Martin Gray's News Posts (15)

Strange Tales #1 review

DC let independent and small press creators loose on their characters a few years ago and the result was the overwhelmingly charming, often funny, Bizarro Comics. Marvel does the same thing and we get Curate's Egg Comics. Sorry, I mean Strange Tales. Good in parts, but not quite good enough.

I'm all for out of continuity strips that allow creators new to the characters to offer a new perspective, or just have fun, and when it works, Strange… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on September 8, 2009 at 8:44pm — 9 Comments

The Brave and the Bold #25 review

For a fella whose comic's been cancelled the Blue Beetle is certainly prominent - he's in Teen Titans every month, has a strip in the back of Booster Gold and here he is co-starring in Brave and Bold. Mind, I'm not surprised DC creators like the character so much: he has an interesting look, great supporting cast and, most importantly, a thoroughly engaging personality. His youthful perspective and sense of humour has Jaime Reyes stealing any story he… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on July 20, 2009 at 6:41pm — 1 Comment

Justice League: Cry for Justice #1

Green Lantern Hal Jordan lays down the law to the Justice League, annoyed that the team isn't proactive enough in terms of going after villains and ending their threat for good. He reminds them that as the local representative of the Guardians of the Universe, he is the law. And he's going to step up before more heroes such as Batman and the Martian Manhunter get killed. So, with the ever-loyal Green Arrow, he exits the League satellite to do ...… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on July 7, 2009 at 4:54am — 16 Comments

Let's get Wonder Woman the big numbers!

She's beaten everyone from the Cheetah to Darkseid but there's one foe Wonder Woman is finding truly implacable - Dan DiDio.

DC's Executive Editor has so far resisted all calls to give the Amazon a 600th issue, reflecting her position in comics history - even though recent years have seen such books as Superman, Fantastic Four, Thor and, soon, Captain America, dump the new volumes for big numbers.

On Mr DiDio recently… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on June 24, 2009 at 6:37pm — 1 Comment

Captain Britain and MI13 #14 review

Well here's a turn-up for the books and no mistake - the apocalyptic events of last issue were a feint, a dream sparked in Dracula by the demon Plokta as a favour to Pete Wisdom. My first reaction was 'jolly cheap, wot?' but writer Paul Cornell quickly won me over. OK, so Faiza and Pete aren't dead but that means Faiza and Pete aren't dead. In a vampire-filled storyline they are, in the nicest possible sense, undead.

And while the 'it was all… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on June 22, 2009 at 8:54pm — 1 Comment

Action Comics Annual #12

I've been critical of recent issues of Action Comics, mainly for a level of violence that's alien to the Superman Family. I've also felt we weren't getting to know our new protagonists, Flamebird and Nightwing, well enough. While this extra-sized issue is still somewhat grislier than I'd prefer, the violence is dialled down. And equally good, the characterisation is dialled up.

What's remarkable here is that while most of the issue is told in the… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on June 22, 2009 at 7:57pm — 1 Comment

Batman #687 review

After last week's sterling first issue of Batman & Robin, do we really need to backtrack for a Battle for the Cowl epilogue? Maybe not, but this book is a lot better than I expected it to be.

So far as I can make it, it's not actually a BftC coda until the final few pages as for most of the book Dick resists taking on the mantle of the bat, He's fighting crime, yes, but sticking to the Batmobile and the shadows, trying to convince Gotham that… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on June 11, 2009 at 6:15pm — 2 Comments

Red Robin #1

When the red, red Robin comes bob-bob-bobbin' along . . .

Oh dear, I just can't see this book without that lovely old song ringing through my head. And that new logo, as chirpy as a cute ickle wed wobbin deserves!

Ooh, goodness me though, that's a very grim fellow underneath it, on Francis Manapul's striking cover. That's the all-new, all-miserable Tim Drake . . . sorry, Wayne. Having been adopted awhile back, he's using Bruce's… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on June 11, 2009 at 6:07pm — 6 Comments

Exiles #3 review

That'a a bit of a dull cover from the talented Dave Bullock, showing the Exiles traversing dimensions - it looks like a final issue deal rather than a third issue image. And I know cartooning is all about exaggeration, but Polaris looks less like a person here than a stick of green licorice.

The first arc in the latest Exiles revival comes to a close with the new members - Blink, Polaris, Beast, the (Scarlet) Witch, the (son of Storm and… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on June 6, 2009 at 2:12pm — No Comments

Captain Britain and MI:13 Annual #1

I've often bemoaned the fact that the X-Men never have any fun these days. They never have time for a trip to the Westchester mall, for example, or a game of baseball. But my nostalgia for those issues in which mutants took to the backfields of Xaviers School for Gifted Youngsters ignores one salient fact - I had no idea about the rules of baseball and what I did understand bored me rigid. I wonder if Captain Britain writer Paul Cornell was similarly… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on June 4, 2009 at 7:05pm — 1 Comment

Batman and Robin #1 blather

The new Batman and Robin have their first night on the town and, suitably enough, meet a new villain. Mr Toad is a self-proclaimed slippery customer but, alas, not exactly formidable and our heroes make quick work of him. They're aided in this by the latest version of the Batmobile, one harking back to the Flying Batcave of the Silver Age. Before issue's end we learn that British 'minger' (and how wonderful to see that in a US comic) Mr Toad… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on June 4, 2009 at 3:30pm — 4 Comments

Amazing Spider-Man #595 review

And a new storyline begins, American Son, in which Spidey determines to take down Norman Osborn, currently head of North America's super-powered defenders. And quite right too, though I'd expect a big brain like Peter Parker to come up with something sneakier than kidnapping and beating up Osborn in public. And his anger makes him rather slapdash with his re-secreted ID. Still, it makes for an entertaining scene, and gives penciller Phil Jimenez a chance to homage a classic Spidey… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on June 1, 2009 at 8:15am — No Comments

Superman #688 bletherings

Holy Seventies Flashbacks, Mon-El has Supergirl's on-again, off-again super-powers. It turns out that Brainiac 5's cure for Daxamite-on-Earth lead poisoning is actually a bit rubbish, and he'll be dead within 18 months. Darn. Luckily his partner-in-Superman's-title The Guardian is going to teach him fisticuffs and swimming, to lessen his chances of dying in an off moment.

Apart from the powers revelation, the other big moment this issue sees our heroes rescue time-displaced Legion of… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on May 30, 2009 at 3:15pm — 4 Comments

Justice Society of America #27 ramblings

'Ghost in the Darkness' is a fill-in prior to the new creative team coming on board, but if we're going to have guest creators, I'm always glad to see writer-artist Jerry Ordway help out. The All-Star Squadron and Infinity Inc artist here revives the latter team for a flashback and it's great to see them again. Ordway focuses on two of their alumni here, Atom Smasher and Obsidian.

Atom Smasher presents no problem, as his Geoff Johns-created character arc looks to be a straightforward… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on May 30, 2009 at 3:14pm — 9 Comments

Wonder Woman #32 - witterings

What I like about this issue is that writer Gail Simone has Diana cut loose against the monstrous Genocide. It's about time, the corrupted corpse of Wonder Woman has been on the loose for too long.

I liked the no-fanfare cameo by DC debutante hero the Shield, aiding the rescue operation as Washington crumbles mid-battle.

The art, by Aaron Lopresti and Matt Ryan is superb, clearly showing the parry and thrust of battle, the emotions felt by Diana, Genocide, Nemesis and Prof… Continue

Added by Martin Gray on May 30, 2009 at 3:00pm — 6 Comments


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