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Quick reviews of new summer comics 

For comic book companies, summer is a time to launch a ton of new titles -- hoping to score a blockbuster series or two. Here's my take on a few new hot-weather books I picked up last week:

Hack/Slash: My First Maniac No. 1: I never read this series when it was being published by Devils Due, but now that it's been restarted over at Image Comics, I thought I'd take a look. After reading the first issue, which I thoroughly enjoyed, I feel kind of stupid for avoiding Hack/Slash for so long. The comic's concept (a teen "slasher" survivor decides to hunt down bizarre psycho killers) is cool enough to warrant a look, but the book's actual execution (no pun intended) is fun, gruesome and slightly scary. I'll undoubtedly be looking for the trade paperbacks.

Mystery Society No. 1: Writer Steven Niles has been known more for his hit comic/movie 30 Days of Night than any of his other creations, but I think he has another hit on his hands with Mystery Society. The comic tells the story of a married couple who travels the world uncovering government secrets, cover-ups and, well, mysteries. With moody/mod art by Fiona Staples, this issue features equal helpings of humor and horror.

Avengers Academy No. 1: With Avengers Academy, Marvel rolls out yet another comic about teen superheroes. (It joins the ranks of books like Young Avengers, New Mutants, and Young Allies, among others.) But this title has a cool twist at the end that sets it apart. I won't spoil it. Pick it up.

Reviewed materials provided by Heroes Aren't Hard to Find:

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