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A Batman #112 Micro-Review – Villainous Outfits

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

TITLE: Batman #112
AUTHORS: James Tynion IV, Brandon Thomas
ARTISTS: Jorge Jimenez, Jason Howard, Tomeu Morey (Colorist), Clayton Cowles (Letterer). Variant cover by Jorge Molina.
RELEASED: September 7, 2021

This is a nice issue for the Simon Saint character. We get a sense of how he’s selling the Magistrate program to Gotham City. Also, I get a weird kick out of him dressing in a turtleneck, purple pants, and flip flops. Now that’s a villain’s outfit.

At one point, Harley Quinn quips about being given a Robin suit. Considering how prominently she’s been featured during Tynion’s run, I actually wouldn’t rule that out at all…

I continue to dig this look for Scarecrow. Great variant cover!

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Comic Books/Graphic Novels, Micro-Reviews

A Suicide Squad #6 Micro-Review – Matching the Movie

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Suicide Squad 6, cover, 2021, Eduardo Pansica, Julio FerreiraTITLE: Suicide Squad #6
AUTHOR: Robbie Thompson
ARTISTS: Eduardo Pansica, Julio Ferreira, Dexter Soy, Alex Sinclair (Colorist), Wes Abbott (Letterer). Cover by Pansica, Ferreira, & Marcelo Maiolo.
RELEASED: August 3, 2021

If I’m at DC, I want this Suicide Squad book to be firing on all cylinders because of any interest the new James Gunn movie might generate. Frankly, I’m not sure it is. Right now we’ve got a story about Squad members traveling to Earth-3. That’s appealing to regulars like yours truly. But to a casual audience that might not normally read comics? Maybe not.

And while I normally am not a fan of how overexposed she is, not including Harley Quinn in this line-up might have been a mistake given how prominently she’s featured in the film.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Comic Books/Graphic Novels, Micro-Reviews

A Batman #111 Micro-Review – Harley (Almost) Ruins the Moment

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Batman 111, cover, 2021, Jorge JimenezTITLE: Batman #111
AUTHOR: James Tynion IV
ARTISTS: Jorge Jimenez, Ricardo Lopez Ortiz, Tomeu Morey (Colorist), Romulo Fajardo Jr. (Colorist), Clayton Cowles (Letterer)
RELEASED: August 3, 2021

There’s a hot spread in this issue of Batman, Ghost-Maker and Harley Quinn. Though Harley almost ruins it by making a crack about being a member of the Bat-family. *sigh* I still maintain she has no place there…

We find out in this issue that a villain is operating from Arkham Asylum, which has been shut down thanks to a Joker gas bombing. Even in Gotham City, how that happens is beyond me. If I’m Batman, I’ve got that place under 24/7 surveillance for that very reason.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Comic Books/Graphic Novels, Micro-Reviews

A Batman #110 Micro-Review – The Business of Making Ghosts

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

TITLE: Batman #110
AUTHOR: James Tynion IV
ARTISTS: Jorge Jimenez, Ricardo Lopez Ortiz, Tomeu Morey (Colorist), Romulo Fajardo Jr. (Colorist), Clayton Cowles (Letterer). Variant cover by Jock.
RELEASED: July 6, 2021

These Ghost-Maker back-up stories have been an acquired taste. But after several installments, I’ve finally started to come around on them. Particularly because of Ricardo Lopez-Ortiz’s art. It’s got a nice animated look to it without being too silly.

The main story was more or less status quo. Tynion, Jimenez, and Morey continue to do right by Scarecrow, while Harley Quinn continues to feel out of place working alongside Batman. I’ll grant you the latter is probably my own personal taste more than anything. But I call ’em like I see ’em.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Comic Books/Graphic Novels, Micro-Reviews

A Batman #109 Micro-Review – Those Damn Distractions

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Batman 109, cover, 2021, Jorge JimenezTITLE: Batman #109
AUTHOR: James Tynion IV,
ARTISTS: Jorge Jimenez, Ricardo Lopez Ortiz, Tomeu Morey (Colorist), Clayton Cowles (Letterer)
RELEASED: June 1, 2021

The stuff we’re getting with Harley Quinn and Ghost-Maker is still feeling like a distraction from what should be our main plot threads. Namely, Batman becoming a financially middle-class superhero, the Scarecrow terrorizing Gotham, and Simon Saint’s tightening grip on the city. I trust Tynion. But it still feels tedious.

Random question: How does having the use of her legs again fundamentally change Barbara Gordon’s Oracle persona, if at all? I’m still getting used to the wheelchair not being there.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Comic Books/Graphic Novels

Weekly Comic 100s: Batman #106

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

TITLE: Batman #106
AUTHOR: James Tynion IV, Joshua Williamson
ARTISTS: Jorge Jimenez, Gleb Melnikov, Tomeu Morey (Colorist), Clayton Cowles (Letterer), Troy Peteri (Letterer). Cover by Jimenez & Morey.
RELEASED: March 2, 2021

Tomeu Morey is the star of this issue. It’s a symphony of gorgeous colors, each playing a distinct role in their respective scenes. A true masterclass in the work of a colorist.

Is Harley Quinn considered a member of the Bat-family now? Ugh.

Story-wise, I was drawn to the back-up more than the feature. We see Damian, complete with a new, far less colorful Robin suit (shown right), return to his mother to take back his role with the League of Assassins. The purist in me doesn’t like that costume. But for now, I’ll bite.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Comic Books/Graphic Novels

Weekly Comic 100s: Suicide Squad #1

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

TITLE: Suicide Squad #1
AUTHOR: Robbie Thompson
ARTISTS: Eduardo Pansica, Julio Ferreira (Inker), Marcelo Maiolo (Colorist), Wes Abbott (Letterer). Variant cover by Gerard Parel.
RELEASED: March 2, 2021

Wait, I thought Peacemaker was supposed to be a comedic character? He certainly looks like one to me…

After almost 10 years, it looks like they might finally be getting Harley Quinn away from the Suicide Squad. Though that may be wishful thinking, as she’s in the upcoming James Gunn Suicide Squad movie. There’s no Deadshot, either. Not yet, at least. So for now we’ve got more or less a new line-up, with Peacemaker in a starring role to tie-in with the film.

This book has my attention. For now.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Comic Books/Graphic Novels

Weekly Comic 100s: Future State: The Next Batman #4

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

TITLE: Future State: The Next Batman #4
AUTHOR: John Ridley, Vita Ayala, Paula Sevenbergen
ARTISTS: Laura Braga, Nick Derington (Breakdowns), Aneke, Emanuela Lupaccino, Wade Von Grawbadger (Inker)
COLORISTS:
Arif Prianto, Trish Mulvihill, John Kalisz
LETTERERS:
Clayton Cowles, Becca Carey
RELEASED: February 16, 2021

Ridley, Braga, and the Next Batman team have sold me on this version of the character. I’ll definitely be checking out Second Son.

The second half of the Batgirls back-up expands quite nicely. We go beyond just Stephanie Brown and Cassandra Cain, and a larger picture begins to form with the rest of the Bat-family. I was pleasantly surprised.

The main thing I took away from the Gotham City Sirens back-up was slighty bewilderment, as they didn’t find a way to shoehorn Harley Quinn into it. The original trio was Harley, Poison Ivy, and Catwoman. What gives?

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Posted in Comic Books/Graphic Novels

Weekly Comic 100s: DC Future State, Star Wars: The High Republic, and More!

***”Weekly Comic 100s” keeps it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Dark Nights: Death Metal isn’t my thing. Just not my flavor of ice cream. But apparently it just changed the DC Universe on a cosmic level. So I had to do a little research.

Apparently, coming out of Death Metal, the DC Multiverse is now a DC Omniverse. An omniverse is, of course…*looks it up*…a universe that is spatiotemporally four-dimensional.” What does that mean? Apparently it means there are, like, a lot of alternate universes out there, and everything is canon somewhere.

That should be DC’s new tag line: “DC Comics: Where everything is canon somewhere!”

Out of Death Metal we go into Generations Shattered, and the two-month long Future State event, which shows us “glimpses into the possible unwritten worlds of tomorrow.” These Future State stories are taking over virtually all the main DC books until March. So whether we like the future or not, it’s here…

Oh, and Star Wars: The High Republic started this week too.

Oh, and there’s other stuff too.

Everybody gettin’ this, so far? Good. Now let’s dive in.

TITLE: Generations Shattered #1
AUTHORS: Dan Jurgens, Robert Venditti, Andy Schmidt
ARTISTS: Various. Cover by Ivan Reis, Joe Prado, & Hi-Fi.
RELEASED: January 5, 2021

This one didn’t do it for me. Which was a surprise, as DC usually does pretty well with these one-shot event kick-offs (think DC Universe: Rebirth). Plus, the idea of all these heroes from various decades (’40s Batman, ’90s Steel, etc) coming together is pretty cool.

But while there’s tons of great artistic talent on display here, there’s a certain emptiness to Generations Shattered. I was left wanting more. And not in a good way.

Quite a shame. There was a lot of potential here.

TITLE: Star Wars: The High Republic #1
AUTHOR: Cavan Scott
ARTISTS: Ario Anindito, Mark Morales (Inker), Annalisa Leoni (Colorist), Ariana Maher (Letterer). Cover by Phil Noto.
RELEASED: January 6, 2021

This has more of a fantasy vibe than a traditional Star Wars book. Not the least of which because we’ve got a fairy-like alien on the opening pages.

This issue drew me in, but the hook wasn’t that strong. I’m wondering whether Yoda, who is in this issue, should have played a larger role. As the only character we know who’s alive during this time frame, he would have been the natural segue in, wouldn’t he?

TITLE: Future State: The Next Batman #1
AUTHOR: John Ridley, Brandon Thomas
ARTISTS: Nick Derington, Tamra Bonvillain (Colorist), Clayton Cowles (Letterer). Cover by Jose O. Ladronn.
RELEASED: January 5, 2021

Right now, people should be reading anything that has John Ridley’s name on it. This is good stuff. Very street-level in both writing and art. I also love that the Santa Prisca gang wears ’90s style Bane masks.

The issue also does a lot of justice to the Outsiders, and oddly enough, the Peter Tomasi version of Arkham Knight from Detective Comics. That story didn’t do much for me. But the character feels like she belongs in this world.

TITLE: Star Wars #10
AUTHOR: Charles Soule
ARTISTS:
Jan Bazaldua, Rachelle Rosenberg (Colorist), Clayton Cowles (Letterer). Cover by Carlo Pagulayan, Jason Paz & Rain Beredo.
RELEASED:
January 6, 2021

Spoiler alert: Luke Skywalker isn’t in this issue. So that’s a misleading cover, right there.

Put that aside, however, and this might be the best issue of the series thus far. We’ve got some good character stuff, including the exploration of the relationship between Lando and Lobot, the latter of whom doesn’t get played with that often. Han Solo’s absence leaves a big void in the Star Wars story that can be used for newer or lesser known characters. This issue is a textbook example of that.

TITLE: Future State: Wonder Woman #1
AUTHOR: Joelle Jones
ARTISTS: Jones, Jordie Bellaire (Colorist), Clayton Cowles (Letterer)
RELEASED: January 5, 2021

This issue is pretty. That’s par for the course for a Jones & Bellaire book. Jones draws the underworld like a crowded city subway station, which is fun. Our new Wonder Woman, Yara Flor, also has a flying horse named Jerry. Because why not? There’s also humor injected into things, which is nice.

The thing is, I’m not really sure what to think of all this. The issue is fun, but there’s not much to get me invested in our new hero, or to make me want more. So I’m on the fence about coming back next time.

TITLE: Future State: Harley Quinn #1
AUTHOR: Stephanie Phillips
ARTISTS: Simone di Meo, Tamra Bonvillain (Colorist), Troy Peteri (Letters). Cover by Derrick Chew.
RELEASED: January 5, 2021

Simone di Meo and Tamra Bonvillain look good on Harley. They give this issue a feel akin to a much brighter Batman Beyond. They also give Professor Pyg a gas-mask-centered redesign that’s pretty cool.

The art is inspired, but the plot isn’t. An imprisoned Harley helping the police (who are aided by Scarecrow, oddly enough), track down Gotham City villains. It’s essentially a twist on the Hannibal Lecter character. Harley devotees may come back next issue. But I’ll pass, thanks.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

 


Posted in Comic Books/Graphic Novels

Weekly Comic 100s: Batman, Bendis’ Superman Finale, Spider-Man, and More!

***”Weekly Comic 100s” keeps it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

TITLE: Batman: The Adventures Continue #16
AUTHORS: Alan Burnett, Paul Dini
ARTISTS: Ty Templeton, Monica Cubina (Colorist), Josh Reed (Letterer). Cover by Mirka Andolfo.
RELEASED: December 18, 2020

This issue and issue #15 are weird in that they essentially repeat a story from the New Batman Adventures episode “Double Talk.” Arnold Wesker, the Ventriloquist, tries to reform and ultimately fails. That’s a really strange thing to have happen, as these guys obviously worked on the old shows as well…

This story seems primarily like an excuse to put Harley and Ivy together. On the upside, we get a cool villain Christmas party at the Iceberg Lounge with plenty of cameos. Including, oddly enough, a panel where Captain Boomerang and Roxy Rocket are making out.

TITLE: Superman #28
AUTHOR: Brian Michael Bendis
ARTISTS: Ivan Reis, Danny Miki (Inker), Alex Sinclair (Colorist), Dave Sharpe (Letterer). Variant cover by Kael Ngu.
RELEASED: December 15, 2020

I’d love to know when Bendis’ run on the Superman books was originally supposed to end. Or if they even had an endpoint in mind. In the grand scheme of things, this feels like a fairly abrupt finale. But at the end of the day, Bendis did right by Superman. That’s more than a lot of writers can say. I respect him that much more for that.

Reis and the artistic team did too. There’s a beautiful panel in here of Lois looking lovingly at her husband. Amongst all the space alien grandeur in this issue, it’s an unlikely highlight.

TITLE: Power Rangers #2
AUTHOR: Ryan Parrott
ARTISTS: Francesco Mortarino, Raul Angulo (Colorist), Ed Dukeshire (Letterer). Cover by Matteo Scalera & Moreno Dinisio.
RELEASED: December 16, 2020

A neat issue, conceptually. Jason, Zack, and Trini against a bunch of space vampires. But this series is having trouble holding my attention even earlier than I anticipated. The foundations of a good book are there, but I think Power Rangers needs a stronger hook. Here’s hoping this book can up its game in a big way soon.

There’s a pretty cool splash page early in this issue. It’s just Jason posing with a sword. But between the pose, the framing, and the lighting, it’s got an epic feel to it that works really well.

TITLE: Spider-Man #5 (of 5)
AUTHORS: J.J. Abrams, Henry Abrams
ARTISTS: Sara Pichelli, Elizabetta D’Amico (Inking Assisant), Dave Stewart (Colorist), Joe Caramagna (Letterer). Cover by Olivier Coipel & Stewart.
RELEASED: December 9, 2020

This story was compelling enough, and the premise was enjoyable. Plus, Sara Pichelli was apparently born to draw Spider-Man. But I’ve said it before, and I’ll keep saying it: The presence of the Iron Man characters took away from Ben Parker’s journey as Spider-Man. Especially here in this final issue. This was supposed to be a family story about Peter Parker, his son, and the passing of the proverbial Spider-Man torch. Instead, the waters got a little too muddied.

TITLE: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #112
AUTHORS: Kevin Eastman & Tom Waltz (Story), Sophie Campbell (Script)
ARTISTS: Jodi Nishijima, Ronda Pattison (Colorist), Shawn Lee (Letterer)
RELEASED: December 9, 2020

Just when I think these TMNT issues can’t add any more depth, we get a story about a fight breaking out during an “I used to be a  human, but now I’m a mutant” support group meeting. Love it.

To help differentiate between the Turtles without their multi-colored bandanas, Ronda Pattison is giving them different skin tones. The IDW Turtles have had different skin tones since issue #1. But note they aren’t given such tones on this otherwise pretty cool cover.

TITLE: Star Wars #9
AUTHOR: Charles Soule
ARTISTS: Jan Bazaldua, Rachelle Rosenberg (Colorist), Clayton Cowles (Letterer). Cover by Carlo Pagulayan, Jason Paz, & Rain Beredo.
RELEASED: December 9, 2020

You’d think a story about Lando and friends trying to break into a museum on Coruscant would be a lot more fun than this. But somehow this issue managed to bore me with it.

I’ve been on the brink of dropping this Star Wars title for a long time. This might have been the issue to push me over the edge. There’s a certain fun, a certain spark, that’s missing here.

TITLE: Suicide Squad #11
AUTHOR: Tom Taylor
ARTISTS: Bruno Redondo, Adriano Lucas (Colorist), Wes Abbott (Letterer). Variant cover by Jeremy Roberts.
RELEASED: November 24, 2020

I’m not a Harley Quinn mark the way a lot of people are. But even I’ve got to admit: That’s an awesome cover.

In hindsight, this series was better than it had any right to be. As expected, Taylor leaves the door open to work more with the characters he created in Suicide Squad. He and Redondo are about to start a run on Nightwing. So I expect we might see them there.

In the end, this may go down as one of the more underrated runs Suicide Squad has ever seen.

TITLE: Batman/Superman #14
AUTHOR: Joshua Williamson
ARTISTS: Max Raynor, Alejandro Sanchez (Colorist), John J. Hill (Letterer). Cover by David Marquez & Sanchez.
RELEASED: November 24, 2020

“I’m calling for my Bat-spaceship to come get us.”

*cringe* That feels like a line out of a post-Wertham comic in the ’50s.

Still, while this story looks uninspired on the surface, it manages to be a decent amount of fun in its execution. A fairly interesting take on the composite Superman/Batman concept, with some fun art by Max Raynor and beautiful coloring by Alejandro Sanchez. I’ve seen much better. But in all fairness, it could have been much worse.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.