This is the third week that we have made the weekly jaunt down to Fanfare for our comic books. I am starting to get used to it, but there is a huge sale this weekend so we will be going on Saturday as well.. Anyway, I promised that I would keep up on these to reduce the length of the column. So, here we are.
I have also decided to institute a new feature at the end of the column each week. Of the books reviewed I will tell you which one was my favorite.
Ready? Here we go!
WONDER WOMAN #17
As you can tell from the cover, Cheetah is back. It's a little sad because Wonder Woman went to all that trouble to help her not be The Cheetah anymore. Diana is still in the looney bin and Steve Trevor and company are being hunted down so they need to bring Diana back to her super heroing ways and fast.
This book is just so good. I can appreciate a long game story, especially with such an iconic character. And since it is only in the odd numbered books, it doesn't seem rushed at all. One of the best things DC gives us on a regular basis.
JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #1
What, another first issue? Yeah, remember when DC decided to start up Rebirth you got a first issue that acts like an introduction and then the first issue of the new series starts things off. A clever way to get two first issues for the collectors and the intro issue kind of works on it's own. Well, now Batman has his team doing jobs and making themselves seen. High profile rescue stuff of the average man. He's trying to humanize the JLA for mankind and it seems like a good idea.
Then Lord Havok and his cronies decide to save our Earth no matter who they have to kill to do it. I remember these guys from the Giffen/DeMatteis Justice League days. They are pretty heavy hitters so, it will be interesting to see how the new team copes. Sure, some of them are pretty street level heroes, but they have a couple of mean dudes on their team. It should be an interesting fight. There is also an epic two page splash page that should be made into a poster.
FUTURE QUEST #10
The giant creature is going toe to toe with the new and improved Frankenstein Jr. Unfortunately, no one told The Herculoids that Frankenstein Jr is on our side and they do not like robots at all. Space Ghost has recovered from his injuries, It's time to get everyone on board against a common threat. Future Quest ends in two issues and they have to wrap everything up. Right? They do have to, don't they? We shall see. In the entire Hanna Barbera reboot this one is my favorite. IT captures those old cartoons that I still watch perfectly. Herculoids are still the best.
EXTRAORDINARY X-MEN #19
I do not like when Event crossovers interfere with my books. Unless, of course, I am buying into the crossover, but with the exception of the recent Monsters Unleashed, I haven't done that since The Black Vortex. Luckily, they kind of ignore the whole crossover for a more intimate story that is told between the beats of the battle. See, Magik had a protege named Sapna who was possessed by The World Eater. TO stop the monster and save Sapna she had to be absorbed into Magik's Soulsword. Now, Sapna is sick of being in there and draws Magi into the sword to keep her company. Time moves different inside the sword so it's okay, but kSapna is rather insistent that she stay. Magik has to find a resolution to the problem and save her team from being wiped out by the Inhumans.
The artwork when they are inside the sword is breathtaking. Blacks, with scratches of white and deep blues and purples make for one of the most interesting pieces of artwork I have seen in a long time. Such a great book, artwise. And the resolution of the problem will be interesting to watch as it plays out.
THE AVENGERS 4.1
Quicksilver has two busted legs. Hawkeye is framed for theft and the team is fragmented. Time to find The Frightful Four and show the world that the Avengers do what they do best. And they have to deal with the new member that is the viper in their midst. If it's not too late.
This has been a good min series. I would like to see them do this along the Avengers timeline. Little stories that fall through the cracks and get told in the time period when they happened. Nice to have a Captain America story to read again.
THE GREAT LAKES AVENGERS #5
The team is still under lock down, but Big Bertha still has a job to go to. But, this new one seems wrong. They want her to pose as the before and after for a weight loss program. But, is that even what they want her for? Or is it something more nefarious? I like that Bertha has embraced her bigger girl and given up the skinny super model persona. She made a lot of money at it, but she was never happy in that size. Sure,it comes in handy for super powers, but Bertha likes her new life. The newest incarnation of the GLA feels like the dysfunctional family we all know.
INFAMOUS IRON MAN #5
Victor goes toe to toe with his mother and he is pretty unhappy that she is still alive. He had buried her for years and now this seems wrong. He also manages to save Ben Grimm from her spell that was mostly an illusion. Now she tells Victor she is proud of his new role in the world, but wants to hear none of it. The end of this one was a huge surprise and will make this continue to be one of the most interesting, original books that Marvel puts out.
UNCANNY AVENGERS #20
The Red Skull's end game that started way back in Issue one, Volume One of The Uncanny Avengers and the theft of Charles Xavier's brain. He is in complete control of The Unity Squad. But Deadpool has a plan and Red Skull can't read his mind.
This book is one of those that gives us small, individual beats and then moves into the long game with such little effort that it makes your head swim. Every issue makes you wait for the next with such expectation that you have to remember not to check out any spoilers online. A fantastic book.
MOON GIRL AND DEVIL DINOSAUR #16
When last we left Moon Girl she had switched minds with Devil Dinosaur and went to ask Dr. Strange for help. Now, he has helped Luna and shrunk Devil down to a more manageable size, temporarily. Luna has problems with the concept of magic, but when they are faced with a horde of Dr. Dooms that should not exist she embraces magic and with the help of Dr. Strange, attacks the Doom Horde. Doom Horde? That seems pretty cool. Maybe I should copyright that or something? Anyway, the book stays at it's always level of excellence in both art and writing. I am interested to see how the appearance of the X-Men will figure into this especially with the whole Inhumans VS X-Men thing going on currently in the Marvel Universe.
BLUE BEETLE #6
Jaime discovers that the scarab can not be removed. Mad and looking for the man who attacked his mother Blue Beetle goes looking for a fight that he can't win. And finds one in spades with Dr. Fate finally getting into the mix.
This is an interesting book. I am excited because it was announced that starting with issue #8 J.M. DeMatteis, my most favorite writer of all times, will be handed the reins. I can't wait to see what he has in store for us.
THE FLASH #17
The final battle with The Rogues and Captain Cold's new Black Ice gun. The Flash tries to tell Captain Cold that he could be so much more than a common criminal all the while, fighting the team and trying to bring them to justice. In the end Captain Cold takes The Flash's advice. Just not in the way he hoped. This is a good end of a story that worked like one long fight. I do want to see what the new Captain Cold will be like in future issues. The book did a lot of speedster stuff when it started and it was all good. Now we have The Flash doing what he does best, being a great super hero that loves saving the day for everyone.
HAL JORDAN AND THE GREEN LANTERN CORPS #15
Hal and Kyle finish their rescue mission of Saint Walker as the Green and Yellow Corps figure out how they will divide the work patrolling the galaxy. Guy Gardner goes looking for his new team mate on his own terms. I hope next issue gives us the Corps working throughout the galaxy doing their job. There has been an epic story leading up to all of this. TO bring us what the Corps will look like in the new Rebirth universe and I think it will be glorious.
The team is forced to go under to look for the bad guys stuff that went down with the cargo ship. The secondary objective is to kill Hookjaw. Yeah, right, good luck with that. Hookjaw has other ideas about the matter. Especially since they captured and killed one of the other great whites. This book reminds me of the days during the movie Jaws and everything was about sharks. I was afraid to swim in the water and I didn't even live near the ocean! That's the sign of a great movie and so many have followed. The recent resurgence of killer shark films with Sharknado leading the pack, is phenomenal and this old school shark tales fits right in. And it manages to out do them all because it feel so real.
Roller Derby resurfaced a few years back and is making a name for itself in sports. It feels more permanent than the first time when it was more of a flash in the pan. Especially when they are using the curved track instead of the flat surface a lot of the teams use now. I understand why they flat track it. They can do that anywhere. Makes for a more user friendly sport than if you have to put up a special structure every time you want to play. Less overhead that way which makes the sport more profitable. Anyway, this issue gives us an instructional on how the game is played and told in a simple way that makes the sport more interesting to watch. Sure, girls on skates beating the crap out of each other is cool, but if you know the rules going in then it helps with the enjoyment of the sport. And our two leads have a painful reunion that ends in more than a couple of bumps and bruises on the track. This is a sweet book and I like how they go to the time to break down the sport and how it works.
BOOK OF THE WEEK
EXTRAORDINARY X-MEN #19
I have always loved this particular X-Book. Some of my favorite heroes and they are there to save the mutants of the world like they are supposed to. Now, faced with another crossover event, it does it's job by being in the center of the conflict and ignoring it the entire time. Recently there has been an issue with how to credit artwork on a book. In the old days it was the penciller and the inker. Now, with the innovations in computers the colorist brings so much more to the game. So, writer Jeff Lemire for giving us such a great story within a bigger one, artist Eric Koda for his imagination of the landscape of the inside of Magik's Soulsword and Morry Hollowell and Andrew Crossley for adding such intersting color schemes to such an alien world., I pick this book as the best of the week.
Here's a page for your to check out.