Indie Comic Review – Lizard Men #2 (Comichaus)

Our pal Kit reviews comics for us! This is one of those reviews.

Warning: minor spoilers.

“Shit. No offence, guys, but this isn’t my scene” The British Prime Minister in the Year 2020

The leader of the country is a celebrity with little to no idea what he’s doing as he’s totally out of his depth while the real establishment (lizard people) are trying to get him to ‘bend the knee’ and serve them as all other world leaders do. No, this isn’t a crazy internet conspiracy you’ll dig up about the ‘deep state’ on various message boards, it’s the plot of the aptly named comic ‘Lizard Men’. This comic came up through the Comichaus app and it caught my attention this week. This is bought to us by:

  • Writer and Cover Art – Steven Horray
  • Artist – Catia Fantini
  • Colourist – Chiara Bonacini
  • Letterer – Ken Reynolds
  • Editor – Mira Manga

The story kicks off at the Brit Awards in 2019 where Dylan, a pop star decides to get political. Fast forward to 2020 and somehow he’s won the election and is in charge of Britain, however his past drug habits and creepy lizard overlords aren’t giving him an easy ride on it. I picked this series up on Issue 2, which managed to provide enough exposition in the core concept to understand the state of play. The power behind the throne as such wielded by the lizard men is shown to be great and the main cast each provide intriguing back stories you want to learn more about. There’s more at play here than the surface story as well. The concept of a pop star miraculously becoming Prime Minister is one that would have sounded crazy ten years ago, but not so much now. There is a definite element of satire here at the expense of a certain president, perhaps trying to explain what on earth is ‘really going on’ (though this main character is a hell of a lot more likeable!)

As for the art – there’s a very professional feel to issue, backed up with a slightly ‘trippy’ aesthetic to match the surrealist nature of the story. The imagery often comes across as a distorted real world, matching the tone of the comic.  The characters are expressive and the conversations portrayed well, with body language communicating a lot through the character stances.

As for the lettering, Reynolds has a little fun early on in the dialogue between Dylan and the other popstars with emphasis on words like ‘totes’ in their conversation. Throughout the issue he provides a high standard of letting which weaves the reader’s eye through the pages.

Final Verdict

This comic was more than I expected. The art in itself is enough to keep reading on, which is portraying a fascinating story which you have to wonder where it will end up. There are a lot more questions than at this point and its worth reading on to find out.

You can back the Lizard Men Kickstarter here!

 

Have an indie comic you’d like reviewed? Get in touch with Kit at lostlighthouseindie@gmail.com!

Total Reroll NSCU: Episode 7 – Minor Crimes and Down Times

Welcome to the episode 7 of Total Reroll NSCU, our new Dungeons and Dragons podcast series. We are new members of the Neverwinter Special Crimes Unit, brought in to investigate strange goings on in the city of Neverwinter and to uphold the law!

After solving our second case, we have a bit of down time before taking on our next one – The Blue Lake Street Race!

Download this episode (right click and save)

We hope you enjoy the episode. We are moving to fortnightly releases, with new episodes out every other week on alternate Fridays to The Weekly Rapture pop culture podcast. If you enjoy the episode, please let us know on Twitter or Facebook, give us a 5* rating on itunes, or share with anyone you think may enjoy it!


Our intro and outro music is ‘Winter’s Howl’ by Ed Curry.

Enjoy!

Fancy supporting the site? You can pick up all of the 5th edition D&D books from Wizards of the Coast using our Amazon links below, and we’ll get a cut with no extra cost to you!

Dungeon Master’s Guide

Player’s Handbook

Monster Manual

Volo’s Guide to Monsters

Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide

Starter Set

Tales from the Yawning Portal

The Lost Lighthouse: The Weekly Rapture 110 – Red Band

Welcome back to The Weekly Rapture, our fortnightly pop culture news and reviews podcast!

Download this episode (right click and save)

This week we chat about the trailers for CargoNightflyers and The Rain, Guillermo del Toro’s upcoming imprint at Fox Searchlight, and the Destiny 2 go fast patch.

Screentime- Pacific Rim Uprising

In Screentime this week we review the new giant robots vs giant monsters film Pacific Rim Uprising! If you care about spoilers, we go a little in to them from 42:00-51:05.

Now Playing – Reading/Watching/Playing

Adam Constellation Games by Leonard Richardson/Star Wars: The Clone Wars (again)/The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild on Nintendo Switch
Ian Earthsea Quartet by Ursula Le Guin and The Sellswords Trilogy by R.A. Salvatore/Game Over Man and Bigfoot Country on Netflix/Icewind Dale on iOS

Check out any of those through those Amazon links and we get a kick back! Or you can go through here.

You can as always get in touch through Facebook or on Twitter @lost_lighthouse, email us at thelostlighthouse@live.co.uk or sound off in the ‘leave a reply’ box at the bottom of the podcast page on the website.Fancy supporting our site? Head on over to our Paypal donation page! It’s completely optional, set your own price! Even £1 helps us with hosting costs and we’d really appreciate it! Cheers!

Comic Review – Avengers: Shards of Infinity #1 (Marvel Comics)

Our pal Kit reviews comics for us! This is one of those reviews.

Warning: minor spoilers.

“That is truly a worthy dream to strive for Avengers. And I’m a dreamer too.” – Captain America at his boy-scout best

If you somehow hadn’t noticed, Avengers Infinity War is fast approaching and I for one, am very excited to see it. Marvel naturally are getting their tie ins and spin offs set up, including one shot issues like this – Avengers: Shards of Infinity. These comics are in circulation to build up hype and increase engagement before the film. There are a lot of Marvel films out there now, and for first timers I can see how it may be a little intimidating to get involved. These comics help bridge that gap which is why I’m thought I would give it a look at get the word out on it. This comic is brought to us by:

  • Writer – Ralph Macchio
  • Artist – Andrea Di Vito
  • Colour Artist – Laura Villari
  • Letterer – VC’s Travis Lanham

Some of the exposition, or character narrations are a little on the nose if you know your way around the Avengers at all (if you’ve seen Captain America Civil War you know it all!) but there is a certain charm to the simplicity of this story. The bad guys with their overly complex evil plan and the cheesy one liners are a lot of fun.

The characters are a little bit one dimensional. They are very much outlines of themselves. This isn’t a criticism though, this comic is intended for people who don’t know their way around Marvel and need to get to grips with who is who.

Di Vito and Villari’s art very much reflects the simple story being told. The characters are sporting their classic costumes, their colours are vibrant and draw the eye and the action is clear and easy to follow with the lettering is clear and unobtrusive, not distracting from the action scenes.

Final Verdict

This made me feel like a kid watching a Saturday morning cartoon again. There are villains. They want to take over the world. The Avengers want to stop them using their own unique skill set. The plot is wrapped up in one issue you can get through very easily.

For a longer term fan, there isn’t a huge amount here. But if you know someone you want to get into the world of Marvel comics, it’s the perfect gift!

Score: 8 Moon Bases out of 10

Anime Review – Children of the Whales

Kii takes a look at some anime!

Children of the Whales is an anime that aired in Japan from October 2017 and launched globally via Netflix in March 2018. The series was directed by Kyōhei Ishiguro (Your lie in April), written by Michiko Yokote (Cowboy Bebop, Saint Seiya, xxxHolic) and animated by J.C.Staff (Food Wars, Excel Saga).

The plot focuses around a young record keeper named Chakuro (voiced by Natsuki Hanae in Japanese and Johnny Yong Bosch in English) who lives on a large moving vessel called The Mud Whale. The Mud Whale has been aimlessly cruising through a giant ocean of sand for the past 100 years and nobody seems to know anything about the world beyond, minus some smaller floating islands they sometimes come across and scavenge from. It’s on one of these islands that they encounter the first human that they’ve seen outside of The Whale. Lykos (Manaka Iwami and Melissa Fahn) is an emotionless child soldier who may know more about The Mud Whale than the inhabitants do.

These inhabitants of The Mud Whale are categorised by those who can use a magic-like art called thymia, the Marked, and those who can’t, the Unmarked. Due to their use of thymia, the Marked lead noticeably shorter lives than their counterparts and rarely make it to their thirties.

Thymia in particular makes this series very interesting to me. It’s like a monkey’s paw of magic and yet it’s also vital for the people’s survival on the sea of sand. I also believe that it makes for some interesting characters; Suoh (Nobunaga Shimazaki and Bryce Papenbrook), an Unmarked who has made it his mission to figure out how to extend the lives of the Marked as he believes their burden to be unfair and Ouni (Yuichiro Umehara and Reba Buhr), a rebel with unusually strong thymia who is locked up in the belly of the ship.

To keep this spoiler free, I can tell you that things go to shit pretty quickly and the people of the Mud Whale are thrust into a world that they don’t understand, let alone are prepared for. I found the themes of the conflict unique as the benefits of using emotions vs erasing them to ensure that they don’t get in the way are explored. The secrets of the Mud Whale itself are also intricate and enticing.

The series contains twelve episodes but I would have preferred if it was longer. There are some moments that end up feeling a touch rushed and the story had points that I wish could have been expanded upon in more detail. It seems that the series wants to develop into a second season but this has yet to be confirmed. I would definitely like to see more from this anime as I still have questions and  want aspects of the story to be opened up.

My slightly personal and a little picky gripe is that whilst the opening cinematics are nice, the theme is weak. The song is ‘Sono Sake E’ by RIRIKO, I listened to the full song instead of just the section for the opening and I don’t really know why the section they chose was used. The song in its entirety is pretty nice and has some nice instrumentals whereas the opening focuses repeatedly on some long held notes. It was, without a doubt, the most I’ve used the skip intro button on Netflix.

Opening theme aside, I would absolutely recommend Children of the Whales if you’re looking for something new to watch. It’s not a feel good anime as some parts are a little harrowing, however, it’s very hopeful. The action is good, the animation is lovely and I felt the concept was unique and attention grabbing. Give it a watch and let me know what you think!

Total Reroll NSCU: Episode 6 – Tiny Ugly Child

Welcome to the episode 6 of Total Reroll NSCU, our new Dungeons and Dragons podcast series. We are new members of the Neverwinter Special Crimes Unit, brought in to investigate strange goings on in the city of Neverwinter and to uphold the law!

We are in the Scar District on our second case, and have found that a hag is using addictive pies to convince people to give her their children! We are on our way to the hag’s hideout to crack this case!

Download this episode (right click and save)

We hope you enjoy the episode. We are moving to fortnightly releases, with new episodes out every other week on alternate Fridays to The Weekly Rapture pop culture podcast. If you enjoy the episode, please let us know on Twitter or Facebook, give us a 5* rating on itunes, or share with anyone you think may enjoy it!


Our intro and outro music is ‘Winter’s Howl’ by Ed Curry.

Enjoy!

Fancy supporting the site? You can pick up all of the 5th edition D&D books from Wizards of the Coast using our Amazon links below, and we’ll get a cut with no extra cost to you!

Dungeon Master’s Guide

Player’s Handbook

Monster Manual

Volo’s Guide to Monsters

Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide

Starter Set

Tales from the Yawning Portal

The Lost Lighthouse: The Weekly Rapture 109 – Set Ben Affleck Free

Welcome back to The Weekly Rapture, our fortnightly pop culture news and reviews podcast!

Download this episode (right click and save)

This week we chat about the new Avengers Infinity War trailer, the success of Black Panther, and the lack of success of Justice League.

Screentime 1 – Jessica Jones Season 2

In part 1 of Screentime this week, Adam reviews Jessica Jones Season 2, the new Marvel Netflix series, with Rose. Pretty major spoilers from 39:45 to 51:40, so skip then if you haven’t seen it yet!

Screentime 2 – Annihilation

In part 2, Ian and Adam review Alex Garland’s Annihilation, the adaptation of the Jeff VanderMeer book with an extremely weird distribution. Not much in the way of spoilers, but if you are worried we speak about the film from 52:30 to 65:30.

Now Playing – Reading/Watching/Playing

Adam A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers/Jessica Jones Season 2/Batman: A Telltale Series on PS4
Ian SPQR: A History of Ancient Rome by Mary Beard/Nothing apparently/Player Unknown Battlegrounds on iOS

Check out any of those through those Amazon links and we get a kick back! Or you can go through here.

You can as always get in touch through Facebook or on Twitter @lost_lighthouse, email us at thelostlighthouse@live.co.uk or sound off in the ‘leave a reply’ box at the bottom of the podcast page on the website.Fancy supporting our site? Head on over to our Paypal donation page! It’s completely optional, set your own price! Even £1 helps us with hosting costs and we’d really appreciate it! Cheers!