Weekly Comic Book Discussion 5/8/2008

Sorry I’m late, been having a hectic week.

I did pick up Secret Invasion #2, just out of a sense of curiosity. Still kind of ‘meh’ on the thing. A surprise, unnecessary return from the dead, whee.

New issues of Buffy, Angel, PS238…

Vertigo series House of Mystery kicked off this week… didn’t grab me yet.

And a variety of DC Superhero titles that were pleasant enough, but nothing that knocked my socks off.

Let’s see I got:

DC Universe #0: I had an ok idea of what was going on. However, I really wish there was an easy way to follow all those plot threads. For .50, couldn’t pass it up. If I had the book in front of me, I would type out all my questions. I am interested in Batman RIP, and all those other ads.

Hercules: Forgot the full title, but it was from a new publisher and it was a $1. It sold out at my local place. I think it was Revolution Studios. They also put out Caliber, which I want to read. Hercules is traveling with his cousin and/or nephew and possibly an Amazon. It’s an interesting take on Hercules from what appears to be from the original greek stories, or at least as i remember them from college.

Ultimate Human: Yawn. Ultimate Hulk cells make Banner into Marvel’s version of Doomsday. Unfortunately, it only makes sense…I say unfortunately because it just makes it look like Marvel is copying DC. Ultimate Hulk is slightly more conversant than OG Doomsday, but does not appear to have any sort of strategy. Did OG Doomsday have any either, or was he just an unstoppable force of nature like Hulk? The Ultimate Human was eventually made into an Ultimate Splot on the ground. I think this was the most disappointing part. It would’ve been much cooler to see the “Ultimate Human” apparently what would have been a combination of The Leader, some Prof. X, and possibly Tony Stark, and according the story, eventually the Hulk. It would probably be too much of a villain for the Marvel universe to happen. I guess they could have made him successful halfway, and he would spend his time trying to complete the process. Ultimately, a disappointment from Ellis.

My favourite books this week are both new series: House of Mystery and The War That Time Forgot.

HoM reminds me a bit of World’s End, but not in a bad way.

Wonder if any of the named characters from the House other than Ann (who seems clearly to be Ann Bonny) are anybody in particular. Hungry Sally’s story was highly amusing, and the art was perfect for it.

WTTF brings up question of who people are, as well - I recognize Enemy Ace, Tomahawk and Firehair, and, of course, Dinosaur Island, but I’m wondering if any of the others are pre-existing characters.

Rann/Thanagar: Holy War was…odd, but mostly inoffensive. Not bad, but not a start that’ll get me too exited.

Action Comics Annual - Not a bad story, at all. But the impact of end was rather…dulled by the fact we’ve just had a whole year of stories that happen afterwards. And they didn’t actually mention how we got from that last page to the situation as it is, now, which was kind of annoying.

[Edit - darnit, I keep forgetting this one…Countdown to Mystery…Eclipso takes a page from Chairface Chippendale’s playbook. That is all. >_>

Well, OK, and I hope issue 8 is jumbo sized, since they’re doing multiple endings to the Dr Fate story, and I’m not seeing how this one can wrap up in one extra-short chapter…]

I splurged, dunno why…

Invincible Iron Man: Say, this Fraction guy can write. Art’s not too shabby either.

**Iron Man Viva Las Vegas:**Bet you’ll never guess what movie I saw and loved! It does look and sound like the film. Pretty good, but maybe I’m still on a high from the flick.

Batman Detective Comics: Mr. Dini, your run on Batman has been pretty good so far. Quality’s not quite what it used to be, but still good stuff.

Rann-Than Holy War: I agree, pretty meh. Guess you had to read other stuff to get it. I only picked it up for Bizarro.

**Secret Invasion: ** Lots of action and yet not much happened.

Thunderbolts One Shot: Eh. It’s no Ellis, but it was readable. They’re really pumping up Osborn, who I never cared about.

Avengers/Invaders: Crap. Crap crap crap. Bad art and bad writing.

Mighty Avengers Secret Invasion: I do not care about any of these people. They should pay me to make throwaway guys for them. And somehow Maleev’s art just doesn’t work if it’s not Daredevil.

And onto the Marvel side of my stack…

Young X-Men - Cyclops is an idiot. (If, in fact, is is Cyke.) ‘We’re facing extinction! So we have to be willing to kill each other!’ Yeah, Scott. Hon, I really don’t think that’ll be the most effective way to stave off extinction, y’know?

I’m still not convinced Cyke is Cyke, though. I’m thinking Blindfold’s conversation with Ink may be a red herring, and it’s Cyke the Cerebrettes weren’t pinging on.

Cable - Love the art. A lot. Story’s good, too. I think Bishop might, in fact, be an idiot, though. But it’s time travel, so who the hell can be sure, y’know?

I also got X-Factor: The Quick and the Dead, but I haven’t read it, yet…Cyke and Bishop have filled my ‘Mutant Moron’ quota for the day.

Detective Comics #844: I liked it. It was a nice conclusion to the story, although I hope we’ll be seeing more of Sugar. The Ventriloquist is perhaps too silly to be a major foe, but it can’t be all Joker all the time. Zatanna seemed a little bit superfluous here, especially since we know she and Bats can’t ever actually hook up (it won’t do for the premier street-level hero to have a girlfriend limited only by how fast she can talk).

While we’re on the subject of Batman, the Batman RIP checklist ad is the first I saw of the story crossing over outside Batman proper. Perhaps foolishly on my part, I had just assumed that this was just an arc of great import in Batman. I’m not pleased by this. I despised Resurrection, and while I have faith in Morrison, I have far less faith in other writers to follow Morrison’s lead. Oh well. I read most of those titles already, and something tells me that the Nightwing and BatOutsiders portions won’t exactly be critical, and can be Byrned.

Jonah Hex #31: Insert standard Hex comments here.

Action Comics Annual #11: I don’t like it. I mean, I feel kind of like I have to judge it harshly, it’s so delayed, but I feel that this book fails well on its own merits as well. I mean, the continuity issues alone. So, pretty much every Superman and Action story happened between issues of the initial action arc? And how did Chris know he had to close the gate to the Phantom Zone? That’s a pretty big leap for a little kid. And I liked Chris, even though he wasn’t always handled all that well. But I guess now that Superman returns is well in the past and not very well regarded, he isn’t needed anymore. At least Lois and Clark are still married. I did like the Kryptonian trade dress on the cover.

Rann-Thnagar Holy War #1: A promising if flawed start. There’s some real danger of things dissolving into a strawman rant against religion in general and it’s rather silly that the Rannians (who previously served as a perfectly workable strawman of atheistic rationalism thank you very much) still worship Lady Styx after all the chaos and violence the virus caused. Also, I’m not pleased to see that Captain Comet (don’t drop the Captain, yes, it’s a bit corny, but do you really want to be confused with Supergirl’s horse/boyfriend?) is a bit of a chicken at the moment (and why is he pretending to be his nephew?). I did like the bit with Capt. Comet telling the JLA why there’s no outstanding space threats to Earth and the scene with Starman and Bizarro.

All-New Atom - boy, all the fun and life has just been sucked out of this title by the writer change. they need to kill it before it poisons the afterglow of Simone’s arcs.

Supergirl - rather grim if predictable outcome. hoping that the next-issue blurb is wrapping up old continuity, rather than re-visiting her origin myth yet again.

Rann-Thanagar Holy War - meh. the use of a suicide bomber in a “holy war” book is a bit too much of a trite cliche at this point.

Metal Men #8 - new MM foe, nice. still confusing, though… what happened to the new Copper?

Action Annual - I think I preferred this being indefinately belated. Lex has to save the world from a Superman-level threat with the aid of Parasite, Metallo, and Bizarro… gee, where have I seen that story line before? and the entire thing with Chris Kent was just annoying.