Comics

AICN COMICS REVIEWS FINAL CRISIS! INVINCIBLE! G.I. JOE! AND MUCH MORE!

Published at: Jan. 21, 2009, 8:24 a.m. CST by ambush bug

#36 1/14/09 #7
Header by Stones Throw

The Pull List (Click title to go directly to the review) FINAL CRISIS #6 INVINCIBLE #58 MANHUNTER #38 SCARLET VERONICA #3 G.I. JOE #1 BLACK LIGHTNING: YEAR ONE #1 Retro Review of BATMAN VS PREDATOR V1 Big Eyes For the Cape Guy presents FAIRY TAIL VOLUMES 3-4 Indie Jones presents… CHEAP SHOTS!

FINAL CRISIS #6 (of 7)

Writer: Grant Morrison Artists: J.G. Jones, Carlos Pacheco, Doug Mahnke, Marco Rudy, Christin Alamy, and Jesus Merino Publisher: DC Comics Reviewer: Ambush Bug

OK, right off the “bat” for those of you who cast opinions aside if they don’t correspond to your own: I didn’t like this book. And I don’t particularly like this series. So if you are one of those sensitive types who can’t take an opposing opinion, scroll down and scoff at my ignorance for not “getting” the awesomeness that is FINAL CREEZUS.
Buh-bye, now.
OK, only the open minded left? Good. I am buying FINAL CRISIS, partially because I can’t turn away from the train-wreckedness of it all and partially because I, like many of you, wanted to tune into this “final fate” of the Batman crap that DC has been hyping all year, first with R.I.P., and now for realsy real in FINAL CRISIS. There are those who want to say R.I.P. and FC are unrelated, but since both series at one point or another were promoted as “the final fate of Batman” and both were written by the same writer, I can’t help but group the two stories together.
I made it clear in the talkbacks that I had difficulty following R.I.P. (and I appreciate the Talkbackers willing to set me straight about a few things, that’s what the Talkbacks are for, ya know, elaborating, debating, and bullshitting comics…) and realize that I simply have difficulty following this new Grant Morrison’s superhero writing style. Grant’s more straight-forward and cohesive style of writing is much more to my preference. WE3 and especially AZTEK were two of my all time favorite Morrison epics. But the Grant who wrote those two series isn’t the same Grant that has showed up this year mapping out the DCU (for Geoff Johns to clean up next year). This Grant thinks in broad strokes and flits around from one story thread to another like a gnat in a sandstorm. This Grant doesn’t want to be bothered with the small stuff. This Grant wants to write something that should be appreciated as a whole, yet it’s sold in increments and suffers from the worst case of delay since, well, SEVEN SOLDIERS OF VICTORY.
Me? I read about a hundred books a month. I’ve compartmentalized my mind to accommodate following these books and do a pretty good job of remembering storylines and characters from one month to the next if they come out consistently. When delays occur, though, it’s hard and more often than not, I tune out from a book if I’m not reminded of the story by a consistent distribution schedule. And who has the time to reread every issue prior before reading a new one? I simply don’t. If your comic requires homework and research, then you’ve officially taken the fun out of funny books for me. And that’s probably why I’m having trouble following FINAL CRISIS, I guess.
But you know what? These big event books are famous for being breezy. They are good for telling broad stories. They are supposed to promote the entirety of the universe the event falls in. Problem is, the rest of the comics distributed by DC are trudging along without acknowledging the event even exists. The world has been taken hostage by Darkseid and been turned into a post-apocalyptic horrorworld where heroines don black leather and fetish masks and mount giant dogs and our only hope lies in the hands of face-painters. And the rest of the DCU is carrying on as if it isn’t happening like it’s a homeless person on a crowded subway car. FINAL CRISIS is over there hemming and hawing about how many pickles he can stuff into his hat, while the DCU is trying its hardest to ignore him, occasionally tossing a side-ways glance to make sure he’s not charging with a hat full of pickles.
Now, if I were naïve I would believe that Didio and Co. were thinking of us in keeping the FC crossovers to a minimum, but c’mon, we know the truth. This is a case of one man obsessively writing and rewriting an event and everything else being on hold till he finishes it. No one knows what Morrison is doing, so they can’t do anything til he’s finished. This guy’s got the entire DCU at gunpoint while he tweaks and twitters from one plot to the next. If Grant were telling this broad strokes/channel-surfing style story and there were crossovers elaborating on the corruption of Mary Marvel (maybe taking place in JSA or better yet SUPERGIRL), the trial of Hal Jordan (I’m thinking maybe in GREEN LANTERN), the death of J’onn J’onzz (possibly a JLA tie-in), the resurrection of Barry Allen (hmmm…I don’t know…FLASH?), and most importantly, the death of Batman (possibly a big story running through the Bat-books with a snappy title like…hmmm…off the top of my head, how about R.I.P.?), I wouldn’t have a problem with tie-ins with the series. The reason why crossovers get so much flack is because the tie-ins are often redundant and the main event book is too breezy. FINAL CRISIS is the opposite. It’s dense. Too dense for one comic written by a writer who doesn’t want to be bothered by details. Never has a comic event come along as in need of elaboration for clarity’s sake as FINAL CRISIS has.
I’ve ranted enough bout FINAL CRISIS as a whole; now let’s get to my main beef with issue number six.
If you have a character that is basically the most popular and iconic character of your entire comic book line…
and if you write an issue that promises the death of said character…
shouldn’t you spend more than just two regular pages, a double splash page, and a final splash page on said character during his final moments?
I think so.
This pissed me off on multiple levels. Not only could Morrison not stray away from the Supergirl/Mary Marvel catfight that’s been going on for three issues long enough to give a bit more attention to this pretty important event, the time he does spend on Batman’s demise has him doing something completely out of character. I’ve tried to make it a point to not say things like “this is completely out of character” or “this shatters the core foundation of the character”. A good writer can make me believe any character can do anything or any occurrence, no matter how crazy, could actually happen, given the right amount of care and creativity behind it. Brubaker’s resurrection of Bucky is the perfect example. But this issue breaks one of the few laws of comics that should be left sacred: Batman uses a gun. And I’m not saying that Batman should never, ever use a gun, but to spend two pages on this important action is doing a complete disservice to the character. If ever an issue dedicated to the deconstruction of a single instant was needed, it’s needed here, explaining to us how Batman rules out every other possibility in that genius mind of his and comes to the conclusion that using the one thing that he swore never to use to stop the bad guy was the only choice he could come up with.
Simply put: Bats deserved better.
What does it say about an issue hyped to contain Batman’s final fate when the most memorable scene of the book stars Mr. Tawky Tawny (a cool scene, but it’s unforgivable that Morrison would rather focus on a cat in a suit than the most popular character in the DCU)?
But Morrison doesn’t want to be bothered with all of that. Sure, Morrison may love the DCU, but things like character or common sense or motivation? Those things are a waste of his time, apparently; something for the peon editors and other lowly writers at DCU to deal with once Morrison’s focus goes elsewhere.
I’ve spent as much talking about what FINAL CRISIS isn’t as I have talking about what it is here. And that’s too bad. I want to like this book. I want to like DC, but these days with the blatant and obvious ways in which editorial manipulates and outright lies to the fans in order to make it look like this is some sort of grand plan and the ham-fisted way continuity has been handled for the last three years, it really has made me lose hope for the company.
At least the majority of DC’s books are still $2.99, right?
Ambush Bug is Mark L. Miller, reviewer and co-editor of AICN Comics for over seven years. Check out a five page preview of his short story published in MUSCLES & FIGHTS 3 (AVAILABLE NOW at Muscles & Fights.com.) on his ComicSpace page. There you can also see a five page preview of his short story in MUSCLES & FRIGHTS! Bug was recently interviewed here and here at Cream City Comics.

INVINCIBLE #58

Writer: Robert Kirkman Artists: Ryan Ottley & Fco Plascencia Publisher: Image Comics Reviewer: Optimous Douche

Pretty much two books dominated the shelves last week, and one even captured America’s heart. The sad fact that neither of them was INVINCIBLE once again proves my theory that 24 Hour News lobotomizes our country one “special report” at a time.
Our first debutaint to the ball was FINAL CRISIS, the series that has mathletes everywhere trying to conjure up the protective symbol that will stop them from getting stuffed in lockers. Yes, folks, we have waited three years for face painting. When I face painted myself as a Snork at camp and attached a bent paper towel roll to my head, I got my ass kicked, but now in the DC Universe face painting is more powerful than Superman. I’m all for originality, but sometimes ideas aren’t tried for a reason.
On the other side of the “the media couldn’t tell a good comic if you paper-cut their throat with it” coin we have AMAZING SPIDER-MAN with Barack Obama. You might have noticed that your Local Comic Shop had a slew of soccer moms and almost everyone with an Internet connection trying to score a copy of this soon to be revered historic issue. Yet here I am still trying to figure out what was historic about this issue, since super heroes have been canoodling with Presidents for a long time now. I’m also still working out what was so damn good about the story that caused every single copy in Pennsylvania to be sold by 11:00 a.m. An imposter, a fist-bump, and a lame joke by Spidey about being Secretary of Ass Kicking? I was almost compelled to give my copy to a kid outside the store who couldn’t get one…almost.
Instead of giving the poor lost waif nothing, what I should have done is taken him aside and said, “Billy, the media might lead you to believe the only thing on the shelves have Crises, Invasions or Obamas in them. But what if I told you that there was a book with mysteries that don’t require massive amounts of LSD to unravel, a book where the only crossover titles you need are later issues -- and you will definitely be able to get a copy.” I hope he would say, “Mr. Douche, I sure would like to read a copy of that book.” And I would say, “I bet you would, now let me tell you why it’s so fucking awesome and why I will enjoy my copy when I get home.”
INVINCIBLE has been the one book that has not only held to canon, but has meticulously resurrected throwaway moments and characters into stirring drama, and this issue is the sideliners’ time to shine. The Teen Team debates over a new identity and name, Monster Girl finally gets her rapid anti-aging under control and there is a hilarious moment where we get to see what the guardian of the seas does all day. There is also a ton of set-up for tomorrow: a star faced madman, a Mrs. Robinson vibe that could spell trouble for Mark’s younger brother and dear old Dad shows up as well. I’m amazed that Ottley was able to fit all of these plot threads on 22 pages with such great flow and clarity.
Some have been harsh on the constant canoodling between Atom Eve and Mark as of late, and for those whose balls haven’t dropped yet, there is more of that “icky” stuff in this issue. However, I love the fact that their relationship has hit more rocks than a Ryan O’Neil movie and exhibits that all of us at one time or another lead with our heart over our head. Tired of boinking in their parents’ houses, Eve concocts a plan to make Mark some money off of his alien-given powers. Despite misgivings, Mark agrees whole heartedly. There’s many a man that has tripped into misgivings for doe eyes and pouty lips. These are the little nuances that allow the book to not only explore the super hero genre unfettered, but life as well.
There’s something to be said for Kirkman’s manifesto that appeared after comic-con last year. What can you do with a universe that isn’t owned and operated under a corporate umbrella? What can you do with imagery, words and ideas when not fettered by continuity and marketing mandates? INVINCIBLE, that’s what.
When Optimous Douche isn’t reading comics and misspelling the names of 80’s icons, he “transforms” into a corporate communications guru. "What if the whole world had superpowers? Find out in the pages of Optimous’ original book AVERAGE JOE. Read the first full issue on Optimous’ New Blog and see original sketches by fellow @$$hole Bottleimp. If you are a publisher or can help these guys get AVERAGE JOE up, up, and on the shelves in any way, drop Optimous a line."

MANHUNTER #38 (last issue)

Writer: Michael Andreyko Artist: Michael Gaydos Publisher: DC Comics Reviewer: BottleImp

Well, it’s over… MANHUNTER is cancelled… again. And even though I bought every issue of this series and, for the most part, enjoyed following the adventures of Kate Spencer every month, I think I can understand why MANHUNTER has finally toppled over the brink after being perched on the edge of cancellation for so long. So before I give my two cents on this title’s last issue, here’s a rundown of the little problems that snowballed into the major flaws that most likely brought this series down.
First off, MANHUNTER never managed to deliver on its initial “hook”—the premise of a criminal prosecutor who was so disgusted by superhuman murderers escaping justice that she decided to track them down and kill them. That’s what attracted me to this series in the first place; I was intrigued to see how a superhero who wasn’t afraid to kill would mesh with the other heroes of the DC Universe. Unfortunately, aside from the premiere issue’s death of Copperhead at the new Manhunter’s hand, that “hook” never really came into play again. There were a few nice moments early on in the series when Kate’s conscience weighed on her in regards to her methods, but soon even the moral ambiguity faded from the series. Manhunter became just another superhero who caught the bad guys. And as the series lost its edge, so too did its main character.
Another thing I loved initially about MANHUNTER was that Kate Spencer was…well, kind of a bitch. Sure, she believed in truth and justice, but that didn’t mean that she was some goody-two-shoes. It was a refreshing change of pace from the everyday superhero—the nearest comparison I can think of is Guy Gardner (when he’s being written as kind of a jerk, yet still effective, unlike the buffoon of the Giffen-JLI era)—but as the series progressed Kate mellowed out more and more. She never became a saint, but again, the edge was dulled. Speaking of dull…
One of Andreyko’s influences on MANHUNTER was James Robinson’s STARMAN, and one area where this connection becomes apparent is in the large supporting casts of characters both new and culled from DC obscurity. However, while Robinson made his supporting cast an interesting and integral part of his stories, Andreyko’s cast never quite gelled. Aside from Manhunter’s criminal weapons manufacturer turned tech wizard Dylan, none of the supporting players brought much in the way of personality or plot involvement to the series. More often then not a supporting cast member’s subplot would resolve without ever crossing into the plot of the main character—this was especially irritating when it came to the subplot involving Mark Shaw, the previous Manhunter. Here was a chance for Andreyko to pull together and expand upon the Manhunter legacy, much as Robinson had done with Starman, but instead Shaw went his own way, Kate went hers, and nothing great came of it.
Missed chances—that’s what sums up this series for me. Nowhere is this feeling better exemplified than in the final two issues. Issue 36 ended with an abortion clinic being blown up, which hearkens back to a similar cliffhanger that was seen before MANHUNTER’s hiatus over a year ago. Did we finally get to see why this happened, and what Manhunter was going to do about it? No. Instead Andreyko gives his readers a self-indulgent two-issue trip into Kate Spencer’s future with a plot that doesn’t connect with the bombing, has no suspense or tension, and features some of the lamest supervillains ever to grace the comic pages. The purpose of this time-jump? To show that Kate’s son grows up to be a superhero in a Manhunter suit to match his mom’s. What? Why? This reminded me of nothing so much as those “Imaginary Stories” of DC’s Silver Age, where Batman and Batwoman got married and had kids who became the new Batman and Robin, or Superman ends up going to live on Mars with Lori Lemaris or somesuch nonsense. MANHUNTER’s final issues are a slap in the face to all of us who bought the series regularly and expected to see good storytelling. Instead we got a dismissal of lingering plot threads and a cheesy, “happily-ever-after” ending. Bleh.
Well, all in all, MANHUNTER had some good spots and some rough patches, and it’s a shame that the series had to end. I’m sure the character will pop up throughout the rest of the DC Universe; I just wish Andreyko had given Kate Spencer a better send-off in her own title.
When released from his Bottle, the Imp takes the form of Stephen Andrade, an artist/illustrator/pirate monkey painter from the Northeast who's given up comics more times than he can remember. But every time he thinks he's out, they pull him back in.

SCARLET VERONICA #3

Writer: Jason Moody Art: Justin Greathouse Publisher: Ape Entertainment Reviewer: Ryan McLelland

This week I got my grubby little hands on SCARLET VERONICA #3. While I enjoy many of Ape Entertainment’s great books I was a bit surprised at how underwhelming this comic was. By the sum of its parts SCARLET VERONICA could be a great comic but upon closer inspection it is all too easy to see it as a comic continually marred with silly dialogue and ample clichés.
Veronica is a hottie high school chick that turns into this kinda-cute hulk-like zombie-monster thing who wears Batwoman’s ripped T-shirt. Joined by her geeky buddy Brian, Veronica is deeply embroiled in a supernatural caper that has her joining Chun-Li clone Lydia, Frank the Zombie, and Mr. Grim Reaper to fight off the creatures who have risen up to try and take over the world. Veronica is the one who is the key to saving the world, so with wisecracks that will make any normal person groan, off she goes to fight.
Later in the book the zombies figure out that Veronica and Brian go to high school, so they attack there during the day. We then get to see V turn into Scarlet Veronica and kick some ass while the scared students stand around going “Dude”, “Like, what is going on?”, and, um, “Dude” again. Veronica then gets to kick some major ass in an amazingly drawn fight with an ugly werewolf-demon-monster-guy where she beats the crap out of him while spouting lines like “Batter Up!”
I’m taking that the book isn’t really for intended for anyone over the age of 13 because anyone over that age realizes that kids in high school really don’t talk like that – perhaps if they are all living at some California Beach Surf School. The other supernatural characters speak like they are straight from pop-culture junkie heaven. Maybe it would be nice if one character was the ubersupergeek, but the fact that is most of them act like they are out of fourth grade for the day with the vernacular heard at the Philadelphia Comic-Con.
The art style goes from cartoony to a mangaesque look from here to there as if having a style at a certain panel becomes acceptable to illustrate a point only to revert back to the cartoony look the next panel. As a whole Jason Moody’s artwork on the book is pretty well done, helped out amazingly by the phenom coloring on the book. For the most part this book looks beautiful (except for the out-of-place mangaesque moments) and Moody surely has a great time drawing the undead zombie Scarlet Veronica.
SCARLET VERONICA does get bogged down by dialogue seemingly written in-between World of Warcraft raids. A better grasp of teenage terminology coupled with supernatural characters that don’t talk like they just got done watching the “Star Wars” trilogy might help with that but as this isn’t my book, I can’t help that. SCARLET VERONICA does have kick ass characters, a good plot, and great artwork overall – but you can expect to roll your eyes more than a couple times at the silly dialogue.
Ryan McLelland has worked in movies and comics journalism for the past several years before joining the @$$holes here at AICN. Ryan’s comic work has already graced comic shelves with Arcana’s PHILLY, WISE INTELLIGENCE, UPTOWN GIRL, and THE SENTINELS ANTHOLOGY. He rarely updates his blog but when he does it can be read at www.eyewannabe.com

G.I. JOE #1

Writer: Chuck Dixon Artist: Robert Atkins Publisher: IDW Publishing Reviewer: Ambush Bug

I’m waiting.
I’m waiting for the day I can pick up a G.I.JOE comic and scream “AWESOME! This…this is just awesome!!!”
You see, I grew up at just the right time, during the height of the G.I. JOE blitz. Sure it was a huge corporate cross-promotional bonanza, but hell, I was 9. What the hell did I know about that? All I knew is that I loved G.I. JOE. I remember one summer I mowed lawns and saved my pennies to buy the USS FLAGG Aircraft Carrier (with The Admiral action figure included, of course) at my local Toys R Us. I was beaming with joy on the day we drove the van to the toy store, I plopped my penny jar on the counter, and patrons watched as it took two cashiers to help cart out the gigantic toy to the car. When I got home I was amazed at the size of the thing. I could freaking lay on it! I fit damn near all of my G.I. JOE figures and vehicles on the gigantic deck and had battles for hours that mostly consisted of me making ‘splosion sounds with my mouth and knocking over figures I took way too much time to place with great care. I’ll never forget the day when I went down to my basement ready for another naval battle, only to find a big hairy pile of shit on deck in between my HISS tank and the Dragonfly helicopter. It was an especially smelly and dastardly deed, one I wouldn’t put past Zartan himself--but I knew it was Thomas O’Malley, the alley cat my brother had taken in as a stray, who was the true culprit. And on that day, Joe soldier and COBRA trooper alike fought side by side against an incontinent and furry foe. It was a day remembered by all, especially Thomas O’Malley who never walked correctly again with a Chuckles figure shoved up where to poop came from. Ahh, the nostalgia.
And that’s the thing. Nothing, no matter what it is, is ever going to match that feeling of nostalgia when you hear the name G.I. JOE: carting the USS FLAGG aircraft carrier home, reading those comics, sitting on my belly in the living room watching the cartoons. Absolutely nothing can compare.
Despite the fact that COBRA is starting to rear its reptilian head in this first issue of G.I. JOE, the nostalgia and disappointment one feels when faced with the fact that “it’ll never be like that again…” is the true villain of IDW’s new G.I. JOE series. It’s going to make people look at this comic and feel a bit sad, somewhat frustrated, and maybe even make them go to the attic and see if those old carrying cases of G.I. JOE figures haven’t melted in the summer heat.
And that’s really not fair to this first issue of G.I. JOE, I know. The makers of this comic didn’t create the blitz that swept up so many of America’s small minds and dollars in the 80’s. Hell, the people behind this first issue are probably just as much fans as I was.
And the story is not bad. Set in a time right before COBRA revealed itself as a terrorist organization, this G.I. JOE team is antsy. They are the best of the best, but spend most of their time in a bunker in the middle of the desert waiting for something to happen. Drill Sergeant Beachhead confesses that he longs for worthy opponents, and from the small rumblings that happen in this issue, it looks like he’ll get his wish.
Writer Chuck Dixon (who is no stranger to adventure) does a good job of depicting the monotony while amping up the intrigue of the oncoming COBRA threat with the aforementioned down-time scene between Beachhead and Duke and an underwater excursion with Shipwreck and Deep Six. He also has a side-plot going on between Duke and Scarlett and the obligatory action scene where Snake-Eyes shows up a bit too late after a firefight with a mysterious disappearing warrior.
Aside from the Snake-Eyes scene, I was surprised by how slow this issue moved. There was stuff happening, for sure. But too much time was dedicated to driving the point home that the Joes are antsy and that COBRA hasn’t surfaced yet. It moved too slowly for a first issue, which should burn my eyebrows off with intensity if it wants to make it in this hard market and wash off a bit of the stank the property gathered from being spread thin and overworked wet over at Devil’s Due. In the end, I was definitely interested and intrigued, but the issue simply lacked the necessary punch to indicate to me that this series will live up to those battles once fought on my living room floor. When I reached the last page of this comic, I actually said, “That’s it?” Not a good thing to say after a first issue of any book.
Robert Atkins’ art is very good. No frills. It’s not flashy. It’s not over-stylized. Guns look like guns. Tanks look like tanks. Equipment looks the way it should. Given that there was little action in this one (the short Snake-Eyes bit was well paneled, I guess), Atkins can be commended for his authentic depictions of arsenals and military clothing, but the verdict is still out whether or not he can put together a good action scene because, quite frankly, there wasn’t one in this issue.
Hopefully, this book will pick up. I see what Dixon is doing here. He’s going for the slow build, but here’s hoping it doesn’t go on for too long. This comic book series may never live up to The Battle of Cat’s @$$, but there’s potential here and Dixon’s history of kick-@$$ action-filled stories leads me to believe that things will start moving soon, so I’ll stick with it for a few more issues to see that happen. Being a Joe fan for as long as I have, I hope for the best when I crack open a new comic book treatment, but the years of disappointment have left me a bit jaded and as much as I long for those wars that took place on the living room floor, I have a sinking feeling that conflicts of that caliber will never translate to the printed page and belong up with the action figure cases in the attic. But I still hope for the best for this series. I didn’t scream, “AWESOME! This…this is just awesome!!!” after adding this one, but it’s too early to give up on the book yet. There had better be some Yo Joe-ing soon, though.

BLACK LIGHTNING: YEAR ONE #1

Writer: Jen Van Meter Artist: Cully Hamner Publisher: DC Comics Reviewer: Stones Throw

FIFTEEN THINGS YOU MIGHT NOT KNOW ABOUT THE FORTY-FOURTH PRESIDENT

1) Obama owns a complete collection of AMAZING SPIDER-MAN comics, and was in fact one of the biggest proponents of the recent “One More Day” storyline. “It is time for change to come to Spider-Man,” he said.
2) He described Mark Waid’s recent two-parter with Marcos Martin as “awesome.”
3) Despite a hectic schedule, Obama still manages to make a weekly visit to Middle-Earth Comics in Washington, DC, where he enjoys perusing the back issues while his Secret Service guard waits outside.
4) Of Jan Van Meter and Cully Hamner’s recent BLACK LIGHTNING: YEAR ONE he said, “Marvel’s AMAZING SPIDER-MAN cover is getting all the publicity, but I think this is a better comic to represent the popular feeling at the beginning of my presidency.”
5) “In Black Lightning’s struggle to reform a tough inner-city high school readers might be reminded of my work as a community organizer in Chicago, recounted in my best-selling book DREAMS FROM MY FATHER, now retailing from Three Rivers Press at $8.99,” the President continued.
6) THE AUDACITY OF HOPE, Obama’s second book, is also currently on sale.
7) Former mayor of New York City Rudy Giuliani commented, “Black Lightning is immersing himself in Metropolis machine politics.”
8) Obama considers himself a fan of writer Van Meter. “I hadn’t seen much of her work before this, but let me tell you, I’ll be seeking it out now,” he enthused. “Van Meter manages to communicate the emotional reality of Jeff Pierce’s frayed relationship with his wife, the scary but enticing sensuality of his secret power, the larger-than-life environment of Metropolis and the down-to-earth black neighborhood.
“It’s no mean feat.”
9) The President wishes more comic book art could look like Cully Hamner’s. “That guy’s great. And the cover’s a doozy.”
10) Obama fails to see a problem with Black Lightning having the word “Black” in front of his name. “It’s not like BLACK GREEN LANTERN,” he said. “Black Lightning actually sounds pretty cool.
“‘Lightning’ sounds much worse.”
11) Obama, the son of a father from Kenya and a mother from Kansas, is an avid reader of the AICN Comics column, on both Mondays and Wednesdays. “I like SHOOT THE MESSENGER sometimes,” the former President-Elect said. “On balance, those guys’ reviews can be a little over-the-top.”
12) The President’s favorite comics are WATCHMEN and Neil Gaiman’s SANDMAN. When asked, he responded “I’m looking forward to the movie. I’m glad Warners and Fox could put their partisan bickering behind them and reach an agreement.
“Even if it’s not that good, I’ll still have the books.”
13) Obama credits White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel with turning him onto THE WALKING DEAD.
“It’s an addictive read,” he explained. “Michelle won’t let me keep it in the house, though.”
14) Before his inaugural address, Obama relaxed with a copy of FINAL CRISIS # 6. “What the fuck is going on here?” he asked.
15) The President recommends BLACK LIGHTNING: YEAR ONE # 2, out today, and wouldn’t mind seeing an ongoing BLACK LIGHTNING series from these guys.

BATMAN VS PREDATOR V1 (1ST LIMITED SERIES)

Writer: Dave Gibbons Pencils: Andy Kubert Inker: Adam Kubert Publisher: DC/Dark Horse comics Guest Reviewer: “William”

It's rare when lightning is captured within a proverbial comic book bottle. You know that feeling--the one where you read a certain comic book and years later it's still a pretty kick-ass event.
Such is the great BATMAN VS PREDATOR limited series (the original, not the sequels). I remember when it first came out in the early nineties; I would've been 11 or so at the time. Being in junior high I remember hearing that there was this big event going on the BATMAN comics, something involving him and a Predator, but because I was 11 I was in that phase where I was too young to work, and my mother (like most mothers did) thought that comics were a waste of money. I was barely able to get comics at flea markets (a big big thank you to all the uncredited flea-market vendors who were always able to sell like 4 comics for a dollar back then), let alone direct edition ones that came with $4.99 price tags. So no BATMAN VS PREDATOR for me then.
Fast forward to the mid nineties, now I'm in my high school years and I get to work on my own (albeit fast food stuff, ugh) and spend my disposable income on whatever I want. I remember going into a Barnes & Noble one day and seeing their TPB section, and upon going through the B's lo and behold there was the collected edition of the event. Suddenly all the memories popped back on how I couldn't purchase it before, but now here was my chance to give a big Nelson Muntz's haha! at fate's attempts and I purchased it right then and there.
If there's one word to describe the comic it's one that was used before in this article: kick-ass. Batman is kick-ass, Predator is kick-ass, the writing by Dave Gibbons is kick-ass, the art by the wonder Kubert brothers is the most kick-ass of all. To sum it up in one sentence, the comic follows the traditional Predator storyline where one hunter comes looking for worthy challenges and along the way finds Batman; Batman decides that Gotham will not fall prey to this alien, and it's basically mano y mano from then on out. Plus there are some very cool sequences, such as Batman's first fight with the Predator at the junkyard, the Batmobile being torn apart by the Predator, Batman using a very cool looking modified suit for their final fight, etc. Great stuff.
I think what stood out most for me was the fact that I had never seen Batman take such wallop before. I'm a big fan of the Predator from the movies, and one has to know that whomever a Predator decides to take on, it's not going to be an easy fight for his opponent. I mean in the first Predator movie he took on an entire group of tough-as-nails commandos, barely getting beaten by the remaining Dutch. In any case there's one particular panel in this comic that shows the horrific results of Batman's first fight with the Predator, one involving him being heavily bandaged, lacerated in various places, broken bones, severe bleeding involved throughout all of the Batcave as he had barely stumbled into Alfred's waiting hands. And I remember thinking to myself, holy crap--Batman has never been beaten up like that before. I mean he's had fights with the Joker, mob bosses, various villains during decades worth of comics, but nobody (and I mean NOBODY) put the hurt on Batman as this Predator did. Even since this comic, besides the broken back caused by Bane, I don't recall him getting beaten so badly.
Anyways for all five of you who still haven't read this incredible event, I highly recommend you to pick it up whenever you can. Besides the great story by Dave Gibbons, and the incredible artwork by the Kubert brothers (who continue to be vastly underrated, especially when compared to more flavor of the month artists like Joe Madureira), you're going to find a great roller coaster ride that'll make you wonder why on Earth this isn't made into a CGI movie (I know I know, the various licensing issues and whatnot. Still, one can dream can't they?). Plus there's some great intros describing the behind-the-scenes casual luncheons held by the various DC/Dark Horse personnel that led to this event.
On a closing note, because I'm a continuing fan of the PREDATOR VS ??? comic book titles, has anybody else noticed that Predator has fought a lot of DC and various independent comic book heroes, but there's no Marvel characters to be found? How cool would it be to see Predator fight against Spider-Man, or Wolverine, or Venom, or Iron Man? Just my two cents on the matter.

FAIRY TAIL VOLUMES 3 & 4

By Hiro Mashima Released by Del Rey Reviewed by Scott Green

It's hard not to be won over by a manga in which a stern faced young woman in breastplate and skirt takes to the air like a wushu heroine in clearing a hall full of armed toughs. Magically swapping weapons, in one page she's swatting foes with a broadsword, before bouncing into the air and springing a spear into the side of a guy targeting her. She lands with a short sword in each hand before taking out a section of the opposing crowd with a battle axe, finishing off the sweep with a BERSERK's style giant sword. Though FAIRY TAIL's home anthology SHONEN MAGAZINE skews a bit older than SHONEN JUMP, with a history of manga like AIR GEAR, CROMARTIE HIGH SCHOOL, DEVILMAN, GTO and VIOLENCE JACK, the spirit of the manga is not unlike the quests of JUMP's well known heroes. Its premise has some effect in casting the manga in a distinctive light, but it is the unreserved energy and style that elevates FAIRY TAIL.
If you read American comics in the 90's you're doubtlessly familiar with Rob Liefeld's YOUNGBLOOD. When the comic was launched in 1992 as part of the new consortium of creators, Image Comics, Liefeld was a celebrity. The Levi jeans ad has to be mentioned. He was a top name in the field launching his big, solo project at the height of the speculation fueled comic boom. Perhaps this was to have informed the work itself, because YOUNGBLOOD was premised as a familiar super-hero team twisted to reflect the reality of celebrity. In interviews leading up to the first issue, Liefeld boasted that his characters would have to contend with public expectations, as well as the physical realities of carrying out demanding, high profile work. The professional athlete-like wear on their bodies was mentioned as an example.
I bring up this bit of not-so-well-regarded comic history because, while YOUNGBLOOD was supposed to be the American superhero team grafted to the realities of fame, FAIRY TAIL is the shonen hero story grafted to celebrity culture. Its characters aren't unlike all of those popular SHONEN JUMP champions, but they're also famous/infamous, attractive, destructive and damaged. There's a daring, playful attitude at work in the manga. The characters behave recklessly. The author flaunts the tiny waists and round chests of the cast's young ladies. Yet, rather than foolish or pandering, these potential liabilities fit into the spirit of the manga.
The titular FAIRY TAIL is a guild of wizards, loved by their young fans for their style and flare, loathed by government officials for the path of destruction left during the course of their work. At the center of the manga's focus is the trio of guild-newbie Lucy Heartphilia, a young woman able to summon beings from other worlds using her "Keys of the Gates", Natsu Dragonil, a guy with feral tendencies and a devastating command of fire magic, and Happy, a winged, talking blue cat. Volumes three and four also employ Gray Fullbuster, Natsu's ice wielding, competitive peer, and slightly older guild-mate Erza, who plays the harsh senior role, and who rages into battle with the ability to summon a host of different melee weapons and suits of armor.
In deconstructing FAIRY TAIL, deficits emerge. Mashima is by no means unskilled at any aspect of manga storytelling, but a critical eye spots weaknesses, particularly with progressions. Specifically, both action and plot are whiplash-prone.
FAIRY TAIL is fine with its sequential quests and cliff hangers. Beyond that competency, my early concerns about the manga's ability to remain interesting over the long term have largely evaporated. The pieces being arranged seem to suggest that there's a long term plan regarding the resurrection of a dark lord, whose left over creations and projects will plaque the heroes until the conflict comes to a head.
The model works better than the rudimentary glue that holds together simple fight manga. However, it does not direct momentum or anticipation as well as the kings of the genre. Similarly, the manga does not deliver as effectively as it might. Volume three starts building up the grouping of Natsu, Gray and Erza as FAIRY TAIL's strongest team. They do work together, and when that happens, the spectacle is suitably impressive, but when they start down the split up and fight routine, the manga seems to be bowing to formula rather than leveraging what it has established.
FAIRY TAIL is packed with magical battles that pulse with dynamic energy. The excitement is infectious in these conflagrations; however, I am slightly bothered by the choreography. It's a nitpick criticism, cropping up when the manga is given a close inspection, but I do get the sense that the panel to panel flow of the fights lack some consideration. If you insist on finding it, it takes a couple of readings to really connect the blow-by-blow logic. When considering the space between combatants and the way in which they are oriented to each other, mentally constructing the progression asks for allowances in mid-air contortions and artistic license.
Exhuberance is nothing new to the genre. Like ONE PIECE's Eiichiro Oda and NARUTO's Masashi Kishimoto, Hiro Mashima grew up a fan of DRAGON BALL creator Akira Toriyama. The planet cracking battles of DRAGON BALL Z have been of primary interest to North American fans. In contrast, these manga creators have often mentioned their fondness for the early parts of DRAGON BALL, in which a primal, monkey tailed boy wandered into adventures with the shape changing pigs and desert bandits of JOURNEY TO THE WEST, but also robots, dinosaurs, Universal monsters, Native Americans and just about anything else that Toriyama could gleefully pluck out of the popular imagination.
While FAIRY TAIL goes for irrepressible late-teens rather than a wild adolescent, the verve of early DRAGON BALL is in effect. Hiro Mashima doesn't quite succeed in balancing structure with the potential for anything to happen, but FAIRY TAIL works well enough favoring the latter. Between the charisma and unmediated determination of the heroes and the concussive force of the action, Hiro Mashima succeeds in packaging potent fantasy action.
Scott Green has been writing for AICN ANIME for over seven years. If you like what you see here and love anime & manga, be sure to check out his latest AICN ANIME column here.

Hey folks, Ambush Bug here with another batch of books from the fringe. This week we have an electric rodent, an encyclopedia of monsters, @$$-kicking rabbis, and a book for geneticists young and old. Check ‘em out.

LIGHTNING SQUIRREL #2 Ronin Studios

In this action packed second issue, Lightning Squirrel takes on a pair of tree-trimmers set to cut down his favorite tree. And he still has enough time to take on Swimming Lady, thwart a robbery, terrorize some school children, and save an innocent squirrel from being squished by a car. All in a day’s work for our furry, rhyming rodent. There’s a lot of fun to be had with this comic and creator/writer Jeffrey F. Kipnis and artist Victor Cabanelas are making sure to jam as much of it as possible into every issue.

BEASTS BOOK 1 & 2 Fantagraphics Books

Never before have I peered through the pages of such a comprehensive guide to all things monstrous. This reference book of sorts lists every monstrosity you can ever imagine and quite a few I never knew existed for this book. The best part is that some of the finest indie artists in the biz contribute one page art for the entries depicting the beasts in humorous and often terrifying ways. Writing a story and need some kind of obscure monster to give your tale some tooth? These two volumes have a surplus of beasts to study and reference. I had a blast leafing through the entries describing the monsters and I especially loved all of the amazing art that comes from outside of the norm, but makes these pictures all the more fitting for these things that go bump in the day and night. BEASTS BOOK ONE is available in softcover, while BEASTS BOOK TWO comes in gorgeous hardcover.

SPIRALMIND: RABBI’S LAMENT #1 Phi3 Comics

What really stands out in this indie effort from creators Matthew J. Rothblatt and Benito Perez is the art, which resembles an amalgamation of Steve Ditko and Ron Lim’s styles. Not a style you see often in this post-Image era of cross-hatches and sketches, and that’s what made reading this first issue so refreshing. The story aims high with a conflict of biblical proportions, but boiled down to its basics, it’s got an @$$-kicking rabbi, a spandex clad superhero, and werewolves that vomit blood and pee all over the place. Issue one also has a full article on Ancient Judaic Exorcism. This is definitely unlike any comic I’ve read before (one of the perks of having this Indie Jones gig) and a hell of a lot of fun to read. Sure, the angels vs. demons motif is a little played, but with the combination of nice art and offbeat ideas, SPIRALMIND: RABBI’S LAMENT is definitely a comic book reading experience you won’t forget. Issue #1 is can be purchased here and here.

THE STUFF OF LIFE: A GRAPHIC GUIDE TO GENETICS AND DNA OGN Hill & Wang

The makers of the amazing biography of ISADORA DUNCAN and THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES do it again, but this time it’s all about science. Genetics to be specific. But this graphic novel doesn’t just state boring facts, it tells the tale of genetics, DNA, and human evolution through a fictional and entertaining story about inquisitive space aliens studying earth. I learned quite a bit reading this book about what makes us tick. Mark Schultz knows when to stick to the facts, and more importantly knows when the info is getting dull, and spices it up with more aliens. The art by Zander and Kevin Cannon is also damn fine; clean and crisp, yet lacking all of that distracting flash. If I were a science teacher looking to teach my students about DNA in a fun manner, this book would be on my list for literature for the course. Hill & Wang seem to be dedicated to opening up the comics medium into areas where graphic literature can be appreciated and should be commended for such an endeavor. With so much brainless crap on the shelves, it’s good to see a comic book company try to give back a little and elevate comics to more than just hobby status. They are making it a learning experience.

YOUNG LIARS #11 DC Comics

With each and every new issue of YOUNG LIARS, I can't help but feel I'm losing just that little bit more of my grip on reality, and honestly, it's kind of sublime. Never have I been so willing to just go unquestionably with the flow on a book and just accept what is happening in front of me with a "well, of course they're alien spiders from Mars with human hosts bent on conquering the world! How could it be any other way?!" And then I reflect on what I just said and get a little smiley and giggly over the sheer outrageousness of this comic. This issue here has spider people, midgets with assault rifles, exploding trailer parks, a body count you'd expect from a PUNISHER comic and game changer of a cliffhanger if I've ever seen one. This comic is like a swift kick to the unmentionables, a foot long line of the nose sugar, and the revelation that your sister is really your brother all in one, every month. Really, that's about the most elegant way I can put it and really, even though I might not always have the slightest clue what the bug-fuck is going on, I pretty much wouldn't have it any other way. This is Lapham and his mad bastardy ways at their best. - Humphrey Lee

THE GOON #31 Dark Horse Comics

I think the people behind the Goon, aka Eric Powell, may be a bit guilty of buying into THE GOON’s own hype. Don’t get me wrong. THE GOON is a one of a kind, great comic, but lately with this multi-issue story arc, it’s taken itself a bit too seriously and made a lot of assumptions as to how close we all have been following the adventures of The Goon, Frankie, and the rest of the crew. It’s not that this story is lacking in sickly gleeful punch that made this series popular in the first place. It’s just that without a recap box, I really am left clueless as to who is who and why I should care. There are multiple women that show up in this issue that I know have some ties to past issues of THE GOON and the CHINATOWN Hardcover from last year, but no real recap consideration for new readers or old readers who may be reading more than just THE GOON means confusion when fists start flying, buildings start crashing down, and lives are lost. The emotions in this book are powerful and I can appreciate the shift in tone (it shows that Powell wants to add depth to the character), but I think the Goon and Co. are at their best when administered in one or two shot doses. THE GOON has always been one of my favorite series, but I can honestly say that the last few issues have been my least favorite. But it’s like saying this is my least favorite blow job. In the end, it’s still a BJ and its still THE GOON, so it’s bound to be good. THE GOON on a bad day is still better than most everything else out there. - Bug

LOCKE & KEY: HEADGAMES #1 IDW Publishing

Having introduced myself to this series not too long ago, and reviewing it as well (Check it, yo!) this first issue of the second LOCKE & KEY mini-series has had nothing but my full anticipation since it was solicited. And now it's here in my grubby little hands and I find that!!!...it's an "interlude" issue. There are no stark, startling revelations here. Hell, the only one of our Locke family protagonists seen here is for one panel. And y'know what? I didn't really care at all, I was so happy just to be back into this world with some new story and new direction. The aim at this issue was to give us just slightly more insight into the history between our newly revitalized nemesis Lucas and the shared past with the now deceased Rendell Locke as they schooled together in Lovecraft. There's something very insidious back there, waiting to play its way out for us as Hill sees fit, and we also get to see Lucas play cold heartless bastard in this issue as he and his unwilling accomplice bide their time and consolidate their power. This wasn't the return I was expecting, but I'm just glad to be back and am ready to be wowed with no doubt that said wowing will be delivered all in due course... - Humphrey Lee

FACES OF EVIL: PROMETHEUS #1 (One-Shot) DC Comics

I never read Grant Morrison’s JLA run so I had no idea what Prometheus was all about—I just picked this book up ‘cause I liked Federico Dallocchio’s artwork. Turns out that Prometheus is pretty badass. This book basically gives you his origin, what happened to him in the pages of JLA and where he’s been up ‘til now. A nice surprise is that his re-emergence actually ties in with the events of FINAL CRISIS, so maybe that miniseries actually has some sort of point after all. And if you enjoy seeing lame characters from the late ‘90s getting eviscerated, you probably should check this one out. - Imp

I KILL GIANTS #7 Image Comics

Not only was the series the first time I've ever seen Joe Kelly write something that wasn't for either of the Big Two (and for all I know this is the first thing he's ever written that wasn't for them) but this is also by far the best. And I'm a man who absolutely loved when he made with the funny on DEADPOOL, also concurs that ACTION COMICS #775 was one of the best Superman stories ever told, and dug his JLA run greatly. But IKG here, it's something else. For six issues we watched as our lead Barbara snarked and lonered her way through a life so full of tragedy that who could blame her, all while claiming that she, well, kills giants. And for those six Kelly skillfully kept us questioning if she was just using the whole Giants angle as a coping mechanism for what was going on in her life, or was there really something to her claims? Issue six gave us a definitive answer one way, in very impressive fashion, and now here's the finale, to not only do a complete 180 and take us back the other way, but to also present us with one of the warmest and most heartfelt conclusions to a very personal piece of fiction that I've read in comics. Very unexpected and quite welcome from something that I added to my pull list as little more than a lark since I couldn't stop my curiosity at a Kelly work at Image. This was overall just a great mini full of eccentricity, humor and humanity that I not only highly recommend, but hope to see get some well deserved attention come Eisner time. - Humphrey Lee

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #583 Marvel Comics

Bullshit. No other way to describe this issue in its entirety. Bullshit hype. And especially bullshit $3.99 price tag. Waid’s main story read like some filler story that had gathered dust on a shelf for a couple of years (no evidence was given to support Betty Brant’s lack of friends over the past year’s worth of stories, that’s for sure). And the six-page back-up that has garnered national attention was about as entertaining as one of those old Hostess super hero ads of old. In fact, those old ads at least were fun to read. Here we get a piece so fluffy it comes with its own set of knee-pads. That a man in a mask could ever get this close to the President-elect is implausible enough, but the speedy resolution and the fact that Nauck’s Obama doesn’t really even look anything like him makes this a shameless and embarrassing display of what Marvel has to offer the masses. I don’t even want to open the can of worms that the mystery of mistaken Obama-identity hinges on which Obama has more knowledge of basketball...because y’know, Obama’s black and all, I guess. National attention for a comic is great. That this issue gets people to come into comic shops for the first time is good. But the thought that this is the type of comic that the general public is going to be thinking of when they think of comic books gives me a full body pee-shiver. - Bug

Editing, compiling, imaging, coding, logos & cat-wrangling by Ambush Bug Proofs, co-edits & common sense provided by Sleazy G


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Readers Talkback

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  • Jan. 21, 2009, 8:29 a.m. CST

    first

    by chetedawg

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 8:38 a.m. CST

    Great review, bug-- a couple other points about FC6

    by Laserhead

    1) Mister Miracle is now a white-man! WTF? He's white as rice in every panel, almost Asian in fact. What if Superman was suddenly black for an entire issue and nobody said anything?<p>2)The OTHER STUPID THING ABOUT BATMAN'S "DEATH"-- if he hadn't announced himself to Darkseid by talking and taunting him, he might have just gotten off the shot with his 'god-bullet' without Darkseid having time to do that 'Omega Sanction'.<p>3) Darkseid is a fat dude in blue jeans hooked up to IV tubes? Didn't he move past that incarnation in the previous issue. <p>Alright, another point. Where the fuck did Superman come from? I guess you're supposed to read Superman Beyond for that (nice way to avoid satellite books)-- but wait, Superman Beyond isn't on sale till the week after. Fucking fuck fuck.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 8:44 a.m. CST

    Unfortunately, it's true

    by Tell_Your_Mom_I_Said_Hi

    The Kubert brothers are vastly, VASTLY, underrated. To this day, I still hail those guys as my biggest artistic influence (being a 90s teen and all).

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 8:51 a.m. CST

    I don't get 'The Goon'

    by eggart

    It's like Hellboy, if it were bad.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 9:06 a.m. CST

    Batman in FC was a clone.

    by Squashua

    The Batman that died in Final Crisis was a clone controlled using a combination of Batman and The Lump. You heard it here first, or elsewhere if you read me write it earlier elsewhere.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 9:06 a.m. CST

    Where the fuck is the 24 talkback??!!??

    by Motoko Kusanagi

    Seriously.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 9:15 a.m. CST

    Final Crisis #6

    by alfiemoon

    I agree that a lot of the mainstream audience for superhero comics probably won't enjoy Final Crisis. Personally though, I love it. I think that expectations of a certain style of storytelling have been set up by decades of superhero comics in a similar style, and now that Morrison is challenging thoese expectations, a lot of readers don't respond well to it. The fact that the reviewer mentions that he reads hundreds of books a month probably makes this break from the usual formula even more keenly felt. I can understand this, but I'm one of the readers who is really enjoying seeing Morrison try new things with the genre. However, I seem to be in the minority. I hope this doesn't stop DC from using similarly innovative and experimental writers on future "event" comics.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 9:16 a.m. CST

    Waitaminute...

    by trafficguy2000

    I liked the GI Joe comics at DDP. The WWIII storyline was massive large scale battles, exactly what you are wanting now!Plus they weren't re-boots like this series. Does this mean a whole new origin story for Snake Eyes, Cobra Commander and all? No thanks!

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 9:16 a.m. CST

    The Death of Batman

    by alfiemoon

    Incidentally, I think that the idea that Batman is "dead" at the end of the issue is an unlikely one. Anyone who read Morrison's "Seven Soldiers: Mister Miracle" will know that the Omega Sanction doesn't necessarily equate to death (Morrison even has Sonny Sumo explicitly refer to his survival of the Omega Sanction in this very issue). And Batman's body looks awfully similar to the burnt-out husk of Boss Dark Side from earlier in the series...

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 9:17 a.m. CST

    message 2 Bug

    by brassai2003

    Yo. can't someone like you interview Dan on this FC mess? Newsarama gets an interview but all they ask about is circulation numbers. are there any Comicbook journalists out there? As a fan of the DCU, I can't help but think it's falling apart and no one cares or wants to confront Dan about it. We pay good $ for these books. I mean jayzus! Look at how seamless marvel gets off Secret Invasion into Dark Reign. Somethings wrong at DC. We need Rorschach.... Oh yeah, @ chetedawg: being first on the comic's page ain't shit. First on a Transformers II post? Yeah. Then we'll talk....

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 9:33 a.m. CST

    Batman is dead? Until when?

    by V'Shael

    Because in comics, nothing is forever, not even Bucky's death. Or Gwen Stacy's. Or Aunt May's. Or Captain Marvel's. Or Steve Rogers. (He'll be back in time for the movie.)

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 9:42 a.m. CST

    Final Crisis Pomposity

    by toxicbuddha

    When you have to start spouting that arthouse bullshit about "challenging expectations" of decades of conventional storytelling to justify the cluster fuck that id FC, I think you have pretty much captured the essence of the argument while showing off ur impressive Vertigo pedigree: At the end of the day these are funny books, ff. We just want to enjoy a good story well told and some kick ass artwork. If Morrison wants to show off his awesome, experimental 'challenge the norm writing style', take a page from the Kirkman manifesto or write a goddamn novel. Further, Douche is right: This abortion is holding the rest of the damn DC universe hostage and it's just damned odd that in the mainstream books no one seems to notice Darkseid bitch slapping the world. And finally: why are we even discussing whether or not Batman as in Bruce Wayne is actually dead. We know damn well he isn't, regardless of how Morrison pulls the rabbit out of his ass.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 9:48 a.m. CST

    hmmm...

    by Joenathan

    Batman vs. Predator, Obama/Spidey like an old Hostess ad... Its nice to see my influence shining through...

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 9:48 a.m. CST

    make sure he’s not charging with a hat full of pickles.

    by SpikeTBB

    That whole paragraph got me smiling and by the final line I was shaking and laughing out loud. Even got a mental image of Pickle Hat Man charging with a roar of "DILLLLL!" What made it even funnier is that you are spot on with the problems at DC. Okay, I'm going to go back up and read the rest, but just wanted to thank you for making me laugh at work. I needed it.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:04 a.m. CST

    Wait, how much of the Black Lightning review should I take serio

    by NinjaRap

    I'm honestly not sure how much of that was true and how much was total B.S.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:04 a.m. CST

    Ambush Bug/Final Crisis 6

    by mattb127

    First off, I can deal with alternate opinions, so I don't want you thinking you're out there on a limb there, Ambush Bug. I know you're a brave fellow, standing against a horrific storm of alternate opinion, all on your own. Good for you, buddy! It must be so lonely! I hate Dan DiDio,I hated the last few "Crises" we've had to endure, and I'm beginning to get sick of Marvel, too. (Secret Invasion and Planet Hulk suh-suh-sucked.) Final Crisis should've been delivered on time. There should've been one artist. But if you're not moved by Superman blasting through the sky, screaming, destroying everything in his path to recover the body of his best friend, then I dunno if you got any batlove in you. And yes, Batman's death took four pages, including a 2-page spread of the moment itself, but this is a story that Morrison's been building since he took on the Batman run. It ended here, but there's an iceberg underneath it. And he died taking down Darkseid. Shit don't get more heroic. Homeric heroic. This is the only event book I find palatable. If you're going to use death to sell funny papers, then at least put something on the line. Batman's a pretty big fish. I look at Secret Invasion and Planet Hulk, and really, WTF was at stake?

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:05 a.m. CST

    Question on Final Crisis

    by SpikeTBB

    As messed up as DC is i don't think for a second they would slaughter their cash cow, which Batman is. The only thing that would temp me to buy a series like R.I.P or final Crisis is The Joker's involvement. I'm a Joker fan first and fore most. So, could anyone please tell me how much he is in these and if it is worth my time to get them? If he isn't there I'm not interested. But I don't want to miss any good appearances of him if he is. Save me some time,money, and a possible bad reading experience please.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:08 a.m. CST

    Batman vs. Predator II has aged better.

    by NinjaRap

    All three "Batman vs. Predator" stories are worth a read, but the second is by far the strongest in retrospect - they totally nail the character voices, invent some really great supporting players that you grow to quickly like, and the art and plotting is just phenomenal all around. The first, sadly, seems to be haphazardly plotted when I go back to it - the art doesn't flow logically, making it confusing and requiring pages to be re-read slowly.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:13 a.m. CST

    Thank God for Len Wein!!

    by The Nihilist

    You know, that guy who has written a lot of comics since the early '70s. The guy who has sort of been a worker bee at both Marvel and DC, quietly putting in consistent story after story. He's done some good stuff, created some good characters (Swamp Thing, Wolverine) but he's also kind of faceless and thankless. He's never done a "Watchmen" or "Dark Knight Returns," nobody ever thinks of him as being in the Pantheon Of Truly Great Comic Book Writers. But I will say this for the guy: HE'LL STOOP TO ACTUALLY MAKING THE STORY UNDERSTANDABLE!! HE'S NOT TOO GOOD TO TELL YOU WHAT'S ACTUALLY GOING ON!! And as a result of his "Final Crisis: Secret Files" one shot last week (I guess they had him write it because he also created Libra), I ACTUALLY MORE OR LESS UNDERSTOOD FINAL CRISIS #6!! First issue of the damn series that halfway made sense. That said...it had it's moments. I loved the S/M approach Mad Mary Marvel took to the fight with Supergirl, and the way they insinuated MM was trying to feel her up (or something even kinkier than just copping a feel) off panel. I did like the Tawky Tawny bit. Braniac 5 (of the Pre-Zero hour Legion, the only one that should exist) and the Miracle Machine...well, I'm a sucker for the P-Z Legion, I pretty much had to like that. But other than that, yeah. It's a cheap gimmick, largely incomprehensible unless an old reliable comic writing workhorse like Len Wein comes along to give us the Cliff's Notes. Get it over with and get on to Blackest Night.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:14 a.m. CST

    lost

    by smutpeddlar

    lost? was just sitting here thinking..lostlostlostlostlostlostlostlost,then i said to myself..lostlostlostlostlost

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:21 a.m. CST

    First Superman Beyond #2 review - absolute mindfuck

    by most excellent ninja

    http://handofmessi.blogspot.com/

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:22 a.m. CST

    FINAL CRISIS IS ART

    by reflecto

    It makes people work and think about it and gives them a smorgasboard to enjoy, whereas Secret Invasion was a massive disappointment for me.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:24 a.m. CST

    You know what's cool about the old Hostess ads?

    by rev_skarekroe

    The Marvel ones are actually in continuity.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:38 a.m. CST

    Evrey complaint about Grant Morrison's writing...

    by Margot Tenenbaum

    ...would be fixed if the man would write "old school" explanatory captions. Alan Moore was able to get away with writing dialogue with interior monologues in Watchmen because he had a phenomenal artist who was able to carry half the load. On the other hand, Chris Claremont's verbose captions conveyed much more than a marginal talent like Jim Lee or Marc Silvestri put into the art. Final Crisis has been drawn by DC's hacks of the week and Morrison just peppers the art with obscure dialogue. Hhhh. I submit that Morrison is readable ONLY when the stories are drawn by a Frank Quitely-level talent.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:39 a.m. CST

    AND NOW I KNOW! AND KNOWING IS HALF THE BATTLE!

    by Err

    GEEEEEE EYE JOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOE!

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:50 a.m. CST

    ...

    by blackthought

    obama wins the cowl.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:58 a.m. CST

    Horrible.

    by SkidMarkedUndies

    Batman dead? BULLSH!T! That who Superman Beyond Review is a total mindf*ck!

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:59 a.m. CST

    FINAL CRISIS Truly Is A Trainwreck Of Epic Proportions

    by LaserPants

    And yet, I like it. I like it precisely because its a trainwreck of epic proportions. Barely readable, almost completely incomprehensible, and totally bugnuts. It's like reading a paranoid schizophrenic's final nervous breakdown... and/or an acid casualty's final meltdown. Which, to all intents and purposes it is. <br><br>That said, theres something hilariously awesome at how much of an epic fail it is; how absurdly obtuse and obscure it is; how bizarre and nonsensical. Rather than gain new readers as Marvel did with the straightforward invasion story, DC appears to want to not only lose current readers, but make it impossible for any curious new readers to start reading their books. Its like they wanted to ruin their company on purpose. Like the comic book company version of THE PRODUCERS.<br><br> That said, AGAIN, expect BLACK LANTERN BATMAN coming soon to a rack filled with diminishing returns sometime soon. Really looking forward to BLACKEST NIGHT. It may be the only chance DC has of surviving as a publisher.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:59 a.m. CST

    Weighing in again on FC

    by Homer Sexual

    If everyone were raving about FC, I would most likely be here saying "Hold on people, there are a lot of problems with this one." But since most everyone seems to hate it, I am here to say "hold on people, there are a lot of interesting things going on here." <p> I can see why people have a hard time following it, (that is how I felt for at least the first three issues). I actually like the multi-prong storyline insofar as that I can focus on the parts I like and pay less attention to the parts I don't. And I am cool with not understanding, for example, if the Female Furies are actually supposed to be WW, Catwoman and Co. or some sort of weird clones or what. <p> It is a very different approach than Marvel, which put Secret Invasion in everything and FC is self contained. Why are the Birds of Prey going on about their business when the world is ending? I see why that bugs people, but I think I like it. I can still enjoy my regular books totally apart from FC. <p> The self-contained story makes me more content with it. Secret Invasion was in everything, so when it was all over, I was like "that's it, whatever."

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 11 a.m. CST

    Batman Will Be A Black Lantern In BLACKEST NIGHT

    by LaserPants

    Why else kill their most popular character? Killing him at a time when the last movie based on him is the #2 biggest money-making film OF ALL TIMES.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 11:03 a.m. CST

    DC accidentally revealed the first Black Lantern in solicits

    by Squashua

    This week's solicits. Go to the end and check out the Green Lantern Action figures.<br><br> They did a silhouette of the Black Lantern, but the description in the text outright states who it is, completely invalidating the silhouette (which is now hiding a zombie version of $UP3R/\/\4|\| 0Ph 34R7|-|-2

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 11:09 a.m. CST

    I Do Like FC, Though

    by LaserPants

    But it is, undeniably, a trainwreck of epic proportions.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 11:09 a.m. CST

    Ambush Bug ( re: Final Crisis 6 )

    by PTSDPete

    I'm ' open-minded ', too. And....' da hell, man ?!? '

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 11:16 a.m. CST

    Oh, and Spike TBB?

    by The Nihilist

    Unless I missed it in an obscure panel or two somewhere, the Joker doesn't even make an appearance in Final Crisis, much less play a significant role. Save your money, my friend.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 11:19 a.m. CST

    Here's a couple of ideas...

    by Fuzzyjefe

    free of charge, to help garner readership. Since WB owns DC, and Marvel has started up Marvel Studios.....why don't they, I don't know, ADVERTISE their product before their films. You know, in front of superhero movies, pimp superhero books. In front of Vertigo adaptations, pimp that. Pimp your best trades for whatever hero or heroes are in the movie people are about to watch........Another: drop continuity altogether. Make each character's book THEIR OWN. But if you want Batman to show up in the Flash, do it without worrying about what Batman is doing in his own book. If you want a universe-spanning 'event', do it as a self-contained story. Just write good stories with interesting characters. You can keep continuity within each title, but make the DC universe in the Batman books BATMAN'S DC, and the DC in Superman books SUPERMAN'S DC, etc etc. Just throwing those out there.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 11:24 a.m. CST

    What I hate with FC is...

    by The_joker

    All of the Morrison fanboys who keep on telling me, "Just wait. Morrison is gonna wrap this up, it's ALL gonna make sense and it WILL BLOW YOUR MIND!" Really? Well I sure hope so, cuz he's got a hell of a lot of answers that need to be resolved in a SINGLE issue. I don't hate Morrison, I enjoyed All Star Superman, We3 and some of his other work, but I think some people are being too forgiving just because of Morrison's past track record. If this was an unknown churning out this trainwreck, most would be wondering when DC hired bad webcomic writers.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 11:25 a.m. CST

    Using "Final" in a Comic Book Series

    by Aquatarkusman

    Is like one of those discount furniture stores that has a "going out of business" sale every two months.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 11:29 a.m. CST

    Invincible is my favorite book

    by White Goodman

    I'm glad someone else likes it. It's the only book that I read every month.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 11:30 a.m. CST

    Sticking GI Joes up a cat's butt

    by White Goodman

    Don't they say that an early sign of a future serial killer is that when they are children they like to torture animals?

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 11:53 a.m. CST

    I don't think it was an accident, Squasha

    by rev_skarekroe

    The character's name is all over that solit. Either they blacked out the figure because they're keeping his actual appearance a secret or because the design isn't finalized yet.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:01 p.m. CST

    Final Crisis review by Ambush Bug...

    by LordPorkington

    He says 'Me? I read about a hundred books a month'. No, you read a hundred comics a month. Try reading a hundred actual books a month and get back to us.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:15 p.m. CST

    The Nihilist

    by SpikeTBB

    Thank you! I appreciate the warning. I made the mistake of getting some issues of RIP that i knew he was in. the art on him was striking but the rest of the issue was a waste.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:19 p.m. CST

    Invincible FTW

    by FastEddieBax

    20 years as a comic fan, and I can honestly say that Invincible is the best book out there right now. Good stuff.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:24 p.m. CST

    MARVEL comics IS GI JOE at its best...best series EVER!!

    by FleshMachine

    forget the show and all other comics...gi joe 1-70ish are the stories ever.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:30 p.m. CST

    FleshMachine is correct...

    by LordPorkington

    God bless you sir.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:30 p.m. CST

    Haven't read Final Crisis at all yet

    by ChocolateJesus

    So, I can't speak to its quality. But, I will ALWAYS be more interested in reading something experimental than something that clings to empty comic-book tradition, just so as not to piss off a bunch of fat, old comic book nerds that miss seeing Superman save Lois Lane from an exploding airplane every month. This is an art-form, people, let it expand where the artists want to take it. And I fucking HATE Chris Claremont's text explanations, those things should be dead by now.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:35 p.m. CST

    But

    by Joenathan

    isn't it a narrative medium as well as an art form? Personally, I'm enjoying FC, but I can see where Morrison has slipped some when it comes to story, the gaps between his panels have continued to grow. I think the trick is to do both a strong narrative and push the boundaries and to do them both well.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:38 p.m. CST

    And an apology to Ambush Bug...

    by LordPorkington

    I was being a twat being so picky about you not distinguishing between 'books' and 'comics'. To you sir, an apology must go. Also, your story about saving your money to buy the USS Flagg truly brought back memories for myself. I was addicted to GI Joe as a kid. I once entered a competition to win the Defiant Space Station/Shuttle, which wasn't available in the UK, and it was displayed in the toy store in England, where it taunted me each and every day. The day the competition ended and I knew I hadn't won it, I almost ended my young life. I wanted it so badly. I'm 33 now, married and living in the States, and I still think about that space shuttle to this very day.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:39 p.m. CST

    Lord Pork

    by rock-me Amodeo

    He MEANT a hundred comics a month. A hundred "comic BOOKS." That's pretty easy to infer or deduce.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:40 p.m. CST

    Wow!

    by rock-me Amodeo

    Good for you, LordPork! I didn't see the apology until after I posted. Color me impressed.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:47 p.m. CST

    Marvel's GI Joe was pretty badass.

    by Pops Freshemeyer

    To this day, I can remember walking into 7-11 and taking a copy of GI Joe #1 off the spinner rack. Must have read the issue like three or four times in a row. Even though I had like five years of Spider-Man, Hulk, Batman and House of Mystery under my belt, GI Joe was instantly my favorite comic book. Never got the aircraft carrier, but I had the Pit, all the early vehicles, and packed away somewhere in my house are the original Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow figures. Hell, GI Joe was so badass that I actually wrote a letter to Marvel about how awesome the comic was and it was published in like 16 or 17. Have it in a box around here someplace as well. If only the GI Joe video games they released way back when were actually good...

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:48 p.m. CST

    Any kid who saved his own money to buy

    by Grammaton Cleric Binks

    the USS Flag earns instant respect. He didn't ask mommy and daddy to fork over the loot. A shame, although understandably, that GI Joe canon is (pardon the pun) shot. Since Duke didn't appear until around issue 12 give or take of the first Marvel run of GI Joe. The first run of the comic/toys had nine soldiers, plus Clutch, Steeler, and one other dude besides Flash who was the laser soldier. These three came with the toy you had to buy whether it was teh VAMP, MOBAT, or that big ass laser canon. And then,the toy bonanza began.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:50 p.m. CST

    Nobody really thinks that Bruce Wayne stays dead...

    by Orbots Commander

    ...do they? Come on, a DC/WB icon is permanently killed off? If you believe that, I have this nifty bridge that I'm selling right over here that you should come on over and check out. Oh, and is the new President really a comics fan, or was that just a comedy writing bit?

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:54 p.m. CST

    Orbots Commander

    by rev_skarekroe

    The new President IS a comics fan (he collects Conan) but everything else in that review is a comedy writing bit.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 12:54 p.m. CST

    Give me a break.

    by Zardozap2005

    First: #2 money making movie of all time = No Batman isn't dead. It's about as permanent as Superman being dead. And about the same as Captain America staying a corpse. Now that Bush and his politics are gone, expect to see Steve Rogers live again. Yeah, I'm linking to two. You know that's why they did it. FC is a trainwreck, and hopefully we'll get back to some decent stories once it's over. Besides, I've been hoping forever for Barry Allen to return to life. It now looks like it's going to happen. I'm looking forward to getting back into comics again. First they do the right thing, and bring back Hal Jordan who never should have died in the first place, and now Barry, my childhood Flash. I can't wait.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:05 p.m. CST

    Mighty Avengers #21 - I LOVE DAN SLOTT!

    by Squashua

    Hank Pym: "So, Hercules, who's your Rick Jones over here?"<br><br> A. Cho: "The name's Amadeus Cho! Seventh smartest person on the planet!"<br><br> Hank Pym: "Really? Well I've been off-planet for a while. You should probably knock yourself down to eighth."

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:07 p.m. CST

    I had a letter published in GI Joe 80 something...

    by lynxpro

    Whichever one had the Iron Grenadiers on the cover. I think I was 11 or 12 at the time. They thought my theory was too complex.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:08 p.m. CST

    Duke is a poseur

    by lynxpro

    Hawk is the real bad ass leader of GI Joe. Having a Master Sarg give orders to officers on the cartoon was ridiculous.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:20 p.m. CST

    Happy Calculator Day, everyone!

    by Thalya

    Rubik's cubes and cookies for all!

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:26 p.m. CST

    Zardozap2005 and Squash

    by Joenathan

    Z - I agree that Steve Rogers will be back, but I disagree that his death was only done to give the finger to Bush, I think that was only a bonus. The real reason Cap died is so that Bucky can really come into his own while trying to get out from under Steve's legacy. It was told because it was a good story.<br><br>Suqash - Is Slott's Mighty pretty good?<br><br> Hows the art? <br><br>I'm usually iffy on Slott, but I was definately curious as to what he's got planned, especially when it comes to Hank Pym, plus you got to Love Cho and Herc on the team.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:27 p.m. CST

    lynxpro

    by Grammaton Cleric Binks

    Nah, you were just ahead of your time I'm sure.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:30 p.m. CST

    General Hawk

    by Joenathan

    gave the orders on the show when he finally arrived after a season or two. Duke only gave them when Hawk or Flint wasn't there. <br><br>Remember when Lifeline, Shortcircuit(?) and Shipwreck were prompted to Colonels and almost destroyed the team with their idiocy while Hawk was out of town or something... How did those three fuck-ups get on America's highly trained special mission force with the purpose of defending the world from Cobra?

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:35 p.m. CST

    "William" you are about nobody putting a hurt on Batman

    by Continentalop

    It wasn't Bane or the Predator who battered him and damaged him the most, it was Joel Schumacher. He did such a job on Bats it took him eight years to show up at a movie theatre again.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:36 p.m. CST

    Ambush Bug

    by hst666

    "And who has the time to reread every issue prior before reading a new one?" I am not slamming you for not liking it - the only time I get upset is when people insult me for liking it. But as far as rereading goes, most great comic stories require this. Did you read the Watch men when it originally came out. I stopped rereading after the fourth issue and there were lots of things I found confusing in later issues. The Invisibles by Morrison also required rereading to remember what was going on. As far as research goes, that's legitimate, although I don't think you need research to understand what's going on as much as to understand why certain things are present.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:38 p.m. CST

    Joenanthan

    by Continentalop

    The Cobra from the TV show wasn't really the scariest of terrorist groups. I mean, their leader was an absolute tool. So it wasn't like you needed the smartest soldiers to be a Joe. <p> I always had a theory that the cartoon wasn't about a Special Forces team, but a Special Needs Forces. I always thought they should have been a character on the show code-named Short Bus. <p>

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:48 p.m. CST

    The real trainwreck is these reviewers. Cmon Harry! Hire some a

    by RinRockRock

    I think it must be said that the DCU and Marvel are not in fact actual universes. I'm astonished that some longtime comic readers do not get that if DC did decide to sync up FC with the rest of the DCU, we all would have 7-9 months of nothing but FC books for their whole line. As FC ends, this is where we will start to actually see the effects in the DCU. I am glad we had the diversity to read other stories in the DC books in the meantime while FC merges. Why cry when things are "out of continuity" based on when the book is published??? If a book comes out August 14, that does not mean it occurs August 14 in the comic world. Everyone MUST understand that, but how people still cry about this is beyond me. Unless you devote your entire waking hours living these books, it shouldn't matter. As for the actual FC book, I am far from a Grant Morrison fan, and as FC started it took some rereads to "get" it all but there isn't any excuse now except laziness by not going back and reading what you don't understand. But it's easier for some dopes to post & complain rather than going back and actually answering their own questions.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:48 p.m. CST

    Buy Might Avengers #21

    by Squashua

    It was a meaty read! I have cut down on my Marvel purchases due to the $4 price-point, so it was just Mighty and Dark today. Dark Avengers was good, but basically was a put-a-team-together story that gave insight as to which Thunderbolt took over which identity.<br><br> IMHO, Mighty Avengers was more fun and covered more bases, but I don't think money was lost on either book.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:52 p.m. CST

    But Duke was the right rank.

    by Continentalop

    All of the Joes where enlisted men, with ranks ranging from E-5 to E-8. Which is supposedly what the majority of the members of Delta Force are. <p> I always loved how Larry Hama had their payscale and MOS on the personal cards.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:53 p.m. CST

    Wolverine vs. Predator

    by Zardoz

    I'd buy that for a dollar! And Invincible rocks! Where else can you see an bug-alien/human adolescent knock a bad guys head off? (literally!)

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:54 p.m. CST

    Jimmy Biden wasn't an error.

    by SleazyG.

    Are you seriously telling me we have to explain Superman making a Jimmy Olsen reference? In a column about comic books? Seriously? SRSLY?<p> Oh, gee, look at that: turns out Biden's first name is *Joe*. Well, golly--thanks for clearing that up.<p>

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 1:56 p.m. CST

    The other laser guy was Grand Slam.

    by Ambush Bug

    He was just Flash with Grunt's head. Grunt. WHat kind of name was that?<br><br> And Lord Pork, I stopped buying GI JOE right before they got all day glo and spacey. Here's hoping someday your dreams of having the Space Shuttle will be fulfilled.<br><br> And finally, there's a different between artsy/experimental and downright lazy and sloppy writing. I'm all for taking chances, but if you don't know how to write a proper narrative that doesn't require massive amounts of drugs and a decoder ring, there's a problem.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2 p.m. CST

    Translating RinRockRock's post...

    by Ambush Bug

    C'mon Harry, can't you hire new reviewers who agree with meeee!?!?! Waaaaaaahhh! Waaaahhhh!

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:02 p.m. CST

    I haven't followed final crisis, but how can Batman be dead if

    by slder78

    he's alive and an old guy in Dark Knight Returns? And he uses a gun? WTF? Maybe by having Batman using a gun that's gives them the loophole to say, "It wasn't Batman that died, it was a clone from Star Labs."

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:04 p.m. CST

    Oh, I Understand FINAL CRISIS…

    by optimous_douche

    And I’ll be honest there’s a part of me that likes the tripped out ride.<p> But…but…but…<p> It should have never been given the tag CRISIS. We’re all crying about the fact the rest of the books don’t synch up for two reasons: <p> The precedent for the term Crisis was set twenty years ago. You can tell all of us “old” fanboys to move with the times, but then don’t shamelessly pander to our sense of nostalgia to sell books. If you want to use Crisis to suck us in, then be ready for the repercussions when it so drastically differs from that expectation.<p> Two, we’ve been promised since Infinite Crisis that the entire universe was going to change as a result of this Crisis and we’re still waiting. Finally 6 issues in to FC we are starting to see a slight bleed through into other books, but slight is being generous.<p> Like I said before many times, call FC anything but Crisis and Morrison would have had a cake walk. Don’t get greedy and try to stretch a seven issue series into a three year cluster fuck and DC would have had a cake walk.<p> Don’t hate on Morrison for Crisis because some things in the book are original.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:10 p.m. CST

    Cobra Commander

    by Joenathan

    A tool!?! I don't think so. He outlived them all. Way in the future he used old Cobra tech to transfer some of the Autobots minds into human bodies so that some criminals could use the bodies to commit... well... crimes and after the big fight and the Autobots were back in their bodies, who is shown walking away clean... Thats right, Cobra Commander.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:15 p.m. CST

    Cobra Commander is a tool

    by Continentalop

    I mean he had only two catch phrases, "Cobra" and "Retreat". When your second catch phrase is an admission you are getting your ass kicked, you know you are not a military genius. Plus the guy got fired and replaced by somebody called Serpentor. Since then he was basically Cobra's office manager. <P> You know the Baroness and Destro were always laughing at him behind his back, just before they went off to do their S&M thing. <p>

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:17 p.m. CST

    Did that really hurt your feelings?

    by RinRockRock

    Look Bug, I read the reviews here to get other people's opinions and translations. I don't need glad-handing. I respect that you read over 100 comics a month and how that can get confusing. I only read a quarter of that. BUT don't be bitter because you are too lazy to go back and reread a book to get an explanation. I'm calling you out on it buddy.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:18 p.m. CST

    Manhunter

    by hst666

    In a 180 from the reviewer. I only became interested in Manhunter because of her supporting cast. I read the first issue and thought it was OK, but not worth buying. But I love Chase and Mr. Bones and the DEO.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:23 p.m. CST

    Wow. I cannot type for shit.

    by hst666

    Watchmen, not Watch men, <p>replace periods with question marks where necessary, <p> and research is a legitimate complaint, but only in a "why the fuck is this scene here," not "I cannot follow what's going on in the main story" way.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:24 p.m. CST

    Cobra Commander was part snake!

    by Joenathan

    It was in his nature to squirm and crawl. Also, he once ran cobra on a shoe string budget using cardboard cut outs AND almost took over the world. Its not all about muscle, Continentalop. Besides, you want to talk lame and creepy, forget Serpentor, Dr. Mindbender wins hands down. Bald, handlebar moustache, shirtless, wearing a cape... nuff said.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:26 p.m. CST

    Day glo and spacey GI Joe...

    by LordPorkington

    I too stopped collecting once they started reissuing the same action figures in horrific lime and orange outfits. The Defiant actually came out in 1987, so it was before all that other nonsense, but it's good to see we shared the same hatred of latter toy releases...

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:40 p.m. CST

    Ok, I will give CC some credit

    by Continentalop

    He was a good manager. And he was actually pretty fair to his underlings. I remember when a Joe team raided an oil rig that was being used as a Cobra front and found documents showing Cobra's Health and Dental Plan, and it was better than G.I. Joe's.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:40 p.m. CST

    Manhunter

    by Homer Sexual

    Such a great book. I thought the whole Ciudad Juarez storyline was kind of tedious, but overall this was a great book! <p> But I didn't start buying it until after the second trade came out, which I loved. <p> A female-lead comic with multiple gay supporting characters, a homo like me has to love it. It was even edgy. <p> I honestly think it was the lack of visual appeal that did Manhunter in. Horrible tiny ponytail, bland costume. Obviously comics are a visual medium, and Kate's outfit was lacking. I know that was kind of the point, but I sincerely believe it turned off readers (me, for example, but I got past it eventually).

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:45 p.m. CST

    Continentalop

    by hst666

    I was a little old for GI Joe when it came out, but I assume the health plan thing is dry humor, correct? Or were the comics that sophisticated.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:46 p.m. CST

    But...

    by Continentalop

    Cobra-La was the lamest idea ever. And even lamer than Dr. Mindbender (who was pretty lame) was Golobulus.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 2:48 p.m. CST

    hst666

    by Continentalop

    The health plan was mentioned in the cartoon. The comic was actually pretty realistic (for a comic) and well-done for the first 60 or so issues. I think Larry Hama was forced to put in more toy and cartoon references after that, so it kind of lost its appeal to me. <p>

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 3:15 p.m. CST

    Cobra-La

    by Joenathan

    I bet that place smelled like manure.<br><br>You know which Joe suck the most? Quick Kick. Putting some fucking shoes on, you jack ass!

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 3:16 p.m. CST

    "Full body pee shiver"

    by TylerDurden3395

    Fell on the floor laughing at that shit.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 3:27 p.m. CST

    G.I. Joe question

    by Joenathan

    Did Major Bludd have a robot arm or just a really stupid sleeve?

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 3:36 p.m. CST

    My favorite old Joe issue

    by Fuzzyjefe

    (besides the classic silent issue) was the dogfight between The Joe in the F-16 (Hotshot I think) and Sidewinder(?) that took a whole issue. They shot each other to poop, and as they both limped home, saluted each other. I believe the Baroness & Lady J were along for the ride in their respective aircraft as well.

  • It's my understanding that all their 32 page books are and that only books with additional pages are more expensive. Please let me know if I'm wrong, I just find it bizarre that the leading comic publisher (Marvel, by a long shot after looking at the sales charts for last month) says they need to put out several $4 32-page books, yet DC is able to atleast justify some of the price with extra material, usually a total of 40 pages

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 4:04 p.m. CST

    Quick Kick did, in fact suck.

    by Ambush Bug

    But nothing was worse than the day glo stuff, except maybe The Refrigerator figure. He had a large football on the end of a chain like a ball and chain come with the figure. Now Sgt. Slaughter was a damn cool tie in. But the worst figure of all to play with was Deep Six. He didn't really even fit in with the rest of the characters. Only his arms moved, the rest of his body was friff. Sure we was wearing a big scuba deep sea suit, but the guy needed a bit of mobility. He came with the SHARK submarine, I believe, which was a pretty cool toy. Looked cool on the deck of the USS FLAGG.<br><br> Which was you guy's favorite character, besides Snake-Eyes of course?<br><br FOr some reason I liked Cutter the Hovercraft Pilot and Clutch because he was the first figure I got with swivel arm battle grip. Mutt and Recondo were awful sweet as well. And no one fucks with Stalker. Damn, I love those old toys.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 4:10 p.m. CST

    I believe Major Bludd had a robot arm.

    by rev_skarekroe

    I have the reissue figure right here in the office. Yes, I do.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 4:11 p.m. CST

    Flint

    by Joenathan

    And then later, Lt. Falcon who was voiced by Don Johnson in the cartoon. In the comic, I loved Duke and Roadblock and that Eskimo guy that snake-eyes traveled with for awhile on his vengence quest.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 4:13 p.m. CST

    also

    by Joenathan

    the best G.I. Joe comic, despite the fact that it was sometimes hard to see what was going on, was G.I. Joe and Transformers set in WWII and drawn by Jae Lee. It looked incerdible.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 4:16 p.m. CST

    The Eskimo's name was Quinn

    by Ambush Bug

    Like the song. Did they ever break down and make a figure of him? They always played him as super cool in the comics. Both a good guy and a bad guy. Kind of an opportunist.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 4:22 p.m. CST

    Just looked at Marvel's April solits...

    by nofate

    and officially Dark Avengers, New Avengers and Hulk (err, Rulk) are now $3.99. FUCK THAT!!

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 4:24 p.m. CST

    I always liked Shipwreck..

    by Thalya

    But then, I was a Navy brat. Does anyone remember that Steve Gerber-penned episode with him that was a mix of Invasion of the Pod People and The Blob? Family values censoring groups are way off the mark because that sort of only-in-the-80s crack is what'll warp a child's mind for good, skip the sex and violence.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 4:26 p.m. CST

    Let's go Joe

    by Continentalop

    Favorite Joe: Stalker (the most realistic of the Joes in terms of a Special Forces soldier)<p> Least Favorite: Bullhorn (Hostage Negotiator? He is armed with a friggin' bullhorn! And all he does is talk to the enemy, "We know you are in their Firefly. What is it you want?" <P> The sad thing about G.I. Joe is that Larry Hama original came up with the concept for the Marvel Universe. It was to be a Special Forces team operating out of the Marvel Universe for SHIELD called either Fury Force or the New Howling Commandos. The Duke character would have been Nick Fury's illegitimate son, and the would have fought Hydra or an offshoot of Hydra (maybe still called Cobra). When Hasbro told Marvel they were thinking of relaunching the GI Joe toy line with a comic, Hama showed them his character designs. <p> I always thought it would have been awesome if they were Fury Force instead of G.I. Joe. I mean, at least this way Snake-Eyes would have been in the Marvel Universe and we could have seen him team up or fight Wolverine, Captain America and even the Punisher.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 4:28 p.m. CST

    But the real question is....

    by Continentalop

    ....Are you man enough for Megaforce?

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 4:53 p.m. CST

    I always liked Tunnel Rat

    by Fuzzyjefe

    'cause his gun was sooooooo big.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 4:55 p.m. CST

    There was never a Quinn figure

    by Joenathan

    and at first, as a kid, I was pissed that they kept focusing on him and Dr. Venom, sure Snake-eyes was there, but it was all about Quinn and Dr. Venom, but by the end, Quinn's whole vengence quest culminating during an attack by Cobra on an undermanned and nearly defenseless PITT, it was awesome. Plus, the ending? That was great stuff. That story and Snake-eye's origin are two forgotten great story arcs of comics.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 5:40 p.m. CST

    WE KNOW BATS WILL COME BACK DUUH

    by Rufferto

    But it still sucks. Morrison went all apeshit in RIP describing how smart and creative Bats is and that's his strategy for stopping Darkseid? Why would Batman make an exception for killing Darkseid? <p>Did he not give Diana shit for murdering and not looking for another way when she killed Max?</p> <p>And Let's say Bats makes "exceptions" all of a sudden. What makes the Joker so special? Bats in almost every incarnation goes above and beyond to save him compared to say someone like Ras al Ghul.</p> Yeah I know its cause Joker's too popular to kill but that just makes Batman's reasoning more and more asinine when the question about killing Joker is ever brought up. Which is every time the character makes an appearance now.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 5:43 p.m. CST

    And Gi Joe has been very strong

    by Rufferto

    in almost every version I've read including recent stories. WW3 was fantastic. I don't know about the new stuff they are publishing now. I feel like I've been so pleased that it's bound to start sucking sooner or later. It can keep being as good as it's been. I feel. I just hope future issues are ok not awful at least. Then I'll be happy.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 5:45 p.m. CST

    It "can't" i mean

    by Rufferto

    Also I haven't started reading any yet. Except 0.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 6:14 p.m. CST

    $3.99 for RULK?

    by SleazyG.

    What, cuz there's so much story jammed packed into every issue?<p> To quote the great Cubs coach Lee Elia, "my fuckin' ASS!"

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 6:31 p.m. CST

    Bug, Obama actually did play college basketball

    by TallBoy66

    He's not good at basketball because Obama is black, Obama is good at basketball because he's actually a skilled athlete, you fucking racist idiot.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 6:45 p.m. CST

    The reality of the basketball thing:

    by SleazyG.

    Yeah, he plays basketball, but when writing a story like this you still have to consider the audience's *perception* of that reality. Certain things are polarizing when it comes to race issues, and basketball is one of them. A couple of weeks ago, Obama's appearance on Chicago foodie show "Check, Please" (which I enjoy) had him talking about one of his favorite restaurants in town, Dixie Kitchen. And you know what? It's a good restaurant. I had fish fried in some kinda mustard-flavored batter and some greens and it was tasty as hell, as was the corn bread. I had a bread pudding dessert with so much Maker's Mark sauce on it I caught a buzz, god bless 'em.<p> But a comic book that had somebody ask questions about soul food to tell the real president from a white imposter? Go on and try to tell me some folks might not look askance at it. It's just a bad idea, regardless of the basis in fact. Sometimes you have to realize that it's not just the truth, but the context and portrayal of the truth, that matters. He may be a good basketball player, but he's also a good lawyer--why not ask him some questions about habeas corpus or Gitmo or universal health care or something else which would have distinguished the two because, oh, I dunno, one's the PRESIDENT and one's a MORON?<p> Nope. We'll fall back on how black people are good at basketball and white people aren't--that oughta do the trick! Oh, except...ummm...have we ever heard before that the imposter sucks at basketball? Cuz if not, doesn't that make this is more idiotic? Why, exactly, would you choose something where the imposter might actually know how to play horse but wouldn't know jack shit about Roe vs. Wade?

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 7:10 p.m. CST

    I don't need a narrative that I understand

    by ChocolateJesus

    As long as I'm enjoying the ideas (written, drawn, and implied) that are being presented. I don't necessarily know what I'm looking at in a Dali painting, but I enjoy the things it evokes in me and the interpretations I can make about it, as well as just looking at the ideas he had. I understand that Comics are a story-based medium, but I would still rather read an incoherent comic, even if every single panel was from another, completely arbitrary comic, if I find the ideas contained within pleasing. What I don't care about, is another generic piece of super-hero namby-pambying, with writing by some nerd that's never had an artistic thought in his life aside from "What if Venom fought Wolverine?". I'm not saying it should be that way, and with a $4.00 cover price, I understand that you want some bang for your buck, but no one's making you buy them every month, and most nerds give favorable reviews to outright mediocrity, and then rail against something that threatens their idealism.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 7:11 p.m. CST

    Again, though

    by ChocolateJesus

    I'm only speaking generally. I haven't read the Final Crisis yet. All I'm saying is that if the fact that it doesn't cohere to some arbitrary standard of story-telling is the primary reason to dislike it, that's just not good enough for me.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 7:31 p.m. CST

    Actually, his name was Kwinn.

    by Pops Freshemeyer

    And they made a figure which was available in a set, along with Snake Eyes and Scarlett and a reprint of issue 2. I would've killed to get that toy when I was like 11. Damn.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 7:42 p.m. CST

    Noaki Urasawa's Monster

    by Henry Fool

    Hey everyone, this is a totally off topic post but I just wanted to remind eveyrone to check out the amazing 18 volume series monster from Viz. It's a truly great manga that easily ranks with classics like Ghost in the Shell, Death Note, and Akira. It's about a surgeon who saves a young boy only to discover the boy is destined for something terrible. It's an amazing story but it isn't getting much attentin. AICN did a write up here last year and I wanted to mention it again. It really is great. If anyone wants to talk about it, e-mail me at edfexley@gmail.com.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 7:54 p.m. CST

    In defense of FC........

    by gooseud

    I gotta admit, that story s pretty much incomprehensible, but the Batman/Darkseid thing? Friggin bad ass. And the reason Bats made an exception is that Darkseid had won. You could make an argument that "if not then, when?". I often complain about DC's "frozen in amber" feel, so good for Bats for bending the rules, it would have been ridiculous NOT to bend them. Plus, it showed how Batman, no matter how outmatched, always has the trick up his sleeve. Loved it, personally.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 8:35 p.m. CST

    Final Crisis and BM: RIP are a load of crap from a sad hack.

    by Uncle Stan

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:26 p.m. CST

    G.I. Joe...

    by BizarroJerry

    I've been a fan of Joe since the Marvel days. The Devil's Due stuff was often pretty good, it was often not good, but they managed to do a pretty good job. I'm a little worried this new one is maybe too different from the old continuity, but I'll give it more of a chance. I do agree, though, with the assessment that it seems to start too slow. For a all-new relaunch of a series with the same continuity for twenty years shoulda started with a bang.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:33 p.m. CST

    Morrison a hack? I say thee nay!!

    by gooseud

    Morrison is probably the #1 overall idea guy in comics today. No one writes moments like Morrison. Martian Manhunter's demise? Green Arrow's last stand? Batman's Old West quick draw to the death with Darkseid, and Superman's accompanying reaction? All totally bad ass and awesome. The problem is, you have to wade through reams of unfocused unintelligible garbage to get to those moments. Seven Soldiers was similar, awesomely cool core ideas surrounded by unreadable garbage. IF you could somehow combine Morrison's ideas with Brubaker's unmatchable professionalism and discipline, you would have the ultimate writer. Has Bru ever been a day late with anything? Has he ever, for even one panel, seemed like the story was spinning out of his control (Kirkman's major flaw is this, as Walking Dead has already had 3 to 4 major moments where I felt like the story got away from him, he already admits regretting the "hand cut-off" incident and that only happened 15 issues ago). Bru has rock-solid disicpline at all times and it shows, you couldnt have written that Bucky story any other way, as fans would have turned on you like jackals if it seemed like that story was going out of control for even a page. Bru was the only one who could write that story.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 10:47 p.m. CST

    X-Factor & G.I. Joe

    by maxwell's hammer

    I just read X-Factor #39, and that was pretty fucked up. Peter David really outdid himself with finding new and horrible ways to use Madrox's powers to tell some great stories.<BR> <BR> And my favorie Joes: DIALTONE, because he had a beret and that funky radio communications backpack, and JINX because when I was a little kid, I totally had a crush on her. Oh, and SPIRIT, because he came with an eagle, and he was my very first G.I. Joe action figure. That was pretty rad.

  • Jan. 21, 2009, 11:14 p.m. CST

    Invincible Rules!

    by Cinemanimetal

    Good to see some Invincible love. A letter I wrote actually got printed in this issue which was cool! Definitely one of the best series out there. I love how the story is all in the one Invincible comic (except for that one Atom Eve special). It is just so refreshing to not have to deal with big universe wide stories. Though you still get appearances from other Image people like in the upcoming issue 60 which seems to have every single Image character making an appearance! Awesome.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 12:06 a.m. CST

    There was indeed a Kwinn action figure...

    by davywankenobi

    http://www.yojoe.com/action/04/trackerkwinn.shtml He came out in 2004 in a comic book 3 pack with Scarlett and Snake Eyes.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 3:04 a.m. CST

    Gotta get me a Kwinn action figure...and a message to "Tallboy"

    by Ambush Bug

    I had no idea Kwinn had an action figure and now that I do, it must be mine.<br><br> Tallboy, Sleazy summed it up pretty eloquently, but I will follow with "Don't hate the playa, hate the game." I didn't write the stupid short story that hinges on Obama's knowledge of basketball. I just reviewed it. As Sleazy said, Obama is about so much more than just his college basketball career. To use that as a means to distinguish him from the Chameleon is pretty horrid. Also, to think the Chameleon knows nothing about basketball at all is pretty damn stupid as well. I chalk it all up to Zeb Wells completely dropping the ball in this short story which was probably cobbled together over a weekend, or at least reads as such.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 3:56 a.m. CST

    toxicbuddha...

    by alfiemoon

    "When you have to start spouting that arthouse bullshit about "challenging expectations" of decades of conventional storytelling to justify the cluster fuck that id FC, I think you have pretty much captured the essence of the argument while showing off ur impressive Vertigo pedigree: At the end of the day these are funny books, ff. We just want to enjoy a good story well told and some kick ass artwork." - - - - - - - - - - - - That's fine, I don't have a problem with people wanting to read good, old-fashioned comics that are told in the same style that they have been in years. Those readers are well catered for by the Big Two. Stuff like Johns' Green Lantern and Action Comics are perfect examples of how those kinds of comics can be executed well. However, I think that there's room in the market for a book that tries something a little different, and Final Crisis is that book. Your main complaint seems to be that DC are using their big crossover event to do something different to the norm. To me, that sounds like a recommendation.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 3:56 a.m. CST

    Margot_Tenenbaum...

    by alfiemoon

    "Evrey complaint about Grant Morrison's writing... ...would be fixed if the man would write "old school" explanatory captions." - - - - - - - - - - - - Morrison's stories might well be clearer with explanatory captions, but that's something that he's consciously trying to move away from for this series. In interviews, he's talked about the way that stories told in other media (eg. TV shows, movies) don't require explanatory captions to tell you that the setting has changed, or that time has moved forwards, and he thinks that avoiding these obvious explanatory devices will give the story of Final Crisis a greater sense of verisimilitude. Of course, you can debate how successful he has been in achieving that goal, but he does have a good reason for not writing "old school" explanatory captions.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 3:56 a.m. CST

    The_joker...

    by alfiemoon

    "All of the Morrison fanboys who keep on telling me, "Just wait. Morrison is gonna wrap this up, it's ALL gonna make sense and it WILL BLOW YOUR MIND!" Really? Well I sure hope so, cuz he's got a hell of a lot of answers that need to be resolved in a SINGLE issue." - - - - - - - - - - - - Really? I actually think that this issue explained most of the major plot points of the series. If anything, I can't help but think that Final Crisis #7 is going to be more straightforward than what has come before it.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 3:57 a.m. CST

    ChocolateJesus...

    by alfiemoon

    "So, I can't speak to its quality. But, I will ALWAYS be more interested in reading something experimental than something that clings to empty comic-book tradition, just so as not to piss off a bunch of fat, old comic book nerds that miss seeing Superman save Lois Lane from an exploding airplane every month. This is an art-form, people, let it expand where the artists want to take it." - - - - - - - - - - - - Well said!

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 3:57 a.m. CST

    optimous_douche...

    by alfiemoon

    "It should have never been given the tag CRISIS. (...) The precedent for the term Crisis was set twenty years ago. You can tell all of us “old” fanboys to move with the times, but then don’t shamelessly pander to our sense of nostalgia to sell books. If you want to use Crisis to suck us in, then be ready for the repercussions when it so drastically differs from that expectation." - - - - - - - - - - - - That's a fair point. By billing it as the third in the "Crisis trilogy", I guess that DC did set up certain expectations for their readers. I can't blame fans of books like COIE and Infinite Crisis for being upset that the story of Final Crisis isn't being told in a similar style.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 4:59 a.m. CST

    Snake-Eyes with the mini-blind visor

    by Dingbatty

    instead of the goggles looks idiotic. Simply don't get the fanboy love for the later, bastardized look. That, and, fuck you for bragging about pet abuse.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 5:27 a.m. CST

    Superman Beyond #2 was more Crisis than Final Crisis

    by most excellent ninja

    man that is one mindfuck of a comic. existensial comics.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 6 a.m. CST

    Hal Jordan. WTF??

    by V'Shael

    Anyone want to explain what's going on there?

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 6:08 a.m. CST

    $3.99 Price Point = The End of a Dying Industry

    by LaserPants

    $3.99 for more content, okay, fine. $3.99 for 32 pages with ads and diminishing returns in terms of content? no thanks. That'll be it for me. And most.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 6:39 a.m. CST

    GIJoe: The pinnacle toy of the 80's

    by Stalkeye

    After watching the first Marvel Comic Animated commercial, i was hooked on the book and the action figures.It's hard to top Hama's Marvel run especially the silent issue which actually outsold the X-Men.*gasps* I still have the issue which printed my letter. i think it's the one with the original GIJoe himself gracing the cover. Ahh memories.<p>PS i would have smacked the shit out of that damn Cat for dumping on my USS Flagg, but as an owner of a Tabby, somethings you just have to say; "ah, what the fuck.."<p>Too bad the Movie will be an instant shitfest.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 8:07 a.m. CST

    $3.99 price point=death?

    by gooseud

    My pull list has dwindled down to around 10 books or so as it is (Lemme see.....Ex MAchina, Walking Dead, Nova, Thor, Cap, and a rotating cast of one shots and whatever grabs my attention that week, with Conan, Astonishng Xmen, She-Hulk, and X Factor being the recent wave of cutbacks) but because the books by and large suck. Give me good books and I'll buy em. Give me the crap they have been releasing and......nada.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 10:37 a.m. CST

    Diminishing Returns As Well, Goosebud

    by LaserPants

    Its true that the quality is the main concern; I've dropped many books based on that. But I would be more inclined to by so-so books at a lower price point. At $4 a pop? Not so much. Trades are a better value anyways.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 10:58 a.m. CST

    Grant Morrison has screwed up everything that he has touched

    by 4we8have15to16go23back42

    I hated his X-Men

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 11:44 a.m. CST

    Did anyone get the special order GI joe?

    by Bass Ackwards

    the one you could name yourself? I was such a sucker. Bought x-ray specs too.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 11:44 a.m. CST

    Did anyone get the special order GI joe?

    by Bass Ackwards

    the one you could name yourself? I was such a sucker. Bought x-ray specs too.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 11:44 a.m. CST

    Fuzzyjefe

    by FleshMachine

    issue 34 as i recall..(I remember it was an april issue my birth month) that was a great issue! ace in the skystriker and wild weasle in the rattler. wicked showdown (was "showdown" the title? might have been).

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 12:44 p.m. CST

    Mighty and Dark Avengers

    by Homer Sexual

    Well, I know the thread is getting old, but I just read the new issues of Mighty and Dark Avengers. <p> Mighty Avengers seems to good to be true. Despite the prominence of Hank Pym, a character I am muy sick of, this seems to be one of the best line-ups ever. Jocasta? Hell yeah! Hercules and Amadeus Cho! Igualmente, as long as they are written almost as well as in Incredible Herc. Finally...can it be...no way...Scarlet Witch? Wanda Maximoff is back? I could not be more thrilled..but leery that she will be gone again very soon. <p> I have always hated Avengers: Disassembled for many reasons. Dark Avengers is better written than that, but it is hard to take these books with every single character being unlikable. Dark, indeed. I thought I liked Dark, but this was a little much. <p> And, of course, if Final Crisis were titled neither Final nor Crisis, it would be much, much better received. Pretty hard to argue with the point about Batman breaking his code to shoot Darkseid. It was a cool moment, but really should not have happened.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 1:04 p.m. CST

    I like unlikable and flawed characters

    by Joenathan

    I prefer them to the boyscouts. This is why I'm excited to see where Hank Pym goes from here.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 1:34 p.m. CST

    Flawed, yes...but these people aren't "flawed"

    by Homer Sexual

    I don't like boyscouts either. Never enjoyed Superman or even Spider-Man, but.. <p> Venom, Osborne, Bullseye..these are not flawed, they are totally evil. Moonstone used to be flawed, but even she seems to be pretty much just evil now. I can't get into a book with all evil characters, so I think I may drop Dark Avengers, I just didn't enjoy it. I guess I need to like some character in some way, or at least relate to them....and there is no one here I can stand, except Moonstone, and she has been written pretty one-dimensionally ever since original Thunderbolts was cancelled. <p> Hank Pym is indeed flawed, though he is not in Dark Avengers. I used to like him and his issues, but at this point I am just sick of him.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 1:40 p.m. CST

    $3.99 Retail is for suckers

    by trafficguy2000

    www.dcbservice.com

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 1:56 p.m. CST

    They already made a book with 100% nothing but evil

    by gooseud

    It was called WANTED, and it sucked the sweat off a dead man's balls.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 2 p.m. CST

    Got to agree with Homer Sexual

    by Continentalop

    I don't mind flawed and unlikable, but that doesn't mean they should be completely immoral. Nowadays it seems that to make a character have depth or to show how mature and sophisticated your comic is you have to have characters who are absolutely decadent and psychotic. Consider it the unintended consequences of the Watchmen. <p> Pretty soon we will be following the adventures of Captain al-Queda and Rape Man.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 2:58 p.m. CST

    I like Evil characters too

    by Joenathan

    Besides, Noh-vahr isn't evil. Neither is Sentry or Ares. And, if I'm correct, neitheris the person standing in for Wolverine.<br><br>As for Hank, I agree with you, if he keeps whining, but if instead, they take his clearly established issues and shortcomings and problems and set him on a road to redemption... I'm interested.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 3 p.m. CST

    Maybe american Eagle will take out the Dark Avengers

    by Joenathan

    He is pretty cool

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 6:15 p.m. CST

    Spoiler (not really).

    by nofate

    Just read Dark Avengers and might actually stick around. Though they really should have just cancelled T-Bolts instead. Is the same guys plus some nice twists. Plus the new T-Bolt lineup is not really doing it for me. Although there is a great scene on this week's T-bolts where new Ant-Man is smuggled in between blond Black Widow's breasts.<br> <br> Actual quote: "I'm keeping abreast of the situation" <br> <br> Excelsior!!

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 6:57 p.m. CST

    Young Liars

    by ktownman

    Finally some attention for an overlooked title. I always give new vertigo a shot and hope this one sticks around past the dreaded cancel point of most new vertigo series of 20 something issues. DMZ , Northlanders and Young Liars are the best Vertigo since Preacher and Sandman before it.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 7:06 p.m. CST

    Final Crisis

    by ktownman

    Love Grant's Vertigo and some of the JLA Run but otherwise hes been hit and miss. His New X-Men run was nothing special. Seven Soldiers was above average in certain mini-series ( Klarion,Frankenstein,Zatanna) but horribly bad in other and most definetely the crap worthy bookend last book. I hate to say this cause I hate most tie-ins but Final Crisis suffered by not having tie-ins. There was mini series but something as drastic as these events should of spilled over into some books. I have no idea when Final Crisis happens. Is it beore New Krypton? How does it tie into the Death Of The New Gods? Where at the end Apoklips (sp) and New Genesis was remade into one planet. Why did Darkseid , Kalibak, Granny Goodness,Dessad et al have to take human form. I understand how he completed the anti life equation but theres more plot holes and mistakes then the Sprit Movie. Did they just go say Mr Morrision go forth and have a crisis and definetely dont talk to Jim Starlin or any other current writer. Just bring back Aquaman and make the forever People annoying Japanese Superheroes.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 7:10 p.m. CST

    Bruce Wayne Will be Back in

    by ktownman

    time for the release of the 3rd Nolan Batman film maybe earlier.

  • Jan. 22, 2009, 7:37 p.m. CST

    Bruce Wayne is never coming back!

    by Continentalop

    Neither is Steve Rogers! <p> Ok, not very likely. But wouldn't that be insane if they stayed dead for like 10 years!

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 4:28 a.m. CST

    Bruce Wayne Will Be Back For.......

    by thelordofhell

    The very last, we really mean it, this is it, the last final, final, really, really final, pentultimate, ultimately last, ending, infinity plus-one, very, very, very, very, very last and final ultimate Crisis

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 7:47 a.m. CST

    Bruce Wayne / Bats Will Be Back As A Black Lantern

    by LaserPants

    And then, at the end of Blackest Night, will somehow be magically brought back to life through some kind of deus ex machina contrivance. Didn't Brainiac 5 even introduce Supes to the God Machine itself? C'mon. Like you don't see that coming from 10 miles away.<br><br>Steve Rogers will probably stay dead, though. Or maybe not. Bruce Wayne is WAY more popular a character than Steve Rogers, though. Ask any pedestrian non-comic reader who Bruce Wayne is and they will tell you "Batman." Ask the same person who Steve Rogers say and they will say "Huh?"

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 9:19 a.m. CST

    I'd believe Steve Rogers was dead and gone IF

    by V'Shael

    the winter soldier version of bucky was in the Captain America movie, and the Avengers movie featured Bucky being found in ice by the Russians, but Captain America being found (years later) by the Americans. And then Cap dies in the Avengers movie. <p> If they do all of that, then kids and casual movie goers could pick up a Captain America comic and know Bucky, Steve's Legacy, etc.. and not be confused about what's going on. <p> They won't, of course. This is Marvel. The company that thought they needed to put Spidey "Back in Black" because of Spiderman 3.

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 10:39 a.m. CST

    The non-evil Dark Avengers

    by Homer Sexual

    Noh-Vahr is a character I am unfamiliar with. <p> Sentry is a character, I guess. He isn't evil, granted. He isn't anything. He may actually be the single least interesting super hero I have ever read. <p> Ares is like Hercules, with less complexity or personality. He is one dimensional and, like Sentry, will be nothing but a background character, not like they are gonna focus on him. <p> Dakken, well I haven't read the final conclusion to his storyline in Wolverine, but he does seem to be a flawed character. <p> Dark Avengers was better as T-Bolts, when they at least had Songbird as a major and not totally evil character.

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 10:41 a.m. CST

    Rape Man

    by Homer Sexual

    His sidekick could be the Molester.

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 10:45 a.m. CST

    Batman's Return

    by RinRockRock

    A few things you gotta keep in mind about Bruce Wayne's inevitable return. Once the "Batman" comic pick back up in the summer, they are only about 16 issues away from #700. They love a big story and anniversary issue to go together. Also, it's Bats' 70th birthday this summer too. I think for sure he'll make an appearance as a Black Lantern but I don't think it'll be permanent. MAybe a dip in Ra's Al Ghul's Lazarus Pit?

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 11:44 a.m. CST

    How come no one ever brings up Micronauts

    by hst666

    I was 12 when Transformers and GI Joe came out and saw the cartoons and comics as mere advertising for thr crappy toys, but I was 7 or so when Micronauts came out and I loved that comic as a kid. Fuck the Transformers.

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 11:59 a.m. CST

    Homer

    by Joenathan

    Noh-Vahr is from Grant Morrison's great mini-series MArvel Boy. It was from a while back. Go check it out. He's popped up occasionally since then, but has been in a holding pattern waiting for someone to do something good with him again. His hatred of humans resulting from his treatment ever since he crashed on Earth, might make him callous, but hes always been noble and fought for good in a Kree sort of way.<br><br>Same for Sentry. Didn't you read his original mini-series? I liked it, but yeah, they haven't quite found a firm footing on who he is eyt, but still... he's not evil and that might loom large in the future.<br><br>Ares is more uncouth than Hercules, but I don't think we should start writing off characters just because they are similiar to another. Anyway, he's all about warrior honor, how will he react when Norman wants to do something decidedly NOT honorable.<br><Br>I think these three will be key when Norman and Bullseye and the others cross the line, which we all know they will. And those are three very powerful characters.<br><br>As for Wolverine's son, I don't know much about him. Personally, I expect him to be lame and whiny like Connor on Angel, also he has the dumbest character design since 90s Image, BUT not evil.<br><br>I agree these are all somewhat unknown characters, but maybe thats the point...<br><br>Songbird whined too much. I was getting sick of her, however the last few issues of her versus Bullseye were pretty good, that being said: I'm glad she's gone for awhile.

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 12:41 p.m. CST

    Steve will be in back in time for the Cap movie...

    by Ambush Bug

    No way he stays dead for too long. Hell, they gave SPidey organic webshooters because it was in the movie. They brought back Pepper as a love interest to make it more in tune with the movie. Marvel has finally smartened up and realized to tie the films and comics together, which is good. As long as they leave it to Bru to bring him back and not let Alex ROss or Bendis or Millar do it, I'll be fine with it. Bru's been toying with the Cosmic Cube since he got on the book. There's your dues ex machina from the get go.

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 1:24 p.m. CST

    Cap

    by Joenathan

    I'm betting they go the Death/Rebirth of Superman route, as in the Super soldier serum is working to repair his body right now and some day soon a very disheveled blonde man will wash up on shore, unsure as to who he is... oh wait... AND THEN its going to become a race between the New and Dark Avengers to see who can get to this "mystery man" first.

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 1:38 p.m. CST

    You Guys Watch Last Night's DEFENDERS?

    by Buzz Maverik

    SPOILER ALERT! Dr. Strange was pissed at Carol Danvers for almost getting Bullseye to kill himself. Meanwhile, Hawkeye, back from the dead, had some bad news for Valkyrie. Kitty Pryde damaged Namor's ... uh, trident. Cage, as usual, was given very little to do, but the Black Knight tried to make it up to Moondragon for messing up their date.<p>You comic fans who can get chicks know what I'm talkin' about.

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 1:40 p.m. CST

    See This Is What I Hate!

    by Buzz Maverik

    Don't fix it! Leave the dead character dead. It's much more interesting that way.

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 3:32 p.m. CST

    Buzz, I'm single...

    by SleazyG.

    ...but I still know exactly what you just said.<p> Oh, the shame...

  • Jan. 23, 2009, 6:24 p.m. CST

    I can occasionally get a chick

    by hst666

    But I have no idea what you are talking about. I was out last night and I am trying to find some metaphor for a show a straight guy would actually watch. You wouldn't be talking about Grey's Anatomy would you? Because the only straight guys sitting through that drek should be the ones that have to because of their GF/wife and won't be getting laid if they don't.

  • Jan. 25, 2009, 2:56 p.m. CST

    What?

    by Homer Sexual

    I totally don't get that Defenders thing, but I haven't scored with a chick in ten years. <p> Anyhooo.....I have totally dated myself by repeatedly referring to Daken as Dakken. 80's headbanger bands linger on, you know...Dokken in my head. And, yes, Daken is a good character but I don't think he'll develop much in Dark Avengers. <p> Now that I read Thunderbolts, I have to decide...Dark Avengers or Thunderbolts. Both well written enough, good enough art (though DA has the edge there). Both full of assholes, to put it mildly. Mainly, too much dick sucking of Norman Osborne. Can't deal with it, have to choose one or the other, or drop both to keep it simple. I do anticipate a steep drop in sales for T-Bolts, since DA is now really T-Bolts and T-Bolts is, well, some other guys.

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