Thursday, November 23, 2006

Oodles of Comics

And I'm using a day off to catch up with them. Happy Thanksgiving to my fellow USAers, and here are my latest reviews.

Uncle Sam and the Freedom Fighters 5
I'm not familiar with all the old-time characters in this, but that doesn't matter. This is one intense, frightening comic. I've always been a sucker for good political drama with action, which is why Checkmate appeals to me, and this is no exception. Until the Democrat upset in the recent elections, the US felt to me as if it was headed in the direction of this book, absent the metas, of course. It still is a cautionary tale. I know there are people who probably vehemently disagree with some of the political views expressed in this and I must admit to some moments of discomfort at the lumping together of concepts I do not consider belonging together on the political spectrum. But that is the point, or part of it. Who gets to decide? Do the people choose representatives who then get to take whatever actions they want, or are they compelled to make those decisions as true representatives? And if the people want something repugnant, such as to send immigrants back to oppressive societies, is that right? And if the leaders want to use torture in the name of freedom.... well, that does have parallels in real life, doesn't it? Is that what the people really want? What matters more? The results? Or the means? A thought-provoking, must-read title.

Wolverine 48
Seriously, I'm reading this only to keep up with Logan in case the post-Civil War issues will return to something worth reading. This issue seems, as the preceding ones, to be an excuse to see how many gross ways Logan can be "killed" and regenerated. What redeemed this ish is the end, in which we see that he's actually narrating to someone, in a scene that can actually be considered character development.

Creeper 4
I liked the original version of this character, but the reworking is even better, if that's possible. Jack and Creeper make an uh, odd though fun team. The art is suitably creepy and the plot twists are twisting nicely. This is one mini I'm hoping can become a regular title.

JSA Classified 19
Focus: Dr. Mid-Nite. Intriguing story arc about the body part trade specializing in meta organs, but a more fluid narrative might've helped. The opening scene seemed to suggest the story would go in a different direction, one not focused on metas. I'm not sure about Mid-Nite's logic in his deductive reasoning, but it did move things along at a decent pace.

Hawkgirl 58
A better arc than the first one under Simonson, and quickly concluded, but it seemed a lot lot of nothing. Nice art, though. Kendra has more than two facial expressions. Yay!

Jack of Fables 5
This continues to be a joyful romp through fables, myths, legends, and lore. Just finding out for sure who Sam is, or was, was worth the read. As was the last bit of narration:
"See? I promised you I'd get away, and I did. So, nyah, nyah to all of you who thought this series would just be a ripoff of that silly Brit show with the village and the giant guardian bubble."
Heh. Except for the fact that The Prisoner was an excellent, not silly, show. But I am glad, so far, this book isn't going to be story after story of Jack trying to escape only to be foiled at the last moment. At least, I hope that's not what this is going to be. ;)

Blue Beetle 9
Another fun book, reminding us of why we read comics in the first place when we were kids. The sheer joy of the things. The dialogue in this is its greatest asset. I love these kids, and Jaime's aw-shucks approach to the whole superhero thing as he struggles to learn and master his new abilities rings true. His parents are handling things well, we got a few answers, and the ending, well, next issue should be even more fun.

Wonder Woman 3
I am of mixed minds on this. Aside for the interminable wait between issues, bringing it out of continuity with the rest of the current titles, including the new Justice League where Diana is back as Wonder Woman, this book is not living up to its potential or promise. The art is stunning and I'm enjoying Agent Prince and Hercules is fine as guest star, but I am not happy with how Donna has been portrayed so far. She is not merely Diana's apprentice. Maybe Cassie can still fall into the role, but not Donna. Not the young woman who's been doing this superhero gig since she was a kid as Wonder Girl. Not the woman, who as Troia, has been to one end of the universe and back. Her return from the "dead" to warn everyone of the coming Crisis, ended up being downplayed into a minor role in the Crisis, itself, and now, she's been reduced to a bumbling Wonder Woman-wannabe and that is doing her, her fans, and the book a disservice. There are other ways to show the strength on one character without disparaging the other. Of course, now that Diana has been rendered mortal at the chapter's end, we'll see if she can triumph, or if she'll need a rescue. Would be nice if her rescuer is Donna.

52 29
Ah, my weekly fix, always on time, always entertaining. Some nice, emotional moments with the new Infinity, Inc. using the names of former heroes, especially Todd's reaction to seeing a new "Jade." His and Alan's reactions were well done, as was the official breakup of the JSA. And I hope I'm not the only one feeling sorry for Will Magnus.

All-in-all, a good week, so far. I've still got a few more, then on to the stack of older titles/issues waiting for longer than I care to say. And I think I'm missing an issue of OMAC. One of the problems with comics that don't come out on time, aside from the tendency I have to forget the previous issue by the time I get the current, is that I can't keep track of what I'm due. And when a comic is missed on my pull list, which does happen from time to time, I can miss issue. If I'm not expecting it this week, and it wasn't pulled, I can easily miss getting it. I do understand the reasons for latenesses, but I don't recall seeing so many at one time before. Which makes 52's schedule-keeping remarkable.


  1. re: Jack of Fables, ok who is Sam? Because I recognize the running people into butter thing, but I can't remember from where...

  2. I believe that was Little Black Sambo, and Sam is a shortened, less politically charge name. That wasn't the most racially sensitive fairy tale. But the tale had the tigers running and melting into butter bit, so it fit.