Thursday, January 19, 2012


To no one's shock, these are ridiculously late because that's how things work here. But here, for the benefit of several, here's two issues I janked from my new comics pile today:

BATWOMAN #4--Erm. Much as I wanna like this, I can't really say I did. It's not that Flamebird gets "fridged" or whatever the term is, it's just how unnecessary the whole thing feels. Flamebird runs off half-cocked, gets nearly stabbed to death just so she can give up Kate's name to Cameron Chase and the various plots (save for Kate and Maggie getting together) just kinda stop so we can get that plot beat done. And because that's all we have going on here, it makes it feel even more arbitrary.

Do we need Flamebird? Really? She's been trailing along as a continuity artifact for decades and she's only ever hauled out to mess stuff up for the main character of the book or be played for a joke, and if that's the case, why fucking keep using her? No one likes her, she's not an interesting character (she's at best like the Booster Gold of the Teen Titans set, and all her bellowing about "I was a Titan" only looks foolish because all that got pitched out with the reboot, dinnit?) and the role could be filled by anyone, so why do we keep going round and round like this?

I'm being hard on the book, and it's not as if it's taken a dip in quality (looks beautiful, really) but this is the first time that the storytelling really fell down and we spent a month in Plot Convenience Playhouse. I hope the last two issues of this arc are more true to form, because this was really thin soup.

JUSTICE LEAGUE #4--Reading this book is like the movie Groundhog Day. New character shows up, acts like a jackass, falls in with the team when more para-demons come in, lather, rinse, repeat. This time, it's Aquaman's turn and it has absolutely no impact because FOUR PEOPLE HAVE ALREADY DONE THIS SCHTICK. THERE IS NO NEED TO DO IT A FIFTH TIME AS IT MAKES THE ENTIRE CAST LOOK UNLIKEABLE AND NOT LIKE PEOPLE I WANT TO SPEND MONEY READING ABOUT.

Sorry for the caps lock, but fucking really, y'all. Even early Image comics weren't this shrill.

Oh, and Cyborg gets all . . .cyborg-y. For something that takes up so many pages, it sure does feel like an afterthought.

That said, the double page spread where Darkseid farts so hard that the Justice League is blown away was an interesting artistic choice on the part of Jim Lee. Didn't add to the drama, but so few gods of evil announce their presence with bombastic flatulence that I felt like it was quite the novelty.

I . . .really am not crazy about the backmatter stuff which implies that damn near every evil scientist is working at S.T.A.R. Labs. Trying to impose this kind of rigidity out of the gate on your superhero universe seems. . .intentionally limiting. Plus, that's six pages where Darkseid could have been farting and blowing shit up.

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