Friday, March 12, 2010

Booster Gold #29, JSA All-Stars #3 & Superman #697. Plus a bonus rant against Geoff Johns?!? Wha???

Now that I have all of my midterms and papers finished and out of the way(for now...), I can devote a little bit more time to my favorite pastime, comic books! Before I get into the reviews, a word to the wise... Although this post reviews three DC comics, I have a pretty large pile of Marvel comic books that I'll probably start getting into soon. I only say this because I know that most of my regulars are more DC oriented people, as is evident by the fact that I always get WAY more comments on my DC related posts then my Marvel related posts. So as to not annoy my DC X-Maniacs, I'll make sure to try to add at least one DC review to every couple of Marvel reviews I post, that way everybody is happy! Aren't I the greatest?

Booster Gold #29: Writer/Artist: Dan Jurgens.

We have a couple of converging storylines happening here, so I'll try to keep this review as linear as humanly possible... That's code for: if this review sucks, don't blame me! I'll start off with Booster Gold sister, Michelle, who has been living in the past since she split from her brother. After coming face to face with Cyborg Superman in Coast City during the Reign of the Supermen storyline from a few years ago, Michelle remembers that Cyborg Supes is responsible for the utter annihilation of Coast City, and as such she does what any sane human being would do in a similar situation, she gets the hell away from Cyborg Supes! Michelle heads back to her boyfriend and tries to warn him that Coast City is about to be vaporized, but he is hesitant to believe her, since she won't give him any reason other then the vague, “I know what will happen in the future”. While this is going on, the woman who tried to assassinate Cyborg Supes before he becomes a maniacal Cyborg from last issue arrives in pre-annihilated Coast City and begins to hunt down the nefarious Cyborg. Booster Gold is summoned by Rip Hunter, who warns Booster that he has to head to Coast City and prevent the woman from killing the Cyborg, even though it means 7 million people will die at the hands of the evil Cyborg. Booster reluctantly follows Rip's orders, and heads into the past to Coast City and finds the woman(whose name is Sondra Crain, by the way). Booster tries to reason with Sondra by telling her that as awful as it sounds, Cyborg Supes MUST destroy Coast City in order to protect the integrity of the timestream. Sondra eventually manages to convince Booster that it would be wrong to stand by and allow seven million people to die in Coast City, and just as it seems like Booster is about to take a stand and do the right thing, Cyborg Superman and Mongol's plan to destroy Coast City gets underway... D'oh!

Oh yeah, I really enjoyed this story. As a matter of fact, the past couple of issues of this series(especially the last two issues)have been really strong. In particular, I'm loving this story and the moral choices it is forcing Booster to make... Does he stand by and allow the past to unfold as it was originally intended to, as Rip Hunter has been telling/ordering him to do, or does he take a stand and do what seems like the right thing to do, even though that would mean altering the timeline... Pretty deep, no? If I were Booster, knowing what I know, I don't see how he can't prevent Cyborg Superman from destroying Coast City... Not only would you be saving seven million innocent beings, but perhaps as importantly, saving Coast City would prevent Hal Jordan from going insane with grief, destroying the Green Lantern Corps and becoming Parallax... Then again, if Hal doesn't become Parallax, he would never gain enough power to defeat the Sun Eater and save the entire Earth... Huh... Damn it, Rip was right!!! Jeez, as awful as it may be, I guess Coast City has to die or there would never be a Parallax, and no Parallax means the Earth would die. What a downer... See, you know a comic book is really good when it makes you think THAT much after reading it!

Score: 8 1/2 out of 10.Hmm, I wonder just how many times Booster has been smacked by a woman...

JSA All-Stars #3: Writer: Matthew Sturges. Artist: Freddie Williams II

Johnny Sorrow, still a bit miffed that his Injustice League lost Stargirl last issue, cuts out the heart of one of his underlings to present as a sacrifice to some evil god he is worshiping... Note to self: if you ever turn to crime, DO NOT work for Johnny Sorrow... Meanwhile, the All-Stars decide that although they don't know where Sorrow is, it would be in their best interests to train ultra hard in preparation for his eventual return. Oh, and they learn that Atom Smasher was missing as well. Unbeknownst to them, it appears Atom Smasher has been abducted by some kind of evil magician. From there we go to several pages of the All-Stars training their hand to hand fighting techniques, which leads to an all out brawl between Power Girl and Magog over what kind of tactics they should be using. Magog favors killing his enemies, while PG is obviously against that, so the two decide to release some of their frustrations by beating the hell out of each other. Unsurprisingly, PG gets the best of that, which leads to Magog storming away. Later on, the All-Stars learn that Magog was responsible for a jail break(which happened in the terrible Magog series), and they decide to go after him(which occurs in the JSA Annual). This issue ends with Sand being visited by his mentor the Sandman in a dream, and being warned that “The Cycle” was about to occur, and that he had best to alert the JSA.

Not bad. Not bad at all. Granted, this wasn't the best comic book I've ever read or anything, but it was perfectly acceptable. The story was coming together, and I like the tension that exists between Magog and... well, everybody else on the All-Stars. Unfortunately, it looks as if Magog leaves the team as a result of what happened in the JSA Annual, but I'm still interested enough in this series to stick around to see just what Johnny Sorrow's master plan is.

Score: 7 out of 10.Here's a quick and helpful tip for Mr. Magog... Unless your name is Wonder Woman, DON'T try to take Power Girl in a fist fight...

Superman #697: Writer: James Robinson. Pencils: Bernard Chang.

This issue opens with Mon-El, Guardian and the forces of General Lane discovering that Control at the Science Police was actually the shape-shifting Chameleon of the Legion of Super-Heroes. Needless to say, nobody is overly pleased to find out about this chicanery, and Lane sends his men to capture the sneaky Durlan. Before Lane's forces can take out Chameleon, a robot from the future appears and attacks Lane, Guardian and Mon-El, allowing Chameleon to make his escape. Mon-El and Guardian give chase, but Guardian is blasted out of the sky by the idiot Starman from the Legion/JSA and Mon is taken out by several of Chameleon's Legion teammates. After that, Mon goes around and whines to his girlfriend, Steel and Superboy about how hard it is trying to live up to Supes, the junk with the Legion, as well as a few other problems he's having. While he's in Smallville complaining to Superboy, Superboy manages to set up a meeting between Mon and the Legion which crosses over with Adventure Comics #8, which as luck would have it just arrived in the mail today!

Umm yeah, I really didn't like this issue at all... For the most part, NOTHING of note happened... And the stuff that did happen I didn't like at all... I've said it ad nauseam, but I'll say it again, I HATE the original Legion... They shouldn't be! Uh-oh, I feel a rant coming on... Once again, this is a case of Geoff Johns run amok! You all know I like Geoff and all, but jeez, the guy has a really unhealthy fixation with DC's Golden/Silver Age... Here's a quick crash course on the Legion. They're a bunch of teenagers from the 30th/31st century who have banded together to deal with the adult run government, as well as dealing with whatever threats came their way. The original Legion met Superman back when he was still Superboy and living in Smallville. They shared some adventures, and eventually Supes grew up. After Zero Hour, DC changed up the Legion's origin, so as to revert them back to their teenage years. After that, in the mid-2000's, DC re-re-booted the Legion again(the Threeboot Legion)and built the team up from scratch, once again reverting the team members to their teenage roots as well as redoing the team origin. While the Threeboot Legion was still around, Geoff Johns decided to bring back the original Legion, and reincorporate them into Superman's life... This(along with bad sales)led to the cancellation of the Threeboot Legion, which is something I'm still sore about to this day... But my immense displeasure at the original Legion goes farther then that... Common sense tells us that Superman is probably at the very least 30 years old... Although I'd be willing to bet that he's even older then that. That would mean that the original members of the Legion that teenage Superman use to hang out with are probably approximately the same age as Supes is. And yet they still go by codenames that end in boy, girl, lad and lass... What the hell is that all about?!? What thirty year olds still refers to themselves as Cosmic “Boy” or Saturn “Girl”??? Not only that, but the entire backstory of the Legion(that they're kids fighting against an unfair system)doesn't work anymore because they ARE adults now, and as such, ARE a part of the system... It was fine when Geoff brought the JSA from the Golden Era into the Modern one. I was fine with him rebooting Hal Jordan back to his Silver Age self. But returning the Silver Age Flash(Barry Allen)and the Golden Age Legion is just a bit too much for me to stomach! We get it, Geoff Johns LOVES DC's vast past. That's great, DC's long and illustrious past SHOULD be respected... Just not at the expense of everything that has happened during DC's Modern Age... Wow, I sure got offtrack there, didn't I? The bottom line to all this is the fact that I didn't enjoy this comic at all, and that I don't understand why I'm reading about a Legion that should have died several decades ago... LONG LIVE THE THREEBOOT LEGION!!!

Score: 4 1/2 out of 10.You should be sorry... For doing this to this series!!!

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