It's a mutant sort of week for DeadLord with a Red Robin thrown in for good measure.
Starlord: Here we are folks, another week and three more books to talk about in our usual geek way.
Let’s start with Uncanny X-Men #523 and the second chapter of the next mutant event “Second Coming”. Cable has returned with Hope and Scott and company are doing everything they can to keep the two alive and away from Bastion and his minions. Nightcrawler is both shocked and disgusted to discover Scott’s secret team called X-Force and chooses to quit... but doesn’t really leave. While Cyclops barely tries to defend his reasons, Cable and Hope hide in a small motel where Hope gives herself a makeover. She’s a pretty gal, and looks real nice and familiar in the green and yellow outfit. Unfortunately Bastion’s people find and surround them. Have no fear though, Wolverine and his team show up in the nick of time and we are left with a classic stand off. In the meantime Cannonball and his team of mutants are ready to infiltrate Cameron Hodges headquarters and eliminate the enemy’s weaponry.
Not a bad chapter, but I have to admit there were a couple of things that through me off; like why did Nightcrawler quit but then accepted Scott’s rather weak explanation and stay. It didn’t feel right to me. On the other hand, I do like Cyclops being the order giver, it’s fun to read. I’m giving it a thumbs up but it didn’t really overwhelm me like the first chapter did. What did you think?
DeadFett: I enjoyed the issue. I liked the scene where Cable had to explain to Hope what a motel is. It was a nice light moment in a tense issue. I think Kurt accepted Scott's explanation because he knows what's at stake. He might not believe Scott but he's willing to put it aside for the greater good. At least that's what I thought about it. Unfortunately, I think Kurt is going to die during Second Coming.
I really enjoyed this more than I have the past few issues of Uncanny. Fraction's writing was great here. It was also nice to see the Dodsons back on the art. This issue gets a thumbs up from me.
This issue introduces us to Karen. Karen is a woman who leads a very guarded life. She is reluctant to let others get close to her. We learn that she is really former X-Man, Jean Grey. Following Ultimatum Jean dyed her hair black and went into hiding. While at work, she is approached by Mystique who is pretending to be Rogue. Eventually Sabretooth shows up and rips open Jean's boyfriend who is the mall security guard. Using her powers, Jean causes an explosion and causes everyone at the mall to forget she was there. She returns home to gather her things before fleeing only to find James Howlett, Wolverine's son, inside her home.
As I stated earlier, I'm really liking the series so far. I thought Loeb's writing was wonderful here. The art by Art Adams, which is the main reason I picked this up, was spectacular. I love the detail he packs into his work. The issue gets a huge thumbs up from me. What are your thoughts on this issue sir?
Starlord: Yeah, I’m giving this a thumbs up as well. Loeb amazes me because sometimes I can’t get behind what he’s writing at all (like his Hulk stuff right now) but then he does a story like this and I’m really impressed. You know I’m not the world’s biggest Wolverine fan, but I find this twist to be pretty interesting; I am a huge fan of Jean Grey though so the scene’s where she is remembering her fallen friends was well done and heartbreaking. I may end up putting this on my Trade list.
Our final book this week was one I personally asked DeadFett if we could review because I have been enjoying the hell out of it. Red Robin #11 continues the chess game between Tim Drake and Ra’s Ah Ghul. Stephanie (the new Batgirl) and Batman and Robin themselves join Tim as he tries to out maneuver Ra’s’ plan to destroy everyone that Tim holds dear.
As a stand alone issue I could see where someone might have a problem getting into the story, but as the penultimate issue to this arc, it sets everything up wonderfully with Chris Yost giving us some nice character moments between Tim and Dick as well as Tim and Damien. This was my favorite book of the week actually and I’m giving it a huge thumbs up. So my friend, what did you think?
DeadFett: I have to be honest Brian, I had a hard time getting into this book. Mostly because I haven't been reading it. I did enjoy the moments between Dick and Tim though. Those moments made me wish Tim was Robin to Dick's Batman. Damien I could do without. Ra's is a worthy adversary and it was nice to see him used here. There just wasn't enough here to hook me. Color me indifferent on this one with a neutral thumb.
Starlord: I thank you for checking out my friend and giving your honest opinion. That’s it for this week folks. Have a great week of new books and we’ll see you here next Tuesday for another DeadLord Reviews. Now please take a second to check out my Cleaning the Plate reviews.
World War Hulks #1
I’ll get right to the point with this book. You know how Marvel decided to give us brief synopsis’s at the beginning of their issues so people would know what had happen before? Well with this special they made an entire issue with that idea in mind. Several short stories give us the location and state of mind of many of the main players in this weird event. I suppose you can call it an event, I haven’t quite grasped exactly how all of this is going to come together yet, but I’m sure it will...at least I hope it will. Not that there isn’t some good art to enjoy in this, there is. I especially liked the story “Ram” with Aluir Amancio with inks by Terry Austin and colors by Val Staples. It’s a great throwback to those glorious days of silver and bronze age comics. When it comes to story though, I’ve yet to find myself caring about any of this. My Score: D+
Batman and Robin #11
With the soon to be return of Bruce Wayne, Grant Morrison seems to be amping up the mystery of how Dick and Damien will figure out where he is and how to get him back. This is one of the few issues in the last year that I actually enjoyed and I think there’s a reason for this. I really like the way Dick and Alfred are suddenly finding all these new secret passages to the mansion and cave. I also like the fact that Morrison is using classic villains like Talia and Slade Wilson (which I found to be a great twist actually). Still, there is a lot of the old Morrison stuff that I still can’t get into. I really don’t care about all these new villains that he’s trying to create; which seem to have no personality whatsoever. Still can’t figure out how Bruce is going to survive through millions of years to make it back to present time Gotham, but Andy Clarke’s art is cool and I love that. It’s my second favorite Batman art after Tony Daniels. I’m totally conflicted on this issue to be honest. It’s more than a love it or hate it story; it’s a typical Morrison head-scratcher with some actual cool elements thrown in. My Score: B-
Electric Ant #1
Novelist Philip K. Dick’s beautifully told story comes to comic form and is scripted by David Mack with art by Pascal Alixe. If you’ve never read the story, I highly suggest you pick up the first issue of this book. David Mack does a more than competent job recreating the visionary world that Dick created years ago. The art is not my favorite to be honest, but it does fit perfectly in a book like this. This is a mini-series that I’m more than happy to be collecting, and you should be too. My Score: B+
Flash Secret Files #1
Here’s another instance of a book that didn’t really need to be. Like the Hulk that I just reviewed, this story by Geoff Johns did very little for the character of Barry Allen other than remind us that he is the Flash, that his mother was murdered and his father took the blame but it was really Professor Zoom that killed her. There’s a bonding moment between Barry, Max, Bart, Wally and the kids that we’ve basically already seen in other recent issues so again, nothing new. The other major plot are the Rogues, led of course by Captain Cold, who finds the original Mirror Master’s old hideout and discovers a giant mirror that reads: “In case the Flash returns, break glass.” What’s inside... don’t know. It’s a great set up, but why couldn’t it have been put in the first issue of the new Flash series. The second half of the book explains who each of the major players and several of the Rogues are. This is nice for those who have never read a Flash book and want to try it out; but for those of us who have been around the block more than once... it was totally unnecessary. Unless you’ve never read anything about the Flash at all but want to start reading it, this book is a total waste of money. My Score: D