They’re Creeping Up on You


The Spirit #9

An uncommonly dead-serious issue of this comic. The Spirit runs into a crimelord named El Morte who appears to be completely unstoppable. Much of the story is El Morte’s origin, and it’s pretty darn bizarre, but wow, he seems really far more scary than Sprit villains should be. Crazy kooky crimelords are fine, but when they can’t be shot or beat up or anything else, what can a non-powered guy like the Spirit do to them?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Darwyn Cooke’s artwork is so excellent. I’m a bit worried about El Morte — I hope it’s not just going to be several issues of “Spirit gets beat half to death” followed by a deus ex machina ending.


Shadowpact #16

Well, it turns out that the evil Dr. Gotham didn’t kill all of Chicago last issue, like they claimed he did. In fact, he missed almost everyone, thanks to Nightshade teleporting multiple skyscrapers and people into the Shadowrealm at the last second. Other superheroes show up to help, but Shadowpact does most of the work. Enchantress teleports into Dr. Gotham’s transdimensional armory and busts up a lot of his stuff until Gotham gives up and runs away. Meanwhile, Blue Devil’s lawyer fails to win back BD’s soul, mainly because Hell’s lawyers are so very good at what they do. A very angry priest requires BD to take on 13 nearly impossible tasks before he can be forgiven for selling his soul.

Verdict: Thumbs down. All this stuff happens, and it’s still not pulling me into the story. And I’m still pretty unhappy with the complete lack of characterization going on. Most of these characters, aside from Detective Chimp, seem to exhibit the same personality, except for Nightshade, who has never really had any personality at all.


Justice League of America #12

Brad Meltzer’s swan song on this comic focuses on the JLA’s time on monitor duty. Hawkgirl meets Red Arrow’s daughter, Black Canary plays the harmonica, GeoForce and Black Lightning run sting operations.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Part of the reason so many of Meltzer’s previous issues met with such rotten reviews is that he seems to be better at personality profiles than he is at superhero action. Well, that, and his cast is way too large. But hey, it’s cool that Black Canary plays the harmonica.


Supergirl #20

I’m astoundingly late with this one. Basically, the new, more realistic Supergirl completely fails to keep Air Force One from crashing, then tries to fight off angry Amazons, magic giants, and distrustful humans.

Verdict: Thumbs up. The character’s new look is a winner — pretty much just like the original without the creepy maniquinism that plagued her before. Good personality work, too. I wish Tony Bedard and Renato Guedes could work on this comic longer than the three issues they’ll be here…

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