Good komiks from Komikon
by rick olivares
The November Komikon, the two-day year-end convention, held at the Bayanihan Center in Pasig City has come and gone bringing a close to the 12th year of a gathering of the local comic industry’s best, brightest, and promising.
Aside from all the cool back issues from American publishers that I picked up, here are some of the stuff that I liked from this pop culture gathering:
Zuma The Origin (Wellsprings Publishing)
This is a huge throwback. Created by writer Jim Fernandez and artist Ben Maniclang, Zuma first ran in the old Aliwan Komiks back in the 1970s. The son of the Mayan serpent god Kukulkan, Zuma was a conqueror; a villain. I recall this character receiving the screen treatment with Max Laurel and Snooky Serna in starring roles.
Fernandez has brought back the character this time with another of those classic Filipino artists, Hal Santiago in a 68-page graphic novel. This re-tells Zuma’s story for a modern audience and how the villain resurfaced in this century.
Crunch Time Komiks Vol. 2 (Yellow Couch Comics)
I picked up the first volume because I liked the nifty clean yet dynamic art that is inspired by Japanese manga and anime yet in a Filipino setting. This anthology series continues the science-fiction and fantasy stories from the first volume.
Tanod #2 (Mahiligsa Komiks)
The continuing adventures of the barangay tanod known as Donato who seeks to keep his neighborhood safe from the supernatural. Artist Jerico Marte, whose style I previously wrote that is reminiscent of American illustrator Bart Sears, gets all crazy and messy. The result is mayhem that leaves you with a cliffhanger.
After Lambana (Visprint)
Writer-artist Mervin Malonzo, in my opinion, is one of the best talents to come up in recent years. His horror series, Tabi Po, is bloody frightening and a riveting read. His re-telling of Jose Rizal’s Noli Mi Tangere, in Ang Subersibo showed he is an artist with deep roots to the past. Then he joined forces with superstars Manix Abrera and Harvey Tolibao for the Beyond anthology where Mervin’s story, Terrorium tells of the post-apocalypse where the world is devastated not by nuclear holocaust but by carnivorous plants.
Now, with writer Eliza Victoria, they come up with the graphic novel, After Lambana, a Gaimanesque story about the fabled land of Lambana where there Magic Prohibition Act has been passed as law. Main character Conrad’s life can only be saved by magic. However, doing so means breaking the law.
As always, Malonzo’s work is a food for the soul of a pop culture addict.
Kikomachine Komix Blg. 12
“Mandirigma ng Tadhana” more from one of the geniuses of the medium.
Tales of the Deadman #1 (Cranky Zombie Productions)
I picked this up as a fan of Gloomcookie and Oddly Normal that really reminds me of this title by Louisa Quiros. The first issue introduces us to the swamps of New Lothayn and the world where Karl, the last living necromancer, lives. Light hearted but fun reading. Again, if you enjoy Gloomcookie and Oddly Normal, you’ll like this.