Well so much for having a few lighter weeks in number of books. This week has 19 DC books, 14 Independents and 10 from Marvel. Ultimately I still have to be a little harsher on my DC list, but I have succeeded in reducing Marvel and enjoy trying out the independents. Still I’m more then willing to cut any book that I don’t get some measure of enjoyment out of off my list. At least with DC I have dropped two mini-series after the first issue and with Aquaman biting the dust and American Virgin being cancelled with issue #23, the list grows incrementally smaller.
Action #857 – Just look at the cover and try not to smile. Johns and Donner with a huge assist from artist Eric Powell have crafted one of the best Bizzaro stories ever done. This three issue arc deserves a stand alone hard cover, with Johns/Donnors scripts and Eric’s sketches to fill it out.
Blue Beetle #20 – A rare “Sinestro War” tie-in issue. I think this is this only cross-over to the entire Sinestro War series in the GL books. Since it is about a yellow ring showing up in El Paso, I trust the writer John Rogers is just using it as an element in his story and it is not a true tie-in.
Countdown #27 – This book is not a top tier book of any week, but it has definitely turned the corner and improved. Now whether this is due to Keith Giffen coming back onboard or the fact that we are getting to the halfway point I can’t determine, but this book is fun to read again.
Flash #233 – This is a good series because of Mark Waid. I believe that Freddie Williams has taken over as artist (if not then next issue he is coming on) and I think that will vastly improve the series. Daniel Arcuna’s style was ill suited for this book. Also a back-up series begins that explores the life of Wally, Linda and the twins after Infinite Crisis.
Green Arrow Year One #6 (0f 6) – The grand finale of Andy Diggle and Jock’s updating of Green Arrow’s origin. This has been a rock solid mini-series and has done a wonderful job of enhancing the origin, but still remaining true to the series. One of my favorite mini-series this year.
Green Lantern Corps #17 – Continuing the Sinestro War series. This is the last issue of what has been one of the best stories ever done about the Green Lantern corps and is also the last issue for the writer Dave Gibbons, who has done a terrific job with this series. Fortunately we are getting Peter Tomasi onboard as the new writer starting next issue.
JSA Classified #45 – Continuing the “Ghosts of Mars” arc focusing on the Martian Manhunter and the telepathic ghosts that haunt him. This has been an okay series.
Robin #167 – Really a fill in issue as a guest writer (Brandon Thomas) and series artist Freddie Williams take a look at Robin skating close to the edge. I’m not familiar with Brandon Thomas so I’m curious to see how he handles this issue.
Superman #669 – Part 2 of the “Third Kryptonian” and it appears as we finally get to met who it is. Superman has been a solid franchise since “One Year Later” but has been plagued with late books and I hope that except for the final chapter of “Camelot Falls” and “The Last Son” in Action, that we are past those problems as Busiek, Johns and Donner have made Superman eminently readable again.
Superman/Batman #41 – The best arc that I have read of this series. Batman is fighting against Darkseid to save Superman from being under Darkseid’s control. This has been an enjoyable story arc and appears to be part of Darkseid’s overall plan within the DCU.
Uncle Sam and The Freedom Fighters #2 (of 8) – Last issue’s opener was a great continuation of the last mini-series and I really enjoyed what was going on with splitting up of the group and Red Bee’s problems. I wish this book would get the green light for an unlimited series, but I’ll have to settle for this right now.
Tales of the Sinestro Corps Present : Superman-Prime #1 – The first two of these specials have been really well done as they enhance the main story with background, but are not essential to the core story. As Geoff Johns is writing this one I’m sure it will be just as good or even better.
Gotham Underground #1 (of 9) – Written by Frank Tieri and art by Jim Califore. An odd premise for a mini-series as all of the rogues are disappearing and the Bat cast is left with a less dangerous Gotham. As the premise implies nature abhors a vacuum and who will rise to take over the criminal empires? Sounds interesting and Frank Tieri has done some decent work and Jim Califore is a solid artist, still going in with almost no expectations.
Teen Titans #52 – Sean McKeever’s run continues as the “Titans of Tomorrow” fight Starro. I think Sean is posed to take Titans to a new level of excellence in the DCU and maybe can make it a top seller again.
Hellblazer #237 – Andy Diggle’s fantastic run on this book continues. The official hype “"Joyride," Part 4 of 4. John Constantine finds himself trapped in a web of corruption and depravity at the heart of middle England. But as he struggles to bring it to light, dark forces are converging to bury the truth — and Constantine with it!”
Loveless #20 – This has been a really good western, but Brian Azzarello’s story telling style is so obtuse, that I lose what is going on at times. Still this book just has a really great “feel” to it. Wes and Ruth Cutter are one of the best couples ever created.
Authority Prime #1 (of 6) – Well since the Grant Morrison / Gene Ha Authority series seems to have tanked and may never come to life again, we have a new Authority mini-series and with a creative team of Christos Gage and Darrick Robertson as the creators it should be good. The premise is the Authority and Stormwatch Prime come into conflict over a secret base of Henry Bendix’s design.
Gen 13 #13 – The continuing adventures of the Gen 13 kids by Gail Simone and Carlo Barberi. The official hype “In recent months, the kids have fought their way through the Authority, Liberty Snots, and even the Authori-teens…but their greatest threat is here! So begins the final, climactic showdown with the Tabula Rasa and the ultimate revenge of Gen9 member Megan.” Never my favorite book, but still an enjoyable read.
Wetworks #14 – I think this is the second to last issue of the series as Wetworks and the Night Tribes are fighting it out. I believe that the nine part opening of this series was too dense to bring in many new readers. I was new to Wetworks and it took awhile for this series to grab me and by then the series had already lost too many readers.
Growing Old With BC A Celebration of Johnny Hart – The official hype “One of the most beloved comic strips of all time is comprehensively collected here for the first time! Features personally hand-picked strips from the master himself, Johnny Hart, prior to his death in April 2007. This edition celebrates the prehistoric hilarity which was B.C. Each chapter lovingly captures the best strips from each decade of the comic strip from the 1950's through the 2000's. This volume features detailed descriptions of the real people Johnny patterned each individual character in the strip after and discussion by Johnny Hart of the strip with foreword by Bobby Hart. Also included are rare never-before-published concept art drawn by Johnny Hart just prior to the launch of the strip, and also a newly drawn cover done by Mr. Hart shortly prior to his death. 200 pages.” – BC was a really great strip and I’m looking forward to t book.
Crawl Space : XXXombies #1 (of 3) – The premise is that this is an ongoing book featuring ghoulish tales of horror. The first story is a three part story entitled “XXXombies” by Rick (Fear Agent) Remender, Kieron Dwyer and Tony Moore with art by Kieron Dwyer. This series combines sleazy porn movie stars and production crew, and a Zombie menace. So this will either be over the top fun or out and out a total miss and some poor tree died to make it happen.
Madam Mirage #3 – I’m still on the fence on this series. While Madam Mirage is a caricature of a woman, she is called Madam Mirage, so I’m thinking this is not who she really is. The series is just okay at this point and is apparently planned as a series of mini-series. This story is ending on issue #6.
Proof #1 – I decided to give this book a try strictly based on the premise. The official hype “When FBI agent Ginger Brown got a promotion, she didn’t expect her new duties would involve tracking down the world’s most mysterious creatures. The Loch Ness Monster, Mothman and El Chupacabra are now on her "most wanted" list and her new partner looks an awful lot like… Bigfoot! “ I’m unfamiliar with writer Alex Grecian and artist Riley Rossmo, so reading people who are new to me is also an enticing part of it.
Conan Volume #13 TP – Collection the old Marvel Conan series, includes issues #92 and #101-#108, the next volume is the last of the Roy Thomas issues and is my point for dropping this trade series of the old Conan stories.
Criminal Macabre My Demon Baby #2 (of 4) – I decided to try out a Cal McDonald series and after only one issue I was hooked. Steve Niles has crafted a down on his luck PI that is at rock body and hip deep in the supernatural. Just an out and out entertaining book with a character you can’t help but appreciate.
Fear Agent: The Last Goodbye #4 (of 4) - Heath Hudson and the Fear Agents in a final battle against the Dressites for the fate of the Earth. Rick Remender’s signature creation continues the “origin” story line. Really just an excellent character and each story adds a little more depth to the character. Humor, action, drinking, space ships and alien creatures all in one of the coolest series to come along.
30 Days of Night Red Snow #3 (of 3) – The conclusion of Ben Templesmith’s tale of Vampire’s and Nazi’s in Russia. Ben’s work just continues to impress me, the little vampire girl is the same he used as a corpse for Wormwood, but that is a minor quibble. I hope to see the movie “30 Days of Night” this week.
Doktor Sleepless #3 – The one Warren Ellis series I have picked up this year that has not really impressed me to date. I will give it one or two more issues, but I may just end up dropping this one as it hasn’t really grabbed me. Although last issue’s ending insinuating there are more then one Doktor Sleepless was a decent cliff hanger.
Fall of Cthulhu #7 – This ongoing horror book playing with Lovecraft’s themes has really been quietly one of the better horror books coming out. The horror or at times overt and other times subtle and underplayed. Very good series so far.
Potter’s Field #2 (of 3) – The first issue was fantastic and I’m looking forward to John Doe’s next mission and learning a little more about the character. Mark Waid has started off at BOOM with a bang (pun intended). A great first issue of his own book and what appears to be a reworking of their scheduling. It appears that BOOM is on track to make an impact in ’08.
The Killer #5 & #6 (of 10) – The is the excellent story of a contract assassin. Why Archaia is publishing is putting out two issues at once is beyond me, but I’m actually happy with it as it has been a long hiatus from issue #4 to #5. The story is told from the killer’s point of view and is worth reading.
Neozoic #1 – My favorite comic from Red 5 and just an out and out great series. I’ve had the chance to read this book a while ago and as my review stated "a comic book that does what comic books do best." Pick it up and try it out.
Streets of Glory #2 (of 6)- Garth Ennis’ western published by Avatar press. The first issue was interesting enough to make me want to read #2, but I’m not sold on this mini-series yet. I think it was over hyped as a reinvention of the western so that my expectations were so high it was easy to miss the mark.
Annihilation Conquest: The Wraith #4 (of 4) – Wrapping up the mini-series that are leading into the actual Annihilation Conquest series. I have enjoyed the Wraith and he is certainly a very powerful addition to Marvel’s space pantheon. I assume the series does not end so much as lead into the main event.
Avengers Assemble Hardcover Volume #5 HC – Concluding Kurt Busiek’s run on the Avengers, which was the best run in many years. I know Bendis has crafted a higher selling title, but Busiek's run was truer to the spirit of the group and written ten times better.
Daredevil #101 – What Marvel is calling the second chapter of “Without Fear” which is actually the continuation of the story line began about eight months ago. Bottom line Ed Brubaker has been writing a really good version of Daredevil. I don’t think this is a definite run on the book, but it is certainly a rock solid entertaining book.
Foolkiller #1 (of 5) – I’m going in with zero expectations, I don’t really remember this character and I have never seen a comic written by Gregg Hurwitz (what is the extra “g” for?). So this was based on Lan Medina as artist and the premise that when the Foolkiller kills the punishment fits the crime.
Marvel Masterworks Nick Fury Agent of Shield – I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR THIS ONE. I swear this is the last of the early silver age stuff from Marvel and why it took so long to put it in a Masterwork I have no idea, but I glad it has finally made it to the stands. It was delayed for about a month due to a printing error.
She-Hulk #22 – The first issue in the Peter David run. I have intentionally avoided reading anything about it as I want to see how David is going to handle this series, but I will be quick to drop it if it is too standard. With David writing it, I believe it will be a good series under his direction, different then what was happening, but still good.
Thunderbolts #117 – When Ellis took this series over it seem to be really exciting and was well written and had so much going on it was almost impossible for it to fit in one comic, but for me the book has lost some of its dramatic impact. It could be just timing as the book has not been coming out monthly.
Ultimate Spider-Man #115 – “Death of a Goblin” part 4 of 6 is in this issue. Stuart Immonen has done a great job of taking over as artist and was a perfect choice to follow Bagley. Also this story examining Norman Osborne has been really well done.
X-Men #204 – An Epilogue to the end of the last story line and more like a trending the water issue to get to the big X-Event starting soon.
X-Men First Class #5 – The novice X-Men have a encounter with the Hulk. Just a solid and well done book reinventing the early years of the first X-Men. I'm a little bothered that they are running into the Hulk as I’m a little tired of the Hulk at this point.
Well a huge list of book, trades and hard covers, but a whole lot of great material to look forward to reading.