Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Comic Book Review: Batman and Robin #4

Written by Grant Morrison
Art by Philip Tan and Jonathan Glapion
Cover by Frank Quitely
Variant cover by Philip Tan

Plot: We begin this issue with Lighting Bug being fried and mutilated by the Red Hood and his sidekick Scarlet, a victim of Professor Pyg.  Batman and Robin come into the scene too late but pick up clues, which only raises more questions about who the Red Hood is.  A new character is introduced into the book as well, Mr. Oberon Sexton, whose face is masked to hide the scars from his wife’s murderer.

Batman and Robin again go on the hunt and find Red Hood ready to kill the Penguin.  Moments before Red Hood pulls out his flaming red guns and begins firing them at the dynamic duo, Batman under his breath asks himself if this villain is Jason Todd.  And if that is so, this could be an interesting development.

My Thoughts: This is an exceptionally conflicting issue.  Red Hood is obviously the bad guy here, and Batman the good guy.  However, I couldn’t help myself but cheer for Red Hood when he busted in the meeting place and started killing all the men surrounding the Penguin, and who wouldn’t cheer for him deep inside right?  When these men were discussing how to make addicts of “housewives, children, policemen, and judges,” who in their right mind wouldn’t want something done to these people? 

This issue makes the reader truly think about the difference between right and wrong.  It’s obvious the Red Hood has an agenda…to stop crime.  His new slogan “Let the punishment fit the crime” is creepy and weird, but there is some logic to it.  Morrison digs in deep and pulls out what most men and women crave, a sense of justice.  But most of us, deep down inside, want to find these criminals, and end it right then and there.

Now, seeing as how this type of story has been done before (people taking the law into their own hands, and killing the evil and the corrupt type of thing, ya know?) this story has to have a bigger angle to make it original.  And it will all come down to who is behind the mask of the Red Hood?  To be quite honest, I’m hoping it’s not Jason Todd, but someone else that we weren’t expecting in the least.

Philip Tan, the new artist, does a fine job, although I do miss having Quietly on this book.  Tan brings the typical artistic style to the pages of this issue, where as Quietly gave us something different and unique.  I honestly will miss having him working with Morrison on this title.

Overall:  A great read.  I would say that the sense of urgency is very high, but not quite to the point of what it was in the first three issues.  But we are getting a new villain here, so who knows what Morrison is trying to do for us now.

4 out of 5 stars

Next Month: Batman and Robin #5
Are two Dynamic Duos too much for one city? Batman and Robin find themselves at cross-purposes with Red Hood and Scarlet. Who's right? Who's wrong? And who will end up being the chosen protectors of Gotham City?

Jimmy's Pull List For 9/30/09

Much to my dismay, I am sadly going to have to wait for two whole weeks to receive any of the titles coming out this week. This makes me sad, but yet, I am very happy I'm saving money on the comics I get. woo hoo!

Green Lantern #46
Justice League of America 80 paged giant
Justice Society #31
Superman #692
Wonder Woman #36

I'm Most Excited For: Wonder Woman #36
Like I've been saying for a while, Gail Simone is comics best writer.  She invests herself in the stories she writes and makes them emotional and thoughtful.  Plus, when she writes, she fills up the comics with so much dialog.  Now a days, your lucky if you don't have 10 pages of nothing but picture frame after picture frame.  Simone delivers Wonder Woman stories like no one else.  It tops Geoff Johns, Brad Meltzer and Brian Azzarello.

I'm not sure what I'll do if and when Simone decides to leave this book.  Please Simone, never leave!  and keep Lopresti with you as well!  Please oh please oh please oh please!!!!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Comic Book Review: Blackest Night Superman #2 (of 3)

Written by James Robinson
Art by Eddy Barrows
Inked by Ruy Jose with Julio Ferreira 
Colored by Rod Reis

Plot: Psycho Pirate comes back from the dead causing mayhem wherever he goes.  So many emotions are vivid and running a muck with the people of Metropolis, and Superman and Superboy have no idea how to handle it.  On top of all this, Superman from Earth-2 rises and brings along with him a very dead Lois Lane.  As Superman battles the Superman from Earth-2, Ma Kent begins her battle with the risen Lois Lane.

My Thoughts: I have to say; this issue didn’t impress me as much as the first.  It hit off to a great start, but now has seemed to flat line, only maintaining a heart beat every 5 seconds.  I think integrating the Supergirl storyline was too much.  I understand it’s going to take a toll on Supergirl having her recently dead father rise from the grave and will help bring a sense of angst to the story, but it really is unnecessary. 

Now why bring Psycho Pirate into the mix?  Is his purpose just to scare people and control their emotions?  If so, I really don’t see the need to dwell on bringing back a villain just because he’s been gone for so long and it’s cool to have him back on the pages of DC Comics.

Now what I found fault with the most was the fact that Superboy seemed to randomly attack Superman without any notion of him being controlled by an outside force.  He, Superboy, becomes enraged and we have no idea why.  I’m sure I need to just be patient, but with three storylines going on in this issue, it just seems like too much was packed into 22 pages.  I wonder how things are going to resolve in Issue number three? 

Oh, and having ma Kent end this issue with the phrase “It’s On!” really doesn’t help me to feel like I’m reading a mature story.

The art however is fantastic!  These zombie heroes and villains are absolutely horrifying and disgusting.  Plus, the use of color is spectacular and couldn’t be better.  I just wish that Ed Benes were doing some artwork for any of the Blackest Night books.

Overall:  A below average issue.  Even with the tremendous artwork done by the Barrows/Jose team, Robinson just does not deliver a top-notch story like he did with issue #1.

2 out of 5 stars.

Next Month: Blackest Night Superman #3 (of 3)

Black Lantern Psycho-Pirate shares his pain with the citizens of Smallville! And having your face shoved through the back of your skull can create quite a bit of pain. Will any Kryptonians come to the rescue? And could the key to taking down this menace lie within the Medusa Mask? Find out in the finale of this terrifying 3-issue epic from writer James Robinson (SUPERMAN, STARMAN) and artist Eddy Barrows (TEEN TITANS, ACTION COMICS)!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Comic Book Review: Superman Secret Origin #1

Written by Geoff Johns
Art by Gary Frank

Plot: Geoff Johns teams up with artist Gary Frank in another revamping of the Superman origin story. We revisit the relationship Clark Kent had with Lana Lang back in school, how he first met Lex Luthor, and the difficulties that Clark faced as he gradually developed unique abilities that caused him to wonder about his life and his beginnings. The answer is frightening, yet not unexpected.

My thoughts: When I first heard of Johns writing this new revamping of the Superman origin story, I couldn’t help but wonder “why now?” It’s a valid question right? Wasn’t it in 2004 when Mark Waid wrote Superman: Birthright? I thought that was to be the definitive revamping of the Superman origin story. Now it’s nearing the closing of 2009 and here we are in the pages of another twist in the Superman story. I’m excited about it, but still pondering on the reasons for doing this so soon.

This first issue is good, nothing bad about it all actually. I felt like I was reading a comic that came out of the Silver age, yet it still maintained a lot of the modern aspects and sensibilities. Clark Kent grows up not knowing what the heck is happening to him and begins to ask questions and begins to believe he isn’t normal, and that’s all he really wants out of life, to be normal.

Now, we don’t actually learn anything new with this first issue. The story hasn’t had a real chance to develop enough quite yet for any new realizations to be put in its foreground. However, we do get a new look at how Clark reacts to learning of his alien heritage. His refusal to accept it at first is quite terrifying, and his adoptive mother Martha and the look of horror bestowed upon her face at how much pain this is bringing to Clark is incredibly emotional and moving. I’m really anxious now to learn about the “secret” part of this origin story.

Gary Frank took an interesting twist on the whole artistic aspect of this book as well. Instead of creating a new face for Clark, we find ourselves looking at a boy who resembles Christopher Reeves in almost every way. Frank did a great job a giving that “Reeves” look to Clark, but making him look young and boyish. The idea of making this a tribute to the recently passed actor is interesting, creative, and hard to do! Every panel of every page of every book now has to look like Reeves, and what a challenge that will be for Frank to do.

Overall, a fun and moving issue. Geoff Johns started doing Secret origins with Green Lantern, and now he has Superman at his finger tips. I hope Johns will do a few more secret origin stories and help bring the continuity of the DC universe back to a place where it makes sense. Because God knows DC’s continuity level is definitely at the “WTF” stage.

4 out of 5 stars

Next Month: Superman Secret Origin #2
Geoff Johns and Gary Frank's exploration of the origin of the greatest Super Hero of all time continues! In this second issue, readers will witness young Clark Kent's initial journey into the late 30th century as Superboy and see how meeting the Legion of Super-Heroes shapes the Superman he will one day become! Plus, more on the beginnings of the young Lex Luthor!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Movie Updates: Thor

Kenneth Branagh is on board with directing the upcoming Marvel Comics film, Thor.  The cast is filled with big name actors and actresses such as Natalie Portman playing Jane Foster, Tom Hiddleston and god Loki, And chris Hemsworth as the title character Thor.  It was rumored that Jessica Jessica Biel would be playing the skilled Asgardian Warrior, Sif.  However, those rumors were torn to shreads when Jaime Alexander was casted in the role.

I'm somewhat excited about Thor.  Having never read the comic seeing as how it's a Marvel Comics title, I still enjoy mythological stories and Thor falls right into that category. 

I think Chris Hemsworth, who we've seen play as George Kirk in the recently released Star Trek, is a perfect choice for the role of Thor.  However, I think he'll need to beef himself up a bit in order to look more the part.

I find it interesting that, of all people, Kenneth Branagh is picked to direct this film.  Branagh is an exceptionally acomplished actor and director whom I never would have picture being apart of a comic book film.  I'm glad to see he doesn't few the comic book genre as something beneath him.

For more updates, go to newsarama.com to find what else will being comig out on film.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Spider-Man 4

Now don't be fooled, the posters you are about to see are completely fake and fan-made.  However, talk of the 4th Spider-Man film is all a buzz right now.  IMDB.com has listed only the cast members signed on for the 4th installment, Tobey McGuire will return as Spider-Man, Kirstin Dunst is on board as Mary Jane, and it is rumored that J.K. Simmons will return as J. Jonah Jameson.  Of course I can't see them getting anyone to play the heard-ass news manager, can you?

From what I've read around the net, it looks as if fans are pushing for two characters.  the first being Carnage, who bears a striking resemblance to Venom.  I was never truly a fan of venom, but my knowledge of venom is purely based on the saturday morning cartoon and not the comic.  And the other one would be Black Cat, of whom I have no knowledge of except from what Ive seen on the cartoon show.

however, Right now the film is rumored to come to theaters in the summer of 2011.  but from what I've heard about re-writes and script changes, it's possible the film could be delayed.  who knows?!?!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Jimmy's Pull List for 9/23/1009

Blackest Night: Superman #2 (of 3)
Superman: Secret origin #1 (of 6)

And coming to me by mail in two weeks....

Justice League #37
Power Girl #5
Supergirl #45

I'm most excited for:
Superman: Secret Origin #1.
Geoff Johns is probably one of the more creative writers in comics right now.  His secret origin story with Hal Jordan was very good, so I'm excited to see how Geoff Johns decides to put a twist on the Superman origin Story.

I like how Johns has been given the opportunity to re-map the DC Universe.  Johns has the ability to boost the mature tone and quality of DC and I think it will be a successful run with this new Superman mini series.

Plus, Gary Frank is such an amazing artist how could I not be excited for this series.  The only way I could be more excited was is Gail Simone and Aaron Lopresti were working together on this mini.

Now, the only question, why now?  Why do this Superman mini series now when the focus is Blackest Night?  The DC universe always seems to tie all their titles into the big event in some shape or form.  Will this mini have some connection with Blackest Night or is there some other reason for making sure this series is going on right now?  Could there be a connection with the dilemma on New Krypton, something that will help solve part of a mystery?  who knows? 

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Comic Book Review: Blackest Night - Batman #2 (of 3)

Written by Peter J. Tomasi Art by Adrian Syaf and John Dell

Plot: Batman and Robin find that there typical way of fighting villains (no guns) will not be enough to stop the risen Black Lanterns. While still honoring Bruce Wayne’s style of crime fighting, they enlist the aid of flame throwing technology to defeat the zombie villains of Batman’s past. Elsewhere, unknown to anyone, Deadman possesses the body of Barbara Gordon in an attempt to save Commissioner Gordon from more Black Lanterns. We end this issue with a twist I think everyone probably saw coming, Dick Grayson is now faced with the most terrifying event in his life…his parents, risen from the dead as evil Black Lanterns.

My Thoughts: I was little worried about this issue at first, the cover made me wonder a few things. First, why is Batman using guns? Was this issue possibly alluding to the Grayson Batman way of fighting crime? And second, I thought to myself, “Oh my, the Ghostbusters are back and they wearing the cape and cowl!” But of course my fears were relinquished once I began reading the story.

Tomasi’s writing is always a toss-up for me. There are moments of brilliance, and moments of dullness. Currently his work on The Green lantern Corps is less than satisfactory, very long and too many plots going on at the same time. However, Tomasi is redeeming himself with his work on Blackest Night: Batman thus far. His best work is when he has the opportunity to flesh characters out. BL: Batman #2 truly brings out some major character development the new Dark Knight and Boy Wonder. It seems Damian Wayne is warming up to Dick Grayson as Batman more and more. And even though I’m still not convinced that Damian is a good choice for Robin, I’m beginning get used to the idea.

Syaf is a newbie in the art department of DC Comics and I’m currently very impressed by what he’s doing. His use of light is very mature and creative. The flames from the flame throwers are blindingly superb and artistic. The amount of detail in his art goes beyond a lot of comic book artists who have been in the field for years and years.

Overall, a good issue. It’s a lot of fun and keeps you interested and wanting more. No complaints here! And I totally want to see how Dick handles having to fight off his parents who want to rip his heart out. Who would have thought the Flying Grayson’s would ever be seen again? Very emotional! Oh the angst, give me more!!!

4 out of 5 stars

Next Month: Backest Night - Batman #3 (Conclusion)
The stunning conclusion arrives! Batman and Robin, along with the help of Deadman, try to defend Gotham City against the onslaught of Black Lanterns. But how do you defeat an enemy whose only goal is to feed off the emotions of a city and eat the hearts of all that stand in their way? Prepare for the answer from writer Peter J. Tomasi (GREEN LANTERN CORPS, THE MIGHTY) and up-and-comer Ardian Syaf!

Comic Book Review: Blackest Night #3 (of 8)

Written by Geoff Johns
Art and cover by Ivan Reis and Oclair Albert

Plot: Hal Jordan and The Flash are in a battle with deceased JLA members, most notably Firestorm.  In the meantime, the current, living Firestorm looses someone near and dear to his heart due to the dead, Black Lantern Firestorm.  And when all hope seemed lost, we are finally introduced to the much talked about Indigo Tribe.

My Thoughts: A fellow comic book buddy told me this after reading Blackest Night #3, “This mini-series will go down as the greatest comic story of all time as long as it finishes well.”  And I very much agree with that statement.  The complexity of this story is mind-boggling.  Johns has done something that Marvel comics failed to do with “Marvel Zombies.”  Everyone loves a story about mindless, brain-eating zombies right?  Marvel comics did attempted this and, while still entertaining, failed miserable as a good story.  Johns has put a lot of heart into Blackest Night by making this story emotional and terrifying.

Firestorm is without a doubt creepier than any of the heroes that have risen thus far.  He has a lot of one-liners that will make your skin crawl.  However, that shouldn’t discredit the fear factor that all the risen heroes bring to the story.  Black Lantern Martian Manhunter scares the crap out of me!

Now, I was beginning to wonder when the story was truly going to push forward in the plot seeing as how it was seeming to focus more on bringing people back from the dead rather than on the plot itself.  But #3 certainly does bring some things to light that helps us to understand things a little better.  Two questions come to mind...
1.     Are these risen heroes the actual heroes, or have the rings just taken over the empty shell?  As we learned in Blackest Night: Batman #1, (review coming soon) Deadman’s body was taken, while his soul was not.  Is Deadman different because of his power or are all of the risen dead bodies souls floating around wondering what the heck is going on?
2.     Why are the Black Lantern rings so different as far as how they are made from all the other lantern rings?  They seem to be embedded into the Black Lantern bodies which, while still revealing a huge part of the mystery, still causes more questions to arise.

It was fun to see the Indigo Tribe finally make their presence known.  And what an entrance they make!  Not only do they come in pounding away at the Black Lanterns, they seem to know more about what’s going on than anyone else.  It makes me wonder if the Indigo Tribe was the very first corps to exist, and the Guardians of the universe only thought they were the beginning.

The art of course is fantastic as always.  While Reis doesn’t rival Ed Benes, he’s still up there as one of the best comic book artists in the biz.

Overall, virtually flawless as an issue.  It was exciting, disturbing and full of angst.  (Has anyone figured out I love the word ANGST?)  Worthy of one of the top spots for this month.

5 out of 5 stars.

Next Month: Blackest Night #4 (of 8)
Summer's hottest event explodes in this critical issue! Hold on to your power rings, because the secrets behind the Blackest Night finally stand revealed! While Earth is evacuated, Hal Jordan embarks on a brave journey to the darkest depths to uncover the truth behind the Black Lanterns! You won't believe what he uncovers!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Comic Book Review: Action Comics #881

Written by Greg Rucka and Sterling Gates
Art by Pere Pérez

Plot: Supergirl and Flamebird find themselves duking it out and Nightwing is caught in the middle. The Science Police are after the three Kryptonians and we find out that Kara, even though she has done a lot of growing up since setting foot in the DC universe, shows she still has more to do.

My Thoughts: Well, I liked it, and I didn’t. I think the conflict between Kara and Thara is pretty darn great and a little ironic. Supergirl’s father died which was in some ways Thara’s fault, (however no one should blame her for it,) and the death of Lois’s sister was Supergirl’s fault. What I find very immature about Supergirl in this issue is the fact that she can’t see that. Lois is very upset at Supergirl for the death of her sister, and Kara doesn’t understand why Lois is mad. Yet here she is, throwing punches with Thara, blaming Thara for the death of her (Supergirl) father.

Now I’m confused by the title of this arc, didn’t they already have a hunt for Reactron? Yet they felt they needed to have another hunt and make it sound epic and as if it’s never happened before? Hhhmmmm? Just makes my right eyebrow raise upward.

Now did I miss something? When did Mon-El die? I just assumed he was taken prisoner by Reactron. It certainly came as a shock to me to read that Supergirl was being blamed for Mon-El’s death. I know James Robinson plans to have him in the Justice League, so I’m certain that this is all just a farce, and Mon-El will show his head again.

The art, has it’s moments, but it’s nothing to get excited about. Perez just didn’t do a whole lot for me this go round. However, the last page of this issue was pretty great, very detailed and fun.

Overall, this issue was satisfactory but had moments of dullness. However, I do like Flamebird and Nightwing. I think they should take over as the headliners in Actions Comics and allow Superman (when he returns permanently) to stay within his self-named title. Rucka is doing a great job at establishing them as a great pair of super hero’s and I think they should stick around after Superman returns and is loved by everyone again.

3 out of 5 Stars.

The Story Continues Next Week In Supergirl #45
Continuing from ACTION COMICS #881 – "The Hunt for Reactron" part 2! Can Supergirl rely on her seemingly unstable childhood friend to help her track down her father's assassin? Or will she ultimately get burned by Flamebird?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

I Hate The Previews

OK, so honestly, I hate the previes DC comics has been having lately.  Currently we are getting a lot of Captain Atom and Starro.  I'm not doubting the potential of these stories, but good grief, are these neccesary?

First off, it causes the prices to go up a buck, which means more budgeting on my part since I also have bills to pay.

Secondly, I really don't like having to read a 5 paged preview and then wait another month for more of the story.  I can handle 22 pages, but there isn't enough pages of the previews to make them interesting to me.

I wonder if DC decided to start doing this because of great demand from customers, or if they aren't breaking even with subscriptions and had to compensate somehow. 

Just a rant, comments and disagreements are welcome.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Jimmy's Pull List For 9/16/09

Action Comics #881 - Flamebird and Nightwing might very well be the most interesting and moving super hero team to ever cross into the comics realm.

Blackest Night #3 (of 8) - Whew, I'm getting all jumpy just thinking about it!

Coming In The Mail In 2 Weeks....

Batman & Robin #4 - Same writer, new artist.  Lets see if Morrison can keep up his good work!

Most Excited for Blackest Night #3
This mini series could very well be the greatest mini series of all time. It’s giving comic book fans some intelligent horror that doesn’t resemble the “mindless zombie” storylines that Marvel decided to give us. Geoff Johns if a genious!

Comic Book Review: Green Lantern Corps #40

Written by Peter J. Tomasi
Art and cover by Patrick Gleason and Rebecca Buchman

Plot: Arisia meets up with her dead family members. Kyle Rayner is bewildered and conflicted with seeing his dead lover, Jade, flying with him in the sky. Kryb, assisted by a Star Sapphire, looks for her children who have mysteriously vanished from their resting place. Clarissi gets into a power tussle with the Alpha Lanterns while Guy Gardner ends up killing an old friend who not too long ago was killed in action.

My Thoughts: I have decided that this particular title is an exceptionally difficult one to write for. There are so many plots going on at once, it takes a good writer who can make each storyline interesting and captivating for the reader. This particular issue is bleeding so rapidly with emotion; it makes me wonder how much worse things can get for the Lantern Corps. Tomasi has to be given such honorable mentions for his ability to handle such a difficult title to write for.

With that being said, I can’t help think that this title is always toggling month to month from being stellar to being very bad. And this issue weighs more towards the bottom of being good and bad. My personal tastes don’t lean much towards stories containing multiple plotlines. I find it confusing and/or too much to handle in a 22 paged book. I understand that the corps is spread out across the universe, but why focus on five plots in so few pages? Take the most important and vital plots for the Blackest Night Story and delve into those more and not waste time on the ones that don’t matter.

Overall, I wasn’t that impressed by this issue. Blackest Night is not doing so well in the pages of Green Lantern Corps thus far. Nothing was truly accomplished here and nothing new was learned either. I feel too much time is being wasted on continually bringing people back from the dead and not enough time is being spent getting to the point of Blackest Night. I sure hope we learn something new soon!
2 out of 5 stars
Next Month: Green Lanten Corps #41
The intense and horrific battle between the Green Lantern Corps and the Black Lanterns on Oa takes a turn for the worse! The Corps realizes that the abominable, ultimate goal of the Black Lanterns is not only to feed off the Corps' emotions, but to consume and decimate the main power battery and destroy Oa forever!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Disney/Marvel Merging Parody - Hilarious!

A lot of truth spoken here.  We honestly don't know how this will end up.

Vote For The Best of 2009

It's September, and the end of the year is rolling around!  Which means there will be talk of what was the best for the year 2009!  Well I'm having a poll!  Vote for your favorite comics of 2009.  Here are the categories....

Best individual comic:
Best Writer:
Best Artist:
Best Cover:
Best story arc:
Best mini series:
Best Superhero:
Best comic book title:

You can vote in a comment below, through facebook or e-mail, totally up to you.

* To qualify for best story arc and mini series, both will need to be finished by January of 2010.
* To qualify for best comic book title, it must have it's first isue out by June of 2009 and must run    once a month.
* Please do not go by the publishing month listed on the comics, go by the actual release date.

Comic Book Review: Superman World of New Krypton #7

Written by James Robinson and Greg Rucka
Art by Pete Woods

Plot: General Zod, a few issues back, was shot during a festival. Currently, Zod remains hospitalized, and New Krypton continues with no military leadership. Zod, in a few brief moments declares Kal-El (Superman) the temporary general and leader of the military guild until Zod has fully recovered. Kal-El, feeling a bit overwhelmed, maintains his stance that New Krypton should not go to war with Earth while the rest the inhabitants are wrestling with that very issue. And while this is all going on, we find New Krypton still has many threats that could jeopardize the lives of everyone on New Krypton.

My Thoughts: In the last issue of Superman, we found Superman alone out in space with the rest Earth against him. The first page of this issue shows him carrying the body of Zod’s assassin through space, all alone. During the council meeting, Superman seems to be all alone in his stance not to declare war on Earth. And when Zod declares Superman the general and leader of the military guild, there is a moment of uncertainty in Superman’s face.

The most emotional point in this issue however is the conversation between Superman and Tyr-van. Tyr-van’s deception did not sit well with Superman, which in turn meant he could not trust Tyr. And the moment Tyr flew away was the point where Superman was completely and utterly alone.

I found this issue incredibly emotional. I don’t know if I can remember a time where Superman has literally had no support from anyone. Yes he has his band of military people, and Ursa, but their loyalties only lie with Superman out of orders from Zod, Ursa especially whose love for Zod is the only thing that dictates her obedience to Kal-El.

This is the part of the story where everything goes completely south and there seems to be nothing our hero can do. In every page of this issue, Superman never cracks a smile. He feels completely alone and I can only assume that he wishes to be back on Earth with his beloved Lois. Everyone hates to see the hero, in any story, so alone because of the terrible situations surrounding him or her, but it’s the part of the story that everyone’s attention becomes more focused. That describes this issue in every way, and I love it!

The art of course is superb. There are times when Superman’s face, mainly during the council meeting, resembles that of Woody the cowboy from Toy Story, but it was nothing so distracting that I lost focus on the story. But the moments where Superman feels the most distraught, Rucka get’s an A+. Rucka shines when he using the characters eyes to show emotion. The moment when he tells Tyr to leave was very emotional. You could see Superman’s pain, anger and disappointment all in one look.

Overall, a grade “A” issue; very powerful and angst driven throughout all of its pages. Not a lot happened as far as the overarching plot in this miniseries, but that wasn’t the point of this issue. Rucka wanted to Superman to feel completely alone, and he did a bang up job at it. We’ll see where this will take Superman in the remaining issues of this mini.

4.5 out of 5 stars

Next Month: Superman World of New Krypton #8 (of 12)
On a mission in space, Superman and his fellow Kryptonians encounter the might of the Thanagarian Army. Can Superman keep things peaceful between the two races – or will The Man of Steel discover that Hawkman's legendary temper is shared by all his people?

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Delay once again in blogs

ok, So I slacked off a little this week, I apologize.  Just got really busy with my chorus and work.  But I've got some reviews to write which will happen both late tonight and tomorrow.  So, again, I apologize for not keeping with it!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Darn My Forgetful Brain

So, as I was driving to the comic book store I thought to myself, "man, I' really excited in getting the Secret Six issue for this month!  It's going to be great!"

And then it happened!  I walked into the store and began looking for my titles in my pull list.  Yes, I know what you are all thinking.  "YOU IDIOT! LABOR DAY WAS ON MONDAY!  COMICS ARE DELAYED THIS WEEK!"

This is the only reason I hate holidays, delayed comic book releases.  gggrrrrr.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Jimmy's Pull List for 9/9/09

Green Lantern Corps #40 - GL Corps keeps bouncing around at being very good and very bad.  I'm hoping Blackest Night gets a move on in the plot.  Sadly though, I have to wait for this issue to come to me in the mail before I can review it, which will be about two weeks.

Secret Six #13 - I've heard enough good thing about this title that I decided to start picking this one up.  It has Gail Simone as the writer so it has to be good right?

Superman: World of New Krypton # 7 (of 12) - I'm absolutly loving this title.  I just wish they would have made this apart of the regular Superman title and not separate.

Title I'm most excited about
Secret Six.  It's a new title for me so I'm in that "really excited" phase about reading it.  I'm really not worried about it either, Gail Simone is such a good writer and knows how to hold herself.  Simone is arguable one of the best writers for comics right now.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Comic Book Stores Review: Gryphon Comics and Halley's Comics

So, I have been living in Fort Collins, Colorado for a month now and I have had the opportunity to check out the local comic book stores in this town. There are two stores that are specifically comic book stores. I have spent some time at both and have had good and bad experiences. Let me explain….

Gryphon’s Comics And Games

If you like flashy, over the top looking shopping places, then Gryphon Games and Comics is for you. I walked in there for the first time and my first thought was, “WOW! This place is amazing!” And I was sure that this would be the store I’d come to on a weekly basis. The layout is very nice and attractive. And I would say any comic book lover should check out this store just to get a feel for it and experience it.
However, I wasn’t impressed with their stocking decisions. The first day I went there, (On a Wednesday afternoon mind you) none of the titles I pick up were there. I made sure I was in the right section of the shelf, and sure enough, it said “New Releases.” I went to the counter and asked if my titles were out, because it’s possible I didn’t check the DC Comics website correctly for the week’s releases. The young woman at the counter looked at her files and replied “It looks like we are sold out of those specific titles.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME?? I have never had that experience at any comic book store I’ve been to in my life. That should never happen, especially on the first day comics are released. I decided that it was a fluke and next week would be fine. So I came back the next week, and the same thing happened again! As well as the third week! I have deduced that Gryphon’s Comics does not keep enough on stock.
And to make matters worse, their back issue section is virtually non-existent. One thing I love doing when I go to a Comic Book store is scrounging through the back issues and see if anything sparks my interest.

Now it is very conducive to conversations, which I have failed to see much of, about comics and other related topics. It’s spacious and has a fun atmosphere. But for someone like me, who likes to roam around looking at everything, this store truly does not meet my standards and ranks low as a good comic book store.

1.5 out of 5 stars

Halley’s Comics

I did visit Halley’s comics and it’s much more satisfying of a visit. Sadly, I have no pictures of the place to post.  But there selection is huge and plentiful. And there back issue section is wonderful. They have some issues I hadn’t seen in a long time. Plus, their shrine to Alan Moore made me smile from ear to ear.

Now, one thing I do have an issue with is they do not split up the comics according to publishing company. DC, Marvel, Image, etc etc, they are all clumped together and alphabetized. This makes it hard to see and very easy to miss a title you may want.

Now, if you have allergies, more specifically towards cats, I would not recommend going here. They have their pet cat rummaging around the store rubbing up against customers. I personally have no problem with this. But someone who does not like animals, or who could die in the mere presence of a cat due to allergies, this is definitely not the place for you. The store is not necessarily a clean place, but not terribly dirty either. But seeing as how I just go in and grab my comics, looking around a bit, and head out, it’s perfect for me.

4 out of 5 stars

I’m hoping to check out the comic book store in Denver soon. I hear it’s supposed to be incredible.

Saturday Morning Watchmen Cartoon Show

I just saw this, and I almost died laughing!  So great!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Comic Book Review: Justice League A Cry For Justice #3

Written by James Robinson
Art and cover by Mauro Cascioli

Plot: Some semblance of a super hero team begins to form in Hal Jordan’s new “task force” League. Supergirl joins their ranks and begins the interrogation of Prometheus. However, this new league learns that Prometheus has more up his sleeve than they anticipated and stopping him may be next to impossible.

My Thoughts: If you are someone who enjoys a lot of dialogue and verbal back story when reading a novel or comic book, then you’ll love this issue. So much time is spent learning about Prometheus, his plans and why he’s doing it. I’m the kind of person who loves stories with a lot of explanation, (ex. Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings) and this issue is no exception.

Now it does drag on a bit for me. Towards the end I was asking myself, “Ok, when’s the plot twist going to come?” And it finally did, but so much time was spent on Congorilla and Mikaal’s part of the story that the book just lingered at the end.

The torturing of Prometheus was a real mind blowing scene! Who could have imagined Hal Jordan would have been reduced to torturing people as an effective way of getting answers. I know a lot of readers will take issue with this and give it a low ranking score as a comic book, but I personally loved it. The best stories are the ones where the good guys become the bad guys when they don’t even realize it, which causes its readers to question the heroes’ motives. And you have to wonder how far is Jordan going to go with this? What lengths will he take to stop corruption and evil? He seems to be verging on hating criminals so much that he is willing to kill them if it means an end to evil in the world.

Cascioli’s art again blows me away. The scene where Atom is inside Prometheus’ brain is so detailed and painful looking and I wonder how in the world this artist is not doing more comic book art? I would argue that Cascioli is up there with Alex Ross and among the rest of the comic book art gods.

Overall, a great issue. It lingered a bit towards the end, but nothing terrible. I was beginning to wonder when this mini was going to get started the plot, and it finally did with JL:CFJ #3.

3.5 out of 5 stars

Next Month: Justice League A Cry For Justice #3
How far would you go for justice? The heroes have found themselves turning to darker tactics in their search for retribution. Starman and Congorilla have captured the killers who took down some of their friends, but now what do they do with them? Meanwhile, Green Lantern and company wrestle with the idea of torturing villains for information in order to save lives.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Comic Review: Supergirl Annual #1

Written by Sterling Gates
Art by Fernando Dagnino and Raúl Fernandez

Plot: To begin, Supergirl gives a shot at her new secret identity, Linda Lang. She finds herself (as superheroes tend to do) in the middle of a hostage situation. Afraid to come onto the scene as Supergirl for fear she would be arrested as an illegal Kryptonian, she decides to infiltrate and stop the criminals as Linda Lang. As successful as she is, she finds herself putting two lives in danger, a mother and her child who are more than they seem to be.
We also have a second feature to this issue, the origin of Superwoman, who we all know as Lucy Lane, sister to Lois Lane. We find out why she became the secret weapon of project 7734, and we are left with a very interesting plot twist.

My Thoughts: All I can say is WOW! Gates once again brings a tremendous story to the pages of Supergirl. The beginning pages are an amazing social commentary on fear and how people deal with it. In and eight panel spread of two pages, we have examples of prejudice, racism, ignorance, fear, shallowness, ignorance and violence. For as long as Superman has been on Earth, and how long people trusted him, it all changed in a snap when a bunch of Kryptonians killed an Earthling. All those people were ready to point finger at who seemed to be the most likely culprit. It is such an interesting and truthful commentary on human nature.

What I appreciate the most about the story is, even though Kara is a superhero and has experienced events that most adults never will; she still has the same worries and makes the same mistakes that your average teenager does. With her experience fighting crime, she still doesn’t make the best decisions in the world. However, with that being said, there was no way she could have known that among the hostages there was a mother and son who were among the inhabitants of Kandor. Now I’m sure we all can understand the mother’s frustration, but she would have been caught anyway. But since Kara was at the fore front of it all, the mother took her anger out on her.

The second part of this issue was also very entertaining. I loved the back story about how Lucy, being the younger sibling, did not receive the attention from her father that her sister Lois did. It was horrifying how her own father put Lucy in that type of danger just to fulfill his vendetta against Superman and the Kryptonian race. None of it mattered to Lucy, she was just happy to finally have the respect and attention from her father that she always wanted. And I’m very excited to see what the next issue of Supergirl will bring us since it looks like Lucy Lane never actually blew up. Will she be mad at Kara and/or her father?

Overall, one of the best issues this year. I love comics that make sociological commentaries that go against the norm.

5 out of 5 stars

This Month: Supergirl #45
Continuing from ACTION COMICS #881 – "The Hunt for Reactron" part 2! Can Supergirl rely on her
 seemingly unstable childhood friend to help her track down her father's assassin? Or will she ultimately get burned by Flamebird?

Friday, September 4, 2009

Hilarious Comic Strip

If you're having trouble reading the text balloons, just go to the website...http://roosterteeth.com/comics/strip.php?id=847

Comic Book Review: Batman #690

Written by Judd Winick
Art by Mark Bagley

Plot: Penguin keeps Batman busy by hiring some of the toughest criminals in Arkham, which includes Clay Face and Lyle Blanco. However, Penguin is taken by surprise when a mysterious player enters into the field and takes over Penguins plans for domination. In the meantime, Two-Face takes matters into his own hands to discover who this man behind the cowl truly is.

My Thoughts: This issue was actually better than the others that Winick put out the last few months. However, I feel this issue is still lacking in substance. The bulk of this issue is passable and unnecessary for the mystery Winick set in place a few months ago. We’ve discovered who the mysterious attacker was, which is incredibly lame and stupid. I like how Two-Face does want to find out who Batman really is now, but going into the Batman cave dressed as Batman doesn’t add to the plot at all.

The art is fine. Bagley is good at bringing emotion to the pages, but I’m not entirely sold on his artwork. Granted, his is probably better than most of the other artists out there, but his particular style doesn’t get me excited about the story.

Overall, a very below average comic. I actually would prefer Grant Morrison back on this title than Winick. At least Morrison’s stories got exciting at some point whereas Winick can’t write a griping story enough to make me want to keep reading. Now I did keep reading only because I love comics and enjoy collecting them. (I’m such a fool!)

2 out of 5 stars
Next Issue
BATMAN double-ships this month as Two-Face and the new Batman throw down in the Batcave. And the fight is a vicious one, but just as Two-Face begins to get the upper hand...Batman shows up? The final chapter of Dick Grayson's first adventure as Batman is a can't-miss!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Lobo Gets A Movie....Shoot Me Now!!!

So I love DC Comics.  But there are things about DC I wish never existed.  The intergalactic bounty hunter that keeps popping in and out of the DC universe officially gets his own film, Lobo. Lobo is unmistakably one of the toughest and most violent characters in the DC universe. Even Superman had some trouble with him.

However, Lobo is also one of the most annoying and stupid characters DC has to offer. I have no idea why he’s as popular as he is. He rides around on a space motor cycle and uses swear words constantly that resemble earth swear words. (bastich, frag, etc.) He is a real numbskull and the person who created Lobo should be put down.

Guy Ritchie is set to direct the film, which makes sense. He has done some amazingly funny films like Snatch, so this is right up his alley. However, I’m afraid not even Ritchie will be able to make a film for such a crappy character work.

On a lighter note, Guillermo del Toro is on board with the “Deadman” film. Deadman has the ability to possess the living. I can only assume that this film will be about his orign and how he seeks out his killer for revenge.

I think Deadman is a rather strange character, but I do like him. I’ve always enjoyed his role in story arcs and mini-series. This should be a decent film, especially with del Toro calling the shots!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

DC Releases For September

R.E.B.E.L.S. #8

The Men Behind The Bat

We can all understand actors dying and directors having to cast a new actor for a character. However, I don’t think there is any series a films, other than James Bond, where so many actors have played the same role than the Batman films. And what’s more, most of the actors casted as Batman are really not that great. Let’s stroll through the timeline…

First we have Michael Keaton, in my opinion the worst actor to play Batman. I’m sorry but there aren’t too many comedians out there who can play a serious role, and do it well. The exceptions are actors like Robin Williams and Jim Carrey. He was unable to display the type of emotions necessary to show how much pain Bruce Wayne was truly in. His Bruce Wayne was an awful portrayal of the playboy billionaire. Tim Burton’s worst mistake ever made was to cast Keaton as Batman

Val Kilmer, I actually loved as Batman. The only problem was, he felt too young for the role. Kilmer was at the time Batman Forever was released an established star and getting so many offers for roles. Kilmer knows how to act, so it isn’t hard for him to be Keaton.

George Clooney comes in to the picture. And I actually remember thinking he would be fantastic as Batman. The previews showed him looking the part. He’s old enough and has the build necessary to make Batman work. Sadly, however, I was disappointed. But I don’t think it’s due to Clooney’s acting. I think it had more to do with the Script. Clooney is a great actor, but I don’t think the script gave him a good chance to really bring out a good Batman on screen.

And of course, finally, we have Christian Bale. Without a doubt the best Batman ever! Bale has always shown how capable of an actor he is with his movie resume. From musical theatre, to jaw dropping action flicks, Bale brings a sense of perfection to the roles he plays. Bale has given new meaning to acting in a superhero movie. His voice changing and emotions he brings to Batman is superior to all of his predecessors.

And with that being said, I’m off to read some more comics!

Archie Comics #1 Most Downloaded Comic On Itunes.

As of September 1st, Archie Comics' "Freshman Year #1" is the most downloaded comic in iTunes History! Jon Goldwater, co-CEO of Archie Comics said, "As the Digital medium expands to include more forms of entertainment; we want Archie Comics to be at the forefront of new media. We are delighted to find our fans are already there and waiting for us. We announced the Archie Digital Comic for iTunes in May and in less than four months our first offering Archie "Freshman Year #1," has become the most downloaded comic on iTunes. It is incredible!"

iVerse CEO Michael Murphy stated, "Archie Comics have succeeded beyond our wildest expectations. Archie: "Freshman Year #1" has been downloaded more than any other comic on the iPhone. We're very excited that iPhone owners love Archie as much as we do."

Archie "Freshman Year" tells the origin story of Archie Andrews and his friends as they enter their freshman year at Riverdale High School. The story begins with Archie, Betty, Veronica and the gang wondering just what that first year will be like.

According to Victor Gorelick, co-President and Editor-in-Chief of Archie Comics, "Archie Comics have always been about the High School experience. These days most High School students have iPhones or the iPod Touch, and that makes iTunes one of the fastest and easiest ways for our fans to get Archie Comics. We are excited by the rapid success with iTunes and will be producing new comics exclusively for iTunes in the near future."

In addition to Archie "Freshman Year," "Young Salem," "Sabrina; Manga" and the "Betty and Veronica Prom Showdown" have had huge success on iTunes.

The Archie Comics line of comic books is one of the most successful, longest running brands in the history of the comic industry. Archie Comics have sold 1.5 Billion comics and are published in a dozen different foreign languages and distributed all over the world. Archie Comics has spawned characters whose popularity has spilled over into other media and who have become part of popular culture. SABRINA THE TEENAGE WITCH and JOSIE AND THE PUSSYCATS are just some of the many legendary franchises that are part of the Archie Comics Library.

Visit the Archie Digital Comics Store at Archie Digital Store
Taken from the Iphone Developers Journal

My Thoughts: Interesting, although not surprising.  The Downloadable comics I've seen based on Super hero comics are at times very dull.  Archie on the other hand lends itself to this form of media very well.  I like to be able to grab my comic and hold ti while reading.  But something like Archie, I could easily just sit at my computer and look at.  I might have to go check this out later today!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Delay In Reviews

So I will be having delays in my reviews since I now have subscriptions to almost every title I get.  It's kind of a downer because, while everyone else is talking about the latest issues, I'm stuck with waiting two weeks until I can read my stuff and review it!  But it's ok because there will always be other stuff out there about comics and super heros!  So fear not, I will keep things updated.

In the meantime, I've decided to put out a request for writers!  I would like to have another comic book reviewer, one or two movie reviewers, and maybe one or two news writers.  All aplicants must be willing to write either about movie and/or comics and comic related material.  It would be nice to get a Marvel Comics fan in on the action to write about Marvel related stuff.  If you are interested, contact me at jamesqtrapp@hotmail.com or just leave a comment and I'll get back to you!