Twelve Thoughts About Twelve Comics

War is hell. So is marriage, apparently. In Avengers Vs X-Men #2 the two come together, in this ultimate “who would win in a fight between” comic. For a book that wears such an agenda so visibly on its sleeve, there are some incredibly subtle and perfectly balanced moments in this comic, where a few words in the right place really elevates the repetitive fight scenes.

Many people found that marriage an odd choice in the first place. But even more may object to this budding romance in Wolverine And The X-Men #9. Also, got to love the alien betting peanut gallery.

Husk and Toad up a tree. Ess Aitch Eee Eee Dee Aye Enn Gee. This book works so much better when it’s set mostly at the school. It suffered that for the last couple of issue, this month is a real return to form. Wonderful stuff.

The Shadow #1 from Dynamite. With Garth Ennis at the helm, returning to his pulpy favourites, but now that he’s working with an classic established franchise character, will he soften at all, maybe give us a kinder, gentler Shadow, one who…

…possibly not then.

In Wonder Woman #8, the eponymous warrior has gone to Hell, to fight on the grounds of Hades itself, amongst the dead. So what do the very depths of despair look like?

Cheers for that. Thanks.

In Batman #8 we are reminded that it’s not just Batman who has enemies in Gotham. Bruce Wayne does as well. And even the Talons of the Owls may not have realised the two are the same. Which leads to some great fighting-in-your-dressing gown moments that would make Arthur Dent proud.

I haven’t been a really big fan of the new Nightwing comic. To be honest, I didn’t much like it before the relaunch. But this issue, #8, is different. It’s a look back at a life spent in early Gotham. It feels like the Joker’s story in The Killing Joke, but from a child’s perspective. And it is told with brevity, with intelligence, with emotion and from a real point of view. In writing and in art, it’s a real highlight of the week, and not at all what I was expecting. Wait to read Batman #8 first though.

With the Incredible Hulk #7, we get a scorched earth attitude, and monsters everywhere. Bad men doing bad things to each other… and sometimes to themselves. The Incredible Hulk has really become a Self Harm Book.

I’ve talked about how the tone of Justice League has really changed now that we’ve jumped five years to the New DCU present day. With an insular, efficient, action team, far from the stragglers bumping up against each other in issue 1. They’ve taken on Apokalips tech to serve their needs… even if it only sometimes does what it says on the tin.

Every time they jump, they play the Apokalips roulette! This is the kind of idea that would have had no place in the old Justice League. Lovely stuff. A much better book.

Manhattan Projects #2 gives us Adolf Hitler and Albert Einstein as regular characters, one hopes, and this issue manages to smash religion and science together. America’s science projects converting people to Buddhism to power their generators? It must be true.

Prophet #24 not only shows us a trek through an incredibly alien but believable future but reminds us of what we have lost. Seriously, prehensile tails, why have Apple not put one out yet? I welcome our prehensile overlords.

Stitched #4. The horrors of war. But thankfully no poetry.

And as the Walking Dead ends one chapter and begins a new one… they also seem to take a leaf out of A Bug’s Life...*

The solution isn’t that far different either.

*Yes, yes, I know there are many precedents, just give me the illusion, okay? I want to see them fighting giant insects.


About Rich Johnston

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

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