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Monday, June 25, 2018

A review of Alt★Hero #2

Bounding Into Comics reviews Alt★Hero #2: Rebel's Cell. An excerpt:
Alt-Hero continues to lay the ground work for what is shaping up to be a compelling and interesting universe. There is an obvious political and social slant here, but it isn’t heavy-handed and I am thankful for that, even if I happen to agree with it. The heroes, specifically Hammer and Rebel, are two very exciting characters and I can’t wait to see more of them and witness how their story arcs play out. I would have liked to see some of the results from the first issue, but this one was entertaining enough in its own right to tide me over until that happens.
Read the whole thing there. The rating was another 8.5, which is great, although I feel a little as if the previous 8.5 was on the generous side, while this one was perhaps a bit stingy. Either way, the important thing is that we are maintaining a high level of quality in the eyes of the readers.

The non-readers, not so much. S. Schwartz provides what looks very much like the first fake review on Amazon:
Cliches put in a blender with a strong shot of politics

This reads like a teenage Frank Miller fanboy who didn't think Frank was tough enough wrote it; or a teenage Chris Claremont fanboy who couldn't come up with their own heroes so resorted to filing off all the serial numbers. The art is mediocre at best, and it comes with a huge dose of politics; if you don't agree with the writer's particular alt-right viewpoint, it will seem at best ridiculous, at worst offensive. I suppose if you care more about politics than quality, this comic will give you the shot of self-righteousness you're seeking. If you want sub-par Frank Miller, read bad Frank Miller -- this will be much, much worse.
I wonder from where he derived the teenage theme. Both the language and the concepts are above-average for comics, particularly these days. As for the derivative theme, I don't even know who Chris Claremont is, nor have I ever actually read a Frank Miller comic book, to the best of of my recollection. But it's interesting that he is comparing my work to Frank Miller's, however unfavorably.

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58 Comments:

Blogger Warunicorn June 25, 2018 2:08 PM  

S. Schwartz's "review" wasn't even a review. It was all generalizations, which means he didn't read it. (The big tell was it wasn't a verified purchase.)

I'm trying to picture a world where people don't go and leave fake reviews just because they don't like the content. This, I realize, is impossible to do with SJWs. The only valid worldview is their worldview, after all.

Blogger doctrev June 25, 2018 2:17 PM  

Filing off the serial numbers? You mean, like the other super-strong vigilante who breaks into prisons to free political prisoners? The other vaguely Euro-fascist superhero team that cracks down on unauthorized blogging?

There's a strong argument that Alt-Hero currently portrays the Initiative as more morally upstanding than the Immotus forces, even if we know the truth. However, the fake reviewers are phenomenally stupid if they think comparing the work to Frank Miller makes sense on any political or cultural level, never mind the story level. For Christ's sake, Miller pretty much rejuvenated popular interest in the Bat with The Dark Knight Returns- which was a comic long before it was an unrelated movie. That comparison won't exactly push people away.

Besides, there wasn't a single whore in the entire piece, unless you're going to make an implication about Rebel or Quantum Kitty (that they'll kick your teeth in for making). So it's obviously not derivative of Frank Miller.

Blogger Krul June 25, 2018 2:18 PM  

I liked it. Thought it was a definite improvement over #1.

Blogger Eli June 25, 2018 2:18 PM  

Chris Claremont is most famous for revitalizing the X-Men ins the 70'-80's. He introduced a bunch of new characters and one in particular Shadowcat has an ability similar to Quantum Kitty. Being compared to 80's Frank Miller would be quite impressive. He had a great Daredevil, Wolverine, and Batman run. Although, I think The Dark Knight Returns is overrated myself it's still worth reading to see how we got the modern day darker grittier Batman. Daredevil: Born Again is certainly worth a read if you ever get the chance though. Probably Frank's best work.

Blogger Looking Glass June 25, 2018 2:21 PM  

The fake review is pretty funny. It's clearing posing as "I know comics!", yet clearly hasn't read either Alt-Hero #2 or the works he's sighting.

Blogger Ingot9455 June 25, 2018 2:23 PM  

Chris Claremont was the guy who took over the X-Men after it was canceled the first time and revamped it into the juggernaut it became for the 15 years he wrote it.

Amongst other things he is famous for the line, "Is the any reason this character couldn't be a woman?" and for his practice of leaving one or two dangling subplots per issue and only truly resolving about one per year.

Dave Sim also makes fun of him in CEREBUS with Professor Charles X. Claremont and the sequence on "Conflict Builds Character, Praise Conflict!" with his penchant for overusing the trope of heroes fighting one another when they first meet.

Blogger August June 25, 2018 2:24 PM  

That is possibly the dumbest fake review ever. Frank Miller? Even I can tell that is bull, and I have been completely uninterested in comics for most of my life.

Blogger maniacprovost June 25, 2018 2:29 PM  

A better fake review would have explained in what way Alt Hero is supposedly similar to Miller's work. You, sir, are no Frank Miller.

Blogger FSL June 25, 2018 2:31 PM  

Amazon should eliminate reviews from non-verified purchasers on books that are less than a year old. If they're going to leave fake reviews, they should have to pay for it.

Blogger Krul June 25, 2018 2:33 PM  

"...and it comes with a huge dose of politics"

An SJW complaining about politics in fiction. How quaint.

Blogger Noah B The Savage Gardener June 25, 2018 2:34 PM  

The fake reviewer is a San Franciscomite who is giving 5-star reviews to Samuel Delaney works. I wonder what it means...

Blogger Wolfman at Large June 25, 2018 2:39 PM  

A disturbing lack of helicopters, both in their physical removal and sexual identification roles. I expect this to be addressed in future issues.

Blogger Johnny June 25, 2018 2:48 PM  

That I am aware of there are no Frank Miller comic books, but there are graphic novils that of course resemble comic books. Perhaps that is what the author is thinking of.

As an author of entertaining fiction I think Frank Miller rocks. Political commentary not so much. And I would say you only vaguely resemble Frank Miller. But for me, being put in his category would be a complement.

Blogger Dire Badger June 25, 2018 2:56 PM  

Just don't put Frank Miller in the director's chair again. The first time, Sin City, was actually really entertaining. The second time, he recycled all the old tricks and told a vastly less interesting story.

and by recycling old tricks I really mean it. Black and white, red colorizing the important bits, same camera angles, much the same dialogue... That was barely acceptable in sin city 2 (a Dame to cash in for) but in the spirit it was terrible.

And Johnny, Miller did Daredevil for a while when it was good.

Blogger pyrrhus June 25, 2018 2:57 PM  

One star reviews, in my experience, are almost invariably politically motivated hit jobs, and that's clearly true here.

Blogger Shimshon June 25, 2018 2:58 PM  

@12 "A disturbing lack of helicopters, both in their physical removal and sexual identification roles. I expect this to be addressed in future issues."

I propose a superhero Pino, with his sentient and mildly sociopathic helicopter sidekick Chet.

I received and read #2. The artistry seemed improved to me, and I enjoyed the story. Definitely looking forward to more.

Blogger FUBARwest June 25, 2018 2:59 PM  

Two comics in and they are comparing you to a living legend in the comic book industry?

Tired of winning yet?

Blogger Junius Stone June 25, 2018 3:05 PM  

Lefties hate Frank Miller and have for some time, ever since he started voicing conservative/right wing opinions.

Blogger Junius Stone June 25, 2018 3:05 PM  

Even though I ordered the collections during the Freestartr campaign, getting the individual issues in paper as they become available.

Blogger Elijah June 25, 2018 3:12 PM  

ALT HERO#2 is excellent. i am looking forward to following both of the story lines and the new ones to come. really funny when rebel asked if the cops wanted Bama? and then she gave them Bama by kicking their a ss.
Bama Football is world wide

Blogger James Dixon June 25, 2018 3:13 PM  

Being compared to Claremont and Miller is high praise, even if he didn't intend it that way.

> The fake reviewer is a San Franciscomite who is giving 5-star reviews to Samuel Delaney works. I wonder what it means...

Oh, I think we all know what it means.

Blogger marco moltisanti June 25, 2018 3:14 PM  

I'll be honest, I thought Alt.Hero #1 was on the amateurish side overall. I was willing to cut it some slack though, because I recognize that beginnings can be rough, and because of my political bias but overall, it wasn't great. However #2 was a massive improvement in every department, art and writing. Seems to me that anyone who can't admit that is being disingenuous. I'm excited to see where the future issues go.

Blogger Dire Badger June 25, 2018 3:19 PM  

I didn't consider alt hero 1 amateurish so much as stylized. Stylized art is often easier to complete quickly, so if That's the price to get a regularly monthly comic, I am willing to pay it.

Blogger Kat June 25, 2018 3:32 PM  

It's not that Bama is world wide so much as Nate being a longstanding ilk. Vox probably didn't want to deal with the clean up from sending her to Auburn or Ol Miss or Tennessee.

Blogger Looking Glass June 25, 2018 3:36 PM  

Kat wrote:It's not that Bama is world wide so much as Nate being a longstanding ilk. Vox probably didn't want to deal with the clean up from sending her to Auburn or Ol Miss or Tennessee.

Still waiting on Nate's review. Should be hilarious.

Blogger Cataline Sergius June 25, 2018 3:38 PM  

I think the most important measure of any comic is this...

Would your mother be horrified to discover you reading it?

If your mother is a purple haired SJW than I think the answer to that one, in this case is obvious.

Well done, Arkhaven!

Well done, indeed!

Blogger JACIII June 25, 2018 3:44 PM  

Ol'Miss would be acceptable as Rebel is a beauty and would fit right in at Oxford. Mississippi, that is.

Blogger JACIII June 25, 2018 3:46 PM  

MOAR Rebel!

Blogger Anno Ruse June 25, 2018 3:47 PM  

I think the Miller comparison is intended as an insult. Miller's reputation suffered after his work went beyond the norm, with dialogue like this:

DICK GRAYSON: Who the hell are you anyway, giving out orders like this?
BATMAN: What, are you DENSE? Are you RETARDED or something? Who the hell do you THINK I am? I'm the goddamn BATMAN.

For some reason people thought Miller had lost his mind.

I didn't buy Alt-Hero 2 so I won't comment on the writing, but judging by the preview pages the art is high quality for an indie title and I could find various Punisher/Green Arrow/Batman books of similar quality. It's much more than I expected this early.

Blogger Noah B The Savage Gardener June 25, 2018 3:53 PM  

@1 That's what I thought too but Kindle Unlimited complicates things. I don't know if someone who downloads a book via Kindle Unlimited shows up as a Verified Purchaser or not.

Blogger Volpack June 25, 2018 4:00 PM  

Frank Miller's Dark Knight Returns and Wolverine graphic novels are some of my favorite reads.

When they start comparing you to Fist of the Northstar we will know you have arrived.

Blogger James Dixon June 25, 2018 4:05 PM  

> That's what I thought too but Kindle Unlimited complicates things. I don't know if someone who downloads a book via Kindle Unlimited shows up as a Verified Purchaser or not.

I should be able to test that out next week after I get my birthday present.

Blogger MendoScot June 25, 2018 4:06 PM  

OT but too entertaining not to share.

A U Memphis SJW prof just published a paper listing her two moggies (one dead) as co-authors.

Professor Nordstrom has perhaps summarized the worst of feminist academia into one paper. Her work is an eight-page rambling research paper about the author’s relationship with her deceased cat that provides absolutely no value to the academic community. It’s almost as if Nordstrom is baiting her would-be critics by adding her cats as “co-authors” on the paper. It’s an open invitation to be mocked.

I've downloaded the paper for posterity.

Blogger Brick Hardslab June 25, 2018 4:07 PM  

Frank Miller? Hammer would have shoved that pipe up their keisters and spun them around like a majorette's baton. While showing all the blood and gore.

Wait, am I getting him confused with Claremont? Now I can't keep anyone but Dixon straight. Avalon!

Blogger Brick Hardslab June 25, 2018 4:08 PM  

@ Mendoscot
MendoScot wrote:OT but too entertaining not to share.

A U Memphis SJW prof just published a paper listing her two moggies (one dead) as co-authors.

Professor Nordstrom has perhaps summarized the worst of feminist academia into one paper. Her work is an eight-page rambling research paper about the author’s relationship with her deceased cat that provides absolutely no value to the academic community. It’s almost as if Nordstrom is baiting her would-be critics by adding her cats as “co-authors” on the paper. It’s an open invitation to be mocked.

I've downloaded the paper for posterity.


You cruel, cruel man.

Blogger insight June 25, 2018 4:13 PM  

"And it comes with a huge dose of politics..."

And Marvel and DC don't!?

Blogger TheWesman Colvin June 25, 2018 4:16 PM  

I read AH #1, then AH#2. As an artist in a past life, I am very very impressed in the jump in quality from issue #1.

Good work on the polish for the art, inking, framing and paneling.

I never mentioned this when AH#1 released, but I also appreciated how the story-line and scripting was done for a 2018 Universe.

I say, "Thank you to all, AH Team, I'm glad to have backed you. Don't Stop. You're on to something special."

Regards,

Blogger Jordi June 25, 2018 4:27 PM  

AH1 was good, AH2 is excellent

Keep up with this fantastic job !!!

Blogger Ray June 25, 2018 4:37 PM  

If you purchase via Kindle Unlimited, your review does not show up as a verified purchase.

Amazon also records number of pages read, etc. as a way to decide if it's a fake review.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan June 25, 2018 4:38 PM  

The real gut punch might be that Schwartz gave Kratman a 2 star review.

Blogger Silent Draco June 25, 2018 5:37 PM  

Schwartz must be saying "pick ME!" to the Dread Ilk. Gotta admire that idiocy, er, determinatio.

The artwork was a big jump up, with much more subtlety and detail in the background. The story is darker and more enigmatic, and sets a good basis for the line. Characters and their powers are shown in action, not told in boxes.

I expect Rebel to perform a BYLH move in action:

Bless. Your. Little. Heart!

A southern girl of good family understands exactly how deadly the phrase is.

I need some time tonight or tomorrow to write a proper rwview.

Great work.

Blogger Noah B The Savage Gardener June 25, 2018 6:02 PM  

Thanks to my viewing Schwartz's review history and pointing out his 5-star review of Delany's Babylon-17, my Amazon recommended purchases list is now full of Samuel Delany books and Nickelback CD's. I'm not even joking.

I've been cyberpozzed.

Blogger Unknown June 25, 2018 6:22 PM  

Growing up in socialist Yugoslavia where DC and Marvel were a big no-no so I didn’t know they even existed. I only read Italian comics like Zagor and Alan Ford where only superpowered “hero” was “SUPERHIK” who was taking from the poor and giving it to the rich (yes reverse Robin Hood, because he was a street cleaner and did not like how poor have been littering the streets while rich were clean and polite) with a superpower of deadly bad breath. So these superpowered comics feel weird to me, I mean walking through walls, c’mon, I can accept superhuman strength, superhuman speed, even telepathy and intuition, but fazing, telekinesis, teleportation, laser eyes, it is over the top (my wife won’t watch SF with me anymore, she can’t stand my moaning and eye rolling). But, again, I guess it comes down to what did you like/read when you were a teenager, doesn’t it? Otherwise art is impressive, story is compelling, I’m glad I am a backer!

Blogger MOTW June 25, 2018 6:28 PM  

Its funny isn't it. When leftist create an alternate world where they are the victims and the evil Christians are the oppressors--think Handmaid's Tale--the work is compelling, a taste of what might happen, and a true picture of the dark side of the Right. But when the roles are reversed, like in Alt-Hero, suddenly the work is silly and ridiculous. After all, its not like leftists have never rounded people up before, have they?

Blogger Looking Glass June 25, 2018 6:34 PM  

Noah B The Savage Gardener wrote:Thanks to my viewing Schwartz's review history and pointing out his 5-star review of Delany's Babylon-17, my Amazon recommended purchases list is now full of Samuel Delany books and Nickelback CD's. I'm not even joking.

I've been cyberpozzed.


The Nickleback part is a crime against humanity.

Blogger David The Good June 25, 2018 6:59 PM  

I really enjoyed this one. The art was great and the writing solid. I didn't think I liked comics until I read these.

Blogger wreckage June 25, 2018 7:02 PM  

Art mediocre: false.
Huge dose of politics: about X-Men levels and X-men themed.
Frank Miller: no, doesn't have that "darker grittier comics-noir" feel at all.
Chris Claremont: He's just name-dropping at this point. Might as well say "reads like it was written for comics." The guy is one of the most prolific and best-known super-hero comic writers of the modern era.

Blogger Salt June 25, 2018 7:07 PM  

If Schwartz did read it he was probably at The Red Hen, sipping a latte... if the Red Hen is even open.

Blogger Weouro June 25, 2018 7:33 PM  

Only think I know about frank miller is the sin city movies which I like

Blogger Avalanche June 25, 2018 7:42 PM  

@6 "his penchant for overusing the trope of heroes fighting one another when they first meet."

A trope that began (as far as I remember) with "La Morte d'Arthur," where knights would meet on the road, swing swords and fight viciously for hours till exhausted; agree to a stalemate and respect for each other; remove helms; and discover they were brothers or cousins!

Blogger Student in Blue June 25, 2018 7:49 PM  

AH#2 was indeed an improvement over #1, but then again I think we all know the plan was iterative improvement.

Is there a better spot to give feedback/a review than a comment here?

Blogger VD June 25, 2018 8:34 PM  

Is there a better spot to give feedback/a review than a comment here?

Amazon is the best place for reviews. The forums are the place for feedback and criticism.

Blogger tuberman June 25, 2018 9:49 PM  

Everyone knows you do not give one-star reviews to something you want to discourage. You give something 3-stars, and then on load on it in the text part of the review. Giving a 1-star and saying even the art is poor encourages interest, and people will pick it up to see if it's true! Fake reviewer is too clever by half... meaning STUPID.

Blogger tuberman June 25, 2018 9:58 PM  

I'll give this a full review on Amazon tomorrow, but as I said, this is what I was hoping to see.

Blogger Brick Hardslab June 25, 2018 10:08 PM  

Everything was better about this one. I want to see more of all the characters. The surfer dude didn't seem to do much. I'd like to see him get into the action more.

This was a five star comic.

Blogger Brick Hardslab June 25, 2018 10:19 PM  

You know why Schwartz gave a one star review, 'The Last Closet'. He is in the SCA in San Francisco. What are the odds he was upset about the revelations of Miss Greyland?

Blogger Student in Blue June 25, 2018 11:52 PM  

Amazon is the best place for reviews. The forums are the place for feedback and criticism.

Jawohl, mein Kommandant.

Blogger Skyler the Weird June 26, 2018 12:17 AM  

We're she a true Rebel from Oxford she would have fought rather than worshipped that villain Nick Satan.

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