Capsules, everyone loves them, here we go!
ASTRO CITY THE DARK AGE BOOK THREE #1 (OF 4): I really like ASTRO CITY. I don't like "The Dark Age" all that much. It might because of the eons between releases (the letter column suggests this problem is solved during this particular run); or it might be because I just don't find the two brothers to be all that compelling (at least not such much to sustain a 16 issue arc). The idea of a look at a minion training camp in one of those "vast villain groups" is sorta amusing, but I'll be happy if AC goes back to the done-in-one storylines that characterized much of prior runs. OK.
BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER #25 CHEN CVR: I don't necessarily have that much to say about this specific issue -- it's nice to see what the dealio with Dawn's shape-changing was all about, but I'm missing any real Big Bad Action (have we seen ANYthing in the "overall" story in the last half dozen issues? The last time was in "Time of Your Life" where they kinda acted stupid, and was abandoned in mid-threat, no?) -- it's a solid entry in the series, but it nearly feels like marking time to me. On the other hand, that cover is totally cool -- note perfect romance novel cover, with a slimy monster in the Fabio role. I'll still say GOOD.
CEREBUS ARCHIVE #1: Regardless of what you think about Dave Sim, getting a look into a "here's my journey as an artist and publisher" is pretty amazing, especially from stuff 30 years back when the market was a very different thing. Same concerns though, interesting, but they didn't have email. I hope this does well enough to continue for another 50 issues, at least. GOOD.
FIN FANG FOUR RETURN #1: *joy* Totally silly, and probably not actually in continuity, but I could easily read 4 of these a year. I laughed several times, and I'm ecstatic seeing more Landridge. Great cartooning, and great wit. VERY GOOD.
FINAL CRISIS AFTERMATH RUN #1 (OF 6): What I don't get, if you're going to spin off the "Final Crisis" "brand" is to launch with a series featuring a loathsome idiot, who isn't just unsympathetic, but someone who I'd actively like to see the Spectre mete out some Ironic Punishment to. And it's supposed to sustain itself for SIX issue? Really? From a craft perspective it's perfectly adequate, but this isn't a sales environment where "perfectly adequate" is sufficient. Especially in following up a huge blockbuster. Very EH.
IRREDEEMABLE #2: Stronger than the first issue, that's for sure, but too many of it's beats felt like them came from that issue of ASTRO CITY that riffed on the Superman/Lois secret identity thing. Plus there's a little too much "normalcy" in a world where an entire city has been wiped out like that. I'll give it one more issue to really grab me, but so far this is OK.
LOEG III CENTURY #1 1910: A nice return to form, with a solid and chilling story that's also clearly setting up way more in the future. I can't wait for the annotations! If you didn't really care for BLACK DOSSIER, you'll probably love this. I know I did. EXCELLENT.
NEW MUTANTS #1: While the title and cast is sorta Running to Stand Still (I mean, they're hardly "new"), this was perfectly competent, and maybe an eensey bit compelling. The book doesn't feel like it has a mission statement whatsoever, and that's probably the general problem with the X-books overall, but if you have a fond feeling for these characters, this should make you reasonable happy. Strongly OK.
POWER GIRL #1: What's up with the Phylis Diller face on the non-Connor cover? Jinkies! This character has just too much backstory, really, but I'd rather read this kind of Supergirl than the current one in the Super-line. And Amanda Connor's art is simply yummy. Did I ever admit publicly that it was only just a year or three back that I actually realized that PG was the Supergirl of Earth-2? No? I know, I am dumb as heck sometimes. I sorta want to give this a GOOD, but it's just below that line (but not by a ton), so: OK
SEAGUY THE SLAVES OF MICKEY EYE #2 (OF 3): Hopefully Jeff or someone will be along shortly to tell me what I'm reading (that dumb thing a para ago? Never applies more than to Morrison comics!) -- I really LIKED it, but I didn't have a clue as to what was actually going on. Still "bulldressers" is kind of madly brilliant. GOOD, despite my stupidity.
SWORD OF MY MOUTH #1: I kinda wanted to like this (the art is swell), but that lettering made my eyes bleed. Lettering should never fight the art, ever. And the lettering (alone) makes me say AWFUL.
As always, what did YOU think?