Rusty's World

Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Lazarus #15

February 22, 2015
Leave a Comment

Lazarus_15

More comics that last week, but three of them have reached the end of the line (two for me and another for everybody).

Starting at the weakest…

SHE-HULK #12 (Soule / Pulido / Vicente) Marvel

This is the last issue of She-Hulk and I have enjoyed the series over all but this issue was very unsatisfying. The big reveal was a super lame villain with a magic trench-coat? Jen is controlled and then she isn’t?

This comic ended on a very down note.

MULTIVERSITY: MASTERMEN #1 (Morrison / Lee / Williams / Sinclair) DC

I guess some people were really excited about a Jim Lee issue of Multiversity. I am not a huge Lee fan.

More importantly, the way this comic kicked off really set a sour note. Look! Hitler taking a dump! It is undignified but it is funny because it is Hitler! Let’s drag this out as long as possible!

Uh, no. Plus it didn’t feel like I was going a whole story in this one shot.

Multiversity has been great but this issue was disappointing.

CAPTAIN AMERICA & THE MIGHTY AVENGERS # 5 (Ewing / Coello / Rosenberg) Marvel

Does this feel like the reveal happened too suddenly? DO you think their timetable was accelerated so they would match up with Secret Wars?

Me too.

FABLES #149 (Willingham / Buckingham / Leialoha / Zullo / Loughridge) Vertigo

First off, what is with that cover? The figure work is terrible. It looks like something from a high school art class… and they didn’t get an A. Please, stick with Mark Buckingham if this is the art you are going to get for the cover.

As for the story… it was fine, I guess. It seem alike Willingham is tacking on an excuse for Snow and Red to fight. Red comes across pretty bad, though. “Now you have told me the story, I guess I will have to kill my sister!”

Uh, what? How about no.

BLACK WIDOW #15 (Edmondson / Noto) Marvel

I wasn’t a big fan of ‘Winter Soldier to the rescue’ but I guess it fits his new gig as the Watcher (or whatever he is…). Overall this is a just a good comic but I DO feel like the story is dragging out a bit too long.

SILVER SURFER #9 (Dan Slott / Michael Allred / Laura Allred) Marvel

Ah, human emotions are such fragile things. Dawn rejects Surfer when she finds out he participated in mass (mass, mass, mass) murders but then panics when she thinks he is in trouble. Very believable. Good writing.

And Galactus.

MOON KNIGHT #12 (Brian Wood / Greg Smallwood / Jordie Bellaire) Marvel

This is the last issue I am getting but I expect that there will be Moon Knight trades in my future.

Khonshu is back where he belongs but this story gives a whole greater depth to that character.

Is Moon Knight backed by a ‘good guy’? Maybe?

Maybe not.

LAZARUS #15 (Rucka / Lark / Arcas) Image

Like Moon Knight, this is my last issue of Lazarus but I expect I will buy trades at some point. This issue is stellar. Normally I don’t like like fight scenes in comics too much, but this one is incredibly well done, and just enough politics on the side to make it work.

Looks like war.

Advertisements

Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Silver Surfer #8

January 18, 2015
2 Comments

SIlverSurfer8

This was a pretty big week… because of Star Wars alone. It was highly anticipated, but how was it?

Well, it isn’t comic of the week, so we’ll have to wait and see. Starting at the weakest.

SPIDER-VERSE #2 (Slott / Anka / Immonen / Lafuente / Lopez / Mackay / Vella / Puig / Herrara / Templeton) Marvel

This wasn’t… terrible. In fact it might have NOT been last if it wasn’t for how kind of uncomfortable the Anansi story made me. I don’t want to call it racist and I am a fan of Kathryn Immonen… but let me just leave it at ‘it made me kind of uncomfortable’.

The punk Spidey story was great. Hobart Brown… who is that again? The Prowler? Let me go look it up… American Sculptor and founder of Kinetic Sculpture Racing?

Wrong one.

Bishop of the Diocese of Fond du Lac in The Episcopal Church?

Uh…no.

Yep, it was the Prowler.

Oh, and the Spanish story? Just no. I shouldn’t have to go on-line to find out what happens in a comic.

AVENGERS #34.2 (Humphries / Bengal / Curiel) Marvel

A fill in story to give us a better look at Starbrand? Or to GET RID of Starbrand?

I am all for the latter, but I don’t have faith that is what happened.

And I really dislike the art. The manga influence on American comics has been a real negative for me.

AVENGERS #40 (Hickman / Caselli / Martin) Marvel

Two overpriced Avengers comics in the same week? And their numbering is not even remotely close together?

Marvel is on drugs.

The worst part here is that this is NOT an Avengers story. It is a New Avengers story. Complete with a ‘shocking death’ that I don’t believe for a second. In fact, they kind of ‘killed off’ a whole bunch of characters that I guess were a big deal in New Avengers.

Whatever. Finish the Hickman run and let’s move on.

S.H.I.E.L.D. #2 (Waid / Ramos / Olazaba / Delgado) Marvel

This was a fun little Coulson / Ms. Marvel story fighting the Wizard….’s glove.

Plus a little backstory for Jemma Simmons (Ms. Steranko 🙂 )

The message at the end would mean more if this book was written by Willow Wilson.

MILES MORALES: THE ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #9 (Bendis / Marquez / Ponsor) Marvel

Ignore the cover. It has nothing to do with the contents of the comic.

This was a decent story but it was just so exposition heavy. Show us, don’t tell us, right?

ASTRO CITY #19 (Busiek / Anderson / Ross / Sinclair / Comicraft) Vertigo

Another Quarrel story… and it looks like another to come. At least I hope so, because the end of this book doesn’t make a lot of sense.

Astro City is great (Rusty’s Comic of the Year for 2014) but this issue does not especially stand out.

DAREDEVIL #12 (Waid / Samnee / Wilson) Marvel

The twist wasn’t especially impactful, but the comic overall was good. A nice chase scene and a great scene between Matt and Kirsten.

And great art, as always.

LAZARUS #14 (Rucka / Lark / Arcas) Image

This book just keeps getting better and better. Politics. Intrigue. Humanity. Betrayal.

I love that Hock’s ridiculous accusations are 100% accurate. I also love that they are still wrong, in execution.

Speaking of execution… it looks like a bi fight is coming. Lazari as samurai? Truth through combat?

And Michael Lark is killing it on this book.

STAR WARS #1 (Aaron / Cassaday / Martin) Marvel

Yes. It is as good as I had hoped. When the characters spoke, I HEARD them, in the proper voices. It didn’t hurt that John Cassaday’s art was absolutely on point.

I’ll admit that I was disappointed that the book is set after Star Wars and not after Jedi. That guarantees a certain amount of wheel spinning, but what are you going to do. They want Vader to be in the books.

Yes. I’m all in.

SILVER SURFER #8 (Dan Slott / Michael Allred / Laura Allred) Marvel

Despite the minor disappointment about the Star Wars comic timeframe, it still seemed like it would get the top spot… until I read Silver Surfer.

Can you imagine? You have met someone. They seem pretty great. You are travelling around, having fun, seeing the universe, basically begin a Doctor Who companion… and then you find out that they are responsible for killing billions upon billions of people.

It is an aspect of Silver Surfer that is often glossed over. Why was he forgiven for that, exactly?

In some ways, this hits home. Very well done.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: C.O.W.L. #6

November 30, 2014
Leave a Comment

cowl6_cover

Interesting week. My taste is moving away from superhero comics… but I actually don’t think that is it. I LOVE superhero comics, but superhero comics have just been getting… bad. The entire DC 52 line is bad and seemingly getting worse. Marvel is cross-over crazy, which would be fine, but the crossovers just aren’t good. (Axis is awful and Spider-Verse isn’t much better.)

So, what do we have this week.

ODY-C #1 (Matt Fraction / Christian Ward) Image

The latest creator owned comic by Matt Fraction. It is very ambitious. And it is quite disappointing.

How many variants of the Odyssey do we really need? Plus that art is of the type that is more worried about looking triply than actually telling a story.

The big gatefold was just an unneeded info dump.

Disappointing.

THE MASSIVE #29 (Brian Wood / Garry Brown / Jordie Bellaire) Dark Horse

A comic that had flashes af brilliance and flashes of ridiculousness seems to be ending on the latter. Too bad.

SPIDER-MAN 2099 #6 (David / Sliney / Fabela) Marvel

As mentioned before, Spider-Verse has been striking out. One of the problems is that the villains are so dull so when they throw out big fight scenes like this one, they don’t resonate. Lady Spider could have been interesting but Peter David wrote this issue like her only interesting quality is that both Miguel’s brother and Daemos found her attractive. Lame.

BODIES #5 (Si SPencer / Phil Winslade / Meghan Hetrick / Dean Ormston / Tula Lotay / Lee Loughridge) Vertigo

This is probably the best issue of this mini yet. The past and resent stories were remarkably clear. The future one was not but it also got to be home for the big twist. For the first time, I feel like I am looking forward to what comes next.

THE UNWRITTEN: APOCALYPSE #11 (Carey / Gross / Chuckry) Vertigo

Moving the story towards resolution. Gunning down childhood heroes (I loved the Tim Hunter reference). Blowing a trumpet. Ending existence.

Next?

DEAD BOY DETECTIVES #11 (Litt / Buckingham / Kelly / Loughridge) Vertigo

The main story was just wrap up but the sweet parts of this comic were very sweet. The passing of a mother, acknowledgement of wrongs done and a family photo. A ghostly kiss but mostly, the little epilogues with two cats and a couple of proud parents.

Nice.

CAPTAIN AMERICA and the MIGHTY AVENGERS #2 (Ewing / Ross / Coello / Rosenberg) Marvel

The first issue of this relaunched title was awful. The same reasons should have made this issue bad too, but they didn’t. Axis is still terrible but instead of focusing on that, they looked at the human side of what happens when someone like Luke Cage because awful and selfish. The team stood strong (and actually fought some bad guys!).

Much better. (But I am still looking forward to Axis being over.)

LAZARUS #13 (Rucka / Lark / Arcas) Image

Remember what I said when I reviewed that last issue of Klarion? Making verbal consent the norm is a GOOD THING.

They did it again.

Meanwhile, the scene with Forever and her family… the scene with Forever and the Lazari… Forever and Joachim… all great.

SUPERIOR FOES OF SPIDER-MAN #17 (Spencer / Lieber / Rosenberg) Marvel

I thought LAST issue was the LAST issue.

Turns out THIS issue is the LAST issue.

I nice wrap-up where everything gets spelled out for those people who need such things. (The Lost complainers, mostly… use your brains people!)

The two big reveals were Abner and one I won’t spoil. There also is one about who Fred is talking to, but that is just cute and not incredibly relevant. (I also hope the new mob boss is reflected in future comics.)

Good issue to a mostly great comic.

C.O.W.L. #6 (Higgins / Siegel / Charretier) Image

What a great comic. It is the origin of Grey Raven, told in the form of a sixties era comic, complete with period style ads and moralizing.

Is that his real origin or just ht public version? I actually hope it is the latter so we can see how things have changed since his early days.

The mix of corruption and ideals is a story that goes ever on…


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Multiversity: The Just #1

October 31, 2014
Leave a Comment

The_Just_Vol_1_1

Still catching up.. only one week behind.

This was a really solid week. Even the book I have as ‘second worst’ was actually pretty good.

BODIES #4 (Si Spencer / Phil WInslade / Dean Ormston / Tula Lotay / Meghan Hetrick / Lee Loughridge) Vertigo

This mini continues to disappoint. What a great idea. What terrible execution.

I keep hoping.

LAZARUS #12 (Rucka / Lark / Arcas) Image

Another solid issue of Lazarus. Lots of political maneuverings and lots of ‘Forever’ sub story. The only thing that is missing from this issue is the strong ‘waste’ story from issues back.

This has a very good storyline. I just wonder if there is an end game.

REVIVAL #24 (Tim Seeley / Mike Norton) Image

Similar to Lazarus – strong setting – good characters – good plot…. I just wonder of there it is going anywhere. Are we ever going to find out what happened? This isn’t Y, the Last Man – here, I think we need to find out.

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #8 (Slott / Gage / Camuncoli / Smith / Fabela) Marvel

The main story was good… despite the dumb reasoning behind Silk’s new costume. Ms. Marvel was written much better this time out… not Wilson, but better than last issue.

AND the back-up wasn’t as lame as Spider-Verse has been so far!

AVENGERS #37 (Hickman / Deodato / Martin) Marvel

I like it when the Avengers come across as rebels… fight the power, so to speak. It is a good counter to the militarized version they have been giving us.

This issue we kind of have both.

SHE-HULK #9 (Soule / Pulido / Vicente) Marvel

So, this book is cancelled. Too bad. I bet a better artist would have helped keep it afloat. (Not that Pulido is bad, per se, just that he isn’t going to provide a sales bump.

I like this legal battle going on around Cap but… this legal case makes no sense whatsoever. No court would even hear a case like this where there is clearly no question of guilt. Steve Rogers neither killed that kid nor is responsible for the action sod the criminals who did. End of story.

Now, I can see CAP thinking otherwise, because he holds himself to a very high standard – but not the courts.

DEAD BOY DETECTIVES #10 (Litt / Buckingham / Kelly Loughridge) Vertigo

Scary things fighting govern the nearly dead. Possessed dead bodies… well, possessed by the ghost of the body. Spectral snow. Skeptical doctors. Semi-skeptical parents.

A reference to The Jam.

If anything, this book was a little crowded.

THE MULTIVERSITY: THE JUST #1 (Grant Morrison / Ben Oliver / Dan Brown) DC

Hey Marvel, you know that Spider-Verse story you are doing? Want to see it done WAAAAAY better?

Is this the Kingdom Come Universe or just a reasonable facsimile?

Interesting characters – well written – moving the meta-plot along.

Good comics.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Astro City #15

September 17, 2014
1 Comment

Astro-City-15-cover-195x300

A pretty sold week, with one error purchase…

Starting at the (very) weakest…

ALL-NEW ULTIMATES #8 (Fiffe / Milogiannis / Bellaire) Marvel

So, after #7 I said I was dropping this book.

I got this issue by accident. This happened once before (X-Men) and the book got a temporary reprieve.

Not this time.

This book is just really, really bad. The story is weak and the art is atrocious.

DROPPED…AGAIN.

INHUMAN #5 (Soule / Stegman / Gracia) Marvel

This book is hanging in there. It isn’t stellar but it still an okay read.

X-Men Lite.

AVENGERS #34.1 (Ewing / Keown / Lee / Keith) Marvel

Hyperion is the kind of character that I don’t really like. The overpowered Superman style. This book gives him some character, so that is an improvement.

I still don’t like him, but hey…

EDGE OF SPIDER-VERSE #1 (Hine / Sapolsky / Isanove) Marvel

Multiversity, Marvel-style?

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #6 (Slott / Ramos / Olazaba / Delgado) Marvel

I still don’t like the new Black Cat, but other than that, the story was solid.

Silk, on the other hand, is growing on me. I didn’t like her at first but she is developing into her own, solid persona… in some ways more adept than Peter.

LAZARUS #11 (Rucka / Lark / Arcas) Image

This issue REALLY shows what it means to be a Lazarus. Sonja Bittner is pretty bad-ass. We also got some cool insights into politics in the world.

Solid issue.

HAWKEYE #20 (Fraction / Wu / Hollingsworth) Marvel

As usual, the Kate issues are just really good instead of amazing, like the other issues. David Aja is just too big a loss (with due respect to the very talented Annie Wu).

I was not really sold on the advantage to most of the non-linear storytelling this time out, but it worked out for the bookends.

I am lamenting the loss of this book and it isn’t even gone yet.

CALIBAN #6 (Garth Ennis / Facundo Percio) Avatar

No spoilers here.

But wow… talk about an effective use of emotions and misleading storytelling.

Just wow.

I can’t wait for the movie.

MS. MARVEL #8 (Wilson / Alphona / Herring) Marvel

This was VERY nearly the book of the week. Kamala and Lockjaw together are just adorable. But really, Willow had me on the first page, second panel. “Why are kids like me always being drafted into wars we didn’t start?”

HELLS YES!

As usual, GREAT storytelling. Absolutely perfect dialogue and one of the most refreshing books on the market.

ASTRO CITY #15 (Busiek / Anderson / Ross / Broome / Comicraft) Vertigo

As great as Ms. Marvel was, Astro City was just a little better. The fresh take on the Reed/Doom rivalry turned into a whole other thing. And while getting a book with a great, young new character is becoming more common, getting a book with a great OLDER new character is a whole other deal.

This sweet little old lady kicks some ass and does so without losing who she is as a character. Very nice. Masterfully done.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Miles Morales: The Ultimate Spider-Man #4

August 16, 2014
Leave a Comment

MIles 4

 

This is actually LAST week. I was away doing a couple of shows down in Toronto and Whitby so couldn’t pick up my comics until now. I read last week’s first to give the illusion of schedule…

 

Starting at the weakest…

 

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #32 (Slott / Gage / Camuncoli / Kubert / Dell / Fabela / Beredo) Marvel

 

So this is the ‘next’ issue of the cancelled Superior Spider-Man. Cancelled because Otto is dead. Well, this is a time travel issue from back when he was alive to kick off the Spider-Verse storyline.

It is kind of boring, actually. Some inter-dimensional baddy is killing alternate Spider-Men and they all have to team up. Repetitive mini-scenes gathering Spideys. That’s it.

 

ROCKET RACOON #2 (Young / Beaulieu) Marvel

The appeal of this has worn off pretty fast. I never thought I would say this but Groot was annoying. (Or, more that the conversations between Rocket and Groot were annoying. Groot’s ‘side’ of the conversation just didn’t ‘sound’ right to me.)

I don’t know how long I will keep buying this.

 

SHUTTER #4 (Joe Keatinge / Leila Del Duca / Owen Gieni / Ed Brisson) Image

This is late for me. It came out last month but I just got it.

It was… just a little bit frenetic. Even though there wasn’t action, it still felt like it was charging through the story too fast.

Much like Rocket Racoon, this book is getting its warning notice.

 

FAIREST #28 (Buckingham / Braun / Dalhouse) Vertigo

The problem with Fairest right now is that it doesn’t feel like its own story. It is just supporting the final Fables story and us such it never feels… important. Plus, the bit with the Spider as Fly tries to let him be human for a bit… well, that’s cheating. That is not the sign of a good leader, in my opinion.

 

BLACK WIDOW #9 (Edmondson / Noto) Marvel

Hmmm… I am not sure I like the idea of a Black Widow then is more out-of-control ruthless than the Punisher.

 

MIRACLEMAN #9 (Moore / Veitch / Bryant) Marvel

This was quite a scandal when it first came out. Part of me thinks that the controversy is silly. The other part of thinks that the scene was drawn in a gratuitous fashion.

Of course the big pay off was actually AFTER the birth scene. Ma-ma?

 

MOON KNIGHT #6 (Warren Elis / Declan Shalvey / Jordie Bellaire) Marvel

Ellis wraps up his run… by continuing to not give us any insight into Moon Knight whatsoever. A one page statement about love is not character development. Having said THAT, the was a decent issue as we got to watch the evolution of a villain.

Still, I don’t mind that Ellis is moving on.

 

SUPERIOR FOES OF SPIDER-MAN #24 (Spencer / Lieber / Ellis / Rosenberg) Marvel

The usual. If you have read this book, you know that is a good thing.

I wouldn’t be really thrilled about the sexual exploits of the one female character in the group becoming something for the others to joke about, but it surely wasn’t her who got the brunt of it. “Subtext” “I just need a minute” Funny.

 

SWAMP THING #34 (Soule / Pina / Wilson) DC

Like often happens in this book, a threat is built up as behind the scenes maneuverings and then is squashed quickly. It almost HAS to be that way do the power of the main character. A supporting cast, abruptly no more.

 

LAZARUS #10 (Rucka / Lark / Arcas) Image

Wonder what happened to Jonah Carlyle? We get to find out. It isn’t nice. You have to feel bad for the poor guy.

Almost like when Jamie lost his hand… oh wait, is the parallel that blatant?

 

SHE-HULK #7 (Soule / Pulido / Vincente) Marvel

Much better than the last storyline. Here we have a one-off dealign with shrinking people so we get a Hank Pym appearance and some Hellcat in action… though Patsy is right, Jen is awfully condescending to her.

 

MILES MORALES: THE ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #4 (Bendis / Marquez / Ponsor) Marvel

Let me reiterate, I don’t think Peter is back. Moreover, if he IS back, that is a really bad idea and poor storytelling. But he isn’t.

Still, adding May and Mary-Jane to the mix is excellent. Also, the mystery of Katie Bishop… well, it doesn’t deepen per se. It appears, I guess.

Good stuff and keeping me interested in the next issue. In a relatively weak week, that gets you top marks.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Miles Morales: The Ultimate Spider-Man #3

July 13, 2014
Leave a Comment

MilesMoralesUltimateSpider-Man3-Cover

I wasn’t able to go get my comics last week. I got both week’s worth this week, read them, ranked them, and then split them back to their respective week so this is LAST WEEK’S list.

This week was bigger than the other, but the book of the week also only ranked third when I put them all together.

Starting at the weakest.

MIRACLEMAN #8 (Moore / Austen) Marvel

This comic actively angered me. We pay $5 for this comic. Normally that means you get multiple stories and then back-up material. I would rather they drop the old Mick Anglo stuff and charge less, but that might just be me.

THIS issue, though, had much less. You had the wrap up to the Gargunza story. It was fine but very simple. Then we get some stupid Cat Yronwoode filler that doesn’t even make any sense because they took it out of context with the reprints it was referring to. THIS shouldn’t have been bonus footage but instead it is a ‘main’ story. They should have dropped the Anglo stuff and given us another full story (original issue 9).

I feel ripped off. If this was normal, I would be dropping this book right now.

THIEF OF THIEVES #22 (Diggle / Martinbrough / Lucas) Image

You know what? I have had enough of this book. Not much more to say. It isn’t terrible, it just goes nowhere. It meanders and we basically get the same story over and over and over and over.

Dropped.

IRON FIST: THE LIVING WEAPON #4 (Kaare Kyle Andrews) Marvel

What a beautifully rendered book.

What terrible storytelling and (frankly) offensive characterization.

It four issues, Andrews has completely ripped Iron Fist apart, with no reason given, turned him into a selfish predator who takes advantage of women to try and fill some emptiness (that was never referred to before now), and made his title character completely unsympathetic.

The character of Brenda is incredibly insulting and a horrible stereotype. Ugh.

Dropped.

MOON KNIGHT #5 (Warren Ellis / Declan Shalvey / Jordie Bellaire) Marvel

This book shared some similar problems with Iron Fist… without the offensive parts.

It is very well drawn (not as good as the Andrews stuff in IF, but still very good).

It is very badly written (not as bad as the… etc.)

Warren Ellis has a rep that is well deserved but sometimes it feels like he cuts corners way too much. Here was have a story that has no first act. At all. Jus throw us in there, don’t explain anything, and let in unfold. Why was the girl kidnapped? There is an oblique reference to a crime family but that is it.

It is one long fight scene that seems to want to evoke that terrible Dredd movie or something.

I am NOT dropping this, because I consider this a misstep rather than an indictment against the book.

ORIGINAL SIN #5 (Aaron / Deodato) Marvel

So, is THIS why the mini exists? They continue to have th problem that it isn’t a story as much as a plot device.

I have a hard time getting worked up over changes to Nick Fury. They happen all the time. They always get reversed. Always.

SWAMP THING #33 (Charles Soule / Javier Pina) DC

Interesting storytelling technique. The book was about the conversations at him while Swampy fighting unending hordes of… something… was the back story.

Hmmm….

FAIREST #27 (Mark Buckingham / Russ Braun) Vertigo

Bucky writing instead of drawing. Interesting. I like the concept…. though it was done back in the second Fables book. The animals are revolting! (“They certainly are!”)

Seeing how the books are wrapping up, who knows how this one will turn out!

LAZARUS #9 (Rucka / Lark / Arcas) Image

Somehow I think that Casey and Michael have just become the most interesting characters in the book (with all due respect to Forever).

The whole ‘Lifted’ concept is problematic, but this whole work is that. Where are they going with it? When is it all going to come tumbling down?

BLACK WIDOW #8 (Edmondson / Noto) Marvel

Problem: you shouldn’t need to read the recap page to understand what is going on and the whole Bucky / Natasha scene and final page wouldn’t make any sense at all if you hadn’t read the crappy Winter Soldier story.

Having said that, I quite liked this comic. Noto’s art con tunes to be wonderful and the character of Natasha has just the right level of opacity. The Isaiah story is also getting really interesting.

ROCKET RACCOON #1 (Young / Beaulieu) Marvel

I have (had?) the old Bill Mantlo Rocet series… but this is a little bit different. TH sold one was like a serious version of Captain Carrot. This one is just fun. Space fun, but fun nonetheless.

Believe it or not, this isn’t the best Groot appearance I read this week (next week?). Groot as wrestler is kind of weird.

Will this level of wackiness maintain? Will I get tired of it?

DAREDEVIL #0.1 (Waid / Krause / Kalisz) Marvel

Why does this comic exist? I am unsure. Maybe it was meant to be a Daredevil Annual or something. Regardless, it is a really good story. It was interesting to me that Daredevil – who is very familiar with any number of artificial lifeforms – completely dismissed the idea that the Adaptoid could be a ‘real person’. I wonder what the Vision would have thought if he witnessed that.

In the end, he feels bad because he cared at all.

Really?

I don’t like that part, but it still felt real. Good story. Well done.

MILES MORALES: THE ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #3 (Bendis / Marquez / Ponsor) Marvel

David Marquez is a brilliant artist. Open the book to page #5. Look at that page. Look at Katie and Miles. Even look at Ganke. This is a perfect, non-action, page. I would like to own this page.

Please, please, please let this all be a trick. No return of Norman. No return of Peter. Just no.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: The Massive #22

April 27, 2014
Leave a Comment

Massive22

Pretty diverse week. Only one real stand-outs, but nothing too bad.

Starting at the weakest.

DEAD BOY DETECTIVES #5 (Toby Litt / Mark Buckingham / Russ Braun) Vertigo

So they are out of the boarding school, so that complaint is gone. Unfortunately this issue was not a lot better. It was very scattered, lacking any real coherence. The structure was hit and miss. The characters are still compelling enough.

THIEF OF THIEVES #20 (Diggle / Martinbrough / Lucas) Image

How many times can I say the same thing? This comic is a movie script. Straight up. That has its plusses and minuses.The characters are there but the plot is kind of jerky at times. This was not one of those times, though. Minus some for the attempted sex scene.

THE SAVIORS #4 (James Robinson / J.Bone) Image

I kind of love that they set up what looked to be a team, gave them personality, and then killed ’em flat, all within one issue.

Talking with the alien.

JUSTICE LEAGUE UNITED #0 (Jeff Lemire / Mike McKone) DC

I am not a JLA guy, but when it was announced that Lemire was going to be writing Justice League Canada, I knew I was going to give it a try. They changed the name, but this is still that book. It is pretty good (which is good, since they cancelled Animal Man for it). I kind of love that it starts with an autograph session.

Question… why is this #0? It clearly starts the story and carries onto the next issue. Why is it not #1?

UNCANNY AVENGERS #19 (Remender / Acuna) Marvel

Solid alternate futre timeline story. Bad guy time travellers trying to dave the earth while the heroes sacrifice everything.

Is Kang going to really save Katie Summers? Won’t that be weird when they go back to the regular time and Havoc and Wasp suddenly have a child?

DAREDEVIL #2 (Waid / Samnee / Rodriguez) Marvel

Shroud wasn’t always like that. I guess that is new for this story. I have to admit that I didn’t know he was blind. That makes a Shroud/DD California meeting an inevitability.

Is DD surrounding himself with a crack team of super-capable women to help him fight crime? If so, I approve.

ORIGINAL SIN #0 (Mark Waid / Jim Cheung / Mark Morales / Justin Ponsor) Marvel

Now THIS is what a #0 should be. It is some interesting backstory, giving us something to make the Watcher feel more… human, I guess… just before he gets his. It is kind of a sweet story, with real repercussions as Nova learns that his father is alive.

BATMAN ETERNAL #3 (Scott Snyder / James Tynion IV / Ray Fawkes / John Layman / Tim Seeley / Jason Fabok) DC

Falcone didn’t thrill me but Stephanie Brown? Yes please! I know some people think of her as Batgirl or Robin, but to me she was always best as Spoiler and this is as close to that as we have come in years.

LAZARUS #8 (Rucka / Lark / Arcas) Image

This book sometimes reminds me of when The Massive was at it best early. Where it lacked in plot it made up for in world building. This is like that. The characters all have immediate hooks and I want to see how things turn out for them, or don’t.

THE MASSIVE #22 (Brian Wood / Danijel Zelelj / Jordie Bellaire) Dark Horse

Speaking of The Massive… this isn’t that. Ignore everything thou have read so far and jeu tread this book. It totally stands on its own and gives us the story of a group of African women trying to ensure that they take care of their own in a convoy across the Sahara.

This is really good comics. (and the art is AMAZING!)


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Animal Man #29

March 29, 2014
Leave a Comment

animal-man-29cover-artjpg-0a557e

Sorry this is so late…. since this is really comics from LAST week, but I have been pretty tied up with VERSeFest.

Starting at the weakest…

SOVEREIGN #1 (Roberson / Maybury) Image

I was a fan of iZombie. When it was cancelled Chris Roberson burned some bridges. I didn’t agree with everything he said but I supported his willingness to speak up. So when Image announced his new creator-owned book, I was on board.

Then I read it.

This comic is really bad. A pretty much incoherent story with unclear art to complete turn the book into a muddy mess.

Oh well. No issue #2 for me.

SUPERIOR FOES OF SPIDER-MAN #10 (Asmus / Carmenero / Pallot / Mossa / Cowles) Marvel

Why didn’t you put creator credits on the cover, Marvel? Were you trying to hide the fact that this issue was a fill in? (They sure didn’t try to hide it on the inside… the issue is titled ‘Filling In’)

Remember the smart, witty SFoS comic? This isn’t it.

I’m looking forward to the return of the REAL comic.

ROCKET GIRL #4 (Brandon Montclare / Amy Reeder) Image

Another one for the cancellation bin for us. We bought this because we are big fans of Amy Reeder. Well, the story is boring and the art is nowhere near the art that made us into fans. She is going more and more ‘manga’ instead of the beautiful work she did on Madame Xanadu.

Oh well.

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN ANNUAL #2 (Gage / Rodriguez / Lopez / Briones / Gandini) Marvel

Annuals should be special. They shouldn’t read like a fill-in issue from a different creative team. This was a Urich Family story followed by a Wraith story, just filling in cracks for the regal brook. Hmmm…

It wasn’t awful, just no big deal.

AVENGERS WORLD #4 (Hickman / Spencer / Caselli / Mossa) Marvel

Not bad enough to drop, yet. Not good enough to praise.

X-MEN #12 (Wood / Anka / Mann) Marvel

As is often the problem with books that fight nigh-unstoppable villains, the ending is a little to pat. They can’t drag out a fight so they either figure out how to beat them, or they don’t… and since they are the heroes, which do you think happens?

Oh, and the roll-call scene and the beginning was absolutely ridiculous. (The Paul Smith-ian shot of Pryor was nice, though.)

UNCANNY X-MEN #29 (Bendis / Bachalo / Townsend) Marvel

The scene with Dazzler was maybe a little too disturbing. Meanwhile the scene with the Sentinels was maybe a little too formulaic.

This book is not as good as Bendis’ other X-book, but it is still quite readable.

SEX CRIMINALS #5 (Fraction / Zdarsky) Image

This felt a little weaker than previous issues, but still a solid read. The kegel-face but was kind of funny but not as great as some of the high points of previous issues (like the karaoke scene…)

UNWRITTEN: APOCOLYPSE #3 (Mike Carey / Peter Gross) Vertigo

Well now we have the apocalypse the title implied. What a mess. No big shock about who the villain is, but wow… how are they going to get out of that/ Will the world remember this? Has this completely changed how the Unwritten world works? A world with time travelling hordes is not the world that the average Joe knew about before…

LAZARUS #7 (Rucka / Lark / Arcas) Image

Whoa. That was sudden and brutal. Beautiful cover and wrenching story. All of it.

MS. MARVEL #2 (Wilson / Alphona / Herring) Marvel

Everything about this book rang true. Her reactions. Her family. All of it.

But we REALLY need to move past the ‘my ideal image is of a white, blonde lady’. The quicker the better.

WONDER WOMAN #29 (Brian Azzarello / Cliff Chiang) DC

Can you smell it? That is the excrement hitting the fan.

Diana, God of War, leading her troops against the Usurper of Olympus? Yes please.

The good… this story seems to finally be reaching its climax.

The bad… when it does so, Azzarello and Chiang are leaving and we are getting a WW T&A book again.

DAREDEVIL #1 (Waid / Samnee / Rodriguez) Marvel

I am going to really miss the old Daredevil comic by Waid and Samnee. Hopefully this new one will be good… who is the creative team?

Oh. Okay then.

A silly renumbering, but what the hell. I like the setting. I like the new status quo with Matt as super-advising detective for the SFPD.

Oh hey, while you are there, say hi to our friends Nadine and Phil, would you?

Oh right… the review. Good comic. Buy it. Nearly comic of the week, but…

ANIMAL MAN #29 (Jeff Lemire / Travel Foreman) DC

I am going to give Lemire’s Justice League Canada a try, but it has better be good since this was cancelled to make room for it.

This book wavered between really good and Rotworld during its run, but this issue was absolutely stellar. Hands up, who though they were getting a FULL family reunion in this issue?

Instead they made it into a truly touching moment between those that were left behind.

I am not a fan of Lemire’s art and not Foreman so much either, but that didn’t distract me from the story which was perfect.

“Goodnight Cliffy.”


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

February 9, 2014
Leave a Comment

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.


Next Page »