The Season Of Criminals, Psi-Lords, And Snakes

I read Criminal #4, Psi-Lords #1, and The Season Of The Snake, and since I didn't have enough for a proper piece about any of them, but together, I can speak about all of them capsule-review style. Without further ado…

Psi-Lords #1 from Valiant Entertainment by Fred Van Lente and Renato Guedes. Writer Fred Van Lente's one of Valiant's journeyman writers. He knows tone, and delivers an unobjectionable team up series here. It's fun, but that's about as far as it goes. Renato Guedes looks like he lets a little bit of Bill Sienkiewicz into his work, which looks great. Plot wise, Van Lente sets up a prison break with relative unknowns (to me, anyway) given what I assume are psiot powers, but are called gods here. The color-coded powers look a little similar to video game archetypes, or it could be based on Green Lantern or Superman or Wolverine? Where Van Lente and Guedes take the characters after the cliffhanger is anyone's guess.

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by Rod Reis

Criminal #4 from Image Comics by Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips and Jacob Phillips. A cautionary tale about bad friends. You've got some, and if you don't, I envy you. But bad friends in Criminal are about the friends anyone has in that world. In this case, Ricky Lawless gets into trouble, and it starts with accepting payment in the form of crystal meth. So Lawless puts it to use, and then gets in over his head. But then comes in the friend part of bad friend. And what he's got while hopped up on crystal meth is a line into one of the biggest questions in the Criminal world. The Phillips family's great at drawing moody atmosphere and tense characters, so steady as she goes in that regard. Criminal #4 isn't as powerful a single issue story as #1, but I don't think it needs to be.

The Season Of Criminals, Psi-Lords, And Snakes
by Sean Phillips

The Season Of The Snake from Statix Press by Serge Lehman and Jean-Marie Michaud: Almost completely incomprehensible, but meticulously produced. My favorite use of a tremendously restricted palate since Guy Davis' The Marquis. There's a semi-religious organization running an ersatz version of Sigil, and a rebellion, and the wild plot culminates in a meta-the-comic-pages-are-in-the-comic ending. I'm not sure what I think of it now, but I got drawn in by Michaud's precise blues, greys, and then blacks in the normal story with a burst of color for when a tremendous amount of emotion comes upon the characters. No shade on the translation, which does what it can. Statix produces another eye-melting wonder of a comic. It's wild.

The Season Of Criminals, Psi-Lords, And Snakes
by Simon Roy