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Comics: I Wear My Sunglasses at Night
by Dee. 5/5/2022Willkommen, bienvenue, welcome to another month of comic reviews! From Marvel, we have Doctor Strange: Nexus of Nightmares, from DC comes an issue of Sandman Universe: Nightmare Country, and from Artists, Writers and Artisans: The Joneses. Let's get to it.
Doctor Strange: Nexus of Nightmares (Marvel): Doctor Strange's dreams have been hijacked by Nightmare and it's particularly haunting because of the surreal quality of said nightmares. Mordo and Nightmare are poised to take over in Doctor Strange's weakened state. The Darkhold continues to be a source of sinister evil, and our villains are trying to get it.
This is an excellent starting place for anyone interested in reading Doctor Strange, considering how the story gives backstory for all the characters, rather than assuming that you have already been reading for a while. The script is from Ralph Macchio, Ibrahim Moustafa, and Neeraj Menon working together, and they make a killer one-shot.
The art also speaks tons, with a contrasting palette for the real world versus the dream world. Magic reigns supreme (forgive the pun) and dazzles the reader with the special effects. Though a bit wordy in order to give the appropriate background and motivations for the characters, it is still a worthwhile read.
The Sandman Universe: Nightmare Country (DC Comics): If you are a fan of the Sandman world and the cast of characters and the horror aspects of the series, you are in for a treat. The Corinthian, one of the universe's biggest baddies, is loose in the mortal world. If that wasn't bad enough, there's another nightmare-made-corporeal, but our main character Dream didn't make this one. Writer James Tynion IV (Woods, Wynd, UFOlogy) has lots of experience with writing horror, so this is a good fit for the setting.
The art, as always in a Sandman book, is excellent. Yanick Paquette and Lisandro Estherren (Strange Skies Over East Berlin, Redneck) provide bright panels with deep shadows, which sets the mood for this book. The art style changes for the characters walking through the world of dreams with more detail and solid colors, versus the more watercolored palette and lighter shadows in our earthly reality. My favorite panel provides a subtle reflection off the water of a docked boat, and it's details like that that make me appreciate the art even more.
The Joneses (Artists, Writers and Artisans): Also known as AWA, this independent creator-focused publisher is making waves with their titles. The Joneses might be a bit too soon to talk about deadly global pandemics, but it does have a positive spin on the occurrence: out of the chaos comes the Reborns, super-powered people (mostly) doing good. The family is all superpowered, and in hiding rather than go public and have to register with a community council. Family drama is present, and adding superpowers just increases the friction between the parents.
The art is realistic without being distracting, meaning the art doesn't look like it was superimposed over a photo of real people. I'm not a fan of art like that. The coloring is distinct for different characters, and the splash pages move the action along at a good pace. There are a few details of this world that I would like to see explored in future issues, so the world-building aspects of the writing are entertaining. Overall, a very interesting read.
Until next time, friends,