Quick Hits: Reviews of Flash #10 and more…

Flash #10

Flash #10: As DC’s Flashpoint summer event builds momentum, both through the Flash book and via promotional efforts, my interest wanes. I can’t shake the feeling that DC’s latest crossover is literally their remake of Marvel’s mid-90s Age of Apocalypse series, the book which to my mind birthed the whole idea of event fatigue. So it is that I greet Flash #10 with a heavy heart. My general malaise isn’t helped by this issue’s script, which shows Geoff Johns at his worst, aka his most melodramatic. Francis Manapul’s art looks as beautiful as ever, but then Johns usually pulls the very best of superhero artists to work on his books. That doesn’t save this issue from feeling totally empty.  C+
Review by Rebel Rikki

Justice League: Generation Lost #23: After nearly a year of publication we only have one issue left to go in DC’s heroic bi-weekly maxiseries. Though generally I’ve enjoyed Generation Lost‘s twists and turns, in addition to the sharp clip at which it moves along, I was a little let down here. Generally, the book’s fine, but within the first few pages it undoes what to my mind was the best aspect of issue #22, namely uniting a close approximation of the Giffen/DeMatteis JLI team that inspired this book. I’m also not crazy about the reveal of the big villain that the League has to beat; it’s really just an overused antagonist in a new suit. As usual, the action’s strong, as is the art by Fernando Dagnino, but I can’t help but feel a little disappointed here. B
Review by Rebel Rikki

Secret Warriors #26: Well, issue #25 of Jonathan Hickman’s Secret Warriors made me want to go back and reread all of the previous issues—as well as the S.H.I.E.L.D. miniseries—and, well, I did… and after reading #26 I now want to do it all over again. With a few more issues left to go Hickman drops another bombshell on us that I can’t even go into without spoilers… hell, I won’t lie, it’s also probably too complex for me to sum up here anyways. As always the art is strong and consistent from Alessandro Vitti. This series has been an absolute favorite from the start and it certainly looks like it’s going to finish very strong. A
Review by Spaceman Spiff

S.H.I.E.L.D. Infinity: Jonathan Hickman’s historical Marvel mash-up continues with a one-shot containing four vignettes of past historical figures and their untold interactions with each other and the Marvel Universe at large. Overall this book was pretty cool; it offers some nice insights into the characters featured in Hickman’s six-issue S.H.I.E.L.D. miniseries that just wrapped up last month. I really like the art here in particular, which comes courtesy of four relatively new Marvel talents: Nick Pitarra, Zachary Baldus, Kevin Mellon and Gabriel Hernandez Walta. Many of them (Mellon excepted) have a softer, quirkier touch more in keeping with indie comics, and I think their talents are put to great use on an off-kilter book like this. My biggest problem with the issue is the pricetag, which sits at a hefty $4.99. That may be justified by its holding four stories as opposed to one, but each of these stories is miniscule in length. Really, calling this book $3.99 would be pushing it; $4.99 borders on robbery.  B-
Review by Rebel Rikki

Transformers #18: “Revenge of the Decepticons” wraps up in the typical Mike Costa Transformers style, which is to say it takes a couple totally unexpected twists and comes to a conclusion that demands readers’ continued attention. Here, Optimus Prime and Megatron have a showdown over the fate of Earth which involves a headless Soundwave, theoretical military weaponry and the craziest end to this fight you can imagine. Given the title tease of the next arc, “Space Opera,” one might reasonably guess that Transformers is done with Earth for the time being, and that’s too bad; Costa and crew have gotten a lot of mileage out of bringing these robots’ battle to Earth and setting it against a modern (that is to say, paranoid and high-speed reactionary) political setting. I’m sad to see it go, though I’m sure what comes next will be just as satisfying. A
Review by Rebel Rikki

Ultimate Avengers Vs. New Ultimates #3: Despite having a very unwieldy title, this issue has a few other faults that drag this series down after what was a very strong start in the first two issues. While issues one and two set up a very interesting conflict between these two teams as each issue presented the buildup from each teams point of view here in issue three we get nothing more than a drawn-out fight scene. And the shocking cliffhanger at the end? Well, I certainly would’ve been shocked had those events not been presented right on the damn cover. What a perfect way to ruin the one redeeming moment from this issue. No fault to Leinil Yu though, he turns in strong pencils as always. C-
Review by Spaceman Spiff

Unwritten #24: Writer Mike Carey’s taken to putting breather issues in between major story arcs, and that’s the role filled by Unwritten #24. Here we return to a story we haven’t seen for about a year — the tale of Pauly Bruckner, an unfortunate man who crossed Wilson Taylor and wound up trapped in a world of fictional stories. The last time we saw Pauly he made his escape from a 100-Acre Woods-like land, and now he’s found himself stuck with another bunch of talking animals attempting to climb a seemingly endless stairway that purportedly leads to salvation. I’m sure there’s a metaphor or allusion here I’m missing (it’s probably painfully obvious), but I can say for certain that this issue was really cool. The interplay between different types of characters and literary tropes that goes on every month in Unwritten is truly something to behold. Honestly, I tried reading Fables recently and was struck with how pale it seems in comparison to this series. Big words, I know, but although Fables plays with similar concepts, it doesn’t have the same kinetic and fresh style of writing employed by Mike Carey every month. Add to that some really great art by Peter Gross and Al Davison and you’ve got another can’t-miss issue of this series. A
Review by Rebel Rikki

X-Men Legacy #247: The penultimate chapter to “Age of X” is here, and it’s another doozy. Rogue/Legacy takes somewhat of a backseat here as a newly-revived Professor X steps to the forefront and we get the story behind how our heros have ended up in this twisted, alternate reality. Definitely a fun issue as written by Mike Carey, and Clay Mann doesn’t disappoint either. The pieces are in place and it looks as though “Age of X” Chapter 6 will be quite set to deliver a thrilling conclusion to what has been—in my opinion—one of the best, and most underlooked, X-Men story arcs in quite some time. A
Review by Spaceman Spiff

tags: age of x, justice league, new ultimates, s.h.i.e.l.d., secret warriors, the flash, transformers, ultimate avengers, unwritten, x-men legacy

  • http://twitter.com/astamm78 Andrew Stamm

    Eric, I really think you need to give Fables another shot… that series really takes off after the first few arcs, and especially so when Mark Buckingham steps in as the regular artist. Not that I haven’t enjoyed what I’ve read of Unwritten mind you ;)

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