Saturday, July 20, 2013

Stack Rundown, 07/20/2013

Ah, back to writing about 13 or so issues a week. Reading less than ten books is for weaklings! What did we have this week...? Trinity War rolled on, Cable and X-Force produced probably my favorite issue yet, and I checked out Gail Simone's Red Sonja, among other things.

Justice League of America #6

The second chapter of Trinity War was way more subdued than the last, because where are you going to go from Superman killing someone's face off? Right!? The two Justice Leagues stop hitting each other and sort of group up to try and figure out what's going on, as not everything is what it seems. Meanwhile, Diana seeks out the help of the Justice League Dark. Very interesting issue, that pretty much teased more multiple earth(3) stuff, and the Question took a bigger active roll. I'm still wondering if they'll do a Trinity of Sin: The Question book… Something like that after Trinity War doesn't seem very timely though. One thing that bugged me was the consistency of inkers on Doug Mahnke's stuff. His stuff is very noticeable when there are different inkers on any given page, and there were a few pages that just didn't look up to par with the rest of the book, in my opinion. Other than that, I thought Mahnke was a great replacement for Finch.

Animal Man #22

This book continues to get back to it's weird, creepy roots, and I'm definitely enjoying it. I don't think it's amazing or anything, and I never really thought so about the book to begin with, but it's nice to see it sort of gain it's footing again after Rotworld. Brother Blood was also introduced into the book, which shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone who pays attention to the solicits. It's cool to see the book tie into the larger DCU, which I don't think it had really done outside of Rotworld. Aside from that, I thought this was a pretty good issue, not much more to say on the subject, really.

Wonder Woman #22

This was a pretty damn strong issue. I think I said this before, but the heyday of the New Gods was well before my time, so I'm generally unfamiliar with all things New Genesis, but the way Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang have been introducing them is perfect for a reader like myself. Easy to follow, and not overloading with all this continuity and extra characters. We also got just enough of a hint about Darkseid, as much as Azz is probably willing to give, but it was nice a big war on New Genesis was acknowledged. There's also a pretty definitive moment for Orion (in the New 52, at least) which was nice to see, but it was immediately followed with the demise of a fan favorite character in Lennox. I kind of find it funny that shortly after someone sort of enters Lennox into the larger DCU continuity (he's Wonder Girl's father) that Azzarello kills him shortly after. I'm not saying he did it out of spite, but it's just sort of funny when you take into consideration his answers to whether or not he'll ever reference whatever else Diana is doing in other books.

Justice League of America's Vibe #6

Where this book stands next to it's JLA counterpart is just sort of weird. In JLA, Vibe is all Vibing it up with his teammates on the JLA in the middle of Trinity War, meanwhile in his title, especially so in this issue, he's fucking public enemy #1 on ARGUS's list. It's weird. You'd think this book and Katana, which were only launched because of JLA, would tie in, because both of them are hovering just above the bottom of the New 52 in terms of sales. It's as if DC saw all the comments on their editorial practices and went "SEE! We're not making these books do shit!" …but it might have helped them a bit, because this just confusing. I mean it's fun… but still a bit confusing. It also seems like we're going to get an answer to Darkseid's daughter pretty soon, which seems pretty big… 

Green Lantern New Guardians #22

Boy, I hope Justin Jordan just leaves Superboy and not this title, because I'm really enjoying both him and Brad Walker on this title. We start to learn a bit more about Relic and what his motivations are, and I keep thinking that I should pay attention to the story being told on the Rags Morales variant covers, but never get around to doing it… even though I could do it RIGHT NOW, and it'll literally take two minutes… but naaah. But anyways, totally surprised this is where all the Relic stuff is happening, rather than Venditti's books, that said, it does feel like he's being built up to a sizable threat to the Corps, which I was concerned about, given he's the first thing to follow Geoff Johns' run. So far, so good.

Revival #12

After the bat-shit "season finale," things sort of cool off for a bit, but keep building in the background. One of the biggest questions I had about this series was the demon/ghost thing that kept popping up. There's a little bit about it earlier around issue 5 or something, but back then, I was still trying to keep track of all the characters that kept getting introduced. Now that introductions have pretty much finished up, things are getting fleshed out a bit more, and this issue did a large amount of that for the ghost. Art Baltazar also provided some art for this issue, drawing one of the characters's self made comics, and it's pretty funny to see such a grim event portrayed as if it was drawn in crayon. Overall, this series has picked up so much for me recently, and I'm finally appreciating it the way it deserves.

Invincible #104

This book sort of ruined evil geniuses for me. So Mark got transported to a desolate dimension, where evil versions of himself have killed, and eaten each other. Meanwhile, his nemesis Angstrom Levy is just waiting for Mark to get back, so he can kill Eve in front of him. Eve, being pregnant, can't use her powers, as they'd end up hurting her unborn baby. So instead of fighting for her life, Eve basically calls Levy out on all his shit, pointing out that instead of seeking revenge for what he did to her ex-boyfried, she moved on with her life and made herself better for it, asking Levy what he could have done if he just got over it… and it works… Then one of Mark's otherworld selves kidnaps a remorseful Levy, and that's bad… but really, whenever I see Lex Luther now, I'm just going to think "Someone needs to get over it."

Deadpool #13

This was another one of those "retro" issues, this time Deadpool was in the 70s, wearing an afro, dressed like a pimp, fighting the White Man with Luke Cage and Iron First. Yeah, it's as dumb as one might expect, but dumb in all the right ways. I really hope they do more of these, and they have to be with Scott Koblish, he nailed the art on both of these so far. I sort of want a gritty 90s issue, but that's pretty much Deadpool in a nutshell, so it could be SUPER meta… and he'd probably end up in a jeans commercial, or something. So yeah, super dumb, but pretty fun!

Cable and X-Force #11

OH MY GOD, I LOVE THIS BOOK. If you've read my thoughts on any past issue of this series, I've praised it for how fun it has been, and man, this issue just went beyond all the previous to be my favorite of the series, so far. The basic description of this issue is "Dom and Boom Boom have a plan… then shit goes real bad" and it's great! This issue had me laughing out loud multiple times, between Boom Boom not believing Dom when she said she was over Colossus, or Boom Boom trying to pretend to be a terrorist, and New Yorkers not giving two shits. The funniest part is how much I just didn't give a damn about the B Plot. Stryfe is involved or something? Or Lady Stryfe… is that a thing? Is future hope this Stryfe? I don't fucking know, give me a Domino and Boom Boom spin off where things go bad every issue!

Uncanny X-Force #8

Let's get this out of the way, I'm not huge on the art this title is producing recently. Alphona is fine, but I just don't really dig Talajic's pages, outside two double page spreads he did featuring Weapon XIII's misdirects. Other than that, this book is crazy, mainly because the romance story is so fucking weird and sort of crazy. It's this weird, bi-sexual, square, but three of the people are one person, and I don't know, it's nuts. The only thing that I'm sort of bummed out on with this current arc is the fact that it's pretty much ditched the rest of the X-Force, it's pretty much a Psylocke book at the moment. I feel things could just be balanced a bit more, instead of just straight up ditching the other four characters. But, whatever… as long as this book keeps being weird, I'll have something to enjoy.

All-New X-Men #14

Quite an action heavy issue, with a bunch of fake outs, starting with the cover, and just continuing on through. Seriously, every other page was "HAHA, no, that was just a projection" "The Avengers? NOPE! FAKE" so on, and so on. But, with all the fake outs, there was one occurrence that wasn't fake, and really hilarious, and that is Iceman throwing a snowball at Thor's head, just to make sure he was real (he was). Past this issue, I'm not sure what this book is going to be doing until Battle of the Atom. The cover to #15 has Beast and Jean about to make out, which is weird, but not necessarily "Man, these original X-men are really fucking up the time stream" weird, or whatever. So yeah, don't know what to expect next month.

Thor: God of Thunder #10

So this arc has what, one issue left? Feels like it, because shit just got real. Gorr just kicks everyone's ass, including his wife's, one of the Thors bites Gorr's eye out, which is pretty badass, then another Thor has two hammers, which is pretty badass, then a bomb goes off, which is pretty badass. Don't know what to expect from the final issue, other than somehow Thor wins, but I know I expect to enjoy it, because this arc has been absolutely great from the very first issue… just needs one more joke about the younger Thors not having beards.

Red Sonja #1

I was thinking about getting this, but then I decided to hold off, because… eh. Then I got a couple hundred dollars extra in my paycheck and said "fuck it." I mean, what's the worst that could happen? I dislike it? Then at least I'd have read a book about a woman in a metal bikini swinging a sword. OH WELL. Turns out it was pretty damn good, this coming from someone who has never read a Red Sonja book in his life. My opinion is that Gail Simone is at her best whenever she's allowed to do whatever the hell she wants. Violence, drunk people, etc. All that nice stuff. Secret Six was a prime example of that… Catman literally bit a dude's face off… Batgirl and the Movement? Far from this. Red Sonja turns out to be right up the alley of at her best Simone, so I may stick around, this one was fun.


  1. It would be cool if the Question became a member of the JLA

  2. Was I the only one sad to see Johns/Lemire drop the concept of The Question only speaking in questions? I thought it was a really cool aspect of his character in "The Phantom Stranger" but the inconsistency in JLA bugged me.

  3. Travel's Foreman art was the heart and sould of Animal Man... I mean, I really like Lemire's writing and were his going with this arc... but the day Foreman left the book, something got broken and as good as Pugh's art is, it was and it is not the same... That's because I can't wait for the animal man annual.