Knocking That Smile Off His Face

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Birds of Prey #124
Written by Tony Bedard
Art by Claude St. Aubin

The news that Didio wants to bring back Barbara Gordon as Batgirl (A total step back for the character, and a complete insult to Cassandra Cain) made it very hard for me to enjoy this. Not to mention the Birds are wrapping up their time in Platinum Flats which was a setting I have rather enjoyed. Seeing Oracle go toe-to-toe with the Joker and get her revenge was pretty cool. I am just sad that this series is wrapping up after a decade of Oracle and her operatives fighting the good fight. Everything else in this issue was just decent, nothing to write home about. And that is not necessarily a bad thing. The new artist I liked a lot and I think he fits the series well. I have never heard of him before though.

Ingesting Monopoles

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Blue Beetle (Volume 6) #33
Written by Matthew Sturges
Art by Rafael Albuquerque

Now I am guessing Jaime is not actually as dead as he seems at the end of this issue. The only evidence we have for its actuality is that the scarab says he is dead. But I don’t think DC would kill Jaime in such a non-heroic way; a cheap shot by the new Doctor Polaris. Plus there are three issues left of this series. Brenda and Paco’s talk while being held captive was hilarious and really shows how Sturges really understand these characters. The Teen Titans guest star and it didn’t seem forced at all; especially considering Blue Beetle is now a Titans himself. It was pretty cool to see Jaime yell Titans Together and Sturges even manages to maintain the relationship Jaime has with Red Devil over in the Teen TItans book. I am not sure if Monopoles are an actual thing, I will have to look that up. Not to mention I doubt that Doctor Polaris could just ingest such a thing, but that is comics for you. And the title of this post is unintentionally dirty….awesome.

Moving On

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Teen Titans (Volume 3) #65
Written by Sean McKeever
Art by Eddy Barrows

This was a decent issue of Teen Titans. You know, I can’t really get behind the colorist of this series. Everything seems a little bit too dark for Teen Titans…I don’t know. But I do love Wonder Girl’s new costume, I wish the W didn’t go around her arms though, that’s kind of weird looking. I for one have never been the biggest fan of her post-infinite crisis costume, it has always seemed so bland and boring. I like that they sort ofstraight up said that Wonder Girl’s brooding attitude has changed, and while she will always love Connor, it is time to move on. It is about time. I don’t know that I give a shit about the plot with Bombshell….and are we supposed to recognize the women at the end? She looks like a generic blonde to me. And I didn’t know Red Devil could make portals? You learn knew things every day. Next issue should be fun as we get a recruitment drive!

Legion 33 – 48

 

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Supergirl and the Legion of Super-Heroes #33
Written by Tony Bedard
Art by Dennis Calero

It has been a while so it took me a while to remember what had gone before in this series, but I caught up. Looks like Lightning Lad’s brother and the wanderer’s are villanous after all. I am pretty sure Lightning Lord was a villain in other versions of the Legion, I am not sure about the wanderers yet. Calero’s art was a little distracting, I am not sure how I feel about it.

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Supergirl and the Legion of Super-Heroes #34
Written by Tony Bedard
Art by Dennis Calero

This issue introduces Wildfire into this version of the Legion’s continuity. Apparently, he is a villain. I don’t know if Wildfire was a villain at first in the other Legions but I guess he is here. I liked this a lot better then last issue but the art is still distracting. It’s too dark and too hard to read. I am not a fan.

 

 

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Supergirl and the Legion of Super-Heroes #35
Written by Tony Bedard
Art by Dennis Calero

This was more like it. Wildfire reverts to the side of angels, and Lightning Lad, Saturn Girl, and Supergirl fight a guy who can control his evolution I guess. And it looks like there is some kind of time machine involved, I am not sure. This was good stuff and the art was much better. I knew Calero had it in him.

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Supergirl and the Legion of Super-Heroes #36
Written by Tony Bedard
Art by Dennis Calero

What a great ending to this arc. Bedard hits it out of the park with this issue revealing Brainy’s good intentions behind the last few issue and sending Supergirl home to the 21st century. I seem to remember her splitting into two different people during World War II though, I wonder why that was? I don’t know but anyways it was fun having Supergirl in this title while it lasted, but like the Legion said, eventually she had to go home.

 

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Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 5) #37
Written by Jim Shooter
Art by Frances Manapul

With just one issue, I can tell you that I totally understand why Shooter is hailed as a classic legion writer. I really loved this, and I am only familiar with this incarnation of the Legion. Not to mention, Manapul’s art is gorgous. He draw sexy girls AND guys it’s perfect! The first Supergirl-less issue is a hit! I wonder if the girl introduced this issue will become a legionairre. I hope so, it is about time someone created a new original one.

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Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 5) #38
Written by Jim Shooter
Art by Frances Manapul

Another excellent issue from Shooter and Manapul, I think it’s safe to say this is the best creative team this book has ever had. The legion tryout were hilarious but I agree with Light Lass, Lightning Lad was being an idiot. I guess he is a little in over his head as Legion Leader. I felt bad when he cried to himself at the end. That has got to be a stressful job. I wish they had picked one of the goofy candidates, the Legion has a tradition of having one character with a weird seemingly useless power, but they are also great characters. I bet Giselle or M’Rissey will be joining soon though. I like them both.

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Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 5) #39
Written by Jim Shooter
Art by Frances Manapul

This issue is sort of a day in the life where most of the time we just see Legionnaires walking around the headquarters in their underwear….and it was damn good. I am really enjoying Shooter’s run, and I love the way Manapul draws the 31st century. You really get the sense that this is another world. The only complaint I have is that Shooter seems to be overdoing the fake future swaring. I really don’t want to hear the word, “florg” anymore. It is fine once in a while, but not on every page. I feel bad for Projectra.

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Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 5) #40
Written by Jim Shooter
Art by Frances Manapul

Still digging this run so far, I especially like how they point out every Legionairre and their powers, it makes things a lot less confusing for us newbs. When Waid was on the book they would mention just like three and expect us to know the rest. I think Saturn Girl was treated a bit harsh but I guess messing with someone’s mind is pretty invasive. There were so many great character moments this issue I don’t even know where to begin. Shooter is a fantastic writer.

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Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 5) #41
Written by Jim Shooter
Art by Aaron Lopestri

Ahh things are getting frustrating for the Legion this issue and I can feel it while reading this. I almost got as stressed out as Lightning Lad must be. The UP are being jackasses as usual, and now they have arrested Invisible Kid. Giselle is part of the new UP Young Heroes team, I had hoped she would become a legionairre. Speaking of Giselle, Lopestri doesn’t draw her right in this issue at all. She is not just a pale girl. Can’t wait for Manapul to come back.

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Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 5) #42
Written by Jim Shooter
Art by Frances Manapul

Manapul returns this issue, but his art suffers a bit. During the battle scenes, things seemed to be a little…off I guess. He is usually very good but things were different then. Honestly, I can’t really tell much difference between the new uniforms and the old, but I am not a detail oriented person. Popoff is a jackass and I hope he gets what is coming for him. Invisible Kid’s Dad was very sweet to him, I was happy to see that.

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Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 5) #43
Written by Jim Shooter
Art by Frances Manapul

I wonder if Karate Kid and Triplicate Girl went to Final Crisis: Legion of Three Worlds. That would be my guess, and I like that use of continuity. As for the rest of this issue, it was pretty good. Action-packed and eventful, I liked it. Manapul didn’t draw Gazelle to look exactly like she used to. She definitely looks more human now and I don’t like that inconsistency.

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Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 5) #44
Written by Jim Shooter
Art by Sanford Greene

I question whether it was smart to put someone with such a cartooney art style on this book, but it wasn’t bad art. This issue was really good, I love M’Rissey and I hope they make him a Legionnaire! Considering he just saved their asses with his crazy business mind. I wish he could handle my finances! What should they call him, Business Boy. And I am glad that Invisible Kid showed everyone that he can be a warrior as well. Fantastic issue. I am sad that this book is going to end as these are MY legionnaires. Oh and I loved the way the cover of this issue was set up.

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Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 5) #45
Written by Jim Shooter
Art by Frances Manapul

I am glad Shooter didn’t draw out the invader planet thing for more then one issue, as he gets it done in just one. This is another reason why Shooter is a good writer, he gets pacing. I was a little shocked by the Saturn Girl and Ultra Boy thing. This is clearly just lust because we know Saturn Girl is not attracted to Ultra Boy’s personality and I don’t think Lightning Lad is treating her really bad, he has just got a lot on his plate. Also, Manapul is really good again this issue.

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Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 5) #46
Written by Jim Shooter
Art by Frances Manapul

This was another fantastic issue. The cover story of Ultra Boy fighting some losers wasn’t that interesting, but Lightning Lad finds out this issue and acts very mature about it, putting his personal feelings aside in order to lead the Legion effectively. I am not sure why Ultra Boy said Lightning Lad hurt him so much. This series is so much better then it was under Waid, and I liked Waid’s run. I wish DC wasn’t canceling it.

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Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 5) #47
Written by Jim Shooter
Art by Rick Leonardi

Ugh I wish they didn’t have these fill-in artists because I love Manapul’s art so much. Leonardi draws Brainiac 5 too young looking, like he looked during the Archie Legion. Why do they call it the “Archie” Legion anyways? What happened to Dream Boy? We haven’t seen him since Shooter took over nor have we heard from Wildfire. The romance between Dream Girl and Brainiac 5 is a adorable and I am loving every minute of it. Too Bad Princess Projectra has gone rogue, I used to like her. Maybe she still has some redeeming qualities not yet seen.

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Legion of Super-Heroes (Volume 5) #48
Written by Jim Shooter
Art by Frances Manapul

It’s time again for Legion Try-Outs, which are probably one of the coolest things about the Legion I think. Night Girl, Sizzle, and Turtle are rejected but are brought into the Legion Reserves (I think this is meant to be a version of the subs) and Gazelle is brought in as the newest member of the Legion with Sun Boy returning as well. This issue was a lot of fun. The destroyer race is pretty high concept with all the virtual reality stuff so I am a little confused by it but it’s all good. I sure hope this Legion gets to stay around after Final Crisis: Legion of Three Worlds.

The Rise of Genocide

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Wonder Woman (Volume 3) #26
Written by Gail Simone
Art by Aaron Lopestri

Just like over in Secret Six, Gail Simone creates an incredibly creepy villain. People who don’t like violence in their comics beware, although everything is done off-panel, this villain murders a little girl and many civilians at a shopping mall in cold blood. I don’t mind it and it makes the character all the more credible. Interviews have called Genocide the ultimate villain for Wonder Woman and I have to say so far, it looks like she might be. The coloring of this issue was a little off, Nemesis’s uniform switched from Red to Black back to red but otherwise the art was pretty decent. I am not sure what is going on with the Greek Gods, but I like they were wearing modern (futuristic?) looking clothes like when Rucka was on the book. I am sure we will learn more about what is going on with these Gods eventually. This storyline looks to be the best of Simone’s run yet and probably the best arc since Rucka left the character. I think everyone should check this out, you won’t be dissapointed.

A Villainous Trip To The Phantom Zone

s682Superman #682
Written by James Robinson
Art by Renato Guedes

Okay….this has to be the most eventful issue of this storyline yet. This is Part 6 of the New Krypton Storyline that began in the New Krypton Special, continued here, then in the Guardian Special, and then here, and here. The New Krypton event has been really awesome so far but this is the cream of the crop. The Kryptonians begin to gather Superman’s villains and toss them in the Phantom Zone, along the way killing some cops who try to stop them. When Clark finds this out, his reaction is priceless. You really get the sense of anger and disappointment as he flies out of the Daily Planet and I think that is a credit to Guedes’s artwork. He really did a good job this issue. I am not sure what is going on with the Guardian or Atlas though. I guess we will find out soon enough. At first I thought Supergirl was in on it but apparently she was unaware anyone got killed. I am glad. Allura is kind of a bitch compared to her husband, who seems genuinely upset about the deaths of the cops. I look forward to finding out what happens next.

Mixed Feelings

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Batman #681
Written by Grant Morrison
Art by Tony Daniel

My enthusiasm for this issue was nearly destroyed when I read Didio’s interview with Newsarama today. He basically confirmed Barbara Gordon will come back as Batgirl. I will get into that in a seperate post. Anyways, I have mixed feelings about this issue. When I first read it it seemed like a great ending if not a little underwhelming ending to this issue. The more I think about it the more I think Morrison’s ending for this was changed instead of Final Crisis. I don’t really see this as being such a shocking ending as Morrison described interviews. Sure Batman goes down in a helicoptor that blows up but it’s not like we see a body. One good thing about all this is Gotham certainly has a new group of villains in the form of the Club of Villains and the Black Glove but….I guess I expected some huge revelation, which there wasn’t one. Was the guy the Devil? Was he really Thomas Wayne? Was he Mangrove Pierce? I am not really sure. Daniel’s art is amazing and I don’t quite understand why people hate on it. I just don’t know what to think about this yet.