The Further Adventures of Indiana Jones 2 (February 1983)

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Denny O’Neil takes over scripting from Byrne, who sticks around to pencil, and adds xenophobia and misogyny. Not to mention Indy talking for the first half of the issue in expository paragraphs.

Ever wanted to see Indiana Jones gleefully kill members of a bronze age tribe? Here’s your comic. Or to see him buddy up with Nazi sailors? Again, this comic’s the one for you.

O’Neil seems entirely ignorant of archeology, so ignorant it’s as though he didn’t even see Raiders of the Lost Ark, which isn’t exactly real archeology but it’s better than what O’Neil writes about here.

He also seems disinterested in the time period. His writing read like a resentful employee’s contractual obligation.

Bryne’s panel compositions are interesting. He goes for cinematic. It doesn’t always work, but at least he’s trying.

Also interesting is Indy’s face. Everyone else has Byrne face; not Indy. Maybe Austin drew it.

CREDITS

22-Karat Doom!; writer, Denny O’Neil; pencillers, John Byrne and Terry Austin; inker, Austin; colorist, Bob Sharen; letterer, Janice Chiang; editor, Louise Jones; publisher, Marvel Comics.

Lord of the Jungle 6 (July 2012)

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Once, not listening to the black lady leads to disaster. Even if it’s realistic, Nelson’s playing the passive racism card a little too often. Not for the dumb white characters, but for the black lady. At least half her scenes are just her saying something smart and being ignored.

This issue’s a complete downer. It’s another fast read, with Jane in Wisconsin about to be married off (maybe her father’s unlikable because he’s more her pimp–Nelson’s inability to reconcile this situation is probably Jungle’s greatest failing)–and Tarzan showing up to save the day.

But the reuniting doesn’t go particularly well and Tarzan’s left alone. I guess the U.S. setting makes more sense now. Nelson’s going for an adventure comic, but a “reintroduction to British royalty” comic.

It’s particularly impressive how sympathetic Nelson makes Tarzan in just a single issue of him talking.

It’s a good issue.

CREDITS

The Height of Civilization; writer, Arvid Nelson; artist, Roberto Castro; colorist, Alex Guimaraes; letterer, Simon Bowland; editor, Joseph Rybandt; publisher, Dynamite Entertainment.

Before Watchmen: Dr. Manhattan 1 (October 2012)

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There’s something cool about Dr. Manhattan. Not just because Adam Hughes does the art–though the way he’s able to be stylized and still fluid is impressive; I wasn’t expecting him to do sequential so well.

And it’s not cool because J. Michael Straczynski tries so hard to ape Alan Moore’s “voice” for Jon. It’s cool because Straczynski actually comes up with something a little different than the rest of these Before Watchmen books.

Well, the ones trying to deal directly with the original series’s events. While Jon’s off on Mars, Straczynski gives him a side adventure. He goes into it without trying to tie it into the original series. It’s like he’s broken the timeline between the original and this prequel.

So between this approach, Hughes’s artwork and Straczynski’s successful aping of Moore’s voice for the character, the issue’s not bad.

The pirate backup, however, is horrendously written stuff.

CREDITS

What’s in the Box?; writer, J. Michael Straczynski; artist, Adam Hughes; colorist, Laura Martin; letterer, Steve Wands. The Curse of the Crimson Corsair, The Evil That Men Do, Part Two; writer, artist and colorist, John Higgins; letterer, Sal Cipriano. Editors, Chris Conroy, Camilla Zhang and Mark Chiarello; publisher, DC Comics.

Swamp Thing 112 (October 1991)

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Shepherd Hendrix is a very stranger inker (or finisher) for Tom Yeates’s pencils (or layouts). The art’s not bad at all, but Hendrix removes most of Yeates’s personality from the pencils. It’s an awkward amalgamation.

Collins continues her uptick, with Chester going through an emotional crisis and Alec (unknowingly) getting drawn into the Louisiana governor’s race. Collins’s approach to Louisiana’s peculiar. She seems to hate the people who live there. Lots of dumb white racist jokes. Not everyone’s a dumb white racist, but she gives a lot of attention to the ones who are such people.

Still, it shows she’s able to tell a joke even about something serious.

More uses of the word “elemental” in conversation–not to mention Chester referring to Alec as “Swampy”–continue to make Swamp Thing seem more domestic. Abby’s kitchen now even has a stove and refrigerator.

It’s good; Collins writes some great details.

CREDITS

All the Swamp King’s Men; writer, Nancy A. Collins; penciller, Tom Yeates; inker, Shepherd Hendrix; colorist, Tatjana Wood; letterer, Albert DeGuzman; editor, Stuart Moore; publisher, DC Comics.

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