This morning I read Amazing Spider-Man #458-459 (guesting the FF), and they weren't bad. The second issue was much better than the first, which felt far too goofy for the FF, and Spidey did something pretty disrespectful in it, which felt really out of place.
I also read JSA #50 (ehh, the art was pretty good and the story was pretty good too, but nothing to shout about) and Batman Inc. #5, which was awesome. I can't wait to read some annotations on this issue.
Skywolf #1-3, Eclipse mini featuring characters from Airboy. Story by Chuck Dixon, art by Tom Lyle.
Skywolf and The Bald Eagle, Jack Gatling, embark on a treasure hunt to French Indochina (Vietnam) in 1954. After meeting an old enemy from the days of the War, things really get complicated. Jack Gatling dies which really surprised me because there was no splash page, no big focus, just a BOOM!, Skywolf tending to him, and more fighting.
Excellent story, excellent art, and my love of all things Airboy grows.
I read Brightest Day #24, Justice League Generation Lost #24, Action Comics #900, FF #2, Flash #10-11, and Herc #1. Trying to get caught up on my pile. They were big event books, and I liked nearly all of them (I probably won't return to Herc, but that was the only clunker).
I liked the ending of JL:GL#24, particularly because of the announcement of the new JLI series, which I haven't read jack about, but yeah, I'm ready for that one, hopefully by Winick and Lopresti.
This morning before I got out of bed, I read the first couple issues worth of the first Secret Warriors trade by Hickman. That's some pretty intense stuff, and I love how Hydra's "tentacles" into big corporations are all laid out. Looks eerily real.
This is actually from over the weekend, but I'm still adjusting to the move, not to mention going to a job every day. First up is The Unwritten Vol. 3: Dead Man's Knock. The series really moves forward in this arc. We get a much better idea of what Wilson Taylor was up to with his books and the way he raised Tom. Lizzie Hexam and Richie Savoy both assume greater importance to the story. We learn a lot about them, especially Lizzie. The famous Pick-A-Story issue was a lot of fun. I was a bit disappointed that it only had one possible abrupt ending; all of the other paths got to the same places in the end. Tom also gets confirmation about who his mother really is, and his father Wilson figures in the action in ways I don't want to spoil.
Vertigo published Jamie Delano's maxiseries 2020 Visions in 1997. It was a bit before the Millenium buzz had really gotten going, but that appears to be part of the inspiration. The twelve issue series is divided into four three-issue arcs, each with its own subtitle, and each illustrated by a different artist. The sections all feature a view of dysfunctional U.S. society in 2020, but they're set in different parts of the country and have no direct connection with each other. "Lust for Life" gives Frank Quitely an economically stratified, plague-infested Manhattan to draw. The beautiful (healthy, rich) people live in a walled part of the city. But Delano's story feature the underclass, especially Alex Woycheck, an aging ex-pornographer. Woycheck's luck goes from bad to worse when he becomes infected and is sent to Ellis Island, which has become a plague prison colony. He leads a breakout, and as he is about to exact revenge by committing suicide, he finds himself hungry for life. It's an oddly uplifting tale, despite all the suffering and death. "La Tormenta" is set in Miami, and illustrated by Warren Pleece. Miami has a different set of problems, being part of an independent state called Nueva Florida formed when Florida seceded from the U.S. and annexed Cuba. The protagonist is Jack Atlanta, a private detective. In the course of looking for a missing girl she becomes involved in a murder investigation: the hunt for El Escultor, a serial killer who remakes his victims with bizarre plastic surgery. So it's a classic detective story, albeit with bizarre futuristic touches.
Earlier today, I read the following Marvel:
Moon Knight #1: This is really my first Moon Knight. I have no idea about what this guy's origin is; I came for Brian Michael Bendis. I read an issue or two of BMB's Daredevil, and I wasn't a huge fan. This book reminded me of that (probably the art...looks extremely similar, and I'm sure it's probably the same artist. I will probably be back next issue, but I'm not all that into "crazy" super-heroes. This guy at least comes off as being sympathetic, which is why I'll check into MK's world again next month.
Fear Itself #2: This kind of reminded me of Final Crisis, where you see different characters being drawn into the dark side individually. Stuart Immonen's art shines here. It's truly the best stuff I've ever seen out of him, and that comes from someone who has been a huge fan of his ever since his first issue of Legion of Super-Heroes way back in the early 1990's. One of the things that surprised me that I never realized is that the Red She-Hulk is Betty Ross. That early-morning revelation assured that I picked up Incredible Hulks at FCBD today. I didn't realize she was alive again, but I didn't care. That scene of Bruce and Betty in this issue sold me on it. Which brings me to...
Incredible Hulks #627: It was even easier for me to check into this book when I saw that it is drawn by Tom Grummett! I had no idea! I haven't read this book in ages (heck, back in ye olden times, it was called Incredible Hulk singular!). It's funny because I'm coming to realize that the Marvel U has all these little pockets of characters that I enjoy checking into. I will read the next issue of this one, just so that I can see the whole story before I make any decisions. The marital status of Bruce and Betty is different here than it was in Fear Itself, though, so I do find myself wondering which comes before which...
Hulk #32: Thumbs down: Zero/One and Black Fog, the most boring villains in all comic-dom. Thumbs up: Hulk punching a tornado in two. I like this book.
Venom #2: This wasn't bad either. Tony Moore is awesome here, and Rick Remender does a pretty good job of making this a good character study of Flash Thompson. I do like how the Marvel U is full of normal characters such as Betty Brant and Flash Thompson, who seem to have it pretty rough. It seems pretty homey. I also like how Kraven isn't taken too seriously in this book, especially after we had the super-serious story in Amazing Spider-Man not all that long ago. Creates a nice contrast.
My new employer (Greenville County Public Library) has Jeff Smith's RASL Vol. 2: The Fire of St. George, so I was able to check in with this series after reading Vol. 1 some months back. Quite a bit of background is filled in here, including how RASL came to be on the run through the Drift. His use of Nikola Tesla's lost notebooks gives Smith the opportunity to present lots of strange real-world scientific history. I'm enjoying the series more and more as it progresses, even though I'm still not sure where it's going.
The third arc of Jamie Delano's 2020 Visions is titled "Renegade," illustrated by James Romberger. This arc starts out in my hometown of Detroit, although in 2020 it's known as Free Islamic Detroit, and is ruled by Sharia law. Protagonist Ethan McWhirter is a lost son of "La Tormenta" protagonist Jack Atlanta, which gives a slight connection with the previous arc--but if this wasn't mentioned in the "On the Ledge" summary I don't think I would have known it, since it's not clear in-story. Ethan is arrested and sentenced to a Texas slave farm, but is instead recruited into a private militia in the New Montana Territory of Freemen. His journey takes him through slaughtering squatters, to trying to rescue the rich owner's son from Indians, to joining the tribe himself. It's a confusing narrative, which seems to have less to say about the state of the dysfunctional U.S. society than the previous arcs. Romberger's art is comparatively primitive, also, which makes the story less enjoyable to look at than the others.