Saturday, October 12, 2013

Stack Rundown, 10/12/2013

In the madness of all the random NYCC related posts I have to put up, nothing stops the Stack Rundown train! This week there were some new #1s from DC and Vertigo which I read, like Superman/Wonder Woman and Coffin Hill, as well as all the usuals from my pull.

Superman/Wonder Woman #1

People were pissed off about this series for some reason. Just days ago I saw someone tweeting some long winded blog post to everyone involved on the book about how it was apparently the worst thing since unsliced bread… of course said person, and everyone else who complained about it hadn't actually read anything, but fuck it, why should that be a reason not to complain? How did the issue turn out? It was SHOCKINGLY pretty good… and by "shockingly" I mean, not shockingly at all, because I have nothing to be shocked about, because I don't have a stick up my ass and decide to hate a book before reading it. I don't really have any strong feelings towards the relationship either way, but I'm willing to go with it, and I think Soule offered up a good contrast/comparison between the two, and the lives they lead, Clark being more secretive and Diana being proud of who she is. Then you got Doomsday showing up, and that's a pretty big ass way to start a book, but he was pretty late in the issue. Tony Daniel's art was some of the best I've seen from him, period, so it's got strong writing and art to go for it. Pretty good so far. Also, I find it funny that Soule did more in a single issue with one of Lobdell's plot points (Clark and Cat's website) than Lobdell has done period. Dude just comes up with ideas, introduces them, then does jack shit. Anyone remember Skitter?

Green Lantern Corps #24

So last week I said I was pretty over planets blowing up in Green Lantern books, because it's old news… but Oa being destroyed does really shake things up quite a bit for the Green Lantern universe. Speaking of shaking things up, by now I think it's safe to say that in a few months, Venditti and company have shaken this universe up far quicker than Johns tended to do, pretty crazy when you think about it. It was a good issue, really highlighted John as a leader, and maybe he's a better leader than Hal when you think about it. Was pretty bummed with the new GL recruit who sacrificed themselves, I've thought the recruits introduced in this book are far more interesting than the ones in the main book. Where the GLC are left after this is going to be pretty out there, probably. Oa is gone, Earth is off limits… things are getting pretty fun in this story.

Suicide Squad #24

This was Matt Kindt's first issue… in a way… I mean, if you want to be technical about it, you could probably count Deadshot and Harley Quinn as his first issues, or half issues? So this is his second issue of Suicide Squad! Whatever. I thought it was pretty good. Not super heavy on the Forever Evil stuff, it just uses the effects of the event as the backdrop for what's going on (Belle Reve going nuts), so it's not really necessary for the bigger story at hand. I thought it was a bit confusing though. There are two "Squads" the usual one, being led by Waller, then the one of good guys being led by someone posing as Waller. Okay, that's fine… but the one being led by someone posing as Waller (through voice only) those characters were personally contacted by actual Amanda Waller, post Crime Syndicate invasion… where she told them her old Squad was working against her, but they aren't, and how the hell did Waller get out of Belle Reve in the first place, given the last page reveal? When you start to really thinking about some of the stuff in this issue, it gets really, really confusing.

Constantine #7

I kind of forgot what was going on last issue, but I do seem to remember I was on the edge of dropping this book. I can't say that I was still feeling so sure in dropping this after some time had passed, but then the Forever Evil: Blight thing came up, and I figured I'd stick around a little bit more. I ended up liking this issue quite a bit. Was basically the Cult of the Cold Flame taking over, and Constantine in some weird relationship with Saragon. Not much more than that, really, but it also had Szymon Kudranski on art (who just shows up whenever called, apparently) and he fits the book pretty well for obvious reasons. So yeah, enjoyed the issue just fine, more so than recent entries, and i'll stick around through Forever Evil, at least, probably reevaluate again after that.

The Phantom Stranger #12

So with Trinity War, the Stranger was eliminated from existence… until this issue, when God Dog went "Nah man, it's cool, I'm GOD!" and brought him back. To be honest, the lack of drama in him coming back felt a little cheap, but oh well. I'm still thoroughly enjoying this title and it's getting me excited for DeMatteis' run on Justice League Dark, as well as his and Fawkes' Forever Evil: Blight crossover. Sin Eater comes back this issue, along with some promise of a Stranger vs. Question face off (hah…), and interestingly enough, it seems as if they're positioning that kid the Stranger saved to be… something. Another good issue, but you know what I want to point out? How freaking good Fernando Blanco's art has been so far. Certain artists really match their assignments perfectly, and he fits the Stranger like a glove, while Brad Anderson's colors really make the book pop, so to speak. All around, just a great book now.

Uncanny X-Force #12

I've been pretty down on this book lately, there's no hiding that, I've just been missing the point. Everything that's happening in this arc just seemed so detached in a way, there wasn't any real hook for me to care about the White Owl lady at all… until this issue. Like Brian Wood's first arc of X-Men, Humphries manages to grab my attention with a little bit of Morrison sprinkled in there, in the form of Cassandra Nova, Prof. X's twin sister, who is a bit of an evil person. How is she the White Owl, how'd she get back, what exactly is going on? I don't know, nor do I care. All I know is that this gives the series something to hook me in with, because Nova is a character form a story that I'm familiar with and have liked. That's it! That's all I needed, just a little something to contextualize why I should care about all these seemingly new elements to the story. Then next issue looks to be getting some better art than the title has had recently (I don't mean Alphona, who drew this issue) and that's another thing I wasn't digging about the series, so it looks like I might be enjoying this book quite a bit more moving forward.

X-Men #6

So, last week I got really sick of the "NO WE CAN'T SAY ANYTHING" approach this story was taking, and no one said anything this issue, but they didn't say they couldn't say anything, so there was that. No anything saying aside, people started punching each other this week, which was fun! There were quite a few good moments in the chaos, most notably Betsy's pictured to the right. So hooray for punching people! But again with the "NO SAYING ANYTHING" stuff… Shogo didn't get the memo. Anyways, I have some more beef to pick with Wolverine's healing ability thing. Okay, so the thought is "ARE THEY GOING TO KILL WOLVERINE?" Well, his and Mystique's "son" makes note of wounding, but not killing him, because if Wolverine was killed, he wouldn't exist. But since this kid exists in general, then it's clear that they're not going to kill Wolverine, or maybe they could, and Marvel's countless time traveling story continuity could get super fucked up. But lets say they don't kill him… then what the hell is the point?! Dumb, dumb, dumb. But I digress. Fun issue, and all that. More punching people, please.

Thor: God of Thunder #14

Man, me and this book are in a weird space. I never know what's coming next and I never know if I'm going to care enough. I went into this arc last issue sort of clueless, then found the sort of… Lord of the Rings fantasy story entertaining enough, but then this issue came around and I just sort of feel indifferent towards it now. I don't know… This issue just didn't quite work for me. You get your fellowship together of all these different fantasy races, and I kind of just don't care. I think I may just pass on the rest of this arc, and if it picks up afterwards where #12 teased, I'll probably jump back on.

Deadpool #18

Man, I thought the last issue was a (great) downer, but hoooooooly shit, this issue puts it to shame. Before we get to that part, I want to say that I think I've figured out why I like this arc so much, other than it just taking itself a little more seriously. It's because it feels like Remender's Uncanny X-Force. Sure, it's not as high concept, but it's dark and deeply personal. Like UXF, Wade's taking things way more seriously, and again, like UXF, things never really turn up that well. As dumb as the situation was, DC had a point when they said happiness doesn't work well for stories... the point wasn't fully correct, but well used drama fuels great stories, and this is one. Those final pages where everyone pretty much knows what Wade is going to find, and you just see him go from excited, to hopeful, to desperate and finally to broken and lost, are so fucking depressing, but amazingly well done. This arc has been nothing short of fantastic, and exactly what I needed to stay interested in the series after not feeling all too receptive towards the last arc. This is easily the best Deadpool story I've read.

Chew #37

Love me some Chew! This was a sort of fun goofy issue, with some darkness hiding beneath the jokes. Toni comes back as a sort of… food ghost? I mean, Tony takes a bite of her toe, and she basically leaves a message for him, but it has autonomy? Pretty weird, but what isn't weird about this book (in all the best ways)? About that "darkness" I mentioned, Toni has seen it all, and she gives some hints for many things to come, both good and bad, and given her fate in the plain of the living, things can get VERY dark very quickly in this book, so it's a bit worrying. But aside from spooky premonitions, we get some Tony and Chow action, as Chow needs to get revenge on a photographer whose food photos create sexual pleasure in their viewers… Yeah! More weird food powers! Then we get some Colby and Mason scheming, and so on. Another great issue, with nothing that left me disappointed… well, one thing. SUPER BUMMED that Toni isn't going to be sticking around as a food ghost, but the moment she goes out on was really nice.

Coffin Hill #1

This is the fall/winter of new creator owned #1s, mostly from Image, but Vertigo has been making a resurgence. I've kept myself pretty out of the loop with this book, honestly. I knew it took place in Mass/Boston (which is a win for me), it had some good looking art, and Geoff Johns was raving about it on Twitter. Premise is simple (or so it seems) woman named Eve Coffin is a Boston police officer who due to some unfortunate events, has to go back to her families home… catch is, her family was an old-money Salen family with deep ties to witchcraft, which Eve practiced in her youth, with some SPOOOOOKY results. I thought it was a pretty good issue that really caught my attention and brought me into it's world. I found there to be a few story telling hiccups in terms of the art, like when Eve meets up with her friends, there's a panel of them noticing her coming, followed by a large half panel of two of them kissing, then the next page is from their perspective seeing Eve walking up. Then there were just some really abrupt scene changes that were a bit jarring. That said, this was the first comic for the writer, and I'm sure she'll get better as time goes on. The art from Inaki Miranda in general was very good, oozing with style. Hard to believe he's the same guy who drew some of those "The Death of Oracle" issues from Gail Simone's second Birds of Prey volume, which to be honest… I kind of hated. So, in summary… Very good first issue, great art, interesting premise, and so on. With all of Image's new series coming out, I really suggest not letting this one get buried in all of them, it's equally as cool.

Red Sonja #4

So, I'll admit, I really enjoy this series so far, but half way through this issue I began to think "Okay, I'm totally over Sonja feeling sorry for herself, let's move on with it, shall we?" and luckily it seems like that's what the next issue or so will be, Sonja being a badass and killing stuff. Don't get me wrong, the origin stuff is okay, but I mean, it's expected in a way. Okay, Sonja's always been a badass, cool. Oh look, she was close to the character who is now her enemy. I've only been reading the character for four issues, but I know this already, and I don't know how necessary it was to remind me of it once again. Fun issue, but I thought it took a step back in the fun department, so to speak.


  1. Dude, GS, I understand if you're not down with the "LOTR" fantasy story in Thor: God of Thunder, but for my money, it's the best superhero book being written today (heresy from a Batman fan on a Bat-website, sorry!) and it's probably because I'm a big fantasy nerd fan and never cared about Thor until Jason Aaron introduced all this crazy world-building stuff in his recent run. I do miss the 3 Thors, but I'm willing to give this time. The Dwarves are always good for a laugh...

  2. God how awesome is Chew? Next few issues are going to be nuts, especially #40. Man tears will be shed.