I'm so totally, crazily, not in the mood to write, but since G didn't get his comics last week, and Jeff is still NaNo-ing, I guess I should say something, even if it is short and crappy. AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #536: I liked the first half (or so) of this filling in the blanks of CIVIL WAR #5 (BTW, #6 isn't listed on the 12/20 Marvel FOC list, which means it isn't going to hit that revised ship date, I don't think. What that means for #7 is even a bigger question) -- yes, there's your failsafe sequence, yes that makes point A match a bit better to point B, but then, suddenly, there's a time jump forward and we're told to read CIVIL WAR #6 (twice!) to have it make sense. Uh.... what? So, oddly half GOOD and half AWFUL.
BOYS #5: I almost cried when Hughie met Nice Girl (or whatever her name is.... does she have a name? I know I've forgotten) on the park bench. It just feels so contrived, and I can see where that's going. This book is really By-The-Numbers, and yet, and yet... I like D's art and I like G's writing, and I approve of the premise in general ways, and I like the characters more or less. So why am I so under-whelmed by the final package? OK
CONNOR HAWKE DRAGON BLOOD #1: I don't really have anything meaningful to say about this -- I just need to fill out the column inches til I get to the next book I *want* to say anything about (PWJ, so, yes filler indeed). Utterly competently done (though how ON EARTH someone having an Archery contest can never have heard of Ollie Queen is... weird), but Connor is mostly defined by what he isn't, rather than anything he is. That's why he needs Eddie as a sidekick, to provide really any color whatsoever. There's absolutely, positively, nothing wrong with this comic... but there's nothing too thrilling about it either. Competently OK
DRAIN #1: Sexy ninja Vampire fighting Evil. Yeah, sounds like an old-school IMage book. Again, competent, but dull. EH.
FANTASTIC FOUR THE END #6: Like I said to Jeff on Friday, it's really really pretty, but it is a "What if....?", AND it is set in the future, so that's pretty much 2 strikes against any relevancy whatsoever. Which is too bad, because it IS really REALLY pretty. For the art alone: GOOD. For how much I care? OK.
PIRATES OF CONEY ISLAND #2: I barely remember the first issue, but we finally meet the Pirates, and I don't like any of them whatsoever. Oh well, EH.
PUNISHER WAR JOURNAL #1: I think I'm on record that Punisher-as-cartoon works really well for me, but I'm a little less sure that Punisher-as-snarky-blogger (c'mon -- "Asshat"?!?!) is a workable tone for the long run. I definitely laughed, HARD, in a couple of places, but I kind of can't imagine that anyone who LIKES "Punisher in the Marvel Universe" is going to enjoy the tone of this. I really want to hear what someone like ex-CEer Gary Barger has to say about this, because he's the target audience, not me. No, not me.
I also think it is of extremely questionable judgment of Marvel to have an "mainstream" and "adults only" version of a character running around at the same time. Some guy in Arkansas or Iowa or something is going to end up taking a raft of shit from some parent pretty soon, I fear.
All of that aside, I really really liked this. Like VERY GOOD liked it.
SUPERGIRL & LEGION #24: Just wanted to say, y'know who I miss? The Comics Shrew. Her last review is #12 of this series, so I guess its been a year. *sad*. I like a lot of the ideas in this series, but I've been bored with the execution. Its all moving so slowwwwwwly. And when you have a Legion of a cast, things need to happen faster, IMO. EH.
ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #102: I'll be damned if that isn't a better origin for Spider-Woman than the "real" one. I'll never live down this sentence, but: I'm actually enjoying this Spider-Man Clone War storyline. GOOD.
WALKING DEAD #32: Wait, where did Glen come from? How is everyone so casually skulking around in an armed camp? After all of the "Sh! Quiet!" stuff, they just smile and give Michonne a pat on the back as she decides to rip out the cancerous heart? This storyline is going on way way too long, and isn't making a ton of sense. A very rare EH for an otherwise great series.
WOLVERINE #48 and WONDER WOMAN #3: just Retail Intelligence, rather than reviews. Both took MASS dives from the last issue. WOLVIE shifts from "Civil War crossover" to "Casualties of War", and, book, 1/3 of the readership walks away like that. Despite it being epilogue to the last six issues which they bought. I no understand. WW lost a quarter of the people who bought #2, so thank you massive delays (and a pretty loony story, too, I think)
X-FACTOR #13: A "sequel" to a decade old X-FACTOR story (when some kid named "Quesada" was drawing it) with X-Factor on the Couch, and it's really terrific. So much so that Jeff Lester almost bought it, after reading it, despite not having #1-12, and not being likely to buy #14. Yes, its VERY GOOD.
ZOMBIES ECLIPSE OF THE UNDEAD #1: Actually didn't read this, but another "Retail INtelligence" thing -- zombies are done. Over. Jumped the Shark, as the kids say. If you're a creator, and you're thinking about it, please do NOT do another zombie book. They're completely flat with the audience today. Seriously.
PICK OF THE WEEK: There's some competition between it and X-FACTOR #13, but I'm going to go with PUNISHER WAR JOURNAL #1, just because its tone COMPLETELY surprised me. And surprise is good.
PICK OF THE WEAK: Is probably really something I didn't review, but of what I did? The second half of AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #536, I think.
TP / GN OF THE WEEK: MOOMIN, LUCKY, 3 new SC versions of classic Eisner works, BUDDHA 4 in SC, a new volume of Y THE LAST MAN, and a I-can-kill-you-with-it version of Morrison's X-MEN run -- it was a good week for books, I think. I'm going to geek on my young adulthood, however, and go with SWAMP THING v9: INFERNAL TRIANGLES, however. LOVE that Superman story in there, and Veitch is an under-appreciated creator. It even has an INVASION! crossover that works. Ah, for the days when Vertigo wasn't Vertigo...
That's what I got for you. What did YOU think?