Sunday, January 22, 2006

IC and GL

Green Lantern 7
Lovely cover with the green guys, GA and GL. I thought this guest pairing would make me more emotional than it did, given that GL/GA was one of my all-time favorite comics. Ah well. You really can't go back to some things and recapture the feelings. Nostalgia is funny that way.

I am loving the slick paper, covers and inside pages. Makes for nice, vibrant colors. The banter between Hal and Ollie was well done and there were nice character bits, but I was a bit disappointed that Ollie's dream included Connor and not Roy. hmmmmm.... Anytime Roy's ignored, I get a bit peeved, so that's not a complaint about the comic, just my bias getting in the way. But still.... Nice start for the story, though, so I'm hoping the next issue is as good.

Infinite Crisis 4
This just gets better and better. So much so, it's actually tempting me to go back and actually read Crisis on Infinite Earths. All of it. Fortunately, I keep coming to my senses. I've said it before, but it bears repeating. I loved the multi-verse. As a kid growing up reading DC comics, I never had trouble telling everyone apart or what Earth they were from. I loved alternate realities in books and TV shows, too. The Mirror Universe on Star Trek, for ex. And now Stargate has been playing with the concept. Frederick Pohl's The Coming of the Quantum Cats and many other science fiction novels. I happen to think parallel time is cool. So, if we end up back to one timeline, one universe, I'll be disappointed, but I also know that the theory goes thusly: Every decision point can lead to an alternate reality. So from some point in the DCU after consolidation, more universes can be spun off once more as decisions are made, with all the alternate decisions and their ramifications. Some realities will be very similar, while others will be very different. Consolidation does not mean it has to be that way forever. I take solice in that, even if DC never follows up.

Okay, on to IC 4. This is a wonderful look at how even the noblest heroes can be corrupted, how good people can end up doing bad things for what they think are justifiable reasons. Superboy's battle with uh, Superboy (Conner) is a case in point.

A lot was packed in here. There was a lot to read, which is why I didn't read it right away (as in on the subway ride home), but saved it for when I had time to concentrate. The tying up of a lot of incidents to Alex and the Psycho-Pirate filled in a lot of gaps and snipped loose ends. Now we know for certain why OMAC went rogue and the true intent behind the Society of Villains, the attack on magic, and what happened with Shazam and with the Spectre.

We also took the big step to a new Blue Beetle and Spectre (the latter set in motion by the Day of Vengeance Special), so things are starting to come together in a big way. Of course, had I realized just how this month's Nightwing fit in with IC, I would have read it after, or at least, the events in Bludhaven wouldn't have been so startling when I read NW on the subway ride home on Wednesday.

Stuff I loved:
  • The delicious art. It really doesn't get better than this. Every character is drawn as an individual, which in a crowded book like this, is no mean feat.
  • Bruce and Dick's conversation. Bruce: "You've put an importance on keeping up relationships that I neglected. You care." YES! And Bruce: "The early years. I've forgotten if...They were good for you, weren't they?" Dick: "The best."
  • Spectre resisting entering his new host, begging for another chance.
  • The pitiable and pitiful Superboy after he's killed: "You're ruining me!" So unheroic to put blame on others. Too immature to see the evil that he's done.
  • Jay admitting he's not fast enough, followed by Linda grabbing the babies and heading into the speed force: "Wherever you're going-- your family's coming with you."
  • Bart's: "Grandpa?"
  • The montage of Lois and Clark's life together (don't they number pages anymore so I can cite them?)
  • And finally, Supes 2: "We're here, Lois. We're home."

I can't wait for IC 5.


  1. Hi, Shelly!

    While reading IC #4, I kept preparing myself to be disappointed (I suppose I'm a cynic, or something), but I never was. Man, it's a good feeling when that happens.

    I like your thoughts on alternate timelines. I recently read the Titan's of the Future TPB, and marveled at how well Johns handled the timeline/future question, which is something that I've seen other writers mangle /confuse/ torture.

    Oh, and yeah, why don't they number pages anymore?

  2. Hi, Melchior!

    Yeah, it is a good feeling.

    The only problem alternate reality presented in the DCU focused on the LSH, IMO, because they were in just one possible future and Superboy, and later Supergirl had a way to get there consistently, which was fine, but when I was old enough, I understood that the LSH future wasn't the only possibility.

    So, in a way, each rebooting, and especially the current one, are just other possible futures that include a version of the Legion of Super-Heroes.

    The lack of page numbering has been driving me nuts for a while now. I can't easily refer to a favorite page or panel anymore.

  3. Infinite Crisis 4. After posting my review of it at the Unofficial DC Comics Review I realized that I meant to post a nagging question. Is Superboy Prime evil or just a spoiled brat who became deranged when he didn't get his way?

  4. I'm hovering between spoiled brat and someone whose mind got scrambled by the events of Crisis on Infinite Earths. :)

  5. I agree with Shelly. Observing Conner Kent's life seems to have driven SPB mad with envy and jealousy. SBP believes Conner has been given all the things that were taken from him during CoIE.

  6. Yes, Melchior. Exactly. Or his brainwaves got scrambled. But yeah, jealousy can drive people to do all sorts of things, and he did zero in on Conner.

  7. I luv ur thoughts on this issue:)

    There def IS a lot packed into this book.
    -The art is great, VERY "Crisis-worthy"...
    -u know, it's not every day Bruce admits he needs help.
    -and Superboy going berserk....WOW.
    (I just couldn't believe heads were flying, bodies were being ripped apart...)

    I feel really sorry for Superboy Prime:(
    I feel like he is such a victim of his youth, experiences, and manipulations.

    It's such a sad case.
    1st of all, he was the ONLY survivor of his world. That must have been such a difficult concept to grasp.
    This tragedy happened when he was oh so young.
    Then he's transported to sum lonely, pocket dimension.....
    his youth was practically stolen from him.
    And to top it all off, he actually gets to witness as sumbody else enjoys his life to the fullest(Conner)....
    I mean, how unfair is that? It must have been driving him mad for so long.
    Then u have Alex Luthor as ur "friend".....

    I don't see him as a "spoiled brat", more like a victim of many things combined:(
    u know, when I went to Wizardcon in Boston, they asked the DC panel if it was necessary to read 'Crisis on Infinite Earths' in order to understand Infinite Crisis.
    The DC people struggled and seemed to force out a 'not necessarily'.....

    I THINK I would be very, very, VERY lost if I did NOT have 'Crisis on Infinite Earths' under my belt b4 coming into this series.
    what do u think?

  8. Good points re: Superboy, H. And that's interesting what the DC folks said at the con. I never did read Crisis on Infinite Earths, but I skimmed up to SG dying and I did read a few comics after, mainly Titans and Infinity, for a while. Plus, I found out a lot about what happened between then and when I started reading again, so I'm not lost. I don't know if I'd feel as comfortable with this Crisis if I didn't have some awareness of the first one's consequences.

    So, are you going to the con at the Javits Center in February? Maybe we could meet up? Maybe I'll email you about it. :)

    And if anyone else is reading this and is going, it would be cool to meet.

  9. Well, darn. I just checked the dates and I might not be able to go. I have work on Saturday and now I have my sister's birthday celebration on Sunday. The first time in many years that they have a con in NYC, and I'll probably miss it. grrrrrr

  10. Yea, that's what I mean, u need at least SOME background info on the original Crisis, even if u didn't read the whole thing.
    But, they tried SO hard to make it seem like anybody could just jump into the series; but man would it be difficult for a newbie to get sum of the things that are currently happening.
    Like all the parallel universe talk, Alex, SBP, etc...etc...

    as for February, hmmm, I'm going to have to look into that:)

    but we Definitely have to get u to a convention one of these days:):):)

  11. I used to go to cons in NY a lot in the '70s, mostly Phil Seuling's Comic Arts Convention at the old Commodore Hotel on 42nd St (a Marriott now, I believe). And once, DC had a con there to celebrate Superman's birthday. That was loads of fun. I miss going to comicons.