Marvel ComicsThese days it seems that whilst there are still bad guys and super villains roaming the streets, the heroes just can’t seem to focus on anything but their own squabbles. This has become the centrepiece in movies like Batman V Superman and Captain America: Civil War, but what about some of the heroes that were left out of the limelight in these films? We look at some great examples of superhero strife on comiXology that could make the next batch of superhero movies even better.

ImposterIn Imposter, the new book from Hero Hourly publisher 21 Pulp, a police detective discovers the secret identity of superhero the Centipede after a pitched dockside battle and it changes his life forever, bringing together the seemingly disparate strands from the rest of this superbly crafted first issue in ways that you really don’t see coming.

The second in our fantastic series of guest columns sees Brian Winkeler, writers of our ‘11th favourite MonkeyBrain Comics‘ title tell us all about what he loves the world of digital comics.

Knuckleheads_01-1Any book that features a lead character called ‘Hot Drunk English Chick‘ and uses the futility of Cloverfield as a reference point when confronted with a giant monster attack is going to be a hit in our books. So after last weeks sneak preview into the world of MonkeyBrain‘s brilliant new slacker superhero adventure Knuckleheads we wanted to get to know it’s stars Trevor and Lance a bit better as they seemed like our kind of guys. And who better to  give us the lowdown on these two and the superpowers of the Crystal Fist than creators Brian Winkeler and Robert Wilson.

Depending on which part of the world you live in, America’s Got Powers is either the new book from celebrity comics fan and UK chat show host Jonathan Ross OR the new book drawn by Ultimates/Authority super-artist Bryan Hitch. It’s a curious pairing because the majority of comics fans probably won’t know (or care) who Ross is and the majority of Ross fans probably wouldn’t bother going to the trouble of searching out a comic by him. However it has managed to get them some mainstream press (such as this article in the UK Sun) and thanks to Hitch’s status as one of the true event artists working in comics at the moment this has the feeling of something very exciting.

When it comes to celebrity comics writers, there tends to be two extremes: either there’s Kevin Smith, whose run on Daredevil and Green Arrow helped revitalise the books and made a genuine contribution to those titles; Or there’s Guy Ritchie whose Gamekeeper book nominally involved him and was done purely for marketing reasons for the start-up Virgin Comics and had no real substance. Fortunately AGP falls much more into the former camp, with Ross more than acquitting himself as a comics writer (perhaps he’s been getting tips from his Hollywood script writing wife, Jane Goldman!) and having cut his teeth on the critically well received Turf in Mark Millar’s Clint, gives the whole thing a very polished feel. No doubt this was ably assisted by the experience of Hitch who has worked with the industries’ top names like Millar, Bendis and Brubaker in the past few years, however the story of a Battle Royale style game show with it’s Simon Cowell-esque mentor is clearly something that comes from the world of Ross and his celebrity connections.

The story itself sees super-powered teens pitted against each other for the chance to join America’s first super team (a la Battle Royale or Running Man) and gives the book a much more dynamic sporting feel than the usual punch ’em up superhero books that we are used to seeing Hitch draw. Although this idea of superheros as sports stars/celebrities isn’t new (just check our perennial Pipedream Comucs favourite Power Play for example) it does give Hitch the chance to stretch his artistic muscles with plenty of wide screen shots of stadiums full of people taking in the action as dozens of super-powered teens leap in and out of the frame to take on swarms of killer robots. Add in an origin story that sees a meteor strike in heart of San Francisco (the source of their super powers) and it has the epic big canvas feel that we have come to know and love from a Hitch book.

At a whopping 36 pages, AGP is a bit like a double episode at the start of of a hit American TV series and so should keep fans appetites under control as we wait for the next instalment. Hopefully the combination of part-time writer and notoriously late-running artist won’t get us waiting for too long, however with the debut story arc covering all the main bases of establishing the character America’s Got Powers is a fantastic first look at what could be a genuinely intriguing series.

Americas Got Powers is available on ComiXology or via the Image Comics app for £1.99

Power Play comic coverWe’re huge fans of digital comic Power Play here at Pipedream Comics and it was one of our first nominations for the Pipedream Pull List back in October. With it’s mix of super heroes and X games style action this digital only title published exclusively on Comixology, it pushed the boundaries of what writers and artists were doing with the medium of digital comics (plus it was pretty darn funny too!) and we’ve been eagerly waiting a second issue ever since. So wondering just what was going on we got in touch with writer Kurt Christenson and artist Reilly Brown to out just when the Power Play crew would be leaping back on to our tablets!