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Spotlight on ComiXology Submit – Deluge, The Snow Queen And Other Stories, The Abominations of Science

Every week, there is quite a selection of new comics available that have been added to ComiXology via their creator-owned Submit platform, and here at Bleeding Cool we're taking a moment to point out some of the titles that have caught our attention this time around that you might find as impressive or wacky (or wackily-impressive) as we did.

Top Pick:

Deluge #1, written by J.D. Oliva and illustrated by Richard P. Clark

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The cover for Deluge, which features clean line-work offset by a watercolor feel, caught my attention as well as the premise: a cop drama set in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. But we all know that a good cover and premise are only the starting point, and a comic needs to follow through. Interior artwork is impressive on Deluge, and even though it has an indie feel, the action and movement in the panels displays a lot of confidence and commitment to the storyline that lives up to the cover. The distance shots of the flood that open the comic are also extremely well-executed, so Clark displays a versatility working with human figures and landscapes that's needed on a book like this. It is quite action-packed and violent, but again Clark's artwork gives each scene a strangely ethereal quality, and that contrast is part of the appeal as we follow FBI agent Jarret Roberts as he attempts to survive a cop hunt-down on his life without badge, phone, or gun as the elements rage and mayhem breaks out in the criminal world. It's a strong debut with a lot of qualities to recommend it, and a degree of professionalism in the writing and artwork that suggests that The Deluge will capture reader attention well on the Submit platform.

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Tall Tales and Outrageous Adventures: The Snow Queen and Other Stories, written and illustrated by Isabel Greenberg

Screen Shot 2014-02-12 at 11.17.25 AMIsabel Greenberg sets off on an artistic adventure here to retell and adapt fairy tales in a modern style with plenty of humor, and while there are hoards of fairy-tale adaptations on the market in prose and even quite a few in comics, her art-style and attitude make this collection unique. She has a wood-block-like and folk-art style that captures in strong lines a kind of inside joke in character facial expressions and poses that is highly original and memorable. You can tell from the almost wicked smile of her reindeer-rider on the cover that she finds the underlying ironies and amusing qualities of these fairy and folk tales and excavates them artistically for the reader, making the book a new reading experience even if you're familiar with the stories. Her lettering is also part of the success of the book, which has the same angular, lilting quality as the artwork. Dialogue like "I'm here in the name of true love, so GET OUT OF MY WAY ALREADY" is precisely what makes the stories winning for the reader, coupled with toothy, angry faces when even the "good" characters are mad. Greenberg finds that fine line quite easily between creating a comic that kids can enjoy and adults can be drawn into. It's kind of the Adventure Time of traditional tales and if readers don't manage to discover this comic, they are missing out.

The Abominations of Science, with writing and artwork by both Ryan J. Kacsandy and S. Louis King

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When I look at ComiXology Submit each week, I always hope I will find something truly wacky that I really wouldn't be likely to find in a comic shop unless they stock indie 'zines or self-published work. And this week, I have not been disappointed. Because comic distributors aren't usually willing to take a chance on wackiness or a comic that can't afford a big ad campaign when the reality is, plenty of comic readers are looking for just this kind of book for a unique reading experience. The Abominations of Science has a painted cover, and the interiors are in black and white. It opens with the immortal words, "Deep in the valleys of nature, all of God's creatures live in peaceful communion. All except one. Dr. Rommel Doowde. Scientist. Lover. Conqueror." Indie books have such guts and really–that opening is very amusing and gutsy. The book quickly descends into the very bizarre adventures of mad scientist (possible wannabe supervillian) Doowde in his gothic castle, scrutinized by police inspectors due to the murmuring of the no doubt pitchfork-bearing townsfolk and there's a minion, of course, too. I suspect as much B-film influence here as comics influence, but there's a pulpy, over-the-top tone that's definitely comics history at work. This will be your dose of strange comics for the week if you have a read–there's even a wig-wearing robot. Big points to the creators for making a comic only they could make.

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Hannah Means ShannonAbout 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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