Trio #1 by John Byrne – John Byrne doing a superhero book. ‘Nuff Said. Oh, you need more? Philistines. This book is FUN. It opens in the midst of big action and introduces it’s characters on the fly. The stars of the book are a team of three heroes (hence the title) named Rock, Paper, Scissors by the media, but they refer to each other as one, two and three. Byrne is a master and the art is, of course, superb. I’m not completely sold on the effect used on Rock’s skin, but I’m sure I’ll get used to it. It is an interesting mix of classic art and what appears to be a computer generated surface/texture. There are a couple of mysteries introduced and a “villain” whose introduction is a bit reminiscent of Namor, and there’s the promise of a big damn monster in the next issue. This is modern Byrne flexing those muscles from his FF days. There is a lot of fun ahead for the readers of this book. Hopefully stores will order it and push it to their customers so we all can have the chance to watch Byrne really cut loose on some good old fashioned superheroin’! This, people, is how comics should be done.
Blue Beetle #9/Green Lantern – New Guardians #9 – Uuhh, okay. I just am dumbfounded at this point. The Green Lantern books were (for the most part) really well done before the relaunch. Now I’m to the point where I’m just about to drop all of them. I’ve really tried hard to give the DCnu a chance. I WANT to like it. At first I was surprised by how much I did enjoy, but that started fading fairly quick. Now however, when the concept of the Reach and their scarab warriors is the most interesting part of a “crossover” with Blue Beetle…I think I’m at that point. Crossover is in quotes because the Blue Beetle issue was COMPLETELY superfluous. One more issue of each GL book. If I’m not wowed they’re gone. I do have to admit though, Saint Walker and the Blue Lanterns get an opportunity to kick some butt finally. It would’ve been pretty awesome if it wasn’t the last page and I have to wait until next month to see it.
Batman Incorporated #1 by Grant Morrison and Chris Burnham – Damn DC, so you still know how to do it! While I have been disappointed by a lot of the DCnu (see above), the triumphant return of Grant Morrison to the Batman corner of the line has turned that frown upside down. Here’s another book that starts in the middle of the action. There’s a teaser of some bad stuff going down a month ahead of time and then it’s right into a chase a la Lethal Weapon 2. Grant’s script is spot on. I know, big surprise. Honestly though, for me anyway, Grant’s work is either completely and thoroughly amazing or nigh on incomprehensible. Batman Inc. is definitely the former. This is a great start to what seems to be an intriguing story. Burnham’s art perfectly conveys the kinetic-ism inherent in Damian/Robin. There is a shot where he takes down 10 gang members that was just fun to go over and over soaking in the detail. He also draws Bruce in a way that you can definitely see him becoming the Bruce seen years later in The Dark Knight Returns. Thick and stocky, very powerful. It may have been a suggestion, seeing as how the Mutants gang from DKR actually make an appearance in the story. Morrison throws down a couple of classic lines. One has been posted all over the web with Damian saying: “As of now, I am a vegetarian. And this is Bat-Cow.” This book is deadly serious without losing it’s sense of FUN. Like Trio, here’s another master at work and twice in a week money well spent.
And now, another quick movie mention.
I just took my 5-year old to see Men In Black 3 today. It was definitely enjoyable. I’ve heard a lot of people say it’s the best of the three. I don’t know about that, it’s not quite as great as the first but is better than the second. Granted, I’m one of the few that actually really likes the second one. Josh Brolin once again absolutely nails it. He is becoming one of the most consistently spot on actors in movies today. Of course, anyone that was in Goonies gets a thumbs up from me. The effects were great, the physically created creatures were amazing all while keeping that almost cartoony feeling the movies have always had. They aren’t high art, but they are fun pop art. Fitting then, that we find out the real story behind Andy Warhol’s efforts in the art world. Time Travel is fun. There’s even a bit of an emotional, misty eyed element to the end of it. The middle has quite a bit of talking and exposition (for a five-year old) and that did have Ewan a bit fidgety, but when the aliens and action showed up he was riveted. Worth the money to see in the theater. Where I went it was almost $10 for a matinee, so that’s saying quite a bit.
Fantastic Four #606 by Jonathan Hickman and Ron Garney – Right after posting this article, I read Fantastic Four #606 and immediately wished I had done so before posting. Then I remembered the edit function! I cannot say enough good about this issue. It seems to be the FF on a danger filled exploratory mission, but ends up so much more than that. Hickman has crafted a story that is high adventure, completely personal, full of everything you could want from a story and FULLY CONTAINED IN ONE ISSUE. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll kiss four bucks goodbye…but you won’t mind spending the dough. Garney is amazing. He has (as always) completely nailed every moment of this book. Big action, strange environments and the entire gamut of human emotion. I really hope Marvel keeps him around and puts him on a high profile book after his FF run comes to an end. He really deserves to be in a place where the most people are exposed to his art.
Sean Stoltey, writer, raconteur and retired rabble rouser, hails originally from California’s Central Coast but currently resides in Southern California’s BEAUTIFUL–San Fernando Valley. Screenwriter, Comic Book author, these are things he does because he’s too poor to be a Producer or Publisher.
Sean has been reading comics, watching movies, reading books and selling his soul (or at least his hearing) to Rock’n’Roll for as long as he can remember. He has been discussing and arguing about these things for almost as long.
So now he has come here to throw his opinions in your face as well and hope that, even if you don’t agree, hopefully you will enjoy them. For the record: Kirk was the greatest Enterprise Captain, Han was the only one that shot, Led Zeppelin was the greatest Rock band to walk the Earth and Keith Richards is the coolest undead person to walk the Earth. Coolest living people are my sons and my Mom and Dad. My Dad F—in’ rocks, and my Mom can kick your ass.
You can ask Sean anything at http://www.formspring.me/WWest3001 contact him via twitter @WWest3001 or boring old e-mail at SeanStoltey@yahoo.com