Category Archives: Review

DCnU Reviews – Done!

Well, I’ve finished all 52 Reviews on the new DCnU titles that came out this month. Here’s the final tally, for those who are interested:

What I Thought I Would Do

Definitely Collect: Batman, Hawk & Dove, and Justice League Dark

Collect: Captain Atom, DC Universe Presents, Fury of Firestorm, Grifter, Justice League, and Resurrection Man

Probably Collect: Action Comics, Aquaman, Flash, Men of War, Mister Terrific, Red Hood and the Outsiders, Stormwatch, and Teen Titans

Try a Second Issue: Animal Man, Frankenstein-Agent of S.H.A.D.E., Green Lantern, Green Lantern Corps, Legion Lost, Legion of Super Heroes, Nightwing, Static Shock, Superman, Swamp Thing, and Wonder Woman

Drop: All-Star Western, Batgirl, Batman and Robin, Batman: The Dark Knight, Blackhawks, Batwing, Batwoman, Birds of Prey, Blue Beetle, Catwoman, Deathstroke, Demon Knights, Detective Comics, Green Arrow, Green Lantern: New Guardians, I-Vampire, Justice League International, O.M.A.C., Red Lantern, Savage Hawkman, Suicide Squad, Superboy, Supergirl, and Voodoo

What I Ended Up Deciding

Definitely Collect: Animal Man, Deathstroke, and Justice League Dark

Collect: Action Comics, Aquaman, Demon Knights, Detective Comics, Frankenstein-Agent of S.H.A.D.E., Hawk & Dove, Justice League, Resurrection Man, Stormwatch, Suicide Squad, Swamp Thing, and Wonder Woman

Probably Collect: All Star Western, Batman, DC Universe Presents, Green Lantern: New Guardians, Grifter, Justice League International, Legion Lost, Nightwing, and Static Shock

Try a Second Issue: Batgirl, Batman: The Dark Knight, Batwoman, Blue Beetle, Catwoman, Fury of Firestorm: The Nuclear Men, Green Lantern Corps, I-Vampire, Mister Terrific, Savage Hawkman, and Supergirl

Drop: Batman and Robin, Batwing, Birds of Prey, Blackhawks, Captain Atom, Flash, Green Arrow, Green Lantern, Legion of Super Heroes, Men of War, O.MA.C., Red Hood and the Outlaws, Red Lantern, Superboy, Superman, Teen Titans, and Voodoo

As you can see, there was a lot of surprises, both good and bad, in the titles. I ended up straight up dropping a lot less titles than I thought I would, and a lot of the titles weren’t ones I thought I would drop.

So what’s next? My plan is to revisit the reviews in 6 months. That doesn’t mean I’m picking up 6 months of 52 titles, but rather, I’ll let you know what I thought of the first six months so those of you who are collecting trades can see what I thought for that purpose. I’m just going to write how far I ended up collecting a title (whether I dropped it after the first issue, which you’ll already know, or if I continued to collect it all the walk through the six months, and everything in between.)

I’m also planning on reviewing the Ultimate titles over at Marvel. I’m picking all those up anyway, so I thought I’d go ahead and review them. No promises on how quickly I’ll get to them, though – October is going to be pretty busy – but I’ll try. I hope my reviews were helpful! 🙂

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Review: Voodoo #1

Written by Ron Marz, Art & Cover by Sami Basri

Solicitation Info (from Previews): Who is Voodoo? Is she hero, villain – or both? Learn the truth about Priscilla Kitaen as she leaves a trail of violence across America. Discover the new DCU through her eyes, because the things she sees are not always what they seem…

Bias: I’ve enjoyed Ron Marz’ run on Witchblade for the most part (I came into it pretty late in the game, and am only about halfway through his run so far), and while I can see a definite parallel between the titles, I don’t know that it’ll be enough to hold my interest.

What I liked: The artwork was gorgeous, even if it was mostly pin-ups of the main character in various states of undress (not that I minded…) If I’m right about the direction the story is going in, it might have an impact on the Grifter comic…

What I disliked: Like Catwoman, this title had a lot of gratuitous half-naked shots of the main character. Unlike Catwoman, there didn’t seem to be as much reason for it. (Initially? Yes. By the end? Definitely not.) In point of fact, it detracted from the story at the end, which was annoying. The story, while promising, has too many characters acting like idiots for me not to cringe with practically every page.

Verdict: I’m dropping this title, but I may pick up the trades, if it turns out to tie into what’s going on in the Grifter title.

As always, SPOILERS in comments, including my favorite scene, thoughts on what happened, and questions about what’s to come.

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Review: Teen Titans #1

Written by Scott Lobdell, Art & Cover by Brett Booth and Norm Rapmund

Solicitation Info (from Previews): Tim Drake, Batman’s former sidekick, is back in action when an international organization seeks to capture, kill or co-opt super-powered teenagers. As Red Robin, he’s going to have to team up with the mysterious and belligerent powerhouse thief known as Wonder Girl and the hyperactive speedster calling himself Kid Flash to stand any chance at all against a living, breathing weapon with roots in another world! They – along with a few other tortured teen heroes – will be the Teen Titans in this new series from writer Scott Lobdell (WILDC.A.T.S, Uncanny X-Men) and artist Brett Booth (JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA)!

Bias: I’m rather excited about this title. I’m curious to see how the global conspiracy kidnapping super powered kids fits in to the DCnU. Unfortunately, Red Hood and the Outlaws has dimmed my enthusiasm somewhat, as both titles looked pretty and have the same writer. Hopefully he does a better job here than in that title.

What I liked: The artwork was great – a lot more refined than the previews indicated it would be. The story begins with Red Robins investigation already underway – but this allows the story to get right to the meat of starting to gather the team together, which is a definite plus. Mostly, this was an introduction to some of the core characters, and to show us that there’s a bad guy organization tracking down the teen heroes.

What I disliked: I’m getting old. I know this because this comic felt like a teenie-bopper, shown-on-the-CW action TV show. In other words, it was well done, but was decidedly not my thing.

Verdict: I’m dropping this title.

As always, SPOILERS in comments, including my favorite scene, thoughts on what happened, and questions about what’s to come.

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Review: Superman #1

Written by George Perez, Breakdowns & Cover by George Perez, Finishes by Jesus Merino

Solicitation Info (from Previews): The new adventures of Superman begin here! What is The Man of Steel’s startling new status quo? How does it affect Lois Lane and The Daily Planet? There’s no time for answers now, because Superman must stop a monstrous threat to Metropolis – one that he somehow is the cause of!

Bias: Superman has generally been a boring character – but with his new return to the original idea in Action Comics, it makes me wonder if the Superman we see in this title will be a continuation of that, or a sell-out.  Did he build a reputation as a (super)man of the people, only to decide his reputation is now too important to risk it doing what gave him that reputation to begin with? (Something we’ve seen all too often in real life…) If nothing else, I’m curious to see what Stormwatch mentioned happening this issue that seems to have such far-reaching effects…

What I liked: Well, we establish early on that Superman isn’t selling out – at least, not yet. There were plenty of set up for future stories, and a big question about the future of the Daily Planet. It was well illustrated, and packed a lot of story into a single issue.

What I disliked: The connection with Stormwatch was one page, and had nothing to do with any of the rest of the story in this title. It felt like a blatant attempt to connect the titles rather than a fluid story cross-over. It would’ve been better to just put that one page in Stormwatch itself… As for Superman – it felt a little depressing, like the point of the story was that the world was passing Superman by.

Verdict: I’m dropping this title.

As always, SPOILERS in comments, including my favorite scene, thoughts on what happened, and questions about what’s to come.

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Review: Savage Hawkman #1

Written by Tony S. Daniel, Art & Cover by Philip Tan

Solicitation Info (from Previews): Carter Hall’s skill at deciphering lost languages has led him to a job with an archaeologist who specializes in alien ruins – but will the doctor’s latest discovery spread an alien plague through New York City? No matter the personal cost, Carter Hall must don his wings and become the new, savage Hawkman to survive! Witness the start of a new action series from writer Tony S. Daniel and artist Philip Tan that will take Hawkman where no hero has flown before!

Bias: In years past, my favorite aspect of the character’s history was the reincarnation bit. Removing that had me all but decided that I wasn’t interested in this title at all. And written by an artist? Yeah, that sealed the deal. Except…the artist in question wrote one of my favorite DCnU books so far: Detective Comics. Hmm…

What I liked: A fast-paced, action driven story that left us with a lot of questions and hardly any answers. Hawkman was thrown from one situation to the next without a chance to catch his breath, which didn’t allow us to do so either. Oh, and the art was fantastic.

What I disliked: As I said, this title left more questions than answers. For the most part, this was a good thing – it piqued my interest. But I really would’ve liked some answers… Some idea of what’s going on.

Verdict: I’ll pick up another issue to see whether we get any answers by then.

As always, SPOILERS in comments, including my favorite scene, thoughts on what happened, and questions about what’s to come.

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Review: Justice League Dark #1

Written by Peter Milligan, Art by Mikel Janin, Cover by Ryan Sook

Solicitation Info (from Previews): The witch known as The Enchantress has gone mad, unleashing forces that not even the combined powers of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and Cyborg can stop. And if those heroes can’t handle the job, who will stand against this mystical madness? Shade the Changing Man, Madame Xanadu, Deadman, Zatanna and John Constantine may be our only hope – but how can we put our trust in beings whose very presence makes ordinary people break out in a cold sweat?

Bias: The other title that I’m really looking forward to. I’m a big fan of the magic characters, especially John Constantine, and as such, this looks right up my alley. Can’t wait!

What I liked: This was definitely the title I was hoping it would be. It was mystical surrealism at its best (a worthy successor, in my opinion, to Xombi). It did a wonderful job of setting up the series and introducing (most of?) the characters, and was altogether an enjoyable read with a definite Vertigo vibe.

What I disliked: This was certainly not anything that bothered me, but I felt I should address it, in case violence in comics is a problem for you: there are multiple scenes of carnage, starting with a two page spread of women in traffic being smashed into by the motor vehicles. If that’s going to disturb you, you might want to give this one a pass.

Verdict: I’m definitely collecting this title.

As always, SPOILERS in comments, including my favorite scene, thoughts on what happened, and questions about what’s to come.

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Review: I, Vampire #1

Written by Joshua Hale Fialkov, Art by Andrea Sorrentino, Cover by Jenny Frison

Solicitation Info (from Previews): For hundreds of years, vampire Andrew Stanton kept mankind safe from the horrors of the supernatural world, thanks to a truce he made with his ex-lover Mary, the Queen of the Damned. But now that truce has reached a bloody end and Andrew must do everything in his power to stop Mary and her dark forces from going on a killing spree – and she plans to start with the heroes of the DCU!

Bias: I’m not sure what to make of this. It seems almost like Marvel’s X-men vs. vampires from a short bit ago, only with vampires trying to protect us from the other vampires. If it’s trying to cash in on the Twilight crowd, then I’m out. But if it’s a more mature approach to vampires (ala Scott Snyder’s American Vampire), then I could see me getting behind this. I guess we’ll see…

What I liked: It was definitely a more mature take on vampires, and the concept behind it was interesting (I liked that it wasn’t a human and a vampire, but two vampires with ideological differences). The artwork was dark and moody (perfect for the story). I was confused by whether the story was currently in the present time or the past (as the story kept bouncing between the two), until I realized that the shading between the two was different (reddish hues in the past, blue-ish hues in the present).

What I disliked: I think I’m just burned out on vampire stories. This was everything I asked for, and yet…it just wasn’t enough. I think that was because all of the action happened in the past. Very little was done in the present, and I wanted to know what was happening now.

Verdict: I’m giving this one more issue.

As always, SPOILERS in comments, including my favorite scene, thoughts on what happened, and questions about what’s to come.

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