The Unwritten 34 (April 2012)

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Perker’s finishes over Gross lead to a somewhat different look for the book. Besides Tom looking more like an action movie star than a twenty-something, there are some weird panel transitions. It’s not bad art, it just doesn’t feel like Unwritten at times.

It’s a combination of an action issue and a revelation one. The leader of the Cabal’s a good Bond villain who explains everything–multiple times–and there are a lot of explosions.

Carey weaves in a surprise–cheating, since the characters know about it but the reader doesn’t, but it plays well. Tom’s maturing as a character, the exposition is good, Lizzie and Richie have a good time. It’s a fine issue, but it just doesn’t wow.

It’s like Carey was giving more thought to the concurrently running .5 issues and letting the main story run on autopilot. Good material, smooth sailing, but not really engaging.

CREDITS

Tommy Taylor and the War of Words, Part Four; writers, Peter Gross and Mike Carey; pencillers, Gross and M.K. Perker; inker, Perker; colorist, Chris Chuckry; letterer, Todd Klein; editors, Joe Hughes and Karen Berger; publisher, Vertigo.

The Rocketeer: Hollywood Horror 2 (March 2013)

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Langridge really embraces the Thin Man tie-in. It’s without names, instead of him doing thinly veined homages. It’s a nice touch, sending Betty off on her own adventure without Cliff.

Actually, Betty’s got the much bigger story. She’s the one who has figured out there’s some creepiness with the Scientologist Cthulhu fan–sorry, Cosmicist–while Cliff’s basically just running around dumb. He’s on the run from Howard Hughes’s guys, who want to bring the jet-pack in for a tune up.

There’s some more great work from Bone this issue. He’s got a lot of Rocketeer action, some great reaction shots between Cliff and Betty; that whole vibe, from cartoon broadness to comic strip focus, continues here, if not amplifies.

While Langridge does follow the general IDW Rocketeer continuity, Hollywood Horror never feels forcibly tied in. They’re creating their own thing; so far, better than anyone else has done.

CREDITS

These Troubled Times; writer, Roger Langridge; artist, J. Bone; colorist, Jordie Bellaire; letterer, Tom B. Long; editor, Scott Dunbier; publisher, IDW Publishing.

Swamp Thing 133 (July 1993)

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Is Eaton trying visually infer romantic feelings between Chester and Abby? It’s the first such occurrence and I’m sure it’s unintentional, but it’s far more interesting than anything else this issue.

Except maybe the stuff with Tefé. When she gets tough towards the end of the issue, Collins writes the scene rather well. Otherwise, the issue’s a mess.

One character dies in front of a sheriff, who doesn’t even file a report, then Abby runs off in the middle of a huge tragedy. She abandons Tefé, which seems somewhat unlikely. Then there are all the scenes with the giant petal monster. They don’t work because it’s viciously killing a bunch of people instead of being a fun giant monster fight.

It’s not the worst issue Collins has written lately, but it’s far from good or even mediocre.

And Swamp Thing still rocking his inexplicable, dumb-looking, shaggy grey hair cut.

CREDITS

Daisy Chain; writer, Nancy A. Collins; penciller, Scot Eaton; inker, Kim DeMulder; colorist, Tatjana Wood; letterer, John Costanza; editor, Stuart Moore; publisher, Vertigo.

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