This Week: Amazing X-Men #16, Aquaman #38, Batman Eternal #43, Catwoman #38, Death Vigil #6, Gotham Academy #4, He-Man – the Eternity War #2, Nightbreed #9, Quantum and Woody Must Die #1, Thor #4, Tomb Raider #12, Turok – Dinosaur Hunter #11, Uncanny X-Men #30, Unity #14, X-O Manowar #32
[toggle title_open=”Excepting that title match. ” title_closed=”The Royal Rumble was dull.” hide=”yes” border=”yes” style=”default” excerpt_length=”0″ read_more_text=”Read More” read_less_text=”Read Less” include_excerpt_html=”no”]We are Living Myth Magazine, and we are here to read comic books! Every week, we go and feed our addiction (single issues mostly online, trades mostly from conventions or Big Pete’s). And every Wednesday we respect Woden, the God of Comics, and we speak of the stories that he, in his greatness, has brought us. We speak of it on twitter. That’s a preview, though, and there’s times we don’t pick up the things we were looking for or end up picking up things we didn’t talk about.
So, here’s what comics we got this week and what we think about ‘em after the reading. We rate these things on a five symbol scale. The first two symbols are for art, the second two for story, and the last is based on whether we think this is a gateway comic – is this something we would lend to friends to get them into this series? This last one is a tricky thing, but if we think it is, then the comic gets this symbol: .
Symbols can be broken down into quarters and look like this from quarter to whole: , , , and . Two symbols is a good comic, three symbols is worth taking the time to hunt down and look at. Anything at four or more symbols is of the highest possible quality.
If you click on a comic’s title it’ll take you to where you can buy that title on Amazon (at least until Big Pete starts selling comics online, after which it’ll take you to Big Pete’s), unless it’s not on Amazon at the time when this article is published. Non-title links will open new tabs and take you to places I think are either informative or funny, depending upon whim.
We’ll give you a very brief overview of what we thought of each comic, and whether we think you should buy it or not. We’ll go a little more in-depth when it comes to our top five comics of the week, and make sure that you can tell them apart from the rest.
I’m inclined to agree that DC Comics was onto something with Steph Brown Batgirl, and that rebooting to Barbara Gordon Batgirl was an idiotic movie made by an editorial board that is far out of touch with their fanbase, and catering to a small fraction of that fanbase. That said, Gail Simone gave DC Comics exactly what they wanted – something dark, gritty, and relentlessly depressing. The new Batgirl, also based around Barbara Gordon, is the exact opposite of that while still being, qualitatively, good storytelling. The reboot was a terrible idea, but not all the comes to come out of it are bad (just most of them).
Lastly, Aaron Golden, Gregory Milne, or anyone else writing this review is not the God of Comics. That would be absurd. Comics come out on Wednesday, which was a day named for the Norse God, Woden. Also called Odin and a whole host of other things. He’s a god of many things, and we sorta think he’d dig comics, so, you know, he’s the God of Comics. Because of course he is.
Okay. Savvy? Everyone with us so far? Cool. Onwards goes us.[/toggle]
Colossus convinces Pixie to help him by being violent and unstable, because that’s a sure fire way to convince people that you’re sane. Storm continues to miss Logan. Rachael is not as powerful as she should be, and it’s handwaved. There’s some cute dialogue and the art is good. This is the very definition of a perfectly serviceable comic. Fun.
You’d think Arthur would have learned not to rush things by now. I understand being in a hurry to see someone, but he’s seen how dangerous these portals are and everyone that rushes in his series has had to pay for it. Take your time, Artie. There might be reasons to hold back and think before acting. One day, these lessons are going to sink in.
Selina has green eyes. Also, the bone structures of the people in this comic would be more horrifying than the events of the comic. There’s moments where the art is very good, but others… the writing, though? The writing is very good, perfectly establishing a new dynamic between Selina and Bruce, and building Steph and Harper. Good stuff.
Catwoman #38 – Top 5 Comics
There’re people that say Catwoman should be pulling heists and that this run is a throwback to the Brubaker era. I’d agree with one point and dispute the other. Selina should be pulling heists, and she is – she’s working a long con because the small time jobs she was doing simply aren’t possible in the Gotham created by Batman Eternal. And while the Brubaker run was great, this is a whole other kettle of fish. Brubaker was about Selina the hero, whereas this is Selina the reluctant empress, an equal and opposite to the Bat in a very different way. Further, Black Mask is the perfect foil for Selina; he’s a control freak, and she thrives on chaos. They’re perfect, and so is this comic.
Death Vigil #6 – Top 5 Comics
First: Stjepan Sejic is one of the best artists in comics. Not currently working, just in general. I’ll pretty much give anything he works on at least a look. His writing veers between heartbreaking and merely good, and this falls into the latter category – there’s too much tell and not enough show, but there’s a hell of a lot of mythology here that needed to be squeezed into eight issues. I’m hoping this will eventually lead to an ongoing series. Some of the best artwork in the medium with a fascinating mythology and characters; this feels like it would make a great setting for a role playing game.
Hogwarts at Gotham continues! Okay, okay, I kid. Gotham Academy is ceaselessly charming, a well written young adult novel that happens to be a comic, and paints it’s characters and mysteries with a vibrant brush. The artwork is excellent, the writing is engaging and fun, and this whole series gets better by the issue. I can’t wait for the trades.
It’s weird seeing He-Man lead an army of snake people. The Horde feels a little nerfed here, but there’s a lot to be said for the explanation we’re given of the different kinds of snake people, so that’s sort of awesome. The art is great and we get character development for everyone except She-Ra, who is missing for some reason. Still, this is a lot of fun.
The difference in writing between this and Batwoman is staggering, and becomes only more baffling when one considers the same writer is involved. Boone has abandoned his new people and they’re doing the best they can, walking freely in a Halloween march as they find a new home. The crazy priest, though? He’s figured some things out.
Sometimes, after you finish reading a comic, you sort of sit there and stare into space. The giggling comes later, but not much later. This is one of those comics, a tale of corporate espionage, greed, and corruption front-lined by two half brothers who are the worst superheroes ever. By design. This is glorious and I need more of it.
Thor #4 – Top 5 Comics
Thor comes to terms with the way things are, both of them. Male Thor comes to understand that he is no longer considered worthy and has a different arm. He relinquishes his name and accepts that he is the Odinson, though there is a lot of punching before that happens. And female Thor? I’m beginning to think she’s the female SHIELD agent that put Thor in contention with Roxxon in the first place. Speaking of Roxxon, the Minotaur is cutting a deal with Malekith, which should work out well for exactly one of them. Jason Aaron is outstanding, and so is this comic.
Lara comes into her own here, as Gail Simone once again explores the intangible qualities that make Lara Croft the person she is – the love of history and the past that is very much the core of her character, a curiosity that demands understanding. The art is gorgeous and what could be a simple story draws several parallels in-world. Fantastic.
Alright, so Turok is Robin Hood. That’s… interesting. Marian is less sociopathic for reasons and Turok is torn between love and lust by an assassin who may as well be the Lady D’Winters. This book is all setting, establishing what the current status quo is and how Turok and his band of Merry Men are leading a rebellion. A weird little alt-Sherwood fic.
Uncanny X-Men #30 – Top 5 Comics
Well, shit. I have no idea what they’re going to do from here. Scott Summers, Illyana Rasputin, and Emma Frost are all dead – the former two due to SHIELD deciding to nuke them from orbit, and the latter due to her interacting with the mutant that SHIELD tried and failed to kill. It could be that Marvel has decided that they can do anything now that Crisis on Infinite Earths is just over the horizon, and if this is the kind of story we’re going to get from that, bring it on. Also, Eva Bell pulls a Hank McCoy and brings past Professor X into the present. To me, my X-Men. This is fantastic.
Sort of disjointed. The news report going on below the actual narrative is a nice touch, and Faith quitting the team was inevitable given who is on the team and Faith’s idealism. There’s some neat character stuff in this comic but not enough build given to the antagonists. Contrast this with Valiant and you’ll see what I mean. In fact, go read Valiant.
X-O Manowar #32 – Top 5 Comics
Not disjointed in the least. An idiot Randian corporate madman tries to take down Aric of Dacia and Aric smacks him around with barely any effort at all. He lets the man pull out all his guns and all his punches and doesn’t care, because at the end of the day, Aric of Dacia is pretty much god. This feels like how the old X-O Manowar vs Iron Man video game should have gone, and is some nice commentary on greed blinding people to the obvious consequences of their actions. The art is greatly impressive and actions continue to have consequences. This comic rules.