5.17.06 Reviews

It's been one of those weeks with precious few moments to do full reviews, but quite a few great books came out. I also tried to make some personal time for writing a new story that's quite personal, so here's a very quick run down of some gems from this week.

Castle Waiting: Collected Edition (Fantagraphics Books): I only read a stray issue or two of Linda Medley's masterpiece. Anyone who knows me knows that I'm a sucker for packaging and this slick hardcover edition was one that I couldn't pass up. Collects everything in one place.

Conan: Volume 3 (Dark Horse): This hardcover collects The Tower of the Elephant arc and a few other stories. I stopped picking up single issues of this book and am content to wait for these handsome editions. The bonus materials and "reads better collected" factor make it a no brainer.

War-Fix (NBM): Don't know a thing about this, but NBM's offerings are usually strong and the art quickly passed the casual flip test. Looks like some autobiographical journalism in Iraq.

Jack Staff #10 (Image): Wow, it's been a while since anything by Paul Grist came out. No idea what's going on in this book anymore. I tried picking up the single issues. I tried just getting the trades. Seems I've lost interest in anything past the Everything Used to be Black & White trade. Trying. One. More. Time.

DMZ #7 (DC/Vertigo): This book never disappoints. Can't wait to read it! Happy to see DC will be quickly publishing collected editions of this great Brian Wood & Riccardo Burchielli series.

Fear Agent #4 (Image): My new favorite book from Image. It's just so much fun to read. Cross Joss Whedon's Firefly/Serenity feel with a heaping dose of Indiana Jones and some kooky 1950's sci-fi tropes and you'll get an idea of the fun romp this book offers.

Fell #5 (Image): Best thing Warren Ellis has done probably since the inception of Planetary and the recent Desolation Jones mini-series. Pick it up now. It's only $1.99 each issue and every issue is self contained with some very imaginative layouts courtesy of Ben Templesmith.

Batman: Year 100 #4 (DC): Can't wait to see how this wonderful Paul Pope saga wraps up. Will definitely be picking up the trade. This was the best Batman book on the stands while it lasted.

52: Week 2 (DC): Read this a couple times and it might actually be settling in nicely. Feels a bit more character driven than event driven and I'm starting to like the lack of Bats, Supes, and WW in favor of spotlighting some bit players in the DCU. Grade B.

Shadowpact #1 (DC): Primarily wanted to see Bill Willingham write and draw something, but my attention faded quickly. Kind of fun to see the odd conglomeration of Blue Devil, Ragman, Enchantress, Detective Chimp, etc., but it didn't hold me. Obligatory cameos from Supes and GL with a not-to-interesting story. Good, soft, cartoony lines from Willingham, but will be passing on future issues. Grade B-.

Talent #1 (Boom! Studios): This much hyped Boom! project from Golden, Sniegoski, and Azaceta was a bit of a let down. Core premise was of average interest. Art felt pretty generic and lacked detail. And I guess I'm just tired of trying to figure shit out, like with the TV show Lost, which this is being compared to. Hiding information from your audience and stringing them along does not automatically equate to engaging or quality writing. It's just an artifical hook that can backfire if the payoff doesn't live up to the hype. Grade B-.


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