Thursday, April 28, 2005

Comic Reviews - April 27, 2005

Marvel

Daredevil #72

Artist: Alex Maleev
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Colorist: Dave Stewart
Letterer: VC’s Cory Petit
Production: Jared Osborn
Editor: Jennifer Lee
Executive Editor: Axel Alonso

Summary –

Decalogue continues this month with another story involving Daredevil. This arc could easily be called, “Tales of Hells Kitchen” or something to that effect. They are told by people in a focus group meeting in a church basement, explaining how Daredevil has affected their lives. This tale is about a jailbird father and his son who is trying to stay on the straight and narrow. A father whose past is directly tied into Daredevil: Born Again.

Review:

The Good –

One of the things I really like about this book is how it looks at super-heroes in a new light. As Bendis says, the first issue of Daredevil was a pulp comic and he and Alex Maleev are continuing in that vein. They are doing an excellent job too each issue is a great read on its own, but when reading the arcs as a whole you get even more out of them.

This issue was no exception. Maleev’s portrayal of Hells Kitchen is very realistic and edgy. My favorite scenes involved Archie and his family. The portrayal of that kind of family was very moving. One minute they are complimenting each other, the next they are infighting and after that being intimate. Archie’s struggle between his father’s legacy and his own life he wants is also done well. Even though it is not an in your face type situation that doesn’t make it any less exciting. You can really feel for this guy, he’s not a loser, but you can tell his life isn’t a picnic to begin with.

The Bad –

The only complaint that I have is that Daredevil doesn’t appear once in the issue. I would have at least wanted to see a flashback from Born Again. This is really a minor complain though since this is just a really good story. I believe that Will Eisner did a similar thing in “the Spirit” where he focused on the regular people inhabiting Wildwood instead of just Denny Colt (the Spirit).

The Money Shot –




Recommendation: Buy It


X-Force Shatterstar #3

Art: Marat Mychaels
Cover Art/Plot: Rob Liefeld
Script: Brandon Thomas
Colorist: Matt Yackey
Letterer: VC’s Rus Wooton
Assistant Editor: Sean Ryan
Associate Editor: Nick Lowe
Editor: Mike Marts

Summary –

After his confrontation with Spiral in the previous issue Shatterstar finds himself on an alternate Earth. The faces are familiar but the circumstances are different. Is this the future that will come to pass? Please this is an X-Title.


Review:

The Good –

Man that is one of Liefeld’s best covers and that is really saying something. I like the poses he puts his characters in, these are more relaxed poses compared to his other stuff.

The general story of this series is very solid. It is a prequel to the X-Force mini which wrapped up a few months back. Shatterstar is trying to track down the Five Fingers of Annihilation from Spiral. Unfortunately Spiral has does some time hopping and now resides in the future. There she is known as Apocalypse. The plot is all Liefeld and I think it is his best outing yet as a writer. His partner Brandon Thomas does an equally impressive job scripting this. I was very pleased with his work on Youngblood Genesis and he doesn’t disappoint on Shatterstar either.

I look forward to the conclusion next issue.

What can I say about Marat Mychaels? He’s a childhood hero of mine and his style has progressed and evolved nicely over the years. It’s a perfect fit for a character like Shatterstar whose fighting style is very fluid and powerful. He’s doing his best work on this series and I can’t wait to see him on Youngblood Imperial.

The Bad –

It’s kind of weird that they are doing this as a prequel to the X-Force mini. I would have rather seen this take place after. The reason, Lady Anime who made her debut in the previous mini. She rocks and wants to kill Shatterstar. I would have loved to see that be the plot for this. This is only a minor gripe though as I am really enjoying the actual story going on. Fans of Liefeld will definitely dig this mini series. The story is even better than the X-Force mini.

The Money Shot –



Recommendation: Buy It (If you are not a X-Force or Shatterstar fan consider borrowing it)


Image

Hunter-Killer #2

Penciller: Marc Silvestri
Writer: Mark Waid
Inkers: Joe B. Weems V & Matt “Batt” Banning
Ink Assists: Ryan Winn, Pat Aquino & Tom Bar Or
Colorist: Steve Firchow
Letterer: Troy Peteri
Graphic Designer: Chaz Riggs

From the cover: “I always thought that if Mark Waid and Marc Silvestri did a book together, it would be great. Looks like I was right.” – Brian Michael Bendis, New Avengers writer

Summary –

The explosive ongoing series continues with Ellis pulling an escape attempt while being hunted by multiple parties of ultra sapiens.

Review:

The Good –

The Top Cow guys really know how to put a good looking comic together. From Silvestri’s pencils, to the army of inkers and the fantastic colors of Steve Firchow this is just great to look at.

There are a few things in the comic book industry that you shouldn’t question. One of them is Mark Waid’s ability as a writer. He’s rocked on titles ranging from Fantastic Four, JLA, Empire and now he’s on Legion of Super-Heroes and Hunter-Killer. To my knowledge this is his first experience in the Top Cow universe and it’s a great place to be.

I’m really into all the relationships that seem to be developing. I heard that Waid and Silvestri plan to make this a buddy comic of some sort, so I can only imagine that Wolf and Ellis will become friends. I can also see Ellis trying to get into Argents pants. Like you can tell from the money shot, it doesn’t seem like it will be too hard.

The Bad –

This was kind of a decompressed issue. We knew that Ellis would escape, but I didn’t like how it took the whole issue to advance it to the next stage of the story. This book appears to be on a sporadic schedule and if this decompression keeps up it will be bad pacing I think. They also dropped the cool thing with Ellis thinking there are 6 days in a week, but never really explained why he thought that.

Small complaints though as this is one of my favorite titles on the racks.

The Money Shot –



Recommendation: Buy It


Invincible #0

Art: Ryan Ottley
Writer: Robert Kirkman
Colorist: Bill Crabtree
Letterer: Rus Wooton

Invincible created by Robert Kirkman and Cory Walker

Summary –

This is what you have been waiting for! This is your chance to catch up with “probably the best superhero comic book in the universe.” This is a 50 cent origin issue and keeping with the Image tradition it is numbered 0. To all you fans who follow the book monthly this fits snuggly between #22 and #23 so give it a look over. The pay off at the end is most likely what you were waiting for in #22 (if you’re like me).

Review:

The Good –

Hey it’s a high quality comic for only 50 cents. I’m not sure if it’s the best super hero comic in the universe, but it is definitely the best indy comic I read.

The issue takes place in a girls dorm on a college campus. Where our newly unmasked hero, Invincible tells his girlfriend his origin story.

The cool thing about this is we get to see Ryan Ottley draw a lot of stuff in the Invincible mythos that he didn’t get to the first time around. As those who follow the series know co-creator Cory Walker had penciling duties for the first issues of the run.

The Bad –

This is going to sound really cheap of me, after all I only paid 50 cents for this..

Well to me as a long time Invincible reader this was worth 50 cents. It is a lot of dialogue and very few “cool” pictures. Most of the panels are just Mark talking to Amber in the dorm room. The middle panels on some pages show the cool flashbacks involving Mark’s past and Omniman.

The Money Shot –



Recommendation: Buy It

Wildstorm

Authority Revolution #7

Penciller: Dustin Nguyen
Writer: Ed Brubaker
Inker: Richard Friend
Colorist: Wendy Broome
Letterer: Jared K. Fletcher
Assistant Editor: Kristy Quinn
Editor: Ben Abernathy

The Authority created by Warren Ellis and Brian Hitch

Summary –

Picking up three years after the end of issue 5 this is all out Jenny. For all the fans of Jenny Sparks and Quantum this is the issue that you have been waiting for. If you’ve wondered about the past incarnations of Jenny look no further.

Review:

The Good –

Ngyuen and Friend go Miyazaki in this one. This surfaces in the form of Infinite City, a description won’t do it justice. I’ll leave that to the money shot.

Meanwhile, Brubaker channels his inner Alan Moore. Taking a page out of Moore’s run on Supreme, he creates a place that is so convenient for us and I’m sure it will play a very important role in the future of this series.

The main attraction though is little Jenny Quantum. We get to see her meet up with the closest thing she has to real family for the first time. On top of that this little sparkplug is even more powerful than we imagined. Seriously, think of a number and multiple it by a billion and that’s a understatement.

The Bad –

Would have been nice to see what the Midnighter was up to, but there is always next issue.

The Money Shot –



Recommendation: Buy It

Sleeper Season 2 #11

Artist: Sean Phillips
Writer: Ed Brubaker
Colorist: Strachan
Letterer: Jared K. Fletcher
Assistant Editor: Quinn
Editor: Dunbier

Summary –

The climax of Sleeper Season Two! The twists, the turns, the betrayals! Who will live and who will die? You’ll have to buy the book to find out.


Review:

The Good –

What isn’t good about this book? I’ve been asking myself that almost every issue of this spy noir series that features super heroes. I still can’t find the answer.

The art team of Phillips and Strachan do a great job of depicting just how much shit Holden is in. Just take a look at the money shot! That expression comes damn close to showing how much shit Holden has crawled through to get where he is now, a prisoner of the most psychotic bastard this side of Henry Bendix, Tao. I really enjoy their work and I hope that they do more noir someday.

Brubaker is polishing off his baby in this issue. All the pieces are in play and now it seems like the kings will be the ones to decide Holden Carver’s fate. Or does the resilient hero have yet another backup plan? Will someone fulfill a promise to him?

The Bad –

Get out of here!

The Money Shot–



Recommendation: Buy It

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Good showing all around for Marvel, Image and Wildstorm. If you buy any of these books I am sure you will be pleased with the purchase.

As you can see I started a new feature for my reviews, putting up my favorite images from each issue. This will take longer to do, but I think it enchances them.

I have a lot of DC books to do tonight, so those reviews might not be up until sometime tommorow.

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