8.08.07 Reviews

DMZ #22 (DC/Vertigo): At the precise moment when I think this book can't get any better, Brian Wood manages to squeeze even more commentary and character development out of it. Wood makes some salient points here about the difficulty finding justice in our system when there isn't simply two opposing sides of right and wrong clashing. Not only are the perspectives of opposition not that clear cut, but a third factor comes into play - public opinion and expectations. I also really enjoyed the role reversal between Matty and Zee, not only do we see Matty in the lead role as protector, physically caring for Zee's wounds, but they also take their relationship to the next level in an understated and plausible fashion. Burchielli brilliantly intersperses those scenes with Wood's voice over about desperately clinging to any "last shreds of humanity." This book is fucking brilliant and should be used in collegiate Political Science courses. Grade A+.

Casanova #8 (Image): Let's get the small little quibbles out of the way first. Personally, I prefer Gabriel Ba's art over brother Fabio Moon. I feel that Ba's style is a little more consistent and refined, while boasting more fully realized backgrounds. Moon's style strikes me as a little looser and more freewheelin,' but they're actually both pretty cool. It's sort of like comparing a t-bone steak to a rib-eye steak. Both hearty and flavorful, it just depends on what you're really in the mood for, and if you... uh, wanna' deal with the bone, err, something (and suddenly this analogy falls apart). In any case, Fraction's script is tight, picks the continuity right up with the integration of the oddball cast leftover from the first arc, and includes some clever self-referential (bordering on self-parody) bits. I dig the backmatter bonus material and sketches, and still, for a $1.99 - this comic is probably the best value for the buck on the stands. Grade A.

The New Avengers #33 (Marvel): Yu's pencils still look a little fuzzy and rushed in spots, not sure if that's his fault or the inker or colorist's. Bendis' script hums right along though and ratchets up the paranoia factor as the team struggles with the Skrull infiltrator issue. Not only do we see some powerful decay in the group dynamics when trust is eroded (really, wasn't it heartbreaking to see that scene between Jessica and Luke?), but we also get a realistic portrayal of drama. Not everything is tidied up here and people react believably as their hearts want to trust in their fellow team members, but their heads say otherwise. It's left very unresolved, which makes for some good pyschological action. Grade B+.

Powers #25 (Marvel/Icon): When my favorite part of this book is Bendis saying in the letter column that he has a definite end in mind, well... "Houston, we have a problem." Candidly, yes, I think it's time we wrap Powers up before it completely derails. I just have the feeling that major plot points will never be resolved and we'll keep using a repetitive formula. I can't decide if I like some of Oeming's experimentation (the double page spread of the sex scene), and it's been so long in between issues that I don't even recall who Walker is having sex with. Hike up the price to $3.95 (even if it is more pages, at least 8 of those pages are self-congratulatory "interviews" or ads for other Bendis books) and I believe I'm officially throwing in the towel - just feeling a little worn out by the whole schtick. I'd love to ultimately pick up the last couple trades of the series to see how/if it all ends, but single issues just aren't cutting it. Grade B-.

I also picked up;

Notes For A War Story (First Second): I've read a few of Gipi's works, but anxious to read this winner from the Angeloume Festival in France and the book that is widely considered his strongest work.


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