Last week’s books were okay and this week’s books appear to be okay, but I think I’m suffering from comic book overload. Anything done to excess will burn out for me eventually. I occasionally burn out from my real job and then find the fire again, with comics it is the same thing. When you read a lot of comics a certain sameness can creep in to them and they lose their joy at times. What gets me back into it are books like Alien Pig Farm, Left on Mission, Black Summer and other books that are unique but show off the art form in its best light. Of course it is easy once you read so much to get totally negative which is what I see out of many critics on the web. Still even slower weeks have some great books and usually have a lot of solid episodes in a favorite series.
Batman #667 – Leave it to Grant Morrison to bring back a group called “The Batman of all Nations”. Based on the cover it appears to be one of those hokey stories from the late fifties or earlier sixties that seems silly from today’s perspective. Still Morrison seems to enjoy using those ideas and making into something unique and enjoyable for a modern audience. With J.H. Williams III as the artist this could be next week’s best book.
Batman Confidential #8 – Part 2 of Michael Green and Denys Cowan’s take on the Joker before he was the Joker. Last issue was a revelation to me as I went in with low expectations and was pleasantly surprised. Their take on the Joker is different then what others have done, but it was a good one. Let’s see how well part 2 holds up.
Black Adam The Dark Age #1 (of 8) – I have been looking forward to this series as 52 made Black Adam one of the most complex and layered bad guys in the DCU. Still we already know he has given his powers to Mary Marvel and we know the word he has to say to access his powers. What is left is to tell the tale of how we got from here to there. If done well a journey’s story can be a good one even when we know where it ends, but that is a harder task then to keep someone’s interest when the ending is unknown. Of course who says this series has to end when he gave away his powers.
Countdown #38 – Okay but when is something going to happen in this book again? I thought the series started off okay, but it has been a snooze fest for a while.
Green Arrow Year One #3 (of 6) – Diggle and Jock just rock with this book and the bi-weekly shipping really keeps things moving along at a great clip. So far a great re-telling of his origin, true to the spirit of his origin, but enough changes to keep it fresh and exciting.
Green Lantern #22 – The “Sinestro War” continues. This book is a much better War then the WW Hulk material. It has many more layers and has a ton of stuff happening that is going to have repercussions for a while. How this war ends is an over riding question for me as the Sinestro Corps are brutally strong.
JLA Classified #41 - The final part of the “Kid Amazo” story line. This has been an interesting examination of Frank’s journey of learning he is a cyborg and is heir to Amazo. Will the good side or bad side dominate his life.
Outsiders: Five of a Kind – Week 2 – Katana / Shazam – The first issue was a surprise in neither person remained with Batman as he takes over the Outsiders. We shall see how this series pans out, still I like the once a week idea and the spotlight on the characters is always welcome.
Deadman #12 – The second to last issue in this series. I thought that this was a decent series, but was not moving towards any resolution. In order words the book earned its cancellation.
Fables #64 – An interlude issue, where we stop and celebrate Snow and Bigby’s cubs fifth birthday. Fables is so great, that I even look forward to the “fill in” issues that give the main artist a break, because these issues aren’t fill ins, but integral parts of the overall story. Out and out a great series, clearly deserving of the hard cover treatment.
Un-Men #1 – This book focuses on the un-men from the classic Swamp Thing series by Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson. To say that this book will be a hard sell is an understatement. Taking a very small point from a book from 20 plus years ago and trying to make it into a series, when the focus is on surgically altered freaks is going to be tough.
Gen 13 #11 – This series is one I should probably drop, but Gail has them in Tranquility and that book I have grown to really enjoy, so I’ll hang in for a little while longer.
Wildstorm PHD #10 – An excellent series by Christos Gage as writer and Andy Smith on art. The official hype “A killer has begun targeting "retired" Super Heroes, a number of whom are on the StormWatch pension plan. The investigation into these crimes points toward the incredibly powerful Slaughterhouse Smith — is PHD ready to take on such a heavy hitter?”
Bad Planet #2 (of 12) – I missed issue #1. Another product from Raw Studios. Steve Niles and Thomas Jane are the writers and this appears to be a series of sci-fi / horror stories. Not sure what to expect but still with solid creators behind it, I want to take a look. Love the cover.
Dynamo 5 #6 – Continuing the sage of Dynamo’s children. This really is one of the best, if not the best super-hero team book on the market. If you look super groups, check this book out from Image.
Invincible Ultimate Hardcover Volume #3 – Collects issue #25-#35. This is the perfect way to make hard cover collections. It collects about one year’s worth of books and list price for $35. I like this better then the Omnibus Editions from Marvel that are almost too big.
BPRD The Killing Ground #1 (of 5) – Still playing catch-up on this series and I have to read all of this stuff so I can be current, but I refuse to read the current stuff and the older stuff simultaneously.
Cover Girl #4 (of 5) – Really looking forward to this book. I have thoroughly enjoyed this light hearted action book. I hope it does well enough to spawn a second mini-series. I can see how these comics are an excellent way to make a pitch to make a movie from the idea as the story boards are already done.
EC Archives Two Fisted Tales Volume #2 – The EC Archives are some of the highest quality reprints on the block. I have a standing order for every one that comes out. EC not only contained some of the best artists of the day, they are one of the most important comics from a historical perspective also.
Annihilation Conquest Wraith #2 (0f 4) – This entire series with Marvel’s outer space characters has been a decent run so far. Marvel has done a good job highlighting some of these minor and/or new characters and giving them an overall storyline to tie into. So far the Star Lord mini-series is the best, but Wraith was entertaining.
Criminal #8 – Tracy Lawless’ story continues. This comes off to me as being Brubaker’s personal favorite as far as all of his comic book work. Tracy’s story is revolving around him getting into “the life” to find out who killed his brother. Of course will he be drawn into making this his life also is a big question.
Daredevil #99 – The villain behind all of DD’s current troubles are revealed. The conclusion of “To the Devil, his Due” story line. Brubaker does best in the super-hero world where his heroes are not overly super. DD, Captain American and co-writing Iron Fist all are good works and X-Men sucks. This has been a good story and I look forward to its conclusion.
Fantastic Five #3 (of 5) – Really enjoyable series. It is so much fun to see a possible future for these characters and how they have grown and changed, yet remained who they are, this is the way comics should really progress. Really loving this series.
Hulk #109 – Last issue was a waste of paper as it was all meaningless background stuff that was not even a good story in support of WW Hulk. I really think the WW Hulk story line would have been just fine staying in its own book.
New Avengers #33 – This is my Marvel book that I buy for the hell of it, because Bendis uses this to launch a lot of story ideas that seem to impact the entire Marvel U. Still I think this book misses the mark on many levels. This issue the Hood makes a bid to be the new Kingpin of Crime and is gathering C/D list characters.
Nova #5 – Okay so last issue so Richard Ryder was essentially killed (or very close to killed) and the world mind jumped ship and now has a new Nova. This book is a very good series and I really look forward to this issue. If I remember the prior issue that well that means it was a really good or really bad book, this is in the good category.
Omega Flight #5 (of 5) – Will have to be really good to make me ever want to come back for more. Outside of Scott Kolins art work this book has been a waste of time.
X-Factor #22 – My now tied for favorite X-Book as X-Men First Class is right in there with solid X-titles. The official hype “Meet Molly and Wally, two charming children who go around the country singing cheerful songs that incite people to violence against mutants. Siryn and Monet have been dispatched to deal with them...except the twins have a rather unexpected protector. Meanwhile the Isolationist continues his manipulations to establish a world where mutants need never live in fear again. Question is, by the time he's done...will they be living at all?” A good series by Peter David as writer. I still miss Ryan Sook on art.
Well in writing about what I’m getting I’m more excited by this list then when I started writing about it. So maybe my comic burn out was short lived or it could just be the oppressive Baltimore summer has arrived and you can cut the air with a knife.