Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Ascender

 I just finished reading the final issue of Ascender. It had the emotional feel of a TV series finale, full of emotion and expectation fulfilled. Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen created an amazing and complex universe in Descender, a dystopia where technology has run amok and robots have been outlawed. The heart of that series was centered in a bot called Tim-21, the childhood friend/brother of a boy named Andy, now grown up and searching for Tim-21. A lot of other people with less than altruistic motives also wanted Tim-21 for the secrets in his programming. Ascender is the shorter sequel, focused on Andy's daughter Mila at a time when magic has replaced technology and not in a good way. This final issue is a perfect ending for the saga and moved me to (happy) tears. If you haven't read this, I highly recommend it.

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Nightwing

 Nightwing 78-79

I haven't read Nightwing since just before he was shot in the head. I'd read, and enjoyed Grayson, but reading about the upcoming storyline that once more would morph Dick Grayson into something other than Nightwing did not interest me. I read so few DC books these days, with Image and some Marvel titles occupying my comics reading time, that I had to think hard about starting back up with Nightwing. A once-page preview of issue 78 made up my mind. I would give the title a chance again. I am so glad I did.

Writer Tom Taylor gets Dick Grayson, and artist Bruno Redondo has a crisp style somewhere between realism and cartoon that is very pleasing to the eye. He needs to work more on his pizza crust lines, though.

As for the story, Dick learns he inherited a fortune from Alfred and is looking for a way to make a real difference in Bludhaven. And Bludhaven needs a lot of help, being under Blockbuster's huge thumb. This is a reset, feeling a bit like Dick's earlier adventures in Bludhaven, yet also feeling like its own thing. The pages catching up Dick's history are elegantly rendered both in text and art.

There's a lot of potential here and I'm happy to have Nightwing back in my life. Now if only someone as good could bring back Roy Harper.



Saturday, April 10, 2021

I Read Something

I got Ron Randall's Trekker Omnibus a few years ago and finally got around to reading it. I probably would've rated this higher if I'd read the series when it was first published, but now, this story of a futuristic female bounty hunter feels dated. What once must have seemed daring and fresh, now has a lot of competition. Mercy St. Clair (her name brought to mind Modesty Blaise) is determined and committed to her chosen profession, but has a soft heart, considered a flaw for someone in her line of work, but it gives her a rounded personality, which is good considering how much of these stories feel cliched, especially the dialogue. I don't know when these stories were originally written, but the tech seems almost quaint now given all the advances of the past couple of decades, which isn't Randall's fault, of course; it just means some aspects of this series haven't aged well. The art is lovely, though. Randall has a nice, realistic touch. I wanted to like this more than I did.

Friday, November 06, 2020

The Dead Hand

 Review of The Dead Hand by Kyle Higgins, art by Stephen Mooney.

I had read good reviews of this comic, so bought the single issues, but somehow, I missed one, so ended up waiting for the trade to be published. And then it sat on a shelf for a while. To take my mind off other things, I read it last night. It wasn't what I expected, and I certainly hadn't expected to tear up at the end. This is a Cold War era espionage thriller about preventing nuclear war after the fall of the Soviet Union, with a near future science fiction twist, and it's kinda brilliant. The art is lovely, and I've been a fan of Kyle Higgins' writing for a while now. I would definitely read more of the story if there is more to read, but it stands on its own as is.

Sunday, October 04, 2020

Reading Comics in the Time of COVID-19

 It's been a year since my last post, and what a year it's been. I broke my arm soon after my last post here, and soon after I finished physical therapy for it after the brace was removed, the virus hit. I started self-quarantining in February; a few weeks later, my LCS closed, along with all other non-essential businesses here in NYC. Just because I think comics are essential doesn't mean the government does.

After two months, Forbidden Planet NY resumed mail service and my pull list titles started to arrive. I took a break from catching up on book reading, to read my new comics. I also started on the stacks of unread graphic novels and collected comics trades. I finally read Brian K. Vaughan's Y: The Last Man and loved it. I enjoyed G. Willow Wilson's Air, a rather quirky fantasy-esque tale. 

I don't know if anyone is still reading this blog, but I thought I'd post an update.

Monday, September 16, 2019

What I'm Reading

I'm still here. I have so many interests, that I don't seem to make the time to blog much, anymore. I've also run out of things to say. I find it easier to review books, over on my book blog than to review ongoing comics.

So I thought I'd post some comments about some comics I'm currently enjoying, for anyone still reading/following this blog. My comics reading has evolved/changed over the last few years. I tired of DC's events and got tired with Nightwing. I got annoyed with Titans. I got bored with Flash. I'm also deeply missing Saga and hope it returns soon.

But I'm being entertained by an interesting mix of comics. Ascender is an intriguing follow-up to Descender. The current Captain Marvel is keeping me reading, though the current Magnificent Ms. Marvel is on the cusp of being dropped. It just doesn't seem as good as when G. Willow Wilson was writing it. And as often happens, much as I love Wilson's writing, I found her take on Wonder Woman kind of dull. Some writers are better with some characters than others, for me, at least.

Web of Black Widow 1 is a decent start to what I hope will be a good story, one with some meat on it and not just another decent yet forgettable one as I felt the just concluded Black Widow title was.

Catwoman continues to be fun and despite going on for 9 issues and counting, Mavel's Invaders is keeping me reading, thanks to Cap and Bucky.

But the title that's got me really hooked is DC's Lois Lane 12-issue series. Only three issues in, Greg Rucka has me eager for the next issue. Lois is in her element -- being an investigative journalist -- and despite my not reading the current Superman titles, I'm having no trouble following along. Including Renee Montoya/The Question is most welcome, and I'm so happy Lois is getting the star treatment. I loved her now-silly-seeming series published back in the '60s, and can't believe it's taken this long to see her name on covers again. I'd love her to get an ongoing title.


Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Not Quite Reviews

I like reading comics by new creators and DC's New Talent Showcase provides a nice sampling of new folks. These short stories can be a mixed bag, but this edition -- 2018 #1 -- is a nice compilation. Featured characters are Batman, Constantine, Catwoman, John Stewart (I didn't read this one since I currently have no interest in Green Lanterns), Zatanna, and Wonder Woman. The stories are fairly light on plot, mainly being character pieces, but they adequately conveyed what they set out to do: explore a facet of known characters. The art is really nice and fairly polished looking. I look forward to seeing more from these new creators.

The Winter Soldier mini concluded in a satisfactory way. Kyle Higgins did a nice job exploring an element of Bucky's psyche and road to redemption and the art by Rod Reis was lovely throughout.