Friday, March 28, 2008

Snap Judgments: Quickie Comic Reviews for March 26, 2008

Geekanerd's second attempt at writing short comic reviews based on initial, lizard-brain opinions. Arranged from BEST to WORST.

Blue Beetle #25: A+
This comic makes me want to be a better man. - AHR

Mighty Avengers #11: A
Probably the best Dr. Doom story I've ever read. Really! - Albo

New Avengers #39: A
Finally the Skrulls are here! Too bad they're pansies. Aside from the lame Skrull fight this is a fantastic standalone Echo story. - Albo

Teen Titans #57: A
An entire issue of Ravager sneering, quipping, and being excessively violent; that, my friends, is exactly what I came to see. - AHR

All-Star Superman, Transhuman and Gunplay after the jump...

All-Star Superman #10:
B+ from AHR, C from Albo
A collection of moments that are alternately confusingly plot-heavy and timelessly emblematic of why folks love Superman. The issue feels disjointed without a single clear narrative line to reassure the audience that the book will eventually become coherent, but like most of Morrison's work it's worth the effort. - AHR

Trying to do way too much at once. Where the hell is Morrison going with this? - Albo

Transhuman #1: B from AHR, C from Albo
Setting a story about genetic engineering in the innately evil world of corporate pharmaceuticals is a stroke of GENE-ius, and despite a constraining "documentary" storytelling device (which visually translates as all talking heads all the time) it's a surprisingly fluid read and if you make it to the middle you get a great comedy interlude with monkeys and violence and X-Men jokes. - AHR

Comic masquerading as a documentary on genetic engineering and human manipulation. All info, no story, no thanks. Hickman's Pax Romana is a much better read with similar themes. -Albo

Gunplay #0: C+
The first bit of a soon to be released graphic novel, which judging from the first few pages I thought was going to be an anti-racist revenge fantasy/vaguely racist castration anxiety nightmare, and though this issue indicates a story more thoughtful and nuanced than that, you get the sense that the preview ends before the interesting stuff starts, which seems like a gamble, marketing-wise - and by the way, I'm not crazy for thinking there are castration themes in this book, like mid-way through a dude gets his balls grabbed. - AHR


Alex said...

Wha! It says how much I think of All Star Superman that I was upset about a B+ (which, you know, isn't that bad). This issue, in particular, was a fabulous exploration of what makes Superman who he is (in this series at least), and what he would do with his last days on Earth. Plus, it was great to see the tiny Superman flying out of hand thing Morrison's been talking about in every interview since he started his run,

Dead-on about Blue Beetle, though. Best issue evah.

AHR said...

Hey Alex! I think my (relatively) low grade of Superman was due to the fact that I read this title off and on, which is obviously not a smart thing to do with an on-going storyline and downright stupid said storyline is by Grant Morrison. And I did really enjoy the issue, but in terms of form I felt I had to grade it down because the structure felt almost haphazardly disjointed - though I'm willing to believe that might be my problem since I haven't been following the series, due to my longstanding and hard to shake dislike of Superman (I'm in recovery). That said, Alb has been following it regularly and apparently had some of the same issues, sooo....Alb, jump in...

I'm glad you're on the Blue Beetle train! My full review of that issue is up at Picks & Pans.

Albo said...

Alex, you say this issue is a fabulous exploration of what makes Superman who he is, but who the hell is he? After ten issues I still don't know what sort of character Morrison is writing. There's plenty of great creative Superman moments, but the characters all feel like not much more than drawings at which to point word balloons. Which was fine for me near the beginning when it was a bit more light hearted and goofy--I was having fun with it. But now Morrison wants me to care about these people. And I don't even know these people.

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