Monday, October 10, 2011

comics for the week of 10/5/11.

The second week of the DCnU. I'm still crazy upset about this, but I don't think that I'm going to do a long post here about it, seeing as I've already kind of summed up my feelings over here. Suffice it to say, there are some great books (see below!) that have come out of this shitstorm, but for the most part, it feels like they're making it up as they're going along, and that's the ultimate disrespect.

Animal Man 2 - I read this after Swamp Thing, so the connection between the Red and the Green seemed super obvious to me. I'm not sure that'll stand out so much to people who aren't reading them (essentially) back to back, but it's great to see writers taking advantage of this newly blank slate. Insofar as the story, it was a bummer to see Buddy up and leave his family on such a whimsical note, but I do think his daughter's manifesting powers would scare the crap out of her mom. The dialogue between Animal Man and his wife rang pretty true, too; it's a fact that she didn't sign up for this kind of life. It's a hell of an adjustment to make. I only hope this isn't foreshadowing of a divorce-style conflict coming up - it makes for a way better story to see the two sticking it out together, even if it is hard. The book is building on a pretty slow pace, especially compared to Swamp Thing, but that's all right with me. I want to learn more about this tree and, of course, about the daughter's powers.

Invincible 83 - You know, just Kirkman doing what Kirkman does best: using superhero stories to actually tell super-detailed character stories where we care so much about so many different people. The main focus (and the twist ending) here go to Robot Rex and his lady friend, Monster Girl, in the most roundabout way. There's a party welcoming them back, couples are all around and everyone seems kind of happy. And then...no one really is. Of course, along the way, we get to see more developments of Mark's evolving personality, Cecil's confusion and Eve's smartness (and also a laughingly kinky side to her). This book does so well not because it's got huge space battles, but rather because Robert Kirkman succeeds in making each of his characters so human. Form Eve's weight gain (and the way it hasn't been in an issue in the actual comic, as opposed to the letters column, where you'd think that's the only thing that's been happening in the book!) to Rex's plead to help, all of these people are actually people. Great work, as always.

Swamp Thing 2 - This book is where things really got going. There's a menace on the loose and his name is The Seethe. He's coming for Dr. Holland, as Swamp Thing (the elder?) explains to him, so Alec had better accept those powers tout suite. The whole issue is essentially dialogue/exposition, explaining what's happening with the Swamp Thing entity, how Dr. Holland is wrapped up and what's going to happen if he doesn't accept his role in the drama. We've got a nice jiving of the past (Brightest Day & The Search for Swamp Thing) with some nods to old continuity and we've got forward momentum in the current story; what more can you ask for? The beginning of the book is consumed with the origin of Swamp Thing the elder and meanders its way to Alec in a pleasing way. The enemy is moving quick toward Alec and we have a great action sequence to end the issue. Fantastic.

Book of the week goes to Swamp Thing. When I first started writing this, I thought it was going to be Animal Man, but I guess my need for a bit more action took over. However, let me be honest and say that if you picked up all three of these books this week, whether you're an old vet or a newbie just dipping toes in, you'd be neither disappointed nor confused. This is a refreshing thing to be able to say.

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