Comics Reviews (May 26th, 2015)
Uncanny Avengers: Ultron Forever #1
Not a week where being at the bottom of the list is a commentary on much beyond how good the list is. Ewing is going for raw silliness here, and the pleasure of this book is unabashedly in using the deep history of Marvel Comics to put together a plot that is at once a riff on Age of Ultron and firmly a celebration of the greater weirdness of Marvel comics. It’s fluffy, and I suspect $15 was a bit high for the entirety of this story, but it’s terribly fun.
The Infinity Gauntlet #1
Interesting, and a comic that introduces some characters you really hope will stick around past the crossover. I liked Duggan’s issue of The Black Vortex more than most of that arc, and was enthused to check him out on a riff on the first big Marvel story I ever read, but this doesn’t quite scratch that itch, and what’s introduced instead – a very nice riff on the idea of child heroes and responsibility – isn’t quite defined enough to grab me. Still, I’m apparently pulling this, and I may well forget to drop it. Worth checking out, but a book that has the misfortune of coming while I’m trying to pare my pulls.
Where Monsters Dwell #1
Garth Ennis being silly. He’s very good at this sort of comedy, but it’s a slender thing, and I kind of suspect I should drop it and add War Stories from Avatar.
A good issue, which is a good sign as we move into the last year of this book. The boil has long since gone off this for me, but I remain vaguely optimistic that it will stick the landing and not make me feel bad for pulling it for the last two years of its run. Quite liked Olive and Tony’s reunion. Olive is by some margin the best thing going in this book.
Old Man Logan #1
A Frank Miller riff, but in a nice, technical sense of playing with his sense of craft rather than his more overbearing aspects. I was kind of expecting the worst out of this book, as I find Sorrentino’s art, though moody, tough to follow, but it kept things going well, with a nice Western noir feel and a surprising level of Secret Wars meatiness. The final image is terribly promising.
A side trip that depends on a better memory of the overall state of play than I have, and thus something of a slender thing for me, but also the sort of worldbuilding whose existence is part of the point of Uber, a comic that’s obviously going to reward a reread when it’s done. Or possibly in two months when it takes a mid-run break prior to a big 2016 relaunch.
This is marketed as the Watchmen of H.P. Lovecraft, but to any Moore connoisseur it’s clearly intended to be the From Hell of Lovecraft, and like From Hell, it opens with a slow burn, with pieces put on the board according to a logic that is as of yet far from clear. Lots to savor and pick apart here – I’d be lying if I said I entirely understood the plot or had a firm idea who all the characters were yet, and there’s lots of Lovecraft to brush up on. But the basic pleasure of finally starting down this path after literally years of anticipation is still enormous.
Sandman: Overture #5
Pleasantly, this comic finally comes together, with an issue that feels disciplined and clever instead of sloppy and overambitious. Williams is his usual genius, Gaiman gives him good material to work with, and the whole thing, for kind of the first time in the miniseries, feels like a good issue of Sandman instead of like an ill-advised reunion tour of a band that will never be as good outside its decade as in.
May 27, 2015 @ 7:14 pm
Just wanted to comment that, while I rarely get books quickly enough to say something timely, I do appreciate the reviews each week- and they do impact my pull list on occasion. I had somehow missed that Where Monsters Dwell was by Ennis, for example, and it's been long enough since I've read anything by him that it sounds like fun.
May 27, 2015 @ 8:13 pm
I'm surprised to see Ales Kot's Material absent from this list, not to mention his absence from these posts entirely. I've heard fantastic things (unfortunately have to wait until tomorrow to get ahold of my copy), and between Wild Children, The Surface, Zero, and Winter Soldier he's easily up there with Gillen in the Most Important Comic Writers of the Moment for me. I think you'd find a lot to like in his work.
May 28, 2015 @ 4:18 am
Secret Wars has pretty well sucked me in, after I caught up with a couple of the tie ins, this week. After years of reading comics, I'm weary of events that CHANGE. EVERYTHING. But, this one in particular seems to be giving a lot of talented creators a chance to do weird things with Marvel characters. So, it seems like a win.