Sunday, August 2, 2009

Originally posted on my myspace blog on 5/19 & 5/31/2009


FX (IDW, 2008)
Collects FX Nos. 1-6 (cover dates March- August, 2008)
This is the creator owned series by Wayne Osborn with artwork by John Byrne, and was a fun read. If you enjoy pre-'90s superhero comic books, then you'll love this.

















JLA/ AVENGERS (DC/ Marvel, 2008)
Collects JLA/ Avengers Nos. 1-4 (cover dates September- December, 2003)
This is the best company crossover that I have ever read. Kurt Busiek and George Perez are so well versed in both universes that it never seems cheesy or pandering to either company. This is Perez's A-game. Each and every panel is a visual feast, crammed with so much rich detail that it borders on distracting. Busiek stuffs as much of each universe's respective continuity into this that it qualifies for a nerdgasm. I never bothered picking up the expensive $75 hardcover and was relieved when a softcover was solicited all of these years later. In retrospect, this book would have been totally worth the deluxe package treatment. It's grand either way, so whatever.










WONDER WOMAN: SECOND GENESIS (DC, 1997)
Collects Wonder Woman (Vol. 2) Nos. 101-105 (cover dates September, 1995- January, 1996)
This is competent stuff by John Byrne. His artwork took a turn for the worse here, but the storytelling and layouts are still solid. The writing is also good, and I unfortunately read the Lifeline TPB first, and have since forgotten how The Demon storyline gets resolved. I guess I could A) dig out the book and re-read it or B) look it up on the Internet.











CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE DEATH OF CAPTAIN AMERICA VOL. 3: THE MAN WHO BOUGHT AMERICA (Marvel, 2008; Hardcover)
Collects Captain America Nos. 37-42 (cover dates June- November, 2008)
Finally! The climax to the epic saga that has been building for years! I am totally loving the "new" Captain America, and Ed Brubaker has firmly cemented his run in the upper echelon of Captain America runs.



















NEW AVENGERS VOL. 8: SECRET INVASION BOOK 1 (Marvel, 2008; Hardcover)
Collects New Avengers Nos. 38-42 (cover dates April- August, 2008)
Bendis, Bendis, Bendis... The man is not paid by the word, that's for sure. I flew through this hardcover in about 40 minutes. That's terrible! Issue 38 is nothing more than padding, with the whole of the issue comprising of a conversation between Luke Cage/ Power Man and Jessica Jones, and the team moving into a new apartment headquarters. I wish I were kidding, but that is really all that happened for 22 pages! Couple that with Michale Gaydos' laughably pitiful artwork, and you have Grade A crap. Issue 39 seems to be a 45 RPM single played at half speed to take up a full issue. 38 and 39 combined are almost one issue's worth of story. The rest of the issues move along at a brisk clip but are at least entertaining. Brian Michael Bendis has some interesting ideas but really needs to pick up the pace in this day and age of $3.99 floppies.





NEW AVENGERS VOL. 9: SECRET INVASION BOOK 2 (Marvel, 2008; Hardcover)
Collects New Avengers Nos. 43-47 (cover dates September, 2008- January, 2009)
I am this close to dropping this title, as it is a poor value for the money. Too little story unfolding over too many pages for too much money.

















WONDER WOMAN VOL. 3: BEAUTY AND THE BEASTS (DC, 2005)
Collects Wonder Woman (Vol. 2) Nos. 15-19 and selections from Action Comics No. 600 (cover dates April- August, 1988).
WONDER WOMAN VOL. 4: DESTINY CALLING (DC, 2006)
Collects Wonder Woman (Vol. 2) Nos. 20-24 and Wonder Woman Annual No. 1.
An eye candy feast by George Perez! This is such an enjoyable read, and the artwork is so great that you almost have to read the page and then go back and just stare at the artwork, analyzing them like you would a painting. Perez is one of all-time favorites, alongside John Byrne, John Romita, Sr. and Gil Kane. The only sub-par issue is Annual No. 1, as it features artwork by some less than notables like John Bolton.

























THE SUPERMAN CHRONICLES VOL. 6 (DC, 2009)
Collects Superman Nos. 10, 11 and selections from Action Comics Nos. 37-40 and World’s Finest Comics Nos. 2, 3 (cover dates May- Fall, 1941).
Fun, goofy Golden Age stories. These are all pretty cookie cutter, and could be swapped out with any story from Volumes 2-5. The only "super" villain in this book is Lex Luthor. Superman really, desperately needs some badass supervillains to fight.
















AMAZING SPIDER-GIRL VOL. 4: BRAND NEW MAY (Marvel, 2008)
Collects Amazing Spider-Girl Nos. 19-24 (cover dates June- November, 2008)
The usual excellence by Tom DeFalco, Ron Frenz, and Sal Buscema. How can this book not have more readers than it does, while losers like Bendis hog the top of the sales charts? Are people really that dumb?

















MIGHTY AVENGERS VOL. 3: SECRET INVASION BOOK 1 (Marvel, 2008; Hardcover)
Collects Mighty Avengers Nos. 12-15 (cover dates June- August, 2008)
I read this in under 45 minutes. In the House of M mini-series a few years ago Bendis wrote “No more mutants”, and I am now going to write: No more Bendis. I will not buy anything that this man writes. Issue 12 was total waste of space about Nick Fury's whereabouts after the Secret War mini, and didn't really belong in this title. Issue 13 was basically a prequel to the upcoming Secret Warriors Secret Invasion spin-off series. My biggest issue with these heretofore unknown heroes is that much like Heroes, Lost, and any other series geared towards the non-comic book fan, they are wholly derivative. I can see the suits, sitting behind their desks, Blackberry in hand, trying to figure out a team of heroes that could be a major motion picture option: We need a guy who flies, one who runs really fast, one that can control the weather and/or elements, etc. These heroes have already been created, and their stories were already told better years ago. Half of this book had nothing to do with this particular team of Avengers! I didn't buy this for a Nick Fury's Secret Invasion 2 part-er, I wanted to read an Avengers story. The only winner in this whole book was Issue 15, with solid art by John Romita, Jr., Klaus Janson, and Tom Palmer. Alex Maleev's "artwork" on Issues 12 and 13 sucks ass. If Dan Slott doesn't turn this series around when he gets on board, then I am jumping ship.

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