Monday, 26 September 2011

Issue 3: The burger with a few pubes in it.

Welcome back!  This update is a little late because I was unable to get these comics before Monday and I’ve had a horror week in general.  While picking them up I got into a discussion about a feminist article that’s become a talking point this week, regarding two titles in the 52:  Catwoman and Red Hood And The Outlaws.  Driving home listening to Noncanonical I got a little more insight into the topic and decided to chase up Laura Hudson's article on Comics Alliance myself.  I wouldn’t praise every point she makes, but I value her opinions, and I urge you to read this article carefully before judging, as she makes some realistic and valid points (and she’s twenty times the blogger I am).  She’s not anti-everything, she even likes sex in comics.

To put my own spin on it:  Costumed sex is fetish territory, and can be very exciting.  Catwoman riding Batman on that last page is bad execution.  Silhouette could’ve made it hot.  Suggestion could’ve made it hot.  It’s not adult if it’s not done right, not the kind of adult the creators were probably striving for.  Comics can be a frontier medium for this sort of thing.  Catwoman sets that innovation back.



Controversy!  Sex!  Reviews!  Here's my first half of reviews for the fourth week of DC's 52!



Batman #1   Before I decided to buy every single #1 in DC’s 52, I already knew I’d be getting this.  I love Greg Capullo’s art.  His work on Spawn has always had my highest appreciation.  When a friend told me Capullo would be doing Batman I flipped.  He seems such an obvious choice, with his eye for grimy details, skilled use of shadows, and visually unique storyboard approach to drawing combat scenes.  Some touches echo Capullo’s Spawn days, with a reflection of Sam and Twitch in his renditions of Harvey Bullock and Jim Gordon respectively, perhaps a coincidence of style, perhaps a deliberate tip of the hat to long time employer Todd McFarlane.  Whatever the case, I got a huge kick out of it.  I’m pleased to say Batman #1 lives up to expectations very nicely, and Scott Snyder’s story isn’t too shabby either.  A worthy addition to the 52 roster, and a book that may introduce an excellent artist to a wider audience yet.  Great stuff.


Birds Of Prey #1   So this one’s like the DJ you’ve never heard of coming on after Daft Punk, but I knew this wasn’t going to touch Batman so I did my best to judge it on it’s own merits.  My first impression was that the art was nothing special, and reading on I actually thought the colouring did this book a disservice, to the point where a nice black and white job could look a lot better.  But as the story Tarantino-time-jumped pretty heavily I envisioned it in black and white, let it be a noirish action ride, and guiltily enjoyed it.  Like Justice League, this team is forming and not everyone is featured in the first issue, despite what the front cover may suggest.  Could be worth another look.






Blue Beetle #1   Ugh, more of that conversation introduction stuff I groaned about in Legion Lost.  This Blue Beetle origin story is devoid of character and feels more geared to a teenage audience.  “Back off Paco Taco!” seemed like a racist slur when first spoken, but it seems it may actually be one character’s name.  Strewth.  There are some nice vibrant colours, but that’s about the best I can offer on this one.  I think I’m beginning to dislike anything Lantern related too.  Not for me.









Captain Atom #1   The pencil-coloured style of Captain Atom does little to excite visually, bringing the look down to an amateurish level.  Those searching past this to find an engaging story will be disappointed too, as there is little context for what is happening and no origin except for brief mention of an “accident”.  A failure then, as there is nothing for the new readers DC seek (and are getting) to hang on to, and considering several second and third tier characters have better books in the 52 I can’t see this one hanging around.  Pass.








Catwoman #1   Given the current debate about this one I couldn’t get past the argument to really take Catwoman #1 in.  I think the Noncanonical guys put it best when they said it’s sexy if you “allude to something, and make people use their imagination”.  This just has people fucking.  It seems like the “idea” was to have the sex scene at the end, then try and construct a comic book to lead into it.  Even without this scene and the discussion around it, this is an average comic with average art and story, and a character I’ve never cared about.  You may buy #1 out of curiosity, but will you buy #2 to see Batman reach for the Kleenex?







Deadman #1   Ooh, great read, this one!  Egotistical twerp Boston Brand is plucked from the moment of death and given a chance to atone by jumping into the bodies of the living and repairing their lives.  Problem is, he’s not exactly sure how to go about it.  Nicely written, especially the scene where Boston is body-jumping multiple times and speaking each sentence with a separate voice.  The monologue flirts with dark mood but never goes all the way over, allowing the charm of the basic premise to shine.  Again, I’m not familiar with the character so the reboot works well for me.  I loved Deadman and I’m on board for a few issues.









Thanks!  More to follow....

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