Veegieleezy compares Demon Knights and FF! Which book will come on top? Click to find out!
Credits & Solicit Info:
In this column, I'll be doing a direct face-off between Marvel's and DC's books. Once a week, I'll pick up a book from Marvel (the "red" book) and a book from DC (the "blue" book), I'll read them both, and weigh the pros and cons of each to determine a "winner". This is all in good fun, so don't take these ratings too seriously.
There is also the strong possibility of minor spoilers, but I'll try to keep those to a minimum. Anyway, let's kick off this shindig with two books based in fantasy: one futuristic, one based in the past. It's Future Foundation vs. Demon Knights!
Red Book: FF #10 (Jonathan Hickman, Barry Kitson, Paul Mounts)
Writing- Something I've always enjoyed about the Fantastic Four is the fact that they're a family. Granted, it's Future Foundation now (probably to save money on changing the logos), with Spider-Man Peter Parker taking Johnny Storm's place. He fits into Marvel's First Family well, and Jonathan Hickman does a good job working the characters into believable relationships, most noticeably Reed & Sue Richards and Peter Parker & Ben Grimm.
Art- Upon reading through this a second time, I noticed something rather cool about this book. The more I do these reviews, the more I look for things I would never have thought twice about before. Such things including color and shading were unimportant to me. This issue, though, makes great use of palettes and color schemes. Each scene/location in this issue seems to have its own palette and tint to it, from the Richards' greenhouse (greenish hue), to Latveria (bluish), to space (purple), to the Avengers Mansion (full, vibrant colors). If you like a pretty looking book, the FF series will do you quite nicely.
Writing- Now, before you start hating on me for doing my job poorly, in my defense I'm a broke college kid. I wasn't able to find many (if any) of the previous issues of the series, at least not any that were sequential. Because of that, this is the first issue I've been able to pick up. And wouldn't it be my luck that it's the middle of an arc. I have no freaking idea what's going on here. I can't comprehend any of it. I get that Doom and Spidey are on the same team as Ben, Reed, and Susan, but beyond that I can't understand a thing of what's happening. Any mentions of the previous issues are literally dealt with in one panel. For new readers, that's not nearly enough continuity.
Art- The characters in this book (or at least this issue) are all very wooden. The only one who shows any kind of different expression is Susan Storm, and again, it's only in a few panels. I get that Reed Richards isn't Mr. Touchy-Feely (he's Mr. Fantastic. *rimshot*), the Thing is a human rock, and Doom's a man in an iron mask, but come on. Show a little emotion. And the Kree villains are almost as bad, but at least they try.
Blue Book: Demon Knights #2 (Paul Cornell, Diôgenes Neves, Oclair Albert)
Writing- Paul Cornell is now one of my favorite writers. He blends the action with the characters very well. The characters are all clearly defined, each with their own personalities. Also, there is a very strong sense of humor that I hope will carry throughout the series. I love being able to laugh at one scene and then have it followed up with a giant fireball of death and magic the next. To me, this is what fantasy comics should be written like.
Art- The art in this book is a strong suit, fitting the medieval era of its setting. The best comparison I can make is to think of Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Terry Gilliam's desire for authentic-looking sets and design helped make the movie look "real". Here, Neves and the art team really make the story look and feel like it's taking place in a medieval village. Plus, all of the characters have very cool designs.
Writing- As much fun as this book is to read, it does have its faults. At times it seems like the jokes are a little forced. I appreciate that Etrigan rhymes more in this book, but here it seems fairly arbitrary. I never was too familiar with The Demon before this book (only saw him as a supporting player in Green Arrow's Quiver story), but I do know that he always spoke in rhyme. Here, he rhymes when he feels like it. I'm not sure why he does it in this story; it seems a little shoe-horned. Also, at times the dialogue can seem drawn out and long-winded.
Art- Authenticity is one thing that I can appreciate, but there are places where it feels like I'm reading "Brown Knights: Modern Warfare .25". The color palette isn't very deep in this series so far; when color is used it is used well, but it seems a bit bland for a good chunk of the book.
Winner of the Week: Demon Knights #2
I'm sure I'll very likely enjoy FF once it comes around to a new arc. Right now, though, the lack of accessibility of the book causes me to give this week's crown to Demon Knights. This is one book I know I'm going to follow for a while.
Review by: Veggieleezy
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About the Author - Christian Hoffer
Christian Hoffer is the exasperated Abbott to the Outhouse's Costello. When he's not yelling at the Newsroom for upsetting readers or complaining to his wife about why the Internet is stupid, he sits in his dingy business office trying to find new ways to make the site earn money. Hoffer is also the only person in history stupid enough to moderate two comic book forums at once.
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