Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Last Week's Comics Today - 10/11/2016

Green Valley and Moonshine were both great, I couldn't pick just one.  Other than that, a lot of confusion this week trying to remember what happened in comics past.

Pick of the Week
Green Valley #1 - Gorgeous art, good story, all-around great start for the series.  The focus is squarely on the characters here, establishing primarily two of the knights, but showing enough of all four to get a sense of their personalities.  But there's a good amount of action as well, and a final page to teases plenty more to come.  Recommended.

Moonshine #1 I love this team and would likely read any book they do together.  You might think that means my opinion can't be trusted, as I'm someone that read all of Spaceman, but I can admit that was weird and not their greatest collaboration.  This, is a reminder of the heyday of 100 Bullets.  Bad men doing bad things with some of the best dialogue in the business.  All with art, heavy in shadow, telling just as much of the story through gesture and facial expression.  These two remain at the top of their game.  Recommended.

Honorable Mention
Paper Girls #10 The titular paper girls - both young and old - get on the same page with one another and take some serious action this issue.  The craziness is as high as ever, and it caused me to let out a single "ha!" when I got to the last page.  There's a lot of books trying to out-do each other with great last pages, and I think that makes us all winners.  Recommended.

Superman #8 This was kind of spoiled by some articles before I'd read the issue.  If you haven't been spoiled, it should be a nice surprise.  If you have, it's a pretty long setup when you already know the payoff.  Regardless, it's still a good issue.  Clark and Jon are great together.  I don't know if Lois is being given much time in Action, but she's barely in this series.  She's great whenever she shows up, and that's coming from a guy with a life-long hatred for Lois.  Anyway, between this and Trinity, I have to wonder who's messing with Superman.  Same person/being or different in each book?  Something is definitely going on.

Everything else
Archangel #3 - There was an announcement for a collected version of this series at NYCC this past weekend.  Which is good, because I suspect a lot people are going to need it.  I remember the first issue better than the second, and the recap page didn't help much.  I have a rough memory of what's happening, but there's so many characters here with different agendas, the series either needs to ship more quickly or do a better job within the series itself.  Things happen, but the best I could figure is "the good guys got away from the bad guys."

Autumnlands Tooth & Claw #13 - I think I'd like this series better if I read it in trades.  It's a great series, but without a recap page and what seems like (I haven't verified) a less-than-once-per-month shipping schedule, it's hard to remember where things left off.  Context is king, and the story caught me up well enough once I started reading.  I'm somewhat purposely avoiding writing about anything that happens this issue since, like a handful of other series, you'd be completely lost if I were to explain anything.  If you like Birthright, check this out.  If you like fantasy in general, check it out.  If you like a Paper Girls-style mystery and trying to figure out what's really going on... you should check the series out.

DC Comics Bombshells #18 Mera vs Siren for the fate of Atlantis!  Where did the cast teleport to last issue?!    Hint: There's still Nazis.  This issues appears to wrap another arc, but by the last page, there's a hint of what's to come.  I'm constantly amazed by the number of characters getting added to this series, and wonder how long it can go on.  It's good, though I don't know anyone else reading it... makes me wonder if the sales are good enough to sustain.  Certainly appears that way, and I wish it the best.  It's positivity is always refreshing, the stories entertaining, and the art almost always wonderful.

Future Quest #5 Two stories this issue - minor advancement of the main storyline that ends in a great last page, and a disconnected story involving The Impossibles.  I'll be dropping this.  As much as I like the main story, it's exactly stuff like The Impossibles I couldn't care less about.  And with good new books coming out all the time, it's time to make room by clearing books I'm not as interested in.  I'm too young for most (all?) of these characters, and they're getting introduced faster than I can keep up.  I'm not invested in any enough to continue.

Ghostbusters International #9 - Issue 11 seems to be the last for this series, which is unfortunate, as I'd been really enjoying it.  So, with only a couple issues to go, things are starting to wind toward the inevitable conclusion.  The team have split in order to achieve multiple objectives, but what I wasn't expecting was a different artist for each team.  I'm going through the book and suddenly think, "Kylie's face doesn't look right..." look closer, check the cover and credits page, and sure enough - two artists.  It's a little weird this late in the game, but it's still a good series and will make for a nice collection once concluded.  

Justice League #6 - This arc looks to be the polar opposite of the first.  Where the first arc focused on huge action and the team working together, this issue opens with them quickly ending (or did they?) a fear-based assault with the rest of the issue focused on their civilian lives.  It's a nice contrast that breathes life into characters I'm not reading elsewhere (except Superman).  If DC have their ducks in a row, it won't clash with their solo books like Johns' run did.  The art and writing remain strong.  

Ragnarok #10 Thor has done some impressive things in this series, but here we're shown even he has limits.  And unless he does something about it quickly, he's not going to make it.  So I think we're due for a side quest soon to get his strength back.  The book continues to be well written, with art I can't help but stare at in awe.  I know the publishing schedule is slow, but this is one book that's always worth the wait.

Shade, The Changing Girl #1 - I sometimes write these immediately after reading a comic.  Other times, I need to figure out what I want to say, so the write-ups come a few days later.  This is one I've sat on, and I'm still not sure what I want to say.  It's weird, that's for sure.  Marley's a friend, and I think she was a fantastic choice.  This issue the surreal and very alien alongside the very real and human.  And she does a great job with all of it.  The story?  ...It's... all those things from two sentences ago.  I never read Shade before.  Maybe if I had, I'd like this more.  As it is, I'll check it out for a few more issues, but... I don't know... it's weird.

Shipwreck #1 - What the hell did I just read?  I don't know if there were preview pages for this book or not - either way, I didn't read them.  I saw the names "Warren Ellis" and "Phil Hester" and I was sold.  Phil Hester did The Wretch (among other things), and for that I'll take a life-long interest in any comic he does.  At a minimum, it deserves a look.  Warren Ellis, is of course, Warren Ellis.  Some hits, some misses, but when he hits, it's outta the park.  I can't even describe to you what happens in this issue.  If either of the creative names behind it interest you, you should pick it up.  I'll be getting issue two and see where that takes me.

Transformers #57 - I'd written a review of this, but for reasons unknown, that was lost to the electronic ether.  Rather than try to re-write it, I'll get straight to the point: this is a bad ending to a mostly bad series.  It was briefly good following Dark Cybertron, but the plotlines I cared about moved over to Til All Are One.  I'll miss Soundwave and Thundercracker, but that's about it.  The writing is horrible as characters possessing multiple names try to explain overly complicated schemes I could not care less about.  The art is incomprehensible in places.  This issue was a chore to get through and exactly the justification I needed to drop it when it's rebooted into the Optimus Prime title in a few months.