I'm literally tying up loose ends before thinking about packing - well, okay, I have the rest of the work day to get through as well, but you know what I mean. My thoughts are of holidays and two weeks away from everything... so let's get through this quickly, okay?
CAPTAIN AMERICA #30: Something I genuinely love about the post-Civil War, post-Cap's death era of this series is that Tony Stark is probably as much of a good guy here as he is in any Marvel book of the moment, despite having been on the other side of that old Civil War from the eponymous hero; seeing him solve the murder of Cap this issue was a surprisingly uplifting moment considering my dislike of the character almost everywhere else in the world of comics. It also brings some plot development right where the book was needing it, as Sharon goes back into fembot mode and shoots two of our new heroic ensemble cast just as Tony works it all out. Brubaker keeps everything moving here, and I'm still not missing Cap at all. Very Good.
COUNTDOWN TO MYSTERY #1: You have to hand it to Steve Gerber for the unexpected masochist movie star version of Doctor Fate, but as much as I want to snark, I found myself kind of warming to the sub-70s cosmicness of the whole thing, ably sold by Justiano's art. There's also an unexpectedness - a mysterious unexpectedness, you could say - to the Eclipso strip, which not only ties Eclipso to the New Gods, but also manages to make her feel like an afterthought in her own strip. Not as good as Countdown to Adventure, but nonetheless, more Okay than you'd expect.
THE FLASH #232: Yeah, I don't get the people who don't like Daniel Acuna's art; in my book, more superhero books should be as personable, with less generic faces and bodyforms. But then, I also would like to see more superhero books written like this, with alien invaders and faux-science solutions, and an enjoyable family-friendly tone throughout. Very Good, and I'd love for Waid to stick around on this for a long time.
JUNGLE GIRL #1: Amazingly, possibly more gratuitous inside with Andriano Batista's art than the Frank Cho covers would suggest. But those with cartoon fetishes would find themselves with pretty enjoyably hokum accompanying the cleavage and ass-shots. It's really not anything approaching art, but it's pretty Okay. Should I feel guilty for admitting that?
TALES OF THE SINESTRO CORPS: PARALLAX #1: Well, we'd gotten relatively far in the Sinestro Corps crossover without a piece of entirely unnecessary dreck, so I guess we should've been thankful for that. Sadly, now we have this one-shot that adds nothing whatsoever to anyone's life other than the bank balances of the creators involved. It's not even bad enough to dislike, it's just a boring and needless slice of Eh.
WORLD WAR HULK #4: It's still beautifully drawn, but both this and last issue of the big Marvel summer event feel as if they're killing time before the big conclusion next issue. Maybe it's just that there's not enough story in "Hulk returns to Earth, smashes" to last five issues, or perhaps it's that there's too much (He couldn't just smash and then be stopped? We have to have him recreating his gladiator experience on Earth?), but what started so well has settled into something that's Okay, but ultimately unsatisfying.
And now, for me, two weeks off. Will Countdown come good while I'm gone? Will Dynamite ask me to write the next Jungle Girl series because I called it enjoyable hokum? Will anyone miss me if I decide to stay in Paris instead of coming home...? These questions and more may be answered in just sixteen days, true believers. Play nice while I'm gone.