This Week’s Comics — And Some Quickie Reviews

AVENGERS VS ATLAS #3 (OF 4) – Any week with a new Atlas book is a week that I’m drooling for getting to the comic shop.  Thank you Jeff Parker.
BATMAN #697 – I wish I could stop getting this boring, boring book, but getting Batman every month is like breathing.
JOE THE BARBARIAN #3 (OF 8 ) – I haven’t gotten the first issue yet so I haven’t read the second, but I’m really looking forward to sitting down with this and reading a big chunk of it.  It’s been getting stellar reviews everywhere else.
MARVEL BOY URANIAN #3 (OF 3) – I still maintain that this is one of those “throw it at the wall and see if it sticks” books Marvel’s been doing, but it’s sticking for me.  This is the conclusion of the story of our weirdest agent of Atlas in the 1950’s, with some surprisingly good Golden Age reprints in the back.  This proves Marvel CAN print a $4 book that gives us enough extra bang for our buck.
MUPPET SHOW #3 – Oh, crud.  The reminder that I haven’t sent Matt his copy of #2 yet, and I swore to myself I wouldn’t read it until I do. This is the other drool-worthy book of the week.
SIEGE #3 (OF 4) – The first two issues of this were surprisingly good: fast-paced, full of action, and with a definite goal at the end. Hopefully this bookend can put the last 8 years of Marvel’s weirdness behind us.

I’ve read some really solid stuff the past week, including new comics!  Ex Machina #48 isn’t the last issue after all, but it was the strongest in ages as Mitchell Hundred and his evil counterpart start getting closer and closer to each other.  Weekly World News #3 is experiencing diminishing returns, as Ed Anger basically just crosses the country being a conservative hate-monger.  We get it already.  Based on the talk from the back of the book, more minis aren’t guaranteed.  It would be nice to see more stories, but  perhaps 3 issues each would be enough.  Batman and Robin #10 was the hit of last week, kicking off the Return of Bruce Wayne with a new mystery that will tie in nicely with the “Batman Through the Ages” theme they’ll be doing. I find it a little hard to believe that with as many times as the manor has been destroyed that there are any secrets still hidden, but I’ll suspend that disbelief, even as I wish this story was in the main title rather than some dull “Long Halloween” rehash.  I find myself amazed to start liking Damian, almost as amazed as I am that he’s liking being Robin.

I picked up the Ghost Riders: Heaven’s On Fire mini and was thrilled to see that Jason Aaron wrapped everything up very nicely.  There’s too much coolness in there to go into in brief, but if you liked his run on the main series, this won’t disappoint.

So that’s it for me.  What are YOU getting?

This Week’s Comics — Again??? Really, Diamond?

Well, it’s that time of the week again.  Diamond is experiencing technical difficulties.  When this week’s comics are posted, This Week’s Comics will be posted.

Still, I managed to read some good stuff this weekend, so some reviews are in order.

Siege #1-2 – It’s probably somewhat telling that I haven’t read most of Marvel’s output in the past couple years. Between snoozer events and Bold New Directions That Will Change EVERYTHING!, I just haven’t
been that interested in what is essentially the asshole-ization of the Marvel U.  I’ve been keeping up with the broad strokes, but not the details.  So if Siege is going to change all of this and lead to a Brand New Day, then I’m all about Siege.

The scene set as Siege opens is fairly unrecognizable to me. Asgard is hovering twelve feet above Broxton, Nebraska, there are two Captain Americas, Thor is back but apparently not doing much, Iron Man is holed up someplace, injured, and Nick Fury is paired up with a bunch of kids I can only assume are the Secret Warriors.

Norman Osborn and Loki set up a series of events that lead to Volstagg creating a huge incident like the one that opened Civil War.  This gives Osborn the excuse he needs to lead an attack on Asgard and dupe
Ares into forging the plan.  Once Ares discovers the treachery, he fights The Sentry in the most gratuitously violent display I’ve ever seen in a mainstream comic (but correct me if I’m missing something egregious).

Despite not knowing where we are or how we got there, I enjoyed the book.  Olivier Coipel’s art is stellar, and Brian Michael Bendis is telling a concise, action-packed story without the wordy repetitiveness of some of his earlier work.*  And in only 4 issues!

I’m looking forward to seeing where this is going, but not nearly as much as I’m looking forward to seeing a cohesive Marvel Universe again.  I still don’t trust Tony Stark, though.  That bridge has been burned.

Blackest Night #6 – I think all of the reviews I’ve read about this have been fairly negative, but I didn’t mind it.  Sure, the “every ring can create one more” deus ex machina came out of left field, but at least it’s fairly interesting, even if I don’t really understand Nekron’s motivations.  Is it just bringing back everyone who’s escaped death?  How the hell is Barry figuring all this stuff out?  I can barely keep things straight from one issue to the other, although to be fair, that’s mostly my fault with the 3 month gaps between issues.

I don’t get all of the choices Johns made for who gets rings. The Atom is Compassion? The Flash is Hope?  Lex Luthor is Avarice? Why?  And why does Ganthet give himself a ring?  Doesn’t he channel the green power through his own body?

Still, the choice of Scarecrow for Fear was well-played. Of course I’ll have a complaint, though, and in this case it’s motivation.  I never recall seeing Scarecrow motivated by the desire to feel fear, and I’m afraid that this is just more of Johns looking to create order where none was necessary.  Dude, if it’s a Batman villain you can throw common sense out the window.  Those cats are all just batshit crazy (pun intended).

Hmm…Maybe I liked it less than I thought.  Expect more from me on the New Guardians (and who else SHOULD have gotten the call) in the next few days.

Green Lantern #50 – I suspect Matt may have posted his second GL #50 review specifically for me after I emailed him threatening to buy it. And I did.  It had some questionable moments in it (and confusing, since I haven’t been following every spin-off…Where did The Spectre come from???) but in all, I thought it was okay.  To be sure, this one book had more action in it than any issue of Blackest Night so far.  I completely missed the point behind releasing Parallax, and his beef with the Spectre, but other than that I thought it was a nice change of pace.  My only quibble is that they’re replaying this so shortly after having Kyle get possessed.

So, that’s what I’ve been looking at.  Hopefully we’ll get a look at this week’s books soon.  In the meantime, I’m going to start re-reading some Starman.

* It’s not that I mind the wordy repetitiveness, it’s just that I refuse to believe that every character has this same type of conversation.