§ December 9th, 2004 § Filed under Uncategorized Comments Off on

New comics day (SPOILERS, don’cha know):

Hulk/Thing: Hard Knocks #4 – nice wrap up to the series…surprisingly low-key, probably the only time the Hulk/Thing battle was mostly just them having a debate/discussion. Yes, there was the occasional punch thrown, but the action was more psychologically-based. Wish it wasn’t in a $3.50-a-pop mini-series, though. Ah, well…onward to Peter David’s return to the character!

B.P.R.D.: The Dead #2 – now are we learning more about Abe Sapien’s pre-fishy existence, or is it just a ruse on the part of the evil being investigated? I wouldn’t think that Mignola would want to spoil one of the Hellboy mythos’ great mysteries, so I’m inclined to think there’s more to it than what we’re seeing. Also, the humor from the previous issue is maintained, mostly in the relationship between Roger the Homunculus and Captain Daimio. Fun stuff, with moody art by Guy Davis. (“Moody art by Guy Davis” – now there’s your redundant phrase of the day.)

JSA #68 – I tend to enjoy Alex Ross’ work more when he’s painting the Golden Age DC heroes, and this cover isn’t bad. Power Girl’s…um, busting out all over, as it were, but I suppose that’s consistent with her…characterization. The inside of the comic deals with the JSA’s forced retirement in 1951, and how the current time-manipulating shenanigns of the greatest Golden Age villain ever, Per Degaton, are intent on keeping that retirement permanent. A very interesting set-up…we learn one of the true tasks of one of DC’s long-running time-traveling superheroes, which also sets up what is sure to be a forthcoming additional revelation about said character. There’s also a surprisingly violent sequence regarding an attack on a JSA member’s family. I’m sure we’ll be hearing more about this in the near future.

Action Comics #822 – for all the bad rap Chuck Austen has been getting on pretty much everything he touches, I think his Action is a fun read. It certainly lives up to the title, anyway…and I’m enjoying his just slightly smart-alecky characterization of Superman.

Mad Magazine #449 – it’s the 20 Dumbest People, Events, and Things of 2004 issue, and the feature article is bound to offend someone of any political stripe. Comic fans may want to note the Identity Crisis spoof cover used at entry #18. Also, there are two covers on this issue…the Janet Jackson cover is amusing, but the one to get is the Drew Friedman cover, with Alfred E. Neuman as Lynndie England. Also, because of the extended 20 Dumbest… article, we get shorted on our usual number of Sergio Aragones’ Mad Marginals!

Others: JLA #109 (the actual JLA finally makes an appearance; still all set up, not a lot of action, but still interesting), Punisher #15 (I swear, Ennis is laughing his head off as he writes these scripts, just daring Marvel to print ’em; over-the-top violent, vulgar, and fun stuff), Wild Girl #2 (still not sure where this is going, but Shawn McManus’ art is always enjoyable), and Fables #32 (another issue of continuing subplots, with no central driving motive; still good reading, but maybe lacks a little focus).

Other new arrivals:

A new Mad-a-like called Gag Magazine was released today, written mostly by Barry Dutter (who I know worked in the comics industry for a while, but I’ll always remember him as the letter column regular who wanted to get She-Hulk booted from the Fantastic Four all these years ago). Best reason to pick up the magazine: art by Captain Jack creator Mike Kazaleh.

Bighead is a graphic novel collection of Jeffrey Brown’s mini-comix superhero spoof…strange, but amusing.

I can’t believe the Claypool Elvira comic is up to issue #140. I don’t know what the print run on this series is, but given that even a larger store like ours only orders minimal numbers on it, I can only guess that the production costs on this comic must be extremely low to allow its continuing existence. Then again, maybe there’s a store somewhere that sells a thousand copies each month. Who knows?

Powers #7 – is it just me, or did the lettering and word balloons in this issue look a little pixelated?

After about two weeks of delays, we finally got our copies of Losers #18. Man, I hate when that happens.

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