Friday, October 14, 2005

4-Color Fri.: The Crisis Draws Near! Yippee!

Finally made it to the comic store to pick up my 5 weeks worth of comics. Of course, a part of me wishes I had put it off one more week, since Infinite Crisis #1 came out on Wed. Don't know how long I can avoid online spoilers for THE comic event of the year. With the price of gas what it is, it would probably be cheaper to just go buy an extra copy at the local store than to drive to Plano and back on Saturday.

Last week’s post about my love of alternate earths and retcons turned out to be pretty timely, as my haul contained not only two Infinite Crisis crossovers which deal specifically with retcons, two House of M alternate universe titles, and two TPBs reprinting alternate earth stories, but also The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Alternate Universes 2005. Haven’t had a chance to crack open any of the TPBs yet, but finished most of the monthlies.

Potential spoilers ahead, so if you haven't read everything you wanted to that came out before this week, tread carefully.

Legion of Super-Heroes #10: On the off chance that Fellow Book Monkey and Blogger Bubblegum Tate has not read this issue yet, I shall restrain my comments to this: didn't like the ending. Not that the book wasn't well done, but I wish what happened at the end hadn't happened.

JSA Classified #3: I'm really enjoying the exploration of Power Girl's history, and how all of the varied theories people have come up with for her true identity seem to have been worked in: she's Andromeda from the Legion; no, she's Superboy and Wonder Girl's daughter; no, she's Ultraman and Superwoman's daughter; no she's someone else entirely. Also fun seeing the Psycho Pirate again, always been one of my favorite villains. And Huntress's reaction to PG saying she came to her looking for a friend was priceless. Man, I love Earth-2-retcon humor!

House of M #6: It depresses me how much my respect for Brian Michael Bendis has fallen over the last several years. Some of his stuff still works for me, like Ultimate Spider-Man and Powers, but most everything else has left me cold, or at the least, only mildly entertained. House of M so far has been of the "cold" variety. Slow moving and wordy, which I've pretty much come to expect from Bendis; my problem stems from the fact that everyone feels out of character to me. I'm ready for the mini to hurry up and get over with so we can move onto the next bloated Marvel cross-over.

New Thunderbolts #12-13: Finally, a resolution to the Purple Man storyline, and I have to say, it didn't suck. In fact, the final panel in #12 revealing that Zemo was the mastermind behind it all made me very excited about possible future storylines. And finally having Melissa take control of the team was long-overdue. Songbird has become one of my favorite comic characters, and I hated seeing her so racked with indecision. My only real complaint is the designs for Photon's costume: uuuuuuuuugly. Put him back in his Captain Marvel togs, for crying out loud!

The Return of Donna Troy #4: This mini has taken a lot of flack, and understandable so, since it was sort of reimagined and reengineered at the last minute, and some of those seams definitely show. But the pay-off in this issue of Donna's history and purpose in the DC Universe was more than worth it. Thank you, Phil Jimenez, for taking the abomination that was John Byrne's take on Donna, and working it into something that actually respects the history of the character. I'm wondering if the name Harbinger is going to stick, I definitely like it better than Troia.

Villains United #5: My favorite of the Infinite Crisis tie-ins
just got a little bit favoriter when the enigmatic figure Black Adam was hunting turned out to be none other than Lady Quark. The last I saw her, she was floating lifeless in space in the pages of L.E.G.I.O.N., during what I like to think of as "the crappy Peyer years" of the title, so it was great to see her back among the living. Now I need to do some research to find out if she's popped up anywhere else that would explain how she's still alive. Wasn't quite as excited by the appearance of Pariah, but still, it all ties in to the original Crisis, so it's all for the good.

Firestorm #17: Still enjoying this title, even if it's not the old-school Ronnie Raymond version of Firestorm; at least it's not the horrendous "Ron-Ray" supermodel version from Extreme Justice; good grief, what were they smoking back then?

Ultimate Spider-Man #82-83: Liking the current storyline more than I have the previous few. Especially enjoyed Bendis's take on Moon Knight's multiple personalities.

Day of Vengeance #6: Despite some great moments along the way, I've felt a bit let down by this mini. Once again, biggest complaint is off-kilter characterization; Nightshade does not feel like Nightshade to me. Detective Chimp, however, made it all worth while.

Birds of Prey #86: Bless you, Gail Simone, for revitalizing this book. I liked the 3-in-1 spotlight format of this issue, and glad to see that Helena has decided to stick around. And, after several mini-series and 85 regular issues, the team has finally officially named itself "Birds of Prey."

Manhunter #14: While I still hate the unnecessary retcon they pulled on the Mark Shaw Manhunter concept, the fact that they’ve brought in Cameron Chase as a possible full-time character has me both hoping that it sticks around awhile, and fearful that this just signals it’s death knell. I mean, historically, Cameron Chase is to comic series as Christopher Gorham, Paula Marshall, and post-MASH McLean Stevenson are to TV shows.

Runaways #8: Didn’t particularly care for Karolina running off with the super-skrull, or power-skrull, or whatever you want to call him, er, her, er, it. I am looking forward to the upcoming road trip storyline which will bring Cloak and Dagger back into the fray.

Marvel Team-Up #12-13: This is the one title of Kirkman’s I buy that doesn’t knock my socks off. I like most of the Spidey centered issues, think Kirkman has a good sense of his sense of humor (better than Jenkins and Millar, anyway), and Kirkman’s love of the secondary characters like Sleepwalker and Nova does my heart good; I’ve always been more a fan of the second and third tier characters than the Fantastic Four or Spidey or Hulk. But the whole Titannus War storyline felt like a lot of buildup for very little pay-off. I guess from the ending that it’s not totally over, but still, the last three issues felt like a waste of my time, especially #12, which was all about Titannus, with very little of the heroes involved at all. I am looking forward to the next issue, which features a cross-company appearance by Kirkman’s creation Invincible, as well as the upcoming “Legion of Losers” arc, featuring tons o’ third-string characters. Viva la underdogs!


g'ovich said...

So good news. You are only four degrees of seperation from Jill Thompson, since you know me, and I know a friend who is friends with her brother (they call him Beavis). Meaning you are probably only five degrees away from all those other guys!

Cap'n Neurotic said...

Cool, I can add that to my list, along with my aunt's brother knowing Jimmy Buffett, my high school Spanish teacher being Tom Arnold's cousin, and, perhaps my favorite, my boss having a relative who used to be a manager for the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling.

Anonymous said...

Wouldn't your Aunt's brother be your uncle?

Cap'n Neurotic said...

Since she's an aunt by marriage, then not really, but thanks for playing.

CAP'N Disaster said...

Oh, 6 Degrees of Seperation, fun game. is goes. You know me, I know my mom, my mom knows this lady named Annie, Annie went to high school with Anson Williams the guy that played Potsy on Happy Days, which of course stared Ron Howard. How do you like that you know Ron Howard through 5 degrees of seperation. Or you could claim to know Scott Baio too, and add one more degree and you get the annoying red headed guy from Charles in Charge.