The Boys 49 (December 2010)


So it’s all setup for Ennis flashing back to the big first fight between The Seven and The Boys? With Butcher recounting the event to his dog, I’m not sure the Homelander is the only nutty one in the comic.

The transition doesn’t go well at all–because Butcher doesn’t usually talk to Terror for this purpose–and it’s actually not a particularly good encounter. Ennis has everyone talking way too much. He’s being very coy, very opaque and I keep losing interest in the exposition. Whether it’s the Homelander, Mother’s Milk or Butcher, there’s just too much talking. The book, even at its best, isn’t worth all this effort.

I assume Ennis put in the cliffhanger to make it more action-packed–I forgot all about the Homelander blathering–but it doesn’t help. All these explanations don’t make for a good comic. Not even Ennis can sell superfluous exposition.


Proper Preparation and Planning, Part Two; writer, Garth Ennis; artist, Russ Braun; colorist, Tony AviƱa; letterer, Simon Bowland; editor, Joseph Rybandt; publisher, Dynamite Entertainment.

Harbinger Wars 2 (May 2013)

271802 20130524225152 large

I love how Dysart makes sly jabs at the Valiant Universe (or whatever they call it), pointing out how bad ideas are from the nineties. It’s a weird thing, which doesn’t break the story–possibly because he’s already got the debriefing framing and it allows for a lot of colorful commentary.

It’s pretty much an all action issue, only split between the two different groups. There are the New Mutants–or whatever the kid-lead group of escaped psiots should be called–and Bloodshot and his charges. There’s also the big fight scene with Harada, which proves more entertaining than one might expect. Maybe I’m just not familiar enough with Bloodshot to know his powers are specifically designed to provide for awesome comic book action scenes. Odd science that.

The stuff with the renegade kids has more depth, but only a little.

Good stuff; Dysart ably handles a huge cast.


Writers, Duane Swierczynski and Joshua Dysart; artists, Clayton Henry and Pere Perez; colorist, Brian Reber; letterer, Dave Lanphear; editor, Warren Simons; publisher, Valiant Entertainment.

Ultimate Spider-Man 117 (February 2008)


Wow. Bendis does half one of his big action issues with Norman going after Harry and there being a big Goblin battle. Peter and SHIELD are there too, with Peter jumping in and out of the action. There’s enough time for him to have a decent moment with Harry too.

But then the issue changes it up. The last four or five pages deal with fallout Bendis has been building since the first arc of the series. It’s strange Bagley didn’t stick around to finish it, but maybe they saw it as a way to establish Immonen as the artist on the series.

Immonen really proves himself in the last, short scene. He’s got a bunch of recognizable people reacting in master shots and he makes it all memorable–Liz, Flash, Kong, Mary Jane, even Kitty in her confusion.

Bendis writes some screwy issues for Ultimate but he excels sometimes.


Death of a Goblin, Part Six; writer, Brian Michael Bendis; penciller, Stuart Immonen; inker, Wade von Grawbadger; colorist, Justin Ponsor; letterer, Cory Petit; editors, Lauren Sankovitch, Bill Rosemann and Ralph Macchio; publisher, Marvel Comics.

Buck Rogers 1 (August 2013)

280309 20130808173346 large

Buck Rogers is surprisingly awesome. It’s like if someone did an exaggeration of Howie Chaykin, only it’s Howie Chaykin doing it himself and doing it really well.

Since it is Chaykin, there’s the usual less than tight art. Not as much as lately, however. Some of the medium shots have issues, but for the action sequences and close-ups, he’s on more than I expected him to be. There’s also the issue of the lengthy expository monologue from Buck Rogers about what’s happened to the world since he’s been asleep.

That monologue comes in between two long, good action sequences. Chaykin writes really strong banter between Buck–who comes from a time when banter is appreciated–and Wilma Dearing, who doesn’t appreciate banter at all. He drags her into it.

The soft cliffhanger is a little odd–Chaykin doesn’t visually establish the hook–but otherwise, it’s an excellent comic book.


Writer and artist, Howard Chaykin; colorist, Jesus Aburto; publisher, Hermes Press.

FBP: Federal Bureau of Physics 3 (November 2013)

283101 20130911093434 large

While this issue of FBP is definitely better than the last, it’s still not particularly good. Oliver’s writing is better, to be sure, but he’s faking it. He’s complicating things in order to get a whole issue out of the weak story.

For instance, he’s got four plot lines running. First, he’s got the betrayed guy. Then he’s got the betrayer, then there’s their boss, then there’s the newscast. The newscast is interesting because it’s entirely gibberish. The “science” behind FBP seems weaker than it should; Oliver goes out of his way to go on and on with it. It gets worse every sentence.

He’s also got multiple mysteries raised in the single issue, solely to remind the reader to get interested again in all the twists and turns. If Oliver were more competent, the twists might be offensive to a reader. Instead, they’re lame.

Lazy Rodriguez art again too.


The Paradigm Shift, Part Three; writer, Simon Oliver; artist, Robbi Rodriguez; colorist, Rico Renzi; letterer, Steve Wands; editors, Sara Miller and Mark Doyle; publisher, Vertigo.

Website Powered by

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: