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Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Daredevil #10

November 26, 2014
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Daredevil 10

What a range this week! From really bad to really good.

Starting at the weakest…

WONDER WOMAN #36 (M.Finch / D.Finch / Friend / Oback) DC

Since I have been married there are two comics that I have consistently purchased. Avengers (for me) and Wonder Woman (for Ruthanne).

That ends now.

David Finch has gone on record as saying that Wonder Woman is not a feminist. What a load of crap.

If that wasn’t bad enough, as expected, the art is awful. I didn’t realize HOW awful, though. Why does Diana look 15? Well, a face of 15 on a porn star’s body, of course.

What a shift away from the very strong previous storyline.

Oh… and the writing is actively bad. It reminds me of the worst of 90’s Marvel.

DC is really, REALLY sucking these days. What DC books do I still buy? Swamp Thing and..

AVENGERS #38 (Hickman / Caselli / Martin) Marvel

What was that other book I said that I have been buying right through my 21 year marriage (and beyond)?

Yeah.

Still, this book has been up and down a lot. This issue was a whole lot of wheel-spinning.

When is Hickman finishing up and moving on?

Can we get Bendis back? Stern?

AVENGERS / X-MEN: AXIS #6 (Remender / Dodson / Dodson / Delgado) Marvel

The ridiculous ‘inversion’ thing is still going on. Ugh.

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #10 (Dan SLott / Olivier Coipel / Wade Von Grawbadger / Justin Ponsor) Marvel

I was never one of those anti-event comic people. But both Axis and Spider-Verse have been really weak so far. The worst part in the case of Spider-Verse is that the Spider-Man comic was really good before this story. When is it over?

UNCANNY X-MEN #28 (Bendis / Bachalo / Townsend) Marvel

This is better written than the cross-over books. I am just not a fan of the super-over-powered character story.

INHUMAN #8 (Soule / Larraz / Isanove) Marvel

I go hot and cold with Inhuman. The book got better with the Maximus / Black Bolt story has been better but I wasn’t thrilled with Bolt just flying off for no apparent reason.

The thing with Maximus’ hands was… icky.

SPIDER-WOMAN #1 (Hopeless / Land / Leisten / D’Armata) Marvel

This reminds me of the Mighty Avengers relaunch and how it was tainted by Axis. This book has the same problem with Spider-Verse.

I think the Spider-corner of Marvel will be the place to go for female-led books AFTER this story line is done (with Spider-Woman, Silk and Spider-Gwen), joining great books like Ms. Marvel and Black Widow… but for now, it is still more Spider-Verse wheel spinning.

BLACK WIDOW #12 (Edmondson / Noto) Marvel

Speaking of Black Widow, this was a decent issue. (The Anderson Cooper appearance is kind of funny.)

I would like to see some more character rather than just mission stuff.

FABLES #146 (Willingham / Buckingham / Leialoha / Pepoy / Lee / Loughridge / Chung) Vertigo

Was that what Spratt’s role was also meant to be? The vehicle for turning Rose Red, so to speak? If so, nice planning. Things are turning a little… darker. Even Rose’s speech patterns were a little more… earthy, I guess I’ll say. She is changing. The end is coming.

REVIVAL #25 (Tim Seeley / Mike Norton) Image

Another episode in this horror town. Ibrahim messed up and now we have crucifixions.

This book has the episodes down, but I also wonder sometimes if they have a long term plan or not.

ASTRO CITY #17 (Busiek / Grummett / a bunch of inkers) Vertigo

Another solid issue of Astro City, though not one of the best ones. We basically got an old-school JLA issue, with the added freedom for Busiek to actually kill someone – which would have been hard to do if he was actually Hawkman.

MULTIVERSITY: PAX AMERICANA #1 (Grant Morrison / Frank Quitely / Nathan Fairbairn) DC

If Watchmen didn’t already exist, I would call this issue brilliant. Instead it is a very well done pastiche. It is kind of weird to see the characters that inspired Watchmen used in a Watchmen knock-off.

An interesting use of time shifting to give us a story that needs to be assembled by the readers as they go. Kind of like… well, you know.

MOON KNIGHT #9 (Brian Wood / Greg Smallwood / Jordie Bellaire) Marvel

This was incredibly well done. A look into the psyche of Moon Knight with a real interior motive ending in a bad situation. This book is well written and well drawn. It isn’t one of my favourite books but if it stayed at this level it would become one.

DAREDEVIL #10 (Waid / Samnee / Wilson) Marvel

Wow.

Daredevil is often a great book bu this issue surpassed that. Right from a graphic representation of depression to kick things off, to a more practical view of it at the end.

I thought I had reached the end of a very good book. Satisfying and sad. Then I turned the page and I almost cried.

Wow.

Apparently the Waid / Samnee run is ending soon. Too bad.

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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: 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: Saga #21

July 25, 2014
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Saga21

This was a very violent week…

Starting at the weakest…

100TH ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL: AVENGERS #1 (James Stokoe) Marvel

There have been a few of these but this is the first I have purchased. The conceit is that some big Marvel comics are done as if it were the 100th Anniversary of the book…. so in this case, as if it were 2063.

Nice idea. Too bad the comic is so lame. I hope comics aren’t really like this when I am 95.

DAREDEVIL #6 (Waid / Rodriguez / Lopez) Marvel

Great Chris Samnee cover. Big opportunity for Waid to use Original Sin to create a big twist in Matt’s life.

So how does he use it? He turns Jack Murdock into a wife-batterer. Really? The best you could come up with was to destroy an important, classic character?

Weak. Really weak.

STAR SPANGLED WAR STORIES #1 (Palmiotti / Gray / Hampton) DC

Hmmmmm… an updating of G.I. Zombie by the people who did the same job on Jonah Hex. I like the idea. I like the story in general. But it is just so… violent.

I’ll stick with it for now, but if I don’t enjoy reading it, I may not keep with it.

This is not the only book this week with that problem.

REVIVAL #22 (Tim Seeley / Mike Norton) Image

Revival turned ugly this week. It seems that everybody is pretty twisted this week. Rasch is suddenly a sexual predator and Hine has tapped into a pretty messed up under-belly in New York.

Again, not a bad story per se, but very unpleasant to read. Hmmm…

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #4 (Slott / Ramos / Olazaba / Delgado) Marvel

Silk does not thrill me so far. Another randomly, overly-sexualized female character. Her back story makes no sense thus far… and neither does she. This was not a very well-written issue. Can we blame Original Sin on that? Why not…

ALL-NEW ULTIMATES #5 (Fiffe / Pinna / Woodard) Marvel

Big fight scene, but one that was not too objectionable. Cloak and Dagger’s sex scene was not exactly subtle. Nice cover.

DETECTIVE COMICS #27 SPECIAL EDITION (Bob Kane / Bill Finger / Brad Meltzer / Bryan Hitch / Scott Snyder / Sean Murphy / Chip Kidd) DC

This was a free comic celebrating the first appearance of Batman on his 75th Anniversary.

There was reprint of that first story, which you have probably read ten times by now. Bad but important. Then there is a modern remake by Meltzer and Hitch. Has this appeared somewhere before? I feel like I have read it. Then a weird, uh… re-mixed version? Or a bit of one?

As far as free comics go, this one was pretty good!

THE UNWRITTEN APOCALYPSE #7 (Mike Carey / Peter Gross) Vertigo

This was a very good book, and in the running for book of the week, right up until the last scene. Did Lizzie suddenly become incurably stupid? Why in the world would she think that Tom had just decided to rape that girl, while the rest of his friends are following him up the hill? It makes ZERO sense. It is way out of character and, well… involves Lizzie acting so stupid as to insult the reader.

The REST of the book is beautiful and smart.

WONDER WOMAN #33 (Azzarello / Chiang / Wilson) DC

What happened there at the end? Did Zeke make WW a new body or did he make a new WW?

A big fight scene, but a pretty darned good one. How can you make a WW comic where she is tied up the whole time? This is how.

MIGHTY AVENGERS #12 (Ewing / Land / Leisten / Milla) Marvel

The 70’s flashbacks really seem to suit Land, who I normally don’t like at all. This is a great story and I hope that Luke’s dad sticks around. “Want to go meet your granddaughter?” Great line.

DEAD BOY DETECTIVES #7 (Toby Litt / Mark Buckingham / Ryan Kelly / Lee Loughridge) Vertigo

Who would have thought that this book would have the same plot as Daredevil?

Kind of.

In this case, though, we had no investment in Charles’ father. I like the new characters. They have… well… character.

Good book. Lovely book.

SAGA #21 (Brian K. Vaughan / Fiona Staples) Image

I am still mad at them but at least Marko is trying…. not hard enough, but he is trying.

FIX THIS!


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Sex Criminals #6

June 21, 2014
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sex-criminals-06-cover-chip-zdarsky-530x815

Some good comics… some bad comics… some dropped comics…

Starting at the bottom…

THE UNWRITTEN APOCALYPSE #6 (Mike Carey / Peter Gross) Vertigo

If you have read this and know me, you know why I didn’t like this one.

Rape isn’t funny. Yes he is the bad guy but tell me that scene wasn’t supposed to make him seem bad-ass or something?

Ugh.

This is normally a good book so I’m not dropping it for this, but someone talking about how cool it will be for him to stick his big unit into those little (Probably quite underage) girls… let’s just say it isn’t my cup of tea.

X-MEN #15 (Wood / Buffagni / Briones) Marvel

This comic did not make any sense. At all. We get a scene where The Future (what a stupid name…) confronts Jubilee and takes Shogo. Then we get a scene where Jubilee still has Shogo. Okay. I guess we are jumping around a bit on the timeline. Then we get a scene where The Future confronts Jubilee and takes Shogo… but it is completely different than the first one.

Uh, what? Was the first one supposed to be him visualizing it or something? Seeing into a false future?

Maybe it would have been clearer if the art was any good, but it wasn’t so…

Dropped.

AVENGERS WORLD #8 (Spencer / Checchetto / Mossa) Marvel

Another book with lousy art – though different lousy art from the last one. Plus the entire book was just a roll call with a different super team… including a ‘hero’ named ‘The Baby Killer’. (I know it is supposed to be that is very young and a killer but still…unpleasant.)

Dropped.

ORIGINAL SIN #4 (Aaron / Deodato) Marvel

This ‘event’ isn’t a story as much as an excuse – a trigger if you will – for stories around the marvel universe. Because of that, the main story is kind of weak. Once again, we have a bunch of people running around, acting in pretty random manners, just so they can get to an send result.

But that end result is pretty cool. We may have just seen a HUGE status quo change for a long-standing Marvel character. Until a new writer changes it back.

Oh, putting Bucky and Punisher in the same room just shows how lame a character Winter Soldier has become.

WONDER WOMAN #32 (Brian Azzarello / Goran Sudzuka) DC

Another one of those bombshell covers… but another pretty inoffensive one, as these things go.

It feels like things are really coming to a head. If this were stand alone story, rather than an on-going, I would assume that we were about to see the ultimate defeat of the First Born and the elevation of Diana to Queen of Olympus… but that would sure screw over whichever writer follows Azzarello.

AVENGERS #31 (Hickamn / Yu / Alanguilan / Gho) Marvel

This title is the best example of what makes Original Sin a good idea (the story trigger aspect), but at the same time we are all ‘scene’, little ‘plot’ right now. But, having said that, they are pretty good scenes. Great art… whenever Black Widow is not busting out… and Hawkeye doing what Hawkeye does beat… talking for the reader. “Does anyone know what the hell is going on around here?”

FABLES #141 (Willingham / Buckingham / Leiloha / Pepoy) Vertigo

The finale to Fables is not here, but we can feel it coming. Medea reminds us why Snow is bad-ass and people start to pick sides… sides that their leaders do not even realize exist yet.

When I opened up to ‘The Last Story of Flycatcher’ I was excited and then… one page? Really?

DAREDEVIL #4 (Waid / Samnee / Rodriguez) Marvel

Whoa. So that is what Shroud was up to? Suddenly this ‘kiddie book’ is talking some real shit and doing so in a way that was powerful but not maudlin.

Waid nailed this story point perfectly and Samnee is one of the best artists in the business.

SILVER SURFER #3 (Dan Slott / Michael Allred / Laura Allred) Marvel

I am automatically going to be predisposed AGAINST this book because of the space theme. I am automatically going to be predisposed FOR this book because of the Allreds. So what is the deciding factor?

Well, there is one of those creepy cymbal monkeys that is really the heart of an extra-normal entity. There is Silver Surfer’s cosmic surfboard (snerk) getting a new, awesome nickname (double-snerk). There is a big decision that is strong in the way that no decision was actually made!

And there is one of the strongest, most well-rounded new characters in comics. Dawn Greenwood is a PERSON. She is strong despite being in over her head. She is heroic. She is decisive. She is REAL.

Well done.

UNCANNY X-MEN #22 (Bendis / Bachalo / Townsend) Marvel

A really, really solid issue of this title. We got a villain reveal (though killing him off like that was a little lame), the repatriation of Dazzler, the return of Magento, the crystallization of the REAL villain for the book, increased mutant/human tension, and Maria Hill NOT acting like an idiot.

And some great Chris Bachalo art.

This was really close to being my book of the week.

SEX CRIMINALS #6 (Fraction / Zdarsky) Image

Wow.

What has made this book great? Humour. Humour. Humour. Inventiveness and humour.

So what happened this issue? Well, there was SOME humour, but all of a sudden we got a peek at someone who has serious mental health issues, dealing with them and having his life turn… grey. He was revitalized by the end but for those pages, we got a glimpse of a world where everything gets ‘smoothed out’. Deadened.

I FELT this book.

Very well done.


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Saga #19

May 25, 2014
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saga19

A fairly big week and I was pretty happy with most of the comics!

Starting at the weakest…

ORIGINAL SIN #2 (Jason Aaron / Mike Deodato) Marvel

Chaos does not generally make good comics. Throwing a whole bunch o stuff at the wall is not good storytelling.

One example… there are three villains. Two of them are given ‘reveal’ captions to give their (stupid) names. The third, even though he is not hidden in any way, was not. Who was that sick, Thing-like guy? Do we have to read another book to find out? Sloppy.

BATMAN ETERNAL #7 (Scott Snyder / James Tynion IV / Ray Fawkes / John Layman / Tim Seeley / Emanuel Simeoni) DC

Hmmm… a couple of weaker issues in a row. Not a good sign for a weekly book. A lot of stuff that happened seemed random, but at least it was built around a core plot. The art was terrible. Look at that Catwoman reveal. Just awful.

X-MEN #14 (Wood / Mann / Briones) Marvel

Getting into the better books now. This was fairly solid but was a little “A to B”. So they are a team now because Storm told Wolverine? Do the X-Men have some sort of a official squad registration process? Did Storm fill out all the needed paperwork?

MIRACLEMAN #6 (Moore / Davis / Ridgway) Marvel

I liked the dream struggle with Gargunza. He almost felt like the protagonist. The use of rape as a simple plot point to make bad guys seems bad is wearying, though. This was 1984, however. Maybe it didn’t feel so weak back then.

AVENGERS WORLD #6 (Spencer / Checchetto / Mossa) Marvel

What I DON’T like about the Avengers these days is the Avengers Army feel. It makes characterizations take a back seat. So an issue like this which is all about characterization (albeit for a character I don’t generally care for), it is quite an improvement.

WONDER WOMAN #31 (Brian Azzarello / Goran Sudzuka) DC

I groaned when Zeke was missing. Again?

But this one was well done. Change is scary and hard to take. That was well illustrated here. (Forgetting that the next writer is probably just going to change it back.)

UNCANNY X-MEN #21 (Bendis / Bachalo / Townsend) Marvel

Things are coming to a head! I don’t know who the secret villain is but the interaction between Magneto, Blob and Dazzler was great. I LOVED the artistic choice of showing the old Magneto/Blob scene. Well done.

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #2 (Slott / Ramos / Olazaba / Delgado) Marvel

Peter dealing with the changes to his life. Pretty interesting. Peter as a jailer? Hmmm…

I really, REALLY like the fact that Anna Maria seems to be staying as an important character.

UNWRITTEN: APOCOLYPSE #5 (Mike Carey / Peter Gross) Vertigo

Is it just a given that the best Unwritten issues are the ones spotlighting Pauly Bruckner?

And that last page!

DAREDEVIL #3 (Waid / Samnee / Rodriguez) Marvel

Strong issue as usual, but I have a question… Julia Carpenter? Spider-Woman? (I think she is called Madame Web now.)

If it is a DIFFERENT Julia Carpenter, that is pretty sloppy. She was a pretty major character at one time.

Nice Saga reference. 🙂

SAGA #19 (Brian K. Vaughan / Fiona Staples) Image

AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!

THAT LAST PAGE!!!!!!

NOOOOOOOOOO!O!!!!!!!!!


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: The Unwritten: Apocalypse #4

April 19, 2014
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Unwritten_Apocalypse_Vol_1_4_Textless

Not a real strong week (and I don’t really like that cover I posted here, but it was the best book…).

Starting at the weakest.

WONDER WOMAN #30 (Brian Azzarello / Goran Sudzuka) DC

This is not the issue you want to hand someone if you want to convince them WW is a good book. Weak art, incoherent storytelling, just generally sloppy.

Why can’t Hera fix Hippolyta? Because there is more tension if she can’t, I guess. Why are the Amazons openly mocking Diana, and why is she acting like a completely ineffectual leader? Same answer, I suppose.

Oh yeah, what is driving force behind this issue? Zeke. Again. For two and a half years now.

The First Born is messed up.

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #31 (Slott / Gage / Camuncoli / Dell / Fabela) Marvel

Yeah. Well, it wasn’t as bad as issue #30.

In fact, parts of it were quite good.

Here’s the deal… I really like Slott’s Spider-Man. I really liked the whole Otto story (though it had been played out a bit), AND I was looking forward to Peter’s return.

Too bad it was done so poorly. Last issue was an absolute mess. Otto acted like a complete idiot, COMPLETELY out of character, and committed suicide, for no real reason. Now Peter is back, and while I LIKE that, and the storytelling possibilities it gives, there was nothing this issue that made Otto’s decision LAST issue make any more sense.

Oh, and by the way… Peter is still dead. We now have Peter’s body being run by the memories of Peter. I am sure that will be ignored.

Oh, and the Green Goblin reveal was STUPID. STUPID. STUPID.

The good thing? The way Peter was written. The way GG recognized who he was after ONE quip. I laughed out loud at that.

BATMAN ETERNAL #2 (Scott Snyder / James Tynion IV / Ray Fawkes / John Layman / Tim Seeley / Jason Fabok) DC

Solid issue in that ‘moody Batman’ genre. The shock of everyone realizing that Gordon was arrested is counter-weighed a bit by the reader knowing he was set up and that there is no way he won’t be cleared of the charges.

The reveal at the end… was kind of weak. That was a big build up for a fairly boring character.

X-MEN #13 (Wood / Mann / Briones) Marvel

A nice character issue. I liked the insights into Storm, Monet, Psylocke…
I wish Jubilee wasn’t a vampire.
I am not a big fan of the uber-powerful villain types that Wood seems to like, but he was hardly dealt with here.

Overall, a good week for the X, as the next book was…

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

…even better. Another character piece (though aren’t Bendis’ books almost always that?). An interesting thought, which may be overlooked, is the elements of abuse in here. Look at how Dazzler is treated. Now look at how Maria Hill is treated. There are some similarities.

I am interested in where Hijack is going. I am interested in the Sentinel attacks. I am interested in Mystique’s potentially growing band of drug-addicted mutants.

I also really hope that Dazzler is the one to kick her ass.

MS.MARVEL #3 (Wilson / Alphona / Herring) Marvel

Speaking of characterization… this is all that. Even the bit characters seem to have a personality. Wilson could have made that a regular robbery, but instead we get the shooter to BE someone.

I am still waiting for Kamala to stop turning into a blonde. I am sure it will come.

THE UNWRITTEN: APOCALYPSE #4 (Mike Carey / Peter Gross) Vertigo

This was a really great book. The way they built the tension was top notch. Tom has just created an army for someone else, in order to get some information. I am sure he will regret that. Wilson is out of his depth and Pauly Bruckner! That was just about the saddest scene I can recall in recent comic memory.

Wow.


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

March 29, 2014
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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: Amazing X-Men #4

February 25, 2014
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A little late this week due to a crazy weekend. There are a few books on this list that actually came out the week before, but my comic store had a box go missing temporarily. Better late than never!

Starting at the weakest.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

FABLES #138 (Bill Willingham / Russ Braun) Vertigo

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

So, what was with Eva? What happened?

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

DAREDEVIL #36 (Waid / Samnee / Rodriguez) Marvel

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


Rusty’s Comic of the Week: The Unwritten: Apocalypse #1

January 26, 2014
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Big week with a drop and a surprising #1.

Starting at the weakest…

BATMAN #27 (Scott Snyder / Greg Capullo / Danny Miki) DC

More on the origin of Gordon’s coat? Really? Plus, the cops aren’t just bad…. they are bad enough to throw another cop in a pit of fighting dogs just to see what happens.

Ugh. Yeah, this just didn’t work for. This book has been more miss than hit and I am dropping it.

DC is really weak these days.

PRETTY DEADLY #4 (DeConnick / Rios / Bellaire / Cowles) Image

This book is five times better than it was the first couple of issues… which still doesn’t make it worth buying, in my opinion. Ruthanne likes it so we keep getting it.

AVENGERS #25 (Hickman / Larroca / Martin) Marvel

Well, this book wasn’t terrible. I liked the idea of finding a dead Hank Pym… to bad they solved the mystery for us immediately. Bad Avengers? Still, early strength Avengers should get whomped by the current level of power not he team.

AVENGERS WORLD #2 (Hickman / Spencer / Caselli / Martin) Marvel

I am good with the focus on Smasher (she sure looks like Yellowjacket at the end…), but I am less a fan of the yet-another-super-powerful-near-cosmic threat. I wonder how many people out there realize that the Entropic Man is not a new character?

X-MEN #9 (Wood / Dodson / Dodson / Keith) Marvel

Did Brian Wood create Arkea? He seems to be enamoured with her. Not a bad book. I actually think the Dodson’s (whom I like) is a bad choice with too many female characters because he does not differentiate between them very much. They were great on a book like Harley Quinn because they drew that one character very well without drawing attention to the fact that their range was a little limited.

I like the Sisterhood.

WONDER WOMAN #27 (Brian Azzarello / Cliff Chiang) DC

I think I am down to 3 DC books (this, Swamp Thing and Animal Man), and one os being cancelled.

This book is well done, but are we REALLY doing a story now about Zola and the baby being missing AGAIN? This book has got to expand its focus. It has been over two years with only one storyline.

THE MASSIVE #19 (Brian Wood / Garry Brown / Jordie Bellaire) Dark Horse

As I list my second Brian Wood title, I will say that I considered dropping all Wood books… and any creators that came out as acting inappropriate towards women in the comic industry.

The thing is, I read Wood’s apology and I think it makes sense. Am I giving him too much of the benefit of the doubt? Maybe.

Oh… the comic. It is pretty good. Callum hunting down his past.

ANIMAL MAN #27 (Jeff Lemire / Rafael Albuquerque) DC

This is the DC book that is begin cancelled, so Lemire can go work on Justice League. Sigh.

It is Justice League Canada, though, so I am going to give it a shot. We’ll see.

What makes this book land as high as it does this month is the scenes with Ellen. Punching that reporter was great. Showing that there are real-life consequences to such an action was also great. The fight scene wasn’t much but Maxine and Socks ‘going the wrong way’ (I have a feeling they didn’t and the Red is just circular) and the Shepherd paying for it… good stuff.

ALL-NEW X-MEN #22 (Bendis / Immonen / von Grawbadger / Gracia) Marvel

A strong characterization issue, which I tend to say a lot on Bendis books. The scene with Scott, Jean and Warren did ‘talking head’ in a great way. The Bobby scenes showed him off very well. Even the fight scene had a great level of kinetic energy, despite being a little one-sided.

I will have to remember to pick up the Guardians books, though they sure don’t look appealing based on that splash page. (Angela? How about getting some clothes?)

BLACK WIDOW #2 (Nathan Edmondson / Phil Noto) Marvel

Better than the first issue. The art is still spectacular but the writing mad dup some ground as well. Isaiah just got a little emote interesting and with the Iron Scorpion we now have a possible recurring villain for the book. Good, good…

I would recommend this book to a new reader.

MIGHTY AVENGERS #5 (Ewing / Land / Leisten / D’Armata) Marvel

Ah, Otto. The crazy thing is, he had a point… which he illustrated in the worst possible way. Arrogance will often be the undoing os such characters. Luke and Jessica sending Danielle away and then laying in to Otto was awesome. Is Jessica going to be more… active in this comic? I hope so (which does NOT mean going into costume with a codename…)

The best part of this book, and what nearly pushed it even higher? The last page. Complete with classic logo.

How about USING that logo on the book? No?

HAWKEYE #16 (Fraction / Wu / Hollingsworth) Marvel

This was the top book of the week right up until I pulled the final comic out of the bag.

Note: Issue 15 has not yet come out. This seems weird, but remember that right now Hawkeye is basically two separate comics – one about Clint and one about Kate. They also have different artists. I am guessing this is why 15 fell behind.

I don’t care. This was a really good, fun comic. Kate is pure charm. She i slough but not too tough. It looks like she has had enough of L.A., though. After the events of Young Avengers she is cleared to go back to New York. Will the two books-within-a-book intersect again?

THE UNWRITTEN: APOCALYPSE #1 (Mike Carey / Peter Gross) Vertigo

The Unwritten went on a little hiatus and then came back with a new name and a new #1. I guess sales needed a little pump.

Well, it seems like it was the fresh start it needed because the last storyline was incredibly disappointing (what a waste of a Fables ‘crossover’), but this one has fresh life (pun intended, if you read the book). The scene of Tommy trying to make to back to life were absolutely great. I don’t know what is going to come after this, because that is a one-off, but the different characters and lands that he pushed through without telling us what was going on, and getting clearer and clearer… yes. It worked from end to end.

Now, what has happened while he was gone?


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