Sunday, December 17, 2006
Quick Take Reviews for December 17
The Trials of Shazam #4 (of 12): Gee, I guess it is “pick on Winick Week” here at Comics Fairplay, as Trials is another one of his titles. I am enjoying the modern spin on the Gods that imbue the Marvels with their powers, but I am flummoxed at the lack of experience Freddy Freeman seems to be showing. Is it a whole “re-learning your powers” kind of thing? I am entranced at the evolution of Howard Porter’s art since his JLA days. If I didn’t know better, I would think it was a completely different artist, which isn’t exactly a bad thing. Grade: B.
X-Factor #14: This is my favorite X-title along with New X-Men. Peter David is in his element, reveling in the uniqueness of the characters and their “stand alone” status in the Marvel Universe. While events are happening in a peripheral way around the team, David doesn’t have to bow to editorial and change the story to suit a certain current big event. I am also basking in the afterglow of the Samson sessions, so I am particularly thrilled by this title. Grade: A.
New X-Men #33: Craig Kyle and Chris Yost are the writing team supreme in this new storyline of New X-Men titled “Mercury Rising”. Along with skilled art by Paco Medina and Juan Vlasco, this book shows no signs of slowing down or giving us a chance to catch our breath. Between the evolution of X-23 and her team members in the “Junior” squad, there is plenty of pathos to go around. I appreciate that the creative team has been able to establish a sense of individuality around this team that harkens to the current X-Factor book. Grade: A.
Infinite Holiday Special: After last week’s Marvel Holiday debacle, I was extremely hesitant to pick up DC’s version of the book. I had to talk myself into it, and am now sitting here quite pleased with myself. The book costs $4.99 and is actually worth every penny. There are seven individual tales, and each one is excellent. This book reminded me of the old school holiday specials from DC that always resonated so well with me. It was always a treat to pick up a DC Holiday book then, and it is today. Grade: A.
Girls #20: The Luna Brothers don’t give the readers a single second of comfort and I wouldn’t have it any other way. In this cleverly executed horror tale, the reader has no idea what is coming next, and the Luna’s keep upping the ante in violence and shock. As the girls continue to multiply and the community further divides, one can feel that the climax is at hand. The only thing that makes me sad is that this book is only 24 issues long, so it will be ending soon. If you haven’t been reading Girls, you are missing out on clever, well done horror. Grade: A.
Ultimate X-Men #77: The last page of this book shocked the heck out of me. After being a bit disillusioned with this title, Robert Kirkham has upped the ante, drawing me back in. All I can say is “I can’t believe he went there”. Wow. Grade: B.
Wonder Man #1 (of 5): I was expecting a certain typical type of Wonder Man story when I bought this book, and it shocked me to find a whole new angle courtesy of Peter David and Andrew Currie. I am cautiously enjoying this mini-series and plan to pick up issue two to see what new surprises the creative team throw at me. Grade: B-.
Robin #157: Robin is a title that I keep trying to talk myself into dropping, but each issue is good enough to draw me back in. Having Tim back in the fold of the city of Gotham and the watchful eye of Alfred and Bruce has made me a fan of the book again. I also appreciate the new feel of the book courtesy of a newfound confidence that Tim has, which surfaced underneath the sorrow and regrets of a life that has suffered entirely too much loss. I can’t stop myself from enjoying a truly quality book. Grade: B.