Rusty's World

Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Fairest #1 | March 11, 2012

What a great week for comics! It was a little big… enough that it was supposed to be a ‘cancellation’ week… but there is nothing deserving of cancellation! (Yet… see below.)

 

FAIREST #1 (Bill Willingham / Phil Jimenez / Andy Lanning) Vertigo

Right from the amazing Adam Hughes cover, this book was a treat. This is Fables back before it got bogged down in overarching plot. Fables is still good, but this book is better! Willingham has totally mastery of these characters, not that it is a surprise at this point. Phil Jimenez is at his best… evoking a little Neal Adams in much the way he used to evoke a little George Perez. It is a little odd that a book that is meant to represent the female Fables characters has a first issue where the star is clearly Ali Baba, but that just seems to be set-up for a certain Slumbering Siren…

Buy this book. You won’t be disappointed.

 

THE DEFENDERS #4 (Fraction / Lark / Gaudiano / Hollingsworth) Marvel

A book that was hovering near the bottom of my list has rocketed way up! Matt Fraction took what I thought of as a weakness (Dr. Strange’s casual playboy attitudes) and turned it into a strength by giving us a peek behind it. Did you imagine that Molly from issue #1 would be back? I sure didn’t… and neither did Strange, likely.

I am a fan of the Dodsons but Michael Lark’s fill-in was perfect for THIS story, where the super-heroic postures of the Dodsons may not have worked as well.

 

ANIMAL MAN #7 (Jeff Lemire / Steve Pugh / Travel Foreman / Jeff Huet) DC

As I have said before, I find Foreman’s work on Animal Man to be a little TOO effective, so I like the switch to Pugh, but that isn’t totally why the book is this high on the list. It is the writing. The scenes with Buddy and Cliff are excellent. Cliff is the often overlooked member of the Baker family, and Lemire knows it and is using it. Other touches, like the cat-shaped avatar of the red making its food preferences known. I am not so sure about the dream (?) sequence with ‘Animal Woman’, but I AM sure that everything is about to hit the fan.

 

SWAMP THING #7 (Scott Snyder / Yanick Paquette) DC

Beautiful cover. Beautiful art. Normally I have Swamp Thing ahead of Animal Man, but they are so tightly connected that it almost doesn’t matter.

This is it folks… this is where the book REALLY starts.

 

AVENGERS: CHILDREN’S CRUSADE (Heinberg / Cheung / Morales / Ponsor) Marvel

SPOILERS!
SPOILERS!

SPOILERS!

 

 

 

Still here?

 

 

Wow. I was SURE that when they brought Scott Lang back that he would be dead again before the series was over. Well, a Lang is dead, but it is Cassie. That truly surprised me. Killing Vision didn’t, because the new one is back. No more Patriot… Iron Lad on his way to being a villain (separate from Kang, I think). So now there aren’t two Visions, but there are still two Hawkeyes and now there are two Ant-Mans (Ant-Men?) as well.

Hmmm.

This book was hurt by the bi-monthly pace but the characterization is strong and the art is excellent.

Oh…are they engaged? For real? Well done. (as was the kiss.)

 

AVENGERS ACADEMY #27 (Gage / Moline / Fern / Sotomayor) Marvel

I love the Runaways and Gage did I good job capturing them. The art didn’t, but you can’t have everything. I hope that Tom Grummett is just taking an issue off. His addition to the book was a bog step up, I hope it wasn’t temporary.

The conversation between Pym and Tigra was terrible. I don’t mean the content, but the actual delivered lines only existed to make a damning sound bite. People don’t talk like that.

 

ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #8 (Bendis / Pichelli / Ponsor) Marvel

Still a great comic, but the focus this time was a little more on plot than characterization. Other than the fact that Miles is bothered by his Uncle’s revelation, there wasn’t much there for him. Scorpion coming to the U.S. was interesting. (Who does he look like on the cover? The Rock maybe?)

 

iZOMBIE #23 (Chris Roberson / Michael Allred) Vertigo

I really like this book. The risk, though, when there are so many disparate plots, is that it starts to feel ‘crowded and chaotic. This is the same problem Hickman has a lot. Still well worth a read, even if just for the Allred art.

 

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (Slott / Yost / Camuncoli / Janson / D’Armata) Marvel

Good read. It is funny that a plot hole became a plot point, as Peter’s plan was ridiculous. Also, why didn’t Johnny bring one of those special ‘FF-space suits’ that lets him be the Torch without using up the oxygen (or lack thereof). By not having it, it made him pretty useless.

 

WINTER SOLDIER #3 (Brubaker / Guice / Gaudiano / Breitweiser) Marvel

Only this low because the week was so good. The Doombot stuff is nice. The story was a little jumpy, but it still works. I love how this reads like a spy thriller. Everytime Guice draws Black Widow it feels like this book is thirty years older than it is. That’s a good thing.

 

NIGHT FORCE #1 (Marv Wolfman / Tom Mandrake) DC

I only just this moment noticed that the cover says this is a miniseries. I loved the premise of the old Night Force from … what, the late 70’s? Early 80’s? This book is all set-up, though. Super jumpy and more hints at plot rather than actual plot.

I was really looking forward to this and I hope it gets better.

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