Rusty's World

Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Ultimate Spider-Man #22

April 27, 2013
Leave a Comment

Ultimate_Comics_Spider-Man_Vol_2_22

Big week.

Right off, I should announce that you won’t see Batwoman reviews here any more… at least until they get a different writer. I like the character and want to support the diversity…but the comic is just terrible. It is such a muddied mess that it is hard to even tell what is going on from page to page.

Dropped.

It isn’t the only one… read on.

Starting from the weakest…

WOLVERINE AND THE X-MEN #28 (aaron / Perez / Martin) Marvel

I picked this up because I had been enjoying the Bendis X-books so much.

This isn’t them.

I read it all through the Savage Land adventure. I like the idea of the school, but this book… just isn’t good enough. Dog is a stupid character that should have never been created. Eye-boy is awful. Shark Girl has potential.

Art – bad. Story – dull.

Dropped.

BEFORE WATCHMEN: COMEDIAN #6 (Brian Azzarello / J.G. Jones) DC

Some of the Before Watchmen stuff was worth the effort. Some wasn’t. So, in Watchmen they implied Comedian killed Kennedy. In this mini they say he didn’t… oh wait, there is more the one Kennedy, isn’t there?

(This IS what happened, best as I can tell, just with someone else as triggerman.)

AVENGERS #10 (Jonathan Hickman / Mike Deodato / Frank Martin) Marvel

This is probably lower than it deserves to be, but I am kind of annoyed that ONCE AGAIN the Canadian heroes are used as a Worf, killed off just so the threat looks big enough to challenge the Avengers.

Alos, finding out what Validator said was a real let-down.

FANTASTIC FOUR #7 (Fraction / Bagley / Hennessy / Mounts) Marvel

Wait… did this book make sense at all? Why did they need to save Blastaar? Did I miss something?

Overall, this book is going nowhere.

Dropped.

FF #6 (Matt Fraction / Joe Quinones / Laura Allred) Marvel

See the last comment on the Fantastic Four review.

Marvel made it easier on me by not having Mike Allred do the art this issue. I like the characters… but they never really do anything.

Dropped.

JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK #19 (Lemire / Fawkes / Janin / Cifuentes) DC

The cover didn’t mean anything… but it sure looks cool. I am referring to the Swamp Thing house on the fold-out. Nice. (This cover theme month is still turning out to be a whole lot of nothing.)

There WAS a cool reveal in this book, but not until the last page. I have to remind myself that the villain was DC first, despite Vertigo’s excellent co-opting of him.

I like Madame Xanadu, but I like how the other characters are questioning what use she is when she always tells them about things too late.

UNCANNY AVENGERS #7 (Remender / Acuna) Marvel

I am not a fan of the big, over-powered space villains, bit knowing that Kang is behind it helps. What slots it this high is the character interplay. That ‘real’ Avengers crack by Wasp was a little petty… which is good. In fact, I liked all the character work in this one. The art is really good, too. Much better than Cassaday.

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #2 (Bendis / McNiven / Pichelli / Dell / Ponsor) Marvel

I have been ready to not like this book. Space stuff isn’t my thing. After an excellent zero issue, #1 wasn’t great. Then cam ethis one.

The plot isn’t grabbing me… but the characters are great! Rocket Racoon is awesome! Plus, is Sara Pichelli taking over for Steve McNiven? I like McNiven, but I like Pichelli even more!

So far, so good.

UNCANNY X-MEN #5 (Bendis / Irving) Marvel

So it seemed that all of the ex-Phoenix hosts had their powers changed except for Magik, right? Not so fast.

Magik’s powers have also been affected, and her powers mean a lot more than ray beams and twisting metal.

Dormmamu will likely be the least of their problems. There will be hell to pay…

Fraser Irving is the perfect artist for this story. His Limbo is perfectly nightmarish.

NEW AVENGERS #5 (Jonathan Hickman / Steve Epting / Rick Magyar / Frank D’Armata) Marvel

How do you get past Hickman’s circuitous, non-rational storytelling? Have an issue that involves on conversation with flashbacks. This issue works a lot better than previous ones have.

The Black Swan’s background was interesting, as was her dismissal of Dr. Strange – which tells me that magic is going to be crucial in saving the day. It will be the one factor that the Black Swan has not included in her calculations.

And who is the best suited to understand the balance of science and magic? Where are they going next issue?

THE MASSIVE #11 (Brian Wood / Declan Shalvey / Jordie Bellaire) Dark Horse

First off, I have been very critical of Shalvey’s work in the past, over on Thunderbolts. His attempt to fit with the style on The Massive is much more successful. It didn’t feel jarring at all.

Some important stuff happened here – the biggest of which is Lars learning about Callum’s condition. They also lost the helicopter and yet another crewman… the hard way, this time.

Plus sharks. Sharks are cool, right? And after seeing the Megalodon, I wonder when the Giant Octopus will show up. A Massive / Great Pacific crossover?

One thing though… swimming with the sharks when they are so hungry that they will jump out of the ocean to grab food on land?

Stupid.

THE UNWRITTEN #48 (Mike Carey / Peter Gross) Vertigo

From Hell to Hell? Why not? There should be as many version so fHell as there are people who have written about it. This isn’t Dante’s version, unless it is an altered one, since the devil is free.

Paulie learning his real origins should be interesting, as was Lizzie’s masquerade.

YOUNG AVENGERS #4 (Gillen / McKelvie / Norton / Wilson) Marvel

Is there a more fun book out this week? I say thee nay! Look at the design sense that went into this, from the cover, to the Noh-Varr attack scene. Beautiful. Loki is being an ass… and I am not referring to him taking a powder at the end. It is painfully obvious that he will be back. I am talking about him dropping those seeds of doubt into Teddy’s mind. Great stuff.

Marvel Boy is not me favourite character but the rest of the cast is aces.

ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #22 (Bendis / Pichelli / Ponsor) Marvel

I guess Sara Pichelli is going to GoG, since they have announced she is leaving here. That’s okay, David Marquez is great too.

This book is… whoa.

So Miles’ identity is now known by Maria Hill. It was also known by his mother but…

Are they going to slowly turn him into Peter. I liked Miles’ mother so it is a loss… and you can argue that it is a bit of a ‘Girlfriend in a Refrigerator’, but the whole thing is going to tear Miles’ world apart. Trauma, despair and heartbreak make for good fiction.

Advertisements

2013 Reading List

April 24, 2013
Leave a Comment

added, a fantastic anthology of contemporary black Canadian poetry. A number of my friends are in this.

2013 in BOOKS

The Great Black North, edited by Valerie Mason-John & Kevan Anthony Cameron
Language Myths, edited by Laurie Bauer & Peter Trudgill
Tomy Bewick, My Mouth Hurts Too Much To Fight You.
Langston Hughes, The Ways of White Folks

2013 in Comic Collections

Uncanny X-Men: From the Ashes
X-Men: The Fall of the Mutants
Richard Stark’s Parker Vol 1: The Hunter by Darwyn Cooke
New Mutants Classic Vol. 1


Posted in Uncategorized

Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Wonder Woman #19

April 21, 2013
Leave a Comment

Wonder-Woman_19

Big surprise at the #1 spot this week.

Maybe I am just in a good mood because I did really well at the Capital Slam semi-finals last night and made the finals. Time to get to work!

Starting at the weakest.

BATWOMAN #19 (J.H. Williams III / W.Haden Blackman / Trevor McCarthy) DC

So, the DC cover gimmick where it is supposed to reveal some big surprise? Did nobody tell Williams that?

I really should drop this comic. I like the character. I like the concept. I like to support diversity in comics.

But I prefer comics to be somewhat coherent. This isn’t. And the art is bad.

Sigh.

CAPTAIN MARVEL #12 (DeConnick / Sebela / Andrade / Bellaire) Marvel

I like this comic more, but this is still just a big fight scene. Interspersing the medical talk helped a bit, but not enough.

So, she ‘caught’ something now? I guess that makes sense because that way she can find a cure, go back to being her old heroic self, and feel bad about Helen Cobb. I get it.

It looks like they are going to try a more ‘standard’ artist starting next issue. We’ll see how that plays.

AGE OF ULTRON #6 (Bendis / Peterson / Pacheco / Martinez) Marvel

What really puts that book down this low is the art. It just wasn’t very good. The past Pacheco art is a lot better than the Peterson art… but nether really wowed me.

The end wasn’t shocking at all and the announcement of an upcoming book called Avengers A.I. has already spoiled that this ‘shock’ doesn’t stick around so, there is that.

The Age of Ultron spin-off this week was way better.

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #8 (Dan Slott / Huberto Ramos / Hector Olazaba / Edgar Delgado) Marvel

The scenes with the Avengers were not great. The cool big fight scene that was expected just didn’t happen and then their ‘scan’ was pretty weak. The stuff with Cardiac was a lot better and Otto’s feelings about being a hero were an interesting evolution.

They have teased that something big happens in issue #9. I think that is it for that Peter echo, cementing Otto’s place. (Of course, I still think Peter WILL be back, but not just yet.)

REVIVAL #9 (Tim Seeley / Mike Norton) Image

Ruthanne’s complaint is that the book doesn’t seem to be going anywhere, and that is a fair assessment, but I still like it.

I actually don’t know what else to say with this one.

THIEF OF THIEVES #13 (Kirkman / Asmus / Martinbrough / Serrano ) Image

This is another one I like more than Ruthanne does. I dig the cinematic feel of it. There are always twists but they don’t feel contrived. This issue marks the end of the Asmus arc but it also sets up the Andy Diggle arc that follows.

The one real criticism I have is that I wonder if EVERY arc is going to be about how someone manipulates him into stealing for them and how he turns the tables.

DAREDEVIL #25 (Waid / Samnee / Rodriguez) Marvel

This is an interesting take on the Daredevil fight scene. I love Chris Samnee’s art normally, so it feels weird criticizing him, but it felt like we were being TOLD that the fight was brutal, rather than seeing it. I recall when Waid made comments about how busted up Matt was inside, wondering, ‘why?’ It just felt like reading a normal fight scene with a supervillain while being told that it was much more.

DD is a good book, though. I am glad I finally starting buying it.

WOLVERINE AND THE X-MEN #27 AU (Kindt / Medina / Vlasco / Curiel) Marvel

Right off the top, let me say that this book does not deserve to place this high on the list. It is just not THAT good. The art is not great and the writing is nothing special.

SPOILER ALERT FOR THIS AND AGE OF ULTRON

But the CONCEPTS in this book really hit be in my happy place.

Wolverine and Sue Storm just screwed up. BIG time.

Forget the possible fall-out from killing Hank Pym… Sue just made Reed more distrustful and less likely to work with the wider community to keep the world safe.

Meanwhile, Wolverine just created a race of SUPER-Brood that would probably threaten the existence of humankind on the planet. (Think the movie Aliens, let loose on the world).

My only concern is that since this isn’t in the main title, these threads won’t be as important as the death of Pym one (which should also be a big deal) and won’t be touched on as much. I hope I am wrong.

FABLES #128 (Willingham / Buckingham / Pepoy / Leialoha) Vertigo

My concerns about this book have been allayed so far. Snow White was awesome. Brute force is clearly not going to win the day (in fact, wait until Bigby hears what he just did to his wife). Rose Red rose (ahem) to the occasion. The witches are DOING something.

I feel more comfortable that Snow will save herself and that is what I want to see.

WONDER WOMAN #19 (Azzarello / Sudzuka / Akins / Green) DC

WW is #1? Wow. I have not been liking the book that much lately, so what made is so great this time? Cliff Chiang isn’t even on art!

Oh, I how I enjoyed this book. Let me count the ways.

The Apollo stuff was okay and the Poseidon stuff didn’t do it for me… but the rest!

Let’s start with the naming sequence. They start with the Brit names. Diana suggests Steve and everyone gives her a look (that is almost a 4th-wall sequence). War shows where his head is at. Hera looking at the baby and the effect that has on her. Then, Zeke! Orion’s idea of what the name sounds like is awesome! What a great name!

The mod-WW semi-easter egg.

The kiss.

The balls.

The punch.

The UGLY Orion!

This book was FULL of great bits.


2013 Reading List

April 13, 2013
Leave a Comment

A little x-nostalgia

2013 in BOOKS

Language Myths, edited by Laurie Bauer & Peter Trudgill
Tomy Bewick, My Mouth Hurts Too Much To Fight You.
Langston Hughes, The Ways of White Folks

2013 in Comic Collections

Uncanny X-Men: From the Ashes
X-Men: The Fall of the Mutants
Richard Stark’s Parker Vol 1: The Hunter by Darwyn Cooke
New Mutants Classic Vol. 1


Posted in Uncategorized

Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Hawkeye #9

April 11, 2013
Leave a Comment

The second week in a row where I have no real complaints about any of the books I read.

Have I gone soft in my old age?

Starting at the weakest…

AVENGERS #9 (Hickman / Weaver / Deodato / Ponsor) Marvel

Hickman sometimes seems to have no idea how to tell a story… but the story he is TRYING to tell seeps through.

Oh wait… I said I wasn’t complaining. You got me.

I find those gene bombs, or whatever they are called, to be suddenly interesting. Do you see what was being formed there? It was a uni-mind. That is pretty cool.
I just hope they don’t figure out how to turn Starbrand into a hero. One Sentry was plenty.

ROCKETEER: HOLLYWOOD HORROR #3 (Roger Langridge / J.Bone) IDW

I feel like I am supposed to recognize a whole bunch of people in this issue, and I don’t. Like… isn’t that narrater supposed to be Groucho Marx? I thought os, but he doesn’t look like him at all. Hmmm.

I like how they are showing that it isn’t so easy to just make more of those rocket packs.

Bridge issue.

AVENGERS ASSEMBLE #14AU (Ewing / Guice / Palmer / D’Armata) Marvel

So, I realized what Marvel has done. There have been a couple of these AU books that I bought, thinking they were part of the regular title. They aren’t. It is a bait and switch. They are really stand alone comics that they have stuck in using SIMILAR Numbering from the regular books to convince people to buy them.

That is kind of slimy.

But I would have bought them anyway… and been disappointed. That is, until this issue. The Fantastic Four and Superior Spider-Man were lame comics trying to fix stupid continuity problems. This one is instead giving us back story and showing what it was like when the Ultrons sudden;y took over. Much better.
Plus, any Avengers book with Tom Palmer on inks gets a thumbs up from me!

FANTASTIC FOUR #6 (Matt Fraction / Mark Bagley / Mark Farmer / Paul Mounts) Marvel

This is the real #6. It is good issue, moving the story along nicely. My only problem is that whenever you let the Franklin genie out of its bottle, it is hard to get it back inside.

Oh, and didn’t they just execute Blastaar? That doesn’t seem like them.

UNCANNY AVENGERS #6 (Rick Remender / Daniel Acuna) Marvel

This was the best issue of this title yet, I think. A brash Thor and a way of getting certain new powers in the hands of the greatest Avengers villain of all time.

Well, maybe the second greatest. Third if you count the Masters of Evil as one thing.

UNCANNY X-MEN #4 (Bendis / Bachalo / Townsend) Marvel

This issue had a cool premise… what else was going on during the conversation between the two X-teams? The interplay between Emma and the Frostlings was well done… but I actually think she should want them to stay where Jean is. Maybe since her powers are a little messed up, she needs them handy.
The reveal was poorly handled. It was poorly NOT handles in the previous X-issue and now it was poorly handled here. It makes sense but we are given none of it… just a cold reveal that isn’t even the cliffhanger. They should have revealed it last week.

AGE OF ULTRON #5 (Bendis / Hitch / Neary / Mounts) Marvel

Now we are getting somewhere. I have liked the mini a certain amount, but now things are going to start hitting the fan. I like that the heroes are being proactive and while I think they are wrong to do so, I really hope Logan’s team succeeds. I want to see what happens.

I bet that Pym has saved the earth at least once, no?

SAUCER COUNTRY #14 (Paul COrnell / Ryan Kelly) Vertigo

Cancelled right when it is getting good. I have already heard that Cornell and Kelly are planning to continue the comic elsewhere. I woudl certainly buy Saucer Country from Image or Dark horse (or IDW or…)

I’m just saying.

SAGA #12 (Brian K. Vaughan / Fiona Staples) Image

So this issue had some controversy. Get over it.

This is the second issue of Saga that did not win comic of the week for me, but that is because I love the Hawkeye issue so much.

Wonderful interplay between the Prince and Heist. You really can see each side and what motivates them.

One thing is certain, there are no ‘good guys’ in the war.

HAWKEYE #9 (Fraction / Aja / Hollingsworth) Marvel

This comic was amazing. It had a little of that time jumping thing that can be confusing but if you can follow along with Pulp Fiction, you can follow this.
Everything that made last issue seem less than perfect was here this time. Everything that made Clint seem like a bit of an ass was delved into here… but boy, did he screw up with Jessica. Big time.

And then the end… no!

Great comic.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Animal Man #19

April 7, 2013
Leave a Comment

Normally when I start these columns, I start by complaining. “This is why I didn’t like this book.” “This is why I am thinking about dropping…”

Not so much this week. I actually liked every book I got.

Good week!

Starting at the (relatively) weakest…

DIAL H #11 (China Mieville / Alberto Ponticelli / Dan Green) DC

This was the first DC book I read with one of those “WTF” covers… and it wasn’t really because they had long ago spoiled that Nelson was going to dial up the Flash. I guess this crossed over with the Flash’s book, but I don’t buy that one.

Nelson was a bit of a jerk here. No wait, he was a HUGE jerk… but that doesn’t bother me because it came across as real. He freaked out.

The accusations of sexual assault, on the other hand, are kind of a big deal. It is downplayed a little bit due to the ‘gender-reversal’ but it still needs to be dealt with.

The ONLY thing that I didn’t really like is the reminder that this book is part of the main DC Universe. This is where DC’s insistence that none of these books can be Vertigo or whatever really hurts them.

SNAPSHOT #3 (Andy Diggle / Jock) Image

This almost seems like a completely different book than the first two issues, but I like where it went. If there was a supernatural element it would almost feel like an X-Files, but instead… this is pretty messed up but still based (loosely) in reality.

Would these people think that getting to that police car is going to help at this point? Wouldn’t the police have called this in? Won’t there be an investigation of the facility?

GREAT PACIFIC #6 (Joe Harris / Martin Morazzo) Image

Wait… how does that little rod thing work? I thought it turned garbage into water… not controlled garbage like some sort of waster management green lantern ring.

Here we finally see how this new country can exist. You have to be needed and he figured out a way to be needed.

I liked Chas’ reaction to the Navy’s confrontation of the octopus.

It feels like next issue wills tart the next phase of the book. I’m looking forward to it.

AGE OF ULTRON #4 (Bendis / Hitch / Neary / Mounts) Marvel

Wait, what?

That is a pretty awesome concept. Ultron is controlling the world from the future. I wonder if he teamed up with anyone, or if he came up with the technology on his own (which is possible, considering how many people have created it). I assume Doc Doom’s time square is going to come into play.

I LOVE that the answer once time travel comes into play ISN’T “let’s go to the future and fight him”, but rather “let’s go into the past and stop this from happening”.

Bendis has two current Marvel books dealing with time travel now. The other one is also out this week.

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #7 (Dan Slott / Humberto Ramos / Victor Olazaba / Edgar Delgado) Marvel

Cardiac is pretty lame… always has been… but this issue was pretty good. I like that the Avengers have figured out that he isn’t really Spider-Man. I also like that Peter is learning from the way Otto handles things. Well, the non-over-the-top violent things.

Oh, and I love Ramos’ art.

Oh, and Slott is right. Otto Reply is a better letters page name than ‘Sup Spider-Man.

ALL-NEW X-MEN #10 (Bendis / Immonen / Von Grawbadger / Gracia) Marvel

So now we get Cyclops’ side of the argument. He is wrong, but that doesn’t mean he can’t have a side and it doesn’t mean he wouldn’t have people agreeing with him.

My pet peeve this issue is the last page. What a cheap ending. That is not how you get people to buy the next issue. SHOW the person and don’t give their reasoning until the next issue.

Oh well. I was buying it anyway because I think this book is great.

SWAMP THING #19 (Charles Soule / Kano) DC

Scott Snyder is off the book and replaced by Charles Soule, who I am completely unfamiliar with. Based on this issue, though, he is a good fit! This felt like a Swamp Thing book! A pre-Vertigo version, rather than post-Vertigo version. The WTF was not exactly a big deal (none of the three I got this week were), but the story itself was pretty solid. What happens when an elemental force gets scared?

I like Kano’s art on this. I like Yanick Paquette better, but this works too.

Good book. It is a big upgrade over the Rotworld story.

FAIREST #14 (Bill Willingham / Barry Kitson / Inaki Miranda) Vertigo

On paper, this would look pretty bad. Willingham doing a story on a female Fable and it is all about her trying to get a date? Told from the point of view of a male character (again)?

In practice, though, this was a really good comic. It was fun, while still having that dark underbelly at the end.

ANIMAL MAN #19 (Jeff Lemire / Steve Pugh) DC

Speaking of a comic improved by leaving Rotworld… Animal Man didn’t have a creative change, but the tone change is incredibly powerful. Now that they are no longer on the run, and with the impact of Cliff’s death, Ellen and Buddy can get back to normal.

Well, they can’t actually.

Ellen was incredibly well written in here. She is wrong, as we know, but there is not a single ounce of unbelievability here. She wants out of Buddy’s crazy world and is taking Maxine with her.

But she can’t. Things don’t work that way and that is what makes this even more tragic.

Meanwhile, much like in Swamp THing, Buddy is turned back into the old style of Animal Man. Animal powers instead of… red powers? Will those crazy vein marks be gone too?