Batman Hates Tentacles

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Trinity (Volume 2) #10
Written by Frances Manapul
Art by Manapul

This was the least interesting issue of this series (at least among those written by Frances Manapul) because not much really happend but Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman plus the Flash and Cyborg are fighting these viruses. The ending held some promise as it seems there is more to the virus’s story than we initially though as they are searching for their mother and suddenly Wonder Woman gets infected. I loved it when Batman said he hates tentacles though. That was a funny moment.

 

Justice League 19 – 22

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Justice League (Volume 3) #19
Written by Bryan Hitch
Art by Fernando Pasarin

Molly the Keeper (whatever a Keeper is, they seem like monitors?) but she warns she only wanted to destroy the League because someone way worse is coming to destroy them. I am assuming this has something to do with Dr. Manhattan and Rebirth but maybe it is a different threat? I also have no clue who Alexis, Vincent, or Jane are.

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Justice League (Volume 3) #20
Written by Bryan Hitch
Art by Hitch

This was spectacularly depressing issue of Justice League where the Flash keeps reliving the death of Jessica Cruz like Groundhogs day and eventually figures out the guy who caused it’s family was accidentally killed by the machine he created when it mixed with the Speed Force and he blames the Justice League. This is the second time this book has had a villain who blames the League for deaths of loved ones but I am willing to see where this goes before I judge the story because it was enjoyable.

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Barry Allen 20 – 23

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The Flash (Volume 5) #20
Written by Joshua Williamson
Art by Neil Googe

Meena is back and is now an agent of Black Hole for some reason in this okay but forgettable issue focusing on Iris investigating grave robberies being perpetrated by Back Hole. Not much else to say about it.

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The Flash (Volume 5) #21
Written by Joshua Williamson
Art by Howard Porter

Ok this is Part 2 of the Button crossover with Batman that began here. Flash is investigating what happened to the Reverse Flash in the Batcave. Barry decides to use the Cosmic Treadmill to follow the energy signature on the button to its source. Which honestly seems like a dumb move by the Flash considering what happened the last time he used it. Batman joins him (it is never really explained how Batman is just running behind the Flash on it) and they see elements of the timeline from before New 52 and Barry even says it is not an alternate universe but part of the stolen years! The real DCU IS BACK BABY! We see Martian Manhunter as forminmg the league and Identity Crisis and Barry’s death during the Crisis. I was smiling with joy as I read these pages.

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The Recipe for a Good Aquaman Comic

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Aquaman (Volume 8) #20
Written by Dan Abnett
Art by Phillipe Briones

This was a good issue. I haven’t quite enjoyed this series so far but now that Abnett is leaning away from Atlantis vs. Surface World (Stories that have been done a million times before) and is doing a story that is actually interesting I am all behind it. Aquaman and Mera are investigating what is turning people into this Dead Water creature and it is even weirder than I expected as it involves a new version of water and dead remains in the ocean. This is the way an Aquaman comic should be. Crazy concepts and fun fantasy. Horror too if this issue is right. Stay away from Atlantis going to war, Abnett, it has been done to death.

 

At Least He Used the Code Names

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Justice League (Volume 3) #18
Written by Bryan Hitch
Art by Fernando Pasarin

Okay so I did not see that ending coming and I can’t say I at all understand what is going on here. This girl wants to protect the timeline just like Tempus did by getting rid of superheroes? But Tempus did not want to kill them. But honestly just like every issue of this series not much happens accept a few panels of them fighting different people. It is still way too decompressed and it’s a shame because I don’t think Hitch is a bad writer. At least he didn’t have them call each other by their first names in this issue. That would have made it worse.

Green Lanterns 1 – 19

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Green Lanterns #1
Written by Sam Humphries
Art by Robson Rocha

As happy as I am to have a new Green Lantern book that is not starring boring old Hal Jordan, I can’t say I was excited to read this. Simon Baz and Jessica Cruz have not interested me one bit in the Justice League book. Simon just seems like a jerk and Jessica is so unsure of herself it becomes not sweet, but annoying. I was hoping under a different write I would feel differently. This issue did not win me over, but maybe future issues will because the art was good and I am interested in the Red Lantern sub-plot. Oh and Dex-Starr!

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Green Lanterns #2
Written by Sam Humphries
Art by Robson Rocha

Now this was more like it! By focusing on Jessica learning about her ring with her sister, Humphries made me actually understand her character better and what she is going through. Hopefully we will get a similar focus on Simon. This series just got good.

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Suicide Squad Rebirth 1 – 13

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Suicide Squad (Volume 5) #1
Written by Rob Willaims
Art by Jim Lee and Jason Fabok

Suicide Squad returns post-Rebirth with the exact same line up as the movie. Coincidence? I think not. I can’t say this was Jim Lee’s best work. I usually like his artwork (If not his choices for costumes *cough* Huntress * cough) but this seemed unpolished somehow or rushed. That being said, it was an interesting start as the Suicide Squad is sent to Russia to retrieve a Cosmic object of importance by Amanda Waller and they nearly die while dropping to Russia from space. I question how it is that Harley is living it up in Brooklyn in her own series yet somehow is in jail here? In the back up story, we focus on Deadshot and it looks like his daughter from the movie is being retconned into the main DCU. At least I know he did not have a daughter Pre-Flashpoint. Maybe she existed in the New 52, I don’t know.

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Suicide Squad (Volume 5) #2
Written by Rob Willaims
Art by Jim Lee and Ivan Reis

In this action-packed issue, the Suicide Squad helps a girl named Hack escape from her prison cell and she turns them into digital information to warp to where the cosmic item is – which turns out to be a sphere which acts as a portal to the Phantom Zone. And yes sure enough Zod escapes and it looks like he kills Captain Boomerang. Is he dead again? We shall see I guess. The back-up story focuses on Captain Boomerang as he tells a fake origin to Amanda Waller. It was good fun.

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Action Horror Aquaman

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Aquaman (Volume 8) #19
Written by Dan Abnett
Art by Phillipe Briones

Aquaman teams up with the Aquamarines to solve the mystery of who the monster Dead Water is and how it came to be. I actually enjoyed this issue toward the end even though this is one of my least loved of the Rebirth books I have read so far. I think Dead Water is a scary villain as he can show up anywhere even a droplet of water is, and the way this was paced made it almost like an action horror. I am along for the ride.

Threats Against Space and Time

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Justice League (Volume 3) #17
Written by Bryan Hitch
Art by Feranando Pasarin

The latest issue of Superman made it seem like the New 52 Superman and our Superman were really the same being split in two but this issue has Tempus saying that our Superman is an anomyly. I wonder how this fits together. I just realized that the latest issue of Superman seems to be playing on the Superman-Red (New 52) and Superman-Blue motif. That’s cool! Anyways, on to this actual comic book I am reviewing. I love how intricately connected all these books are. The editors are doing a stand up job (except for the Aquaman book and its crazy Atlantis destroys half of Boston but it is not mentioned in any other comic crap) as Wonder Woman and Superman’s going ons in their respective solo books are referenced here. And this issue is representative of what this series should have been from the start – epic Justice League stories where the threat could destroy all of space and time. I like how the villain is utilizing magic, Green Lantern energy, and the Speed Force to move the Earth somewhere else because a dark force is going to come after the heroes and he wants to separate them from the rest of the univer. Could this coming threat have something to do with Rebirth? Is it Doc Manhattan or something specific to this book? We shall see.

Aquaman Rebirth 1-18

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Aquaman (Volume 8) #1
Written by Dan Abnett
Art by Brad Walker

This is the first issue of Aquaman post-Rebirth. Aquaman of course only recently came back to life Pre-Flashpoint so I wonder how much of Aquaman’s history has now been restored. Black Manta attacks Aquaman and his new embassy in this comic, and there is no mention that Black Manta once killed Aquaman’s baby son, so maybe that is no longer in continuity? Or perhaps the memory of it has been erased by Dr. Manhattan since Mera and Aquaman think they were never married. Anyways, continuity matters aside, this was a great first issue with great art and a great introduction to the politics between Atlantis and the Surface World.

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Aquaman (Volume 8) #2
Written by Dan Abnett
Art by Scot Eaton

In this issue, Aquaman manages to use his words rather than his fists to defeat Black Manta as he convinces the villain that killing him will ultimately be disappointing for him. It shows that this character is about both brains and brawns. He is a monarch and a diplomat after all.

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The Timeless and Rebirth Questions

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Justice League (Volume 3) #16
Written by Bryan Hitch
Art by Fernando Pasarin

Fernando Pasarin should be this book’s main artist going forward. He draws an incredible Justice League book. This issue ties back to the beginning of this series with the zodiac crystals and maybe even with Rebirth itself as the Timeless maybe related to Dr. Manhattan and his manipulation of the timeline? These timeless people have led to the League being stranded in different times. Barry Allen back to his origin, Wonder Woman in ancient greece, Aquaman in Ancient Atlantis, Cyborg in the time of the Legion, and the Green Lanterns in the 26th century. Meanwhile Batman and Superman are talking to some people who know about this…who is this group and what are they hiding? How does this relate to Rebirth? Why do the Timeless look like Brainiac? A lot of questions and I can’t wait to see how this plays out. I hope everyone’s Pre-Flashpoint memories are somehow restored.

Superman Rebirth 1 – 17

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Superman (Volume 4) #1
Written by Peter Tomasi
Art by Patrick Gleason

Ok in this issue – the first of Post-Rebirth Superman comic – we are introduced to Clark and Lois and their son Jon’s new farm where Jon accidentally kills his cat when he is trying to save it. I am sorry but that is the kind of dark shit I thought was not going to happen in Rebirth. I mean we had a cat killed in the Batman series already why do I need to be reading two series in a row where cats die. Come on DC! Anyways, this was a good start I guess but I can’t say much happens other than Jon being upset they have to hide who they are and Wonder Woman and Batman showing up to talk to Superman. Also, something weird is going on with Superman’s hands and it relates to Rebirth.

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Superman (Volume 4) #2
Written by Peter Tomasi
Art by Patrick Gleason

Ya right she would not be proud the kid accidentally killed the cat, she would be pissed and upset but only pretending to be okay cause she knew it was an accident. This is a pet’s death. People get more upset about it than Tomasi is writing here. Ugh. I like how Tomasi writes Jon over in Super Sons but I find him a bit annoying so far in this series. Also, why do they expect him to be able to fly at all one day? He is half-human. Are they thinking of Connor Kent and that is why? Because Connor was human and krpytonian but he was a clone maybe it is different.

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Batman Rebirth 1 – 17

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Batman (Volume 3) #1
Written by Tom King
Art by David Finch

In the first issue of this new Batman solo series, Batman prepares to give his life to save a plane full of people that almost crashes into Gotham. Spoiler Alert…he ends up not dying although he prepares to say goodbye to Alfred in a touching scene. The plane is actually saved by two Superheroes calling themselves Gotham and Gotham Girl. The idea of heroes showing up in Gotham with actual powers is an interesting thing. Would this make Batman feel useless? I guess we will see. I enjoyed the art in this. Finch knows how to draw Gotham City and its world well. Also, who is this new Batman protege Duke Thomas? I don’t know anything about

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Batman (Volume 3) #2
Written by Tom King
Art by David Finch

I love how Duke asks Batman if he trusts these new heroes of Gotham and Gotham Girl, and he says “I don’t even trust Alfred.” That made me smile. I thought this would make Batman jealous to have super powered heroes but I should have known better – Batman is a true hero and wants what is best for Gotham City. These heroes could stop things he cannot stop and he knows that. I loved how the Gotham Man is confused when Batman dissapears when talking to Commissioner Gordon. But who are these two heroes and how do they have powers that are almost Kryptonian in nature? I do not like how skinny Finch draws Amanda Waller. She is way too thin in this. But that is my only complaint about this issue.

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Justice League 1 – 15

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Justice League (Volume 3) #1
Written by Bryan Hitch
Art by Tony Daniel

This is the the first issue of Justice League after DC Rebirth and I have to say I was…underwhelmed. I ceratainly felt like I could come into this as a new reader (although there wasn’t much explanation of each character) and understand it but it was just another crazy disasters happening all over the world story. Although I know there is this Kindred subplot…I guess I expected something more. I mean maybe it is just after reading Detective Comics it just seemed like nothing happened in this single issue compared to what happens in every issue of that series.

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Justice League (Volume 3) #2
Written by Bryan Hitch
Art by Tony Daniel

I wish I could say that I was impressed with this issue but I really feel like not much happened here. They talked about the problems and then Batman went to go get Superman. That was really it…. hard to recommend a single issue if very little happens. All I kept thinking about was I miss Martian Manhunter. Talk about a character who has been screwed since Didio took over. He was the heart of the League and when I see him you think “Justice League.” Why the hell is he not on this team?

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Justice League (Volume 3) #3
Written by Bryan Hitch
Art by Tony Daniel

Now this was a bit better. This still seems decompressed but more happned here. It is the first I have seen of Lois since I started reading Rebirth so that was good although you would think by now she would be used to these kinds of things with her husband. I think Tony Daniel upped his ante on the art in this issue. I found myself enjoying quite a bit more than the previous issues. I wonder what the Kindred’s connection is with the League and these Zodiac Crystals.

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Justice League (Volume 3) #4
Written by Bryan Hitch
Art by Jesus Merino

Hitch is guilty of the “Brad Meltzer” trope of having the Justice Leaguers call each other by the real names all the time. Come on. Why in the hell would these new Green Lanterns know the Flash’s secret identity. Anyways, for some reason the Sigil of Truth showed up in ths issue so I imagine this storyline is going to go into an occulty direction which I am excited about. But this is seriously decompressed.

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Justice League (Volume 3) #5
Written by Bryan Hitch
Art by Tony Daniel

In this issue the Kindred say they are looking to bring about a Forever Crisis, and it was in bold. I think that was on purpose. Is Rebirth leading to another Crisis event? Or am I seeing things that are not there. Either way, I wouldn’t say I super enjoyed this first story arc of this series, but at least we got that interesting tidbit.

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Justice Society 50-54

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Justice Society of America #50
Written by Marc Guggenheim
Art by Tom Derenick, Howard Chaykin, George Perez, Freddie Williams II, and Scott Koblish

So Martha Kent designed the Superman costume? I am pretty sure that flys in the face of continuity. Also I am pretty sure Alan Scott was in retirement when Hal got the ring right? Does DC not have editors? That being said it is always cool to see how the modern heroes knew about the Justice Society growing up which is what the first part of this anniversary issue focuses on. The secon story has something to do with Per Degaton traveling between universes. The third is the JSA vs. the House on Un-American Activities in the fifties being retold, and then finally the modern day JSA sets up shop in Monument Point just as Jay Garrick is sworn in as mayor. I really liked how Guggenheim threaded all of these stories together and it all lead up to certain events in the modern story. This issue mattered and that is so important in serial storytelling.

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Justice Society of America #51
Written by Marc Guggenheim
Art by Tom Derenick

At one point in this issue it says Jay Garrick is the first superhero to be elected to office. That is not true I know at least Green Arrow became mayor of Star City but maybe the person didn’t know. Anyways Lightning makes it out of the after life okay and alive and there is a touching moment between her and Doctor Fate. Also, Jay Garrick kicks into gear as the Mayor of Monument Point and we get hints that there is a strange history behind the city that I am excited to find out about. Derenick draws the shit out of this book and does a wonderful job. I sometimes feel his facial expressinos always seem menacing though when the story doesn’t call for it.


Justice_Society_of_America_Vol_3_52Justice Society of America #52

Written by Marc Guggenheim
Art by Tom Derenick

This was another good issue. Mr. Terrific finds out the man who took away his intelligence is a deranged original Mr. Terrific fan kind of like the same guys who complain whenever a hero is replaced meanwhile the JSA and the Challengers of the Unknown go deep underground Monument Point to learn about its ancient mysteries. I enjoyed it.

 

 


Justice_Society_of_America_Vol_3_53Justice Society of America #53

Written by Marc Guggenheim
Art by Jerry Ordway

Wow Jerry Ordway sure is a breath of fresh air. Why can’t he be the book’s regular artist? He is perfect for the JSA and while I have liked what Derenick has done lately he really only draws menacing facial expressions even on the good guys. This was a fun issue where the JSA accidentally release a God who draws his power from metahumans. I can’t believe this is the penultimate issue of this series though.

 

Justice_Society_of_America_Vol_3_54Justice Society of America #54
Written by Marc Guggenheim
Art by Jerry Ordway

 

Damn…just damn. This was clearly not Guggenheim’s plan to have a rushed ending to this arc and have Alan Scott sacrifice his life so quickly and without much fanfare. The fact of the matter is that the true JSA Villain is Dan fucking Didio who has no respect for the DC Universe and has publicly complained about the JSA “being old” in interviews. He is responsible for the awful New 52 and I am so glad the real JSA will be coming back soon. I wonder how much will remain in continuity but I have to say Guggenheim’s run could have been great but it was cut off too soon.

Green Arrow 11-15

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Green Arrow (Volume 5) #11
Written by J.T. Krul
Art by Diogenes Neves and Vincent Cifuentes

This issue goes by so fast and not much of interest even happens. I was really dissatisfied with it. Krul is so good on Teen Titans but this issue was a low point for him.

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Green Arrow (Volume 5) #12
Written by J.T. Krul
Art by Diogenes Neves

The only thing of any consequence in this issue is that we find out Galahad is really just a father who had a psychotic break. Otherwise it is just Green Arrow watching the events of the end of Brightest Day. It is filler material again. Swamp Thing barely makes an appearance despite the cover. Now that the Brightest Day crossover is over I hope this book improves.

 

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Green Arrow (Volume 5) #13
Written by James Patrick
Art by Austin Padilla

Now that is more like it. This new creative team had a stellar debut with Green Arrow fighting a right wing Christian terrorist by the name of Rev. Billy Miggs. I love how much Ollie hates this guy. The art was good too.

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Green Arrow (Volume 5) #14
Written by James Patrick
Art by Austin Padilla

Green Arrow continues to fight Rev. Billy Miggs who is shown to be way creepier than I thought when he murders a person he is baptizing in front of his congregation. It is quite disturbing and a great new villain for Green Arrow. I also enjoyed Ollie and Bruce’s moments here and how the artist chooses to keep Batman in the shadows. This is a great arc fro this series to end on.

 

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Green Arrow (Volume 5) #15
Written by James Patrick
Art by Austin Padilla

This is the final issue of Green Arrow before the New 52 unnecessary reboot. Within its pages, Ollie defeats Rev. Miggs with the help of the army and some trick arrows. It was enjoyable but nothing to get too excited about.

 

 

 

BatCon 52 – 54

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Batman Confidential #52

Written by Marc Guggenhiem
Art by Jerry Bingham

Batman calls the Justice League for help and that is about it. This would seem to be before he became a full-time member. This was probably the best issue of this arc so far.

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Batman Confidential #53
Written by Marc Guggenhiem
Art by Jerry Bingham

 

Okay DC you need to decide who was a founding member or not! This issue reads like Batman is definitely not a founding member of the Justice League as he has said to have been post-Infinite Crisis. How annoying. Total continuity mistake made this unreadable for me. And if they were gonna go with the Post-Crisis, Pre-Infinite Crisis continuity where Batman was not a founder – why isn’t Black Canary there! This is just dumb.

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Batman Confidential #54
Written by Marc Guggenhiem
Art by Jerry Bingham

 

The continuity mistakes (And the fact that the two stories told never connect) made this arc a lousy read for me. And this issue also marks the final issue of this book. This was a book chock full of continuity mistakes with some great arcs in between. The Batgirl and the Wrath arcs come to mind but otherwise I am not going to miss this series at all.