The Ogre's Staff Picks (07/11/2018)

A new week. Some new Picks! Let's get down to it. Here are this week's Ogre Staff Picks (

Lauren's Pick

X-23 #1

Lauren's Pick

Writer: Mariko Tamaki
Artist: Juann Cabal
Colorist: Nolan Woodard
Letter: VC's Cory Petit

Follow Laura and her newfound sister to a new adventure in X-23 #1! Despite their efforts to curb the effects of the Weapon X program, more clones appear and Wolverine DNA continues to be used to turn mutants into unstoppable super soldiers. Now, Laura and Gabby go on the search for a missing geneticist whose disappearance has sinister implications. I really don’t want to spoil the rest of this excellent comic, so let’s just say some familiar faces (or iterations of the same familiar face) play a significant role as the story moves forward. I never get excited enough about superhero comics to choose them for my staff pick, so you know this one must be good! Check it out NOW!

Trish's Pick

Outpost Zero #1

Trish's Pick

Writer: Sean Kelley McKeever
Artist: Alexandre Tefenkgi
Colorist: Jean-Francois Beaulieu

Outpost Zero follows a group of teenagers that have grown up inside of a manmade biosphere on a planet far away from Earth. While some inhabitants seem content to simply survive inside of the biome, others question if their purpose is to someday leave and discover what else is out there on the frozen planet that they landed on. While these characters discuss which direction the remaining humans should take, disaster seems to threaten the very home that their ancestors have made. The art by Alexandre Tefenkgi is simple yet never feels lacking and the expressions are consistently unique and lively. Each character has a clear and concise story and a difficult path ahead, and I look forward to seeing how each one grows!

Like what you see? Need a few more books to try? Come by the store! We will happily suggest and suggest and suggest!

The Ogre's Staff Picks (07/04/2018)

It has been awhile. Did you have a good Fourth of July Holiday? We did! So many great books! Let's take a few moments and talk some.. Ogre Staff Picks!

Gib's Pick

Knights of the Dinner Table: Bundle of Trouble Vol 1

Gib's Pick

Writer/Artist: Jolly Blackburn

The Knights of the Dinner Table are a gaming group.  Their adventures in and out of the game are familiar and very funny.  The book has been running for over 20 years and is still one of the most entertaining reads on the shelf.  The art is a step above clip art, but it really doesn’t detract from the story.  This book is one of my favorite monthly treats, and I can’t recommend it highly enough!

Lauren's Pick

Four Sisters HC Vol 1

Lauren's Pick

Writer: Cati Baur
Artist: Malika Ferdjoukh

The recently-orphaned Verdelaine sisters live in a constant state of controlled chaos of their family estate, built by an ancestor on the cliffs overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. Enid is the youngest at nine and often feels ignored by her older siblings, absorbed as they are in their own storylines. Instead she occupies herself with animals, outdoor adventures, and speaking with the ghosts of her dead parents. Yes, you read that right. Artist Malika Ferdjoukh adapts Cati Baur’s novels in a gorgeous and whimsical style, developing the unique personality of each Verdelaine with every stroke of her pen. This graphic novel is the first in a series, and I eagerly anticipate the release of the next installment!

Trish's Pick

Thor #1 (LGY #707)

Trish's Pick

Writer: Jason Aaron
Artists: Michael Del Mundo, Christian Ward
Colorists: Christian Ward, Marco D'Alfonso and Mike Del Mundo
Letterer: Joe Sabino

Jason Aaron’s long run on Thor begins a new tale - a tale of Asgardian brothers that seem to be going on a road trip through Niffleheim? Thor is back, and Loki and Balder join him now with their trusty hellhound and goat as they all find themselves teleported to the realm of the dead. The painted art style by Del Mundo is an incredible fit for Thor, not only is his art always insanely gorgeous but each realm that is visited feels unique due to the vast array of selected colors used for each. The first half of the issue mentions recent continuity, but each story is quickly summarized and wrapped up before the new story begins which makes this issue incredibly friendly for new readers. Please read Thor, thanks, I love him.

Sarah's Pick

Luisa Now and Then GN

Sarah's Pick

Writers: Carole Maurel, Mariko Tamaki
Artist: Carole Maurel

After falling asleep on the bus home from a friend’s house, a young Luisa wakes up in Paris in the future of 2013 with only her backpack, her Walkman, her diary, and no pager. Noticing her distress after a confrontation with a man while trying buy a phone card, a kind woman offers to help her find a way to get in contact with Luisa’s aunt, who is the only person she knows in the city. As fate would have it, a woman lives across the hall from the kind stranger who has the same last name! And first name…who has the same mole on her right cheek and whose aunt’s name is the same as Luisa’s. Realizing that they are one in the same, the two women navigate their time together by fighting and learning about their past and future selves, their job, their friends, their sexuality, and their strained relationship with their mother. What would you say to your younger self knowing what it is you know now and how can you learn to accept yourself the way you are?

Mike's Pick

Y the Last Ban TP Book 1

Mike's Pick

Writer: Brian K. Vaughan
Artists: Pia Guerra, José Marzan

In 2002, Brian K. Vaughan (Saga, Paper Girls) and Pia Guerra (Spider-Man Unlimited) unleashed Y the Last Man on an unsuspecting world.  It almost immediately became my favorite series, at the time.  The Vertigo series explores a world where all male mammals were killed off by a mystery plague except for one man and his pet monkey.  The potential for cheese or camp was high.  Instead, this post-apocalyptic tale opted for a more thoughtful nuanced approach.  What militaries would still be operational?  Would governments be able to maintain order or would the world fall to chaos?  What would be the impact on religion, culture, and class structures?  Additionally, gender politics are front and center, making the book seem especially relevant still.  It’s not all just subtext and speculation, though.  This is a wonderfully character centric book.  Yorick, Agent 355, and Dr. Allison Mann, along with a cadre of notable supporting characters, are fleshed out in detail.  The fantastic premise is grounded by the authenticity of our leads.  Completed in 2008, the series is available in its entirety in five very affordable volumes.  It receives my highest possible recommendation.  Please note, though, that Y the Last Man is intended for mature readers as it contains harsh language, adult themes, and frank depictions of sexuality and violence.

Need a few more new reads? Come by the store! Let us suggest one... Or two... Or Ten more!

The Ogre's Staff Picks (05/30/2018)

It has been too long and some Picks have been stacking up. So... Let's catch up. Here are this week's Ogre Staff Picks.

Gib's Pick

Roughneck GN

Gib's Pick

Writer/Artist: Jeff Lemire

Derek and Beth had a very rough childhood, and they are still dealing with the ramifications.  Derek is drinking and fighting through his days with no much going on when Beth returns after a long absence.  In order to escape her abusive and violent ex-boyfriend they hide out in a secluded cabin and start to heal as they reconnect with each other.  When Jeff Lemire (Descender/Green Arrow) draws his own stories, you know they will be powerful and compelling.  Roughneck is that and more, a lot like his Underwater Welder book.

Lauren's Pick

Shade, the Changing Girl

Lauren's Pick

Writer: Cecil Castellucci
Artists: Marley Zarcone, Ande Parks
Colorist: Kelly Fitzpatrick
Letterer: Saida Temofonte

Expanding on the classic Vertigo series Shade, the Changing Man, this comic is truly the best of DC’s Young Animal line. Loma is directionless on planet Meta, drifting through a life she feels doesn’t fit, until she finds a way out: she steals the madness coat once owned by missing poet Rac Shade. Using the coat Loma travels to Earth and possesses the body of a formerly comatose high school bully, where she finds herself struggling to understand her new planet and somehow barred from returning home. Meanwhile back on Meta, powerful forces are looking for the coat, and the one who stole it. Simple, right? Writer Cecil Castellucci and penciller Marley Zarcone (as well as the whole creative team—this book is crazy beautiful) work together to weave a psychedelic adventure that spans the galaxy but stays anchored in high school.

Sarah's Pick

Be Prepared GN

Sarah's Pick

Writer/Artist: Vera Brosgol
Colorist: Alec Longstreth

After continuous failed attempts to fit in with the other girls at school, Vera discovers news of a Russian summer camp where she thinks she’ll finally be around other people like herself. What she learns, however, is that mean girls and boys will always be mean girls and boys, and that the camp is nothing like she expected. From the terrible two Sashas she shares a tent with, to the door-less outhouses, Vera Brosgol recounts a summer trying to navigate the perils of adolescence and friendship in this semi-autobiographical coming of age story.

Trish's Pick

Vinland Saga GN Vol 1

Trish's Pick

Writer/Artist: Makoto Yukimura

Taking place during the Viking invasion of England in 1013 AD, Vinland Saga is a manga comprised of both fictional and historically accurate elements that blend together seamlessly. The story follows the quest of the historical Icelandic explorer, Thorfinn, as he seeks vengeance for the murder of his father and inadvertently gets wrapped up in the dawning of King Cnut the Great’s rise to power. Not only is the story consistently intriguing as you become further entangled in the bloody drama of this saga, but you’ll learn quite a bit about Viking culture and history as you read! Fans of Lone Wolf and Cub or Berserk should certainly check this out as it spins a tale of revenge and honor that are very reminiscent.

So many books! And even more when you stop in. Come by and see us today for all the best reads in comics!

The Ogre's Staff Pick (05/09/2018)

It is turning into Summer really quick, isn't it? But even as the hot sun is really starting to beat down, the books continue to come in and give us a wonderful feeling of cool and calm. Would you like a staff pick to help with those long summer days? Well... It here it comes!

Lauren's Pick

Princess Jellyfish GN Vol 1

Lauren's Pick

Writer/Artist: Akiko Higashimura

Step into a world of fandom and fashion in this adorable manga! Tsukimi has been fascinated by jellyfish since she was very young, leading her to an adulthood largely spent paralyzed in fear when faced with other people. Together with her similarly obsessive female friends, she avoids contact with stylish women and never speaks to men…until a coincidence brings a new character into her life. This beautiful mystery girl has some surprises in store for Tsukimi and friends! Princess Jellyfish is so much fun to read that I got through another volume of it in the time I was supposed to be writing this review!

Need more manga? Need more... Comic books?! Come in today and we can talk your ears full of great new options!

The Ogre's Staff Picks (04/25/2018)

Free Comic Book Day (FCBD) is LESS THAN A WEEK AWAY!!! Saturday, May 5th is so close, we can almost taste it! Can you believe it, Comic Fans, the biggest Comic Event of the Year is almost here?! Are you ready? Do you need something new and exciting to hold you over until then? Then let's get to some Ogre Staff Picks...

And... To start it all off... We'll start with a Special Review for an upcoming Free Comic Book Day Book!

Michael's Pick

Barrier - FCBD Edition

 

Michael's Pick

Writer: Brian K. Vaughan
Artist: Marcos Martin
Colorist: Munsta Vicente

One of my favorite graphic novels from the last few years is The Private Eye by Brian K. Vaughn (Saga, Paper Girls) and Marcos Martin (Daredevil).  They are releasing their follow up this May as a weekly miniseries.  However, the first installment is dropping on Free Comic Book Day.  Titled Barrier, the story, told in a horizontal fashion for a very cinematic feel, parallels the lives of a widowed rancher on the Texas/Mexico border and an undocumented immigrant travelling from Honduras to the U.S.  Oh, and there’s some weird goings on possibly involving extraterrestrials.  Look, I’ll read anything BKV writes.  He’s a master at the top of his form right now, able to craft inventive and character driven stories that are melded with topical science fiction.  Throw in Martin’s beautiful and clean retro style that’s a perfect marriage of Ditko and Romita, Sr. and it’s a guaranteed purchase for me.  This FCBD issue has me massively excited for what is sure to be another unique sci-fi mystery tale and I’ve already added it to my pull.  You should do the same!

**Please note that Barrier is intended for a MATURE AUDIENCE.

Lauren's Pick

The Land of the Sons HC

Lauren's Pick

Writer/Artist: Gipi

Italian cartoonist Gipi weaves a story of family and masculine fragility in this post-apocalyptic tale. Brothers Lino and Santo were born into a wasteland and raised by a distant, inscrutable father. He teaches his sons to find uncontaminated food, how to dispose of corpses, and tells them never to use the word “love.” He doesn’t teach them to read, though he himself writes constantly in a journal they are forbidden from touching. The boys chafe under their father’s seemingly arbitrary restrictions, but they are unprepared when he dies suddenly, leaving them with only a book of words they can’t understand. Follow the brothers on a journey through a world they don’t know they’ve been protected from as they embark on a mission to find someone to read the journal and unravel the mysteries of the man who they desperately hope loved them despite his rules. In a narrative style matching his main characters Gipi masterfully executes the emotional moments of this story almost as afterthoughts, leaving readers affected long past the last page.

Do you need more to try? Come by today and we can talk you in to even more wonderful reads. And... Don't forget... Next Saturday, May 5th, we are expecting to see you for Free Comic Book Day!

The Ogre's Staff Pick (04/11/2018)

We apologize for the extended hiatus, life has been busy! But we are back.. So let's talk some Ogre Staff Picks.

Mike's Pick

The Omega Men: The End is Here TP

Mike's Pick

Writer: Tom King
Artist: Barnaby Bagenda with Toby Cypress and Ig Guara

With Mister Miracle, Tom King became a must read writer for me.  So, to that end, I picked up the TPB of his miniseries, Omega Men: The End is Here, that he and Barnaby Bagenda (Planet of the Apes/Green Lantern) collaborated on in 2016.  King and Bagenda (along with some fill in art along the way) take the barebones of these existing characters and reinvent them in a sci fi political allegory about terrorism that’s morally ambiguous while still being entertaining.  The Omega Men are terrorists or freedom fighters, depending on whom you ask.  They are fighting against the Citadel, the entrenched rulers of the Vega system.  The story begins with White Lantern Kyle Rayner being captured by the Omega Men for propaganda use in their insurgency effort.  There are plots within plots here and King explores our modern sociopolitical landscape through the distancing effect of a space opera fantasy.  The scripting is tight with formal elements that hearken back to the work of Alan Moore.  Bagenda’s soft but kinetic artwork gives the proceedings a sleek and dreamy flavor.  This is a very dark and heavy story that asks questions that don’t necessarily have answers.  Though it uses existing characters and is firmly planted in the current DCU, it is entirely self-contained and requires little to no knowledge of said characters or universe.  Tom King is proving to be a writer of smart, philosophical, and complex tales that are both personal and uncompromising.  Omega Men: The End is Here is well worth your time for its efforts to do something different with the superhero genre.

 
Lauren's Pick

Skip Beat GN Vol 1

Lauren's Pick

Writer/Artist: Yoshiki Nakamura

16-year-old Kyoko Mogami is practically a saint! A high school dropout, she works two menial jobs in order to support her best friend Sho in his pursuit of stardom. Though Sho doesn’t seem to appreciate Kyoko’s hard work, she knows one day he’ll see her selfless actions and realize he’s loved her all along. When Sho betrays her, Kyoko knows there’s only one way to get revenge: become a bigger star than her friend-turned-nemesis. What follows is the hilarious and heartwarming story of her quest! Skip Beat features many staples of shojo manga, but Kyoko is no traditional heroine! Her vengeful spirit is the driving force of the storyline as she shuns the gentle selflessness she once embodied, but could this rejection of her softer side be what’s holding her back? If you’re looking for a cute and fun story with a little bit of an edge, look no further than Skip Beat!

 

Not enough? Then come by the store. We offer the best comics, manga, toys and more. And we LOOOOOVE talking about them! So... See you soon?

The Ogre's Staff Picks (03/14/2018)

Just one little pick today... So let's get right down to it! Here is this week's Orge Staff Pick.

Lauren's Pick

Megahex HC: Megg and Mogg

Lauren's Pick

Writer/Artist: Simon Hanselmann

Stoner comedy meets deep existential dread in this book from Simon Hanselmann! Follow roommates Meg, Mogg, and Owl as they drink, smoke, and play cruel jokes on each other to distract from lives of quiet desperation. Megahex will have you laughing out loud, then you’ll turn the page and feel bad for laughing but won’t be able to stop. Get yours today, read it today, come back tomorrow to unpack the psychological issues these hilarious short stories will force you to confront!

Need more new read options? We can suggest even more! Come by and say hi today.

The Ogre's Staff Picks (03/07/2018)

Another week... Another round of new books... Another group of Staff Picks! So, let's chat.

Lauren's Pick

Red Colored Elegy GN

Lauren's Pick

Though the contents of its story feel at home among independent comics of today, when Red Colored Elegy was originally published in the early 1970s it broke new ground in the world of manga. Within its pages legendary artist Seiichi Hayashi tells the story of Ichiro and Sachiko, a couple living together in a world of their own. In a style heavily influenced by French new wave cinema, the minor dramas of the young artists’ lives are amplified visually, small events warped and drawn to seem insurmountable as the relationship between the two characters deteriorates. Panels of the lovers are juxtaposed with seemingly unrelated imagery to create within the reader a devastating sense of the emotions they are unable to express to each other. This new edition also features an essay by comics historian Ryan Holmberg which does an excellent job explaining the work’s many inspirations as well as its lasting impact on comics today.

 
Mike's Pick

Ragnarok Vol 1: Last God Standing

Mike's Pick

Writer/Artist: Walter Simonson
Colorist: Laura Martin
Letterer: John Workman

Walt Simonson’s run on Marvel’s The Mighty Thor was the character’s creative highpoint.  That’s saying something when one considers that Jack Kirby co-created him (all due respect to whoever came up with those original Norse myths).  Now, imagine Simonson (see also Manhunter, and The Fantastic Four) being freed from the constraints of shared universe continuity and telling the darker and more melancholy story of Thor in a Norse post-apocalyptic setting.  Intrigued yet?  You should be, because Simonson is at the top of his game pulling double duty on IDW’s Ragnarok.  Thor has woken up after centuries of being dead to discover he is the only god left and he embarks on an epic quest for vengeance.  This is an absolutely gorgeous and enthralling book.  Seriously, the art is STUNNING.  Laura Martin’s colors and Simonson’s detailed, yet uncluttered, pencils are a match made in Asgard.  I took my time reading this because I couldn’t help pouring over every page.  The first volume is available in both HC and SC now.  Pick it up today!  You won’t be disappointed!

 

We love what we do and we would only offer the best! Come by and we can offer these titles and so many more!

The Ogre's Staff Picks (02/28/2018)

It has been busy around the store. But we want to take a moment to tell you about a story that you absolutely MUST read! Here is this week's Ogre Staff Pick.

Mike's Pick

Royal City TP Vol 1

Mike's Pick

Writer/Artist: Jeff Lemire

Man. Royal City is so good and it feels like nobody is talking about it. After I finish each issue, I’m struck by how solid and engaging a read it is.  Jeff Lemire writes some of my current favorite series, specifically Black Hammer for Dark Horse and Descender for Image, but those are both (excellent) genre series. Royal City is much more grounded, although there are hints of surrealism that flavor the story of a small town family haunted (maybe literally, maybe not) by their long dead sibling/son. Lemire pulls double duty here, and his sketchy, impressionistic art is perfectly suited for this melancholy, possibly supernatural tale.  Volume one (available now) follows the family in the present as they reunite in the crumbling titular town where they grew up and experienced loves and losses. Volume two (due out in late April) follows the last days of the deceased son in the 1990s. I, too, grew up in a small town that’s now seen better days and I was also a teenager/young adult in the ‘90s so this book really appeals to me. Nothing else I’ve ever read has come close to palpably conveying those experiences. The prolific Lemire is at the top of his game here, breathing life into characters and a town in a painfully, and beautifully, real way.

 

It may only be one title this week but when you stop by to pick up Royal City we can offer you many, many more great titles! So come on by!

The Ogre Staff Picks (02/21/2018)

It is a busy week but we always we have something new for you to try. Only one Staff Pick this week but it is one the entire family can enjoy. Here is this week’s Ogre Staff Picks...

Lauren's Pick

Castle Waiting GN Vol 1

Lauren's Pick

Writer/Art: Linda Medley

The story of Sleeping Beauty leaves a lot of questions unanswered. When everyone in the castle fell asleep, what happened to those who happened to be running errands outside the boundaries of the sleeping spell? When the enchantment was broken and the princess rode off into the sunset, what became of the people who were left behind? This is just the prologue of Castle Waiting, a feminist fairy tale. Writer and artist Linda Medley builds a world inspired by classic stories and populates it with women of modern sensibilities making their respective ways. I could read these two graphic novels again and again!

Need more? Comics are what we do. So come in today and we can tell you about all of our favorites.