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A blog about books and other things speculative

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My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011

I collect a lot of comics. I probably collect too many comics if that is even possible. Three comics stand out as my favorites of 2011. They have nothing in common except they represent things I really like and are very well done.


The comics (in alphabetical order):

Godzilla: Kingdom of Monsters

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a huge kaiju fan and my favorite kaiju of all is Gojira/Godzilla. I'm especially fond of the Godzilla films from Toho Studios. Don't get me started on Godzilla films made here in the US. We just don't do it right!  I have kaiju plush, all the Godzilla movies I can get, Godzilla trading cards, etc. I admit I generally root for the big green lizard as it stomps its way through various cities. So when IDW Publishing announced Godzilla: Kingdom of Monsters in conjunction with Toho Co., Ltd., I may have squeed a bit. Okay, a lot. Happily the comic does not disappoint. I'd love to frame each and every cover. They are exceptional. The inside of the comic is not bad either! I love all of the covers so I'll share just a few.

My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011

My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011

My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011

My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011

This is probably my most favorite though. It's a variant of Issue 1 and hand-drawn by Eric Powell. No two are exactly alike. I know this for certain because I have 2 of these.

My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011


Lady Mechanika

Lady Mechanika's first edition was published in 2010, but it remains one of my favorite comics. It's published by Aspen Comics and is the brainchild of Joe Benitez. This is a gorgeous steampunk comic. The story is great and the comic covers and art are just brilliant. There is a wonderful esthetic to this comic. Fortunately prints are available from the Aspen Store so I don't have to frame the comics. I love all the covers. Here are the covers from the first 4 issues. Story and Art is by Joe Benitez; Colors are by Peter Steigerwald; and Letters are by Josh Reed. Each issue had several covers. I collect all of them.  You should read this comic!

Issue 0, Cover A

My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011
JOE BENITEZ DEBUTS HIS NEWEST THRILLING SERIES! The exciting adventure of Aspen's newest female heroine begins here!

The mysteries surrounding private investigator LADY MECHANIKA and her origin begin to unfold as she heads to a rundown city known as Satan's Alley. Located on the lower eastside, it is an area of town under siege by the presence of a murderous creature of unknown origin. While a weapons manufacturer has issued a reward for the unknown slayer, drawing a crowd of bounty hunters looking to cash in, Lady Mechanika's purpose is far more personal— information that could lead to the truth about her creation.

Complete with an additional sketchbook section, never before seen art, and a stunning cover by creator Joe Benitez himself, this special #0 issue is not to be missed!

Issue 1, Cover A
My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011
THERE'S A NEW LADY IN TOWN!

From the imaginative mind of Joe Benitez with colors by the incomparable Peter Steigerwald, comes this all-new supernatural action-adventure series!

The tabloids dubbed her "LADY MECHANIKA", the sole survivor of a psychotic serial killer's three-year rampage through London. Found locked in an abandoned laboratory amidst countless corpses and body parts, with her own limbs amputated and replaced with mechanical components, her life began anew. With no memory of her captivity or her former life, LADY MECHANIKA eventually built a new life for herself as a private detective, using her unique abilities to solve cases the police couldn't or wouldn't handle. But, she has never stopped searching for answers.

Now, brought into a case unlike any before, LADY MECHANIKA will have to rely on her advantage in all things occult and paranormal in order to solve the case and possibly unlock the secrets to her past!

Issue 2, Cover A
My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011
From the imaginative mind of Joe Benitez with colors by the incomparable Peter Steigerwald, this all-new supernatural action-adventure series continues!

LADY MECHANIKA's quest to retrieve the 'Mechanical Girl' along with her mysterious maker takes her up to the clouds, where she must infiltrate a masquerade ball aboard Lord Blackpool's airship high in the sky. While the nefarious Blackpool showcases a new advanced weapon added to his impressive armament catalog to a captive audience, Mechanika discovers something quite unexpected, that may hold a clue to her own creation!

Issue 3, Cover A
My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011
From the imaginative mind of Joe Benitez with colors by the incomparable Peter Steigerwald, this all-new supernatural action-adventure series continues!

LADY MECHANIKA's quest to retrieve the 'Mechanical Girl' along with her mysterious maker takes her up to the clouds, where she must infiltrate a masquerade ball aboard Lord Blackpool's airship high in the sky. While the nefarious Blackpool showcases a new advanced weapon added to his impressive armament catalog to a captive audience, Mechanika discovers something quite unexpected, that may hold a clue to her own creation!


Richelle Mead Dark Swan: Storm Born

I really like comics based on Urban Fantasy novels. I collect several. My favorite though is Sea Lion Book's stellar Richelle Mead Dark Swan: Storm Born. I've said it before: if you read the comic you really don't need to read the first book in the series. The artwork is great and the story true to the novel. I'm showing the regular covers for the comic. There are incentive covers for each issue as well.

Issue 1, Regular Cover
My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011
From the New York Times and USA Today-bestselling author of urban fantasy books for both adults and teens. Eugenie Markham never asked for any of this. Until now, she's been content with her job as a freelance shaman, battling and banishing Otherworldly creatures. When a prophecy suddenly makes her the Otherworld's most popular bachelorette, Eugenie finds herself fighting off unwanted supernatural suitors, as well as the evils that begin emerging from her past!

Issue 2, Regular Cover
My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011
Eugenie Markham is a freelance shaman, guarding our world from the invasion of Otherworldly creatures. Those who try have 'The Dark Swan' to contend with. But Eugenie's about to cross into the Otherworld alone to rescue a girl that nobody else will. Will she make it back across alive?

Issue 3, Regular Cover
My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011
Eugenie Markham is a freelance shaman, guarding our world from the invasion of Otherworldly creatures. Eugenie has decided to cross into the Otherworld alone to rescue Jasmine a girl no else will. Entering one of the most dangerous dimensions alone isn't easy or safe but no one ever said being a hero was. Unfortunately for Eugenie, she will come face to face with her past and learn truths she would have preferred were left buried.

 Issue 4, Regular Cover
My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011
Yesterday, Eugenie Markham thought her life was complicated. But today, she will learn a secret that shakes her world to its very core. Everything she thought she knew was wrong. And if that wasn't enough, she still has Jasmine Delaney hanging over her head...


Here is the book that the Richelle Mead Dark Swan: Storm Born comic is based on:

My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011
Just typical. No love life to speak of for months, then all at once, every horny creature in the Otherworld wants to get in your pants…

Eugenie Markham is a powerful shaman who does a brisk trade banishing spirits and fey who cross into the mortal world. Mercenary, yes, but a girl’s got to eat. Her most recent case, however, is enough to ruin her appetite. Hired to find a teenager who has been taken to the Otherworld, Eugenie comes face to face with a startling prophecy—one that uncovers dark secrets about her past and claims that Eugenie’s first-born will threaten the future of the world as she knows it.

Now Eugenie is a hot target for every ambitious demon and Otherworldy ne’er-do-well, and the ones who don’t want to knock her up want her dead. Eugenie handles a Glock as smoothly as she wields a wand, but she needs some formidable allies for a job like this. She finds them in Dorian, a seductive fairy king with a taste for bondage, and Kiyo, a gorgeous shape-shifter who redefines animal attraction. But with enemies growing bolder and time running out, Eugenie realizes that the greatest danger is yet to come, and it lies in the dark powers that are stirring to life within her…
There are 3 additional books in the series. The 4th book, Shadow Heir, will be published on December 27, 2011.

My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011


So what am I giving away? The 4 books in Richelle Mead's Dark Swan series and a set of the comics so far:

My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011


The Giveaway

THE RULES

What:  One commenter will win Richelle Mead Dark Swan: Storm Born comics (1 copy from Issues 1-4) and books 1-4 in the Dark Swan novel series: Storm Born, Thorn Queen, Iron Crowned, and Shadow Heir.

How:  Leave a comment answering the following question:

What is your favorite comic, cartoon series, or Urban Fantasy series?

Please remember - if you don't answer the question your entry will not be counted.

You may receive additional entries by:

1)   Being a Follower of The Qwillery.

2)   Mentioning the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter. Even if you mention the giveaway on both, you will get only one additional entry. You get only one additional entry even if you mention the giveaway on Facebook and/or Twitter multiple times.

3)   Mentioning the giveaway on your on blog or website. It must be your own blog or website; not a website that belongs to someone else or a site where giveaways, contests, etc. are posted.

There are a total of 4 entries you may receive: Comment (1 entry), Follower (+1 entry), Facebook and/or Twitter (+ 1 entry), and personal blog/website mention (+1 entry). This is subject to change again in the future for future giveaways.

Please leave links for Facebook, Twitter, or blog/website mentions. In addition please leave a way to contact you.

Who and When:  The contest is open to all humans on the planet earth with a mailing address. Contest ends at 11:59pm US Eastern Time on Friday, December 30, 2011. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 years old or older to enter.

*Giveaway rules are subject to change.*

Thursday Flicks - Gojira - July 29, 2010

I am a tremendous fan of kaiju eiga (Japanese monster films). While there are many kaiju (strange beasts or monsters), even nonfans will recognize Gojira. Gojira is Godzilla.
The film Gojira was originally released in Japan in 1954 and won a Japanese academy award for special effects. The film is clearly an Atom Age film. Gojira was created by a nuclear radiation. The film deals with the fallout of nuclear weaponry in the form of a giant monster. Many scenes were cut from the US version of the film, most of them dealing with the perils of atom bomb. Raymond Burr was (badly) added to the cut up version of the film with approximately 40 minutes of the original removed. While I enjoy his acting as Perry Mason, his character adds nothing to this film Fortunately the original version is available. This is the version that I recommend.  It has a much different feel than the American version, which is campy and choppy.  The original Gojira is really a somber film that warns about the perils of nuclear testing and the unbridled use of dangerous weapons. It alludes, of course, to Hiroshima and Nagasaki, but also to the fallout caused by an American nuclear test in the Pacific that resulted in radiation poisoning of the crew of a Japanese fishing boat, Fukuryu Maru (Lucky Dragon). In any event, the orginal film is simply a better film. If you have the chance you should watch it.

The Japanese Trailer for Gojira (1954)


The United States Trailer for Godzilla, King of the Monsters(1956)



A really nice montage to part of the iconic Gojira theme written by Akira Ifukube :


The full Gojira theme:


Gojira (1954)

Ishirô Honda, Director

Ishirô Honda, Writer
Shigeru Kayama, Story
Takeo Murata, Writer

Tomoyuki Tanaka, Producer
Akira Ifukube, Original Music

Masao Tamai, Cinematography
My Favorite Comics of 2011 and Giveaway - December 23, 2011Thursday Flicks - Gojira - July 29, 2010

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