1. The Flash #2 moves from physical speed to mental speed and gives us a Flash learning to tap the Speed Force with his brain – and Manapul gives us a seemingly Frank Quitely influenced look at how that actually works.
2. The vampires of I, Vampyr #2, preparing for war against humanity see themselves not as monsters but as “freedom fighters”. And have Machiavellian propaganda plays even within their own ranks. Who would have thought this would turn out to be such a politically complex thriller?
3. The Fury Of Firestorm: The Nuclear Men #2 presents a true gestalt entity, with the separate minds inside unable to control the very thing that makes a summation of them both. Oh, and tweakers.
4. Ganthet fans be prepared to weep in Green Lantern: New Guardians #2, for he is dead. Just not in the way that you might otherwise think.
5. Teen Titans #2 is full, fast and fun. The kind of thing you used to read Claremont for. Lots of fun playing around with text, filling the spaces and delivering back for your three bucks, even as it delivers flashy nineties storytelling. Lobdell and Booth are filling those twenty pages with at least twenty-five pages of story while still giving flashy splash pagey images. Bendis could pick up tips here.
7. Batman: The Dark Knight #2 featured Batgirl, Bird Of Prey, Batwoman, Nightwing and Robin in something that will no doubt confuse the continuity spotters. But the Hulking up of Batman’s villains gallery continues… including the most unlikely of all, the Ventriloquist! With a truly hideous alternative when his doll gets broken…
9. Legion: Secret Origin #1 reminds me most of Firefly/Serenity, we have a mystery massacre across a planet by unknown forces, we have a conspiracy of assassination, we have a genius analyst… but most intriguingly we have a familiar team of Legionnaires who are not the focus of the story, they are seen through reportage and through the eyes of others. This is a sophisticated, new-reader friendly tale, and just the sort of thing the two ongoing Legion comics as part of the New 52 should have been. By a league.
10. You know how Hollywood always gets the internet wrong? Blackhawks #2 knows this and has fun with this. If Men Of War is a Garth Ennis book in disguise, this is a Warren Ellis comic book. Nanotech, people as weapons upgrades, and LOLcats.
11. Savage Hawkman #2 also brings the Ellisisms with an embedded sub-skin armour. And a hell of a lot of men in black. Seriously, DC, are we going to have a war between all the mysterious government and non-government turning up killing, kidnapping or blowing things up? Surely their separate agendas must clash at some point…
12. Justice League Dark #2 proves how embedded it is with the DC Universe, and indeed the New DCU by introducing Dove as a character.
13. The thing I liked most about Superman #2 is the thing I liked about the first issue. The soap opera elements, the strange dissociation between Lois and Clark, the way the both rub off against each other but remain supportive. They behave like exes whose relationship has ended well enough, even if they’ve never had a relationship. Not in this life, anyway.
14. All Star Western #2 gives us a new religion of crime turning Gotham into its own equivalent of the Vatican. You know, I hope Hex and Arkham don’t manage to defeat this attempt, because it would set up so much for Gotham and Batman’s future. Some great small panel fight scenes here…
15. Bonus fifteenth comic with Spaceman #1 by Brian Azzarello and Eduardo Russo for only a dollar. Book of the month of course, mixing as it does sensational sci-fi with genetically created ape-men going to Mars, with the kidnap of a young girl who won a worldwide reality show to be the latest adopted child of Brangelina two movie stars looking to adopt another child to their growing entourage of international orphans. Rich, surprising, creating a vivid near-future full to the brim of present day satire, and the kind of thing we haven’t seen from Vertigo since Transmetropolitan. I’ve missed it. And it’s a dollar. Come on, what’s not to love?
Comics courtesy of Orbital Comics, London, are all very Hallowe’en this weekend, with John Watkiss talking about working on The Walking Dead TV show on Friday 5pm, a signing with Mike and Laura Allred on Saturday 2pm, a Bret Ewins/Alan McKenzie signing on Sunday 2pm and a Halloween costume parade and competition from Noon on Monday!