Monday, January 21, 2013

Week in Comics 1/16/13

Almost completely forgot to write this, but here I am. I kind of liked getting a thought or two down on every comic, like I did last week, so let's do that again. Although I am not really sure what to do about the tags. SPOILERS FOR LAST WEEK'S COMICS.

2000AD #1815 (Dredd story)By Robbie Morrison and Peter Doherty
     Pretty much how I figured this storyline was going to play out. I wish the concept could have been drug out a little longer, but that doesn't seem to happen in the Dredd stuff I've read.

All-New X-Men #6
By Brian Michael Bendis and David Marquez 
     Marquez does a good job of making the past X-Men look like a bunch of teens. I dunno how long he's going to be on this book, but I think it fits the tone a bit better than Immonen did.

Archer and Armstrong v3 #6
By Fred Van Lente and Emanuela Lupacchino
     Funny as always.

Avengers Assemble v2 #11
By Kelley Sue DeConnick and Stefano Caselli 
     I'm not sure if I just missed something, but it didn't really seem like the whole virus part of the plan was taken care of.

Avenging Spider-Man #16
By Christopher Yost and Paco Medina
     It's interesting to see how the rest of the Marvel U is reacting to Spider-Man's personality change, but you have to figure that they'd take a personality change more seriously. There is like aliens that have taken over someone's life. This issue does address how Ock can remain hidden despite the metric ton of mind readers walking around, so at least there is some reason this is working.

Batgirl v4 #16
By Gail Simone, Ed Benes and Daniel Sampere 
     Whatever your mind imagines to be the language that sentient alien pieces of shit use to communicate is what I want to write this in. It's the only language that can possibly express the levels of shit, shittyness and shititude contained in this book. This is a total hate read for me.

Batman v2 #16
By Scott Snyder, Gregg Capullo and Jock
     If there is one thing Scott Snyder does well, it's write Batman just walking through a place wrecking dudes. Obviously it wouldn't be as awesome without Capullo on art, who can definitely draw the hell out of Batman wrecking dudes.

Batman and Robin v2 #16
By Peter J. Tomasi and Patrick Gleason
     This was a whole lot of punchin'. Pretty weird that Damian couldn't tell the difference between his dad and a Japanese man dressed like Batman, but he was under some stress so I'll let it slide.

The Black Beetle #1
By Francesco Francavilla 
     I am pretty predisposed to loving this comic. I am down for pretty much anything that has the 1930s-1940s noir pulpy feel to it. It doesn't hurt that Francavilla is an excellent artist.

Captain America v7 #3
By Rick Remender and John Romita Jr.
     I'm not really sure what to think of this comic. While I like the Idea of taking a dude who was already out of his own time and throwing him into some crazy sci-fi world, this is just really weird. Because the comic jumped ahead in time to when Cap had already been surviving for a while, we never really got introduced to the rules of the world. Its hard to tell if Cap is in an extraordinary circumstance, or if this is just and average Monday in this world.

Captain Marvel v7 #9
By Kelly Sue DeConnick and Filipe Andrade
     Woof on the art in this comic. It was just distracting. Instead of paying attention to a story about dinosaurs and cats, I was thinking this.

Conan the Barbarian v2 #12
By Brian Wood and Declan Shalvey
     This whole business with Belit has lasted a lot longer than I thought it was going to, so kudos for not being predictable. Similarly, other than breaking it off and moving onto to a totally new place and story, I'm not sure where this plot is going.

Daredevil v2 #22
By Mark Waid and Chris Samnee 
     Similar to Avenging Spider-Man I am really feeling like other heroes should take this change more seriously. Again, its fairly well justified, but I am always vigilant on the lookout for evil posing as someone I know. Also, way to be a downer Mark Waid.

Demon Knights #16
By Robert Venditti and Bernard Chang
     Well there goes my theory that Al Jabr is secretly Ra's Al Ghul. Also, why even have a mask/gag thing on a dude when his mouth is fused like that one scene in the first matrix?

Frankenstein Agent of SHADE #16
By Matt Kindt and Alberto Ponticelli
     I have to say, I had high hopes for this series when it first came out. It was crazy and not really like the rest of what DC was putting out, but it didn't really go anywhere. Things happened, but they didn't seem important to the world or the characters. It was just some issues of crazy stuff, which were enjoyable, but not that memorable.

Indestructible Hulk #3
By Mark Waid and Leinil Francis Yu
     Bruce Banner and his science team is shaping up to be a pretty sweet series. From a distance, the Hulk always looked insanely boring to me. But it's hard to pass up some sweet SCIENCE, which this book is delivering so far.

New Avengers v3 #2
By Johnathan Hickman and Steve Epting
     Maybe it's because I am not as well versed in the Marvel U as I am the DCU, but this book really seems like it's trying to have some gravitas that I am just not getting. The whole time I was reading it, I felt like someone was elbowing me in the ribs and going "See how cool all these guys are? They are like super important and secretly make super important decisions. Cool, right?"

Savage Wolverine #1
By Frank Cho
     This was probably not a good one to read on the train. I am fairly sure some type of elderly something was not impressed by Shanna the She-Devil. Other than causing some looks, I dig the concept of being trapped in the Savage Lands. Although pretty much all stakes are out the window when it comes to wolverine. Not only does he have the standard popular hero plot armor, but also powers that make sure there is basically no danger ever.

Threshold #1
By Keith Giffen, Tom Raney and Scott Kollins

Venom v2 #30
By Cullen Bunn, Thony Silas and Rodger Robinson 
     How many different things has Eddie Brock been infected with? That dude needs to see a doctor or something.

X-Men v4 #40
By Brian Wood, Jefte Palo and Guillermo Mogorron
     I hope hey call that new dude TRANSFORMERS 4 or something.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Week in Comics 1/9/13

I am back from a holiday vacation, and I'm feeling like it's time to try something a bit different. I am going to do really short thoughts on ALL the comics I read every week instead of the few I've decided are worth talking about more. Maybe this will help me pay more attention to all the comics I read, maybe this will get me out of thinking I have nothing to say for some of the comics I was posting on here. So prepare yourself for a big list and maybe some SPOILERS FOR THIS WEEK'S COMICS.

2000AD #1814 (Just the Dredd story)By Bobbie Morrison and Peter Doherty
     I like the contrast between Dredd and Heller. Both coming up mentored by the same guy and ending up in completely different places in their old age. I'm actually not sure how old-ish Dredd is supposed to be now that I think about it.

Action Comics v2 #16
By Grant Morrison, Brad Walker and Rags Morales
     I am just not into the Legion. I tried with the relaunch, but it didn't happen. Also what the hell is going on in this series.

Age of Apocalypse #11By David Lapham, Roberto de la Torre and Renato Arlem
     This is a series I just kind of picked up in the middle, so I don't have the best grasp on what's going on but I like it for some reason. I've referenced it a few times in paste posts and I do really like the idea of alternate timeline ongoings.

Animal Man v2 #16
By Jeff Lemire, Steve Pugh and Timothy Green II
     These last two months have not been great for John Constantine on the whole being alive front. Also, I'm glad that this issue shows how insanely fucked people would be fighting the Flash.

Avengers Arena #3
By Dennis Hopeless and Kevin Walker
   Battle Royale was one of my favorite manga back when I was really into anime, so it's nice to see that this series is giving its props with the covers. I know almost nothing about all of these characters, so I'm glad each one seems to be getting some flashback time and explanation.

Batwing #16
By Fabian Nicieza and Allan Jefferson
     Even though Nicieza wrote the previous issue, it was finishing up a plot from Winick's run. This issue is a lot more like a reintroduction. It mentions who characters are and how Batwing came to be, so I'm hoping this is a new jumping on point for some people and a new direction for the series.

Cable and X-Force #3
By Dennis Hopeless and Salvador Larroca
     I like that this comic has a kind of heist-movie feel to it. A ragtag team of people who maybe don't like each other getting together to do crazy stuff for mutant kind. I'm not a huge fan of Cable, mostly because of the 90s, but it hasn't really gotten in the way of this being an enjoyable read.

Detective Comics v2 #16
By John Layman, Jason Fabok and Andy Clarke
     I've said it before and I'll say it again, I don't like the penguin. Even this Emperor Penguin storyline is not grabbing me at all. The main plot about the Joker gangs was kind of interesting until there was a old timey looking supervillain who was masterminding it. Why cant Batman just fight a bunch of crazy Joker gangs? I miss street level crime in Batman comics.

Dial H #8
By China Mieville and Alberto Ponticelli
     Dropped this series for a bit and then picked it back up recently. I'm still not totally sure if I like it or not.

Earth 2 #8
By James Robinson and Yildiray Cinar
     So, is Apokolips in this series Apokolips 2? Did both universe's Apokolips just decide to invade Earth and one did a bad job? I don't even know why I am still reading this.

Fairest #11
By Lauren Beukes and Inaki Miranda
     Recently, I read all of Fables and it's spin-offs/tie-ins. Now I am all caught up and digging this series a lot. I hope there is more exploration of Fables from different parts of the world. In this or other series.

Green Lantern: New Guardians Annual #1
By Keith Giffen, Scott Kolins and Andrei Bressan 
     I am just not a fan of DCU's space stuff. I don't really like Green Lantern, but I also don't hate it. It's just there. And the fact that this served basically no purpose to the New Guardians series and instead was to sell the upcoming space anthology made me enjoy it even less.

Marvel Universe vs The Avengers #4
By Johnathan Maberry and Leandro Fernandez  
      Through this series I've mostly thought, "Wasn't Marvel Zombies already a thing?" and the answer is yes.

The Phantom Stranger v4 #4
By J. M. DeMatteis, Dan DiDio and Brent Anderson
     This series is really trying to ride the line between Justice League and Justice League Dark. It really wants to be knee deep in the magic stuff, but it has to keep going "HEY THE TRINITY WAR IS AN EVENT THAT IS COMING UP"

Punisher: War Zone v3 #3
By Greg Rucka and Carmine Di Giandomenico
     I hope Greg Rucka writes the Punisher forever. I hope the Punisher never shaves and stays Big Boss forever.

Scarlet Spider v2 #13
By Christopher Yost and Khoi Pham
     My favorite thing about this series is that it takes place in Texas. It's nice to see some superhero action away from the east coast.

Secret Avengers #36
By Rick Remender and Matteo Scalera 
     I've sat here for a few mins trying to remember what I think of this, and all I can think is that it's crazy.

Star Wars v(?) #1
By Brian Wood and Carlos D'Anda
     As a kid I was really into Star Wars, but I never really got into the expanded universe stuff. As an adult I am not that into Star Wars, but I loved DMZ, Northlanders and Demo, so I figured i'd check it out. So far it's interesting. I'm kind of surprised that it takes place between Episode IV and V since it doesn't seem like there is much story to tell there.

Superior Spider-Man #1
By Dan Slott and Ryan Stegman
     I was a little wary of this series after the events of Amazing Spider-Man #700, but i have to say I really enjoyed this. The section right at the end was very well done. It was intense, up close, and brutal. It was something I haven't seen in a Spider-Man comic and that is worth the read alone.

Swamp Thing v5 #16
By Scott Snyder and Yanick Paquette
     Goddamn this series is good.

Sweet Tooth #40
By Jeff Lemire
    I enjoyed this series quite a bit. Lemire's off-kilter art elevated everything else about the book and really made it a unique read.

Thor: God of Thunder #4
By Jason Aaron and Esad Ribic 
     Despite how much I love Norse stuff, I never really got into Thor. Until this series. The story being split across three times is great and the art is fantastic. I can't compliment this book enough.

Thunderbolts v3 #3
By Daniel Way and Steve Dillon
     Some people really like Steve Dillon's art. I am not one of those people. I first ran into him on Hellblazer, where I was alright with his art, but then I saw the other things he has penciled and realized that pretty much everyone looks the same. In the credits page for this issue the Punisher and Red Hulk have nearly identical faces making similar expressions. Often, artists can kill a series for me and this might be one of those.

The Walking Dead #106
By Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard
     One of the things I really liked about this series was that Rick was slowly transforming into almost a villain. He went from pretty innocent to hardcore and it was a great read. Now that's slowed down a bit, and it definitely seems like Kirkman is having fun just torturing the characters for a while.

Wolverine and the X-Men #23
By Jason Aaron and Nick Bradshaw
     I jumped into this series mid-stream, but it's been a pretty fun read. I'm thinking Jason Aaron might be good at writing comics.

Worlds' Finest #8
By Paul Levitz, George Perez, CAFU, and Cliff Richards
     There is a lot of artists on this issue, and that is never a good sign. Suddenly it cuts from a style I don't like to a fantastic one and back a few times within a page or two and then a completely different one. My problem with this series from the get go has been art, and I really wish they would get it sorted. going by artists on this issue, I vote CAFU stays on.

Man, I read a lot of comics. I am not sure if this was more or less fun than my usual posts, so we'll see if I do it next week. Man, it wont even let me tag all the comics.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Week in Comics 12/12/12

My god have I not been doing any comic stuff lately. Someday I will get back to actually reading things before Sunday. Anyway, SPOILERS FOR THIS WEEK'S COMICS

Batman v2 #15
By Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo
Backup by Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV and Jock
     Similar to last issue, some stuff just came off weird to me. This time it was some of the dialog. I'm not sure if it was supposed to reflect Batman losing his cool, but lines like "YOU ARE NOTHING--BUT DEGENERATE FILTH" read really awkwardly in my head. And the framing dialog about pupils, I like as a concept, but the way its phrased like Batman psyching himself up is strange to me.
     Then there's the scene where Bruce tells a story that has no real point, and seems to only piss off the rest of the family. On a metatextual standpoint I can see wanting to have an encounter like this, but I am not sure why Bruce would decide to go "Oh, BTW the joker possibly knew who we were all along, but probably not because I say so" from a character standpoint. He doesn't want to tell everyone about Alfred and upset them, but he does want to tell a nearly decade old anecdote that will only upset them.
     I get the sense that all of this is to show that Batman is off his game, but it comes out more like out of his character. It's like Snyder wants that post Jason Todd era Batman, but that was an era where Batman shut everyone out. It clashes with all the scenes of dealing with the rest of the bat-family.

Batman and Robin v2 #15
By Peter J Tomasi and Patrick Gleason
     This issue was fantastic. It was all talking, but managed to get across the Joker's point in a way that wasn't weird. There was none of the king Batman stuff, it was just the Joker telling Damian why all the bat-fam needs to go away. It pretty much communicated everything the last 2 issues of Batman tried to in a way I enjoyed and understood way more. Plus the Joker did some seriously creepy stuff with his face. Somehow this issue beat out Batman #15 in terms of my enjoyment.

Demon Knights #15
By Paul Cornell and Bernard Chang

Monday, December 10, 2012

Week in Comics 12/5/12

I totally meant to do this last night, and then I ate a bunch of crappy food and passed out. Then, I meant to do it on the MAX this morning, but completely zoned it. So, now it's officially into the next week, BUT I DON'T LET THE MAN'S CALENDAR KEEP ME DOWN. SPOILERS FOR LAST WEEK'S COMICS. Although, my thoughts on these may be a bit short.

Animal Man v2 #15
By Jeff Lemire, Timothy Green II and Steve Pugh
     Pretty much more of the same. Which isn't a bad thing, but it's one of those issues where a lot of not much happens and then there is a shocking reveal on the last page. Pretty common in current comics, which sometimes makes issues that don't really stick with you. I'm sure they'd serve a lot better for Trades, but waiting a month for a light issue is always kind of a bummer.

Batwing #15
By Fabian Nicieza and Fabrizio Fiorentino
     I really hope these solo adventures keep up. Batwing is developing some much needed personality.

Detective Comics v2 #15
By John Layman, Jason Fabok and Andy Clarke
     Again with this series. The main plot is solid and the backup seems way more interesting. They tie pretty closely together, but Clayface yelling "NOOOO" has nothing on Clayface being super sad in a sewer reading old love letters.

Swamp Thing v5 #15By Scott Snyder and Marco Rudy

Worlds' Finest #7
By Paul Levitz, Kevin Maguire and George Perez
     Did not think I'd see any comic ever mention Kony 2012.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Week in Comics 11/28/12


All-Star Western v3 #14
By Justin Gray, Jimmy Palmiotti and Moritat
     This is, as far as I can remember, the first story I've read to be labeled with the BLACK DIAMOND banner. Like all of All-Star Western's tie ins, the actual plot elements that tie the series into the crossover are barely present. I wouldn't be surprised if the first half of the next issue dealt with it a little and then dropped the plot entirely.
     I'm not really sure what's going on with this book. It just leaves me wanting something more, but I can't pin down what it is. It feels too small, which can work, but I like my historical fiction to be grand. It should be huge and full of detail, which I feel this series is lacking. Instead it's smaller stories in one city and it's not quite doing it for me anymore. Hex needs to move on and do some traveling.

Batman Incorporated v2 #5
By Grant Morrison and Chris Burnham
     I think what I loved most about this issue was its demonstration of how Morrison continues to not give a single fuck about the rest of the DCnU. That's not to say the rest of the issue wasn't fantastic as well. Similar to Rotworld, I would read the hell out of an alternate future ongoing of the Batman #666 future. It wouldn't really make sense to have one based on what happens in the issue, but I don't even care. This issue pretty much does everything that Earth 2 hasn't. AKA be interesting and actually make me unsure of what will happen to the characters next.

The Flash v4 #14
By Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato
     All I could think about for the first half of this issue was that there should have been an Abbot and Costello style routine on "Gorilla invasion" vs "Guerilla invasion." Once I got over that idea, I got a pretty solid issue that I can't really form a thought on. I've probably said this too many times, but The Flash is just a good series. It doesn't reinvent the wheel, it's just a very well done superhero story. Which is what makes it hard for me to put how I feel about it into words. It doesn't fail to meet expectations and it doesn't do completely insane things, so there is nothing I can really point at and discuss.

I, Vampire #14
By Joshua Hale Fialkov and Andrea Sorrentino
     Talk about a world where you don't know what's going to happen. I've referred to this series as being like a Vertigo title before, and it still holds true. New characters and a loose connection to DCU mean things can actually happen and characters can actually play out their arcs. I'm pretty interested to see what will happen to this series. It's definitely at its best when not dealing with other DCU stuff, but that means that a lot of people aren't going to pick it up because someone they like is in it. I'm glad it has survived thus far  and I hope it keeps on for a while even being under the radar as it is.

Talon #2
By Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV and Juan Jose Ryp
     It seems like a lot of series this week are just reminding me why I am disappointed in other series. Here is a book that contains a high tech heist, a room full of treasure, and yet this isn't Catwoman. Why is the high adventure crime all happening in a series about taking down the Court of Owls? Well, I'll take it where I can get it, because this issue was good. Each issue seems to be building off the last and giving me a lot of hope for this series.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Week in Comics 11/21/12

I kept meaning to read these all week, I'm not sure why it took me so long. Anyway, SPOILERS FOR THIS WEEK'S COMICS

Batwoman #14
By J.H. Williams III and W. Haden Blackman
     I'm not sure if it's because I've been reading a lot of other stuff lately, but the narration by Medusa in this issue makes me think I have missed/forgotten a lot about this series. It was probably there to bring everyone up to speed on what happened in those hard to follow mixed up issues, which is nice, but it left me focused less on the issue itself and more on trying to figure out how we got here. 

Birds of Prey v3 #14
By Duane Swierczynski and Romano Molenaar
     This issue was just pretty bland. I've seen heroes fight armies of ninja. I've seen the new hero not want to work with the team. It just read like a totally average comic. The only remotely interesting thing is Black Canary's reaction to using her powers, but there hasn't really been any clues to what this could be. They'll probably reveal what it is too fast and destroy any tension it would have, but here's hoping they don't.

Catwoman v3 #14
By Ann Nocenti and Rafa Sandoval
     What was going on with the dialog in this issue? I'm not sure what the Joker was supposed to be, but it wasn't scary and it wasn't funny. This is kind of what I was afraid cut-off-face-Joker would be. I get what they were going for, and it makes sense for the Joker to mess with Catwoman over her pseudo bat-ally status, but it lacked impact and didn't accomplish anything. Which is too bad, because I think this concept could have worked really well.

Nightwing v3 #14
By Tom DeFalco and Andres Guinaldo
     This is another of those issues that feels like it was written before the crossover, and had to have the Joker shoehorned in. It has lots of talk about what's going on, "... AND THE JOKER IS BACK!" It would probably have been a better issue if it didn't keep reminding me that Nightwing is faffing about and not all in with stopping the Joker. The problem with a shared universe is that characters have to exist and make decisions that fit their personality in that universe. Sometimes it's better not to talk about what else is going on and just tell a story.

Wonder Woman v4 #14
By Brian Azzarello, Tony Akins, Dan Green and Rick Burchett 
     It'll be interesting to see where all this fourth world stuff is going. Especially since we've already had Darkseid in Justice League, and some fourth-worldey stuff in Justice League Dark. If I didn't know the next event was the Trinity War, I'd say this was pretty clever buildup to a big story. With the exception of Justice League of course. Clever is not a word that could come within miles of that series.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Week in Comics 11/14/12

Well, this may be the first time I have read comics before the weekend in a while. Batman #14 was a big motivation for that, as my 500+ word thoughts show.

Batman v2 #14
By Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo
Backup by Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV and Jock
     The first half of this issue was just weird. I don't know if I am in the wrong frame of mind or this stuff will come back up later, but there are things I just don't get. We are going to dip into more spoilery spoilers here, so you've been double warned. This might be a longer section than usual.
     First, when Batman is in the vat of chemicals, Harley says "Maybe you'll be the next one. Like I always thought you would. Maybe you'll come back like he used to be, back then... Beautiful" I'm interpreting this line as Harley thinking that Batman will turn into the next Joker and she can be happy again. Which is crazy, but she is pretty crazy. What I don't get is the "like I always thought you would" this was the first thing that threw me for a loop in this issue. I didn't think it was biting commentary on how Batman is as crazy as the rest of them, I thought it was weird and kind of out of character for her.
     Second, When Bruce gets the package from the Joker, he opens it to reveal a cassette. Which he puts in a bag for one panel, and then is standing there in the next panel with no bag and puts it in a tape deck. What was the purpose of the bag? I thought maybe it was an art error. then I thought maybe it was to show that he was just going to take it as evidence, but changed his mind and decided to listen to it, which is weird. For a second I thought maybe he switched it with another tape, but that makes no sense at all considering he then listens to it.
     Third, does he pull a gun on Gordon when telling him to get to safety? I can't tell what the hell it's supposed to be from the art, but it looks like he is threatening Gordon with a pistol, which is so insane that I think there has to be something else going on that I'm missing.
     Fourth, I sort of get the point of the scene between Nightwing and Batman outside the hospital, but it felt totally off in terms of characterization. As much as Batman is about crushing his emotions he doesn't really fuck around when it comes to Alfred, and he certainly knows that Dick understands how he feels about it. It comes off as just really awkward to read and kind of beating you over the head with Bruce's emotional issues, which continues through the Bat/Tron-Cycle ride to the reservoir.
     And then things pick up. I really like that the Joker has Batman's number and has this 'yeah, yeah all that stuff we always do is fun and all, but this is something else.' attitude. And the idea of the Bat-Family making Batman weak is an interesting one. After Morrison spent a few years making Batman realize that he has never really been alone in his crusade, Snyder shows up and has the Joker hate that about Batman. It plays off the idea without erasing or copying it, which is great. I don't know if I like the whole King and Court Jester routine, but maybe it will tie in thematically with the Joker's plans.
     Also, I am so tired of the Penguin. Not really the backups fault, but I just sigh when I see him now. I do like the idea of the Backups being the Joker touching base with all the villains, and hinting at some future event.

Batman and Robin v2 #14
By Peter J Tomasi and Patrick Gleason
     This smells of rewrites. It makes absolutely zero sense for the Joker to be involved in this plot. it seems like this issue was 3/4ths done when Tomasi had to tie it in with Death of the Family. I guess the signs where there all along. Last issue characters could not shut up about how the Joker was back in town, but I just don't buy it. Maybe I hope it's a rewrite, because if this was planned it was just bad.

Demon Knights #14
By Paul Cornell and Bernard Chang