Monday, May 25, 2015

comics for the week of 05/13/15 & 05/20/15.

EOCs, EOY exams, finals, etc. Sorry to be late.

Black Science 14 - It was pretty and I'm glad I read it, but I know I've said this about Black Science before: I'm almost definitely going to have to read this in trade. It's just too...overlapping for me to make any sense of. In monthlies, with all the different versions of the same characters? And the art, while totally beautiful, often obfuscates who's who, maybe not due to artistic style as much as it's due to the costumes they're all wearing. I'm a huge fan, but I think I'll have to step back.

East of West 19 - The most awesome single issue of this series so far? The singular focus really helped, but so did the previous character-building that got us to this point with both Babylon and Balloon. Also, it didn't hurt that the lessons were real. While the boar probably wouldn't have been able to kill him, there's a lot to be said for the fact that they would have jacked him up. And Balloon's method of dealing in half truths is hilarious because he's playing quite the game as well. Also, there was a panel where little Babylon actually, authentically, genuinely looked like little Death. Awesome.

Saga 28 - Saga, man. Fucking Saga. From the first panel to the entire first page. This book is solid gold. But it's so much more than just the first page or the first panel. This book is the greatest example of the sum being greater than the addition of its parts. We meet Halvor. We have characterization of Ghus and Yuma. We see Alana and the killer robot (and EVEN HE SEEMS LIKE HE'S ALMOST LIKABLE AT THIS POINT!) and the Revolutionaries they're with now. And then we swing over to Marcus and Prince Robot IV and the whole time we've got this increasingly knowledgeable narration from Hazel going on. BUT THEN THE END. Jesus. I mean, I should have known with the beginning of the narration, but that's one of my favorite things about Saga: it's so good that it throws all of my normal senses totally out of wack. Damn.

Secret Wars 2 - Wow. That was so so so so so good. So much better than 1. Obviously, we get a ton of world building, and it took until the end, but it definitely (kinda) makes sense. I loved the glimpses we get of Sue, Stephen, Val, and others (not to mention even the lands beyond the Shield). This makes sense as an explanation of Battlworld, and it also leaves the door open for more than 2 worlds in the future (which is something we were all coming to anyway) since this was previously undetected. So, Doom's world is going to be overrun and we're going to see a whole lot of people just naturally fighting each other, especially since the Cabal just landed here. But, the key to this issue, I think, is in who we didn't see - even on the map. The life raft makes no appearance. So the heroes will get to show up and save the day, huh? I'm good with this. Ribic is killing it on art and the story is only getting better. Super happy stuff.

Thor 8 - So it turned out exactly like we all predicted from the get go, but the best thing about this issue wasn't getting the answers that I'd been clamoring for, but rather, the looks from the side via all the guest characters. It's so cool to see Jess and Carol, the All-Mother and Angela (in a not worthless appearance), Sif and the Valkyrie, and so many more, beautifully drawn and all worth our time. The Destroyer left because of Odin, but I kind of hate that, because it truly felt like the gang was on the verge of winning and that might have been more worth seeing? But it leaves long-term potential, too, obviously. And then, at the end, we get the answer we've been waiting for. And while it wasn't a surprise, it also wasn't poorly done. It was well explained and gives us something to watch for a long time, as long as they want to drag this storyline out. I'll be with them.

The Walking Dead 141 - What a contrast with Rick's noble speech; that last page was a killer. But puns and spoilers aside, I am actually starting to side with Negan a little bit. He didn't move at all? He didn't do anything? And Rick just casually discards that? That seems stupid on Rick's part. You can't just have him here as a symbol of your grand self, you've got to continue with this idea of making progress. Andrea is a good partner, Dwight wants out, and Maggie is taking up the reins of leadership in a totally different way. There's some cool stuff happening.

Book of the week goes to Saga. I hope it's always around.


And the next week came and went while I was finishing school, so I didn't get this up until two weeks later.

Buffy 15 - I coulda swore I just wrote a review for Angel & Faith where I said that it looked like the crossovers were done with and that was a good thing. But, to be fair, I think I left a little caveat saying they happened in the TV show once every season (or once every two?) and that'd be fine. So yeah, this makes sense. They need more power, we've clearly been seeing Angel dealing with the same nightmares, so it makes sense. And, again, there'll be the good reconciling of any of the Spike/Buffy relationship tension. So, yeah, it makes sense. But I'm hopeful that when this is over, they go their own ways. They're related, but they're not the same. I think Buffy works best when Angel is on his own. And the inverse is true. They're just so different now. Key example: Buffy forming up her team around her with the line that they're a family. Angel's not part of that anymore. He's got his own. And that's a good thing. The art in this issue bordered on just a little too cartoony for me, but overall, it was great.

Daredevil 15.1 - Fun, unnecessary, but nice to get another touch from the team. Hope they're still around on a Daredevil book post-Secret Wars.

Mind MGMT 33 - That's the best thing about Mind MGMT - everything is planned out, plotted rather precisely. Willie makes his way into the series and we get to see a tertiary character become part of the main focus. His fortune cookie narration over the second plot of the issue was perfect; when this many characters can see what's coming, it's vital that we have this wide lens to cast over all of them, so that we can still maintain the element of belief. And then the bookends. That was cute. But it felt meaningless? Which drives me back to the first point: it must not have been. There must be more to the parents, but they only have a little more time to pay off. It's going to be great, but I'm sad that it's going to be over so quickly. Beautiful stuff.

Wytches 6 - God. That's horrible. But amazing. I mean, I tend to think that I figure stuff out pretty quickly, but I did not see that coming and I thought it was an amazing turn. All the mainline story stuff aside, there was the great background of Charlie putting out his last book and the recurring theme that it was all about Sialor, which is quite meta, obviously. But it was nice to hear all those complimentary things he had to say about her, given their up and down relationship this whole run so far. My biggest wonder is whether this will mean the end of the book as we know it and when 7 comes out, if it'll be set much, much later, or if Sailor will immediately get into the monster-hunting business. Superb stuff.

Book of the week goes to Wytches. Conclusions are the hardest part to pull off, and though this was only the ending to chapter one, it was beautifully done.

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