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ComiX Weekly: 1/2/13 – Zen Parables and Doo-Doo

Star Wars, Adventure Time, Batman, Grant Morrison and a whole lot of surprises take place this week. Let us guide you through these choice comics and pick out the best of the best that’ll fit in a 10 dollar budget. Scroll down to see our picks!

Quote of the Week:

Henchman: “You said I would live and not die.”
Black Swan: “I said nothing of forever.”

– New Avengers Vol. 3 #1

Batman Incorporated #6 (DC Comics)

Grant Morrison has been writing quality Batman comics for what seems like a decade now (actually it’s closer to six years). His latest big idea has not only made Batman global with Batman Inc, but his story was also one of the few DC storylines that managed to stay alive with the New 52 reboot. Scott Snyder has been given the reigns to the main Batman book, but Morrison has been able to play out his Inc. series here with all the creative control one could dream of. That’s made this series exciting, but at times also a little stilted in pacing and story.

Finally, we get confirmation of the bat shaving technique.

This issue is nearly all action, although it plays out like high drama considering Damian is listening in on his parents, Batman and Talia, spar psychologically. Batman has knowingly entered Talia’s trap, but as it plays out it’s clear this is more for Damian’s ears than anything. Those of you who love the Batcow note he/she makes an appearance, albeit as a strong example of how the Batman family is much more a family than Talia ever was.

Iron Man must be pissed.

Sick sequence by Chris Burnham.

In most cases this series has been very wordy with very little action and a whole lot of exposition. This issue does something a bit different and instead shows a lot of action; although it’s not there as eye candy as in most comic book cases — it stands as a representation of the relationship of Damian between Bats and Talia.

One of many epic pages.

It’s clear Talia is more evil then ever now that she’s leader of the League of Assassins. Typically in the past she was a hero who must abide by her fathers wishes. Here she’s committing real murder by order.

Now that’s brutal.

This is a great issue that’ll be a tumultuous chapter in a great series once collected. Single issues of this quality are hard to come by due to pacing issues, but this week it shines.

Budget: $10.00 – $2.99 = $7.01

Lot 13 #3 (Vertigo)

I don’t want to spoil the ungodly fun that is contained in this issue, but good lord this is basically a horror action sequence that doesn’t end. It might take place over a single minute, but there sure is a lot of beautiful, putrid art by Glenn Fabry.

Look at the bodies falling from the ribs! Gnarly!

So far this series has gone at a slow pace developing the characters and playing out with subtle unease and creepiness. Not so here, as the horrors attack directly and don’t stop.

Uncle Phil?

It’s like one of those stress dolls with the eyes that pop out…only with blood spray!

The problem with an issue like this though is the time it’ll take to read the bloody thing. You’ll be in and out within three minutes. Now if you give each panel a good eyeballing you’re still talking 10 minutes of visual candy, but not much story, and in the ComiX Weekly world that doesn’t cut it. We’re looking for bang for your buck reads that’ll make every penny worth it.

Budget: $7.01 – $0.00 = $7.01

New Avengers Vol 3. #1 (Marvel Comics)

A good first issue, but not anything to write home about. Essentially this is a decent setup to a possibly fantastic story, but as far as budgets go not going to cut it. This was reviewed in-depth earlier today in our Is It Good column.

Budget: $7.01 – $0.00 = $7.01

Four comics this week were either close to the mark or downright failures; either way, they can’t justifiably fit into a 10 dollar budget. Superman wouldn’t hit a girl over these comics…would he?

(Don’t forget to click any links as they direct you to more pictures!)

As I’ve said in previous weeks, this series is a slow-burn story that’s not friendly to the single issue reader. All-New X-Men #5 develops the plot only a smidge, but two main advancements take place. Jean sees her deaths which has a resounding effect on her and Beast’s sickness gets a resolution. Besides some Beast on young Beast dialogue that’s at times clever and fun, there isn’t much here that warrants a purchase aside from the two advancements.

I understand the mystique of the character, but Morbius: The Living Vampire #1 plays out like every other vampire story we’ve seen in this millenium. We get a breakdown of the “rules” that make this vampire so unique and a brief introduction to new location Morbius is going to be hanging around in. Essentially it’s a lawless town ruled by a gang leader named Noah St. Germain. I can only hope the name is in reference to the occultist and not the flower liqueur.

Sleepy Hollow #3 has a few good ideas, one of which is about how when someone commits vengeance the other person being murdered only sees it as a horror. There’s nothing here aside from that though that might peak your interest as the plot is quite predictable.

Harvest #5 (of 5) really looks amazing, but I’m not so sure what happened to this story. At first I thought the protagonist was just a drug addict, but now I’m not so sure what’s going on in his head. The story ends with a nice little twist on a twist, but there’s nothing in this conclusion that makes me jump for joy. I suppose it’s neat that a surgeon hero wins with a surgeon technique.

Kludd to these comics!

Star Wars: Purge—The Tyrant’s Fist #2 (Dark Horse Comics)

I wasn’t necessarily floored by the last issue, but the second and final issue in this miniseries was spectacularly paced with an interesting story to go with it.

Well written.

This story follows Darth Vader as he attempts to destroy the Jedi and not simply by killing them. Instead we learn they are systematically destroying the culture of the Jedi which is not only chilling but also something we humans have done for centuries.

Sound like slavery much?

The pencils and inking by Marco Castiello, Andrea Chella does a good job with the architectural design throughout the issue. This helps add weight to a story about the destruction of a culture.

Don’t worry, there’s two great fight scenes in this issue too!

Worse than death.

I wasn’t sold on the last issue, but it’s clear by story’s end writer Alexander Freed knows what he’s doing. The story touches on Vader as a person just enough to add a new layer to Vader as well. Well worth a purchase.

Budget: $7.01 – $3.99 = $3.02

Batman: The Dark Knight #15 (DC Comics)

If there’s one thing David Finch is good at it’s extremely fun panels to eyeball for countless seconds. He’s on writing and art duties this issue as he concludes his Scarecrow story. I can’t say I’m unhappy it’s ending as it feels like this story has gone on for a good year.

Batman can’t catch a break.

Zombies make everything better!

I’m actually quite surprised how well this comic was written. Bruce must make a very dangerous choice as he saves the city. There’s also a tender moment between Bruce and Damian.

I’m getting a Jesus vibe from this shot.

Even Alfred gets a moment as he shows anger towards Bruce’s sacrifice.

What if that was hot!?

Overall a nice chapter in the story. Scarecrow barely makes an appearance, Batman wins the day as always, but there’s some emotional resonance felt with supporting characters that’s appreciated. It’s good, but there are better purchases for our 10 dollar budget.

Budget: $3.02- $0.00 = $3.02

Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #19 #1 (Marvel Comics)

Finally, writer Brian Bendis has gotten back to the main story thread he left a few months ago before Miles was forced into war. Now we get some answers on what happened to Betty Brant and Venom. Or do we?

Once again, more shots of Miles figuring out how to web swing.

Michael Bay does Venom.

This issue breaks down into two scenes with a smidge of Spidey thrown in. One involves J.J. expressing his love of Peter Parker—oh, how things have flipped in the Ultimate universe—and the other involves Ganke expressing his desire to create web fluid. So I guess Ganke is going to be Miles’ Lucius Fox?

I loved that boy!

This is a nice change of pace for the better, but I can’t help but be annoyed with the Venom tease on the cover when clearly that isn’t going to be served up until the next issue.

Budget: $3.02- $0.00 = $3.02

Talon (2012-) #3 (DC Comics)

I’m growing very impatient with this new series. It hasn’t established any of the main characters, decides to introduce new ones and then has our character go after a MacGuffin. And we’re only in issue #3!

Pain don’t hurt.

It seems the hero has an old flame he needs help from. Just so happens this master fighter gets caught within three seconds of meeting her crackpot team.

Clearly the sound effect, “boing-ing-ing” was underused in this panel.

Who dresses you?

Her team is made up of old bad guys who failed their masters, like Ra’s al Ghul for instance. They aren’t even superpowered and beat the protagonist! Ouch, that has to sting.

Budget: $3.02- $0.00 = $3.02

Blackacre #2 (Image Comics)

After an intriguing first issue I’m not so sure about this series anymore. The first issue had its preachy moments, but it had moments of humanity and respite surrounding them giving things a realistic yet interesting vision of the future. This issue appears to be all preaching and very little else.

Do soldiers really wax philosophical like this?


When we finally do get to some action it’s done in a ho-hum sort of way. No offense to Wendell Cavalcanti but his pencils work best when imbuing a sense of symbolism. The action sequences here don’t have much kinetic energy to pull you through them.

Point A to point B.

The first issue totally won me over, but the handling of the story this issue isn’t as strong. Chalk it up to the “second issue slump” many series have, but I can’t help but be worried the remainder of this series is going to go down hill.

Budget: $3.02- $0.00 = $3.02

Adventure Time: Fionna & Cake #1 (of 6) (BOOM! Studios)

I’m not familiar with these alternate Adventure Time characters, but I couldn’t help but check out a comic that was drawn by the Adventure Time cartoon storyboard aritst.

There’s a bit of humor which will give you a giggle.

The issue opens with a fairy tale told by Cake to Fionna about a princess and the creation of volcanos. It’s beautifully drawn and actually interesting.

Very pretty.

The unfortunate thing about this issue though, is the humor doesn’t occur very often, mostly due to the backup taking up pages and the opening fairy tale. Due to these bumpers you don’t get a whole lot into the characters and the story ends much too soon.

Super rad man!

For budget’s sake, four dollars for a comic that’s a breeze isn’t really worth it, but for fans of the series were you ever not going to purchase this?

Budget: $3.02- $0.00 = $3.02

I Love Trouble #2 (Image Comics)

Of course the next thing I read is the second issue of another series by Image and it rocks my socks off. The first issue had incredible art and a cool idea, but didn’t pace out well enough to recommend. This issue reads much more balanced, and while there isn’t much light shed on the girl’s powers, the story ramps up and even gives us more of a taste of the heroine.

Love his style.

Mark A. Robinson knows what he’s doing and it’s clear his graffiti-like style is incredibly powerful. Each panel has an energy you don’t normally see, which not only transports the viewer but adds character to otherwise mundane scenes. One scene in particular would fall flat with many other artists, in which the protagonist screws with a street card trick hawker. You’ll follow each panel as if it were the greatest action sequence ever.

Cards anyone?

His use of sound effects are particularly interesting, either due to the placement…

…or relationship with each other.

This is a strong example of a comic whose art is telling a story on top of the actual story. Comics like this are great not only because they look amazing, but because a single panel can be so lush in detail and character that single panel has what some comics have in an entire page.

Sound effects in comics are the only edge they have on film.

You’d be remiss not checking out this super cool and interesting series. The story is just starting to bud so it’s the perfect time to check it out.

Budget: $3.02- $2.99 = $.03

And we’re under budget! Next week is going to be a big one, particularly because there’s a comic book called Star Wars, written by Brian Wood with covers by Alex Ross, that recounts the first film. Say what?! Oh and Superior Spider-Man will blow us all away I’m sure complete with many new releases from IDW and Image.


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