Monday, September 08, 2008

What I’m Getting Wednesday

I wrote my commentary on violence in comics here and had long discussion in this comment session here. What I find interesting is that since it was a Mark Millar book and people know I’m not his biggest fan, they continued to suggest that it was an anti-Millar stance and it is not. It is a question of how much is too much. Since I raised two daughters and have always been very liberal in what I let them watch and read, I’m not advocating censorship. What I am wondering is what (if anything) would be considered too much. I was a little shocked that some people said anything goes no matter how depraved. I did not get into in these discussions, but the attitude I thought was cavalier as I’m positive these same people would not support child pornography. I guess it maybe generational thing.

All Star Batman and Robin the Boy Wonder #10 – My theory has been that this book was about why Batman needed to have Robin. I think the book was showing just how crazed he was and he needed Robin to ground him. This is a book that I don’t care when it comes out as both Miller and Lee are very busy people. The hype “Batgirl, Catwoman, Black Canary, and even Detective Gordon's better half give Gotham a headache so big it'll split the city in two!”

Batman Confidential #21 – This arc has been a blast. I have really enjoyed this tale of the first meeting between Batgirl (Babs) and Catwoman. What’s inside “"The Bat and the Cat" Part 5! The tale concludes as Batgirl finds out who sent Catwoman after Commissioner Gordon's notebook – and why! But to do so she will have to spend the night in Arkham Asylum!”

Booster Gold #12 – I was surprised how seamlessly Chuck Dixon came in and picked up this book and continued like Geoff and Jeff never left. The company line “Guest writer Chuck Dixon goes back to the future and brings our heroes into the past for "Vicious Cycle" Part 2. When Booster's attempts to right a wrong from Batman's early days goes horribly wrong, he must look to the newest member of his Time Masters team to set things straight.”

Final Crisis Revelations #2 (of 5) – The first issue was interesting and I enjoyed how Rucka brought Detectives Allen and Montoya back together again, but now they appear to be adversaries and are the Spectre and The Question. The word “The Question's been marked for death by The Spectre! How will Renee escape the grasp of the Spirit of Vengeance? Can either of them stop the immortal Vandal Savage once he has the Spear of Destiny? Plus, the return of Batwoman!”

Gen 13 #22 – The last issue was really atrocious so this book has this issue to get it right or it is back off my list. The hype “As the kids navigate their way through a flattened and flooded New York, they discover human survivors of the apocalypse — who want superhuman blood! Can a desperate plan bail them out, or will the kids serve the ultimate sentence for being post-humans? Plus: Part 3 of the Wetworks backup story by Gage and Badeaux!”

Gotham Central HC Volume 1- In the Line of Duty – This was a great series and it really was a cool concept to tell stories about the GCPD. My big concern is what type of paper and format is this hard cover. This volume contains “The first ten issues of the Eisner and Harvey Award-winning series is collected in hardcover for the first time! Written by Ed Brubaker (Captain America) and Greg Rucka (DETECTIVE COMICS, 52), this series pitted the detectives of Gotham City's Special Crimes Unit against the city's greatest villains — in the shadow of Batman himself.”

Green Arrow / Black Canary #12 – This book used to be the fastest paced book in the DCU. Now it has dragged on and on. Actually it is not dragging that bad, it is just compared to the 150 MPH we started with 60MPH feels slow. The hype “Side-by-side with the League of Assassins, Team Arrow finds where Connor Hawke's been taken – but are they too late to save him?”

Green Lantern Corps #28 – Wow last issue was pretty gruesome when the eyeball rain occurred. A rather nasty villain is going after the loved ones of the GL corps. One thing the DCU has gotten a lot more dangerous in the last five years. The company line “As Kyle and Guy deal with personal issues on Oa, several Lanterns search for whoever's been gruesomely removing the eyes of their relatives. Meanwhile, the Guardian known as Scar summons Lantern Saarek for a mission that will lead directly into The Blackest Night.”

Simon Dark #12 – Last issue we had come to a showdown between Simon Dark and the guy who is behind all of this madness. I’m looking forward to this issue and I thought I read somewhere where Niles and Hampton have retained more ownership of this character then normal. That would be a very cool idea if you owned any creation you brought into the DCU and then once the contract ended you could renegotiate or move on. The word “Simon's status changes in a major advance against the cult that seeks to control Gotham City! As the Black Cloud descends and infects the populace, Simon must make a life-altering choice to save everyone!”

Trinity #15 – This book is becoming better with each issue. Okay the DC hype actually seems to be on track as opposed to pointless. The company line “Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman lead the heroes of the DCU against the machinations of their malevolent counterparts, resulting in a cataclysmic event that will change the world – but not like anyone involved expects. Plus, Hawkman and Gangbuster make their move to rescue Tarot, and Konvikt breaks loose.”

Wonder Woman #24 – The last arc was really well done but the hype for this issue sound rather boring. The hype “After Diana's high-profile showdown with the devil is broadcast worldwide, Hollywood comes calling with a surefire proposal: WONDER WOMAN: THE MOVIE! It's the summer blockbuster to end all blockbusters, but will Diana play along? And will the project get back-burnered permanently by a terrorist with a grudge against the Amazons?”

Dynamo 5 #16 – This is one of the best group books on the stands. Right now the group has been fragmented and the spotlight is on Scrap as she is pulling together another group to carry on. As Scrap is my favorite of the group I’m fine with this story line. The word “Introducing the new Dynamo 5!” Okay the soul of brevity award fro promoting your title goes to Dynamo 5 this week.

I Kill Giants #2 (of 7) - The first issue was great. It had a Calvin and Hobbes vibe to it for me. The bunny ears the girl who is the main character wears are just hilarious. I also enjoyed how the line between real and fantasy is a little blurry for our main character. The hype “As Barbara continues to make her way in a world that just doesn’t get the importance of Giant Slaying, new players enter her tale " the new girl, the bully, and the psychologist. Will any one of the three crack through Barbara’s armor and reach the girl inside?”

Invincible #52 – Kirkman has promised us to keep the pace faster now that we are past issue #50. Also my expectations are higher for this comic then others. It is funny because once you deliver a great comic then you have to match it or it becomes a let down. Often you can be a victim of your own success. The company line “INVINCIBLE vs. KID OMNI-MAN!This partnership is not off to a good start! It's brother versus brother and the outcome of this all out brawl will amaze you. Who will be left standing? The bold new direction of INVINCIBLE continues here!” Wow this was solicited for March.

Pax Romana #3 (of 4) – I see where Image is releasing a bumper edition that collects the first twp issues in case you missed it. I guess the sales are doing pretty good on this book. Jonathan Hickman is writing comics with a decidedly different bent and examining some great ideas. The hype “The Empire divided, the Word rewritten. Tough choices face the army of the future as enemies become allies and friends go separate ways.”

BPRD The Warning #3 (of 5) – This book is so exciting right now and so many different dangers are occurring. I also continue to be amazed at how almost every story Mignola has ever done with this material all ties in together. The company line “Stranded and missing a teammate, Abe, Kate, and Johann discover that the situation is far worse than they had thought, as another old enemy resurfaces.”

Criminal Macabre Cell Block 666 #1 (of 4) – Steve Niles is a creative force and his character Cal McDonald redefines how down on your luck you can be as a Private Eye. This series is always entertaining. What’s inside “If good intentions pave the road to hell, then Cal McDonald should just get in the handbasket already and buckle up for the ride. He's no do-gooder--not by far--but he does everything he can to keep supernatural forces of evil from harming humans; and it always comes at a great personal expense, taking everything and everyone he's ever owned or cared about. Now he's being set up by the cops and a vengeful D.A. to take the fall for a pile of bad news. There's no way he's getting out of this one without serving some time at the graybar hotel. A little time in lock-up would be like a vacation compared to what Cal's been through lately, but forces both human and monster alike are lining up to make sure Cal's trip to the slammer is the last trip he ever takes.”

Goon #28 – Last issue felt like a fill-in, but with the Goon it is not as important as the character himself is so much fun, although we do have actual continuity in the series right now. The word “The Zombie Priest becomes an unwilling agent of the Goon when things heat up in the Labrazio gang war. Could he hold the secret to Labrazio's power and Franky's missing sausage links? Eric Powell continues his monthly run on his Eisner Award-winning series The Goon with Dave Stewart on colors.”

1001 Arabian Nights Adventures of Sinbad #3 – This is the last issue that I’m getting of this series. It just has not impressed me enough to hang on to it. The official hype “The incredible adventures of Sinbad continue as he and his crew search for the missing pieces of the Jericho Visor. But as they approach the mysterious Islands of Fire, the crew of the Al Da'rab encounters a vicious and terrifying resistance. Meanwhile, the Witch Queen Alorana has her own plans for one of Sinbad's crew, using her powers to make Samelia her apprentice and slave!”

Bomb TP – I was sold on this book by the cover and Lee’s praise of the creator. The hype “Collecting issues #1-4 of The Bomb mini-series, this book has been described as Raiders of the Lost Ark meets MAD Magazine, with a dash of Stan Lee thrown in for good measure! Steve Mannion's signature brush style, colorful characters, and witty gag-writing have already netted the artist a solid underground following. This huge compilation features Fearless Dawn, Brownhole Jones, and Jungle Chick and the Dinosaur. For fans of The Goon, Wally Wood, and classic EC horror, this book is a must!”

Dead She Said #3 – This three part series has been a blast. Steve Niles teamed up with Bernie Wrightson doing pencil and inks really says it all. The word “In the conclusion to Niles and Wrightson's horror-noir, Coogan has reached the end of the line, and there's no question whether or not he'll survive to see it through... not when he's already dead! But dying is the least of his worries now that there are giant ants running amok!”

Enigma Cipher TP – This was a two part mini-series with both issue being 64 pages, but was released over a long period of time when BOOM was figuring out how to get their production schedule done right. It was an exciting story and a great read so I wanted to have it in my library. The company line “In the conclusion to Niles and Wrightson's horror-noir, Coogan has reached the end of the line, and there's no question whether or not he'll survive to see it through... not when he's already dead! But dying is the least of his worries now that there are giant ants running amok!”

Epilogue #1 – This is Steve Niles week as we have Simon Dark, Dead She Said, Criminal Macabre and this new series from IDW. The hype “What if the thing that gave you your greatest power was your greatest enemy? Writer Steve Niles (30 Days of Night) and artist Kyle Hotz (Man-Thing) present an all-new series featuring the ultimate avenger-outsider. In issue 1, a man loses his family to creatures of the night only to survive as something more-and something less-than human, and he's out for bloody payback.”

Grimm Fairy Tales #30 – I have been hot and cold on this book, but this issue looks good. What’s inside “What ever happened to Sela? Sacrificing herself so that an innocent life might be spared, she was sent to an icy grave by Belinda. But is she gone for good? The classic story of 'Rip Van Winkle' sheds some light on Sela's fate and offers intriguing clues on what's to come in the Grimm universe.”

Neozoic #6 – I just wish this was a monthly book. I love how much happens each issue. This is a great series. The company line “Lilli and Pax escape the dinosaur hoard into an ancient village at the tops of the trees where they find a clue to unlocking the mystery of the little girl and the reptile attacks. Meanwhile, the scattered Predator Defense League looks to find allies in their fight against the Talpid occupation.”

Straw Men #2 (of 12) – The first issue was intriguing but did not reveal much. The hype “In Los Angeles, 14-year-old Sarah Becker disappears into thin air. Ex-cop John Zandt and FBI agent Nina Black are on the trail of Sarah’s abductor, a man that Zandt has a terrible history with, a sadistic killer known only as The Upright Man. In Montana, former CIA agent Ward Hopkins tries to uncover the mystery behind his parent’s death. Seemingly unconnected incidents happen hundreds of miles from each other. Soon Ward, Nina and Zandt will learn that all roads lead to The Straw Men”

Welcome to Hoxford #2 – The first issue was really well done and I have to say Templesmith just seems to have fun with these outlandish tales. The word “Ray hasn't been taking his medication. No surprises there. Turns out the Hoxford staff don't really have the prisoners welfare at heart... more like their own stomachs. Dr Ainley keeps trying to gain access to her old patients, only to find herself locked in the Warden's office with a strange old man as night falls, the full moon lights the sky... and the screaming begins.”

Criminal #5 – Officially Criminal 2 #5, but I get tired of all the bizarre numbering. If you like crime drama or noir type stories, then buy this book. The hype "Nothing is what it seems when a woman on the run falls for a man running from his past!“Bad Night” Part 2 of 4, twists like a knife in your back, as the multiple-award-winning series CRIMINAL keeps the hits coming! Jacob K. is no stranger to trouble, or to the strangers that bring trouble with them. Still, his coincidental meeting with a beautiful woman in need of shelter is beginning to turn his life upside down, and he’s starting to wonder if he even cares. And he’s also wondering if there are really any coincidences in life. See what these bad nights will bring him, and if he’ll get out alive.”

Secret Invasion #6 (of 8) – I always hope against hope that someone actually is given the authority to really shake things up, but even if they do I worry it will be re-set. This started off okay, but eight issues has been too long. The company line “EMBRACE CHANGE! With these words, the Skrulls have made their intentions clear but not everyone thinks they sound all that bad. Which heroes and icons are hell-bent on defending the Earth from the invasion, and who thinks a new era has dawned for mankind? The final double-page spread of this issue will send chills down your spine, and that is a promise!! The blockbuster event of the year heads towards its shattering conclusion by Bendis and Yu.”

Ultimate Origins #4 (of 5) – I picked this up on a whim and have enjoyed parts of the series. I guess it doesn’t matter as I will not buy Ultimatums as I’m done with Loeb written books. The word “Continuing the shocking exploration of the dark side of the Ultimate Unverse! For the first time we learn: How did Nick Fury become Nick Fury? How did the Hulk become the Hulk? And, finally, how did a baby Peter Parker connect to it all? Plus: the Ultimate Watcher has appeared and he is here to witness the Ultimatum!”

A more frequent happenstance occurred again this week where the independent books outnumber DC and Marvel. I’m curious to see what Marvel starts to produce once we get out of Secret Invasion. I’m almost totally done with X-books and I have to say I’m getting tired of the Avengers. In the last two weeks I have only gotten six books from Marvel.

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