What Looks Good - Week Three
By Michael Diaz
Ahh...another week, another column. Welcome to WLG, my little column where I talk about, well, what looks good. If you're new, it's simple, really: these are the comics that I plan on buying this week with my own money. Yes, my scrilla. I WANT to buy these comics with the money that I could be using to pay off credit cards or my student loan. The risk I am taking is all mine, nothing here is free to me.
Really, that's all there is to it.
I love comics and so do you. Here's what I think this week...
BRATH #4 $2.95
I sound like a broken record whenever I talk about CrossGen books because I am always saying "I don't like [insert genre] comics...", but what can I do? I don't like barbarian books; I don't own a single issue of Conan or anything like it. I wasn't particularly impressed with Brath when he showed up in Sigil.
Then that day in the comic book store I saw the Brath Prequel. I remember missing out on Sojourn and Route 666 initially. They are now two of my favorite books, as well as two of the most consistently well written books around. On a lark I picked up the prequel and enjoyed it. I didn't love it, but I got to the end of the issue and I wanted to know more. That's the sign of a good book, one where you want to continue along on the adventure.
So here I am, eager to see what happens as Brath and his pseudo-Braveheart brethren take on the pseudo-Gladiator praetorians in a battle that reminds one of Hannibal and his elephants.
See, this is SO not my bag...but I love it.
Mr. Dixon et al have done well.
GLOBAL FREQUENCY #8 (Of 12) $2.95
I don't know if anyone has ever said this, so pardon me if I am lifting from something I have read elsewhere, but this book is kind of like Plantetary-lite. Being that we have not seen a real issue of Planetary in over a year, this is a good thing.
This book is underrated and fun to read. Every issue is self-contained and nicely captures everything that a reader needs to know to enjoy the comic. That's not an easy task, but Ellis and the constantly shifting art crew seem up to the task.
As every issue is stand-alone there isn't a whole lot to say. Basically, if you like Ellis this book will tickle you right where you need to be tickled.
POWERS VOL 4 SUPERGROUP TP (MR)
I SO want this.
OK, it is no hidden fact that I am a Bendis freak. He could have a bowel movement, write about it and I would but it in the comics that came out every month. Then, a couple of months later they would collect it into a trade paperback and I would buy that too.
Pity me, really, it's OK.
Bendis likes to write in wide arcs that translate really well to the collected format. I bought the first Powers trade because I missed out on the original issues. I loved it. I actually own all of the issues from the "Roleplay" story arc, but I bought that trade as well. When I had first read the issues I thought it was good, but not great. The trade came out and I had some extra scrilla so I bought it. Good thing. The arc was so much more cohesive when read in a single sitting.
You don't go to McDonald's, buy a Big Mac, eat it, then show up a month later for the fries and then another month for the Coke. You get the Extra Value Meal (tm) NOW baby. That's why you get the trades.
Of course, sometimes you're late for work and you've only got a couple of bucks in your pocket and you REALLY just want to have that Big Mac, and just the Big Mac, RIGHT NOW. That's why you have to buy those single issues.
Wow, I'm just going on and on here.
The point I am trying to make, and failing at miserably, is that I really liked the "Supergroup" arc, especially the HUGE twist ending that I never saw coming. If I loved it in such small bites, how much better is it going to be to sit down to a whole meal o'Bendis a la Oeming?
MYSTIQUE #2 $2.99
Vaughn is my new boy. If you read the column last week you know why, but the short version is that I think he is the hot new talent, the new comic book "it" writer.
This book, as well as Runaways, continues that streak. It is well written and well conceived. Basically, take Mystique and throw her into an espionage situation a la Alias (the TV show), and that's the book.
Vaughn makes it worthwhile and believable. I think I will stick around a bit and see where this goes.
PUNISHER #27 $2.99
The last issue was OK, not great, but definitely original.
Now we have a guest appearance by Elektra?
Yeah, I am officially bored with that idea. Crossovers are so cliched and I have a hard time swallowing the fact that Ennis is doing one. There's some consolation in the fact that the crossover he wrote with Spider-Man early on in this series was hilarious.
Will we see more of the same?
Oh, and rumor has it that this book is getting the axe and will be reincarnated as a MAX title, which would be the 7th volume of the Punisher title, if I count correctly.
ULTIMATES #10 $2.25
Is it THAT cold in Hell right now?
I do love this book, but to call it a monthly is more than laughable. On the one hand, as a reader and someone that appreciates great comics it is very frustrating that this book comes out as seldom as it does. But then on the other hand, when I open the book and actually read it the effect is breathtaking and amazing. It is very hand not to forgive the creative team for such tardiness when such excellence is the result.
This book has picked up where the first volume of the Authority left off and is sure to dazzle and thrill with every issue.
My one (other) complaint is that by making World War II the result of an alien incursion rather than the brutal reality of man's inhumanity to man takes aware some of the impact and importance of what the true cost of that horrible war was.
But I am sure it will look fantastic.
UNCANNY X-MEN #424 $2.25
Austen started out with me as a believer when he took over the Uncanny book. For some reason a few vocal fanboys have been "dis'in" him online.
While I won't be anywhere near as harsh as them, I will say that the last couple of issues have been meandering and uninteresting. Archangel's blood is now a healing agent? Uh, I guess that works, I mean, I suppose that kind of fits in with his "angelic" qualities, but as secondary mutations go I have to say Morrison is leading the field with nifty ideas.
Here is where I show my true X-Men geek colors: I also don't like the fact that Archangel is no longer blue. Yeah, it's nit picky, but I miss the fact that he isn't blue anymore, and if you want me to really keep going, I wish he had his metallic wings back.
Back to the book at hand, I have to say I also don't like the idea that it is possible that Nightcrawler never became a priest? Wha?!?! Now come on, that is as poorly conceived as the "dream" episode of Dallas. Don't know what I am talking about? Look on-line; the internet is good for more than just porn.
I am hoping that this current arc improves, as well as this title. I am not one of those Austen bashers; I really liked his first arc, but right about now the book is a car wreck.
Everyone gawks at a car wreck, but not always for the right reasons.
X-TREME X-MEN #26 $2.99
The second part of "God Loves, Man Kills II."
I don't have much to say about this issue. I miss Larocca doing the art. True, Kordey is doing some of his finest work, and I am sure I will warm up to him eventually, but for so long Larocca's art has been an integral part of this comic. It's almost like when Maguire left Justice League back in the day; the pencils on that and this book were a part of the book's identity. Can the book maintain that identity with such a dramatic change in artistic styles?
I hope so.
X-MEN UNLIMITED #48
See, ANOTHER issue.
These are coming out more often than Ultimate Spider-Man, but this looks more and more like filler. At least with USM I know I am going to get an excellent issue. This is such a potpourri of different talents it is hard to know what the reader is going to get with every issue.
I can't say that I am terribly geeked about this issue.
But, of course, I AM buying it, so really, it's my own damn fault.
Didn't I say that last week?
Not as much coming out this week as last week, which is good. My wallet can use the break.
Once again, here is your turn. I will be hanging around the SBC Forums if anyone would like to post about this column. Do you agree/disagree? Is there anything that I left out that you think I should be buying? Let me know!
Until then, see you next week!
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