Saturday, January 3, 2009

Comic Book Reviews for the Week of Dec. 3, 2008 (Limited Series)

Battlefields: The Night Witches #2

With this issue we get a better view of the Germans on the ground who might have given the Night Witches their name. I was a bit shocked by the gang rape, but I wouldn’t be a decent human if I weren’t. At least there was that lone voice of reason, so Germans as a whole weren’t demonized. I’m a bit surprised that this is only a three-issue mini. It seems like there’s more story there.

Chuck #6

As with the TV show, this was incredibly corny. But also like the TV show, it was extremely fun and enjoyable. The Capt. Awesome back-up, though, was decidedly not awesome. In fact, it was downright stupid. Hell, if they needed filler material so bad, just go old school and throw in some pin-ups. It’s Wildstorm. There are tons of crazy-good artists who I’d love to see do a pin-up of Chuck and the gang.

Crossed #2

I’m really not sure what to make of this series. The art by Burrows is as consistent as ever. I expect graphic shit from him, and I’m by no means disappointed. It’s just the actual story. I mean, I also expect graphic stuff from Ennis, but this just feels different. Maybe I’m just burned out on zombie stories (yeah, I know these aren’t zombies in the strictest sense of the word, but it’s pretty fuckin’ close). Maybe it’s the sexual twist that Ennis put in. Other than that, I’m not really finding much difference than you’re run-of-the-mill zombie tale. Maybe he should just stick to military stories.

Ender’s Shadow: Battle School #1

I haven’t read the Shadow books, but I’ve always meant to. I remember Bean being a little shit in Ender’s Game, so I’m glad (and a little horrified) to finally get in on his background. I’m not saying I won’t eventually read the Shadow books, but now I know what to expect. Bean definitely is a scrawny little thing. This issue got him into the Battle School, so I’m hoping next issue we’ll see parallel’s made between him and Ender. And really, that’s already been done. We’ve seen what’s lead up to both kids being sent up to the Battle School. While physically and socially Ender and Bean may be totally different, it looks like they may have a common thought process. I’m loving the Card and King adaptations.

Haunted Tank #1

“A mistake has been made.”

Not a bad issue at all. We’re quickly brought up to speed regarding who JEB Stuart is and why he’s around to help out armored cavalry. Then we get joke: his ancestor this time around is black. This was pretty much an introductory issue that allowed us to meet General Stuart and Sergeant Stuart and his tank crew. While we got some decent but quick action this issue, I’m hoping we’ll get some more in the next one.

Marvel Zombies 3 #3

“Stop that robot! Bring me whichever part of it can feel pain…so I can stab it repeatedly!”

The zombies’ plan is revealed, but can Aaron make it back to Jocasta in time to stop her from delivering the final piece of the “inoculation?” No, he can’t. He gets himself blowed up. I’m a little disappointed in the lack of humor in this series, or how when we do get it, it’s pretty forced. The humor doesn’t flow nearly as well as it did in the last two series. Oh, and look at that. Almost everyone at A.R.M.O.R. is now infected thanks to zombie Morbius. How will Portal and Jocasta end up stopping this?

Marvels: Eye of the Camera #1

I think I was expecting something different. I expected it to pick up sometime after the previous series. But this issue seems to take place somewhere in the middle, right when the Silver Age Marvel Universe was being born. We’re reintroduced to Phil Sheldon and his family, but the first series isn’t really reference at all. At one point, quickly, in passing, he brings up Maggie. If I’m not mistaken, I think she was a little mutant girl that he saved from an angry mob or something like that. Other than that, though, there was nothing. We don’t know at what point in time the issue ends, just that it’s a few years after the intro of the Fantastic Four and the others. I’m assuming now we’re past where we left off in Marvels. It’ll be interesting to see where Phil goes from here.

Projet Superpowers #1/2

Either I missed it and never realized it or I had forgotten that the Dynamic Forces (all of them, or just Man and Boy?) are robots. And really, how self-serving can you be? Dynamite Entertainment is owned by Dynamic Forces, the online store that sells signed and special comic book merchandise, right? Or at least owned by the same guy? Of course, I guess it’s no different than Marvel having a Captain Marvel (or three) running around. This was a quick yet decent issue that gave us a brief glimpse inside Dynamic Man and Boy.

Sandman: The Dream Hunters #2

What a beautiful story. Someone has set out to kill the monk, while the fox creeps around to protect him, getting injured and trapped in dreams for her trouble. I really need to read the original version. Russell is doing an awesome and visually stunning job of adapting this thing.

Secret Invasion #8

Wow. Norman Osborn is having the best year ever (VH1 got it SO wrong). I cannot wait to see how that last page plays out. Osborn, The Hood, Loki, Dr. Doom, Namor, and The White Queen (isn’t she still a good guy?), all in cahoots. Nice. I don’t think I’ve enjoyed a universe-wide crossover this much since Infinity Gauntlet. We’ve got actual repercussion rather than a reset to the status quo. We’ve got deaths. We’ve got “resurrections” (I would have been okay had some of them stayed dead). We’ve got a new status quo. And we’ve got a new pariah. I think this might be enough to drive Tony back to the bottle. I really want to see this played up in the Amazing Spider-Man. Norman Osborn is his arch enemy. This has to get more than just a passing mention. Kudos to Bendis and Yu and all involved with this story. This starts a new era in the Marvel Universe, and I’m glad I’m around to witness it.

Secret Invasion: Front Line #5

Oh no, Ben’s wife died? And he wasn’t there…how sad. I enjoyed this Front Line series much more than the Civil War one. It seemed more about real people, and we only got brief glimpses of the super heroes. Because of the last page, I’m hoping we’ll see a Dark Reign: Front Line series. With the death of his wife and his past with Osborn, I would assume this would consume Ben’s life. It’s a story someone needs to write and won’t be able to fit in Amazing Spider-Man or Daredevil, although with his relationships with both characters, his current situation should at least be brought up in both titles.

Terror Titans #3

All right, so Dreadbolt killed his dad, big deal. The shocker (hah!) here was the introduction of Static into the DCU proper. I knew the Milestone characters were coming over, I just didn’t expect Static to turn up here. I never read his comic, but I really enjoyed the cartoon…which was set in the animated DCU proper, so there’s that. So how long has he been here? He’s the reigning champion, so I would assume a while now. I’m looking forward to how this plays out.

Trinity #27

Amidst some page-filling fighting and Tarot and Charity trying to figure out what’s going on, Morgaine and Enigma recruit Konvict to the cause. I guess this was kind of a filler issue, getting us ready for heroes to go up against the unholy Trinity. I had been hoping that we’d seen the last of that horny gorilla, but I guess not.

Vixen: Return of the Lion #3

Again, beautiful artwork, but a lack of backgrounds. It makes me wonder if they’re just not Cafu’s strength and it’s a good thing the story is set in a pretty sparse setting, or if it’s just that we don’t get to see his background work because the story is set in a pretty sparse setting. I wonder what he’s got lined up next? The story is staying consistently decent, but Mari’s power being inside her was telegraphed a couple of pages earlier.

Wolverine: Manifest Destiny #2

The thing that still grabs me about this book is how similar Stephen Segovia’s artwork looks in comparison to Lionel Francis Yu’s. And has Wolverine ever had a girlfriend that wasn’t in some way a villain or at least connected to one? Even Mariko at one point led the Hand. I’m having a hard time getting into this. And Rock of the Buddha looks ridiculous. Is that a giant ball necklace? Seems ‘twould be a hindrance. Soulstriker was pretty cool, though. And at the end we’re dropped right into a Bruce Lee movie. Eh. Just eh.

Xena/Army of Darkness: What…again? #2

Ash, Xena, Gabrielle and Autolocus get thrown around different classic stories after trying to escape from a bunch of Deadites. There’s nothing high-brow about the show, but it’s pretty fun.

X-Infernus #1

Okay, I’ve got no idea what’s going on here, but I like it. The last time I was reading all of the X-Men titles regularly, Illyana was dead due to the Legacy Virus. So she’s alive and in Limbo. Is this Illyana from a different point in the timeline? I don’t know. I’ll have to look it up. But it looks like Pixie (whom I don’t know) has part of her soul (a soul dagger), and Nightcrawler had A soul sword, and maybe it’s Illyana’s and maybe it’s not, I don’t know, but whatever happened when Pixie pulled it out of Nightcrawler, it was enough to bring Darkchylde into the Danger Room. This should be fun.
X-Men: Manifest Destiny #4

I’m still out of the loop about Iceman and his powers. For me, this is all rehashing stuff Bobby went through with the White Queen. Cessily is new to me, too, but I’m getting sick of all the different X-kids and X-Men who bitch and moan about being different. It’s been done to death. Try something new. I guess Nightcrawler’s story had to be told, but something extremely similar is done almost any time an X-person dies. The entire issue seemed to be a retread.

X-Men: Worlds Apart #2
The Shadow King is toying with Ororo by controlling both Cyclops and Black Panther. She had no problem blowing Scott up while he was flying to San Fran to get rid of the X-Men, but things are a bit harder when you’re fighting a husband that wants to kill you. All the while she still has to protect her mutant ward, who killed a man while under the Shadow King’s control. Farouk is making things a bit difficult for Ororo. It’s a good story that shows her being pulled between two very different lives, one as an X-Man and one as a queen.

X-Men: Noir #1

Oh, I hope the Spider-Man book is better than this. It’s just not my thing. The art was too dark and sometimes it was difficult to tell who was who, and the story just didn’t grab me. I’ll pick up the Spidey story, but I think I’m done with the X-Men.

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