Saturday, January 25, 2014

Harley Quinn #2 Review and *SPOILERS*

Written By: Amanda Conner, Jimmy Palmiotti
Art By: Chad Hardin, Stephane Roux
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 22, 2014


So Harley's luck as been flip flopping lately, yeah she inherited a large property in Coney Island, but she also had a hit put out on her, that's causing every wannabe Deadshot to come out of the woodwork.  So I guess it's a take the bad with the good kind of thing.  Harley also got a job a roller derby girl, and is currently awaiting a call back from a psychiatric hospital where she'll get a chance to put that degree to work, unless they do a background check.  So let's step into the sideways mind of Harley Quinn, and let's see what kind of trouble she can get into this month.

Explain It!:

Since Harley's moved into her new building she's adopted a bad habit, hoarding dead assassins.  So the obvious thing to do is get a refrigerator right?  Oh Harley.  During her hunt for the perfect box to keep her new friends fresh, she stumbles onto a animal rights protest.  Apparently everyone is up in arms about this shelter's policy to put the animals down if they haven't been adopted after thirty days.  Well this obviously pulls at Harley's crazy heart strings, but the shelter also has a policy to not let psychopaths adopt animals.  

Feeling bad about not being able to help those poor animals, Harley needs a pick me up, so she calls her bestie, Ivy for a impromptu girls night out.  We all know that there's not a better time than when Harley and Ivy have a night out on the town.  We all know that right?  So Ivy comes to Coney Island, and listens about Harley's woes on animal euthanasia.  So it's time to break those suckers out.  The only problem is, that instead of hanging around like they did in Pee Wee's Big Adventure, these four legged ingrates take off in different directions.  So Harley goes one way, and Ivy goes the other, and here comes another assassin down a side street.  Harley makes short work of him, by smashing him through the glass window of a meat market, which also solves her animal problem.  Who's a hungry puppy?  

Back at Harley's home Ivy waits patiently for her friend to return, and gets to know Big Tony, and a dog faced boy.  So obviously Ivy's happy to see Harley return, and surprised to find her with a bunch of animals, and a would be assassin in tow.  Once she leads her new friends upstairs though, she realizes that they might be a bit hungry when Bernie, the burnt stuffed beaver that talks to her is instantly mauled.  But most problems are quickly solved as we see Harley throw the assassin into the mix, and the dogs get what they've wanted.  REVENGE ON MAN!  Well maybe just something to eat.  Our two sweethearts decide to sleep on the roof that night, and when Harley awakes in the morning she finds that her friend left her a present before she left.  The whole third floor has been transformed into a lush green wonderland for her and her new pets.  In the end we're left seeing a mysterious man eating jello, and a monologue about Harley being his, and she will make sure all his enemies are eliminated.

Bits and Pieces:

This issue definitely sold me on Harley being the definitive FUN title for the DC Universe.  I had my doubts, but it just oozes a good time.  The writing was completely out there, and I mean that as a good thing, and Chad Hardin's artwork is completely different than anything else I've seen in comics lately, and completely compliments Harley Quinn.  Okay Conner, Palmiotti, and Hardin you've sold me, now keep it up.


Red Hood and The Outlaws #27 Review and *SPOILERS*

Written By: James Tynion IV
Art By: Julius Gopez, Noel Rodriguez
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 22, 2014

The End Of Magic!  

In the last issue of Red Hood and The Outlaws we find out that this whole amnesia thing was Jason and Ducra's plan from the beginning.  So there's a bit of method to the awfulness that was an amnesiatic Jason Todd.  But methods aside at the end of last issue Ducra tells Essence and us that Jason wasn't meant to have his memory returned until Ra's was defeated.  Now that he has it back early he will die.  So hopefully that doesn't happen, but let's find out as we African Anteater Ritual right into this.  Come on people that was a "Can't Buy Me Love" reference, get on the trolley.

Explain It!:

So Ra's is all empowered with the energy of the Untitled from stepping into the well of sins, and Jason hoping to level the odds a bit steps inside as well.  But according to Ra's this will make no difference.  See the whole reason Jason had his mind wiped, and we had to go through the agony of not having the most interesting character in the book actually be there, was because he had too many demons to contend within him.  All the pain, and anger in his life would weigh him down, and not allow the light within to shine to the top, and allow him to win the fight.  So obvious since Red Hood is back, Ra's will use these demons against him.

With the power of the Untitled, Ra's uses Jason's worst fears, and failures against him.  But as we've seen and known, Jason's greatest strength is to be given a shitty hand, and to overcome.  With this Jason begins using the power against Ra's and shows him Talia.  But this only works for a moment.  The two battle, and Jason explains why Ra's can't hold onto the power of the Untitled.  It's because he doesn't have enough of a soul left to use it.  For every second within the well is agony, and as I said before Jason can overcome it and it's not because of Batman, it's because of his friends, and  Ra's isn't as strong as he would like to think.  Ra's is down, and with magical constructs of his friends Jason performs the move he learned in the Zero Year tie-in in issue #25 on Ra's and removes the power of the Untitled from him.  

At this moment Ducra tells Essence it is her time now, and dies.  The power that Ra's possessed is transferred into Essence, and the magical community all across the universe feels the balance of power shift towards the light.  In the end Essence forces Ra's Al Ghul to let Red Hood, Starfire, and Arsenal leave, and the trio decides that it's time to actually start doing some good for a change.  Woo!  Next month we're back to Red Hood and The Outlaws kicking ass and taking names without all the magical influences.  See you then.

Bits and Pieces:

I really hate to say that I think the reason I enjoyed this issue so much, was because it ended this story arc.  It's a very strange feeling to be so satisfied with an issue, because you know it will become more next issue.  But strangeness aside, this wasn't a bad end, it answered all the questions I had, and left me satisfied with the outcome.  So complete your collection of Red Hood's foray into the land of Magic, and check this out, and hopefully we'll be getting back to the Red Hood who kicks as while taking names.


Trinity of Sin: Pandora #7 Review and *SPOILERS*

Written By: Ray Fawkes
Art By: Staz Johnson, Francis Portela
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 22, 2014

Light Vs. Blight

In the last issue of the Forever Evil: Blight story, the new Justice League Dark made their way to heaven, to get some answers from god.  While there each of them were given a vision to help them with their emotional burdens, understanding of themselves, etc, etc.  In the end the final piece of the team was added as the archangel Zauriel became the seventh member of the JLD.  So now it's time to go back on the offensive against the evil that lives within us all.  Let's check it out.

Explain It!:

We begin this story with Pandora reflecting on her time in heaven, and the vision she was shown by the Scottish Terrier that is god, or the voice of god for all of you out there that get pissed off at things like god being a dog.  Pandora remembers that in the vision she was asked by a enigmatic voice, "What are you".  The vision takes her into space, where she looks upon all the stars and realizes that each one of these stars is the light that is inside all of us shining through the darkness.  Even though we live in a world of darkness we all chose to shine in spite of it.  This is usually where I'd try to write something funny or clever, but this is just really beautiful.  You made my day Ray Fawkes, thank you.

So enough of the mushy stuff.  As Pandora is having her revelation about becoming the host for the light, the JLD team is getting primed to take on Blight for what they hope is the final time.  As the House of Mystery zeros in on the Duke of Darkness, Constantine calls the play for his team.  Phantom Stranger is to engage Blight directly, Nightmare Nurse will maintain their psychic shields, Swamp Thing's job is to bind, and disrupt Blight's movements, and Dead Man (in the body of the Sea King) and Zauriel are on the front lines.

The doors open on the George Washington Bridge, and Blight and the Six Deadly sins are waiting for them.  The two sides charge at one another, and when Blight and Pandora clash a explosion engulfs the area.  When the smoke clears the team see's that Pandora has become the host for the light, and that the energy of the two in the throws of combat has destroyed the remaining Sins.  Pandora's work is finally done, but will she survive long enough for a victory dance?  Man this is fun.  Pandora struggles with Blight, and as she does she feels the light shining within the people all over the world, and thinks about her vision.  "What are you".  She thought about what she was, but realizes that the past doesn't matter.  This is what she is now.  With this realization she finds the power to free Chris Esperanza from Blight.

The fight looks to be over, and Phantom Stranger goes to his friend to make sure he's alright.  But what they should of done was listen to Constantine, who keeps yelling about killing the kid so Blight doesn't have a host in the physical world.  But nobody ever listens to Constantine.  Too Cockney.  So Chris turns into Blight again, and Pandora and him throw themselves off the bridge and continue to fight underwater, as the team looks on.  Hopefully we can keep this momentum going in the next installment in Justice League Dark #27.

Bits and Pieces:

There isn't anymore room for naysayers of this story.  While it may have started out as a weaker story to the Forever Evil event, it surely has moved itself to the forefront of the tie-ins.  Between this and Constantine #10, I've been blown away, and have been kept on my toes about what they're going to do next.  So if you love the Dark characters, or just good story telling in general go get this, and have a new found faith in what the Dark titles can be.


Batman '66 #26 Review

Written by: Jeff Parker
Art by: Ruben Procopio
Cover Price: $0.99
Release Date: January 22, 2014

Oh, What a Shame

Shame is a very obscure Batman villain and that is such a...well, shame.  Though he appeared in four TV episodes as well as two episodes of Brave and the Bold, I never have heard anyone mention him.  For the uninitiated, he is a villain who fashions himself an outlaw of the Old West.  Though he is a bit of a coward, he claims he's second to none with his six shooters and often bends the rules when confronting Batman.  The thing I remember most about his television appearances though, was his purple polka dotted bandanna. Priceless.  Well, I'm glad to say that Batman '66 #26 features The Conniving Cowboy of Crime, bandanna and all.

I mentioned last issue that Jeff Parker was toning back the campiness factor a bit and giving readers a better plot and book in general.  This is again the case this week and I am grateful.  The campy humor is always going to be in Batman '66 book, but Parker is letting the material speak for itself.  Because of that, we are getting issues that could be right from the television series, not parodies of them.

This issue has a bunch of funny moments, but my favorites involve Shame's Indian partner, Thunderhawk.  He's a Yale graduate that keeps showing his scholarly roots, much to Shame's dismay.  Of course, Batman knows Thunderhawk's full resume (why wouldn't he?) and promises to help clear his name in a mistaken identity/Fission Research incident.  Only in a Batman '66 review could I write that and know it makes total sense.

One thing I must note.  I was so glad when Batman gave a reason why they are out West.  It made total sense and gave the book an organic feels that it sometimes just doesn't have.

The art of Ruben Procopio is different from what we've seen in Batman '66.  Most artists have varied between a cartoony look to a look representative of the TV Series.  Procopio takes inspiration from the source material and gives the readers a look reminiscent of the covers of Old West dime store novels or even the works of Charles Marion Russell and Frederic Remington.  Kudos are in order.

Bits and Pieces:

Batman '66 #26 is a really good issue showcasing a obscure but fun Batman villain.  Jeff Parker and Ruben Procopio give readers an old west tale that is fun and entertaining.  In the end, that's what I look for in this book so mission accomplished.


Animal Man #27 Review

Written by: Jeff Lemire
Art by: Rafael Albuquerque
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 22, 2014

Evolve or Die, Indeed

Jeff Lemire recently announced that Animal Man is ending.  Yes, the main character will be a member of Justice League United, but it's a shame to lose such a great and unique book.  With a couple issues left (March's issue #29 will be the last) it's no longer a question of when it's ending, but how great the ending will be.  If Animal Man #27 is an indication, the answer is really great.

Animal Man as a whole has been so good because it's focused not just on Buddy Baker, but his family as well.  In fact, Buddy says so at the beginning of this issue.  That's what makes this issue so good...the focus is back on the whole Baker family.

Buddy has returned from space and is ready to kick ass.  This is the new and improved Animal Man, being able to tap the Red of the Universe, not just Earth.  If that sounds cool to you, trust me, it's even cooler.  So, what does the upgraded Buddy do?  Attacks the Totem, of course.

Meanwhile, Ellen is dealing with the aftermath of the Blood Cult's attack on the Oscars and the sudden disappearance of her husband.  I loved this part.  Ellen shows how tough she is and Lemire again reminds us that Family drives this book.

Speaking of which, Maxine and Socks are searching for the edge of the Red in order to outrun and hide from Brother Blood.  The Red has set up defenses, but in the end, Lemire shows us that there is no real room to run.  There is a real poignant moment between Maxine and Socks that really sheds light on Maxine. She is a strong hero, but still is a little girl who misses her brother.

The book ends with a great cliffhanger (of course) that leaves you on the edge of your seat.  The end is in sight, but I can't wait to see what Lemire has in store for us.

Rafael Albuquerque's art is so good as usual.  It fits the tone and scope of the book so well.  It's a shame it's coming to an end, but at least we got to enjoy it while we did.  In fact, I'd like to give a shout out to Travel Foreman, Steve Pugh and the rest of the artists who worked on this book over the full run.  They all did an outstanding job.

Bits and Pieces:

Animal Man #27 is the beginning of the end of one of the best New 52 books out there.  Jeff Lemire and Rafael Albuquerque give us a great issue that sets up what is bound to be an exciting conclusion.  It's bitter sweet, but I can't wait to see how it ends.


Batman and Two-Face #27 Review

Written by: Peter J. Tomasi
Art by: Patrick Gleason
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 23, 2014

Flip the Coin

I have not been too kind on Batman and Two-Face.  Most complaints I've seen center on the new Two-Face origin as the major bone of contention, but that's not my issue at all.  In fact, I actually have enjoyed it as it has progressed. No, my issue is with Erin McKillen.  I find her annoying as a character and forgettable as a villain.  Batman and Two-Face #27 doesn't remedy this much, but despite that is still a pretty good issue.

On the surface, Peter J. Tomasi has used Batman and Two-Face to give the New 52 a Harvey Dent origin story.  However, as it has gone on, we are getting a bit more.  Tomasi is showing how Bruce Wayne and Batman have altered Gotham in a way that is not always been for the better.  I know the idea that Batman makes his own villains is old (and true), but this is different.  Harvey Dent has Bruce Wayne to thank for his downfall.  In Batman Two-Face #27 we see that greed may have been the reason.

I like the interaction between Dent and Batman.  They are forced into an uneasy alliance, but as the book ends, luck is not on Harvey's side.  It will be up to Batman to save the life of one of Gotham's most violent criminals and I am looking forward to seeing how it plays out.

What I'm not looking forward to is more Erin McKillen.  I really don't like her.  The reveal earlier that she has ties to Bruce Wayne was interesting, but now she just seems to be a device to further the plot.  She does carry the story along, but would it have been so hard to make her interesting, if not slightly likable?  If Batman punched her in the face I wouldn't be appalled, I would applaud.

I have always liked Patrick Gleason's art, but not so much here.  His angular, static style is great for characters, but the action in this issue falls flat because of it.  Also of note, there is a full-page spread in the book that shows Batman's pain and regret throughout this series.  It is really good, but at the same time, doesn't really fit.  I'm not even sure why it was included.  It looked nice, but was a strange inclusion.

On a personal note, can we please get this book back to being Batman and Robin.  I know to do that, DC would have to announce a new Robin (obviously) and they don't want to do that just yet, but don't wait too long.  I loved Damian, but I also love the dynamic of Batman and Robin in general.  With Batman teaming up with Wonder Woman (?) and Aquaman (???) in the near future, I guess I'll just have to wait.  Maybe Harper Row can join as an Oracle/Robin hybrid with her brother and her living at the mansion?  Hello? Are you there, DC?

Bits and Pieces:

Batman and Two-Face #27 is a decent issue that gives some more details on Two-Face's origin.  Unfortunately, Erin McKillen is not an interesting character and we get alot of her here.  The story is slowly getting better and I am looking forward to next issue to see if the trend continues.


Smallville: Harbinger #4 Review

Written by: Bryan Q. Miller
Art by: Daniel HDR
Cover Price: $0.99
Release Date: January 25, 2014

Surprise, Esirprus

I have really become a fan of the DC digital titles.  Smallville, in particular, has become a favorite of mine and the mini series concept has really helped.  It has allowed Bryan Q. Miller to explore other parts of the DCU while still existing in the Smallville Universe.  What makes it work so well is that Miller does make it fit into his existing world and overall story line.

Smallville: Harbinger has been a great mini and on a personal note, has been a bit of an introduction to DC's darker characters.  See, I have to admit that I don't have a huge history with Constantine or Zatanna.  My partner here at Weird Science reviews Constantine and Justice League Dark, so my exposure has been limited.  So, I must thank Bryan Q. Miller for the crash course in these two characters and I don't expect a thank you, because the pleasure has really been mine.

Smallville: Harbinger #4 wraps up the mini series in such a great way.  Miller shows why people love Constantine.  He is a selfish S.O.B. who ends up being the good guy when all is said and done.  I don't even think he expects it, but it happens anyway.  However, Zatanna ends up being the shinning star of the series, for me at least.  She is strong, brave and is willing to sacrifice (pun intended) everything to save a girl who appears to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.  We learn at the end this is not entirely true.

In a surprise cameo, Jay Garrick and the Teen Titans pay a visit to welcome this girl into their ranks.  It is such a great twist and anyone who loves the Titans will have a huge smile on their face.  I hope this means we will be seeing more of the Titans, hopefully in a full new miniseries.

I usually stress in my reviews to go out and buy the digital copy and not wait for the collected edition, but this one is a slight exception.  I still think you should get the digital right away, but I think this story in particular is going to read so well collected.  So just go buy both.  Easy peasy.

Daniel HDR continues art duties and everything looks great.  I don't want to get on a soapbox again, but artists such as Daniel HDR, Iban Coello, Bruno Redondo, Cat Staggs and Thony Silas are making these digital titles look so good.  I have to admit that when I first started reading and reviewing the digital stuff, I looked at the art duties as kind of a "minor leagues" where DC tested out unproven artists.  I'm glad to say that either I'm wrong or DC found a bumper crop of rookies ready to make the jump to the Show.

Bits and Pieces:

Smallville: Harbinger #4 wraps up the mini series in such a satisfying way.  Bryan Q. Miller gives us a conclusion to the arc, but also the promise of these characters coming back later, which is great.  We also get a great cameo and a huge (HUGE) twist reveal that will have Teen Titans fans so happy.  Highly Recommended.


Thursday, January 23, 2014

Birds of Prey #27 Review

Written by: Christy Marx
Art by: Daniel Sampere and Robson Rocha
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 22, 2014

Excuse me Sir, I Mean Ma'am

Birds of Prey is an odd book for me.  I like most of the characters and enjoy the team concept.  I just haven't liked the book.  Unfortunately, I am not in the minority.  The book is not a big seller and there is little to no hype surrounding it.  

Birds of Prey #27 is listed as Gothtopia tie-in, but unfortunately that is a little misleading.  Christy Marx spends most of the issue giving us Condor's origin story and the whole Black Canary-Kurt Lance story line.  Let me sum it up simply...we get the origin story of the least interesting (and most hated) member of the group and the Black Canary story is a dud.  I still hate Condor and now Black Canary is turning her back on the team.  Great.

The other part of the issue is actually interesting.  We find out the team's mysterious benefactor.  It is a woman and she is very old.  She has met some of the team before, but it isn't a huge reveal, but who she needs the team to fight next is.  It may be the only exciting thing to ever come from this title.  

Wait, this is a Gothtopia tie-in, right?  Well, we get a final few pages where a generic member of the GCPD shows up to tell the team that everyone in Gotham is acting strange.  The team, minus Black Canary, decide to investigate.  Yep, that's the whole tie-in.  Pretty weak, but I still have hope for next issue.

The art by Daniel Sampere and Robson Rocha is serviceable at best.  It pretty much goes with the title in general.  Not horrible, but nothing special, either.

Bits and Pieces:

Birds of Prey #27 is another below average effort.  I really want to like this team, but the book just goes nowhere.  This promised Gothtopia tie-in is hardly that and instead deals with Condor's origin and Black Canary leaving the team.  We do find out the team's mysterious benefactor and it sets up a battle with one of DC's best villains.  I just hope the writing and art improve by then.


Wonder Woman #27 Review

Written by: Brian Azzarello
Art by: Cliff Chiang
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 22, 2014

Oh Baby, Baby...

Some comics have little condensed story arcs.  Some comics are easy to jump into at any point making it easy for new readers to jump onboard.  Brian Azzarello's Wonder Woman does not have easy to jump into story arcs. Nope, Brian Azzarello makes you work...if work is enjoying one of the best books in the New 52 with a great sprawling story with awesome art month in, month out.

Wonder Woman is the story of the gods fighting for the Throne of Olympus.  It's the story of a baby boy who must be protected and the First Born who must not be underestimated.  It's a tale of deceit, intrigue, and family fighting.  The family just happens to be the Olympian gods and one of them happens to be Wonder Woman.  Seriously, this book would be great without Wonder Woman, but with her it is stellar.

Wonder Woman #27 continues this trend.  Brian Azzarello continues the slow burn story with great characters and scenes.  Apollo is trying to make the first born kneel before him, while everyone including Wonder Woman search for Zola and Zeke.  Meanwile, Zola and Zeke might need rescuing, but from who? 

Seriously, when I say everyone is after them, I mean everyone.  Gods, shadow organizations, gods with shadow organizations...  The story is far from over and that is not a bad thing.  It is a pleasure just to sit back each month and see what Azzarello has in store.

What Cliff Chiang has in store this month is the best looking book I have read in quite some time.  Really, it's that good.  Just trust me and get it.  I also have to point out the awesome color work of Mathew Wilson.  He makes Chiang's work pop and even seem to glow in the dark.  Kudos to all involved.

The only downer of this issue, and every Wonder Woman issue, is it's hard to recommend to new readers.  I would advise everyone who hasn't read an issue to start at the very beginning.  It is worth the effort.

Bits and Pieces:

Wonder Woman #27 is so good.  Brian Azzarello continues the slow burn story that gives you just enough to keep you begging for more.  Cliff Chiang's art is second to none and complements the book so good.  Highly recommended.


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Supergirl #27 Review and *SPOILERS*

Written By: Tony Bedard
Art By: Yildiray Cinar, Ray McCarthy
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 22, 2014

Time For A Lobotomy.  See What I Did There

Supergirl has had a lot on her plate lately.  All that Krypton Returns nonsense, and now she has to deal with the Twilight Lobo.  I just wish my Main Man and him would come to fisticuffs already.  But I'll have to settle with Supergirl kicking his ass instead.  Last issue ended with what looked like the death of Lobo, at the hands of Supergirl.  Let's see if that death took.  Since they usually do in comic books, that should be the last we see of new Lobo.

Bits and Pieces:

Down in the Block, the scientists perform a autopsy on Lobo, and try to map his genome, since how often do you get to do that to a supposed extinct species?  Dr. Shay Veritas, and Supergirl look on, as the docs do their work, and Supergirl ponders how she could have killed someone.  Shay explains that since she was on Krypton, and now back on Earth, her powers are fluctuating, and what happened isn't her fault.  In a fit of rage Supergirl screams out, breaking the window into the autopsy room, and I'm sure embarrassing her a bit.  The two walk off, and let the docs do what they do, but like all horror flicks, now that there isn't any witnesses it's time for the killer to come back from the dead.  Come on people you've all seen this one.  

So Lobo's back, and after he gets dressed he uses a hacking device to find out all about Supergirl, and how to use her strengths against her.  That's usually how I start most relationships, and he's got a sweet six pack.  Hopefully it will work out for him more than it does for me.  First thing he uses is a hyper sonic device to give Supergirl a neural overload.  Once Kara's out, Lobo goes after Dr. Veritas.  Shay leads Lobo into a chamber, and activates it, while locking herself into a giant catacomb.  The device Shay activated created a mini sun, but I think I might rather be in Lobo's shoes, because inside the catacombs is a creature that calls itself Blaze, and looks like terror incarnate.  Shay apologizes to the creature Blaze about keeping it here, and when it looks like it's about to become another horror flick, Blaze disappears and Lobo breaks through the blast shields.

In the end Lobo threatens Dr. Veritas for the knowledge of the imposter Lobo, and the mini sun Shay activated powers up Supergirl, and we're left with what looks like a no holds barred, rock em' sock em' fight next issue.  Plus we should see a bit of Supergirl as the newest Red Lantern next month.  God I hate waiting.

Bits and Pieces:

This is a very quick read, that doesn't lead to much, and really just gives us what last issue did.  The only exception is for those out there that wanted to know the origin of the Block, this issue is for you.  


Batwoman #27 Review

Written by: Marc Andreyko
Art by: Jeremy Haun and Francis Manapul
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 22. 2014

Identity Crisis

I mentioned in last month's review of Batwoman that it was a good jumping on point for new readers.  I can't say the same for this issue.  In fact, after the beginning bit that picks up right where last issue ends, everything goes cuckoo for cocoa puffs.  I'm not saying it was bad, it just was confusing, especially for new readers who don't know Kate's colorful history.

Marc Andreyko slows things down a bit and gives us a peak into what makes Kate Kane tick.  In slash page after splash page we get a psychedelic view of her loves and fears all set in an Alice in Wonderland dream world.  Yes, it was really neat.  It just slowed the books momentum down a bit.  Luckily Kate shakes it off and manages to save herself...barely.

Meanwhile, we get a little more peak into who Wolf Spider is and who is actually pulling the strings.  Wolf Spider is intriguing to me because he doesn't seem cut and dry evil.  I'm interested in seeing more of him and possibly who is under the mask.

Speaking of under the mask (transition folks!), the ending of the issue promises to make life alot more interesting for Kate and Maggie's relationship.

Jeremy Haun and Francis Manapul join together on the art and it's fantastic.  There are so many trippy full page spreads during Kate's drug induced dream and though they may be a bit confusing, they are interesting. This is one of those issues that non comic book readers may glance at and wonder what they've been missing all these years.

Batwoman #27 is a good book that looks great.  It may be a bit confusing at points, but I can still recommend to Batwoman fans.  The ending changes everything for Kate and Maggie's relationship.  That and the many full spreads are worth the price of admission alone. 


Justice League #27 Review and *SPOILERS*

Written By: Geoff Johns
Art By: Ivan Reis, Joe Prado, Jesus Merino, Vicente Cifuentes
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: January 22, 2014


Do you remember all the awesome stuff that was going on in the last issues of Forever Evil, where Power Ring was going to fight Sinestro, and then in the last issue of Justice League where we were disappointed because even though the cover showed us what we wanted we were given a inside look on Grid?  Holy run on sentences Batman.  So even though we will not be seeing the fight we've been waiting to see, what we do get is the New 52 Doom Patrol, and Cyborg back in action.  So let's check it out.

Explain It!:

Do you know how long I've been waiting for the Doom Patrol to be in the New 52?  About a year and a half, and now I have it right in front of me.  Oh wait, wait...... okay they're all dead now.  God damn it, why can't Eric Shea catch a break?  So Johnny Quick and Atomica murder the first Doom Patrol of the New 52 which included Karma, Scorch, Celsius, Negative Woman, and Tempest.  The only ray of light in this bit of material is at the end of this sequence you see the Doom Patrol's leader Chief say that he has to start over.  So everyone close your eyes and yell out "I believe in the Doom Patrol!", and maybe we'll get what I want.

So onto some Cyborg.  Batman and Catwoman are gone now (presumably to storm the Crime Syndicate headquarters, and get Nightwing back), so we're left with the lump of a man that once was Cyborg.  Dr. Stone, and Cyborg argue about becoming a hero again, because everyone knows instead of having a superhero son, you'd rather have a lump with a mouth.  Luckily Dr. Morrow knocks some sense into Dr. Stone, and the two begin work on the new and improved Cyborg.  But not in the Red Room we know about.  Since Cyborg was first put online five years ago, he's known about the real Red Room, and demands to go there, and have that tech integrated into his lump.  

Right now I want everybody to picture the lump that is Victor Stone, and now pick a great montage song.  Okay if you're ready have a big montage of Cyborg being built anew, with a sleeker, slimmer body, and when your all done with your montage, I want you to picture Cyborg looking down at his new hand and say "Groovy".  Now that we have our first Evil Dead 2 reference of 2014 we can all sit back, and feel a whole lot better about things, like what the government is doing behind our backs, and what they really put into those delicious cheese burger big bites at the 7/11.  Oh Evil Dead 2, your the wind beneath my chubby arms.

Now that Cyborg is better than the Robocop remake coming out, he goes out in search of the creator of Platinum, the robot who went crazy, and Wild West World'd the Watch Tower last year.  Dr. Morrow tells Cyborg where to find Dr. Magnus, and we see one of Cyborg's upgrades to get there.  He's able to jump around like the Hulk.  Yeah it might sound kind of weak, but you can't boom tube all the time.  In the end Cyborg finds Dr. Magnus, and the Doc tells him, he can't help him.  The Metal Men were a failure.  

I'm pretty depressed right now.  No Doom Patrol, and now no Metal Men, I don't know why I even woke up this morning.  Oh well there's always Evil Dead 2.

Bits and Pieces:

This book had promise offering us the chance to see Cyborg back in action, the Doom Patrol, and the Metal Men.  This comes across sounding like the most badass issue of Justice League yet.  But sadly all of that was taken away, and we're left with the opening to the Six Million Dollar Man.  Yes they made him stronger, and faster, but in doing so the book got slower and weaker.  Still we needed this to get where we're going, so I'm remaining optimistic, this is just a lull.


Batman #27 Review

Written by: Scott Snyder
Art by: Greg Capullo
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: January 22, 2014

Who let the Dogs Out?

I must admit that Zero Year has kind of slipped my mind a bit lately.  With Forever Evil and even Gothtopia making the headlines, Snyder and Capullo's origin story has been on the back burner.  Don't get me wrong, it's not because of lack of quality.  In fact, it may be because of it.  It has been so good that I have been taking it for granted.  It's like I forget about it, then BOOM! It shows up to impress me all over again.  Batman #27 did it to me.  It snuck up on me and slapped me right in my face with it's goodness.

Scott Snyder seems to revel in giving little morsels out that taste good, but make the reader hunger for more and more.  With Batman #27, Snyder has invited us to the big boy table.  So much comes together in this issue, both good and bad.  Of course he throws in a couple more hints and clues for future issues as well.  This issue is not new reader friendly at all, but none of the Zero Year issues are and aren't meant to be.  This issue is for reader of the book and if you aren't, start at the beginning and you will be.

Greg Capullo's art is as awesome as ever.  It get's hard to keep writing about something so consistently good, so just take may word.

Bits and Pieces:

Batman #27 continues the Zero Year story and this issue begins to lift the curtain on Snyder's master plan. Readers there from the beginning will be rewarded this month.  Capullo continues the awesome art that combined with the story are making a book that may not be flashy, but is just plain awesome.


Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Smallville: Harbinger #3 Review

Written by: Bryan Q. Miller
Art by: Daniel HDR
Cover Price: $0.99
Release Date: January 17, 2014


Zatanna and Constantine continue their search and rescue mission.  The Church of Blood go to Stonehenge, but are not just there for the sites.  Zatanna catches Constantine's eye, but all she gets to see is his tail.

Bryan Q Miller's Harbinger mini series has been my crash course on Constantine, Zatanna and the DC dark universe in general.  It's been a fun and educational ride so far and things only get better in issue #3.  Zatanna and Constantine play so well off of each other and Miller really takes advantage of it.  There are laugh-out-loud moments coupled with great action and story.  In the end you may be cursing, but it's only because you should have seen it coming.  

I must admit that I have really enjoy Miller's minis that don't include Superman.  Don't get me wrong, I love Superman and Miller writes him better than most, but I like when he gets to explore the rest of the DC universe and put his stamp on it.  I hope there are plenty more of these side trips in the near future.

The art of Daniel HDR continues the goodness.  This issue gives him a chance to draw grotesque beings and plenty of action and he takes it by the reigns and goes with it.  

Smallville: Harbinger #3 is a fun, action packed romp featuring two of DC's favorite dark characters.  Zatanna and Constantine go so well together and Bryan Q. Miller does them justice.  Combine that with excellent art by Daniel HDR and you have yourself a winner.  Highly recommended.


Adventures of Superman #39 Review

Written by: B. Clay Moore
Art by: Gabriel Rodriguez
Cover Price: $0.99
Release Date: January 20, 2014

Exposed part 3 of 3

Superman must save the man intent on ruining him.  Metallo makes sure to tell Carl Hobson he is a pain in the neck and then proceeds to give him one.  Guess who "Mr. Action" is and does Lois Lane know everyone in Metropolis?

B. Clay Moore concludes his three part "Exposed" story and it is pretty much like the first two...mediocre at best. The story wraps up in a way that is neither exciting nor thought provoking.  It just ends.  Superman saves the day, but in the end the "villain" was more pitiful than evil.  He was a sad, misguided man who didn't even have the story right.  

The few villain cameos were cool enough, but not enough to save the day.  The story wasn't beefy enough for one issue, let alone three.  I've read a bunch of times that digital story arcs read better when collected, but I think that will expose the paper thin story even more.  If you haven't guessed it yet, I wasn't a big fan of this arc.

The art was troublesome as well.  I still liked the look of Metallo and a brief glimpse at Bizarro looked cool, but everything else wasn't good.  I mentioned it in the first two reviews of the arc and it still holds true in this issue, I hate the way Rodriguez draws Superman.  Kind of bad in a book titled "Adventures of Superman"

Adventures of Superman #39 ends B. Clay Moore's Exposed story arc and I'm glad.  I wasn't a fan of the arc or any of the issues especially this one.  When I make the argument that digital titles are equalling print titles in quality I won't use these as an example.  However, it highlights a plus for this book in particular...a new story starts next week.


Superman Unchained Cancelled

The DC Solicits for April came out today and the big news was that Nightwing had been cancelled.  Not to spoil anything, but things aren't going well for Dick Grayson in Forever Evil and the cancellation kind of points to his death.  However, there are three more cancellations, but one in particular is a huge shock.

Scott Snyder and Jim Lee's Superman Unchained will end with April's issue #9.  What the heck?  The book has been really good in Snyder's particular "slow burn" method.  Well, he better pick up the pace if he is going to tie up the loose ends and there are plenty, believe me.

The book is a huge seller with 96,322 issues sold of December's issue #5 and issue #1 being the third highest selling comic of 2013 with 259,100.  I can only guess that Snyder and/or Lee didn't want to continue and DC agreed to end it.

Like I said, Snyder better put it into overdrive to wrap things up with Wraith, Ascension, The Machine and Lex Luthor's prediction that Superman will die at Jimmy Olsen's hands among others.  Damn, the rest of the issues are bound to be interesting.

Injustice: Year Two #2 Review

Written by: Tom Taylor
Art by: Bruno Redondo
Cover Price: $0.99
Release Date: January 21, 2014

Chapter Two: Fear

I am so glad Injustice is back.  Last issue ended with a huge reveal involving Black Canary and also the promise of an awesome team already beginning a secret war against Superman.  Unfortunately, this issue involves neither of those threads.  However, what it does contain is simply awesome.

Tom Taylor is so good.  So good, in fact, that he has graduated to the big leagues with Earth 2.  He hasn't forgotten us little people who love Injustice, though.  This second chapter provides everything that makes the book so good.  We get great character moments and surprises with every page.  

Without spoiling too much, we find out where Batman has been healing and why Superman can't find him. There are also the appearance of no less than four favorite DC characters with one not lasting through this issue.  His (or her?) death is so sudden that I couldn't believe it, but that is what's making Year Two so great. Tom Taylor has been given the key to the toy box and the world and characters are his to play with.  I have no idea what's going to happen next and I love it.

Bruno Redondo is a rising star and I expect to see more from him in the near future.  Tom Taylor is throwing characters in the book at break neck speed and Redondo handles them with ease.  Everything doesn't just look good, it looks great.  I wish I was his agent.

Injustice: Year Two #2  continues what makes Injustice such a great series.  Great and varied characters combined with awesome art and a unique story make this my favorite comic book out right now.  Everyone needs to read this book right now.


Suicide Squad #27 Review and *SPOILERS*

Written By: Matt Kindt
Art By: Rafa Sandoval, Jordi Tarragona
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 15, 2014

In The Company Of Strangers

The Squad isn't looking so good lately.  Two issues ago Harley Quinn betrayed the Suicide Squad, consisting of Deadshot, Captain Boomerang, and herself.  She also screwed over a team that was put together by a fake Amanda Waller who sent them after O.M.A.C.  That team consisted of Steel, Power Girl, Warrant, and The Unknown Soldier.  Oh.  How did she screw them over you ask, well she used OMAC to drop a mountain on top of their heads.  So yeah, screwed over pretty bad.  Harley then gave OMAC over to the Thinker, who sent him after Amanda Waller, who just released King Shark's father Kamo.  You following so far?  So with all that said, we're going to take a peak into how the two teams are doing after having a mountain dropped on them.

Explain It!:

So this rag tag team is stuck underground, and the only way to get out is to work together.  The team splits off in groups of two, and they search the collapsed mountain complex for a way out.  the groups consist of Power Girl and Unknown Soldier, Steel and Captain Boomerang, and Deadshot and Warrant.  Weird thing here is they keep just referring to Captain Boomerang as Boomerang.  I don't know if this is something new for the New 52, or if recently they decided to drop the Captain, but I don't like it, and I'm not going to do it.  Hell I might promote him to Major to spite everyone else.  So yeah.

Now the middle of this book is filled with origins, and to find out what characters have been up to.  So the skinny of it for those that might not know, Power Girl was Supergirl of Earth 2, and Unknown Soldier lost his family, and now he's a top secret killing machine.  Steel left Metropolis, and has been protecting a village in Australia until it was destroyed, and he was recruited by the fake Amanda Waller.  Captain Boomerang is a psychopath who's good with a boomerang.  Deadshot recounts his Villain's Month issue, and Warrant is a super assassin for Israel, who's next target is actually Deadshot.  So there you have it.  Everything you need to know.

While Deadshot and Warrant are searching for a way out, the floor collapses beneath Warrant and he almost falls down a sewer tunnel full of raging waters, but he's able to grab a piece of wood and suspend himself above the water.  Deadshot not wanting to lie if asked did he kill Warrant, shoots the piece of wood, and let's Warrant be taken away by the current.  Honesty is the best policy.  Finally the group finds a way out of the mountain, and Unknown Soldier plans on them working together to take back Belle Reve.  Minus Warrant of course.

In the end, back at Belle Reve, OMAC is fighting King Shark and his father Kamo.  Amanda Waller thinking that all is lost, is planning on using Bell Reve's self destruct system, when she's interrupted by a plea for help on the computer screen.  Apparently OMAC's host Kevin Kho is still trapped within OMAC, and needs help.  Hopefully he gets what's coming to him after making Blue Beetle be in Threshold.  I miss Blue Beetle.

Bits and Pieces:

Most of the issue feels like filler, full of information we already know.  But somehow I found this story fun, and at times delightfully surreal.  I don't know how to really describe it but halfway through the issue I didn't like it, but by the time I got to the end I did.  Possibly it's just what the book might be leading to that got me excited, but be the judge.  With April's solicits calling issue 30 the end, get your Suicide Squad fun while you can.


Nightwing, Suicide Squad and Stormwatch Cancelled

Well, today DC Comics finally released their April 2014 solicits and it contains at least two surprise cancellations.  The solicits list Nightwing, Suicide Squad and Stormwatch as the final issues of their respective series.  It was rumoured that Stormwatch was being cancelled so that's no big surprise, but Nightwing and Suicide Squad?

doesn't look good
The solicit for Nightwing #30 says,

"The Bat Family is forced to face the brutal aftermath of FOREVER EVIL, but after everything they’ve been through, can they stand together?"

It doesn't sound good for Dick Grayson.  I actually have a bet with Eric here at Weird Science that Dick would be killed at the end of Forever Evil and I may be collecting that crisp one dollar bill.  When Kyle Higgins announced he had been dropped from the book it just didn't seem right.  The book sells well and Higgins is an awesome writer.  The final issue will be written by James Tynion IV with art by Meghan Hetrick.

The final issue of Suicide Squad is being written by Sean Ryan with art by Ig Guara and Roy Jose.  The solicit says,

"In the ashes of FOREVER EVIL, A.R.G.U.S. and Task Force X leader Amanda Waller must face the consequences of her failure to protect the United States from the Crime Syndicate."

Suicide Squad has had it's problems with changing creative teams, but sales have been good.  Issue #26 in December sold 25,346 issues.  In my opinion, the book has just become redundant in the wake of Forever Evil.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Justice League of America #11 Review and *SPOILERS*

Written By: Matt Kindt
Art By: Tom Derenick, Eddy Barrows
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: January 15, 2014

Time To Get Mind F%*#ed

In the last Forever Evil tie-in to JLA, our only heroes remaining Star Girl and Martian Manhunter, were under attack by the Secret Society.  But the two overcame, and decided to go their separate ways.  Martian Manhunter intended on continuing his search for the Firestorm prison, most of the heroes have been contained in, and Stargirl needed to go to L.A. to check on her parents.  Let's see what Forever Evil speed bumps get in their way.

Explain It!:

Since our two heroes parted ways, it seems that Martian Manhunter has done the worst thing in the DC Universe you can do.  He went to Gotham City.  So obviously he was attacked, and this isn't even because Forever Evil is going strong.  I mean even if the Crime Syndicate hadn't screwed up everything, and unleashed all the villains unto the world, this was bound to happen.  It's Gotham for Superman's sake.  You're not supposed to go there.  Imagine how empty a job fair is going to be, anything you get hired for is going to get you killed eventually.  But getting back to the story, Martian Manhunter has made a friend in Clayface, and the way that Clayface shows you friendship, is by devouring you.  At least that's how I understand friendship.  All looks lost for my favorite Martian, but fortunate for him, it seems that Stargirl and him are still connected, and she swoops in to save the day.  So some battling occurs, Stargirl calls Clayface Crap Man, and she wins the fight for all who want to remember clay for it's memorable scene in Ghost, and not as a slimy disgusting failed actor, and I don't mean Willie Aames.

Stargirl grabs the weakened Martian Manhunter, and flies west to find Firestorm (remember that the Justice Leagues are being held prisoner within the Firstorm matrix).  According to J'onn, whoever has Firestorm is moving him, and Stargirl agrees to go after Firestorm as long as he keeps heading towards L.A., but the moment Martian Manhunter senses him going in a different direction, Stargirl is going to leave him on the search, and go on her way.  But the two aren't done with trouble yet.  On their way west they find Denver in a calamity.  Now bear with me.  People running away from Denver tell our heroes that they were being terrorized by a man in black, and red with a lightning bolt on his chest.  Then the next panel we see a picture of Shazam, or a Shazam like character.  If you remember when Stargirl, and Martian Manhunter were stuck in the superhero prison, Shazam was having fun terrorizing a city, and fighting monsters.  So is this somehow the prison bleeding through to reality?  Is it just a coincidnce?  Or are the Crime Syndicate somehow turning our heroes, and then releasing them back into our world?  Well we won't find out here, but feel free to make some guesses.  Back to the story again, the character terrorizing the city is gone now, but in his place a giant robot has surfaced.

Martian Manhunter sends out a calming effect to all the people in the city, to allow them to flee in a calm manner, (Yep no screaming here, just a calm orderly flee of terror) while Stargirl goes to battle again.  Months and months of nothing to do, and now she can't catch a break, I'd enjoy it more, if it seemed this story was going anywhere.  Stargirl has a bunch of flashbacks about the time she was lured to a hostage situation when she first became a hero, while battling the giant robot.  The robot goes down, the city rejoiced, and we find out that Stargirl's and Martian Manhunter's mind just might be getting played with, as we see Despero watching the duo.  But his mother never told him to watch with his eyes, and not with his hands.  This becomes even more apparent, when he knocks out Martian Manhunter, and knocks Stargirl into a river.  In the end Despero is strangling Stargirl as the two sink deeper into the water.  

Bits and Pieces:

Even though this issue takes a jump in the right direction towards the end, the rest of the book stands still with giant monster fight, after giant monster fight.  Normally this would be a fun thing, but when we're in the thick of this story arc, and nothing has really happened, that's an issue. (a problem, not a comic)  But the book does impress with it's artwork, and the ability to make Stargirl look like a badass.  I just really hope that this story arc picks up, and doesn't leave us disappointed in the end.


Son of Batman Trailer Released!

Well it's that time again to go on and GET HYPED AS HELL!  The new DC animated film, Son of Batman is soon approaching, and to get you into the mood for a little more Damian, (god I can't get enough of that little boy) the trailer has just dropped.  So sit back, and enjoy, our first glimpse of an animated Damian Wayne.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

DC Universe vs. The Masters of the Universe #4 Review

Written by: Keith Giffin and Tony Bedard
Art by: Pop Mhan
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 15, 2013

Trinity War Redux

I love the Masters of the Universe.  I was 13 when the cartoon originally aired and I couldn't get enough of it.  When it was relaunched in 2002, I was a father of three (with two more to come in the next couple of years) and He-Man had fallen off my radar.  Fast forward to 2013 and when I heard of DC Universe vs. Masters of the Universe I was excited, though a little skeptical.  When the book was delayed, my skepticism grew.  Fortunately, the book arrived and was as good as I originally hoped.  Issue #4 is here and it is what I was hoping the series would be from the start, a boat load of fun.

Keith Giffin and Tony Bedard give fans of both Universes action, and lots of it.  While He-Man and Evil-Lyn search for Skeletor, Man-at-Arms leads a battle against Green Arrow and the rest of the Justice League of America.  It is as cool as it sounds and each match up is like a fantasy league of superheroes.  The highlight for me was Simon Baz vs Moss Man.  Giffin and Bedard have so many great characters at their disposal and they are beginning to use them all.  Which leads too...

Just when I thought it couldn't be any better, the Justice League Dark showed up.  Meanwhile, Batman thinks he has figured out what really happened to Superman and joins with Constantine to convince everyone to stop fighting each other and focus on the real enemy.  Who the real enemy is revealed to the reader and it is another too cool moment.  Fans of the Masters of the Universe may have mixed reactions, but I loved it.

My only issue is Batman's "voice" during his locker room speech to get both sides together.  It didn't ring true.

Pop Mhan's art does justice to both Universes.  The action looks great as does everything else.

Bits and Pieces:

Dc Universe vs. The Masters of the Universe #4 is great fun for fans of both Universes.  There are so many great characters in this issue and the action is top notch.  The true evil is also revealed and allies are forming to fight it instead of themselves.  Things are really heating up and I can't wait to see what happens.


Forever Evil: Rogues Rebellion #4 Review

Written by: Brian Buccellato
Art by: Scott Hepburn and Andre Coelho
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 15, 2014

Full House

The Rogues continue to battle their way through Gotham minus Captain Cold.  Mr. Freeze can't get no cold and Clayface still can't get no respect.  Trickster is saved by Tumblr and the Royal Flush Gang has a huge card up it's sleeve.  Still, the Rogues always stick together...even when they're apart.

Rogues Rebellion has been a mixed bag for me.  On one hand, I love the Rogues and how Brian Buccellato writes them.  On the other hand, the title seems to be the most unnecessary of the Forever Evil tie-ins.  Well, this issue changed my mind.  This was my favorite issue of the run so far.  Why?  Because Buccellato shows us what makes the Rogues so great.  In a world gone bad (sounds like a summer movie trailer), the Rogues are actually good guys.  They stick together and only want to get home.  However, the Gotham villains aren't so good.  In fact, they all want a piece of the Rogues and it takes a surprise change of heart to save the team. Unfortunately, the ending shows they are still in alot of trouble.

Another reason the Rogues and Buccellato nail it this issue is the fun factor.  It's cranked up this issue.  You get jokes that are actually funny and over-the-top, zany action.  The final escape by the Rogues is so good, showcasing the teamwork and madcap fun that's become their signature.  

The art is shared between Scott Hepburn and Andre Coelho and while both do a good job, the transition is noticeable. 

Bits and Pieces:

Forever Evil: Rogues Rebellion #4 is my favorite of the arc.  Buccellato shows why the Rogues are such a great team; they are fun, not so evil and always stick together.   I am looking forward to next issue more than any time in this mini.


Batman Beyond 2.0 #12 Review

Written by: Kyle Higgins
Art by: Thony Silas
Cover price: $0.99
Release date: January 18, 2014

The Bat Men Part 4 of 7: All Leather Wings

Commissioner Gordon demands more time as Bruce and Terry confront the Man Bat infestation, but are they up to their batarangs in trouble?  Kurt Langstrom has a trick up his sleeve and how many punches can a superhero withstand?

The last two issues of Batman Beyond 2.0 have been pretty quiet setup issues.  Quiet, this issue ain't!  In fact, the book goes at such a breakneck speed that you may gasp for air while reading it.  Seriously, Higgins gives one huge fight...and it is awesome.  We get to see Bruce and Terry fight Man-bats using new and old school techniques.  While all this is going on, Barbara Gordon is trying to keep an extraction team from going in and messing things up.  Barbara has supreme confidence in Bruce and Terry, but by the end of the issue I'm not sure it's warranted.

I have made comments about how much the Man-bats have been showing up lately and there is a funny little line in this issue that may show that Higgins agrees.  However, I have to admit that I'm interested in what Langstrom has in store after this issue.

Thony Silas nails the art again.  I sound like a broken record, but I love the look of this book so much.

Bits and Pieces:

Batman Beyond 2.0 #12 is all action and after a few setup issue, is a great change of pace.  Higgins and Silas are giving readers the gem of the DC Digital titles and I suggest reading it right away.


Nightwing #27 Review

Written by: Kyle Higgins
Art by: Will Conrad and Cliff Richards
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: January 15, 2014

Identity Revealed part one

Nightwing tries to help the psychotic Marionette battle the Mad Hatter, but who really needs helping? Dick may need to go house hunting soon, but a roommate with OCD is the least of his problems and the people of Chicago find out the ills of cell phones first hand.

Nightwing #27 continues the Mimic/Marionette story and it's a pretty good one.  Kyle Higgins writes Nightwing so well and it's issues like these that I enjoy the most.  It's not the action, art or even the story that impresses me most here.  It's the way Higgins makes me care for Dick.  He is such a good guy that you can't help but like him.  Unfortunately, good people like Dick Grayson often get taken advantage of and this issue is no exception.

I was wary of the Mad Hatter being introduced last issue and though I didn't like him in Nightwing's world, he wasn't as annoying as I feared.  The real villain was Mimic/Marionette.  With her, Higgins gives us a sympathetic villain that toes that grey area between good and bad that comic villains often don't.  I like her and hope to see her more in the future.

That leads me to my first problem with the book...the future.  Forever Evil is not being too kind to Dick Grayson.  Kyle Higgins announced he has been dropped from Nightwing after issue #29.  What is the future for Nightwing?  I know that shouldn't change my view of an individual issue, but I can't help it.  Everything that happens to Dick seems anticlimactic.  The end reveal would have been pretty big if not for knowledge of what's going to happen in the near future.

The art duties are split between Will Conrad and Ciff Richards.  The transition is pretty jarring and I'm not a fan of Richards' Dick Grayson.  Conrad's pages are real good with the great action scenes being the selling point as usual.

Bits and Pieces:

Kyle Higgins and Dick Grayson can't catch a break.  Higgins' Nightwing has been a highlight of the New 52, but due to events of Forever Evil, the book seems like an afterthought.  Nightwing himself is heading towards a Forever Evil disaster that will change (or kill?) his world forever.  What the reader is left with are a couple issues before everything collides.  Is Nightwing #27 worth reading?  For Nightwing fans, the answer is yes.


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Weird Science News: Week of January 15, 2014 Edition

Hello and welcome to the first edition of Weird Science News.  Yes, you may be wondering, "Why do we need another site with DC Comic news when we already have (insert favorite comic book website or blog) and (insert second favorite comic book website or blog)?"  To you I say, "phooey" and "You shut up your rag-box an' 'ark to my lay".  Seriously, there is no real reason except I'm bored and you are already here.  So...

On With the News

Justice League United

The Team of Frog, Chimp, Owl and others
Jeff Lemire announced that the title formally known as Justice League Canada will be hitting shelves in April 2014 as Justice League United.  The title reflects the larger scope of the book, splitting time between Canada and Space.  The team will consist of Animal Man, Green Arrow, Adam Strange, Stargirl, Supergirl and Martian Manhunter with other members joining in the future.  Lemire will be joined by Mike KcKone on art duties.  What the book will be "aboot" is still a mystery, but I'm still hoping these guys make an appearance.

Captain Cold joins the Justice League
Clever putting Captain Cold in the back

Geoff Johns' promised a huge shakeup following Forever Evil and here is proof.  The leader of the Rogues and Weird Science's favorite cold powered villain (sorry Freeze) is set to join the Justice League in Justice League #30 in April.  I know what everyone is thinking, and yes, I do think Cold will lead the Justice League.  I mean who else is better than him?  In related news, Lex Luthor is also joining the Justice League in issue #30.

Kyle Higgins dropped from Nightwing

Who is the guy on the left?

Sad news indeed.  Kyle Higgins announced on his facebook page that he will be off the Nightwing book and a new creative team will be announced starting with April's Nightwing #30.  I love Kyle Higgins and as a reader of the book, I can tell he loves Nightwing.  With what is happening with Dick Grayson in Forever Evil, it is no surprise that changes have to come to the book, but getting rid of such a great writer?  It may just be me, but I still think they are killing him off (Nightwing, not Kyle!) and this is just part of the cover up for when the April solicits come out.

New Name, Tony S. Denial

Tony S. Daniel off/on Superman/Wonder Woman

With the Internet going crazy over what DC has in store for April, there are bound to be rumors and craziness flying around.  Well, this was one of those times.  It was reported that Tony S. Daniel was off of Superman/Wonder Woman and doing art on a relaunched Teen Titans.  This was news to Daniel who went on Twitter to tell everyone that the report of his death (as artist on Superman/Wonder Woman) was an exaggeration. Funny, he didn't deny the Teen Titans bit, though. The story also involved current Superman/Wonder Woman writer, Charles Soule being offered the job to write the new Teen Titans, which leads to our next bit of news... 

Teen Titans ending in April

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Scott Lobdell announced on Comicvine that Teen Titans was coming to an end in April with Teen Titans #30.  Now, I've been told so many times that Lobdell likes to throw misdirects and half-truths out to mess with people's sanity, but this seems true.  He did mention that it was the end for the current incarnation of the team, so a relaunch/reboot/retelling/reunion/renegotiation/reset is probably happening.  My bet is that Tony S. Daniel may be a part of it.  Just saying...

Batman Vs Superman Movie delayed

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Yes, the  Justice League  Batman/Superman movie's release date has been pushed back from Summer 2015 to May 2016.  Filming was supposed to begin in Detroit in February, but was delayed until Spring.  An unnamed source told me the reason was "It's too damn cold!"  You heard it here first.

Well, that's it for now.  I will try my best to keep up with the news, but I'm making no promises.  I may be bored, but that is usually outweighed by my massive laziness.