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Kolchak: The Night Stalker: The Lovecraftian Horror
by Mattias G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/29/2017 07:08:53

I'm gonna have to give it the full 5 stars. First of all, the illustrations are excellent both in terms of evocative style and in layout (one per page), which capture the horror feel better than nortmal cartoons. This is a proper graphic novel!

Secondly, the text itself, delivered in a quintessential 50's / Dashiell Hammet type of Noir. Not the jumbled schizo lingo where different writers (or translators) have been brought in to provide piece-meal illustrations of the pictures, but as a consistent literary voice. It really brings the lead character, Kolchak, to life (perhaps even more so than the TV series?)!

The one weaker point is perhaps the mystery at heart and the show down itself. Basically just another Innsmouth style raid into sea caves to machinegun deep ones. Then again I'm not that taken with Lovecraftian horror, but to me it was all the peripheral things (local colour and details) rather than the plot itself that kept up interest.

Anyhoo, for 5 bucks, you should definitely get this inspirational masterpiece.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Kolchak: The Night Stalker: The Lovecraftian Horror
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The Hat Squad: Falling Star
by Daniel L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/13/2015 16:39:51

If you are craving a story in the classic noir style this graphic novel does an excellent job. The tone, art, and language remind me of the movies that I have watched in the genre.

The book is reasonably priced (less than $7 dollars for print and 2.99 for digital only). The print copy I received was of high quality. Despite being a scanned image book the images were crisp. The art was well preserved and had survived the transition.

After ignoring a woman's request for help the Hat Squad becomes involved in solving her murder out of guilt. They was no time in scouring all known avenues for results. The conclusion is a true noir conclusion. I don't want to spoil it, but I will say that it was very fitting for the story.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Hat Squad: Falling Star
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The Saint: The Man Who Was Clever
by Myk D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/12/2014 16:57:20

All in all, I'm disappointed. This is described as a "graphic novel", but it's actually more like an illustrated novel. In a graphic novel, the story is shown in images and dialogue, with limited narration. This is largely the text of the novel, with vaguely linked images that don't show what is happening. It's an ok illustrated novel, though.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
The Saint: The Man Who Was Clever
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Kolchak Tales: Ghost Stories (B)
by Flames R. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 10/27/2013 13:58:22

Carl Kolchak, hard-bitten reporter of the supernatural from the TV series “Kolchak: The Night Stalker” of the 1970s returns to action courtesy of an ongoing series of comic books and graphic novels from Moonstone Books. This time, Carl’s been fired by the owner of the newspaper that used to employ him, and he must find another way to make ends meet. He’s approached by a young couple, Otto and Mo Brerhahrer, who are ghost hunters in their spare time, and Kolchak can hardly say no, particularly when they offer to buy him lunch.

Through three related vignettes, the reader learns more about Kolchak, and why he has such a close connection to the supernatural. The first, titled “Fifteen Minutes,” find Kolchak at his wits end regarding where his next meal is coming from. He decides to get in touch with a young couple he met at a recent funeral – their interest in the supernatural seemed fortuitous, and at the time they had expressed an interest in hiring him to do some writing work for them. As it turns out, the offer wasn’t completely genuine but it was sincere, and Kolchak is intrigued.

In the second story, “Blood,” Kolchak is attempting to network with other reporters at a press conference to find work. The company holding forth, Windsor Chemical, is being investigated for illegal dumping. Abandoning the networking effort as a lost cause, Kolchak heads home; later that night, a mysterious and beautiful woman visits him, wanting to hire him to investigate the circumstances surrounding Windsor Chemicals. What Kolchak finds is murder, and more deaths to come.

In story number three, “A Clue To The Truth,” Kolchak is sent by Otto Brerhahrer – a ghost hunter from the first tale – to interview a local expert on the supernatural in order to give himself a better background understanding of ghosts. Kolchak finds himself losing track of the time during his lengthy conversation with Doctor Robert M. Carter; he finally excuses himself hours after he arrived, thanking Dr. Carter profusely for being such an engaging conversationalist. When he meets with Otto the next morning, Otto has news that shocks Kolchak to the core.

This is an entertaining series of tales, and I found myself at the end wishing there was more to read and enjoy.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Kolchak Tales: Ghost Stories (B)
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Return of the Monsters: Black Bat vs Dracula
by Chet C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/18/2013 00:45:47

Well - uh -

Boy, do I hate to say it. Maybe I can make this a little kinder.

It could have been better.

The writer starts from the assumption that every reader knows who these characters are. An incorrect assumption, as this is an issue that most people will pick up even if they don't know any character but Dracula. Let's face it: Hardly anything with "Dracula" in the title is going to lose money.

But how many people know who the Black Bat is/was? And who's this Rachel dressed as an even-more badly designed Azrael-Batman? Why is Dracula in this particular city at this time, and why is Rachel hunting him? What's her relation, if any, to Black Bat? (They seem to know each other.) The story seems to be chase, chase, chase, fight, chase some more, fight, stop the story before it ends.

It's really hard to tell what's going on sometimes. The art is very pretty, and filled with lots of extra lines which aren't needed. (Alex Toth would have a fit!) But the artist seems to want to fill up space and show off his/her art - not tell a story.

SPOILER WARNINGS!!!

The plot is: Dracula is killing prostitutes. Rachel hunts Dracula. He almost successfully seduces her but Black Bat saves her. (Surprised?) Dracula is driven away by a Really Badly Drawn Schtick. (The items used to drive him away are not the items which would drive him away, nor do they look like them.)

We don't get to know the Bat. We don't get to know Dracula. (We just assume he's like the most cliched movie version.) And we don't get to know Rachel, other than - like a stereotyped woman hero, she comes from an abusive background. Look, it worked well enough with Red Sonja, but does EVERY abused person put on a costume and go hunting bad guys and monsters? In far too many comics, they do -- and that's all we ever see into their character.

Every person seeing this title, especially if they know who Black Bat was, really wants to read this book and hungrily wants to like it. We were ready to forgive a lot, and we have to if we want to finish the story. (Which doesn't finish, using the stereotyped "The End?" blurb.) We have come to expect so much from Moonstone.

It could've been a contender. The best I can say is "It's not as bad as it could have been."

I really - REALLY - wanted to like this.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Return of the Monsters: Black Bat vs Dracula
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Kolchak Tales: Frankenstein Agenda #1
by Aaron B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/01/2012 05:17:36

I was pleasantly surprised by this comic. I'd watched a bit of the original TV series, and this does a good job of keeping that general atmosphere.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Kolchak Tales: Frankenstein Agenda #1
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Robin Hood and the Minstrel
by Scott C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/18/2012 00:24:52

Gorgeous art accompanies fun, believable, and likeable characters!



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Robin Hood and the Minstrel
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Domino Lady: Sex as a Weapon
by Scott C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/09/2012 19:30:37

A fun and thrilling adventure and the only reason why I didn't give it 5 stars is because it was a little too sexy for me.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Domino Lady: Sex as a Weapon
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Kolchak: The Night Stalker: The Lovecraftian Horror
by Jeffrey V. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/19/2012 23:13:05

I was a huge fan of the "Kolchak: The Night Stalker" series on TV when I was a kid back in the 70's. So when I found this book, I was, of course intrigued. Add to that the fact that it brings in HP Lovecraft's "Cthulhu Mythos" -- my favorite RPG -- and I was sold. Originally, I thought I was getting a role-playing supplement, and after that first flash of disappointment (what could be better than roleplaying Kolchak up against mighty Cthulhu?), I continued to read -- I could almost hear Darren McGavin's and Simon Oakland's ("Tony Vicenzo") voices during much of the early part of the book. It was an awesome tour de force, and very much in keeping with the spirit of the movies Night Stalker and Night Strangler, and the best of the Night Stalker shows. I'd cheerfully buy any more of these if they exist or are being written. This was one of the best $4.00 buys I've made in years! My only regret is that it wasn't substantially longer!

Doing a little research, I discovered that Moonstone has been working this stuff since 2007. Well good for them! It's a great franchise, and it's a terrible pity we'll never see another new Night Stalker episode from Darren and Simon and the gang.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Kolchak: The Night Stalker: The Lovecraftian Horror
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Twilight Crusade: Gabriel
by Andrew M. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/30/2011 13:03:36

Set in a grim modern day, this Comic grips you from the beginning. It has an interesting spin on the battle between Heaven and Hell, adding a third group into the mix. I liked it, as you aren't sure where it's headed. The graphics are well done and some of the thought into the story is definitely intriguing. If you enjoy an action/puzzler based comic then this one should satisfy you. If you don't like theological questions of good vs evil in gray terms then don't read this book. With a price tag of free, and readers deciding whether it will continue, I'd encourage people to give it a read and then decide for yourself.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Twilight Crusade: Gabriel
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Twilight Crusade: Gabriel
by matt b. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/23/2011 05:48:08

Mysterious enough and the premise is extremely interesting. However, I don't have a lot of buy-in with the characters yet. So far it is just your typical guns-blazing heroine. It almost feels like they were trying to write a script where the actors would fill in a lot of these blanks. I would be interested in reading the others but, truthfully, not for $3.99 a digital download--maybe 99 cents.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
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The Phantom #1
by Aditya T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/25/2011 23:13:31

All ok. I just need to re download since my laptop was stolen.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Phantom #1
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Twilight Crusade: Gabriel
by Flames R. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 12/30/2010 15:18:51

“Raining Fire” is the first in the TWILIGHT CRUSADE: GABRIEL series from Moonstone and introduces us to a female embodiment of the archangel Gabriel. She’s fed up with her job, has a jaded outlook and some high powered, kick-ass weapons. I’m all for tough heroines and heroes ready to take down the bad guys, and I enjoy a complex good vs. evil story. Unfortunately, I didn’t think there was enough in the first issue to fully deliver the hard-edge and gripping storyline that it initially promises—but there is great potential here for any future issues.

An introductory page gives us some background. It lays out the story of Lucifer and the fallen angels, Michael the other archangels, and the ones that couldn’t choose a side. The latter are called the Hollow because “they were so empty of passion they couldn’t choose a side.” Being banished to earth, many of the Hollow bore children with humans. The offspring were called the Nephilim. Throughout the comic details are added about the rest of the divine hierarchy as well.

All of this is pretty familiar territory, and the basic plot will be recognizable to anyone that has at least some passing knowledge of religion, has watched Supernatural or Constantine, or has read the graphic novels. This isn’t a bad thing, per say; there’s a huge audience for the material, and it’s as good of a start as any.

After the intro, the story begins with a high octane fight sequence between Gabe and a few demons. After the initial showdown with the bad guys, Gabriel meets up with “Lou” (three guesses who that is). Things start to slow down from this point in order to fill in some important details on the relationships between the denizens of heaven, hell, and the divine on earth.

Overall, there’s nothing wrong with the basic idea itself. It’s been proven and it works because people are interested in the classic good vs. evil struggle. But with the number of stories, books, movies, television shows, graphic novels and comics that deal with this type of plot, each creative work that tries to tread that path needs something unique to itself so that readers aren’t saying “hey, this is exactly like this thing over here.” Again, there’s obvious potential present in GABRIEL. I wouldn’t disregard it, and if the trouble spots can be strengthened in future issues then it may develop into a truly riveting comic series.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Twilight Crusade: Gabriel
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The Silencers #4
by Sean H. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 06/25/2009 16:55:54

The Silencer #4, Created by Fred Van Lente and Steve Ellis and published by Moonstone Books. It is a twenty-eight-page product (two of which are advertisements).

The Silencers are drawn by Ellis who has a good feel for the classic look of the American superhero comic and, while rough at times, captures the mood of the story quite well. The entire comic is in full color, as superheroic action should be.

The Silencers are not you typical supergroup. They are criminals, superpowered enforcers previously employed by the mob and now fighting for their own survival against the forces of the criminal Syndicate and its powered enforcers as well as trying to avoid the law. The Silencers have to act carefully so as to avoid attracting the attention of the “tights” (costumed superheroes) of their world, which is a little amusing as all of the Silencers have bought into the same game, and all of them have code names and flashy costumes.

This issue concludes the first story arc begun back in Silencers Issue #1. It is the final confrontation between the Silencers and the Syndicate, where they make their play to get revenge for being betrayed and the loss of their friends and allies. The secrets behind the Syndicate and their powered agents are revealed. The tights make a major appearance. It is an exciting read and a suitable ending for the story.

As I am primarily a game product reviewer, I would like to note that this issue contains a lot that could be used for a supers campaign, on either side of the law.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Silencers #4
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The Silencers #3
by Sean H. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 06/24/2009 16:03:39

The Silencer #3 (“Spree”), Story by Fred Van Lente, Art by Steve Ellis, Dae Lim Yoo and Kurt Marquart and published by Moonstone Books. It is a thirty-page product (two of which are advertisements).

The Silencers are drawn by Ellis who has a good feel for the classic look of the American superhero comic and, while rough at times, captures the mood of the story quite well. The entire comic is in full color, as superheroes (or supervillains) should be.

The Silencers are not you typical supergroup. They are criminals, superpowered enforcers previously employed by the mob to keep down the competition now fighting for their own survival against the forces of the criminal Syndicate and its powered enforcers. The Silencers have to act carefully so as to avoid attracting the attention of the “tights” (costumed superheroes) of their world, which is a little amusing as all of the Silencers have bought into the same game, as all have code names and costumes.

This issue is mostly told in flashback through a clever set up and helps to explain what the Syndicate, the Silencers main enemy, is up to as the Silencers themselves learn through a set of carefully planned operations. It also develops the world beyond the Silencers a little more, showing the police and the superheroes, at least peripherally.

As I am primarily a game product reviewer, this issue expands on the Silencers’ world a bit, showing you more of the tights and the police, both of which provide useful idea to incorporate into a superheroic campaign.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
The Silencers #3
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