Letter 44

Weekly Pull Review 2/18/15

There were no giant science tubes this week. Not a damned one. Seriously, people, what’s the point of drawing a comic without giant science tubes, especially if a laboratory shows up?

Bitch Planet #3: The Secret Origin of Penny Rolle- Image

Bitch Planet is doing something a bit unusual- every third issue is going to be drawn by a guest artist, in order to help keep the comic rolling on a regular schedule. I personally think it’s a fantastic idea, at least based on the art in this issue. The old school four color toning continues to work incredibly well everywhere it’s used in the comic- it just fits into the comic’s voice. Consistent release schedules are a major problem for many excellent comics out there. This issue jumps back in time to give an origin story for Penny Rolle. It seems a little early in the series for an origin story issue for someone other than the protagonist, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing- far too often, ensemble cast comics do far too little in the way of establishing personality and history for characters, just leaving you with a broad trope or two. This issue also does a great job with showing us how things really are for average people under the rule of the Fathers. I’m really, really wanting to learn more about Megaton, though. I’ve got to admit it, I’m a sucker for fictional sports, especially sci-fi ones. The afterwards materials/columns are really proving to be a draw, as well- letter columns are nice, but unless it’s the Sex Criminals letter column, having a little extra informative material in the back does nothing but good for the comic. This issue also features the most ominous use of hair care products I’ve seen in quite a while. Also, an awesome magic mirror, using science! Suck it, Snow White. (Seriously didn’t even catch the symbology there the first readthrough, but that’s on me for being thick.)

Multiversity: Mastermen- DC

Grant Morrison takes us to his version of Red Sun this issue- one where Superman’s pod lands in Nazi occupied territory, leading to him ruling over a Nazi Earth as Overman. (In the original Red Sun, Superman’s pod crash-lands in Soviet occupied Ukraine.) Jim Lee handles the art duties on this one. I knew this was going to be one of my favorite Multiversity issues yet when it opened with a splash page of Hitler straining with constipation on the toilet. The story is pretty straightforwards, but that’s not a bad thing. The Sivanas are really building up more than the Gentry in terms of the overarching story- to be fair, though, it’s often a better idea to have the minor villains take more screen time than the Big Bads. Nazi Batman (Leatherwing, how fitting) proves creepy as hell. Establishing Uncle Sam as a superpowered freedom fighter is a pretty awesome move. Much of the driving force behind the plot is Overman’s moral doubts creeping up on him- even raised by Hitler, he proves to still have something of a moral compass. One thing that really bothered me, though- Underwaterman never looked directly at the camera. Ever. No science tubes, though there is a cylindrical hovering specimen jar. It’s just not big enough to be a proper giant science tube.

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Weekly Pull Review 12/24/14

Yes, I know the 24th was a couple days ago. Whatever, it was Ebenezer Scrooge Day. Anyhow…

Hawkeye Vs Deadpool #3- Marvel

If you had told me that one of the enjoyable comics in my pull lately would be one of the bajillion Deadpool miniseries that have been coming, I probably would have… well, maybe not have laughed, but given you a skeptical look. It’s not that most of them are bad, it’s just that they don’t tend to be super interesting. While Deadpool Vs. Hawkeye doesn’t quite measure up to Deadpool at its best, or Hawkeye at all, it does manage to pull in a lot of the charm of both. The characters all click amazingly well, too. Kate Bishop is the real scene-stealer (“Oh god, I blew up New York”), despite Clint Barton and Wade Wilson getting top billing. Watching the bad guys have minor computer problems, like not being able to find a thumb drive on the desktop was the kind of bizarre, mundane, wonderful scene that doesn’t really exist outside this miniseries and its parent series. I’m kinda sad there’s only one more issue left. Also, Deadpool continuing to use Uber (Ooper) to get to and from missions? YES.

Dead Boy Detectives #12- Vertigo

This series just keeps growing and growing on me. The characters feel more fleshed out, the art is really getting into stride… it’s feeling less like just a Sandman Spinoff, and more like its own beast. The philosopher ghost cats work much better as amusing animal sidekicks than the usual addition, which tend to rely on cuteness over actual interesting behavior. The detectives interacting with a medium while she tries to ignore them was confusing, but not in a bad way at all- all of the characters involved in that scene, especially the customer, are absolutely bewildered themselves. It’s a great little setup. Despite the videogame being the cover hook, it doesn’t actually get a lot of screen time, but what we do get looks really good. (more…)