Sunday, December 28, 2014

Batman Detective Comics: Faces of Death + iZombie Series

This past year, I took place in the Graphic Novel Reading Challenge as I really wanted to read more graphic novels. I signed up for the first level in the beginning (12 books) and then continued on to the Bronze Age, where you had to read/review 24 books during the year. I figured I'd post one post with my final graphic novels of 2014- I finished with 27, so that means I officially made it through the Bronze Age!!

Batman Detective Comics Volume 1- Faces of Death by Tony S. Daniel

Review by Lauren

Source: copy from library; all opinions are my own

Official Summary: Bruce Wayne returns as Batman, and sets his sights on new villain the Gotham Ripper, who in turn has his sights on Batman. Meanwhile, Bruce Wayne explores a budding romance with television journalist Charlotte Rivers, who's visiting Gotham City to cover the gruesome slayings–while also trying to uncover Bruce's own mystery. But time is running out as both Commissioner Gordon and Batman work to uncover the true identity of this new serial killer.

Review: By now, most of you have realized my love for Batman and the graphic novel collections of new comics. I love the dark, gritty stories and this one definitely fit the bill. Batman/Bruce Wayne is battling a lot of gruesome killers in this one, from new killer the Dollmaker to old fan favorites the Joker and the Penguin. I've noticed that in a lot of these Batman collections there is usually a comic or so that leaves me a bit confused. I assume it's setting up something for the future, but I don't know yet. For this volume, there was only one section that had me confused; the rest of the book seemed to follow a linear storyline from beginning to end. Overall, I really liked this one, and I hope I can find the other volumes soon.

iZombie series by Chris Roberson and Michael Allred

Review by Lauren

Source: copies from library; all opinions are my own

Review: I've heard of iZombie for awhile now, so I was excited to find all four volumes at my local library. Volume 1: Dead to the World, Volume 2: UVampire, Volume 3: Six Feet Under and Rising, and Volume 4: Repossession. All the comics are collected into these four volumes, and that's the entire story, so it was kind of cool to read something from beginning to end. At the same time, I would love to see more of these characters.

iZombie is mostly about a zombie named Gwen Dylan and her friends, Ellie (a ghost) and Scott (a were-terrier she refers to as Spot).

At least once a month, Gwen has to eat a brain so she doesn't turn into a shuffling, mumbling version of a zombie. Of course, when she eats a brain, she gets memories and even the voice of the dead. This often leads her to finishing up their final business. The rest of the time, she works as a grave digger (which is how she ends up getting the brains when she needs them), lives in a crypt, and spends time with her very unique friends.

Things start to get even weirder in the first volume though, when Gwen meets a man named Aman who tells Gwen she needs to do more than just eat a brain once a month to keep from becoming a true zombie. His ideas leave Gwen feeling weird though, as she wants to stay as far away from being an "actual" monster as she can. This storyline progresses throughout all the volumes, leading to what could easily be the end of the world if Gwen doesn't figure out how to stop it.

Throughout the comics, we learn more about Ellie and her background, Scott and his, and some other side characters that come into their lives to help defeat the end of the world. These were really fun comics, and again, I'd love to read more about the characters. The end was very bittersweet, but at the same time, it made sense. It didn't turn the whole story into a sudden "happily-ever-after" which would not have been realistic.

All in all, a good series!


Claudia {Sparrowhawk} said...

I am so glad you stopped by my blog today and left a link to your blog because I would not have stumbled upon your awesome review!

I am a certified DC Comics fangirl; let's be friends! Ha ha ha XD

I haven't read any graphic novels or new comic book series in such a long time, I suspect it is owing to the fact that my children are a lot older now and I have to be a bit more cautious with what I bring home :/ Maybe I can get my comic book fix through you :P

Jasprit said...

I'm glad to see that you're having such a great success with your challenge, I'm normally not one to pick up graphic novels, but I do really like the sound of the Batman Detective Comics! :)

Diva Booknerd said...

iZombie, she's the most fabulous looking zombie I've ever seen! reminds me a little of Warm Bodies, where she's more than just a shuffling mess moaning for brains. I love seeing the human side of zombies, where most authors stick with 'The Walking Dead' format.

Great review Lauren, going to check that one out <3 and congratulations on your challenge!

Melliane said...

Oh nice graphic novels! I think a TV show will be out for the second one right? Because I noted it to watch it. thanks for the 2 reviews.

Melliane said...

Oh nice graphic novels! I think a TV show will be out for the second one right? Because I noted it to watch it. thanks for the 2 reviews.

Kindlemom said...

These sound like they were fun reads, glad you enjoyed them so much!

Brandi Kosiner said...

The dark and grittiness sounds great.

Noelia Alonso said...

Thanks for visiting my blog yesterday! ;) I've never really been into comics and the only comic I've read has been Saga volume 1 and I have to say that I really enjoyed it so I might continue with that. Still both stories look nice ;)

Erika Sorocco said...

iZombie looks like so much fun!


cleemckenzie said...

I haven't read many graphic novels, but my nephew is a fan. Guess I'll have to pay attention and make some lists so I'll know what to talk to him about.

Michelle @ In Libris Veritas said...

I need to read that volume of Batman...the New 52 line confused me when it first started so I just stopped reading DC except for those that I just happened upon or my boyfriend bought.I read the Batman volume but missed this one. iZombie looks pretty good too