Amazing Art

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Brave and the Bold #20
Written by David Hine
Art by Doug Braithwaite

Hine and Braithwaite’s awesome run on this series continues in this issue. We learn more about the planet Hal and Phantom Stranger visited last issue and its Green Lantern has gone a little rogue. Braithwaite’s art is breathtaking as he really brings this plant-like world alive in each panel. What an amazing artist. DC needs to do more with him. I love the designs of all the different aliens. I am not sure what is going on with the little girl, but we will know soon enough. The fact that these plants can hurt the Phantom Stranger shows how much of a threat they are. Phantom Stranger is almost God-like in my opinion, he even says it himself. I wish Kyle was in this and not Hal as it might make more sense considering Kyle is living in space now but whatever. That is not the creators fault, DC seems to be obsessed with Hal Jordan as of late. Anyways, people, check this out! It is really good.

Hook

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The Vigilante (Volume 3) #1
Written by Marv Wolfman
Art by Rick Leonardi

The Vigilante is a character I am only minimally familiar with and I can’t say that this issue really hooked me on the character. I am mean this series has potential but nothing so far really proved to me that this is anything but another generic action book. The art is perfect for this series and I love the Vigilante’s costume. It reminds me of a Power Ranger (and yes I realize the character predates Power Rangers). I am not sure who this superhero traitor Vig (Can I call him Vig?) is investigating is. I hope it is NOT Jericho because as I said in my Titans Review, we have seen that too many times before. I know that this series is going to crossover with the Titan books, which is exciting and is exactly the kind of push a book like this needs in order to gain readers. This book needs a hook.

At Least We Get A Happy Ending

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The Flash (Volume 2) #247
Written by Alan Burnett
Art by Carlo Barberi, J. Calafiore, and Andre Coelho

This may or may not be the last issue of this series. Sadly, they are bringing back Barry Allen (a much inferior character) and retiring Wally. Well..er…at least he ended on a high note as this is a good story and it is a good explanation for him to give up the super hero business to focus on his family. But I don’t see that staying the same for long. The art was so inconsistent this issue, it was a bit distracting. And no, Wally doesn’t die. Nobody does. It is a happy ending for the West Family. Their only true enemy is Didio, who wants to move the DC Universe backwards instead of forwards. Yes, I know I mention this in almost every post now but it’s true, and I am bitter about it.

Immortal No More

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Wonder Woman (Volume 3) #27
Written by Gail Simone
Art by Aaron Lopestri

Despite emphasis put on other members of the trinity’s storylines right now, this is really the one everyone should be looking at. Genocide defeated Wonder Woman in battle, and has not only stolen her lasso, but wove it into her body! Now that’s creepy. As for Genocide herself, I have read a lot of people saying she is poorly designed, but I really like her look. I loved Donna and Wonder Girl’s reaction to the news of Wonder Woman’s death, but they do seem a little quick to assume Wonder Woman’s dead. I mean Diana has died before, and has come back. And here she isn’t even dead, so what are they worried about exactly? Sarge Steel is still acting crazy and I have no idea why. And Zeus’s proclamation of what is to happen to the Amazon’s is EXACTLY something the Greek God would do. I wonder how Wonder Girl will react to her own father taking away the immortality of the amazons?

Morrison’s Farewell

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Batman #683
Written by Grant Morrison
Art by Lee Garbett

This is Morrison’s final issue on Batman, and, well it was damn good. Just like last issue, we get more memories from Bruce’s life mixed with a fake what if memory if Bruce had never become Batman. This issue was much more clear. I like the idea that Dick would have died going after his parents’s killers if Batman never existed. It shows how important Dick and Bruce are to each other. Same with Gordon. And Catwoman for that matter. And hey, we see Batgirl’s silhouette! Yay! Thanks for actually having her appear in your run at least once Morrison. The end of R.I.P is finally revealed…Batman survived the explosion and goes on to Final Crisis which is his real last case. Yes, DC totally handled this wrong and I am pretty sure this wasn’t originally how it was going to happen but I don’t really mind. What I do mind is Didio’s fucking DC Nation column in the back, not only does he totally disrespect Kyle and Wally, but what he says is definitely a lie. There were no plans to bring back Barry Allen, just read interviews with other creators like Johns and Waid who have said DC didn’t know what the hell they were doing with Flash. I can’t wait till the day Didio leaves DC and the DCU can actually move forward instead of backwards. But anyways, this issue was good.

Life On The Outside: Martian Manhunter

Major Spoilers is a great blog and comics news site. I especially like their rundown on oh….every single member of the Legion of Super-Heroes ever! It is a lot of fun to read. So, I decided to do the same thing on my blog (I hope they don’t get mad). Instead of the Legionnaires, I want to focus on a superhero team that is even more under appreciated then those from the 31st Century….a team in the 21st Century; a team that that exists on the fringes of the Superhero Community….and yes I am talking about THE OUTSIDERS.

The Outsiders have always been a favorite team of mine. Maybe because I like the underdogs? Maybe because of the characters? Maybe I have no reason. I just know I like them. From Barr to Winick to Dixon, they have always captured my imagination. It seemed fitting to do this now since Tomasi’s run is about to begin and we are getting another overhaul of the team. I can’t promise it will be as witty and well-written as the Hero Histories over on Major Spoilers – in fact I can guarantee that it won’t be – but I will try my best.

In the first installment I want to focus on an easy one. He was once a mainstray of the Justice League and very much an insider but for at least a few issues he lived life on the Outside – I am talking about the recently deceased Manhunter from Mars; J’onn J’onzz, aka Martian Manhunter

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Huh?

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Manhunter #37
Written by Marc Andreyko
Art by Michael Gaydos, Carlos Magno, and Dennis Calero

So what happened to the abortion plot? You know the one that was solicited and inspired the cover for this issue? It looks like it was changed at the last second (To avoid controversy? I don’t know) and instead we get a look at 15 years in the future when Ramsey is deciding to become a superhero and Obsidian’s daughter is now Jade. I liked it a lot but I was looking forward to the abortion plot. Oh well. It was nice to see such a healthy relationship with a mother and her gay son and his lover in comics. It made me really happy. The DCU is full of lesbians, but there are very few openly gay male characters and Ramsey and Obsidian are better characters because of it. The Sweeney Todd stuff is interesting as well. This is actually the penultimate issue. I wonder how it will all end?

Keep Her In The Chair

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Birds of Prey #125

Written by Tony Bedard
Art by Scott McDaniel

I had a hard time getting through this issue, since I am not a fan of McDaniel’s art at all, and I have liked the art previously on this series. I DO like the Caretaker, who is a creepy villain that I think more people should use after this series ends. Same with the town of Platinum Flats, It is just a great concept. The writing is as good as ever, with Bedard being the most underrated writer on DC’s roster. But, I hated Barbara’s last line, as it is foreshadowing Didio’s plans to bring Babs back as Batgirl (Which is completely retarted may I add) and that doesn’t make me happy at all. I am getting more and more interested in the character of Infinity and I hope we find out more about her before the final issue. It is cool that she can read the minds of the dead. Not a power I have heard about in any other hero.

Forever Grateful

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Batman and the Outsiders (Volume 2) #14
Written by Frank Tieri
Art by Ryan Benjamin

While this isn’t really an Outsiders issue, just another issue starring Batgirl, I have to say that I also fucking loved it! Tieri needs to write a Batgirl book as he completely respects the character. Alfred showing up in the Batmobile was sweet and I loved how he broke up Nightwing and Batgirl’s fight and Dick admits he was a little jealous of Cassandra. Fantastic. I really feel like she is a member of the Bat family here, unlike all the other  books as of late. Thanks Frank, you have officially made me one of your fans. Since her series ended, no writer has truly respected Cassandra as a member of the bat-family, but you finally did it. Even though Batgirl will not be involved in this series past this issue, I am forever grateful that she got this nice arc.

Red Robin

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Robin #181
Written by Fabian Nicieza
Art by
Freddie E. Williams II

Well the General Guy is dressing up like Anarky and Robin got pretty burned after the explosion last issue. Like really burned, like the back of his head looks like Two-Face’s right side. So naturally, in order to conceal his identity, Tim takes on the Red Robin costume at the end of this issue. Will this be a permanent change, I don’t know, but Tim certainly looks older in the Red Robin costume, I like it. Maybe he can just be Robin, and still have that costume, because I do like it. It is Batman meets Robin perfectly. I despise Alex Ross, but the man does do great costume designs. As for this issue, eh, it was okay, I just hate Williams’s art and I really don’t give a crap about the guy dressing up as Anarky. I wish Dixon never left.

Alura Is A Bitch

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Supergirl (Volume 5) #36
Written by Sterling Gates
Art by Jamal Igle

This is Part 9 of the New Krypton crossover that began in the New Krypton Special, continued here, then in the Guardian Special, then here, here, here, and here. Seriously, this just keeps getting better. We see a lot more of Superwoman this issue and her costume is fantastic. I really love it! It has this great feel to it I don’t know how to explain it. She turns out to be really nice…that is unless she was hiding something. I was hoping she was Linda Danvers but it looks like she is definitely a Kryptonian so it’s not Linda. I still hope Flamebird is Linda. We see more of Flamebird and Nightwing this issue and learn that they took on the costumes to stop Zod’s followers. The New Nightwing’s costume is really a lot like Bat-costume, was the silver age Nightwing like that? I wonder.  I would love to see Dick Grayson and Bette Kane confront them. As for the Girl of Steel herself, I still wish she would change her costume lol. Oh and her mother, well, her mother is a bitch.

Death By Banana Peel

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Batman Confidential #24
Written by Andrew Kreisberg
Art by Scott McDaniel

This is definitely the best issue of Kreisberg’s arc, but that is not saying much. Once again this is a we’ve seen this all before arc and I guess it would be fine for new readers, but bores me. Mc Daniel’s art is at least bearable  this issue, as bearable as McDaniel’s art can be I suppose. I didn’t expect that cop to go quite over the edge at the end. I liked the part with Joker and Matches Malone in the prison and the banana peel death. I guess those were the moments that made this better then the two previous issues. Next issue looks like it will feature the Riddler, which is always a plus. I guess this was decent, but I wouldn’t pick it up if I were you.

Zatanna and Her Magically Large Earings

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Superman/Batman #54
Written by Michael Green and Mike Johnson
Art by Rags Morales

Another good issue of the Green and Johnson run on this book, these are definitely the best writers this series has ever had. I wasn’t too keen on the idea of Batman gaining Superman’s powers, but Green and Johnson’s portrayal of it is really interesting. Batman is going a little nuts and sort of drunk on power, which I could totally see happening. He even kills Bane (or does he?) which makes me think somehow at the end this is going to be erased from continuity. Morales’s art is beautiful as usual, but I don’t know how I feel about those giant earings on Zatanna. I mean come on, how can she even move her head. There is a particularly breathtaking page of Batman just floating while talking to James Gordon which is really damn cool. Good issue.

Dick Has Some Balls

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Nightwing #151
Written by Peter Tomasi
Art by Doug Mahnke and Shawn Moll

This issue felt like it was Tomasi’s last issue. He wraps up a lot of things he set up with Two-Face and Dick’s girlfriend, I wonder if he thought this was going to be his last but his run was expanded at the last moment. I liked the ending with Alfred, Dick, and Tim watching a movie and eating popcorn, it put a smile on my face. But I do wish Cassandra was there, but I will let it slide because I don’t see Cassandra eating popcorn and watching a movie lol. It looks like Carol, the girl we thought Two-Face murdered a couple issues back, faked her death and is in the witness protection program. I wonder how she did that? Her death seemed pretty bloody if I remember correctly. I liked how the artists portrayed Dick’s freefall from space, as I even got a little sick thinking of doing that. Wow! Dick has some balls. LMAO reread that last sentence without thinking of Dick Grayson. No pun was intended there!

Colorists Suck Sometimes

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Green Arrow & Black Canary #15
Written by Andrew Kreisberg
Art by Mike Norton

Andrew Kreisberg begins his run on this series, and unlike his work on Batman Confidential, I was pretty damn impressed. He starts out the issue making it look like Dinah is the damsel in distress, but then shows she has had the upper hand the whole time. One thing Winick often forgot was this series is about Dinah as much as Ollie, and I think Kreisberg really remembers it here. The art, I was not so impressed with. Norton’s work here is subpar and the coloring was just awful. People’s hair color changes from red to blonde to red. Connor and Roy have black hair in one scene! And Roy has the wrong costume. Mia was never Speedy at the time Roy had that late nineties Arsenal costume! That being said,  I did like the trip down memory lane. I don’t know how I feel about Connor and Mia leaving. I did like the whole condoms joke though, that made me smile. So far, so good with Kreisberg.

Creepy Creepy Creepy

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Green Lantern Corps (Volume 2) #31
Written by Peter Tomasi
Art by Patrick Gleason

In another rather disturbing issue this week (in a good way), we find the Green Lanterns still fighting Kryb. Kryb has to be the creepiest but enjoyable villains I have seen in a while. I hope Tomasi doesn’t kill him off in the end. I like how he generally seems to care about these babies yet so easily kills their parents. The lanterns are eventually taken control of by Kryb who infects them with some kind of liquid he has, and the last scene is incredibly creepy. It almost reminds me of the Manson Family and Sharon Tate with Kryb being Manson and the Lanterns are his followers, while the pregnant Lantern is Sharon Tate. Really really creepy. The star sapphire Corps has at least one member now and I would’ve liked to see more of the Zamarons this issue but we really didn’t. Anyways, good issue.

A Ride On The Way Back Machine

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Detective Comics #851
Written by Denny O’Neil
Art by Guillem March

Denny O’Neill starts his two part Last Rites Batman story with this issue. This was something I was definitely excited for. And while I was slightly underwhelmed, it was still a good read. The art is fantastic and O’Neil reaches as far back the Gotham Quake, which is what got me into comics at the mere age of eleven in the first place, so this was a ride on the way back machine for me. It brought back a lot of good memories. Once again, Alfred doesn’t mention Cassandra Cain as a possibility in stopping this fake Two-Face and just calls in Nightwing. I expected at least a mention from O’Neil who was around during the time she was created in the world of Batman. This kinda pissed me off, but it was a minor complaint. I am intrigued by this new actress character. At least I am assuming she is new and I look forward to the next part of this story.