Monday, December 14, 2009

Post-Crisis Comic Book Previews for 12/16/09

A new week means a new Post-Crisis Previews.  This is both Ryan's and my pull lists for the upcoming week with analysis and general thoughts on the comics we will be purchasing.  It's also a good time to offer up some suggestions to us for books you think we should be reading, discussing our picks or letting us know what you are getting and why.  Hit the jump to see what's on tap for us this week!



AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #615
Written by Fred Van Lente
Art by Javier Pulido

A locked room mystery! A string of brutal murders! A missing girl! One of Peter Parker's closest friends on the brink of ruin! This looks like a job for the Amazing Spider-Sleuth...and all clues point to the sinister SANDMAN! But all of Spidey's classic villains are being reinvented as part of ""THE GAUNTLET"", and Sandy is no different--so nothing is what it seems!

Ryan: Here’s my problem with this solicitation: I like that it’s a mystery story and I love that Sandman is the villain. I don’t get why it is necessary for the “classic villains” to be “reinvented” for this storyline. If they are such classics, why mess with them? Given how horrible the “reinvention” of Electro was last arc, my expectations for this are low despite the fact that Fred Van Lente is at the helm.

Kirk: After two lackluster arcs in a row, I was considering dropping this book for the time being.  Fred Van Lente is the only reason I'm sticking around for this arc and even he's only getting a probationary issue-by-issue shot at keeping me around for the foreseeable future.


BATMAN #694
Written by Tony Daniel
Art by Tony Daniel

While Black Mask and his Ministry of Death struggle to maintain control of Gotham City, The Dark Knight sets his sights on Kittyhawk – a young thief pivotal to the outcome of Black Mask’s gang war. But will a powerful adversary thought long dead spoil all of Batman’s plans? Guest-starring Oracle and the Penguin!

Ryan: Tony Daniel’s run on Batman has been a mixed bag thus far, though it has been clearly building towards something good and has gotten progressively better with each issue. It is going to take one really solid issue to kick this story into gear and I think that this one could be it.


BATMAN 80 PAGE GIANT #1
Written by Various
Art by Various

The BATMAN 80-PAGE GIANT features can't-miss action from some of today's premiere up-and-coming talent working on your favorite characters! It's the biggest blizzard of the year, and everyone in Gotham City is doing what they can to help. Find out what Batman, Robin, Alfred, Catwoman, Mr. Freeze, Veil, Poison Ivy and more get up to when snow brings Gotham City to a standstill!

Ryan: Like with all anthologies, I’m expecting a wide range of quality in this issue and can’t imagine I’ll be wrong in doing so. However, it does have work by the super awesome Chris Samnee and the first comics writing for Ivory Madison since Huntress: Year One. Those aspects alone are worth the cost of the issue.


BATMAN: STREETS OF GOTHAM #7
Written by Paul Dini and Marc Andreyko
Art by Dustin Nguyen and Cliff Richards

Paul Dini returns to STREETS OF GOTHAM as Batman and Robin uncover a sinister plot involving dozens of Gotham City’s young runaways. Is Arkham Asylum escapee Humpty Dumpty at the center of the scheme – or is he just the tip of an even more dangerous iceberg? Guest-starring Abuse and Zsasz!

And in the Manhunter co-feature, now that Kate has finally tracked down Two-Face, she's ready to confront him for the hit he ordered on Gotham’s former D.A. But their confrontation is not going to go the way she planned!

Ryan: Chris Yost did a heck of a job on his fill-in issues, giving this title a lot of momentum heading into Paul Dini’s return. I’m glad that we’ll be seeing more of Zsasz since Dini has done a great job of bringing the character back to the limelight. In the backup, I’m super pumped that Manhunter will be finally confronting Two-Face, though I’m disappointed to see that the story is going to have another artist change. Jeremy Haun was doing a superb job, so Cliff Richards has big shoes to fill.

Kirk: Looking forward to Dini's return.  Yost did an admirable job on what was probably short notice, but it really felt like filler since it lacked any progression of the Dini plotlines.  Add in the fact it's such a new title, it really killed any momentum the title had.  Let's hope we can get back on track here.


CAPTAIN AMERICA: REBORN #5
Written by Ed Brubaker
Art by Bryan Hitch

Steve Rogers is back...or is he? The Avengers try to rescue their best and brightest from the Red Skull's darkest designs.

Ryan: There really isn’t much mystery left in this solicitation since Marvel has released multiple books this month that have spoiled Steve’s return. However, the idea of the Avengers going toe-to-toe with Red Skull’s forces to save Steve will be just as good even if the end result has been spoiled.





DAREDEVIL #503
Written by Andy Diggle
Art by Roberto De La Torre

It’s blood, sweat, and brutal truths as the new creative team of Andy Diggle (THUNDERBOLTS) and Roberto De La Torre (IRON MAN) continue their first breathtaking story arc! While the Kingpin secretly builds his power base, Daredevil and Master Izo collide violently over the future of the guild of assassins known as The Hand, and Foggy fears the Matt Murdock he once knew may be gone for good.

Kirk: Diggle is doing some great work here and has been every bit as good as he predecessors.  Considering those writers were Brian Bendis, Ed Brubaker and Kevin Smith, that's some high praise.  Can't wait for this one.


DARK AVENGERS #12
Written by Brian Bendis
Art by Mike Deodato

The explosive smash hit series from Brian Bendis and Mike Deodato continues!! The Dark Avengers are pitted against a foe they cannot defeat: A man with the power over every molecule in the world! Norman can't talk his way out of this one as the world gets turned upside down and no joke...someone dies. For reelz!!



Kirk: Just going through the motions on this book lately.  From what I understand, Marvel sent out notice this was ending post-Siege.  Maybe Bendis will migrate to a Heroes for Hire book with Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Jessica Jones and few other pet characters to fill the gap. Oh, and fire the man that wrote this solicit.  For reelz!!




ELEPHANTMEN #23
Written by Richard Starkings
Art by Andre Szymanowicz

Why has Simm lured Vanity to Horn Tower? What deadly game is the MAPPO sleeper cell playing with Information Agents Ebony Hide and Hip Flask?

Ryan: The bulk of 2009 has been spent on the Dangerous Liaisons storyline that concludes this week with what sounds to be a very thrilling issue. Elephantmen has had nothing but can’t miss issues all year, so its all but certain that this issue will be too.





GI JOE #13
Written by Chuck Dixon
Art by Robert Atkins

This month only, G.I. Joe is shipping two issues two weeks apart! Artist Robert Atkins returns to the book to begin an all-new storyline where Tripwire joins the team. But his first mission may be his last, as Tripwire and Beachhead are trapped inside an ancient Mixtec ruin with an army of narco-terrorists hunting for them.

Ryan: The only thing you need to know about this issue is the fact that artist Robert Atkins is returning to the series, which should have an immediate impact on the quality of this book. Atkins was firing on all cylinders when he left the title, so I’m expecting big things now that he’s back!


GREEN LANTERN CORPS #43
Written by Peter Tomasi
Art by Pat Gleason

Red rain falls! As the Black Lanterns continue their reign of terror and chaos on Oa, things go from bad to worse when a horrible loss for the Green Lantern Corps results in Guy Gardner becoming so enraged that he becomes a Red Lantern! And hell breaks loose as the Central Power Battery faces an attack from the newly arrived Black Lantern Corphans!

Ryan: Last issue ended with the HUGE shocker of Kyle Rayner’s death, which leads into this issue as Guy Gardner becomes a Red Lantern. This could be one of the most intense and important points in Blackest Night, provided that the switch isn’t a momentary swerve. If I had to place a bet, though, I’d say that Gardner only lasts a few issues (if that) as a Red Lantern before going back to Team Green.

Kirk: Issue of the week.  I can't imagine anything topping it and previews of it look amazing.  I'm willing to give it pick of the week based on those 4 pages alone.  


HULK #18
Written by Jeph Loeb
Art by Whilce Portacio

For years now Leonard Samson has been part of the Marvel Universe. Both ally and enemy with the Hulk, the shocking turn of events in HULK #600 has introduced a far more deadly SAMSON. What has happened to DOC SAMSON and whose side is he on? Join Jeph Loeb and superstar artist WHILCE PORTACIO returning to Marvel for this special prologue issue to FALL OF THE HULKS where more secrets will be revealed!

Ryan: Despite all of my reservations about the Red Hulk and Red She-Hulk, as well as Jeph Loeb’s Marvel books (I still love his DC work), I’m intrigued enough by this Fall of the Hulks business to pick up this important prelude chapter. Of course, I’m keeping my expectations low, but this could be the issue that decides whether or not I’m sticking around for the event.


MIGHTY AVENGERS #32
Written by Dan Slott
Art by Khoi Pham

The throwdown you've been waiting for--and that Loki, God of Mischief--has been scheming towards: THE MIGHTY AVENGERS versus THE DARK AVENGERS! Hank Pym's team has tried their best to be a shining light in the world of Dark Reign but this might be the time that light gets snuffed out! Special appearance by the MIGHTY THOR!

Ryan: This should be an exciting action-packed issue thanks to the battle between the two Avengers teams. I’m more interested, though, in the explanation of why Loki impersonated Scarlet Witch and, more importantly, what the current fate of the real Scarlet Witch is. Hopefully those stories will be jumpstarted here!


OUTSIDERS #25
Written by Peter Tomasi
Art by Fernando Pasarin

The Outsiders’ loved ones are returning from the grave in this BLACKEST NIGHT tie-in, and the stirring turn of events forces the team to make some difficult choices as they struggle to survive the night and stop the Black Lanterns. But the battle will be a dangerous one, and the repercussions of this issue will be felt throughout the next year!

Ryan: Last issue of Outsiders was an entertaining tie-in to Blackest Night, which is a big reason why I’m coming back on board for this week’s issue. More importantly, though I’ll be picking this one up as a precursor to next month’s debut of Dan Didio as the series writer as it sounds like the major events of this issue will jumpstart that run.



POWER GIRL #7
Written by Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray
Art by Amanda Conner

A blast from the past! The alien Vartox has come to Earth to claim a wife—and her name is Power Girl! PG may have wanted a boyfriend, but not quite like this! The fan-favorite team of Palmiotti, Gray and Conner craft another winner!

Ryan: I actually had to look up Vartox when I first read this solicitation. It sounds like he has only made a few appearances since Crisis on Infinite Earths, before which he was a respected equal of Superman’s. It’ll be interesting to see if the creative team picks up on that or the later, lesser-powered version of the character. Either way, I suspect we are in for more of this title’s quirky fun and superb art from the ever-amazing Amanda Conner.


REALM OF KINGS: INHUMANS #2
Written by Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning
Art by Pablo Raimondi

Guest starring the Mighty Avengers! It’s more courtly intrigue and crushing cosmic action as Attilan faces threats from within and without! The Alpha Primitives revolt! Devos the Destroyer attacks from the heavens! The Inhuman Royal Family struggles to maintain control, but can they maintain their authority if they don't even trust each other? And how will the arrival of Quicksilver and the Mighty Avengers upset the balance of power?

Kirk: I'm really wondering what's going on in this issue and why the Mighty Avengers showed up.  Will it end up tying into the main Mighty Avengers series, which recently saw Quicksilver lying to the Inhumans and clearing himself of the things he did with the Terrigen Mists by telling them he was a Skrull?  Is it something new?  Really enjoyed the last issue of this, so hoping it doesn't get too cluttered with the Mighty Avengers guest-appearance.


SPIDER-MAN: THE CLONE SAGA #4
Written by Tom DeFalco & Howard Mackie
Art by Todd Nauck

Peter Parker’s got a case of the clones…and the only man with the cure is Doctor Octopus! But if the nefarious Kaine has his way, this is one check up neither will survive!

Kirk: I'm sort of losing interest in this series.  It's not nearly as bad as expected, but it hasn't really been great either.  I just end up comparing it to the original and picking out/trying to figure out the differences in the story.  So far, nothing really new has happened that would warrant the "new" version of this.  The random time skips with little explanation is annoying, too.




SUPERGIRL #48
Written by Sterling Gates
Art by Matt Camp

Uh-oh! The Silver Banshee is back in Metropolis! This time she’s after an artifact that could finally break her family’s eternal curse. When Inspector Mike Henderson gets involved, Supergirl is pulled into the conflict! Meanwhile, Lana Lang’s mysterious condition takes a turn for the worse. Will the Girl of Steel be able to save her only two human friends?

Ryan: I find it hard to believe that Inspector Mike Henderson and Lana Lang are Supergirl’s only human friends. In fact, having read more than a few DC comics over the last few years, I know for a fact that she has a lot of human friends and seems to be quite popular amongst the teen heroes sect. I know I’m just nitpicking the over-dramatics here, but it does seem a bit silly, doesn’t it?


X-FORCE #22
Written by Chris Yost & Craig Kyle
Art by Clayton Crain

The unthinkable happens as NECROSHA continues! Selene's actions on Genosha have changed everything, and while the X-Men were desperate to save their species...this isn't what they had in mind. But as the siege by dead mutants continues, things get even deadlier with the arrival of Selene's very much ALIVE Inner Circle at the X-Men's headquarters. With Eli Bard in tow, WITHER, MORTIS, SENYAKA and BLINK have come for one thing, and anyone who gets in their way will die. PART THREE (of SIX) PLUS - A CABLE BACKUP STORY!

Kirk: Really hope I can actually tell what's going on in this issue.  The art was so dark and muddied last issue that I could barely tell who was who.  It's also been just a series of different fight sequences with no real plot progression.  Might read better as a trade, but Necrosha's been a bit disappointing so far.


X-MEN: LEGACY #230
Written by Mike Carey and Duane Swierczynski
Art by Daniel Acuna

It’s Rogue and Trance vs. Emplate — a villain who has single-handedly taken down teams of X-Men A-Listers. Do they stand a chance? We sure hope so as X-MEN LEGACY #231 is on sale two weeks later! Don't miss the killer climax to the huge first arc of the new direction on X-MEN LEGACY! Plus, a Cable backstory!

Ryan: Despite a strong start, the lack of plot movement and the poor showing from Daniel Acuna has really dragged this storyline through the mud. I love the new direction of this series in theory, but this arc has really bombed. Mike Carey’s strong take on Rogue is really the only thing that has kept this series alive for me. I’ll be glad when this arc ends and, hopefully, some new life can be breathed into this series.


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16 comments:

Anonymous said...

"Of course, I’m keeping my expectations low, but this could be the issue that decides whether or not I’m sticking around for the event."

You are reading the wrong Hulk book to base that decision on.

Andrenn said...

really excited about Dini's return to streets of Gotham and am hopeful about Mighty Avengers this month.

Sadly my most anticipated comic of the month, Angelus #1, has seemingly been pushed back a week.

Primewax said...

Nothing this week interests me other than GLC #43, which I've been waiting on ever since I saw that cover.

TheGoose said...

I first saw Vartox when he showed up and hugged Lana Lang in Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow.

btownlegend said...

X-men A-listers? Tmz for mutants soon.

Ethereal said...

Batman and GLC from DC. If this issue of Streets of Gotham is good, I'll start picking it up. Promise.

CA: Reborn, and Daredevil from Marvel.

Flip The Page said...

POWER GIRL! took it long enough to come out! Been seriously missing my pointless fun!

Also ROK: Inhumans fills in the before of the Mighty Avengers meeting with the Inhumans according to the preview

Anonymous said...

Batman, 80-Page Giant Batman, Streets Of Gotham and GLC for me! GLC in particular looks amazing. Blackest Night, I love you! Definitely the kick in the ass DC needed!

Anonymous said...

I love how Power Girl #7 is basically a direct copy of the cover on the Vartox wiki page (Superman #281).....

I mean, i understand homaging covers, but that's basically a direct bare bones copy that isn't particularly interesting and will only make it feel cheap when people who read the comic look up Vartox on wikipedia and realize it.

JonesHawkeye said...

Really, it's almost hard to get excited about this weeks batch of comics (even though I'm buying a bunch of them). Here's what I'm getting in order that I'm looking forward to them.

1. Green Lantern Corps # 43 - Hard not to be excited about this issue after Kyle's death last issue. This issue's ranking is miles ahead of the rest of this week's list.

2. X-Force # 22 - Necrosha has been pretty good so far, but not nearly as good as Blackest Night; despite the fact that dead mutants outnumber dead Titans & JLAers by a 4 to 1 ratio.

3. Last Resort # 5
4. Locke & Key: Crown Of Shadows # 2

5. Batman 80 Page Giant - wasn't particularly very interested in this issue until we got sixteen inches of snow last week. Now all of a sudden it's kind of relevant and timely.

6. Captain America: Reborn # 5 - would probably be more excited about this issue if the good Captain hadn't already appeared in three different comics this month.

7. Complete Alice In Wonderland # 1 - I'm a sucker for anything involving Wonderland or fairy tales.

8. Escape From Wonderland # 3
9. Grimm Fairy Tales Holiday Special '09 - See?

10. Outsiders # 25 - This will be the best out of the three non-GLC Blackest Night tie-ins this week. And this is the only title of the three that I might actually buy again next month.

11. Amazing Spider-Man # 615 - I was really enjoying ASM since the relaunch. I thought that the classic villains were going to make ASM even better than it had been. Unfortunately, I couldn't have been more wrong. What the hell happened here?!?

12. Superman / Batman # 67 - Bizarro talk not make my head unexplode.

13. JLA # 40 - DC's super-group continues to super-suck. The only saving grace of the last issue was Dr. Light licking the salty remains of Firestorm's girlfriend, and that was one single page. The rest of it was a trainwreck. Not expecting much better here.

Matt Ampersand said...

Ryan, are you seriously buying (Red) Hulk? You should know better than that. Go buy X-Factor instead!

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