Wednesday, June 30, 2010

What Looks Good?

We're heading into a holiday weekend here, so better load up on entertainment early!

Action Comics #890 -- Lex Luthor, man of Action!

Flash #3 -- The Renegades, the Rogues, and the Flash in the middle!

The Web #10 -- The end of the line for our high tech hero and the mysterious Hangman.

Wonder Woman #600 -- The celebration of logevity begins by jettisoning the old costume?

Invincible Iron Man Annual #1 -- How badly will Matt Fraction screw up the Mandarin?  Find out inside!

Iron Man: Kiss And Kill -- Tony Stark, International Man Of Mystery!

The Phantom/Captain Action #2 -- The team-up which Moonstone demanded concludes!

The Phantom: Generations #13 -- Dangitall we're going to get as many of these Phantom books out as possible!

So, what looks good to YOU?

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Yeah. about that Darkwing Duck Image...

...which I mentioned yesterday.  Helpds if you add the image, right?  Man, I would buy a clean version of this as a poster.  

Monday, June 28, 2010

What I Read This Week

Superman #700 -- Three tales of the Man Of Steel to celebrate the milestone: First, Lois and Clark are reunited after Clark's year on New Krypton.  Second, the original Robin teams up with Big Blue despite Batman's protestations.  And finally, Superman begins his journey across America to reconnect with his adopted home.  Rounding out the book is some preview/hype of the upcoming Superman family of titles.  I liked this issue quite a lot.  All three stories were fun to read for different reasons.  As a coda to the New Krypton story, Robinson's tale was great.  I'm a sucker for Lois and Clark as a couple.  The Dan Jurgens piece was like a classic issue of The Brave And The Bold or DC Comics Presents, and Jurgens art always looks good to me.  And JMS's prologue to "Grounded" has whet my appetite for that story.  I would have liked a reprint or something instead of the hype, but overall I thought this was well worth the money.

ShadowHawk #2 -- Paul Johnstone wanders the streets of New York, out of place and out of time, trying to find ShadowHawk's role in this strange new world he finds himself in.  The cliffhanger from the last issue is handled in a surprising way, we meet a few other costumed adventurers, and learn some details of how he came back to life.  A solid issue, I get the feeling that this issue would have been better served by Image United actually coming out, but that is neither here nor there.  

Iron Man: Legacy #3 -- Tony Stark is enslaved and forced to build weapons once more, but Dr. Doom's agent Dreadknight is in Trasnia to take him out once and for all!  I'll approve of any comic which uses Dreadknight so effectively, but this was a very strong bit of Shellhead comics.  Things are building to another big throwdown, and this book is really the antidote to what Fraction is doing over in the "main" book, which means that Marvel should cancel it any time now.

Darkwing Duck #1 -- The Duck Knight Returns!  It's been a year since the city of St. Canard last saw their defender Darkwing Duck, instead they have put their faith in Duckworks Corp.'s enforcement droids.  But evildoers can't stay in hiding forever!  If you are like me, then you remember Darkwing Duck and his adventures very fondly.  If that is the case then you need to buy this comic!  Just about everything you could ask for in a relaunch of Darkwing Duck.  Also, this image really cracked me up.

Re-read Pile: Superman, ShadowHawk, Iron Man: Legacy, Darkwing Duck (4 for 4!).

The Pick Of The Pile is Iron Man: Legacy, which kit it out of the park, although Superman and Darkwing Duck were superlative as well.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

The 3rd Dimension: "New" Toy Roundup Part 4!

This is the 4th installment of my roundup of "new" toys which I have been working through here on the Bunker.  Today we're looking at someone who should have been in the last post, the Mandarin from Iron Man: Armored Adventures!

IM:AA Mandarin -- Based on the heavily armored version from the cartoon, the Mandarin does not resemble any version of the Mandarin I remember from the comics.  But that's alright, because this is a nice take our favorite Asian conqueror.  The colors are pretty muted, a contrast to his normally bright robes, but the gunmetal color works well thanks to gold and silver highlights.  The twin swords are oversized, which is a disappointment, but for toy accessories they are not bad.  The action feature (a twist and release waist) doesn't interfere with posability too much -- at least, not as much as balancing the figure with the two swords in his hands.  All in all this is a solid little toy, on display with my other 3 3/4" Iron Man badguys.  Although I have to wonder, why does a Chinese supervillian wear Japanese samurai style armor?  Ahhh, nitpicks.

Pretty sweet, all told!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

What Looks Good?

Now that I have officially entered the next decade of my life, I think it is time to pause, reflect, and then, read comics.

Superman #700 -- The Man of Steel starts a new direction with an over-sized milestone.

ShadowHawk #2 -- Paul Johnstone is a man given a second chance on life, but will he survive long enough for that to matter?

Avengers #2 -- The Avengers must travel to... THE FUTURE!

Iron Man Legacy #3 -- Iron Man captured by the rebels using his old technology!  And what does Doctor Doom have at stake in all of this?

The Phantom: Generations #12 -- The illustrated prose continues!  Moonstone is going to get this stuff out by hook or by crook!

So, what looks good to YOU?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Unbridled Capitalism: Heroes & Dragons

This past Saturday, my wife, son and I went down to Columbia to visit the Riverbanks Zoo and then head over to Adama's new place for a housewarming party.  But we started the day right with a trip to Heroes & Dragons, one of the largest comic shops in the state!

Hawkman -- The Hawkman stores were well stocked, and so I partook of them righteously.  From Hawkworld, I picked up #11-13, 24, 27-28, and 31-32, leaving me three issues and an Annual from having the entire run.  For Volume 3, I didn't get any actual issues entitled "Hawkman," but I did pick up the three issues of Guy Gardner: Warrior which crossed over with the title (along with JLA), issues #32-34.  And from the last volume, when the title had changed to Hawkgirl, I added #46, 49, 56, and 61, along with the Secret Files and Origins special.

Other Stuff -- Only three miscellaneous comics this time out, all taken from a fifty-cent bin.  Up first is Weird War Tales #87, since I always dig some Weird War Tales.  Next was one which will make Diabolu Frank proud, Justice League of America #178, featuring the Martian Manhunter and Despero playing chess with the members of the Justice League.  And finally, a more recent comic, Battle For The Cowl: Man-Bat, because Man-Bat rocks.

All in all not a bad haul!  But this trip does further demonstrate that the last few remaining issues of Iron Man I need are going to be tougher to get, and I may have to break down and order them online (which I am loathe to do if I can get them in person instead).  Still, I cannot complain about this load of Hawkman comics!

Monday, June 21, 2010

What I Read This Week

Brightest Day #3 -- The living Deadman is in trouble as he stares down the Anti-Monitor!  Plus Aquaman experiments with his seemingly haywire powers, Martian Manhunter investigates the family slaughter in Pearl River, and Hawkman and Hawkgirl lay siege to Hath-Set's camp.  Things are slowly but surely starting to take shape here, but there are still mysteries aplenty.  This one was worth the wait just for the Hawkstuff, but the scene between Aquaman and Mera was great too.    

Brightest Day #4 -- Hawkman and Hawkgirl enter Hath-Set's portal, and find themselves in a strange alien landscape.  Meanwhile, Ronnie Raymond and Jason Rusch are recovering from their forced seperation from the Firestorm Matrix, Boston Brand runs into Hawk and Dove, and strange things are a-brew in the Bermuda Triangle!  Things start to come unglued a little bit, as it looks like the Blackest Night may not be over just yet.  This series has consistantly been at the top of my comics reading pile and these issues have done nothing to stop that trend.

The Shield #10 -- In Happy Harbor, The Shield has to work with the JSA to stop Black Seven's agent Dragonfly from detonating a WMD which would take out the East Coast.  Meanwhile, in Japan, The Fox faces down the man who killed his father!  The final issue of the series  goes out on a good note for both features, especially the Fox, which comes together and makes a bit more sense than it had previously.  The ending of the Shield story is about what I expected (perhaps Black Seven will work for the Global Concern?), but the way they wrap it up is nice (Though I have to say, there is no song on Rust in Peace with that title... the only Megadeth song which comes close is "Angry Again," which was on the soundtrack to Last Action Hero and then featured on the Hidden Treasures EP.  Anyway.)  Very sad to see this series end, but the numbers weren't there for it, unfortunately.

Tiny Titans #29 -- Supergirl in the Babysitting Crisis of Infinite Toddlers!  I think that pretty much says it all but when you factor in Jericho possessing Zatara in order to put on a magic show you really get the idea.

The Phantom: Ghost Who Walks #10 -- The Phantom is stalked in the mysterious citadel by not only child soldiers but two of his former foes, all in the service of the Ugandan warlord HIM.  A lot of cat-and-mouse action as the stalkers and stalked trade places.  The re-appearance of not one but two baddies from earlier in the series is a nice touch, but we all know where this is heading.  It's too bad that this series is coming to a close all-too-quickly, because this stuff is just really good.

The Phantom Double Shot: KGB Noir #4 -- In the lead story, The Phantom learns about the details of the Hammer's plan to destroy America, but runs into a muscle-bound roadblock!  In the backup, the new Captain Action runs afoul of a beautiful El Salavdoran agent, who may or may not have evidence to have the El Salvadoran secret police, the former KGB, and the CIA all gunning for her!  The art in this series is the main draw for me, as it is a pretty basic story but it looks great in black and white.  The Captain Action backup is pretty good, certainly a lot better than the really poor Buckaroo Bonzai one last time.  Moonstone is in a hurry to get all of their Phantom stuff out but at least it's been pretty good!

The Phantom: Unmasked #1 -- The fifth-richest man in the world hires a "fixer" to bring him proof of life after death, and her investigation leads straight to the Eastern Dark!  An intriguing little mystery story, with the Phantom making only an extended cameo apperance as we focus on the woman hot on his trail and her benefactor who is not quite what he seems.  A very nice little "side story" which is perfectly suited to a two-issue miniseries since the main title is bi-monthly.

Invincible Iron Man #27 -- While Pepper demands that Tony restore her repulsor-powered heart, the Hammer Girls are busy hyping Detroit Steel in Japan.  Fraction breaks out one of the most irritating trends in comics in this issue by having page after page of non-English dialogue (in this case, Japanese) with no translation.  Beyond that, this is pretty much all setup for a possible throwdown next issue with Shellhead, War Machine, and Detroit Steel, as well as an excuse to bring back a nigh-unrecognizable Bambi Arbogast.  LaRocca's art is pretty good on the action, but his Pepper is getting weirder and weirder looking.  Maybe some armored action next issue?

Re-read Pile: Brightest Day (x2), Shield, Phantom: Ghost Who Walks.

The Pick of The Pile is shared between Brightest Day #3 and #4.  DC has my attention and this story is a big reason why!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

The 3rd Dimension: "New" Toy Roundup Part 3!

Today we have Part 3 of my ongoing roundup of "new" toys!  Today we are looking at some badguys from the 3 3/4" Iron Man 2 toyline!

Iron Man 2 Crimson Dynamo -- One of the strongest aspects of the Crimson Dynamo is that there have been a whole mess of variations on the armor over the years, allowing for lots of different interpretations when translating it to toy form.  This Dynamo is based on the most well-known version of the armor, wore primarily by Dmitri Bhukharin in 1980s and recently popping up again in Matt Fraction's Invincible Iron Man.  This figure rocks.  I really dig the detailing of the shoulderpads, wrists and ankles, and the head looks dead on.  The red is not too bright and not too dull, and certainly looks like the utilitarian work of the Soviet Union.  The eye-blasty thing is lame, but that is easily left in a bit bin somewhere.

Iron Man 2 Iron Monger -- Now the Iron Monger suit has only really gone through two iterations, the comic suit and the movie version.  This toy is based on the latter, which works for me as I never bought the larger scale Iron Monger from the previous line.  I really like the huge feet that he has, which supports a lot of nice menacing poses and helps him from tipping over (he's pretty top heavy).  The Monger is also suitably larger than the other toys in the line, keeping the proportions close if not perfect.  Despite its size, no articulation is really sacrificed, which is a plus.  Very nice toy all around and always fun to get more Iron Man villians on the shelf!

I really dig both of these guys and this line as a whole.  Later on I will talk about the various Iron Men I have bought from this series, and, hopefully, I will be able to track down and buy my favorite Iron Man baddie of all time -- Titanium Man!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

What Looks Good?

Sweet Christmas it's hot!  The high yesterday was 95 and today it's going to be right around the same.  Good thing there are some cool comics coming out to help beat the heat.

Brightest Day #4 -- I should get #3 just in time for #4!

The Shield #10 -- *sob sob* The final issue of this tremendous comic!

Tiny Titans #29 -- Once again the only Titans book worth reading.

Charmed #0 -- Catch up with the Halliwell girls in the lead up to the new series.

Darking Duck #1 -- The Duck Knight Returns!

The Phantom Double Shot: KGB Noir #4 -- Moonstone is clearly trying...

The Phantom: Ghost Who Walks #10 -- get all of their Phantom stuff out...

The Phantom: Unmasked #1 -- ...before the Dynamite series starts up!

Monday, June 14, 2010

What I Read This Week

Doom Patrol #11 -- When Rita is captured by Jost's team of freaks, the Patrol hijacks Ambush Bug to find her!  This issue was a mixed bag for me.  The action portions were fun, with Negative Man and Robot Man throwing down with AVM-Man.  But the talking bits were a bit meandering.  Jost's monologue to end the issue was all over the place, and I am sorry but I have never cared for Ambush Bug.  Hopefully this will make more sense next issue.

Human Target #5 -- Chance and his charges in Hong Kong to retrieve the last set of ledgers, but one member of the group will not leave Asia alive!  More solid action from Len Wein, who I hope gets to write some stuff for the TV series or gets to take on another one of these minis, because the fact that this is ending next month depresses me.  Great high espionage fun.

Outsiders #30 -- While Geo-Force deals with anti-New Krypton unrest in Markovia, Black Lightning and his crew find a safe haven in the weirdest of places... with Simon Stagg!  There's some real goofiness with the timeline here as we get the introduction of the Earth-New Krypton War, but by the time the team reaches Simon Stagg's lab, the war is over.  So the tie-in elements seem a little out of place, especially considering when this was released.  I still like the story which DiDio is telling here and I like Stagg's new enforcer (Freight Train, who looks like he stepped out of a WWE ring and acts like someone Mike W. Barr (that magnificent bastard) would have created), but Tan's art is off-puttingly rough in some areas.  

Warlord #15 -- Everything changes.  Well, everything starts to change, anyway.  Grell is in good form here with his pencils, but the story meanders a bit as we set up the big change in Skartaris -- you know, after the big change which made Joshua the new Warlord.  I would have probably enjoyed this issue more if the next issue didn't end the series, so in the back of my mind I know that whatever it is Grell has in mind will be essentially back-burned.  Still, a good issue.

Phantom: Generations #11 -- The Phantom is in colonial South Carolina tracking down a foe when he runs afoul of the Swamp Fox, Francis Marion!  Beyond the awesomeness that is a Phantom story set in my homestate, this is a very well told and exciting piece of illustrated prose.  If this is the last issue of Generations then the series is going out with a bang.  

Re-read Pile: Outisders, Human Target, Phantom: Generations

The Pick Of The Pile is Phantom, which is a real shame because its most likely the last issue!  

Friday, June 11, 2010

The 3rd Dimension: "New" Toy Roundup Part 2!

We're continuing our look at my "new" toys today!

DCU Classics Eclipso -- I picked this one up off of eBay for cheaper with shipping than I could get a DCUC toy in Walmart.  Nevermind the fact that I have never seen an Eclipso in the store!  Based on the original Silver Age Eclipso design, this is a very nice figure.  The colors work very well, including the yellow on the belt and the choice of purple for his trim.  The belt itself is nicely sized, and not just a small deco or something.  I like his elfin ears and toothy grin, giving him a sort of Alex Toth-style look like some of his early adventures.  But my favorite aspect is the Heart of Darkness molded in his left hand, held between his thumb and index finger.  He is articulated enough to hold it up to either eye and not look goofy, and being molded into his hand there is no way to lose this tiny piece!  Definitely a top-notch toy and one of my favorites from this line !

Thursday, June 10, 2010

The 3rd Dimension: "New" Toy Roundup Part 1!

This is the first of several posts I want to make featuring some of the latest toys I have acquired!  I had some time this past weekend to finally open up some of the many toys I have had sitting in packages for a few... months... and check them out.  So let's get to it!

Marvel Legends Falcon -- My brother got me this fig for Christmas.  Considering my enthusiasm for Hawkman, and the fact that I dug the Secret Wars Falcon back in the day, I thought this was a pretty neat gift.  In execution there are some drawbacks.  Firstly, Redwing does not stay pegged in place at all.  His peg is too small for the hole, end of story.  And unfortunately, the way he is molded, he can't stand on Snap's wrist or anything.  I also do not like the way Falcon's shoulders look, with a big gap between his back and arm, like both of his shoulders are seperated.  I think it was designed this way for range of motion -- I have him in a sweet "wings up" pose -- but it can look weird.  Beyond that, though, I like this representation a lot.  The colors look great and wings are a nice take on the comic version.  I am thinking of sneaking him in with my Hawkman toys.

Blackest Night Larfleeze -- My brother was nice enough to order this one for me from Diamond, which is good because I have never seen it in stores!  As far as a representation of Agent Orange, I don't think you could get more accurate than this toy.  The long limbs and hoggish face are very nicely done.  He can sorta-kinda clutch his Orange Lantern to his chest -- it's not perfect but it works (though be careful as the handle on the Lantern is very flimsy).  And having little Glomulus in there is a bopnus, like Mamutt coming with Mumm-Ra, if you catch my meaning.  My main complaint is that he really leans forward on his stand, a common problem amongst my DC Direct toys, though he can stand on a shelf alright.

More to come!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

What Looks Good?

Between the heat, the humidity, getting my new car registered and titled, work, the little guy, and picking up a copy of Iron Man for my PS2 (not Iron Man 2, Iron Man!  It was finally cheap enough for me to buy!), it's been a heck of a week.  Good thing I have some comics to tide me over.

Doom Patrol #11 -- The Brotherhood of Evil?  I think not.

Human Target #5 -- Chance has to keep his charge alive for this mission to have meant anything!

Outsiders #30 -- The fallout of the war between Geo-Force and Black Lightning!

Warlord #15 -- What is the mysterious beast in the cave and will Joshua survive it's wrath?

Invincible Iron Man #27 -- What does Tony have up his sleeve?  And what bout the Hammer ladies?

So, what looks good to YOU?

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

What I Read This Week (Late)

Yes, this is a day late and yes its not even close to the book I listed in last week's What Looks Good, but work and home have both been hectic the last few days.  It's such a cliche to be "burned out" these days so I am not even going to go there.  By the way, Brightest Day #3 was not shipped my LCS this past week, hence the lack of a review.  But going on a good review from the boys at the Alternate Reality Podcast (which, sadly, is ending at episode 300), I decided to pick up this title instead.

Zatanna #1 -- Zatanna leads a full life... when she is not on stage doing her act, she's busy helping the police investigate what looks like a magical mob hit.  I have never read much of Zatanna other than the occassional team book, but as a first issue this was a very strong debut.  Paul Dini really has a good voice for her, and he does a good job of weaving the setup of the series (that Zee is an ambassador to the world of magic) very nicely in the internal monologue.  Also strong is the art by Stephane Roux, a French artist known more for his covers than his sequential art, but who looks terrific here.  He makes Zee strong and sexy without it being pandering, a tough balancing act.  All told this was a very good comic and has me interested enough in checking out a few more issues.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

What Looks Good?

It's June, which means that HeroesCon is this weekend and my birthday is right around the corner!  So let's celebrate by going to the comic shops!  

Brightest Day #3 -- The ongoing saga of those who have been brought back to life continues!

One book?  Wow, I can't remember the last time it was only one new book!  Actually, yes I can, it was that Blackest Night which came out the week of New Years.  So there.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

What I Read This Week

Yeah, these are a day late but new comics are a day late too, so there!

The Web #9 -- Can The Web survive the Global Concerns effort to eliminate him?  And what about the blackmailer?  Then, the Hangman comes face to face with Dead Hand Legendre!  The lead story is a step up over the last couple of issues, which were a little draggy, while this one is peppy.  I especially like the blowoff at the end, which made me smile.  The Hangman piece is pretty good as well, explaining not only how Legendre's power seems to work but the Hangman's as well.  I am disappointed to see this book end next month, but at least...

The Mighty Crusaders Special -- ... we will be getting some Crusaders action afterwards.  The seeds are planted here as the Web crashes a supervillain auction, setting into motion the events which bring the Crusaders together and bring the team to the attention of the Global Concern.  Despite having 4 writers, this plays pretty solidly, with each member of the Red Circle books introduced in their own manner and given a chance to shine.  It's nice to see Inferno's story picked back up (and seeing him and The Shield going all spec-ops on the Big Bad is a fist-pumper) and the setup for the Crusaders story is very intriguing.  Definitely worth the extra couple bucks in every respect!  (Also, I wanted to say that the "Mighty Crusaders" title logo is awesome!)

Superman: War Of the Supermen #4 -- This is it!  The blowoff to several years worth of Superman stories is here, and it's a doozy!  Things play out in about what I figured they would, but there's some surprises along the way.  The ending is a little sappy but I'm becoming something of a sappy romantic in my old age.  I am very much looking forward to sitting down with all four issues and reading them in one sitting, in addition to reading all of New Krypton now that I have obtained the entire story, hahaha.

Futurama Comics #49 -- It's that one where there's a killer ventriloquist dummy!  Well, sort of, anyway.  Goofy fun as usual, this book always brings a smile to my face.

Robocop #4 -- OCP has deployed their newest multi-environment, asymmetrical enforcement droid, the ED-309... and Old Detroit may not survive!  And what is The Old Man's plan for Robocop?  The first arc of the new series comes to an end in appropriate fashion, with the first thread of OCP's plan defeated, but plenty of bad stuff is on the horizon for our hero.  There's some bits with the 309s that are hilarious ("Apparently, it just didn't like the helicopter") and plenty of violence which will satisfy Robofans.  This is a winner.  

Re-Read Pile: Web, Mighty Crusaders, War Of The Supermen.

The Pick Of The Pile is War Of The Supermen, though the Crusaders book is a close second.