Rusty's World

Big Change on Wonder Woman

February 26, 2014
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Well, it seems that the Brian Azzarello/Cliff Chiang run on WW is ending.

While the storyline has gone on too long, just compare it to Supes/WW to show how WW COULD be treated. Disappointing.

Well, that depends who they replace them with.

If they get a big name creator, doesn’t that mean they are dedicated to the character?

David Finch is a good artist… kind of. He is a big name, definitely.

Will he treat WW well?

Sigh.

Back to WW T&A.

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Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Amazing X-Men #4

February 25, 2014
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amazing x-men4

A little late this week due to a crazy weekend. There are a few books on this list that actually came out the week before, but my comic store had a box go missing temporarily. Better late than never!

Starting at the weakest.

GREAT PACIFIC #13 (Joe Harris / Martin Morazzo) Image

Hmmm… this is kind of turning into a ‘wandering’ comic. The concept is fairly solid, but the plot is not.

You know, I think that is it for me. Consider the book dropped.

AVENGERS WORLD #3 (Hickman / Spencer / Caselli / Martin) Marvel

Uh… the whole issue for that? Zero plot advancement. Zero character advancement. Zero anything.

I was THAT close to dropping this book after reading this issue. It better get better.

UNWRITTEN APOCOLYPSE #2 (Mike Carey / Peter Gross) Vertigo

The first issue was great. The second issue was not. Guess how he came back? They concentrated on a story that he was in where he came back.

Yeah, okay. That part was pretty much a given… but that’s all this issue was.

X-MEN #11 (Wood / Anka / Mann) Marvel

My problem with this issue was the X-Men figuring out the plan. There was no reason for them to do so. It was a little too convenient. The Sentinel fight was decent, but that is about it. This isn’t a bad book but this wasn’t a strong issue.

FABLES #138 (Bill Willingham / Russ Braun) Vertigo

An interesting little story about Gepetto that sets him as a resurgent bad guy down the line. I assume that he will be part of the big final story as Willingham has announced that he is going to wrap up Fables in the not-to-distant future.

ANIMAL MAN #28 (Jeff Lemire / Rafael Albuquerque) DC

This issue seemed really rushed, but with the book wrapping up, I guess they had no choice. Lemire wants to go and start making some real coin writing Justice League instead of a low seller like Animal Man. Too bad. This book used to be quite good and is still decent.

WONDER WOMAN #28 (Brian Azzarello / Cliff Chiang) DC

A decent issue. Dio has turned out to be more interesting than expected. The Apollo / Firstborn fight was pretty well down, so far. Looks like a big, multi-god blowout is in the offing.

UNCANNY X-MEN #17 (Bendis / Bachalo / Townsend) Marvel

Asa character issue, this was very solid. It is unfortunate that the plot point moving forward is so ridiculous, but the story as a whole was good.

So, what was with Eva? What happened?

That part interests me a lot more than Hijack’s firing.

DAREDEVIL #36 (Waid / Samnee / Rodriguez) Marvel

Here is the problem with multiple writers spanning years of a comic. Everyone knows who DD is! Then the comic works hard to turn that around so DD can have a secret identity again. Now everyone knows who DD is again!

Oh well. The writing is good and the art is amazing and I am looking forward to DD in SF.

SHE-HULK #1 (Soule / Pulido / Vicente) Marvel

The success of Hawkeye seems to have opened the door of this type of book. Superior Foes falls into that category as well.

No complaints from me, because I really enjoy a smart, funny book. She-Hulk is the perfect character for this treatment and Soule did a good job. I am less fond of Pulido, but I like the general look of the book… I just don’t like Jen’s faces. Oh well.

I do with I got the Skottie Young cover variant. 🙂

AMAZING X-MEN #4 (Aaron / McGUiness / Vines / Gracia) Marvel

Do you know what made this book so great? The flashbacks. That and the Firestar stuff, but especially the flashbacks. This made you really FEEL how much the characters missed Kurt and that made the reunion scenes work that much better.

I felt like I had seen those scenes before, because they read just like the old Claremont book. Well done.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: All-New X-Men #23

February 13, 2014
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all-new_x-men_23_cover

This was an odd week. First, I got my comics a lot earlier than usual. We are redoing the floors upstairs this weekend and we have been slowly boxing up stuff to get it out of the way so Ruthanne swung by Silver Snail to get some more boxes.

A: They were short a bunch o comics, which are coming in on Friday. I normally would be in on Saturday and get them then, but since we were early…

B: I had cancelled Batman, but still got it. I ordered the coming X-Men Legacy series (starring Nightcrawler and written by Chris Claremont) but got the last issue of the current series by mistake. Oh well. I read it anyway.

Oh, and I never picked up the Guardians of the Galaxy book that crosses over with the X-Men. Not sure I miss it.

Starting at the weakest.

X-MEN LEGACY #24 (Simon Spurrier / Tan Eng Huat / Craig Yeung / Jose Villarrubia) Marvel

Sure I was just coming in for the last issue so it might not make sense but… wow. This was absolutely terrible. This is an absolute mess. It doesn’t surprise me at all that it was cancelled.

If it is better when you read the prior issues, okay. But any comic should be READABLE without knowing every bit of what is going on. This comic wasn’t.

AVENGERS #26 (Hickman / Larocca / Martin) Marvel

The good news is that it was the only really bad book. I liked this one,d despite my general aversion to Hickman. I liked the multiple layers of faux Avengers. I am a big fan of the Super-Adaptoid. Plus, who doesn’t like A.I.M.? I do wish the beehive helmets on the inside of the comic matched the classic design on the cover, though.

BATMAN #28 (Scott Snyder / James Tynion IV / Dustin Nguyen / Derek Fridolfs) DC

So… I cancelled Batman last issue and don’t revet it. But this issue was quite good. But it isn’t REALLY the same comic. It is actually a sneak preview of the new Batman Eternal comic. I think I will keep THIS book cancelled and add Batman Eternal. Bluebird seems pretty great (though I am not a big fan of the gun thing), an dI don’t want to give away any spoilers but the end was pretty great.

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #27 (Slott / Camuncoli / Dell / Fabela) Marvel

Otto vs Green Goblin! (That is SOOOO NOT Osborne!)

GG’s machinations have come to a head and I LOVED that he figured out who Spidey is and I loved that it made him think they could work out a deal and I REALLY LOVED that it didn’t work! Especially WHY it didn’t work!

This is going to be great!

ALL-NEW X-MEN #23 (Bendis / Immonen / Von Grawbadger / Gracia) Marvel

I was ready to not like this book as much after missing the Guardians of the Galaxy book that came before it.

But I couldn’t. This comic was just TOO great! Iceman and Rocket Racoon were just too…. yeah, great. I don’t like most of the GoG, but RR and Groot are tops. Corsair showing up to meet his son… yes. I just read today that they are going to have their own spin-off comic. I’ll probably give that a go.

Oh, and the Shiar are close to figuring out that who they put on trial LAST time was NOT Jean Grey.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Mighty Avengers #6

February 9, 2014
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MAvengers 6

A strong week… with a couple disappointments.

Starting at the weakest…

MARVEL KNIGHTS: SPIDER-MAN #5 (Matt Kindt / Marco Rudy / Val Staples) Marvel

I should have stopped buying this after issue #1. What a terrible, terrible comic. The thing is, the art is very good… in a vacuum. It just doesn’t illustrate the story well. And I am not totally convinced that there is a story there to illustrate. Yeah. Terrible.

TRILLIUM #6 (Jeff Lemire) Vertigo

Just when I thought this book couldn’t get more annoying. I barely even read a couple of pages because flipping orientation page-to-page (which was already very annoying) was not enough for Lemire. Now he has us flipping back an forth on the same page. I almost think this is a big joke for him and he is laughing about figuring out ways to piss the readers off.

If this was an ongoing, I would drop it now. There are only two more issues though, so I guess I’ll see how it turns out.

LAZARUS #6 (Rucka / Lark / Arcas) Image

Ugh. I like this book in general, but not this issue. The old trope of a woman using her sexuality to distract stupid men while her partners do something nefarious is old hat. This went beyond that. Instead she actually let them have sex with her, when I would argue that her speech made it clear she didn’t really want to. The guards who were taking advantage of the girl (even if she WAS just desperate for food and water…. even more so), were admonished…but that is it.

Yeah. I am not claiming that this is like the infamous rape joke that launched this blog, but it IS cheap writing that adds to the general rape culture.

Not cool.

(In fact, this shows how much I disliked the two comics below it on the list that this book wasn’t last.)

AVENGERS A.I. #9 (Humphries / Araujo / D’Armata) Marvel

I have enjoyed this book, and this issue wasn’t bad… there just wasn’t that much to it. No great Doombot quotes. The revelation that everybody can just do whatever they want in the Diamond makes any battle kind of pointless.

Yeah, there have been better issues… but the America vs rebelling nations analogy was spot-on.

X-MEN #10 (Wood / Anka) Marvel

First off, the art is a big step down from the Dodsons. With all of their faults, they are still very talented artists and this is more… journeyman art. This is a leo a bit of a bridge issue. Not a lot really happens. The reveal of who WILL be joining the villains was pretty interesting.

SWAMP THING #28 (Charles Soule / Javier Pina) DC

Not a bad issue overall, but it was saddled a bit with the origin of Capucine. She has not been an incredibly interesting character and her origin emphasized that. The scenes with the ex-Parliament were better.

FAIREST #23 (Marc Andreyko / Shawn McManus) Vertigo

From the James Bond-esque cover to the addition of Ramayan, this book was pretty solid… but just solid. Again, there seemed to be a lot of ‘bridge’ stuff and the bits with the mice… like what was up with the sex scene at the beginning? He can change back and forth if he says he loves someone? Is that it?

THE MOVEMENT #9 (Gail Simone / Freddie Williams II) DC

An up-tick of this book. Batgirl was a good addition to the mix… the girls’ dinner had just the right amount of tension-easing for Babs to let her guard down enough to get dropped. The fact that she is the daughter of a cop meant that there was no way these two forces would get along.

I am happy to realize that this story does not go into the Batgirl book, which I don’t buy.

BLACK WIDOW #3 (Edmondson / Noto) Marvel

Another strong done-in-one adventure story for Natasha. Phil Noto continues to be amazing and they story’s morality part was telegraphed, but is still worked. I wonder if Natasha realized the big slip Isaiah made there?

Either he set her up, or Edmondson made a huge mistake in the script. In the space of one page, Isaiah went from assuming the job didn’t work out to knowing not only what when down, but why.

SUPERIOR FOES OF SPIDER-MAN #8 (Spencer / Lieber / Rosenberg) Marvel

This is the Hawkeye of villain books. Or something.

The Silvermane vs Shocker fight was brilliant. Boomerang trying to pick somebody up. Big Wheel. BIG WHEEL!

The reveal (to the rest of the team) that Tombstone is Beetle’s daddy.

The Sinister Six has five members… or maybe four.

How did I miss the first six issues?

MS. MARVEL #1 (Wilson / Alphona / Herring) Marvel

This book would have landed a lot lower on the list if I hadn’t read interviews and seen some promo art.

A young, female, Pakistani-American, muslim super-hero headlining her own book.

Yeah. That is kind of a big deal.

They don’t shy away from the cultural differences but she doesn’t come across as a parody. STRONG writing. The art is not as good, but it gets the job done. It isn’t distracting.

Why would it fall lower, then? The last page.

Her first iteration of her powers as wish-fulfillment turns her into a blonde, white lady.

The thing is, I KNOW that isn’t where it is going – but wow. Leaving THAT as the last page cliffhanger with no pay-off?

Bad idea.

Anyone who reads this review, though… trust me. This is NOT where the book is going, based on everything I have read.

MIGHTY AVENGERS #6 (Ewing / Schiti / D’Armata) Marvel

Another great written issue and the art is better! There is so much goo din this issue… Jessica’s concern about being Avengers again… Power Man’s interesting power set… the difference in opinion between Luke and Adam… but more than anything, addressing the comments about Monica’s relaxed hair style… without trying to justify anything. They SEE the concerns and are willing to face them.

YES!

Though I imagine there are many readers who don’t understand the exchange at all, it was very great.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Revival #17

February 1, 2014
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Revival17-cover

Hmmm… not a terrible week but a few book stat a normally love were not as goos as usual. It left room for a nice upset at the top spot.

Starting at the bottom…

INHUMANITY #2 (Fraction / Bradshaw / Fabella) Marvel

Hmmm… when they announced that Matt Fraction was going to be spearheading the new ‘franchise’ for Marvel, that sounded kind of exciting.

Then the first issue came out, and it wasn’t really very good. Then they announced that Fraction had left the project and was replaced by Charles Soule, who I find kind of hit (Swamp Thing) and miss (Superman and Wonder Woman).

Then this issue came out, and it is pretty awful. Bad writing. Bad art. Bad comic.

But, it is still Fraction and it is not the regular artist (this was solicited as a one-shot and was renumbered because nobody ordered it…)

O’kay. I’ll still give Soule’s Inhuman a shot, but it is son a short leash.

THE SAVIORS #2 (James Robinson / J. Bone) Image

The first issue of this was my comic of the week (in a week where I only got two comics), but this issue is nowhere near as good. Alien tries to kill guy for unknown reason. Other guy saves him and gives him an explanation that is… just really generic.

Another possible short leash title.

FABLES #137 (Bill Willingham / Mark Buckingham / Russ Braun) Veritgo

A few good pages and a whole bunch of filler. The first Knights were named and a little bit of forward momentum on the Spratt / Bigby front.

The rest was just an overview of the world and a tip of the hat to the fact that the new North Wind isn’t a little kid anymore.

Not a terrible comic, but it felt like there was very little of substance.

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #26 (Slott / Ramos / Rodriguez / Martin / Lopez / Delgado / Olazaba / Vicente) Marvel

Why so many creators? Because the Peter scenes were by a different creative team than the Otto scenes. That was fine.

Kingsley is turning into one of my favourite villains. He appears to be the Scorpion of Marvel (L5R reference, woo-hah!). Meanwhile, the Green Goblin is most definitely NOT Norman Osborne. The biggest hint this issue was that it was Harry, which makes me think it isn’t.

I don’t know.

THIEF OF THIEVES #19 (Kirkman / Diggle / Martinbrough / Serrano) Image

Solid issue of ToT. I liked the ‘save’ and the counter-save and the arrest. The cheque was brilliant. The team is still out there. The black book that shows his plans within plans were also within plans.

Nice.

MIRACLEMAN #2 (Alan Moore / Garry Leach / Steve Dillon / Alan Davis / Paul Neary / Mick Anglo) Marvel

Yes, I credited Moore. No copyright issues here. The Moore / Leach stuff is really, really good. (Though this time out you have to remind yourself how long this came out BEFORE Kingdom Come.) I still get kind of annoyed that I am paying for so much stuff I have no real interest in. I am not being this book for the 1950’s stories. I barely read them. I have no problem with classic comics… but these aren’t. They are just not that good.

UNCANNY AVENGERS #16 (Remender / McNiven / Dell / Leisten / Martin) Marvel

This book and a really BIG feel to it. The confrontations seemed epic. Captain America and Thor and Wasp epitomize what the Avengers should be. The fights with the separated twins felt important without just being energy thrown back and forth like a lot of the stories that pass for ‘big’ these days.

This is not the best Avengers book going, but it is easily #2.

DEAD BOY DETECTIVES #2 (Toby Litt / Mark Buckingham / Gary Erskine) Vertigo

This book does a lot to give Crystal even more character. It has the drawback of still having the ‘high-tech criminal enterprise’ laid over the classic boarding school… but it has the advantage that this isn’t in the forefront of the issue.

SAGA #18 (Brian K. Vaughan / Fiona Staples) Image

Last issue before the break…

So, what kept this from being #1? It was a really good comic with really good characterization… so what was the problem?

Well, ‘the push’ was ridiculous. Absolutely ridiculous. ‘It’s okay, I knew you could do it!’ when the alternative was pushing her and their baby to their deaths? That is the most idiotic thing I have read in a while. Just awful.

Plus, the sudden jump was jarring.

REVIVAL #17 (Tim Seeley / Mike Norton) Image

While Revival out in a really solid outing this time. It feel silk you know these characters now. As a bonus, no over racist characters this time out! The Weimar vs the skinned (?) guy was riveting, but nowhere near as much as the woods scene between Em and May. Then the little reveal at the end which reminds us that there is still a mystery going on here…