Yes, it's Friday night again and you know what that means! Oh, you don't? Well, it means that I'm wasted from the week and instead of actually reviewing some comics or posting something specific, I'm just going to ramble on about some random stuff until get tired and feel like passing out! With that great explanation out of the way, let's start the inane prattle.
-No Batman: The Brave and the Bold tonight... That kind of sucked. That show has really grown on me. It'll NEVER be as great as Batman: The Animated Series, but it's just quirky enough for me to enjoy it. When I'm watching Brave and the Bold, I can just shut my brain off for that half an hour. That's not to say that the Brave and the Bold is some stupid, mindless kids show, it isn't, it's just good, easy to follow fun. With no Brave and the Bold, I was going to watch Wolverine and the X-Men, but I just couldn't bring myself to put it on... It's bad enough that Wolvie is on every team in the Marvel Universe, but now the X-Men are HIS team??? NO WAY! If the cartoon was just called X-Men, I'd watch it. But, I refuse to watch a show called "WOLVERINE and the X-Men". Hell, why not go all the way and just call it "Wolverine!!!"? Or better yet, "Wolverine and some other guys"? What can I say, seeing Wolvie EVERYWHERE is really starting to sour me on the character. I've always been a Wolvie fan, the guy just exudes cool, but come on, enough is enough Marvel, stop overexposing the little Canuck!
-I came close to finally giving in and buying DC vs. Mortal Kombat today... I managed to stay strong though and not give in. Once that price drops a little bit more though, wild horses couldn't keep me away from buying that game. The prospect of kicking ass as Deathstroke actually causes me to salivate!
-Hey, I haven't mentioned a single comic book yet. Let's rectify that right now. Since one of my professor's no showed a class today, I had two hours of sitting around campus with nothing to do. Luckily, I was prepared, and had packed the last 9 issues of the Runaways as well as Batman: The Killing Joke in my book bag. With nothing else to do, I breezed through every one of those books.
-First I'll start with the Runaways. I used to love this comic back when Brian K. Vaughan first created the series. Brian put in a good 24 issues or so, before Marvel handed the writing duties over to Joss Whedon. I really didn't enjoy Joss' take on the team, and lost almost all interest in this book(that's why I had 9 issues to catch up with!). Joss left the series at issue #30, and the series was restarted at #1(Marvel sure loves to do that...)and the writing chores were handed over to Terry Moore, who's work I'd never read before. So, I read issues #1-6 and kind of liked them... Which wasn't what I wanted. I wanted to hate these comics! My subscription is almost up, and now I'm on the fence as to whether I should renew or not. If Joss was still the writer, my decision would be easy, I'd abandon ship. But, I still need a few more issues before I can make up my mind about Terry's work. Most likely, I'll wind up renewing this book, and cutting something else.
-Next up is Batman: The Killing Joke. For those not in the know, this was the Alan Moore graphic novel in which Barbara Gordon(Batgirl/Oracle)is shot and paralyzed by the Joker. This was one of those books where I pretty much knew what happened in it, but felt I had to actually own it. I'm very possessive about comic books, what can I say? The basic story is that Joker decides he wants to prove that any man can be driven insane if pushed far enough, so he decides to drive good old commissioner Jim Gordon crazy. He shoots Barbara, kidnaps the Commish, and basically tortures him physically and emotionally to prove his point. Gordon never snaps like Joker had expected, and Batman eventually shows up to rescue the Commish and bust Joker. The story was really pretty good, and Joker's dance number, complete with sideshow freaks and lyrics nearly had me laughing out loud. However, I was pretty let down by the ending, which sees Batman try one final time to appeal to Joker, offering to do anything in his power to help him reform(this was before Joker's brutal "murder" of Jason Todd). After listening to Batman's offer of help, Joker tells Bats a joke about two guys in an asylum, and the two of them laugh at the punchline. The comic ends with Batman reaching out and grabbing the hysterical Joker... Huh? But didn't Joker just paralyze one of your closest allies and torture another close friend Bats? Why the hell were they standing around sharing a laugh? That really bothered me. This comic also detailed some of the Joker's past, giving some information I didn't know about, so that was a pleasant surprise. If I was to score this comic, I'd give it a 8 1/2 out of 10. It was good, but the ending really sucked for me.
-While I'm still on a Batman kick, I recently finished reading "Batman: The Dark Knight Returns" tpb. This wasn't as great as I had heard it would be... That's not to say that I didn't enjoy reading it, because I did, but I was hoping for more. As far as I'm concerned, All-Star Batman and Robin was WAY superior to Dark Knight Returns. I really can't explain why Dark Knight Returns didn't click for me, maybe it was the fact that it was so heavily influenced by it's time, Cold War America, maybe it was because of the far-fetched occurrences that happened. Why the hell would anyone book the Joker to appear on the David Letterman show? I mean come on, that's crazy even for a comic book! I guess the thing that bothered me the most was the final battle between Batman and Joker. Joker had killed Jason Todd 10 years earlier(it was this that pushed Batman to retire), escaped custody, killed 200 people at the Letterman show, killed 20 boy scouts at a county fair with poisoned cotton candy, and went around shooting people indiscriminately until Batman arrived at the fair. Bats finally corners Joker and the two fight, with Batman gaining the upper hand after a nasty battle. Batman twists Joker's neck, snapping it, but not enough to kill him, just enough to paralyze him. Joker decides, "F### that, I'm not going to spend the rest of my life in a wheel chair", and manages to turn his head just enough to kill himself... What the f### is that!?!? I'm sorry, I know Batman doesn't kill, but come on! Joker kills your kid sidekick, murders hundreds(thousands?)of people and just killed a bunch of boy scouts! Snap his f###ing neck already! I can't believe Batman stopped just short of killing Joker here. That really hurt my enjoyment of the rest of this trade. It almost made it seem like Joker had won. Sure, he was dead, but he went out when he wanted to. The end battle between Bats and Superman was pretty cool though. Score-wise, I'd give this tpb a 9 out of 10. I wanted this to be more like All-Star Batman, and it just didn't live up to expectations.
-I also mentioned in an earlier post that I had finished up the Starman series written by James Robinson earlier this week. I'd implore anyone who hasn't read those comic books to hunt them down and give them a read. Starman was by far the best comic series I've read in a LONG time(maybe ever). Not only did I love the way the main character, Jack Knight developed, I just couldn't get enough of the Shade. That guy was just incredible! I'd probably rank the Shade right up there amongst my favorite comic book characters of all-time, which speaks volumes about just how awesome the Starman series was. One of the secondary characters has become one of my all-time favorites. Starman was an amazing series, and I hope the rumors I've heard about James revisiting the character down the road are true. Jack Knight in the role of Starman again, even in a flashback story would have me doing backflips through my house!
I think that's about all I can come up with tonight. If you've got any questions or comments, post em, and I'll be more than happy to respond. Until next time, LONG LIVE THE LEGION!