Comics Reviews 6/22

Posted on June 22, 2010. Filed under: Reviews |

By Erik Lewis, Lead Blogger

Not much to say this week, I guess, so on to the reviews!  As always, I pick up my comics at Comics and Paperbacks Plus in Palmyra, PA.  You can find them on Facebook here or here, or you can stop in if you find yourself in Central Pennsylvania. You can also follow me on Twitter, just to see what I think of my books as I read them!  Here’s what I got:

Incredible Hulk #610
Amazing Spider-Man #633 & 634
Lockjaw and the Pet Avengers Unleashed #4
Mad Hatter #1
DC Universe Legacies #2
New Avengers #1
Brightest Day #4
The Boys #43
Hellblazer #268
Harley Quinn #1
The Spirit #3
Red Hood: The Lost Days #1
Heralds #3
Age of Heroes #2

And here’s what I thought:

Amazing Spider-Man #634

Marvel Comics, $3.99

Joe Kelly, Michael Lark, Stefano Gaudiano, Matt Hollingsworth

So here starts the Grim Hunt, what the last 30 or so issues have been building towards.  There’s a lot going on here, and I’m honestly impressed by almost all of it.  Kelly manages to work in a lot of spider people that I haven’t actually thought of for a while.  Ezekiel, Madame Web, Julie Carpenter, Kaine, and Mattie Franklin all have cameos in this issue, and to be honest, I don’t remember all of them.  Madame Web is a character I only remember from the 90’s animated series(I just dated myself, I know), and I’m not familiar with Mattie Franklin at all.  It was nice to see Ezekiel again, and I am frankly very interested in what part he’s going to play in the coming story.  I actually have nothing bad to say about this issue.  It’s a perfect way to start a long anticipated story line, and promises big action from the Kravens and their assorted cohorts.  The art in this issue is also fantastic, although a little sketchy at times, which makes it a little hard at times to make out exactly what’s happening, but I suppose that’s ok.  The backup stories are pretty interesting, although the one called Kaine has very little to with Kaine, but it does show Kraven’s life leading up to Kraven’s last hunt, which is kind of nice to see.  Stan Lee’s back up also promises to be a fun read, although you can tell that Lee is from a different era in comics storytelling.  Which isn’t to say that he’s bad, he just writes in a different style, using a lot of exposition, for example.  For this book, a knowledge of Kraven’s Last hunt would be nice, although I suppose it’s not required.  It is a fun read, but if you can’t find it, catching up on wikipedia would be a suitable alternative.  To sum everything up, while a knowledge of the last 30 issues of ASM isn’t strictly necessary, it’s nice to have to read this, but at the same time, this would be a good place to start reading Spider-Man, and this provides a very fun read.

Odin’s Beard 5/5

Joker’s Asylum II: The Mad Hatter #1

DC Comics, $2.99

Landry Quinn Walker, Keith Giffen, Bill Sienkiewicz

I reviewed the cover for this book on last week’s Mortals, Take Cover feature, and I was a little excited to read this story since then.  I have to say, I was not disappointed.  I really like the idea of the Joker’s Asylum stories, simply because Batman has, arguably, the best rogues gallery in all of comics, or at least tied with the Flash and Spider-Man.  For those of you who don’t know, Jervis Tetch is the Mad Hatter, a character in Batman’s world who was a scientist(as a lot of his villains start off) who developed an obsessive personality, focusing on the works of Lewis Carroll.  This story is told from his perspective, and sees him talking about the book he’s writing, tea, and hats.  It’s a vicious cycle that he goes through, showing some promise in working towards being better mentally, but sadly, eventually, comes the break.  The story makes you feel a little bad for Tetch, because you see that he really can’t help himself.  I like how the art also throws in little snippets of what would be Tetch’s perceptions, like an image of an older style of Batman head, or seeing smiles on past victims faces.  I’d say, if you have an interest in Batman or his rogues, then you should get look for this, or wait for the trade(if it’s collected), but otherwise, you can skip this one.

Ollie’s Beard 3/5

The New Avengers #1

Marvel Comics, $3.99

Brian Michael Bendis, Stuart Immonen, Vade Von Grawbadger, Laura Martin

I’m a sucker for the Avengers, as you can see from my reviews.  I basically got this one upon seeing the Thing on the cover, as I love that ever-lovin’ blue-eyed piece of orange rock.  I have to say, I enjoyed this issue much more than I enjoyed Avengers #1, but not was much as I enjoyed Secret Avengers #1.  It’s a solid team book, starting off where Siege #4 left off, and building from there.  I absolutely love the idea of basing the team out of the old Avengers mansion, so that’s cool.  The only thing that bothered me is that, when recruiting the Thing to the team, Ms. Marvel brings up that he’s on the Fantastic Four already, and Wolverine pipes in to say that he’s an X-Man and on the other Avengers team, but nothing is said about Spider-Man and Hawkeye being on two Avengers teams, or Luke Cage himself leading both the New Avengers and the Thunderbolts.  Why make it an issue when more than half of the team is already doing the same thing?  But that brings me to praise: I love that Bendis has turned Cage into a leader.  It seems like a natural role for the guy.  And you know what, I think that’s as much as I have to say about this one.

Volstagg’s Beard 4/5

DC Universe Legacies #2

DC Comics, $3.99

Len Wein, Andy Kubert, Joe Kubert

DC Universe Legacies inches forward in the DCU timeline, telling a great story to draw in new fans, and to remind old fans of where their favorite characters got a start.  I knew some of the things that go on in this book, but not everything, so it’s nice to get caught up, so to speak.  Also, the backup stories in both this issue and the first issue have been very engaging and intriguing, especially since I’m only really familiar with the Seven Soldiers reboot that happened a few years ago.  The most interesting part of the entire thing, though, would have to be the human story that’s woven through, getting to see Paul live his life through the age of the superhuman wonders.  You really identify with the guy.  The Kubert brothers on art is always a treat, so the book has that going for it too.  You can’t go wrong picking this up.

Volstagg’s Beard 4/5

Lockjaw and the Pet Avengers Unleashed #4

Marvel Comics, $2.99

Chris Eliopoulos, Ig Guara, Chris Sotomayor

I just read the first series of Lockjaw and the Pet Avengers the other day, so I now understand just a little bit more about them, and I can safely say that they are truly great all ages fun in any form.  The real threat of the book isn’t really as advertised on the cover(which is awesome), although I suppose you could say that they do really face a giant threat, so it’s not like  it’s a lie.  As an all ages book, it was easy for me to see the twist behind the series coming, but I can see how it could come as a surprise to younger audiences.  I’d have to say my favorite part of the book would be Ms. Lion.  The dog provides great comedic relief, although the premise in and of itself is humorous enough to begin with.  Looking to get a younger reader hooked on comics?  You could do worse than Lockjaw and the Pet Avengers Unleashed.  Much worse.  Like Preacher.

Ollie’s Beard 3/5

Incredible Hulk #610

Marvel Comics, $3.99

Greg Pak, Pail Pelletier, Danny Miki

So much in this book is awesome.  So much to make up for the terrible parts of World War Hulk, it’s like Greg Pak is personally trying to make it too awesome not to read the rest of the series.  To start off with, Hulked Out Amadeus Cho.  I shouldn’t have to say more than that.  It’s nice that Pak acknowledges that giving someone gamma powers plays off a part of their personality, and as such makes Cho able to alter reality with his mind instead of making him just a mindless bruiser.  The biggest question I have is what the hell happened to M.O.D.O.K.?  Is that for real?  Anyway, the story ends pretty much how you’d expect it to, what with all the big reveals in Hulk books lately, but it’s still very cool and very satisfying.  The next few issues are going to be interesting, and that’s putting it lightly.  As I’ve been saying for the last few issues, if you’re a Hulk fan, this is an absolute essential.  Pak does great work.  If you’re not a Hulk fan, you can safely sit this out.  Maybe that goes without saying, but I’m saying it anyway.

Volstagg’s Beard 4/5

And that’s it for this week!  Thanks for dropping by, and be sure to return this Thursday for another Mortals, Take Cover, and this Sunday for a new Asgardian Trade Commission!  Until then!

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2 Responses to “Comics Reviews 6/22”

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I guess I’d better take back through Preacher comics I gave to my 9-year-old niece.

Bah, through = those

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