Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Best to Worst of Last Week

Back to our regularly scheduled blog - April 1 should be a day to do fun post - hope you all got a kick out of ours this year.

This week I really felt only two books had a chance to be best book of the week and one was totally expected and the second was a shocker. Still this was a good week of books with a lot of fun reading and a wide variety of subject material. Of course this week’s Best to Worst was delayed by our “April Fool’s Day” post which I’m sure will generate some level of comment in the days ahead.

All Star Superman #10 – Writer – Grant Morrison, Pencils Frank Quietly, Digitally Inked and Colors Jamie Grant. Thank god all comics aren’t this good or I would go broke buying every darn book that comes out. Superman’s death is fast approaching and he realizes he has a few more things that he needs to get done. Two problems he addresses this issue is the city of Kandor and how will Earth survive without him. The city of Kandor is simply taken out of their glass case and they are put on Mars. It is such an elegant and simple solution. Yes the Kandor people are still small, but on their new world they will be the norm and have super powers to help tame a giant size world. When you think of scale in a cosmic sense size is relative. The second half is Superman has an infant universe in his fortress and he helps to create a new Earth that develops at an extreme rate in comparison to our world. Superman wants to see if a planet of humans can survive without him. On that Earth two young cartoonists create a character called Superman. It was a wonderful subtle and great nod to Jerry Siegel & Joe Shuster. There is so much more and as always Frank Quietly out does himself, every page and every panel is a work of art. Not only is this the best Superman series I have ever read, but is also vying for top series of all time. Grant Morrison and Frank Quietly are having their seminal moment in comics, on top of a lot of great work from before.
Loveless #23 – Writer Brian Azzarello, Art Daniel Zezelj, Colors Lee Loughridge I have no frelling clue what this book had to do with the original Loveless series and I could care less, it was a wonderful story. We start in 1934 and Bonnie and Clyde need a place to hide out for a while and drive into an old man’s home and put their car in the barn and then come into his house. Bonnie discovers a picture of when he was a young boy and he tells them the story of how he used to race horses with a group around the country. He talks of the one friend he made and how much he learned of life as a boy of 15 on the horse racing circuit. He then talks of a race where he and his horse beat out his friend on a muddy track and he was awash in the glow of victory and noticed a hushed crowd. His friend had fallen off his horse and had been trampled and eventually died from his injuries. It gets dark and Clyde says it is time to leave, Bonnie stops and comes back in to hug the old man before she leaves. Daniel Zezelj dark style is absolutely gorgeous. He has clear and well designed layouts and his horse racing scenes made you fell as though you were there. A one page panel of particular note was the start of the fateful race where the old man lost his friend. We are treated to a ground level shoot of the horses all starting to take off. It is just some amazing art and a truly wonderful and touching story.
Blue Beetle #25 – Writer – John Rogers, Art Rafael Albuquerque. What a great ending to this story. Essentially the first 25 issues of Blue Beetle has been one long story of Jamie Reyes learning to be a hero. This issue we have the final battle with the Reach and we find out that the real twist with Jamie as the Beetle is that he and the scarab are in communication and are now partners. This book proves my point about putting new people under the mask. The story of this Blue Beetle could never have been done with Ted Kord. Also this is a better story then I ever read about Ted as the Blue Beetle. Having a new person take up the mantle of a hero allows for new stories that can be more exciting and are not weighed down with impossible amounts of continuity.
Green Lantern #29 – Writer Geoff Johns, Pencils Ivan Reis, Inks Oclair Albert, Colors Ranov Mayor. Geoff Johns now owns Green Lantern and his retelling of Hal’s origin as GL started off very well. Geoff goes all the way back to when Hal was a boy and fills in all the information that he has laid out about Hal in a linear fashion. It is a story about Hal Jordan and his family and the events that shaped Hal. The last page we cut to Abin Sur and see what he was up against before he would pass his ring onto Hal. Here we get a little retro-con of Abin Sur looking onto the cosmic revelation of “The Blackest Night”. Ivan Reis continues to impress. During his tenure on GL Ivan has progressed from a solid super hero artist to someone who is knocking on the door of being one of the best super hero artists.
Uncle Sam and the Freedom Fighters #7 (of 8) – Writer Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti, Art Renato Arlem, Colors Alex Bleyaert. I’m going to have to buy the trade of this series when it is done. Gray and Palmiotti are crafting one heck of a great story. As the story progresses they continue to update and modernize the heroes they are using as well as continuing to introduce other heroes. This issue we see the original Ray is transformed into Neon and the end of the story we see Ms. America has been transformed into Ms. Cosmos. Also we find out that the Red Bee has been under the control of the alien hive from the jump. Neon has the power to destroy the mites that infected everybody and does so, this cures the Red Bee and she is returned to human form. She then informs everyone that the Hive is coming to Earth and it is more then just one ship. This series is a grand scale super hero adventure with tons of characterization and great art.
Proof #6 – Writer Alexander Grecian, Art Riley Rossmo, Colors Fiona Staples. If you are not buying this series you are seriously missing one of the better new series on the comic book shelves. This issue is a great jumping on point. Not only is this a new adventure, but it has a great little who’s who feature in the back to give you a brief bio on all the main players. Proof has mysteries, action/adventure, and characterization and knows how to have fun within the story itself. Plus Alexander and Riley are obviously pouring their heart and soul into each and every issue. This issue we have the bad guy (Colonel Dachshund) who is hunting one of the few dinosaurs left in the world. This is reported to the Lodge and Proof, Ginger and the Sheriff are sent to stop him. Proof and the Colonel have a history and unbeknownst to Proof the Colonel reported his own activities to the Lodge, so that Proof would be sent after him. It appears the Colonel is intent on hunting Proof. This series is unlike almost any other series that you are reading and I bet it is better then 50% of the ongoing series you are reading.
Hellblazer #242 – Writer Andy Diggle, Art Leonardo Manco. Colors Lee Loughridge. This was an excellent conclusion to this arc. Constantine did not know who was after him, but through some magic he managed to send him after another one of his enemies. His hope is they will kill each other or at least take one or the other out of the picture. What John does not realize is they have now become allies of a sort and that just spells bigger trouble for John. Andy Diggle seems to building up to a bigger story line and it definitely feels like he knows what he is doing with Constantine. Under Andy Diggle this book is as strong as it has ever been.
Legion of Super Heroes #40 – Writer Jim Shooter, Pencils Francis Manapul, Inks Livesay, Colors Jo Smith. This issue we see a new menace that the Legion is trying to deal with is a group of warriors who are being teleported in from another galaxy. Brainiac 5 pulls a group of Legionnaires together and sends them off to different worlds to try and stop them and hopefully gather a sample of one so he can analyze what is attacking our galaxy. We also see some great characterization moments with Lighting Lad and Princess Projector. Jim Shooter has really done a great job in coming back to this book and building adventures and building the personalities of the group.
Batman Confidential – Writer Tony Bedard, Pencils Rags Morales, Inks Mark Farmer, Colors I.L.L. This issue we get Part 3 of the 4 part Wrath story line and learn that this Wrath is the original Wrath’s protégé. We also learn that Jim Gordon was involved in the creation of the first Wrath, as he had to kill the Wrath’s parents as they had fired on him when he tried to stop them in a robbery. This has been a very good action/adventure that is also adding something to the mythos of Batman. I’m curious to see if the Wrath becomes a more permanent addition to Batman’s rogue gallery or not. I hope when DC trades this arc, they add the original story to it.
Dan Dare #5 (of 7) - Writer Garth Ennis, Art Gary Erskine, Colors Parasuraman A. I’m enjoying this series to no end. This chapter Dan is greeted as though he is to be the figurehead that runs the space fleet for Earth. Dan has other ideas and presents himself to the Mekon and tells him to turn back and take him as the prize for all his past defeats at Dan’s hands. Dan knows this won’t be accepted, but has a locator on him that allows a small force to teleport into the flagship of the Mekon’s fleet so they can disable the black hole weapon they have. A great space opera adventure that makes me want to read Dan Dare’s old adventures, but I’m guessing this is better then the source material ever was.
Sorrow #4 (of 4) – Writers Rick Remender & Seth Peck, Art Francesco Francavilla A good ending to this horror series. The long delay between issues muted the overall impact that this series should have had, but it was a nice horror story about a town that had been possessed due to past sins. The escape by Danni and Dalton was well done and the hard fought battle against the terrors the town had to offer was also nicely executed. The ending was strange as Danni’s reflection in a mirror showed her as appearing to now be possessed by the shaman who was betrayed. The covers by Kieron Dwyer on this series were beautiful and Francesco’s interiors were just as beautiful. Francesco has a solid and realistic style that really makes you feel like these stories are actually happening.
Fallen Angel #25 – Writer Peter David, Art J. K. Woodward. This was a strong issue of Fallen Angel. Peter David is breaking this series open in the same vein as Robert Kirkman has done with Walking Dead. This is a huge fight for the control of Bete Noire and Angel and her son appear to have lost. Malachi appears to have been killed, Jude no longer has the power of the Magistrate, Jubal does have the power now and everything is falling apart. What was especially nice was the back up piece in this issue that gives us a history of who all the players are in this story line.
JSA Classified #36 - Writer B. Clay Morre, Art Ramon Perez. Colors Dave McCaig. Moore and Perez on a book what a great team, oh not Alan Moore and George Perez. Seriously this is a good arc on this book. This tale of Wildcat is an interesting one as he is re-examining his life. By use of flashbacks to the forties we see how Wildcat views how the world has changed and how the role of heroes has changed with it. This issue he is trying to find out what is going on at his old gym and he is recruiting Catwoman to help him out. Ramon Perez’s artwork captures the flavor of this story very well as he conveys some great action scenes and his style has a throwback feel to it. The book has both a golden age and modern feel to it.
Crossing Midnight #17 – Writer Mike Carey, Pencils Jim Fern, Digital Inks and Colors Jose Villarrubia. This is the final arc of this series and the twins are both on either side of a coming war between the mystical beings that their lives have become entwined with. Kai goes back to the real world to deliver a letter to his parents in case he and his sister are killed. His sister who has no memory of who her brother is, spies on the forces that her brother is a part of and escapes after being found out. She appears to have undone any chance that side had to win this war. I cannot do this book justice in an abbreviated format like this, but it is a great fantasy/horror story that has many Japanese influences. I will miss this series when it stops at issue #19.
Daredevil #106 – Writer Ed Brubaker, Art Paul Azaceta, Colors Matt Hollingsworth. This is a path that we have seen Matt go down before and it is recognized by Matt’s friends that he has gone down this road before. In this issue we have Daredevil out on the streets and taking out the criminals with a zeal and viciousness that has the police and everyone else more concerned more about Daredevil then the criminals. Ben Urich tries to reach out and Matt never calls back. Matt blows Foggy off and has not even come into the office for a month. Dakota takes Matt to see Milla and the doctor tells him to stop visiting as he is making his wife worse. Dakota takes Matt out to help drown his sorrows and he gets in a bar fight and takes off as Daredevil , What I liked was they are acknowledging in this story all the times he has wallowed in his grief before and gone off the deep end and they are all trying to watch out for Matt. Paul Azaceta’s style is a good one for Daredevil and I’m curious to see if he will be the regular artist or if he is just filling in for Michael Lark. Now having said all of that you knew this issue was going to be exactly what it was. This book is getting a little tricky in how long can this story be told. Matt eventually needs to be the hero and overcome these problems and really beat Mr. Fear.
Teen Titans #57 – Writer Sean McKeever, Pencils Eddy Barrows, Inks Jimmy Palmiotti, Ruy Jose and Eddy Barrows, Colors Rod Reis. This is one of the best issues of the Teen Titans in a long time and certainly Sean McKeever’s best issue to date. The “Terror Titans” have captured Kid Devil and are now going after Ravager and she absolutely kicks a** against Copperhead and the Persuader. Dreadbolt shows up and Ravager proceeds to take him out also. Of course she blows up half the Titans Tower in the process. This is juxtaposed with Robin and Cassie debating the merits of Ravager and whether she even belongs in the group.
Transhuman #1 (of 4) – Writer Jonathan Hickman, Art Jim Ringuet. This book is presented as though you are watching a documentary. The documentary subject matter is about how two corporations were formed in trying to improve the human species. One went for the enhanced human aspect, making us the best we could from our genetic potential and the other going for the enhanced human aspect via the addition of cybernetics. It really came across like a documentary as we had the reporter’s narration and then a series of interview clips with the major players in these corporations. While it was an interesting start and it appears that it will be an interesting book, it feels like this is more about corporations and marketing wars then about the impact of the actual transhuman movement that has been started. This is a very different kind of comic that maybe more about how corporations act then about any science fiction theme. While I share Jonathan’s obvious distaste for major corporate enterprises I’m not sure if the sales on this book will ever warrant making it into a trade.
Secret History of the Authority Hawksmoor #1 (of 6) – Wrier Mike Costa, Art Fiona Staples. This was a good first issue. I’m not totally familiar with the entire back story of the Wildstorm Universe as I have read so much of it in a disjointed fashion. This book starts in the present day as a Slavic god appears over Kiev and the Authority try to take it down. The city is not listening to Jack Hawksmoor and that causes him to flashback to San Francisco in the nineties. This series appears to be more of telling an early tale of Jack Hawksmoor, then an origin. I was hoping for more of an origin story but this story was a good read. Jack’s flashback is to another time when he was having difficulties with part of a building talking to him. So the parallel to the current event is being played out. The art by Fiona Staple is a solid job and is a sketchy type of style, for lack of a better term.
Countdown to Final Crisis #5 – Head Writer Paul Dini with Adam Beechen, Story Consultant Keith Giffen, Pencils Jim Starlin, Inks Rodney Ramos, Colors Pete Pantazis. I enjoyed this issue of Countdown. First off a nice surprise to see Jim Starlin doing the pencil duties on this issue and he did a top notch job as always. Jim has certainly been a busy guy at DC comics. Second this issue tells the story of how the “Great Disaster” came about and we get the origin of Kamandi. Now I was never a big fan of Kamandi when it came out, so I do not know if they ever told the actual story as to what happened. Therefore for me this is new information and I thought it was well done. I have to say I’m curious as to what happens next as this seemed like it could have been the real DCU, but it must be a parallel world.
Authority Prime #6 (of 6) – Writer Christos Gage, Art Darrick Robertson, Colors Tony Avina. Darrick is just a rock solid artist and I almost always enjoy anything that he draws. He does super hero and the fantastic and the mundane all equally well. If we can’t have a regular Authority series, this was the next best thing and it actually had an impact on the group as opposed to be a mini-series with no consequences. Rose Tattoo bites the dust in a final confrontation with an uber-powerful Bendix and we see her later reincarnated again and this time as the Spirit of Murder. What I didn’t like if after the Authority and Stormwatch Prime got their butts kicked and then Rose takes Bendix down, they blow up the place to make sure it is all dead and gone and we see Bendis crawl out of the pit as an ending.
X-Men First Class #10 – Writer Jeff Parker, Art Craig Rousseau, Colors Emily Warren. Nice to see some of the artists better known for their independent work also do some mainstream material. Craig style is a little different and it has an indy vibe, but it fits the tone of this book and he did a nice job. Jeff Parker just shines on this book and I really enjoy each issue. This issue Cyclops ends up having to fly solo as the rest of the team is home fighting a flu bug. Cyclops meets a mutant who has kidnapped townspeople who had caused some of his problems or just been mean to him. In order to save them Cyclops ended up killing Frederick. Cyclops saw that Frederick was similar to Hank or his story, but also realized that what he did was hard, but necessary. This series is a solid all age book and it a throwback in it tells most stories in one issue, has humor and still can be serious.
Gutwrencher #2 (of 3) – Writers Shannon Eric Denton, Keith Giffen, Steve Niles, Art Anthony Hightower, Colors Carlos Badilla. It must be interesting when you have three people listed as the writer. Now the way the credits read I believe all three came up with the concept and Shannon wrote the actual script. If not I would pity the artist trying to work with all three at once. I had assumed Gutwrencher was a spirit of a mummy, but now it appears to be the spirit of some insane Druid type priest from 798 AD. I will ignore all that stuff as it is unimportant other then to know the spirit is a kill crazy sumofabitch. We have this after party going on and the old high school friends getting together after the official reunion. We have a second chance being given to a couple that never took their first chance when the crazed killer attacks. It is all very typical hack/slash type of horror flick material but it is being done well. You are really rooting for the couple that has found each other after all of these years ago to get away. You also can sort of understand the rage of the rejected high school classmate that has been given fire and strength by the spirit that inhabits his body. This is a “fun” book in the way a good hack/slash movie is supposed to be.
Sheena #5 – Writer Steven E. DeSouza, Art Matt Merhoff, Color Bob Pedroza. It looks like this is the end of the series for right now. We do have a one shot being advertised and a reprint of some Golden Age Sheena material, but I have to tell you that I was looking forward to more of this series. It has themes and storylines that are telegraphed from a mile away, but still it is a fun light read, with a nice clean art style that is easy on the eyes (as is Sheena). This story ends with Sheena being reunited with her grandfather and assuming her place again in the real world. You know that once you put the jungle in the girl, you can’t take it out. For now she is convinced the best way to help save the jungle is to work from the inside of the powerful corporation she is heir to. Hope we see this series return as a regular monthly book.
Gravel #2 (of 6) – Writer/Script – Warren Ellis, Script – Mike Wolfer, Art Raulo Carceres, Colors Greg Waller. I have never read any of the early series about Gravel, but so far for a “combat magician” he comes off as a killer who can use magic. This issue he kills another member of the “minor seven” who are down to the minor four. The enemy this time is a woman named Johanna who can use a spirit form and has ghost horses that she uses to try and kill Gravel. After a decent fight scene Gravel takes over control of the horses and goes back to her place and kills her and gets the next part of the magical book that the seven have pieces of. All in all somewhat of a normal Warren Ellis gore fest where the challenge is to make each next magician that Gravel goes after more interesting then the last. Hopefully putting the book together will also lead somewhere.
New Avengers #39 – Writer Brian Bendis, Art David Mack, Colors Jose Villarrubia. This was a Secret Invasion prequel and actually felt like it was worthy of the banner. Echo is roaming the streets and is attack by a skrull who exhibits teleporting, eye beams and flame powers and is about to take Echo out when Wolverine shows up. Wolverine also gets the crap kicked out of him and is saved by Echo. Together they drive the skrull off and they realize Echo was targeted to be replaced. Then Echo goes back to the Avenger’s “secret hideout” and has sex with Hawkeye. The book has lost focus and you are not sure from issue to issue if this is really a group or not. Bendis dialogue again falls extremely flat and his puerile obsession with sex in his comics is annoying. David Mack did a good job with the art, although it fell off in the last few pages. Overall it was a decent prequel to the Secret Invasion book, but I was surprised at the power level being exhibited by the skrull.
The Stranded #3 – Writer Mike Carey, Art Siddhart Kotian, Colors Anand Ballusamy. This issue the book really picked up a lot of speed. Tamree is fighting on the psychic plane against Dzin who claims to be her sister. Two members of the Stranded have been awaken and are helping Tamree in her fight against Janus (an assassin) and the Forgotten. It all sound convoluted and it is somewhat, but now I have become entrenched in the story and want to see if the Stranded can come back and beat Janus and the Forgotten or not. The artwork is very strong and it is in the classic super hero realism school. I have started classify various artist in various categories and the Neal Adams school of stronger realism is one of them. He started the trend that has been more fully realized by people like Bryan Hitch, John Cassady, Alex Ross, Dale Eaglesham and others. So when I say the art is in the realistic school that is what I’m trying to describe.
X-Men Legacy #209 – Writer Mike Carey, Reality Sequence Pencils Scot Eaton, Inks John Dell, Colors Frank D’Armata, Mindscape Sequences Art Billy Tan, Colors Brain Reber. I’m still a little confused by the whole sequence of events involving Professor X. He is shot in the head and about to die; Exodus takes him and strips his mind bare. Xavier falls into a coma and Exodus cannot revive him. He gets Magneto (who has no powers) to come and wake him up. Magneto and the Sentinel girl (who I still don’t know who the heck she is) do a little mumbo-jumbo bit and poof Professor X is back among the living. In the middle we have a little dream sequence added in and some drama within the Acolytes team to keep the action level up. It ends with the newly revived Xavier taking Exodus on in the psychic plane. Now Xavier supposedly has holes in his memory and does not remember everything, but the whole plot if full of holes and so far is just plain confusing. How can you strip a mind, yet leave it intact? What was Exodus plan? Personally I think it hasn’t been revealed because there is no plan that makes sense. Finally what is the purpose of this book and why is it being called X-Men Legacy? The plus side of the book is that even with all my complaints Mike Carey is writing a solid script and the Eaton artwork is very strong.
Countdown Lord Havok and the Extremists #6 (of 6) – Writer Frank Tieri, Pencils Liam Sharp, Inks Rob Hunter and Liam Sharp, Colors Dave Baron. This was a solid ending to a mini-series that I enjoyed. Frank Tieri has made me want to see a series about these characters. The ending was perfect as we jump over Countdown and we have the Extremist sitting on the moon looking at there world and having access to all the different worlds and ambitions to set things right in those worlds also. Of course their methods of setting thinks right would make the Authority seems like non-interventionists. At the same time we get the origin story for Lord Havok himself. Liam Sharp’s style was a great fit for this story. He has a realistic edge to his work that also conveys the dark and gritty feel that this story demanded. I would love to see this team do another series on the Extremist.
Hunter’s Moon #5 (of 5) – Writer James L. White, Art Sebastian Cardoso, Color Juanmar. This was a good ending to this mini-series and after reading it I realized that as a trade this will be an excellent read. Not only is it a solid action/adventure as Lincoln Greer is trying to save his son from kidnappers, but it has under tones of father/son relationships, husband/wife relationships and racial views in small town America. So many of BOOM’s projects come across as true novels that you would find in a book store, just with the bonus of having pictures to help tell the story.

Ultimate Human #3 (of 4) – Writer Warren Ellis, Pencils Cary Nord, Colors Dave Stewart. Another reviewer (Hannibal
Tabu) nailed it when he said it was like reading Queen and Country for most of this book. Since I have just recently read Queen and Country Volume One of the definite edition, it was very fresh in my mind. Essentially the entire issue was the build-up and origin of the man who is the Ultimate Leader. The ultimate Peter Wisdom takes matters into his own hands to try and create a super human for the British government and instead turns himself into the Leader. Last issue we saw that Tony and Bruce had been captured by him and this issue ended at the same point. A rather talk intensive issue, that does not play to Cary Nord’s artistic strengths at all.
Mighty Avengers #11 – Writer Brian Bendis, Pencils Mark Bagely, Inks Danny Miki and Allen Martinez, Art for three pages Marko Djurdjevic, Colors Justin Ponsor. Wow I liked last issue of Mighty Avengers and this issue just goes back to being another poor issue. The art was decent and I have really come to a new level of appreciation for Mark Bagley and believe that Marvel will feel the loss of such a talent (Mark has moved to DC). The actual story is the other half of last issue as we find out Doom came back a half an hour early and then was setting a trap for Iron Man and Sentry, he basically beat the rest of the Avengers until Spider-Woman use some unknown power to break free. Then Iron Man and Sentry return and they take Dr. Doom down and capture him. Some of the dialogue by Bendis was just poorly done. Brian Bendis is a smart and intelligent person and often can be a great writer, but his group books usually don’t work. Dr. Doom’s bad guy dialogue when he was insulting Ms. Marvel was just totally out of character. After Secret Invasion both Avenger books are on my hit list.
Spirit #15 – Writer Sergio Aragones and Mark Evanier, Art Paul Smith, Color Lee Loughridge. Another one and done adventure of the Spirit. This series has fallen on hard times. First we have lost Darwyn Cooke as the writer and now this issue Paul Smith is on the art chores and not Mike Ploog, who I thought was the new artist. Paul’s art can be glorious at times, but this was not one of his stronger efforts. The story was a pedestrian piece and it is not hitting the right notes with me. I hate to say it, but this book may bite the dust soon.
Ultimate Spider-Man #120 – Writer Brian Bendis, Pencils Stuart Immonen, Inks Wade Van Grawbadger, Colors Justin Ponsor. This arc is not doing much for me. This issue we have Magneto fighting Iceman and Spider-Man while trying to convince Liz Allen to come with him and see her father. Iceman is trying to get her to go with the X-Men. Liz runs away and confronts her Mom about her lying to her about not knowing where her father is and that her Dad is actually Uncle Frank who visits ever couple of years. Liz runs to MJ, Spider-Man shows up and he pulls off his mask and they help her decide to go with the X-Men to learn how to use her powers. We flashback and see Magneto and the Blob talking and the Blob is revealed as Liz’s Dad. An okay storyline, but now Liz is a mutant in this universe – blah. Stuart’s art seems to be suffering also and I wonder if a monthly schedule may not be more then he can handle. The dialogue was not that strong and every character has the same voice for the most part. Hope the next arc is better.
Jack of Fables #21 – Writers Bill Willingham and Matthew Sturges, Art Tony Akins, Colors Daniel Vozzo. This series is starting to lose it for me. I guess the fact that the main character Jack is a total a**hole and the sidekick the Pathetick Fallacy is a total loser, has worn thin for me after almost two years. This issue is about an adventure involving the Pathetick Fallacy giving a play back before Jack was involved. Wicked John plays the part of Jack in this tale and it really was a boring read, that added nothing to the overall story.
Countdown to Adventure #8 (of 8) – Adam Strange, Animal Man & Starfire Story – Writer Adam Beechen, Pencils Allan Goldman, Inks Julio Ferreira, Colors The Hories. This story had its very predicable ending. The heroes return to Earth and save the day. Starfire, her powers now back, flies off to rejoin the Titans. Adam Strange returns to Rann is reappointed the planetary protector and preaches peace and learning to live with the Thangarians. Animal Man and Ellen are back together, but Animal Man can now apparently access any Animal in the Universe, so his power level is very high. I would love to see a new Animal Man series at some point. Still overall this was a forgettable storyline and was a book that would have been easy to pass. Forerunner – Writer Justin Gray, Art Fabrizio Fiorentino & Adam Dekraker, Colors The Hories. Now this character was touted so highly and then given some exposure in Countdown and a backup series in this book and it was a waste also. After all was said and done they placed her almost back to where she started. The story ends with her on a planet that will now have a new race of Forerunners on it and she will serve as the mentor/leader to her race that was destroyed. What was the point of this character?
Gunplay #1 – Writer Jorge Vega, Art Dominic Vivona, Colors Nei Ruffino. Not really a number one, but an inducement for us to buy the graphic novel, but for me it will be a pass. The story did not draw me enough or explain who the main character is enough to make me want to pick it up again. I got more about what the story was about from the introduction, which tells us this is a bullet riddled tale about a Buffalo Solider who is cursed. It actually goes on and on, but the story it self never even gets to what the introduction tells us. I also found the language usage in the story to be used for shock value’s sake or I could be over sensitized to the whole issue and ignoring that this is how people may have talked in the Old West. Still there was a scene where a father grabs his son’s genitals and squeezes them after correcting his son. There is another scene where one man pisses on a sleeping man to wake him. It feels like it is gratuitous shock things for the sake of showing us how rough and nasty things are in the old west. The art was okay, but on a scale of 1 to 10, really never rose past a five.

This is the first week in a long time that what I thought going in was going to be the best book was in fact the best book of the week. In reviewing I noticed that DC totally dominated my top of the chart for this week. Hope everyone has a great “Comic Book Day”, as that is what everyone where I work knows Wednesday’s are for me.


  1. "Rose Tattoo bites the dust in a final confrontation with an uber-powerful Bendis... and then Rose takes Bendis down, they blow up the place to make sure it is all dead and gone and we see Bendis crawl out of the pit as an ending."

    While it would be interesting to see Rose Tattoo and the Authority go up again Brian Bendis, I think you're referring to Herny Bendix.

    Brian Bendis IS uber-powerful, though.


  2. Wishful thinking on my part. :)