Mini-Reviews - Axe Cop: Bad Guy Earth #2, B.P.R.D.: The Dead Remembered #1, Madman Giant Special #0, Usagi Yojimbo #136


Followers of this site are probably aware of the fact that my reviews tend to be 1 -2 K word affairs, that pull the comic apart and critique ever aspect. Not everyone’s cup of tea, I know, but it’s just the way I write, and lots of people tell me they like my review style, so…

However, these reviews can be exhausting, and the format doesn’t really lend itself to doing regular weekly release reviews. Therefore, I have decided to try out something new. Each week, on Wednesday or Thursday, I plan to post a handful of mini-reviews of a number of the week’s releases. I plan to boil the reviews down to 1 to 2 paragraphs, to keep things short and sweet.

As my “day job” is an evil nigh/third-shift schedule (11 p.m. - 7 a.m.), I can never make it downtown during the week, because I mostly sleep during daylight hours, like a Vampire. However, due to the magic of the internet, and publishers who are living in this century, I now get sent a ton of digital copies of the week’s comic. Not all publishers do this, so you can mostly expect to see stuff here from: BOOM! Studios, Dark Horse Comics, Image Comics, Oni Press, and Radical Comics. Occasionally I get send stuff from other publishers, but DC and Marvel don’t do digital review copies. Yes, you read that right! I’ve had review copies from them before, but I had to request them, and then they sent them though regular mail, it’s an ordeal.

If you work for an indy/small press publisher, and want to get your books to me for review, please email me at [email protected]!

This week’s reviews (click the title to skip to the review):


The psychic brother begin their plot to turn all of the Earth’s good guys into bad guys. Meanwhile Axe-Cop, Dinosaur Soldier, and Wexter battle dinosaurs, aliens, vikings, pirates, monsters, animals, wrestlers, ghost knights, and baseball players? We learn Sockarang’s secret origin! This comic also answers the question of how to defeat a race of people with magic unicorn horns. The answer is of course, with traffic cones! Don’t worry though, Super lion pig saves the day!

The plot of Axe Cop: Bad Guy Earth is so zany, and so unpredictably funny, that it could only have been written by a six year old. This is of course, because it was! Ethan Nicolle tells his wackiest story yet, while Malachai Nicholle produces some of his finest artwork to date. The artwork looks even better thanks to a fantastic colouring job by Dirk Erik Schulz. If you’ve not yet jumped on board the Axe Cop bandwagon, Bad Guy Earth is a great place to start. It needs no knowledge of the previous stories, just that you have a great imagination and a sense of humour to match! If you buy one comic this week, make it Axe Cop: Bad Guy Earth. If you buy two comics, make them both ‘Bad Guy’, and give one to a friend!

My Pick of the week!


Last month was Guy Davis’ last issue on B.P.R.D. - sad I know. However, before we get to see new artist Tyler Crook join the title. Mike Mignola, Scott Allie, and Karl Moline are taking us back to 1976 for a three-part story from the early days of the bureau. It’s the untold tale of teenaged Liz Sherman’s first field mission with Professor Brutenholm. The pair head to Massachusetts to investigate reports of the ghost of a woman who was wrongly executed on grounds of witchcraft.

I have to say, it’s strange to read a B.P.R.D. story that isn’t co-written by John Arcudi. Not in a bad way, but it does give the book quite a different feel to it. Of course, I know that tons of other people have written the team in the past, but it’s certainly been a while. Mignola and Allie weave a a great opening issue to what looks like it will be an interesting story. They do a particularly good job of bringing us a teenage Liz, who is uppity and undisciplined - completely different from the Liz we know today. Karl Moline does a great job on the art front, with some nice clean line art, quite different from Davis’ style, but made to feel similar by Dave Stewart’s always amazing colouring job. It’s a great comic for constant B.P.R.D. fans, or even casual fans who want a glimpse of Liz’s early career. Don’t skip it just because it’s not part of the ongoing B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth story, or you’ll regret it!


Madman is back in a one-off story that sees him fall down a hole. OK, there’s way more to it than that, but it’s hard to explain without giving away the ending! This special also includes short Madman comics by Emi Lenox, Matt Kindt, and Tonci Zonjic. There is also a MASSIVE pin-up gallery, with contributions by some of the industry’s finest comics artists!

Mike Allred is the master of the Bizarre! This single story embodies everything that I love about Madman. Frankly, nothing much happens in the issue, but Allred uses a dream/hallucinatory experience to do some great characterization work that explores Madman’s life, loves, and fears. Oh, and the artwork is just divine! This has really whet my appetite for the Madman Atomica HC, which I need more that the air that keeps me alive! Also, the three back-up storys are all great, I think Emi Lenox’s was probably my favourite though, such a sweet story!


Usagi once again crosses paths with the Red Scorpion Gang, who are terrorizing the local area. He also meets a friend of his old sensei, and spends some time at the sword school he runs. However, this school may be more than it at first appears to be. It’s a two-part story with a twist in the tail.

Let me guess. You used to buy Usagi Yojimbo, but you haven’t bought an issue in years. Everyone tells me the same story. I used to be the same way myself. I bought the series when I was a teenager, but stopped buying it at some point. I’d always see it on the shelf, and wonder whether it was still worth buying. Well, around issue #100, I started picking up the series again, and let me tell you, it IS still worth buying, and it never stopped being worth buying. For nearly 30 years now, Stan Sakai has consistently been telling some of the best comic stories out there, and this issue is no different! With a smart plot, great dialogue, and breath-taking artwork, Usagi Yokimbo #136 deserves to be on your buy pile! Jump onboard with this issue, it’s a quick two-parter, and requires very little knowledge of prior events in Usagi’s wanderings!

Related posts:

  1. Advance Review - Stan Sakai’s Usagi Yojimbo: Yokai OGN
  2. Dark Horse and The Hundreds Brand Announce Two Limited-Edition Usagi Yojimbo T-shirts to Be Released This Saturday
  3. Dark Horse Deluxe Announces a New Usagi Yojimbo Plush Toy For Release This Spring
  4. Stan Sakai Interviews Usagi!
  5. Dark Horse Comics Team-Up with The Hundred to Release Usagi Yojimbo Apparel

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