Sunday, July 09, 2006


Recent Comics I Have Read

52 #6, 7 & 8: Continues to be interesting. I liked the rise and fall of Booster Gold. The artwork remains decent; not outstanding, but decent. Luthor's public rehabilitation seems a bit forced, but then again, that old fraud Nixon was being described as an "elder statesman" by the time he died. The backup feature, History of the DCU, is annoying mainly because it serves as yet another reminder of how pointless and silly the whole Infinite Crisis was in the first place.

New Avengers #20 & 21: The end of the Michael saga was good way to bring back Magneto. I now officially regret looking forward to Chaykin's artwork. It comes across as stiff, unwieldy and the characters inexplicably have tiny skinny little legs with huge torsos balanced on top.

Batman #654: Artwork is still uneven. The storyline would be better if we had been given more time to empathize with Harvey Dent, so we actually felt bad when he descended back into madness, which took about 2 pages. Has the Great White Shark appeared before? If so, did he seem as lame then? The ending is nice.

Brave New World: Several short stories, all fairly mediocre. The New Atom is interesting; the Marvel Family remains impenetrably lame. The new Freedom Force is...intriguing. Who the heck is Father Time?

Captain America #19: Finishing up the more or less decent Union Jack team-up. The art is either getting better, or I'm getting used to it. Yet MORE cameos by super secret Soviet cyber-Bucky! Feh.

Civil War #2: A let-down from the first issue. How many times have we seen this cliche? Protagonist is "kidnapped" or otherwise "disappears" and when the blindfold is removed, he's in a hidden lair and someone says "Welcome to the resistance." The internets are of course all a'buzz about the big outing of Peter Parker. I personally have no problem with change. I have no problem with big change. Characters grow up, get married, sometimes they die. This change, however, seems completely gratuitous, just another gimmick to sell comics.

Invincible #33: Alternate Universe Brain-head guy strikes! Does Invincible's mom have any point other than to be drunk, menaced or have the crap beaten out of her?

Iron Man #9: Still not sold on Zircher and Hanna's artwork; looks too...I dunno...manga? Not big eyed, microscopic-nosed manga, but--well, just can't put my finger on it, but I don't like it. Again, why the hell is Nick Fury running things? Have I missed a memo? And I still don't understand how we are realistically ret-conning Iron Man's origin out of Vietnam and into the Afghan war. That makes Iron Man, tops, 4 years old. Couldn't we have at least used the first Gulf War?

JSA #86: Big lead-up to the final issue. Artwork is very very not good. A close-up on Power Girl makes her look like some kind of buck-toothed Bizarro world caricature. The Gentleman Ghost is just not enough of a villain to pull this story off.

Ms. Marvel #4: I liked it. Good art. Nice House of M mystery tie-in. DC are you taking notes? Dr. Strange was presented well. Some sinister undertones to Ms. Marvel's agent. Good. I'd like to see a tie-in with Carol Danvers' blog. That could be a good storytelling device.

Outsiders #37: Yeah, nothing like love between a giant talking gorilla and a pickle jar. Alan Scott, Agent of SHIELD (including the eye patch BEHIND his mask). And we can never have too many lectures by Superman: you're going too far. I have my eye on you. And Nightwing THREATENS HIM WITH KRYPTONITE! WTF? Yeah, this is stupid and I don't think I will buying any more of this.

Squadron Supreme #4: The origin of Inertia, and unsurprisingly, it involves sexual assault (evidently mandatory for all female comic book characters) and also a hypocritical right-wing Christian preacher with a penchant for domestic violence. Okay, guys, know what? This horse is DEAD. It's been overdone since at least Elmer Gantry. Can there be NO positive Christian characters in comics? Even Nightcrawler had to be turned into a stooge for some white supremacist outfit instead of a Catholic priest.

Ultimates 2 #11: The battle against the Evil Liberal Army continues. I get the distinct impression there's going to be some big, reality-altering magick thingamabob at the end of this, probably involving Odin. Which might explain why there is NO cross-continuity with this storyline in any of the other Ultimate titles.

Young Avengers #12: Very entertaining team-up with the New Avengers. I'm starting to like this book alot. Weird, silly, unnecessary, self-congratulatory back-up story.

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That New Avengers storyline was the end of the road for me. The whole Xorn thing was so confusing and out of left field, I didn't even know what to say.

The thing that annoys me the most about Peter unmasking - besides the fact that Amazing Spider-Man #533 highlighted just about every possible reason why it was a bad idea - is that Quesada and Millar have said after Civil War there'll be one more mini-series that 'puts the biggest genie in the Marvel Universe back in the bottle.' Gee, I wonder what that means? I was OK with the Iron Spidey costume as a temp thing, because it's minor, and shouldn't really have any major effect on who Spider-Man is. But revealing his identity just to jump sales, then making it secret again just feels really lame.

I with you on Ms. Marvel. It's one of those books along with X-Factor and the soon to be ended Spider-Girl that I'm really enjoying these days.
Yeah, I see your point about Xorn. Of course, I'm so far behind the times on the X-Books I'm not even sure who Xorn was supposed to be. Last I heard, he was Magneto. The whole Peter Unmasked thing just reeks of being a stunt; I haven't read any Spider-books in a long time, but was there any real buildup to this? Of course, stunts can be handled right, i.e. Death of Superman, but this one--not so much, I'm thinking.
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