Live From the Comic Shop – Sinergy #2, Bitch Planet #1, Batgirl #37

By Christine Marie

IMG_7974Happy Wednesday Bleeding Coolers! I'm at Conquest Comics in Bayville, NJ feeling very enthusiastic about the lineup of comics that have been released this week. On to the comic reviews!

IMG_7977It feels like yesterday that the first issue of this colorful series was released, but I'm happy to report that Sinergy #2 from Image Comics, co-created/written by Michael Avon Oeming and Taki Soma with art by Oeming and colors by Soma is out today. Main character Jess is in the difficult position of deciding whether or not to continue her life as a normal teenager or follow in her Dad's footsteps and become a seer. Her parents debating over the issue doesn't help her conflicting feelings. What's great about the way Oeming and Soma write Jess' character is how realistic they make her. Despite all of the supernatural crazy things she has to deal with, she still acts like a normal eighteen-year-old girl, daydreaming about the guy she lost her virginity to.

This issue has a decent amount of world building in it, which is necessary and done in a way that's easy to digest. We get a little more incite into the long term goals of these monsters recruiting people for their army of synergized humans. One of the best things about this comic is how spectacular the artwork is. Soma's mixtures of bright colors pop from the black background throughout most of the issue. I found myself wanting to analyze the particular choices of colors last month, and I feel the same way this month. It's interesting that there is a lot of black colored in amongst the bright colors that fill Jess and her parents characters, but a white background surrounds the scenes with the monsters. Obviously it might just be a matter of style and I could be over-analyzing, but I do feel like the colors are done in a purposeful way.

IMG_7978When I woke up this morning, I checked my Twitter feed and read a tweet from comic writer extraordinaire, Gail Simone that hinted at reading one of Image's new releases today. Unless I've lost the ability to rhyme, she was talking about Bitch Planet #1 from Image Comics, written by Kelly Sue DeConnick, with art by Valentine De Landro. Wow! What a fantastic book! The story takes place in a prison for women in a space type setting. The women that are contained there "don't fit in" in society and are punished for it. It has some incredibly violent scenes throughout, but these women are tough! During the issue the focus is shifted to Marian Collins who is conflicted about why she is there in the first place.

Separate scenes with her husband reveal the reasons, but I won't spoil them here. I will tell you that despite the violence and the harsh treatment that these women are receiving, there is a strong sense of unity among them. They have each others backs and that is something very powerful to watch. The rules in this prison might be one thing, but they have plans of their own. I'm not sure if other readers felt this way, but it reminded me of the TV show Orange is the New Black. Just like the show, all of these women have unique personalities and I really look forward to learning more about each of them individually as the issues continue. De Landro's art is drawn in a realistic fashion, with a few sci-fi looking characters thrown in for good measure. Overall, I think the comic is interesting, and has the potential to send a very powerful message to everyone who reads it.

IMG_7976The sparkles are flying in Batgirl #37 from DC Comics, Written by Cameron Stewart and Brenden Fletcher, with art by Babs Tarr, as Barbara Gordon deals with an imposter trying to hurt her reputation. I've been very passionate about my opinion of this "New Era" of Batgirl, and I continue to struggle with the same things as I move forward. However, I will say that Stewart and Fletcher are making major improvements. The beginning of this issue annoyed me with the tight low cut dresses and the club scene, but there was a defining moment that tugged at my heart strings. As Barbara looks at the gallery that is depicting her in a not so flattering way, she comes across a piece entitled "vulnerable," which shows her in a wheelchair. This brought out a lot of emotion for me as a reader, but also made me feel relieved that they are finally acknowledging her struggle.

This is an action packed issue, and like I've said before, I really enjoy the way fight scenes are done. All of my personal struggles with the "New Era" mostly stem from the Barbara Gordon scenes and the hearts that pop up randomly around her or the guy she's two feet away from. I think Stewart and Fletcher are slowly developing a complex plot and I am looking forward to finding out who the villain is behind these tricky schemes. The minions working for the mastermind have been okay thus far. I haven't been very impressed, scared, or intimidated by them. So, I'm hoping that whoever the man/woman behind the story arc is, surprises me in a good way. Babs Tarr's art continues to be pleasing to the eye, although I worry about the potential for crossovers in the long run. At the end of the day, I am a huge fan of Batgirl and I think as time goes on I will warm up more and more to this new version of her.

To finish off my Live report, I'll share co-owner Pete's pick of the week! He chose, The Valiant #1 from Valiant Comics written by Jeff Lemire and Matt Kindt with art by Paolo Rivera.

Well, it has been an eventful Wednesday here at Conquest Comics. Thanks for reading Live From The Comic Shop! Be sure to come back next week for more new release reviews! If you're looking for some more awesome things to read on Bleeding Cool, check out Typing on the Dead and Sweet Release by Jared Cornelius!

Conquest Comics is located in Bayville, NJ. You can find out more about their awesome shop or follow them on Instagram @ConquestComics.

Christine Marie is a writer and bibliomaniac with a love for all things creative. Some of her favorite things include: Batgirl, Star Wars, Harry Potter, Saga, Game of Thrones (the books and the show), Johnny Depp, and all things Disney. She spends her weekends feeding her competitive side while she plays tabletop and/or video games with her friends. She is currently working on a multitude of different creative projects. You can find her on Twitter and Instagram @AWritersWay or on her blog

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About Hannah Means Shannon

Editor-in-Chief at Bleeding Cool. Independent comics scholar and former English Professor. Writing books on magic in the works of Alan Moore and the early works of Neil Gaiman.
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