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Triple Shot: FRESH ROMANCE #1, OLD MAN LOGAN #1 & SANDMAN OVERTURE #5

Fresh Romance is in the air, courtesy of Janelle Asselin. Bendis opens up three old wounds on each hand with Andrea Sorrentino on art in Old Man Logan (Secret Wars) #1 and don’t forget about The Endless Dreaming with Sandman: Overture #5 in this week’s edition of Triple Shot!

FRESH ROMANCE #1
WRITER: Sarah Kuhn, Kate Leth, Sarah Vaughn
ART:   Arielle Jovellanos, Sarah Winifred Searle, Sally Jane Thompson


Publication Date: May 27, 2015
Price: $4.99
Publisher: Rosy Press/Janelle Asselin
UPC: 70985301875900111
Buy it HERE: RosyPress.com / Comixology

As I’m learning in my current comic book class with professor Michael Uslan, Romance Comics as genre came to prominence after the end of World War II.

Everyone hung up their collective capes, and even Stan Lee, Jack Kirby and Joe Simon filled the newsstands with tales of heartbreak, secret crushes and handkerchief hand wringing.

These days, superheroes dominate the scene and the big screen, but former DC Comics editor Jannelle Asselin is resurrecting the genre over at Rosy Press and also utilizing her vast established audience for Kickstarter funding for this special project.

[Read an amazing FOG! interview with Jannelle over here with Stefan Blitz, conducted after the project was funded!]

This inaugural issue of Fresh Romance is an anthology book highlighting 3 separate stories from some of the best talent around. Kate Leth (Adventure Time, Bravest Warriors, Edward Scissorhands) starts off with a classic high school tale of locker talk and Mean Girls swagger. I’m most looking forward to the next installment for the twist introduced at the end of these pages.

Upcoming talent Sarah Vaughn (Alex + Ada) goes back to the post-Revolutionary War days for an impending tale of arranged marriage from ye olde tymes. I wasn’t expecting to go back to the age of AMC’s Turn but it was a nice place to visit and Sarah Winifred Searle’s art is divine.

‘The Ruby Equation’, the final tale by Sarah Kuhn and Sally Jane Thompson was perhaps my favorite. Without spoiling, this was the most comic-booky of the tales. Modern day cupid meets coffee shop barista. Very cute story with more to come.

Congrats on getting the ball rolling—this was a fun book, and I may have been quoted as saying, “I hate stupid love stories because they are stupid”.

Yet again, I was wrong.

OLD MAN LOGAN #1
WRITER: Brian Michael Bendis
ARTIST: Andrea Sorrentino
Publication Date: May 27, 2015
Price: $4.99
Publisher: Marvel Comics
UPC: 75960608226100111
Buy it HERE

I grumbled in my last Triple Shot that I would not play the ‘game’ with all of this messy DC Convergence guff or certainly not wrap my head around the rebranded Secret Wars at Marvel.

I nearly knocked unconscious an innocent Magic the Gathering kid as I stormed out of my store that week! (Reports are that he is +5 healing as we speak).

DC did it first, not Marvel (You bastards!). I succumbed to the rather hefty $4.99 price point for this version of one of my favorite What If—?’s, Old Man Logan #1.

I can take or leave Brian Michael Bendis criticisms as they are, but I already miss my Ultimate Spider-Man fix. I know Miles will be around post-Secret Wars but having a run that long in comics is just damn impressive, you know?

Mark Millar and artist Steve McNiven created the Old Man Logan concept, and in my opinion this creative team has a lot to live up to.

What I really shelled out this money for was the gorgeous Andrea Sorrentino art. Sorrentino and Jeff Lemire rebooted Green Arrow, and her work was groundbreaking.

Lucky for fans of grizzled old Logan, I think this team really nailed it. (What is left of) Earth-807128 has a gang of miscreants dressed as Daredevil calling themselves The Flying Devils, with Gladiator at the helm. Wolvie takes down the whole crew before returning home and discovering a flying object headed toward him. That object — a head of an Ultron Bot.

Our hero sets out on a journey to solve the mystery of the head and runs into Emma Frost and hears of marauders known as The Punishers.

This is a hefty cover price to pay for a single issue but I’ll say it is worth it.

SANDMAN OVERTURE #5 (of 6)
WRITER: Neil Gaiman
ARTIST: J.H. Williams III
Publication Date: May 27, 2015
Price: $3.99
Publisher: DC Comics/Vertigo
UPC: 76194131030500511
Buy it HERE


I can’t tell if this is a timey-wimey anomaly thrust upon me by Mr. Gaiman, but it appears that I first reviewed issue #1 back in October 2013. That’s sort of a long time to get to issue #5, right?

Not that I’m exactly complaining, I’m lucky enough to have interviewed J.H. Williams III about his process, and these pages are knock-out beautiful mazes of intertwined dream stuff that must be pretty time intensive.

The book is coming to an end next issue, and that will be sad. I’m only reading now that this volume is to be read as a prequel to the 100 issues of Sandman we already have ingested into our mindscape (and surely these books have influenced my deep sleeps).

You learn something new every day, I guess!

Framing the chronology was important to me grokking this issue. We find out who Morpheus’ parents are (Time and Night) and how he interacts with his staunch brother Destiny. Destiny is thrown for a loop when something from The Dreaming appears and is not in his precious book!

I hope I’m preaching to the converted here, as the mythology to Sandman is quite extensive. I don’t recommend this as an actual staring point. The Sandman Vol. 1: Preludes & Nocturnes is certainly THE starting point.

This book is for fans—and will look very nice next to your other trades when eventually collected.

I hope we get an issue #6 before the end of the year or before his sister Death comes knocking on our respective doors.

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