Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Unsolicited Opinions

The September '08 Solicits are out, which is odd, because I could have sworn that the December solicits just came out last month. Curse my temporally-displaced memory! Click the new little expanding posts link below to find out what I think, because you care so much.
TRINITY #14-17
Written by Kurt Busiek and Fabian Nicieza
Art by Mark Bagley & Art Thibert, Scott McDaniel & Andy Owens, Mike Norton, and Tom Derenick & Wayne Faucher
Covers by Jim Lee & Scott Williams
Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman lead the heroes of the DCU against the machinations of their malevolent counterparts, resulting in a cataclysmic event that will change the world – but not like anyone involved expects. Plus, Hawkman and Gangbuster make their move to rescue Tarot, and Konvikt breaks loose.
Issue #14 on sale September 3; issue #15 on sale September 10; issue #16 on sale September 17; issue #17 on sale September 24
32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

I seem to be one of few enjoying "Trinity" so far, and maybe it's because of things like this solicit: the return of Gangbuster? Busiek knows what I like. Also, I'm surprised to see Tarot making an appearance...does this mean that Chris Sims will be annotating it?

Face, meet palm.DC UNIVERSE: DECISIONS #1-2
Written by Judd Winick & Bill Willingham
Pencil art by Rick Leonardi
Covers by Stephane Roux
Election season is upon us, and the stakes have never been higher! An unknown villain is attempting to assassinate the presidential candidates, and only the heroes of the DCU stand in the way. As Green Lantern, Green Arrow, Superman, Batman and more try to learn the killer’s identity, they are faced with the difficult task of reconciling their own personal ideals with the mission at hand.
Brought to you by writers Judd Winick (GREEN ARROW/BLACK CANARY, TITANS) and Bill Willingham (FABLES, DAY OF VENGEANCE) and featuring sensational art by Rick Leonardi (ROBIN, SUPERGIRL)!
Issue #1 on sale September 10; issue #2 on sale September 24 • 1 and 2 of 4 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

I don't think I've ever been less excited about a comic than I am about "DC Universe: Decisions." I have a feeling that it may be the most anvilicious, straw man-filled, poorly-conceived caricature of a comic ever. Given that Winick and Willingham's politics are basically caricatures of reasonable positions anyway, I have little doubt that this series will serve only to piss off absolutely everyone.

Written by Grant Morrison
Art by J.G. Jones and Carlos Pacheco
Covers by J.G. Jones
It's one month after the Anti-Life Equation was released worldwide. Millions now toil as slaves of Darkseid, while the Justifier shock troops of Apokolips lay waste to the planet Earth and hunt down its protectors.
The remaining free humans and superheroes are stationed around the world, besieged within the walls of ten very familiar 'Watchtowers', as they fight a desperate, losing battle against the triumphant forces of evil.
While Green Arrow and Black Canary attempt to deliver the secret of humanity's last hope across America's blasted wastelands, the Outsiders brave the horrors of the Bludhaven bunker in search of Batman. The ultimate battle is coming...but which heroes will become villain – and vice versa? And what part do the Secret Society have to play in the dawning of this new Age of Evil?
Darkness is falling and death rules the day. Is this truly the end of the Age of Super Heroes? Don't miss FINAL CRISIS #4: “How to Murder the Earth!”
Retailers please note: This issue will ship with two covers by J.G. Jones that will ship in approximately 50/50 ratio. Please see the Previews Order Form for more information.
On sale September 17 • 4 of 7 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US

So I hear that skipping the last 40 issues (or so) of "Countdown" and not actually finishing reading "Death of the New Gods" may have greatly enhanced my enjoyment of "Final Crisis" #1. In any case, I'm pretty psyched about the series, and this issue's solicit suggests that we may get the same kind of awesome dystopian storytelling that Morrison presented in "JLA: Rock of Ages." And that can only be good.

Written by Geoff Johns
Art by George Pérez & Scott Koblish
Covers by George Pérez
Geoff Johns and George Perez continue crafting the Crisis of the 31st Century! As Superboy-Prime leads the Legion of Super-Villains against everything and everyone inspired by the legacy of Superman, the Legion of Super-Heroes are forced to call for help from beyond their world. Meanwhile, contingency plans are created by Brainiac 5 as he attempts to overcome Colu’s devastating betrayal, Dawnstar and Wildfire pull off a startling rescue, but at a horrible cost to the universe, and Saturn Girl uncovers the source of the Legion’s troubles.
Retailers please note: This issue will ship with two covers by George Pérez that will ship in approximately 50/50 ratio. Please see the Previews Order Form for more information.
On sale September 17 • 2 of 5 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US

"Legion of 3 Worlds" is the only Final Crisis tie-in series I'm really excited about. I think "Rogues' Revenge" will be good (even if only because it reunites Johns, Kolins, and the Flash), I'll begrudgingly buy "Requiem," I might read "Reign in Hell," and I'm curious about "Superman Beyond," but I'm chomping at the bit for "Legion." Johns' Legion arc in "Action Comics" was his best so far, and I love the Abnett/Lanning and Waid Legions to death; seeing them team up should be a blast.

But nothing can compare to my excitement over this:
The 'POP' of shame.AMBUSH BUG YEAR NONE #3
Written by Keith Giffen & Robert Loren Fleming
Art by Keith Giffen & Al Milgrom
Cover by Amanda Conner
Darkseid makes a list and checks it twice! Plus, a shotgun wedding, alternate universes, more OMACs than you can shake a stick at and the very important return of Super-Turtle all wait for you in this all-new, all-ridiculous third issue.
On sale September 24 • 3 of 6 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

Ambush Bug is the definition of awesome. Ambush Bug, Amanda Conner, and the Inferior Five? This book may require a warning label to explain the side-effects of a fun overdose.

Written by Gail Simone
Art by Nicola Scott & Doug Hazlewood
Cover by Cliff Chiang
Because you demanded it! The Secret Six are back in an all-new ongoing series that promises to deliver some of the darkest, most twisted action-adventure the DC Universe has seen since...well, the last time the Secret Six got together! Writer extraordinaire Gail Simone (BIRDS OF PREY) is reunited with BIRDS penciller Nicola Scott to chronicle the adventures of the Six, and you will not believe what they have in store. Join Catman, Scandal, Deadshot, Ragdoll, and ?? as they prepare for an adventure that will take them through a gauntlet across the seediest parts of the DC Universe, and will ultimately pit them against a foe more monstrous and murderous than any they've had to face! Don't miss the beginning of the most ferocious and scandalous Six story yet!
On sale September 3 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

Yay! This almost makes up for losing Gail on All-New Atom (and subsequently losing All-New Atom).

Written by Jim Starlin
Art by Rick Leonardi & Dan Green
Cover by Jim Starlin & Al Milgrom
A RANN/THANAGAR: HOLY WAR tie-in! After narrowly escaping a deadly blast, Adam Strange finds himself spiraling through the timestream, forced to relive the past and helpless to watch as his future unravels before his very eyes. Will he be able to pull himself together to rejoin the Holy War?
On sale September 3 • 40 pg, FC, $3.50 US

Dear DC,
There are writers besides Jim Starlin who can do space opera adventure stories. In fact, I daresay there are much better writers for that than Jim Starlin. Please make a note of it.
Tom Foss

Written by Sean McKeever
Art and cover by Eddy Barrows & Ruy Jose
Bombshell is back! But wait — isn't she dead?

My first thought upon reading this: "Who the hell is Bombshell?"

My second thought: "Isn't she on X-Force or something?"

My third thought: "Why am I still reading Teen Titans?"

Written by James Robinson
Art by Renato Guedes & José Wilson Magalháes
Cover by Alex Ross
“Atlas,” part 4! The grand finale of the Atlas epic finds Superman's foe seemingly victorious! With Superman down for the count, who can stand in the way of the city's supposed new ruler? Enter Krypto, (Super)man's best friend, who will do anything to protect his master. Don’t miss Krypto at his most heroic, a worthy addition to the Superman Family – and a very good boy. Plus: A new, magical character settles in Metropolis, just when Superman needs him most.
On sale September 24 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

I can't wait for James Robinson's Superman to start, but this solicit got me thinking: is Kurt Busiek's Krypto-centric story ever going to get published? Because I'd really like to see that.

I wonder if they'll even mention her toddler parents.SUPERGIRL #33
Written by James Peaty
Art by Ron Randall
Cover by Stephane Roux
Coming off the most devastating decision of her young career, Supergirl finds herself at a crossroads. Is she worthy of the "S" she wears? Can she involve herself in the affairs of humans again after misusing her powers so badly? Enter the Empress (of YOUNG JUSTICE fame), who has a whole different perspective on the matter!
On sale September 3 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

I'd complain about Supergirl getting another new writer, but I'm so incredibly happy about seeing Empress again that I can't bring myself to say anything bad.

Written by Marv Wolfman
Art and cover by Phil Winslade
Supergirl and Raven team up to save San Francisco from a new super villain with deep roots in the DC Universe!
On sale September 17 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

You know, I like Marv Wolfman as much as the next guy, but I really hope he isn't permanently taking over "Brave and the Bold." If Waid can't do it, why not Karl Kesel? Dwayne McDuffie? Someone else with an encyclopedic knowledge of the DCU and the ability to write characters with distinct voices? As far as I can tell, Wolfman's only got one of those skills.

Also, that cover is hideous.

Written by Geoff Johns
Art by Ivan Reis & Oclair Albert
Cover by Ivan Reis
The conclusion to “Secret Origin”! The prelude to the Blackest Night begins as the climax of the story of Hal Jordan’s first adventure comes to a close! Hal and Sinestro are confronted by the Guardians over their greatest fears. Plus, Sinestro uncovers a new prophecy all his own as the stage is set for next month’s “Rage of the Red Lanterns”!
On sale September 24 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US

Oh, holy crap. You know, I thought "Secret Origin" was almost done at this point. I was kind of expecting it to wrap up in the next issue or two. I mean, it's not a bad story, I just can't bring myself to care about the latest retelling of Hal Jordan's origin. Yes, it's a great deal better than "Emerald Dawn," does it have to be twice as long too?

Written by Dwayne McDuffie
Art by Ed Benes
Cover by Ed Benes
Vixen and Animal Man journey into the sacred Tantu Totem to solve the mystery of their altered powers. But Anansi, the African spider god responsible for these changes, has only begun reshaping the powers and histories of the Justice League, as eight-year-old Bruce Wayne shoots the burglar who killed his parents, Wonder Woman retires from the JLA after the tragic death of her husband, Superman, and The Green Lantern Corps quarantines Earth after one of their number destroys an American city. With the team’s history changing before Vixen’s eyes, is the JLA we now know gone forever?
On sale September 17 • 48 pg, FC, $3.99 US

McDuffie has gotten the short end of every stick with this JLA run. Between the artist, Meltzer's loose threads, and half a dozen stupid crossover tie-ins, there's been very little opportunity for him to do anything interesting or original with the series. I'm glad to see him still trying, and this story looks pretty interesting, but I'd really like editorial to give him as much free reign as they gave Brad "six issues of table talk" Meltzer.

Terra is totally the Titans' Charlie Brown. If Charlie Brown were sleeping with the teacher and taking down the Peanuts Gang from inside, that is.TINY TITANS #8
Written by Art Baltazar and Franco
Art and cover by Art Baltazar
School is in session at Sidekick City Elementary and it’s time for report cards and parent teacher conferences.
Plus, Beast Boy gets more than he bargained for with a trip to the local library and hilarity ensues at Blue Beetle’s birthday party with a case of mistaken identity and much, much more!
On sale September 17 • 32 pg, FC, $2.25 US

I love "Tiny Titans," and that cover gag is precisely why. Major props if this issue has Raven waiting in a pumpkin patch for the Great Trigon.


Hm...the Doctor Manhattan toy looks more like a Photoshop effect than an actual action figure. Is he unfinished, or just naked? I notice there's no new Minx titles slated for September; is it just a lull in the schedule?

Anyway, that's about it for DC. Looks to be a much better month than July. I'll hit Marvel up tomorrow.


Tom Bondurant said...

I could have sworn the Krypto story was part of the background of the Jimmy Olsen/Countdown issues of Action Comics, but I can't find a recent all-Krypto issue.

Jason said...

I keep waiting for something super cool to happen in Trinity. I like it, but I think it's hampered by the main story only being 16 pages long. I'm giving it a few months, and even if I want to drop it by then, I probably won't.

I feel bad for MacDuffie, I'm holding off on reading JLA until Robinson finally takes over.

The Dr. Manhattan toy's features are fuzzed out so as not to give away his appearance in the movie.

CalvinPitt said...

I'm pretty sure Wolfman's just filling in for a few issues on Brave and the Bold. Then it's J. Michael Stracynski Time! I leave it up to you whether that's a good thing or a bad thing.

Will Staples said...

I've been enjoying Trinity, too. It hasn't grabbed me like 52, but it's a breath of fresh air after that other weekly series.

Likewise psyched for Legion of Three Worlds (especially after getting hooked on the post-ZH Legion), and agree that DC should drop Jim Starlin like a potato on fire.

Derek said...

- I'm also enjoying Trinity and am a little confused by the general malaise about it online. Busiek's a great writer, and Trinity's been pretty fun so far.

- I'm undecided about DCU: Decisions. I like comics. I like politics. It should be a no-brainer, right?

Well, that's what I'm afraid of; that the series will have no brains. I think I'll wait to read some reviews before curiosity gets the better of me.

- Can I just say how cool it is to have a fellow Troper on my blogroll?

- I heard it here first: Secret Six (complete with Gail Simone) is coming back. I can't stop smiling.

- Bombshell was one of the Titans during 52. She was revealed as a traitor because... something. I don't know why I'm reading it either. I guess because McKeever can do better.

- Ditto McDuffie on JLA.

- Wow, this went on too long. Sorry for the long comment.