Rusty's World

Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Daredevil #11

December 27, 2014
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Daredevil11

This is the last RCotW for 2014. Next week is a skip week. I saw one book (Miracleman Annual) that I’ll get, but it can wait until the week after.

That means that AFTER this post I will start crunching some numbers and generate my TOP 10 titles of the year. That should be fun.

Last year I guessed the book of the year would be Saga or Hawkeye and instead it was Ultimate Spdier-Man.

This year… Saga or Hawkeye? Daredevil? Ms. Marvel?

First, this week… starting at the weakest…

AVENGERS & X-MEN: AXIS #9 (Remender / Cheung / Dodson / Yu / Kubert) Marvel

Well, it is over. It never got better.

Lots of this book makes no sense, like why did the villains make that video? After they were evil again? Why was Carnage in it? Does that mean they made it in advance? That shows a lot of ridiculous foresight.

The alignment swapping annual was still inane. It seems that the whole thing was just so Iron Man could get a shot in the arm and Sabretooth could replace Wolverine. Oh, and I guess Havoc is joining Uncanny as a bad guy or something.

What a terrible story.

BODIES #6 (Si SPencer / Meghan Hetrick / Dean Ormston / Phil Winslade / Tula Lotay / Lee Loughridge) Vertigo

I have said it before: this was a really solid idea with really poor execution.

CAPTAIN AMERICA & THE MIGHTY AVENGERS #3 (Ewing / Ross / Coello / Rosenberg) Marvel

The Axis stink is hard to wash off. Okay cliche fight scene, but that is it.

THE MASSIVE #30 (Brian Wood / Garry Brown / Jordie Bellaire) Dark Horse

This was just an epilogue for the series. The comic had great moments but the arc went back to supernatural Mary, which was a bad way to go. The characters were good but the metaplot was weak.

SHE-HULK #11 (Soule / Pulido / Vicente) Marvel

A good She-Hulk / Titania tussle is always fun. This one had a bonus of Hellcat joining in – not to mention the mystery of Angie and her monkey. A big reveal just in time for the book to be cancelled… it turns out the secret villain was… who?

REVIVAL #26 (Tim Seeley / Mike Norton) Image

Moving the story forward. Alliances shifting.

ALL-NEW X-MEN ANNUAL #1 (Bendis / Sorrentino / Maiolo) Marvel

Finishing off the Eva Bell time travel story. Beautiful art and a heart-wrenching scene but the story was a bit light for an annual (or two).

This sets up future stories, it seems.

DEAD BOY DETECTIVES #12 (Litt / Buckingham / Vieceli / Santos / Loughridge) Vertigo

This book is not big on plot. Things just kind of happen and it only works if you care about the characters.

Luckily, I do.

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

That cover made me think we were actually getting back to the will.

Nope.

Instead we get a little power struggle between Magneto and Cyclops where both sides keep telling the truth.

Interesting.

C.O.W.L. #7 (Kyle Higgins / Alec Siegel / Rod Reis) Image

Who would have thought that a book that is fundamentally about politics would be so interesting?

DAREDEVIL #11 (Waid / Samnee / Wilson) Marvel

The different stories to kick of the issue were great. Reality vs truth or something. 🙂

Then the great Stunt-Master story. This reminds me, in a way, of the old Gladiator story, with a dark outcome.

Suddenly Stunt-Master is a real problem.

Waid and Samnee make good comics.

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

November 30, 2014
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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: Wonder Woman #35

November 4, 2014
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Wonder_Woman_Vol_4-35_Cover-1_Teaser

Caught up!

Starting at the weakest…

THE MASSIVE #28 (Brian Wood / Garry Brown / Jordie Bellaire) Dark Horse

I like The Massive overall, and I like Mary when she is just being Mary, but when she acts all super-space-alien or whatever, it interests me less.

The fact that she clearly CAN save Callum and needs someone else to mention it to her is just stupid.

MARVEL 75TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION (Robinson / Samnee / Timm / Lee / Bendis / Gaydos / Defalco / Goldberg / Hanna / Wein / Gulacy / A bunch of pin-up artists) Marvel

This is a surprisingly good anthology. Every story had its bonuses…. well, the Defalco Spider-Man story was a little weak, but that’s okay. Seeing a new Alias story was a treat.

SAGA #24 (Brian K. Vaughan / Fiona Staples) Image

Can I express how much I dislike casual rape references in comics? I don’t mean rape as a plot point (which i then judged on the merits of the writing), but just off-hand little nothing bits that have real purpose.

I dislike them enough to drop Saga all the way from it’s usual place at the top of the list down to here.

INHUMAN #7 (Soule / Stegman / Gracia) Marvel

The story of the missing Black Bolt along with some nice Maximus action. This book is hit and miss but this was a solid issue.

THIS is how to ramp things up for the upcoming movie. (So, do you think Kyle Mclachlan is Maximus or what?)

ALL-NEW X-MEN #33 (Benids / Asrar / Gracia) Marvel

Have I read a comic with art by Mahmud Asrar before? He is quite good! So is this comic. The scenes with Miles, Ganke and Jena sound like we are reading a Miles book (because, duh…) and that is a very good thing.

If the ultimate universe finally implodes and Miles comes over to the 616, I want him to join this team.

Ganke too. 🙂

SWAMP THING ANNUAL #3 (Soule / Pina / Carnero / Villarrubia) DC

A very strong, an unexpected, wrap to the Capucine story. It is interesting to get a comment about all stories needing endings in an on-going, monthly book.

Still, is it an ending? Ot just a new chapter?

Good week for Charles Soule.

WONDER WOMAN #35 (Azzarello / Chiang / Wilson) DC

This is the conclusion of the 35 issue Brian Azzarello storyline, and he wraps it in style! There were some really interesting swings to make it more than just “the good guys rally and beat the bad guys” which often happens in these epics. We get some interesting changes to the Zola / Zeke characters and in all it was very satisfying.

Too bad the next run looks so… bad.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: The Massive #27

September 28, 2014
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The-massive-27-cover

Isn’t that a great cover?

My weekly ‘review’ (barely) of the comics I bought this week in ranked order from worst to best.

Not included… I picked up what I thought was the new issue of Sandman Overture but it was really some stupid ‘Special Edition’ with art process and script stuff. Whatever. Taking it back.

BODIES #3 (Si SPencer / Meghan Hetrick / Phil WInslade / Tula Lotay / Dean Ormston / Lee Loughridge) Vertigo

Ugh.

This series hasn’t been great regardless but the special ‘police brutality’ issue was especially annoying because the writer slanted it so we would be on their side.

No thanks.

EDGE OF SPIDER-VERSE #3 (Weaver) Marvel

Remember how good the last issue of this book was, with Spider-Gwen?

This issue was pointless. Tons of bad exposition. A character that has no real reason to exist. There was no ‘small change to make a new character’. It is just a different person with a terrible costume.

What was the twist even supposed to be? Spidey but with big stupid boots?

INHUMAN #6 (Soule / Stegman / Gracis) Marvel

Inhuman Teen Squad saves the day. Then there was a little character advancement for Lineage and a Black Bolt teaser. That’s about it.

STEED AND MRS. PEEL: WE’RE NEEDED #3 (Edginton / Cosentino) BOOM! Studios

It was the ‘wrap everything up’ issue that was a little too pat. Not bad, though. Fun little mini.

MIGHTY AVENGERS #14 (Ewing / Larroca / Milla) Marvel

I am not a huge Salvador Larocca fan but it was a step up from Land. The story was… mostly okay. The basics were good but the Captain Planet thing was SUPER lame. This issue felt rushed so they could wrap up the series (before relaunching with the new Captain America).

I’ll be on board for the next iteration.

DEAD BOY DETECTIVES #9 (Toby Litt / Mark Buckingham / Ryan Kelly / Lee Loughridge) Vertigo

A good issue but a little rushed in places. Hmmm… maybe not rushed. More like jerky.

Why is Chewbacca on the cover?

SAGA #23 (Brian K. Vaughan / Fiona Staples) Image

Not the best issue of Saga… mostly it was plot advancement without any of the super groovy stuff that makes this book so amazing. Izabel’s story was nice. I was yelling at Marko again this issue. He is really stupid at times.

Kind of like people.

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #1.5 (Slott / Perez / Herring) Marvel

This hidden mini has been hit and miss but this issue was quite good. The art was perfect and the ‘origin of quips’ was nicely handled. The way the mini wrapped makes be think morel only on the whole thing.

C.O.W.L. #5 (Kyle Higgins / Alec Siegel / Rod Reis) Image

A nice story about labour negotiations and public perception.

Honest.

THE MASSIVE #27 (Brian Wood / Garry Brown / Jordie Bellaire) Dark Horse

The Massive! In The Massive! Who would have thought?

And what the ship was DOING is just great! No explanation about how it was hiding but I am sure that will be tied into Super-Mary.

Something very big is about to happen between Callum and the baby. I can feel it.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Silver Surfer #5

August 30, 2014
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SilverSurfer5

Much bigger week than last week. Some great comics, though.

Starting at the not so great comics…

STAR SPANGLED WAR STORIES #2 (Palmiotti / Gray / Hampton) DC

This is just unpleasant. I am not anti-dark. I am not anti-horror. But when the ‘hero’ of the book spends his time describing in some detail how he is going to torture his victim…

I watched a movie on Netflix last week called ‘Thursday’. (I do NOT recommend this movie…) In it I saw the same scene where one character was describing the torture he was about to inflict. But in the movie, that was the bad guy.

Two issues is, neither of them good. DROPPED.

ALL-NEW ULTIMATES #7 (Fiffe / Milonogiannis / Bellaire) Marvel

I want to like this book but until they get a writer that understands things like plot and storytelling, I have had enough.

DROPPED

BODIES #2 (Si SPencer / Dean Ormston / Phil WInslade / Tula Lotay / Meghan Hetrick / Lee Loughridge) Vertigo

I ‘nearly’ dropped this book as well, for the same reasons as the G.I. Zombie book. It is just unpleasant. We’ll see.

INHUMAN #4 (Soule / Stegman / Gracia) Marvel

Hmmm… this book has been okay and this issue us that: okay. Hopefully the story advances in some way.

UNCANNY AVENGERS #23 (Remender / Greene / White) Marvel

What happened to the art? It was really, really bad this issue.

The story has been working, though. I am interested in seeing where this goes.

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #1.4 (Slott / Perez / Herring) Marvel

Now that we are past the rehashes, this book works as a nostalgic look at a different era of Spider-Man. They should have done it during the Superior time frame when we could have used that reminder more than we do now.

REVIVAL #23 (Tim Seeley / Mike Norton) Image

Hey Star Spangled… this is how you do a creepy horror book right. Super creepy. Super odd. Super engaging.

DEAD BOY DETECTIVES #8 (Toby Litt / Mark Buckingham / Russ Braun / Lee Loughridge) Vertigo

Not very good storytelling this issue, but the character points were there.

STEED AND MRS. PEEL: WE’RE NEEDED #2 (Edginton / Cosentino / Grassi) Boom!

The first issue I talked about the great Peel art. That is still there, but this time I want to talk about the ‘voices’ of both protagonists. Perfect. You can HEAR them talking.

Fun comic.

ALL-NEW X-MEN #31 (Bendis / Asrar / Gracia) Marvel

How many times are we going to see the old X-Men fly off to Xavier’s will reading?

Still, the Warren / Laurie stuff was great and the new mutant with the dimension gateway powers is an interesting hook. Miles / X-Men Crossover by Bendis? Yes please!

AVENGERS #34 (Hickman / Yu / Alanguilan / Gho) Marvel

Captain America doing the right thing is always the right way to go. Yes!

Let’s get back to reminding the readers that being a hero means doing heroic things. You don’t rationalize and try to find the best of a bad situation. No. You fight and you win.

THE MASSIVE #26 (Brian Wood / Garry Brown / Jordie Bellaire) Dark Horse

I am still disappointed that this book went the supernatural route, but at least it is doing it well. We are starting to get answers and… finally… The Massive.

C.O.W.L. #4 (Kyle Higgins / Alec Siegel / Rod Reis / Stephane Perger) Image

Sometimes this book tends to the seamy side a little too much for my taste, but this is a really well written book and it looks beautiful.

Modern union busting tactics by the cops!

SAGA #22 (Brian K. Vaughan / Fiona Staples) Image

Damn it! This really kind of pisses me off. He was right! All the way through the argument, he was right! And then he had to do something stupid that immediately makes him the one in the wrong. But… that is right and the way it works.

Damn it Vaughan! Why do you have to make a comic so good that I actually care about the stupid people in it?

SILVER SURFER #5 (Dan Slott / Michael Allred / Laura Allred) Marvel

This book made me happy. Saga was probably better, but too bad. Happy wins.

Toomie! That is sticking! Yay!

The conversation between the boy and the Hulk… yes.

Stupid Saga…


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Hawkeye #19

August 6, 2014
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Hawkeye-19-cover

This was quite a good week and it has a GREAT comic topping things off.

Starting at the weakest…

BODIES #1 (Si Spencer / Meghan Hetrick / Dean Ormston / Tula Lotay / Phil Winslade / Lee Loughridge) Vertigo

Why so many creators? Well the gimmick is that there are murder investigations going on in different time periods that are somehow connected and each time period has its own creative team. Sound interesting? I thought so… but not so far. The first issue was kind of dull and the art was especially disappointing hidden behind a really great cover.

I am not giving up on it.

X-MEN #17 (Wood / Diaz / Briones / Mounts) Marvel

So, I planned to drop this book, accidentally didn’t, and the next issue (last issue) was quite good!

That lasted one issue. Huh.

Let’s see what the next story line brings…

AVENGERS #33 (Hickman / Yu / Alanguilan / Gho) Marvel

This Cap-goes-forward-through-time-thing has been okay but this issue was quite weak. Not much actually happened. And why was Star Brand all over the cover?

So… is this story just designed for Cap to trust Tony at the end? I hope not.

AVENGERS WORLD #10 (Spencer / Checchetto / Mossa) Marvel

Things coming together? That’s a good thing, I suppose.

UNCANNY X-MEN #24 (Bendis / Anka) Marvel

Kris Anka is one of those ‘design’ artists. He can come up with some great designs but doesn’t seem to be so great at actually drawing. This issue was especially badly drawn (to my taste, anyway)… plus the whole issue was just about getting Scott on site.

Oh, except for that wedding bombshell. That could be pretty interesting…

THE MASSIVE #25 (Brian Wood / Garry Brown / Jordie Bellaire) Dark Horse

This is where the books this week start getting quite good. The event is still happening? Well, that is pretty cool. I haven’t really liked the supernatural element of the book, but I am all for super-science. Mary is great when she isn’t stopping nuclear missiles with her brain.

And Cal is really, really sick.

CALIBAN #5 (Garth Ennis / Facundo Percio) Avatar

So, is this booked optioned for a movie yet?

The first part of the book – the explanation part – dragged a bit but the tension ratcheted right back up quickly.

How many issues is this supposed to run? They are running out of characters.

UNCANNY AVENGERS #22 (Rick Remender / Daniel Acuna) Marvel

The big complaint about big work-ending, time-travel stories is the big reset button at the end. You KNEW that Rogue and Scarlet Witch weren’t going to stay dead. You KNEW that the world would go back to what it was.

Oh but wait… Wasp and Havoc were still a couple and still remember having a baby? Sentry, Grim Reaper and Daken are still ‘alive’? What is going on with Rogue? And Wonder Man?

Well… cool.

STEED AND MRS PEEL: WE’RE NEEDED #1 (Edginton / Cosentino) Boom Studios

I didn’t order this but Ruthanne was with me at Silver Snail and saw it so we picked it up and added it to the file. I am glad we did!

This is the first Boom book I have picked up and this one was spot on. The Diana Rigg (because she IS her) was just perfect, and really, isn’t that the selling point of the book?

A reminder to the rest of the comic industry that you can make strong, smart and sexy without it being gratuitous.

C.O.W.L. #3 (Kyle Higgins / Alec Siegel / Rod Reis) Image

Last issue was hurt by the cover but this issue is great all around. Showing the 60s era sexism and then reminding us how it effected some of the women and THEN reminding us that it wasn’t ALL sexism. Well done.

SANDMAN OVERTURE #3 (Neil Gaiman / J.H. Williams III) Vertigo

Classic Sandman. A wandering journey. An added character to give the Dreams someone to talk to. Ideas. Images. Vistas. Threats. Ideas.

Did I say ideas twice?

Dreams.

This book is like revisiting an old friend… who once taught you what comics could be.

HAWKEYE #29 (Fraction / Aja / Hollingsworth) Marvel

BRILLIANT!

BLOODY BRILLIANT!

This book might not be QUITE as good as the Pizza Dog issue, but it is close. Seeing the world through the viewpoint of someone suddenly deaf and down SO WELL.

There is sign language (with no cheat sheet to help you through). There is lip reading shown in a great fashion.

My question is, does Matt Fraction know someone who is deaf who helped him out with this? Is the lip reading part… accurate?

Wow. What a great book.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Ms. Marvel #5

June 28, 2014
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MsMarvel5

Maybe it is my general mood, but I was a little disappointed (at least) by most of the comics this week, even when there were some I normally really like.

Oh well… some weeks are like that.

Starting at the (very) weakest…

CAPTAIN CANUCK SUMMER SPECIAL (Richard Comely / Paul Gardner / Dean Henry / George Freeman / Claude St. Aubin) Captain Canuck Inc.

I was given this for free by Kin at the Silver Snail, and as such, I tried to be kind…. but wow.

Let’s start with the cover that is reproduced as the first page of the first story… with added Booster Juice product placement.

I guess Booster Juice wouldn’t pay the ‘front cover’ rate.

This comic is poorly written and poorly drawn. It is just generally bad.

Oh well.

ALL-NEW ULTIMATES #4 (Fiffe / Pinna / Woodard) Marvel

Now a cover like this had me a bit at odds because part of me says that it is kind of cheap, but the other part of me sees a really nicely illustrated cover. I wish David Nakayama did the interior art because it is really, REALLY sloppy. The less said there, the better. Bad.

The PLOT is solid and the information conveyed is good, but the actual scripting is just as bad as the art. The conversation is jerky and awkward. The whole comic flowed poorly.

It is too bad, because the revelation about Jessica Drew deserved better.

UNCANNY AVENGERS #21 (Remender / Acuna / White) Marvel

This story has been going on much too long, but it has turned interesting lately… until now. The big plan is to turn Rogue into one massive Deus Ex Machina? What is this, Captain Planet? “And if we all join hands and believe in ourselves…”

The betrayal worked and I was very happy to see ‘concluded’ on the last page.

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #3 (Slott / Ramos / Olazaba / Delgado) Marvel

Slott’s Spidey has been steady. Not ‘blow you away’ but worth reading. This issue falls into that.

Of course he is writing Black Cat SOOOO out of character that we just have to accept that it is his take on her and move on, because none of her makes any sense otherwise.

REVIVAL #21 (Tim Seeley / Mike Norton) Image

Revival hits NYC! Solid story here as Dana goes all X-Files and (maybe) the rules change once again.

Revival is worth reading, but it is definitely a long-haul book.

THE MASSIVE #24 (Brian Wood / Danijel Zezelj / Jordie Bellaire) Dark Horse

Another beautifully drawn part of a very solid Mary story. Strong woman (which is Wood’s theme these days after taking some particularly negative press), tension, anti-capitalism, etc. All good. BUT, more of the ‘Mary is some sort of Super-Person’, which is very bad. It pulls the issue down a bit.

C.O.W.L. #2 (Kyle Higgins / Alex Siegel / Rod Reis) Image

Did this comic have more than one cover available? Because, if so, I sure wish I got a different one.

The insides of this comic were great – art and story – to the point that it could have been in the running for book of the week. But that cover. Oy.

YES, the scene is inside the book (kind of) but it is a fairly minor scene. The great stuff with Grant and his son and the impact of Grant feeling… less than adequate is great comics. The strip club scene worked on its own, but the cover makes the book look like it is Sin City. It isn’t.

SAGA #20 (Brian K. Vaughan / Fiona Staples) Image

Do you know what stopped this book from being number one? Because of the time I spent yelling at the characters.

So why is it still #2? Because I care enough about the characters to get angry that they are in the process of messing everything up.

MS. MARVEL #5 (Wilson / Alphona / Herring) Marvel

It took five issues but her is Kamala’s thought-caption: “I’m not here to be a watered-down version of some OTHER hero… I’m here to be the best version of Kamala.”

YES!!

Great comic. Well written. Suitable art. Nice package.

(Yes, Saga is still probably better, but I am mad at both Marko and Alana…)

(C.O.W.L. might have been better if the cover wasn’t so tacky.)


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: The Massive #23

June 1, 2014
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MASSIVE23

Another week where I let you know whether I liked the comics I bought and how much.

Starting with the weakest.

GIANT-SIZE SPIDER-MAN #1 (Caramagna / Koblish / Caracuzzo / Ciregia / Casagrande / Seeley) Marvel

In my library I have a copy of the first Amazing Spider-Men Marvel Masterworks. It includes reprints of the first ten issues of Spider-Man by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko.

This week’s comic retold early stories – the Spidey origin and his first encounters with the Vulture, Doc Ock and Sandman. Straight up retelling. Nothing of any importance added. It was as if you picked up those old issues and read them… with two very important distinctions: the writing was weak and the art was terrible.

Don’t buy this. It is awful.

THIEF OF THIEVES #21 (Diggle / Martinbrough / Lucas) Image

Sigh.

The issue as a whole wasn’t that bad but once again, a writer thinks that only way to make a ‘bad guy’ seem really bad is to have him rape somebody. It is the same story that I read last week in Miracleman, but at least in that case the books as reprinted from the 80’s before we had a better idea of the damaging nature of this sort of rhetoric.

He could have just killed her. You want to make him seem really awful and still have him mutilate her? Well, that is pretty awful, but okay. So what did raping her first add?

We get it. He is an awful human being.

Weak, WEAK writing.

MIGHTY AVENGERS #10 (Ewing / Land / Leisten / D’Armata) Marvel

Is this the first appearance of the Watcher’s wife? A Watcher with lipstick?

The characterization of Ulana was fine. The visual portrayal was absolutely ridiculous.

Oh, was Uatu having a child a new reveal? If so, why did you give it away ON THE RECAP PAGE?

CHEW / REVIVAL #1 (John Layman / Rob Guillory / Tim Seeley / Mike Norton / Mark Englert) Image

Hmmmm… I read a review the other day that said that the Chew side was really good but the Revival side wasn’t funny enough… or something to that effect.

Allow me to rebut…

This crossover was stupid. The only part of the crossover I liked was Cooper explaining WHY they were doing a crossover (with a little Saga thrown in there for good measure).

Having said THAT, the Revival story was quite good. I wouldn’t bat an eye if it was in the regular comic. Chu was just a guest appearance that added pretty much nothing. Revival is a good comic and this was a good issue of that.

Then I flipped it over. Chew was terrible. I am very glad I haven’t been convinced to try this comic, and now it is pretty certain that I won’t. It is just a one-note gag all the way through. (Oh, and if you are going to cross-over with another comic, do you think you should MAYBE READ the other comic? Revival is NOT about Frankenstein people with limb grafting abilities. At all.)

Half a good comic.

BATMAN ETERNAL #8 (Scott Snyder / James Tynion IV / Ray Fawkes / John Layman / Tim Seeley / Guillem March) DC

A little chaotic, and not in a good way. Very sketchy. Still, another Stephanie Brown sighting, even if it was just to remind us she is still out there…

UNCANNY AVENGERS #20 (Remender / Acuna) Marvel

This was pretty solid despite being just one long fight scene.

I am very interested to see if they actually have everyone remember what happened and have Wasp and Havoc actually have a child together. This would be a very big character change for both of them.

When is the Giant-Man / Polaris team-up?

INHUMAN #2 (Charles Soule / Joe Madureira / Marte Gracia) Marvel

Issue #1 was so-so. Issue #2 was better. I am not sure I dig the Nuhuman label but I really liked Medusa’s (Lady Big Hair) portrayal in this book. Captain America was reasonable so she responded in a reasonable manner.

Having a sovereign nation in the middle of the Hudson probably won’t fly with the U.S. government, though. Tow them out to sea and Attilan Island will be the new Genosha or whatever that X-Island in San Francisco was called.

Because, let’s be honest here, this IS an X-Book.

AVENGERS #30 (Hickman / Yu / Alanguilan / Gho) Marvel

It is no secret to readers of this column that I am no fan of Hickman. AND this is following a New Avengers plot line in the Avengers and I didn’t like New Avengers.

Having said that… this was pretty good issue. Iron Man is played straight up as a villain here and I am starting to wonder when the rest of the heroes are going to stop putting up with his crap. Future Hawkeye was pretty cool (as you would expect). I liked it.

MS. MARVEL #4 (Wilson / Alphona / Herring) Marvel

YES! It took four issues for someone to say that the world didn’t need another BLONDE superhero (read: white). What they needed is Kamala Khan.

Yes! The character of Kamala IS this book and having her turn into a Captain Marvel clone undercut that. Now THIS is the future of the book.

I’ll admit, growing up the way I did, I have a hard time with her parents. I am trying not to judge because they seem awful to me.

C.O.W.L. #1 (Kyle Higgins / Alec Siegel / Rod Reis) Image

Another great new book from Image! This is treated like a super-hero union, but it seems more like a private Super-hero police force. Either way, it is quite interesting and visually appealing. (I love the cover design!)

Of course, it would be nice if some of the characters were a little more likeable…

DEAD BOY DETECTIVES #6 (Toby Litt / Mark Buckingham / Russ Braun) Vertigo

I have been fairly critical of this book thus far… until now! This was a very fun book, capturing the right mix of whimsy and threat that earlier DBD stories did. Done right, this book could be the new Books of Magic, and I consider that high praise.

THE MASSIVE #23 (Brian Wood / Danijel Zezelj / Jordie Bellaire) Dark Horse

The cynic in me wonders if Brian Wood decided to write this story with very positive, strong female presence after he had his “female comic creators are not your personal dating pool” comeuppance.

Regardless, whatever the motivation, this has been a GREAT story. I am not such a fan of the supernatural elements of the character but this issue doesn’t dwell on those. This is just good storytelling and strong character work.

I just read that tho book plans to end with issue #30.. Keep telling stories like this one and I will miss it.


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

April 27, 2014
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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: 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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