Rusty's World

Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Sandman Overture #2

April 5, 2014
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sandmanoverture2

Pretty big week with some pretty good comics. A couple of clunkers and a stop though.

Starting at the bottom…

SURVIVE #1 (Bendis / Quinones / Beredo) Marvel

I originally didn’t order this but I figured with Bendis writing it and using it as a segue into the New Miles book and the new Ultimates book… but no. This was pretty bad. A bunch of scenes of people saying…. hey, there is a new status quo! But let’s not talk about it too much because we are just going to talk about it again when each of the new books launches!

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #30 (Slott / Gage / Camuncoli / Dell / Fabela) Marvel

You have GOT to be kidding me! That was awful and people have been talking about how great it was. THAT is how you bring him back? THAT?

It is pretty bad when a fan theory on Bleeding Cool is ten times better than what the writer comes up with.

Dan Slott… this was terrible. Zero creativity and terrible characterization.

If I wasn’t generally enjoying the book, I would drop it now.

Looking forward to the return of Amazing…

AMAZING X-MEN #5 (Aaron / McGuinness / Vines / Gracia) Marvel

Not THIS Amazing…

Yeah. I bought this book because I really like Nightcrawler. But this wasn’t very good, overall. The resurrection was cheesy. Fighting pirates in hell or whatever… yeah. Not for me. Now Nightcrawler is getting his own boo, so this one is dropped.

DEAD BOY DETECTIVES #4 (Toby Litt / Mark Buckingham / Gary Erskine) Vertigo

Ruthanne and I chatted about this and decided not to drop it. I really like the characters – including Crystal. This story was pretty bad, though. They took the classic Gaiman issue and turned into a funhouse parody of itself. What made the boarding school so chilling is that it was so NORMAL. Not this.

Hopefully the book gets better.

AVENGERS #27 (Hickman / Larroca / Martin) Marvel

I am enjoying this evil Avengers story more than any of the Hickman run so far (damning with faint praise). I don’t like the art (especially the AIM costumes and Captain Marvel’s odd look), but the story works for me. I wish the scene on the cover actually happened because I like that era of Super-Adaptoid. There has obviously been a Hulk bait-and-switch.

Yeah. Not bad.

SILVER SURFER #1 (Dan Slott / Michael Allred / Laura Allred) Marvel

I was a little disappointed in this book only because my expectations were so high. This book was all set-up with no pay-off. I would say it is ‘written for the trade’, so to speak.

That’s okay. I’m along for the ride.

FABLES #139 (Bill Willingham / Steve Leialoha) Vertigo

Wait, what happened to the Knights story? This is cute and everything, but I was enjoying the other one. Oh well. I guess Bucky needed a break.

This appears to be the kick-off to the eventual demise of this book. I guess that is because they are going back to the Homelands.

Hands up… who thinks Danny Boy is a double crosser?

UNCANNY AVENGERS #18 (Rick Remender / Daniel Acuna) Marvel

Decent alt-reality type story, like the old X-Men ones. They do a good job setting up the new status quo while also giving us the tip-off about how everything is going to get fixed. Pretty nice last page where we get a nice reveal.

THE MASSIVE #21 (Brian Wood / Garry Brown / Jordie Bellaire) Dark Horse

Nice double cross. Nice cast addition. Nice plot motion…

Though I do wish that the forward motion of the plot wasn’t tied in to this super-Mary thing. I am not a fan of that aspect of the story.

Oh well. Looks like it is entrenched. Better get used to it.

BRILLIANT #5 (Bendis / Bagley) Icon

I was ready to drop this. When I saw it came out (after what, a year?), I said to myself that if this wasn’t really good, I wasn’t waiting around for issue 6.

Thing is, it was really good.

The various reactions tot he exposure of powers was well done. You had fear. Fascination. Greed. The whole thing.

Hopefully the next issue comes out in a little more timely fashion…

HAWKEYE #18 (Fraction / Wu / Hollingsworth) Marvel

I heard a rumour that this book is ending… does anyone know if that is true? I hope not.

The Kate in L.A. stories aren’t quite as good as the Clint in NYC ones. Kate is every bit as interesting a character, but not having Aja hurts… despite Wu being quite talented.

But now it seems that these seemingly disparate threads are coming together! Oh boy!

(Of course, Clint still appears to be bleeding out on his apartment floor…)

MIRACLEMAN #4 (Alan Moore / Alan Davis / Garry Leach) Marvel

Man, this book is good. I actually have the old traceback of A Dream of Flying, which is now really hard to get. So I have read these issues but I am coming up to the end of what I have.

How often are reprints some of the best comics coming out?

The Warpsmith stuff doesn’t do it for me, though. Oh well.

SANDMAN OVERTURE #2 (Neil Gaiman / J.H. Williams III) Vertigo

Wow. This was one beautiful book. Beautifully written. Beautifully drawn. If issue 1 brought us back into the world of Sandman, this issue made it feel like we had never left.

Absolutely mind-blowing.

If you are NOT reading this book, I hope it is only because you are waiting for the collection.

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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: Uncanny X-Men #16

January 19, 2014
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uncanny xmen 16

A very solid week. A good number of really good reads.

Starting at the weakest.

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN: INHUMANITY #1 (Gage / Hans) Marvel

Does Christos Gage READ Superior Spider-Man? This wasn’t even the same character. At all.

ALL-NEW X-MEN #21 (Bendis / Peterson / Anderson / Silva) Marvel

The book jus didn’t flow. Things happened but they didn’t feel like one page moved to the next. The art was pretty suspect as well. Not awful but not very strong.

MIRACLEMAN #1 (Moore / Leach / Anglo / Lawrence / Conroy) Marvel

I have been really looking forward to this, and the Moore / Leach parts were very solid, though not deep enough to warrant a higher spot.

Unfortunately I also had to pay for a bunch of other filler. The old Mick Anglo pages were pretty bad and the sketches and interview etc. should have been on a website for free, to padding out a $6 comic.

ASTRO CITY #8 (Busiek / Anderson / Ross / Sinclair / Comicraft) Vertigo

Astro City is a great book. It works better with shorter stories, though, and this is at least a three parter and this is a middle part. A fun little Confessor / Samaritan tussle worked. Good book, but not a stand-out this week.

DAREDEVIL #35 (Waid / Samnee / Rodriguez) Marvel

Daredevil is really consistent. I was wrong about Foggy last issue and the way the Serpents get Matt to defend their guy works… though he probably would have done it anyway.

AMAZING X-MEN #3 (Aaron / McGuiness / Vines / Gracia) Marvel

Beast makes this book. He is great in here.

Do any of you read Bleeding Cool?

On Bleeding Cool they mock Beast for saying he is atheist (though in this one he says agnostic). They say it is ridiculous for someone who has met gods and seen heaven and hell to say such thing.

Bull.

He explains it perfectly well here. Beast may have been to ‘heaven’ and ‘hell’ but he has also been to other dimensions and worlds that don’t claim any divine status. He has no reason to think this is any different, just with delusions of grandeur.

I prefer when my comics don’t try to make some sort of definitive statement about religious accuracy. To be more specific, I prefer when EVERYTHING works, no matter what your perspective. It make setter stories.

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #25 (Slott / Gage / Ramos / Olazaba / Delgado) Marvel

Until the end, this book would have been much lower. I didm’t like the ‘Flash is dying’ thing because it rues the suspense. However, the end was great. Otto using the opportunity to try and fix his rep was genius.

Nobody falling for it was even better.

UNCANNY X-MEN #16 (Bendis / Bachalo / Townsend) Marvel

Magneto meets Mystique and her new ‘brotherhood’.

And he kicks their asses.

Sweet.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Amazing Spider-Man #700.1

December 7, 2013
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amazing-spider-man-700-1-cover

Well, I am really sick. I also have a slam tonight that I am really not up to going to… but the show must go on and I have all the slam stuff. I am certainly not performing or hosting or anything.

Starting at the weakest…

MARVEL KNIGHTS: SPIDER-MAN #3 (Matt Kindt / Marco Rudy / Val Staples) Marvel

Sigh. It was a bit better for one issue. Now it is back to just begin a series of pin-up pages (that are really well done). This is not a story.

INHUMANITY#1 (Fraction / Coipel / Morales / Martin) Marvel

Talk about disappointing. I am a big fan of Matt Fraction. I liked what I heard about this series and the position it is meant to hold in the Marvel Universe.

But this was really lame. This whole issue did nothing more than take a full comic to update what happened as one of the sub-plots in Infinity. (Admittedly the best sub-plot.) Nothing was advanced other than the disappointing and illogical death of a cast member.

Here is hoping it gets better.

TRILLIUM #5 (Jeff Lemire) Vertigo

Congrats to Jeff Lemire for continuing to try and push the envelope of the storytelling medium. On the other hand, there is a reason why comics are printed the way they are. Some of what he has tried is just annoying to read. This falls into that category (though not as bad as the one you had to flip over constantly.

The story is interesting but… not THAT interesting.

GREAT PACIFIC #12 (Joe Harris / Martin Morazzo) Image

They are finally dealing with the elephant in the room. If Chas has the tech to CLEAN UP the mess in the ocean, why is he not doing it?

Hiatus now?

SWAMP THING #26 (Charles Soule / Jesus Saiz) DC

I almost missed this as it wasn’t put in my box by mistake. That would have been a shame as Soule is really doing a great job on Swamp Thing… who doesn’t appear in this comic. I LOVE Seeder. Woodrue never got the position he deserved after being such an important part of the most important Swamp Thing comic ever. It is nice that he is finally getting his due.

THE MOVEMENT #7 (Gail Simone / Freddie Williams II) DC

Is this going to be one of those books where actions have real consequences? I don’t believe Mous wis actually dead and Burden is going to save Vengeance Moth, but at what cost.

This is a hit-and-miss book, bu still a solid read overall.

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #23 (Slott / Gage / Ramos / Olazaba / Delgado) Marvel

Is there still a Venom book or is it cancelled? I am pretending there isn’t one because if there is, we know none of this can actually stick. Is Venom going to infect someone else? Is Flash free from it, but with new legs?

Hey, why can’t Miguel be called Miguel?

AMAZING X-MEN #2 (Jason Aaron / Ed McGuiness) Marvel

The second issue of the new, FUN X-Men book is here and everybody is in… Hell? Wheee?

It is fun, actually. The team is split and facing overwhelming odds. Dead allies and a mysterious reunion in the offing.

Bamf!

FAIREST #21 (Marc Andreyko / Shawn McManus) Vertigo

One thing stopped this book from being higher on the list – did Cinderella really NEED to do that scene in her underwear? It wasn’t as bad as it could have been either since McManus is not a standard T&A artist (good!)

Having said all that, I really like the Cinderella stories. I also prefer Andreyko to Willingham on this book (though I am happy with Bill W. on Fables).

I really liked the panel with the Huntsman and Crispin. I can’t recall, was that previously established?

AVENGERS ANNUAL #1 (Immonen / Lafuente / Beredo) Marvel

This book was good fun. The message was there, but not very heavy-handed. The characters were light-hearted and there was a good dose of ‘do I really sound like that’.

What stopped THIS book rom begin higher is that it made me think of the books I have read before that did a better job of the ‘lonely Christmas’ theme. Do you recall that Peter David issue of Peter Parker where Peter (lots of Peters) thought Aunt May didn’t want him to come for Christmas?

YOUNG AVENGERS #13 (Gillen / McKelvie / Thompson / Norton / Wilson) Marvel

I thought this was the last issue, but I guess there is another one.

This is where you need a scorecard to keep up with the twists and counter-twists. SO Loki is a bad guy? Or good guy? Or in between? Billy saved the day but then didn’t. Mother is defeated. No, I think we are good with that one.

Hey, does this mean Kate can go back to NYC in the Hawkeye book?

Speaking of Kate… Noh-Varr really blew that one. (Good.)

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #700.1 (Morrell / Janson / Buccellato) Marvel

Let me say upfront that I really like the Superior Spider-Man book. I like it quite a bit, actually.

That doesn’t mean that I don’t miss Peter Parker. It is nice to see classic Spidey in action. (Though the idea that nobody needs him because of a massive snowfall doesn’t really make sense…)

Let’s wrap up the Octo-Spidey stores ion and bring back the original. (I had hope this was going to be that, but clearly not.)


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Swamp Thing #25

November 14, 2013
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265px-Swamp_Thing_Vol_5-25_Cover-1_Teaser

This actually for last week as I was away at the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word so didn’t get my comics until I got back.

It wasn’t a great week, honestly. Some okay books, but not very many.

MARVEL KNIGHTS: SPIDER-MAN #2 (Matt Kindt / Marco Rudy / Val Staples) Marvel

What can I say about this comic? It was better than issue #1. That is something, I guess.

I CAN say that after Suicide Squad and this, Matt Kindt is not rating very high on my preferred writers list.

THE MOVEMENT #6 (Gail Simone / Freddie Williams II) DC

So far I like the IDEA of this book more than the book itself. The art hurts it, but the biggest problem is that it seems to meander. It is character-based more than plot-based, which definitely an work but… we’ll see. It isn’t in danger of me dropping it yet.

TRILLIUM #4 (Jeff Lemire) Vertigo

Now HERE is an example of a book that is really hurt by its art. Jeff Lemire is a very good writer, but his art is distracting from the story. It really hurts my enthusiasm for the book.

MIGHTY AVENGERS #3 (Ewing / Land / Leisten / D’Armata) Marvel

There have been places where I have spoken out against Blue Marvel. I am not a fan of incredibly over-powered character. I hated the Sentry, for example. Having said that, Adam sure worked in this issue. In fact, they ALL worked well in this issue. Luke’s speech at the end was a perfect capstone. This very well could be the Avengers book that succeeds where the others are generally failing… making you care about the characters. Oh, and the identity of Spider Hero has been spoiled… I won’t reveal it here but… interesting. I sure didn’t guess it, and I am not sure of I like it. Could be worse, that’s for sure.

AMAZING X-MEN #1 (Jason Aaron / Ed McGuiness) Marvel

Another entertaining X-Book? It seems that the X-books are the place to be now that Marvel has done so much damage to the Avengers franchise. This book is just fun – straight up. The sexual innuendo between Wolverine and Storm didn’t really work, but the rest was top-notch. You can pretty much buy any marvel book with X in the title without going wrong. (Well, maybe not that Wolverine & the X-Men one…)

SWAMP THING #25 (Charles Soule / Jesus Saiz) DC

Swamp Thing vs Seeder for the right to be the avatar of the Green! What could be better?

This was a great issue with an interesting fight (not much of a punch ’em up, but why would it be?), interesting philosophical dilemmas and a surprise ending!

Good comic!