A Dark Crisis: Young Justice #1 Micro-Review – In Good Hands

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

Dark Crisis Young Justice 1, cover, 2022, Todd NuackTITLE: Dark Crisis: Young Justice #1 (of 6)
AUTHOR: Meghan Fitzmartin
ARTISTS:
Laura Braga, Luis Guerrero (Colorist), Pat Brosseau (Letterer). Variant cover by Todd Nuack & Matt Herms.

RELEASED: June 21, 2022

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Meghan Fitzmartin has impressed the hell out of me lately. Not just with this issue, but her handling of Tim Drake’s emergence as bisexual. Tim’s new ongoing series is in good hands with her.

Fans of Tim, Conner Kent, Bart Allen, and Cassandra Sandsmark should lap this one up. It’s got nods and tributes to their history in and beyond the original Young Justice series. It also has a very relatable core story about this seemingly lost generation of heroes struggling to find their place in the world. I’m all in on this one.

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

A Superman: Son of Kal-El #12 Micro-Review – Enough is Enough

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

Superman Son of Kal El 12, cover, 2022, Travis MooreTITLE: Superman: Son of Kal-El #12
AUTHOR: Tom Taylor
ARTISTS:
Cian Tormey & Ruairi Coleman, Dave Sharpe (Letterer). Cover by Travis Moore & Tamra Bonvillain.
INKERS: Scott Hanna, Coleman, Raul Fernandez, Tormey
COLORISTS:
Federico Blee, Matt Herms

RELEASED: June 14, 2022

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

I think I’ve officially had enough of Batman and Nightwing having a consistent presence in this book. Guest spots are fine. But as I’ve said many times before, we don’t need Batman characters here as window dressing.

This cover by Travis Moore and Tamra Bonvillain is one of my favorites on this series so far. For me, it’s all in Jon’s face. It looks genuine.

There’s an interesting twist here involving Jon’s boyfriend, Jay Nakamura, that offers a good amount of intrigue for issues to come. Things are about to get very, very personal…

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

A Teen Titans Academy #11 Micro-Review – Shazam’s Farewell

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

TITLE: Teen Titans Academy #11
AUTHOR: Tim Sheridan
ARTISTS:
Rafa Sandoval & Jordi Tarragona, Brent Peeples, Alex Sinclair (Colorist), Jeremiah Skipper (Colorist), Matt Herms (Colorist), Rob Leigh (Letterer). Cover by Sandoval & Sinclair.

RELEASED: January 25, 2022

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

I didn’t like this one. First off, the cover seems to indicate that we’ll finally get Red X’s identity. That doesn’t happen.

Secondly, Shazam gives the teachers a heartfelt goodbye in this issue, which doesn’t land because we haven’t explored Billy Batson’s relationship with the Titans to any great length. That’s a bizarre misstep, considering we had a four-issue Shazam! miniseries that directly tied into Teen Titans Academy.

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

A Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #9 Review – A New Room in an Old House

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #9, 2016TITLE: Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #9
AUTHORS: Kyle Higgins, Steve Orlando
PENCILLERS: Hendry Prasetya, Corin Howell. Cover by Jamal Campbell.
PUBLISHER: BOOM! Studios
PRICE: $3.99
RELEASED: November 30, 2016

***WARNING: Spoilers lay ahead.***

By Rob Siebert
Editor, Fanboy Wonder

Can we talk about the Power Rangers movie for a second?

They’ve started showing the trailer in theaters, and a few days ago we got our first look at the movie’s Alpha 5 (yuck). For better or worse, it looks very much in the same vein as the darkened, CGI overhauls that franchises like Transformers, G.I. Joe, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles got. As such, it looks big, epic, mostly serious, and only slightly like the show I watched as a kid. As a longtime Power Rangers fan, that’s disappointing.

I bring this up because, like the movie, this Mighty Morphin Power Rangers book from BOOM! Studios is also big, epic, and serious. At one point in this new issue, the Tommy character finds himself in a life-threatening scenario. Thinking these are his final moments, he starts to ask the other Rangers to tell his mother that he loves her. That’d be a pretty intense moment for a Saturday morning kids show. But it works here. In fact, most of what we’ve seen in this series works. So why does MMPR work, but the Power Rangers movie looks so contrived?

power-rangers-movieI think a lot of it has to do with what seems to be an affection for the source material. Kyle Higgins, Hendry Prasetya, and this team are looking at this world through a different lens. But it still feels like the world and characters that we know. Everyone is in the same role, everyone looks and talks (mostly) the same, and the suits and zords are the same. But it feels like we’re breaking new ground. This series almost feels like magically finding a new room in a house you’ve lived in for years. Whereas the Power Rangers movie feels like a different house, built to vaguely look like the old one.

Even when we’re introduced to an element exclusive to the book, it feels like it’s cut from the same cloth as the show. Case in point, Black Dragon, and the mysterious new Ranger we meet at the end of issue #9.

By splitting Tommy’s powers, Jason, Kimberly, Zack, and Trini have regained access to the Morphin Grid. They once again have their powers and words, albeit with a green tint. Now they must rescue Billy from Dark Dimension and defeat Black Dragon. But during the battle, they learn this new enemy is not all that he seems. This new revelation will lead two Rangers to discover a new world of peril. Literally, a new world.

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #9, Black DragonThe big news from this issue is the introduction of our comfy friend on the right. He’s obviously a mix of the Green and White Ranger (designed by Jamal Campbell), with some nice little additions thrown in. The Black Dragon we’ve seen previously is apparently an empty vessel. We find this mysterious Ranger in another plane of reality, which is dark and decimated, and features big statues of Rita and the Green Ranger. My guess is this is alternate-Earth Tommy, who was somehow victorious with Rita as the evil Green Ranger, and then turned on her to rule the world on his own.

This has been treated as a big reveal, with BOOM! advertising it as the first new Ranger introduced to the MMPR world in over two decades. Indeed, it’s pretty damn cool. With this new Ranger comes a new sandbox for writers and artists to play in, and a boat-load of new story possibilities. I’m guessing (and hoping) this is what Higgins was referring to when he talked publicly about not sticking to the show’s continuity.

Turning the other Ranger costumes green is a neat gimmick. Power Rangers fans like little tweaks like that. Colorist Matt Herms pulls it off very well, and Campbell even gives it a certain grandeur on the cover.

The superhero action stuff is where Prasetya really excels, as opposed to the quieter moments with the teens. So this is a big issue for him. There’s a fantastic splash page (shown below) where the Red-turned-Green Ranger teleports in, with the Tyrannosaurus Dinozord and the Eiffel Tower in the background. There’s a great shot where Black Dragon has his back to the camera as the zords advance. There are also a lot of great little things, like a rubble effect around the Dragonzord’s face when it takes a punch.

Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #9, 2016Higgins also has a nice handle on Goldar. Via some convincing, he actually releases Billy from the Dark Dimension so he can help the Rangers destroy Black Dragon. When it’s revealed Black Dragon is a robot, the idea is to let Billy dismantle him so that Goldar can take his spot back at Rita’s side. It’s shades of the dynamic he had with Tommy during “Green With Evil.” What made Goldar so intriguing was that while he worked for Rita, and was ultimately loyal to Lord Zedd, he had his own agenda. In this series, and the Pink miniseries, we’re seeing him act on that agenda. The only hole I can poke in the Dark Dimension stuff is why Goldar is so transparent with Billy. Agenda or no agenda, Billy is still his enemy.

Steve Orlando and Corin Howell are also back with more Bulk and Skull. While these back-ups haven’t done much at all for me, But the inclusion of Rita in this one offers a little more intrigue. And this story about Rita wanting the boys to control a monster does seem like something that might have happened on the show.

I admit, I’ve been nervous about this book since Higgins said that continuity stuff to Newsarama. We’ve got such a good thing going. So when the writer says something like that about the continuity that everybody knows and loves, I get antsy. With this alternate reality stuff, he’s found a nice way to have some fun and sell a lot of comics. I’m just hoping the fun continues.

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