Stone Star | Review

Stone Star, a comiXology Originals, follows the adventures of Dail aboard the nomadic space station Stone Star. The station is similar to a traveling circus but instead of bearded ladies and cotton candy, you get gladiators and death marches.

Dail begins his tale as a scavenger and thief but soon runs into a retired gladiator who sees that Dail has a special skill. Not much is revealed at first, but it appears he can control machines and become an energy being.

Eventually, he meets Kikanni, an on-the-run royal who’s family is displaced because of a coup. Dail witnesses the murder of Kikanni’s family at the hands of Stone Star workers. He and she then have to escape and hide.

img_2674The plot was a typical story about an average person with a great destiny and strange powers. The characters seemed pretty bland. The displaced princess, the good guy thief, the stoic and wise mentor, etc. Even by the end of the book, the characters didn’t seem to grow much–but it is the first book. The first book is meant to introduce the characters, setting, and plot. 

Stone Star does have a somewhat interesting plot. Someone murdered Dail’s father. His murder happened shortly after he refused to rig the fights. I think we can see where this is going.

So, if the characters are typical and the mystery is pretty standard, why did I like the story? It was one of those hard to put down books. I finished it in about an hour. 

Part of the reason was the art. It was pretty impressive; though sometimes it did look rushed, there were some moments that made my mouth drop.

I think the other part that made the comic so appealing was Dail’s powers. At first I wanted to know what they were. Then I was like, “Oh, he can just control machines. Big deal.” But then he merged with a fighting robot, and later he was able to semi-merge with Kikanni and learn her backstory. So, even though right now it seems like all he can do is control technology, they hint at something greater.

I also think pacing had something to do with my enjoyment. There weren’t many slow points and when you did slow down, you felt like you needed the rest. You felt like you were on the run with Dail and Kikanni; you felt as much in danger as they did.

Finally, I think it was the world. The setting of a traveling space station that works as an entertainment center is kind of unique. Also, it was neat seeing all the different alien beings. I liked the variety and creativity in each one. Each showed the personality well. I also liked how Dail looked human but not so much you’d think he was human. You know he’s an alien. The design choice allowed me to empathize with him but at the same time not wonder “How’d a human get here?”

While on the surface, Stone Star seems typical, the pacing, unique characters, and the deigns of the setting and world pull you in and make the read worthwhile. While I would like to see more adventures with Dail, Stone Star isn’t at the top of my To-Read list. I’m going to pre-order the book, but I’m also not marking down the days till its release on June 1. 4.1/5

A couple images from Season 1.

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading!


Today’s Amazon Affiliate links: 

I get a percentage from any qualifying purchase; doesn’t have to be the ones listed below. Thank you for helping to support my blog so I can continue to tell stories, write reviews, and more.

Buy Season 1 Now
A young thief named Dail discovers a dark secret in the depths of Stone Star and has to decide where his destiny lies. 
Pre-order Stone Star Season 2 Now
A young warrior named Dail has been drawn into the ring and is trying to prove himself in the Grand Arena, but there are forces on the station determined to see him destroyed as revenge for his father’s fighting legacy.

Recommended #12

Some more recommendations you might enjoy. The following are my opinion and do not reflect any organization or person.

DC Comics

Young Justice #2

The Adventures of the Super Sons #6

Action Comics #1007

Justice League Annual (2019) #1

Heroes In Crisis #5

Justice League #16

Justice League #17

These are available wherever DC Comics books are sold, such as Barnes & Noble or Amazon. If you’re looking for reviews of these and many others comic stories, you can check out the Caped-Joel YouTube channel.

Reign of the Supermen | Review

DC Comic’s movie Reign of the Supermen picks up where The Death of Superman movie left off–namely with Superman dead. But, the four new Supermen (Cyborg Superman, Visor Superman/Eradicator, Superboy, and Steel) have already arrived. The story deals with deciding who is Superman. Along the way, they must deal with a dangerous threat.

First off the animation was pretty good. It followed the recent animation style the other DC animated movies have been using. I like how it is a mix of realistic and comic book (or animation) styles; the characters seem cartoon-like but also have a slight human/real quality to them. 

The characteristics of the four Supermen followed their comic book versions well. Superboy is the slightly annoying teenager and Steel is a serious/mature inventor. Cyborg Superman still has that ability to pass himself off as Superman while at the same time making you feel uneasy. Eradicator had that machine logic coldness to him. 

At first, I was a bit disappointed that the movie didn’t follow the comic series closer; but in the end, I was glad it was a new story. I was glad to see that they didn’t destroy Coast City like in the comics–for a bit I thought it might have a happier ending, but then they flipped things at the last second (like after the final battle was over–you think everything is fine, but it’s not). 

I enjoyed the Easter Eggs of them showing the comics’ cover art as the news article photos. During a montage showing the four Supermen as they saved the day, various news articles were shown and the pictures with the article were copies of the Reign of the Superman cover art.

It was kind of a let down to see that Cyborg Superman wasn’t as much of a “big bad” as he was in comic. For most of the movie, he is just a pawn to the real threat. He does finally rebel and become the threat, but he just didn’t have that same uneasy, scary nature he did in the comics. In the movie, he was more of a crazy person than this hate filled man that seemed incredibly powerful. In the comic, people were scared of Cyborg Superman. In the movie, he was just a pawn.

img_2674I liked how Lois had more of a part to play in the movie version. She, as you would expect, was right in the middle of everything. You could say she was the main character and the four Supermen were just supporting characters. 

I also liked how the movie staff managed to develop the four Supermen’s characters in such a small time. I felt like I knew Superboy and Steel by the time the movie was over. I didn’t know everything about them, but enough to like them. I would have liked it if they were given more screen time though. I really hope there are some Steel and Superboy movies coming, even just one for each or something–maybe a new take on the Bloodlines series.

The ending left me unsatisfied though. I’m going to spoil a part of it here, so skip this if you want.

After the battle, all the people change back into humans. I’m thinking, “Whoo, they’re all right!” but they remained motionless and one person, the girlfriend of one of the affected people, stays crying. It then changes to six months later and everyone is happy. There is no mention of hundreds of people dying or a memorial being set up or stories of people getting out of the hospital; it’s just Lois and Clark eating and the audience finding out that Lois and Wonder Woman are going to have a Girl’s Night Out. It then shows everyone being excited that Superman is alive. It just made me feel like, “WHAT?!” It was like, “Oh, yeah, uh, hundreds of people died but that’s okay, everything is awesome now.” It just kind of left a bad taste in my mouth and left me feeling like things were unresolved. The movie had been great up till then. Now I’m just kind of left feeling “uh…what?”

I did enjoy the end credit scene. It was hilarious. Green Lantern’s “Who left the front door open” line just made it even better.

Overall, the movie was really good. I felt like the plot kept to the comics but added to it. The animation and music was enjoyable. The acting and characters were believable. I’d been waiting for DC to do this movie pretty much since the series came and it didn’t disappoint. Other than the fact that I wish Superboy and Steel would have gotten more airtime, and I would have liked Cyborg Superman to have been more of a threat, I was glad I bought the movie. My main problem was the ending and how they just kind of swept the pervious scene under the rug. It made it feel unresolved. 

I have to give the movie an 8/10 maybe 8.5 if I’m being generous. I really liked the movie. I had a great time; I’ll probably watch it again (and again most likely), but there just was some strong issues that stopped it from being a 9.5. It would have gotten a higher score if they would have resolved the final scene in some way.

Joe Rover eBooks are available at Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, and many other online retailers.