Friday, July 20, 2007

My Comic Store Pull List - July 18, 2007

Brave And The Bold #5
This is kind of the oddest comics on the racks right now. You see it seems to me that this is a gloriously retro kind of book, both in writing and art. And the larger truth about it? I love it! Unlike most of the other currently produced super hero comics from the "Big Two", this comic is a wonderful team-up series done without a whole lot of interest with continuity. They might drop a hint here or there about something going on with a given character but it doesn't really factor into the story. It's all about the enjoyment of seeing your favorite heroes working together to fight evil.

This issue continues the introductory story concerning, among other things, Destiny's book and the Lords Of Luck. You've got Batman stuck in the 30th century with the Legion of Super-Heroes and dealing with the only object that could get him back home. Along with that, you have Supergirl arriving at the planet of Rann to help out Green Lantern and Adam Strange. It's all about leading into the big finale of the story next issue and it will be interesting to see how all of this dovetails together. All in all, it's nice to have a series that doesn't have to worry about what everyone else is doing.
My rating: A

Countdown #41
I honestly don't know what is causing me to feel that this book isn't working right. It seems like it should be humming along but it always seems to read more disjointed to me. Unlike the preceding weekly series, Countdown doesn't quite have the same flow as 52 did and it also lacks the previous series hold on all of the plot lines. Each issue is set up in the same manner as 52 but Countdown reads like seperate pieces stuck together and not a more complete story. All of the seperate plots are interesting but it feels like they're all going off into different directions and not towards a similar end. I'm going to keep reading but I hope that the story will gell together in the future.
My rating: C+

Justice League of America #11
This stand alone issue is a very interesting thing to read following the first two multi issue arcs. Instead of the big sweeping adventure storys, this is a much smaller story concerning the survival of two members of the team who are trapped inside a collapsed building. The whole story feeling of claustrophobia especially due to the guest art by Gene Ha. With it's all black pages and jagged open spaces wedged into each page, the reader can really feel how compressed the environment is for the heroes. I was kind of disappointed with how fast of a read this issue wound up being but the issue was still stong enough to work without being giant sized.
My rating: B+

Birds Of Prey #108
I'm not sure if this is Gail Simone's last issue as writer of the series but this issue really reads like it is. It seems to function both as a finale for the current storyline and an opening for the new writer to come in and do what they want to do. While the field team comes back from their mission in Russia, Barbara waits for the return to make the stand to return the team to her control. After a couple issues of Babs seeming more docile than in the past, it is really nice to have her back to her old personality. Add in a kind of altered 4 page spread of all of the people that have been members of the team backing Babs up (though I was kind of confused to see Power Girl there after their past problems) and it feels even more like an ending than anything else.
My rating: A-

Ultimate Spider-Man #111
After all of the histrionics of the last two plots, it is really nice to finally get the chance to take a breath. A reader can get buried mentally from all of the fights and explosions so you just want to feel for the characters more than it's possible to do in a plot like that. The main part of the issue is the discussion between Peter Parker and Aunt May about his heroic identity. Instead of all of the standard written issues, this one feels really real and solid in a worldly kind of way. The talk flows and you can feel it move without being forced at all. This issue also has the pedigree to be the final issue by artist Mark Bagley (who has drawn the entire series up to now) and his replacement, Stuart Immomen. Both artistic looks fit together nicely and both seem to have the same sense for design which leaves a long time reader like me looking forward with hope.
My rating: B

All Flash #1
It struck me as funny when I realized that I've actually bought every Flash first issue since the relaunch following the Legends mini series back in the day. I never seem to stay around for very long but there must be something in the character that keeps drawing me back. The opening of the issue helps to fit all of the odd temporal difficulties that have crept into the continuity since you have events happening in a couple different comics. It's nice to have that to link the points together and give you a knowledge of where the story is coming from. It might seem like they're spending a lot of time just to wrap up all manner of plot points but it reads more or less like a way to clear the deck for the return of Wally West as the Flash. And I really don't have a problem with that.
My rating: B+


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