For Those about to Rock

iZombie #24

Our focus in this issue is on Kennedy, the field leader of the Dead Presidents, a bunch of government monsters who go out to fight other monsters. Everyone in Eugene, Oregon is dealing with the problem of an elder god called Xitalu, who is about to come to Earth and kill everyone, and Kennedy notices a new player on the scene — a green-skinned, green-haired combat monster who looks just like Gwen’s boyfriend, Horatio. And Kennedy realizes that this reminds her of something from her past — after a short origin story, the flashback reveals that a mission a few decades ago had her meeting up with a rock band called Ghost Dance that, thanks to lyrics assistance from a trippy novelist named Adam Morlock, was performing concerts where the band and everyone in the audience had mass hallucinations. What’s the connection between an old rock band and the end of the world?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Nice to see a little background on the Dead Presidents’ leader. Great character work, too, particularly for the band members. And a really nice cliffhanger. It’s depressing that this title will be ending in another four issues, though…

Fatale #4

The supernatural gangsters are running amok. They’ve already butchered the wife of reporter Hank Raines and have now turned their evil attentions on a mob boss named “Mayday” Luccarelli and his stooges. Hank Raines has gone a little bit crazy after being accused of killing his wife — especially after he sees the gory crime scene photos. Corrupt cop Walt Booker and his partner insist they had nothing to do with the murder, though their superiors still suspect them. Josephine catches up with Booker, and she convinces him that he should help her escape from the demon mobsters. We also learn that Booker has been able to see through the world’s mundane veil to the otherworldly horrors that actually run things. And Hank, released from jail because the cops don’t believe he really committed the murder, gets trailed by Booker’s partner, and they both land in a world of trouble.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Super-stylish noir-horror. Great atmosphere, killer art, everything else about it rocks. Don’t know what else I can tell you about it — it’s grand fun to read.

Avengers Academy #28

The Runaways have got Old Lace back, but they’ve learned that Giant-Man and Tigra plan to betray them so they can get Molly Hayes and Klara Prast into normal families and normal schools. This leads to a fight… but not a very long fight — most of the Avengers Academy kids are entirely sympathetic to the Runaways. They all realize that part of the problem is that none of them understand the other side’s point-of-view, but Nico Minoru can cast a spell that will make that possible. So everyone gets a peek into the brains of someone else on the other squad so they can get some perspective on their lives. Will that be enough to clear up the two teams’ disagreements?

Verdict: Thumbs up. So amazing to have a comic where problems are solved through brainpower instead of a bunch of people slugging each other.

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