This Week’s Comics

Monday in the Spring!  The time when a young man’s thoughts turn to love, and a young geek’s heart looks to New Comic Day.  Here are this week’s new and noteworthy releases.

  • BLOODSTRIKE #27 – I thought the Bloodstrike relaunch was decent, but it’s also the Extreme title that stayed most faithful to it’s original concept.  In most circumstances that would be a plus, but since we’re talking about Extreme here, the more a title strays the better I’m finding it.  So I think I’ll pass.
  • DAREDEVIL #11
  • FF #17
  • GOON #39
  • POPEYE #1 (OF 4) – I mention this specifically for certain Popeye-loving readers of the blog.  I’ll pick it up because Roger Langridge is writing, but it will have to be unquestionably strong for me to keep going with it.
  • TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES ONGOING #9
  • TWELVE #12 (OF 12) – I mention this in the hopes that Matt will let me know how long it’s been since the first issue came out.  It’s got to be closing in on 4 years, doesn’t it?
  • ROGER LANGRIDGES SNARKED #7 – It feels like we’re starting to sail toward a conclusion.  And while that’s undoubtedly a good thing (all stories need resolution, after all), I hope it’s not an ENDING.

I’ve apparently betrayed my inability to repeat myself ad infinitum by not being able to come up with more to say about DD, FF, or TMNT, but rest assured they still come highly recommended. That’s it for this week.  What looks good to you?

This Week’s Comics

A lot of potential LAST issues this week around.  Here are this week’s new and noteworthy titles.

  • DAREDEVIL #10.1 – I won’t repeat myself too much here, but more Waid DD is always a plus.
  • HELL YEAH #2 – I was planning on picking this up, but then I realized it’s probably a bad sign that I originally couldn’t remember a single thing about HY #1, other than thinking it was okay.
  • HULK #50 – So, I loathe the Red Hulk character and as much as I hate to say it, Jeff Parker’s losing some steam for me.  This may be a good jumping-off point for me, if it doesn’t capture my attention.
  • SUPREME #63 – This is the last of Alan Moore’s Supreme scripts, drawn by Erik Larsen.  I’m really psyched for it, and then Larsen kicks off his own run on the title.  I can’t see continuing after this issue, though.  Larsen talked to Bleeding Cool over the weekend about his plans going forward, and how Alan Moore’s Supreme was just a poorly-veiled Superman analogue, and how the original character was Superman as a dick.  All true statements, but Larsen plans on going back to the original asshole version, which I have less than zero interest in.  Sure, Liefeld’s crew did it first, but since then EVERYONE has done their Superman as an ass story, and I tend to hate each and everyone.  Dickishness just isn’t a character trait I find myself wanting to read about (see also: every Mark Millar book).  While I’m excited that we’ll finally get the complete Moore run, after that I’m out.
  • THUNDERBOLTS #172 – With T-bolts winding down, I’m waiting until the Dark Avengers relaunch to make the final verdict, but this is just coming out too frequently to really focus on the characters, it’s just trying to keep moving them forward.
  • VENOM #15

More than any of the other Extreme relaunch titles, Bloodstrike #26 feels more like a direct continuation than Glory or Prophet.  That may just be because I’m more familiar with Bloodstrike’s original series than the others, but part of it is the direct references to previously established team members and continuity.  It was a good effort by Tim Seeley and artist Franchesco Gaston, whose linework gave it a very animated feel, showcasing the black ops side of Youngblood, but it wasn’t really something that sparked my interest.  It feels like it would appeal to the 13-year olds much in the same way the original title did, and maybe that’s how it should be.

Frank Castle has always been reflective of the times he lives in, so it makes sense the story approaches do too.   As I’m getting up to speed on Greg Rucka’s Punisher run, it’s becoming somewhat apparent that the past decade for Frank Castle has mirrored Batman’s career. Under Garth Ennis, The Punisher took on the mob and organized crime. Matt Fraction and Rick Remender placed him squarely inside the Marvel Universe, squaring off against heroes and  supervillains alike, a character with a real place inside the 616.  With the new series Rucka decided to take the next step and made The Punisher a force of nature, rarely seen but largely felt, and while Frank does show up the real action seems to occur leading up to and in the aftermath of his appearances.  He’s playing up the urban myth aspect like Batman or Todd McFarlance tries to do with Spawn.  I really think that’s a smart move, as Frank Castle is of such a singular mind that he’s the least interesting thing in his own world.  Still, I’ve never been a huge fan of the character since I prefer my heroes to actually be, you know, heroic.  I love the angle, but once I find the issues on my pull list I think I’ll let Frank drop off my radar until his next reinvention.  Punisher, Inc?

Rick Remender’s walking a very thin line with his Venom ongoing.  He has to appeal to fans of the Venom character, the huge drooling hulk who only wants to eat brains, as well as people like me, who have tuned in more to see how Flash Thompson’s plays out.  But Remender’s a master writer who made a sewn-together Frank Castle Frankenstein story work, so he pulls it all together.  Flash is essentially playing Peter Parker, a government agent partnered with the alien symbiote  trying desperately not to let it take control of his body, while at the same time trying to prevent the job from taking over his life.  If you’ve read Spider-Man you’ve read Venom, but it really works with the dark twist.  And it works fine from the drooling monster angle, to be honest.  This is the most interesting I’ve ever found him as the lead in his own book.

That’s this week, then.  What looks good to you?

Tomorrow’s Comics

I’m so excited for this week, no preamble.  We’re jumping right in! Here are this week’s new and noteworthy releases.

Yes, that's a robot about to whack something with a tiny dinosaur.

  • ATOMIC ROBO REAL SCIENCE ADV #1 $2.75 – New Atomic Robo, and look at that price!  Many issues of AR include backup features written by Brian Clevenger and drawn by other available artists.  Real Science Adventures takes these from the backups and makes them the featured story.  I admit I always appreciate Scott Wegener’s art the most on Robo, partially because he’s just that good, but mainly because the quality of the guest artists tends to fluctuate pretty wildly.  Still, new Robo is new Robo, and you can’t go wrong for less than $3.
  • BLOODSTRIKE #26 – I am SO torn about this one!  On the one hand, it’s Bloodstrike, the main signal that the 90’s had gotten dangerously out of control (yeah, yeah, I read it.  Shut up.).  On the other, The Rob’s Extreme relaunch has been surprisingly good, so it’s got the virtue of being in good company.  I’m in for now.
  • DAREDEVIL #10 – I believe I covered this.
  • FF #16 – After finally finding FF #1, I’ve read the first year’s worth of stories now.  It’s technically good, but I definitely feel like it misses out on part of the appeal of Hickman’s run, namely that just about every story was a standalone but fed into the whole.  It was very artfully done, and after 12 issues a complete story hasn’t been told yet.  I think that’s pretty poor form.  Still, it’s solid FF’ery if you can be patient with it.
  • SNARKED #6
  • TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES ONGOING #8

I had planned to take this space to mention Greg Rucka’s new Punisher series, but that will have to wait until next week, when I’ll pair it up with Rick Remender’s new Venom.  So that’s it for this week.  What looks good to you?

This Week’s Comics

Such a fun batch of comics this week!  Here’s this Wednesday’s new and noteworthy titles.

  • AXE COP TP VOL 03 – I skipped Volume 2 because I picked up Bad Guy Earth in the single issue format, but with volume 3 the Nicolle bros. continue the printing of their webcomic.  Damn fine madness!
  • BATMAN ODYSSEY VOL 2 #6 (OF 7) – Kudos to DC for getting their act together on this book, as it’s been shipping pretty regularly. Unfortunately, volume 1 was unreadable, so I’ve passed up volume 2 completely.
  • GOON #38
  • INFINITE VACATION #4 (OF 5)
  • PROPHET #23 – The first arc of the “All-New, All-Different” Prophet wraps here.  Good, low-key sci-fi that you should be checking out.
  • REED GUNTHER #9 – Despite reassurances from several sources that this is a good read, my LCS doesn’t get it!  So I may never find out.
  • ROCKETEER ADVENTURES 2 #1 (OF 4) – I’m very glad to see this Rocketeer anthology return, and the news of an ongoing is certainly welcome, as long as IDW doesn’t oversaturate the market with poor content (see: Godzilla).
  • STEED AND MRS PEEL #3 (OF 6) – I wound up missing issue 2 and then realized I didn’t really miss it.  Should I go back and give it another try?
  • STRANGE TALENT OF LUTHER STRODE #6 (OF 6)
  • THUNDERBOLTS #171 – My enthusiasm for this book as been waning; I think it’s stretched too thin by the publishing schedule, but it’s still pretty solid.  Enjoy it now before it becomes Dark Avengers!

I haven’t had a chance to read any of last week’s new comics, but that’s okay because I found a copy of Daredevil #1 (the new series, let’s not get crazy) and got to read the first four issue of Mark Waid’s new title.  I mentioned being impressed by #8, but 1-4 prove it’s not a fluke.

Matt and I met up a couple weeks ago and he mentioned he’s never been a Daredevil fan.  We didn’t get to delve into that any further (I suspect daredevils killed his family when he was a small child), but this is definitely a DD run unlike any other, so I feel it’s worth examining on it’s own merits.  It doesn’t diavow anything that’s come previously, but it definitely takes the approach that the character is getting a fresh start.  For one, it’s not a dark, dour affair.  And complimenting that, it’s definitely a superhero book.  In these first issues he fights The Spot and Klaw.  The Spot, for crying out loud! And not just played for laughs.

Waid manages to meld the best of Superman and Batman in Matt Murdock, in that he can’t help but hear and address crime across New York, but has only martial training and good intentions to back it up.  (Waid manages to throw in a little Hal Jordan/Tony Stark as well, playing up his fearlessness and the the ladies man aspect of his character that MUST have been present this whole time, but never really addressed.)

Marcos Martin and the Paolo/Joe Rivera team are swapping off the art duties.  Both are incredibly strong draftsmen and storytellers, and both have novel new ways of displaying Matt’s radar sense, but if you made me choose, I’d pick the Riveras as the stronger team, if for no reason OTHER than how they showcase the radar.  It’s truly amazing.

If you — like Matt — have been on the fence (or are off the fence completely) on Daredevil, if you enjoy superhero comics you’ll enjoy Daredevil.  The comic springs to life in your hands, and it’s enthusiasm is contagious.

That said, that’s enough for this week.  What’s looking good to you?

This Week’s Comics

A light batch this time around.  Here’s this week’s new and noteworthy titles.

  • FANTASTIC FOUR #602 and FF #14 – I confess I don’t know why Marvel decided to release these both on the same day rather than spacing them throughout the month, but I’m getting them both, so I suppose it doesn’t matter.
  • GODZILLA KINGDOM OF MONSTERS #11 – And the monsters keep on rollin’.
  • SECRET AVENGERS #21.1 – I’m caught up through 17 and looking forward to seeing how Rick Remender takes over.  
  • TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES ONGOING #6

Last week Prophet #21 led the new Extreme relaunch, surprising just about everybody, myself included.  I recently re-read (if you can call it that) a few older issues and even with the reliable Chuck Dixon scripting I found them fairly incomprehensible and Stephen Platt’s — which I remember being impressed with at the time — had not aged well at all.  
The conventional wisdom is that this is a European-style book, and while I can’t vouch for that description, it is unlike anything else on the stands right now.  The book allow for absolutely no knowledge of what’s come before, and yet contains many of the Liefeldian tropes you’d expect, like giant knives and orbiting space station acronyms.  The art is highly detailed, yet easy to read and follow.  Earth teems with fauna unlike anything I’ve seen represented in a comic before, a nice sign as to the creativity of the creators.  The plot, though a little on the complex side, is definitely easier to follow than the original series.  

Prophet #21 is currently sold out, but should you find a copy, snag it.  And let it lure you into sampling more of the Extreme 2012 relaunch.  Glory, especially, looks to be a winner, and we’ll finally get the rest of Alan Moore’s Supreme scripts with Erik Larsen providing the art.

That’s it for this week.  What looks good to you?

This Week’s Comics

Another week, another strange half-dozen assorted comics.  There’s this week’s new and noteworthy titles.

Not your daddy's Prophet comic!

  • PROPHET #21 – The Rob’s Extreme relaunch begins here!  When comicdom’s best writers like Warren Ellis and Rick Remender praise Liefeld’s comics, you KNOW they’re going to be something special.  Prophet looks to be the best of them, as John Prophet’s story picks up years after the original Stephen Platt series and promises a more more European-style book.  I don’t know how much it’ll appeal to me, really, but I’ve GOT to check out such a drastic revamp.
  • STEED AND MRS PEEL #1 (OF 6) – This one is new to me, but it looks like a new Grant Morrison series, so I’m in.
  • SUPERIOR #7 (OF 7) – I picked up the first handful of issues before last year’s experiment and I’m astounded to see it hadn’t wrapped up yet.  And it looks like I hadn’t missed it that much.  
  • THUNDERBOLTS #169
  • VENOM #12 
  • VOLTRON #2 – The Voltron relaunch wasn’t especially good.  Give it a miss unless your love of the big guy won’t let you do otherwise.

If your area is anything like mine, Fatale #1 got a lot of press and sold out quickly.  And with good reason.  Brubaker and Phillips’ latest is essentially a Hellblazer noir title, and the mystery is pretty intriguing.  While the seemingly-endless run of new mysteries is unquestionably producing more misses than hits, this isn’t one of them.  These guys have a great, established track record and I’ll be picking this one up for a while.

That’s it for this week.  What’s looking good to you?