Friends! It’s been a crazy two weeks – I was on the road most of the time, first at the outstanding SASA conference in Atlanta, where I was talking about the southern Captain American and talking up the forthcoming Comics and the U.S. South collection, and then off to Maryland to visit family, and then back here to close on a new house. I read barely any comics at all the first week and am still playing catch-up with my regular weekly pulls. Here’s what I’ve got so far:
Action Comics #898
Amazing Spider-Man #654.1. I dug this intro to the new Flash Thompson/Venom status quo, although it maybe moved the inevitable “when will the symbiote take over” storyline farther down the road than I would have liked so soon. Then again, I’m someone who always complains that not enough happens in any given issue of a superhero comic, so really I guess I’m just hard to please.
Captain America #615.
DeadpoolMAX #5. If you’re going to write a comic about a villainess sadistically murdering a group of cub scouts, you should definitely get Kyle Baker to draw it.
Fantastic Four #588. I liked Nick Dragotta’s art on this mostly dialogue-free requiem for the FF’s fallen member. An issue-long “in memoriam” issue like this is tough to pull off in the superhero genre, since we know that Johnny Storm is coming back at some point, and since Hickman knows we know, and so forth. Smartly, Hickman doesn’t dwell too much on the melodrama but instead focuses on how the various characters’ reactions to their friend’s death set new plot threads in motion. You know what it made me think of, though? Justice League America #40, the funeral for Mister Miracle issue. Still the best superhero funeral ever—an all the more impressive achievement since if you were reading the ongoing Mister Miracle title at the time you knew for sure that he wasn’t dead. Adam Hughes turned in some lovely moody artwork on that, and Giffen and DeMatteis nailed the various JLers responses. I’m pretty sure I cried.
Iron Man 2.0 #1. I might keep reading this just because they gave at least a passing mention to Rhodey’s stint in The Crew in the character history text piece. Also, there is apparently a story where War Machine travels back to WW2 and fights alongside the Howlers? I’m going to need to read that.
Knight and Squire #3, 5. Paul Cornell’s playful and sweet-natured adventure series takes a sudden turn into the darker DCU proper. I don’t know what the plans are for the characters after this but I hope Cornell keeps working on something in this vein—the DC line-up needs it.
Thunderbolts #152-153. Jeff Parker’s King Hyperion is a great heel.
X-Men #8. This arc probably isn’t an official audition for Gischler to write Spider-Man, but maybe it should be?