The Further Adventures of Indiana Jones 19 (July 1984)

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Let me tell you a story about how this issue of Indiana Jones came to be. It’s not true, but it’s far more amusing than the comic book itself.

So, once upon a time, the LucasFilm licensing person–who probably had other duties in addition to overseeing Marvel Comics adaptations–quit… or went on leave… or vacation. Marvel took advantage of that absence to push out this filler issue, written and pencilled by Larry Lieber.

Now, maybe Lieber really liked Raiders or something, but he sure doesn’t know how to write the dang character. Larry Lieber writes Indiana Jones–not just from Indiana (see, the LucasFilm licensing person would have caught that one) but a racist. He’s racist. It’s amazing. Larry Lieber writes Indiana Jones as a racist who mocks indigenous peoples and cultures.

The Japanese villains–Lieber also ignored Japan’s war against China in the thirties–come off better.

CREDITS

Dragon by the Tail!!; writer and penciller, Larry Lieber; inkers, Jack Abel and Vince Colletta; colorist, Rob Carosella; letterer, Rick Parker; editor, Eliot Brown; publisher, Marvel Comics.

Bloodshot 13 (July 2013)

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Swierczynski takes a peculiar approach to dealing with Bloodshot’s side of the final Harbinger Wars issue. He makes it as lame as humanly possible.

It’s actually not even Bloodshot’s issue, it’s his sidekick Kara’s issue and his sidekick Kara hasn’t had much presence during the crossover event. She’s his voice of reason, not much else. Babysitter for the kids too.

Speaking of the kids, after spending a couple issues establishing them, Swierczynski dumps them to instead focus on really bad dream sequences. They’re an afterthought to the issue. Valiant must have really wanted to do a crossover special, but by not doing it straightforward, these issues are weak.

The art’s also got problems. Kitson’s has three inkers (himself included) and each of them makes the finished art look different.

It’s a bad issue and left me wondering why anyone would ever want to read another one. It’s rough and pointless.

CREDITS

Living the Dream; writer, Duane Swierczynski; penciller, Barry Kitson; inkers, Stefano Gaudiano, Kitson and Mark Pennington; colorist, Brian Reber; letterer, Rob Steen; editors, Jody LeHeup and Warren Simons; publisher, Valiant Entertainment.

Batman 368 (February 1984)

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It’s a very simple issue, but Doug Moench really does pace it all out beautifully. It’s goofy even–Moench hasn’t got down how to get his superheroes not sound silly when talking about being superheroes–but it is beautifully paced. The issue features Jason Todd’s first two nights as Robin, which end in tragedy.

Pre or post-Crisis Jason Todd was apparently always a lot of trouble (more like the writers finally realized how nuts it was to have a kid running around beating people up). There’s also a cameo from Dick Grayson and Moench, along with artists Don Newton and Alfredo Alcala, figure out how to turn it into a great guest appearance.

Even with iffy dialogue. There’s just so much texture to the characters’ interplay.

The art’s fantastic, the pacing’s fantastic, the dialogue’s problematic… it’s a pretty darn good comic. Except maybe the cliffhanger, Moench tries too hard.

CREDITS

A Revenge of Rainbows; writer, Doug Moench; penciller, Don Newton; inker, Alfredo Alcala; colorist, Adrienne Roy; letterer, Ben Oda; editor, Nicola Cuti and Len Wein; publisher, DC Comics.

Kiss Me, Satan 2 (October 2013)

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Didn’t the first issue have some really mediocre or bad narration from the protagonist? Gischler doesn’t make that mistake in this issue. It’s a lot of action–actually, I think it’s nonstop action at least for the witches and their mysterious protector.

Gischler goes for humor with the witches and it works. His banter between the protector and the vampire hit woman is a little weak, but it’s still all right. Kiss Me, Satan is interesting in how it’s not too ambitious, Ferreyra’s art isn’t exactly good–he goes for a static painted look–but the comic is rather entertaining nonetheless.

There’s some good, actually nerve-wracking stuff with the lady giving birth to the heir to the werewolf clan. It provides a fine companion to the main fight between the witches and the ninja zombies, which is definitely more for humor.

It’s a pleasant book; tough, but not really.

B 

CREDITS

Writer, Victor Gischler; artist, Juan Ferreyra; colorists, Eduardo Ferreyra and Juan Ferreyra; letterer, Nate Piekos; editors, Shantel LaRocque and Daniel Chabon; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.

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