Posted by: Brian Hibbs on March 9, 2012
Tags: Action Comics, Age of Apocalypse, Ann Nocenti, Avengers Academy, Avengers: Children's Crusade, Brian, Defenders, Fables, Fairest, Frank Quitely, Grant Morrison, Green Arrow, Jonathan Hickman, Manhattan Projects, Matt Fraction, Nick Pitarra, Night Force, Paul Jenkins, Roberto De La Torre, Stormwatch, Supurbia, Swamp Thing, The Authority, Ultimate Spider-man, Warren Ellis, Young Avengers
Ah yes, reviews, I remember those! Been a while, but I think I’m finally back on the weekly-review-train now!
ACTION COMICS #7: I know the book’s been a little uneven, but the issues that are good are so good that it makes my teeth hurt. I thought this was one of those issues. I’d rather read Morrison doing Superman than almost any other superhero comic by almost any other creator. I’m a little amused, however, that Brainiac is, y’know, the internet. VERY GOOD.
AGE OF APOCALYPSE #1: I have little-to-no natural affection for any of these characters (I sort of think the IDEA of the original AoA was more interesting then the actual execution), but I thought this was non-heinous, with some pretty nice art from Roberto De La Torre. What I don’t see is how this is an ongoing series, because I can’t imagine that (even with the X-Force lead in), there’s more than, say, 10k people (by issue 4 or 5) who will want to read about alternate universe version of the X-Men? it’s strange to me — this is the kind of book that Marvel used to make fun of DC about (alternate versions of the same characters), but that Marvel is doing in multiple ways now (Ultimates, Zombies, this) — this is the kind of thing that led to CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS, y’know? Anyway, this comic is perfectly OK for the kind of thing it is
AVENGERS ACADEMY #27: This, on the other hand, I thought was terrific — funny, and real conflict and stakes, and just really being the “legacy” comic in a way that DC has entirely walked away from now with the 52. The “voice” of some of the Runaways is a little off, but over all, I thought this was a fun little romp of a comic, and was VERY GOOD.
AVENGERS CHILDRENS CRUSADE #9: If this had come out over the course of 9 months, I think we’d all be talking about what a great comic it was; but, of course, it has been TWENTY months, and the Marvel universe this story began in is kinda different than the one today. Characters live, characters die, and “Young Avengers” is largely thrown away as a concept by the end of this — which is too bad, because I liked that first incarnation a whole lot. I’m glad Hulkling and Wiccan get their kiss at the end, though. Overall, I’ll go with GOOD here, I think.
DEFENDERS #4: I pretty much flat out hated the first three issues — I’d probably not have disliked it had it been, like, “Magic Man” and “Kung Fu Guy” instead of “Doctor Strange” and “Iron Fist”, if you see what I mean? I just don’t think that the characterization Fraction tried to graft on here really bore any relationship to past characterizations — but this issue I kinda liked just fine. The problem is, at $4 a throw, the audience has now made up their minds about whether they like the book or not, and you have to hit the ball right in the first issue… you can’t wait until #4. Either way, I can give it a low GOOD, but it’s probably too late — we sold 32 copies of #1, and just a meager 13 of #3.
FAIREST #1: I thought the premise of this FABLES spin-off was “it focuses on the female Fables”? *looks at the cover* Yeah, that’s how they’re selling it. So… why no female Fables as anything other than furniture here? This is the comics equivalent of the Senate hearing on Contraception, isn’t it? Also, I have to say that I think the choice of the flat matte paper was a poor one with fully digital painted art — it looks muddy and bland, and, frankly, ugly to my eye. Shockingly EH.
GREEN ARROW #7: Ann Nocenti’s first issue… and it’s just kind of weird, sort of like her later DD run. I mean, I liked it, don’t get me wrong, and it’s a big step up from the first six issues of this version, but triplet mutant killer seductresses? Mm, dunno. Also: what on the earth could they possible have “twelve of these” be referring to? Did they each lose eight toes, somehow?
Oh, and here’s where I’ll slot in the rant against the new DC logo. Here’s how you know it is an utter and abject failure as a static object: they have to print the words “DC Comics” underneath it so that anyone could POSSIBLY tell that that is what it means. *sigh*
Anyway, Green Arrow #7: A strong OK.
MANHATTAN PROJECTS #1: I thought this was utterly spiffy, with a wonderful Jonathan Hickman high concept (if I tell you it, I’ll thoroughly spoil the comic), and some really terrific art from Nick Pitarra. Man, it’s kinda like a younger Frank Quitely. Image is on a helluva roll these days, isn’t it? VERY GOOD.
NIGHT FORCE #1: Well, it was fairly pretty, but I really had no idea why I should care, or whom I should root for. Much like the original series, when i think about it. EH.
STORMWATCH #7: Paul Jenkins comes in as new writer, and it’s a little better, though I’m still not finding the compelling reason for these characters to be together. At least when it was THE AUTHORITY, you got the who “We’re smarter than you” Warren Ellisy vibe going for it. Very strongly OK, but not any better than that.
SUPURBIA #1: Ah, if only this hadn’t been so strictly mapped to existing archetypes, I might have been more attracted to it, but I don’t really need YET ANOTHER pastiche of Superman and Batman and Wonder Woman, I don’t think. “The Real Housewives of Superville” is a fun enough pitch, and the execution was at least competent, but this largely feels recycled and warmed over. OK.
SWAMP THING #7: SEVEN ISSUES for the protagonist to actually appear in his own comic, terrific. And yet, I still like it adequately. I really do rather hope that out protagonist and antagonist both manage to defy their expectations — but I also think that this “rot” plotline just can’t go on indefinitely, and may already be outstaying it’s welcome. One problem: the big Green Guy is too wicked powerful — look at the way he routed all of those minions in a single double page spread. I’ll just barely give it a low GOOD.
ULTIMATE COMICS SPIDER-MAN #8: I’m kind of creeped out that the guy on the cover looks very little like the guy actually in the comic book. There’s also something boringly predictable about the Aunt May and Uncle Prowler scenes — now all we need is for Nick Fury to step back in where he left off. When you add that to how Miles’ voice is virtually identical to Peter’s… well, I’m kind of not feeling this book, sorry. (especially for $4, jebus!) EH.
Right, that’s me… what did YOU think?