Incorruptible #11: Now we’re getting somewhere. After the disappointing last issue, we get into some character motivation and discovery. Plutonian’s ex, Alana, is under the protection of Max Damage, though she doesn’t feel all that safe. Along the way to Coalville (you know, even after reading these issues and glossing over over them for these reviews, I still don’t understand the importance of that town–so either I read too fast or it’s a plot point that hasn’t been made important enough by the writer), Alana tells Max it’s her fault that Plutonian went crazy, and just when you think Max is going to unleash his bridled anger upon her, he’s furious that the Plutonian was probably laughing at him when Max kidnapped Plutonian in his other identity. Max calls Plutonian a coward for letting Alana live with that guilt (Max should be careful here: Alana could take that to mean that Max thinks she should be killed for letting loose unto the world the crazed Plutonian), and then asks for her help in navigating this new world(view) that Max inhabits. I was going to probably stop reading this at issue 12, but now we’ll see.
Superman #704: This issue is more about Lois Lane and the road not taken (it’s on the cover, see? Just so you know what the theme is in case you missed it) than Superman’s walk across America. I liked this a lot, but then, I’ve been some of the few who have been enjoying JMS’s run on this title (as well as on Wonder Woman). “But Eric P. I.,” some will say, “this issue wasn’t written by JMS!” That’s true, but it’s still within the spirit of the current storyline, plus Superman does make an appearance near the end. It’s funny that I read Incorruptible and this issue in the same month because both Lois and her analog, Alana, worry about being the same thing: footnotes to the superman in their lives. Of course, Lois, being the strong, independent woman she really is, realizes that she is much more than a mere footnote, especially when Clark meets up with her in the end of the issue and tells her that he needs her. He then asks if she needs him, to which Lois responds with a sarcastic comment. Okay, I’m going to get a little cheesy here: this exchange reminds me of conversations I’ve had with my wife, and this sequence in the comic resonated with me. Given the reversal of the Peter Parker/Mary Jane marriage over at Marvel, I really, really hope DC keeps Lois and Clark together as man and wife for the foreseeable future.
Teen Titans #88: I decided to return to this title after the horrible One Year Later storyline screwed up this comic enough that I couldn’t stand it any longer, and that there was a new creative team on the book with the artist being Nicola Scott. I saw the great pinup she had done for Wonder Woman #600 and thought, wow! But then I saw the cover. It’s a fine enough cover, except I didn’t like the way Beast Boy’s face was drawn, or Wonder Girl’s. Speaking of Wonder Girl, I hate that top of her’s–it’s too retro. Also, Beast Boy’s feral tooth has got to go! I hate hate hate that!!! (See? All those exclamation marks show I’m serious!!!!!) But the interior art looks pretty good (though Gar’s head is still wrong), so whew! Scott has a clean style that I appreciate and it’s well suited to superhero action. It’s hard to really tell with these “building the team” issues, but J. T. Krul’s writing seems pretty good. I liked the way the issue ended with the Titans running to where an intruder was in the tower and it turning out to be Batman and Robin. Batman says, “Intruder? You mean founder.” Damien sits there all cocky and confrontational–I can’t wait to see how the current Titans deal with this Robin.
Wonder Woman #604: I’ll start by saying that I have enjoyed the art in this new storyline, but can we keep the cleavage running at us shots more to a minimum, please? In this issue alone there are 9 panels showing this pose (plus the cover). Also, a little editing would be nice. At one point, Diana tells her ghostly mother that “I can’t use you again”. Huh? Of course, she means “lose”, but how did this gaffe get through everyone (and is it the writer’s or letterer’s fault?)? Speaking of losing, Diana loses that jacket that was so controversial when it was introduced, so that should make some fans happy, at least for an issue or two. By the way, speaking of fashion choices, I asked my 18-year-old daughter about the new look for Wonder Woman. She’s pretty savvy (as far as I know) about fashion, and she liked the pants and jacket design. So, take from that what you will. Near the end of this issue was a nice little moment where Diana learns that she can now fly. The panel of her crying as she soars while lamenting the second loss of her mother was beautiful. It’s these emotional, character moments that I so enjoy in comics.
Zatanna #6: In one of my Brave & the Bold reviews I said that DC ought to give Jesus Saiz some other book to also draw, but this issue of Zatanna wasn’t what I had in mind. Still, Saiz did a nice job on it, though his work on this title seems … darker, or maybe that’s the colorist? As far as the story, thank goodness Z’s cousin has some issues with her and stumbles into her rescue. I really hope this series turns into more than Zatanna defeating demons every issue–I want a larger story at work here that showcases her talents.