Random Thoughts from 9/19/07

GA&BC Wedding SpecialThe Green Arrow and Black Canary Wedding Special was a fun read, even though it simultaneously acknowledged and contradicted what happened in the JLA Wedding Special from last week. See, in the first Wedding Special, the JLA gets the snot whipped out of them by the Injustice League during Canary and Arrow’s respective bachelorette and bachelor parties, on the eve of their wedding. Not so much in the second Wedding Special, where the wedding takes place as planned with every member of the JLA present and accounted for. Yet the Injustice League that attacks the nuptials just happens to be the same band of second-stringers introduced in the JLA Wedding Special. So DC editorial decided to coordinate a few things (including the joke about Ollie not wanting strippers), but didn’t bother to make sure their two writers weren’t writer conflicting stories? That’s an interesting choice.

Three more comments on the wedding:

1) Thanks to Countdown #32, I saw three different versions of Black Canary’s bachelorette party. I’m not sure I needed to see it once.
2) Hiring strippers dressed like you’re friends and family is the creepiest thing I’ve ever seen. Thunder was dancing with a stripper dressed like her father. That’s just not right.
3) Umm…[SPOILER!!] couldn’t Black Canary have fought off her new husband with her sonic scream, or maybe her vastly superior hand-to-hand fighting skills, instead of jamming the nearest sharp object into his trachea?

Cap 30Captain America is just awesome. I just don’t think Marvel is putting out a better book right now. I love the book despite (or perhaps because of) the constant presence of that über-asshole, Tony Stark. “You’re making me want a drink, Steve…” Oh, so your alcoholism is Cap’s fault now, Tony? What a dick.

World War Hulk #4 was a bit of a disappointment. I thought we were going to see a whole issue of the Marvel heroes being force to fight each other. Instead we get another Strange/Hulk fight, another Rick Jones/Hulk conversation, and only a few panels of the Illuminati fighting, completely obscured by the bright flashes their staffs create. These flashes of light were all over the place this issue, which makes the colorist’s job a lot more interesting but really means John Romita Jr. got to be a little lazy this issue. The only way I see this mini-series reaching a satisfying conclusion is if during the Hulk/Sentry fight, Thor shows up and mops the floor with both of them.

Man, I’m already sick of the Flash’s kids. When I pick up The Flash #232, it’s because I want to read a story about the Flash, not the Flash and his two pre-pubescent super-kids. I like Daniel Acuña’s art, but I’m not sure this is a title he’s best suited for. He’d probably be great for Superman or Shazam, but his art just seems a little too static for the fastest man alive.

Madman 4Madman Atomic Comics #4 was very colorful. I really enjoyed the art this issue, and it even allowed me to understand the story this time. But this issue really made me want to go back and read the older Madman stories (which I’ve never read) more than it made me anticipate the next issue in the series. That’s not a good sign. But like I said, I really enjoy the art, and that may just be enough to keep me buying this book for the foreseeable future.

So the plot of the next arc of Ex Machina is Mayor Hundred gets framed for the murder of the Pope? I did not see that one coming.

A lot of times, done-in-one stories where nothing groundbreaking happens are some of the best stories of the year. Wolverine has had one of those issues each of the last two years. Birds of Prey #110 is not one of those issues, though. Maybe I didn’t really like this issue because it was just Oracle and Huntress, and they’re not that appealing to me on their own. The best part of BoP is the team dynamic of what is essentially a group of hired guns doing Oracle’s bidding. Bedard even pointed that out this issue by looking back on some of the one-time Birds and why they didn’t work out. People getting along are never as interesting as people not getting along.

Ant-Man 12It’s good to see that Ant-Man will be showing up in Avengers: The Initiative now that his solo series has ended with Irredeemable Ant-Man #12. It’s even better to see that he’s the same egotistical jerk he’s always been, looking out for himself above all others, when he decided to not stop and help Spider-Man fight the Absorbing Man at the end of the issue. For a second there I thought he was going to start redeeming himself. That was a close one.

Hey, Checkmate #18 was actually good! After a crappy fill-in last issue, which placed Checkmate next to Shadowpact on the short list of titles I was about to drop, this issue was actually pretty good. You always knew the time would come that Amanda Waller would go too far and the rest of Checkmate would have to take her down. Then Greg Rucka had to go and throw in Scandal (with a reference to her girl’s recent death in Birds of Prey), the Suicide Squad, and a role for Martian Manhunter that makes more sense than anything I’ve ever seen him in. It reminded me why I liked this title so much when it launched during One Year Later.

Skill being revealed as Ravager in Robin #166 was very cool. It makes total sense that Robin would turn to his Teen Titans buddies for help in Gotham every once in a while. What’s even cooler is that he needed a little help, but he didn’t automatically turn to Batman. I wouldn’t be surprised if sometime soon Tim Drake ditched the Robin moniker (like Dick Grayson did before him) and created his own superhero persona to distinguish himself as more than just Batman’s sidekick.