Posted by: Brian Hibbs on April 25, 2007
Ow, back after 11 hours at the store – this week’s shipment kicked my ass. Man, do I hate it when FCBD books ship the same week as a big week of comics (and frickin’ PREVIEWS and WIZARD – those boys add some WEIGHT)
And, OF COURSE, this was the day Rob needed to check out at 5pm so he could make it to some concert somewhere up north (I think…?)
Anyway, quick hit on last week before I go for the newest books….
WORLD WAR III: Except for the whole “You shouldn’t buy it!” thing, I’m in total agreement with Graeme on this – I figure you’re a big enough boy to decide on your own how much of a DC Universe fan/completeist to decide for yourself if it is worth your $10 or not. Me, I’m a big DC fan, and I thought this was a trainwreck of a comic.
Functional problem #1 is that it doesn’t seem to me that the two writers read each other’s scripts at all – the first two parts have the Martian Manhunter (the POV character) somehow having his telepathy wired into all of humanity at once, crippling him. This is flatly ignored in the second two issues. That kind of sloppy co-ordination makes an bad comic even worse – if THEY don’t give a damn, why should WE?
From my side of the page, it appears the writers were given a laundry list of plot points to address (and is it just me, or is it sloppy and stupid that ALL of the “One Year Later” changes seem to be occurring in a single week?) – that may be OK in a “crossing the Ts” kind of way, but it makes for shitty fiction, and is completely unengaging.
Then there’s the changes themselves – many/most of them don’t really make a whole lot of sense. What was that that happened to Supergirl… and why? Showing Jason Todd in a Nightwing costume without any explanation whatsoever (or even clarity that it wasn’t Dick) was awkward; Adam gets his “bad ass” credentials shown by killing “Terra” (wait, what? Who the hell was that?, but doing nothing at all against similarly un-super characters like, say, Wildcat or Green Arrow (honestly, what is Green Arrow going to do against Black Adam?), while at the same time showing the Marvel family to be completely ineffectual, it just goes on and on.
Then there’s stuff like the Aquaman sequence – apparently he summons… well, I have no idea who those giant guys were, certainly no one we’ve ever seen before – but how? He has no magical affinity that we’ve ever been shown before. Further, what exactly is he bargaining for? We’re shown the people in “Sub Diego” drowning – but it strikes me that there’s not a human alive who is going to take more than, say, five minutes to drown. Clearly that’s not possibly enough time for Arthur to summon some gods (?), make a deal, and complete a ritual. Why are the people drowning, anyway? It doesn’t seem to be connected to anything that Adam has done, or even the idea of WW3. But, OK, fine, he manages to raise Sub Diego – but why does THIS WEEK’s issue of Aquaman reference the cast having to swim back to Sub Diego, then?
This kind of top-down plothammering is absolute CRAP, and it cements in my mind that the DCU isn’t a place for me any longer.
And that’s a god-damn shame.
BRAVE & BOLD #3: Meanwhile, this is exactly the kind of book that makes me think I’ll be reading DC comics until I’m well into my dotage – fun, funny, action-packed, moral, trenchant. If the overall DC line had HALF of the charm and verve of this title, DC would be ahead of Marvel by twenty points or more. EXCELLENT.
OK, so that’s the PICKS, both WEEK and WEAK, how about for the BOOKS?
I’ll give you two things you really should pick up, as they’re solid comics: v2 of Ed Brubaker’s DAREDEVIL: DEVIL INSIDE AND OUT, where he amazingly gets Matt out of where Bendis left him in a way that doesn’t strain credibility as much as you thought it might. I also really like the second volume of Matt Wagner’s recent Batman work – BATMAN & THE MAD MONK. Boy knows how to draw, and how to pace a story.
Right, back tomorrow with the first look at this week’s stuff, and, probably, the second of at least six daily blog entries for this week…
What did YOU think?