Wednesday, November 27, 2013
Comic shop comics: November 27
This was one of the better short stories I can remember reading since this anthology series launched, and has two rather incredible images, including Superman making a gigantic "peashooter" to just wreck Metallo, and a Superman adopting a "disguise" to confront the leaders of the Superman-worshipping movement (see above).
The back-up story is written by Tim Seeley and drawn by the great Mike Norton. It's not quite as impressive as a story, contrasting the bleak experience of a five-year-old Russian orphan with the super-exploits of grown-up orphan Superman, but it was nice to seen Norton not only drawing Superman in his real costume, but drawing Wonder Woman and Martian Manhunter in their original costumes too.
There's also a Japanese hot spring scene that could have come straight out of a manga comic (at least in set-up; Allred's art doesn't look like anyone's art but Mike Allred's) and a neat in-joke cameo from Matt Fraction, who made his first in-story appearance alongside Cargo Manshark a few issues back.
It's not just going to be sad when this title ends, it's going to be downright depressing.
It's a little disconcerting to match this Kate Bishop with the one in Young Avengers, as this one seems to barely know anything about crimefighting, law enforcement or superheroing ("Oh, thank God," she says in one panel, as someone pulls a gun on her and she raises a bow and arrow at him, "I was beginning to forget how to use this thing"). But, as usual, Fraction's writing is so sharp, witty and layered, it hardly matters. This Kate Bishop is fun to hang out with and read about, and Hawkeye is a fun and funny comic book, so if one wonders where her laser bow is or why she seems like this is her first rodeo at all, these are thoughts that come after the comic's over.
I continue to love this book, and while I'm not crazy about the split-focus (Clint Barton drawn by David Aja one issue, Kate Bishop by Wu the next), I understand it, Fraction writes about characters well, and both Aja and Wu are great artists.
Saga #16 (Image Comics) This comic is just the worst.
The story's not very good and essentially pointless, just ending rather than concluding, but the art is nice, and I like Eastman and Talbot's gritty, ragged lines, their usage of blacks, the way they draw skulls and even the handwriting on the dialogue and special effects. It's an aesthetically pleasing work of absolutely no other value.