Archive for Flash

Love, Superhero Style

We got another giant buttload of Convergence comics this week, and once again, I’m going to try to get all of these cleared out of the way quickly.


Convergence: Nightwing and Oracle #2

The rotten-as-snot Flashpoint versions of Hawkman and Hawkgirl are in Gotham City, looking forward to killing Nightwing. But Dick Grayson isn’t all that easy to kill, and Barbara Gordon’s awfully, awfully smart. And they both have some really great friends. Can an acrobat and a paralyzed hacker beat up a couple maniacal winged fascists and still find true love?

The backup story is the first glimpse we get of the new “Midnighter” series.


Convergence: Superman #2

While Superman battles the Flashpoint versions of Cyborg, Captain Thunder, and Abin Sur, the skinny Flashpoint Superman kidnaps the pregnant Lois Lane. He takes her to the Flashpoint Batman’s Batcave, hoping Dr. Thomas Wayne can help deliver her baby. Will Lois’s baby be delivered safely?

The backup story is the first glimpse we get of the new “Doomed” series.


Convergence: The Question #2

Renee Montoya, along with the Huntress and Batwoman, are trying to find Two-Face. Harvey Dent desperately wants to die, and since he’s not able to commit suicide as long as his coin keeps coming up heads over and over, he’s decided to track down the Harvey Dent of another dimension and get him to commit murder on his behalf.

The backup story is the first glimpse we get of the new “Starfire” series.


Convergence: Speed Force #2

Wally West has to battle the seriously psycho Flashpoint Wonder Woman and her Amazons, while Fastback, from the Amazing Zoo Crew, tries to defend Jai and Iris West. Can the Flash handle a foe who’s almost as fast as he is and a much more deadly combatant? And will the loveable cartoon turtle survive?!

The backup story is the first glimpse we get of the new “Green Arrow” series.


Convergence: Batgirl #2

It’s Stephanie Brown, Cassandra Cain, and Tim Drake vs. the Flashpoint versions of Gorilla Grodd and Catman!

The backup story is the first glimpse we get of the new “Prez” series.

Verdicts: We had some good stuff and some bad stuff. Let’s unpack this thang.

First of all, the Batgirl story is the one I was looking forward to the most, and it was just not good. While I liked the fact that she solved the issue’s dilemma through brainpower, the rest of it was not worth the paper. Confusing, badly illustrated, not well written, poor characterization. Of all the characters here, Steph probably needed closure the least — the end of her regular series was actually very well done and emotionally affecting. I would’ve enjoyed this one more if we’d gone with a good ending for Cass, instead of a tacked-on romance between Steph and Tim.

The rest were much better. The Nightwing/Oracle story was probably the best, but it was written by Gail Simone about some of her favorite characters, so that was certainly to be expected. The romance subplot didn’t feel tacked-on — in fact, it was at least, if not more important than, the entire battle against the Hawks.

Superman’s story was fine, but it was stronger as a combination of a great Lois Lane story and a nice story about the more hard-edged Flashpoint Batman finding something he was willing to care about.

The Question’s story was great just because it’s wonderful to see Greg Rucka and Cully Hamner working on these characters again.

Flash’s story was alright, but not all that spectacular. I was just glad to see Flashback survived — I take it the Zoo Crew has been taking it on the chin in the other Convergence books.

Of the sneak-peeks we get of the new series… not a lot of them really appeal to me. I’d had high hopes for the Prez and Starfire series, and they just don’t look very interesting. The Doomed series looks somewhat interesting — I knew nothing about it before — but it still stinks like ’90s Image to me…

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So Much Convergence

So the first of the “Convergence” miniseries came out this week, and most of the stuff on my pull list all showed up at once. So hey, we’re gonna try to clear these outta here as quickly as we can.

We know the general premise, yes? A mysterious entity (Pssst! It is Brainiac!) had kidnapped many cities from old versions of the DC Universe or alternate universe variants. For the past year, they’ve all been held beneath domes, and the various superheroes under the domes have been deprived of their superpowers. Now the domes have been removed, everyone has their powers back, and the champions of each city must fight other champions, or their realities will be destroyed. And the first crop of books focuses on pre-Flashpoint characters, just before DC ruined everything with the Reboot.


Convergence: Batgirl #1

We start off with Stephanie Brown as Batgirl, Cassandra Cain as the Black Bat, and Tim Drake as Red Robin. Stephanie has been designated Gotham’s champion, despite the fact that she hasn’t worn her Batgirl costume in a year — Cassandra and Tim would be much more capable than Steph would. They start training her but are all soon dragged off into the desert where they’re attacked by the Catman and Gorilla Grodd from the Flashpoint universe.


Convergence: Superman #1

Superman has been without his powers for a year, but he’s been dressing up in a simple costume to fight crime Batman-style. Lois Lane has been assisting over a radio headset. Lois is also pregnant and due any day now. Once the dome is down and Supes has his powers back, he ends up tangling with Captain Thunder, Cyborg, and Abin Sur from Flashpoint, while the skinny teenaged Flashpoint Kal-El heads for Lois, believing her to be his Flashpoint benefactor.


Convergence: The Question #1

Renee Montoya is trying to help keep things under control in Gotham, running around without her mask. Harvey Dent is running around with half a beard, beating up thieves — and his two-headed coin is only flipping good side up lately. The Huntress doesn’t really approve, but she’s not going to get in the way. And Renee is still going out nightly as the Question — and meeting up with Harvey, too. He wants to kill himself, but he can’t do it as long as the coin keeps flipping on the good side. But when the dome comes down, he decides to find a Two-Face in another city who’ll finally kill him.


Convergence: Nightwing and Oracle #1

After the Flashpoint Hawkman and Hawkgirl kill off the Justice Riders‘ Earth, they get sent after our Gotham, where Oracle is giving Nightwing her cyber-assistance in crimefighting. Mr. Freeze has lost his edge from long imprisonment under the dome, and Nightwing is worried that he’s losing his edge, too. Dick Grayson asks Barbara Gordon to marry him, and she turns him down, just before the Hawks make their appearance and offer a bargain — if Barbara surrenders the city, the Hawks will take a dive — Gotham will live, the Hawks’ home will be destroyed, and the Hawks will take over Gotham. Nightwing plans to fight them, but Oracle has her own way to make war.


Convergence: Speed Force #1

Wally West has been stuck powerless in Gotham with the rest of the Justice League, along with his children Iris and Jai. When the dome comes down and his powers return, he takes a high-speed tour of the other kidnapped cities. He gets to watch the Justice Riders’ home get atomized, then visits a bunch of other worlds, eventually picking up a new superspeed friend, Fastback, from the Zoo Crew! But they’ll all have to deal with the murderous Flashpoint Wonder Woman next.

Verdicts: Well, now, let’s add all this up.

First, I really hate the “We have to murder all these people to save our planet” plotline. It’s lazy. It’s not something that any legitimate superheroes would do, because it’s exactly the kind of scam that comic book superheroes prefer to find a way around, usually by beating up Brainiac instead of each other. And it’s short-sighted — is there any good reason to wipe out characters as awesome and fun as the Justice Riders? Only if you’re Dan DiDio, Geoff Johns, and Jim Lee, and you can’t stop thinking like a ’90s Image comic.

I liked getting to see Stephanie, Cassandra, and Tim again, but large chunks of the story bugged me bad. Steph had finally become an excellent superhero at the end of her series — now she’s struggling to do anything right, which is a severe backslide. We also don’t get to see her mother at all, and she was a great character. And I felt Cassandra and Tim were also a bit mis-handled.

Having said that, there are lots of good things here. Revisiting the pre-Reboot non-sucky DCU is a very good thing. Tom Grummett drawing the Flash and his kids is a good thing. Gail Simone writing Oracle is a good thing. Greg Rucka and Cully Hamner working on the Question again is a very good thing. Guest appearances from Two-Face, Starfire, Helena Bertinelli, and Fastback are all good things, too.

Altogether, I’ll give these a tentative thumbs up. I reserve the right to switch that to a thumbs down if DiDio is just going to kill everyone off but Flashpoint and the Reboot just to laugh at everyone’s tears.

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Friday Night Fights: Dead Reckoning!

Kids, it’s been a long week, and papa’s tired. So without no further ado, let’s just get right to it. It’s time for… FRIDAY NIGHT FIGHTS!

Tonight’s battle comes to us from September 1983’s The Flash #325 by Cary Bates, Carmine Infantino, Dennis J. Jensen, and Phil Hugh Felix. Professor Zoom has been killed by the Flash, and the Rogues have gone to the trouble to hijack his body from the morgue.




There we go, children. Now y’all shoo — papa’s gonna start the weekend off with a nap…

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Friday Night Fights: Cold Blood!

Well, looks like we’re back in the saddle again. The weekend’s here, I’m socked in by an ice storm, and it’s time for… FRIDAY NIGHT FIGHTS!

In honor of the cold weather I’m suffering through, let’s pull tonight’s battle from March 2004’s The Flash #206 by Geoff Johns and Alberto C. Dose. Yeah, this is back in the days before Johns started to suck quite so relentlessly. Anyway, the Flash is trying to bring in Mr. Element, who’s been committing murders and framing Captain Cold for the crimes. Turns out the real Captain Cold isn’t too happy about that.





Let’s hope the power stays on here, or I’m gonna get flash-frozen myself…

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What is Best in Life?

People, I don’t have much of anything I want to blog about today, so I’m just gonna sit here and deliberately stir up trouble.

What I am about to reveal here is the complete, objective truth.

For example:

Who was the best Green Lantern?


Answer: Kyle Rayner.

No, definitely not Hal Jordan. He’s always been a shallow, generally uninteresting character. “Fearless test pilot” isn’t a personality all by itself, and the people out there who seem to freakin’ worship Hal strike me as some of the weirdest people on earth. Yes, that includes the “Hal’s Emerald Attack Team” fanatics and Geoff Johns. As for the rest of them, Guy Gardner’s generally fun, but he’s mostly a gag character. I like John Stewart, especially in the Justice League cartoons. Simon Baz is too new. But Kyle, the last Green Lantern, uncertain, awkward, crab-masked, completely aware of his own fears, freelance artist with the no-yellow-impurity power ring? Kyle was the best.

Who was the best Flash?


Answer: Wally West.

Definitely, definitely not Barry Allen. Having a crew cut and a bow tie makes him the *worst* Flash. Wally was funnier, cooler, more interesting in every possible way — and of course, he was far, far, far faster.

Who was the best Robin?


Answer: Dick Grayson.

Really, I guess the best answer would be “Anyone but Jason Todd.” Because I really like all of the Robins. But Dick was the first Robin, he was Robin for the longest time, and he eventually ended up being the best possible Nightwing, so I’m giving the circus kid the crown.

Who was the best Batgirl?


Answer: Stephanie Brown.

Not to take anything away from Barbara Gordon or Cassandra Cain, because they were pretty cool, but as grim and gritty as the Bat-verse generally is, it was just plain awesome to get to read a Bat-title every month where the lead character wasn’t an emotionally-crippled basket case. Steph was fun and funny and had the best dialogue.

Who was the best Aquaman?


Answer: Bearded, hook-handed Aquaman.

Because I don’t care who writes him, the clean-shaven, orange-shirted nonentity from “Super Friends” just sucks on every possible level.

Who was the best Hawkgirl?


Answer: Kendra Saunders.

Mostly because I liked the idea of a Hawkgirl who, at least initially, didn’t want to be the back half of “Hawkman and” — she didn’t love Hawkman, and she wanted to be her own person. She was even in relationships with people other than Hawkman. Eventually, she fell in love with Hawkman in a way that felt more organic, realistic, and worthwhile, and that was fine with me. She certainly didn’t deserve to get exit-stage-lefted the way she did…

Who was the best Green Arrow?


Answer: The one with the beard.

I liked Connor Hawke, but he’d never be the equal of his dad. And Ollie without a beard just looks like a dork, so he’s gotta have the ridiculous beard.

Who was the best Hulk?


Answer: Angry green stupid Hulk.

I liked the Professor Hulk, actually. And the Green Scar was cool. Joe Fixit is always fun. But angry green stupid Hulk is the strongest one there is.

Who was the best Spider-Man?


Answer: The Peter Parker married to Mary Jane Watson.

Because Spider-Man isn’t Otto Octavius, and he doesn’t make deals with the Devil.

What are the best zombies? Fast or slow?


Answer: Slow zombies.

To quote Max Brooks: “Ha ha, there are no such things as fast zombies!”

So there we go, friends and neighbors, all the mysteries of life cleared up. Go on about your business, please.

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Flash in the Pan

The Flash #10

Well, the motorcycle-riding speedster Hot Pursuit is really an alternate-universe version of Barry Allen himself. He warns that some kind of time anomaly is about to drastically alter history and reveals that Barry Allen himself is the generator of the Speed Force. Kid Flash shows up, and Barry blows him off because, well, no one knows. And former police lab scientist Patty Spivot returns to visit Barry and apparently try to start some kind of romantic triangle with Barry’s wife, Iris.

Verdict: Thumbs down. Holy bananas, this is rotten stuff. They’re trying to get all the pieces in line for the upcoming “Flashpoint” crossover, but this really is coming across very ineptly. I’m especially irritated by the “Barry is the source for the Speed Force” thing, ’cause it’s just thrown out there almost at random, which is a really poor way to do a retcon.

Batgirl #20

Batgirl and Proxy are trying to track a shadowy group employing Slipstream, a technology-based superspeedster who plans on a major heist. And it turns out that Slipstream was actually one of Stephanie’s classmates. So how does a college student with some Batarangs beat a speedster?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Great dialogue, jokes, and action. Do I need to keep telling y’all this is DC’s best superhero comic?

Marvel Adventures: Super Heroes #13

Thor and Valkyrie bring Nova along on a trip to Asgard, where they’re going to meet up with an Asgardian soldier who has been punished for the last several thousand years for a failure in battle. Nova points out that this is a pretty harsh punishment for a single failure, which angers Thor and amuses Valkyrie. What’s going to happen when the three of them finally catch up to the condemned warrior?

Verdict: Thumbs down, mostly because this series has been the all-Thor-Valkirie-and-Nova show lately, and I’m getting bored with that. C’mon, Marvel, I know there’s a “Thor” movie coming out, but give it a rest, okay?

Sir Edward Grey, Witchfinder: Lost and Gone Forever #3

Sir Edward and Kaler dispose of the undead Mr. Glaren by burning him in a campfire and are soon afterwards set upon by some sort of demonic hound — and Edward is saved by Isaac, the simple-minded Paiute Indian. Edward and Isaac exchange gifts — Edward reads an old letter to Isaac, who gives the Englishman a bracelet. While all this is going on, the witch Eris is continuing to work her influence over the local Indian tribes.

Verdict: Thumbs up. I’m loving John Severin’s artwork. I’m also getting a charge out of the rest of the story. The dialogue is wonderful, of course, but I think the most fun is the small moments — the letter Edward reads to Isaac doesn’t seem to be any earthshattering thing, but it’s a nice moment anyway.

Today’s Cool Links:

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Flash Bang

The Flash #9

I got dead bored with this title for a while but am gonna give it another shot as they’re starting the buildup to the big fancy “Flashpoint” crossover event. We start out with a character named Hot Pursuit — some kind of supercop driving a superspeed, time-traveling motorcycle — showing up in Central City looking for the Flash. Barry Allen, meanwhile, has been sent out to investigate the dead body of an old man wearing a superhero costume — specifically, the costume of the Elongated Man, though for some reason, Barry doesn’t recognize it. When the body’s fingerprints are identified, it turns out to be a local teen hero called the Elongated Kid. No one knows why a teenager aged into a 90-year-old corpse. On top of that, Barry is avoiding attending a “Flash family picnic,” and his wife Iris is unhappy at him for that. Finally, Hot Pursuit shows up again and busts a window in the crime lab right in front of Barry. When Barry chases him down, Hot Pursuit reveals himself to be (Spoiler Alert, if you didn’t figure out the extremely obvious reveal by Page 2) Barry Allen, trying to prevent “the single greatest time anomaly to ever threaten reality.”

Verdict: I think I’m going to go with a thumbs down. First, it irritated me that Barry Allen wasn’t able to recognize the Elongated Man’s costume — longstanding continuity, confirmed only a few short years ago by Geoff Johns himself, has established that the Flash and the Elongated Man have been close friends for years. It bugs me that Johns is such a sloppy writer now that he can’t even remember something he’d written not that long ago. Yeah, it’s just one small moment in the comic, but it annoyed me enough to completely ruin the rest of the story for me. I’ll give it another issue or two to try to draw me back in, but they better step up their game quick.

Batman and Robin #20

Dick Grayson attends a performance of Das Rheingold which gets disrupted when a guy dressed as an angel plummets 80 stories to his death on the red carpet. The guy’s wings were filled with some kind of glowing yellow substance and his fingerprints and footprints have been burned off with acid. While Batman and Robin are investigating the crime scene, they’re accosted by Man-Bat, covered with some kind of glowing white substance and shouting about screams that only he can hear. And then the glowing white bats show up.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Seriously weird story and starting out very, very interestingly. But I must say, my favorite part of the whole story is the very beginning, with Bruce, Dick, Tim Drake, Damian, and Alfred all settling down with popcorn and strawberry milkshakes to watch “The Mark of Zorro” on DVD. It’s a great, fun moment.

B.P.R.D.: Hell on Earth – Gods #2

This issue is actually set at the same time as the previous issue, but told from the POV of the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense, and particularly with Abe Sapien as our focus. He and Andrew Devon have it out about the strong disagreements between the two of them over the last few months, the whole team reviews the situation in Texas, with an emphasis on Fenix’s ability to lead large numbers of refugees to safety, and they hear from a borderline crackpot named Professor O’Donnell, who theorizes that the monsters overrunning Texas were also responsible for the destruction of ancient Hyperborea. It all culminates where last issue did, in the ruined football field.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Nice to see a little character development getting processed for Abe and Andrew, along with a little more backstory for the Texas situation.

Today’s Cool Links:

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Yin and Yang

Supergirl #56

Supergirl has kidnapped her Bizarro double, Bizarrogirl, so she can return her to Bizarro World. But when they get to Bizarrogirl’s home, they learn that something has cracked the whole cube-planet open, and everything’s in chaos. Well, more in chaos. After a green space monster eats Bizarro Luthor, Bizarro himself shows up and reveals that something called the Godship is behind all their troubles. It crashed into the planet and periodically sends out space-monster drones to eat people — the drones then get processed to provide the ship’s fuel. Supergirl goes out to check out the Godship — and discovers that it’s not a ship at all. And it won’t be easy to beat it.

Verdict: Thumbs up. It ain’t perfect, but I love this comic’s blend of humor and superheroics. The Godship is plenty impressive, and I like the way the Bizarros aren’t being portrayed as solely dim-witted buffoons. The artistic style is great, too — it’s so nice, after the last few years, to see a Supergirl who’s not drawn to look like a hooker.

The Avengers #5

Time appears to be broken bad, and while the Avengers in the present mostly sit around and gawp at the ongoing disaster (except for Thor. Thank Thor for Thor! He zooms right out and hits Galactus with his hammer), the small group of Avengers in the future have a lot more to do. Future Tony Stark has stripped out all the electronics and armor out of Regular Tony Stark to keep Ultron from using his armor to spy on them. Future Tony Stark and the Maestro reveal that time breaking is all the fault of Kang — he was trying to defeat a super-advanced version of Ultron and kept twisting time to bring in more and more heroes and villains to help him until he finally fractured time good.

Future Tony has a big Rip Hunter map of the Avengers’ future, and he realizes that he has no idea who Noh-Varr is — which means he’s could be the key to stopping time from breaking. The Avengers suddenly find themselves shot back into the past, Groundhog Day style, at the moment a few issues back when Apocalypse and his Horsemen attacked. Can the Avengers figure out the clues they need to prevent the disaster? And who will they have to ally themselves with to stop it?

Verdict: Thumbs up, with reservations. I loved all the future stuff, even when it was chaotic and crazy. I really disliked the stuff in the present, particularly the way that everyone except Thor limped around staring goggle-eyed at a bunch of cavemen and dinosaurs and whimpering that they had no idea how they could help and the whole world was just ruined and how can any of us go on? The whole thing made me want to smack the tar out of a bunch of whiny superheroes. And Bendis’ dialogue was downright weak this time. But yeah, even with all that going against it, I still enjoyed enough of the story to feel happy with it.

The Flash #5

I didn’t actually buy this one. I’ve been feeling unhappy with the way it’s been going, so I flipped through it in the store. General summary: Flash fights the Rogues and also the future versions of the Rogues, who are all cops. They want to arrest him because they say, at some point in his future, he killed one of the future cops. At some point, for no real reason I could see, Captain Boomerang gets a bunch of White Lantern powers.

Verdict: Thumbs down. The random “Hello, White Lantern!” thing was bizarre. The way the future cops are wanting to arrest Barry for a crime he hasn’t committed yet — and if jailed, will never commit — is stupid. But you know what really chaps my hide about this? This comic about the Fastest Man Alive is incredibly slow and boring. I doubt that I’ll be reading any more of it.

Today’s Cool Links:

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Dark Knight Meets Emerald Knight

Batman: The Brave and the Bold #19

Hal Jordan hates to wait for Batman’s intricate plans, so he ends up getting captured by the Cyborg Superman, who wants access to the technology of the Green Lantern power ring. When the power ring detects the cyborg’s tampering, it immediately leaves Hal to find someone else who can help — and it ends up settling on Batman’s finger, making him the newest member of the Green Lantern Corps. But Batman isn’t a fan of power rings — he’d rather rely on himself and his less-flashy weapons. He and the other Corps members fly to the planet Ranx to rescue Hal, but the Cyborg activates the Manhunters, robots that specialize in draining power rings. For Hal and Batman to stand a chance against the Cyborg Superman, Hal is going to have to learn to plan, and Batman is going to have to learn to use a power ring.

Verdict: Thumbs up. It was kinda cool seeing the old-school Cyborg Superman again, and it’s always fun to see Batman wearing a modified Green Lantern costume.

The Flash #4

Captain Boomerang is out of prison again, and he’s now able to throw black-energy boomerangs like he did when he was a Black Lantern zombie. After Boomerang tries to blow up a police helicopter, Flash uses some super-fast footwork to rescue everyone aboard. Flash also saves the Rogue-inspired future-cops from Boomerang’s assault, inspiring the Top to risk his own life by telling Flash about the future — Mirror Master is going to open a gateway into the Mirror Worlds in an effort to beat the Flash, and one of the villains inside is going to take over Flash’s wife and turn her into a supervillain. The only way to free her will be to kill the person who opened the gateway, which will lead to Flash accidentally killing the future cop analogue of Mirror Master. Where does that leave the Flash?

Verdict: Thumbs up, mostly for that great speed stunt where Flash rescues the cops in the helicopter. The rest of it, I’m not so fond of. There are some serious time travel logic problems in this story — if the future cops arrest Barry Allen prior to the point where he kills the Mirror Monarch, then no one actually kills Mirror Monarch, so there’s no reason to arrest Flash, and they’re doing more damage to the space-time continuum than they are by revealing the truth to him. And I don’t much like the way the mirror gateway part of the story is developing either. It’s either going to be needlessly cruel or a complete anticlimax…

Today’s Cool Links:

  • Jack Kirby’s depictions of God.
  • The article is about the latest round in the legal battles between Neil Gaiman and Todd MacFarlane, but the judge’s ruling leads me to believe we’ve just found the best nerd judge ever.
  • So apparently, when you’re faced with an epidemic of people videotaping crooked/violent/racist cops, the solution isn’t to train cops not to be crooked, violent, or racist, it’s to arrest the people who expose the crooked/violent/racist cops. I’ll, as they say, retire to Bedlam.

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A Bunch of Short Reviews, Followed by a Hiatus

I got a great big stack of comics sitting on the desk, all ready to start reviewing for the week.

And I’m also getting a bit tired of blogging. The weather is nice, I’ve got a stack of interesting new games I could be playing, I’ve got a bunch of books I never have time to read, and I’ve got non-blog writing I’ve been wanting to do forever. The blog gets in the way of all of that.

So here’s what I’m gonna do — get all these comics reviewed today, then take most of the rest of the week off, except for Friday Night Fights. Maybe I can recharge my batteries, maybe I’ll get some writing done, maybe I’ll actually finish a book for once.

So here we go…

Batman: The Brave and the Bold #18

Batman teams up with the Martian Manhunter to take on Ma’Alefa’Ak, the other last survivor of Mars, and later, Dr. Fate assists when Batman is possessed by the evil Martian.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Fun story with a few twists and turns. Evil Batman is lotsa fun.

The Flash #3

Captain Boomerang gets magic black-lantern boomerangs, Barry Allen gets in trouble at work, and the Flash gets chased by the futuristic Rogue-inspired cops

Verdict: Thumbs down. It’s just not particularly fun or exciting.

Green Lantern #55

Lobo’s in town, and that means a bunch of ring-slingers are gonna get beat up. All that, plus the origin story of adorable rage-filled Red Lantern cat Dex-Starr!

Verdict: Thumbs up. Lots of great stuff, including Hal on a space motorcycle. And the Dex-Starr origin is worth the price of admission all on its own.

Heralds #5

Nova has kidnapped Valeria Richards, and all the heroines have to go into space to rescue her. Will Frances the diner waitress be able to assist with her mysterious connections to Nova? Or is someone gonna die?

Verdict: Thumbs down. Not enough of Tonci Zonjic’s artwork. Too much confusion in the plot. A whole lot of stuff unresolved. This series started really well — I’m disappointed it ended so poorly.

Joe the Barbarian #6

Joe makes it to Hearth Castle, a deeply friendly and comforting place, where everyone promises to make his life completely happy. But Zyxy and Smoot track him down and try to get him to return to his quest.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Two issues left ’til the end of this one. Joe has to get a soda and try to save both himself and this weird little fantasy world that may be a lot more real than we expect.

Legion of Super-Heroes #2

While the Legionaires try to clean up after the destruction of Titan, Saturn Queen takes control of Ultra Boy, Earth-Man tries, probably deceitfully, to win his new teammates’ trust, and Saturn Girl travels time to find her children.

Verdict: Thumbs down. Too much stuff happening! Come on, it’s just the second issue — shouldn’t there be a little lead-up before we get this many subplots going on at once?

Madame Xanadu #24

Rosalyn is trying to live a normal life, but she’s begun to see visions of normal people with horrific injuries — visions that no one else can see. Can Madame Xanadu help cure her?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Very nice work, great setting details for 1963. Rosalyn is a very appealing character. The art by Marley Zarcone is different than normal for this book, but it works very well.

Supergirl #53

The War of the Supermen is over, and New Krypton is destroyed, and now Supergirl doesn’t much wanna be Supergirl anymore. But a new Bizarro Supergirl may soon force that issue.

Verdict: Thumbs up. Nice characterization, nice dialogue, cool art. Supergirl’s desire to get out of the spandex-wearing career is written really well.

Aaaaand that’s that. See y’all Friday evening.

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