DC New 52 – One Sentence Reviews, Part 19

Between work, delayed comic deliveries, an understandably demanding five-week-old daughter and my almost three-year-old son thinking my tablet PC (on which I read the comics I don’t collect in hard copy) is exclusively his for the purpose of playing Angry Birds – my New 52 One Sentence Reviews are becoming increasingly late.

I apologise, but am stubbornly committed to continuing my series and I know that, because of the leaderboard, dropping the ball just once means the whole thing is over red rover.

So, better late than never (like Justice League #5, I guess) … here are last week’s reviews.

Each comic is scored out of five and at the end I have a cumulative leaderboard to show which are consistently excellent, which are on the rise, and which are circling the drain.

I have also reviewed the mini-series issues but they aren’t included in the leaderboard.

Warning, there could be spoilers ahead (although I try to avoid them).

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Review: Catwoman #5

Catwoman #5, Cover by Guillem March

Catwoman #1 was not an easy book to support.  The cheesecake was excessive, the sex was gratuitous, and the take on Selina seemed, at first, to be incredibly reductive and simplistic.  But I enjoyed it anyway.  The pacing was propulsive, the action was non-stop, and there was a wit, a sense of fun, that many books in the New 52 lacked.  Those were the qualities that kept me interested in the book, and I’m glad I stuck by it: though Winick and March’s Catwoman is still fairly flawed, it’s also a ceaselessly exciting read, a hyper-active take on a classic character that magnifies all her best and worst traits to a cartoonish degree and then sets her loose to wreak havoc in DC’s grimmest city.

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DC New 52 – One Sentence Reviews, Part 11

 

If it’s short, sharp reviews of the New 52 ye seek, then here be one sentence reviews for the comics of the week.

Each comic is scored out of five and at the end I have a cumulative leader board (averaging the scores of each title) to show which are consistently excellent, which are on the rise, and which are circling the drain. 

I have also reviewed the mini-series issues but they aren’t included in the leaderboard.

Warning, there could be spoilers ahead (although I try to avoid them).

Continue reading

Top 5 Best Comics of November 2010

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I read 20 comics in November, and these were the best.

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Review: Wednesday Comics #3

Wednesday

Last week’s Wednesday Comics was the first to really disappoint.  The premise of the project should suggest that the creators compress their stories as much as possible, at least in general – when all’s said and done, they only really have 15 pages to finish the story.  While some creators have risen to the challenge, like Caldwell on Wonder Woman or Pope on Strange Adventures, some strips that started out strong have begun to peter off already.

There is still the seeds of genius that were strongly evident in the first two issues, but there are too many non-starters here.  The flaws remain relatively unfixed, with the weakest pages among the first two issues showing little improvement.  Not all is bleak, of course – a project with this many gifted creators is bound to have some astonishing moments – but I am not sure that a book facing all the challenges that Wednesday Comics faces can afford to have many more issues like this one: Not bad, but not quite worth the trouble.

Grade: B-

– Cal Cleary

Wednesday Comics #2

Wednesday Comics #1

Catwoman Gets Jealous

Sorry, this is about as random as posts get, but I’m curious. Constantly, one of the biggest reasons people come to read/RANT is because they search for “catwoman gets jealous.” Why do you search for this? When has Catwoman gotten jealous? Is this some sort of password for the Freemasons or Stonecutters? I don’t know, but please, enlighten me in our comment section. Oh, yeah, and:

Please, check out the site!

I like Catwoman. I hope Rachel Weisz does get to play her soon.

Review: Wednesday Comics #2

Wed2

Though Wednesday Comics #2 didn’t do much to improve over the flaws of the first one, and certainly won’t change any minds about the project as a whole, it also kept all the charm, wit and creative energy of the first issue, and even improved upon some of the slower stories.  The keyword with Wednesday Comics is variety, and you get a lot of it.

Busiek’s Green Lantern is a wonderfully retro The New Frontier-style sci-fi adventure, while Pope’s Strange Adventures is classic pulp action.  Flash reads like a bizarre blend of romance and super-hero stories, while Baker’s Hawkman offers a dark, fascinating look at a frequently muddled character.  As with the first issue, not every story is a hit, and the two biggest offenders from #1 (Teen Titans and Sgt. Rock and Easy Co.) remain relatively weak, though both show at least some signs of improvement over the previous issue.

Meanwhile, the creators are making full use of the space, sometimes in interesting ways.  The Gaiman/Allred Metamorpho is essentially one enormous panel while Caldwell’s surreal Wonder Woman features roughly fifty panels on its only page.  

The format is definitely bringing out the best in many of these artists, most of whom have admirably risen to the challenge.  The less-glossy pages and creases that come from the folding were a worry to some people when it came to the quality of the art, but rest-assured, this is rarely the case.  Only Caldwell’s Wonder Woman and the Arcudi/Bermejo Superman seem to have been hampered by the fact, each of them a little too dark for their own good.  Despite that, however, both pages remain well-crafted and interesting.

Wednesday Comics is too scattershot to appeal to everyone, but those who try it out will find a selection of interesting stories by star creators that hearken back to the early days of comics and the traditional stories without being lazy or condescending.  Everyone involved seems to be having far too much fun to either.

Grade: A-

– Cal Cleary

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Wednesday Comics #1