Week 42 (June 20, 2012)

  • Green Lantern Corps #10 epitomized the growing schism within the ranks of Oa.  The Alpha Lanterns unilaterally passing sentence on John Stewart for his killing of corpsman, Kirrt Kallak, and the sentence is death.  Though Stewart resigns himself to his fate, the rank and file officers who know John and fought alongside him do not.  The Alpha Lanterns are an unimpeachable force of “justice”, empowered but not censored by the Guardians and the Green Lanterns find themselves disenfranchised from their own Corps.  This comes to a head with Stewart being offered up as an unintentional martyr, sparking off what promises to be a conflict that will define the destiny of the Green Lantern Corp for years to come.
  • Batwoman #10 brings us to the cusp of the “To Drown the World” arc in the penultimate issue.  Told in the fractured means, pioneered in this arc, Killer Croc comes out the main subject of discussion, as the enigmatic sorceress, Maro, fulfills his legacy dating back to his supposed Babylonian heritage, turning him into a truer form of a mythological crocodile monster.  The other characters, Jacob Kane, Maggie Sawyer, and Cameron Chase continue to evolve, but among the supporting cast of characters, Sune’s was the most interesting.  After kissing and attempting to seduce Kate last issue, her fate in this issue truly intrigued.  I can’t wait to read the concluding chapter of this arc next month.

    What a Croc!

  • Catwoman #10 was very interesting.  I think I would have enjoyed it better if I could have read it and its fellows all at once in graphic novel format.  The story is really fascinating, picking up from where it left off two months ago, prior to the “Night of the Owls” tie in issue, following Catwoman’s investigation into the disappearances of prostitutes and teen gang members throughout Gotham.  A great deal is revealed about who is doing this, why they are doing it, and also about the background of both Catwoman and her new partner in crime, Spark.  A lot is going on and there are numerous threads running through the story.  It can be tedious with the jumping around, but I feel that once we are able to pull back after the fact, these elements are going to combine to an incredible story.
  • Nightwing #10 is the first issue of the series, truly, that breaks from the “Court of Owls” plot and goes into a self determinant direction.  Picking up a subplot mentioned at the end of issue #7, Dick goes looking for the criminal who murdered two brothers using his escrima sticks.  Following this brings him right smack in the middle of a cult gang that are tied to the alpha and omega symbols.  In between, Dick also stumbles on a police conspiracy, plans an ambitious project of urban renewal, and takes the reigns once more of Haly’s Circus.  This issue will shape where Nightwing truly stands in the New DCU, post Court of the Owls.
  • Supergirl #10 follows the Girl of Steel inside the beast, after the Black Banshee consumed her in the previous issue.  Inside the villain, Kara is transported through perverted versions of her dreams, revealing much about what events shaped her as a person.  Inside she is confronted with the true nature of Black Banshee, as well as his intrinsic qualities that can serve as his weaknesses.  Looking forward to seeing what the Mikes have in store for her in the coming issues.
  • Red Hood and the Outlaws #10 also is fresh off of the “Night of the Owls” tie in, and breaks also from its first arc of the All Caste vs. the Untitled.  Jason and Roy are roused from their much deserved R&R by a seeming attack on Starfire.  What follows brings all three and Jason’s unfortunate date, Isabel, halfway across the galaxy to Starfire’s planet, Tamaran, to fight an enigmatic scourge aptly called “The Blight.”  Starfire’s exile from her homeworld has in the past always been an interesting story, and in the capable hands of Scott Lobdell her new backstory promises to be equally epic.  After the main story wraps up for the issue, there is a backup feature following the character Essence in her crusade against the Untitled.   Most likely after Lobdell has explored non-Untitled plots, the backup and main features will reunite to cap off the whole thing.  Until that time, however, I am just going to enjoy the incredible storytelling Lobdell has in store for us.
  • Wonder Woman #10 really highlights the character of Hades.  After the ending of last issue, when Hades required proof of Wonder Woman’s love, we see how the love of Wonder Woman juxtaposes against the vacancy of his soul.  Thus far, I have been a huge fan of Hades and I am a little sad to see the arc in the underworld ending.  However, I doubt that this will be the last we see of him.  In the meantime, I am curious to see what writer Brian Azzarello has in store for the Amazing Amazon next month.
  • Legion of Super-Heroes #10 brings the Legion into the dark waters of interplanetary diplomatic tension.  The United Planets have been attempting to maintain a strained peace with the Dominion and the kidnapping of two legionnaires leaves their fellows with few options.  With not proof, the United Planets refuse to intervene on behalf of the Legion and any act by the latter to get proof would be considered an act of war.  Within the Dominion, we see how Dream Girl and Brainiac 5 are holding up, as well as what has been done to them, the portents of which are truly terrifying.  In light of all this, it doesn’t lie in the hands of the Legion to save the day, but rather former Legionnaires and Legionnaires yet to be . . . Paul Levitz keeps the drama and intrigue cranked at 11 with no signs of decline.
  • DC Universe Presents: Savage #10 brings us within one issue of the conclusion to the Vandal Savage storyline.  Can’t say that I am completely into this story.  It still seems like there is more than a passing resemblance between this plot and Silence of the Lambs.  We’ll see how it turns out, but thus far I am not the hugest fan of what James Robinson is doing, but in fairness, he only has three issues to work with.
  • Before Watchmen: The Comedian #1 was stellar.  So far the Before Watchmen line is three for three.  Brian Azzarello tells a convincing story about sociopathic superhero and government lapdog Eddie Blake.  Opening with Blake playing touch football on Martha’s Vineyard with the Kennedy boys (JFK being president at the time).  There is a close knit relationship between the Kennedys and Blake.  Like its predecessors Minute Men and Silk Spectre, it retains a great deal of the original grit and apocalyptic ambiance of the original graphic novel.  Both Brian Azzarello and artist J.G. Jones are the perfect choices for this title about one of the starkest characters in the Watchmen universe.
  • Batman Beyond Unlimited #5 prominently features a one shot intro to a character firmly rooted in the original Batman mythos. Called “Jake” this issues’ Batman Beyond story focuses on the Wayne/Powers enforcer who killed Warren McGinnis.  That man’s name just happens to be Jacob Chill.  In the Beyond Origins segment, the origin of Warhawk.  His birth was masked in tragedy and his life follows suit.  There is a tragic beauty to it.  The Justice League Beyond Unlimited segment takes a break this month, absent from this issue, which makes me sad, as the cliffhanger from last installment was incredible after Apokalips had been ravaged by Kobra.  Hopefully next month we can get some resolution to this INCREDIBLE story development.  The Superman Beyond segment returned the aged Man of Steel to the cat and mouse antagonism of his former associations with Lex Luthor.  With Lex’s daughter now behind the scheme its the same feel but different venue.  Like the Batman Beyond show, the atmosphere remains with a fresh take.  Good job, JT Krul.
  • Dominique Laveau: Voodoo Child #5 for the most part did some world building rather than plot development.  Perhaps it was supposed to be plot development, but it sure didn’t feel like it to me.  It follows Dominique being tested by several Voodoo deities and analyzed by them in the cryptic fashion one expects from the divine.  There is no resolution or advancement to what any of this means.  I will say that it was entertaining and interesting to see the mythological background that gives power to the main characters in this manner.  A good issue, but I am anxious to get to the confrontation with the current Voodoo Queen.
  • The Unwritten #38 has Didge linking up with Danial Armitage to get the inside scoop on the Cult of Tommy and the related disappearances.  In Switzerland Richie powwows with Madame Rausch who tells him the nature of the wound that gives this four issue story arc its name.  The world of stories is dying, which means that humanity’s ability to interact with its own history and identity.   So far this new arc is intriguing as it breaks almost entirely from the Tom Taylor line of the story and goes outward to show what all of the things Tommy has done mean to the world at large.  We’ve gotten tastes of that throughout the series in the past, but these past two issues immerse themselves in it.  I do want to get back to Tom, but in the meantime I am really excited about the fleshing out of Armitage as a character and the promise of Didge as a potential mainstay of the series.  All around Grade A comic.

 

Disclaimer: I do not own the rights to any of these images and give credit to those whose work they are.

Illustration Credits:

Batwoman #10:  Art by Trevor McCarthy, Colored by Guy Major

Red Hood and the Outlaws #9: Art by Kenneth Rocafort, Colored by Blond

Wonder Woman #10: Drawn by Tony Akins, Colored by Matthew Wilson, Inked by Dan Green

Before Watchmen: The Comedian #1: Art by J.G. Jones

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2 thoughts on “Week 42 (June 20, 2012)

  1. John Ekleberry says:

    I was really unimpressed by the initial launch of the New 52, but the second wave has me hooked. The relaunch of Batman Inc. has me very excited and I really enjoyed the first three issues of Earth 2. It doesn’t get better than Morrison on Batman and Robinson writing the JSA. I’m also picking up The Ravagers to celebrate Howard Mackie’s return to comics. As a hardcore Marvel fan in the early 90s, I’m intrigued by the large number of 90s Marvel creators (including editorial) now making their home at the new DC.

    • Yeah, Batman Inc has been awesome. If you read the “Tales of the Demon” where they present the first appearances of Ra’s and Talia, the second issue of Batman Inc has a few homages to it that are pulled right out of the old Neal Adams panels. I like Robinson a lot. Again I am not the hugest fan of the rationale behind the change in Alan Scott’s sexual orientation. It seemed really forced and not something that is natural or intrinsic to the character himself, but then again what do I know? Love the series though as well as Nicola Scott’s art. Scott Lobdell’s trek to DC was I think one of the best things. I was dubious, but he is an awesome writer and all three of his series are at the top of my list.

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