Rusty's World

Rusty’s Comic of the… Weak?

April 5, 2015
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uncanny avengers 3

Since I started filtering out my monthlies, I keep doing this post and saying, “Well, it may not be a full week, but I still stand behind the comic of the week…” or something to that effect.

This week, not so much.

I got two books that each have one more issue in the current run.

Luckily I also got two great looking tradebacks, but those are for another post (once I read them).

AVENGERS #43 (Hickman / Mayhew / Martin) Marvel

Sigh. Right after I decide that I will keep getting the main Avengers title even after I stop all other monthlies (I mean, I have them all so far, right back to 1963), the next issue I rad was downright awful.

First off, the art is terrible. I mean it really looks rushed. The story isn’t much better. It is choppy and I am pretty sure that half of what happens doesn’t make sense because I don’t read New Avengers, which is inexcusable.

What a mess.

Thankfully, when Secret Wars is all over, it seems that Hickman will no longer be leading the Avengers.

UNCANNY AVENGERS #3 (Rick Remender / Daniel Acuna) Marvel

Well the art is much better in this comic, right off the bat. The story is better as well, though still has that, ‘fighting in a vacuum’ quality that I sometimes get from Remender’s books. Hi sense of ‘place’ is not always to be liking.

Overall, a decent book, but this wouldn’t be near a Comic of the Week ‘award’ if I was still getting a full complement of books.

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Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Daredevil #13

March 1, 2015
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Daredevil13

As my comic list dwindles, the idea of a ‘Comic of the Week’ gets a little more muddy since I may be passing over better books just because of where they are in the storyline.

And boy did I fell that this week. I got five books and I read the firs three last night before going to sleep. I put them down saying… wow, what a bunch of garbage. Why was I wasting money on this stuff?

I am happy to say that when I woke up this morning and read the other two, the outlook got markedly better.

Starting at the weakest.

BODIES #8 (Si Spencer / Dean Ormston / Tula Lotay / Phil Winslade / Meghan Hetrick / Lee Loughridge) Vertigo

I have complained about this book before but now it is finished. There were the occasional sparks of… conference along the way but they were an illusion.

Inscrutable plot, poor scripting, often bad art (depending on the chapter). This book has literally NOTHING going for it.

Realizing I spent over $30 on this makes me happy I am switching to trades.

UNCANNY AVENGERS #2 (Rick Remender / Daniel Acuna) Marvel

This comic was nearly as bad.

Well maybe not NEARLY as bad, but it was pretty darned bad. There is no story, there is just strung together scenes. Setting is ignored as nothing more than a moving backdrop behind the shots.

Storytelling is more than this.

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #15 (Dan Slott / Giuseppe Camuncoli / Cam Smith / Justin Ponsor) Marvel

If I had realized I was going to b switching to trades I would have dropped this book before Spider-Verse. I have really enjoyed Slott’s run on the book but this story was just not very good… and it was very long.

Now it is over. Some characters switched around a bit but nothing I found that I cared about. There are still too many damned Spider-people. The little hint at Secret Wars was cute and I guess there is going to be some spider-sense repercussions but… whatever. Moving on.

INHUMAN #12 (Soule / Stegman / Isanove) Marvel

This was one of the relative bright lights this week and mostly because of a great little scene with Iso and Black Bolt. “Why is he touching me?” “Then he can earn it.” “What if I don’t want to…”

YES! Personal autonomy is tough when you are dealing with a monarchy. BENEVOLENT or not. A monarchy is intrinsically repressive. Speak!

DAREDEVIL #13 (Waid / Samnee / Wilson) Marvel

Speaking of…

AMAZING COMIC!

When this started I was kind of groaning inside. How is it possible to make Kisten NOT be a damsel in distress? That is NOT her personality but the nature of super-hero stuff… with DD’s id public…

It was clear that this is what Waid WANTED to counter but I couldn’t figure out how… until he did it. HE WASN’T THERE FOR YOU, DAREDEVIL! The Dare-splainign lien was gold. The way they played out Kirsten’s attitude was excellent.

And the little Shroud/mystery villain hook was good as well.

And that is a wrap on three of the books. I have two more issues of both Daredevil and Uncanny Avengers to buy.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: The Unwritten: Apocalypse #12

February 1, 2015
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UnwrittenApocalypse12

Quite a range of books this week… some were very good, some were less so…

Starting at the weakest…

BODIES #7 (Si Spencer / Dean Omston / Tula Lotay / Meghan Hetrick / Phil Winslade / Lee Loughridge) Vertigo

Do you see all those names in the credits? This is what you get when you make a comic by committee.

SPIDER-MAN AND THE X-MEN #2 (Kalan / Failla / Herring) Marvel

This is old-school style super heroics/ I LIKE old-school style super heroics.

Too bad this one is written so badly. What was up with that dialogue? I have a feeling I won’t be getting this comic for long.

I have a feeling that nobody will.

SPIDER-MAN 2099 #8 (David / Sliney / Fabela) Marvel

The Steam Punk Sinister Six were pretty cool and they are getting a spider version of Red Ronin.

But it is still Spider-Verse, which has dragged out WAY too long.

INHUMAN #11 (Soule / Stegman / Isanove) Marvel

Angsty Medusa as she ‘uninverts’. As crappy as THAT is, the Reader / Iso scenes were solid and that last page return was great!

REVIVAL #27 (Tim Seeley / Mike Norton) Image

Reviver fish! This book just keeper crawling along its creepy way but there was a couple things that were problems this issue. One, what the hell happened to open the book? Who got shot? Two, at the end, aren’t we past the time where people find a dead body and are surprised when it turns out to be a reviver?

UNCANNY AVENGERS #1 (Rick Remender / Daniel Acuna) Marvel

The great Acuna art really kicks this up a notch but we have a sold story (if a slightly iffy premise) that really gets things going. I don’t forgive Remender for pushing us into that Alignment-switching nonsense but this book is pretty good.

Wait a minute… did that say that Havoc kidnapped Wasp? Uh, why are the Avengers not trying to save HER?

UNCANNY X-MEN #30 (Bendis / Bachalo / Townsend) Marvel

Welcome to the problem with time travel.

It is kind of funny that THIS time slipped person shows up in THIS book, rather than the one with all the young time travellers.

BITCH PLANET #2 (DeConnick / De Landro / Peter / Cowles) Image

This book continues to impress.

How do you make a women’s prison exploitation flick and have it be feminist?

Well, honestly, so far you don’t… really. But DeConnick is including some great back matter so you have no reason to doubt her intention.

SEX CRIMINALS #10 (Fraction / Zdarsky) Image

The exploration into issues of depression and therapy have really changed this book… for the better. You still have the sex jokes and the wacky nature of the premise of the book, but there is something more laying just under (or sometimes ON) the surface.

Great stuff.

THE UNWRITTEN: APOCALYPSE #12 (Carey / Gross / Chuckry) Vertigo

This wraps up this volume of the Unwritten and MAYBE the Unwritten altogether. I am unsure.

This sure FEELS like an ending but they gave just enough extra to open it up if they want to.

They thing that bothered by in the extended ending was Lizzie. So, she ended up with Wilson? But then where is she at the very end?

Overall though, this book is really, really good. The way they defeated Rausch and Pullman made just too much sense, which is what makes me think they should stop in here. Any other threat would seem a little contrived.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Moon Knight #8

October 9, 2014
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MoonKnight 8

Yes this is a little late, but that is nothing next to the next couple of weeks. I am off to the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word on Sunday and after the festival I am doing a (very) mini tour and spending time with my family out west.

I will still ‘review’ the book shut it will be three weeks from now and then three weeks reviewed in quick order, likely.

This week was okay. Starting at the weakest.

Edge of Spider-Verse #4 (Chapman / Bonetti / Gandini) Marvel

Well, this was a better COMIC that the previous issue, but it didn’t do much for Spider-Verse. Spider-monster who then just dies? There is a story going forward which may or may not be anything. Meh.

SPIDER-MAN 2099 #4 (David / Sliney / Fabela) Marvel

There is nothing ‘wrong’ with this title, but it also isn’t drawing me in very much. It is almost the definition of adequate.

MIRACLEMAN #11 (Moore / Totleben) Marvel

Of course Miracleman is well behind ‘adequate’. This is a relatively weaker issue, though. We get hints at the future and some aliens. This is probably better in the context of the story to come.

WONDER WOMAN #34 (Azzarello / Chiang / Wilson) DC

This was almost lower. WW is an important icon. That ‘rhymes with witch’ line was beneath her.

The rest of the comic was pretty solid, though. Hera’s scenes were great and the reveal at the end was excellent! The forgotten brother!

FAIREST #30 (Buckingham / Braun / Dalhouse / Major) Vertigo

Fun cover. Here is a point where a little of objectification really works for the story… and it was a fun story (if a little simple).

A nice little detective story, almost going back to the roots of Fables.

SWAMP THING #35 (Soule / Saiz / Hollingsworth) DC

The rise of the machine, indeed! I liked the sneak peek we got at the machine folk earlier, so my appetite is whetted for this storyline.

BLACK WIDOW #11 (Edmondson / Noto) Marvel

This book seems a little disconnected from the rest of the MU, but that is okay. Natasha felt a lot more in character in this issue, which was nice. Still great art by Phil Noto. Solid book.

SILVER SURFER #6 (Dan Slott / Michael Allred / Laura Allred) Marvel

A great bonding moment between Surfer and Dawn, unfolded in a cute story.

I assume it is no real revelation to anyone, but this are, in a lot of ways, Dr. Who stories…

UNCANNY AVENGERS #25 (Remender / Acuna) Marvel

Better than I would have guessed. Red Skull is a great villain and the X-Avengers were competent and up to the challenge. Seeing the difference between Magneto and Wanda reminds us that she is NOT the villain some see her as – at least not inside.

MOON KNIGHT #8 (Brian Wood / Greg Smallwood / Jordie Bellaire) Marvel

Not the usual comic of the week fare but it was a very well told story that moves Moon Knight’s status quo forward… or back, maybe. Back to the roots of the character while still utilizing the changes in the current title.

Just a good comic.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Edge of Spider-Verse #2

September 22, 2014
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Edge of Spider-Verse 2

 

Poetry is running me ragged but I found time to read some comics!

Starting at the weakest…

 

FUTURE’S END: WONDER WOMAN #1 (Charles Soule / Rags Morales / Jose Marzan Jr. / Batt) DC

Here is my second Future’s End book and it is no better than the previous one (Swamp Thing)… in fact, it is a lot worse.

In addition to being a story out of any sort of context with no attempts to give it any, the book i sporty written with sloppy art. I like both Soule and Morales normally, but this book feels mailed in.

In addition, this supposed to be Wonder Woman but instead of being written by the current or future WW writers, it is written by the Superman/Wonder Woman writer. If I wanted THAT book I would have purchased THAT book.

SHUTTER #6 (Joe Keatinge / Leila Del Duca / Owen Gieni / Ed Brisson) Image

I gave this book plenty of time to start making headway to some sort of interesting story.

Enough. Dropped.

UNCANNY AVENGERS #24 (Remender / Larroca / White) Marvel

This book was really sloppily written as well. It is like scenes were put in without any sort of overarching setting or tone. It was so awkward that I kept expecting characters to wake up and sic over that none of this is actually happening and their heads are being messed with.
The Magneto appearance is just bad.

UNCANNY X-MEN #26 (Bendis / Anka) Marvel

The Xavier’s Will story has been a big let down so far. (Plus, the Anka art is really, really bad.)

There WERE good comics this week… I promise.

MULTIVERSITY: SOCIETY OF SUPER-HEROES #1 (Morrison / Sprouse / Story / Wong / McCaig) DC

Starting here. I really liked the first half of the book, setting up the Society concept, but the back half was less strong. Vandal Savage is relay stale and the time jump was jarring.

Still decent.

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #33 (Gage / Camuncoli / Dell / Fabela) Marvel

Followed by Marvel’s version of Multiversity. Decent story but still just one big fight scene.

AVENGERS #35 (Hickman / Cheung / Bradshaw / Medina / Weaver) Marvel

I have been critical of Hickman in the past and I probably will be again, but this is good comics. The corruption of the Avengers concept is perfect as I was just telling someone how the book I loved so much had become something else altogether. They are military now. They are the establishment.

They weren’t always. They used to push back against government interference. I miss those days.

FABLES #144 (Willingham / Buckingham / Leialoha / Pepoy / McManus / Loughridge) Vertigo

Beast… Ozma…

MILES MORALES: THE ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #5 (Bendis / Marquez / Ponsor) Marvel

I think we get to find out what is up with this Peter next issue. I don’t believe for a second that he is the real deal.

Strong comic, but not the best Miles comic this week.

THE UNWRITTEN: APOCALYPSE #9 (Carey / Gross / Chuckry) Vertigo

Want to hear big praise? While I was reading this, it felt like I was reading a Neil Gaiman Sandman book.

ALL-NEW X-MEN #32 (Bendis / Asrar / Gracia) Marvel

The young X-Men have gone to the Ultimate Universe! Jean Grey and Miles Morales, hanging out!

Big week for Bendis… though one was a dud.

DAREDEVIL #8 (Waid / Samnee / Wilson) Marvel

The Purple Man is a dangerous villain to use because he is so… creepy. Rapey. Icky.

Now it is about something every bit as creepy (if not more so) but without the rapey. Eventually.

It is very creepy.

EDGE OF SPIDER-VERSE #2 (Latour / Rodriguez / Renzi) Marvel

Marvel is the place to go for strong, young female characters, it seems! Add this alternate Gwen Stacy to Kamala Khan and that is a great start!

Plus, who designed the costume? Sharp!

For a one-off style alt-comic, this is the bomb!


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: All-New X-Men #26

May 4, 2014
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all-new-xmen 26

It was Free Comic Book Day today and while I did indulge a little bit, you won’t so those books reviewed here. There wasn’t anything out that I was interested in (having missed out on Rocket Racoon) so I just picked up a couple of things for Ruthanne… an Archie Digest and a Hello Kitty comic. (Could anyone find the Catbug in the second Find Catbug spread?)

This week’s books, starting at the weakest…

AVENGERS WORLD #5 (Hickman / Spencer / Caselli / Mossa) Marvel

This was the only actually bad book I picked up this week. It was a mess.

“Manifold can’t help and no other teleporter can either.”

“Manifold goes to another universe for no reason whatsoever.”

“Manifold comes back and now he can help… for no reason whatsoever”

AVENGERS A.I. #12 (Humphries / Araujo / D’Armata) Marvel

I didn’t realize this book had been cancelled until now. That’s okay. It was a decent enough read but nothing I will really miss. This was… not a great wrap-up, but not terrible. The scene where Dimitrios gets past Galactus was too simple without enough pay-off. Beating him was too easy.

Doombot was awesome, as always.

BATMAN ETERNAL #4 (Scott Snyder / James Tynion IV / John Layman / Ray Fawkes / Tim Seeley / Dustin Nguyen / Derek Fridolfs) DC

I know that if a book is weekly you are going to need multiple artists… but this issue was kind of jarring with a very dramatic slide in art quality. It was messy with poor fundamentals.

Also, Batman’s treatment of Batgirl was kind of off. She wasn’t doing anything that Batman doesn’t do all the time. I guess he didn’t like seeing it in someone else. Falcone continues to not impress.

AVENGERS #28 (Hickman / Larocca / Martin) Marvel

I would rather NOT have this book tie in with New Avengers, since I dropped that book. Oh well… at least they did a decent job with it. I like it when they remember that Bruce Banner is really smart.

The Adaptoid stuff doesn’t make any sense, but I am not sure it is supposed to and it was a very small part of the book.

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #1 (Slott / Ramos / Olazaba / Delgado) Marvel

If this were a normal sized book, it would likely have been comic of the week. Well, maybe. Paying $5.99 for a bunch of ads masquerading as story was annoying. At least the Electro and Black Cat parts were ads for THIS book. And I am planning to buy the Peter David Spider-Man 2099 book but there is no way I am getting New Warriors and this lame Kaine story sure didn’t convince me otherwise.

The main story was awfully good, though. I looked forward to the ongoing story of Peter dealing with the fall-out from Otto.

SILVER SURFER #2 (Dan Slott / Michael Allred / Laura Allred) Marvel

This book showed exactly why I don’ t;irk cosmic books. That fight scene was BORRRRRING. Nothing you can do about it. Throwing energy back and forth in space is boring.

So why is this book so high?

Dawn Greenwood. The energy added to the book by this character is palpable. Good job folks in making a book about a character like Silver Surfer actually interesting.

UNCANNY AVENGERS ANNUAL #1 (Rick Remender / Paul Renaud) Marvel

The only thin that would have made this book better would have been Art Adams interiors instead of just a cover.

This book was just fun in a way that only Mojo could be. The marketing guys set the book up so the immediate cheescakey pool scene felt like it was over-sold Hollywood time. The teen Avengers was a great knock on the upcoming teen Batman show.

This was just fun… and completely ignoring the regulate Uncanny Avengers book.

ALL-NEW X-Men #26 (Bendis / Immonen / von Grawbadger / Gracia) Marvel

The scene with adult Cyclops and teen Jean was perfect. Absolutely perfect… well, as long as you include the Kitty part.

The scene read… real.

Well done.


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