Saturday, November 13, 2010

Comic Book Review Power Rankings for 11/10/10

It’s late, but it counts! It’s this week’s Comic Book Review Power Rankings! I’ve got to be up early for a comic book convention (Iowa-Con in Altoona, IA) and we’ve got a hardcore fight for the Book of the Week, so let’s not waste anymore time, alright? Hit the jump to see this week’s reviews!

For the uninitiated, the Comic Book Review Power Rankings is a countdown from worst-to-best of my weekly comic book haul. Before reading the issues, I preRank them based on the creative team, previous issues, solicitations, and gut instinct. The final Ranking number is based upon how the issues actually turned out. I attempt to keep everything as spoiler free as possible, but keep in mind that there may be the occasional minor spoiler that I overlook. As always, I can be reached via responses to this thread or at

Written by Grant Morrison
Art by Lee Garbett, Pere Perez, Alejandro Sicat, Walden Wong, and Guy Major
Letters by Jared K. Fletcher
Cover by Andy Kubert
preRanking: 12

• In the conclusion to Return of Bruce Wayne, the time-displaced Batman is chased by Darkseid’s “trap” to the end of the universe, which sets forth an unnecessarily complicated plot that sets up Batman’s return in Batman and Robin #16.
Grant Morrison really runs wild with some of his ideas here, doesn’t he? The problem is that his ideas are never fully developed, causing the specifics of the plot to fall apart as it rushes through to a conclusion. With another issue, he could tighten things up quite a bit and put together a successful end to the story.
• Also, call me a purist, but “killer ideas” (no, seriously, the villain is an idea that can kill) and neurotic robots packaging all of history before the end of time doesn’t exactly work well with a street-level hero like Batman.
• I know I’m going to get yelled at for this, but most of the dialogue in this issue is just gibberish. There is enough that works to make the story readable, but when you really get down to it, the writing in this issue is mostly nonsense.
• And before anyone flips out, yes, I “get it.” I get what Morrison is going for. I even get the meta-fictional symbolism of it all. That doesn’t change the fact that it wasn’t well-written.
• The saving grace, or as much of a saving grace is possible with this issue, is the art from Lee Garbett and Pere Perez, who bring the same level of quality to this issue that they did to their run on Batgirl.
• Most of the heavy-hitters of the DC Universe show up in this issue and they all look great thanks to superb designs with strong expressions. This issue shows that both main artists are capable of taking on any book DC throws at them (and I hope they throw them something soon!).
• Interestingly enough, the weirder the story gets, the better the art looks. Garbett and Perez do a solid job of creating interesting and exciting visuals to go with the storytelling mush.

Verdict: Byrne It. I really hate to Rank a book this low and give out this harsh of a verdict when the art is so strong, but in the end, the abysmal writing simply overwhelms it. Morrison goes off on a wild tangent here, but simply outpaces himself, delivering underdeveloped ideas wrapped in shoddy dialogue. With more time and stronger focus, I think the concepts here could actually work and work extremely well—which is the same argument I had for Final Crisis (though, in his defense here, he doesn’t include any unnecessary plot elements like he did in Final Crisis, which prevented him from tightening up the story). This issue is about ideas that kill and, unfortunately, that is exactly what happened to this issue.

Written by John Jackson Miller
Art by Federico Dallocchio and Michael Atiyeh
Letters by Michael Heisler
Cover by Joe Quinones
preRanking: 11

• Following the massive amount of destruction wrought last issue, young Jedi Kerra Holt struggles to rally local leader and former Jedi Gorlan Palladane against the Sith Lord controlling his planet, only to be caught in a much more sinister battle.
• In the big picture, I really like this issue. There is some great complexity in the war at large and I think there is a lot of potential for Kerra, but the thin plot does it no favors.
• The resolve of Kerra and Sith Lord Dalman’s arrogance make them great characters, but they are tremendously one-note. Every character beyond them is a dull cookie-cutter archetype.
• I went through multiple readings of this issue before reviewing it because I wanted to find more that I could grip onto. I want to like it because it has so much potential, but John Jackson Miller just isn’t bringing enough to the table.
• The art in this issue is frighteningly uneven, with some of the worst consistency issues that you’ll see in any comic this week.
• Some pages are full of detail and look fantastic, but the vast majority are so lacking in detail and depth that they look completely unfinished.
• While there are definitely issues with Federico Dallacchio’s linework, Michael Atiyeh’s colors are to blame as well. His coloring is too flat and dull, giving everything a tremendously lifeless look.

Verdict: Byrne It. With Star Wars: Legacy all but ended (we still have the upcoming miniseries), I was really hoping that this series could fill that space on my pull list, but I think that I’m done. There is so much potential in the characters and concepts here, but it ultimately misses the mark on too many occasions to be considered a success. I might be persuaded to give this series one more shot, but if I get another issue like this, I’m moving on.

Written by Peter Tomasi
Art by Fernando Pasarin, Cam Smity, Randy Mayor, and Gabe Eltaeb
Letters by Steve Wands
Cover by Rodolfo Migliari
preRanking: 07

• In this week’s Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors, lead character Guy Gardner and his band of compatriots stop off in Daxam to look for Sodam Yat, who is taking his own strange journey.
• This issue is very strange in terms of its plotting. We get a lot of information, but it feels like a story between stories—a strange transition issue that will definitely read better in trade than as a single issue.
• I find Sodam Yat’s “cult” to be really interesting and a cool use of the Daxamites, but this seems really out of character for Sodam.
• Despite some strong interplay between Guy Gardner and Bleez, I really wasn’t impressed with how Peter Tomasi handles the characters here. These are his marquee stars that he has done some amazing work with, but there isn’t a lot of fitting personality in the dialogue. It’s surprisingly shallow.
• I’m having a hard time taking the villain of this story seriously because he is still so abstract. I don’t want the mysteries spoiled, but I need more than we are getting in this issue. Again, this could be because of the transitional tone of this issue, but I feel like I’m left hanging here.
• The best and worst of this issue is how full the panels are—thee is a great amount of detail, but the art also has a tendency to get too busy at time, making it hard to place exactly what you should be looking at.
• There are also notable design inconsistencies in the character’s facial features, especially Arisia’s shifting nose and cheekbones.
• I do really like how Fernando Pasarin backs up to use larger panels when the Lanterns use their Power Rings. This emphasizes the power of the rings in comparison to the wielders. It’s a simple technique with very cool results.

Verdict: Check It. This issue squeaks by with a Check It verdict, but just barely. If you take a giant step back and start to see the forest from the trees, this issue has a lot going for it as the story begins to transition into its next phase. When you get down to the issue itself though, there are plotting and pacing issues that are hard to get past, especially with surprisingly weak dialogue and an inconsistent art effort. It’s enjoyable enough, but the issues aren’t easy to overlook.

09. THOR #617
Written by Matt Fraction
Art by Pasqual Ferry and Matt Hollingsworth
Letters by John Workman
Cover by Pasqual Ferry and Matt Hollingsworth
preRanking: 05

• In this week’s Thor, the titular Thunder God tracks down the reincarnated Loki, while the threat of the World-Eaters gets even more serious than before.
• I really like the fun and playful take on the young reincarnated Loki. It’s nice to see the mischief and chaos coming to the forefront rather than the sadistic and evil. It’s fun to see him hustling people on the street.
• The threat of the World-Eaters needs more emphasis. With the majority of the characters blowing it off and Matt Fraction still dealing with them in a mostly abstract manner, it’s hard to see them as credible. However, given the way this issue ends, I think that will change next issue.
• I really dig how Fraction bookends the issue with the more unpredictable World-Eaters bits, using the majority of the issue to focus on the more predictable Thor/Loki relationship. That’s an interesting way to plot out the issue.
• Fraction is doing a great job of dealing with the big picture, but he needs to ground the story a bit more. I want to see more meat to all aspects of this story.
• While I did enjoy the art, I know that Pasqual Ferry can do much, much better work than we are seeing here.
• His designs are fantastic, especially with the creepy troll dudes. The problem is that he isn’t putting enough depth on the characters, making the awesome designs look flat and lifeless.
• There is a lot of craziness going on in the backgrounds of the panels and it would be interesting to see if these came from Ferry’s lines or if it is something that was added by colorist Matt Hollingsworth.

Verdict: Check It. This is another squeaker. It seems like every time Fraction and Ferry take a step forward, they have to take another step back. The biggest problem lies in the fact that Fraction’s head seems to be in the clouds on this story. The big picture is well-developed, but its time to raise the stakes by closing the story in a bit. Now that we have Loki back and the threat of the World-Eaters is closer to Earth, we might just get that. I certainly hope so as I’d love to see what this creative team is capable of once they really get going.

Written by Gail Simone
Art by Alvin Lee, Adriana Melo, Jack Purcell, JP Mayer, and Nei Ruffino
Letters by Swands
Cover by Alina Urusov
preRanking: 06

• In the conclusion to this short Birds of Prey arc, Huntress and Zinda track Black Canary to Bangkok, where White Canary is forcing Dinah into a battle to the death with Lady Shiva.
• Unless you are really into the battle with White Canary, it’s a little hard to get fully invested in this story. Since she hasn’t been built up all that well (too much mystery for her own good and too little payoff when her identity was revealed), a lot of readers may be frustrated.
• That being said, this issue is a great exploration of the relationship between the Birds, especially the strong bond between Huntress and Black Canary. That bond runs deep and this issue taps into that really well.
• Where Gail Simone really shines is how fantastically complex Huntress is here. Simone always writes her well, but this is the best the character has been written since Ivory Madison’s brilliant Huntress: Year One (if you’ve never read that, you absolutely need to as soon as possible).
• In terms of art, the normally capable Alvin Lee and Adriana Melo don’t exactly put their best feet forward. It’s not bad per se, but its not what these artists are capable of.
• It doesn’t help that Lee and Melo’s styles clash here, making the jumps between artists very jarring and very disruptive to the flow of the story.
• I’m not sure which artist drew the middle section of this story (the feast), but those are some of the weirdest lips I have ever seen.
• On the flipside, the action sequences in this issue are spectacular. I love the energy and impact once things start picking up. Seeing Huntress and Shiva duke it out in such a spectacular fashion goes a long way to making up for some of the artistic shortcomings.

Verdict: Buy It. I was really on the fence about assigning this book this strong of a verdict given some of the flaws in the art and some issues with the development of the plot, but the strength of Gail Simone’s Huntress and the fun action sequences won out. The entire White Canary epic has been weaker than could be expected based upon Simone’s recent output on Secret Six and her fantastic history with this series, so I’m hoping this series can turn a corner back towards Must Read territory after this issue.

Written by Tim Seeley
Art by Tim Seeley, Victor Olazaba, and Val Staples
Letters by Simon Bowland
Cover by Salva Espin and Guru eFX
preRanking: 09

• The unlikely duo of Eric O’Grady and Hank Pym find themselves in an unlikely team-up this week when AIM sets its sights on yet another benevolent invention of Pym’s that could be turned into a super-weapon of mass destruction.
• This issue is a ton of fun and that success rests solely on the fact that Tim Seeley has a fantastic understanding of both Ant-Man and Wasp and puts them in a Silver Age-y plot that plays with the differences between the two.
• I’m glad to see that Seeley doesn’t shy away from references to the awesome Irredeemable Ant-Man series by Robert Kirkman and Phil Hester. Black Fox bringing Ant-Man’s Wii back to him was priceless.
• Despite only having a handful of pages, the Avengers Academy kids—especially Veil and Finesse—have a great appearance in this issue. Seeley’s sense of humor is just priceless.
• The art, also from Seeley, is strong and clean with great designs. He seems perfectly at home with these characters.
• I’m interested in the layout choices that Seeley makes. The majority of this issue follows a strict grid system, with only a few places where this breaks down into overlapping panels. I’m not seeing any story reason behind these. Since they are distracting, I’m curious about why this choice was made.
• The only character I didn’t dig as much is Seeley’s Pym. He’s dull and lifeless, which does fit the character a bit, but I think it goes a bit to far, making the character painfully stiff compared to the others.

Verdict: Buy It. Comic book readers are constantly complaining about comics not being fun anymore, but then often overlook comics like this issue that are precisely that. Seeley’s playful tone and great character work make this a highly enjoyable issue that has a decidedly different feel than any other book that Marvel is currently publishing. Its old-school superheroics with a new-school attitude presented through fine craftsmanship. While not quite jumping into Must Read territory, I still highly recommend it.

Written by Paul Cornell
Art by Jimmy Broxton and Guy Major
Letters by Swands
Cover by Yanick Paquette, Michael Lacombe, and Nathan Fairbairn
preRanking: 04

• In another done-in-one story for Knight and Squire, we see a bit of their sleepy hometown before the duo takes on a secret society of villainous Morris Men.
• Did you like the first issue of Knight and Squire? Then you’ll love this issue. Did you hate the first issue? Then you’ll probably hate this issue even more. There is going to be very little middle ground with this series.
Paul Cornell does absolutely nothing to hide how British this issue, which makes it incredibly refreshing and unique. Everything from the language to the plot points to even the plot structure sets it apart from the vast majority of American books. I love that.
• The interplay between Knight and Squire is just fantastic. Cornell picks up the breadcrumbs left to him by Grant Morrison and runs with the concepts. The sheer amount of personality in every page of this book is just unreal.
• What’s more impressive is how well Cornell builds the world around the characters without being forceful. There is nothing unnatural about how the issue rolls out. It’s just brilliant storytelling.
• Artist Jimmy Broxton has a great amount of chemistry with Cornell as the art works perfectly in synch with the tone and pacing of the script. I really hope we see more from this creative duo after this series has finished.
• The over-the-top designs are a lot of fun, especially when we see Knight’s “Castle” (his Batcave). There is a great throwback to the 1966 Batman TV show that I’m digging quite a bit.
• There isn’t a ton of action, but the joy and light tone of the art keeps things fresh despite this. It’s really impossible to get bored looking at these pages.

Verdict: Must Read. It pains me to rank this book at #6 when it’s definitely of a Book of the Week caliber. That just shows how strong this week really was for comics. There aren’t many major flaws with the craftsmanship or the entertainment value of this comic. The lack of action may put some readers off, but the real stumbling block, and the main reason this didn’t rank higher, is accessibility. This is definitely a niche comic for a niche audience, meaning that the average reader of the Rankings may not be able to get full invested into the comic. On one hand, I applaud Cornell and company for not even flinching with this book, but on the other hand, I do have to note how easily they dismiss a large potential audience that would love to jump onto the K&S bandwagon from Morrison’s work. Still, if this is your thing, you’ll freakin’ love this book and you’ll wish it were an ongoing series (I know I do).

Written by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning
Art by Miguel Sepulveda and Jay David Ramos
Letters by Joe Caramagna
Cover by Aleksi Briclot
preRanking: 02

• In the “conclusion” to a multi-year, multi-title space epic that started way back in 2006 with the original Annihilation, Thanos shows his true genius while two of my favorite characters appear to make the ultimate sacrifice.
• It is almost impossible to talk about this comic without spoiling anything, so I’m going to walk on eggshells. That may mean a less-than-satisfying review and, for that, I apologize.
• This is a great end to a great story. The pacing in the final moments towards the shocking ending is simply superb. Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning take years worth of buildup and let it boil over in an ending that is as simple as it is clever.
• This issue features, quite possibly, the best ever representation of Thanos that I’ve ever read. Everything we know about Thanos is on full display here—his cunning, his power, his passion, and his neuroses. This is a mad god set loose in a mad universe with brilliant results.
• The end is a huge shocker; I did not see it coming at all, but that doesn’t take away from its effectiveness. DnA absolutely pull the rug out from readers on this one while still setting it up for future stories.
• I really wish that Jay David Ramos would go back and recolor issues #1 through 5 of this series, because it took him until now to color Miguel Sepulveda’s art in a way that doesn’t detract from the great details, huge impact, and strong designs. Sepulveda is as strong as ever, but it took until now for Ramos to really step itu p.
• This issue looks completely epic. From Galactus in the mdst of a space battle to the statue of the fallen heroes, everything in this issue is huge. It’s amazing how much gravitas that Sepulveda can bring to this story.

Verdict: Must Read. For patient fans that have followed Marvel’s cosmic books from page one of the epic Annihilation miniseries way back in 2006 until now, this is the perfect ending to one of the most complex and satisfying epics that Marvel has ever produced. Although Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning jumped in after that initial miniseries, they piloted these characters through twist and turn through hundreds of pages spanning multiple titles and then BAM, they slap the readers in the fact with a shock ending that reaches all the way back to those opening pages of Annihilation. It’s heartbreaking and powerful; even if I’m totally not okay with the fact that we readers are left with our jaws on the floor wondering what happened to two of our favorite heroes (including my personal favorite Marvel character). There are still issues with the art that have plagued this miniseries from day one and there is a lot that is glossed over to reach the shocks, but this is still an amazing comic that absolutely needs to be part of your collection.

04. BATGIRL #15
Written by Bryan Q. Miller
Art by Dustin Nguyen, Derek Fridolfs, and Guy Major
Letters by Sal Cipriano
Covers by Dustin Nguyen
preRanking: 03

• In Dustin Nguyen’s debut as regular artist, Batgirl tries to save a man on campus from mysterious attackers, only to find herself framed for murder.
• This issue has personality up the wazoo—as usual. Every line is full of personality, especially the sequence between Stephanie and her mom. This series has been known for its entertaining charm, but this scene shows it still has a lot of heart too.
• Given how complex and convoluted most of the Bat-franchise has been, I’m glad to see that this issue is so clean and straightforward in its storytelling. It’s very refreshing.
• Kudos to Bryan Q. Miller for continuing to develop Stephanie’s life outside of being a hero. You really cannot deny the effect of a strong supporting cast and a well-developed secret identity. For a character with as rich a back-story as Stephanie, this is all the more important.
• Dustin Nguyen’s debut follows suit with his recent work on other Bat-related titles in terms of quality in all aspects of his art.
• The opening pages featuring Nguyen’s “Lil’ Gotham” characters were a lot of fun. We really need to see more of these designs elsewhere.
• Nguyen’s art is incredibly clean and expressive, which makes it a good fit for this series. It’s nice to see him take on a slightly lighter fare than we’ve seen him on lately.
• I love the range that Nguyen shows between his water-color-y cover to the Lil’ Gotham opening to the style used on the interior—all different styles, all with the same impressive results.

Verdict: Must Read. I really hate to see Lee Garbett leaving this title because he had amazing chemistry with writer Bryan Q. Miller and the two did such an impressive job of bringing the adventures of Stephanie Brown to life, but it’s hard to be upset when his replacement is the always-impressive Dustin Nguyen. Nguyen and Miller make an excellent team here and continue the winning ways for this insanely charming and addictive series. Another month, another big win for Batgirl—the best superhero book that you probably aren’t reading.

03. SHE-HULKS #1
Written by Harrison Wilcox
Art by Ryan Stegman, Michael Babinski, and Guru eFX
Letters by Ed Dukeshire
Cover by Ed McGuiness and Morry Hollowell
preRanking: 08

• In the debut of She-Hulks, the titular heroines (Savage and…umm…Regular?) track down members of the villainous Intelligencia as they start new lives in New York City.
• This issue is over-the-top, a tad ridiculous at times, and amazingly entertaining. If you are looking for a fun superhero yarn that features lots of punching and great personality, you must own this book.
• While I’m not sure how she was presented in other comics, I was really impressed with Harrison Wilcox’s take on Lyra, the Savage She-Hulk, is really charming. She’s incredibly charming with a fun naïveté that balances well against her thirst for action. I’m instantly reminded of early Spider-Man stories or, for a more contemporary example, the brilliance of the Jaime Reyes Blue Beetle series.
• I really dig the fact that Wilcox seems to be having a blast writing this book. Between the Mean Girls-esque high school scenes to the hilariously excessive villains and everything in between, Wilcox brings the fun.
• Not surprisingly, Ryan Stegman steals the show. I knew that he would, but I didn’t expect the art to be this great. This is leaps and bounds ahead of anything Stegman has produced previously. This is a career making issue.
• In his recent Incredible Hulk back-up stories, I commented on how much improvement Stegman has shown in his expressions. He continues that trend here, reaching ludicrous levels of awesome. I’m talking Amanda Conner-level facial expressions (regular readers of the Rankings will understand how strong of a compliment that is).
• I can honestly say that I never thought I would compliment the way an artist draws the way bikini models are thrown about by an explosion or how great a Zac Efron look-a-like is drawn, but this issue forces me to.
• I’ve been focusing a lot on page layouts lately and the importance of using the tried-and-true conventional grid. This issue is a prime example of how this classic is still incredibly viable. This issue features amazing storytelling based upon standard grids and only breaks them once or twice. This gives those moments a tremendous amount of impact and movement. Kudos to Stegman for thoughtful storytelling in this regard.

Verdict: Must Read. I can honestly say that I never thought a She-Hulk comic could make such a strong case for being purchased, let alone for being Book of the Week. While this issue does fall just short—and I’m taking millimeters here—it is certainly worth of the honor. Harrison Wilcox puts together an insanely entertaining storyline featuring some of the most intriguing characters of the week, but it is the work of Ryan Stegman that launches this book to another level I’ve been singing the praises of Stegman for years, but his work here is above and beyond anything I’ve seen from him before. In a few years when he is headlining the next Bendis-written mega-event, you can look back at this issue as the reason he was tapped for that project. This is a superstar making performance and a comic you seriously cannot do without.

02. RED ROBIN #17
Written by Fabian Nicieza
Art by Marcus To, Ray McCarthy, and Guy Major
Letters by Sal Cipriano
Cover by Marcus To, Ray McCarthy, and Brian Buccellato
preRanking: 01

• In a densely packed issue, we learn the whereabouts of Cassandra Cain, see the return of Lynx, and Red Robin’s first encounter with Bruce Wayne after his return has been revealed.
• It is so great to see Cassandra Cain back and in action, especially in a heroic fashion. I also love the foreshadowing for what I’m assuming will be her debut as Hong Kong’s Bat-themed hero in a future issue of Batman Incorporated.
• There are few scenes in a superhero comic that can be as powerful as the interaction between Tim Drake and Bruce Wayne. We saw it in Identity Crisis, we saw it in a brilliant Father’s Day issue of Robin, and we see it again here. You get Bruce’s acknowledgment of Tim’s skills and their similarities, but more importantly you get the brilliantly developed father-and-son relationship.
• The interaction between Lynx and Red Robin is great and comes together naturally. There are shades of the Catwoman/Batman relationship, which will surprise absolutely no one, but with fun character-specific twists. I really look forward to seeing how this plays out and I hope that Fabian Nicieza plays it against Tim’s other love interests that are all always in a state of flux—Stephanie, Wonder Girl, Zoanne, and, most recently, Tam Fox.
• There is no denying after this issue that no one writes Tim Drake better than Nicieza. He’s complex, bold, and undeniably teenaged with a perfectly formed outlook. It’s absolute gold.
• I really can’t think of anything bad to say about the art from Marcus To, Ray McCarthy, and Guy Major. Those guys friggin’ nailed it.
• The scene with Lynx is so good, in fact, that it could’ve been done without any narration or dialogue whatsoever. This is a prime example of how body language and facial expressions are just as important to telling a good story as words.
• In terms of sheer fanboy excitement, how awesome was the opening splash featuring Cassandra Cain kicking all sorts of ass?

Verdict: Must Read. There are a lot of books this week that pulled in Must Read verdicts, but no comic fought harder for the Book of the Week ranking than this week’s Red Robin. This is a near flawless issue that delivers on an obnoxiously large number of levels. Every time I think about this comic, I find new things to love about it. The fact that this issue isn’t #1 has absolutely nothing to do with any of its own flaws and it should be noted that it was just barely nosed out of the top spot by another incredibly impressive comic. Even as I write this, I’m second guessing my choice to put this book at #2. It’s that good—nay! It’s that great!

Lead Written by Dan Slott
Lead Art by Humberto Ramos, Carlos Cuevas, and Edgar Delgado
Backup Written by Paul Tobin
Backup Art by Clayton Henry and Chris Sotomayor
Letters by Joe Caramagna
Cover by Humberto Ramos
preRanking: 10

• With the 101-issue epic Brand New Day experiment now over, Big Time starts for Spider-Man in this week’s issue, which features a team-up with the Avengers to fight Doctor Octopus, a search for a new home, and a surprising return from one of Spider-Man’s most memorable villains.
• This issue is simply epic in so many ways. There is so much packed into the lead story that, as a reviewer, I’m not even sure where to begin (note that, as of this writing, I’m planning a special Top 10 Tuesday for next week just to focus on all the awesomeness).
Dan Slott’s ability to write so many characters with so much personality is central to this issue’s success. There are literally dozens of characters popping in and all of them are written perfectly.
• I’m also impressed at how naturally the new status quo is developed through Peter looking for a new apartment. We get to see where all of the players are and how they are interacting. It’s a great move.
• Furthermore, kudos to Slott for making this such a great jumping on point for new readers. Everything you need to know is neatly displayed here in a manner that is as welcome and inviting to new readers as it is rewarding to longtime fans.
• I know that his distinctively outrageous style is pretty polarizing, but I love the work of Humberto Ramos and this issue is a great example of why he is one of my favorite artists.
• There is a brilliant and undeniable energy from Ramos that brings so much life to this issue, both in the action-packed opening pages to the extended “talking heads” sequences that follow. Just as Slott brings so much personality to the large cast of characters, Ramos brings life to their actions.
• Almost all of the pages in this issue are densely packed with lots of movement and a large number of panels, save four pages. The book opens on a splash page, followed by a spread, and the story ends with a splash. These are the only full pages in the entire issue—which makes the final splash (revealing the returning villain) all the more impactful. How is that for thoughtful storytelling?
• As a bonus, we get a great backup that re-introduces readers to Arana of the Young Allies, now taking the moniker of Spider-Girl, as she saves Spider-Man in the midst of the Doc Ock fight from the main story.
• This is a great kickstart for the upcoming Spider-Girl ongoing series from writer Paul Tobin that gives you everything you need to know about the character, plus a nice bit of validation from her namesake.
• The use of faux-Tweets in lieu of narration boxes was a fun twist, especially given how much the comic book industry has taken to Twitter. The fans and creators are crazy about it—so why not the characters?
Clayton Henry’s art in the back-up is clean and consistent with solid designs and strong storytelling. There is nothing flashy about it, but it’s extremely effective. After an oversized story by Humberto Ramos, the simple and straightforward is a welcome approach.

Verdict: Must Read. Having dropped Amazing Spider-Man a few months back and only marginally following it through other reviewers, I was completely floored by how much Dan Slott and company pack it not his incredible debut issue for the new status quo. This issue hits all the right notes in terms of craftsmanship and entertainment value in a way that should appease disillusioned Spider-Man readers while still exciting those who’ve been following Spider-Man for the last 101 Brand New Day issues (and beyond). When you add in a superb backup, this is a great jumping on point with and incredible amount of new twists and turns that shows just how exciting the future can be for Spider-Man. It’s a hard fought week, but this issue could not be denied the Book of the Week honor when it is packed to the gutters with awesome. It’s a book that will stick with and having you jacked up for more.

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Dean Trippe said...

You know I love you, dude, but that RoBW review does not sense make. Sorry it didn't work for you, tho. Blew me the eff AWAY. Couldn't believe how well Morrison had planned EVERY. FLIPPING. THING. All the threads of his Batman run, RIP, 52, Final Crisis, and notes from dozens of other Batman scribes, culminated in one perfectly executed conclusion. This was the master work. And the First Truth of Batman made my heart grow two bat-sizes too big. God I love that guy. And Batman.

Logan said...

Is this really Red Robin's first meeting with Bruce after the return? I know with all the messed up shipping it's hard to tell but I did notice Tim on the platform in the last scene from B&R 16. Great reviews BTW, keep up the great work!

Steven said...

They just paraphrased some of Starlin's old Thanos work and erased any and all character development done on the character since he stopped being a complete villian years ago.

He always used to rant and get upset at being cuckolded by Death, and he was always a deviously calculating planner.

This portrayal of Thanos was a typical comic book reversal. "No characters shall be anything more than the two dimensional plot device they started out as."

Anonymous said...

stop saying your going to get yelled at and mentioning the controversy ! you keep going on about it!

its sad .it makes you come across as desperate for attention and it makes the readers start to question your ranking .

Cael said...

Personally, I think the best part of the whole awesome Thanos Imperative, which even trumps all the many crazy, badass, hilarious, epic and/or awesome scenes in the whole series, was the small detail of a tear running down Death's (now-human) face as she leaves.

Anonymous said...

gotta agree shut up about your controversial reviews its sad

Anonymous said...

the ideas were developed since 52 seriously . I know your going to dismiss it but you arent focusing on the scale of the story

Ryan Schrodt said...

@Dean - I'll give you the events of B&R and the evebts RoBW up to this point cominbg together, but this issue, to me, feels like a wild tangent that flies in the face of what Morrison had been doing.Th e first truth was a cool moment, I'll give you that, but the rest was a mess to me.

@Logan - It isn't Tim's first encounter with Bruce since his return, but clearly the first after Batman's return became official (after the events of Road Home, Return of Bruce Wayne, and Batman & Robin). This is the first quiet moment between them since Bruce's return became known.

@Anonymous - I consider it a proactive answer to the kneejerk reaction that I always seem to get on bad Morrison reviews...that I just "don't get it." I think there is a difference between accepting and proactively responding and being "desperate." Believe me, I'd much rather everyone comment on the positive reviews I give than the negative.

Anonymous said...

You have to get over this man crush on Batgirl and Red Robin. Seriously, I love this website but your rankings must easily be the weakest based on you biased rankings. Thanos Imperative not being the top book of the week out of the books you reviewed is preposterous. RoBW #6 last? That's just crazy. I admit Morrison's faults and by now means do I think it was #1 but 12??? COme on man get a hold of your sanity and drop the bias'.

Anonymous said...

Morrison is in a weird category: superstar writers that you either really like or really hate. There isn't much in between. For the most part, it seems that what you don't like about him is the thing that most people do like about him: the big, meta ideas. I can get that. His endings always play really loose because he seems to want to write about endings in the abstract instead of just writing an ending to the story at hand. I do think they play well over time, though. I hated the ending to the Seven Soldiers series at first, but I really appreciate it now.

In the end, you're a critic and expressing your taste preferences. If they coincide with someone else's taste, then they love you. If not, they think that you just don't get it.

Anonymous said...

RoBW was quite simply the best limited of the year and some of Morrison's most interesting work ever. I felt that every line of dialogue was calculated. And we finally get conclusive connection to Hurt's comment in RIP that he is "the hole in all things". Awesome!

Anonymous said...

I've hated Grant Morrison since he lied. He said DC left a "shitty" taste in his mouth after the release of Matrix (which, in his own words, stole numerous ideas from the Invisibles) by WB.

Then he went to Marvel and revamped the X-Men for all of 50-some odd issues and turned them into a damn near incomprehensible mess that had to be fixed somehow (in spite of how great they started out being, his heart just wasn't in it).

And then instead of standing behind his own words and never working for DC again, where did he go? Surprise! And talk about incomprehensible: Batman RIP, Final Crisis, almost everything he's done for DC has been completely ridiculous and just incomprehensible for god's sake.

The best thing he's done since going back was All-Star Superman. That's it. And yes, that was great.

But Grant Morrison seems to be trying too hard to be something he's not. And that is clever.

Lucho said...

Well, I´m surprised about RoBW is last lol.

I think Morrison did not execute everything very well in 6 issues. Some ideas seem pressed hard to fit in the last episode. And I agree SCI-FI it´s not Batman´s best field.

Still some of the concepts and absolutely love for the character of Batman that Morrison shows in his writing makes me enjoy it a lot more.

This issue got me thinking and I think that´s a great thing. Even though some of it (maybe) it´s gibberish.

Anonymous said...

Wow. That ROBW review didn't match up with all the other reviews I have read of that same issue. Ryan would prefer crap comics to godly comics like Morrisons.

Matt Duarte said...

Oh hey, thanks for that incredible insight, Anonymous #14. I don't know what we would have done had you not come in here and enlightened us.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I'm actually surprised - RoBW #6 nicely wrapped up virtually every plot Morrison has had going on Batman since 52. Virtually every question has been answered. I must have read a different comic book.

Also, I'll agree with the sentiment that you need to stop touting your reviews as "controversial." It's a review. Get over yourself.

This site has really gone downhill. The lack of posts, & the Power Rankings are pretty much the same books being praised over & over again. It's also very apparent that you don't like comics that make you think - I don't think I've ever seen a thought provoking comic get a "must read" from you. Don't think I'll be coming back again.

Anonymous said...

Wow, can't wait to see you give the newest issue of "Green Arrow" a must read when that eventually comes out, too.

I won't comment on the quality of your reviews since they're simply editorials and they're supposed to be opinion-based, but I've noticed a trend with certain books always being "incredible" and certain books getting the cookie-cutter "one step forward, two steps back" description.

RAMOONA said...

emmm gotta disagree with your review . but agree with your other ones . I think the whole bias weekly crisis is bullshit but please stop with the whole controversy remarks it feels that your milking it just to gain attention and is making a lot of viewers question your integrity

Steven said...

Why can't all the "anonymous" posters just type a name instead of leaving it anonymous? Are they only capable of coming here and ranting if no one knows who they are? I seriously don't get it.

I got the Return of Bruce Wayne. I got that the art was slightly Kirby-ish, which no one mentions. I got that Hurt is supposed to be Darkseid trying to incarnate again. Got it. Liked the book a lot more than Ryan, who despite claiming he "got it", wrote a lot of stuff that genuinely makes it sound like he actually did not "get it".

But I don't get the "anonymous" slammers. If you want to say something and WILL NOT PUT A NAME, then I could care less what you have to say. No on should care what you have to say. And since you are anonymous, no one will know or care if you "don't come back again".

Matt Duarte said...

I'm pretty sure this is quite literally the first time that Ryan has ever addressed the controversy as part of the reviews (he's engaged people in comments before, but that's it), so him "touting" it all the time as some kind of plot to gain popularity is complete and utter BS.

Plus, I actually see the stats on the site, so I know for a fact that whether Ryan gives good or bad, controversial or normal reviews, the numbers stay pretty much the same.

In other words, your theory is completely and utterly baseless, based on simply the fact that you disagree with what Ryan wrote.

Max Barnard said...

@anon17 oh wow it's almost like some books stay consistently great or consistently crap what a weird thought!

@Ramoona trust me, if you see how frustrated Ryan gets with the more agressive haters you'd probably think he'd prefer no attention from them at all

Naymlap said...

I am shocked, SHOCKED, that Ryan is partial to some books and not others. It sounds like he's just a fan.
Wait, he is. He buys the books he likes, and reviews them. I can't believe that's a thing. I thought this was the point. Ryan isn't assigned books, he buys the bulk of his own books and ranks them in the order that he liked them most.
So if you don't have the same taste as him respectfully put up your own ranking or shut the [expletive] up. I remember that being what people did back when he posted on Newsarama.

Darth Vader said...

@Steven - I chose anonymous (#17) 'cause I don't have a snazzy screen name. Since that aggravated you, I've signed my work this time. Of course, you won't read this, as I've force choked the shit out of you.

The rational of it being "anonymous" & therefor not meaning anything is assinine. It's the Internet. If I sign my real name, what are you gonna do, come beat my ass? An anonymous comment doesn't invalidate the comment. It just makes you mad 'casue you can't cyber-stalk me.

Ryan Schrodt said...

Wow...a guys goes out of town and things get crazy doesn't it?

Well, as usual, thank you to everyone for taking the time to read the Rankings and post your reactions--even if you disagree with me. It doesn't surprise me that most of the posts here focus on RoBW, but I am disappointed that there were so many great comics this week that no one seems to want to talk about. Instead of focusing on what you think I'm wrong about, why not try something I like?

I apologize for being defensive and noting to controversy. As Max stated, I do get frustrated when I'm getting slammed over my opinions and told over and over that I'm wrong in quite nasty terms--something that only seems to happen on Grant Morrison comics and mostly happens from Anonymous commentors. It's frustating. Thankfully some folks like Dean are willing to "out" themselves and rational discourse happens. In case you haven't noticed, even though we disagree, I think that Dean and I have a lot of mutual respect for one another and each other's opinions.

What I don't get is why this type of reaction only happens when I trash a Morrison comic--despite the fact that I saw much worse things on a weekly basis. If it's really Morrison that gets everyone so passionate, where were you last week when I gave a very favorable review to Batman and Robin, which masterfully wrapped up years of storylines. That was a stroke of brilliance, but my praise of it seemed to go unnoticed.

As for the very personal attacks about the quality of my reviews and the quality of Weekly Crisis, I say just calm down. Just because I didn't like one comic doesn't mean our site goes to shit. This site is a passion project for us and 90% of the comics we review on this site, we pay for out of our pockets. You want to talk integrity? We have it in spades, especially for a site our size. You want to talk bias? Well, find me one reviewer that has no biases and I'll retire from reviewing on the spot. It's all subjective. I encourage you to disagree and, as always, I welcome the discourse so long as it remains civil.

There are a lot of great comments this week, both from people that agree and disagree with me, so I'm sorry to spend so much time on the haters. Let's just all take a step back and realize that these are just comics and my opinion on them. Just because I don't like what you like doesn't mean all civility and maturity goes out the window. We can and should have dialogue about our opinions--don't ruin that opportunity.

Servando Gomez said...

I have to say that on a lot of Ryan reviews i typically think he more guilty of giving too much credit to a comic for those he really likes (Batgirl comes to mind and that Deadshot Secret 6 oneshot) but i'm quite alright with the lesser scores he gives most of the time. AND even i wasn't at first, I come to see later on when i'm a bit more cool about it and gave the matter some more thought that I knew where he was coming from.

Overall though, I see my taste more reflected in Matt reviews followed by Eric then Ryan L, and then Finally Kirk when he finds enough time to write. Which means on top of it all, the power rankings are the least favorite of my reviews but the thing that keeps me coming in is that I wouldn't doubt a word that Ryan S. had to say about a comic.

If he was disappointed in something or felt something was a bit off, then I think i would want to know and it applies Vice Versa. In this case, Return of Bruce Wayne satisfies that quite well as I'm someone who got into comics really last year with the discovery of this site; I have no idea what the hell happen on a panel to panel history leading up to the RoBW. Even more so, i been told by many people to Avoid R.I.P. and from what people been saying here how important it ties into the miniseries, i think it would kill a lot of what makes this last issue so satsifying.

Other than that, I like Grant M. as much as the next guy but i realize he's human all the same as us and there's a part of me that keeps to the idea that everything he does is going to be bad ass. Which for the most part sounds like the vast majority of his batman work.

Overall still, Ryan may have somewhat large differences taste (like how for he can keep to a G.I. Joe series when like the 8 of them in a row he reviewed were check it which i would have just stopped at the 2nd) in what we like but I can trust that he's going to cover something I'm going to care for and I like to hear what he had to say on it.

Anonymous said...

Thanos Imperative is now my favorite everything ever.

Ramoona said...

Okay about the anonomous 'slammers' you realise that you on average have 1800 readers and yet only about I dont know 50 are bloggers the rest are anonomous and also I'm pretty sure that everyone that puts a name on it becomes an asskisser seriously all you do is praise . Sooo I'm not really understanding how people would ignore us when we are the majority. Rant over. Keep up the good work

twobitspecialist said...

I got Ant-Man and the Wasp #1. I gotta agree, it was a really fun issue and sure wish more people would give it a shot. You just don't see a whole lot of comics like this anymore.

As far as the same comics getting the same rankings, good night, I was surprised that AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #648 got top spot! When was the last time that happened? I'm on the fence about getting this one. You mean to tell me there's such a thing as a GOOD Spidey comic? ;)

Patrick said...

I respect your opinion, but after reading Morrison's entire run starting with Batman and Son, I could not have been more satisifed with the conclusion. Morrison set out to prove Batman as the ultimate surivalist and he accomplished that in spades. He beat F@cking Darksied/Dr. Hurt in a game of wits! how cool is that!? I agree some stuff seemed a little overboard sometimes (gibberish as you put it) but in the grand scheme of things I am truly happy I stuck with this run. It was an awesome time to be a Batman fan, and I cant wait to see where Morrison goes next with it.

jerry said...

someone has a regative opinion of your review ?

man up

John J said...

@Max Barnard: "oh wow it's almost like some books stay consistently great or consistently crap what a weird thought!"

I'm fine if a reviewer thinks a good book is good. That's fine. Seriously, I won't argue that point.

But I seem to remember a while back on this site that "Green Arrow/Black Canary" was being touted as one of the best books on the stands. And dude, it really, REALLY wasn't. It was a horrible book week in and week out, and so after reading that I went "Oh, this dude just likes Green Arrow so he's gonna say the book is good. NOW I get it."

And THEN this new Green Arrow ongoing started coming out, and THAT book is garbage too! Sketchy pencils, unfocused plot, bad characterization, boring all around. But y'know what? The first issue was gettin' praised!

Totally putting only one book under the microscope here and it's not indicative of all reviews. I personally love Morrison's Batman, but I get the other side of the coin, too so I won't shout down the Morrison-haters. But these reviews aren't unbiased, I'm sorry they just aint.

Max Barnard said...

@ramoona i like to think it's less people having names being asskissers (seriously? that's your argument here? Some of us with names regularly disagree with Ryan) and more people who bother to have names in the comments at least TRYING to have some tact and to put up a reasonable argument. at least sometimes.

Anonymous said...

gotta agrre with ramona , the bloggers always praise you guys to try and think they are a member of the site

Anonymous said...

huh actually when you think about it ramonas got a point . you bloggers are kinda the minority and the reason we dont post a name on it is because we dont want to get dragged into a bitchfest every week

pilgrim said...

Ramoona trust me, if you see how frustrated Ryan gets with the more agressive haters you'd probably think he'd prefer no attention from them at all

oh my god Im a long time lurker but I have to agree with you on the bloggers think they are a part of the site thing #33

they dont seem to understand that anyone can look at someones tweets and that doesnt mean you know their feelings . I once looked up kirks twitter and that 2bit guy asked if he should straighten out a conversation about rokks comic , jesus you guys arent a part of weekly crisis just because you have a blog and are their followers

Anonymous said...

"i like to think it's less people having names being asskissers (seriously? that's your argument here? "

dont mean to be rude but could you string a sentence together a little better so I could understand more?

I dont see why your taking this so personal . you regulary disagree ? cool but she just pointed out that most of the bloggers just praise or make a bad joke leading to no disscussion . and I dont really understand why people should put a name on it , I mean I am pretty sure that out of the 1800 readers bloggers are in the minority so I dont see why kirk and the others should ignore us

iwasherefirst said...

I'm not a blogger, and I really enjoy the reviews. Even if I don't agree with them, I think the reviews are always intelligent, considered and the points are well argued. Sure they come with bias, but so does every review ever. If you're looking for a review entirely without bias, you'll be reading a three line paragraph saying something along the lines of "The comic was drawn. There were also words. The paper held the ink without smudging.".

As for Return Of Bruce Wayne, I loved it. I got every story beat, and felt that everything from RIP up to RoBW built up to one of the most satisfying and intellectually brilliant Batman stories ever written, but Morrison has always had a tendency to be overly self-indulgent and RoBW suffered from that a little. It's worth noting that Ryan doesn't dislike Morrison; he just dislikes it when Morrison gets buried too far up his own ass. When Morrison is more focused, he gets good reviews, when he devolves into his "Morrison-ness", he gets bad reviews. It's Ryan's opinion.

Sure, if you don't agree with him by all means, argue the point. But to accuse the reviewer of being unfairly biased when he has given the creator and the character both excellent reviews and terrible reviews is just willful ignorance borne out of a childish, fanboy desire to be validated by a community that isn't actually there just to pander to your tastes.

CW said...

So let's get this straight... just cuz Ryan doesn't like Morrison's work, fans of Morrison bother to sit and read the review, get themselves worked up into a nerdrage, and start levelling all manner of (pretty personal) criticisms and accusations at him?


So exactly what makes these people think Ryan's opinion or taste is inferior to theirs? Self-righteous delusion, probably.

Guy doesn't like Morrison. It ain't the end of the world, petty people. If you were so smart to 'get' Morrison's work, then why aren't YOU writing reviews for a comics blog instead of trolling on the net?

Disagree with it, live with it. Even better, don't like it, don't read it. I'm pretty sure the point of this site isn't to win a popularity contest. Go look for a site which agrees 100% with your own opinions so you'll never have to get upset ever again.

Anonymous said...


umm just cuz people giving a negative opinion doesnt make them trolls also most people who wont write reviews will probaly have lives,jobs ,relationships and cant be bothered to create a blog that will only get 3 views per year . that wasnt a jab at weekly by the way you guys are on par with cbr

Anonymous said...

damn CW do you have to clarify romonas view on bloggers ? sheesh :(

Jarmir said...

Ryan: first off thanks for keeping the Ranking going. I´ve been reading them since Newsarama

Now for all who don´t agree or read other comics than what Ryan Posted: read what Naymlap posted; put you own review so we can all see other POV

I liked when that happened earlier in The Weekly Crisis Power Ranking and in Newsarama, it's a geat way to see comics though different perspectives.

Now, please dont do what some posters did on Newsarama: a review is not "Writer X is so great that this comics deserves a 10!" or "Even if this issue is not uo to par in a trade it would be great so im given it an 'Awesome' score!" Try to really put into words why you liked it so much(o why you didnt)

Ryan K Lindsay said...

Ah, CW, you make a mighty fine point.

"...why aren't YOU writing reviews for a comics blog instead of trolling on the net?"

I think that's a great idea. Let's call for more reviews in the comments for the power rankings. I'd love to hear anyone's view that they put down here in smart words. Next week, or even this one, bring it on.

At Anon39's comment - if these people have time to lurk here with negativity then they have time to create a blog, fill it, and promote it. It won't get CBR numbers, fine, but it'll get something if it's any good. My blog still does average numbers, in my opinion, but it got the right numbers because it got me this gig, and then got me the gig for CBR.

These anons seem pretty passionate, I think they have the time. Hell, I have the time and I'm an assistant principal, recently married, 6 week old baby, I write for about 5 sites...need I go on. You make the time you want to use.

I think they should use their time productively. And if they don't feel like creating some sort of site, then post their reviews in the comments here, we'd love to have them.

As for using the Anonymous handle...yeah, I rarely respect it. I think if I had to use it it would be because I really didn't want to be linked to what I was saying. But maybe that's just how I view the use of the function, for others it might be an expediency thing. I'd prefer to see just a first name put, and consistently used, and then we couldn't track that person (for fear of cyber-stalking) but we could at least differentiate the dozens of different voices in the anon crowd. I think that's fair enough.

Anonymous said...

Let's be honest you got rid of the anonomous feature and you barely scraped 10 comments for every feature so if your planning to get rid of it fine but if your not I don't know makes you a tad two faced plus you saying you don't respect is quite hurtful as like ramona said we seem to be a lot bigger then
people with names . Seriously what's so bad about it ? If I want to make a once in the blue comment do I really need to create a blog ?

Max Barnard said...

@john j - you carry a very fair point, but really that's kinda how subjective opinions work. Someone's more willing to forgive a series' faults if they're a fan of the character. And no matter where you look for a review that sort of bias is inevitable. Also, dude, you're my favourite commenter right now for being reasoned and well-thought out.

@pilgrim - I don't think anyone with a blog or who follows the members of TWC on twitter think they're a part of the site. A lot of people take a personal investment in it, sure, but for various reasons.
I mean I tend to get involved with this stuff simply as a fan of the articles and as a writing partner to Ryan Lindsay and Matt over at another site, and yeah, twitter doesn't show someone's feelings, but if they're actually talking on there about how much agressive commenters are frustrating them then it's safe to say that's how they feel.

Kirk Warren said...

@Anon 43 - We didn't scrap it. Someone was spamming, so we disabled it for a week or two. And we still averaged the exact same number comments over that time period per article.

stacy said...

cheers ryan , nice to know what you think about your reader :(

Servando Gomez said...

I have to say that "I was here first" did a awesome job of summing up some of the words I had left in my mind that i didn't feature in. I mean i seen how Morrison can get too weird and how he can it out of the park.

Other than that, you think that reviewers being a dime a dozen on the internet that they wouldn't send the time commenting negatively and just find one that reflects their opinion. If anything, I love Ryan reviews of morrison as it gives a contrast to what everyone is praising. I mean one bad review from a guy that isn't a professional journalist (well i don't think he gets a salary for doing this) isn't going to put Grant. M out of a job.

I find this to be especially true when Kirk and Ryan can release their reviews in the same week. Ryan Praise some, kirk critizes the other and vice versa. Reading the two views you can get a picture of what to expect in the comic and thats when i think WC is at its best.

Anyways, keep up the good work guys. And, hope your piece in CLiNT does well Ryan.

Stagger Lee said...

I've followed the rankings for a while, and I admit that I have found them to be somewhat repetitive in regards to titles – but then again, why wouldn't they? He's not paid to cover a wide spectrum of comics – he chooses the comics he finds interesting, so big surprise that the same titles keep coming up. I'd say that's very natural for a blog. How many comic fans have wildly differing pull lists from month to month? The thing I find a bit surprising is that Ryan keeps buying Morrison's Batman comics in spite of having multiple issues with the story being told, but it's been a loooong storyline ever since "Batman and son" with tons of hype, so I can't blame Ryan for wanting to see it through to the end. Anyway, I always like to see a differing opinion.

Ryan K Lindsay said...

@Stacey - I think perhaps you misunderstand me. I assume you take annoyance at my words re: anonymous comments.

I can see how that might annoy you but I think I make a clear point. It's not hard to type a name into the Name/URL option. You can list any URL you want, or even none at all. That way each time you comment we can see who you are, it helps with discussion so we know we aren't responding to the same people again and again. I think that's fair to ask.

If you're passionate enough to open up a discourse with us then put a name. If you just want to troll, or not have feedback, fine, use the anon, but then I am not going to care as much, it's just simple.

I value every reader we get on the site, and enjoy much of the discussion brought up, but when I see an anon comment it makes me wonder why that person felt they couldn't attach their name to it.

All you have to do is put a name in the Name/URL section, it's that easy. It's creates a sense of trust and consistency. Otherwise, it's just a voice in the wind and thus means that bit less to me.

And I say this knowing there are some great anonymous commenters on here all the time. I just wish I knew exactly who they were so conversations could carry over, like they do with regular commenters.

Which reminds me, those commenters stick around here not because they think they run the site but because they are an active part of the community. Community means some place they like to come, a place they feel open to discuss things freely with friends (yeah, even on the internet there are friendships formed). Anonymities don't really have that community because they don't exactly exist here, they have no identity.

twobitspecialist said...

@pilgrim - Dude, what the heck? Don't drag me into this. I just want to discuss comics again.

Anonymous said...

CBR's review of Return Of Bruce Wayne for some real perspective.

Dennis N said...

So yeah, this thread is somewhat annoying, because I find most comment threads on TWC to be filled with smart and comic-loving fans. Sometimes I enjoy the comments more than the articles!

Something about Morrison's work brings out the fans who are less fun-loving and more take it way too seriously. Not everyone is gonna like Grant Morrison. Not everyone is required to find his penchant for complicated (some might say convoluted) story-lines to be endearing.

It's true the reviewers here do pick favorites. Batgirl, Red Robin, Secret Six, and Thor: Mighty Avenger come to mind. I like Batgirl and RR, and I don't like Secret Six or Thor: Mighty Avenger. So what do I do? I don't buy them.

And you know what I would do if I wrote the Power Rankings? I would make The Walking Dead be #1 every week. Everyone has favorites.

I would have thought Ant-Man and Wasp would be ranked way higher. It was tons of fun, and they even managed to bring Abigail back from Ant-Man's old ongoing!

twobitspecialist said...

I had to go back and buy ASM #468. Haven't finished it yet, but I really can't believe I'm enjoying ASM again.

I found myself immensely enjoying Ant-Man and the Wasp #1. I've read it several times already.

twobitspecialist said...

I, of course, meant ASM #648

Daryll B. said...

Man, I delay buying comics for one week and this type of Armageddon Ryan you cad!

As far as books go:

Picked up the trilogy of Trinity GNs by Busiek, Bagley, Nicienza, Derenick and a host of other talent for 30 dollars total. Ryan you were right, it did read better collected than waiting for it week by week. I grossly underestimated this story and the underlying themes.

Avengers Children's Crusade was another head trip and makes me wonder yet again how Heinberg could do this so well but fudged up Wonder Woman? Then again outside of Byrne, Perez, Rucka, and Simone, I could say that about a lot of creators.

Booster Gold... who knew General Glory could be... um..on second thought as funny as the book was I still find GG redundant.

...and to DnA's end to their cosmic adventures (for now), well done gentlemen! Well Done! Now good luck to you with Heroes For Hire.

twobitspecialist said...

@Daryll B - I'm dying to pick Children's Crusade but I ended up skipping it in favor of the trade. Though at this rate, I might as well get it as a Christmas present for myself... in 2011.

Matt Duarte said...

@twobit: I think Christmas 2011 is actually quite a hopeful date. There's still five issues left, on a bi-monthly schedule, so that's 10 months right there, and Marvel usually waits a couple of months to release a trade. If all goes according to plan, but if they run into some delays, the trade may not show up until 2012.

twobitspecialist said...

@Matt - That stinks. I'm new at trade waiting, so I don't know how long companies take before releasing TPBs after a recent arc finishes.

Logan said...

@Matt-Dang it! I didn't realize it would take that long! I don't know if I can stand the wait. I really wish that Marvel would/could publish it on a monthly basis. By the time the story is finished the Marvel U will look vastly different and the story will be less relative. That won't stop me from picking it up but it will be more a bummer.

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