About Me

A blog wherein a literary agent will sometimes discuss his business, sometimes discuss the movies he sees, the tennis he watches, or the world around him. In which he will often wish he could say more, but will be obliged by business necessity and basic politeness and simple civility to hold his tongue. Rankings are done on a scale of one to five Slithy Toads, where a 0 is a complete waste of time, a 2 is a completely innocuous way to spend your time, and a 4 is intended as a geas compelling you to make the time.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Funny Book Round-up

I was surprised just how much I enjoyed DCU Legacies #8. This one dealt with some crazy things I'd tried to forget, like the aftermath of Superman's death at the hands of Doomsday when the Superman books split up to show 4 different of them doing their thing. Maybe I'd forgotten because we're starting to get into comics from 1994 and 1995 when my post-JABberwocky hiatus from reading comic books began due to time constraints. Even now, I read only a third or a quarter of the # of books I was reading in 1993, so the forthcoming issues of the series will cover a lot of stuff that I've skipped over these past many years. Like the whole Hal Jordan not being Green Lantern thing. After covering the death of Batman (he died then, too, wow!), we get into Parallax, introed from 1994, all new to me. I know Len Wein is doing good scripts, and Jerry Ordway and Dan Jurgens excellent art for this issue, but will this all be more or less interesting as we move forward?

Teen Titans: Cold Case wasn't a bad one-shot, I read all of it with mild interest even based on the script by Mark Sable. But no great shakes, either. Do we need this, did I need to spend my $4.99? Doesn't help that the art by Sean Murphy is inconsistent. Look at the top of page 6 (or don't if you would have to buy the book in order to do so), and there's Robin from profile, and apparently he has a very small mouth since you can't see the lips from the side view. A very very very small mouth. Then panels five and six of Robin getting dressed are actually quite good, looks like somebody took good notes during his anatomy classes in drawing school. But then move four pages past the center staples and there are panels of Robin in costume that don't look very good at all.

The lead story in Bart Simpson #57 is a delightful tale by indie comic person Carol Lay. Not unlike the Homemade Heroes contest by Peter V. Brett, Lisa decides to take her Malibu Stacy and make her Egyptian for a school project, only Mattel gets wind of it and comes out with their own Egyptian version. Come judging day, all the girls are going to school with projects that look just like Lisa's, and it's up to Bart to provide the moral. The story comes complete with a mini two-page Itchy and Scratchy in ancient Egypt. The back half not worth talking about so much, happily the Carol Lay story is alone worth the price of admission.

My final comic of the year, DC Comics Presents THUNDER Agents, which I was curious to see after reading (well, part-reading) the first issue of the revival. These comics are from 1966 and clearly influenced by James Bond and his ilk. The evil Warlord plots against the THUNDER agents. It's hard to critique these the way you might a modern comic, no on-story art credits to say who wrote or drew what. It's not a superhero team book like we know it today. The agents do act together, but they're as likely to be in a story where the focus is entirely or primarily on one agent instead of on the team. One actually dies, and even stayed dead. The idea being played up in new revival that the powers can kill the heroes is not a big thing here, one of the heroes has a belt that can't be used for too long without repercussions, which is a very different concept. Final analysis, these were old-fashioned fun. In some ways not as "good" as modern comic books are, but on the other hand, I was able to read every page of this and couldn't finish the first issue of the new revival.

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