Monday, October 12, 2009

Post-Crisis Comic Book Previews for 10/14/09

Kirk’s vacation continues this week, so I’m in charge of the good ship Post-Crisis Previews once again this week. For those of you who are new here or just don’t pay attention, the Post-Crisis Previews is a look at this week’s releases and my thoughts on them. You can always play along with the home version by posting what books you’ll be picking up, telling my why my thoughts are wrong, or suggesting other books you think I should be checking out.

This week’s Previews include looks at the Good (Anna Mercury 2), the Bad (Judd Winick and Mark Bagley’s Batman) and the Ugly (Greg Land’s art on Uncanny X-Men), as well as the tremendously awesome (Secret Six) and the brand new (Phil Hester’s Anchor). If you are looking for my thoughts on these and more, hit the jump to see what I have to say!

Written by Phil Hester
Art by Brian Churilla

The Anchor. Holy warrior, unholy war. Freak of nature, beast of burden, hulking outcast, medieval prize fighter, Viking raider, God's leg-breaker. One thousand years ago a hulking outcast sought refuge in the crumbling ruins of an ancient monastery, offering in return the one thing he had to give — his fists. Transformed into an immortal warrior monk standing at the gates of Hell itself to keep our world free from its invading armies, The Anchor is mysteriously tricked into centuries of slumber. But today, this holy warrior rises to battle all the unholy monsters unleashed during his slumber. Cataclysmic action, quirky humor, and profound pathos for fans of Hellboy and The Goon.

Ryan: You had me intrigued at “Written by Phil Hester,” but you had me sold at “God’s leg-breaker!” I picked up an early-release copy of this from Hester at FallCon this past weekend and it looks great based on a flip-through. Despite having loads of talent, Hester is more known for his art than his writing, but I think that this series could definitely change that.

Written by Warren Ellis
Art by Facundo Percio

Anna Mercury is back in this summer’s biggest epic! Warren Ellis’ fiery red-head returns to once again explode into mad science-fiction action with the stellar art of Facundo Percio, returning from the smash-hit original series! Anna Mercury is wounded and trapped in the security ministry of Three Souls Town, a city hanging in the weird Constellation outside the universe itself. She thinks they're insane, they think she's an agent of destruction. Neither of them realize something worse is on the way: ULTRASPACIAL DREADNOUGHT VANAHEIM and Space Vikings!

Ryan: It’s been so long since the last issue came out that I’ll definitely need to refresh my memory by re-reading #1. However, once I’m back on top of things, I know I can expect more of the usual high-concept sci-fi action that the series is known for. This is definitely one of the biggest releases of the week for me.

Written by Bryan Q. Miller
Art by Lee Garbett

It’s a new look and a new costume for the all-new Batgirl! As crime in Gotham City continues to rise, the newest member of the Bat-family vows to wear the mantle of the Bat and fight alongside Batman and Robin in their war on crime. There’s just one problem: She hasn’t told Batman and Robin yet!

Ryan: We’ve only seen flashes of Batman and Robin’s reaction to the new Batgirl, so it will be interesting to see how they react in full to Stephanie Brown taking up the mantel—especially considering they have both taken over their roles from other heroes as well. If Bryan Q. Miller continues to write the characters as strongly as he has in the first two issues, this could be a very strong issue.

Written by Judd Winick
Art by Mark Bagley

BATMAN double-ships this month as Two-Face and the new Batman throw down in the Batcave. And the fight is a vicious one, but just as Two-Face begins to get the upper hand...Batman shows up? The final chapter of Dick Grayson's first adventure as Batman is a can't-miss!

Ryan: Judd Winick and Mark Bagley’s Batman has been one of the few weak links in the post-RIP Bat-franchise, so I’m glad to see their run on the title finishing up this month. Last issue saw Two-Face break into the Batcave using the most a teleporter that fails to make sense even by comic book logic standards, then dress up as his own version of Batman to attack Dick Grayson. So…umm…at least the standards aren’t too high for this issue?

Written by Dan Jurgens and Matthew Sturges
Art by Dan Jurgens and Mike Norton

“Day of Dead” concludes as Booster Gold battles Black Beetle in the past and jumps through time to team up with the new Batman and Robin in the future. But how are these events connected – and what is the Black Beetle really after?

Then, in Blue Beetle, Jaime Reyes must stop the Blue Beetle scarab from trying to kill him...and everyone else on the planet Earth!

Ryan: I’d still rather see this series be a Blue Beetle book with a Booster Gold backup, but the lead story has steadily improved with each issue, bringing the book back up to the levels of awesomeness it enjoyed when Geoff Johns was at the helm.

Written by Various
Art by Various

Special SUPER-sized, ACTION-packed 104-page special to commemorate Deadpool’s historic 900th issue! ... Wait, has it really been nine-hundred issues...? Who cares! If this collection of octane-infused stories by some of comics’ hottest talent doesn’t make you want to genuflect at the Altar of Wade, nothing will. Thrill as the Merc with a Mouth squares off against probe-happy aliens, trigger-happy mimes and one seriously unhappy fanman – and that’s just half the book! Wince as Wade bares his soul (and lots more) to a shrink who’s got major squirrels in his own attic. Thrill as he travels around the globe and then some to settle a childhood bet. And chill as C.S.I. investigators at a blood-splattered crime scene attempt to piece together why this particular “unsub” needed battery cables, Crisco oil, three stacks of adult magazines and a live chicken to pull off the hit.

Ryan: Over the years, I’ve tried really, really hard to get into Deadpool, but the Merc with a Mouth has never really caught on with me. I’m hoping that somewhere in the midst of this massive 100+ page “anniversary” issue will be something that will help me understand why Deadpool is enjoying such a massive increase in popularity these days.

Written by Christopher Yost
Art by Pasqual Ferry

Dragon Army has been training non-stop for their first battle, and they're about to get it. But what Ender doesn't know is that the deck is stacked against them and everyone is gunning for Ender, from the students to the teachers. Even with Bean's help, can Ender win against unbeatable odds? And Ender's anger at his teachers has consequences...murderous consequences.

Ryan: As great as the first miniseries was, Chris Yost and Pasqual Ferry really upped the ante with the first issue of the follow-up last month. On one hand, that is a great thing as it puts a lot of momentum behind this issue; on the flipside, it might be hard for this week’s issue to live up to last issue’s incredibly high standards.

Written by Peter J. Tomasi
Art by Patrick Gleason

The intense and horrific battle between the Green Lantern Corps and the Black Lanterns on Oa takes a turn for the worse! The Corps realizes that the abominable, ultimate goal of the Black Lanterns is not only to feed off the Corps’ emotions, but to consume and decimate the main power battery and destroy Oa forever!

Ryan: I’m glad to see that the Black Lanterns have an actual goal in mind, as the lack of movement in the entire Blackest Night story was starting to turn the even prematurely stale. This one should be almost all action, so I look forward to Pat Gleason directing the flow of the book with his always-excellent art.

Written by Chris Yost
Art by Ramon Bachs

Ra's al Ghul goes from hunter to hunted! What is the Council of Spiders, why have they been killing assassins, and who is the Wanderer? After the death of Red Robin last issue, the League of Assassins now must – wait, WHAT? Everything shifts into insane overdrive as the daughter of Wayne Enterprises CEO Lucius Fox completes her quest to find Red Robin, only to get caught up in one of the deadliest games on the face of the planet.

Ryan: It took me until the third or fourth time reading this solicitation to see that it claims that Red Robin died last issue. Since we all know that Tim probably isn’t dead, it makes me wonder what else we shouldn’t trust about this solicit. Hmm…

Written by Gail Simone
Art by Nicola Scott

The shattering conclusion to “The Depths” is here! The Six find themselves pitted against Artemis, Wonder Woman and the hideous secret being from deep within the new Devil's Island!

Ryan: Once again, I’d have to say that this is the book to beat this week. Honestly, this series is so good that, as long as Gail Simone and Nicola Scott are the creative team, I really don’t pay that much attention to the solicits. I know the book is going to be amazing, no matter what it is about.

Written by Matt Fraction
Art by Greg Land

He returns.

Ryan: As cool as the return of Magneto could be, especially since the X-Men are now using the floating remains of Asteroid M as the newest version of Genosha, I know that the issue can only be so enjoyable since Greg Land’s horrible “referenced art” is going to ruin anything cool that Matt Fraction does with the story.

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JP said...

All excellent picks as always.

However, if I may be so bold, I have 3 words for ya: "Blackest Night: Batman #3."

This has been the strongest of all the current Blackest Night mini-series, which I attribute to the fact that it is penned by Pete Tomasi, who besides being Johns' partner in "Blackest Night," but also clearly understands Dick Grayson as demostrated by his late Nightwing run, (seriously DC, why the hell is he not writing one of the Batman books?).

My only compliant with series is the lack of info on why "Bruce's" skull is so important to Black Hand and why Deadman is immune to his body being a Black Lantern.

JP said...

Almost forgot,

May I also recommend R.E.B.E.L.S. #9. It has been a good story from the begining, but after the Annual last week, (which "The Weekly Crisis" failed to review I noticed), which turned Starro from a joke villian to a "Darkseid" level threat, it should most definitely be checked out.

Anonymous said...

Agree with JP, R.E.B.E.L.S. is a must read!

Ryan Schrodt said...

I've been getting a lot of flack lately for not picking up R.E.B.E.L.S. It's a Legion spin-off right? I've never cared much for the Legion in the past--will that make a difference?

JP said...

I just got into comics about two years ago, but from what I understand (from wikipedia), the original L.E.G.I.O.N./R.E.B.E.L.S. from the 90s was orginally a centuries old predessor to the Legion of Superheroes.

The current series (written by Tony Bernard), however, has no real link to the LSH. The only "Link" so to speak was that at the beginning of the series, when Vril Dox (Brainiac 2) was on the run from Starro, his descenant Brainaic 5 sent a message into the past for Dox to find. The message contained a bluprint of "the greatest fighting force in the universe" (the LSH). Dox has since used this blueprint to build his current "rebels" to combat Starro.

In conclusion, "R.E.B.E.L.S." seems not to be a Legion spin-off, but rather a title that explores the cosmic side of the DCU that the Green Lantern titles don't.

P.S. As someone whose only Legion material I read was the Final Crisis mini-series, I have no problem getting R.E.B.E.L.S.

P.S.S. If by chance you are confused by the relation of Vril Dox and he Brianiac that Johns rebooted in "Action," Bernard has gone on record in saying that he will make only vague refences to their relationship in his book, and if Johns wants to resolve their relationship, he is welcome to.

Ethereal said...

Action Comics, Adventure Comics, Batman, GLC, REBELS, Secret Six. I think I'll have to start picking up Booster Gold at this rate. Big Week for DC.

Marvels Project, UXM. might have to start reading Incredible Hercules.

Ruuudes said...

yes Ryan, you should pick up R.E.B.E.L.S. The annual has been great, you don't regret it.

brandon said...

Lots of good stuff this week.

Anyone planning on getting Punisher #75? Seems like an anthology type issue. I'm curious but at $5 I'm not sure.

Walking Dead, Hellboy, GLC, BN:Batman, Liberty Comics.....great week coming up.

FYI - Ryan I think you meant "weak" not "week" in your Batman write up.

CrIpPlEr said...

@RUUUDES : i read the first few issues of rebels but then the plot got too similar to the one in annihilation conquest so i dropped it...has it changed any at all from the old stoyline??

Anonymous said...

REBELS is one of the best DC titles at the moment. It's fantastic. Vril dox is a great character and the story is really building into something epic.

The recent annual is actually a good jumping on for new readers as it brings them up to speed on all the current events and all the main players in starro's inner circle.

Cheaper than buying the first trade paperback if it's money you would like to save. But I would highly recommend the first trade when it comes out in Jan.

Matt Ampersand said...

The main complaint I have heard about REBELS is that the plot is too much like Annihilation: Conquest, which I have heard from a number of people.

Ruuudes said...

I have not read Annihilation Conquest, but R.E.B.E.L.S. so far seemed to be a fantastic read, Bedard shines exploring the cosmic side of DC. If R.E.B.E.L.S. do not buy because it is similar to A.C. that means A.C. it's a bad story?

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