Podcast Episode 66: Must Read TV

I talk about some TV comics, including:

  • Battlestar Galactica
  • Buffy, Season 9
  • Angel and Faith
  • Star Trek
  • Doctor Who, including Prisoners of Time

Please send your comments to longboxreview@gmail.com, leave voicemail at 208-953-1841, or send me a voice message via Speakpipe. Please rate and review the show on iTunes.

Thanks for listening!

Direct Download (41:07)

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3/27/13 Comics Review

I review the following comics:

  • Age of Ultron #3
  • Angel & Faith #20
  • The Answer #3
  • Aquaman #18
  • Batman, Inc. #9
  • I, Vampire #18
  • Joe Kubert Presents #6
  • Justice League Dark #18
  • Rachel Rising #15
  • The Sixth Gun: Sons of the Gun #2
  • Superior Spider-Man #6AU
  • Star Trek #19
  • Superman #18
  • Teen Titans #18
  • Time Warp #1
  • Uncanny Avengers #5
  • Young Avengers #3

 

Pull List Review: 12/28/11 Comics

Here are my final 2011 comic book reviews. What a great year for reading comics, mostly for DC’s relaunch. Say what you want about the titles, at least they were interesting or infamous. Also, given that I finally received all of my January 2012 comics, I will be trying something different for my Pull List Reviews very soon. Now on with the old before I can begin with the new!

Alpha Flight #7: While a part of me chuckles at the funnies in this, another part shakes his head because they’re the easy shots, and ones that don’t really make sense. For example, when Hulk-mentality Sasquatch yells, “Squatch smash puny Canadians”, that’s funny sure, but come on. Then both Mac and Logan point at each other and say (in unison), “He started it.” Easy joke, bad characterization. So Heather is some sort of clone created by the Master, but why does she only have four toes? How does that make sense? I actually did enjoy Wolverine’s appearance in this issue, especially his conversation with Heather at the beginning. I am looking forward to seeing how this limited series turned ongoing turned canceled at issue eight series will end.

Aquaman #4: The Trench storyline comes to an unsatisfying end, mostly because there was no connection between hero and adversary, no communication, no attempt at resolution other than death. Having said that, I do like how Arthur is shown making regal decisions about life and death. I wish Geoff Johns would play up the kingly aspect of Arthur’s history. Speaking of Johns, I really hope he stops making jokes at Aquaman’s expense. At first it made some sense to me (it undercut the “lame” reputation that Aquaman supposedly has), but repeating the jokes just calls attention to something Johns purportedly wants to dispel. It’s almost like Johns has a love/hate attitude towards Aquaman himself. I am looking forward to the upcoming “Who Sank Atlantis” storyline that was teased at the end of the book.

Green Lantern: New Guardians #4: So, some extradimensional force caused the various Lantern Corps members’ rings to abandon them and go to Kyle? Huh? And this force arrives in our universe in the form of a solar system-sized spacecraft, complete with planet-shaped modules. Huh? This seems overly complicated. I thought this book had some potential to be some sort of Brightest Day sequel, but it’s somewhat of a mess narratively, and messy in terms of art.

I, Vampire #4: This is how I like John Constantine appearances: understated but with a bit of the usual Hellblazer sass. What a surprise this book has been for me. I initially wrote it off as a book trying to capitalize on the Twilight crowd, but it’s been quite enjoyable so far, especially the art.

Incorruptible #25: Part 2 of the Irredeemable/Incorruptible crossover, but I enjoyed this story much more than Part 1. The relationship between the Plutonian and Max reminds me to some degree of the old Superboy/Lex Luthor dynamic. Maybe I should give Incorruptible another chance to entertain me?

Justice League Dark #4: I’m still not sure about this book. I know I want to really like it, but the story comes across as a bit muddled, and the art, while good at a certain level, doesn’t help narratively. What do we know? Xanadu did something to separate June from the Enchantress and all hell’s broke loose. I just wish after four issues we’d have moved on from that, even just a bit. I do like how Zatanna is shown as talking in reverse, as if it’s second nature and not just an application of her power.

Star Trek #4: After four issues, this series will stop retelling old stories in the new continuity and tell something new altogether, so I’m looking forward to that. As to the resolution of this issue, I have to admit I preferred the choice Spock makes in the television show as opposed to the save by Uhura here. It’s a duh moment, but not nearly as fun, and it makes Kirk look dumb. I also have to wonder why the creative team picked the “Galileo Seven” as the second story to be told as opposed to a different early episode.

Superman #4: Most intriguing thing about this issue is the Commissioner Corporon’s (have you noticed the odd names in this title?) comment that the Mayor didn’t want Superman to go through what he did five years earlier, but DC fails to cross-promote here by saying we should be reading Action Comics for the details (which I am looking forward to reading)! Ok, that and the reveal that Superman supposedly had something to do with the creation of his superpowered tormentors (though, why fire, ice, and lizard dude? How does that make sense?). And does anyone else think that too much is being made about Clark not being with Heather when she was attacked?

Unwritten #32.5: I am really loving these .5 issues giving us past stories in the Unwritten universe. This time we learn of Gilgamesh’s brush with the ancient (?) Mr. Pullman and the fight with the Leviathan. Nicely done story and art.

I also read All-Star Western #4 (What does it say when I find the backup story more interesting than the main one?), Angel & Faith #5 (I never cared for Harmony in the show, and her appearance in last season’s Buffy was much better than this offering.), FF #13 (This used to be one of my favorite books to read every month; now, it’s ok. I do love the relationship between Valeria and Dr. Doom.), Firestorm #4 (The cover art is the best thing about this book.), Savage Hawkman #4 (My last issue. I read it.), Teen Titans #4 (More team building. And Superboy shows up to beat up Wonder Girl. Feh.), and Voodoo #4 (Despite the nice art and lovely John Tyler Christopher cover, I’ve decided to drop this comic come issue 6–it’s just not interesting enough, like Animal Man.).

Pull List Review: 11/30/11 Comics

Angel & Faith #4: I really liked that Angel knew that Faith was going to stop him if he crossed a line–Angel has been portrayed a little too oblivious? for my taste so far in this title. But then, he is apparently going insane or possessed by Giles, which is a plot point that the creative team should be very careful with. Also, the creative team should steer away from super-powered vampires–I had my fill when Angel was Twilight.

Daredevil #6: Mark Waid certainly knows how to up the stakes. How will ol’ Hornhead get out of having A.I.M., Hydra, Agencé Byzantine, Black Spectre, and the Secret Empire after him all at the same time (and I have never heard of those last three agencies)? Although, considering that the world at large thinks that Matt Murdoch is Daredevil, why would Matt put that data disk on his desk? Shouldn’t it be put somewhere perhaps more secure? Still a wonderfully fun superhero comic, and it’s no surprise that it’s landing on some folks’ Top lists. It’s certainly one of my favorite comics of 2011.

FF #12: I heard some buzz online that FF is becoming the Power Pack of the Fantastic Four “universe” and this issue seems to herald this since the focus of the (so far) year-long storyline shifts to the kids. But is this a sea-change for the title, or just a brief interlude? If it’s the former, then I’m dropping the title because, as much as I like the kids thus far, I want to read about the adults and their relationships (and yes, see more of Sue). Also, if the current art team stay, then that will only make my decision easier–that style is just not to my liking.

Star Trek #3: I don’t normally comment on this title because it’s essentially “reprint” material, but I do want to say that that whole “Spock never had a command of his own” comment from McCoy in the Original Series episode “The Galileo Seven” makes perfect sense in this retelling where it never did in the television series. McCoy’s crack always bugged me since how could anyone achieve the rank of Commander in any quasi-military branch (even a fictional one) without having commanded a certain group of subordinates? I just thought that was lazy storytelling on the part of the writer and producers of that episode serving only to create a false sense of tension. In this comic, and given the events of the last Star Trek movie, McCoy points out that Spock has his chance at command again, since that opportunity was taken from him by Kirk.

T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents #1: My exposure to the THUNDER Agents (the periods are hereby banished!) came from the 1984 comic Wally Wood’s T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents #1 by Deluxe Comics, so when I heard that DC was putting out another version of the THUNDER Agents by Nick Spencer, I was intrigued until I read the premise, specifically, the bit about their powers killing them. I’m not sure why that take turned me off, but it did. Then my friend Oddfellow kept talking about how good the series was, so when DC stopped the series and announced it would return after the New 52 launched, I decided to try it out. After all, it would only be six issues. Plus, it would give me a chance to assess Nick Spencer’s writing. Like Scott Snyder’s work, I haven’t been overly wowed by Spencer’s comic writing, but I have recently come around to Snyder’s work on Batman, so maybe this title will cement how I feel about Spencer. With that, how was this return issue? Mmm, ok. I got enough back story to fill me in on the previous 10 issues of the title and make me curious to perhaps buy the trade if I can find it cheap (or maybe ask Oddfellow if I can borrow his copies :) ). The two agents in suits, Henston and Franklin, are the most intriguing of any character in this issue, with NoMan coming in second so far. And while the whole powers killing the agents bit turned me off before, I can see where this could lead to some interesting storytelling, sort of like how new actors come in to play James Bond or more appropriately Doctor Who. I like the Wes Craig art, though it reminds me of someone else’s work that I’ve seen recently, but I can’t quite put my finger on who yet. This title I think will be an interesting distraction for six issues.

Pull List Review: 10/26/11 Comics

Holy cats, I am so far behind in reviews. Here’s the biggest set of comics, I believe, within the last month’s worth of titles. I’ll be working hard at getting the rest of my comics reviews completed soon.

Angel & Faith #2-3: The take away of this comic right now is very simple: Angel is trying to make amends for killing Giles (by bringing him back to life) and Faith is his increasingly unwilling partner. Plus, despite the fact that Angel’s name has first billing, it is Faith whom we really follow in this title. Normally, this lack of focus on a titular character would bug me, but I really like that Faith leads us through the narrative thus far.

Aquaman #2: I have to admit, the Trench are pretty generic adversaries for Aquaman, not to mention their point of origin as shown in very limited form last issue makes it hard to accept that Aquaman had never heard of them? I’m sure we’ll get an explanation soon, especially since Aquaman was tagged by one of the Trench to be taken back “home”. I know that this title has its detractors, but I’m still liking it a lot, especially the art. I can’t wait to see more of Aquaman and Mera being a couple exploring this new phase of their lives.

Daredevil #5: What a great cover! Unfortunately, Matt get’s out of the multiple sniper situation a bit more conventionally than I expected, but still Daredevily. :) I don’t know who the tough guy is that seems to win the fight with DD at the end of the issue, but it’s refreshing to see DD lose a physical confrontation every once in a while, especially since he’s usually presented as the smartest fighter in the ring. Here, he’s doing everything correctly, yet he’s still getting the snot beat of him.

GL: New Guardians #2: Poor Ganthet. I’m sure that his new condition will not be permanent, but the Guardians, as I’ve come to know them ever since Blackest Night, are just bastards! I’m expecting that we’ll get a story where the GL Corps rebels against the Guardians thus changing the core of the Corps, but that’s the future. Right now, Kyle has to contend with the multiple rings wearing him at the end of this issue.

Guarding the Globe #6: Oddfellow and I once discussed on the podcast the sometimes contentious idea of waiting for delayed issues as long as the issue was worth it. The first issue of this title was released in August 2010. The time between the fifth issue and this last issue was three months; the time between the fourth and fifth issues was four months! Did I get an exceptional series? Hell, no. Was there a big payoff, either in plot (worldview) or character? No. Because of the delays and lack of wowness, I just didn’t care anymore. Pretty much what happened in issue one hasn’t really changed by the end of issue six, so this was a waste of time and money. If you haven’t read this series and they put out a trade, i recommend you avoid this title.

Justice League Dark #2: One of the (pardon the phrase) bright spots of Brightest Day was the relationship that developed between Deadman and Dove. Anyone who has followed this blog or listened to the LBR podcast knows how much I care for the Dove character, so all of the appearances in her own series, in DC Universe Presents, and in this issue of JL Dark all equals good to me, but I have to admit, even I’m getting tired of the relationship between Deadman and Dove as it is being shown in the new 52 titles. What was once a sweet romance now appears to be turning sour without much provocation. At this point, especially with what we’re shown in this issue of JL Dark, I just wish the characters would move on. As far as the overall plot of this title, I’m already tiring of not knowing why the Enchantress is doing what she’s doing. Let’s move on already! Great looking art still.

Sixth Gun #16: I am really loving Gord’s backstory, and hope we continue to get more about this man. Other than the beginning of the issue where Becky speaks to her grandfather through time and via the power of the gun she holds, I’m not really caring much about her any longer. In fact, I’m hoping we’ll get more story concerning Drake in the near future.

Spider-Island: Amazing Spider-Girl #3: This was a weak offering focusing on a former interesting character to me. I hope Marvel does something that better fits Spider-Girl. And the artist chose too often to show various characters with their mouths wide open in exclamation.

Supergirl #2: Boring. This issue was mostly a fight scene between Supergirl and Superman. The decompression storytelling style does not benefit this title at this point. Let’s move on and make the character an interesting read. If we continue down this same path, I will be dropping this title.

Superman #2: This was definitely an improvement on issue one. I am really liking the relationship between Clark and Lois as depicted here–it’s different from anything we’ve seen previously with these two. Lois treats Clark as an equal and not, as usually depicted, the hick from Smallville who confounds her as to his scoops. Lois is also instrumental in helping to save Superman from an alien attack.

Voodoo #2: First of all, apologies to Sami Basri for my identifying him as a she on the podcast. Mr. Basri’s art is so far the saving grace of this title. I’m still not convinced that this title is a stinker as much of the Internet seems to think, but at the very least the Basri art is a nice draw. :) I am curious about this mission that Voodoo has, and why she considers humanity weak and contemptible. The adversarial relationship between Voodoo and Fallon could work well, or it could be like that of David Banner and Jack McGee from the Incredible Hulk tv series. Plus, we all now know that Ron Marz has been pulled form the series, so how will that change the tone and direction of the series?

I also read All-Star Western #2 (not much went on in this issue, but it looked good), FF #11 (whoo-wee! I cannot wait to see what happens next issue!), Firestorm #2, I, Vampire #2 (this has moved to my pull list and am still surprised at how much I enjoy this title considering I wasn’t even going to pick up issue one), Savage Hawkman #2, Star Trek #2, and Teen Titans #2 (This is another title that improved in issue two and continues to impress me. Not like I, Vampire, mind you, but still better than I thought this title would be.).