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Tag Archive: Dream Thief


Ryan Sook Futures End cover 1    Ryan Sook Futures End 14 cover August 2014 release

We’ve delved into some great cover artists at borg.com in the past three years, from Alex Ross to Mauro Cascioli to Frank Cho and Mike Mayhew.  With his cover run on the DC Comics New 52 series Futures End, Ryan Sook is the artist you just can’t miss these days.  His cover for Issue #14 (above right) of Futures End is being solicited for August 2014 already, and it showcases several styles.  If you take a look back over the past few years you can see one of the best artists around developing his style and craft, putting his mark on the covers of some great comic book series.

You can see Sook as the cover artist of choice to start up several new series with the number one issue out of the gates, for series including Robotika (2005), Giant-Size Hulk (2006), Friday the 13th (2007), Batman and the Outsiders (2007), Death of the New Gods (2007), Countdown Specials, Countdown Presents and DC Universe Specials (2008 and 2011), Broken Trinity: Aftermath (2009), Blackest Night: Wonder Woman (2010), JSA All Stars (2010), The Magdalena (2010), B.P.R.D. Hell On Earth series (2011-2013), Victorian Undead II (2011), DC Universe Online: Legends (2011), Kirby: Genesis (2011), Justice League Dark (2011), Lord of the Jungle (2011), Rose & Thorn (2012), Sword of Sorcery (2012), and The New 52 Futures End (2014).

Sook is able to render men and women superheroes equally well, yet his women really stand out.  Here’s his Wonder Woman, showcased in the Blackest Night series:

Ryan Sook  Blackest Night Wonder Woman 1 cover    Ryan Sook Blackest Night Wonder Woman 2 cover

Less stylized than Cliff Chiang’s current angular Wonder Woman look, Sook may have created a modern twist on the definitive look of the classic character for other artists to emulate.

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Miss Fury Dynamite Comics

We tried on for size almost every new book that was released from comic book publishers like Dynamite Comics, Dark Horse Comics, IDW Publishing, Archaia/BOOM!, and Image.  We tried to sample the best of all that Marvel and DC Comics had to offer, too, and although we didn’t have enough time to review everything we did try to put out there for your consideration those titles we thought our readers might like to check out, especially those with a sci-fi, fantasy, or retro bent.  Our pull list included issues from Afterlife with Archie to Django Unchained, from Liberator to Larfleezeand from Velvet to The X-Files.  This past month we have reviewed the year-long run of the best of these titles, as we narrowed our selections to 21 of the very best entries in genre entertainment outside of TV and movies, which we revealed here yesterday.  So here are the rest of our picks for the Best of 2013.

Kane Starkiller borg by Mike Mayhew

Best Borg Appearance — Kane Starkiller, The Star Wars.  Borgs showed up everywhere this year, from the lead characters on Almost Human, to Doctor Who, to countless comic book series including Justice League and RoboCop.  Our favorite appearance came from the young mind of George Lucas as he created the original script that would later be edited into the original Star Wars trilogy.  And through Dark Horse Comics’ The Star Wars monthly comic book event we learned one of his best ideas was merged into other roles and one of his best characters entirely cut.   That character was Jedi Kane Starkiller, who would reveal his cyborg chest implants that kept him alive, later to heroically give up this life-saving technology to save his friends.

MissFury001-Cov-Renaud

Best Comic Book Series — Miss Fury, Dynamite Comics.  A uniquely crafted tale, a compelling and seductive superhero, great action panel after panel, sourced in a long-shelved classic character of the Golden Age of comics.  Rob Williams and Jack Herbert’s Miss Fury is a carefully rendered update that rings true to the edgy spirit of the world’s first female superhero.  Beautiful panels set up an ever-changing time and place and pull readers along for the ride.  And stuck-out-of-time Marla Drake and her alter ego Miss Fury could not have looked better, whether carving out her place in the 1940s or as she was teleported into the future.  It’s a series no one should miss.

Clint Barton Hawkeye by Fraction

Best Comic Book Writing – Matt Fraction, Hawkeye.  Last year revealed one of the best comic book series we ever read, focusing on that “other” superhero archer, the second tier Marvel Comics superhero Hawkeye.  Matt Fraction gave us the most interesting set-up and look into the daily life of a superhero who isn’t Captain America or Iron Man.  This year he kept up the momentum in his Hawkeye monthly series, providing stories that challenged readers, each issue taking a different peek into Clint Barton, another costumed superhero called Hawkeye, and their trusty dog.

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Michael Golden cover to Dream Thief Issue 5

It’s a five-issue limited series with no ties to any current franchise.  It’s a gritty tale you might find from someone like Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips, yet it’s not just another crime noir caper.  It’s a story about a superhero story for sure, but a reluctant one, who comes with plenty of baggage and character flaws and draws his power from what could be a cousin to Loki’s mask from Mike Richardson’s The Mask series.  It has its own unique, cool look, too.  It’s Dark Horse Comics’ Dream Thief, and if you missed it this year you’ll soon have a chance to pick it up in a trade edition.

On a particularly wrong time, wrong place outing with a friend, John Lincoln steals an aboriginal mask from an art museum display.  He then finds himself tumbling again and again through other people’s lives, waking each new day with the memories of a person who used John’s body to kill someone.  And each of the victims?  They deserved it.  In his quest to discover what has happened to him, he sleuths out the truth behind the acts of his own girlfriend, the mob, and baddies of every variety.

Smallwood Dream Thief panel B

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Limitless poster

It’s probably telling that the 2011 movie Limitless was directed by Neil Burger, director of the brilliant fantasy film The Illusionist, starring Paul Giamatti.  Strangely marketed as a movie about a dead-end would-be writer that finds a way to gain intelligence by using more of his brain than the ordinary guy, Limitless is a film the studio just didn’t understand.  It is listed in various places, in reviews, in marketing lists and DVD sales notations as each of the following: fantasy, drama, science fiction, thriller, mystery, urban fantasy.  It is neither and yet it is all that.  Above all it is a superhero film.  Yesterday we reviewed the new comic book series Uncanny, and we previously reviewed the new series Dream Thief.  These are only recent examples of an ordinary guy gaining strange powers.  Bradley Cooper’s Eddie Morra gains similar extraordinary abilities in Limitless.  In the process of honing these powers, he’d fit right in with another tale of the X-Men.

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Damont Jordan Green Arrow and Black Canary

This year I continued my Comicon season by commissioning sketches from comic book artists of my favorite characters, Green Arrow and Black Canary.  I always like to let the artists do whatever vision they have with the duo and am always blown away by the results and at this year’s Planet Comicon it was no different.  It’s even better when you watch artists take on characters for the first time.

At Planet Comicon weekend itself, I met Greg Smallwood, who I found at Artists Alley with the forthcoming Dream Thief co-creator Jai Nitz.  Greg sketched this great piece for me, and I’d LOVE to see a series with this classic look.

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Black Canary never before looked more like she was going to take everyone out of commission with that sonic scream!

I also asked my friend Damont Jordan to give me his take on Green Arrow and Black Canary and gave him a few weeks after the Con to take his time with it.  Somewhere we started chatting up adding extra characters and I threw out the idea of something like “oh yeah, why not include Super Grover, too.”  And BAM!  Check this out:

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Dream Thief banner

We hinted here just ten days ago that we thought Jai Nitz and Greg Smallwood’s Dream Thief is the next big thing–the next must-read on your comic book pull list.  Now, courtesy of Dark Horse Comics we can release a preview of the first six pages of Issue #1!  

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Dream Thief Issue 1 cover art Alex Ross

Ok, I’ve been holding back.  I landed my hands on the first issue of Dark Horse Comics’ new series Dream Thief a few days ago and WOW–I am convinced it’s the next big thing.  It’s one of those from outta nowhere books that comic book stores better start ordering in droves for its May 2013 release.

We’ll preview Dream Thief here as we get closer to its release.  What’s it about?  Here’s the official promotional blurb from Dark Horse:

Your dreams… His nightmare! After stealing an Aboriginal mask from a museum, John Lincoln realizes that the spirits of the vengeful dead are possessing his body and mind while he sleeps. His old problems have been replaced by bloody hands and the disposal of bodies—and now remembering where he spent last night has never been more important…

The series is written by Jai Nitz with art by Greg Smallwood.  We’ve reviewed works by Jai Nitz here at borg.com before, like the cool Tron: Betrayal, the comic book prequel to Disney’s big screen Tron: Legacy.  He’s also written some great stories in the pages of Dynamite Comics’ Kato series and the awesome DC Comics tale El Diablo with Phil Hester and Ande Parks.  And the creator-owned series Dream Thief is sure to be Smallwood’s break-out book.

Dark Horse has released this great teaser piece featuring the story’s masked hero that really sums it all up:

Dream Thief teaser

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