We take a look at three fantastic new indie comics including: the new issue of Rich Carrington’s Mahoney’s from Hard Line Comics; spaced out sci-fi wierdness from Black Mask Studios with Space Riders; and Plexus the latest anthology from Irish publishers Limit Break Comics.
Mahoney’s #2 (Hard Line Comics)
Arriving just a little too late for our recent round-ups of great second issues, comes the sophomore issue of Rich Carrington’s excellent ‘Powers meets Cheers’ series Mahoney’s. Set in a bar for super villains, Carrington continues the sit com vibe of the first issue and builds the whole issue around the Mahoney’s team hosting an awards do for super villains, known as the Capies. It’s a fantastic concept for a story that is ripe for humour with Carrington packing in so much detail into this issue that it feels like it should be a 40 page bumper issue. From disgruntled winners and losers to Mahoney trying to prevent a potential infiltration from one of the heroes. Carrington brilliantly subverts the hero/villain dynamic and also does a great job of parodying the world of awards at the same time. He is backed up by some fantastic, over the top artwork from Brian Dawson that steps up with quality from each issue to the next. In a genre that is incredibly difficult to stand out in, Carrington and team are managing to carve themselves a really enjoyable little super powered niche. These guys are definitely not sat at the losers table tonight!
Space Riders #1 (Black Mask Studios)
This years nominee for brilliantly mental space adventure goes to Fabian Rangel Jr and Alexis Ziritt’s Space Riders. It’s up there with pervious nominees for this title like Al Gofa’s Dark Angels of Darkness and Jordan Krueger’s the FIST as it features crazy indescribable artwork, violently nonsensical storylines and insane characters that defy description. It’s one of those books which giving a synopsis of the story does not do it justice, as trying to explain how anti hero peregrine and his baboon headed buddy encounter a naked demonic lady in deepest space cannot really do the story justice. Suffice to say it is brought to life some eye poppingly outrageous artwork that looks a mix of Michael Fiffe and Lukas Kowalczuk trying to reimagine a Kirby New Gods comic. It’s all rendered in a simple vintage colour scheme that only uses primary and secondary colours and is told using is sepia toned paper stock to make it look like some of crazy refugee from a 70s back issue bin. Whether it has the legs for a long run is difficult to say (it’s currently down for a four issue mini series, which may three issues too many?!), but for a first issue this is an adrenaline rush of outrageous intergalactic action, and whether you like it or not, you will definitely remember it!
Plexus #1 (LB Comics)
This new anthology from on the rise Irish publishers, Line Break Comics (home of MixTape and Meouch) comprises of three sci fi tales, written by Paul Carroll with art from a variety of creators who are new to us. The first story ‘Glitch’ is a kind of superhero relationship drama told from the perspective of a guy who wakes up one morning and texts a friend who he thinks he has had a fight with the night before. The notion of him having some kind of powers is very much tucked in the background, as the relationship and dialogue comes to the fores, and fizzes along to make a strong read. The second story ‘Shelter’ is about a father and daughter who are trapped in a bunker trying to make contact with the world while a rampaging kaiju destroys the world outside, which makes for a really tense read. (There is a second strand of the story involving some establishment radio hosts which doesn’t really gel with the survivors story, but it’s a solid read nonetheless). Then, the final story ‘Al’ is perhaps the most ambitious and sees a robot doctor attempting to rescue their sick robot son. It’s an interesting mix of high tech sci fi and human emotional drama and makes for a thought-provoking and strong read. The whole things is brought together in a really well produced and slick looking package that signals Limit Break out as a publisher to watch in the the future.