Monday, October 20, 2008

What I Read This Week

I swear, all this travel makes my Monday posts longer and longer!

Batman And The Outsiders #12 -- MUCH better than last issue, let me just say that right off the bat.  With the Black Glove out to destroy everything Batman holds dear, the Outsiders are in their crosshairs.  As I said last week, who will survive and what will be left of them?  Still kinda light but much more readable and much more about the Outsiders than last time out, with a cliffhanger which seems to sending the team into dire straits.  Fun comic.

Final Crisis: Rogues' Revenge #3 -- The stuff hits the fan in rapid succession as the Rogues fueds with Inertia, Zoom, and Libra all come to a head in rapid succession.  Serves as both a side story for Final Crisis, which is cool, as well as a sort of prologue to Flash: Rebirth, which is even cooler.  Let me just add that if any other writer did this to Zoom I'd be filled with geek-fury, but since Johns did I am in awe.  

Flash #245 -- Speaking of the Flash, what is Wally do when his life appears to falling apart at falling apart at the seams?  "Limited" to the speed of sound once again, will the Flash be fast enough to save his family?  We've pretty much confirmed that this is the last storyline for this version of the Flash comic, and it's been pretty good stuff, so I can't complain too loudly.  But I am a sucker for the Flash so I may just be more prone.

Justice Society of America #19 -- Gog's herald, Magog, now exists on New Earth.  Does this mean that the bleak future of the Kingdom Come world is destined to happen?  Will the JSA be shattered by the clash of beliefs within it's ranks?  And what about Power Girl's gambit to get off of Earth-2 and back where she "belongs?"  Johns and Eaglesham create traditional superteam drama seemingly without effort.  This title is easily as good as the best Avengers stuff I have ever read, juggling multiple plotlines and characters with ease.  

Guardians of the Galaxy #6 -- Secret Invasion may not hold much interest at all for me, but stories like this, which take the basic building blocks of the big event to make something palatable and entertaining is what I can get behind.  With a Skrull infestation on Knowhere, and everyone stuck on board, "Who can you trust?" takes on a whole new meaning.  Marvel fans owe it to themselves to check this title out.

Hulk: Monster Size Special -- Now this was worth the $3.99.  Four stories -- a long feature, a backup, a two page comedy strip, and a text story -- involving old Jade Jaws and the monsters of the Marvel universe.  Oddly, this is also sort of a European tour for the Hulk, as he finds himself on The Continent for the majority of the book.  A fun sort of throwback to the days of the Marvel monster magazines, and a highly recommended purchase for monster-crazed kids (and kids at heart).

Iron Man #34 -- Continuing the "War Machine: Weapon of SHIELD" story, Rhodey first deals with Skrulls in orbit, then heads down to a Russian firefight between the invaders and the Winter Guard.  I like how Crimson Dynamo becomes the de-facto leader here, since over in Hulk it was pretty clearly established that Red Guardian was in charge.  Be that as it may, as a preview of the upcoming War Machine ongoing, this is a lot of fun, and pretty much what I expect from such a title, so it gets a thumbs-up.

Halloween: First Death Of Laurie Strode #1 -- Set after the events of Halloween and Halloween II, Laurie Strode tries to return to a normal life in Haddonfield, IL.  But we all know that there's somethings you can never recover from, and the police never found a body of the Boogeyman known as Michael Myers in the fiery tomb where she last saw him.   DDP's Halloween stuff has been a good fit for me, and this issue did nothing to change that.  Not a lot of horror just yet since we are in the set-up phase, but I like the tone and look of the series so far.

The Phantom #25 -- "Checkmate," the finale!  With all of the pieces in place, the Phantom's enemies make their final move to overthrow the Wakandan government and take the first steps to controlling all of Africa.  But are their motives political or is there something else in mind?  And how can the Ghost-Who-Walks stop all of this chaos in time?  Rip-roaring adventure which was worth the delays in production.  Moonstone's modern approach to the Phantom continues to deliver a mix of contemporary comic book realism mixed with classic face-crushing.  I hope they collect this story as a trade.

Secret Six #2 -- High above the streets of Gotham, Catman and Batman rumble, while the other members of the Six break into Alcatraz Prison to collect their assignment.  But the mysterious man in the box has other plans for them, and they are not good.  I felt cold from reading this comic.  I liked the interaction between Batman and Catman, but the main story didn't really do it for me.  For budgetary considerations I am probably going to drop this, which stinks because I liked the previous stories.  Maybe I'll get the trade instead.

Invincible Iron Man #6 -- Has Zeke Stane defeated Tony Stark?  What do you think?  Good blowoff to the first story in what is shortly to be the only Shellhead solo title on the stands, but after six issues I can safely say that this title is designed not for Iron Fans but for newbies.  I say this because every element and turn of this issue was 100% predicted by yours truly, from the cliffhanger resolution to the denoument.  It's not bad, not in the least, but it's not exactly ground-breaking stuff here, either.

The Pick Of The Pile was a tough one to call as there were a lot of good and varied things to choose from.  But, keeping with my tastes and interests, the pick goes to Justice Society of America, which I could just read over and over and not get tired of.

So what did YOU read this week?

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