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Read the color supplement, the TV Guide: Graeme, 5/31, part four…

If it’s Sunday, then it’s time for me to catch up on random things that I won’t be talking about elsewhere across the week…

DAREDEVIL #97: It’s only when I type that out that I realize how close we are to the 100th issue; I knew it was coming, I’ve seen the double-page cover in the solicits and all, but somewhat refreshingly, the story in this issue is entirely devoid of dramatic “the tension is building towards something big that’s going to happen in three months’ time” moments. Not that there’s no tension here at all; just the opposite, in fact – It’s just that all of the tension is for drama that’s a lot more immediate. Is Brubaker so kill-happy after killing off Captain America that he’s going to kill off Matt’s wife? What’s going on with the magic smelly woman? Who do I have to threaten to get a Brubaker-written Dakota North series (Yes, I was one of the few who read her first series, waaaaay back when)? It’s not all drama, though; there’s also humor in the reason why the cops don’t unmask Matt when they arrest him (He gets arrested for Civil War/Initiative-related reasons that don’t seem too obtrusive, happily enough. I hope there’s a sales bump for the scene, nonetheless) and in Foggy’s appearance. Between this, Captain America and Criminal, Ed’s so on his game these days that I’m almost tempted to check out his Uncanny X-Men after all. It goes without saying that Michael Lark and Stefano Gaudiano’s artwork is as effective as ever, so you can consider this a safe Very Good.

GREEN LANTERN #20: There are two things that save this from being Geoff Johns’ uncomfortable fanfic made public (“Why doesn’t every woman in the universe love Hal Jordan as much as I do? I know! I’ll make that a plot point in the actual comic!”) – the sense that he’s actually going somewhere with the Green Lantern/Sinestro/Zamaron Corps storylines, and more tellingly, artist Daniel Acuna’s attractively-sloppy art, which manages to be sketchy and convincingly finished at the same time, and gives the story much more credibility than it probably deserves. Okay, but if regular artist Ivan Reis had drawn this, as much as I normally like his stuff, his idealized-realism would’ve shot that down a couple of ratings…

JUSTICE SOCIETY OF AMERICA #6: I can’t quite tell if there’s self-aware humor in this issue (I’m pretty sure there are shots at Kingdom Come and old Legion stories) or just some kind of pre-exemptive snark strike at those who don’t love what Geoff Johns loves, but even that’s not enough to save what feels pretty much like extended filler so that Brad Meltzer gets to finish the story over in Justice League. There’s even more continuity self-love with the Triplicate Girl appearance (And, appallingly, I fell for it, thinking to myself “Wait, wasn’t she Duo Damsel by the time Dawnstar joined the team…?” I am nerd, hear me moan), and the reveal of the final time-tossed Legionnaire was unexpected, but still… Eh.

If my response to The Lightning Saga is any indication of how other JLA and Legion fans are feeling about the story, then I’m sure that somewhere in DC’s hallowed headquarters, there’s a team of crack scientists wondering just how a story with so many of the right ingredients is leaving the target audience so cold…

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