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    Most Anticipated Comics of 2016: Dark Jem Arc of ‘Jem and the Holograms’

    The biggest reason I’m hyped for Dark Jem is the return of artist Sophie Campbell. The cover designs for the “dark” versions of the band members are deliciously gothic. The normal pastel palette has been replaced by a largely black and white one with subdued pastel highlights. The characters are harder-edged with tattered detail work on their clothing. More

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    ‘Jem and the Holograms’ #10 Gives Rio a Chance to Reflect

    Jen Bartel’s cover: Jerrica with Rio, but behind her in the reflective glass is Jem looking back at her. That’s what this issue is about: reflection. Introduced on the cover, the theme continues throughout: what something appears to be and what the reality is beneath the surface. Duality of character. It is ironic, then, that the issue leaves the obvious example–Jem and Jerrica–in the background. More

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    Best Comics of 2015 (Part One)

    Two words could be used to describe comics in 2015: scandal and rebirth. The scandals happened off the pages at both companies large and small, and the rebirth happened in the comics themselves. More

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    ‘Jem and the Holograms’ #9 Develops Character Dynamics Through Costumes

    However, this issue, while having great fun with the romantic pairings and the Misfits’ “mucking” antics, also has a dark side. Jerrica is dressed up as Black Swan. This is perhaps the most important costume of the issue. First, it reinforces the anxiety Jerrica feels about being two people and losing sight of who Jerrica is when all around her people clamor for Jem. Thompson presented this same anxiety in a different pop culture homage in the Jem Annual’s Teen Wolf dream. The Black Swan costume carries more horror than Teenwolf’s comedy. That gothic horror foreshadows the dark twists of the ending: Pizzazz’s accident and Techrat’s discovery in the pool house. It ultimately points an arrow straight at the next story arc: “Dark Jem More

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    ‘Back to the Future’ #1 Features a Fun Approach to Licensed Stories

    Most licensed fiction takes one of two approaches to its stories: tales set before the main narrative, showing what characters were up to before their original story, or stories set after, showing the further adventures of the characters. IDW’s new Back to the Future series, subtitled “Untold Tales and Alternate Timelines” intends to do both (and more), telling tales set before, after, during and sideways to the events of the movies, as Bob Gale, co-writer of the three films, is joined by a series of writers and artists for a unique kind of anthology series. More

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    IDW Panel Recap- Ragnarok and TMNT/Batman

    The two biggest topics at the Baltimore Comic Con IDW Panel were the continuation of the story arc for Walter Simonson’s Ragnarok, and the official announcement of James Tynion IV’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles / Batman crossover. Simonson and Tynion were on-hand to discuss their respective books while IDW President Greg Goldstein and Vice President of Marketing Dirk Wood acted as moderators. More

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    ‘Long Distance’ # 2: Reasonable Romance

    Last time in Long Distance, readers were introduced to Carter and Lee as the couple meet during a snowstorm at an airport. The young couple were head over heels in love with each other, but their problem being they lived 300 miles apart. Carter and Lee began their relationship far part, and Carter undertook a journey to see Lee. The next issue of Long Distance picks with Carter’s and Lee’s date together. Zahler presents the same quality of artwork as issue one. The beauty of monochromatic shades continues without fail. The writing of the comic presents new complexity of issues between the two lovers and developing passion. Zahler delivers a lovely follow up to Long Distance #1. More

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    ‘Jem and the Holograms’ #4 is romance and music done right

    With character introductions out of the way, Jem and the Holograms #4 fully focuses on the music, characters, and their relationships. Sophie Campbell continues to make Jem the most stylish book in comics with a nice mix of casual and performance outfits for the characters. She continues to draw women with diverse skin colors and body types while Kelly Thompson spends some extra time develop bits of their personalities. Aja gets to make dad jokes and be the hard worker of the band while Shana tries to make sure everyone is happy and realizes that sometimes you just need a latte break. Thompson also looks at the strained relationship between Misfits super-fans Blaze and Clash and some of the budding romances. However, the story truly comes to life when the musical element kicks in. More

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    ‘My Little Pony Friendship is Magic’ # 30: Jarring Horsing Around

    My Little Pony Friendship is Magic # 30 is a mixed bag of writing and art. The story starts with Twilight Sparkle and Spike leaving town to go to Canterlot on business. Every pony else is charged with getting ready for Ponyville’s Ponyville Days, a celebration about the town’s history and togetherness. The town comes into conflict over what building in Ponyville should be recognized as the town’s first structure and which child should be the Ponyville Days Princess. More

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