Topic: Comic Books - New
TODAY'S FEATURE - Blog #3133:
As stated in yesterday's blog, I met Jeff Clemens in Artists Alley at the 2010 Wizard World Anaheim Comic Con last month. That is where he gave me a copy of his earlier work 'Black Dawn' #1 for possible review in this blog. (I did review it as seen at this link.)
Today, I'm reviewing another comic book that Jeff illustrated & co-created with Mike W Naylor, the creator / writer of 'Vesuvius Johnson'.
So what's this comic book about? Here's the background info from the web site:
"Thanks for stopping by to check out Vesuvius Johnson! When is the last time you read a comic book by two guys who really know what it's like to jump out of a plane at altitudes that require Oxygen with over 100lbs of gear, guns and ammo strapped to them? Mike Naylor and Jeff Clemens are those two guys and they're proud to bring you this one of a kind Superhero. Vesuvius Johnson! Nobody knows action first hand better than Mike and Jeff. Both are Ex-Military Special Operations Veterans with real world adventures under their utility belts! Don’t miss this once in a lifetime chance to jump on the train while it's still at the station! Get on board! We need you! Vesuvius Johnson needs you! Your adventure with Vesuvius Johnson starts here and now.
Who and what is Vesuvius Johnson? Born from the fiery core of this earth, Vesuvius Johnson is unlike any other superhero to have ever set foot on the planet. Have you heard of Mother Nature? Let’s just say he is a very close relative to her with an ugly edge and much less forgiving.”
So what's 'My Take' on this first comic of the series in 2010?
Front Cover: This is illustrated in a different style than from yesterday's reviewed comic book by the same artist. Definitely can tell why there's a person called 'Vesuvius' just from the cover page though!
Inside Front Cover: Used as a 'Credits' Page: Besides being created and written by Mike W Naylor, co-created with art by Jeff Clemens, we also see that the coloring is by Antonio Mastria, with lettering by Wayne Powers. Plus their web site's url is shown.
Splash Page / First Page: Not used as a 'splash page'. Starts right in with the storyline.
The storyline is 'heavy' in dialogue. So much so, that several pages have more than 6 panels in them.
Yet after the last panel on page 25, there is a 'to be continued' sign. Of course I do realize that the front cover did say 'Day One', so it makes sense there would be a continued story happening here.
So what about the artwork? Well, to me it's reminiscent of some underground comix artwork, which is NOT saying it's bad or good, just that it has a little of that 'feel' to me. And I do like several underground comix both Silver / Bronze Ages & today's Modern Age of Comics.
Although pages 4 & 5 used the old school standard of 3 panels to a row with 3 rows / nine total panels, there is the other extreme shown on pages 8 & 9, where the panels are inserted with a 'road' track to connect them from page 8 to page 9, and then back to page 8 and then ending at page 9. Whew! So the artwork is definitely something to watch in this issue!
The colors used are wide ranging, from being 'subdued' to 'in your face', and then somewhere inbetween again! I'm reminded a little of underground comix again, where the 'boundaries' of colors are challenged.
The lettering was done very well, considering the different formats the panels were placed in on the pages mentioned above. Good job on the fonts used, and the sound effects used!
Overall, I would give this introductory issue a 'Fine / Very Fine' (F/VF) 7.0 comic book grade, (out of a 10.0 Mint grading scale).
The cover price of $4.99 could be considered a 'little' high, even though there were enough pages, 25 of them, including the inside back cover as an 'interior page' in the story.
Only the back cover could be considered an 'ad page', even though it was the ad page that the printer,(ComiXPress), used to show that they were the printers. (Part of the printing process / contract.)
I think that the concept of this comic book series is a good one. Just that the execution of this 1st Issue could have been 'tightened' a little more. Maybe the 'looseness' of this issue is what reminded me more of what older 'underground comix' were like, and what some of the ones being published today are like.
Overall, this 1st introductory issue enticed me enough to check out the comic's web site, and see what the plans are for the future of this series.
I am suggesting that you check it out also, as there are several pages from this 1st issue on that web site, and you can see for yourself what I commented on above, and thus make your own decision on this series. You can't beat that! You get a 'review' here and a link to preview a few pages of the same story!
For info on how YOU can see more AND order this comic book, check the following web site: www.VesuviusJohnson.com - where you can read the bios of the creators, their upcoming con schedules, and much, much more!
Also, "Vesuvius Johnson" has a Facebook Member Account, and NOT a Fan Page. So if YOU are a Facebook Member, feel free to send a 'Friends Request to 'him' at his Facebook member account by clicking here!
My thanks to Mike W Naylor & Jeff Clemens, for submitting this first issue of the series for possible review! You can also see what Mike and Jeff are currently working on together and separately by visiting http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0623295/ for Mike and www.JeffClemens.com for Jeff!AND My thanks again to all of YOU reading this blog and our archived blog posts, now over the 3,130 total posts in number!
~ Michael D Hamersky @ ComicBookCollectorsBlog.com
Note: Our online comic book store carries many different genres of comics and graphic novels, including Underground and Super-hero Comics at: