Posted by: Brian Hibbs on July 16, 2011
Comics, comics, comics! I’m dancin’ as fast as I can!
CAPTAIN AMERICA #1: Well, the McNiven art is pretty, and Brubaker’s story zips along just fine from WW2 to today (probably a smart move for audiences walking out of the WW2-set Cap film), but I have to say that this issue didn’t work on the balance for me. Part of it is the “Wait, when is this happening in continuity” aspect — Steve is Cap again, but not even a mention of ol’ Buck… and, especially that graveyard fakeout means this is happening at least “three months” “from now” (Post FEAR ITSELF), but the other part is the TWO different (if related) continuity implants of the issue — Jimmy Jankovicz (“Jimmy Jupiter”), and the other guy, who I *think* was named “Codename: Bravo”… though maybe he’s JUST named “Bravo”, since what moron would have “codename” before his name? It’s hard to say, really, either way — neither of whom is really properly introduced or explaining their motivations in any significant way.
Take Jimmy J first — there’s a “bum, bah bah!” beat of “I think Jimmy Jankovitz just woke up!”, without explaining who he is, or why he is asleep, or, more importantly for a serialization, WHY I SHOULD CARE if he’s asleep or awake or even in existence. Jimmy is apparently “our ticket right into the belly of the beast” of some secret french base, despite looking like a nine year old American boy, but then we cut away to JJ being an old man, and nothing else happens with that thread other than him being a McGuffin what gets kidnapped.
Then there’s the man who is codenamed as Codename: Bravo (seriously, I can just see… “Ah, what was his codename again?” “He is codename: Codename: Bravo!”) who SEEMS to hate Cap because Peggy Carter wouldn’t kiss him back in ’44, and whom it is also implied somehow is a “man out of time” (jeez, how many of those are running around the Marvel U?), but who, despite saying that he wants to destroy Captain America, takes a shot at… Dum Dum Dugan instead? Allllright, nothing like an incompetent act to get your ideological villain off on the right foot.
There’s also a fight that seems to take place on a freeway (rather than a surface street), where a grenade casually goes off, surely killing a civilian (or 12), and no one comments on it for even one second. Ah, what the hell, they’re French, it’s OK!
I don’t know, maybe this will make more sense when we have the entire TP collection, but, at this point, I’m not especially compelled to even pick up #2…
Sadly, this was just modestly OK.
DEFENDERS FROM MARVEL VAULT #1:Most of the “from the vault” books seem to “just” be left over inventory, but this one, as explained in the text page was plotted by Fabien Nicieza a decade back, and drawn back then (by Mark Bagley), but they lost the plot and script in the intervening years, so Kurt Busiek stepped in to try and figure out a new story. That’s pretty stunningly “Marvel Method”, in a lot of ways, and the resulting comic is far more coherent than you could ever hope that it might be. I enjoyed it in a “goofy fun” kind of way, and give it a big strong OK.
GREEN LANTERN #67: I don’t expect a lot out of crossover thingies, but it IS nice when they end up in such a way that mixes up the status quo significantly for a little while. I don’t have any expectation that this will stick for more than a few months, and it certainly makes that hastily inserted end-credit sequence in the GL film make a smidge more sense, maybe, but it WAS a genuinely “hoo boy!” moment which made my blackened and jaded heart swell for a moment, so that, all by itself, makes me give it a VERY GOOD. I also liked the half-beat insinuation that there’s something really freaky about the Indigo lanterns. The only thing I will say is that the more they try to fill in Sinestro’s backstory (between the film, and that direct-to-DVD animated one, and much of this arc), the less sense it makes that he was ever “Sinestro” in the first place, y’know?
ULTIMATE COMICS FALLOUT #1: How is this going to be a six issue mini, I don’t get it? More than half of this issue was just various reaction shots of supporting cast members, few/none of which seemed like they needed another page at all? It was “touching”, I guess, but as “1 of 6″, it was pretty dang EH.
X-MEN SCHISM #1: I dunno, I like Jason Aaron very much, but I don’t think he nailed the right “tone” of an X-book here at all? There was kinda too much comedy on one hand, and not enough “weight” on the other. Liiiike… “ooh, Sentinels are scary!”, then both Cyke and Wolvie are shown casually taking entire groups out with AOE attacks? Also? Kinda no “schism” on display here at all. Much like Cap, I’m wondering what my motivation to come back for #2 might be — it isn’t on the page. Eh.
That’s me — what did YOU think?