Mini Reviews: Graphic Novels – Sex Criminals Vol. 4, Starfighter Ch. 4, Starfighter Ch. 5

 
 

In Sex Criminals Vol. 4, John and Suzie attempt to take down another person with time-stopping orgasm powers. In Starfighter Ch. 4, relationships start shifting as the big mission grows closer and Cain and Abel grow closer to each other. In Starfighter Ch. 5, the big mission is upon everyone, and Abel finds out some truths that could ruin everything for him. Enjoy my mini reviews for these three graphic novels!


Sex Criminals Vol. 4 by Matt Fraction, Chip Zdarsky

Title: Sex Criminals Vol. 4
Publisher: Image Comics
Series: Sex Criminals
Pages: 127
Rating: 3 stars
 
Review:

Honestly, I think this series just isn't for me anymore. I love that the relationships are so realistic, that they've never been too easy or perfect, that the characters actually work at them. That's one of my favorite things. I also love all the humor that's hidden in the background---seriously, read every sign and bit of text because it's all great. But this series has become heavy and has lost almost all the humor and fun that it once had for me. There's nothing wrong with heavier stories, I just miss how the series used to be and was hoping for more of that as it continued. Other readers may continue to love this though!

*Rating: 3 Stars // Read Date: 2018 // Source: eBook*

 
 

Starfighter Ch. 4 by Hamlet Machine

Book Cover - Starfighter Ch. 4 by Hamlet Machine
Title: Starfighter Ch. 4
Author: Hamlet Machine
Series: Starfighter
Pages: 90
Rating: 4 stars
 
Review:

You can find my series review in my review of Ch. 1! Below are my thoughts for this chapter specifically.

First Read Thoughts (Ch. 4):

Ok, wow, this chapter was a VAST improvement over the others. I mean, this one finally made the whole thing start to feel like a real, legit story---not a ton actually happened plot-wise, but there were some twists, there was backstory shown, there was character and relationship development (including for side characters), there was emotion, there was humor...

*SPOILER* I could definitely feel the emotion/connection between Cain and Abel more this time. And even though we never got to be inside Cain's head, his developing feelings toward Abel, his confusion about the feelings he doesn't want or know how to handle, and his growing unease about the Commander's plan were all shown perfectly. And I just about died laughing at the vodka and cigarette picnic, haha. It was hilarious, but it was also sweet and showed us more of Cain's personality and emotions. Honestly, now that I know more about what's going on, I'm starting to think maybe Cain isn't so bad since a lot of what he's done has basically been an act, it seems. Even in the little flashback thing that showed his first two navigators, he actually looked kind of worried/upset about the injured one. If only the abusive beginning to the relationship between Cain and Abel would be addressed, I think I could get behind it. *END SPOILER*

But man, why wasn't there more about Encke and Keeler?! Because they were freaking adorable. Within just the few pages they had, I was already sympathizing with each of them, feeling the emotion between them, and swooning over their relationship. The scene when Praxis told Ethos he wanted to help him, not Abel, was cute too. And that part about the backstory between Cain and Deimos had me cracking up. I would probably feel bad for Deimos though if he wasn't so shady.

Oh, and the artwork was beautiful and detailed.

Anyway, I don't know how this review that was supposed to just be my quick thoughts got so long, so I'll wrap it up by saying I hate that I'll have to wait for more (this is the last complete chapter at the moment) because I am totally invested now!

*Rating: 4 Stars // 1st Read Date: 2017 // Source: Free Webcomic*

Second Read Thoughts (Ch. 4):

Chapter 4 definitely had me hooked!

*SPOILER* It made me both happy and sad when Abel defended Cain against Praxis. Happy because it was cute, the bond they've formed. But sad because Cain actually was up to things behind his back. Cain has definitely changed at this point, but still. It was nice to see some other relationships too this time. Like Praxis actually trying to mend fences and build a bond with his navigator, instead of pining over Abel. And Keeler and Encke were adorable. They have such a sweet relationship. And Deimos... Deimos seems like this mousey little thing, but he's really not helpless. He can take care of himself. Always pulling knives on people and shit. And then he actually stood up to Cain in this chapter. For reasons I didn't agree with, but still, he showed some backbone. But ahhhhh, the vodka and cigarette picnic is still my favorite thing lol. And we got to learn Cain and Abel's real names (Alexei and Ethan). And then that ending with Phobos and Deimos actually maybe teaming up... *END SPOILER*

Things are happening. Things are getting more interesting. Everything is a spoiler now because I'm too deep into this story to keep things vague. Too into everything happening. Loving all the details and characters and relationships. This story really does hook you the deeper you go.

*Rating: 4 Stars // 2nd Read Date: 2020 // Source: Free Webcomic*

Recommended For:
Anyone who likes erotic comics, manga-style artwork, space battles, m/m romance, and romance that starts a little fucked up but ends cute.

 
 

Starfighter Ch. 5 by Hamlet Machine

Title: Starfighter Ch. 5
Author: Hamlet Machine
Series: Starfighter
Pages: 139
Rating: 4 stars
 
Review:

You can find my series review in my review of Ch. 1! Below are my thoughts for this chapter specifically.

Thoughts (Ch. 5):

Chapter 5 was a little anticlimactic, to be honest. Everything wrapped up rather quickly and easily. The ending was left hanging a bit.

But there were a lot of things I loved too. I loved how characters came together and had each others' backs when it mattered. I loved Cain and Abel's relationship, with its passion and its flaws and its sweetness. *SPOILER* I loved when Cain called Abel by his real name, and when he blurted out that he still wanted to be with him as if that was all he'd been thinking about for days/weeks and couldn't keep it in anymore. *END SPOILER* I loved seeing how much Cain had changed. I loved how Keeler and Encke were together. I even loved that Deimos redeemed himself (since he always seemed like a bit of a shady rat).

So yeah. A lot of was kinda skipped over or happened quickly in the end, but I still loved this comic!

*Rating: 4 Stars // Read Date: 2020 // Source: Free Webcomic*

Recommended For:
Anyone who likes erotic comics, manga-style artwork, space battles, m/m romance, and romance that starts a little fucked up but ends cute.

 
 
 
 

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  1. Greg

    Matt Fraction is hit or miss for me so not sure how I’d like sex criminals, but I like the sound of the earlier ones being more humorous. I’m really curious about a good SF webcomic though!

    1. Kristen Burns

      I haven’t actually tried any of his other stuff, but I definitely loved the humor in the earlier volumes of Sex Criminals. You should try webcomics sometime!

  2. Becky @ A Fool's Ingenuity

    Sorry to hear Sex Criminals isn’t for you. No one can say you haven’t given it a fair shot though. Glad Starfighter took a good turn for you, though. I remember you saying you weren’t certain previously but it seems like there was a definite turning point with the storyline.