Weekly Comic Review for 9/28/11

I’m finally getting to write up the reviews for the final week of the New 52. I’ll try to get to my overview in the next couple days. First I’ll hit up the one book that got missed when they pulled the books for me the first week.

Swamp Thing #1 – Alec Holland is alive and taking a break from his old work and doing construction instead. He gets a visit from none other than Superman who seems to be more like the old Superman than the one that we’ve seem in the new books. Meanwhile, an archeological dig in Arizona starts having some odd occurrences. To make things even more interesting for Alec, he gets a visit from Swamp Thing as well. (Guess they aren’t the same any more.) Not really sure what to make of this book. Not much going on yet. I’ll give it the benefit on the doubt here.

The New 52
All Star Western #1 – Jonah Hex is back. Not sure if this will be his title or a western for others like Batlash and such. The story takes place in the 1880s in Gotham and the art is mostly done in sienna tones with splashes of color to make it look “period.” Paired up with Jonah Hex is Dr. Amadeus Arkham whom Arkham Asylum is named after. The mayor of the city is a Cobblepot (an ancestor of the Penguin’s no doubt) who holds a gathering with Alan Wayne (of Batman’s lineage we presume) in attendance. A mystery is afoot and our unlikely pair is off to figure out who is killing the ladies of the night. I’m not a big western fan or Batman fan, but despite the genre and links, It was an enjoyable book.

Aquaman #1 – It’s the old Aquaman back in action, both hands and clean shaven. The scaled top must have some serious armor in it as bullets are bouncing right off of it. Everyone is taking pot shots at Aquaman as he shows he’s no weakling and there’s more to it than “talking to fish” (which he even explains he actually doesn’t do). One cop even complains that the “just got upstaged by Aquaman.” It seems like after everything, he’s back to having the respect level of his Super Friends self instead of the power and regality that he had prior to his death. At least he still has Mera though it seems he’s got some new enemies coming up on the horizon.

Batman: Dark Knight #1 – How many titles does Batman need? He’s got Batman, Detective, and Batman and Robin. He even appears in Justice League and Justice League International. Now he’s got this title too. *sigh* Despite the thick gloves and boots, Batman’s costume is a lot more spandex than armor as it looked in Detective. Bruce start off at a big business press conference and ends up at yet another break out in Arkham. (That’s 2 in one month. They need better security.) This time it leads to Two-Face who is bow built like Blockbuster and saying to call him One-Face. Ummmm…. yeah. Not really impressed by this book.

Blackhawks #1 – It’s the concept behind the old Blackhawks only made modern. High tech but still from multiple counties. This group is a UN created group though. This group is going to need to build up the characterization of all the individuals since this isn’t known characters like the other titles.

Fury of Firestorm the Nuclear Man #1 – Ronnie is a snotty high school football player and Jason is a stuck up newspaper reporter. (Looks like Ronnie isn’t in college any more.) Some mercenaries show up up looking for something that Professor Stein (who never appears in the book) gave to Jason. Jason sets this off and turns himself and Ronnie into variations of Firestorm (Jason in all yellow and Ronnie in all red) who end up fighting and merging into a brute version of the old Firestorm named Rage. You’ve got to be kidding me.

Flash #1 – He’s the one who started this all. How much do you want to bed that he won’t remember Flashpoint. Barry is with Patty instead of Iris. Flash’s chest crest is more 3D than it was and his mask even covers his chin. The story involved some friend of Barry’s who I don’t believe was ever used before. Overall, it’s not an overly interesting story.

Green Lantern: New Guardians #1 – The book starts off with a quick retelling of Kyle’s origin. Good to see that that hasn’t really changed. Then we move on to the present. We’ve seen what happens when a lantern dies — the ring flies off to find a new host. What could cause a ring to leave a living lantern? We don’t know that yet but we do see what happens when that occurs when that happens. A member of the Sinestro Corps loses his ring in the middle of an attack on a group of armed aliens who then kill him. A red lantern loses his ring and dies instantly due to the ring’s affect on his body. One of the Sapphires has her ring leave her but luckily she is saved by Fatality. These 3 rings as well as a blue, indigo, and orange ring all fly off to Kyle Rayner, selecting him. One odd thing is that the cover shows someone other than Larfleeze so I’m not sure what’s up with that but this could get interesting. I can’t wait to see where this all goes.

I, Vampire #1 – This is another book with stylized colors with the pages shades of sepia or cyan with splashes of red added in. (Not surprising for a vampire book.) The story is of a vampire who has given up on killing and stopping those who do. Despite the popularity of vampires nowadays, I don’t think this will last long.

Justice League Dark #1 – I’ll start out by saying the logo sucks. I hope they change it if the book lasts. The story starts out with Madame Xanadu looking at where things are going. We then jump between June Moone, Shade the Changing Man, Enchantress, Zatanna (who is “not stable enough” according to Batman), John Constantine, and Deadman. The Justice League makes an appearance to set things up and show that pure force is not good enough against magical threats. The concept of a magical JLA is good but we’ve seen too often that tossing a bunch of unlinked characters together doesn’t work as well as desired. After a reboot with no idea of what is still true, there’s no telling what will happen here. I’m looking forward to seeing what happens as this goes on though. (Shadowpact was fun.)

The Savage Hawkman #1 – It seems Carter is sick of being Hawkman. So much so that he takes his uniform out into the woods, shoots it, and buries it. Things don’t go away so easily though and a bird of flame comes up out of the grave and engulfs Carter. While going over some archeological finds, an alien being comes to life and attacks. This causes Carter’s body to create a Hawkman uniform and wings all of its own as his body seems to have been imbued with the Nth metal. The being absorbs some of the metal into itself too though. This is a weird twist in the style of Hawkman. Sadly, this isn’t the fuzzy chested version though that seems to change with the artist. This should have some potential.

Superman #1 – This title seems to be based more in the present than Action Comics did. The old Daily Planet is knocked down for a new building to build a modern one instead. We’re back to Lois having had a television career and moving on to be a producer now. To be honest, it’s a first issue and I still feel like I’m jumping into the middle of a story. That and all the jumping around storywise made it impossible for me to even finish the book. And if I can’t finish the book, it get a .

Teen Titans #1 – The reboot hits again. The cover shows Red Robin, Kid Flash, Superboy, and Wonder Girl along with 3 other unknown characters. (It’s been leaked that the purple one in the middle is a new gay character named Bunker. I believe he’s supposed to make his real entrance in issue #3 but you do see him on a screen that Tim is looking at.) Thankfully Kid Flash’s costume on the cover differs from the one he is wearing on the first few pages of the book. The real question is if this is Wally, Bart, or someone else. If they are making Wally Tim’s age instead of Dick’s, this is going to be stupid. On top of everything, he’s a major showboat and mess-up it seems. Next we see Red Robin who ends up taking off to track down Wonder Girl (who hates being called Wonder Girl). She is the “belligerent thief” that she was described to be. I’m not even sure what her powers really are in this version. Finally, we get a 1 panel appearance of Superboy. This book is really riding the fence for me. I’ll probably check it out for now and give ti a chance. At least they have a gay character coming in.

Voodoo #1 – I really don’t know much of anything about Voodoo in the old Wildstorm universe. She must have been consternating to get her own title. That or they just really wanted to write a comic about someone starting off as a stripper giving lap dances. I’m not sure what her real story is but she appears to be a shapeshifter as well. I guess only time will tell and it could be interesting but things will have to pick up some from here. Is book is another one on the fence for me. I think things will need to change for it to keep going.

Everything Else
Avengers Academy #1 – More of “Fear Itself.” More of the academy kids righting Absorbing Man and Thundra. There’s some kissing amongst the kids too. In the end, they blow up the building, the bad guys escape, and Veil quits the team after how they were treated through the whole event. This is getting boring so I hope it picks up after the “Fear Itself” event.

Herc #9 – From one Marvel cross over to another, our next stop is on Spider Island. After beating up more Spider-Man wanna-bes, Herc ends up taking on the X-Men. Just when they think they’ve taken him down, he changes into a creature like a centaur but with a spider body instead. Seeing him like this, Arachne shows up and they start making out and such. The best part is the White Queen commenting on how much people used to pay at the Hellfire Club for a show like that. In the end, we get an appearance by Electra. These cross-overs are really draining my interestin books I used to enjoy.

Secret Avengers #17 – This issue centers around Steve Rogers, War Machine, and Valyrie with Sharon Carter around too. They go off to stop some trucks. This title has gotten so boring on its own that it’s getting dropped.

Ultimate Comics Spider-Men #2 – Miles continues to get powers after getting bitten by the spider. After learning he can camoflage himself, he next learns he has a venom sting. He shows this to a friend of his who thinks it’s coool. Later, his friend points out that Spider-Man got his powers the same way so he jumps up and learns his can stick to the ceiling too. Still no costume and definitely no interest.

Ultimate Comics Ultimates #2 – The book starts off with a 2 page history of the dome so we know what’s going on. The beings inside battle Thor the the Captains. Upon examining Thor, we realize his potential and head out after Asgard. This leads to the death of many (if not most) of the Asgardians.

This week has a lot of flops, especially on the Marvel side. For a Top 3, I’m going to pick Aquaman, Green Lantern: New Guardians, and Justice League Dark. I think we can see where the New 52 are going now. The real quiestion is if we want them to.

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