Hungry Ghosts #1 (January 2018)

Hungry Ghosts #1

Hungry Ghosts is the story of restaurant staff who get suckered into telling ghost stories with one of their hideous rich customers. The hook of the series, presumably, is “executive producer” Anthony Bourdain. He’s credited as co-story but–from the back matter–it’s clear Joel Rose, the other story credit, did the writing work.

Though, presumably Bourdain agrees most of his customers are hideous rich people.

Alberto Ponticelli and Vanesa Del Rey do the interior art. Ponticelli does the setup and the first story, Del Rey does the second story. It’s the one about the pirate ship rescuing a drowning woman just so they can rape her. It doesn’t go as planned. It’s not scary though. None of Hungry Ghosts is scary or even disturbing. It’s PG–13, conceptually as well as visually.

Yawn.

The first story has a cook not feeding a homeless guy and the homeless guy turning into a demon to exact retribution. So, maybe if you bring a copy of Hungry Ghosts #1 to a Bourdain restaurant you get a free meal? Because the story literally says not feeding the hungry deserves death.

So. I guess the comic is for people who just love anything with Anthony Bourdain’s name on it? Because there’s nothing else to it. Sure, it’s updating Japanese “Kaidan” but so are a lot of things. Even some actual scary things, which Ghosts isn’t.

At all.

CREDITS

Writers, Anthony Bourdain and Joel Rose; artists, Alberto Ponticelli and Vanesa Del Rey; colorist, José Villarrubia; letterer, Sal Cipriano; editor, Karen Berger; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.

Kaijumax: Season Three #6 (February 2018)

Kaijumax: Season Three #6

I’m not sure Cannon would want the compliment, but Kaijumax: Season Three just duplicated the feel of a problematic third television season perfectly. After stumbling through the first half of Season Three, Cannon rallied. That rallying has led to this issue, which is a great comic.

It’s an action issue. There’s a prison riot. The warden is out of town. The prisoners are trying to settle scores–including Electrogor, who’s far from the lead, but clearly needs to be in the comic–and all the plot threads get completed. Including some leftover from Season One. It’s an awesome, awesome finish. And one where Cannon could take however long he wants before Season Four, frankly.

Some great art. Cannon does big action real well–he also gets to play with his visual pacing, as they related to narrative reveals. Everything going so fast–monsters to guards to monsters to interlude to monsters to guards–he’s got rhythm. The issue flows.

I can’t imagine it’s going to seem such a victory in trade as it does in this one issue, where Cannon doesn’t exactly save Kaijumax (clearly it wasn’t in any real danger), but he does resurrect it.

Of course, Season One and Season Two didn’t have cliffhangers anything like this one so hopefully he starts next series as strong as he finished this one.

CREDITS

Consequences; writer, artist and letterer, Zander Cannon; colorists, Cannon and Jason Fischer; editors, Charlie Chu and Desiree Wilson; publisher, Oni Press.

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