Just a quick announcement before I get started. You might not hear from me for a few days (which isn't too unusual these days). The reason is because we are scheduled to get slammed by Hurricane Noel tomorrow. Last time we got hit with a storm this size, we lost power for quite a while. So that's what I'm prepared for.
But enough of this unpleasantness. At least I have plenty of comics to read.
And here's what I thought of some of the ones that came out this week!
Action Comics #858
It's a little confusing, in that it is a story set in current continuity, but borrows a lot from the past. It feels like a Year One story, mostly due to the emphasis on Clark Kent's loner status, and inability to relate to humanity. Of course, this has to ignore the fact that he is happily married, which this comic does.
But I'm not complaining. Especially not if we get delightful pages like this one, with classic grouchy Perry, awkward Clark and enthusiastic Jimmy:
We also get some great flashback scenes of Clark as a lonely kid, when he meets the Legion for the first time. This was pretty adorable and heartbreaking, as a friendless young Clark thinks he's found someone who understands lonliness:
I really liked this remark, as Superman faces who he believes is Brainiac, but is actually Brainiac 5 in an elaborate plot to get Superman's attention:
It's nice to see Superboy and the legion. Especially with art this nice.
Looking forward to more of this!
This, along with this week's Robin Annual, more or less begins the big Resurrection of Ra's Al Ghul crossover, which will be continued in Batman and in Robin. I'm not super pumped about it, just because I've been enjoying the non-event issues of both Batman and Robin. But Grant Morrison is still writing, so it's not going to suck.
I am also liking Damien more and more:
On a similar note, the Batman and Son action figures were released this week, and they look great! There's a very awesome Tim Drake, and a sweet-looking Batman. If you want a Man-Bat figure, there's a nice one of those, and the Joker one is fun to pose. I'm surprised they didn't make a Talia figure. It would have made more sense than the Joker.
52 Aftermath: The Four Horsemen #3
One thing this issue is really good for is Snapper Carr burns. Batman really hates that guy.
But Black Adam doesn't give you this:
So Kingdom Come Superman shows up, and he's all "When Kingdom Come, you ready? Not only NYC, I'm hip-hop's saviour, so after this flow you might owe me a favour."
This was great. I loved Starman's interaction with Kingdom Come Superman:
This Superman likes to talk a lot about regret and failure and mistakes and tragedy. And he does, for a really long time. Then he decides to up and leave, which results in a JSA dogpile:
Daredevil Annual #1
The thing about Annuals is that it usually involves a guest artist, and sometimes a guest writer. Or it's several short stories. This was a Brubaker story, with an Ande Parks script and Leandro Fernandez doing pencils. My only worry going into this was "Well, after all the Brubaker/Lark issues, this might be disappointing." NOPE.
This comic was amazing. It opens with Daredevil struggling to fight off some Yakuza boys. He's struggling because he has the flu, which he continues to have for the remainder of the issue.
Now the cool thing about giving Daredevil the flu is that it messes with his heightened senses. He can't smell anything, and his congested head and his high fever are making things very difficult. So he's making lots of mistakes. Painful mistakes:
I liked how Matt slinks off after the fight to go pass out:
So yeah, sick Daredevil. Very interesting, and kind of cute:
Mainly, though, this is a story about Carlos LaMuerto, aka Black Tarantula. He has just been released from prison on parole. He got along well with Matt in jail, and he looks him up on the outside. Matt gives him a job at the firm, helping Dakota. Dakota is not into working with a violent ex-con. Carlos is not into her attitude:
LaMuerta gets frustrated by the uselessness of the legal process when it comes to actually helping people in the neighborhood. He takes things into his own hands, but with good intentions. Even so, Matt doesn't want to see Carlos go back to his old ways. He offers him a chance to suit up as Black Tarantula and help him fight the Yakuza. It works well, because Matt still isn't at 100%:
Unfortunately, Carlos can't restrain himself from using extreme violence, except now he wants to clean up Hell's Kitchen, rather than run it. He feels responsible for a lot of the damage done to the neighborhood, and sets about making things right. Which involves killing a lot of bad people.
Like I said, this is a great comic, and it's extra-long. Do read it.
Countdown to Adventure #3
In the middle of all this, Ellen is concerned about her marriage. She asks Buddy the question that's been on her mind ever since the scantily-clad space princess arrived at their door:
The Adam Strange Pages are all really great. I like his narration. He's tough.
Death of the New Gods #2
Here's the JLA at the murder scene:
1. Red Arrow isn't doing anything. He's just chilling, and looking as cool as possible.
2. Superman is like "Uh, what's Vixen doing exactly? Looking for cookies?"
3. Barda's outline, while not supposed to be funny, kind of is.
In the next panel Red Arrow has apparently removed his shirt. I approve:
I also like that Hal is talking like Batman. And Black Lightning is being a little inappropriate. "Are you sure she's in here? It's kinda light. I mean, she is Big Barda, right?"
Mr Miracle changes his clothes:
Superman accompanies him back to New Genesis with Barda's body. Orion takes one look at Superman and loses it. Man, that guy is just angry all the time.
Unfortunately, he did. And this means a pointless fight between the two of them for the next few pages:
It lasts until Metron shows up. Then Orion wants to fight him.
Orion, you have got to chill, bro. You can't just beat up everyone who stops by. In three successive panels Orion is like "I'm gonna kill you, Superman! No, I'm going to kill YOU, Metron! No! I'm going to kill Darkseid!" It's exhausting being Orion. "Milkman! I'll kill you!"
I'm going to wrap it up there. And other comics can be discussed in the comments. Like the giant heaps of comics that count down to various things. But not that X-Men Messiah stuff. I don't read that.