Outsiders 38-40

outsiders_vol_4_38
Outsiders (Volume 4) #38
Written by Keith Giffen and Dan Didio
Art by Giffen

Keith Giffen joins Didio in this issue of the Outsiders and it vastly improves the dialogue…I would assume…I did not go back and re-read the previous issues but I do remember horrible dialogue. What is clear about Didio is he and I both have a common interest in the history of this team. If Didio loves these obscure characters and brings them back for his run, why can’t he understand the love for characters like Cassandra Cain, Linda Danvers, Kyle Rayner, and Wally West?! But I digress, this was actually a cool issue as we see the return of a lot of former Outsiders as they battle it out in Markovia. Hell, even Technocrat shows up. I loved it. I hate to say that, but Didio and Giffren did a good job here.

outsiders_vol_4_39Outsiders (Volume 4) #39
Written by Keith Giffen and Dan Didio
Art by Giffen

The big villain manupulating things behind the scenes is revealed to be Veritas whose motivations are not explained and Geo-Force becomes one with the land of Markovia erecting huge walls of earth around the country’s borders for some reason. It was not as good as the last issue and left me very confused. It looks like Batman will be showing up for the final issue though.

 

batman_and_the_outsiders_vol_2_40

Batman and the Outsiders (Volume 2) #40
Written by Dan Didio and Phillip Tan
Art by Tan

This is the final issue of this series and truly a finale to the Outsiders’s long history in the DC Universe which is beautifully recapped in the pages of this comic. One day I want to go through this again and see if every Outsider appears in the flashbacks because it sure seems like they covered it all! I am actually very proud of Didio for this. I know I can’t stand the decisions he has made as head of DC but he sure does love the Outsiders. So why in the hell did he restart the continuity of the DC Universe with the new 52 if he loves the Outsiders so much! Geo-Force is left here a broken person and it is sad we will probably never see this resolved. I actually even liked Tan’s art in this. We even get to see him draw Cassandra Cain in a flashback! Didio included Cassandra in a book he wrote! Or…I bet it was Tan.

 

 

Batman Incorporated 5-8

Batman_Incorporated_Vol_1_5
Batman Incorporated #5
Written by Grant Morrison
Art by Yanick Paquette

In this issue we are introduced to “The Hood” who I immediately mistook for being Azrael at first and Batwing who is the Batman of Africa. I did not realize it but Bruce and Kate aka Batman and Batwoman had never met before this issue. At least since Kate has become Batwoman. How did I not notice that? Paquette draws a great Batwoman. Anyways, like usual Morrison’s story doesn’t make sense until the very end when the clues will come together. We still don’t know what Doctor Dedalus’s plan is or what exactly Leviathan is but there a ton of interesting clues in this issue. Can’t wait to see where this goes!

FEB110141_1-2
Batman Incorporated #6
Written by Grant Morrison
Art by Chris Burnham

Wow Grant Morrison is amazing! Of course the Outsiders would be part of Batman Incorporated! Anyways I loved this issue up until Bruce Wayne tells a group that includes pretty much everyone he cares about that they are his closest associates except Cassandra Cain is not there! But then a few pages later my dreams came true! Cassandra Cain was back with a new identity! She is now the Black Bat – the Batman of Hong Kong! Seriously this is the best thing Grant Morrison has ever wrote. I love the character so much and to see her back in action is incredible. I definitely prefer the Black Bat costume over her present Orphan costume. I sincerely hope Rebirth ends up having Cassandra remember her time as Batgirl and as Black Bat and retaking up the mantle of the bat where she belongs. The best thing about this is it redeems Bryan Q. Miller having Cassandra leave Gotham because Morrison is writing Batman here as trusting Cassandra enough to be her own Batwoman of Hong Kong. She is not a sidekick. She is an equal to him. And that is how it should be. Best issue of this series hands down.

Batman Incorporated #7
Written by Grant Morrison
Art by Chris Burnham

This issue focused on Man-of-Bats and his sidekick Little Raven and I expected it to be dull as shit but I was pleasantly blown away. First of all, Burnham’s art is gorgeous. Second of all, Morrison wrote a really inspiring story about a hero standing up for his community on a low budget. It was really good.

 

 


Batman_Incorporated_Vol_1_8Batman Incorporated #8

Written by Grant Morrison
Art by Scott Clark

This issue is one of those brilliant Duh comic books that you think wow that’s genius but why hasn’t somebody already of that. There is no reason why this couldn’t be a whole series of virtual Barbara Gordon fighting. We didn’t need to stop her from being Oracle to see her in action. This issue even makes more sense today with virtual reality. I say make Cassandra Cain a bat again and put Barbara back as Oracle and if you need to have her in action use this virtual reality. Anyways, we learn Jezebel Jet is behind Leviathan which I didn’t see coming at all.

Eradicated By Doomsday

outs37

Outsiders (Volume 4) #37
Written by Dan Didio and Phillip Tan
Art by Tan

 

This is the second part of the Reign of Doomsday storyline that began in the Steel One-Shot. It was okay. Didio’s dialogue is of course horrible and everything, but Tan’s art has improved tremendously even if I did not know what was going on with the fight half the time. It looks like Eradicator is dead but I doubt it. At least we get to see Halo back in action.

Family Reunion

outsiders36

Outsiders (Volume 4) #36
Written by Dan Didio and Joe Bennett
Art by Bennett

 

Okay so in interviews Giffen said he was taking over art but that doesn’t seem to be so. Dan Didio is supposed to be the co-publisher of DC Comics – how does this guy have this job if he can’t even keep an artist on his own book? And wow is Black Lightning a dick to Thunder in this. The dialogue is still pathetically bad here but at least we get a reason for Geo-Force’s madness and it was great to see Thunder and Grace again (Even if Bennett decided to have her be in a thong the whole issue!)

Superman Batman 79 and 80

supbat79

Superman/Batman #79
Written by Chris Roberson
Art by Jesus Merino

 

Roberson introduce (or re-introduces for some) to the DC Universe of the 853rd Century and I am one of the few who have never read DC One Million and therefore I am fascinated by this Justice Legion with its many worlds and I can’t wait to see more next issue. Epoch Lord of Time doesn’t seem like a new character but I could be wrong but he was a great way to frame the story and allow for the past and the future to collide.

sb80

Superman/Batman #80
Written by Chris Roberson
Art by Jesus Merino

Epoch is stopped by the Bronze Age World’s Finest and travels through time being defeated by each era’s Batman and Superman – Brilliant! I am looking forward to seeing more of Roberson’s run on the main Super-book after reading this awesomeness.

Outsiders 34 and 35

outs34

Outsiders (Volume 4) #34
Written by Dan Didio and Keith Giffen
Art by Giffen

I like the idea of The Olympian getting involved with the Outsiders – but I don’t know how I feel about him actually calling his men Manazons. That is just dumb. I think we know why that Wonder Woman arc was called Rise of the Olympian despite its focus being on Genocide – Didio. He loves this character I guess. It is great to see Giffen joining the book as artist and co-plotter as it will probably gain some quality.

outs35

Outsiders (Volume 4) #35
Written by Dan Didio and Phillip Tan
Art by Tan

Ahh and Tan comes back for one more issue! He is not such a bad artist but he never draws backgrounds and I never know what the hell is going on when he draws this comic. Not to mention the dialogue is pathetically bad once again. Ugh at least Giffen is coming back next issue. Oh and since when does Black Lightning contain Black Lantern energy??

Bringing In History

out33

Outsiders (Volume 4) #33
Written by Dan Didio and Phillip Tan
Art by Tan

The art is still awful…I have no idea what has happened to Halo and why she is a coma – and I see no reason for Geo-Force acting the way he is still, but I got to at least hand it to Didio for his use of continuity – even pulling from the nineties Outsiders series. I like that Didio at least respects the history of the team. But this is still awful storytelling.

Embarassing

out32

Outsiders (Volume 4) #32
Written by Dan Didio and Phillip Tan
Art by Tan

Um….can we just have the team back again? Why is this filled with shitty dialogue and no movement in plot months after months? How is it that a guy who writes a comic like this is DC’s co-publisher? This is embarassing. I love me some Outsiders but this book is not getting any better!

Outsiders 30 and 31

outs30

Outsiders (Volume 4) #30
Written by Dan Didio
Art by Phillip Tan

 

Metamorpho, Owlman, and Black Lightning must turn to Simon Stagg for help after being deemed enemies of Earth because of Markovia’s alliance with New Krypton. It is an interesting thing this alliance with New Krypton and I love having the Eradicator around but Didio still has yet to explain why Geo-Force is acting like a nutjob and this Freight Train character is about as generic as they come. Wasn’t a bad issue which is saying something because it has been all pretty bad since Didio took over the book.

out31

Outsiders (Volume 4) #31
Written by Dan Didio
Art by Phillip Tan

Okay Halo is back in this issue! Thanks Didio! But she never even went missing, she just wasn’t mentioned. If you are going to make her return a big deal – how about maybe writing people actually wondering where the hell she is? Anyways the Ray shows up and so does a weird succubus lady. This book is way random but at least it has become interesting.

Streets of Gotham 12 and 13

streets12

Batman: Streets of Gotham #12
Written by Paul Dini, Dustin Nguyen, and Derke Fridoffs
Art by Nguyen
Co-Feature by Marc Andreyko
Art by Szymon Kudranski

 

I don’t know why Dini is having such trouble writing this book solo but this is another kinda fill-in – although it is based on a plot by Dini. Luckily, it has Dini’s good writing and style to it as we get to know The Carpenter and are introduced to a new Bat-Villain, The Director. A crazy director who wants to make superhero snuff films. Dini is a genius at creating themed villains I sware! Anyways, he hires the Carpenter to build the perfect set but then plans on killing her when she is done. It’s a neat plot and meanwhile Damian gives a gift to Abuse that Batman won’t be happy about. I liked this. The Manhunter back-up was as good as always as Ramsey arrives at his mom’s place only to find Jane Doe dressed up in a skinsuit that looks like her! The art change from last issue was pretty dramatic. Not that I don’t like Kudranski’s art but it is just a completely different style.

streets13

Batman: Streets of Gotham #13
Written by Paul Dini, Dustin Nguyen, and Derke Fridoffs
Art by Nguyen
Co-Feature by Marc Andreyko
Art by Szymon Kudranski

 

The main story concludes the tales of the Carpenter as she is saved by Batman and all is a happy ending for this new fun character – she even defys Batman by deciding to stay in Gotham after all. It was really good. Hush is also dealt with here as the second plot apparently setting up with the next arc. I wonder what is in store for Tommy Elliot now that Bruce is coming back? The Manhunter back-up wraps up the co-feature as Jane Doe is defeated. The ending has Dick Grayson asking Kate out on a date. I wonder where this will go from here? Will Andreyko write their relationship or what? I don’t know but I will miss Manhunter in this book. Why is she being taken out and replaced?

Waste Of Panels

out28

Outsiders (Volume 4) #28
Written by Dan Didio
Art by Phillip Tan

 

As I expected, this book is not getting any better. What the hell is Didio doing?! Still no explanation for Geo-Force’s actions…is he being manipulated? Is Katana? And still no mention of Halo! Where the hell is she? The entire issue was a rather boring fight between Black Lightning and Geo-Force with Didio’s lame narration. What a waste of panels.

Where is Halo?!

out27

Outsiders (Volume 4) #27
Written by Dan Didio
Art by Don Kramer

 

Didio oh Didio! Why do you write such bad dialogue? Do we need to make fun of you even more then we already do? Black Lightning final line in this issue was so lame. Geo-Force and Katana are acting really strange still (I am hoping that there is going to be an in-story reason for this) and there is no fucking mention or anything of Halo?! Where did she go? Did someone forget about her? What is going on with this book? Where is Phillip Tan, how are we needing a fill-in artist already? Why is this guy in charge of DC Comics when he can’t even keep things together on this one book? Yes it was cool to see classic Outsiders villains the Masters of Disaster and I like the continuity references but this issue is just soo bad. Why is Owlman referring to Blackest Night as Blackest Night? Why not the time where everyone became Black Lanterns? Didio is writing him as if he is aware that it was a comic mini-series called Blackest Night! This is awful. Just awful.

I Wish I Could Say That Didio Proved Me Wrong

out26

Outsiders (Volume 4) #26
Written by Dan Didio
Art by Phillip Tan and Don Kramer

You know…I started this telling myself to keep an open mind. That even though Dan Didio is the man who thought Countdown was better then 52 and many other idiotic opinions, he could be a good writer and I shouldn’t prejudge. One issue in and I have little hope. This isn’t a very good comic. All of the characters are off and are not acting like themselves. Katana just stabbed a guy in the chest and Geo-Force is calling for extreme violence and acting like a completely different character then well…Geo-Force. What the hell? I am hoping this is explained through mind control or something but so far it is just bad characterization. Halo is nowhere to be found except for one panel. The art is just awful and Tan’s anatomy changes from page to page. The only good thing was the Eradicator – a former member of the Outsiders. I do like the acknowledgement of that history and he is a character that has been gone for a long time but… Please, Didio, prove me wrong and show me that you can write a good comic.

Halo Kicks Ass

out25

Outsiders (Volume 4) #25
Written by Peter Tomasi
Art by Fernando Pasarin and Derec Donovan

Tomasi’s run comes to an end with this issue and it was a good issue. Yes, Tomasi had Halo being called Violet again (Ugh she never went by that name!) but he lets her be the big hero and kick serious ass in this issue so I forgive him. I love when Halo kicks ass. I think this was a good way to end Tomasi’s run and this Blackest Night tie-in was definitely successful. Do I think Tomasi’s run was that great? No it could have been a lot better but it wasn’t awful either. I am more afraid of what the Didio-Tan run will be like. I hope they pleasantly surprise me. Oh and it was nice to see Thunder again!

Blackest Night Descends Upon The Outsiders

out24

Outsiders (Volume 4) #24
Written by Peter Tomasi
Art by Fernando Pasarin

The penultimate issue of Tomasi’s run may be the strongest issue of his run yet. That could be due to the strength of the Blackest Night concept or because Tomasi get the character of Terra – the evil girl who infiltrated the Teen Titans and betrayed them. She was not duped or drugged by Deathstroke – she was a bad person. It’s pure and simple. I love that Krul and Tomasi are acknowledging this as for a while DC seem to be heading in the direction of ignoring the intent of Marv Wolfman when he created her and pretending that she was this sweet girl who got corrupted. I love how Black Lantern Terra is just as manipulative as she was in life. She acts all sweet and kind to her brother even with that horrible zombie look – and he believes her! It was awesome. You know she is setting a trap for the Outsiders. It was great to see Katana and Halo’s close friendship acknowledged (Although she calls her Violet again ahh!) and Katana’s family who I hadn’t even predicted would show up as black lanterns.

Her Name is Gabrielle!

out23

Outsiders (Volume 4) #23
Written by Peter Tomasi
Art by Fernando Pasarin

Pasarin is such a good artist why doesn’t DC ever use him as a regular artist? Although his Creeper is a little more normal looking then the Creeper usually is. But at the same time Tomasi writes him as more “normal” then he usually does too. It was great to see Katana and Halo’s relationship acknowledged, even if it is annoying that they keep calling Halo Violet instead of Gabrielle. This is going to be Tomasi’s last arc on this book before Didio takes over. I guess we shall see if Tomasi’s run is considered a sucessful one or not.

I Miss My Dark Knight Damsel

bg2

Batgirl (Volume 3) #2
Written by Bryan Q. Miller
Art by Lee Garbett

You know…I really can’t wait for Stephanie to get her new costume, because I just can’t help but miss Cassandra when I see Steph in that costume. How cool would it have been if this series was about Cassandra working with Barbara out of the currently abandoned batcave! Wtf Didio! I miss my Dark Knight Damsel, Stephanie Brown just isn’t her. Anyways, this was an okay issue and unlike other people, I see no problem with the way Barbara is acting. Steph has screwed up in the past and Babs doesn’t want to see that happen again.