The Magnanimous Inventions of Ben and Mike #1 Warrior Innkeeper Comics Created and Written by: Benjamin J. Kreger Art by: Paul Johnson Reviewer: Robert McClelland
Summary: The Adventure Begins! When Ben Franklin is tricked into flying a kite during an electrical storm by Mike his gremlin friend, he not only proves lightening is electricity but also stumbles upon a brilliant idea! Follow the adventures of Ben & Mike as they travel through Space & Time in their most Magnanimous Invention!
Review:Do you enjoy tales with a bit of Looney Tunes in them? Do you love helping new comics get the funding they need? If so, The Magnanimous Inventions of Ben and Mike is one such comic you will surely find yourself loving. So much so that you’ll want to get it immediately to have as part of your collection and read with the kids! Mike honestly makes me think of Gizmo, and if you don’t know who that is by this point in time. There’s clearly something wrong with you. Only I think with Mike he’s a bit more mischevious, and probably less prone to danger when it comes to water and over eating. I have to admit that the art while having a cartoonish feel, isn’t something I really like much. Now it could wind up growing on me as this story goes on. Only time will tell however. But some may find themselves liking the art. I love the idea in this comic that Mike is the one who helped bring to life the idea that made Ben Franklin a very famous man. And the results prove to be hilariously enjoyable.
Kreger’s writing also feels Looney Tunes inspired and as you yourself read this you may find yourself agreeing with me on that. And cause of the Looney Tunes feel, its easy to see that Kreger enjoyed writing this from start to finish. As you will be laughing at different moments in all three stories and closing the book with a smile on your face.
I honestly hope though that Ben knows what he’s doing with a machine he’s built. And that he and Mike don’t cause too much mayhem as they use it. I kind of wonder if Kreger got the look for Ben’s machine from the Family Matters show. Because it really reminds me of an invention Steve Urkel from that show made. And hmm... Could Ben be the cause of a certain phrase everyone loves when it comes to Fridays!? Another great thing about this comic is some of the other references that get used along with some 4th wall breakage. So if you’re looking to for something a bit Looney Tunes like, The Magnanimous Inventions of Ben and Mike is the perfect start! This really is something that everyone should have the chance to read! 3 out of 5 Stars.
Satanic Hell #1 Zeno Telos Press/Alterna Comics Story: Grigoris Douros Art: Kevin Enhart and Newel Anderson Colors: Jimmy Kerast Lettering: E.T. Dollman Reviewer: Robert McClelland
Summary: Broke and directionless, the three members of the industrial metal band Satanic Hell arrive in Texas for a chance tour set up by a mysterious promoter named Sam. Death Priest, Dante, and Exodus quickly find trouble in the bizarre world of Texas, now an authoritarian Christian state controlled by a council of religious fanatics.
Review:It’s not often I find myself both angry and annoyed after reading a comic, but after reading this I certainly felt that way. Granted, its not the story itself that's having me feel those two emotions. But the religious aspect of heavy handed Christianity found through out the book. And the crap the band members have to deal with cause of how faith controlled Texas is. Though any actions made by the group themselves in retaliation can potentially lead to some amusement. It all reminds me greatly of why I’m glad Religions don’t have control of the Government in any shape or form. At least here in America for the most part anyway. This book is another reason why Religion much like Politics just shouldn’t be in Comics. Satanic Hell shows what life might be like if the Churches ever got control of Texas and frankly it scares the crap out of me for the kind of potential that could happen with it. Either in Texas or anywhere else.
The shared art duties by Enhart and Anderson are well done and the cover has me thinking of Stefano Cardoselli’s art. Kerast’s colors bring everything to life very well. I love that the band drives a hearse as it fits them and their theme really well. Course the smart thing to do would have been to research where they are going. I imagine that would have saved them quite a few headaches!
The names of each character is also something I find myself liking. As you don’t often see anyone with the name of ‘Death Priest’. Which I think would make for a great supernatural character. I know I’d be yelling high to the Heavens of Police Brutality after the treatment these boys got. Although I wouldn’t have minded seeing if they freaked out once Satanic Hell played a few songs. I think the reactions would have been hilarious and great revenge.
There’s a quote on a billboard in this book at one point that says "A friend of this world is an enemy of God. James 4:4" and it makes me kind of just want to shake my head. That quote and others in this story has me wanting to rant a bit, but I know that this review wouldn’t be the appropriate place for it. As I said earlier, a lot of what annoys me is the religious aspects as they all feel heavy handed. And I apologize in advance if I offend any religious types with my comments. The billboard and any other religious content within this comic is actually based off of real content of the views by the Christian Right and its Politicians on the local, state, and national levels. Which is something I find kind of alarming to know it actually exists. I find myself curious about what’s going to happen to one young girl, as it seems ‘The Man’ in this is out to try and punish her.
Hopefully certain Satanists can make a win during this story’s run. I know I’d be wanting to move out of the state as fast as I could once I hit my majority in this world, as anywhere else would look a heck of a lot better. I have to wonder what the booker was thinking in getting the band to come there. Although the question that he is asked is possibly the best moment in this book. And its answer I look forward to reading about.
Despite how I felt after reading this, I am honestly looking forward to the next issue, as I want to see what is going to happen. Will the band get their phone call? Will the tv show some MTV? Will Armageddon come? To find out these answers, grab yourself this comic and begin the journey! I will admit though that this will be something you’ll either like or hate. I also love how Zeno Talos Press is willing to put something out like this. Even knowing its bound to potentially ruffle a few feathers. And Mr. Douros may certainly accomplish that! And now that Satanic Hell has come to Alterna Comics, this series will be available on ComiXology! 3 out of 5 Stars