Archive for May, 2013

After having last week off I return to Marvel Disassembled this week with not one, but two reviews!

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Click the images above for my reviews of Indestructible Hulk #8 and Morbius: The Living Vampire # 5.

A little behind? Want to catch up? Check out my past reviews of these titles below.

Indestructible Hulk #5                       Morbius: The Living Vampire # 3
Indestructible Hulk #6                       Morbius: The Living Vampire # 4
Indestructible Hulk #7

Not enough for you? Well then, go here to check out all the other Marvel Comics reviews over at Marvel Disassembled.

Well, it’s the fifth new comic book day for the month of May, and it seems I’ve got a pretty light week. This weeks total is actually fewer books then I usually pick up on a weekly basis from DC Comics alone. So, what have we got? Four Anne’s from DC and the road to the Trinity War continues in Justice League of America #4. Two personal favorites from Marvel. And, once again with none of my regular non-Marvel/non-DC books out his week, I’m checking out a couple new titles from Vertigo an Boom! Studios.  As always, head over to Comic List for the full list of this week’s new releases.

Boom! Studios

Clive Barker’s New Testament #1 (may review)

DC Comics

Arrow #34 (digital first)
Batman: The Dark Knight Annual #1
Catwoman Annual #1
Earth 2 Annual #1
Injustice: Gods Among Us #20 (digital first)
Justice League of America #4
Red Hood and the Outlaws Annual #1 (reviewing)

Marvel Comics

Indestructible Hulk #8 (reviewing for Marvel Disassembled)
Morbius: The Living Vampire #5 (reviewing for Marvel Disassembled)

Vertigo

The Wake #1 (may review)

Alright, so I’m going to give something new a try here this week. Completely going against the saying “don’t judge a book by its cover”, I’m going to do just that, and present to you my five favorite covers from the week’s releases, first from the books I actually picked up, and then from all of the week’s new releases. Obviously this is going to be completely subjective, but I don’t comment on the art that often in my reviews so this will give you guys some insight into my personal preferences as far as comic art goes.

Purchased releases:

5. Red Lanterns #20
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4. Teen Titans #20
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3. Talon #8
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2. Green Lantern #20
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1. The Flash #20
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All releases:

5. Jirni #2
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4. Scarlet Spider #17
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3. Talon #8
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2. Green Lantern #20
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1. The Flash #20
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DC Comics

All Star Western #20 – 3 stars
Aquaman #20 – 2 stars
Arrow #33 – 3 stars
Batman Incorporated #11 – 2 stars
Batman: The Dark Knight #20 – 3 stars
The Flash #20 – 3 stars
The Fury of Firestorm: The Nuclear Man #20 – 4 stars
Green Lantern #20 – 5 stars
Green Lantern: New Guardians #20 – 4 stars
The Green Team: Teen Trillionaires #1 – 3 stars
Injustice: Gods Among Us #20 – 4 stars
Justice League #20 – 4 stars
Justice League Dark #20 – 4 stars
Red Lanterns #20 – 3 stars
The Savage Hawkman #20 – 4 stars
Superman #20 – 3 stars
Talon #8 – 4 stars
Teen Titans #20 – 3 stars

Dynamite Entertainment

Masks #7: Digital Exclusive Edition – 3 stars

Icon

Powers: The Bureau #4 – 3 stars

Image Comics

The Bounce #1 – 4 stars
Sex #3 – 5 stars

Marvel Comics

Deadpool #10 – 5 stars
Fantastic Four #8 – Not reading until I reach May in “Catching Up On: Marvel Comics”
Fearless Defenders #4au – Not reading until I reach May in “Catching Up On: Marvel Comics”

Best of DC – Green Lantern #20 – 5 stars
Best of Marvel – Deadpool #10 – 5 stars
Best of Other – Sex #3 – 5 stars

Top 5

5. Talon #8 – 4 stars
4. Injustice: Gods Among Us #20 – 4 stars
3. Sex #3 – 5 stars
2. Deadpool #10 – 5 stars

Pick of the Week – Green Lantern #20 – 5 stars

Alright, I don’t usually say anything here, but this week I just had to make a comment. I’ve been pretty hard on the Wrath of the First Lantern storyline over the past few months, but this week’s Lantern books, particularly Green Lantern #20, did an excellent job of wrapping the story up.

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Written By: Joe Casey
Art By: Piotr Kowalski / Colours By: Brad Simpson / Letters By: Rus Wooton
Price: $2.99

Nudity, implied sex, perversity, violence, intriguing characters, a story that is only becoming more twisted and complex, and apparently a lot of history to the world that is only ever alluded to. Why isn’t this your favorite new book too? You’re not reading it? Start. Seriously. Don’t be scared of the title, just go get yourself some Sex.

Ok, so I got that sad little sales pitch and the requisite application of double meaning to the title out of the way, so we can all move on. Honestly though, this really is a very good book. It has the faintest trappings of the superhero genre and is absolutely soaked in sexual energy, but at its core, what it really seems to be is a crime drama. And yet, even just calling it a crime drama doesn’t seem to do the book justice. Only three issues in and Joe Casey is weaving an enticing tale of a man attempting to adjust to a city that has fallen apart in his absence while seeing it for the first time through eyes not clouded by a here’s mask. And that is only the main thread of the story. We’ve also been introduced to an elderly mob boss with big plans, a thief with high hopes for his latest acquisition, a pair of brothers cold enough to execute one of their employes, not expressly for his failure, but for not meeting the visual requirements (not being pretty enough). And of course the former villainess flame of our “hero” who featured prominently in what was without question my favorite sequence of the issue. I won’t describe it in too much detail, because frankly I couldn’t do it justice, it needs to be experienced. What I will say that it’s the combination of three scenes, our hero Simon Cooke having a moment of self-examination with his friend Warren, our leading lady Annabelle Lagravenese enjoying some alone time, and a shared moment from their past.

I can’t sing the praises of this book enough. It’s quickly climbing the ranks of my favorite books, new or old. Given enough time it may even top the list. Do yourselves a favor and just give it a chance, better yet, read it with your significant other. Do it. Come on. You know you want to.

Score: 9.0

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Written By: James Tynion IV
Art By: Miguel Sepulveda / Colours By: Rain Beredo / Letters By: Taylor Esposito
Price: $2.99

Calvin Rose is about to become everything that he hates. Bane prepares to shape Gotham to his will. This one is very much an in between issue, but that certainly doesn’t mean that it’s bad. It just means it’s stuck beneath what has come before it and the expectation of what is soon to come.

Now, I don’t like to spoil things in these reviews, but the facts are, you’ve had two weeks to read Birds of Prey #20, so if you haven’t this probably won’t hurt that much, and the reveal I’m spoiling is featured on the cover of Birds of Prey #21 anyway. So, who is it? Why it’s the star of Talon, Calvin Rose of course. But why do I need to tell you that here? Well, because the entire point of Talon #8 is to get Calvin Rose from the last page of Talon #7 to the last age of Birds of Prey #20. In order to do that, James Tynion IV pulls Calvin down to the darkest place he’s been to date in the series. This issue is not about action, its purely about the story. And this chapter in Calvin Rose’s life is not about happiness, and it’s not about winning. This about darkness, about the strength of a man’s will, and about hat happens when the hero loses. And you know what? It works. It works because Tynion presents us with a stark contrast between the characters of Calvin Rose and Bane, two characters who undoubtedly heading for a rematch afte eir confrontation last issue. While Tynion shows us that Calvin, finding himself in a spot even he may be unable to escape from, is quickly sinking deep into the darkness, he contrasts that with a brief interlude where Bane regales Sebastian Clark with a rendition of his origin story. As we watch Calvin Rose begin to break, we are reminded that Bane does not break.

This may not be an action-packed slugfest, but it is that start of a very emotional journey for Calvin Rose. The rematch with Bane is certainly in the future and Batman is almost certain to make an even more substantial appearance in Calvin’s story then he already has. But before we get to that, Calvin first has to make it through what’s coming in the pages of Birds of Prey #21 and Talon #9. So, if you don’t want to miss out on what’s going on in the slightly less Bat-heavy corner of Gotham, you might want to pick this one up.

Score: 8.0

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Written By: Brian Posehn and Gerry Duggan
Art By: Mike Hawthorne / Colours By: Val Staples / Letters By: Joe Sabino
Price: $2.99

It’s Deadpool and the Superior Spider-Man versus the Blandtastic Four, and Batroc the Leaper. Sound ridiculous? Of course it does, it’s a Deadpool book. Here’s the thing though, and I’m sure this says something about my sense of humor, but I believe this may have been the funniest and best issue of the current series to date.

So we all know that Deadpool is out of his mind and generally a goof. So what do you think happens when you give him a straight man in the form of Otto Octavius (in Peter Parker’s body of course) and a cast of what I will generously refer to as C-list villains? Well, jokes happen. A lot of jokes. This is Deadpool in all his comedic glory and basically exactly what I was expecting when I first heard that Brian Posehn would be penning this book. There are subtle nods, such as the ghost of Ben Franklin angrily leaving Deadpool’s side for the comfort of a strip club named Amazing Fantasy. There are puns, such as the aforementioned Blandtastic Four, used to refer to the assemblage of Taskmaster, Chance, Paste Pot Pete and Lady Stilt Man. Without question though, the highlight is definitely the interaction between Deadpool and Spider-Man as Deadpool mocks Spider-Man’s rogues gallery, particularly Doctor Octopus and then goes on to petition Spider-Man for membership in the Avengers. Alright, now that I’ve covered my personal highlights, there actually is a bit more going on here then just an onslaught of jokes. Everything I’ve mentioned to this point is revolving around the continuing story of the job Deadpool has taken on for the demon Vetis in an effort to save his friend Michael. The target for this issue is Daniel Gump, a businessman who sold his soul for pre-cognitive powers and is now venturing into a life of crime, which is what set Spider-Man’s sights on him setting up the issue’s featured team-up. Exactly what Deadpool’s plan for dealing with Vetis is has yet to become clear, but his recent moves have caused further tension between himself and Agent Preston, their interaction in this issue taking a backseat to that with Spider-Man, and caused the departure of Ben Franklin’s ghost I mentioned earlier. Clearly things are building to a confrontation between Deadpool and Vetis, most likely in an issue or two, for Michael’s soul and I have to say I’m looking forward to that more then ever after this issue. This book just seems to be getting better with each instalment.

I do have to say that the organ snatching plot was completely absent from this issue, but considering how much fun I had reading this issue I’m certainly willing to overlook that. Besides, I expect that particular story thread will make its way back to the forefront as the Vetis story draws to a close. If you’re into Deadpool as a character or Brian Posehn as a comedian at all folks, then pick this one up, you’ll have a good time with it.

Score: 9.0