The Haul: Time Frogs
October 29, 2010 1 Comment
Avengers vs the Pet Avengers #1(of 4)
Eliopolous, Guara, Roberts
Any comic featuring the Pet Avengers can’t be taken entirely seriously, but here we have a book that has Fin Fang Foom and a bunch of other dragons trying take over the world. And then the real Avengers (Iron Man, Captain America and Thor) get turned into frogs for some reason, so Frog Thor (different guy) and his Pet Avengers show up to help. The Pet Avengers include Redwing, Falcon’s uh…falcon, Speedball’s snarky cat Hairball, Lockjaw of the Inhumans and Kitty Pryde’s dragon Lockheed, who becomes important to the story because of the giant dragons. The story is cool enough, and this issue ends on a downer, which I always find nice. The art is also really great, with some fantastic splash pages with the dragons. If you want a comic that isn’t choking on it’s own seriousness, try this one.
Green Hornet Blood Ties #1
Acting sort of as a prequel to Kevin Smith’s updated Green Hornet series, Blood Ties follows the original Green Hornet and Kato in their quest to rid Century City of its organized crime. And to be honest there’s not much more to it that that. This is just a decent, pulpy Green Hornet book with lots of bad guys who are just criminals and not dressed up in a costume. The art is a little bit off-putting for me. I think I’ve been spoiled by Jonathan Lau’s incredible pencils. Desjardins’ work is fine though, other than a panel here or there that just doesn’t quite look right (such as a panel with Kato looking a little bit too much like Marvel’s Hammerhead). For fans of the original Green Hornet, this may be worth getting, but if you’re reading the current Green Hornet by Kevin Smith, you can skip Blood Ties.
Bruce Wayne – The Road Home: Oracle
Andreyko, Padilla, Buccellato
Nearing the end of The Road Home series, this issue focusses on the core Vicki Vale story, with Bruce (as the Insider) being contacted by Oracle who reports that Vicki is being hunted by Ra’s al Ghul’s elite assassins. Oracle then uses her contacts to assist the Insider by distracting some of the assassins. This means we get to see Batgirl again, this time teaming up with Hawk and Dove. Honestly, I couldn’t really believe that Batgirl could take on one of the Seven Men of Death. I think they’re still a bit out of her league, but whatever. The other team-up was Manhunter (Kate Spencer), Man-Bat and Ragman, which, although featured only briefly, is a team that I would love to read a limited series for. Oracle ends up taking a back seat…er, that is, she sits out of the action and um…okay that was insensitive. Anyway, Oracle ends up not taking much part in most of the story, with her not getting any ‘over-the-radio’ talking during the fights, so it ends up being really detached and not really about Oracle at all. The art is some of the best in The Road Home, but really, that just means this book gets a consolation wheelchair because it doesn’t have a leg to stand on.
Bruce Wayne – The Road Home: Ra’s al Ghul
Nicieza, McDaniel, Owens
The final Road Home story, and the third by Nicieza, Ra’s al Ghul has captured Vicki Vale and intends to kill her to preserve the identity of his nemesis due to his sense of honor and integrity. Naturally, Bruce saves her and she destroys her evidence about the Bat Family and their identities. The story is one of the least engaging of the Road Home books, because, like with the Oracle story, there’s little in the way of Bruce actually interacting with the featured character. Whilst earlier books had Bruce testing Batgirl etc., he saw no need to test Oracle, and no reason to test Ra’s obviously. Because of that, this book only features the one aspect of the story, although I guess the ending with Vicki sort of works. It’s not a bad issue, just not special. McDaniel’s art is okay, which is good news seeing as he’ll be on Batman and Robin soon. Anyways, The Road Home as a whole has been pretty amazing and highly recommended.
Wonder Woman #604
Straczynski, Kramer, Pansica, Leisten, Sinclair
The fourth and final part of the first arc of ‘The All-New’ Wonder Woman by JMS, the issue has a pretty great ending. The next sentence contains spoilers. <Diana gets her whip, learns how to fly and best of all, her stupid jacket is burnt to cinders. yay>. Unfortunately, most of this arc has been disappointing, with inconsistent pacing and quite a bit of screwing about and I didn’t care about a lot of it. However, this reimagining of Wonder Woman has been a long time coming, and her origin and personality feels very fresh and I appreciate what JMS and, in regards to her costume especially, Jim Lee have done. Speaking of the costume, I’m a fan of everything except that jacket, although I do think she doesn’t need the tiara, but it’s fine. The pants especially are nice, but the chest piece with the straps and the belt work great too. As for Kramer and Pansica’s art, it’s amazing. Their Diana is just perfect, particularly in those panels that are close-up stoic scowls. As with The Flash, if you have any interest in the character, this book is worth it on art alone.
Time Masters: Vanishing Point #4(of 6)
I haven’t even read this issue, but I want to complain about the series as a whole. The premise is that Rip Hunter has gathered a group of heroes (Superman, Green Lantern and Booster Gold) to travel back in time and find Bruce Wayne and stop him from accidentally destroying the universe. But the book got sidetracked really quick, barely mentioning Bruce at all and solicits for the last two issues have hinted that they’re not going to bother with Bruce at all. So this book, which was intended as a sort of companion to Return of Bruce Wayne (which itself was a disappointment) has lost the central focus and become a story about Booster and Rip. And I guess the Time Stealers, with Black Beetle and (old) Despero and nobody cares. It just irks me that this book tried to sell itself as a Bruce Wayne tie-in, without dealing with any of the plot in that book. Technically though, the book has good art and should be appreciated by Booster Gold and Rip Hunter fans.