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Just get to the screwing: Hibbs on 7/7

Brian Hibbs

I hate airports.

I’m off for a day trip for an Important Business Meeting in Burbank, and there’s all of this time to kill. SuperShuttle wanted to pick me up at 4:30 for a 7 AM flight. I told them 5 AM would be more than fine, even allowing for, say, an earthquake. I still got here more than an hour before I really needed to.

Anyway, time to kill, so I type to you, my friends, and I write some reviews (though I’m not certain I’ll POST this until later tonight….) [Which of course you now know I didn’t]– but because I’m in an airport, I don’t have actual access to the comics, so this is from memory.

AVENGERS: CHILDREN’S CRUSADE #1: Here’s what I don’t get: they had a perfectly working franchise going on here a bunch of years ago when this was called “Young Avengers”. There were a bunch of fans for that, and this is the actual continuation of that series, by the same creative team – this is, in effect YA #13. So where’s the sense in ditching the name? Meh, well doesn’t matter – if you liked that, you’ll like this. Drawn well, competently written, and a set of reasonably compelling characters new characters (well, new then, not so much new now, but you know what I mean) – if I didn’t read another issue ever, I wouldn’t die, but I’d rather read this then, say, get a poke in the eye, so that’s like competently GOOD.

BATMAN & ROBIN #13: Words fail me of just how awesome this issue was. But I’m with Gotham’s cops – I like Dick better as Batman, too. EXCELLENT

BATMAN ODYSSEY #1: Uhm… What? Over-rendered finishes, hard to decipher page layouts, oddly out-of-character pieces, and clunky, chunky, crunky exposition. Yeah, didn’t care for this even one tiny bit. AWFUL.

BRIGHTEST DAY THE ATOM SPECIAL: Writing super-hero comics is its own special little trick. Not everyone can do it, and I think that, with a couple of pretty rare examples, that most people who excel at doing “Alternative” comics just don’t have the right muscles or tone to do it. I wish I could tell you this was one of those exceptions, but it really isn’t – too much time and space is devoted to things that don’t matter in a superhero comic, the threat was flaccid, and it doesn’t resolve in anything even slightly approaching an exciting To Be Continued manner that would want me to read the upcoming backups in ADVENTURE. In fact, after reading this, I felt pretty ripped off for my time – I didn’t read to read a retconned origin, there wasn’t a moment’s sympathy for Ryan Choi, and the comic didn’t end, it stopped. Sadly: AWFUL

SCARLET #1: No, no, not THIS one

(though, really, with all the vampire shit going on these days, that might have a chance at selling…)

The way I’d describe the 2010 version is Seattle G20 Protest: The Comic, and while that’s not strictly right, it’s pretty close in tone and spirit. It looks dead-fabulous, and while I’m not really sure I care for the protagonist, there’s definitely a huh-what-happens-next? Thing going on here. I thought it was very nearly VERY GOOD, though #2 will probably more tell the actual tale.

SHADOWLAND #1: There’s a pretty cool Reversal in this, though I’m not really all that sure that the ground had been properly set for THAT in the regular DD issues leading into this. I also wonder how the heck Frank Castle is in this comic, given the events in his own book. Still, it is nice to have a “street level” event, after all of the Everything Changes Forever! comics that event books tend to be…. GOOD.

THOR MIGHTY AVENGER #1: I sold out before I had a chance to read this (more copies on their way this week), but I do have to say that on the flip test it looked GREAT. I strongly don’t think, however, movie or not, that the market can support all of the Thor comics (or Iron Man, for that matter) that Marvel keeps trying to cram out.  INCOMPLETE

VENGEANCE OF MOON KNIGHT #10: WTF? Ryp? Drawing Marvel comics? Wow, that’s a big poach from Avatar…! This isn’t much what I want to see him drawing (it is kind of the opposite of subversive), but MK hasn’t looked THIS distinct since the Sienkiewicz days. VERY GOOD for the art; EH for the story… average it out to a high OK?

X-MEN #1: Oh, vampires! How we love you! Well, no, not really, and I really don’t think the market needs Yet Another Ongoing x-title, especially one launching into Yet Another Event (when the previous one hasn’t even quite ended yet); my customers have sort of rejected this – I only had 4 preorders for this new title (even lowly X-Force has like 17), and the rack sales weren’t even close to what I wanted them to be for week #1. Thank god for FOC! I thought this was no more than OK, and that not what the market needs right now…

X-WOMEN #1: I love how every woman that Milo Manara draws looks constantly like they’re orgasming, all the time. No, I actually do. But, honestly, he’s wasted on softcore like this – everytime I turned the page I wanted to see Kitty jam her tongue down Storm’s throat while Psylocke stuffed something up her own ass. What? Stop looking at me like that! It’s not that I want to see that, but when it’s Manara, what else can you expect? This is probably going to fuck up a whole lot of kids who stumble across it… and maybe even a few adults. EXCELLENT art, AWFUL story… but it looks so good, I have to call it GOOD.

Well, that’s what I thought at least; what did YOU think?


16 Responses to “ Just get to the screwing: Hibbs on 7/7 ”

  1. i like those quickie reviews quite a bit. to the point and short.

    hibbs is by far the best critic here – the others are either trying to be funny and in the end dont review shit, or overanalyze the hell out of the funnies.

  2. That’s very nice of you to say, but, and excuse me for this, you’re batshit insane. I’m very clearly the worst critic of the gang; I don’t even hold the slightest candle to my contemporaries.

    But, thank you nonetheless.


  3. Don’t sell yourself short, Brian. As writing that helps inform my decision to buy or not to buy, your reviews are always truly spot-on. I don’t need a panel-by-panel academic evaluation of the artistry and thematic undercurrent of the book to help me make that decision (not that those aren’t fun as well).

    And isn’t 90% of winning just showing up for the race in the first place (completely butchered quote from I don’t know where)? Look at the recent posts — Hibbs, Hibbs, Abhay, Hibbs, Hibbs, Hibbs, Hibbs, Hibbs, Graeme, Hibbs, Graeme, Hibbs, Hibbs, Tucker, etc.

    Your contributions are always greatly appreciated.

  4. Brian – Ryp drew the previous issue of Moon Knight too. I never would known (or imagined) if i hadn’t read it on his blog. Rather – saw it on his blog since it is in spanish.

  5. I don’t know Brian – you wrote about Arsenal, and look how many people were convinced to check it out!

  6. That X-WOMAN thing… Yeesh. It’s barely two issues long (not even really OGN length) and the story was so inconsequential, it’s unreal. I’ve not read any Claremont in a while, so maybe this is what all his comics are like? It felt, to me, like a porn comic with all the porn taken out. That would explain the lack of pages and the build-up to nothing. But Marvel – just shit or get off the pot. If you’re having Manara do a special project for you about X-Women, why not just let him do porn? Are there ANY nerds out there who wouldn’t buy Rogue fudding Storm? Are there any NON-nerds who wouldn’t at least flip through it? Weird weird comic.

    And yeah – Ryp doing MOON KNIGHT was a nice treat. Wish they’d got him to draw something of interest. But he’s doing PUNISHER MAX now, so…

  7. Or WOLVERINE MAX. Or PEPSI MAX. Or EX LAX. I’m not sure. I wouldn’t like to say.

  8. Nope, you’re frank, short and don’t constantly try to impress with your vocabulary. That is for me good reviewing.

    Plus you got taste.

  9. That X-Women review is the best review I’ve read on this site in a long time.

    And yeah, Hibbs is the best reviewer, though kind of by default for being the ONLY reviewer. The other guys tend to get too self-indulgent to the point where it becomes a lecture on “why this one black line matters.”

  10. I tend to agree with the prevailing sentiment here…I most often look forward to the reviews by Hibbs more than anyone else here (although Graeme also tends to run close to my taste).

    I appreciate the succinctness and the ability to sometimes say ‘I just LIKE the damn thing.’

    Those reviews are more responsible for my buying (and in some cases, not buying) books than any other reviewer I know of.

  11. Very much got the same vibe off the X-Women preview. I was completely put off by it in that it seemed like a classic 70’s Claremont script that had the art subbed in like some kind of Tijuana Bible…

    Thanks for the reviews. Any insight as to how Thanos Imperative is selling? They seem to have been gifted a corner of the universe and left entirely alone so I always like to see those type of things do well.

  12. I think they deviated from the Young Avengers name because after the numerous low-selling mini-series the brand isn’t a great selling point anymore.

    I like Dick better as Batman too! And Damian as Robin, of course. Nightwing & Robin just won’t have the same ring to it…

  13. Just chiming in to echo the appreciation of the style of Hibbs’ reviews. They have a less formal, more conversational tone, which is simple, but devastatingly effective. It’s like a trusted friend is just rapping with you and saying “hey man, this book is good, you’ll like it because x, y, z…” or conversely, “this book kinda’ sucked for me, because x, y, z…”

  14. I also appreciate that he for a seller of said books he is pretty forthright about his likes and dislikes. Plenty of smarmy bloggers will say no wrong about any books they think they can unload on you.

  15. Bad Wolf, I think Hibbs also benefits in that he reviews the books after he orders them and after he’s seen the first day’s sales, so he’s free to say, “Yeah, no wonder this bombed with the customers.”

  16. I will SO miss Morrison once he moves on beyond Batman (and Batman and Robin).

    Maybe they mooted the YOUNG AVENGERS tag b/c it might get confused with AVENGERS ACADEMY? Both great books!

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