Monday, December 24, 2012

2 Cent Holiday Reviews - Marvel NOW & The DCnU

Hello everyone and welcome back!  This week is going to be all big two comics.  Come back in a few days for some lesser-known publisher reviews, including the newest issue of Saga.  For now, let's take a look at Avengers #2, Avengers Arena #2, Captain America #2, FF #2, Thor God of Thunder #3, Wolverine & The X-Men #22, Uncanny X-Force #35, X-Factor #249, Batwoman #15, Green Lantern #15, Green Lantern Corps #15, Supergirl #15, Sword of Sorcery #3, and Wonder Woman #15.  Let's go.

 Avengers 2:  Top quality art, top quality writing....but I'm still waiting.  Too much set up can cripple a series.  Luckily, the first two issues were released two weeks apart so my patience isn't being tested.  Yet.  If issue three doesn't take place in the present and only offers more back story then I might just drop this.  I remain to have high hopes.  In Hickman We (still) Trust!
 Avengers Arena 2:  This issue really pulls at your heart strings.  If you thought the last chapter was brutal, wait until you see the barely note-worthy/noticed death here.  The entirety of this month's production focuses on one of the new and more innocent characters unlovingly dubbed as "Deathlocket".  It's exactly in Battle Royale's spirit where we get the perspective of an innocent child trapped in this murder game, alone and filled with fear.
 Captain America 2:  It's been one year since issue one.  Cap and his young charge Ian (the baby) have been surviving the harsh wasteland of Dimension Z on instinct alone.  There are predators everywhere and worse yet, organized monsters with weaponry, armour and transport.  But Cap never falters.  He never gives up hope.  Even when captured.
 FF 2:  The machine that goes "boop boop!"  I loved that.  As expected, the mission that should have taken the official Fantastics away for four minutes is taking longer, leaving Scott and the new recruits as the permanent team.  The media takes a dump on our heroes which leaves many of them not very confident.  Mole Man shows up to get a piece but he is shut down quickly.  And Darla finally dons the Thing's body suit.  All this, plus Allred art.
 Sword of Sorcery 3:  Amaya continues her rigorous training and her aunt calls for a meeting in neutral lands.  The end of the issue also answers how/when she joins up with the JLD, something that was bugging me before.  Meanwhile, in the Beowulf back up, we learn something interesting about the current DC verse.  Something that happened in the stories past, which is our present.
 Thor God of Thunder 3:  The God Butcher story arc continues and it is magnificent!  From the art to the writing, everything is very imaginative.  I may not be enjoying the current Wolverine ATXM storyline, but this Aaron has me gripped by the short hairs.  Things get darker/more complex and Thor remembers feeling fear.
 Batwoman 15:  Strange.  I thought I had purchased Batwoman and not the Guilt-Riddled Diary of Detective Maggie Sawyer.  I hate when Batwoman does this; one, not featuring Williams' art and two, the focus of the book landing on one of its minor characters.  The creators may think it is artsy but it's just dissatisfying.
 Green Lantern 15:  Baz continues his quest to prove his innocence.  The third army is everywhere and they've just landed on Earth.  Our only hope...Lantern B'Dg?!!
 Green Lantern New Guardians 15:  Lesson 5: Greed.  And a lesson hard-won.  Someone sacrifices their life aiding Kyle's troop and it's heartbreaking.  Next:  Rayner VS Ganthet!
 Supergirl 15:  Kara and H'el, sitting in a tree.  I guess even alien chicks dig goth boys.  In this issue:  the city of Kandor, a plan to save Krypton, and super hormones!
 Wonder Woman 15:  Diana's search for her family continues and takes her to Manhattan's underground.  This particular sibling does not want to be found or involved in any more "family business"  but Lenox and Diana give him no choice.  The New God Orion however will make their job more difficult.
 Wolverine & The X-Men 22:  I'm not enjoying this circus arc at all.  Did Aaron's brain take a vacation?  Or is he reserving all his creative fluids for Thor: God of Thunder?  Either way, it's a silly, childish and I hate to say it, stupid arc so far.  I really want it to end.  Also, the new characters Eye-Boy and Shark-Girl are super lame.  You have a generation of students to work with but you invent two of the most ridiculous characters in comics?  Hell, one of the New X-Men kids is even an Atleantan, what was the point of creating Shark-Girl????  Waste.
 Uncanny X-Force 35:  Final Issue.  Remdender tries to end things on as much as a positive note as a book of this nature will allow.  Not a mind blowing ending and some of the character personalities felt a bit forced (Deadpool) but I guess they needed to set up the title for its next version.  I however will be getting off at this stop.
X-Factor 249:  Think I'm starting to lose interest in this book. Once it was a favourite I thought could never do wrong, now I'm just bored.  I was expecting it to get more interesting after its haircut (the shedding of half the cast) but it really hasn't.  The art is always bad which the writing typically saves but it wasn't enough this time.  I'm getting tired of the same formula each issue:  Madrox doubts himself, M is a bitch, Longshot is dumb, Layla is mysterious, Shatterstar is brave, Rictor is whiny, Pip is vulgar, etc etc.  Next month is the title's 250th issue and the last chance it gets.

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