Sunday Digest 25/08/13 – this weekend’s must read digital comics

This weekend’s must-read digital comics in the Sunday Digest include an existential edition of Monkeybrain’s Edison Rex, all new The Engine from Madefire and 2000ad‘s genre-defying Trifecta crossover.

Edison Rex #9

Edison Rex 9 coverChris Roberson and Dennis Culver’s ironic look at silver age superheroes takes a surreal twist this issue as Edison takes a detour to the whited out world of ‘The White’. Riffing on DC’s Phantom Zone, it makes really smart use of some very well done homages to Japanese manga (turning monochrome and using Japanese lettering) and also 90s Image/Rob Liefeld’s X-Force (with bulging muscles and impossible anatomy and over-sized weaponry) as well as including some awesome Guided View specific pages. These are designed to layer up on each other as you read – so make sure to turn your iPad landscape for this one and read in Guided View mode – and create a really intriguing one-off format for the book, that matches the trippy nature of the story. Flipping between landscape and portrait modes is a bit confusing at first (but that’s kind of the point) and although when read out of context may seem a bit crazy, but by the time you get to the end and it sets up the next story arc for Rex it all begins to make sense and is another smart story from the MonkeyBrain co-founder and co..
Edison Rex #9 is available exclusively via ComiXology for just £0.69/$0.99

The Engine #5 (Madefire)

The Engine #5 cover (Madefire)Madefire‘s robotic red menace is finally coming out of the shadows and into the forefront of Guy Adams’ and Jimmy Broxton’s Soviet inspired motion book. After 4 instalments of  back story, introducing us to the various dissidents in the Siberian salt mine that is our setting, an earthquake fires Soviet robot The Engine into action and begins to tunnel their way out, but is it to freedom or into the fire? Broxton’s incredibly stylised art mixes Soviet Contructivism with a lead character who looks like a cross between Atomic Robo and The Goon, however don’t let that give you preconceptions. As befits any book from that period if has a solid and intellectual undercurrent and Adams’ script is smart and layered with tons of depth which gives Broxton room to create a stunningly designed book which really is one of the most under-rated in the Madefire family.
Download The Engine #5 via the free to download Madefire app

2000ad Trifecta

2000ad trifectaHot on the heels of the epoch-defining Day Of Chaos storyline, 2000ad have lined up yet another intense genre-defying storyline with Trifecta and created another modern classic. Now collected in one edition for fans to truly appreciate in all it’s brilliance it’s available via Amazon as both a print and kindle edition. Originally split across 3 seperate 2000ad series – Judge Dredd, The Simping Detective and Low Life – it was only after several weeks that regular 2000ad readers knew these 3 stories were connected as Dredd literally burst from the pages of one story into the next. Unlike your usual crossover where one writer guides the whole story and the other characters become homogenised, writers Si Spurrier (The Simping Detective), Rob Williams (Low Life) and Al Ewing (Judge Dredd) continued to craft their own unique stories with ther respective characters while a huge conspiracy involving Black Ops Judges and the Wally Squad unfolded across all three titles.  Dredd continues his relentless pursuit of the law which glues the story together, however Spurrier’s The Simping Detective – which is a twisted, dark mass of a story with intricately constructed almost nonsensical exposition- continues to be just that backed up with brooding artwork from Si Coleby. While Low Life and it’s star Dirty Frank is just plain mental and in completely contrast to the other two thanks to Disraeli’s styllish, almost cartoony art which matches the surreal tone of a book about an amnesiac under cover judge – plus the lead villain has a shark for a head, what’s not to love! Just when you think you’ve seen everything in comics, 2000ad prove that there is still a few genuinely new ideas left in the tank, so long as you approach it in the right way, and when it comes to comic book story-telling  this is up there as one of the best books you’ll read all year!
Trifecta is available via Amazon in print and Kindle editions and 2000ad is available weekly via Apple Newsstand