Saturday, 12 October 2019

A Man of Blind Faith Finally Opens his Eyes in Blood Cries Out...



'BLOOD CRIES OUT' will be unleashed at the Thought Bubble Comic Festival 2019


Pre-order and receive a free 22 page comic


The Reverend is a weapon forged by fate and the cruelties of men, his life an endless crusade waged in shadow and blood. He is a one-man holy war, but he is not the first product of the machinery that created him.
When the twisted Broken Heart cult seeks to conjure and enslave a force they are ill-equipped to control, The Reverend must face a custom-built killer who knows him as only a brother can. The Reverend has finally met his equal in battle, and faith alone may no longer sustain him.
"To me, the Reverend represents the purest form of personal commitment – an implacable crusader with every outward trace of humanity literally burned away. No act is too monstrous or sacrifice too great in pursuit of his understanding of justice" - Cy Dethan
Script: Cy Dethan
Art: Conor Boyle
Letters: Nic WIlkinson
Pages: 88
RRP: £14.99
BLOOD CRIES OUT will be launching at the Thought Bubble Comic Festival (9th -10th Oct), which is being held in the Harrogate Convention Centre. 


The retail price for Blood Cries Out is £14.99 but if you pre-order the comic for collection at the Thought Bubble Comic Festival you can pick it up for the special price of £10.
For those who can’t make it to the festival there are a limited number copies (20) set aside which can be pre-ordered for postal delivery for the special price of £10 (£2.50 P &P) .

Pre-order BLOOD CRIES OUT for pick up at  the Thought Bubble Comic Festival for £10.00

Available on launch day 9th November
Pre-order Now

Pre-order Blood Cries Out for £10.00 for UK Delivery (P&P £2.50)

Delivered on launch day 9th November
Pre-order Now

Pre-order your digital copy of Blood Cries Out for £5

Delivered on launch day 9th November
Pre-order Now
For international orders, email and let us know where in the world you are so we can work out the P&P.

Also available to pre-order is THE DIVINE REVELATION OF THE BROKEN HEART.  This special digital edition collects the comics  The Immaculate Abortion of Dina Leigh,Wrath of God and Blood Cries Out as one volume. This special edition will also include production sketches, character bios, scripts and more.

Pre-order your digital copy of

Delivered on launch day 9th November
Pre-order Now


Also, as a thank you to all you lovely pre-ordering readers, all pre-orders will come with  a digital copy of Wrath of God on launch day (9th November).  Let us know if you have already read Wrath of God and we can arrange for another Unseen Shadows digital comic to be delivered.

The Unseen Shadows Transmedia Universe  is dedicated to expanding the world and characters created in the bestselling novel Fallen Heroes through transmedia storytelling. 
“These are not just nice little side stories with no impact on the events surrounding them,” Barry Nugent, the founder of Unseen Shadows explains. “The spin-off titles expand and enhance the characters lives and relationships within the novels. It was important to me that these titles can be read, watched and listened to independently of each other and the novels but you will get more insights into the characters by experiencing everything the Unseen Shadows Universe has to offer.”
…rip-roaring, testosterone-fuelled pulp fiction with soldiers and mysteries and all-round weird stuff  – Jonathan Ross
High flying adventure, monsters, espionage, Indiana Jones calibre action and a whole lot of fun… -Aintitcool
“...draws on many popular culture references & influences, and is easily compared to ‘Sin City’, ‘The Da Vinci Code’, ‘Heroes’ or ‘Buffy’ – there really is something for everyone and I would thoroughly recommend it to anyone that enjoys reading or watching Sci-Fi/Fantasy.” –Waterstones

Copyright © 2019 Unseen Shadows, All rights reserved.

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Bomb Scares 2 Kickstarter is Live!

Just 55 hours after launch, Time Bomb Comics' newest anthology book was already funded and chasing its first stretch goal. At time of writing, the book's £45 shy of the first bonus and still moving fast.

If you know me at all, you already know I'm a world-class sucker for anthologies. This one's a bit special for me, as it was a chance to work with the amazing Row Bird. Row's an incredible artist with a sharp, crisp style and a real eye for detail. Anthology stories need to pack a lot of information into every panel. With every detail competing to justify the page space allocated to it, every decision has to be carefully judged. Row's got that balance nailed, as you'll see in our story, Murderbox.

It's a simple system, and it's worked flawlessly for years. You put a name in, you draw a name out. Whoever's name you pull must die within seven days. When the name you enter into the system is drawn by another client, that person is killed with no connection back to you. It's personal revenge weaponised on an industrial scale, and it always works - until a desperate woman inexplicably draws her own name from the Murderbox, and then discovers that everyone else has drawn it too.

We've got Dave Evans on letters and the campaign runs through the end of the month. Do The Money Thing Here!

Wednesday, 1 August 2018

Disneyland Paris: Summer of Superheroes 2018 in Pictures (Plus Occasional Videos)

Yeah, this was fun. From the time Spider-Man and Black Widow teamed up to pummel French Loki to the guy who LITERALLY GOT SET ON FIRE AND WALKED IT OFF, Disney still knows how to put on a good show.

Enjoy this parade of random needle-drops through our 4-day adventure.

Friday, 22 June 2018

Nic's Sticky Notes (feat Mike Orvis): A Wild Writhe

Nic here!

Yesterday we arrived back from Disneyland to find the magic had followed us home. Not only had some elves left an amazing wizard hoodie for me under the bushes, but a great and rousing battle anthem had been composed by the Mighty Mike Orvis in honour of my latest circuit around the Sun.

So, let's wind back a bit.

Those of you who read my Facebook posts may remember that a while ago I enquired as to who else amongst my friends fills the bath with too many bubbles then writhes about pretending to be the World Serpent Jörmungandr in the foamy seas of Ragnarok.

Not many, as it turned out - but Rainbow Wrangler Yel Zamor gets into the skin of an ice dragon of the glacial northern seas and writer Richmond Clements likes to emerge from the shower in the style of the Terminator.

Suddenly, into my head pops Iggy Pop's Passenger but as "I'm a Jörmungandr and I writhe and I writhe..."

Encouraged by the positive reaction to my nonsense I then substituted the rest of the lyrics in while on the bus to work the next morning.

And now, magnificently, Mike has recorded it.

Jörmungandr: Words by Nic Wilkinson and music by Mike Orvis (with thanks to Iggy Pop)

Here are the lyrics if you want to wave your tail in the air like you just don't care and roar along.

I'm Jörmungandr
And I writhe and I writhe
I writhe round Midgard on all sides
I see the wolf come out of the sky
His fangs are bright in a hollow sky
You know it looks so good tonight

I'm a Midgardsormr
Not as light as a cat
I give Thor's ox head bait a good bite
I see Hymir pale with fright
I hear the Gyallarhorn's hollow cry
Over the bifrost's rip in the sky
And everything looks good tonight
Roarin', ra, ra, ra, ra, rararara
ra, ra, ra, ra, rararara
ra, ra, ra, ra, rararara

Get into the war
We'll be the Jörmungandr
We'll writhe round Yggdrasil tonight
Lick the torn gods' ripped insides
We'll see the light fade from their eyes
We'll see the fires that burn so bright
The fight was made for us tonight

Oh the Jörmungandr
How how he writhes
Oh the Jörmungandr
He writhes and he writhes
He looks through the shadow
What does he see?
He sees Fenrir devour the sky
He sees the brightest fall into night
He sees the Aesirs' ripped insides
He sees his dripping teeth like knives
And everything was razed for you and me
All of it was razed for you and me
'Cause it just belongs to you and me
So let's take a writhe and see what's mine
Roarin', ra, ra, ra, ra, rararara
ra, ra, ra, ra, rararara
ra, ra, ra, ra, rararara

Oh, the Jörmungandr
He writhes and he writhes
He sees the gods' twilight
He looks through his gleaming eye
He sees his poison slowly drip
He sees Thor take nine steps and die
He sees Asgard empty at night
He sees the gods cast out tonight
And all of it is yours and mine
And all of it is yours and mine
Oh, let's writhe and writhe and writhe and writhe
Roarin', ra, ra, ra, ra, rararara
ra, ra, ra, ra, rararara
ra, ra, ra, ra, rararara
Roarin', ra, ra, ra, ra, rararara
ra, ra, ra, ra, rararara
ra, ra, ra, ra, rararara

Laters, babysnakes!

Follow Mike Orvis on Twitter at @The_Dark_Mike

Sent from my Samsung Galaxy smartphone.

Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Approaching Infinity Part Nineteen: Avengers: Infinity War (2018)

After 10 years of build-up, Infinity War is upon us...


An obligatory caution up-front. This post contains discussion of Avengers: Infinity War - a movie I was shocked to discover is composed ALMOST ENTIRELY OF SPOILERS FOR AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR!

The Villain
Well, Doom and Galactus are still over in Fox-land, so who's next on the Marvel Big Hitters list? Honestly, if you'd asked the random MCU appreciator in the street to name the top villains in the comics, you'd probably have to work your way through a bunch before you found someone who even knew who Thanos was. Then again, back in 2008 hardly any non-comics people (we call you Mundanes) could have picked Iron Man out of a line-up, so those considerations seem pretty trivial now. Anyway, Thanos is what we've got - and they did a Hell of a job with him. There's no Evil Shadow shit to wade through here, since no one even operates on Thanos' plane. There's just nothing to compare him with. Each of his henchcreatures alone could have served as the primary bad guy of any other MCU story in terms of raw threat level.

So, yeah - Thanos is solid. His overall plan, though... well, let's just say I have a couple of queries:

1) The global human population alone has literally doubled from 3.8 billion to 7.6 billion in the time I've walked the Earth. If your grand scheme is to wipe out half of all life, wouldn't you have to do it all again every few decades or so?

2) I guess we're talking about sentient life, here. Are we also wiping out half of all dogs? Insects? Bacteria? I mean, how far does this go? Aren't they consuming the universe's resources, too? I didn't see any trees or grass blades ashing at the end of the film, so I guess plant life is okay - but edge-cases like Groot arguably got royally shafted on that score.

3) You've got a Reality Stone and a Time Stone, giving you ultimate power over essentially everything. Doesn't deciding that there's no more efficient way of restoring balance than to wipe out 50% of all life seem like an almost comical failing in imagination?

4) Is there actually any evidence that the universe's resources are in any kind of short supply? Even if there were, and even without the limitless powers of the Infinity Gauntlet, was there really no prospect of a political or economic solution?

5) Wouldn't severing Thanos' arm in a Sling Ring portal and locking the rest of him in the Mirror Dimension have cut the Infinity War short about an hour earlier? Come to that, couldn't Strange have just decapitated the Mad Titan the moment he showed up?

The Story sort of incidental, by this point. Thanos is here, he's collecting Infinity Stones and he's going to wipe out half of all life. There's basically nothing we can do to stop him. The end of Thor: Ragnarok gets basically Alien 3'd, Thor gets a new eye and weapon (despite recently realising that he needed neither) and Pepper Potts is back to being the twittering fun-vacuum she was in the first Iron Man. Never mind; I'm sure it'll all work out in the... oh.

The Universe
This is another MCU episode that takes a lot more than it gives. The Asgardians species is basically gone. Loki is finally dead, along with Heimdall and God knows who else. Every Avenger who joined after the first big team-up is supposedly out of the picture. How we're supposed to feel about that is questionable, given the number of the dead heroes with upcoming solo outings announced. Still, though, we're not punched in the feels by Spider-Man's death because we think it's permanent. We're punched because it's a beautifully crafted scene with a ton of emotional weight behind the blow.

To be fair, I'd add that Marvel still has a tough time earning some of the shots it takes. We're constantly asked to care about relationships that have never been convincingly established, from Black Widow/Bruce Banner to Scarlet Witch/Vision. A lot of that stuff feels rushed to me.

A couple more questions, while we're picking at threads here:

6) I know; I've griped about this before - but I REALLY don't get how languages work in the MCU. For reasons that go eternally unexplained, every species and every creature in the universe speaks English except for Groot. Groot's language is taught on Asgard, and several other characters are able to understand it, but no one can actually speak it except Groot himself. Starlord has a translator implant (which he clearly doesn't need since everyone else uses English well enough for no one on Earth to need one when dealing with aliens) - but Groot's tongue is uniquely immune to it. It just bothers me, okay? I'm allowed to be bothered by things. It doesn't make me a bad person.

7) Where does the new Iron Man armour's mass come from? We've let Hulk's size changes slide for ages, and we've accepted that older Iron Man suits can be slung around in a briefcase. This new nano-gear, though, either stores 800lbs of metal atoms in a fist-sized medallion or basically conjures them out of thin air.

8) Where the fuck are Korg and Valkyrie?!

Anyway, moving on.

The Stinger
Always good to see Nick Fury back in the game, albeit briefly. You kinda have to recognise Captain Marvel's symbol to feel the impact of this scene, though. Judging from the reaction in the cinema, pretty much no one got it and most left the theatre on a bemused shrug instead of a white-knuckle fist-pump.

The Take-Away
Infinity War is a really solid film by most standards. It's easily in the top tier of MCU efforts for me and, for whatever this means in the real world, makes a decent case for itself as Best Superhero Film Ever. A lot is going to depend on the follow-through, though. Almost by definition, the next Avengers flick is going to have to spend much of its runtime unpicking Infinity War to mitigate the damage it did. That's a tough trick to pull off, and I'm excited to see how they tackle it.

Previously: Black Panther

Friday, 27 April 2018

Approaching Infinity Part Eighteen: Black Panther (2018)

So... I guess I really don't understand vibranium at all.

I mean, it's incredibly strong and supposedly absorbs all vibrations - except when it clearly doesn't do that. It also makes cities fly somehow, heals bullet wounds, blows up cars and can't be synthesised by a man who - and I can't stress this enough - RECENTLY INVENTED WHOLE A NEW ELEMENT!

By the way, this is a really, really good film.

The Villain
Ouch - we're right back into slaughtering the villains territory with Black Panther. In this case it's a major shame, as Killmonger is one of the most persuasively realised antagonists of the whole MCU. It's like - he's not even wrong, really. He's just a bit murdery about the whole business. His grand scheme meanders a bit between giving oppressed people the tools to overthrow the systems holding them down and all-out world domination. Still, he's ex-CIA so he's probably used to a bit of "mission creep". There's really no getting away from the Evil Shadow angle in this flick, of course. Still, when it's done this well there's not much to complain about.

We also get a lot more Klaue, which is a positive delight. But yeah - we were wise not to get too attached there. The sonic arm cannon is fun but, given that this is it for the character, it's a weak echo of the supervillain they could have shot for.

The Story
We get a lot of information dumped on us at the outset of Black Panther, but it all pays off. Killmonger and Klaue have what amounts to a mini-movie of their own together, while T'Challa swings wildly between full-on Bond adventure and more-civil-war-than-Civil-War political epic. It's a concentrated blast of a story, building up and battering down relationships in quick succession. No one's 100% in the right and no one's 100% vindicated. Everyone significant grows and learns, and where we end up is somewhere very different from where we started.

The Universe
Okay, there's a lot to wade through here, as we're basically adding a whole new history, culture and mythology to the MCU in this film. Anyway, Wakanda itself is a significant contribution to the evolving universe - so much so that it's almost impossible for future films not to continue to address it overtly. There's definitely a pre-Black-Panther MCU and a post-Black-Panther MCU.

Shuri's a particularly intriguing addition to the roster. At first glance, she's almost too smart for the room. That is, she's already doing stuff that the top established MCU minds couldn't even dream of. The thing is, though, we're going to need that pretty soon. Even after the Thanos kerfuffle settles down, we're probably looking at a cast rotation that could easily see some of those top-level genius characters getting shuffled out. The universe is still going to need super-genius science heroes and inventors after RDJ sods off.

I still have a problem with vibranium, though. Those all-purpose kimoyo beads just bug the Hell out of me. Some of the weapons tech seemed oddly archaic to me at first, with all the energy spears and laser shields flying about - until I reflected on how many sci-fi broadswords and crossbows I'd cheerfully accepted in the past.

I still think topless fist-fights are an inherently shaky means of establishing supreme executive authority in a modern political system, though.

The Stinger
Wakanda decloaks and Bucky's the White Wolf. All cool stuff, but nothing that plays significantly into Infinity War - which is weird given that this was the last stop before we get there. 

The Take-Away
I have a couple of practicality questions about Killmonger's overall scheme. Several characters seem to be under the impression that Wakanda stands a strong chance of overthrowing the governments of the world here. It seems to me that the last time a technologically superior army attacked even one major city of even one MCU country, they got wiped out by half a dozen Avengers in about 15 minutes of screen time. Not to mention, those guys were led by a LITERAL GOD, with the backing of the near-limitlessly powerful Thanos.

Still, you've got to applaud ambition.

Previously: Thor: Ragnarok
Next: Avengers: Infinity War

Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Approaching Infinity Part Seventeen: Thor: Ragnarok (2017)

Right - first off, Thor: Ragnarok absolutely wasn't what I expected, or even wanted, a Thor film to be. It throws out over half of the established characterisation of the central character, tosses out significant MCU supporting cast members without a thought and replaces them with people we have no reason or opportunity to care about.

But damn - it's hard to hold any of that against a film that made me so incredibly happy for over 2 hours.

The Villain
So I guess we're talking about Hela here, for the most part - and, honestly, there really isn't that much to say. It's a wonderful performance and a terrific look. Once you get past that, though, she's a motiveless monster with no plan and nothing to fight for. She just wants to rule Asgard - even if that means killing literally every living thing that exists there. Then... what, exactly? Use her zombie army to conquer other worlds, I guess? Pretty sure there are enough Celestial-level threats out there to put a stop to that.

Beyond Hela, we've got Surtur (an off-the-rack CGI fire demon destined to destroy Asgard) and The Grandmaster (an inexplicable cosmic narcissist and planetary-scale game show host). Jeff Goldblum basically watched Benicio Del Toro's performance as The Collector and thought, "too subtle?".

Both are fine, as far as they go, although you get the feeling that no-one ever really explained to Goldblum where he was and what was going on. I'm not even convinced he knew there was a camera on him.

The Story
Doesn't matter. The whole film is just a Korg delivery vehicle. Every second of screen time they waste on any other character is irrelevant.

More seriously, though, there's a lot going on in this film. Thor and Loki struggle toward some kind of mutual understanding, while Hulk and Banner do the opposite. Hela is an impossibly powerful threat, a time bomb ticking loudly in the background for most of the film. There's not much back and forth between Thor and Hela, as he's kept busy by The Grandmaster most of the time. In fact, it's Heimdall who does most of the heavy lifting on Asgard in opposing her. The various story threads unravel largely separately, only weaving together at the end. It's a pretty unconventional structure for an MCU film, but it all still works.

The Universe
Honestly, Thor: Ragnarok takes more away from the MCU than it gives. Sure, we get Valkyrie and a few gladiator characters, but we lose Volstagg, Fandral, Hogun, Odin, the entire realm of Asgard and Jane Foster. There's no word on Sif, and new additions like Skurge, Surtur and Hela are either killed or written out. The entire surviving population of Asgard apparently fits into a single spaceship, which winds up on Earth. Given that even an Asgardian plumber is probably at least as powerful as Spider-Man, we just ramped up the superhuman population by a hefty margin. It remains to be seen if anything's going to be made of that, though. Honestly, it wouldn't surprise me if the Asgardians were quietly sidelined while the upcoming Thanos unpleasantness shakes itself out.

The Stinger
It's cool - Avengers Assemble was ages ago. No-one's going to remember all those people Loki killed. Oh, hey - giant deathship!

While we're at it, The Goldblumster survived and still hasn't worked out he's in a movie.

The Take-Away
This is the first MCU film that had me laughing out loud in the cinema. Any gripes or criticisms I might have are entirely secondary to that fact. Weirdly, you'd have to count this as the highest bodycount of the series to date. 600 on the nose, according to the people who track these things. Although nothing much was made of it, we also saw a severe and unceremonious scything off of figures from previous films. Only Hogun made a half-decent account of himself. Everyone else went down like a crude simile clumsily inserted at the end of a blog post for minor shock value.


Previously: Spider-Man: Homecoming
Next: Black Panther
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