Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The Week in Review November 7 Part 3 of 4 – 4 Good Books and 4 That Got Away

The week broke down a little odd and with the ton of books I got and timing of things I was unable to read 4 books. The 4 that got away are Planet of the Apes Cataclysm #3, The Shadow #7 with a new creative team, The Manhattan Projects #7 (what the hell happen to Secret by Hickman?) and Criminal Macabre One Shot, which is a collection of DHP material. No reason they missed the cut, just too much to read and not enough time.

The four good books that deserve at least some brief comments follow.

Battlefields #1 by Garth Ennis and Carlos Ezquerra. Since this is the third Battlefields series I did not place this in my new number one line up. As I have stated ad nasuem Ennis’ best work is his war books. This story spotlights “The Tankies” and maintains the only ongoing character in the Battlefields series and boasts some of the hardest dialogue ever to read. The reason is Ennis maintains his own spelling so as you read it you can get the accent of the tank commander. It is fooking difficult to read at first and then you almost fall into it as the book progresses. This time the venue is the Korean War and as an American and old MASH TV show fan I forgot that other countries even had troops over there. Ennis just seems to manage a sense of realism with his war stories that never short changes the people involved but always makes us understand how brutal and nasty a business war can be.

Next up is Harvest #4 of 5 by AJ Lieberman and Colin Lorimer. This book is a great mini-series that unfortunately has come out at the same time as Happy and Punk Rock Jesus or else it might be garnering more of a buzz. It is a tense crime drama with an alcoholic doctor in the middle of an organ harvesting ring. There are crosses and screw ups all over the place and in the midst of all the medical stuff and shootings the doctor has this strange six year old Jiminy Cricket with him at times. It is a very cool premise and the “hero” of the piece is about as flawed a person as you could see in any comic. Lieberman is producing his best work to date and I would not be surprised to see his name showing up at Marvel or DC. Of course if AJ and Riley want to do more Cowboy Ninja Viking I will not object.

Sweet Tooth #39 by Jeff Lemire comes to a bitter penultimate issue. If you never followed this book go out and pick up the trades, it is an excellent series. Jepperd comes to his end and dies in Gus’ arms after Gus killed the bad guy who had finished off Jepperd. We are left with an Earth that will be inherited by Sweet Tooth and his kind. It looks like the meek have inherited the Earth after all. The next issue provides, what I assume,  will be the epilogue to a great story. Lemire is one of the industry’s best story tellers. Sweet Tooth is a very cool post apocalyptic vision and has characters that have true depth and heart.

Last for this segment is Mars Attacks #5 by John (Chew, Detective) Layman and John McCrea. I was wondering how this series was going to go on for a long time and my questions were answered as this arc came to a sudden conclusion. The story is far from over, but the main antagonist’s (General Zar of the Martians) story did conclude. Layman with John McCrea is doing terrific work with this book. It is over the top mayhem and destruction with a decent plot and a firm sense of underlying humor. Humor maybe the wrong word, but it is done in the spirit of being fun and over the top and not as a drama or tragic feeling to it.  IDW has gone insane with various Mars Attacks Popeye and all sorts of other things. While they look like fun it is not material by Layman and McCrea and for me not worth wasting $4. With certain types of entertainment I only want so much of it and the main series is enough.

Whew, I finally keep a part short, Part 4 at noon and another shorter post. 

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