Friday, September 9, 2011

Comics Roundup for 9/7/11

Action Comics #1 - This was probably the one relaunched DC book that I was looking forward to the most - even more so than Justice League. Even though I'm not a huge fan of Superman, I have been known to pick up his comics from time to time. I was genuinely excited for this one though because Grant Morrison is writing, and some of the best recent Superman comics - nay, comics in general - were his All Star Superman issues.

I also liked the whole conceit of the story - really getting Superman back to his roots. Before this came out, I took the time to read my Superman Archives, Volume 1 which reprints Superman's earliest adventures. I was surprised at what I read, as I could almost see a bunch of Fox News pundits protesting the character if it had come out just recently. Superman was proactive and represented the truly oppressed and downtrodden. My favorite example of this is when he trapped a bunch of rich people down in a mine in order to get the mine's owner (who was among the group of rich people) to improve the working conditions of his employees.

So what did I think of this relaunch? Good start. We've got a real (Super)man of the people here, and it was cool to read the throwaway line about how he dealt with a guy who was abusing his wife (something he did in one of those adventures from the 1930s). I also like the fact that he hasn't completely developed his powers just yet. Plus, Lex Luthor is given a pretty good motive for hating Superman. Don't get me wrong; he's still evil. However, now his reasoning could actually convince a person that Superman is an enemy of mankind.

Batgirl #1 - I figured I'd at least check out the first issue of this series so I could find out how Barbara Gordon is able to walk again. Unfortunately, all we're told is that "a miracle" happened. Now, I can buy miracles in a comic book universe, but I still feel like a plot point this significant should be given a bit more than a throwaway line. Perhaps they'll follow up on it in future issues. That said, I found this to be a really compelling story. There was an interesting bad buy and some great characterization. I especially like the fact that her paralysis is still a significant part of who the character is. She certainly doesn't seem to be taking it for granted that she's up on her feet again.

Justice League International #1 - I wasn't originally planning on getting this one, but I'm glad that I did. In a way, it was a more satisfying reading experience than the first issue of the much-hyped Justice League. It has the sort of character dynamics you'd want in a team book, and it doesn't feel like Dan Jurgens is just riffing off of the now-classic series of the same name that took the book in a more humorous direction. Everybody's in-character - especially Batman and Guy Gardner/Green Lantern - but I don't feel like I've seen these interactions before.

Spider Island - The Avengers - Yeah, this is kind of a shelf-filler issue that capitalizes on the mini crossover running out of Spider-Man's book. Still, it was a lot of fun - especially the bit about Hawkeye being one of the people to get Spider powers. That would be amusing enough, but the fun thing is that he really sucks at using them.

The New Avengers - Annual #1 - This was disappointing. Wonder Man elaborates on why he thinks that the formation of The Avengers is a bad thing. He enlists some guys to create The Revengers. Then he beats the crap out of the New Avengers. At the end, he's on his way to Avengers tower to take on the main team. The second part of this, in Avengers Annual had better offer a good payoff to all this. Plus, I don't know why they made such a big deal about Gabriele Dell'otto drawing this issue in the ads. The art kind of stinks, if you ask me.

Wolverine #15 - While bordering on turning Logan all emo, this was a compelling issue. Basically, he got his world destroyed last issue like he never has before, and now he pretty much just wants to die. How can you die though when you heal from a wound almost as soon as you get it? That's the question, and I'm eager to see how Wolverine will eventually get his mojo back.

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