Saturday, 7 July 2012

Issue #21: Ravaged by spelling errors.

Ends Of The Earth more exciting than Avengers Vs X-Men?  Not that I’m hating AVX, but I just found Spidey’s event to be more of a page turner, with a good mix of humour and action, and just, well…. BETTER.  I just finished reading the sixth issue and I liked it a lot.  And on the subject of recent Spidey tales I like a lot….. the new Amazing Spider-Man movie was pretty awesome too!  The reboot fixes some issues I had with Raimi’s trilogy, particularly the order of Peter’s girlfriends, and it’s really nice to see Andrew Garfield give Spider-Man a very overdue New York accent.  And er, Emma Stone is bloody gorgeous.

Readers in Queensland would do well to cancel their plans on Thursday 19 July and head to the Brisbane Comic Jam.  This event is being held at the Griffith Film School Cinema in South Bank, and kicks off at 7pm with a short film screening, followed by micro workshops with some very talented writers and artists.  At 8:15 it’s over to the Ship Inn Hotel for what I feel is the night’s masterstroke, Drink And Draw!  What could possibly sweeten the details of this event even more?  How about the fact that aside from the booze you’ll be hospitalising yourself with, THE ENTIRE THING WILL COST YOU FUCK ALL.  That’s right kids, you’ll be surrounded by like minded folks willing to share their genius with you AND drink with you and it’s all FREE.  Get more details and see how good looking everyone is at the Brisbane Comic Jam facebook page.

Batman #10   While I usually like to reveal just enough plot details to compel you to form your own opinion of a comic and all of my reviews usually contain spoilers to some extent, I feel I must go further to properly write about this issue, so IF YOU INTEND TO READ BATMAN #10 AND HAVE NOT YET DONE SO, REFRAIN FROM READING ON!   I had several friends warn me to hurry up and read this before I stumbled across a spoiler elsewhere, so after I was sure to read this first upon returning home with my latest pile of new comics.  The anticipation may have been a little detrimental to the shock value though, and as a result I’m not sure I believe Batman’s latest revelation.  I gather if you’ve read this far and ignored my all-caps warning above it’s now safe to mention that this issue reveals the Cort Of Owls’ champion’s real identity is Bruce Wayne’s younger brother, discarded after an accident, and this story is seemingly supported by the companion story that follows, “The Fall Of The House Of Wayne”.  Now my friends may have unintentionally cushioned the impact by preparing me for some kind of announcement in this book, and I have to admit the moment was accompanied by “Huh?  That’s it?” from me, but there’s also the fact that Snyder seems to have almost immediately inserted an exit for himself in the form of a line from Batman where he states that the story is a concoction of The Court, perhaps just in case there was too much fan backlash, or someone someday soon wants to shy away from this new addition to Bruce Wayne’s backstory.  But then it struck me:  with this new 52 reboot, isn’t this exactly what DC are giving themselves the chance to do?  To craft new stories for their classic characters, and make revelations like this all the more plausible and possible?  Of course it is, and with this perspective I have to congratulate Snyder and those above him at DC for having the courage to try this.  Batman has a fucked up brother, invented in 2012.  This means you can eventually expect to discover something brand new and exciting about Superman, Green Lantern, anyone and everyone DC, and if it works, enjoy it being referenced and built upon for years.  This is a good thing!

The Ravagers #1   Back in September I wrote two scathing reviews for two books in the 52, Legion lost and Legion Of Super-heroes, two horrible pieces of boring shit I am sadly reminded of after slogging through the equally awful first issue of The Ravagers.  Spun out of recent issues of Teen Titans (not reading it) and by extension, but to a lesser extent Superboy (I get every issue), The Ravagers throws a few left over F-list characters together and assumes at least someone on the planet will give some kind of miniscule fuck about what they could possibly get up to.  Having trouble remembering these new names?  Don’t worry!  This book borrows from same 20 cent guide to shithouse writing that Legion Lost did, and simply has each character use everyone’s names ad nauseum, ramming names down your throat so frequently you’ll wake up screaming them!  And if those of us who value skilled use of the English language weren’t feeling discarded enough, the writer neglects to spell simple words properly, and two editors and two assistant editors let this fucking disgrace slip by!

Shit writing, so-so art, a poor set-up and characters I wouldn’t piss on are one thing, but if you’re not even going to bother spelling properly there’s no way I’m paying you any more money!  Who’s this for anyway?  It’s too violent for kids, too inane for adults.  That leaves teenagers, and it’s not like they’re going for this over the five Batman titles available, or Justice League, or Green Lantern, or at least 30% of what Marvel has out.  Why is this thing here?  I liked OMAC!  It had old school charm, and possibility!  And they cut it to make room for the goddamn Ravagers of all things!  I give this shit ten issues before it also gets shitcanned for a third of fourth wave.  Fucking garbage.

Batman Incorporated #1   Alright, I like this book.  Artist Chris Burnham has style very much in common with Frank Quitely which is bloody awesome, and Grant Morrison gets to continue a series he started a couple of years back and let it exist in the new 52 universe.  As I’ve mentioned earlier regarding Batman’s “reboot” (and Green Lantern’s too, for that matter), there doesn’t seem to be much in the way of discarded continuity, and this move seems to support this.  I confess I have not read any of the existing Batman Inc. stories, though I would like to, and from the way this kicks off I will likely need to, as this feels very much like ten issues in.  Normally all this would be enough to make me get shitty with it, but I can’t.  It looks great.  I like Damien as Robin.  I want more.

Supergirl #10   Supergirl is not a comic that’s going to set the world on fire for most of you.  At face value there’s nothing particularly standout about the artwork or story or writing, but as I’ve gone Superfreak in the last twelve months, I collect it and like it.  I like this issue in particular though, just for how FUCKING TRIPPY it is!  Last issue, Kara let the Black Banshee absorb her hoping her powers would be too much for him to handle and destroy him, but he seems to be able to hang on to her just fine, and Kara’s advantages only benefit her enough to have her survive the experience.  So what’s it like living in a soul absorbing, black magic demon monster?  Or what happens when a Kryptonian takes LSD?  Kara finds herself waking up in a memory that doesn’t quite play out as it originally did, combining with another memory and changing location suddenly, like a dream.  She argues with her mother who then blames her and commits suicide into lava.  Then Kara’s clothes suddenly morph into a combination of old Kryptonian warrior armour and her Supergirl costume.  The banshee then attacks Kara in the form of a huge Kryptonian lavadragon and knocks her into the lava. Which becomes pink water.  And there’s more.  The mixture of science fiction and fantasy gives this issue a nice classic flavour that somehow reminds me of a thousand old DC books I’ve never read, and the psychedelic flow from moment to moment is brilliant.  You’d be forgiven for not bothering with this but look beneath a little and you’ll find the character has mummy issues and a subconscious part of herself that is trying to tell her conscious self to embrace her destiny, and I couldn’t name another DC book that bothers to get so subtly psychological.

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