Thursday, March 23, 2017

DC Comics Best Covers of the Week 3/22/17

My Forehead is Peeling

Hello again! Many apologies for missing last week, I was away in Florida and could only commit to the essential contributions to Weird Science DC Comics. Meaning, specifically, my reviews. I'm sure there were some swell comic book covers last week, unfortunately there was no Great Arbiter to judge and order them in a group of five! What a shame. Yesterday's spent, so let's focus on the definitively best DC Comics covers for this week!
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Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Batman/TMNT Adventures #5 Review


Batman/TMNT Adventures #5

Writer: Matthew K. Manning
Art Team: Jon Sommariva, Sean Parsons, & Leonardo Ito
DC Comics/IDW Publishing
Release Date: March 22, 2017
Cover Price:  $3.99

The Adventures of Bat-Angelo and Robin

In the penultimate issue, of most crossovers, usually what occurs is a villain begins a monologue, before the inevitable fight, and start to the final conflict. This is the same path I expected Batman/TMNT Adventures to take since we were finally provided a glimpse of the mastermind behind this whole ordeal last month in the Mad Hatter! Well, here we are, issue in hand, with surprisingly all our heroes already assembled into various working groups, and the ‘bad guy’s’ “giant machine” armed and ready to fire. It sounds to me like we’re setting up, to wrap this early and head home. That couldn’t be the case right? A comic book publisher wouldn’t leave $3.99 on the table would they? Join me inside for some Batman & Turtle Adventure team-up action and let’s see what tricks, if any, are left for this mini-series to achieve.

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Flash #19 Review





Father Figure


Written by: Joshua Williamson
Art by: Jesus Merino, Carmine Di Giandomenico, Andy Owens, Chris Sotomayor and Steve Wands
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 21, 2017


I was a big fan of Sean Ryan's New Suicide Squad near the end of the New 52 and while that may just seem like random love, it's actually not just that.  That's the story where we last saw Reverse Flash which ended up being a redemption story.  Yea, he's still a villain, but Daniel West died a hero no matter what anyone says.  That leads us to this issue and a little worry I have...will Joshua Williamson go with that (it is still in continuity, but you never know) or worse yet, will Wally West even find out the truth.  That second part is the worrisome one since they are going to Boomerang for answers and he isn't usually very reliable. So, what do we find out?  Let's jump in and see...

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Mother Panic #5 Review and **SPOILERS**

Pals with Pretty?

Mother Panic #5

"Broken Things, Part Two"Written By: Jody Houser
Art By: Shawn Crystal
Colors By: Jean-Francois Beaulieu
Letters By: John Workman and Shawn Crystal
Cover Price: $3.99
On Sale Date: March 22, 2017


Last issue, it looked like Mother Panic might have made a brand-new friend.  Not sure she's really all that great with other people... but, hell... it's not like we know all that much about her at this point, right?

Let's check in with Violet and Pretty and see how much they might have in common.


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Deathstroke #15 Review


Blind Man's Bluff

Written by: Christopher Priest
Art by: Larry Hama, Carlo Pagulayan, Jason Paz, Jeromy Cox and Willie Shubert
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 22, 2017

Deathstroke is back, but what I'm more excited about is Power Girl!  Yea, Slade is blind and that's pretty cool, but I actually never thought I'd see Tanya Spears again and Christopher Priest did such a kick ass job with her last issue.  I can only hope this is just the beginning of a long and wonderful friendship.  Oh, who am I kidding?  This is Deathstroke and "wonderful friendship" never factors into anything he has going on.  Anyhow, is this issue good?  Let's find out...


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Teen Titans #6 Review and **SPOILERS**


Gonna Need a Bigger Boat...

Teen Titans #6
"The Rise of Aqualad, Part One"Story and Words: Benjamin Percy
Pencils: Khoi Pham
Inks: Wade Von Grawbadger
Colors: Jim Charalampidis
Letters: Corey Breen
Cover Price: $2.99
On Sale Date: March 22, 2017


Is that... Aqualad on the cover?  I could've sworn he should have been here by now, like, ya know... seven years ago when he was introduced!

Ya know... in that year-long maxi-series that was supposed to set up the DC Universe for the foreseeable future before they just crumpled it all up for The New-52!.  Not that I'm bitter or anything... ahem.  Anyhoo, hey... Aqualad!  Let's get right down to it!


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Action Comics #976 Review and *SPOILERS*



Something Old, Something New, Something Red and Something Blue


Written By: Dan Jurgens
Art By: Doug Mahnke, Jaime Mendoza, Christian Alamy, Trevor Scott, Wil Quintana, Rob Leigh
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 22, 2017

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

It's finally here, the end of the Reborn arc and with it hopefully some answers about what everything means since for the most part we've just been dealing with Mxyzptlk's nonsense and a whole bunch of stuff that hasn't been explained that we've just simply had to go with.  In our previous chapter to this arc, we saw Jon connect with the Red energy versions of Superman and Lois Lane to break the confines Mxy had him in and what looked to me to save his parents from certain death, but when we ended that issue it seemed that the Pre-Flashpoint Superman and Lois were gone and replaced with the New 52 versions of them.  Let's jump into this issue and get the answers we deserve and see what the landscape of Rebirth will look like by the time this arc has ended.  Let's check it out.

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Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps #17 Review and **SPOILERS**



That’ll Do, Kyle. That’ll Do.

Written By: Robert Vendetti 
Artist: Ethan Van Sciver 
Colorist: Jason Wright 
Letterer: Dave Sharpe 
Cover: Van Sciver & Wright 
Cover Price: $2.99 
On Sale Date: March 22, 2017

**NON SPOILERS AND SCORE AT THE BOTTOM**

I’ve talked about it on the Cosmic Treadmill podcast (plug, plug) with Chris before: legacy superheroes work. I am from the tail end of a generation that dealt with pre-Crisis on Infinite Earths continuity, and when Wally West took over the mantle from Barry Allen, I thought it would never work. When most of the Justice Society of America was eliminated during Zero Hour, I was really dubious about the new Starman and other composite characters that spun from it. But you know what? A newer generation did embrace them, and the proof is in my co-host Chris, for whom Wally is “his” Flash. Truth be told, he’s not a lot younger than me, and he would be more on the early side of that post-Crisis generation, (and sort of got into DC Comics toward the end of the 1990s besides) but the fact still holds. To me, Kyle Rayner is more of a cipher, a character I’ve never connected with like the initial three Green Lanterns. But I know that when Chris sees this cover, with Kyle back in the GL togs, he’s going to get chills. Is there more to the issue than Chris chills? Read my review and find out!
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Batgirl #9 Review and **SPOILERS**



Wait Until Your Father Gets Home

Script: Hope Larson 
Pencils & Cover: Chris Wildgoose 
Inks: Jon Lam 
Colors: Mat Lopes 
Letters: Deron Bennett 
Cover Price: $2.99 
On Sale Date: March 22, 2017

**NON SPOILERS AND SCORE AT THE BOTTOM**

Remember that time Batgirl stepped out of the shower and it turned out that the whole existence of Burnside was a dream?

No? That was just my dream, then? Makes sense, since I was naked and she was fully clothed. Here’s my review of Batgirl #9.
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Suicide Squad #14 Review and **SPOILERS**



Better Together

Writer: Rob Williams 
Penciller: John Romita Jr. 
Inker: Richard Friend 
Colorist: Dean White 
Cover: Romita, Friend & White 
Back-up Penciller: Eddy Barrows 
Back-up Inker: Eber Ferreira 
Back-up Colorist: Adriano Lucas 
Letterer: Pat Brosseau 
Cover Price: $2.99 
On Sale Date: March 22, 2017

**NON SPOILERS AND SCORE AT THE BOTTOM**

I would like to suggest something radical that could change the nature of many comic books coming from the DC offices these days: superheroes do what they do, in part, because it is fun. They enjoy it. They may be motivated by a death in the family, or guilt, or a youth spent at the 4H Club, but ultimately they zap things with hand blasters because it’s a good time. And villains are the same way. You think it’s expedient for the Riddler to set up those complicated, oversized death traps just to rob a museum? His net profit must be less than five percent—and that’s if he pulls off the heist, which is unlikely. Anyway, I’d really like to see some of this so-called fun employed in this title. Everyone is such a sad sack all the time, tasked with responsibility and misery and bitter feelings, when really they could be reveling in the fact that they can employ their bizarre talents on the government’s dime. Then again, they haven’t gone anywhere outside of New Orleans for like nine fucking issues, so maybe resentment has set in. You know when I’m reviewing the comic book at hand in the introduction, things are about to get heated! Strap in for a potentially incendiary review of Suicide Squad #14, right here!
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Wonder Woman #19 Review and *SPOILERS*



Crazy No More


Written By: Greg Rucka
Art By: Liam Sharp, Laura Martin, Jodi Wynne
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 22, 2017

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

I've really been digging how we've been tying together the past and the present with this series over each issue because while originally it seemed like two different books we were getting, it's started to really play well in telling this story and I've found myself more interested than ever with what we've been getting lately.  In our previous "Truth" issue, we saw Wonder Woman crazy as hell as she talked to some snake in her arm, but thankfully it looks like all that is over with now that Etta and Steve have brought Ferdinand to see her........... Hopefully, it's explained well because it would suck just to have crazy for the sake of crazy.  Let's jump into this issue and see what's going on with our hero, especially once she finds out that Barbara Minerva has become Cheetah again.  Let's check it out.
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The Hellblazer #8 Review and **SPOILERS**



The Djinn Con is In, John

Writer: Simon Oliver 
Artist: Philip Tan 
Colorist: Elmer Santos 
Lettering: Sal Cipriano 
Cover Artist: Declan Shalvey with Jordie Bellaire 
Cover Price: $2.99 
On Sale Date: March 22, 2017

**NON SPOILERS AND SCORE AT THE BOTTOM**

When we divvy up the DC Comics among ourselves, I normally let Jim and Eric pick theirs first, then I take whatever’s left. I’m fine with that role, someone’s got to play clean-up and tackle the unloved series. The only caveat is that I normally take all the “strange” titles, ones with elementals or magic-based characters that exist a half-step outside of the mainstream DCU. And indeed, I asked specifically for the title in this review, the Hellblazer—in fact,  I believe I was already reviewing its previous iteration, Constantine: The Hellblazer, by James Tynion IV and Riley Rossmo (mostly) and simply cruised into reviewing this as a matter of course. Made sense to me. I love John Constantine and despite having been somewhat neutered by his inclusion in the DCU, I’ve enjoyed it more often than not.

Well, I’m really regretting being the “strange titles” guy about now. Read my review of the Hellblazer #8 and find out why.
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Doom Patrol #5 Review and **SPOILERS**



Time Keeps on Slippin’

Writer: Gerard Way 
Artist & Cover: Nick Derington 
Colorist: Tamra Bonvillain 
Letterer: Todd Klein 
Cover Price: $3.99 
On Sale Date: March 22, 2017

**NON SPOILERS AND SCORE AT THE BOTTOM**

Author and foppish gadabout Oscar Wilde is not known to have said, “the only thing better than inserting time travel into your science fiction is not inserting time travel into your science fiction.” The reason for this is because traveling through time, being a logical impossibility, makes the creation a coherent narrative extremely difficult. Oh, you can impose any arbitrary “rules” you like, but you’ll immediately come up against “two atoms can’t occupy the same space at the same time” and it’s done. Unless, of course, you throw out all rules entirely. Doom Patrol has done that, both in the narrative and publishing schedule, and while I’d love to ascribe the extreme delay of this issue to wayward time travel, I can’t help but admit that my interest has waned with each re-solicit. So am I going to be a grumpy gus this whole review and keep harping on how this was the first Young Animal title and it’s on target to be the last to finish its inaugural story arc? Check out my review of Doom Patrol #5 and find out!
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Batman Beyond #6 Review and *SPOILERS*



Batman.......... Sometimes


Written By: Dan Jurgens
Art By: Bernard Chang, Marcelo Maiolo, Travis Lanham
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 22, 2017

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

Terminal is dead and the Joker is back in town....... That's essentially all we got from the previous arc and while I enjoyed it for the most part, it really just forced its way to an ending in the last issue.  Now it's time to get on with our Batman Beyond life and see what Terry McGinnis has left in the tank now that he's back to being Batman full time and now has Bruce Wayne back in his life.  Hopefully, as things continue we'll see what's up with Terry's new Batman suit and see if his little brother Matt starts training to be his new Robin.  Yeah, I don't know why Terry would want to put Matt in danger like that, but I just love the idea and hope that it's brought to page in this series because he's been a big help to his big brother so far, not to mention how much he helped when Tim Drake was rocking the bat suit.  Let's jump into this issue and see what the next arc holds and what Curare is doing back in town.  Let's check it out.
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Blue Beetle #7 Review and *SPOILERS*



Fate of the Scarab


Written By: Keith Giffen
Art By: Scott Kolins, Romulo Fajardo Jr., Josh Reed
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 22, 2017

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

The quest to turn Jaime's alien scarab into a mystical object continues as we previously saw Dr. Fate jump into the mix after the Blue Beetle went and had his damn essence pulled out of him by Mordecai, making the scarab drive on auto-pilot........... or the way it always wanted to go now that Jaime wasn't holding it back.  Who knows what's up with the scarab now or what its intentions are........ you know, since we had that big flashback about five issues ago, where it looked like the scarab was a kaiju monster trying to rampage its way through Egypt before the ancient Dr. Fate stopped it.  Either way, whatever the scarab is up to, I hope it will be a good time because now it has to go blow to blow with Fate.  Let's jump into this issue and check it out.
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Detective Comics #953 Review


Sleeping with the Enemy

Written by: James Tynion IV
Art by: Christian Duce, Fernando Blanco, Alex Sinclair, Allen Passalaqua and Sal Cipriano
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 22, 2017

I'm not sure what I'm expecting this week in Detective...Batman stubbornly demanding there is no such thing as a League of Shadows or Shiva kicking more ass than is rightfully possible.  I guess I should admit something, I'm fully expecting both.  While Batman's hard headedness is getting old quickly, I could sit and watch Shiva take down an army of assassins every day and twice on Sunday.  She really has stepped out of the shadows (!) and become one of my favorite villains.  So, how many times does she use a guy as a pin cushion this week?  Let's find out...


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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

PREVIEW: Blue Beetle #7




Written By: Keith Giffen
Art By: Scott Kolins, Romulo Fajardo Jr., Josh Reed
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 22, 2017

Missing families! Kids with superpowers! Mystical beings arriving in El Paso! Who or what has been behind the strange doings in Jaime Reyes’ hometown is about to be revealed. It’s a force so powerful that Dr. Fate has no choice but to team up with Blue Beetle—even though he still suspects that the Beetle might have some connection to the evil entity they must battle. 

Every issue of Blue Beetle I hope that that one will be the one that gets me on the trolley with this character again, but as this series progresses, I'm afraid that DC is making this hero something that I won't recognize anymore.  Hopefully that's not the case and this will be that issue I've been waiting for.

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PREVIEW: Action Comics #976




Written By: Dan Jurgens
Art By: Doug Mahnke, Jaime Mendoza, Christian Alamy, Trevor Scott, Wil Quintana, Rob Leigh
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 22, 2017


“SUPERMAN REBORN” finale! As this epic tale wraps up, Superman’s life is drastically changed...and that’s all we are saying for now—except that you won’t want to miss it!
* The covers by Patrick Gleason and Mick Gray and the variant covers by Gary Frank for SUPERMAN #18-19 and ACTION COMICS #975-976 will connect to form a single vertical image. 
The finale is finally here and with it......... well, hopefully some goddamn answers about what the hell is actually going on in this arc.  

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PREVIEW: Wonder Woman #19




Written By: Greg Rucka
Art By: Liam Sharp, Laura Martin, Jodi Wynne
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 22, 2017

“The Truth” part three! Diana, Steve and Etta come face-to-face with their newest foes—the deadly group known as Poison! But what do they have to do with the plot to unravel Wonder Woman’s life?

Well, I don't know what this solicit is talking about because we've already dealt with Colonel Poison and her Poison Brigade, I just hope we get Wonder Woman out of the nuthouse and that it makes sense.
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PREVIEW: Batman Beyond #6




Written By: Dan Jurgens
Art By: Bernard Chang, Marcelo Maiolo, Travis Lanham
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 22, 2017


“RISE OF THE DEMON” part one! A new world power that no one anticipated or recognizes is reengineering large swaths of the planet in the aftermath of Brother Eye’s destruction. Batman is drawn into this tale of global conquest after a violent visit from his old foe, Curaré. His only chance of success hinges on an old friend joining him in the fight that looms ahead. 

I can't wait to see what we get from this arc now that Bruce Wayne is back and kicking it curmudgeon style, in a world that he no longer recognizes. 

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PREVIEW: Deathstroke #15


Written by: Christopher Priest
Art by: Larry Hama, Carlo Pagulayan, Jason Paz, Jeromy Cox and Willie Shubert
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 22, 2017

“TWILIGHT” part four! Faced with a career-ending diagnosis, Deathstroke is coached by Power Girl to reinvent himself—and comes face to face with a rival assassin known as Deadline!

Oh no, it's Deadline...I heard he's been running around with such villains as Rewrite, The Editor and Sales and Marketing.  Wait a minute, nobody wants to run with Sales and Marketing!

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PREVIEW: Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps #17


Joy and Pain, Sunshine and Rayner

Written By: Robert Vendetti
Artist: Ethan Van Sciver
Colorist: Jason Wright
Letterer: Dave Sharpe
Cover: Van Sciver & Wright
Variant Cover: Kevin Nowlan
Cover Price: $2.99
On Sale Date: March 22, 2017

“QUEST FOR THE BLUE LANTERNS” finale! As both the torchbearer of the Green Lantern Corps and the White Lantern of life, Kyle Rayner’s proved he can wield the entire emotional spectrum. But when forced to choose, which ring will he don—and which Corps will he join for the oncoming threats facing all of time and space?

Looks like it's Kyle's time to shine! And, based on the cover, get a demotion? Read the issue to find out, but check out some preview pages before you do!

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PREVIEW: Mother Panic #5

Don't Look in the Basement

Written By: Jody Houser
Art By: Shawn Crystal
Colors By: Jean-Francois Beaulieu
Letters By: John Workman and Shawn Crystal
Back-up Written By: Jim Krueger
Back-up Pencils By: Phil Hester
Back-up Inks By: Ande Parks
Back-up Colors By: Trish Mulvhill
Back-up Letters By: Deron Bennett
Cover By: Tommy Lee Edwards
Variant Cover By: Michael Cho
Cover Price: $3.99
On Sale Date: March 22, 2017

While hunting a new target, Mother Panic may have found her first ally in the strange and enigmatic Pretty. But nothing involving Gather House is ever what it appears to be. Can Pretty really be trusted? And what exactly is going on in Violet Paige’s basement?

Hey, we're learning more about the title character here! Check out some preview pages below!

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PREVIEW: Doom Patrol #5



The Patrolling Begins

Writer: Gerard Way
Artist & Cover: Nick Derington
Colorist: Tamra Bonvillain
Letterer: Todd Klein
Variant Cover: Farel Dalrymple
Cover Price: $3.99
On Sale Date: March 22, 2017

The team is back together at last, though why they are back together remains an unanswered riddle. After the mind- blowing revelations of the previous issues, Casey Brinke has to figure out what this all means going forward. Or maybe it’s just the end of everything after all? Plus, Robotman punches stuff!

It's about flipping time! Looks like the whole gang together now, so that's good news. Look at some preview pages below! 

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PREVIEW: Teen Titans #6


Long Time No Aquakinesis

Story and Words: Benjamin Percy
Pencils: Khoi Pham
Inks: Wade Von Grawbadger
Colors: Jim Charalampidis
Letters: Corey Breen
Cover: Khoi Pham and Jim Charalampidis
Variant Cover: Chris Burnham and Nathan Fairbairn
Cover Price: $2.99
On Sale Date: March 22, 2017


“THE RISE OF Aqualad” part one! New story! New city! New member? As the team adjusts to their new lives at Titans Tower, Damian investigates a series of strange disappearances in San Francisco. Meanwhile, Jackson Hyde heads west to fulfill his destiny…and finds himself in the crosshairs of the Teen Titans!

Ooh, Aqualad's gonna be in the mix? I can dig that! Have a look at some preview pages!

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