This weeks seemed a bit slower than past weeks. I wound up picking up some more back-issues because I found myself with a little extra reading time. What would be even better would be finding myself with a little extra cash… I miss the days of 75 cent comics. At least I seem to be saving a little bit by reading them digitally.
What I picked up:
- Aquaman #18
- Batman #18
- Justice League #16
- Deathstroke #2 through 5
Aquaman was an ok read. I feel that he is a bit of a difficult character to write. What is arguably the most interesting part of the character– his role in Atlantis– is also something that keeps him isolated from the rest of the DC universe. The only time that Atlantis seems to have much contact with the surface world is when they are at war, but that is not something that can be dragged out for an extended arc. As a result, I find that having Arthur dealing with supervillains on land tends to come across as a bit forced. I’m still going to follow this title, though. I just hope they can find some way to make things feel more natural.
Batman is a character that I love, but I find him… difficult… at the moment, because he almost seems to be a different person in each title. He is a member of the Justice League and in the Trinity books he seems to be forming the old pre-52 relationship that he had with Superman and Wonder Woman, yet in JLA he speaks about the regular League with what seems to be real disdain. In Detective, he is learning the value of opening up to the “bat family” and seems to be a pretty well-balanced character, but in the eponymous Batman book, he reminds me of nothing so much as Frank Miller’s Dark Knight Returns. As written by Tom King, Batman is not terribly likeable and comes across at times as mentally unwell. I did somewhat enjoy the symmetry shown in Batman and Bane’s childhoods, but I am not fond of this characterization of Batman.
Justice League continues the story of The Timeless and their quest to prevent the rise of super-powered beings on Earth. This story is actually quite interesting as it continues to build toward what appears to be some significant revelations about Rebirth as a whole. The art is somewhat uneven, with supporting characters looking better than the primary League members, but overall it is fairly decent. This book has gone from almost being dropped by me, to being one that I am looking forward to.
Nightwing was fun this week, if only for the interaction between Dick Grayson and Damian Wayne. I normally can’t stand Damian, but when paired with Dick, or with Jon Kent, he’s not too bad. I’m still not sold on Dick’s relationship with Shawn Tsang (he belongs with Barbara Gordon, dammit!), but I can accept it in the short term. My little nitpick in this issue is the same as every time I see Damian (or Jon Kent, for that matter): they keep drawing him about 4′ tall. He’s much too tiny. He is 14 years old. My elder son is not even 14 yet and he is about 5’11” or even 6′. I know that Batman and Superman are tall, so it makes sense for the kids to look small in comparison, but they are often drawn at half the height of their fathers.
Superman kicked off the Superman Reborn storyline which promises to be interesting and to start unveiling the meta-plot of the entire Rebirth event. More importantly, this storyline will see Superman getting his red boots back. Thank goodness for that! The story itself focuses on the mysterious fake Clark Kent and a strange white flame that is seemingly erasing everything that is not a natural part of the New 52 universe, including a character that’s very important to Superman.
Pick of the Week
My pick this week likely would have been Superman had I not picked up a few more issues of Deathstroke. Once again, I am surprised at how much I am enjoying this title, considering I had never really been a fan before. The writing is very good and the story so far is quite engaging. As a bonus, two issues featuring Batman and Robin show Batman in a better light than his own titles do. In his guest appearance here, Batman is both more capable and more intelligent than he has seemed in Batman, Detective, Trinity or the Justice League titles. I wish he could be like this all the time. Incredibly, I even found myself not only not hating Robin, but actually almost liking him. That alone elevates the three issues I’ve read over everything else I picked up this week.
So, what is everyone else reading? I don’t know… no one has answered that question yet. Maybe this week someone will. 🙂
I’d love to hear some opinions on the various titles coming out each month, whether Marvel, DC or another publisher. I’d also enjoy hearing thoughts and theories relating to Rebirth.