Meaningless Awards of the Week- 4/18/07

Fallen Angel 15Artist of the Week- Kristian Donaldson, Fallen Angel #15

Wait a second! Someone else is getting the Meaningless Award for Artist of the Week the same week Darwyn Cooke’s The Spirit came out? How is that even possible? Well, you just have to combine the always fantastic Fallen Angel with an awesome new artist. I’m not sure where this Donaldson fella came from, or what he’s done (if anything) before Fallen Angel, but I am very much looking forward to seeing a lot more of his work.

Best Surprise of the Week- Harley Quinn is the Secret Sixth, Birds of Prey #105

There’s got to be six members of the Secret Six. But since Ragdoll pushed Mad Hatter off a cliff in Secret Six #6, there have only been five. What kind of person would be crazy enough to join such a dysfunctional team, though? Crazy, dysfunctional Harley Quinn, of course. I never would have guessed she’d be the sixth member, but now that she is, I don’t know how it could have been anyone else. And since the Secret Six is semi-heroic, Harley’s membership doesn’t even contradict her recent de-vilification in Detective Comics. Keen!

Ultimate X-Men 81Spoiled Surprise of the Week- Ultimate Beast isn’t dead, Ultimate X-Men # 81

The death of Beast is about the only memorable moment from Brian Michael Bendis’ terrible run on Ultimate X-Men. And its really only memorable because no one wanted to see him die in the first place and there wasn’t really any good reason to kill him off. Since then, UXM fans have been speculating if and when Beast would return to the land of the living. That occurred in this week’s Ultimate X-Men #81, although it probably would have been a good idea for Marvel to not put the out-of-mind character on the cover. That way, his actual reappearance in the actual story might have come as an actual surprise. I really wish Marvel and DC would stop trying to one-up each other on the bad things like spoiler covers, underwhelming “events” and Michael Turner variants.

Most Appropriate Issue Number of the Week- X-Men #198

Splash Page of the Week- Darwyn Cooke, The Spirit #5

Fear not! I still managed to fit the The Spirit double page splash in here.

The Spirit 5

Book of the Week- Nightwing Annual #2

I didn’t enjoy an issue more this week than I did Nightwing Annual #2. In fact, there wasn’t even a close second. Even with Manhunter, Birds of Prey, X-Factor, Invincible, Fallen Angel and The Spirit coming out this week. And that’s saying something.

Nightwing Annual 2Jim Doom and Doom DeLuise already covered the issue pretty thoroughly in their podcast last week, so I’m not going to go over it all again. I pretty much agreed with everything Jim Doom said about the issue, which might be a first here on the Legion of Doom.

I think the reason this issue stood out head and shoulders above the rest (aside from being written and illustrated incredibly well) was the fact that I really, really cared about what happened between Nightwing and Oracle after he proposed to her right before heading off to take down Alex Luthor. There’s something about these two characters that just feels right when you put them together. There aren’t many romantic duos in comicdom that you can really say that about, and even fewer where both people are superheroes.

The Dick Grayson/Barbara Gordon relationship is something special. Somehow, Nightwing Annual #2 made it even more special. And yes, Colonel Doom, it is all right to care about it.