Quick Hits: Reviews of Action Comics Annual #13 and more…

Action Comics Annual 13

Action Comics Annual #13: Though Paul Cornell’s Action Comics has been a really nice surprise this year (and regular readers of this site will know in what great esteem I hold it), I must admit I’m a little… confused by this issue. Here Cornell continues Lex Luthor’s tour of the DC Universe with two flashbacks in which Lex meets Darkseid and Ra’s Al Ghul for the first time. This comic makes some pretty strange choices, like having the Ra’s story be told completely in captain boxes, or having Darkseid speak in a style reminiscent of Beat poets. I’m guessing the later’s an homage to Jack Kirby’s original work with the character, but after immersing myself in Grant Morrison’s mega-serious interpretation for the past couple years, well, pardon the pun but this diversion was really a trip. I do have to give props to Darkseid segment artist Marco Rudy, though, who has some pretty amazing page layouts and similar tricks up his sleeve. There’s definitely some really interesting stuff happening here (especially a shout-out to two other members of the Endless clan Lex seems to be so fond of?) but a lot of this issue is just way bizarre.  B

Brightest Day #15: This issue’s called “Whatever Happened to the Manhunter from Mars,” and it turns out that’s more than just a cute title. Without warning (in this book, anyway) readers are apparently thrust 25 years into the future, to an anniversary celebration of Mars’ restoration to peace at the hands of J’onn J’onnz. However, things start to go stale after some of J’onn’s JLA buddies turn up dead (in some truly gruesome ways), and J’onn begins the hunt for their killer. Although this issue was pretty interesting as a single unit, I’m not sure how well it works as part of an ongoing bi-weekly series, especially since its denouement doesn’t really have the impact it might’ve.  B-

iZombie #8: Chris Roberson and Mike Allred give us perhaps a bit weaker iZombie installment than we’re used to in this issue. I think that’s because it’s made up of a lot of bits and pieces of story that advance everyone’s plot a little, as opposed to focusing on one or two more compelling plotlines. In iZombie #8, for starters, Gwen deals with a dead friend (which is kind of funny to think about), Amon remembers a (maybe) ex-lover, Horatio fights some vampires, Scott and his grandpa get in a fight…. Overall I found it overwhelming and a bit scattered. Still, iZombie remains a strong, strong book in a pretty solid Vertigo lineup.  B

Sweet Tooth #16: I never noticed before this issue how much colorist Jose Villarrubia adds to Sweet Tooth. Though Jeff Lemire’s art is nothing short of amazing, Villarrubia’s colors really bring it to life in some truly striking ways. Speaking of striking, Sweet Tooth #16 is full of erupting emotions and raucous conflicts as many of the violent plot threads introduced in the last few issues begin to come to a head in an all-out war to save the hybrid children. It’s not my favorite issue of the series so far — like many of its brothers it just feels so damn short! — but it’s a rewarding reading experience.  B+

tags: action comics, brightest day, chris roberson, i zombie, Jeff Lemire, mike allred, paul cornell, sweet tooth

  • Kyle Gnepper

    Gotta agree with you about the Action Comics Annual. I did enjoy it overall, and I liked the way Darkseid was written. He seemed cold, calculating and opretty well displayed.
    My only issue is in part because I still have Superman: Secret Origins fresh in my mind, so I can’t help trying to fit those stories in place mentally.

  • http://nerdynothings.com Rebel Rikki

    Kyle, good point. I was trying to think about that too. One would think the Action Annual would happen right after Lex leaves Smallville, but, I don’t know, do any events in Secret Origins contradict that?

  • Latest Nothings
  • site design: haystack needle design    privacy policy©2011 nerdynothings.com     RSS