidnapped her. The aliens put her in a field of flowers. Since Peri was hungry she ate all the flowers. This saved the alien civilization as these flowers were poisonous to them. These flowers gave Peri the ability to control ultraviolet light. The aliens gave her powers to change into Violet Vixen to fight crime.

So to the present and Violet Vixen is at a rally in Midtown to welcome the new super heroin Madame Midnight. She can control darkness and soon after she arrives Panda Trash Man who is dressed as a racoon(?) comes to spoil the event. Madame Midnight uses her powers to make everything dark and shoot Panda Trash Man in the forehead. Violet Vixen thinks that’s not very superheroy to kill your villains but it goes over well with the masses.

So the two superheroines go to Vixen’s apartment and Madame Midnight tells of her origin. She was a stripper named Candy Noxx whose real name was Cherry. She had a sugar daddy named Daddy Sugar. One day on her birthday this Daddy was taking her on his private spaceship to the moon. Neutron Gamma Pulses bombarded this ship and put Daddy Sugar in a coma. It also gave Candy her powers of controlling darkness.

So the two get a notification of a bank robbery. They hop on the Violet Vespa which is a moped. They confront The Questioner who only talks in questions and his gang The Punctuation Pack. Madame Midnight accidentally hits a switch on the moped that launches a missile killing the villains. Yet later Vixen hears a news report that someone stole all the money in the bank from the hole blasted in the wall and blame Vixen because she didn’t properly secure the money. The mayor in consultation with world leaders forbids Vixen to be a superhero and Madame Midnight is the new city’s champion.

Only Madame Midnight is a villain and robs a diamond factory. We find out that Vixen is afraid of the dark. That as a young girl she was playing with her giant spikes and during a blackout her parents fell down the stairs and impaled themselves. Yet she manages to overcome her fears and confront Midnight. She used her powers to heal Daddy Sugar but when he hears medical expenses made him broke and Vixen is standing in the way he wants Vixen killed. Both girls powers cancel each other out so they rely on a good old fashion catfight. The day is saved when the aliens come in an RV stolen after probing the campers. They capture Midnight and her Daddy in a forcefield so they can be arrested and sent to a prison that everyone always escapes from. At the end Violet finds out her boyfriend is Captain Attraction and they go on to have adventures in the next Vengeancers movie. This pissed off Jessica who storm out of the sports bar.

Yes another installment of Sonya Devereaux. This time is skewers the superhero movie. This is just downright funny. Violet Vixen is just over the top dumb blonde who bakes vegetables for a living and has to always go out for tacos as an excuse to her boyfriend. Who is revealed to also be a superhero. The main villain is an alcoholic /stripper. The next story is coming called Warrior Woman Death Team 5 which takes a shot at the sword and sorcery genre. I really hope they continue writing these.

CARSON OF VENUS #3

“Realm of the Dead Part 3”
Writer: Mike Wolfer
Artist: Cyrus Mesarcia

Carson is in the palace of Skor and uses his mental powers to create an image of himself so he can take out the guards. While going to the tower he is confronted by many of Skor’s undead guards. Meanwhile Duare manages to get close to Skor and grab his pistol. She manages to escape. Carson finds out that he has mental control over the dead. Before he can use this newfound power the Zangans attack. Using the attack as a distraction, he makes it to the tower and finds Duare. The dead scientist feels Skor’s power on him fade and helps the two escape. The Zangans kill Skor while Carson and Duare make it to the river and are discovered by Ero Shan and Nalte in their anotar. At the end the dead scientist pays Skor back by bringing him back as a zombie.

Well this was an exciting conclusion to the story. Once again Wolfer tells a story with minimum dialogue and exposition. I really like that he decided to give a conclusion to Skor who Burroughs kept alive in his novel. I thought the ending was right on and his whole portrayal of Skor and his zombies a very accurate presentation. I look forward to future adventures of Carson.

CARSON OF VENUS #2

“Realm of the Dead Part 2”
Writer: Mike Wolfer
Artist: Cyrus Mesarcia

Carson has escaped the Zangans by jumping into the River of Death. He makes his way to a sewer system that leads to Skor’s castle. While making his way he comes on one of the zombies chained to the ground. This zombie doesn’t seem to be fully under control of Skor. In fact the zombie is very helpful to Carson, so he frees him to lead him around the castle. They make their way to the castle and have a fight with the guards. The two manage to defeat the zombie guards. Meanwhile Duare is forced to eat dinner with Skor. They have Ulsio or Amtorian rat for the main course. Skor is determined to make Duare his wife. After dinner Duare manages to convince her guards to take her to the lab where the dead are reanimated. There she finds out how it is done but Skor discovers her and vows to make Duare his undead queen.

Another fun issue of Carson and Duare’s adventures in Kormor. The story goes along at a good solid pace. It tells a story without any unnecessary exposition. The fight scenes are not cluttered with description and let the images tell the story. I think Wolfer really has a grasp on Carson. The zombies and how they act are dead on from the novel.(No pun intended) Also Skor is what you would expect from the original Burrough’s book. A good continuation of Carson’s adventures on Venus.

CARSON OF VENUS #1

“Realm of the Dead Part 1”
Writer: Mike Wolfer
Artist: Cyrus Mesarcia

Duare has been kidnapped by Skor the evil Jong of Morov. So Carson takes off though the trees to avoid the dangerous ground life. Only there are dangers in the trees and a giant snake forces him to the ground. He lands in the mud and is covered with it. One of Skor’s zombies comes and thinks that Carson is one of them. So Carson plays along until a Kazan attacks. Since the Kazan will only attack a living man that exposes Carson. Only the zombie is far enough away from Skor to have some free will. He implores Carson to kill him which Carson does after getting some info on Skor’s castle. Later he is attacked by savage beast men. Carson runs and jumps into the river escaping them.

So they are continuing the story from the Fear on Four Worlds story. Nice to see they don’t forget some dangling plots. This story like all of Wolfer’s stories is just spot on in getting Burroughs right. The creatures and feel of Amtor is just as I would image it. The art really captures the world, people and creatures. The story is told with a minimum of dialogue and written description. It just lets the art tell the story and that is a sign of a good writer. Looking forward to the next issue.

CARSON OF VENUS #3

“The Eye of Amtor Part 3”
Writers: Mike Wolfer & Matt Betts
Artist: Vincenzo Carratu

Carson and Duare come to the Mountains in the Clouds for the final piece of their quest. They need to find a Joska a giant snake. The Joska is a feared creature that is rumored nobody has seen it and lived. The Joska lives in caves and they need a scale from it. So the two go into the caves and find one. Carson manages to knock off a scale and the two head back to Loton. When they arrive they find out the Jong has no interest in building a telescope. It was all a bet between the Jong and his chief guard. Ero Shan and Nalte were never in danger and still guests unaware of the quest that Carson and Duare were sent on.

“Pellucidar: Dark of the Sun Part 3”
Writer: Christopher Paul Carey
Artist: Mike Wolfer

Victory Harbin has been sucked into a portal created by the Mahar. Jason threatens the Mahar and is attacked by her Sagoth servant. Jason shoots him with an energy pistol and jumps into the portal to rescue Victory. Only he finds himself on another world with two suns. Victory meanwhile is also on another world with strange giant insects.

So the Quest for the Telescope comes to an end. We find out it was just done for a wager by the decadent jong of Loton. Carson’s friends were fine and it was a bluff. This was a really fun story. It was in the spirit of Burroughs and this is a prequel to a new novel Carson of Venus: The Edge of All Worlds. This sounds like a really good book. I know ERB Inc. is putting out a lot of good books. I really should start checking them out but there just seems to be so much to read and so little time and money.

The Pellucidar story also leaves us with a cliffhanger. Both Gridley and Victory are on alien worlds. This sounds like it will also be continued in the new novel. American Mythology is doing some great stuff with Burrough’s creations.

CARSON OF VENUS #2

“The Eye of Amtor Part 2”
Writers: Mike Wolfer and Matt Betts
Artist: Vincenzo Carratu

Carson and Duare evade the Vortos and make it back to the anotar. The next stop on their quest is near the city of Voo-ad. There they must find the Ranlav Sap. This clear sap is needed for the telescope. Carson bails out using his ballochute which is his own invention. He lands in the giant trees and immediately is attacked by a tongzan. He escapes it and finds the sap. Then he is attacked by a targo. A giant spider that manages to ensnare the sap canister in it’s web. Fortunately the tongzan comes and attacks the targo. This allows Carson to retrieve the cap canister and make it back to the anotar.

“Pellucidar Dark of the Sun Part 2”
Writer: Christopher Paul Carey
Artist: Mike Wolfer

Victory and Jason Gridley are confronted by a Mahar after using their device to turn the sun dark. Victory reveals she communicated with the Mahar when she was eleven. The Mahar queen is the one that David Innes took to the surface. She is able to communicate with the humans by telepathic means. They ask about why the sun turns dark and the Mahar goes and twists a dial. A beam shoots from the sun and opens a portal that sucks in Victory.

I love this story. The Carson story really has a feel of being written by Burroughs. We get a return to the giant trees and creatures that Carson first started his arrival on Venus in the first book. There is also a callback from the novels with his invention of a ballochute. A kind of parachute and balloon. This is really a good story.

Also the Pellucidar backup is good. We find out some more about Victory. She can communicate with the Mahars and has done so in the past. It was very amusing that the Mahar used these nonsense words that didn’t translate well into the human language. This was a very realistic touch that I appreciate. So now a portal to somewhere is open and Victory is going through.

CARSON OF VENUS #1

“The Eye of Amtor Part 1.”
Writer: Mike Wolfer & Matt Betts
Artist: Vincenzo Carratu

Carson with his mate Duare and friends Ero Shan and Nalte are flying in the anotar(airplane) on their way to Sanara. They decide to help some herders of zaldars by chasing off attacking tharbans. They land in Loton and are welcomed by their Jong Kabalo. He seems friendly and they are shown around the city. Carson and Duare are taken to their library and shown the maps. The jong also shows them plans to a telescope that Carson says he could build. So the jong then gives Carson an ultimatum. Carson and Duare must retrieve the materials to build it in three days or Ero Shan and Nalte will be executed. So the two take off for the Aprith Stones. The stones are clear coral located in Maltor. Carson dives for the stones and gets one but the two have to fight off Vortos.

“Pellucidar Dark of the Sun Part 1”
Writer: Christopher Paul Carey
Artist: Mike Wolfer

Jason Gridley and Victory Harbin are attempting to set up a radio antennae to get the Gridley wave working again. The tower emits some beam that turns the sun of Pellucidar black. Just then a Mahar comes up from the entrance to the old Mahar city they are by.

This was an excellent comic. It is a prequel to an actual book Carson of Venus The Edge of All Worlds. The story has a real feel of being written by Burroughs and I love it. I also love the introduction the authors write. They explain that Betts gets a visit from Carson’s projected image while visiting ERB Inc. While Carey tells of his finding the lost Gridley wave radio and getting transmissions from Pellucidar. They keep the old Burrough’s feel of being just a teller of the stories that are told to them.

The second backup story is short but also good. It introduces a new character in Victory Harbin a young 18 year old who already graduated Oxford and is brilliant. So far I like her but I hope she doesn’t turn out to be too Mary Sue. So far they are setting her up to be too perfect and characters are at their best with human flaws that the reader can relate to. Still a good start and I am also interesting in reading the new books coming out.