Comics (#SFWApro)

Catching up on several week’s worth of TPB collections
356343BPRD: The Dead by Mike Mignola, John Arcudi and Guy Davis introduces scarred Captain Daimio (and given disability stereotypes, it’s commendable he doesn’t seem to give a damn about what he looks like) as the new team’s field leader and shift the BPRD to a base in Colarodo. Which happens to be occupied by an aging German scientist still working on this particular experiment … A good one in its own right, and seeding for the future in introducing Axis agents Black Flame and Crimson Lotus (though only in old files).
NOVA: Origin by Jeff Loeb and Ed McGuinness feels uncomfortably like a knock-off of the Jaime Reyes Blue Beetle: Half-Latino boy inherits heroic mantle, gets plunged into a world of new super-heroics and has to save Earth from an alien invasion. The copycat elements aside, it’s a fun read, other than using the Chitauri as the invaders. I understand the urge to align the MU with the cinema universe but the Chitauri are boring and bring nothing to the table (saying they exist only for war is about as distinctive as saying they come from another planet).
DIGGER Vol 4 by Ursula Vernon is another excellent entry in the series. In the first chapter, Digger works out issues with the local hyena tribe and meets their shaman (“I can’t see through these crystals, but everyone thinks I can.”), resolving a plotline from the previous collection. In the second half, Digger has to choose between taking a chance to head home and protecting the unstable priestess Murai from going on a dangerous mission solo (thereby, as Ed the Nameless Hyena points out, establishing Digger’s heroic credentials). Highly recommended.
Jason Todd was Dick Grayson’s first replacement as Robin, eventually killed, then resurrected as the Red Hood. Despite that pedigree, he’s never been that interesting a character and RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS: Redemption by Scott Lobdell and Kenneth Rocafors doesn’t make him that different from any other hard case, fighting-crime-outside-the-law type. That said, this is a fun actioner but fatally flawed by its handling of Starfire (as I’ve mentioned before) as a sex-fantasy character who’s infinitely available for sex and forms no personal ties with anyone (Lobdell presents this as an alien disdain for humanity but it doesn’t work). Plus the enhanced boobs compared to her pre-reboot look and the scanty clothing displaying them. Possibly we’re supposed to think that her alien culture doesn’t mind showing skin, but the fact she bares almost everything but nipples and crotch makes it obvious we’re dealing with eye candy, not an alien race (here’s a dissection of a cover with similar problems).
ALL-NEW XMEN: Here to Stay by Brian Michael Bendis, David Marquez and Stuart Immonen has the time-tossed original X-Men trying to find their feet in the present as they learn more about what’s happened to them (I love their reaction to the modern Danger Room) and have to choose their course in fighting for mutant rights. Suffers from the usual problem of insisting being noble and patient is the only path to equality but fun nonetheless.
JIMMY CORRIGAN,THE SMARTEST KID ON EARTH by Chris Ware is the story of a fifty-something man meeting his long-estranged father while slipping in and out of Walter Mittyish fantasy sequences. I found some of the reality/fantasy shifts confusing; otherwise this didn’t work for me, but I think it’s mostly a matter of taste.
FABLES: Snow White by Bill Willingham and multiple artists wraps up the plotline of liberating Oz from the Nome King, then moves on to a new story where a prince formally pledged to Snow White in childhood now shows up to demand his marital rights. Unfortunately the arrogant Prince Brandish (racist, sociopathic, classist, sexist) is too loathsome to make an enjoyable villain and the climax shakes up the status quo for the worse (no spoilers). A disappointing collection.
(Cover art by Guy Davis, rights with current holder)

3 Comments

Filed under Comics, Reading

3 responses to “Comics (#SFWApro)

  1. Pingback: Woman criticizes comic book cover. Rape threats follow. | Fraser Sherman's Blog

  2. Pingback: A minor follow-up point regarding John C. Wright | Fraser Sherman's Blog

  3. Pingback: Welsh mages, earth mages, WWI and more: books read (#SFWApro) | Fraser Sherman's Blog

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