Superman Batman 82-87

superman-batman_vol_1_82
Superman/Batman #82
Written by Cullen Bunn
Art by ChrisCross

Is ChrisCross’s art always this gorgeous? I sure don’t remember it being this good. This was a fun issue as we see Superman in a future world where magic has essentially taken over the earth because of “the final spell.” Meanwhile Batman is back in time doing occult detective work with Detective Chimp and Doctor Occult. I can never get enough Detective Chimp. And then Klarion the Witch Boy shows up! This is going to be a wild ride.

superman-batman_vol_1_83Superman/Batman #83
Written by Cullen Bunn
Art by ChrisCross

Another fun occult flavored issue finds Batman teaming up with the entire Shadowpact and fighting an evil cult. I loved it. Although I don’t know that I care too much about the Superman in the post-apocalyptic future part. It just has been done so many times before. ChrisCross’s art is beautiful!

 

 

Superman/Batman #84superman-batman_vol_1_84
Written by Cullen Bunn

Art by ChrisCross

This issue concludes the Sorcerer Kings arc and it was well and good. The art was fantastic and there were some great character moments but I can’t say I was blown away by it. I never really enjoy alternate timeline stories all that much.

superman-batman_vol_1_85

Superman/Batman #85
Written by Joshua Hale Fialkov
Art by Adriana Melo

This was a cool start to this new storyline. A man washes up dead in Metropolis. It turns out this man was working for the Gotham Gazette and was about to expose who Batman really was. Clark is sent to Gotham to cover the story and also wants to help Batman clear his name for the murder.  It turns out the reporter figured it out because he found a gadget that Batman had forgot to take the Patton number off of that belonged to Waynetech. It shows that even Batman can make a mistake. The art fit the story well. Melo is a great artist for a Batman story.

superman-batman_vol_1_86Superman/Batman #86
Written by Joshua Hale Fialkov
Art by Tomas Giorello

A different artist draws Part 2 of this story. Tomas Girorello is just as good. He draws a beautiful Gotham City. Clark continues his investigation and interviews Lucius Fox who basically says Batman stole the tech. This whole scene is clearly inspired by the Nolan movies. In the comics, does Lucius  know that Bruce is Batman? I can’t remember. I am pretty sure that the Nolan movies came up with the idea that Lucius works on his gadgets and that is what he is show to be doing here but I wonder if they also brought into the comics Lucius knowing his secret identity. Anyways, this was a great issue as we see Superman and Batman doing their best detective work independently with a shocking ending I didn’t see coming. I mean I knew Mayne probably had something to do with it but the Joker came out of nowhere!

Susuperman_batman_vol_1_87perman/Batman #87
Written by Joshua Hale Fialkov
Art by Tomas Giorello

This is the final issue of Superman/Batman’s long run. It has been a hit and miss book over the years but this issue was a definite hit. The gorgeous art by Giorello and the wonderfully plotted story made it a hit in my book. They never mention it but I bet the Joker chose to kill the reporter because he did not want the Batman’s secret getting out cause it would ruin his fun. I always like the idea that the Joker does not really want Batman dead or unmasked.

Justice League of America 55-60

Justice_League_of_America_Vol_2_55
Justice League of America #55
Written by James Robinson
Art by Brett Booth

This James Robinson Justice League was so fantastic. It really was totally underrated. Robinson is a writer who understands that the DC Universe is so rich with diversity of characters. Anything CAN happen in the DCU and Robinson and really knows how to play with its toys. I also loved how odd this group of Justice Leaguers was at the time. This issue is actually part of a wider crossover but Robinson does what any good writer should do and incorporate the crossover into the ongoing story of the book without a hitch. It was cool to see Dick Grayson Batman’s space suit too.

Justice_League_of_America_Vol_2_56

Justice League of America #56
Written by James Robinson
Art by Brett Booth

Congorilla calls in the Justice League Reserves which I didn’t even realize existed but I am sure glad they do because Zauriel is a great character to put against Eclipso. Robinson is brilliant with his use of DC characters. Even Manitou Dawn got a name drop! He joined the League back when I first started reading comics as a kid and has been barely seen since! I did find it odd that the Shade is aware that two heroes teaming up is called The Brave and the Bold. How would he know that in-universe? What does the media in the DCU say that?  The issue ends with Obsidian showing up as the Big bad.

Justice_League_of_America_Vol_2_57

Justice League of America #57
Written by James Robinson
Art by Brett Booth

Robinson’s use of Theology in this DCU is fascinating to me. Earth as the Conduit for God’s love for the Universe. Theology in the DCU would be an interesting topic for a paper don’t you think? Anyways, The Spectre shows up now (Robinson is brilliant I can’t say that enough) to fight Eclipso and Eclipso absorbs Spectre’s power. His whole plan with this is to kill God. That is the ultimate villainous plot is it not?

Justice_League_of_America_Vol_2_58

Justice League of America #58
Written by James Robinson
Art by Daniel Sampere and Miguel Sepulveda

Jesse Quick makes mention here that she is no faster than Donna or Batman now that she has lost her link to the speed force. Does Jesse Quick think that Batman has super speed powers? Because Donna does have superhuman speed so why is she saying that like Batman and Donna are equal in speed. I hate to sound like a broken record but Robinson’s knowledge of DCU obscurity is great and he uses that to a great advantage in the story. All of the Leaguer’s histories are mentioned in this arc so far and this time we get a look at Donna Troy’s past which is quite interesting. But I sure hope Eclipso did not just kill Donna at the end. I like Sampere’s art here.

Justice_League_of_America_Vol_2_59

Justice League of America #59
Written by James Robinson
Art by Daniel Sampere

The Justice League defeats Eclipso in this issue and all returns to normal, but there is a tease that the League will be breaking up next issue (which is the last issue of this series) after the Atom expresses how impressed he is with this new ver

 

Justice_League_of_America_Vol_2_60

Justice League of America #60
Written by James Robinson
Art by Daniel Sampere

This is the final Justice League issue before the New 52. Sad because James Robinson made this comic good for the first time since I can really remember. Certainly specifically this volume of the comic was pretty awful till he showed up. I look forward to reading more Justice League Comics during the Rebirth of the DCU. The beginning of this issue is a quick summary of an arc he probably had planned for the book where all the robots in the DCU get corrupted. How cool would that have been as a full arc! Robinson has so many obscure Robots name dropped. Instead he fast forwards through that and has the team meeting and talking about why each one wants to bow out of the League. Donna wants to discover who she is again now that her rage is gone, Supergirl wants to do the same after dealing with New Krypton, Jade wants to enjoy her second chance at life outside of the superhero costume, Jesse Quick is pregnant, Congorilla wants to become a hero for Africa, Starman is nursing a broken arm,  Batman thinks he will be too busy with Batman Incorporated,   They look back on an untold story (has to be another arc Robinson had planned, this guy is great!) about a war between Saturn and Thanagar and an untold story in Gemworld. Donna makes a comment at the end she wants the world to forget her which is ironic because I think at the beginning of the New 52 they had forgotten her. This was a very bittersweet ending to Robinson’s run and I love that we get a taste of what he would have done with this group if the book wasn’t ending.

 

 

Gathering Shadow

jla54

Justice League of America #54
Written by James Robinson
Art by Brett Booth

 

This was a fantastic issue as Eclipso gathers shadow-based characters for some kind of plan. It even goes back and looks at the history of Eclipso which even I needed some refreshing on. Once again Robinson really makes the DC Universe seem like a vast wonderland as he pulls characters from its history – both obscure and famous. There were some more shadow villains I could think of – such as Shadow-of-War but hey he picked the ones he did for a reason I am sure. Booth’s art is going to take some getting used to as some parts of this issue seemed too much like Ed Benes (That is not a good thing) and the beginning two pages make no sense in terms of who was in the League at the same time I mean why are Vibe and Red Arrow shown to be in the team together at the same time!

This Is The Land Of The Living…And You Are Trespassing

ss18

Secret Six (Volume 3) #18
Written by John Ostrander and Gail Simone
Art by J. Caliafore

 

The title of this post is a badass line coming from Amanda Waller to the Black Lanterns. Seriously Amanda Waller is not a woman you ever ever want to fuck with. Deadshot will probably regret shooting her in the chest at the end of this issue. This was good action-packed stuff but I am ready to get back to normal fun Secret Six issues without Black Lanterns and the suicide squad. Not that this little excursion was bad it’s just I want more focus on the six.

Doll, Stop Playing With That Girl

ss17

Secret Six (Volume 3) #17
Written by John Ostrander and Gail Simone
Art by J. Calafiore

This is part 2 of the Blackest night crossover that began here. I miss Nicola Scott. Caliafore is good but he’s not Scott. I think this is all and good but Blackest Night is interrupting the narrative in this book and I was enjoying it so much. Anyways, there were still great one-liners like Doll, Stop Playing With that Girl haha.

Black Lantern Title

suicidesquad67

Suicide Squad #67
Written by John Ostrander and Gail Simone
Art by J. Caliafore

I love that DC is bringing back old series as Black Lantern titles, what an awesome concept. This is the first one I am reviewing. I know very little about Suicide Squad but have heard great things about Ostrander’s run on the title, it doesn’t really matter though as the reader is caught up and the focus on the issue is more on Secret Six, who I know and love. So many great moments in this, pick this up especially if you are a Secret Six Fan.

Superbat Concludes

Superman/Batman #56
Written by Michael Green and Mike Johnson
Art by Rags Morales

The Superbat arc concludes rather predictably. I wouldn’t say that this was a great read. Everything goes back to normal and Batman realizes how much of a dick he was while he had Superman’s powers. It is not really compelling. I guess I expected more from the conclusion of this. In the end, while this may excite some people, I think this arc was rather bland. That’s all I can really say about it. The art was great though. And it was nice to see the Shadowpact again.

Shadowpact 15 – 25

Shadowpact #15
Written by Bill Willingham

Art by Tom Derenick

Whoa did a volcanoe just erupt in Chicago? My home town?! Oh no you didn’t Doctor Gotham. I hope the Shadowpact kicks your ass! Decent issue of Shadowpact. Zauriel is officially on the team now.

Shadowpact #16
Written by Bill Willingham

Art by Tom Derenick

The Justice League guest stars in this issue – and not only does Willingham not do his research on Chicago – it’s the Magnificent Mile dumbass, not Miracle Mile! – but he also does not even read any other DCU comics because Zatanna and Supergirl are not currently members of the Justice League. Willingham is a lazy writer when it comes to the DCU and sometimes I think he should just stick to Fables. Anyways, this was okay.
Shadowpact #17
Written by Matthew Sturges Art by Doug Braithwaite

I forgot what happened – I think Willingham got sick – but Matthew Sturges begins his run with this issue. And I enjoyed it. The art was fantastic, I loved the painted style. There was some gruesome scenes in this – a girl driving a nail through her eye and a man exploding out of Doctor Gotham’s head. Pretty gross but awesome.

Shadowpact #18
Written by Matthew Sturges

Art by Tom Derenick

Okay this was another disturbing issue where a woman is literally melted alive. The art is good, you can see the pain upon herself. Too bad it something that I don’t really want to see her. Story is good though. I am not complaining.

Shadowpact #19
Written by Matthew Sturges Art by Phil Winslade

Yay! Part of Chicago is in the Nightshade Dimension. That should be fun. As for the main plot, Protege’s defeat seemed kinda easy. But it was still good. I like Winslade’s art a lot.

Shadowpact #20
Written by Matthew Sturges

Art by Kieren Dwyer

Oh it is good to see Rex the Wonder Dog, a series can never have enough talking animals. Anyways, looks like it wasn’t Chicago after all but in fact the city Nightmaster gained his sword. Decent issue with some funny dialogue.

Shadowpact #21
Written by Matthew Sturges

Art by Tom Derenick

Haha Detective Chimps is cruising Furry websites looking for some answer. That is just freaking hilarious! This was a really good issue as I liked learning about the unbound. They are really interesting. It looks like the Shadowpact may have accidentally let them into our universe now.

Shadowpact #22
Written by Matthew Sturges

Art by Phil Winslade

The Shadowpact defeats the unbound and Nightmaster decides to leave the team and stay behind. It makes sense, and really shows how good-hearted he is. Nice conclusion to this arc.

Shadowpact #23
Written by Matthew Sturges

Art by Phil Winslade

I like how in Hell Court, you sware on a book of dirty jokes. Hahaha. But Blue Devil reverts to being a human in this issue and I hope that isn’t permanent. He is a great character and it would be a shame to see him go. But maybe he could be retired for a while?

Shadowpact #24
Written by Matthew Sturges

Art by Phil Winslade

They finally face the sun king in the penultimate issue. This sun king thing has run on for too long and I am glad they are concluding even though it is only because the series is ending. It was cool to see Blue Devil’s original costume but I still hope he reverts back to being a demon.

Shadowpact #25
Written by Matthew Sturges

Art by Phil Winslade

This is the Final Issue of this series and it was good and actually solved all of the dangling plot threads. Blue Devil is a demon again and the Sun King has been defeated. I will miss my monthly does of Detective Chimp and I think this series had a lot of potential if only more people were reading it. I look forward to seeing the Shadowpact around the DCU.

The Chimp In A Hospital Gown

Shadowpact #14
Written by Bill Willingham
Art and Cover by Tom Derenick

Hey note to Bill Willingham-Saying Chicago is worse than a hell is a low blow, a real low blow…anyways this was another great issue of Shadowpact. Blue Devil goes on a leave of absense and admits to the world that he made his deal with the devil out of selfishness so that no one will want to become like him and start making deals with the devil. It is interesting that in a world like this, there could ever be atheists. But Mr. Terrific is one…oh well. Anyways, I am happy to see Zauriel on the team now and I hope he stays on a more permanent basis. Having a Devil and an Angel on the same team would be a lot of fun. Detective Chimp at the hospital made me smile. How cute did he look in that hospital gown? Too cute. And you know that the way those doctors were acting is exactly how they would act in real life…taking pictures with the monkey and everything.

Murder

Shadowpact #13
Written by Bill Willingham
Art and cover by Scott Hampton

In typical Willingham style, this issue is a side story focusing on the adversaries of Shadowpact. We see Doctor Gotham murder Strega in order to bring the Sun King to our world, Kid Karnevil kill a dozen trademen, and Zauriel being ordered by the higher angels to murder Blue Devil. When it comes down to it, this issue had a lot of murder. It’s strange to see Zauriel accept his order, but I suppose if it truly comes from God he has to although I have a feeling he will rebel and hopefully join Shadowpact. He would make a great addition to the team. I like Coast City being shown, especially considering it hasn’t been seen in Green Lantern for a while now. Did Hal bring that city back only to abandon it? I guess Zauriel has been Coast City’s protector as of late.

Shadowpact 9 – 12

Shadowpact #9
Written by Bill Willingham
Art by Tom Derenick

This was an action-packed issue of fun. I like this series a lot if I haven’t said that a million times already and this issue is no exception. Will Nightmaster survive? Probably but I really don’t care either way. I find him kinda boring. Shadowpact meeting Etrigan is so obvious that I am surprised I never thought of that before. And it is funny to see Blue Devil start rhyming. Oh and I love the Shadowpact’s new laws of superheroics. So simple and brilliant.

Shadowpact #10
Written by Bill Willingham
Art by Tom Derenick

Another great issue. It was interesting to learn about how promotions work in hell and I look forward to seeing Blue Devil, Nightshade, and the subsitute Shadowpact they have set up travel into Hell. That should be cool. While this issue was mostly talking, it was still awesome.


Shadowpact #11
Written by Bill Willingham
Art by Tom Derenick


Willingham is an imaginative man and the final defeat of Etrigan proves that. I like these subsitute Shadowpact heroes, I hope they stay in the series in one form or another. I actually was scared that Warlock’s Daughter was going to die at one point. Thank God she didn’t (And God actually plays a role in this when Ragman asks him for help.)

Shadowpact #12
Written by Bill Willingham
Art by Tom Derenick

Wow! This was a cool issue! Willingham recounts the origin of the Nightmaster and now…I actually like him! In one issue he has turned me into a fan of the character. That is amazing. I loved everything about his origin. The origin of the Oblivion Bar and all of it. It was really cool and magical. I highly recommend this issue.


Checkmate 9 and 10

Checkmate (Volume 2) #9
Written by Greg Rucka
Art and Cover by Jesus Saiz

This series is brutal and can be incredibly confusing, but it sure is good. Especially this issue, which unexpectedly guest starred the Shadowpact (Who I love). I love how the Checkmate is really no-holds-barred and they do things the JLA or any superhero team wouldn’t be caught dead doing. I am not sure why Sarge Steel and Sasha are so pissed at eachother this issue, but they are at odds through the whole thing. The introduction of the Thinker to the cast is a great move by Rucka, I like the character already even though I am barely familiar with him.

Checkmate (Volume 2) #10
Written by Greg Rucka
Art and Cover by Jesus Saiz

The pulled it off! They got a mole into Kobra! I was worried through the whole issue. This was certainly suspenseful and hats off to Rucka for creating that suspense. I really liked this issue. Maybe it was the magic I don’t know, but it was really cool. Both Shadowpact and Checkmate kicked ass this issue and there was a lot of tension and surprise. The only thing I am worried about is did Sasha say that the Thinker could not be the White King’s bishop? That would suck if he got kicked out just as I was starting to like him. Anyways, great issue. Highly reccomended.

A Journey Inside Ragman

Shadowpact #8
Written by Bill Willingham
Art and Cover by Shawn McManus

This is by far one of the best series that DC is putting out and more people should be reading it. (I know I am going to be pissed on by the blogosphere for saying this, but yes, it is better than Manhunter) I really enjoyed this issue which focused mainly on Ragman. The ragman is not only a visually exciting character, but also a character with a really cool and exciting concept behind him. Willingham expresses this greatly when he has Ragman journey into his suit where his captured souls are. I think I would feel the same way that Ragman feels, he feels bad for these souls. But he is and I am convinced by the end of this issue that Ragman gives these souls redemption. He gives them all a second chance. I also loved the sequence where Ragman recognized all of the people in there. That reminded me a lot of the scene in “Chicago” where we are introduced to how all the women ended up in jail. I wonder if Willingham thought about that when he was writing this. The Shadowpact ends up defeating the Congregation at the end, because the Congregation makes a really stupid error. But they don’t seem like the smartest organization to begin with.

Shadowpact 3 – 7

Shadowpact #3
Written by Bill Willingham

Art by Cory Walker

This was a fun conclusion to this storyline. It establishes that what was only a few days for the Shadowpact, was a whole year outside of the blood barrier. Way cool. I doubt that this will be the last time we see the Pentacle, they are just too cool of villains for the shadowpact to stay in limbo. Oh and I didn’t realize how powerful Nightshade really is until this issue.

Shadowpact #4
Written by Bill Willingham
Art by Steve Scott

This was a stand alone day in the life story of Blue Devil, although the rest of the Shadowpact was mentioned, they don’t make an appearence. I always hate when comic issues do that, the stars of the title should all be in the issue. But besides that little nitpick, this was a fun story. Mr. Green and Mr. Grey were funny villains and I hope Willingham brings them back sometime.

Shadowpact #5
Written by Bill Willingham Art by Steve Scott

This was another fun issue, picking up where issue 3 left off. It was fun to see what happens to each member’s belongings since they have been missing for a year and though dead. Makes me wonder what would happen if I dissapeared and came back. The final scene with Ragman is great and I look forward to learning more about this new villain with an awesome name, Dr. Gotham.

Shadowpact #6
Written by Bill Willingham
Art by Cory Walker

Just in the first few issues of this series alone, Willingham has managed to create some fun villains for the shadowpact. And in this issue the wild huntsman and Blue Moon are added to that list. The scenes with the oblivian bar were fun as well. I think it is safe to say that the Phantom Stranger is the official narrarator of this series and I think he works great in this role. This is the most fun book that DC is putting out.

Shadowpact #7
Written by Bill Willingham
Art by Tom Derenick

I actually do not have that much to say about this issue except it was a lot of fun, just like this book always is. I wonder of Derenick actually read last issue, because Nightmaster was not wearing those clothes before. The congregation’s light attack was pretty cool. Oh and I hope Rex the Wonder Dog becomes a permanent member of the team.

Fun + Creepy = Cool

Shadowpact #2
Written by Bill Willingham
Art and cover by Willingham

In the second issue of shadowpact, we are treated to more of this fun/creepy story. We now get to know this anti-shadowpact team better and boy are they a cool villain team. I do hope that this story is not the last we will see of them. It is rare for cool new villains to be created now and days but Willingham hits it out of the park with these guys. Each of them are creepy, yet there is something about them that makes you like them. I guess because they play by the rules so to speak. They work together very well. Karnevil is a sick little guy and I am worried for Detective Chimp. Please don’t kill my favorite Chimp (I am just kidding I know they would never kill this series most popular character.) I wonder if the devil guy is really Blue Devil’s brother. I think it would be interesting if he was and how that would affect Blue Devil, knowing that his deal with Neron affected his family as well. Speaking of that, are we supposed to know the God Strega is trying to wake up? I did not recognize him but Willingham made it seem like we as an audience knew him. This series continues to impress.

DC’s Newest and Craziest Superhero Team Makes its Series Debut

Shadowpact #1
Written by Bill Willingham
Art and Cover by Willingham

See I expected this to be good but I did not expect to be this good. This was a really fun read. It reminded me of PAD’s Supergirl and Fables rolled up into one. I simply loved it. It has this charm to it that only Willingham can bring to a comic. The storyline was cool, and the fact that the shadowpact has been missing for a year in the big red barrier thing was smart on Willingham’s part. He really doesn’t have to explain what they have been doing in the last year because they have only been one place. What is so great about this new series, is that I couldn’t have cared less about Nightshade, Nighmaster, Bluedevil, The Enchantress, Ragman, and Detective Chimp before this. Now I want to know more about each and every one of them. What the villains are doing is very creepy and reminded me of that short story the lottery that you always had to read in high school english classes. Speaking of these villains, they all seems to be evil doppelgangers of the Shadowpact members. I wonder if this was purposeful…I guess it has to be. The only problem I saw with this issue is I don’t see why Detective Chimp had to get a new costume. His old costume was way cooler. Anyways, great start to this new series and I am looking forward to reading more. Everyone should definitely buy this.