Monday, 3 October 2011

Issue #5: The Death Of Point Ones On Comic Burger

Wow!  I’ve just read the remaining issues in DC’s 52, and while there have been a few misses, generally this has been a very entertaining month in comics.  The 52 have also sold shitloads, which is great for the comic industry at a time when sales were much needed.  I’ve read stuff I would normally never have bothered with, discovered talent I’ve never heard of, expanded my knowledge of the DC universe and blown more cash on comics in a thirty day period than I ever thought sane. 
If you’ve read all of these reviews you’ll notice I’ve already committed to quite a few issue #2s, and while I may not review them all I’ll endeavour to follow up on what I’ve started here enough to keep it interesting.  Ah fuck it, maybe I will write something on all of them.  I’ve had fun doing it.
Alright, here’s the last of my 52 reviews.  Enjoy.  And buy All Star Western because it’s shit hot.

The Fury Of Firestorm #1   While there’s not much here for me to get sucked into buying issue #2, there are some points worth making about this one.  Firstly, writer Gail Simone seems to understand that stories written about teenagers don’t have to be written for teenagers, and some of the problems I had with Blue Beetle and Static Shock are nowhere to be seen here.  The frustrations of the characters, while teenage in nature, are believable.  There’s a nasty team of goons slaughtering their way to the source of Firestorm’s power, and an almost unseen corporate nasty pulling the strings.  Could have potential but I’m overloaded with stuff right now so I’ll let this slip through the cracks.


Green Lantern: New Guardians #1   This is more confusing and requires more visits to Lanternpedia than the other Lantern books I’ve savaged.  The strange thing is I like New Guardians.  Perhaps it’s because at this point my expectations were lowered, so I could just get on with it.  The cover basically gives away the last page, and I want to know where it will go.  Why does a ring from each corps converge on Kyle?  Will there be some allegiance between these characters?  Will I regret caring?  By the way, Lanternpedia is not a real website, but considering how confusing the Green Lantern backstory is for new readers, it fucking should be.

I, Vampire #1   Not too shabby at all, this one.  Initially a little confusing as to what’s-happening-when, due in no small part to some very heavy ink work that hides facial features to the point of making characters unrecognisable, but it ties together halfway through.  There’s a nice reference to super heroes too that gently reminds you this book is still a part of the DC Universe, and that what’s happening in Superman, while not really relevant to proceedings here, is still based in the same world.  Great artwork by Andrea Sorrentino reminded me a little of Szymon  Kudranski’s recent work on Spawn, which I love.  Well worth a look.


Justice League Dark #1   It’s very early days for this team, and if you’re interested in where it’s going you may want to hold off for the trade.  Character introductions are very brief, and their motivations for teaming up feel like they could be four or five issues away.  I’ve put the boots into other issues in the 52 for needing their hand held by Batman.  Justice League Dark features Bats again, and Superman, Wonder Woman and Cyborg all join in too.  There’s actually more of the Justice League team in this than some of the characters that belong to this book (or in Justice League #1 for that matter).  And if one more character says anything about Shade’s vest I’ll scream.  Not for me.

The Savage Hawkman #1   Written by Tony S. Daniel and drawn by Philip Tan, there’s decent reason to pick up The Savage Hawkman based on the attached talent alone.  Science collides with the supernatural, indeed there seems to be an air of X-Files all over this until we actually get to Hawkman being Hawkman, with a beginning that works like a TV pre-credits sequence, followed by a plot about alien artifacts and the shit hitting the fan.  It’s not going to set the world on fire but it’s fun enough to check out.

Superman #1   ***WARNING! SPOILERS!***  Superman was the one DC title I was collecting before the 52, and really just because, you know, it’s Superman!  I was enjoying it to a point, but this book just got so much better with the relaunch!  It begins with the analogy of the demolition of the old Daily Planet building to make way for the new fancy tower, and there’s discussion about the future of print media I also found interesting when comparing it to what’s going on with comics lately.  Superman faces a threat in the form of an alien fire monster, which while shrouded in mystery origin and motivation wise, acts as a device for Supes to do what he does best, the true victory being a personal one when Clark Kent gets front page for writing about it, sticking it to digital media in style.  I would have collected this anyway, but Superman is shaping up to be a much improved title and a top 5 in the 52 for me.  I like it much more than Action Comics too.

Teen Titans #1   Of all the team books in the 52, Teen Titans is a cut above.  It echoes Justice League in that we are only introduced to half of the team within one issue, but crap like Legion Lost shows how introducing everyone immediately can fall flat fast.  Red Robin takes centre stage here, and the story ties into Superboy #1 quite nicely.  Artist Brett Booth has drawn a sweet looking superhero book that deserves to be on your pull list, and if my best friend wasn’t already intending to collect this, I definitely would (I’ll just read his).  Teen Titans is looking the goods.

Voodoo #1   Given the recent accusations of some titles in the 52 about their attitudes towards women you could be forgiven for dismissing Voodoo for more of the same shit right from page one.  The whole thing is pretty much set in a strip club.  Give it a go though, because there’s a little more going on.  Besides, there’s also a strong female character in Agent Fallon, who’s smart and tough, and the character with the most to offer so far in this book.  I like where this one is going.  I’ll have a look at the next issue.

Thanks again.

- Jem

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