Posts tagged Batman and Robin

In Memoriam: Damian Wayne

This week has a central theme: Mourning Damian Wayne. Or does it? I glanced through Batgirl in my comic shop, because we’ve all seen the sad cover:

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See? Babs is crying big, sad, boo-hoo tears over a character who, to my knowledge, she had no direct interaction with in the reboot. I mean, they were in the same place during Death of the Family, but did they talk? Don’t think so. The actual issue involves James Jr., a character I really do find interesting! But not right now. There is a single scene consisting of two pages that deal with Damian, and they’re a complete write-off. Babs isn’t sad about Damian, she’s sad for Bruce.

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Lovely. In any case, we’ve got two more Requiem issues, the main Batman title, and Batman and Robin. I’m girding my loins for feels.

Harper Row is back! Remember her? Awesome hair, nose ring, adorable brother, idolizes Batman? I feel like I’m going to be less sad, and more pumped! This issue of Batman deals mostly with her following Batman around, trying to figure out why he’s sad. Damian isn’t mentioned at all. This seems familiar to me. A Robin dies. Some smart teenager starts following Batman around to help him when he needs it. Batman refuses to throw the teenager a bone, and continues lashing out at everyone around him. Eventually allows the teenager to train with him and…oh my god, Harper Row is being set up to be the new Robin. We’re being Tim Drake’d! Still, think about what this means. We’ve been denied Stephanie Brown and Cassandra Cain, in order to bring in a new female member of the Batfamily. That’s…wow, no? I mean, I’d love to see Harper as the new Robin. I’d love to have a canon female Robin in the main universe that makes up the majority of the DCnU (sorry, Helena Wayne). But that’s exactly like when James Robinson made Alan Scott gay in Earth-2. Making that character gay caused his gay son, Todd Rice, and his son’s boyfriend, Damon Matthews, to essentially be erased from existence. So, we got one and lost two, the same thing that’s happening with Harper Row now. Still, it’s not an unusual practice, as far as DC is concerned. We can have four Green Lanterns from Earth (now five, with Simon Baz)…so long as they’re all men. Sorry, Jade. But we can only have one Atom, and that one is going to be Ray Palmer, goddamnit. We can have three white, male Flashes, no problem. But throw a female Robin or an Asian Batgirl in the mix? Nope! Not possible! This sort of thing just annoys me, and I know I’m not alone.

Did someone say ‘set phasers to feels’? In this special, completely silent issue of Batman and Robin, well…I can’t say anything. I’m not trying to make a joke at all, I literally cannot say anything about this issue. The panels all speak for themselves. From Alfred’s grief, to Titus’ confusion and sadness that only a dog can have, to Bruce’s despair-fueled rage, everything is painted perfectly.

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That was this week in comics. Come back next week for absolutely nothing depressing in Batwoman, Supergirl, Wonder Woman, DC Universe Presents featuring Starfire, and possibly the first issue of Constantine!

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At last! The long-awaited origin of Damian’s Batman 666 costume!

DC, we need to have a chat.

Okay, I know this is a comic review blog, and that I should save my opinions on shows I don’t even watch for my Tumblr, but come on. As you may have heard, Young Justice and Green Lantern were cancelled, and are being replaced by a new Batman cartoon and Teen Titans Go, a semi-continuation of the Teen Titans cartoon that ran a few years back. This is a stupid move. You see, cartoons take time to make. Instead of cancelling two cartoons with a fairly large fan following, both of whom were famous for their constant hiatuses, why not renew them for more seasons, then take your time airing them, as you already do? That way, you can still have your Batman cartoon, your SD Teen Titans cartoon, and whatever else you wanted? Heck, maybe we could have gotten that third season of Legion of Superheroes that was planned, then cancelled, or a Super Best Friends Forever cartoon. Ahh, but what’s done is done. Actually, no. What’s done is done, but the fanbases of both shows are trying to raise support to have it undone. Personally? I don’t watch TV anymore. I’ll probably never get to watch these shows as they air, because I have work at that time. But if you are reading this, and you enjoy the shows in question, let your voice be heard. Sign petitions, buy episodes on iTunes, tweet creators, email DC! Maybe, if enough people speak up, some higher-up will take notice. And now, back to our scheduled comics.

I am very, very mad at Grant Morrison. As much as I’ve disliked some of his creative choices in the past (such as how he handled Jason in Batman and Robin pre-reboot), I think I get angrier with him when he creates something I love dearly, and then takes it from me. While Grant wasn’t the one to originally create Cyril, he is the one who formed him into what he is today, and gave us Beryl, to boot. And now Cyril’s gone. I know that his death happened last issue, but this isn’t a fakeout. He’s not coming back this time, he’s dead. And I…I don’t want to deal with that. So instead, hey, who remembers Damian’s clone from that one pre-reboot arc of Batman and Robin? Well, he’s a big boy now. A fully grown boy. Which, okay, kinda saw that coming, but at the same time, damn! I owe at least one person money, because I kept insisting that he was going to grow up to be Ibn al Xu’ffasch. Sigh. We could have had it all, folks. We could have had it all.

So, um. Remember when I said I was done with Batman and Robin? Well…okay, hear me out. Despite Peter Tomasi’s depiction of Bruce having me in literal pain whenever I read it, he doesn’t do a bad Damian. He’s got the kid down to a pretty basic science; he’s willing to do anything to get his father to like him, and to trust him as a partner. This being said, the Batman and Robin Annual was awesome. It was half a cute story about Damian sending Bruce on a scavenger hunt to find out things about his parents that he either didn’t know or didn’t remember, such as seeing the place where his father proposed, or visiting a place where they had their picture taken on their honeymoon, and half a story about Damian solving a case on his own. Also, he dressed up as Batman to do it! Ugh, this adorable little shit. I don’t understand why so many people don’t like him. So anyway, it was an issue with very little Bruce in it which, as it happens, turns out to be my very favorite kind of issue. The art was just, wow. Ardian Syaf, please draw Damian from now on. At 38 pages of comic (and 8 pages of ads), the annual was certainly worth $4.99, and I can honestly say that I was satisfied with it, and the content.

What has 20 pages of comic, 10 pages of ads, and the best, most creative layouts in the DC proper right now? Well, that’d be the Flash! I’m going to level with you, folks. It’s 2 am, and one of my friends took me away from my computer to get vodka’d up earlier this evening, so I’m only just coming off of that. But I can say, with some degree of certainty, that I think we’ve found yet another rebooted Rogue. It’s been speculated by fans that Turbine is the reboot version of the Top. They even share the same first name! Well, say hello to Albert, one of the Central citizens sharing a tank with Iris West. He may or may not be the reboot version of Doctor Alchemy. I’m honestly only going on the fact that he started to glow and then somehow managed to get the tank to shoot a mammoth (I know, right?). For all I know, he could be like Mob Rule, a completely new character. In any case, I’d like to see more of him. This issue further outlines the whys and hows of Barry and Iris not getting together. See, she asked him out right after her brother was jailed, leading Barry to believe that she was only trying to get him to help free her brother. Which, I mean, she kind of was, but she felt scummy over it. Thought I did like Daniel’s line: “What’s the matter?! Did I mess up your big chance with Barry Allen?!” Oh, honey. You have no idea.

And that’s this week in comics. If you’d like to save $4, don’t buy the tie-in comic to Injustice: Gods Among Us. Not worth it in any way. (Spoiler alert: if you like literally anyone related to Superman, they die. They just fucking die.) Glory and Hawkeye also came out this week! But I, uh, sort of grabbed the wrong issue of Hawkeye, as both the reprint of #5 and #7 came out at the same time. So, nuts. That was this week in comics. Next week, we tackle Animal Man, Swamp Thing, and, uh, possibly that Valentine’s special DC’s doing. Possibly. 

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Death of (a good bit of) my sanity

I’m just going to come right out and say it. It’s Death of the Family week. If that doesn’t interest you, sorry. See you next week, hopefully. Oh! Wait! I’ve got two non-DotF books here! Come back, come back!

It’s the last issue of Marceline and the Scream Queens! And, sorry, Bubbline shippers. No kisses in this mini, just lots and lots of juicy subtext. The monster that is Marceline’s insecurities is the villain this issue, don’t miss the awesome boss battle! Also, beginning next month, a new six-issue mini set in the world of Fionna and Cake!

Hahaha, Ame-Comi Girls. What do I even say about this book. I mean, it’s bad. It’s really, really bad. I’ve come to expect so much more from Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray, because I was spoiled by their work on Power Girl. But when I read a comic and see Selina’s name misspelled, Jesse Quick’s name misspelled and her formula stated wrong, not to mention the bucket of farts that is Duela Dent’s Ame-Comi origin? And that’s not before getting to the part where she-Brainiac created the Earth. Ha. No. Sorry. Done.

If someone were to ask me, on a scale of one to ten, how upset I was over Gail Simone being fired off of Batgirl, I’d basically have to forfeit my vote. Because after issue…four? Until just now with Death of the Family, I haven’t been reading Batgirl. Of course, it became a hit series without me, one of the top sellers in the New 52. Barbara Gordon, the iconic Batgirl, was back in the suit! And she was being written by the best female talent DC has to offer. But apparently, even making the company a lot of money wasn’t enough to save Ms. Simone from getting the axe, as she has also been off Firestorm since the sixth issue. I wish her the best in all she does, and pray that this means she’s going to be on Suicide Squad from now on.

Speaking of…oh, did I conveniently forget to review Batgirl? Whoops. I’m just a little more upset at DC than I am interested in that particular DotF storyline, which seems to involve the Joker’s desire to marry Batgirl, while also setting up a plot with her brother, James, that we’ll never get to see through. But yes, speaking of Suicide Squad, let’s have a round of applause for Adam Glass. He was a little slow out of the starting gate, but he finally got Harley Quinn to about the same place she was before the end of Gotham City Sirens pre-reboot. Bravo. Honestly, this was the best issue this series has had in…yeah, ever. It’s Harley versus Joker and you know what? Harley won. She made it out alive, and maybe showed Waller that she wasn’t as useless as everyone thought she was. Oh! Quick Rogues update! Digger seems to be leaving both the Squad and Belle Reve…wonder what he did to deserve that?

I have a confession to make. I haven’t picked up an issue of Batman and Robin since the Night of the Owls crossover. I have no idea what’s been going on in this book other than what panels I see on Tumblr. Maybe this won’t be so confusing? Well, we’re off to a decent start. I don’t think Bruce is going to be appearing in this issue at all. And really, wasn’t that what I disliked about the book in the first place? Bruce’s constant dismissal and underestimation of his own son was just…frustrating as hell. Okay. So, this is a Damian-centric arc. I can dig that. And Joker gives the same speech he did in the last issue of Batman about all the sidekicks dragging him down…hello! Okay! No spoilers, but get this issue. It was actually very interesting.

DC, please. Sinestro and Hal had a kind of a kinky dom/sub relationship during their stint as co-Green Lanterns, Joker is canonly in love with Batman…can you stop with all the subtext and just make with the anagram already? I can wait for the three of you who’ve never seen that joke on the internet to figure it out. In any case, it’s a nice little family reunion at the Batcave, where Bruce shares a not-so-heartwarming, kind of really fucking important story about one of his earliest tussles with the Joker. Seriously, dude. If a madman even has the chance of busting into your super secret hidey hole, you let someone know. Anyone. Tell the dog, for Christ’s sake. When people ask why I don’t like Bruce Wayne, I usually respond with something like, “He’s got more trust issues than a victim of a lifetime of emotional abuse.” or “He’s about as open as Santa’s Enchanted Forest in July.” Call him stoic, call him thoughtful, call him whatever. Best case scenario, he’s just a big manchild with shiny toys and an unlimited budget. Worst case scenario, he’s a sociopath waiting to happen. Scott Snyder is some kind of word wizard, though, because as good as the main story was, the back-up just blew me away. Finally, someone giving the Riddler credit! Hey, remember Hush, when Eddie totally figured out Batman’s identity, but didn’t tell anyone? Sigh. That was great.

I feel like I’ve spent less time reviewing and more time reacting this week, at least with the Death of the Family books. Why? Because, for the most part, I just can’t stand them. I dropped Batgirl because it wasn’t interesting to me. I dropped Catwoman because I found it insulting. I dropped Batman and Robin because Bruce is a douchebag. I was never reading Detective Comics. I dropped Nightwing because it was boring. I dropped Red Hood and the Outlaws, at long last, because I just couldn’t take it anymore. With the exception of the main Batman title, and the two Bat-titles that have nothing to do with DotF, Batwoman and Batman Inc, my pull list is relatively Bat-free. I have non-Bat interests. But all the events, all the crossovers, the pain, the suffering, the mental anguish…it all comes back to Batman in the end, doesn’t it? I hopped on the Batman bus in month four, before Night of the Owls. And I loved it. Still do, to an extent. But I’m getting a little tired of all the crossovers. Here’s an idea, DC. Let’s have a few months go by without some massive, Bat-related crossover event. Stop putting all your eggs in one Bat-shaped basket and let us rest.
I’m Touch of Grey. It’s two in the morning. I think you all know where I’m going with this.

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Prelude to the Culling? Yeah, I’m going to go with prelude to the Snoring.

A Bat-heavy second week for me as I’ve, shamefully, decided to peruse a book I thought I’d long-since dropped. Pray for me.

I love James Gordon Jr. I always have. He’s a fascinating character; The son of the paragon of noncaped virtue in the DCU, James Jr is a sociopathic serial killer. Everyone in my LCS who knows my feelings on the Bat-villains knows my preferences, and when it comes to Gotham crazies, James Jr is in my top five. So when someone said to me, “Hey Grey, did you know that James Jr is in Batgirl this month?”, I not-so-gracefully flipped my shit. I loved James under Scott Snyder’s pen, but how much would I like him under Gail Simone’s? Luckily, it looks like I’m not going to have to worry about that for another month. James only shows up on the last page, the rest of his appearances take the form of flashbacks from his mother. And as I read this issue, I remembered why I dropped Batgirl in the first place. Babs is…borderline boring. The writer is entirely too fixated on Babs’ time in the chair being traumatic, rather than the acceptance pre-52 Babs had in regards to her disability. And the villain? Grotesque was bit too Larfleeze-esque for my tastes, so I mostly ignored him in favor of the…what do I even call it? Revenge martyring of one of the Joker’s former henchmen? I can see what Gail was attempting to do, but the execution was beyond poor. James Jr, you better be damn worth it for me to continue reading Batgirl.

I’m so done with Batman and Robin. No. I mean it. I can’t do this anymore. Bruce looking over at The Case while worrying about Damian clinched it for me. To read his little speeches about the nature of who Damian is, and how the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree…come the fuck on, Bruce. Writers have been condemning Talia as the ‘evil’ parent since day one. Conveniently leaving out all the actual romantic history between her and Bruce. Not to mention his little bit about he holds himself to a higher moral standard…just stop talking. We’re done here. You should’ve got your son a damn cat.

Okay, Suicide Squad. Take a step back and let me in on what the fuck just happened. This issue flashed back and forth so often, I felt like I was watching a Stephen King movie. So, who is the mole within the Suicide Squad? Do I have to go read Resurrection Man to understand next month’s issue? Is Savant going home to Creote now? Why were they able to wipe off the black paint stuff from around Harley’s eyes, but not clear up the grey skin, which is obviously some kind of paint as well, if the normal skintone around her eyes is any indicator? This was supposed to be a cooldown issue, but I’m more confused than anything.

And so ends the adventure in Barcelona. I liked this mini-arc within the Shade’s story, even if it was all for nothing. Richard’s great-grandson is dead, the Inquisitor has been vanquished, and the Shade is off to London. For all that happened this issue, I have very few words with which to explain. I guess I can just call it a fight scene issue, with religious subtext intermixed and be done. And look, I did!

Okay. Scott Lobdell. We need to have a serious chat. This ‘Culling’ event you’re preparing us for has a very…Battle Royale/Hunger Games feel to it, which obviously isn’t so. In fact, we already know who is going to survive to be on this new team of Ravagers, as it was announced months ago as one of the new books replacing the first wave of cancelled series’. So. Aside from Caitlin Fairchild and the new Terra and Beast Boy, our next official Ravager was introduced in Legion Lost (which I actually skimmed through for you people, uchh) this week, the creature called Ridge.
I guess what I’m trying to say here is Scott, you’ve kind of struck out. The Culling is obviously going to be DC’s way of trimming away teenage heroes they’ve got no use for anymore. Fans really, really dislike you as it is, both from the awful comments you make regarding the characters you write, and the actual things you write. You’ve also proven to be fantastic at writing stories that go nowhere and utterly raping well-built traits on characters that you think no one cares about anymore. Well. I care. I care about Percival Edmund Chang. He’s probably dead now, but I care about him, and the rest of Gen 13. Prepare yourself now, because I have little doubt that you’re going to spend quite a bit of time acting as the fandom’s punching bag.

Well, shit. Okay, it’s time for a short lesson in the origins of the different Lantern Corps’. Everyone knows how the Greens came to be, so let’s just start with the ones that have been popping up since 07 or so. The Yellow Lanterns, the Sinestro Corps, were created by Sinestro, who mastered control of the GL’s yellow impurity while he was imprisoned withing the Central Power Battery on Oa. Next came the Red Lanterns, whose rings and batteries were created by Atrocitus from the blood of his fellow prisoners. The Blue Lantern Corps was created by Ganthet and Sayd as a way to help the Green Lanterns during the upcoming Blackest Night. If you don’t know Larfleeze’s story by now, then DC has failed you. And then there are the Star Sapphires. Love warriors who have been shown as able to convert Lanterns of other Corps’ to their cause. Well, guess who has been recycling shocking twists?! Geoff, you’ve done this already, when Fatality went from yellow to pink. Revealing that the Indigo Tribe successfully brainwashed Sinestro and changed the color of his suit is nothing new. However, finally getting some actual info on where the Indigos come from is going to be fantastic. We’ve been getting hints for nearly four years, our time is coming. That being said, this was a pretty great issue, if you like watching Hal Jordan act like an idiot. “Oh, I shouldn’t make constructs because this borrowed energy is unstable? Guess I’m gonna make me some constructs!” This moron, I can’t.

A moment of silence for the art of Amy Reeder, which will be leaving us after this issue.
I really, really don’t like Cameron Chase. Maybe it’s just personal taste, but the ‘driven to the point where sadism masquerades itself as professionalism’ type of character has always resonated with me in a bad way. It’s the main reason I’ve never been a huge fan on Amanda Waller, though I do think she’s pretty badass. You know what? I can’t talk about this issue right now. Not when I’m so upset about Amy Reeder leaving the book before the To Drown the World arc is even finished. I just can’t get over that. Her designs for Killer Croc, this new version of Bloody Mary, not to mention the distinct parallels in body language when she draws Kate Kane as opposed to Batwoman…it’s criminal. Though I understand that she left over undisclosed creative differences, it’s still a really hard blow to an already sore body that is the Batman Family fandom.

That was this week in comics. I’m hungry, I’m sad, and while I certainly didn’t fly off into as blind a rage as I could have, I’m still coming down off my Red Ring high. Hopefully, I’ll see you back here next week. Until then, I’m Touch of Grey.

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Legends and torture and fridging, oh my!

Six titles this week, all DC, all ones I actually enjoy. Maybe this won’t be such a rage-filled week, after all.

I spent most of the five minutes it took me to read Superboy making happy noises. I love Rose Wilson. I love Caitlin Fairchild. I love it when awesome ladies are friends with other awesome ladies. So, the acknowledgement that the two of them cared about each other kind of made me lose my shit a little bit. Also, I just need to say that I don’t read this book to listen to the mental ramblings of Mr. How-Do-I-Emotions. To me, this is Rose’s book. And you know what? I think she’s the first clone. She’s a female clone of Deathstroke. I’m calling it right now, and if it actually happens, you all owe me a soda. Oh, and before I forget, next month…more Gen 13! Yesss! Ahem, I mean, this pleases me. Verily.

Nope. I can’t. I can’t do this. Will someone please go up to Geoff Johns, slap him, and tell him to put his fanfic on his LiveJournal like the rest of us? Because, frankly, if this was good fanfic, I wouldn’t really care. But it has all the standard slashfic cliches: Guy is interested in guy, but said guy is already taken, usually by a woman. Guy makes it so that other guy has no choice other than to work with him. Bondage? Can we just cut to the ending where they make out? And have Marcus To or someone draw it. No offense to Doug Mahnke, but his Sinestro is kind of creepy looking. But enough about the blatant UST which seems to be a central theme in this book. Let’s talk about the Indigo Tribe. Personally, I love this particular Corps, especially because of what they seem to mean to the universe. Their rings, not unlike the rings of the Star Sapphires, completely wipe, and then warp, the personality of the wearer. I mean, they took Black Hand and turned him into a…I want to say militant hippie, because that’s what the Tribe seems to be made up of. And then there’s their manner of speech. I bet Geoff doesn’t actually have a translation guide, he just makes it up as he goes along. I’m a bit worried, though. As they were abducting Hal and Sinestro, Indigo-1 mentioned Natu, as in Soranik Natu, Sinestro’s daughter. Does that mean she’s still around? Do the Indigo have her somewhere? Ooh, I hope we find out soon, I do love my Green Lantern ladies alive, after all.

“Some of my best friends are sodomites.” I love you, James Robinson. I’m really loving the Barcelona stop on the Shade’s world tour. As a character, La Sangre is interesting, charming, and even cute. This Inquisitor fellow on the other hand, is just as interesting, but not as charming. Religious fanatics have always stuck a negative chord with me, especially ones who use their faith as a way to prove they’re better than others. There isn’t much I can say about the actual issue that anyone else won’t be saying. It’s well-written, and the art really suits the arc. To see Shade interacting with country-specific heroes like La Sangre and Montpellier is really a treat, and I hope that trend continues in whichever place he goes next.

Oh, wow. Really now. Hello, fridge! This is going to be a spoilery review, so if you don’t want to know all the happenings of the Suicide Squad, skip to the paragraph after next.
Harley Quinn, we hardly knew ye. No, really, we barely get your updated origin before kaboom, gone. While I find it interesting that Harley wasn’t brought into the life so much as forcibly pushed into it, it really leads me to wonder. What that toxin she was dunked in a last straw that revealed the real madness behind the mind, or did it drastically alter her personality? Also, what the hell is in that juice to make it dye your hair like that? That’s so stupid, it borders on nonsensical. Then again, this is Harley Quinn we’re talking about. Nonsensical is sort of her thing.

What the fuck is wrong with this book. What the fuck is going on in Peter Tomasi’s head. The opening sequence, of Morgan torturing Damian while Bruce rushes to his rescue, is just gross. And then we get into the actual meat of the book, which is a fight scene. Bruce and Morgan throwing each other all over the boat, while Damian just kind of…crawls around aimlessly. And then that ending…what the everloving fuck. Bruce backs down from killing Morgan because he doesn’t want to set a bad example for his son, and then Damian just sort of goes, “Screw this.” and punches him so hard that his fingers go into Morgan’s head. What the fuck, Peter Tomasi. No. I can’t. I really can’t with this book. I want to stop reading it, but it’s the only place where Damian even shows up. Why does this precious hellspawn have to be in the worst Bat-title on my list? Why?

Thank god for Batwoman. While I was sorry to hear that Amy Reeder will soon be leaving the book as artist, she’s certainly bringing her A-game now. Such expressive faces, such beautiful movements, sigh. She will be missed. As for the story, while the Medusa-focused segments did little to forward the plot (mainly because they were flashbacks), they were still very interesting. Sune seems to have more compassion than her brother, Maro. Scratch that. Sune definitely has more compassion than Maro, who sacrificed three women to obtain Bloody Mary. That’s another thing. The horrors that Maro magics up are all based on local legends. The man with the hook for a hand. The Weeping Woman. Bloody Mary. Even Killer Croc represents the pet alligator that someone flushed down the toilet. I like how Falchion wonders what kind of living legend he’ll make Kate into. Don’t you know, B-list supervillain? Batwoman is a local legend, she doesn’t need to change at all, silly.

And that was this week in comics! Also of note, though I chose not to review it, the second issue of Adventure Time came out. If you’re a fan of the show, I’d recommend giving it a read. Anyway, I’ve got to get going now. See y’all next week!

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This is Grey. See Grey flail over Batwoman. Flail, Grey, flail!

For reasons, I have decided to drop Resurrection Man entirely. Sorry, RM, I don’t have time for you. That being said, we’ve got 6 books to go over, let’s get started!

What can I say about Huntress? Well, aside from the revelation (via Paul Levitz) that she is not, in fact, Helena Bertinelli, I don’t know what else to say. I’m not interested in the exploits of Helena Wayne, even if she seems to be just as bloodthirsty as the Huntress DC spent 20 years developing.

Batman and Robin is my least favorite Bat-title that I’m still reading. No, really. It’s just…Bruce doesn’t really talk to his kid, and yet Damian still has all this loyalty towards him, solely because Bruce is his father. Ugh, ow my heart. This issue focuses less pages on Damian and Morgan, and more pages on Bruce’s training with, and eventual betrayal by, the Ducards, so I wasn’t actually paying as much attention as I could have. Frankly, the only person who is doing Bruce Wayne justice in the DCnU is Scott Snyder. Batman and Robin, you’ve been downgraded to in-store, officially.

Well, that’s an interesting re-origining. In Batman: The Animated Series, Harley was a shrink at Arkham that fell in love with the Joker, who manipulated her sympathies. In her introduction in the DCU (and subsequent re-origining in her own ongoing series), she was already interested in him when she got the job at Arkham, he only had to nudge her a bit to get her to go full bananas. Now, Joker seems to have been playing Harley’s white knight in order to get a friend in the system who would bust him out. We’re seeing a lot more emotion from Harley, and Adam Glass seems to be straying back to her original personality, which is nice, but also a shame. I’d love to see a world where Harley is legitimately over the Joker, but you can’t have it all. In other news, Savant lives, and he’s dressing like Taskmaster. I wonder if Creote is waiting somewhere out there in the wide world for when Savant is finally off the hook. Still no sign of Digger, though, so that’s…depressing.

I don’t know if I’m happy or angry about the new issue of Superboy. “Kon-El” is now directly translatable as “Abomination in the House of El”, when it used to just be another member of the El family back on Krypton. But…this issue had Supergirl. And Solstice. And it ended on Rose Wilson. So many fantastic ladies in this book, and the thing I’m focusing most on is Scott Lobdell taking a piss on Superboy’s last identity. Ughhh.

Geoff Johns is approaching self-parody. “Hal isn’t going to be a Green Lantern anymore! Hal is going to try and make things work with Carol! LOL JK his jealous lover is going to show up and make him wear his ring again!”
I wish I was joking, but that’s the exact summary of this issue, regarding Hal Jordan. Sinestro, on the other hand, was off kicking some ass. Hunting down Lyssa Drak, learning the plans of the Guardians regarding the third army, wow, Sinestro is like the second Lantern coming or something! I actually like the direction this series is going, to be completely honest, even if I’m not liking the speed it’s getting there.

I’m in love. I am. I wasn’t sure how much I’d like Amy Reeder drawing Batwoman, but oh god. I’m so on board with this. The Weeping Woman story, while the first arc has ended, is not over. As it turns out, she was made into who she became by a man named Maro, who draws power from superstition. Kate is taking pretty well to working for the DEO, if her love of her new suit is any indication. Speaking of love, Maggie! Maggie and Kate are my favorite part of this book. Their relationship is developing so naturally as the issues go by, it really makes me root for them. On a sadder note, Bette is still in a coma, but her uncle is there for her. Every day, reading to her as she lies there. It’s the perfect combination of pain, and joy, and sadness, and love, this book. It’s by far one of the best titles DC has put out in a long time.

And that’s this week in comics! I’m actually fairly satisfied with what I read, but that’s me. How are you liking your books?

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I’m just going to paraphrase and call this Flashback Week.

Another Wednesday, another pull list full of DC. Seven books this week, let’s get down to business.

This is the origin issue of Resurrection Man, it seems. Boy, Mitch Shelley was a gigantic douche prior to acquiring his powers. And he had Deathstroke working for him…okay, I need to know more. Just how important was this platinum blonde Alzheimer’s patient? So it looks like his origin is this: Mitch was a scientist for the United States government who had developed a serum that could restore lost limbs, a regeneration serum. He was the one who gave the Body Doubles their powers, or at least, he gave them to Carmen. She got a small dose of regeneration serum but after some…terrorists? Let’s go with terrorists. After some terrorists attacked his base, Mitch got injected with the full serum, everything that was left. So now, he doesn’t just regenerate limbs, he comes back to life. There must have been a glitch in the serum that caused superpowers, or maybe it was intentional. In any case, wow. What a turn-around. I was honestly planning on dropping this down to in store-only status and I may still do it, but it seems that so long as the story is focusing on Mitch, it’s not unbearable.

Oh dear, it seems as though the thing everyone else could see was going to happen has finally happened. Damian has decided that his father getting him a dog was just the last straw, and he’d rather fight crime with Morgan. I think Morgan promised him a kitten. Oh, Bruce. You insufferable asshole. It’s not your ‘job’ to love your son. Being a good parent just isn’t in your skill set. It’s flashback month! This time, we look at how Bruce met Henri Ducard and his son, Morgan. I have this terrible feeling that all the good Damian did with Dick is going to be negated, and he’s going to turn into a villain. I don’t want that at all. I don’t think anyone wants that.

I love Suicide Squad. I love it in an entirely non-ironic way. It’s well-written with interesting characters, and Adam Glass is not afraid to have big, powerful men show real emotion from time to time. I have exactly three problems with this entire series, so far. First, Amanda Waller’s size. She’s still the same old Wall, just…hot. And that is sort of freaky. Though this issue, she calls her husband when she thinks she’s about to die, when she thinks she’s going to have to kill everyone in the prison remotely, just to tell him that she loves him. That’s a great bit of characterization for her. Just because you don’t fuck with Amanda Waller doesn’t mean she doesn’t have the capability to love.
My other problems are with Harley Quinn’s outfit, and only her outfit, and Captain Boomerang’s disappearance respectively. Harley Quinn has spent many years as either the Joker’s flunkie-slash-girlfriend, or trying to forget him and move on with her life. Her fling with Deadshot seems like it would qualify under that second part. There’s no shame in attempting to, if you’ll forgive my paraphrasing, fuck the pain away. Then again, it didn’t seem to work. Looks like Harley’s headed back to Gotham, as of the end of this issue. As for Digger…his story was open-ended. There was no distinct ending to it. Is he dead? Alive? Being tortured? Hopefully he’ll show up again within the next few issues.

Last issue of the Shade, we met Richard’s great-grandson. This issue, we learn just how familiar they are. After all, the Shade has a history of secrecy and seclusion, so how would a living family member be aware of him? Well, there was once upon a time when grandfather saved grandson’s life. Of course, an issue set in 1944 is going to be drawn by Darwyn Cooke. This man is a retro god, and I’m not afraid to say it. This issue is all about how Nazis wanted to kill Darnell Caldecott, and how Richard did not allow that to happen. With the assistance of wartime hero Vigilante and cross-dressing hero Madame Fatal, Shade keeps his kin alive. An interesting change, Madame Fatal was originally envisioned as a man dressing as an elderly woman. Aside from the cane, Madame Fatal just looks like a buxom platinum blonde. ‘She’ looks more like a naughty librarian than anything else. But I blame that on Cooke’s inability to really change up his style vis a vis women. Not that I’m saying all his women look alike, only that…he’s not good at making them look old. Still, it was a fantastic issue, and not a bad jumping-on point if you still haven’t picked up the series.

Superboy is an interesting book. It has shown us that Gen 13 is still around, that Rose Wilson was never a pawn of her father, and that Superboy himself may or may not be a villain. But the most interesting reveal so far, is the knowledge that Rose, friend of ‘Red’, may just be a part of the 13. She’s got the designate number of 8, as well as a codename, Ravager. If Rose is in fact part of the 13, that’ll mean that she has no actual connection to Deathstroke, unless, of course, it was his DNA that she was built out of. And how freaking cool would that be?! Oh yeah, and something happened involving Superboy, too. Who cares. Rose!

Usually if I’m talking about Geoff Johns, I’m snide. Jeering. Constantly throwing out accusations that he’s got a Green Lantern sex toy shoved up his butt at all times. But you know what?
The current Green Lantern series, starring Sinestro, is the best one I’ve read in years. Because Sinestro isn’t looking for redemption, he’s just looking to do his old job again, as reluctant as he seems to be. The last couple of pages were my favorite, as they set up the next arc. Hal and Carol are giving it another go, and the Guardians are planning to police the entire universe, or possibly conquer it, with a ‘third army’. Personally? I’m shaking in my boots here. Because while the Manhunters and the Alpha Lanterns were freaky bananas as it was, what could this ‘third army’ possibly be made up of?

As of the end of the first arc I can now confidently say, Batwoman was worth the wait. The ghost woman, Maria, was in fact a ghost. Dead as disco. So how was she still on this plane? Well, that would have something to do with Medusa, an organization that seems to be the new Religion of Crime in Kate’s life. Like the Dark Faith, Medusa seem to have some ties to magic, as well as being a big-time criminal organization. Man, there are a lot of those roaming around freely in the DCnU. Oh, and by the way, the DEO didn’t waste any time going after Kate. But, instead of shutting her down, they offered her a job. And she took it. Actually, that’s over-simplifying things. If she didn’t take the job, her father would rot in prison for crimes against his country, namely, stealing the military tech that Kate used as Batwoman. So even though literally minutes prior she’d been cutting him out of a picture, symbolically cutting him out of her life, Kate still chose to help him. There’s hope for you yet, lady. As always, the art was amazing. Especially the opening and closing sequences, and when Kate threw off the influence of Maria, whoo. And while neither Bette nor Maggie had any real appearances in this issue, they still played their parts to make it work. Let’s hope the next arc is as good as the first, as well as all those who come after.

That was this week in comics! I hope to catch you all here next week. For now, however, I hear tell of fajitas in the kitchen, so I’m going to go make one. As always, I am Touch of Grey.

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