Welcome to Adventures in Poor Taste’s weekly comic review. A typical week might see over 50 book releases, and that’s just the big two over at DC and Marvel. This column serves as a buyer’s guide to those of us holding a single Hamilton and can’t afford to read every single issue.
Each week I’ll read a glut of the good and the bad and post enough reviews to reach the budget of $X. Yes, that’s $10.00 for those of you who aren’t Roman. I’ll also post comics to steer clear from. Sadly a quality comic is few and far between these days, but using this column a diligent reader can still get their comic on.
I’m not going to lie to you, folks. This is a rough week, as the stars have aligned and most of the major books just didn’t hit. I’ll be digging deep this week to provide you with my favorite books as a lot of the consistently good issues just aren’t on the rack.
Fantastic Four #603 (Marvel)
Fantastic Four #603 is an exciting book that has some hockey bits that only add to the experience. The issue contains a brawl between Galactus and three Celestials, reveals a mega weapon alluded to in the last few issues, and ends with a semi-predictable but awesome ending. What more could you ask for?
While looking at the above image listen to the clip below:
Heaven weeps. Nice touch.
Now when the Celestials combine, you might think to yourself, “what is this, Power Rangers?” It definitely has that feel considering the ante has been upped to get the Celestials around Galactus and put the fight to the Fantastic Four. So far writer Jonathan Hickman has used the Celestials to prove how powerful Franklin is and tease what kind of powers he might have. It’s worked, but it’s getting a little old. The ending of this issue though promises some final answers to this issue.
By the power Greyskull!
There are definitely some drawbacks to this issue, though. For instance, Spider-Man is pretty nonexistent and the entire issue is more about putting our heroes into a corner with seemingly impossible odds against them. It does that very effectively and sets up next issue quite well.
When Galactus is small, you have an issue.
Things feel fresh and that’s something hard to do with the Fantastic Four. With so many years piling on new back stories, building up relationships and increasing the ante this book promises to give you a little extra.
Budget: $10.00-$2.99 = $7.01
Captain American & Bucky #627 (Marvel)
This book’s latest story arc has been on my to-read list for the last few months and it continues to shine here as well. Take Captain America robots, unleash them on Captain America, give an alternate human Bucky who replaced the original Bucky in a backstory we’ve never heard of, add a powerhouse villain and what do you get? Intrigue! Excitement! Enjoyment! And with two page spreads like this why not revel in the excitement?
“The star represents America and how soldiers dance around freedom,” the comic shop owner lied.
I can’t help but enjoy what Brubacker is doing with this book as it’s adding new layers to what we know of the Captain America legacy post his deep freeze disappearance. It’s a cool history to add to, as it implies the hero kept going, sans powers, and the possibility of adding new villains who thought they were facing the real Captain America are great. He’s definitely builing up this new villain too as most of this issue is exposition to increase the humanity of this robot bad guy.
Not only can this villain shape shift and control robots with his mind, he has encyclopedic knowledge of the Bible! Every kid must envy him.
Of course, one must wonder why Captain America can’t ask his buddies in the Avengers or some help. It’s a common problem in all the books, but then again you can always use the excuse of, “I need to deal with this on my own team. Skelatons in the closet.” The tried and true argument. Can’t wait for the next issue.
Budget: $7.01-$3.99 = $4.02
Danger Girl #2 (IDW)
This cover not only has nothing to do with the story, it’s the only reason to buy the comic, you horndog nerd fanboys.
You might be asking yourself, “Wait, Dave! I thought you hated the first issue, why would you buy Danger Girl #2 this week?” To which I reply, “maybe the boobs would be more enjoyable this time!” To which my brain says, “idiot.” Indeed I am, as this issue continues to disappoint.
Boobs + water + spray on shirt = OMGLULZ!
Largely I dislike the art, as it’s so cartoony how could anyone see these forms as sexy? Deep apology to those of you that are Schediaphiles (aka Toonophilia). But hell, can you really find these cartoony drawings a turn on when they are drawn so sloppily?
What the hell is that that thing on your lip?!
The plot is frustratingly jarring, particularly if you read the last issue. They were on a mission, but this book seems to think we need some back story on the paper-thin relationship between Abby and her fiancee.
Who glued these globes to my chest?
If you don’t find the art insulting to the eyes, you may want to consider rubbing them with bleach. Somebody get a sexier artist on this book, because the imagery is what sells Danger Girl in the first place. If you decide to throw a cartoonist on it why not give some story.
Budget: $4.02-$0.00 = $4.02
Grimm Fairy Tales: Alice in Wonderland (Zenescope)
Finally, a book that understands boobs. But wait; there’s more! In the last issue I had some trouble with what the story was intending to do and what was working. It seemed things were just happening without reason. This issue takes on a much more horrific tone, but continues to play and change the classic story of Alice in Wonderland enough so your interest is always involved in the story. It’s also coninuing to play around with how it tells the story in each panel. For instance, at one point Alice watches herself as the story unfolds on the floor:
Originally I thought this book would be about boobs and sexuality, but instead that’s left for the cover of each issue. Once you delve in, the book has a much darker underbelly. The amount of gore is also quite surprising to say the least.
Hell, even Alice gets in on the action.
Wonderland itself is getting some nice representation in the panels as well. The way the surroundings get unhinged are expressed really well by Robert Gills layouts:
Believe me, when you find out how the Walrus became the Walrus you’ll be sold on this book. Lets just say a man was attacked by walrus bones and was horribly stabbed until he was newly formed. Given I was impressed last week with very little expectations, I was again surprised how much I liked this book in its second issue. Things are getting a little more interesting and the horror quotient definitely adds to the drama. Check this book out.
Budget: $4.02-$2.99 = $1.03
Three different comics this week had a lot of potential, and I think they might make the budget another week, but ended up not making the cut. Lets deliver them to The Blob in quick succession:
The Mighty Thor #11,has a ton of action, but once again we’re sort of waiting for things to align. Loki finally has Silver Surfer on the same page as far as helping Thor, and Thor is nearly ready to get back to reality. The art is quite good here as well, especially better than last issue. Next issue concludes this story and I can’t wait for what is in store.
I know what you’re asking yourself. Another reimagining of a classic story? No Place Like Home #1 is a “new” version of the Wizard of Oz. Before you smash your computer screen know this: the art is awesome, the characters are very realistic, and the plot isn’t one big connect the dots story. It’s actually interesting with realistic characters. Unfortunately the story sets everything up without a lot of payoff. If you have the cash check this one out.
Venom #13.3 Does some great things, like show each character’s wildest dream, which has funny implications. Unfortunately, not a lot happens in this book. It’s a neat idea to do decimal issues like this as the writer can explore a story that may not be part of the main storyline. But why not just continue the numbering? Marvel will eventually catch up the numbers so they can brag about milestone issues like 50, so isn’t this just a gimmick? At the end of the day this issue feels about half done. You get some nice story but then it sort of ends without getting your money’s worth.
Clearly, the Blob can only absorb comics. Not carrots.
Final Budget: $1.03
For such a slow week, there were a bunch of good comics and I actually wished I had a bit more change to purchase another book. With so many original things going on lets get more weeks like this please. Save that buck for next week. We might need it.