DC Through The Eyes Of A Marvel Zombie: Week One

DC Through The Eyes Of A Marvel Zombie: Week One

Posted by September 10, 2011 Comment

Heather Kenealy, a self-confessed Marvel zombie reviews the DC Newniverse title from her rather rarefied point of view…

What a week, right? Thirteen new books to wade through! So, I’m looking at this HUGE stack of books on my desk, and I’m trying to figure out which order to read this in. “When in doubt,” my mama always said, “go alphabetically.” Well, she never really said that but let’s pretend for the sake of the article, shall we?

Action Comics

Writer: Grant Morrison

Pencils: Rags Morales

In Metropolis, the City of the Future, the mysterious and violent Superman takes down mobsters without mercy, exchanges witty barbs with best friend Jimmy Olsen, bond with the common folk and basically run faster than a speeding bullet, be more powerful than an locomotive, and leap tall buildings in a single bound, all while being hunted by military consultant Lex Luthor and General Lane, coincidentally the father of spunky girl reporter Lois.

OK, Superman is wearing jeans and combat boots. Let’s process that a minute. Jeans and combat boots. Why does that bother me so much? I’m not sure, but it does. It smacks of trying too hard to make him young, hip and relateable, which is, of course, in stark contrast with the theme of this book, that this “Superman” is not one of us. He’s an alien, hell, Lex Luthor even refuses to call him “him” referring to Supes as “it” exclusively. I understand where Morrison is going with this. I really do. Superman is the most human of the characters we meet in this inaugural issue, overpaying his suffering landlady, communing with the cast of Rent, I mean, the displaced hipsters put in harm’s way by a Luthor-laid trap. But it’s manipulative and pandering, forced. This is a disenfranchised Superman, a young hipster on his laptop, drinking coffee at Starbucks, and while I like this new attitude, it felt shoved down my throat. We get it. You’re wearing jeans and combat boots. That says it all.

Story: 3 out of 5 stars

Grant Morrison, Writer.

I don’t know, I just felt like I’ve seen this story before. There’s plenty of action to keep me interested, but it just felt like I’ve danced this dance already. Realizing that Morrison has a huge uphill battle to entirely change the attitude of a 70 year old icon, I’m willing to call this growing pains, but if he continues to try and choke me with hipness, well, sorry, dude, I’m a nerd, I can’t relate.

Art: 4 out of 5 stars

Rags Morales, Pencils. Rick Bryant, Inker. Brad Anderson, Colorist.

I liked the art a lot, it was clean, crisp. The faces are different for each character which is a definite plus, and something a lot of modern artists can’t pull off. Story telling is adequate and while there are a couple places I think smack of too much Photoshop, as a whole, this team makes for a slick and shiny book.

Overall 3.5 out of 5 stars

OK, Action gets an arc. But Morrison, remember, every person on these pages reminds me of why I feel uncomfortable in Starbucks.

*****

Animal Man

Writer: Jeff Lemire

Pencils: Travel Foreman

Buddy Baker, a hero, an actor, stuntman, activist who can tap into the life web of animals somehow, manages to balance his active career with a perfect home life, wife, son Cliff, and his daughter Maxine who only wants a pet of her own. But, after saving a cancer ward from a distraught father who claims the hospital has taken his daughter from him, Animal-Man has a prophetic dream about danger to his family, and the Hunters Three, hideous monsters who claim to be his daughter’s true father, only to wake up to more horror, Maxine apparently resurrecting all the dead pets in the neighborhood.

This book starts out with an article, an interview with Buddy Baker, written for a magazine. Welcome to Exposition 101. Couple this with the fact that Lemire uses his own name for the interviewer, and I’m left wondering who the hell this guy knows to have gotten this job. There is a feeling of fan fiction here, and I’m neither intrigued nor compelled to continue reading, not even with the dun-dun-DUN ending. None of the characters are likeable, not even the hero, who is far too smug and self satisfied for me to care. The art isn’t even good enough for me to continue because at least it’s pretty.

Story: 2 out of 5 stars

Jeff Lemire, Writer.

I don’t know this writer, but he strikes me as being very indie. If I did some research and found out that he had a graphic novel about a quirky 15 year old girl in Seattle on the eave of her first period, I would not be surprised.

Art: 2 out of 5 stars

Travel Foreman, Pencils. Travel Foreman and Dan Green, Inker. Lovern Kindzierski, Colorist.

Scritchy, sketchy art, inked with a ball point pen and colored with Prismacolor markers. Half the panels don’t even have backgrounds, and the only shadows in evidence are for dramatic purposes. It looks unfinished and undone.

Overall 2 out of 5 stars

Cross this one off my pull list. Not even the $2.99 price is enough to make this worth my time.

*****

Batgirl

Writer: Gail Simone

Pencils: Ardian Syaf

Miraculously able to walk again three years after being paralyzed by the Joker, Barbara Gordon moves to a new town, gets an artistic new roomie, and resumes her duties as Batgirl just in time for a new rogue to make his presence known. A cloaked vigilante who makes the punishment fit the crime, the Mirror reveals that Batgirl may have rushed back into her crime fighting career when she freezes at the sight of his gun long enough for him to kill a hospitalized home invasion robber before he could be brought to justice.

The whole controversy regarding Batgirl being able to walk again set aside, I feel like as a female writer myself, I should support this more. Gail Simone is, after all, hope for all the girls like me who aren’t interested in romance stores. But while, the Mirror is a really interesting character, somehow using his gun to drown a man in the opening sequence, much of the dialog is heavy handed, leading to awkward statements like, “He pointed a gun at my spine and I froze!”

Story: 4 out of 5 stars

Gail Simone, Writer.

Simone is usually much better than this so I am going to assume this is first issue jitters. I like the Mirror enough to give this a few more issues, and I want to know how she got her legs backs. If either of those things cease to be interesting though, I am probably going to find my desire to keep buying this waning.

Art: 2 out of 5 stars

Ardian Syaf, Pencils. Vincente Cifuentes, Inker. Ulises Arreola, Colorist.

The storytelling is definitely key in this book and Syaf does a great job with it, but here and there he has problems with anatomy, particularly in cases of extreme forced perspective such as the hero shot splash page where apparently Babs has elephantiasis of the foot. Inks are clean though, and Arreola uses a brilliantly intricate color palate, the flashback sequences of the joker starkly sepia to contrast with the shiny rainbow hues of Batgirl’s love of what she does.

Overall 3 out of 5 stars

I’m on the fence, Simone, make me want to read this. The Mirror and the mystery is enough right now, but it’s not going to last.

*****

Batwing

Writer: Judd Winick

Art: Ben Oliver

In Africa, Officer David Zavimbe creates the myth of Batwing, using techniques learned as not only a police officer, but lessons taught by Batman himself, to begin to clean up the crime ridden city of Tinasha, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. When an entire gang of criminals is slaughtered, and the id of a former superhero is found with them, Batwing finds that this is not going to be as easy as expected, especially when he is attacked by a mass murdering monster who calls himself Massacre.

Picking up this book and knowing only that it is an African Batman, I was afraid I was going to get a lot of preachy political propaganda and forced oppression issues, but I was surprised by it. It’s a fairly decent story, and while it doesn’t interest me at all, I can see where it has the potential to properly present a new member of the Bat family. Massacre is suitably creepy, and there’s even an Alfred proxy in the colorful character of Matu Ba, a former member of the child soldier rescue organization ‘The Childrens’ Harbor.”

Story: 4 out of 5 stars

Judd Winick, Writer.

Solid writing, and there is potential here, but right now, it’s nothing really that I’m interested in. Definitely though, for Bat-Fans, this is right up there in storytelling and character development.

Art: 5 out of 5 stars

Ben Oliver, Art. Brian Reber, Colorist.

This is the most beautiful book of any I have read so far for DC, beautifully painted, richly colored. With a golden and silver palate that tells us this is not cold grey Gotham, there is a richness that never seems heavy and weighty. Storytelling is handled clearly with several beautiful double page spreads and flash panels that are alive with detail and nuances that might be missed on first viewing, so linger on them.

Overall 4.5 out of 5 stars

This is a book that I’d flip through at my shop, but I’m just not interested enough to keep picking it up.

Maybe I’ll be able to finish this huge stack before next Wednesday… maybe! Until then, though, I’m still saying Make Mine Marvel. I’m telling you DC, I’m going to be very happy when I’m not swamped with your universe. I can barely keep my real life straight.

*****

Detective Comics

Written and Drawn by Tony Salvador Daniels

“Gotham City,” according to Commissioner Gordon, “is a hell hole. Always has been. Always will be.” Batman, however, disagrees, even as the ever-campaigning mayor steps up his efforts to catch the cowled crime fighter. A new more violent wave of Joker killings brings Batman into a bloody conflict with the Clown Prince of Crime, and the gory ending of this, the first Detective issue of the reboot boot, is a beautifully executed still life in madness with a clear indication of more to come.

I’m not going to spoil what that final image is, but can I just speak frankly to the creators of this book? Mr. Daniels… I beg of you, on my hands and knees, never ever ever make me look at naked Joker ever again. Of all the scarring imagery in this book, of all the twisted action and bloody pain and violence… Joker’s nipples nearly did me in. As for the rest of it, this is a reboot, I assume, and I admit that the whole Batman/ Batman Incorporated/etc thing had me lost as a strictly Marvel reader, but this seems to me to be just another Batman story. Exciting, dark and gritty, but not any different from any other Batman story I’ve read. I suppose that’s a good thing though. If it ain’t broke…

Story: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Tony S. Daniel, Writer.

Writing is adequate, exciting. Batman’s voice is different from the Joker’s which is different from Gordon, etc. This is a good thing. A lot of writers on both sides of the fence can’t handle that and all of their characters sound the same. (I’m looking right at you, Brian Michael Bendis.) The story is coherent without be over simple, and exciting without being convoluted, and can I just say, the tone on Alfred is exactly as it should be. Half a star off just because I felt like this could have just been any Batman story.

Art: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Tony S. Daniel, Pencils. Ryan Winn, Inker. Tomeu Morey, Colorist.

I’m a geek girl. Pasty, scrawny, angsty boys turn me on. I’ve discovered my limit. Mr. Daniel, if you ever make me look at that again, I will hurt you, oh yes, I will bring the pain. Other than that, the art is amazing, expressive. Storytelling seems to be improved when the writer also draws the book, but with both of these responsibilities on Mr. Daniel’s head, I wonder at his ability to keep this on schedule.

Overall 4.5 out of 5 stars

I’ll read an arc to see where this is going, but for now, I am going to go wash my eyes out with bleach. I’ll be right back.

*****

Green Arrow

Writer: J.T. Krul

Pencils: Dan Jurgens

Oliver Queen juggles superheroing with running his billion dollar company Queen Industries, taking his high tech archery around the world to stop criminals in high society. But in this new rebooted world, the heroes are hunted and the villains are YouTube celebrities.

The above synopsis is short because nothing much really happens in this book. Green Arrow has lost his Errol Flynn facial hair, and sports a scruff to fit in with the rest of this new and hip style, but other than that, he still comes off as Batman with a Bow. The villains he goes up against are generic and I still have no idea what Doppelganger does. What’s the the use of growing an extra face and set of arms if all you do is stand around and stare blankly while shaking your fists? The final full page splash of the villains I am assuming I’m supposed to recognize fails because I have no idea who any of them are and none of them look interesting enough for me to care.

Story: 1 out of 5 stars

J.T. Krul, Writer.

This is a familiar name but I don’t recall anything he’s done, and this pretty boring comic doesn’t make me want to do any research. Oliver Queen seems just like another douche bag rich guy who runs around in Kevlar body armor and thinks that makes him something more. I do like the varied types of arrows, but I have that with Hawkeye over at Marvel. Nothing Krul does makes me leave the purple for the green.

Art: 4 out of 5 stars

Dan Jurgens, Pencils. George Perez, Inker. David Baron, Colorist.

The art is very competent, sort of 90s old school. I like the cleanness of it, and I’m really enjoying the attention to architectural detail that the art team focuses on. The backgrounds are detailed without being distracting. Green Arrow’s new look though is boring. I saw him dress like this in Smallville. Is it wrong to miss the Van Dyke?

Overall 2.5 out of 5 stars

There’s apparently room for only one archer in my heart, and Oliver Queen isn’t him. Seriously, go pick up a Hawkeye book and tell me that Green Arrow still hits the bulls eye. (See what I did there?)

*****

Hawk and Dove

Writer: Sterling Gates

Artist: Rob Liefeld

One is an Avatar of War, One is an Avatar of Peace. Together they are Hawk and Dove, which they tell us about 19 times in this book, each time with specialized font. As Washington DC is under threat by Alexander Quirk, self proclaimed “Science Terrorist” and his army of Zombie things, Hawk and Dove wrestle with their own uneasy partnership, and the secret that Dove has been hiding about her origin and connection to the original Dove, which I am assuming has to do with the villain who appears on the last page… well, at least, I assume he’s a villain, he looks like everyone else in this book, complete with slim jim cape strips and Liefeld’s patented “punch crotch.”

DC, I demand my $2.99 back. Hoo Boy, what an awkwardly written, horribly drawn comic this is. It had promise, it did. Zombies on a plane heading for the Washington Monument? A terrorist who uses science to create monsters? Oh fun. Or so you’d think. No. It’s not fun. The squabbling superheroes are just irritating, the flashback exposition is handled like an anvil dropped on my head, and the Art. Good Lord.

Story: 1 out of 5 stars

Sterling Gates, Writer.

Whoever this Sterling Gates person is, will someone in DC editorial staff please return him to the mail room, or at the very least, hold his hand and walk him through the ideas of pacing and storytelling. Also, can someone tell me how to pronounce Dove’s repeated exclamation “Kaaiw!”

Art: 1 out of 5 stars

Rob Liefeld, “Artist”

Yeah, I’m putting that in quotations, because I think Liefeld has a heck of a nerve right there. Liefeld is dynamic, yes, and he’s got a decent sense of storytelling, but that does not make for good art if you can’t figure out how to draw a face with a matching set of eyes. There are so many things wrong here. Is Hawk beating up universe-displaced SHIELD agents in the first double page spread, they seem to be sharing that uniform, at least. Why do all the background characters look like the Liefeld family reunion? How many teeth does Rob Liefeld think people have?

Overall 1 out of 5 stars

The only way I could like this book less is if… well.. if I… Uh… you know, I don’t think I can like this book less.

*****

Justice League International

Writer: Dan Jurgens

Art: Aaron Lopresti

The UN assembles an international team of heroes, most of whom have issues with authority, with each other and in a couple cases, with themselves. As the civilian population protests the formation of the team, the mismatched superheroes get adjusted to the team dynamic, hopefully in time to survive lava monsters and a giant robot apparently responsible for the disappearance of a science team in Peru.

Out of all the characters in this team, I know three of them. Booster Gold, Batman and Guy Gardner, the rough and tumble Green Lantern. Unfortunately, it seems like those are on the only ones Dan Jurgens knows, too. The rest of the cast is reduced to stereotypical cultural representatives– The Russian Guy speaks like Yakov Smirnov and hates the Chinese Guy who talks like a fortune cookie. The English Girl is Posh Spice. The African American Lady is sassy. The monsters were fun, but the added complication of the civilians hating that they JLI is in the Hall of Justice? Explanation? Why so violent that they’d rather torch the building than having superheroes living there?

Story: 2 out of 5 stars

Dan Jurgens, Writer.

This is Mr. Jurgens second time in the reviews today, and personally, I think he should stick to the art. Really, this story didn’t need to be told. The Government trying to manipulate the heroes? Golly, that’s a totally unique idea… oh, wait, no it’s not, in fact it is so common that if I was a superhero I would just automatically assume the government is trying to make me dance like a puppet on a string. The pidgin English that the international characters speak in is insulting, and Booster Gold is written about three points below moron on the IQ scale.

Art: 3 out of 5 stars

Aaron Lopresti, Pencils. Matt Ryan, Inker. Travis Lanham, Colorist.

The art is adequate. Nothing special, nothing interesting. Possibly because of the size of the team, the panels tend to be cluttered, and in the fight scenes, that gets quickly confusing. Maybe a greater difference in the focus between the foreground characters and the background ones would help to alleviate that problem. That seems to be a flaw on the part of the Colorist, right there.

Overall 2.5 out of 5 stars

Not even Booster Gold can win this book a spot on my pull list. Nice try, but Justice League is far superior to Justice League International.

*****

Men of War

Joseph Rock Writer: Ivan Brandon– Navy Seals Writer: Jonathan Vankin

Joseph Rock Artist: Tom Derenick– Navy Seals Artist: Phil Winslade

Men of War is actually two stories in one book. The first is Joseph Rock, who will, it seems, become Sgt. Rock, which should be a familiar name for DC readers. Hell, I knew the name, so that should tell you something This is a fairly simple story, an intro to the uber-soldier and his refusal to take a promotion that will take him out of the field. An exercise to retrieve a missing senator from an insurgency is interrupted by a flying, laser beaming cape, that I am just going to stab in the darkness is Superman. The second story, Navy Seals, is much shorter and much less interesting. Several identical looking Navy Seals tell us nothing about themselves or their mission and then almost get killed by Osama Bin Laden or at least his stand in.

I’m not a fan of war books. I think they have a tendency to either be too political and preachy, or so pc that they go the other way and end up fighting vampires or alien invasions. This book definitely borders on the former, the Joseph Rock story containing about 50% preaching from Rock about how he’s not ashamed to be a fightin’ man! Yawn. Yes, yes, you’re a noble warrior, we get it. Move along. Nothing more to see. But at least, Rock is defined as a character. I have no idea who the Navy Seals are except they all have Top Gun names, which I guess is a real thing. My cousin tells me his call sign was Breeze.

Story:

Joseph Rock: 3 out of 5 stars

Navy Seals: 2 out 5 stars

Joseph Rock: Ivan Brandon, Writer.

Navy Seals: Jonathan Vankin, Writer

Writing the longer tale really did serve Mr. Brandon, but not by much. I don’t understand the inclusion of the Presumedly-Superman cameo, because it did not enhance the story, but then, it didn’t detract from it either, I suppose. Vankin, however, his story was filler. Sorry. Maybe they’ll flip flop these two stories month to month to give them equal time? I’m not really sure, but I doubt it.

Art:

Joseph Rock 3 out of 5 stars

Navy Seals: 2 out of 5 stars

Joseph Rock: Tom Derenick, Artist. Matt Wilson, Colorist

Navy Seals: Phil Winslade, Artist. Thomas Chu, Colorist.

The Art Styles are very similar in the two books, except that Matt Wilson fills the empty background of panels with rich colors, and Thomas Chu leaves them blank and uses the negative space. Storytelling in both is done very expertly, and there are some tricks for story purposes, like only showing a silhouette of the superhero, or the terrorist hiding behind his human shield until it is too late. It’s hard to say art that shows battle is pretty, but there are places in these pages where that’s the only word for it.

Overall 2.5 out of 5 stars

I feel like I’ve seen all I need to see here with Men of War.

Two thirds of the way through, and this poor little Marvel Zombie has been nearly overwhelmed by all this total immersion into the DCU. Thank goodness, I am almost done with this reboot. Wait, I have 42 more to read? Really? Oh brother, am I getting paid for this? Someone call my agent.

All right, I think I recovered enough from seeing naked Joker and Liefeld art yesterday, let’s see if we can finish up this stack of books. Only four more in this mound of DC reboots for this week, and then I can rest. Please, DC, I just want to rest.

*****

OMAC

Story and art by “Daring” Dan Didio and “Krackling” Keith Giffen

The Cadmus Industries building comes under attack by a superhuman creature that calls itself OMAC, and appears to be controlled by an external force. Working its way down into secret levels at the bottom of the building, Omac faces the security forces of the dark geniuses who work there, directed to tear apart the Cadmus mainframe. But when the objective has been completed, the truth about the creature is revealed. It’s a man – Kevin Kho, and he is now under the control of Brother Eye!

This is actually a really fun story once you get past the awkward dialog and character intros. Don’t expect deep insights into life or any semblence of true science, but if you were a fan of those implausible comics of yesteryear when there were just superpowered people fighting weird looking monsters, this is the book for you. The title page even give the creators those wacky nicknames like back in the day when comic books were allowed to be fun.

Story: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Art: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Story and art by Dan Didio and Keith Giffen

Art and Story really compliment each other on this book, and that is clearly the result of the dual jobs Didio and Giffen took on. They work as a team and that makes this book look cohesive… well, as cohesive as a book with characters named “the Gobblers” and “Build-a-Friend” can be. Really though, like I said, this book has an old fashioned feel to it, despite topical references like “stem cells” and “microbial cultures.” Monster attacks, civilians run, Monster attacks more monsters, monster is revealed to be more than he seems. At times the ham handed dialog is a bit too much like when adults write children, or self conscious white writers think all black characters come from Harlem, but, all in all the book is pretty enjoyable… Word to the wise though, the mohawk? Not a good look.

Overall 4 out of 5 stars

I’ll add this to the pull list, but if the quality drops, I just don’t care enough to muddle on.

*****

Static Shock

Story: Scott McDaniel and John Rozum

Pencils: Scott McDaniel

Static Shock is about a kid with some sort of electric powers fighting some sort of scientic something or other while the Power Rangers on Hoverbikes set out to stop him. Or… something like that. Gosh, I don’t know, I couldn’t make heads or tails of this story.

Yeeeeeeah, this book is very weird. Static Shock is chasing what he thinks is a technician trapped in a runaway suit, and calls him Sunspot, but why would a guy who is accidentally out of control have a codename? And, it’s not just a nickname he’s calling him, he actually addresses him as Sunspot, but he shadowy bad guys who it turns out the technician is working for just call him, “thief.” I’m not kidding, either, the bad guys, the “Slate Gang” are a multicultural, color coded, hoverbike riding group with a pet robot. Dwayne McDuffie, you’re terribly terribly missed.

Story: 2 out of 5 stars

Scott McDaniels and John Rozum, Story

I suppose I’m supposed to understand what’s going on here, but I’m really not. I doubt the validity of the science and pseudo-science presented in this book. The characters are not likeable, and too much is left unexplained, not in the attention grabbing oh-what-comes-next way, but in the you-should-know-it-already way, and considering that this is supposed to be a reboot to make things more accessible for new readers, it fails in every way.

Art: 3 out of 5 stars

Scott McDaniels, Pencils. Jonathan Galpion and Le Beau Underwood, Inks. Guy Majors, Colorist.

Slick and action packed, yeah, but everyone has the same face. I know this was a cartoon first, though I didn’t watch it, but does the art have to look like the same cels reused over and over? The lighting effects are done well though and there is lots of shine to it.

Overall 2.5 out of 5 stars

Style over substance can be good, but I’m a freelance writer who works part time at my local comic shop (DJ’s Universal in Studio City, CA.) $3 buys me a couple tacos for lunch, and this book is not worth skipping a meal.

*****

Stormwatch

Writer: Paul Cornell

Artist: Miguel Sepulveda

The Martian Manhunter and several other strangely named, overly complicated heroes march around in different wheres and whens around the world, ham handedly revealing their powers and code names in order to form a team to beat up bad guys, while a giant eye in the moon turns the lunar surface into a clawed hand in response to a cosmic battle horn someone blew for some reason.

I’m getting a headache, DC, don’t you care about me at all? I don’t have any idea what’s going on. Two of the characters Midnighter and Apollo were a married gay couple in the DCU-That-Was, though considering in this book they are just meeting, that might be retconned. I live and work in the Hollywood area. If this element is removed from the books, my shop is going to lose a lot of customers and I’m going to have to hear LGBT activists complain at me all day, so, cross your fingers, this might be the start of a love story. Everything else about this book though? No clue… just really no clue.

Story: 1.5 out of 5 stars

Paul Cornell, Writer.

The high-light of this book is when Adam, who I guess is an immortal, and Jenny Quantum (not her codename believe it or not, that’s the even more unwieldy ‘Spirit of the Twenty-First Century, I guess) come across the giant space horn in the Himalayas, and calls it the most important thing in the world, “…and certainly the horniest.” Get it? It’s horny, ’cause it’s a horn… a HORN… *crickets* Eh, what do you know from funny?

Art: 2.5 out of 5 stars

Miguel Sepulveda, Artist. Allen Passalaqua, Colorist

Yay, Photoshop filters, they make everything shiny and pretty! They cover up anatomical errors like Jimmy Hawksmoor’s backwards blue hand in the title page splash image. The art frankly looks amateurish and rushed, and I’m wondering if there were time constraints with this book. Who is this Miguel Sepulveda guy, anyone know? I could research this stuff, but it would take away the total newcomer feel I got going here, people. I have integrity, you know… and also, I’m lazy.

Overall 2 out of 5 stars

I’m a girl. I might stick around for the developing relationship, but I might also get bored really quickly with the complexity of this title, since it is not done very well. Confusing for the sake of confusing.

*****

Swamp Thing

Writer: Scott Snyder

Art: Yanick Paquette

Alec Holland, no longer Swamp Thing, is running from his past as a monster, even in the face of a request for help from Superman himself. But as strange events begin to happen around the world, will the reluctant hero once again join the green to become the creature he once was, or will he continue to deny his destiny/

True story, I do the Halloween Horror Nights event at Universal Horror Nights and one of our special effects makeup artists is the son of the guy who created Swamp Thing. So, I was excited to read this book, and for the most part, I’m interested in it. It doesn’t explain much even with the waaaaaay too dialog heavy sequence in the middle with Holland and Superman, though. Why isn’t Holland Swamp Thing anymore? What happened to him? Is this something I should have know if I knew the DCU before the reboot? While I’m not keen on pages and pages of exposition, there does neeed to be some information doled out, doesn’t there?

Story: 3 out of 5 stars

Scott Snyder, Writer.

Like I said, there is a LOT of talking in this book. A lot. If I wanted to read this much, I would pick up a prose novel. Show me pictures please, show me action. That’s what I want in my comics. The dialog gets a little to on the nose as well. When two out of three people who get their necks snapped by the monstrous baddy who rises in the desert say, “My… my neck!” That goes from ‘comic book’ writing, into ‘bad writing’ territory.

Art: 4 out of 5 stars

Yanick Paquette, Artist. Nathan Fairbairn, Colorist.

The art here is pretty cool, the inks are heavy and dark, but not in a Fred Flintstone kind of way. It accentuates rather than attracts and the few amounts of action in the middle of the Chatty Cathy sequences are done very well. I like Yanick’s depiction of Superman too, very Justice League… but oddly not Action, so, color me confused. I’ll just assume he can be wherever whenever like Wolverine and I’ll just leave it at that.

Overall 3.5 out of 5 stars

Maybe I’m being generous because I know the creator’s son, but I liked this book. It wasn’t great, and it needs to stop talking at me and start showing me some excitement, though, so it is treading on thin ice. Snyder, make me want to buy this or I’m not going to waste my time.


Yay! I finished all thirteen books by the weekend. I’ll never have to do that aga— Next week is thirteen books too?! You’re asking a lot, DC, you’re asking a lot.

See you next week, kids, when I’ll be reading and reviewing Batman and Robin, Green Lantern, Superboy, Suicide Squad and NINE other #1 titles in this major comic book event. Can I just say Frankenstein, Agent of S.H.A.D.E. Sounds AMAZING? Come on back to see DC through the Eyes of a Marvel Zombie and see if I’ve jumped ship yet!

About Rich Johnston

Chief writer and founder of Bleeding Cool. Father of two. Comic book clairvoyant. Political cartoonist.

(Last Updated September 10, 2011 11:16 am )

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