Archive for the ‘Weekly Comics Spotlight (John Mayo and Bob Bretall)’ Category

Red Tornado #1 / The Torch #1 / Hercules: The Knives of Kush #2

Monday, September 21st, 2009

This is Bob from the Weekly Comics Spotlight podcast with short reviews “by the #s” (with a rating out of 5) of the books we review on our weekly show.  I’m catching up on  a few weeks in a row here.
You can hear full the audio reviews For Episode #108 on the Episode page at

DC:  Red Tornado #1 (W: Kevin VanHook  A: Jose Luis / JP Mayer)
Bob: 4/5    John: 4/5
I was a bit skeptical about this series, since we just recently had a Red Tonado focused story in the last relaunch of the Justice League title, but Hevin VanHook hit some interesting new story beats here with the introduction of new family members representing the elements of fire/earth/water (as counterpoints to Reddy’s air).  Nice story advancement and solid art left me wanting more at the end, I’m on board for this mini.

Marvel: The Torch #1 (W: Alex Ross / Mike Carey  A: Patrick Berkenkotter / Carlos Lopez)
Bob: 4/5    John: 4/5
Another great mini-series, that while standing on its own, does follow out of the recent Avengers/Invaders mini (e.g. fans of that series should definitely be picking this one up too).  I liked the focus on Toro as we get some very interesting insight into his backstory.  Good setup for the return of the Jim Hammond Torch, and the characterization of the character “The Mad Thinker” (the best I have ever seen for this character) is worth the price of admission by itself.

Radical Publishing: Hercules: The Knives of Kush #2 (W: Steve Moore  A: Cris Bolson / Doug Sirois)
Bob: 4/5    John: 3/5
Another great foray into the world of ancient Greece with Radical’s Hercules.  This series follows on from last year’s “The Thracian Wars” and does so with style.  This has the signature Radical art, which is to say, it’s marvelous.  High adventure, mystery, and a few surprising plot twists along the way along the way make this a great issue of a comic.  That’s what I like about this: as a #2 comic, we get a satisfying chunk of story that advances the overall arc, there’s good plot advancement, some nice character moments, and the issue closes off on a scene that has me craving the next issue.  Just was a comic should be, good as an issue and part of an overall good story arc.

Red Circle: The Shield #1 / Secret Warriors #7 / Zero Killer #4

You can hear full the audio reviews For Episode #107 on the Episode page at

DC:  Red Circle: The Shield #1 (W: J. Michael Straczynski  A: Scott McDaniel)
Bob: 3/5    John: 3/5
A pretty good story by JMS, but it’s hard to see where this one is going since it’s one of 4 somewhat interlocking one-shots setting up new ongoing series that will be by a different creative team.  As a standalone issue, it was a pretty good story and I’m interested in the character, but it’s more of a setup than a complete story and as such, will really succeed or fail based on how the ball gets picked up in the ongoing series.

Marvel: Secret Warriors #7 (W: Jonathan Hickman  A: Alessandro Vitti)
Bob: 3/5    John: 3/5
I love this series and it’s normally a 5  out of 5 for me, however, this issue was my least favorite of the seven out to date by far.  A muddled story with not a lot of advancement of plot.  I’m sure the series will recover, Hickman is a solid writer, but this may not be the best entry point into the series for new readers.  Check out the trade of the 1st 6 issues instead.

Dark Horse: Zero Killer #4 (W: Arvid Nelson  A: Matt Camp)
Bob: 4/5    John: 3/5
It’s a huge credit to writer Arvid Nelson that I was able to get right back into this story after the 20+ month delay since issue #3 (which shipped in Nov 2007).  This is a great post-apocalyptic/ alternate history story with some spectacular art by Matt Camp, however, if you have not gotten into the series by now, it’s probably a good idea to just wait for the trade collecting the entire 6 issue series.  That said, if you read #1-3 back in 2007, you should be able to jump right back in with #4.  Hopefully #5 will be out before 2011…..

 Batgirl #1 / Daredevil #500 / Days Missing #1 / Archie #600

You can hear full the audio reviews For Episode #106 on the Episode page at

DC:  Batgirl #1 (W: Bryan Q. Miller  A: Lee Garbett/Trevor Scott)
Bob: 4/5    John: 4/5
A great #1 issue setting up this new series, and one of the better titles in the Bat family right now.  I’m very interested in seeing Stephanie Brown as Batgirl.

Marvel: Daredevil #500 (W: Ed Brubaker  A: Michael Lark/Stefano Gaudino)
Bob: 4/5    John: 4/5
One of the better Marvel anniversary issues and a great closure to Ed Brubaker’s run on Daredevil.  Brubaker did something similar to Bendis’ last issue in that while closing out his story he really shook up the status quo for the character and left DD in a really different/unique situation that I’m going to be very interested in seeing continue under the new creative team.

Archaia: Days Missing #1 (W: Phil Hester  A: Frazer Irving)
Bob: 5/5    John: 5/5
Great stand-alone story, but I have some misgivings about the rotating creative team each issue.  This issue was outstanding, will the team on #2 carry that on?  Time will tell.

Bonus Book! Archie #600 by Archie Comics (W: Michael Uslan  A: Stan Goldberg)
Bob: 3/5    John: 3/5
A “What If” story on Archie speculating what his future would be like proposing to & marrying Veronica.  It struck me that after college the Archie gang set their sights pretty low for jobs like used car salesman running a nail salon, & being a burger chef, should not need a college degree to do this stuff.  Not being a regular fan of Archie comics, maybe I was just expecting too much.

Adventure Comics #1 / Lockjaw & Pet Avengers #4 / G-Man: Cape Crisis #1

Sunday, August 30th, 2009

This is Bob from the Weekly Comics Spotlight podcast with short reviews “by the #s” (with a rating out of 5) of the books we review on our weekly show.  We’re also including the “price per page” of the comics we review.
Remember, you can hear full audio reviews on the Episode page at

DC:  Adventure Comics #1 (W: Geoff Johns  A: Francis Manapul)

Bob: 4/5    John: 3/5
$3.99 – 22 pgs + 8pg 2nd feature– 13.3 cents/page (color)
Solid “day in the life” story featuring Conner Kent (Superboy).  I liked the characterization and storytelling (some really nice stuff with Krypto), but this was not the most action-packed choice of story for a 1st issue.  For folks who have a predisposition for liking the characters, this was great and will “sell the series”.  I’m not as sure that this will be similarly effective on selling this to new readers.  The Legion “2nd feature” was a bit weaker.  While a good story, I think it should have more strongly featured Legion members other than Starman.

Marvel: Lockjaw & the Pet Avengers #4 (W: Chris Eliopoulos  A: Ig Guara)
Bob: 3/5    John: 4/5
$2.99 – 23 pgs – 13 cents/page (color)
Excellent comic for younger readers, I’d highly recommend this series for any parent who wants an all ages comic to read with your kids.  For me personally, I’d have preferred if Eliopuolos stuck more to the “pets” that are strongly associated with superheroes (Lockheed, Lockjaw, Redwing, Frog Thor, Zabu) as adventurers.  Speedball’s cat is a bit of a stretch, and the dog “Ms. Lion” is completely unnecessary.

Image Comics: G-Man: Cape Crisis #1 (W/A: Chris Giarrusso)
Bob: 3/5    John: 3/5
$2.99 – 28 pgs – 10.7 cents/page (color)
This didn’t hold up as much in a feature length story as it did in shorter 1-2 page “gag” strips.  The main weakness is that the comedic “beats” were just not there that usually punch up the shorter strips.  On the other hand, it was a decent enough story and suitable for all ages, there was also good value given the 20 page main story and 8 pages of back-up strips, I particularly liked the art on the “Pix” backup.

Doom Patrol #1 / War of Kings #6 / The Boys #33

Saturday, August 22nd, 2009

This is Bob from the Weekly Comics Spotlight podcast with short reviews “by the #s” (with a rating out of 5) of the books we review on our weekly show.  We’re also including the “price per page” of the comics we review.
Remember, you can hear full audio reviews on the Episode page at

DC:  Doom Patrol #1 (W: Keith Giffen  A: Matthew Clark/Ryan Livesay)
    Metal Men 2nd Feature (W: Keith Giffen/JM DeMatteis  A: Kevin Maguire)
Bob: 4/5    John: 4/5     2nd Feature: Bob: 5/5    John: 5/5
$3.99 – 30 (20+10) pgs – 13.6 cents/page (color)
After a slow start, this turned in to a really great comic (picked up after clearing out some extraneous team members from the last DP run).  I loved the characterizations of the indicidual characters, particularly the scene with Elasti-Girl & Bumblebee.  The Metal Men backup was particularly well done, to the point that I wish it was the main feature!  This book is a winner, I’m adding it to my pull list.

Marvel: War of Kings #6 (W: Dan Abnett/Andy Lanning  A: Paul Pelletier/Rick Magyar&Andrew Hennessy)
Bob: 4/5    John: 4/5
$3.99 – 22 pgs – 13.6 cents/page (color)
Solid progression in the “Marvel Cosmic” saga. Though weakened by lack of solid closure at the end of this mini in issue #6 (it looks like we’ll need to get the “Who Will Rule?” one shot to get the real conclusion).  That said, I’m really enjoying the marvel cosmic stuff headed up by Abnett & Lanning, pick up the trade & try it out!

Dynamite: The Boys #33 (W: Garth Ennis  A: John McCrea/Keith Burns)
Bob: 3/5    John: 4/5
$2.99 – 22 pgs – 15.9 cents/page (color)
While I generally think The Boys is a brilliantly satirical title, this particular issue fell a bit flat for me.  Not every issue in a long run is going to be brilliant, and this was just not resonating with me, I suspect it was the combination of the fill-in artist (whilst Darrick Robinson is off doing the Herogasm mini) as well as plot developments which caused a lot of totally incomprehensible dialogue in the issue.

Radical Publishing Spotlight (Featuring Incarnate #1).

Saturday, August 22nd, 2009

This is Bob from the Weekly Comics Spotlight podcast with a spotlight on a lot of the great titles from Radical Publishing.
Remember, you can hear full audio reviews on the Episode page at

Since their launch a bit over a year ago, Radical has put out an impressive array of comics.  Their hallmark features are beautiful art coupled with stories that weave tales of interesting characters and worlds.

They stand out because they’re not re-runs of things we’re seeing in other comics, instead they grab the reader with gripping tales of horror, fantasy, sci-fi, and high adventure that I’m not seeing anywhere in the 120+ other monthly comics I read.

If you’ve never tried a Radical Comic, give the episode a listen, hear some of the creators talk about their stories, and decide if there is something that looks interesting, I’m betting there will be.  With the range of thitles they’ve put out so far, there should be something for anyone and these titles are definitely worth a look:

Nick Simmons: Writer/creator/penciler of Incarnate
They cannot die. They feel no pain. They hunger for human flesh. They are Revenants. Centuries ago, the Revenant known as Mot was worshipped as a God. Now, he walks the Earth in search of a purpose to his immortality – but when a secret society discovers a way to kill Revenants, Mot and his fellow immortals must make a choice: Hunt or be hunted.

Barry Levine: Radical Publisher - Givens an overview of Radical & it’s mission.  The thing I love about Barry is you can hear his passion for the stories in the comkics when he talks about them.

Steve Niles: Writer of City of Dust
Special detective Philip Khrome doesn’t enforce Imagination, instead he works in homicide; that’s where the action is, and he’s seen it all before. But criminals evolve and the world is forever changing. When a killing spree hits his department, Khrome finds himself face-to-face with a perpetrator who has merged reality with superstition, and nothing is what it seems.

Mark Long and Nick Sagan: Creators of Shrapnel
Venus, 2250. After five years of war, the last free colony in the Solar System is about to fall. Unknown to the attacking Marines—or even the colonists themselves—the most infamous heroine of the war has gone into hiding in exile on their planet. Now she must organize a revolt against the very Marines she once fought alongside and lead the colonists to freedom.

Steve Pugh: Writer/artist of Hotwire
In the near future, the living and the dead share the same space. Most of the “Blue Lights” are harmless, witless drones, as lost in death as they were in life. Some want revenge. Some want power. Some even want company to join them in the ranks of the departed.  Enter Alice Hotwire, Detective Exorcist. She’s the best there is at keeping the peace on the Blue Light beat and her fellow officers hate her for it. It’s a job she doesn’t want, in a world she doesn’t understand. But, when a break-in at the Maximum Security Necropolis sets off a surge of violent, brutal hauntings, Alice Hotwire knows she’s the only one that can pull the city from the brink of chaos.

Sam Sarkar: Writer of Caliber

In the far reaches of the Old Pacific Northwest lies a world where lawlessness runs rampant and only a mystical six-shooter forged from the metal of the legendary Excalibur can balance the scales.  With Caliber in hand and posse at his side, Arthur must fulfill his destiny as the Lawbringer to defeat evil and restore order to his home.

David Hine: Writer of FVZA (Federal Vampire & Zombie Agency)
Throughout history, from the Civil War to World War II, the FVZA protected humanity from the blood-sucking, flesh-eating hordes — until a cure was discovered that sent the undead to their graves. When a new incurable strain of the virus ravages a small town in America, Agent Landra Pecos must call upon her lethal skills to eradicate the threat. But as Landra delves deeper into her investigation of the undead menace, she uncovers shocking secrets that will change her life forever.

Blackest Night: Tales of the Corps #3 / Ultimatum #5 / Fear Agent #27

Monday, August 17th, 2009

This is Bob from the Weekly Comics Spotlight podcast with short reviews “by the #s” (with a rating out of 5) of the books we review on our weekly show.  We’re also including the “price per page” of the comics we review.
Remember, you can hear full audio reviews on the Episode page at

DC:  Blackest Night: Tales of the Corps #3 (W: Peter Tomasi  A: Chris Samnee/Mike Mayhew)
Bob: 4/5    John: 4/5
$3.99 – 18 new pgs (color) + 12 reprint pages (B&W)
Overall, this was a great series, marred by the unsolicited inclusion (in this issue) of a reprint of Blackest Night #0.  As far as I’m aware, this is the 1st time DC has chosen to not take the “high road” on a $3.99 and give readers extra all-new material for the extra $1, instead throwing in a reprint to pad out the issue.  We didn’t even get the standard 22 new pages in this one, and this would have gotten a 5/5 had there been a full issue of new content.
The stories that ARE in here are excellent, a story about Kilowog when he was a recruit and the GL drill instructor Ermey (a nod, no doubt, to R. Lee Ermey) who forged him into the Lantern he is today.  This was followed up by a great Arisia story with some superb Mike Mayhew art that gives some insight into the GL legacy in her family, but it was far too short.

Marvel: Ultimatum #5 (W: Jeph Loeb  A: David Finch/Danny Miki)
Bob: 3/5    John: 2/5
$3.99 – 27 pgs (color)
This capped off a 5-issue kill-fest that was really a sad way for Marvel to close off 10 years of the Ultimate Universe before it’s relaunch.  The series was the comics equivalent of a violent summer blockbuster film that exists for action & explosions with only the thinnest strands of plot & story linking together the scenes of mayhem.  That’s not to say that this cannot be enjoyed, it certainly can be savored in the same way as a “popcorn” film, but it could have been something a lot more, and the Ultimate universe deserved a much better epitaph than this series.

Dark Horse: Fear Agent #27 (W: Rick Remender  A: Tony Moore/John Lucas)
Bob: 3/5    John: 3/5
$3.50 – 22 pgs – 15.9 cents/page (color)
I love this series in general, but it really suffers from delays between issues.  As a result, I cannot really recommend reading this in issues, you’re much better off waiting for the trade.  Remender says (at the end of this issue) that he has one more Fear Agent arc to tell and it won’t be solicited until it is mostly complete so that it can ship on time.  We’ll see.  It would be better to wait until it is COMPLETELY complete, in my mind, given the past challenges.  As for this story itself, it seemed like kind of a rushed ending, and was a bit confusing, but some of that probably had to do with my foggy memory of past parts.  What I do know is that there was no sense of closure at the end, and this means by the time the next arc comes out (in a year or so), I will be similarly detached from this cliff-hanger unless there is a really good re-cap.   Stick with the trades, and skip the “I Against I” storyline completely until the next trade becomes available in a couple of years, then get them together.

Final Crisis: Legion of Three Worlds #5 / Amazing Spider-Man #600 / Cyber Force-Hunter Killer #1 / Incredible Hulk #600

Monday, August 10th, 2009

This is Bob from the Weekly Comics Spotlight podcast with short reviews “by the #s” (with a rating out of 5) of the books we review on our weekly show.  We’re also including the “price per page” of the comics we review.
Remember, you can hear full audio reviews on the Episode page at

DC:  Final Crisis: Legion of 3 Worlds #5 (W: Geoff Johns  A: George Perez/Scott Koblish)
Bob: 5/5    John: 5/5
$3.99 – 30 pgs – 13.3 cents/page (color)
This series was only marred by the long delays between issues and the marketing tie-in to the “Final Crisis” event that I could have done without.  As time goes on, this series will exist as a stupendous TPB that will transcend the delays that fans had to endure as the issues came out.  It’s ironic that the loyal fans who support a book in its initial periodical release bear the brunt of this effect and as a result get a story that is harder to follow than necessary, while those who “wait for the trade” are immune to the effect.
In any event, a great story with great art. Tied up a lot of loose ends, and complex, yet understandable.  Basically, everything the main Final Crisis series was not.

Marvel: The Amazing Spider-Man #600 (W: Dan Slott  A: John Romita, Jr./Klaus Janson)
Bob: 5/5    John: 5/5
$4.99 – 102 pgs – 4.9 cents/page (color)
102 all-new pages!  It’s a shame Marvel didn’t choose to include a cover gallery like they did in many of the other recent anniversary issues.  Other than that, a really good story that had a new take on Dr. Octopus (that does not seem to be sitting well with all fans, but that I didn’t really mind, and this with Doc Ock as my favorite Spidey bad-guy).  I thought the new take on the character was an interesting 21st century twist on his previously established cybernetic control of his arms.  Guest stars galore, the wedding of Aunt May, and plenty of moments with his supporting cast.  Everything I look for in a Spidey comic.  So far the best of the “multiples of 100” anniversary issues Marvel has put out.

Top Cow: Cyber Force/Hunter Killer #1 (W: Mark Waid  A: Kenneth Rocafort)
Bob: 4/5    John: 4/5
$3.50 – 22 pgs – 15.9 cents/page (color)
A cool story, with some interesting “extras” (including content on the I liked the fact that I could follow the story even though I’m almost completely unfamiliar with the Cyber Force characters, certainly a sign of a good writer.  I did follow the Hunter/Killer series that was out previously and this mostly picks up from that storyline, so seems like this will mostly appeal to fans of Hunter/Killer.

Bonus Book! The Incredible Hulk #600 by Marvel Comics (W: Jeph Loeb  A: Ed McGuinness/Mark Farmer)
Bob: 3/5    John: 3/5
$4.99 – 56 pgs – 8.9 cents/page (color)
Fairly weak as a Giant-Sized anniversary issue.  While the solicitation did not lie (I suppose some secret about something was revealed in this issue), Marvel certainly implied that we’d find out the identity of the Red Hulk in this issue.  We do not.  A fairly pedestrian story, weak back-ups stories, and a reprint of Hulk: Grey #1.   This did not hold a candle to Spider-Man #600.

Blackest Night #1 / Mighty Avengers #27 / Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep #1

Monday, August 10th, 2009

This is Bob from the Weekly Comics Spotlight podcast with short reviews “by the #s” (with a rating out of 5) of the books we review on our weekly show.  Life has intervened so I’m a few weeks behind and hope to catch up soon.
Remember, you can hear full audio reviews on the Episode page at

DC:  Blackest Night #1 (W: Geoff Johns  A: Ivan Reis)
Bob: 5/5    John: 5/5

This is what Green Lantern has been building up to since the Sinestro Corps War, and if this first issue is any indication, we’re in for a hell of a ride!  If you’re getting any DC comics, you should be getting this.  A story worthy of being told as an “event”.

Marvel: Mighty Avengers #27 (W: Christos Gage/Dan Slott  A: Khoi Pham/Allen Martinez)
Bob: 4/5    John: 3/5
A really cool story with a heretofore unknown Inhuman of almost immeasurable power.  It looks like it’s going to take everyone who’s ever been an Avenger to stop him, this is another one that is off to a great start and has the makings of a really good story.

Boom!: Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep #1 (W: Philip K. Dick  A: Tony Parker)
Bob: 3/5    John: 3/5
A word-for-word adaption of the Philip K. Dick novel that is the basis for the movie Blade Runner, that is both the strength & weakness of this comic.  Your enjoyment of this is going to hinge directly on your enjoyment of Dick’s story.  The fact that every word is left intact have in many cases left us with captions that directly tell us what we are seeing in the art and that is not something I like to see in a comic.  When the picture conveys the info, I don’t need the redundant words.  However, I can see this being a huge plus to hardcore Philip K. Dick fans.

Detective Comics #854 / Dark Reign: Elektra #4 / PVP # 42 / Gotham City Sirens #1

Tuesday, July 21st, 2009

This is Bob from the Weekly Comics Spotlight podcast with short reviews “by the #s” (with a rating out of 5) of the books we review on our weekly show.  We’re also including the “price per page” of the comics we review.
Remember, you can hear full audio reviews on the Episode page at

DC:  Detective Comics #854 (W: Greg Rucka A: JH Williams III + Cully Hamner)
Bob: 5/5    John: 4/5
$3.99 – 24+8 pgs – 12.5 cents/page (color)
This is the best comics DC has put out this year.  Visually stunning, if JH Williams does not get an Eisner nomination out of this, then there is no justice in the comics award community.  Pick this book up!

Marvel: Dark Reign: Elektra #4 (W: Zeb Wells  A: Clay Mann / Mark Pennington)
Bob: 4/5    John: 3/5
$3.99 – 23 pgs – 18.1  cents/page (color)
I was predisposed to dislike this series (due to the $3.99 for a normal-length comic factor), but Zeb Wells won me over with a very entertaining story coupled with really nice art.  I’m willing to give a lot of $3.99 comics a try (especially when DCBS has a special discount on #1) but I only continue with the ones that get high marks.  This one was good.

Image: PVP #42 (W/A: Scott Kurtz)
Bob: 2/5    John: 2/5
$3.50  – 20 pgs – 17.5 cents/page (B&W)
Personally, I see no excuse for putting out a comic with only 20 pages of REPRINT material over 6 months late, and slapping a $3.50 price tag on it.  I used to be a huge supported of PVP, this is the last issue of the comic I’ll get.  I’ll read it on-line for free.


Bonus Book! Gotham City Sirens #1 by DC (W: Paul Dini  A: Guillem March)
Bob: 3/5    John: 4/5
$2.99 – 22 pgs – 13.6 cents/page (color)
An OK comic, but I think DC went a little over-board with expanding the bat-franchise.  If you really want to read about the “bad girls of Gotham” then this will be right up your alley.

Wednesday Comics #1 / Ms. Marvel #41 / Drafted: 100 Days

Tuesday, July 21st, 2009

100 EPISODES!!!!

This is Bob from the Weekly Comics Spotlight podcast with short reviews “by the #s” (with a rating out of 5) of the books we review on our weekly show.  We’re also including the “price per page” of the comics we review.
Remember, you can hear full audio reviews on the Episode page at

DC:  Wednesday Comics #1 (W: various A: various)
Bob: 3/5    John: 2/5
$3.99 – 15 over-sized pgs (color)
This is going to be long…..
I think it was pretty typical for an anthology.  Some stuff I absolutely loved, some stuff I hated, the rest in the middle.  While I respect DC for trying something new here, what this really boiled down to was a set of 1-page comics printed really big…..innovative for comics?  Yes.  The greatest thing since Jack Kirby picked up a pencil?   Certainly not.
Given that the writers were well aware of the “page a week” format, I would have expected more of them to structure their stories in such a way that the all-important 1st page was a real “grabber” and this just did not seem to be the case for most of the features.

Metal Men
- Didio did good.  The art was really nice too.
Kamandi - This was channeling an old Hal Foster Prince valiant page if anything was.
Metamorpho - Wow!  Allred draws a nice Saphire Stagg.

Adam Strange - Very nicely done!  A lot of story packed into this page
Supergirl - Nice art, not much story yet, but with this creative team, should be fun when it gets going.
Green Lantern - Nice setup, mostly for people familiar with the characters, though.  I have high hopes for this once it gets going.

- Some people were loving the “split page” with Iris in a “Juliet Jones” kind of strip along the bottom.  That was not working for me, I’d rather have seen Flash for the whole page.
Sgt. Rock - Not much of a story here yet.  Good art, seems like this will get better.
Catwoman/Demon - Not much of a story here yet.  Good art, seems like this will get better.
Batman - Seems like Azzarello could have done a 1st page with a bit more “punch”
Superman - Really weak 1st page, the alien looks goofy, not really in step with the general painted art style.

- Art was really off-putting for me for some reason.  kept me from getting into the story, just a personal thing, though, seems like the story will be decent enough.
Hawkman - I’m thinking that a story narrated by a bird, while interesting conceptually, is not going to work for me.

Teen Titans
- Not only was this muddled, Galloway could not even be bothered to draw facial features on Wonder Girl in the top row.
Wonder Woman- I could not even make it through reading the entire page….
The Format - I really don’t like this format.  I’m certainly not going with the popular opinion on this one though, I lot of people are heralding this as brilliant & innovative.  I think they want to evoke being a 10-year-old laying on the floor to read the Sunday comics, but I’m not 10, and I don’t want to lay on the floor to read this.  This was difficult to read while sitting up on my couch (my preferred reading location) so that was a detractor for me.

If I average all this out, Wednesday comics gets a 3/5 from me.  Some people are calling this brilliant, but different people like different things.  I also suspect certain proponent of this title overlook the parts they don’t love and concentrate on the parts they do.  If I did this, it would certainly get a higher rating, but I am rating it based on ALL the content.

Marvel: Ms. Marvel #41 (W: Brian Reed  A:Sergio Arino)
Bob: 4/5    John: 4/5
$2.99 – 22 pgs – 13.6  cents/page (color)
I had dropped Ms. Marvel several issue ago when Carol Danvers was replaced by Karla Sofen (Moonstone) as part of Marvel’s “put bad guys ABSOLUTELY EVERYWHERE” Dark Reign event.  I picked it up here and I’m glad I did, as it looks like they are working Carol Danvers back into her own book.  I liked the various guest stars (Wolverine & Spider-Man, while used as guest stars in different books a lot) were handled quite nicely here and seemed to have a decent reason for being featured.  All-in-all I’m glad I picked this book up and will be adding Ms. Marvel back onto my pull list.

DDP: Drafted: 100 Days One-Shot (W: Mark Powers  A: Chris Lie/Junaidi&Faisal)
Bob: 3/5    John: 3/5
$5.99  – 48 pgs – 12.5 cents/page (color)
On first glance, what one would think of this book is high price, average art, Obama opportunism.  If I had just seen this on the rack at the comics shop & had not been reviewing it for this episode (hey, Episode 100 à “100 Days”, we HAD to review this one) I would have definitely left this one sitting on the rack at the LCS.  That said, upon reading it, I found it to be a pretty good story, a bit of human drama set in an obligatory post-alien invasion world that’s been decimated, with Barack Obama thrown in to spice things up……  Brilliant?  Certainly not, but a decent story, more of a “must read” for people who have read & enjoyed previous “Drafted” comics, though.

Justice League: Cry for Justice #1 / Captain America: Reborn #1 / Greek Street #1

Tuesday, July 21st, 2009

This is Bob from the Weekly Comics Spotlight podcast with short reviews “by the #s” (with a rating out of 5) of the books we review on our weekly show.  We’re also including the “price per page” of the comics we review.
Remember, you can hear full audio reviews on the Episode page at

DC:  Justice League: Cry for Justice #1 (W: James Robinson  A: Mauro Cascioli)
Bob: 4/5    John: 4/5
$3.99 – 24 pgs – 16.6 cents/page (color)
A lot of setup & team forming, but Robinson did a really good job of capturing the personalities of the various heroes featured in this issue.  I like the idea of a JLA that goes after “Justice” in a more proactive way instead of always reacting to what villains do, but ramped back a bit from the “extreme” versions where proactive is little more than a euphemism for fascist.

Marvel: (Captain America) Reborn #1 (W: Ed Brubaker  A: Bryan Hitch/Butch Guice)
Bob: 4/5    John: 4/5
$3.99 – 13.3 pgs – 18.1  cents/page (color)
Good story, really nice art.  I’m curious about where this one will end up, Brubaker certainly has a good track record, but the “unstuck in time” Cap could end up being a great way to bring him back, or a questionable one depending on how the story plays out over the rest of this series.  Well worth reading, though.

DC/Vertigo: Greek Street #1 (W: Peter Milligan  A: Davide Gianfelice)
Bob: 2/5    John: x/5
$1.00  – 32 pgs – 3.1 cents/page
I can see someone really liking this comic, but it really did nothing for me.  I could see that there were supposed to be lots of parallels to Greek myth, but the story was too layered and I’m not really looking for entertainment that I have to struggle to get the meaning out of.  Some people love that and I can respect that, they might love this series.  For me, I have no problem with a series that has deep themes & content as long as the writer crafts a surface story that can be enjoyed in parallel, which was what I was not seeing here.