A Geek's Guide To The Galaxy

Comics: Week of 04/10/13


Story by Matt Fraction
Art by David Aja
Colors by Matt Hollingsworth
Letters by Chris Eliopoulos
Cover by David Aja
Marvel Comics

More ladies, more problems. Featuring: The Girlfriend, the Work-Wife and the Ex-Wife.

Plus the tracksuits are back and aim to kill.

Good luck, Hawkeye.

What can I say about this perfect comic? Matt Fraction and David Aja have brought the most consistently amazing book I’ve read in a long time. It is an independent spirited main stream super hero comic. But really, it’s not a super hero comic at all. It is almost a soap opera of Clint Barton (aka Hawkeye) and his regular guy life. He owns his apartment building and he is trying to defend it from Russian mafiosos that looooove tracksuits and are all serious “bro’s”. 

Aja’s art is unbelievably jawdropping. It has an instantaneous classic Golden Age comic look (or maybe even Silver Age), but with modern sensibilities. I mean, look at those costumes! Black Widow, Mockingbird and Spider-Woman have never looked so good. I LOVE seeing all of these heros in their day to day ‘off-Avengers’ time. This works with all of these street-level characters who have to have real lives. This would not work for Thor.

Have I mentioned Matt Hollingsworth’s colors? This is not something I normally notice, but the coloring in this book is so stark and gorgeous and I just want to bath in it!

Fraction captures Clint’s utter ‘guy-ness’ and lays it out on display as we watch a hero who can’t help living on the edge, to the point of self destruction. He is a normal guy, who makes normal mistakes and has normal friends. His relationship with Kate Bishop (Lady Hawkeye) is so fantastic. It rides this beautiful line of teased romance and complete take-no-bullshit best friendship. And the choice to have a Lolita poster in Kate’s bedroom… genius.

My favorite relationship that has been forged in this book is between ‘Hawkguy’ and ‘Grill, -er Gil’. They are just buddies sharing an apartment building. True friends. It is a beautiful thing.

Please read this book. Read it. You will love it. The art explodes off the page in every direction and it is a MUST. And lastly, if you, after reading everything that leads up to this issue, are not gasping from sucker-punched breath by the end of this issue… you have no heart. Damn you, Fraction!!

SAGA #12
Story by Brian K. Vaughan
Art by Fiona Staples
Image Comics

Prince Robot IV makes his move.

Here is another near flawless book. Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples bring the most imaginative book on the market to life for their twelfth issue. This issue does not disappoint. It is a different story than we’ve been recently following and leads to a fangreatastic final page that left me biting my nails (which for me is normal, but I was EXTRA biting them).  

Fiona’s brain needs to be dissceted and studied for science. Her creature creation is unmatched. I love that Vaughan literally just tells her, ‘We need an alien here – whatever you come up with is great.’ She just produces an endless array of galactic species that make me ponder if this is the galaxy of Wonderland.

As Prince Robot (who makes an appearance with fairly graphic imagery on his head), searches the galaxy for our hero family, he tracks down the writer of the book that brought our two love-birds together. This is a great scene that is certainly inspired by Christoph Waltz from Inglorious Basterds

This comic is basically another soap opera, but I can’t help it, it is amazing. This is art at its best that uses the whole page to it’s advantage, from artist-drawn lettering to details of the many small wonders surrounding the fringe of the page.

Stop what you are doing – buy issue #1 of this book and read, read, read!!

UPDATE: I apparently was in the dark to this great controversy about the “graphic” imagery on Price Robot’s face. I just thought it was hilarious and awesome. I understand Comixology’s decision and while I don’t agree with it, I understand their concern. I’m glad it was corrected and we can all be adults again and read our “funny pages”.

Story by Jason Aaron
Art by Esad Ribic
Cover by Esad Ribic & Gabriele Dell’ott
Marvel Comics

GODBOMB, Part One of Five
Somewhere at the end of the time, all the gods of the universe are enslaved, working to build a machine that will forever change the face of creation.

What is…the Godbomb? And what can Thor, the last free god in all the cosmos, do to stop it?

Thor: God Of Thunder is one of the strongest books on the market today. The art by Ribic is consistent and classic. The rough edges and kinetic movement make every page a work of fine art, as if painted by a master. 

Jason Aaron continues the God Butcher story and reveals one doom beyond the previous doom, again and again. It is bleak and exciting. Seeing the All-Father ‘Future’ Thor leap into battle alongside modern day Thor, well it’s a thing of beauty – especially when they are all liquored up.

And I just freakin’ love arrogant true-Viking Thor from back in the day. Is there anything better than naked, post coital Thor fighting with Jarnbjorn, his axe? As far as I’m concerned he can do no wrong in my book… unfortunately for him, Jason Aaron and the Gorr, the God Butcher do not agree.

My only complaint with this weeks book is that I actually felt the art was a little too uncharacteristically muddled at times and maybe a little rushed. But that is only a few panels in an otherwise great read.

Story by Rick Remender
Art by Daniel Acuña
Letters by Chris Eliopoulos
Cover by John Cassaday & Laura Martin
Marvel Comics

The Apocalypse Twins, Part 1
New regular artist Daniel Acuña joins just in time for Thor vs Apocalypse in the 11th Century! Wait until you see these two titans first meeting and first battle!

The Avengers’ ancestors are being hunted and only a young Thor can save his future companions!

And with Rama Tut and Kang pulling the strings, you know nothing good can come from any of it.

The future begins in the past! This is it! The future of the all-new, all-different

Uncanny Avengers begins here and the effects will reverberate across the Marvel Universe for years to come!

MORE VIKING OLD-SCHOOL THOR!!! Drunk Jarnbjorn-wielding Thor fighting ancient Apololypse. Yes. Yes. And, YES!!! 

Remender has been killing this book every issue and I can’t wait to see how he handles Kang the Conquerer and Apocalypse, especially since his Apocalypse heavy Uncanny X-Force run.

That being said, I felt that the writing in this issue lacked clarity at times and could have stood to be streamlined a bit. 

Writer: Brian Wood
Artist: Carlos D’Anda
Colorist: Gabe Eltaeb
Cover Artist: Alex Ross
Dark Horse Comics

As Princess Leia’s stealth squadron lays a trap for the spy within their ranks, she soon realizes that the Rebels are ill prepared for the Empire’s zealous pursuit. Meanwhile, Han Solo flees from the Empire through the lower levels of Coruscant, and Luke Skywalker enjoys being grounded with a female friend…

Great Alex Ross cover! 

Oh, and yes, Brian Wood is telling a very exciting Star Wars story. I’ve always avoided Star Wars comics, but I heard good things about this one. From issue #1, Wood and D’Anda have brought exciting new life to these classic characters.

Han seems pretty much like the Han we know. But, Chewie is a badassmuthawookie, destroying tie fighters, IN FLIGHT with his damn crossbow! Luke has pathos that I never knew I missed from his character. Wedge is a vicious pilot and still the hero we know and love. We are seeing a side of Vader we never got to see, really – the one where he has something to truly prove after the loss of Death Star 1. But the true stand-out character here is Leia – she is a true leader. She leads by example and is a force to be recokoned with from her tactics, her leadership and her piloting. I love this Leia SO much.

Story by Scott Snyder & James Tynion IV
Art by Greg Capullo, Danny Miki, & Alex Maleev
Colors by FCO Plascenica & Brad Anderson
Letters by Comicraft & Dezi Sienty
Cover by Greg Capullo & FCO Plascencia

Who would cause Bruce Wayne to use a gun?

I don’t envy Scott Snyder, having to follow-up three great storylines (Owls, Joker and Death of Robin). And, frankly, I don’t know that he improved on anything here. For those of us with a passing knowledge of the Batman Villains Gallery, this was not really a big surprise of an issue. I mean, it is great to see (SPOILER ALERT) Clayface in action. But it all felt a little contrived and limp to me. 

Frankly, while I have LOVED the run up to now, I am needing to slim my pickin’s anyways, and if this doesn’t improve next issue… well, I might have to leave my only DC Comic at the door.

A word on AVENGERS #9. I have been reading this run and have been enjoying it for the most part. But it has been a little… meh and convoluted at times, focusing on too many new characters that didn’t seem interesting to me. This week, was a VERY heavy week for comics and I found myself having to draw the line somewhere. So, Avengers got the Jarnbjorn… 

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