Posted by: Brian Hibbs on September 13, 2011
Watching over the rest is STORMWATCH, down in the streets is STATIC, with OMAC and MEN OF WAR lurking around the sides…
STORMWATCH #1: I probably had the highest hopes of all the DCnu books for this one — oh, I was anticipating ACTION more, but this was the one that I was hoping might be the best: wide-screen action like THE AUTHORITY, but firmly in the DCU. It also makes it, perhaps, the most problematic of the books, because that kind of world-changing action really doesn’t work with a shared universe in a lot of ways (witness how no WS book every dealt with the notion that a corporate controlled version of The Authority took over the world for a period. as one of many examples) — you really can’t do “The Moon is a Hatching Egg!” and not have it impact a jillion other books.
There’s also the notion that as appealing I find The Engineer, and Jack and Jenny and Midnighter and Apollo… well, they can’t be The Authority is a world with a JL, because the JL is better… they have to be.
I’m not sure if I’m reading too much into it, or not, but STORMWATCH also appeared to be adding in Milestone concepts in the mix, with the mention of a “Shadow Cabinet” that runs it all? And which “Big Bang” are they referencing at the end of the issue? (Nah, that one is probably reaching)
I had a problem with STORMWATCH #1′s dialogue — yikes, pretty overly “comic-booky” with everyone reciting their names and powers and off-screen plot points left and right. I’m not sure there was a “normal” line of dialogue in the entire book — I’m hoping this is purely an artifact of being a character/location/conflict-rich first issue, and this will settle down tout-suite.
Overall, I liked the character concepts and the setups and what appeared to be the remit, but I thought the dialogue was far too “old school” to enjoy it. I’d stick through the first arc, but it’s pretty iffy if I’d want to go past that. A mild OK.
STATIC SHOCK #1: This may be the one book that would have most benefited from a “traditional first issue” — that is an origin story. Starting in the middle for a character that much of the audience doesn’t really know that well seemed a little weak to me. I didn’t know how to root for the character! Like: is Hardware the old Hardware from Dakota, or is he like a hologram butler or something? Either way, what’s he doing working with Static (or is his name now Static SHOCK like the cover says)?
The art was nice, and there was a density to the book that I liked, but I’m not feeling that crucial sympathy I need. I’d probably not bother to pick up the next issue (though the final page cliffhanger was slightly intriguing) — overall, I thought it was pretty EH.
MEN OF WAR #1: The one book I had no expectations of of any kind going in, and it’s a solid little war book (albeit one with superhumans involved). Well-written, fairly gripping, and well-illustrated. But, also one that I really didn’t care too much for. I’m not very interested in war stories, and while the superhuman involvement could bring me back to flip through #2, this isn’t something I would like to spend my personal money on. Ditto for the backup tale. Very solidly OK, just not my cuppa at all.
OMAC #1: Big, frenetic, dumb, fun destruction. It’s probably the speediest read of week 1, but I liked it a lot! In fact, I only have one criticism about it whatsoever, and that is that there is not “Omac created by Jack Kirby” credit. Even STATIC SHOCK had *that*. Anyway, I’d call OMAC #1 a solid (if lower) GOOD.
What did YOU think?