Staff Picks of the Week – April 21st, 2017
No Betty and no Veronica makes Dave a sad boy. I have become a fan of Riverdale and it isn’t on! Back to the NHL playoffs, I go! BUT before that: it’s Friday! It is time for the Staff Picks of the Week! Each week a select few of our staff share what has been keeping them entertained. Before we get to the picks, I always share with what is new this week at Rogues Portal. Debating on what to buy at the comic shop this weekend? Check out reviews for Plastic #1, Batman Vol. 2: I am Suicide, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: Pink, Shaolin Cowboy: Who’ll Stop the Reign #1, and World Reader #1 just to name a few. You know we have you covered with TV shows as well! Billy reviews Doctor Who: The Pilot and tells us if the premier of American Gods is worth watching (pssst, it is!). Samantha reviews the first two episodes of the newest Netflix show, Girlboss and Amelia catches us up on the latest episode of Riverdale, which you know I’m missing about now. Podcasts! We have many podcasts covering a variety of interests. Check out the latest episodes of Comicsbound, Scooby Dos or Scooby Don’ts, The Comics Agenda, Not Enough Resources, and new to the site, Babes of Wonderland. Hang out for awhile and enjoy! Now it is time for the Staff Picks of the Week!
Stephanie Pouliotte’s Pick of the Week – I started watching One Punch Man when it went up on Netflix, at the recommendation of a fitness youtuber I follow (JaxBlade) who creates videos based on the workout regimens of anime characters. The premise is pretty simple, a guy who can beat any foe with a single punch, no matter how ridiculously overpowered they may seem. Though it presents as a traditional shonen, with its over-the-top fights and action sequences centered around a strong male protagonist, it also makes light of the superhero genre in it’s title character Saitama, who seems to be in a constant state of apathetic consternation as he struggles to find a challenging rival in a world were earth is beset upon my carnage on a daily basis. His motivation, or lack there of, doesn’t stem from wanting to protect others or be a force for good, he just wants to test his insane strength against the strongest foe (a la Son Goku), and complains after each city-leveling battle when he discovers that all he needs to do is throw a single right hook. You’d think the show would get boring pretty fast when you know the outcome of every battle, but the show’s Gintama-esque humour will have you in stitches as it pokes fun at other power-fantasy animes like Dragon Ball through Saitama’s unique perspective on life and training. I will certainly be picking up the manga next, which was penned by an anonymous writer under the pseudonym One.
Rhian’s Pick of the Week – My pick of the week is Korean blockbuster zombie film Train to Busan! If you haven’t seen it, watch it! It has to be the best zombie film I’ve seen since Dead Snow! Train to Busan centres around a man (Gong Yoo), his estranged daughter and other passengers when they become trapped on a speeding train during a zombie outbreak in South Korea. The zombie scenes are second to none and the acting (especially from the little girl) is the best I’ve ever seen. Even though the film is action packed it’s also heartbreaking, I would be lying if I said I didn’t shed a tear or two at the end. You do become attached to each and every character so some scenes may appear slightly difficult to watch but you have to watch it. I watched it with my housemate and we were just blown away. I promise if you watch it your in for a real treat!
Robert’s Pick of the Week – Mark Waid wasn’t always the Mark Waid of Daredevil, Kingdom Come and so many other genius comics. At one point in time he was just another writer looking to get his crack doing something he loved. Early 90’s Mark Waid got his big crack at writing mainstream comics by writing Flash. This was right about the time of the T.V. Show on CBS, but there wasn’t the critical acclaim and synergy that now exists between comics and other platforms. I say that to say, Flash then wasn’t the Flash of now. Wally West was the Flash and he had been in about the same point for the last, almost 10 years, since Barry died. Mark Waid turns the Flash, in his 10 year run, into one of the most pivotal characters in the DC pantheon. Waid creates the Flash Family and grows the character of Wally more than anyone since. My first comic was a Mark Waid Flash book and it literally lead me to this chair writing this. I have never read Waid’s entire run on the series and every time I see the issues or trades pop up on EBay they are always ridiculous in price. DC is going to make oversized trades collecting his entire run and I couldn’t be more excited to read the remarkable Mark Waid run on Flash. The Volume feels very much, of its era. However, even in the infancy of his career, he still has the power to deliver heart to a story. And no matter how of the time, the book feels, there is this authenticity that he is able to engender into a comic that I love his writing for. Do yourself a favor and pick this trade up.
Josh Canales’ Pick of the Week – For my pick of the week I am choosing Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #14 from Boom! Studios. Kyle Higgins and Hendry Prasetya have continuously given us top-notch Power Rangers comics and the current arc has just been raising the bar they’ve set for themselves higher and higher; this issue continues that trend. With two simultaneous Ranger stories happening in two different dimensions (both with the same end goal of reuniting the team) each scene will keep any fan of the series turning the page. Alternate reality Power Rangers was not something I’d ever really thought about in this manner, but the story that Kyle is weaving regarding the different choices each Ranger makes has me wanting to know so much more; such as a newly revealed evil Ranger, Lord Drakkon, who has conquered Earth and a cast of rebels that have named themselves “The Coinless”. It almost the point of wanting to ditch the original dimension for this one. Almost. With the introduction of an all too familiar “relic”, as its referred to in the comic, the story is fixing to take a drastic turn and I just wish the next issue wasn’t a month away. Of course it’s not just for current fans of the series, its simply a really well-told superhero team story with relatable characters so if that type of thing piques your interest, this is definitely a comic series to check out.
Dave’s Pick of the Week – My pick of the week is The Belko Experiment, written by James Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy) and directed by Greg McLean (Wolf Creek). The film opens with an unusual day at the Colombian based Belko Corporation. There are armed guards with bomb sniffing dogs watching the gates and even sending certain staff members home. Once the day begins, there is an announcement over the P.A. system that instructs the staff to kill people in the next 30 minutes or else more will die at the hands of an unseen force that can kill with the push of a button. Metal shutters and walls seal off the building and the employees finally realize that this isn’t a game. The Belko Experiment is sick and twisted fun, full of blood and gore to satisfy any horror fan. Check it out!