Saturday, January 11, 2014

Stack Rundown, 01/11/2014

And we're back to 10+ books a week to write up! All-New Marvel NOW started, so I checked out a couple of those, Sex Criminals is still fantastic, and DC was doing what DC does.

Earth 2 #19

Now, I thought this was one of DC’s best books since its introduction, but man, has it been on fucking fire recently. Something totally fucking insane happens in every issue, meanwhile, a good number of other DC books, despite potentially being enjoyable, are just sort of treading water. Superman is working for Darkseid! BAM! Lois Lane is Red Tornado! BAM! Batman shoots Joker dead! BAM! There’s a secret kryptonian! BAM! Remember the WTF month? This is the WTF book of DC’s line. You can tell Tom Taylor has brought this crazy enthusiasm to the title, and it’s infectious… I mean, with all the crazy moments that go on seemingly every other page, how the hell could one not take enjoyment out of something like this?

Green Lantern #27

Well, that went poorly, didn’t it? I’ve gone on record saying that I think the “we’ll deplete the emotional reservoir” stuff is sort of lame, but at least everyone can be pissed off at the Green Lantern Corps. now because of it. Just sort of confused how we’re going from “EVERYONE HATES THE CORPS NOW!” to Supergirl is a Red Lantern next month. I guess Green Lantern Corps #27 is supposed to fill that gap or something? I don’t know, but yeah… everyone hates the Corps. now, that’s cool, I guess.

Swamp Thing #27

Okay Charles Soule, we get it, you’re pretty good… Apparently another Letter 44 came out this week too, I got behind on that, can’t do more $3.99 titles at the moment, but whatever… I wonder if there’s ever been a month where he’s had an issue out every Wednesday… there’s got to be one coming up at least… BUT I DIGRESS! Alec is back as the Avatar of the Green, and the whole Green is probably going to be mad at him! Basically, from what I can tell, Alec fucked over the entirety of the Parliament of Trees, thus the Green, in order to get his spot as the avatar back… Who wants to bet that’ll come back and bite him in the leafy ass? I’d expect Lady Weeds to turn into a villain for Alec in the future, because she’s the person he fucks over the most, actively telling her “nah girl, you’re crazy, you stay here” …I may be paraphrasing. Nevertheless, great conclusion and HOT DAMN Jesus Saiz’s art… that is all!

The Phantom Stranger #15

I’ve been pretty lukewarm on the Blight crossover so far, but for whatever reason, I enjoyed this issue quite a bit more than the others in this story. I don’t know, maybe it’s just because I’m a fan of how DeMatteis writes this series, how dense it is, how the Stranger is in a constant struggle between his destiny and what he believes is right, it all just makes for a good read. Plus it ends with the Stranger threatening to kick God’s teeth in… which is sort of funny. Anyways, what this issue also did right was actually tie into the Forever Evil story as a whole, with Ultraman and his plans, so that was a necessary tether, that was appreciated.

Green Arrow #27

So what’s the first thing I think when I see Katana showing up as a cameo in this issue? “Oh look, Jeff Lemire is cleaning up the mess again.” Then I laughed at the editors box telling me to go read Katana’s recent series. Har. Har. No. Anyways, keeping up the pace with how batshit crazy the Arrow show can get, the last page of this issue went pretty batshit once it was revealed that Robert Queen is still alive, and the person who orchestrated Oliver getting stranded on that island… Oh yeah, he tortured Oliver for a while too, eventually leading Oliver to kill someone in cold blood… no big deal, right? I know I keep bringing up the show whenever I talk about this book, but they are different, I have to point that out. They’re both just so fucking crazy at times though, and that’s what really has sold me on both of them. This team has been on the book for a year now, and man… have they done some good.

Action Comics #27

Two issues into Pak and Kuder’s real run on Action Comics, and so far I’m finding this to be just plain fun. Pak isn’t trying to come in and write the biggest most life changing story ever that no one is going to care about in a couple of months… like say Krypton Returns, instead, he’s just coming in and having fun. Superman has a new alien buddy from a secret subterranean world beneath the earth’s surface? Fucking sure, why not? It’s just simple and enjoyable, couldn’t ask for much more, given how I’m not a HUGE Superman fan. Little bummed to see we’re dealing with fill in already though. If it was just the flash back, that’d be fine, but when art switches in the main story, that’s when it bugs me.

Black Widow #1

This is a book that along with titles like Hawkeye really illustrate the difference between DC and Marvel. DC just has your regular super hero books, some of them are good, great even, but one can argue they aren’t exactly that unique. Maybe it’s the characters, maybe it’s the environment, but most DC books kind of feel the same on a very basic level… Yet Marvel is publishing titles that have the feel of creator owned titles, have a feel that only the creators involved would be able to produce this specific title, and Black Widow is one of those that falls into that category. Going into this, I knew the very basics of Black Widow, but came out really in love with how she was presented here, as for a new fan, Nathan Edmonson gave me a very good introduction to her. The real star here is Phil Noto’s art… which holy shit… I mean… holy shit, there’s not much else you can say. Everything from the line work to the colors is just so god damn beautiful, Noto is nothing short of a master. I know Marvel has a habit of switching artists for arcs, but NO… delay the fucking book all you want, Noto needs to be the only guy drawing this. Great debut issue, that’s for sure.

Cable and X-Force #18

No need to explain why this book has gone from one of my favorites to just bumming me out, yet again, but yeah… total bummer. While this title may sadly be ending, it’s at least addressing something that needed to be addressed, and that is Bishop being in the present with Cable and Hope. That news isn’t taken well by either Cable or Hope, as one would expect, then Strife shows up through some hoodoo, because I thought Apocalypse killed him, but who the fuck knows. Stryfe is the wild card in all this, so I can’t really tell where it’s going to go, but despite my lack of enthusiasm to see this title end, I’m at least interested to find out. Also… WHERE THE FUCK IS DOMINO!?

All-New X-Factor #1

I wasn’t going to read this book, but then I did… I don’t know! I wasn’t sure I was going to get it based on not reading any of PAD’s X-Factor run prior, and it’s not like all these All-New Marvel Now books are really good jumping on points (ask Hickman) so the hesitation was there… but then I said “fuck it” and tried anyway, I know Gambit, he was in the cartoon! And Li’l FHIZ liked him… so that’s what I was relying on going into this one. I don’t know what to really say about it though, I mean, I liked it, but it was a lot of set up for this new cooperate super hero team, which is a cool idea, that will no doubt go wrong at some point. I’m not completely sold on picking up yet another book each month, but this definitely did leave a good impression, and I’ll stick around for a bit to see if it hooks me, that’s for sure.

Deadpool #22

I don’t know! This arc is fine so far… I don’t really have much to say about it, other than that. The previous arc really set the bar pretty high, and while fun and sort of goofy, this story so far just doesn’t have the gravitas that the "Good, Bad and the Ugly” did. It’s apparently building to something bigger though, with that wedding in April, so I’d expect things to take a weird turn at some point.

Sex Criminals #4

Just when you think you have everything figured out about this book, it throws you a curveball, and shit gets real. Through a flashback, we learn that Suzie used her time in the quiet to do random stuff like study before tests, eat dinner with her family quietly, etc… but she also used it to get back at a guy who raped her roommate in college. It sort of took me back for a moment, as Cumworld and “The Gang Bangover” movie posters go to something pretty dark and serious. It’s nice to see some variation in the title, despite the dark subject matter, proving the book isn’t as one note as it may come off some times. Lots of questions still linger with one issue left in what will be the first trade, like who are the sex police, what are they going to do with Suzie and Jon, and what’s going to happen in this book after that? Shit could get real weird, that’s for sure.

Invincible Universe #9

So the Uncanny X-Invincible-Force’s first mission is over, and while it didn’t go as planned, it was successful… sort of, that’s usually how these things go. This still remains one of those books where I just sort of turn my brain off when I read it and just have fun. The only problem is how I just have such a hard time keeping up with everything in the Invincible universe, like the villains working in the background here? I’m sure I’ve read issues with them before, but I can’t remember for the life of me who any of them are.

Fatale #19

BOOOO, Fatale is ending. They got five more issues left, until Brubaker and Philips do literally whatever they want at Image for the next five years. Anyways, this was the end of the Seattle arc, and guess what happens?! Shit goes bad! People die, Jo ruins people’s lives, pretty standard for the series, but this was the first time (I believe) that the guy she was attached to lived, and guess what, he’s the crazy dude who broke Nick out of prison! And here we’re at the set up for the finale of the series. It was a good end to the arc, and I can’t say the news that the next arc is the last is all too surprising, given that we’ve gotten closer to catching up to present day with each arc. It is nice to have a book end on its own terms though, so I’m looking forward to how this one goes out.


  1. Favorite book of the week was Black Widow. I mean, as awesome as Green Arrow and Manifest Destiny were, this comic blew them out of the water for me honestly. This book could easily become my favorite series Marvel is putting out now (it's only real competition is Mighty Avengers though) if it keeps up this level of quality.

  2. Supergirl and Red Lantern #27 could also help to set up #28. Also I think the Green Lantern Half of #28 could deal with the Durlans while the Red Lantern half deals with Supergirl