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Sep 10

My Comics for the Week of September 7, 2011.

Easily one of the best stacks of comics I’ve picked up from the store in a while. Not a bad one in the bunch and they ranged from good to really good to great to asdfghjklasdfhjla;dsfkjd.

Action Comics #1 was everything I wanted in a reintroduction of Superman. It’s very much him finding out who “Superman” is going to be and who he wants to be. You can see he’s making up what a superhero is going to mean as he goes along. He’s a little angrier and a little more vulnerable at this stage. But he’s also still easily wowed by, and this just made the whole book for me, the strength and courage of the average person. He stands up for the little guy and the poor and is a hero of the people again - in a way that maybe that whole Grounded arc that took up a year of Superman’s book last year wished it could be. Morrison does in one issue what JMS never really accomplished in a year of plodding plots. All the characters are here and present and are themselves… but they’re also all fresh and new and we don’t entirely know what’s coming next. And as a huge Superman fan, that’s really exciting.

Animal Man #1 starts off with a lot of bright, simple, clean art that (based on that cover) isn’t quite what I was expecting… and then it takes a turn into wanting my blankie and a nightlight. The book is simultaneously a very down to earth regular guy, regular family story and a creepy, unsettling horror book. It’s basically awesome.

Batgirl #1 has a lot of great character stuff to it. I liked seeing the establishment of Barbara Gordon’s new status quo. I liked meeting her roommate. I am definitely kind of having to readjust to this younger version of the the character. I’m used to Babs as a lot more experienced and in charge, rather than being a bit younger. The uncertainty does work though, as she’s been out of the role as Batgirl for a while and it is taking her a bit to get used to it again. The new villain seems creepy and Hughes’ covers own my heart.

Batwing #1 was such a great surprise. One of the really new characters of this whole relaunch got off to an amazing start. This book has, hands down, the best art of any of the new 52 that I’ve seen so far. It manages to introduce a supporting cast that I’m intrigued by without feeling like the introductions were shoehorned in. (Kia Okuru left an impression and I like her quite a bit.) There’s an interesting mystery left to unfold, a hell of a cliffhanger and GAH, did I mention the art? Cause applause to Mr Ben Oliver for that.

Detective Comics #1 was exactly the right kind of story to reintroduce the Bruce-as-Batman story to this relaunch. It’s was exactly the kind of classic Batman vs. the Joker story that gives you the who, what, when and where of Batman in the new DC universe. When I was reading it, all I was focused on was the plot, the case, the villains, the action and the story. Looking back on it, I’m surprised at how much exposition we got in this story too. It gives you a great sense of the State of the Batman Universe while creeping you the fuck out with one hell of a disturbing Joker story.

Green Arrow #1 was a solid book that introduced us to the new Green Arrow status quo. I wasn’t quite as blown away as I was by some of the other books but that’s not at all an insult. This was still a good issue. I think I just want to see a little more of it before it sucks me in. I’m not quite feeling the supporting cast just yet and I think their intros are that’s the only thing holding me back from really grabbing onto the story. I’m still glad I bought it and am still looking forward to the next issue.

Static Shock #1 did a good job of introducing a teen superhero living in New York that made his family life feel genuine and his super-life feel exciting. Pleasantly surprised to find the art pretty decent… considering I’m not much of a fan of the artist from the stuff I know him from, that was a relief.

Stormwatch #1 was a lot of fun. I love, love, love that we’re going to see the Apollo/Midnighter relationship unfold from the beginning. Much like with Lois & Clark, by the time I came to comics all of that courtship and whatnot was already in the past and everything was long since established. I really liked the new characters they introduced, like The Projectionist. Her Google-like powers were fun and filled with fandom goodies. I love the abstract nature of the characters names and powers. This book seems fun and exciting and the art is far better inside then the covers would have you believe.

Swamp Thing #1 relied a little bit more than I would have liked on history and external characters to get things going but I still liked it quite a bit. I have a feeling I’m going to like issue two a lot more than I liked issue one just because it will probably focus more on Swamp Thing and Alec rather than having the distraction of another visiting character in the book. That said, the art, dialog, story and tone were all good and I’m hooked for issue two for sure.

I also read two of the books my roommate picked up:

Hawk and Dove #1 set up a good bit of mystery yet to unfold and I’ve already got my theories as to what Dawn’s secret may be. All I hear about is how horrible Liefeld’s art is and I seriously don’t get it. Like… he’s not great or anything. I’m not twirling in a field, clutching his art to my bosom and singing his praises but I’ve definitely seen worse. I liked this one. Solid first issue.

Justice League International #1 had an excellent “building the team” scene. I’m a total sucker for a let’s-put-a-team-together scene. So that will always be something I enjoy. I like Booster’s characterization so far. He’s still got that PR-hungry, bit of a joke to others quality but also has a lot of actual skill to back up his selection as team leader. I enjoyed it. But with any larger team book that relies heavily on the personalities of those involved, it will only improve with time as the characters get to know one another and form relationships.

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