Report what comic books you have read today--and tell us a little something about it while you're here!

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I wrapped up Silence & Co. by Gur Benshemesh and Ron Randall, and I really liked it. It is about a hit man who is getting bored of his job, so while on vacation he gets approached by Silence & Company, and international crime organization, to do some work. The tale goes across the globe and has pretty of twists and turns. One surprise I should have seen coming, but I didn't. Highly recommended if you like Criminal or Queen & Country. Ron Randall's art is very crisp and clean. Also at a very affordable price, $10 for 170+ pages.

This morning I read the TPB of Patsy Walker Hellcat. In all honesty, I had bought this sometime within the past year because I found it for under five bucks at Books-a-Million. And I bought it primarily for the artwork by Stuart Immonen and David la Fluente.

First off, I want to say that the book was fun. Definitely written with a light-hearted touch that lent itself to being more of a fun distraction than a deep story a la Alan Moore's Swamp Thing.

However, the writing led me to believe that I wasn't quite in on the joke. Or that everyone else was in on something that I didn't quite get. I kept thinking that I'd missed a vital scene or something. Like I am in the wrong generation to get this comic.

It was easily $4+'s worth of a distraction, and the art is really pretty. All of it. But for the story? Maybe if you're part of Generation Y or something, but I just didn't feel like I was quite in on it.

When I read the preview for the first issue I thought the creators had taken inspiration from Men in Trees.

I think that may be pretty close to the truth.

No idea where Kathryn Immonen drew her inspiration from, but that may be accurate. All I know is that I was pretty confused, but pretty impressed by the art. Worth it at the bargain price to any fan of either of those artists. The art throughout was really pretty.

Luke Blanchard said:

When I read the preview for the first issue I thought the creators had taken inspiration from Men in Trees.

Honestly, I've often come away from Kathryn Immonen's writing with that feeling: that I've read a good story, but that there's some key moment or reference I missed along the way. (Grant Morrison can have that effect on me too...)

Glad to know I'm not alone, Alan!

Today I read Venom #36 (or as the cover would tell you, "036") first of all. The art on this one was a nice compliment to that of regular artist Declan Shalvey. This time it was turned in by Pepe Larraz. I really like Flash Thompson as Venom. I like what he's doing as a gym teacher, and I like how he's just cleaning up the streets of Philadelphia. I love the "Venom-mobile" (he called it that tongue-in-cheek, by the way). It would have made Big Daddy Roth proud, but I'm glad they didn't go full-on with that homage and kept it toned back.

The one thing that makes me cringe about this book is Andi, the girl in his class and who lives in his apartment. The first issue of the new status quo had her clearly being set up to be a big part of Flash's life, and it made my eyes roll then as well. The recent solicitations confirmed what gave me that feeling. Now, it's not as bad as it could be construed, but why couldn't it have been another teacher? Why did it have to be one of his students? *NOTE: No, they're not in a romantic relationship.

Deadpool #11 (011): There was a lot of comic book in this comic book! I checked the cover while I was reading it to make sure it wasn't a double issue. I wouldn't recommend picking this one up as a first issue, as this convoluted story arc is about to end, but for anyone who has been reading this comic from the beginning, this was yet another nice treat. The issue runs across Luke (kinda) and Jessica Cage as well as Daredevil. The way he sheds Daredevil is one of those "Oh, Deadpool, you went too far..." moments. The intro page with Daredevil is hilarious. And of course, the usual supporting cast of Agent Preston and Ben Franklin (yes, that one) are both there as well. Nicely written by Posehn and Duggan with some pretty cool art by Mike Hawthorne and Val Staples.

Massive Vol. 1: Black Pacific is the first collection of Brian Wood's dystopian series, which is kind of a spiritual sibling to DMZ. The disaster here is much bigger, though: it's an environmental disaster of global proportions called the Crash. The environmental group Ninth Wave chooses to remain at sea rather than join emergency forces on land. So far much of the story has taken place on a ship, giving it a claustrophobic feel. And it's bleak: the group finds themselves battling pirates who are after any useful dwindling resources.Artist Krisian Donaldson (Garry Brown on the second arc) and colorist Dave Stewart do what they can, but it's a bit monochromatic by design.

Getting back to the Vertigo miniseries tour, Bite Club: Vampire Crime Unit was a five-part sequel to the earlier Bite Club series (written by Howard Chaykin & David Tischman, art by David Hahn). The first series was about the struggle for power in the vampire crime family the Del Toros. This one depicts the aftermath through the eyes of the police force's elite Vampire Crime Unit.

Volume 8 of the Jon Sable, Freelance. This takes us into the first two issue in which Mike Grell gave up doing the art, and was only writing. Kind of a relief to me actually as his pencils were just getting too loose for me.

Guardians of the Galaxy: Tomorrow's Avengers TPB Vol. 1 - I never realized that Steve Gerber wrote all those issues of the Guardians through all those different books! Even the Marvel Two-In-Ones! The fight to rid the Earth of the Badoon really didn't take that long, in terms of Marvel Time. The Badoon were on Earth for 7 years but the fight to liberate the entire planet took about a year, thanks to the kickstart from Thing, Cap America and (of all people) Sharon Carter! I really enjoyed seeing Al Milgrom's art again, especially with the Terry Austin inked issue. Great stuff! I miss Al Milgrom. I wonder what he's doing now?

Frankenstein, Agent of S.H.A.D.E. Vol. 1: War of the Monsters collects the first seven issues of the series, written by Jeff Lemire and drawn by Alberto Ponticelli. I kept hearing good things about this title, and I'm glad I finally got my hands on the collection. It's a potent mixture of high tech and monsters: absolutely crazy mad science. The action just keeps ramping up. The first issue starts with a monster attack. By the end we've met Frankenstein and his new group of Creature Commandos, seen the S.H.A.D.E. headquarters, and the team has begun battling a town full of monsters. Turns out there's a portal under the lake, which takes the battle to an entire planet full of monsters. Turns out each kind of monster has a Titan that spawns them...it's a lot like bosses in a video game batte.

Harvey Pekar's American Splendor moved to Vertigo for two four-issue miniseries. The basic premise remains unchanged: a series of short stories about Harvey's daily life, presented in black & white. The Vertigo connection does give him access to a broader array of artists than usual: the first cover was by Glenn Fabry, and there are interiors by Ty Templeton, Richard Corben, and Eddie Campbell.

 

I read Batman #20. It was fun the way Clayface and Bruce Wayne bandied about with Lucius Fox and eventually ol' Bats was able to foil Clayface's schemes.

Indestructible Hulk #9: This one guest-stars Daredevil, and wow does this book ever deliver. In a huge way. The art by Matteo Scalera was perfect for a comic featuring Daredevil. This is a team-up that I don't think I've ever seen before, but it makes perfect sense, especially considering that both characters are being written my Mark Waid right now. I really can't recommend this one highly enough, guys.

Age of Ultron #10: Okay, SPOILERS....

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...now the Marvel Universe seems to have an even greater variety of universes, making this a new Multiverse. This ties directly into Infinity, I would imagine. I didn't get the FCBD issue, so I have no idea, really. This was pretty neat, though, on its own merits.

Cable and X-Force #10: The team is attacked by the Uncanny Avengers; crazy antics ensue. Really, what this issue did for me was made me wonder if the Uncanny Avengers actually call themselves the "Uncanny Avengers", or if they just call themselves the Avengers. I was happy to see Dennis Hopeless back on this issue. Also, I loved the way each team member was pretty much assigned a person from the other team to fight. It felt like a classic team vs. team issue from the 80's or 90's.

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