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October 31st, 2013 by Julz Hendricks Comments

One does not read comics, without knowing the greatness that J.M. DeMatteis brings to the table.

I had first encountered his work not from a comic, but from a show. I was watching an episode of the 2011 ThunderCats TV show. The episode was (Song of the Petalars.) It has remained one of the best things I have ever seen. I thought the writing was so captivating, so heartfelt, and honest. That is something you’ll be lucky to see at least once in your life. He made a character, Emeric, who was small, but had a mighty heart. The writing in this episode was so real, and true.  I couldn’t believe how I related to Emeric. I wish someone made a plush, because every kid should own one. A hero’s heart may or may not have fear, and you can never tell by how courageous he is. Every writer should think like that. It captures the minds and hearts of kids and adults alike. It’s one of my favorite things in all of storytelling.

In November of last year, DeMatteis gave us the lovely tale of Augusta Wind. This magical fantasy is not only fun to read, but the art takes us on a journey. Vassilis Gogtzilas did the art, and is like nothing you have ever seen. While drawing on similarities from Alice in Wonderland, Augusta is her own wonderful heroine. While it may not look like an all ages comic, I assure you it is. After all, the best comics cater to the young at heart!

J.M DeMatteis is also writing my favorite comic, Phantom Stranger. In a world where Batman and Superman are tokens of our superhero “faith”, Phantom Stranger has resurrected a strong fan base. I have yet to find a comic that makes me have so many emotions. Phantom Stranger has travelled to Hell and then Heaven; all to fight for the people he has made a part of his life. When the Phantom Stranger does find his family in Heaven, he is faced with an impossible choice. Bring only one person back. How could anyone choose? He has defied all orders and odds. He is alone, yet there is something about him; it’s something so human, so loyal. I have to admit, these issues have brought me to tears. Identified as Judas Iscariot, he must travel the world to redeem himself for his part in the Trinity of Sin. This is proven to be quite challenging for the Stranger, as the Sin Eater is destroying his very life. As much as I love Phantom Stranger, my heart can’t take much more. He has quickly, and without warning become one of my favorite characters. I attribute this to the writing. I can like a lot of characters, but if their stories are not compelling, it’s so much easier to put it at the bottom of my stack.

When I think back on discovering DeMatteis, in the beginning, I think of the Justice League. What better way to read his work than a Justice League comic? I immediately bought the first four issues on Comixology, and devoured them. I was like a little kid again, reading comics that I should have been years ago, but I didn’t even knew these existed! I mean, I knew Justice League comics existed, but not like this. I also bought Going Sane because the premise was right up my alley. It’s one of those psychological comics where the Joker can’t be the Joker without a Batman. I like stories that make me laugh or cry, and that is what draws me to DeMatteis. I love that a lot of the comics I read that he is a part of. For example, he worked on Amazing Spider-man #700, and The Adventures of Superman #4 (The Bottle City of Metropolis). DeMatteis also doing Larfleeze; I really like his take on the character, and the humor is off the charts. He’s also taking over the writing on Justice League Dark. I am excited about this because JL Dark has been consistent, and it will only get better. We are getting Justice League 3000 as well soon. It is a very good time for comics, indeed!

If you can think of a comic title, J.M. DeMatteis has most likely worked on it. That is a win/win situation for us fans. I get so excited when I see new and older titles with his name on them and even more excited when Phantom Stranger takes me away to another place. He also has his own blog, (Creation Point) and responds to every single person that replies to him. I can honestly say that he is one of the nicest people in the business. With all the work he has done, and is doing, he has to be a superhero in disguise.

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At the age of 23 this girl did something she wished would have happened a long time ago, she read her first comic. She now spends every waking moment making up for the missed time. She loves all things Doctor Who, and enjoys debates about who is the better Doctor (Matt Smith). You would have a hard time finding a bigger Powerpuff girls fan, and she isn't afraid to admit it. She spends most of her free time reading comics to her two kids or talking about how awesome Superman is with her husband. She is a huge Art Baltazar and Franco fan, and advocates the buying of all their stuff! She is one of the co-hosts to Panel 2 Panel and loves every second. Follow her on Twitter where she encourages the reading of Wolverine and Hawkeye @JulzHendricks

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