As my buddy Dave Jordan put it: this might be the best week of comics ever. For real. The only weak point was Buffy (unusual) but I forgot Willow last week, read it this week, and loved it, so that more than made up for it.
Batman 14 - Joker is back in a huge way and, though I'm not sure if I believe that he knows who the Bat-family really are, I do think that he's dead set on getting rid of them. This is an interesting story, especially for those of us with Bat-history. There was a long period (Hell, there have been a couple of them) where the writers decided that the Bat family was weakening the main character and had him act out to get rid of them in various passive-aggressive manners. But this is the first time where an enemy has decided to do the same, for the same reason. Mostly, they've wanted to remove their support to make their jobs easier. Joker seems to have passed this final point, he's talking about Batman as a God and as a King, and he's gone past threatening people to just murdering them, saving the set up as an introduction and skipping past the climax. It's inspiring to see how a true supervillain would act. And scary. Here's to hoping that I can get the whole story just by reading Batman, though, cuz I'm not gonna dive into the others.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer 15 - Ugh. Proselytizing, even when it comes from a side I agree with, is still annoying. I said enough bad things about this story last month, but it didn't get any better. The last page was all that needed to be said. Enough, let's get back to the real story.
Invincible 97 - Well done. The light situation of the replacement Invincible gets starkly real, and things go into hyperdrive. We have a half-second of comedic relief wherein Krikman reaffirms that he does, in fact, know how to poke fun at himself, and then we see the dramatic tension turn in the most positive way imaginable for Mark and Eve. That'll be a fun development for next issue. Good all the way around, even if it felt like quite a leap that Carla would conk the mom that hard. Zandale does the only thing he knows how to do in cleaning up the mess.
Locke and Key: Omega 1 - Holy poop. First of all, just the fact that it's here. This isn't a book that's suffered from tremendous delays, but it does its breaks in the right way and it totally snuck up on me. Secondly, the story. Holy... Joe Hill knows how to do climaxes. For real. And he must have learned it from that guy who's carrying Kinsey on the gurney (is that the right word for someone who's not dead?) into the ambulance. Well played, Gabriel Rodriguez! Besides the little jokes, this is one serious story. Dodge sums it up well at the end (no spoilers) by saying, "Well, that's that. I win." Jesus. This is gonna be one hell of a story. I can't wait for the little surprise that we see twice in this issue. There are gonna be some tears, though, I'm predicting, for the Locke family, no matter how this turns out.
Saga 7 - Wow is the only appropriate response. I try to stack my books so that I read the best first and last. Locke & Key was obviously first this week, but I saved Batman for last on the premise that I've always been more of a superhero guy and less of an indie guy. But this book...BKV...it's just...it's better than anything else. It's so epic. It's so well-crafted. It's so real. The characters feel like they're a real family. The drama that exists between Marko and his mom and his dad is incredible. The brief history we get is fascinating. The narration from Hazel continues to be one of the high points of this book, and the thing that Marko is protecting his mother from seeing? Well, that honestly made me laugh out loud. The secret that his dad uses to jumpstart his spell is obviously going to be the huge news over the next arc, but this book, it's just so good that I don't know if anything is going to top it.
Book of the week goes to ... Saga. That's right. I tried to break y'all in softly. I know that I've gone on record as saying that Locke and Key is the best comic book ever, but with this issue, I really do feel like the weight and momentum is behind Saga. Plus, I'm sure Locke and Key's conclusion is still gonna have some crazy issues and I'm positive that it'll get one of these before it's done. For the incredible job that Brian K. Vaughn is doing, he deserves a weighty reward.