DC Reviews for the week of 6/23/14

This is one of those weeks where my DC list is as big as where Marvel list.

The first book I read this week was Batman 32 Zero Year Final Act. This has been a great series that not only examined how Batman was created but his year long cat and mouse game with The Riddler.

Each issue of Zero Year has been about as good as the last and the writing has been near perfect. I am going to miss these stories when it ends. The art is just as good as the story. Grade: A

Batman Eternal 12 was better than last week but still not as wonderful as previous issues. One of the difficulties of the series is that because its weekly, it has to keep the readers engaged. To do that, Scott Snyder has to introduce a plethora of characters that each have their own story. As a result the reader is moved around from plot to plot without getting to spend enough time on any one plot.

Its clear that Snyder has a direction but right now it seems pretty convoluted. In this issue we see the trial of Jim Gordon( the opening statements, at least), and see a few cops and Harvey Dent devise a plan, which hasn’t been revealed yet, to stop the gang war and free Gordon.

I’m not sure why but The Penguin has been pretty absent in these last few issues while still being a major player in the book

The book needs to pick its pace up. The art is fine. It just foesnt feel like Snyder is at the top of his game here. B-

Sinestro has been a fun book to read. Sinestro 3 was equally interesting. One of the best parts of the book is that Sinestro’s daughter, who hates him, acts as a voice of reason and conscience for him and he seems to try to ignore it but he can’t.

This issue has a lot to do with the kind of leader Sinestro has become. He is expecting his people to be grateful but they aren’t. So he goes on a bit of a rescue mission to do some PR. There is a villain in this issue that I’m curious about

I liked the writing in this book a lot. The book remains interesting without having a lot of action. That is not easy to do. There are some great character choices in this book that go a long way to develop the characters.

The art and coloring is also good. I enjoyed this issue a lot. B+

Red Lantern 32 was the beginning of a battle that has been in the making for a long time. Atrocious Vs. Gardner with Rankorr making a pretty prominent part of the story. Atrocitus had captured him and now the rest of the corps is trying to free him. It wasn’t an easy task.

This was part one of four and I can guarantee its gonna get good. Because of a conversation I had with Tony Beddard this last winter I was aware of a character’s departure and I have to say it was the only part of the book I didn’t like.

All of the lantern books rely heavily on the shading. The color of the character’s ring determines the shading. Each of the books do a commendable job at being detailed without the shading overwhelming the art. Grade: B

This concludes my DC services for the week. Many of you may ask why I’m not reviewing Superman 32 with John Romita Jr. Jumping ship. The reason: there is not much that can be said that hasn’t been said on other sites. Romita Jr. Is a great artist and will continue to be.

See you next week

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Comic book reviews for the week of 6/23/14( Marvel)

This week was a HUGE week of comic collecting for me so let’s get right to it

Original Sin #3.1 Hulk Vs. Iron Man #1 really couldn’t have been about anything other than it was when I sit down to think about it and it still is a pretty shocking secret that is revealed. I should have figured it out yet the fact that I hadn’t is actually the part of the story that I liked. The cover was even a give away!

As you know, if you’ve been reading Original Sin, The Watcher was murdered and his eyes stolen. They ended up being truth bombs, releasing deep secrets about each of the heroes, or had been kept about them. The same is true here. This time, though, the secret that was kept has the potential to change the dynamics of two heroes ALOT.

The writing here was good and did a very good job at showing the flashbacks necessary to pull of this story. I also really liked the art. I think the only gripe I have with the book is believing that a secret of this magnitude could be kept as long as it has. It’s huge! I’m giving this book an A-.

2. I really hate it when a comic book changes artists half way through a comic. It usually interrupts the flow of the book and one of the two is usually not as good as the other artists. Although the art choice is understandable, it was still annoying. Original Sin Fantastic Four #6 examines the secret kept from The Thing. The flashback would have been served better if the art was better. As a result the secret was not as shocking .

The first two thirds of the book was excellent and dealt with the disappointment of losing not only a court case but their kids and the Baxter Building too. The book did a great job of balancing the story line that has already been in the book and the Original Sin event.

I’m giving this book a B-. The art took such a sharp turn I lost my enjoyment of the book

I have no way of knowing whether or not the twist at the end of Savage Hulk 001 was added or a part of the original story. I’m unsure whether or not it’s a re telling of x-men #66 with new artists or a continuation.

It was fun to read the hulk as I remembered him from before and it was cool reading old stories with new art. A-

4. I have been hearing rumors for about a month now that Marvel is canceling Wolverine. This is a shame because I think it’s one of the more solid of the X titles. Wolverine has dealt with death his entire life but it chases him and, as a result, he is scared of death. As a result he has been asked to face death

There are two other stories here. Pinch, a member of Offer’s team, has been betrayed by her boss and captured by Sabretooth to get a hold of the sphere that Pinch had stolen

The other story had to do with Shang Chi and Iron Fist fighting the demons trying to enter the temple where Wolverine is facing his fears

I really wish that this book was not being discontinued. Very cool writing and pretty decent art. Grade: A

5. You know Marvel must be a little desperate if they drag out Howard the Duck, but in all honesty the best art in the book is in the last few pages where Howard’s story is. Orginal Sins 2 of 5 dragged him out

Each of the stories are revealed secrets from The Watcher’s eye. The first of the stories was somewhat similar in tone to the Deathlok story in that it’s about a complete stranger knowing the secret identity of one of the characters. This time it’s The Black Knight. So that I don’t give any plot points away, I’m not going to mention any more

The art in this portion of the book was great. It fit the story perfectly. Dark and a bit gritty

The second story gives us answers into why The Hood appeared to The Young Avengers. Let me say here: I can’t stand the art in this section of the book. It’s kind of clunky.

The third part is only 3 pages and humorous, if not just a bit stupid. His secret is kinda dumb but reminds me of the dolphins in hitchhiker’s guide to the galaxy. Once you read the story, you’ll understand.

This comic was nothing spectacular. It had it’s moments, but not enough of them. Grade B-

6. Guardians of the Galaxy 016 was written well that looks pretty good with some exceptions. There are 5 stories here. Peter Quill and his father, Rocket and the Kree, Gamora and the Badoon, Drax and the Shi’ar, and Venom and the Skrulls.

There is a lot of action here which usually works but because there is so much ground to cover, it can be a bit overwhelming.

I really liked the Peter Quill storyline and Venom, but some of the storylines felt like after thoughts. This was a good comic, but not great. Grade: B.

7. This may sound strange but I still find myself warming up to Peter Parker as Spider man. For the last two years we’ve had a villain superhero and I’ve loved the storyline. Now that Peter is back, we are faced with reading a much more timid version of the character that I’m not always a big fan of.

In The Amazing Spider-man 003 Peter continues his crusade to cure Electro and is sidetracked by a building fire. Along the way he meets up with Felecia Hardy who wants him dead for something Otto did while he was pretending to be Spidey, mainly get her jailed.

There are a few small plot twists here that have the potential of becoming bigger plot points. I have no idea where the J Jonah Jameson plot line is going and I like that part. I’m also very interested to see where the Maria plot line is going as she tries to resurrect Otto’s research projects.

This was a good comic and I loved the art work in the building burning. The coloring was very well done. The ending of the book is a bit
predictable but I still thought this was a pretty well done book. Grade: B+

8. Marvel seems to be revisiting origins of Super Heroes or revisiting old story lines a lot. Spider-man Spectacular one-shot is no different. Inasmuch as these stories are rehashed here, they were still fun to read.

Whether or not it was intended as a gauge to see how The Sinister Six would be accepted for a movie, there are cameos and story lines for many of the characters associated with the team of villains. However, the main characters in this book are Kraven the Hunter, The Green Goblin, and Mysterio. Doc Ock, Sandman and The Vulture, also make appearances as well as the Fantastic Four.

Each of the stories take place when Peter was figuring out his powers so each story also follows the predictability of the old “if you get too close to me you’ll get hurt” storyline that has been so prevalent throughout his comics. There was some attempt at making the stories current( in one frame Spidey uses a cell phone) but that actually was a bit distracting because it made the reader question the timeline of the story.

All in all this was a decent book. The writing was a bit of a throwback to past issues and the art was good too. I’m giving this book a grade of B.

Those are my Marvel reviews for the week. I hope you enjoyed then. See you next week

Comic Book Reviews for the week of 6/16/14

It’s not often that I decide to start over after everything I started gets erased but there are a couple of comics this week that deserve recognition.

So let’s get started.

1. This week’s issue of Original Sin 4 of 8is one of the first of the series that really grabbed my attention and allowed me to enjoy the series. My beef with this series is that for a summer event it doesn’t feel big enough. Sure one of the major players in the Marvel Universe has been murdered and had his eyes plucked out but the book’s choice of villains is strange and and less than what you would expect from a summer event

I liked this issue because it left us with a cliffhanger that was intriguing and also answered the many questions that the last issue left us with. The art in the book was also impressive. I hope that the rest of the event is as good as the rest. B+

2. There are very few comic books that I read that are worth reading just because the art is amazing. It helps that the two books I read for the art are accompanied by great stories. Avengers World 008 was one of the prettiest books I’ve read in a few months. The art is smooth and detailed and pretty amazing

The story picks up where the last issue left off. A team of Avengers has been sent to Italy to figure out why an entire town has disappeared. When they arrive they find a mysterious object that transports them to the City of the Dead where they encounter Morgan Lefay.

There are guest stars and surprises. This was a fantastic comic book. A+

3.

Original Sin Avengers #31 continues the ongoing storyline that has been playing itself out over the last two years in various Avengers books. There is a group of Avengers called the Illuminati that have determined that there is a point where two universes can collide and cause one of those of those universes to be destroyed. The Illuminati decided to use the Infinity Gauntlet to keep further collisions from happening. One of the team members, Captain America, objected to its use so the rest of the team has his memory erased so that he can’t tell others. Except his memory has returned

When the Infinity Gauntlet was used it caused all but the Time gem to disappear. That particular gem blew up causing the avengers to be hurdled randomly through time.

This storyline, while mostly well written has awful pacing. The incursion storyline seems to be never ending and not enough happens to make it very interesting. I’m giving this book a weak B. It’s drawn well but the book needs to move on

4. Original Sin Nova 018 was not the strongest comic. I understand why it was written the way it was but it also featured a trick that I think is very annoying: repeating a previous story but from a slightly different viewpoint. The reason this annoys me as much as it does is because it forces the reader to read the same story twice and pay for it twice. In this issue we learn what happens when Nova finds out his friend, Uatu has been murdered and also what he saw when his eye exploded and a secret was revealed.

It’s not that it was drawn poorly, it wasn’t. It was that the reader is being manipulated into reading a previous story twice. I’m giving this grade of B-

5. One of the books I look forward to reading when it comes out is Uncanny X-men. This issue revealed quite a few plot points that have been mysteries in the books for the last few months. It reveals why Cyclops’ powers are broken and it also reveals who is behind the new brand of Sentinels. The answer is surprising

The conflict between Maria Hill and Cyclops comes to a head too. This was a fun issue with a lot of explosions and action. I’m giving this book an A.

There were other books this week that I read. Thor’s story of environmental terrorism continues and Thunderbolts starts a new story arc that pits The Punisher against the rest of the team. I didn’t really care for either book as far as the writing goes but the art was decent in both

This ends my Marvel comics list for the week

DC reviews for the week of 6/9/14

For anyone who has read Superman: Doomed they have been treated to an absolutely great crossover series. Superman Wonder Woman 009 was no different. The majority of the book is a conversation between Clark Kent and the Doomsday that Superman has become. Both of them are warring each other.

Wonder Woman sends in a healer to help but does she help?

The art is amazing in this book. The level of detail is worth looking at and admiring. The Red Lanterns make a cameo too

Absolutely excellent book A+

Green Lantern Corps 32 Uprising Chapter 4 of 6 continues the mostly redundant 6 month story line with the Khund and Durlans. The difference? We are at the half way point so the plot is moving. Sodam Yat goes to his home planet to find his father and warn him that the Durlans are coming to steal their DNA.

In the meantime on Mogo the other lanterns are trying to figure out a way to replicate Durlans DNA so that the rings can recognize them during battles

This was a decent book but it also seems that some of the plot points are a bit predictable. The art has been okay and the lettering has bordered on annoying . I’m giving this book a B.

Batman Eternal 10 was the second book of the 10 books in a row that weren’t particularly strong for the series. Pyg has never really interested me as a villain. I think he’s a bit corny when it should look like a masked bad guy from the movie Saw but instead comes across as a Pygmy.

Scott Snyder is usually top notch so this was a bit of a disappointment. The art was good but even that seemed off. I’m giving this book a B-.

Those are my DC books for the week. Come back next week for more

Marvel Comic Book Reviews for the week of 6/9/14

Welcome to this weeks Marvel Comic book reviews. This week is my favorite week of the month because:

1) it has the Mighty Avengers in it.
2) I get to read about my favorite Super Hero since I was a teenager- The Hulk.

So let’s get started.

I rarely pick up a book solely for the art but Mighty Avengers is one of those books. Greg Land astounds me every time I read one of his books. Original Sin Mighty Avengers 11 gave me the advantage of of a fun story as well.

This issue is a direct spinoff of Original Sin. If you haven’t read Original Sin, you won’t understand the need for this story. The Orb, still the stupidest name for a villain, had one of the Watcher’s eyes and caused it to explode forcing each person who was present to face secrets the Watcher had seen and kept hidden.

Luke Cage, seeing a secret his father had kept from him, confronts his dad about it. This entire issue is a flashback and it’s like watching the movie Shaft. It’s both funny and extremely cool. Great job!!! A+

All New X-men 028 continues the confusing story of Battle of the Atom which never really concluded. Yep, that’s right, the Brotherhood of Evil is back and trying to stop Jean Grey again. We, at least get a clearer idea about why the attack is happening this time. Charles Xavier blames the X-men for his father’s death and also believe they are tarnishing his legacy.

This book goes back and forth between the future and present. The brotherhood is trying to determine why they’ve been unable to beat the X-men. In the present, Xavier Jr. has psychically attack Jean.

The writing in this book was alright but, honestly, I’m a bit annoyed because it feels like I’m being asked to take on something as a bit of an apology for messing up Battle of the Atom. I did like the art though. Grade: B

Last issue of Hulk was probably my favorite of the last 2 years. It was very reminiscent of the 1980’s when Hulk was mindless and almost impossible to stop. Hulk 004 continues where last week left off. The Abomination( or a version of it) is still attacking Hulk after Banner hulked out. Banner hulked out to save his friends but, in doing so, may have done irreparable damage to the gun shot wound to his head. Until this issue, Maria Hill was the only one who knew. Now the Avengers have to find a way to heal Bruce and Tony Stark might have a solution but at what cost?

Waid and Bagley have created a very cool story with art that is mostly incredible( I’m not a fan of how he draws Captain Marvel). This is another grade A book

The Amazing Spider-Man Learning to Crawl 1.2 continues the story of Peter becoming Spider Man and trying to keep it a secret. It is also the continuing story of his overwhelming fan that turns into Clash( not the band).

This is an okay series that hasn’t popped at all. The art is mediocre and the story is nothing that new. The writing does make sense though. A 14 year old boy would not necessarily be good at concealing an identity and, although he’s pulled it off so far, it’s getting much more difficult. Grade B. The writing is okay.

Wolverine 008 starts the 3 months to die storyline which is a direct offshoot of the previous story. Logan took a job with S.H.I.E.L.D to infiltrate a mobster named “Offer’s”organization. Offer wants to beat Sabretooth to a mysterious orb found on Madripoor. Wolverine helps offer to get closer to Sabretooth. Pinch, a member of Offer’s team that becomes intimate with Logan, gets the orb first but gets herself captured by Sabretooth who is hoping that Wolverine will come after her

In the meantime, Wolverine is taken to an island where people aren’t allowed to die and asked to face his fears by a priestess.

There is more to the story and to talk about it too much would spoil the book. Let’s just say there are other hero cameos in the book.

There is a lot of mysticism in this book and it is definitely other worldly. The art is good and the cliffhanger at the end of the book also makes the next issue something to look forward to. Wolverine has become one of my favorite Marvel Comics as of late. I’m giving this book a B+

Whenever I see the word Special on a comic book I usually find that it’s more “special” than special. That’s pretty close to being true. This book wasn’t anything spectacular but it was still infinitely better than the crap that was arms of the Octopus. Uncanny X-men Special 001 No End in Sight 001 begins the story of Death Head, S.W.O.R.D, Iron Man and Cyclops. This is all I will say about the plot Line because, in all honesty, it’s about all I understood of it.

Both the art and writing in this book seem amateurish at best. The cyborg soldiers are wooden and sounded awful. C+

Original Sins 1 of 5 has two stories in the issue, one of them is pretty cool and the other was probably pretty good if you are a 14 year old boy.

The first story has to do with Deathlok, half human, half cybernetic that is being blackmailed into doing things he doesn’t want to do. He is approached at a train station by a stranger that is a fan of his( but is also S.H.I.E.L.D) and Deathlok’s handlers are not happy.

The second story is about the Young Avengers learning about the Watcher’s eye exploding and wanting to be a part of the action

My favorite part of this book was the art in the first half of the book. It’s really good. The rest of the book was not my cup of tea. Grade: B

Secret Avengers 004 is the fourth installment of a completely unnecessary reboot of a good comic. This was a good issue but the writing still has slipped. The Secret Avenger team are looking for a symbiote called Fury in a city that should not exist. To give more info would spoil the book

The writing in this book is solid. The author dropped most of the cheesy humor and stuck with the intrigue that makes this a great comic.

The art is not my favorite in this book. I would love if the art in this book was much more solid. Grade: B

Those are my Marvel reviews for the week. My DC reviews will come tomorrow