Thursday, December 15, 2011

Comic shop comics: December 14

Batman: The Brave and the Bold #14 (DC Comics) I love Ragman, who boasts one of my all-time favorite character designs, and is thus one of those superheroes whom I enjoy reading about on one level simply to see the way different artists draw him. And I love the "All-New" volume of Batman: The Brave and the Bold by Sholly Fisch, Rick Burchett and Dan Davis. So you can probably guess how excited I was about issue of the B:TBnB featuring a Ragman team-up and, I'm happy to report, I wasn't the least bit disappointed. (I've already enthused about it over at Robot 6, if you'd like to read a couple hundred words on it and some of the issues it raised).

I was a bit surprised by Burchett's Ragman, as it seems fairly far removed from Joe Kubert's original Ragman depiction, and the artist generally hews pretty closely to the designs of the character's creators in his designs. Instead, his Ragman looks to be more inspired by the look of the TV show itself.

He has a clean, smooth black face beneath his hood, which is a flowing green zig-zag, rather than the more conical hood Kubert used to draw, with pupil-less white triangle eyes (despite the cover, which shows him with glowing yellow eyes with visible black pupils. Burchett uses Kirby dots in depicting the mystic energies of the suit of rags, as when Rory Regan first transforms into Ragman and, later, when he uses the cape to absorb bullets. One aspect of his Ragman I really liked was how skinny who drew Rory. He's not at all a superheroic-looking figure, but once the rags are on he gets the broad-shoulders and barrel-chest of a Brave and The Bold superman.

There was quite a lot to like about the book, but this was probably my favorite part:Yeah, take that Batman!

Green Lantern #4 (DC) I've been reading Geoff Johns' Green Lantern comics as long as he' s been writing them, but given the "Everything Is New!" premise of The New 52, I've been trying to read the few DCU books I still read with two pairs of eyes: Mine, and those of a theoretical newcomer. Johns is now into his fourth issue of the new volume of Green Lantern, and he's still telling the Sinestro-and-Hal-Jordan-team-up-to-save-Korugar-from-the-Sinestro-Corps (The yellow Lanterns) story arc.

Now, I know Sinestro is a wicked villain, not only because his name has the word 8/9ths "Sinister" and I've seen Super Friends, but because I've been reading about him for years now and know that, morally, he's somewhere between Space Machiavelli and Space Hitler. However, based on these four issues alone, he seems like the better and more noble of the two characters (In this issue, he admits past mistakes and, while struggling to be humble, apologizes for once oppressing Korugar by abusing his power).

Sure, Jordan egged him on a bit in this, and encouraged him to sacrifice some of his own power and trust in others to try and save the world, but Sinestro seems like a pretty decent guy in this story so far, while Jordan still seems like a dumb, cocky/arrogant a-hole whom I'd hate to share an elevator ride with, let alone look up to as a hero.

I wonder to what extent this is intentional, and if and when Johns plans to knock Sinestro off of the road to redemption the character has been on?

Nice art, as always.

SpongeBob SquarePants Comics #6 (Plankton Pictures) In the cover story, billed as "Crisis of Infinite Jerks," SpongeBob inadvertently gets a multiverse full of different versions of himself and his cast onto the same splash page, and it's truly a joy to behold, and a greater joy to scan the George Perez-level crowd scene to spot the radically reimagined versions of the characters. As with the last five issues, this one is full of rock-solid gag comics from a bunch of talented cartoonists, many of whom it is surprising to find working on a comic based on a cartoon show.


Vanja said...

Why not post the relevant SpongeBob splash-page? :)

Caleb said...

I would have, but I passed it on to my niece already.