Monday, May 31, 2010

Just a(not so)Random WOLVERINE Scan...

So me and JT(of http://jasontoddscomicspot.blogspot.com/)were talking about Wolverine yesterday, and I happened to mention that once Wolvie was blown LITERALLY to smithereens. He DEMANDED me to produce evidence of this fact, and viola, instant comic book scan! So here ya go, Wolverine, blasted right down to his shiny metal skeleton, and yet still alive, thus proving once and for all that NOTHING can kill Wolverine!From Wolverine #43(Aug. 2006).

Batgirl #10

Hey there X-Maniacs, which is better then Red Readers just so you know :P, I only have one review for tonight, but it's a GOOD one! Well, the comic, not really the review itself... Since I do feel kind of bad about only posting one review, I'm also going to post a bonus Random Scan! I'm fully expecting things to be back to normal around here going forward, so expect two or three reviews up tomorrow, followed by Comic Gazing for Wednesday, as I slowly get back into the swing of things. Well that's all I have to say I think... On to the review!

Batgirl #10: Writer: Bryan Q Miller. Pencils: Lee Garbett & Pere Perez.
Last Issue: 9 1/2 out of 10.

Review: This issue opens up with the Calculator explaining to his dead son that he was planning on capturing Oracle as revenge for Oracle taking his daughter from him. Meanwhile, Oracle tells Batgirl that since Calculator had managed to get his hands on one of Darkseid's “Obey Darkseid, drink Sprite!” helmets, she was shutting down all of her computers and dropping all communitarian with Batgirl, since she didn't want Calculator going after Batgirl when he came after Oracle. Needless to say, Batgirl finds these measures extreme, but Oracle's mind is made up and she shuts down all communication with Batgirl. The following day, Detective Gage(who's maybe/kind of/sort of dating Barbara Gordon)drops by Babs office at Gotham University, only to find that Babs wasn't there. Being a detective, Gage begins to poke around the office while waiting and discovers some clippings from a recent Batgirl case. Stephanie Brown walks in and tries to flirt with Gage like she does when she's Batgirl, however it doesn't exactly go smoothly, and Gage decides to leave, asking Steph to tell Babs that he stopped by... HA! Next up, Oracle sends Calculator's daughter, Wendy, to a safe-house, and Calculator fires up the satellite that was connected to the Darkseid helmet. Calculator's helmet transforms anybody in Gotham who was either looking at any sort of technology or at an image of Oracle into a brainwashed zombie slave of his. With his plan now fully in motion, Calculator orders all of his computer zombies to hunt down and capture Oracle, and to kill anybody who got in the way. With that, Oracle, who was teaching class at the time is attacked by several students, but she manages to beat them away and escapes the classroom, where she is met by Batgirl, who had seen one of her fellow students transform into a computer zombie, and figured that Babs would need some help. The two women manage to escape the building, only to run into a SWARM of hundreds of computer zombies(including Commissioner Gordon), who immediately try to get at Babs. Babs and Batgirl try valiantly to fight off the overwhelming odds, but they are quickly overrun, which leads Babs to tell Batgirl to save herself. After pinning Babs to the ground, the computer zombies vomit some sort of nanites onto Babs which encases her in a solid mass of... zombie vomit? Okay then... Batgirl sees what was happening to Babs and tries to assist her mentor, but is halted by Manbat, Catwoman and Huntress, all of whom were computer zombies.

What I Thought: What can I say here besides this comic was great? It really was. The creepy stuff with Calculator and the corpse of his son, the relationship between Babs and Steph, the funny dialogue between Steph and Detective Gage, the cliffhanger ending, everything was just SO well done! Nothing I say can do it any justice, so why even try? You should definitely give this series a shot, it's really that good!

Score: 10 out of 10. Hey, check it out, a perfect score! This is only the seventh perfect score of the year from me(out of over one hundred reviews), and the second Batgirl comic to achieve that honor.Who knew Calculator was such an awesome villain?

Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Random Scan of the Week!

Hey ya'll, tis your loyal servant X here, dutifully posting the random scan of the week, even though this past week has been BUSY for me! Aren't I a swell guy? Anyhow, I'm not really sure if I'll have any new reviews up tomorrow night(with the cleaning and unpacking and such), but if I don't have time to post reviews, I'll definitely post a random scan. That's it for me tonight, see ya tomorrow, and Long Live The Legion!!!From Detective Comics #542(Sept. 1984).

Saturday, May 29, 2010

The Best of the Rest!!! May 29th edition.

It's Saturday, which means it it's time for me to give my uninformed, overly sarcastic and at times offensive opinion on comic books and their creators, that's right, it's time for a new installment of The Best of the Rest!!! Are you tired of that introduction yet, 'cause I sure am! But alas, there's nothing that can be done about it, mainly because I'm just not creative enough to come up with anything new. Um, what was I talking about? Oh yeah, this Best of the Rest post thing... I have some pretty mediocre comics to get through tonight, so expect some mediocre psuedo-reviews. Hey, if the writers aren't gonna bring their A-game, why should I?

Outsiders #29: This is one of those comics that has been seemingly sitting on my nightstand forever. Well, not literally forever, but... why am I even explaining this... Anyway, this comic deals with former Outsider Looker(and what kind of a super-hero name is Looker anyway? I guess I'd be Amazing Man-Hunk or something...)being hunted by a vampire who hunts other vampires... Methinks DC is trying to cash in on the vampire-mania that has been running wild. After some hot vampire-on-vampire action, Looker winds up using her womanly wiles to trick and kill the vampire hunter. Since Looker seemed to think that other vampire hunters would come after her(um, why would they? She trounced this one!)she books a plane ticket for Markovia, a country where both Kryptonians AND Vampires are welcome. And they call America a melting pot! Score: 7 out of 10.Whenever the word "bitch" appears twice on a single page, you can be SURE that I'll be posting it!

Justice League of America #45: So Jade landed in Germany thanks to a big green meteorite, which has the Germans none too pleased. The Justice League of America(what, no Justice League of Germany?)arrives to calm the situation down, just as the Justice Society of America's airplane arrives. Just so ya know, the JSA was following their comatose teammate Green Lantern(that would be Alan Scott), who was being drawn to the green meteorite. Before the JSA can touch down, Power Girl attacks and destroys the plane to the shock of the JLAers, and the apathy of me. Power Girl then turns her busty attention to the JLA. Luckily for the JLA, Congorilla(who I guess knew Power Girl would eventually become possessed and turn on EVERYBODY)had contacted Supergirl earlier, and the Girl of Steel arrives to intercept the seemingly insane(but busty)Power Girl. After an extended fight scene, Batman tells Jade to blast Power Girl, since Jade's powers are magic based(really?)and all Kryptonians(even busty ones from alternate dimensions)are vulnerable to magic(or magicks if you prefer). With Power Girl down(but thankfully still busty), the Germans inexplicably decide to launch an attack on the JLA/JSA contingent, and are easily turned aside by Jade... Silly Germans... The two teams then totally ignore the poor inept Germans and decide to discuss Alan Scott's origin... Well that seems unnecessary... Jade then tells the team that the meteorite she arrived in was the Starheart, which I guess is important, since the Starheart gave Alan his GL powers. Alan then wakes up and proclaims that it's the end of the world, and that he feels fine... Well he didn't say the last part, but he should have. Score: 7 out of 10.Okay, no funny comments or anything here, that picture is AWESOME!

New Avengers Finale #1: God help me, this is the comic I've been avoiding... Remember how much I enjoyed BENDIS's work on Siege? No, well go check out my Siege reviews and then come right back...... Done? Good. So you see that I REALLY liked Siege. I guess BENDIS must have sensed that and decided to punish me by putting this piece of garbage out... Basically all you need to know about this one is that the heroes end up capturing the Hood, Madame Masque and Count Nefaria, after an extended(and BORING!!!)battle. Then BENDIS decides to kill 19 pages with a recap of pretty much his entire New Avengers series... Yes, that's right, a NINETEEN page recap!!! I mean is a NINETEEN page recap EVER really necessary!?! So between BENDIS's HORRIBLE dialogue, and what was pretty much a retelling of a series that I didn't like in the first place, this comic was like some sort of terrible comic book torture. When I envision Hell, I see myself strapped to a really uncomfortable chair(maybe one of those little pink children's ones)while demons force me to read this comic for all of eternity!!! Score: 1 out of 10. I'd have gone with a zero if not for the artwork, which was really good. See that, a silver lining!Spider-Man and Luke Cage talking for no reason at all... A SURE sign this was a BENDIS written comic!

Batman #699: So the Riddler was drugged with Joker venom(or Joker gas, although Joker venom sounds a bit classier)last issue, but Bats managed to get him to a hospital in time to administer the antidote. Bats then decides to go after the man responsible, Sebastian Blackspell, but Bats is unable to track down the bad news magician. Oh, and while Bats is chasing leads and doing that whole detective thing Ra's Al Ghul loves so much, the Riddler sneaks out of the hospital(in his hospital gown!)and is able to track down Blackspell(STILL in his gown!)... You know, more then anything else, I'm most impressed that Riddler was able to sneak around Gotham and find Blackspell, all while wearing a hospital gown! I mean really, THAT'S impressive! Bats finds Blackspell's hideout and discovers him kicking Riddler around(and yes, Riddler is STILL in the gown), and steps in to halt the assault. Blackspell falls into a barrel of... magic goo I guess, and Batman accuses Riddler of being responsible for... I don't really know, but something evil. Riddler denies he's turned back to the dark side, and Blackspell turns into a giant pissed-off tree thanks to his exposure to the magic goo... Huh, I didn't see THAT coming... Riddler runs away(bare-foot and STILL in his hospital gown)and Bats winds up tying up Blackspell in some chains. Blackspell becomes human when it starts to rain, and Riddler high-tails it out of Gotham, probably still wearing that hospital gown... What a weird comic this was.... Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.You know, if I was to ever turn into a tree I think I'd do better then simply saying, "I'm... turning into a damn tree!"

Flash #2: Yay, it's Barry Allen time... And just so you know, that's me being BITTERLY sarcastic. On the plus side, my Flash subscription ends at issue #6, and I PROMISE all of you that I WILL NOT pick up another Flash comic so long as Barry Allen is starring in it! But enough venom, let's get this review over with so I can spew some more venom! Barry runs away from the Renegades(who are police officers from the future), and eventually causes the Renegades to return to the future after he messes with their time equipment. Thanks to Barry's negligence, an old apartment building blows up... That Barry Allen is a real jerk. Barry then returns to his police station and finds out that his blood was found on the deceased Mirror Monarch(one of the Renegades), which leads to everybody stupidly looking at him... Yeah, that's right, that's as much of a review for this comic as I'm willing to do! Sue me! I hates me some Barry Allen, plain and simple. If you want to read a Flash comic, do yourself a favor and read some older Mark Waid, Mark Millar, or even that jerk Geoff Johns issues of the Wally West Flash. Boycott Barry Allen!!! Score: 6 out of 10.For as long as YOU'RE alive Barry, I'm definitely NOT okay...

Batman: Streets of Gotham #12: This was yet another really weird read for me... For some bizarre and inexplicable reason, Paul Dini(he's the guy who wrote this comic)decided to make the Carpenter(that woman who's gimmick is that she builds headquarters for villains)the central feature of this book... Yeah, that's right, the Carpenter STARRED in this issue... What, was the Molder unavailable? Jeez... Anywho, she gets hired to build a deathtrap for some loser named the Director(where the HELL is Paul getting these villain names from?!?), who planned on tricking Batman into running through it, so he could film Batman's death... Well, I guess that explains his nom de guerre... 's right, I'm throwing French words out there now! Gawk in awe at my awesomeness!!! Carpenter is nearly finished with her masterpiece when she stumbles upon some of the Director's storyboards which reveal that he intended on killing her to test the traps. Some of the Director's goons then notice that Carpenter saw the storyboards and go to kill her... The most horrifying thing here is the fact that this is a multi-part story! About the Carpenter! And a guy named the Director!! In other Streets of Gotham news, Damian Wayne continues to make nice with that Abuse kid, buying him a motorcycle and a warehouse to keep it. Don't worry, Hell hasn't frozen over or anything, Damian only did this to make sure he'd have the power of Abuse on his side if things ever went sour between him and Batman. Huh, so I didn't like the main story, but I enjoyed the Damian parts... That's a sure sign that I should stop blogging IMMEDIATELY! And possibly check in with a head doctor... Score: 6 out of 10.Damian being NICE!?! What in the blue HELL is going on here!?!?!

Friday, May 28, 2010

Flashback Friday: May 28th.

Get ready for a blast from the past, it's time for Flashback Friday! Or maybe I should start to call it Tim Drake Friday... Although I do have a few non-Tim Drake Robin books to check out(like 2...)this week is very Timmy-centric. Next week once everything settles down(provided I can find everything!)I fully intend on reading the second Wolverine Weapon X trade, as well as a Gen 13 trade that was written by the uber-talented Gail Simone. Why Gen 13? Because my sister has been raving about it, and anybody who knows my sister knows she doesn't rave about ANYTHING, so I figure this Gen 13 book MUST be worth a look. But that's next week, I still have this week to get through. So without further ado, here's this week's back issue bonanza.

Wonder Woman #113(Sept. 1996): This is a very early Wonder Girl appearance, and let me tell you, Cassie was ANNOYING back in the day! Cassie winds up stealing a bunch of Wonder Woman's artifacts and goes hunting the villainous Decay. Decay does a good job of trouncing Cassie, who is eventually saved by Wonder Woman. Score: 6 out of 10.

Flash 80-page Giant #1(Aug. 1998): 7 different stories here, so I'll try to quickly touch on each one. The first was a stinker where Wally West envisioned his life had he not gotten his speed powers(he was a paralyzed bum for some reason...). Next we had a flashback story with Barry Allen and Jay Garrick against the Shade in a story that actually made me slightly embarrassed to call myself a Shade fan... It looked like he was wrapped in black tin foil! Next was a fun little Impulse story where he was dealing with Gorilla Grodd and an army of intelligent rodents. Story 4 was a pretty good Jesse Quick story, while story 5 dealt with Max Mercury and Babe Ruth... Yes, THAT Babe Ruth. We then had a surprisingly good story about future Flash John Fox, and closed the book with a story in which Wally West met up with Mark Millar, who was hoping Wally would give him an idea for a new Flash story. As for a score for this comic, I just averaged the scores I gave all 7 stories. Score: 6 1/2 out of 10.

Robin II #1(Oct. 1991): This was Tim Drake's second mini-series. With Batman out of town, the Joker breaks out of Arkham and kidnaps a computer whiz. Tim winds up running into the Joker while he was kidnapping the computer guy, and Joker freaks out at the sight of Tim, since he thought Robin was dead. In the end, Joker manages to escape with the computer guy. Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Robin II #2(Oct. 1991?): Tim searches Gotham hoping to find Joker, and eventually does. Joker winds up handily beating Tim, and is ready to kill the fledgling Boy Wonder, if not for the interference of the Gotham City police. Once again, Joker escapes, but realizes that Batman must not be in town. Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Robin II #3(Nov. 1991?): Tim continues his hunt for Joker, but is unable to track the madman down. Joker drugs the computer expert he had kidnapped earlier and begins to wreak all kinds of computerized havoc throughout Gotham. Joker promises to cease his computer terrorism if he is given one billion dollars in a truck with Batman as the driver. Score: 6 out of 10.

Robin II #4(Dec. 1991?): Tim and Commissioner Gordon manage to outsmart the Joker by giving him an empty truck with a fake Batman automaton driving it. Joker tries to escape, but this time Tim catches him and ends up besting Joker, finishing the fight by tossing Mistah J into a vat of sewage, where he is fished out and arrested. Score: 7 out of 10.

Batman #480(June 1992): Tim Drake's father is finally released from the hospital and no longer wants his son hanging out with Bruce Wayne. As Robin, Tim manages to catch some goons who were embezzling money from his father's company, and ultimately moves out of Wayne Manor, although this issue ends with Alfred showing Tim some real estate listings, including one right next door to Wayne Manor. Score: 7 out of 10.

Robin III #1(Dec. 1992): This is the final Robin mini-series before DC finally relented and made the Robin comic a regular monthly. Huntress is running around Gotham busting heads, and Tim winds up running afoul the KGBeast, who was destroying a Russian owned store whose owner wouldn't pay the Beast's handlers protection money. Score: 6 1/2 out of 10.

Robin III #2(Jan. 1993): Tim is unable to prevent the KGBeast from killing the store owner from last issue, or from halting the Beast from kidnapping the store owner's teen-aged daughter. While chasing after the Beast, Tim happens to wander into Chinatown, where he is immediately attacked by his old foes, King Snake's Ghost Dragons. The Dragons trounce Tim, but he is saved by Huntress. Tim and Huntress decide to work together, since they were both after the KGBeast and his handlers. Meanwhile, Tim's guidance councilor believes Tim is being abused by Bruce Wayne because of all the bruises he's always coming to school with... If she only knew... Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.

And that's it for this week. See, I told you there'd be a lot of Tim Drake related material here! Tomorrow I should have the always offensive Best of the Rest up, and boy am I going to have fun with THOSE reviews... Why? Simply put, Flash #2... Until then, Long Live The Legion!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Birds of Prey #1

Birds of Prey #1: Writer: Gail Simone. Pencils: Ed Benes.

Review: This issue kicks off in Iceland where Black Canary is trying to rescue the daughter of an ambassador who was being held by some crazy terrorists. BC meets up with the head terrorist, who is holding a gun to the little girl's head. Realizing that this guy appeared to want to kill the girl for the publicity it would garner him, BC gives a sign and Lady Blackhawk and her helicopter arrives on the scene and starts to shoot at the other terrorists in the area, leaving BC alone to deal with the leader. Dinah then unleashes a RIGHTEOUS beatdown on the terrorist, leaving him laying in the snow a bloody mess. BC then goes to mop up the rest of the terrorists, but the head guy attempts to toss the girl off of the glacier they were on, but BC manages to snag the girl and in one motion grab a hold of Lady Blackhawk's helicopter, leaving the terrorists to fall from the glacier. Afterwards, Blackhawk and BC take the girl to the hospital and are ready to head away when Oracle contacts them on their old Birds of Prey frequency, asking them to return to Gotham post-haste, which the women agree to do. Next Oracle gets in touch with Huntress, who was busting some heads in Gotham and asks her to meet up with her as well. The scene then shifts to Hawk and Dove who are also working out of Gotham and are beating up some criminals, although Hawk is a bit too exuberant in his beatings for Dove's approval. Afterwards Hawk and Dove head to a bar where Hawk drinks and Dove watches him unhappily. Lady Blackhawk arrives in the bar and gives Dove one of Oracle's cards, telling her that Oracle would like to work with her and Hawk. From there we head to the Birds reunion with Huntress, BC and Oracle meeting on a Gotham City rooftop to discuss why Oracle had contacted them. Oracle reveals that somebody had sent her files that had an insane amount of knowledge on several heroes, addresses, secret identities, social security numbers, who they've slept with, EVERYTHING! This mystery villain has demanded a meeting with the Birds, or else they promised to release all of the information they had gathered on-line. While the woman decide what to do, a Birds of Prey symbol(ala the bat-symbol)is shone in the air, telling the women the villain was ready to meet with them. BC and Huntress head to the location and find the Penguin and a woman shrouded in shadows standing there. The Penguin seems afraid of the woman, so BC and Huntress tell the Penguin to get away from her, which he does. The mystery woman then launches an attack on the two Birds and SOUNDLY defeats them both, while also managing to stab the Penguin in the neck with one of Huntress's arrows, which automatically makes this comic EVEN better for me! This issue ends with the woman, who is dressed in a white Black Canary outfit, telling BC to come and save the Penguin before he bleeds out, if she can.

What I Thought: Ah how I missed my Birds of Prey!!! As always, Gail had an amazing grasp of these characters. She is probably the ONLY writer who should EVER write this series. Seriously. As for the story, I can't say I'm overly pleased to see Hawk and Dove joining the team(I mean come on, they scream their names to change into their costumes!!!), but I trust Gail's judgment, so I'm willing to see what comes of them joining up. White Canary is an interesting case. In this issue she refers to Dinah as “siu jerk jai” or little bird. The only two people I can ever recall calling Dinah by that name are her dead sensei and Shiva... That could mean nothing, or it could be a huge hint... I guess we'll find out next issue.

Score: 9 1/2 out of 10.How wonderful it is to see Dinah back to her awesome ass-kicking ways again!!

Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne #1(of 6)

Oooookay... Tonight's going to be an interesting pair of reviews... One comic I thoroughly enjoyed, while the other one is probably in the running for worst comic of the year thus far. Well there's no sense delaying the inevitable any further, let's get this over with...

Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne #1: Writer: Grant Morrison... Pencils: Chris Sprouse.

Review: This issue starts off with a bunch of cavemen checking out a crashed spacecraft. Being a spacecraft, the cavemen believe it to be holy, so they mill about and babble in a manner that I won't even try to explain. Eventually, Bruce Wayne emerges from a nearby cave and talks gibberish to the cavemen... Yes, gibberish. Crazy Bruce wanders over to the spacecraft and opens it up, removing a bat-symbol(which promptly disintegrates), and Superman's cape(???)... The cavemen bury the dead old caveman that Bruce was apparently living in the cave with, and then Bruce and the cavemen decide to sit down to have a meal... Is this really happening? Vandal Savage and his band of EVIL cavemen attack Bruce and his cave-buddies and Bruce proceeds to save the youngest of the cavemen. After watching from the shadows as the good cavemen were being routed, Bruce springs into action and eventually gets beat down by Savage's EVIL cavemen. Savage figures that Bruce is a god, and as such he wants to eat him, so he has his men tie Bruce down for the night, because I guess he wasn't hungry at the time. During the night, a giant bat visits Bruce, because... well I really don't know why, but it does. The young caveman that Bruce had saved earlier arrives on the scene, dressed kind of like a Robin(if Robin was a caveman)and cuts Bruce free. The next day, Savage wakes up ready to eat Bruce's brain or heart, he's not very specific on which, and is infuriated to discover that Bruce had escaped. Bruce arrives on the scene, wearing the remains of a giant bat, and uses the contents of his utility belt to confound Savage's men, until he ultimately defeats Savage in battle. Savage's EVIL cavemen are none too pleased by this turn of events, and as such begin to launch a barrage of arrows at Bruce and caveboy Robin. The two leap from a high cliff and land in the water below, and when caveboy Robin arrives from the murky waters, he discovers that Bruce was gone. A little later on, Savage's group pf EVIL cavemen toss Savage out of their tribe, just as a time bubble arrives. Superman, Green Lantern and Booster Gold emerge from the bubble and Supes realizes that they were too late and that Bruce had once again moved through the timestream. Then he ominously states that if Bruce returns to the present, everyone will die!!! For some reason... As for Bruce, he emerges from a pool of water now further along in the future(and not speaking in gibberish anymore for some reason)where he discovers a huge sea monster about to attack a woman... Oh, and for some reason, Bruce has a big sword now... And yes, that ends this one.

What I Thought: What can I really say here? This was horrible. I'd have easily scored this comic a 0 out of 10, but at least the artwork was okay. Cavemen, Bruce speaking gibberish, giant bats, what the bloody hell was Grant thinking here?!? This was nearly epically bad. There's a part of me that's actually looking forward to the second issue just to see how much worse this can get. If this first issue was any indication, this mini-series has the chance to be one of the worst things I have EVER read, so I guess that's something to look forward to, right?

Score: 1 1/2 out of 10.What can I POSSIBLY add to this scene?!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Comic Gazing for: 5/26/10.

Hey, it's time for the final Comic Gazing post for the month of May! There's really no significance to that statement actually... Regardless, I just placed my order for this week and last, so by early next week I should have a bunch of good(and some bad)comics to dig into. And um yeah, that's about as much of an introduction as I'm willing to do tonight! On to the comics!!!

Batman: Return of Bruce Wayne #2: After the horrible first issue, I'm mildly intrigued to see where Grant Morrison goes from there... Interest Level: 3 out of 10.

Gotham City Sirens #12: Interest Level: 6 1/2 out of 10.

Green Lantern Corp #48: Interest Level: 7 out of 10.

Green Lantern #54: I'm SO over Geoff Johns and his writing right now it's not even funny... Interest Level: 6 1/2 out of 10.

Justice League: Generation Lost #2: The first issue was damn good, so here's hoping this issue picks right up from there. Interest Level: 9 out of 10.

Justice League: The Rise of Arsenal #3: I'll be interested to see how Roy survives his run-in with a very angry Cheshire. Interest Level: 8 out of 10.

Superman: War of the Supermen #4: Interest Level: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Teen Titans #83: You know, I've been collecting this series, but not reading it... I REALLY have to find my Teen Titans comics and try to get up to date. Interest Level: 6 out of 10.

Wonder Woman #44: Interest Level: 6 1/2 out of 10.

Dark Wolverine #86: Daken vs Wolverine vs Romulus!!! THIS is the comic of the week for me! Interest Level: 10 out of 10.

Secret Avengers #1: It's an all-new Avengers team and it's written by Ed Brubaker... I can hardly contain my excitement at the prospect of reading this one! Interest Level: 10 out of 10.

Thanos: Imperative Ignition #1: Interest Level: 8 out of 10.

Thor #610: Thor vs Ragnarok??? Hell yeah! Interest Level: 9 out of 10.

Thunderbolts #144: I'm not the biggest Luke Cage fan around, but I'm willing to give this comic a shot. Interest Level: 6 1/2 out of 10.

Wolverine Origins #48: This comic is crossing over with Dark Wolverine, so yeah, to say that I'm interested in it is an understatement! Interest Level: 9 1/2 out of 10.

Wolverine Weapon X #13: Interest Level: 7 out of 10.

A very solid 16 books this week, with 9 DC comics and 7 Marvels. So by looking at those numbers this seems to be a pretty clear win for DC, right? Yes and no... Marvel has three comics coming out this week that I absolutely CAN NOT wait to get my hands on, while DC has... well, only one comic that I'm really excited to read. I can definitely see the pendulum slowly beginning to swing back towards Marvel for me. Geoff Johns, and to a lesser extent Grant Morrison, has savaged DC to such a degree that I'm honestly beginning to lose most of my interest in that fair company, and that's really too bad. But, DC's loss is Marvel's gain. I'd say by August unless things drastically change(which I'm sure they won't)the majority of my money will be heading to Marvel once again...

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Adventure Comics #11

Just this one review on tap for tonight. I was going to review Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne #1 tonight, but that comic was SO bad that I'm actually going to attempt to read it AGAIN later on tonight to see if I can possibly glean anything positive from it... But let's not go there just yet(there'll be plenty of Return of Bruce Wayne bashing on Thursday I figure), tonight I'll be looking at Adventure Comics #11, which contains two stories, one being an epilogue to Brainiac's attack on New Krypton, while the other is the conclusion to the long-running Mon-El storyline that had been taking place in the Superman title for the past year or so. Why am I talking about that here in the intro though? Let's get to the review!

Adventure Comics #11: Writers: James Robinson and Sterling Gates. Pencils: Travis Moore and Bernard Chang.
Last Issue: 9 out of 10.

Review: Our first story is the Brainiac one, so that's where I'll start. After being defeated by General Zod on New Krypton, Brainiac was abducted by Brainiac 5(of the OLD Legion of Super-Heroes), just prior to Zod blowing Brainiac's head off. Instead of allowing Brainiac to be killed by Zod, Brainiac 5 intends to turn Brainiac over to the authorities on Brainiac's homeworld of Colu. Before Brainiac 5 can get to Colu though, Brainiac manages to break free from his shackles and attacks Brainiac 5. The two Brainiacs fight, and Brainiac manages to get the upper-hand on his descendant, and is about to tear the secrets of time-travel from Brainiac 5's mind when Vril Dox(or Brainiac 2 since we seem to be on a Brainiac kick right now)arrives on the scene and takes Brainiac down with a well placed taser blast. It seems that Brainiac 5 had contacted Dox earlier and was intending to hand the elder Brainiac over to Dox all along so he wouldn't have to head to Colu and explain to the authorities who he was. With Brainiac now destined to be returned to Colu, Brainiac 5 returns to the future where he receives a hero's welcome, ending the first story. Next up is the Mon-El story, which also spins out of the Last Stand storyline. Mon has been taking all of the bottled cities he rescued from Brainiac's ship(with some help from the OLD Legion Espionage Squad)and placing them on planets where they would be able to grow(literally!)and thrive. Mon eventually completes his task, but returns to Earth greatly diminished thanks to the return of his fatal lead sickness. Mon says his good-byes to Jimmy Olsen, finds and defeats the talking monkey that had experimented on him, and in doing so rescues a young Daxamite female who the monkey was also experimenting on. Mon then takes the woman to the Fortress of Solitude where Superboy and a spacecraft was waiting. Mon escorts the woman onto the spacecraft so she can get off of Earth before she also begins to suffer from the deadly lead poisoning that Mon was suffering from. Once the woman is safely headed off of Earth, Mon begins to collapse. Chameleon Boy(from the aforementioned Legion Espionage Squad)teleports over to Superboy and the stricken Mon and offers him a chance to live by returning to the newly fixed Phantom Zone. Mon decides he'd rather die then spend forever drifting as a phantom, but Chameleon Boy guilts Mon, telling him that he still has more to do one day down the road. Mon agrees to go back to the Phantom Zone and drifts aimlessly for untold years, until Superman and the Legion pull him out of the Phantom Zone in the future, where the apparent cycle of Mon-El's life begins all over again, ending this issue.

What I Thought: I actually liked both stories. The first story had Vril Dox in it, and as far as I'm concerned, a Dox appearance can make ANY comic better! The second story felt somewhat rushed, but was a satisfying end to Mon-El's story. I will say that I'm sad that Mon's story(in the present day DCU at least)has ended, I always felt he had some great potential. I did like the way James Robinson pretty much completed the apparent circle that is Mon-El's life, with him returning to the Phantom Zone where he would eventually be rescued thanks to a young, time traveling Clark Kent in the future, so that his life story could begin anew. As I said in the intro, I did find it strange that Mon's story was completed here in Adventure Comics as opposed to Superman(where Mon has been starring for over a year now), but I've given up trying to figure out the way the DC brain-trust thinks... I'll just shrug my shoulders and say, whatever, and move on to the next comic.

Score: 8 out of 10.If Vril Dox appeared in every DC comic, I'd have nothing to complain about!

Monday, May 24, 2010

A Random Scan...

So I was planning to post a review of Adventure Comics #11, but I'm just not up for it tonight... So instead, I figured I'd go the lazy route and simply post a random scan. Well, a not so random scan actually... See, I'm going to do a Young Justice week over at the pic blog, so I figured I'd get a bit of a head start here and post something from the predecessor to Young Justice, the JLA: World Without Grown-Ups mini-series. Hopefully I'll have at least ONE new review up for tomorrow night, but until then, here's that scan.Hmm, I could have sworn that I had posted this scan somewhere before, but I guess not... From JLA: World Without Grown-Ups #1(Aug. 1998).

Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Random Scan of the Week!

From Flash: 80-Page Giant #1(Aug. 1998).

The Best of the Rest!!! May 22nd edition.

It's Saturday, which means it it's time for me to give my uninformed, overly sarcastic and at times offensive opinion on comic books and their creators, that's right, it's time for a new installment of The Best of the Rest(copyright pending)!!! And yes, I am going to use that opening line EVERY single week, so get used to it! Five books to get through tonight, and much to my chagrin, I enjoyed them all! I know, what's a Best of the Rest post without a whole bunch of complaints!?! Oh well, hopefully I'll read a bunch of horrid comics for the upcoming week and next week's post will be full of venom and fun! Enough babbling X, get on with the post already! Umm, okay I will...

Brightest Day: Titans: Villains for Hire Special #1... Wow, that's a long title!: Before we get into this comic I need you all to do me a favor. Forget the Faces of Evil: Deathstroke comic, as well as the Teen Titans Blackest Night x-over stuff, because it seems as if Deathstroke sure forgot about those comics! Anywho, Deathstroke hires the Tattooed Man(who REALLY needs a better codename!), Cheshire, Osiris and some girl named Cinder to be his... well, villains for hire(as is obvious from the title here!). The 5 villains/pseudo-villains get a contract to kill the Atom(Ryan Choi, not Geoff John's beloved Ray Palmer), and after some difficulty, they do just that... That slight sobbing sound is probably Kello, just so you know. So the villains kill the Atom and Deathstroke refuses to tell his team why they are called the Titans, or what his masterplan is... Well okay then.... Score: 8 out of 10.You see, Osiris broke my number one rule, NEVER trust a one-eyed man dressed fully in spandex.

REBELS #16: This comic kicks off with Starfire attacking some of the REBELS(or are they LEGION again?)because of the good old, “super-heroes meet and have general misunderstanding” law. After Adam Strange explains that the fight was a simple misunderstanding, Starfire goes to meet Vril Dox(AKA my hero). Dox tells Starfire that since her homeworld Tamarian(Tamaria? Tamariananar?)had been blown up good, he was having the planet Rann teleported into its place. There's a very good reason for all of this, but you'll have to trust me on that, 'cause I don't feel like getting into it! In a few weeks time, Dox has managed to transform Rann from a barren wasteland to a thriving planet again. And why did he do that? Because he's awesome! Well, that plus he plans on restarting his LEGION police force, and with the people of Rann now beholden to him, he figures he can base LEGION from Rann. Starfire's insane sister Blackfire learns that another planet had appeared in Tamarian's orbit, so she decides to attack it, because she's insane and all. Oh, and somewhere along the way Starfire joins with the REBELS/LEGION team and starts to flirt with Captain Comet. Eventually Blackfire(who is insane)and her evil Tamarians attack Rann. What happens next? I'll tell you next month. Score: 8 1/2 out of 10.If I was a songwriter I'd write a song and dedicate it to Vril Dox... I really would too!

Booster Gold #32: Booster Gold was sent into the distant future by Rip Hunter(that has to be THE best porn star name EVER! Not that I know anything about porn star names... *ahem* moving on...)to retrieve the helmet of Dr. Fate so that it wouldn't fall into the hands of Darkseid. After some VERY hit or miss comedy(much like this post!), Booster winds up bringing the helmet, as well as a small girl back in time with him. It seems the small girl is there to make potty jokes, because in the DCU, nothing is funnier then toilet humor. This issue ends with Booster learning from Rip Hunter that Max Lord was alive again, which Booster is none to pleased to find out. You know, because he killed Booster's good buddy Ted Kord. Back during Infinite Crisis. In the Countdown to Infinite Crisis comic. With a gun. In a castle. There, I spelled it out for you! Score: 7 out of 10.My GOD are there a lot of words on this page!!!

Gotham City Sirens #11: This comic follows two different storylines, Catwoman and Harley Quinn hunting for missing dogs and Poison Ivy starting her first day at her new STAR Labs job. First off, you'd think somebody named CATwoman would be glad that a bunch of dogs had gone missing, but apparently not... Go figure. CW and HQ(you can always tell I'm getting close to the end of a post by how many abbreviations/initials I start to use)wind up solving the case of the missing dogs when they discover that HQ's hyenas were eating all of the neighborhood pets. Oh the humanity! Or should I say oh the hilarity? Umm, I'll go with hilarity. Oh the hilarity! In the other story, Poison Ivy arrives on the job(but obviously NOT as Poison Ivy, because that would just be dumb), and fires a few people because she read(from Lex Luthor no less)that's the way to garner respect in the corporate world. Sure, if international super-criminal Lex Luthor says that's the way to go, them by gum, that's the way to go! Eventually one of the women Ivy fired returns and locks Ivy in some sort of evil plant oven thing because she was angry about being fired. I bet THAT never happened to Lex. And well, that's the end of this issue. Will Ivy be cooked? Will Catwoman rename herself Dogwoman?? Will I end this pseudo-review with a modicum of self-respect??? The answer to all of those questions is a resounding no! Score: 8 1/2 out of 10.See, just like I said, Ivy was trapped in an evil plant oven thing.

Dark Avengers #16: I'm gonna tell you right now, NOTHING in this comic matters except for the very last page. But don't you worry, I'll get to that soon enough... This is the final issue of Dark Avengers, because Dark Reign is over and Marvel must finally be over it's love of the word “dark”. Don't you worry though, I'm not over my love of the word “supercalifragilisticexpialidocious”! This issue follows Siege #4, and shows all of the Dark Avengers(except for Daken, because he's too smart)being arrested by the heroes. The villains get locked away, Steve Rogers decides to hire Victoria Hand to be his right... umm, hand woman, and Norman Osborn gets to act crazy one more time, this time blaming all of his failings on his Green Goblin persona. So that's how Dark Avengers ended. On the very last page, series writer BENDIS writes his farewell address. And he signs it, “BENDIS!”!!! That's how I've been typing his name for over a year now! This can mean one of three things... Either BENDIS is so crazy that he actually DOES sign his name in block letters with an exclamation point(as I always suspected...), that he's is a frequent reader of my blog, or that I have been BENDIS all along, and have been bashing most of my... I mean BENDIS'S comics simply to see who would agree with me... him, and then have those cretins... I mean readers destroyed. All hail the Dread Lord BENDIS!!! Score: 8 out of 10.So he really DOES sign his name "BENDIS!"... I don't know whether to laugh or cry...

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Flashback Friday: May 21st

Get ready for a blast from the past, it's time for Flashback Friday! JT won the contest to give me an intro for this post, so thank you JT! The check is in the mail... Really, it is... Anyway, it's already Saturday, and I haven't even started this post yet... Yes everybody, procrastination, thy name is X! With that said, I'm going to cut the intro WAY short so I can try to get this post up before I fall asleep.

Robin #4(April 1991): Tim Drake, who is still training for the Robin spot, gets some training help from Lady Shiva(and really, who better to learn fighting techniques from?)and King Snake gets his deadly Nazi plague. As a loyal(but insane)citizen of the United Kingdom, Snake wants to unleash the plague in Hong Kong before it gets handed over to the Chinese. By the end of this issue, Tim, Shiva and Tim's friend the ex-DEA agent have tracked Snake down and are preparing to invade his penthouse stronghold. Score: 7 out of 10.

Robin #5(May 1991): Tim, Shiva and the DEA guy break into Snake's penthouse building and try to prevent him from unleashing his plague. Snake winds up killing the DEA agent, but Tim surprisingly manages to defeat King Snake in one-on-one combat. Snake ends up falling out the window, presumably to his death. With Snake out of the picture, Tim destroys the plague and burns all of Snake's dirty money, because as we all know, burning stuff is cool!!! Score: 7 out of 10.

Batman #465(July 1991): The real notable thing about this comic is this issue was the first time Tim(as Robin)and Batman went out on patrol together. Bats was still somewhat overly cautious with Tim due to Jason Todd's death still being fresh on his mind, but all in all, things turn out well for Bats and his new Boy Wonder. Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Batman #466(Aug. 1991): Much like the issue before this one, this issue dealt with an early Batman and Tim Drake Robin story. The two try to capture some mobsters, they run into gangs, and Batman is over-protective of Tim. Score: 7 out of 10.

Batman #467(Aug 1991): King Snake's gang(the Ghost Dragons)from the Robin mini-series turn up in Gotham City and wind up scoring lots of illegal guns. After watching how they were operating, Tim believes that King Snake was somehow still alive, while Bats refuses to believe Tim's words, figuring somebody else was calling the shots for the Ghost Dragons. Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Batman #468(Sept. 1991): So it turns out Tim was right and King Snake did indeed survive his fall in Hong Kong, and is now obsessed with getting revenge on the Boy Wonder. With Snake and his gang obsessed with getting their hands on Tim, Batman decides to hold him back, refusing to allow Tim to help on the Ghost Dragon case, which kept putting Bats in constant jeopardy. Score: 6 1/2 out of 10.

Batman #469(Sept. 1991): Batman manages to track down King Snake, and the two battle one-on-one. Bats manages to defeat King Snake, but nearly gets his head blown off by one of Snake's men, if not for the timely arrival of Tim. Instead of thanking Tim for making the save, Bats yells at him for disobeying his orders and getting involved in the case... Ah Batman.... Score: 7 out of 10.

Batman #470(Oct. 1991): Batman and Robin go after Maxi Zeus, who was given some sort of godly artifact by the Cheetah to hold on to. Tim is still growing into the Robin role here, which leads to some miscommunication between him and Bats, but in the end the Dynamic Duo manage to defeat the inept Zeus and his gang and reclaim the artifact. Score: 7 out of 10.

Wonder Woman #109(May 1996): Wonder Woman winds up having to face off against the Flash, who is acting uncharacteristically insane. Flash runs through WW's city(Gateway City)destroying things, and acting aloof, which leads to a WW/Flash showdown. WW eventually manages to snare the Flash with her lasso and unmasks him, only to discover that it is a young man who she is unfamiliar with. Before the “Flash” can be taken to prison, he explodes into a bunch of white dust... Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Wonder Woman #110(June 1996): This time, a young and aloof Sinestro attacks Gateway City, so WW has to attempt to take him down. WW knows for a fact that Sinestro is dead, so she isn't quite sure what to make of this “Sinestro”. Much like Flash from last issue, “Sinestro” never says a word and just seems bent on mindless destruction. WW(along with some help from Champion)finally manages to capture “Sinestro”, but much like last issue, “Sinestro” explodes in white power when captured. We learn that some computer program was creating these menaces, not realizing the danger. Oh, and this issue ends with the computer creating Doomsday! Score: 8 out of 10.

Wonder Woman #111(July 1996): Fake Doomsday takes to the streets of Gateway City and stomps a mudhole into WW. We also learn that some mad scientist had put the brainwaves of his dead son into the computers at his lab, and that the kid's brainwaves were creating the fake heroes and villains from the past few issues thinking he was simply playing a video game. Also in this issue we have Cassie Sandsmark dressing up as Wonder Girl for the first time. Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Wonder Woman #112(Aug. 1996): Once again Champion comes to WW's aid, but not even the combined powers of WW and Champion are enough to stop Doomsday. The mad scientist, realizing that his experiment had caused all of the destruction in Gateway City, decides to overload his computer systems, which causes Doomsday to mutate to the point where his bone growths grow out of control. WW takes this opportunity to smash “Doomsday” and destroy it. The cops arrive and arrest the scientist, which ends his threat. Score: 6 out of 10.

That's all of the old reviews I have to post this week. I was pretty Tim Drake heavy this week it seems... I'll try to mix things up a little bit for next week's post. Thanks for reading, and remember, tomorrow night is a new installment of the Best of the Rest. So until next time, Long Live Barkspawn!!!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Justice League: Generation Lost #1

Justice League: Generation Lost #1: Writers: Keith Giffen & Judd Winick. Pencils: Aaron Lopresti.

Review: With Maxwell Lord alive and on the loose again, Superman and the Justice League call a press conference to warn everybody in the world to be on the lookout for Max, telling the gaggle of reporters present that Max's capture would be their number one priority. While the JLA did have some leads on Max's whereabouts, they always seemed to be one step behind him. These near misses have begun to try Booster Gold's patience, as he, possibly more then anybody else, wanted to see Max brought to justice. As such, Booster began to disregard JLA orders and began to play the lone wolf in an attempt to locate and stop Max before he killed anybody else. The other members of Max's old JLI team(Fire, Ice and Captain Atom)decide to join forces in order to find Max, since they all felt that the time they spent with him could lead to some insight into where Max may have been hiding. The trio actually manage to uncover one of Max's old bases, but it is rigged with a massive bomb, and only Captain Atom's control over energy saves the trio from certain death. While that was going on, Booster figures out that since Max had always been insanely arrogant, he'd probably be hiding in plain sight, so Booster heads to the JLI embassy in NYC, and sure enough, he runs into Max, who was expecting Booster. Max shuts down Booster's force field(with one of Ted Kord's old weapons no less)and then proceeds to beat the hell out of Booster with a concrete covered pipe. Before Booster loses consciousness however, he manages to hit his JLI distress button, which brings Fire, Ice and Captain Atom to his side. The trio finds Booster lying in a pool of blood, but Booster tries to tell them that it wasn't his blood, it was Max's. Before the trio of heroes could figure out what Booster was trying to say, Max pushes his powers to their absolute limit, which causes him to lose a massive quantity of blood, while sending out a telepathic shockwave across the entire planet. The shockwave knocks out Booster and company, and when they awaken, they call for Superman so they could tell him what had happened. Supes arrives and Captain Atom tells Supes that Max had been there, which leads to Supes quizzically asking, “Who's Max Lord?”... This issue ends with the four former members of the JLI realizing that Max had wiped his existence from every living being on the planet and escaped off to parts unknown.

What I Thought: This was a VERY strong opening issue to this mini-series. The writers did a great job of setting the stage, putting all of the main players in position and giving Max a way to rebuild his powerbase away from the watchful eyes of every hero on the face of the Earth. It would have been nice if the Brightest Day mini-series was this coherent... I for one can't wait to see what Max decides to do now that he believes he is free to operate however he feels, as well as seeing what the former JLIers do to try to stop Max before he embarks on whatever his next evil act will be. A villain with all of Max's knowledge of Earth's super-heroes, free to do as he pleases could be a very scary thing!

Score: 8 1/2 out of 10.I always like a villain who is 100% convinced he's in the right and everybody else is in the wrong.

Siege #4(of 4)

Two reviews up for tonight, and both of them were actually pretty good... The comics I reviewed that is, not the actual reviews, they're mediocre at best! Actually most of the comics I've been reading this week have been decent, which is going to make for a very tame Best of the Rest post... I'm going to have to read a few comics I KNOW will be bad so I can have some fun with them. Who wants to read reviews where everything is wonderful anyway? Certainly not I! Plus I always have more fun writing scathing reviews as opposed to glowing reviews... Anyway, that's enough of my personal reviewing preferences, let's get started with the posting!

Siege #4(of 4): Writer: BENDIS! Pencils: Olivier Coipel.
Last Issue: 8 out of 10.

Review: So Asgard has fallen and all of Earth's heroes are trying to halt the onslaught of the insanely powerful Void(Sentry's evil alter-ego). Seeing that the heroes were sure to lose, and never meaning for Asgard to be completely destroyed, Loki steals the powerful Norn Stones away from the Hood and uses them to super-charge the heroes battling against the Void. The Void realizes that something is amiss, and deducts that it was Loki who was empowering the heroes, so the Void simply grabs Loki and murders him right in front of everybody! Even though Loki was a lowlife villain, he was Thor's lowlife villain(not to mention his brother), so Thor flies into an Asgardian rage and throws every ounce of his power at the Void in an effort to stop it from killing anybody else. While Thor has the Void's undivided attention, Iron Man takes command of the HAMMER helicarrier and sends the entire massive ship hurtling straight into the Void. This strategy actually works, and the Void transforms back into regular old Robert Reynolds, who begs the heroes to kill him to end everything he's done. Thor refuses, instead telling Reynolds he'd pay for his crimes by seeking penance for what he had done instead. Unfortunately for the heroes, this brief exchange is all the Void needs to retake control of Reynolds and renew its attack. Finally, having had enough of the Void's madness, Thor just beats the hell out of it with his hammer until the Void was dead at his feet... Well that takes care of THAT! With that, Thor takes the remains of the Void/Sentry into space, and tosses the carcass into the sun. And that's the end of the main story. From there we get a few epilogues... Steve Rogers hands the shield of Captain America back to Bucky and tells Bucky that he was the Captain America the world needed now, not him. Later on though, Steve heads to the White House where the President asks him to take command of SHIELD/HAMMER, and Steve agrees, with the sole condition being that he would run things his way. The Avengers celebrate at Avengers Tower as the news networks report that the abomination known as the Superhuman Registration Act had been thrown out, and that Steve Rogers had accepted the position of America's top cop. While the Avengers/Young Avengers/and for some reason the Fantastic Four live it up, Thor arrives and puts the remains of Asgard atop Avengers Tower and pledges to assist the Avengers whenever they ask him to. This issue ends with Steve Rogers stopping by and asking all of the gathered heroes for their assistance for what was to come next.

What I Thought: Well, I never thought I'd say this, but BENDIS>Geoff Johns... Siege TOTALLY blew away Blackest Night in terms of quality and aftermath. I mean it wasn't even close... Trust me, nobody is more surprised then me! Hell, if BENDIS keeps THIS sort of work up, I'll have to go back to calling him Bendis again... Now, that's not to say there weren't a few small problems here, but for the most part, everything went perfectly. With the exception of the, “No More Mutants” junk, the Marvel Universe is finally headed back in the right direction. The classic Avengers are back(sure Wolverine and Spider-Man are still there, but I can try to overlook that), it's no longer illegal to be a super-hero in the Marvel U, AND Steve Rogers is going to be running whatever comes after HAMMER. Could I really ask for anything more? Well I could(ERASE the No More Mutants decree!!!), but for now, I'm just going to sit back and say good job BENDIS.

Score: 8 1/2 out of 10.Steve Rogers as the new head of SHIELD? Thank you Marvel!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Comic Gazing for: 5/19/10.

It's Wednesday, which means it's once again time to go Comic Gazing! I'm enjoying my summer vacation so far, thanks for asking. I have about five weeks before I head back to school to take some summer courses, but for these next five weeks I fully intend to enjoy myself! And how better to enjoy the summer then to talk about comic books? I figure I'll have at least two new reviews up tomorrow night(including Siege #4), and then it's my new weekend block of Flashback Friday, The Best of the Rest and THE Random Scan of the Week. How about that, a few months ago this blog was nothing but barely coherent reviews, now to go along with those barely coherent reviews, a few non-coherent regular features! Yes, good times... Anyhow, this is still Comic Gazing, which means that I should do just that, gaze at comics or something...

Batman: Streets of Gotham #12: Interest Level: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Brightest Day #2: I've pretty much given up all hope for the DCU to be perfectly honest with you. To me, this mini-series perfectly encapsulates everything that is wrong in the DCU right now. I've gone on and on about my problems with DC ad nauseam, so I won't go on another extended tear(even though I easily could!), but in a nutshell, DC needs to realize that it is 2010, and not 1965... Embrace the future DC, NOT the past!!! Interest Level: 6 out of 10.

Justice League of America #45: Interest Level: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Legion of Super-Heroes #1: I doubt this series will make my monthly pull list, but I figured I should at least give it a courtesy read before I trash it. Interest Level: 4 1/2 out of 10.

Superman/Batman #72: Interest Level: 5 1/2 out of 10.

Superman: War of the Supermen #3: Interest Level: 8 out of 10.

Zatanna #1: Why not? Interest Level: 6 1/2 out of 10.

Age of Heroes #1: Let's see what Marvel has in store as they enter the Heroic Age. It's got to be better then the whole Dark Reign storyline, right??? Interest Level: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Avengers Assemble #1: I do loves me some Marvel Handbooks! Interest Level: 7 out of 10.

Avengers #1: Even with BENDIS as the writer, I have HIGH hopes for this series... Interest Level: 9 out of 10.

Deadpool #23: Interest Level: 6 1/2 out of 10.

X-Factor #204: Interest Level: 4 out of 10.

And that's it for this week. The final tally is DC: 7, Marvel: 5. So it seems that DC wins the battle for my money this week, although I have to say that I'm a lot more interested in the Marvel books then the DC ones. I was pretty close to grabbing a few other Marvel comics, and if I had, the final tally could have been much different...

Brightest Day #1

Brightest Day #1: Writers: Geoff Johns and Peter Tomasi. Artists: Ivan Reis, Patrick Gleason, Ardian Syaf, Scott Clark & Joe Prado.
Last Issue: 6 1/2 out of 10.

Review: This comic begins with Hal Jordan, Carol Ferris and Sinestro arriving at the location of the white power battery. Sinestro reveals that he has proven unable to lift the power battery, so Hal gives it a shot, but he also finds that he can't move the battery. Carol figures that the battery is waiting for a special person to arrive to take it away... My guess? Why Saint Barry of course! From there we head out to sea where Deadman is still being jerked around by his White Lantern ring. Deadman arrives on a boat, where several young children were kidnapped by pirates. Deadman's ring forces him to helplessly watch the scene play out as Aquaman and Mera arrive on the boat to save the kids. Aquaman calls for help from the sea creatures under the waves, but is horrified to see a bunch of dead sea creatures pop up out of the sea and completely decimate the pirates. Needless to say, once all of the pirates have been taken care of, Aquaman is quite shaken by this experience, and Deadman is pretty surprised himself. As news of Aquaman's rebirth circulates, Black Manta, who was working at a seafood joint in Massachusetts, flips out and kills a bunch of people in the store, before leaving to find and re-kill his long-time foe. The Firestorms whine about their predicament, and upon meeting up with Professor Stein and the Atom, they learn that it appears that they are going to be stuck together... Just like a really bad 80's sitcom! The Martian Manhunter gets a strange psychic flash in which he sees himself murdering Prof. Erdel, while a woman lies dead nearby. Since the flash came from Earth, MM decides to head there to find this woman and see what was going on. Finally, Hawkman and Hawkgirl come across some guys trying to steal the skeletal remains of their original bodies. The Hawks launch an attack and seem to have things well at hand until one of the grave robbers tosses a few grenades into an airplane, forcing the Hawks to save the plane. While the Hawks are busy with the plane, the grave robber returns the corpses to Hath-Set(???).

What I Thought: Wow, I didn't like this comic either. There was absolutely no main theme/story here, it was just a bunch of random stuff that happened to a few of the recently returned heroes... Some of the stories were interesting(Aquaman and the dead fish), some made no sense(like the MM)and some were just uninteresting(the Hawks). From a creative team with the talent of Geoff and Peter, I'd expect MUCH better then this. So far the two issues of Brightest Day I've read have been terribly disappointing.

Score: 6 out of 10.All that's missing is that music from Jaws!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Batman & Robin #12

Two reviews on tap for tonight, and let me tell you right off the bat, I was extremely disappointed with both of them... But I guess you'll find that out after you check out the reviews, right? Well, no reason to continue chirping, let me get these posted and done.

Batman & Robin #12: Writer: Grant Morrison. Pencils: Andy Clark
Last Issue: 8 out of 10.

Review: We begin this issue with Damian Wayne trying to brain Batman with a shovel in the Wayne family graveyard. Why is Damian acting up more then usual? Because his mother had implanted some sort of chip in his spine that is allowing Deathstroke the Terminator to control Damian from Talia's lab. After Deathstroke taunts Bats through Damian, Bats figures out what was going and and manages to shock Damian, disrupting the signal and freeing Damian from Talia and Deathstroke's control. Meanwhile, those weirdos in the cemetery that were fighting Oberon Sexton and Damian last issue have managed to get there hands on a little box with a bat-symbol on it and they run away. Sexton tells Bats that he's going to return to his hotel, but that he'd like Bats to meet him there later. Next Bats and Robin head to Talia's base and confront her over what she had done to her son. Talia complains about the Bat-family corrupting her son and explains that she was only trying to force him to act properly. While Bats goes and confronts Deathstroke, Talia takes Damian and shows him a new child that she was growing, telling him that since he didn't want to be a proper son to her, she was going to simply grow a new Damian(oh GOD NO!!!). Talia offers Damian one final chance to stay by her side, but he turns her down, so she tells him that from this moment forward, he is an enemy of the Al Ghul family. Then this comic begins to bounce all over the place as we lose all sense of cohesion... The guy from the Black Glove(the one during Batman RIP)arrives in Gotham, Bats, Robin and Alfred explore the secret underground caverns of Wayne Manor and find an old Batman cowl, and Bats goes to meet up with Oberon Sexton, who reveals himself to be the Joker, mercifully ending this issue...

What I Thought: This was by far the worst issue of Batman and Robin that I've read yet, and that's REALLY saying something! This issue(and especially the dialogue)was so unbelievably bad that I actually found myself speed-reading through the second half of this comic just to get it over with... I honestly don't know what the hell Grant is thinking anymore. This comic was an incoherent mess. Oberon Sexton being the Joker made absolutely no sense, nor did the whole, “Wayne Manor is shaped like a giant Bat-signal!” reveal. The junk with Barbatos(whatever the hell THAT'S all about)and the return of the horrid Black Glove, just cemented this comic as the front runner for worst single issue of the year to me. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I'm sure all of you Grant Morrison apologists will try to tell me that Grant is a genius, and that this comic was brilliant, but to me this was just a bunch of random scenes that made little sense. Add that to the atrocious dialogue, and yeah, this was one BAD comic...

Score: 3 out of 10.One Damian is enough, PLEASE don't create another one!!!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Wonder Woman #43

Since I'm feeling a bit under the weather(whatever THAT means)it's just one review tonight. And don't expect it to be a very coherent review, since I'm expecting the effects of the Nyquil to start kicking in sometime during this post. So yeah, let's just get this over with...

Wonder Woman #43: Writer: Gail Simone. Pencils: Nicola Scott and Fernando Dagnino.
Last Issue: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Review: We get started with Wonder Woman facing down her angry aunt, Astarte(who just so happens to be leading a small army of would be world conquerers). Astarte wants to destroy the Earth(or some similarly evil plot device), and needless to say WW isn't about to allow that to happen. Astarte gives her soldiers the order to eliminate WW, so WW launches into an attack of her own, and takes down all of Astarte's women, which prompts Astarte to order her spacecraft to drop a giant mechanical snake on Washington DC. Before the snake can destroy too much of Washington, Achilles arrives on the scene and obliterates the serpent with surprising ease. While that scene is playing out, WW manages to catch Astarte in her lasso in an attempt to see why she is acting up. We then get a flashback of Astarte's life and learn that she is who she claims to be, and that she has been forced to work with these aliens for over 3,000 years. In time, Astarte managed to work her way up the ranks until she became the leader of the aliens, and has since lived a joyless, anger filled existence. After WW releases Astarte, Astarte reveals to WW that she intends on sending all 200,000 of her spacecrafts to Earth to completely annihilate the planet. This issue ends with WW agreeing to fight a duel against Astarte's daughter with the winner getting the Earth.

What I Thought: Meh. This story is OK, but pretty unspectacular. I just can't get into the whole, “Crazy space-snake-women trying to conquer/destroy the Earth” story. I guess Astarte being WW's aunt is kind of interesting, but that's probably the only real interesting thing about this comic.

Score: 6 1/2 out of 10.SOMEBODY needs to lay off the caffeine!

The Best of the Rest!!! May 15th edition.

With the overwhelming success that is Flashback Friday(OK, “overwhelming” is probably a bit of a stretch, but it's my blog so humor me!), I've decided to bring back the feature that nobody has been clamoring for(well, except for JT)the Best of the Rest! Now I'm sure there are a few of you out there who are wondering, “Why gosh Jethro, what is this here Best of the Rest nonsense all about?” This “nonsense”, as you so astutely put it, is where I(and I'm quoting myself from several months back here), “give my uninformed and at times offensive opinion on comic books and their creators”. In layman's terms, I just do a bunch of hastily put together reviews, slap 'em into one post and call it a feature... It's my regular reviews, only worse! Expect lots of sarcasm. Horrible, horrible sarcasm... Well with an intro like that, who WOULDN'T want to start reading???

Green Lantern Corps #47: This issue pretty much wrapped up the Blackest Night portion of this series and put a pretty little bow on top. Basically, the GL's go about fixing up Oa, and we get to look in at a few of the characters who have been starring in this series. Since I have a very strong pro-Earth bias going tonight(don't ask... Trust me on that!), I'm only going to look into the two Earth-born Green Lanterns. Kyle Rayner manages to convince the Guardians of the Universe that they should repeal their ban on GL's having romantic relationships with each other, basically so he could get some of Sinestro's daughter in public. Hey, why not? Oh, and Guy Gardner's bar collapsed during the Black Lantern invasion, which proves definitively that zombies are real jackasses. And if that offends any zombies who may be reading this, TOUGH! And yeah, that's pretty much that. Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.Yeah that's right, I didn't even mention this scene in my "review", but I decided to post it anyway... Go figure.

Justice Society of America #38: FYI(that's “for your information”, for your information), this entire comic takes place in the suck-tacular future where the Nazis have managed to conquer the United States, which probably surprised even the Nazis themselves... And if that offends any Nazis, TOUGH! After recapping how the Nazis won(hmm, I guess that means this comic didn't actually take place solely in the future...), we discover that the Fuhrer(that's Nazi-speak for leader I guess)is going to be visiting the prison camp where all of the de-powered ex-superheroes were living. In order to impress the Fuhrer, the top brass at the camp decide to execute a high profile prisoner, so they choose Batman(as well as the Joker, who doesn't want to live in a world with out Bats). The Fuhrer arrives and we learn that he is the all grown up All-American Kid/Kid Karnevil/that evil blond kid from Salvation Run. Bats and Joker get executed firing squad style, and the grown up(and still ultra annoying)Jamie Reyes decides to attack Mr. Terrific, who was collaborating with the Nazis. Don't worry, this was all a plan to get the Nazis to trust Terrific even more then they already do, he wouldn't REALLY collaborate with Nazis! So the Nazis shoot Jamie in the head for his lack of restraint, and take Terrific to the infirmary to get patched up. And that's literally how this one ends. Score: 6 1/2 out of 10.Gute Nacht Mistah J!!!

Action Comics #888: The evil Kryptonian, Jax-Ur(who is the host for evil Kryptonian god Vohc the Breaker)has managed to trap Chris Kent in the Phantom Zone, while Vohc's creation(a giant-sized version of the Kryptonian god Rao)destroys large portions of Pakistan. Flamebird tries to defeat fake Rao, but can't, so the Justice Society of America(and I guess Pakistan)step up to the plate to give her an assist. Mr. Terrific wins the award for the most obvious observation, when he announces that it looks like Rao has been growing every time he is being struck... Gee, thanks Captain Obvious... Terrific then spouts off a bunch of sci-fi mumbo-jumbo, that basically means that if Rao continues to expand, he'll become a giant black hole and destroy the Earth(much like my blog). So to combat this dread news, the JSA continues to attack Rao, and they are soon joined by Wonder Woman(and an ax!). WW(and the ax!)smacks Rao a few times and Green Lantern(Alan Scott)puts a big force field around Rao's head, which causes Rao to collapse. Well THAT was easy! Almost too easy... Hmm... The heroes all celebrate and congratulate each other, which allows Rao the opportunity to get back up again and continue his parade through Pakistan. By this time, the governments of Pakistan and India have had enough of Rao and his crap, and decide to launch some nuclear weapons at the giant Kryptonian god, which seems a BIT drastic to me, but what do I know? Before I get back to that cheerful little scene, I should probably go back to Chris and the Phantom Zone. Chris wanders around the Phantom Zone and winds up finding Nightwing(no not Dick Grayson, although that would have blown my mind!), and the two decide to bond(or whatever it is you do when you meet an ancient Kryptonian god)in order to halt the horrifyingly deadly march of Rao the unstoppable!!! Nightwing hops out of the Phantom Zone(not literally I hope)and disarms all of the nukes, ending this issue. Score: 6 out of 10.Hey look, it's Wonder Woman... And an AX!!!

Daredevil #506: Wow, it seems like AGES since I last read a DD comic... That's not a part of the review or anything, just a random observation... DD(who is the leader of the Hand)helps one of the Hand's bigwigs fight off an assassination attempt. The bigwig(whose name is Bakuto by the way)figures that DD was behind the attack(because they butted heads last issue), and storms away. DD mopes about this turn of events to his friend White Tiger, who acts weird... Foreshadowing much? Later on, DD calls a Hand meeting and Bakuto accuses him of shenanigans, which DD flatly denies, which causes Bakuto to storm away again, because that's what he does, much like how I tend to over use commas(and parentheses!)... Wow, that was the best run-on sentence EVER! After the meeting, DD falls asleep and is visited by Elektra in a dream, who proceeds to cut something out of him. DD wakes up and realizes that he was bleeding... Exactly where Elektra cut him! Ooo, creepy!!! We conclude this lovely trip to Japan with White Tiger revealing that she was actually in cahoots with DD's rivals for the leadership of the Hand! How UN-surprising! . Score: 7 out of 10.Gah, that's one UGLY ninja!

Mighty Avengers #36: This is the very last issue of this series, so I think a moment of silence is in order......... OK, that's long enough. Pym(taking a page out of Mr. Terrific's playbook)explains in sci-fi mumbo-jumbo that he's been attempting to revive his ex-wife/punching bag the Wasp, and that he's been using Jocasta to help with that feat. Jocasta, now realizing why Pym had been so nice to her, smacks him and calls him a fleshbag, which is my FAVORITE(or FAVOURITE for my non-American friends)robot to human insult. While Jocasta vents at Pym, Ultron and his ten billion brides(that's right, TEN BILLION)storm into the room and start tearing up the joint, Ultron style! Pym and his associates(Jocasta, a guy in a black mask named Ace, and a chick with an eye-patch named One-Eyed Jacquie)run away from Ultron while Pym tries to formulate a plan to defeat his angry robotic offspring. Ultron says nuts to that and flies in front of Pym, telling his “father” that he knows what Pym was up to, and reconfigures the Wasp's brainwave patterns so that she only obeys Ultron. Ultron gloats, figuring he's finally defeated Pym, but Pym reveals that he still has the only device that can free Ultron from Infinite Avengers Mansion, the Dimensional Inducer, which is trapped inside of Jocasta. Pym then calls Ultron a coward(them's fightin' words!), which causes Ultron and his ten billion brides to attack Pym. Pym grows in size to deal with the attack, while drawing Ultron's attention away from his allies. Finally away from Ultron, Jocasta manages to free her ten billion clone bodies from Ultron's control, and Pym flies away from Ultron to meet up with Jocasta. Ultron arrives and tells Pym that even without his ten billion brides he can STILL whoop Pym, so Jocasta offers to marry Ultron to halt his attack... Really?!? Ultron agrees, and then Pym marries the two robots... Yes, really! Ultron goes through Jocasta's files and realizes that the Dimensional Inducer was back in Infinite Avengers Mansion, so Ultron decides that he'll be using that to run rampant through the cosmos. Pym says, nuh-uh, and teleports every single Avenger ever to his side to deal with Ultron once and for all. Ultron(realizing that those were PRETTY bad odds)backs down and agrees to leave with Jocasta, heading to a completely secluded planet that was totally devoid of life. After Ultron leaves, we discover that the Avengers were only holograms, and that Jocasta could still project her consciousness to the Mansion, which means that everything that had happened was all for nothing... Hmph... This issue ends with Pym joining his Mighty Avengers at Asgard for the final battle against the Sentry. Jeez, that reviews was WAY longer then I would have liked... I'll have to short-change the next one now! Score: 6 1/2 out of 10.And I must be mad for reading this!

Action Comics #889: Hey look, it's another issue of Action Comics! Giant, evil, fake Kryptonian god Rao begins the long and arduous process of turning into a black hole(well, I think turning into a black hole WOULD be a long and arduous process!), while Nightwing walks around saving those losers from the JSA from being crushed by Rao. I kid, I like the JSA! There not losers... Most of the time... Dr. Fate shows up(gee, thanks for FINALLY showing up Doc...)and along with Nightwing, Flamebird and Wonder Woman(who has pretty much stood around and done nothing)attack Vohc the Breaker who was responsible for giant, evil, fake Kryptonian god Rao's rampage(but then you all ready knew that from reading about AC #888 earlier, didn't you?), and Nightwing and Flamebird force Vohc into the mini black hole that was opening up inside of Rao. The other heroes don't follow the Kryptonians because... Well, I'm not entirely sure why not, but they don't, which leaves us with Nightwing and Flamebird against Vohc inside of giant, evil, fake Kryptonian god Rao. Unsurprisingly, the two heroes vanquish Vohc, which is a classier way of saying they beat him like a rented mule. With Vohc done for, Nightwing banishes him to the destroyed Phantom Zone, allowing Vohc to build stuff in that secluded space... Aww, how nice of him! With Vohc gone, giant, evil, fake Kryptonian god Rao breaks into little pieces, which causes Wonder Woman to say, “Great Hera.”. I agree WW, “Great Hera” indeed! Nightwing and Flamebird emerge from the shadows and make out in front of everybody(umm, OK...)before flying off into the sunset together. Well, not literally, but I think you get my point. This issue ends with a bunch of scientists(led by that sneaky Lex Luthor)cleaning up the mess that was Rao, while Luthor almost definitely thinks of all sorts of nefarious uses for a broken giant, evil, fake Kryptonian god. Score: 7 out of 10.Sorry, I'm all out of quips. You'll have to come up with your own.

Annnd, that's it. I'm done and not a moment too soon I'd say. Feel free to leave your credit card numbers and/or false praise in the comment section of this post, and last but CERTAINLY not least, Long Live The Legion!!!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

The Random Scan of the Week!

That's right, this isn't a hoax or a bad dream, this is really THE Random Scan of the Week, ONE full day early!!! I know, this is just madness! I WAS going to introduce a new weekly feature tonight, but something came up, and before you knew it, it was well past midnight, and I wasn't planning on staying up all night doing a long post. So there ya go, that's why the RSotW is here tonight. Hopefully I'll find the time to put together a nice long post for tomorrow night, but no promises... As for tonight's scan, hows about the always weird Tim Drake and the deadly Lady Shiva?From Robin #4(April 1991).