The Punisher 7 (October 2000)

The Punisher #7

Should I call this a bridging issue or maybe I should call it a highway interchange issue because Ennis is bringing so much together. This subplot meets this other subplot and leads into the connection to the next subplot. It goes on and on.

It’s amusing. Ennis writes it well. The stupid priest thing has the detectives in it and they’re still funny. Whenever Ennis writes loser guys and their female partners who don’t want them romantically, it’s good. He should really do a series of just them.

Oh, yeah, Frank’s neighbors–who he mocks in his first person narration–once again get the kid glove treatment from Ennis. Dave and Joan are protected characters. Ennis coddles them; it’s a strange thing, since they’re the most obvious characters for him to coddle.

Still, it’s pretty good. Mr. Payback and the Elite are both funny. Ennis’s clearly exercising entertainment over ambition.

B 

CREDITS

Bring out Your Dead; writer, Garth Ennis; penciller, Steve Dillon; inker, Jimmy Palmiotti; colorist, Chris Sotomayor; letterers, Richard Starkings and Wes Abbott; editor, Joe Quesada; publisher, Marvel Comics.

Red Team 6 (November 2013)

Red Team #6

It’s a bad issue. Ennis rushes through the entire thing, only gets in a single moment of personality. I guess he tries to open with personality, with the female cop apparently doing a mock eulogy for a terrible cop. But it’s way too forced. It’s Ennis on a soapbox and one he doesn’t care about. Red Team is not a deep rumination on the NYPD or police officers. Not sure why Ennis feels the need to pretend here.

Then it’s immediately into a contrived hurrying up of the resolution to the big plot twist. It’s like Ennis thought the series would go on longer and then found out, this issue, he had two more to go and then he was cancelled.

But it’s a limited series so Ennis should have paced it better. All of the personality is gone from the characters, even the supporting ones act rather differently.

Boo.

C- 

CREDITS

The Fallen; writer, Garth Ennis; artist, Craig Cermak; colorist, Adriano Honorato Lucas; letterer, Rob Steen; editors, Molly Mahan and Joe Rybandt; publisher, Dynamite Entertainment.

Stray Bullets 31 (April 2003)

Stray Bullets #31

Lapham does some really tight art this issue. I don’t think his figures have ever been so precise. It’s a shame the story’s not there.

This issue has Virginia returning home and, once home, she runs into some kid she had a conversation with during her first issue. Is it too much synergy? Yes, it is too much synergy. But given the comic also has her at a high school where the kids attempt murder on two or three times a day and there’s no accountability–these are incidents where police reports would definitely be filed–too much synergy is the least of the problems.

It’s like Lapham is trying to do a high school story with that “Stray Bullets flavor” and it comes off like a cheap imitation.

As usual, he doesn’t cheap out on Virginia the character and she can hold the comic, regardless of its problems. Not ideal, but….

B- 

CREDITS

Derring-Do; writer, artist, and letterer, David Lapham; editor, Karen Hoyt; publisher, El Capitán Books.

Nightbreed 1 (May 2014)

Nightbreed #1

What just happened here? In this comic book running approximately twenty-two pages? Nothing, not a dang thing. Unless a couple unsubstantial characters are actually going to be the protagonists of the comic, which seems difficult since they seem to be living in different time periods.

There's an escaped slave who gets turned into one of the Nightbreed–oh, I forgot, Nightbreed is another Boom! Clive Barker licensed title. It's got the built-in <u>Fangoria</u> audience, which may explain the art. Piotr Kowalski does a good job. He doesn't have a lot of interesting things to draw, but he excels at them.

Anyway, this girl gets turned into an evolved monster before her part of the issue wraps up. Meanwhile, a senator who frequents a Nightbreed prostitute.

How are these two things connected? Who cares.

Writer Marc Andreyko actually does bring some tone, just no gravitas.

Who needs another licensed comic anyway….

C 

CREDITS

Writer, Marc Andreyko; artist, Piotr Kowalski; publisher, Boom! Studios.

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