Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Comic reviews for September 10th 2008

Last Week was fairly big for reviews, but here we’ve got a more digestible 3 comics so that should be a lot easier for me. Sadly, All Star Bats was pushed back a bit thanks to a printing error…that and Frank Miller’s love to curse. Either way, I’m a little pissed about that…but maybe this week’s comics can cheer me up.

The Amazing Spider-man #571

Written: Dan Slott

Art: John Romita Jr.

Opening comments: Talk about a fall from grace…whereas last week’s issue was wicked fun with some incredible moments, this issue is bogged down with more shoddy storytelling and art that is starting to really deteriorate.

Story comments: Picking up where last issue left off with Anti-Venom trying to “cure” Spider-man, after a good few opening pages and some interesting moments with Menace, this issue falls down flat on its face.

First let’s talk about the cover. Don’t even think that it holds true, no, there is absolutely no Green Goblin here. Whatsoever. At all. Spider-man and Norman aren’t even in the same vicinity of each other the entire issue!

It’s all a mad dash, the Thunderbolts want to take in Spider-man, Spider-man wants to escape, Anti-Venom wants to help Spider-man, but is oblivious to how he is simply endangering him more. Norman and Menace have a slap fight with bombs that ends up with Menace throwing a tantrum at the end, and I’m left completely unsatisfied after this incredibly random issue.

Seriously, you can’t keep the same point going for more than a few pages before it jumps onto some new scene or place, it’s insane. While it was annoying in #569, it wasn’t anywhere near this bad. Am I reading Spider-man or watching an episode of Robot Chicken?

Despite my big complaints, there are a few good little moments tucked away. One of course being Anti-Venom taking on Radioactive Man and some little shtick about working for god. I can’t help but wonder if Slott is setting up Eddie to turn out to be as crazy as ever. Either way, we get a nice peak into the power level of Eddie’s new persona, revealing how unlike Venom, Anti-Venom is immune to the previous weaknesses.

While I do enjoy the little moments like this, alongside with Harry going to Lilly (finally making me like her character, if only a little bit) and Menace freaking out at Norman’s confession of always just wanting Spider-man…the bad, here, definitely outweighs the good and really disappoints me.

Art comments: Making things worse and taking this issue down even farther is John Romita Jr.’s art. While he has his good moments, usually the more open panels and scenes, he really just rushes through the entire issue, glossing over details like Radioactive man being bald, or Menace having pupils. While it isn’t a huge fall, its enough to take this issue down a peg for sure.

Final comments: I was very let down by this issue. Last week set a very high goal, so I wasn’t expecting too much, just an enjoyable read is all. But after following such an amazing issue, there’s no way I can recommend this bore-hole.

2 out of 5

Pass It.

Secret Invasion #6

Written: Brian Bendis

Art: Lienel Yu

Opening comments: And the disappointment ball keeps on rolling, with huge promises for this issue of Secret Invasion, I can’t help but feel negative towards it. At least Spider-man had Anti-Venom going for it, but this, what do we have here? Not much really, and nothing worth a 4 dollar price tag.

Story comments: This issue does little to nothing really. It’s really all the same we’ve seen before. Skrulls yammer on for a few pages, Avengers yammer on for a few pages, itty bit of action, more yammering, baddassery!

Honestly, I’m not even sure how to review this. This doesn’t even feel like an issue of Secret Invasion. Sure, all the plot elements are there from before, but this is about as stuffed as a salt-less saltine.

As far as advancing the plot, all it really does is get the Avengers to New York and everyone teaming up with everyone to take on a massive amount of Super Skrulls.

Though I’ll admit, the moment when Thor and New Cap meet was kind of cool, and the final 2 splash pages…oh my god…amazing. Simply amazing.

But really, there is little to nothing here. The Skrull-Vell moment at the end was just a stupid lead in to next month’s issue of Mighty Avengers.

I think THIS is the shortest review I’ll ever write, there is literally nothing I have to say about this issue but boredom.

Art comments: On the upside, Lienel Yu is blowing me away at every turn. I honestly feel his work here, is better than Steve McNiven’s Civil War art. Yu is capturing the exciting momentum of this event more than any other event artist ever could. I don’t have anything bad to say about him, he’s just knocking it so far out of the park…it’s amazing. Pure and simply amazing. It more than makes up for the paper thin plot of this issue. Yu’s art saves the day here.

Final comments: As boring and disappointing as this issue is, I’d say check it out for the art alone as Lienel Yu is just doing such an amazing job, he’s easily outshining Bendis’ incredibly weak script.

3 out of 5

Check It

Secret Invasion: Runaways/Young Avengers

Writer: Christ Yost

Art: Takeshi Miyazawa

Opening comments: Again, forget the Young Avengers to the title. It continues to be all the Runaways, with a few of the YA, the others still tied up in the main SI book. But again, like last month, that doesn’t in any way make this a bad read.

Story comments: This issue alone is more stuffed than Secret Invasion #6. We have some great moments, the best being Xavin coming to terms with his place in the world and whom he trusts and is loyal to. Xavin has always been a fairly strong character, but Yost really takes a strong character and makes him…her…whichever, even better.

One thing Yost does in this issue that was missing from the previous 2, is have Xavin and Karolina interact more. I seriously think this is the most time the words “Beloved” wherever spoken in a single comic, as Xavin repeats that word several times over, making it reach comedic effect.

Of course we get another great character moment from Teddy, AKA Hulkling, who wants to help but isn’t sure how. It’s fun to see his struggle with trying to do whatever the hell it is he’s supposed to, but just falling flat and doing nothing constructive except kick a Skrull’s ass once.

One thing to note, this whole story is very self contained compared to most of the Invasion stories. Most of the Invasion stories seem to have heroes against massive armies of Skrulls, just wasting through them, Yost however seems to understand the concept of “Super” Skrulls. Meaning their super, and not easy to kill.

In the end of it all, there were some great comedic moments, some awesome action and character development that really make this feel worth it. Not as if it where some shameless tie-in to get people onboard for the title alone. Yost shows that he not only can handle both teams well enough, he understands and appreciates them enough to tell a strong story with them.

Of course a big chunk of the YA is missing, and that is s till a minus. But regardless, as much as I was hoping to see some Vision baddassery, this was still good and the Runaways more than made up for their missing comrades.

Art Comments: While Takeshi Miyazawa started off fairly cutesy in issue #1, this issue his art does a great job. Granted, Lienel Yu still steals the show as top artist for Secret Invasion, But Miyazawa’s art really matures here and the characters look far closer to their original designs. Which is a plus since his art was already great to begin with.

Final comments: I’m sure most people wrote this off as a waste of money tie in, it is only 3 issues after all; there can’t be THAT much story to it, right? Wrong. It’s stuffed pack with great story, awesome art and incredible character moments. If you’re a fan of either the Runaways or Young Avengers, this is a Must Have.

5 out of 5

Must Have

So that’s it for today, I’m sorry that it’s a bit late in the evening, but I am so wiped out. I finished the first 2 reviews, then had to go lay down before I finished the third. Now check in Friday for Thunderbolts: Faith in Monsters in Collection Spotlight.


BrikHed said...

Invincible and Dynamo 5 were two must reads this week... just as a heads up

Andrenn said...

I don't have Invincible in my Pull list, I read it if I hear good things about it then check it out. But I'll check out #52 for sure, I've heard nothing but love for it. If I do get my hands on it, I'll post a review.

I've heard about Dynamo 5, but thats about it, I know little to nothing about it.

BrikHed said...

You can get a free copy of Dynamo 5 on the Image Comics site under online comics. It is worth a quick check to see if you like it.

Andrenn said...

I'll check it out, thanks very much.