SOME ACTUAL REVIEWS
I promised last week that I'd do some actual comics reviews this
week. And so I shall.
It's a welcome break from my continual struggles with getting Linux set up on my computer. Anyone have some good advice on getting PPP working with RedHat 5.1?
GON COLOR SPECTACULAR
Yes, I'm a little behind on my reading, what's your point? ;-)
This is the 48 pages-or-so compilation of the GON stories originally presented in Japan in color. It's interesting to see Masashi Tanaka's color view of the little guy. Quite honestly, I think I prefer Gon in black and white. It's the stellar line art from the pen of Tanaka that keeps bringing me back for more with every new compilation. While the color is interesting and at times, necessary for the story, the art loses some of its luster in my mind. You can see the ink wanting to bleed through the watercolors but failing in spots.
Of course, on the other hand, being in color means being on glossy
paper instead of newsprint and less ink rubbing off on your hands.
The stories, though, are just as good as ever with the lovable scamp Gon conquering all sorts of animal subkingdoms, protecting the
little guy and beating up the much larger guys. And since each story is short, this book is easy to read through cover to cover without realizing it.
SUPERMAN ADVENTURES #25
It's the team-up of the World's Finest -- almost. When Bruce Wayne
is unavailable to become Batman, Superman comes in to save the day,
assisted by Batgirl. The cover is a wonderful homage to the classic
World's Finest cover, and the differences between Supes and Batman
are pointed up beautifully in the story. There's tension between
Batgirl and Superman in this story. It's almost eery. Gotham City
and Metropolis are different cities requiring different takes.
The only funny thing, I thought, about this issue is that about
half-way through it, I had to check the cover to see if I was
reading SUPERMAN ADVENTURES or BATMAN ADVENTURES. Fun stuff. It's
Superman as seen through the filter of Gotham City.
This is an excellent issue for John Arcudi to just have some fun
with. Along with artist Gary Frank, he tells a story straight out
of some Scooby Doo or Bugs Bunny cartoon, as the teenagers run
across a larger-than-life baby and craziness ensues. It's fun
The highlight is the backup story, though. It's a preview of Warren
Ellis' highly-anticipated series, PLANETARY. Drawn by the
superlative John "DESPERADOES" Cassaday, it's basically a retelling
of the Hulk origin, but with a completely different and warped twist
to it. This is Ellis getting a chance to play around with our
favorite origins and ideas.
In case you still need a reason to pick up this issue, the first
letter in the letters column is from some kid in North Haledon, NJ,
who unwittingly uses a groan-out-loud pun.
If you want to see more of his work, check out SIREN #2, where that
same kid (that's me in case you haven't realized yet) takes up a
good eight or ten inches of column space discussing the previous
issue. When I read the issue I'll review it, of course.
CAPTAIN AMERICA #11
Mark Waid writes this issue, as always, but I think Andy Kubert
steals the show with his art and storytelling. There's just some
wonderful panels in this issue. The story is sort of so-so, but soe
of the pages have beautiful layouts. The opening double-page spread
is well-done with a nice tilt to it. The double-page spread of Cap
and Carter falling through the air works well, particularly with the
extra-wide panel along the bottom there. My absolute favorite pages
of the issue is the final sequences with Sharon standing off with
Cap. GREAT work there, with some fine parallelism and excellent
choice of close-ups.
SUPERMAN FOR ALL SEASONS #3
Until Paul Dini and Alex Ross come around to give us their Superman
special, Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale (with painting by Bjorne Hansen)
deliver the perfect anniversary tribute to the big blue Boy Scout.
This is a quick read, make no mistake about it. Sale uses a lot of
large panels and Loeb doesn't interfere by packing in tons of
captions and dialogue to stifle it. These two men work well
together, and leave enough room for Hansen to shine on the colors.
This issue is told from Lex Luthor's point of view and includes all the hubris and machiavellian plotting you'd expect from Luthor.
Richard Starkings changes lettering fonts to point this up, too.
It's a good story and one which leaves you feeling sorry for Supes.
How odd, eh?