This week in comics (9-25-09)

(Insert failed attempt at comics related humor here) ok now lets get on with the reviews.

Spider-Woman #1

Written by Brian Michael Bendis

Art by Alex Maleev

swoman1

Better. Much better. A few weeks back I reviewed the Spider-Woman motion comic and gave it some pretty lousy marks for weak animation, terrible voice acting and this one scene where they just looped the same two images for 5 minutes straight. It didn’t flow at all, however this issue was a whole lot better. First off we have the atmosphere in still image form, which allows you to soak it up, and Maleev really knows how to make a dark and depressing atmosphere. I still have some gripes with the storyline, because I don’t think that Jessica Drew: Skrullhunter is a huge draw in for me. In the end this issue is achieves passable status due to the normal comic form. Hopefully comics will simply stick to what works.

7/10

Guardians of the Galaxy #18

Written by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning

Art by Wesley Craig

(Picture not available, and it wasn’t that good anyway)

I knew it was coming and I just hoped it wouldn’t be this soon. As with every cosmic book eventually we hear those dreaded words “TIME TRAVEL”. Time travel does not enrich storylines unless it is well thought out, and this issue is anything but well thought out. So the guardians have now traveled too the future to fight Tripod monsters from the War of the Worlds movie (ugh). Due to the effects of traveling through time Star-Lord ages to an elderly man, Mantis is a baby, Cosmo is now a puppy, and Jack Flag is just fading in and out of time (as seen in back to the future). The writing is childish and weak and the art is just as childish and weak. This is one of the comics I really look forward to picking up, but this issue was a half-assed wreck. Save your money and wait for Realm of Kings, then the cosmic side of Marvel will get good again.

4/10

New Avengers #57

Written by Brian Michael Bendis

Art by Stuart Immonen

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Bendis where has your talent gone? This issue of New Avengers was very forgettable, and only features a large amount of unnecessary dialogue that doesn’t enrich the story at all. It is really hard to care about this book when the best thing about it is Stuart Immonen’s artwork, and after three years of ranting on his art bringing down Ultimate Spider-Man. I think this book needs a change in direction soon, and hopefully get out of Dark Reign, which has become more played out than Secret Invasion. I can’t really think of much more to say for this book other than I am losing a lot of faith in it.

5/10

The Incredible Hulk #602

Written by Greg Pak

Art by Ariel Olivetti

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Father-son bonding can be a beautiful, beautiful thing, especially if your father-son bonding moments include pissing off the Juggernaut. In our previous issue Bruce Banner told Skaar he wanted to train him in order to fight the Hulk, so Banner blew up Juggernaut’s mobile home. The fights between the Hulk and Juggernaut have always been epic ones, so it should make sense that a fight between Skaar and old Jugg-head would be good too right? Well this fight was just ok; it didn’t have the lasting effect of previous Hulk and Juggernaut fight. However this is just a warm up for Skaar to anticipate for the real fight. My complaint is that this issue was not taken as a real fight because it certainly had set up for it. Ariel Olivetti’s art style is as stunning as it ever was; yet there is a problem that follows it. The backgrounds in this book are CGI rendered and I would rather see art that is drawn in, because it would certainly make the atmosphere fit a lot better. So in the end we have another OK Incredible Hulk book, but at least its Loeb’s Hulk.

7/10

Wolverine: Old Man Logan Giant Size #1

Written by Mark Millar

Art by Steve McNiven

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Easily one of the most violent comics I have ever read in my entire life. The stunning conclusion to one of the most insane storylines ever told. The finale issue ends the way it started with Wolverine fighting against the Hulk. Unlike the previous 7 issues, the claws are out this time. This issue has been a long time coming because of the dedicated art style that Steve McNiven delivers. The art is top notch and detailed down to the bone, and the guts, and the oceans of blood that were spilled by Wolverine’s claws. Millar’s writing wraps up all everything quite well and I found his explanation for the armada of redneck Hulk people to be very justified and appropriate for the writing. This book was great simply great, but there was some missed potential. The one thing that stopped this from being a perfect book is that the fight between Hulk and Wolverine could have been much longer. I hade high hopes for this book to feature the greatest fight in comic book history, and though it was a good fight it certainly could have gone on longer. The giant size title is misleading because the last 22 pages of this book are just cover galleries and art sketches. I would have preferred 22 pages of fighting, and I would not have minded waiting another month for McNiven to deliver the art. This additional material could have gone in the hardcover edition. Overall it was a great book, but it could have been a near perfect book if it had a better fight.

9/10

Superman Secret Origin (Part 1 of 6)

Written by Geoff Johns

Art by Gary Frank

SSOrigin1_CVR

All right, I caved in and bought my first ever single issue of Superman and I am very glad that I did. The first thing that jumped out at me from this issue was the nice glossy cover. I have missed the glossy comics oh so much. I reminds me of Ultimate Spider-Man back when it was good. Like Ultimate Spider-Man this is a modern retooling of the origin story of Superman. It focuses on a young Clark Kent discovering his powers and abilities in his early years of high school. This story took the oldest super hero story around and made it connect on a deeper level. I have to say that this is the best issue I read this week, and I never would have suspected that a Superman book would outdo the finale of Old Man Logan but it did. There is one gripe I have with this book. I love the art it is stunning but young Clark Kent’s chin is too big and makes him look like an adult. I understand that he is Superman and all but I think he needs a Howard Chaykin chin just yet. Pick up this book it was amazing, and I don’t even care for Superman.

9/10

(Insert encouraging remarks here) until next time.

– Matt Dunford “your comic book guy”.