Peter Milligan gets the ball moving with Justice League Dark #2, giving us a taste of a super-hero team-ups against the occult. There’s a lot to like with this new team, particularly with Zatanna’s more hard-edged personality and a surprising continuation of a key relationship from Brightest Day. Makes me wonder if the story arc ties into the aforementioned event.
Not so far behind it was The Sixth Gun #16. Cullen Bunn is continuing to build an epic in his western mythology, this time focusing on more second-tier characters to tie into that mythology. This one needs to get on more people’s radar more – truly something for the fans of Lord of the Rings, but with a magical twist.
And lastly, the X-Men universe continues to go strong post-Schism. Jason Aaron’s Wolverine and the X-Men #1 has a great mix of comedy, action, and heart that fits well with Logan’s new team. Chris Bachalo can be hit or miss at times, but he brings very crisp pencils to the new school and its inhabitants.
Don’t forget that the 100th Quick Picks is coming soon! Send us your thoughts, comments, and emails on topics for the show!
We’re on the cusp of San Diego touching down upon the comic book industry, but that hasn’t stopped the new releases from being discussed. Here’s what’s on tap:
5) Zatanna #15
It was a good run while it lasted under the leadership of Paul Dini, but it looks like it’s getting the boot come September. Enjoy this while it lasts – it was a great insight into the life of one of the premier magicians of the DCU.
4) Flashpoint – Deadman and the Flying Graysons #2
This was a unique take on the Grayson crew with Deadman as the tag-along. Incorporating it into the Amazon/Atlantean war will make this next issue interesting as we see what fate lies ahead for Flashpoint Dick Grayson.
3) Daredevil #1
I avoided this book like the plague during its Shadowland run. Getting Mark Waid to re-launch the title is enough to get me back in.
2) Flashpoint – Wonder Woman and the Furies #2
Had Knight of Vengeance not been knocking our socks off, this would be right up there as the strongest Flashpoint tie-in. Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning know what it takes to juggle wars and they’re proving that as they set up the seeds for what caused Diana to declare such a war on the Atlanteans.
1) Batman : Gates of Gotham #3
It’s Scott Snyder time! Although to be fair, Kyle Higgins deserves just as much credit for the architectural story revolving around a plot to destroy the descendants of the founding families of Gotham. Just when you think you run out of good Batman stories to tell, new writers come in and prove you wrong.
I’ve expressed great praise for Bryan Q. Miller’s work on Batgirl for the longest time and issue #22 shows why he continues to receive this praise. The already light-hearted antics of Stephanie Brown combined with Squire brings those antics up another notch. Much as there’s excitement behind Batgirl’s re-launch with Barbara Gordon returning to take the cowl, it’s still a sad state of affairs to see Stephanie and Bryan go soon (at least for the immediate future).
Flashpoint tie-in madness continues to rage in the DCU. Two great things come together in Wonder Woman and the Furies #1 – the Wonder Woman side of the Amazonian/Atlantean war and Dan Abnett/Andy Lanning. There’s a lot of political intrigue in this issue and gives you some great context as to what’s going on in current Flashpoint continuity.
And then we also have Deadman and the Flying Graysons #1. I was sold on this issue with Cliff Chiang’s cover alone. Then we got a nice outlook at the Grayson clan back in the circus, but fleeing the ongoing war ravaging Europe. This is a solid start and preps us for things we know of well if you know how the Graysons’ story ends.
This was a great struggle to find five books to discuss – which you would think wouldn’t be the case given all of the Flashpoint and Fear Itself tie-ins that have been coming out. Fortunately this week, I have exactly 5 books on the pull list:
5) Uncanny X-Men #538
Kieron Gillen has been getting rave reviews ever since he took on this title. I unfortunately am coming late to the party, but given the small amount of books I have this week, now is as good as time as any to give it a shot. I’ve been wanting to for a while after seeing Marvel getting spotty with this book after their Second Coming arc last year.
4) Hellblazer #280
Another book I’ve been off and on, but willing to jump back in. One thing you can say about the book is it’s had a consistent presence and is mindful of its continuity. Something to fear when Constantine’s DCU counterpart makes his presence known.
3) Flashpoint : Wonder Woman and the Furies #1
Another round of tie-ins gives us the Wonder Woman side of the equation in the battle between Amazons and Atlanteans. I’m hoping to see a really gung-ho personality in Diana and putting her in the hands of two of my favorite writers in Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning is the icing on the cake.
2) Flashpoint : Deadman and the Flying Graysons #1
I have no idea what this is about and yet Cliff Chiang’s cover is enough to draw me in.
1) Batgirl #22
Let’s enjoy these last few moments with Stephanie Brown while we can because it will all come to an end for her come this September. In this issue, she goes on her Batman Inc. assignment and goes on an adventure with Squire. Expect much bollocks.
I’m posting this at the 11th hour, but it’s worth doing it any way because heck knows by tomorrow morning, DC will already have announced 20 more new titles for their big September re-launch.
Today’s latest from the DC Source blog delves into the supernatural realm of the DCU. What’s interesting is that the blending of Vertigo characters into the DCU still seems to be in place despite the massive re-launch. I’m about to drop dead soon, so I won’t be able to talk about all of them, but here’s the top 3 that piqued my interest today:
Animal Man by Jeff Lemire, Travel Foreman, and Dan Green
Kudos to DC for giving Lemire more to play with. You may not applaud his Superboy work too much, but you should applaud his Sweet Tooth work. I unfortunately missed Grant Morrison’s take on the character long ago, but I’m willing to give this a shot.
Justice League Dark by Peter Milligan and Mikel Janin
Constantine, Deadman, Shade, and Madame Xanadu. Yeah, I’m buying this book.
Swamp Thing by Scott Snyder and Yannick Paquette
No surprise that this character is sticking around after the Brightest Day push. What’s surprising is Snyder taking the reigns. Looks like they’re going to keep the horror vibe going even with him now back in the mainstream DCU and that will play well to Snyder’s strengths.
Did I miss something this week? Where are all the books?
Despite the light week, a couple of books still managed to hit the radar. Uncanny X-Force #5.1 was a good outing for those wanting to see what the Rick Remender hype is all about. Having Rafael Albuquerque draw the one-shot is the icing on the cake, of course. Wasn’t as great as the Kid Apocalypse arc, but for those wanting to see what got this series off to a great start, this is good for that crowd.
It fell a little short of the last two issues, but Brightest Day #22 was another good outing to wrap up the Firestorm arc. A key death sparked the character of this arc to act and bring about the ultimate climax that is hopefully going to give us some answers as to why the white light’s being such a jerk. One can only hope that answer involves monkeys…