What a great week for comics! More good than bad.
Half way through DC’s event of the year and I can’t help but admit that this has been far more enjoyable than Final Crisis in its delivery. Perhaps because the story is much more linear or the Geoff Johns has created an event where the stakes are apparently high. Johns’ writing is dead on here, and every word is like a love letter to the heroes that we grew up with. The exchange between Barry Allen, Ray Palmer, and Mera sings with determination and hope. Alan Scott is given a chance to shine (pun very intended). The fact that this epic is more than just a simple zombie story comes home in a huge way with the apparent death of Damage by Jean Loring while Atom looks on. And with the appearance of Nekron in the beautiful final splash page by Ivan Reis promises that this tale has just begun. My Score: B+
A sad and dynamic chapter closes on the Guardians as the Marvel’s most fascinating team of heroes finally finish their battle to save the universe. Of course they aren’t able to pull this off without the help of one of Marvel’s greatest time traveling villains of all time – Kang the Conqueror! The struggle to not only save every living being that exists, but also their teammate Adam Warlock, is so well written that it reminds me of the classic Uncanny X-Men #137 and that ultimate sacrifice that sometimes has to be made. Abnett and Lanning have made this one of Marvel’s top five books out right now, and the sacrifice that is made will resound for months to come. This may be the first Marvel book that I end up collecting both the trades and the singles. It’s just that damn good! My Score: A
Gerry Conway’s still got it, and this endearing little mini-series of the last adventure of Buddy Baker and his family just goes to prove it. This is a well crafted story that goes out of its way to use what Grant Morrison did in his amazing run, low those many years ago. Was this an Earth shattering series? Nope. But if you’re a fan of Animal Man, you should read it. It’s every bit as human as the man once had the powers of all God’s creatures. My Score: B
I was a huge fan of this team way... way... way back when. In fact, my continual love for Cannonball no doubt stems from those days. So I was a bit cautious when I heard that they were bringing the original team back. Six issues in I have to say that it’s great to see most of my favorites back together, but I’m still left with the nagging question of why. It’s not that this team shouldn’t be together, by all means they should, but they are no longer new mutants. It almost feels like a step back for nearly all the characters. The first arc was just okay, bringing back Legion who was never one of my favorites to begin with. Now we have the return of Doug Ramsey and Warlock. This interests me a bit more, but I can’t stop hearing that little whisper in my head that says: “You can never go back again.” My Score: C+
All of the Blackest Night mini-series have been focusing on the return of dead loved ones and this story has been no different. What makes all of these stories interesting is not only who comes back, but how they affect out heroes. This story really focuses around two Titans of yore; Dove and Donna Troy. Of the two, the pain and anguish of Donna Troy has been one of the most gut wrenching to read. Not only are we reminded of just how much the original Wonder Girl has lost; we are also shown once again why Donna is the true legacy of Wonder Woman. She is a warrior first, a warrior with a heart of gold. This hasn’t been my favorite of the off shoots, but the moments with Donna will always stay in my mind as some of the most emotional. Special congrats to Ed Benes for showing us those moments without the need for words. My Score: B-