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'm pushing my way through the three Abe Sapien HCs. The art is very good, but it's just ... boring. I'm waiting for a hook to explain why these stories were published. It's just Abe wandering around the apocalypse (so rousingly depicted in the simultaneous B.P.R.D. volumes) wondering what his connections to the frogs is, if any. 2.5 books in and we still have no answer, and nothing much has happened except Abe wandering from one survivor town to the next. Even the supporting characters come and go with no real resolution. (Or no resolution that I care about.) Maybe some of you got more out of them than I did.

FANTASTIC FOUR #164-165: I followed 1950s-era Marvel Boy up with his modern appearances (now called “The Crusader”).

MARVEL TWO-IN-ONE #53-58: After that it was “Project Pegasus” featuring his successor. I remember how I came to read this the first time. When I was in college, I picked up a lot of 1970s series had missed as backissues, and I followed Deathlok from Astonishing Tales into Marvel-Two-In-One. I thought it was okay at the time, strictly by the numbers, kind of perfunctory. I still feel the same way.

MMW SHE-HULK Vol. 2: Another series I read for the first (and only) time as backissues in college. It didn’t make much of an impression on me, and I eventually traded it. I buy all the Masterworks, even if I don’t plan to read them right away. I always read the introductions the day I buy them, though. Most often MMW editor Cory Sedlemeyer hires the writer or artist or editor associated with the series to write the introduction, in this case, David Anthony Kraft. I’ll admit, I missed a lot of what he was trying to achieve my first time through. DAK was never a favorite of mine, but his introductions make me look forward to re-reading his series.

JMS SPIDER-MAN OMNIBUS: J. Michael Straczynski wrote 44 issues of Spider-Man, 38 of them drawn by John romita, Jr. and six by Mike Deodato. They are all collected here: #30-58 & #500-514. He wrote a lot of really good issues (including the 9-11 one), but it’s “Sins Past” I tend to remember him for. That pretty much ruined Spider-Man for me, but I must not judge his entire run by that one story. I don’t usually have such knee-jerk reactions, but I have tried from time to time to read Spider-Man since the one/two punch of “Sins Past” and “One More Day,” but I am simply no longer interested. I would be happier with this collection if it contained only the Straczynski/Romita issues.

I liked the GL Myrwhidden story -- but then again, I'd expected Myrwhidden to reappear a year or so ago, in Dan Jurgen's story that ended the Green Lanterns title, in which a villain had "hacked" the power rings and power battery. I was so hoping it was Myrwhidden, but it turned out to be Cyborg Superman. Oh, well... I'm glad to see him back now.

I just read the debut of Man-Bat in Detective Comics 400, reprinted in the Detective Comics hardcover. I'm surprised I've never read this one before -- I didn't realize that Langstrom really wasn't presented as an antagonist for Batman at all in this initial story... by  the end of it, it would be just as likely that he'd become a partner or sidekick. 



Jeff of Earth-J said:

MARVEL TWO-IN-ONE #53-58: After that it was “Project Pegasus” featuring his successor. I remember how I came to read this the first time. When I was in college, I picked up a lot of 1970s series had missed as backissues, and I followed Deathlok from Astonishing Tales into Marvel-Two-In-One. I thought it was okay at the time, strictly by the numbers, kind of perfunctory. I still feel the same way.

I love me some Project Pegasus! But a lot of that probably has to do with the fact that I was 9 when I read it and it featured art by both Byrne AND Perez; my two favorites at the time. I think I may have only read it once or twice since it was first published though.

I bought the trade of this last fall, but I haven't read it yet. Thanks for the reminder!

Detective 445 said:

I love me some Project Pegasus! But a lot of that probably has to do with the fact that I was 9 when I read it and it featured art by both Byrne AND Perez; my two favorites at the time. I think I may have only read it once or twice since it was first published though.

I picked up Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles at Free Comic Book Day. Snagglepus as a closeted gay playwright fighting conformity in an alternate 1950s America where anthropomorphic animals and humans co-exist. The Puss proves the darling of talk shows, dodges the Lavender Scare with his beard wife, hangs with fellow author Huckleberry Hound, mentors Augie Doggie, runs cover for Marilyn Monroe, testifies before the House Un-American Activities Committee-- and slips away to see his human paramour at the Stonewall Inn. Pursued by a closeted lesbian version of Roy Cohn, he must choose to implicate his friends-- or sacrifice his career. Be a pariah, even.

Even for a DC reinvention of Hanna-Barbera, this was unusual. It could have been better-- characterization, for example, is uneven-- but I enjoyed it.

I was really excited about this after I ended up loving The Flintstones so much. The first thing I didn't like about this, though, was the art. I felt like it could have been much stronger, and a little more realism would have made it match the tone more.

But I've heard from a few sources that this series got better as it went on, so if I find it on the cheap somewhere, I will most likely check it out.

JD DeLuzio said:

I picked up Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles at Free Comic Book Day.

Even for a DC reinvention of Hanna-Barbera, this was unusual. It could have been better-- characterization, for example, is uneven-- but I enjoyed it.

HASHTAG: DANGER #1: The one thing that most comics drawn in a “cartoony” style miss (and that Hashtag: Danger gets right) is that the drawings themselves are supposed to be funny.

FLASH #70: The thing that most “year one” stories (of those released since Batman: Year One) get wrong is that they are supposed to tell the story of the entire first year, not just the origin. I don’t know about this one. Barry is struck by lightning in February, then spends four months in a coma. Are they counting those four months towards the first year? Remains to be seen. Other than that, this is a very contemporary take on the origin. There will be no surprises for fans of the TV show.

SHAZAM #5: One thing I don’t like about what passes for “creativity” these days changing surface elements of an established character to create something “new” (such as red Hulks, multi-colored Lanterns or Infinity “stones”). There’s none of that here. Bill Batson’s powers are spread around, organically, among his foster siblings, and it works.

BRONZE AGE BOOGIE #2: I think I’m getting most of the in-jokes and references. Bambi’s mother. Classic. I love it.

In Hashtag: Danger, check out their hashtag-shaped desks...and all the papers that have dropped through the hole in the center!

I liked the first issue of Flash: Year One a lot. The pile of sneakers Barry burns through is a great detail, and mostly this books looks like it'll be a real showcase for Howard Porter's storytelling abilities. That 16-panel-grid, whoa!

Haven't gotten my hands on Bronze Age Boogie 2 yet -- next week, if not tomorrow.

INVADERS #5: Marvel “ruined” Spider-Man for me with “Sins Past” and One More Day” by making further adventures of the character unpalatable. “Civil War” ruined Iron Man in a similar manner, and the Hydra storyline ruined Captain America. Marvel seems bound and determined to ruin the Sub-Mariner for me, too.

SPIDER-MAN LIFE STORY #3: This issue is up to the early ‘80s, Peter’s late 30s, and the Secret Wars. With America’s super-heroes out of the picture, the USSR took advantage of the U.S. being unprotected and launched a nuclear strike. Aunt May is in her 90s and going senile. MJ has given birth to twins, Claire and Benjamin. Peter owns Parker Industries and works closely with Reed Richards. “Secret Wars” segues into “Kraven’s Last Hunt.” Peter’s life is saved by the symbiont and (briefly) becomes Venom, but he is saved in turn by Mary Jane.

I think I have figured out where that “15 year old high school student” thing comes from. I have traced it back to Parallel Lives, the 1989 graphic novel (reprinted at standard size in 2012) by Gerry Conway.

PLANET OF THE NERDS #2: Every bit as entertaining as #1.

IMMORTAL HULK #17: Every bit as disturbing as #1-16.

I haven't figured out where my impression that Peter was 15 when the spider bit. I know I didn't get it from Conway's GN because I had that impression much earlier.

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