144 Batman: War Games Book Two

When giant crossovers are done right, and infrequently, they can be amazing.  I thought the entire War Games crossover was pure gold.  There was one, focused story, it ran through the entire Batman Family of books, none of it felt forced, none of it felt padded out.  It was on point and a great read.

Basically, for a year, we got a story that took place over the course of a few days.  Batman had fired Stephanie Brown as Robin.  She still wanted to prove her worth to Batman and it backfired in her face.  Batman has contingency plans for everything.  EVERYTHING.  Stephanie took one of those plans and unintentionally turned it into a reality, sparking the biggest mob war in Gotham's history.  It took all of Batman's associates to end it, but it did so much damage to Batman's standing in Gotham, his allies standing in Gotham, and his own relationship with his allies that it took years to fix.

It really is a great story with amazing consequences that laid the groundwork for more stories.  That's the sign of a great "event story."

Batman: War Games Book Two
Writer: Anderson Gabrych, A.J. Lieberman, Devin Grayson, Bill Willingham, Dylan Horrocks, Ed Brubaker, Bruce Jones, Russell Lissan
Artist: Pete Woods, Cam Smith, Brad Walker, Troy Nixey, Mike Lilly, Andy Owens, Al Barrionuevo, Francis Portella, Jon Proctor, Robert Campanella, Rodney Ramos, Mike Huddleston, Jesse Delperdang, Paul Gulacy, Jimmy Palmiotti, Kinsun, Aaron Sowd, Sean Phillips, Thomas Derenick, Adam DeKraker, Drew Geraci, Paul Lee, Brian Horton, Eddy Barrows, Jay Leisten, Chris Marrinan, Andrew Pepoy, BIT, Giuseppe Camuncoli, Sandre Hope
DC Comics

143 Tales Of The Batman: Gerry Conway Vol 1

When I think of Gerry Conway, I don't necessarily think of Batman, but as it turns out, he's written his fair share of Batman stories.  Everything in this book I've read before.  Most everything I've read I read when it was brand new.  There are a couple exceptions, but very few.  This book has a nice mix of stories from Batman, Detective Comics, Batman Family, Brave & The Bold, World's Finest and Man-Bat. 

A couple of the stories in here I have very strong, fond memories of, though I had no idea they were Gerry Conway stories.  The first being the story from Batman Family #17.  And it's not even the story itself that I have really fond memories of, but the entire issue.  I remember all the stories kind of blending into one another.  The story reprinted in this volume has one of my favorite BatFam sequences ever. Huntress breaks into the Wayne Foundation building and is quickly "discovered" by Batman and Robin.  It's the first meeting between Batman and Huntress and I love it.  Batman brings Huntress to meet Kathy Kane, who in turn takes Huntress to meet Batgirl.  That story isn't in this volume, though.

Another story I have very fond memories of is from World's Finest #250.  I don't think the story is nearly as good as I remember it, but I'm a sucker for anniversary stories with lots of guest stars.  This tale isn't just the Superman/Batman story you'd normally get in World's Finest.  It also stars Green Arrow and Black Canary and the WWII Earth 2 Wonder Woman, all who also had features in World's Finest.  I do love these kinds of stories, whether they are successful or not. 

This book also has a fair amount of Brave & The Bold stories.  I love those tales.  LOVE THEM!!!  Especially the ones that are the more impossible ones, like Batman teaming up with Scalphunter.

I wouldn't say there's anything in this book that's outstanding, but it's a great read cover to cover nonetheless.

If DC is going to reprint more Gerry Conway stuff, I hope their next project is the Fury of Firestorm series.  That, to me, is classic Gerry Conway.

Tales Of The Batman: Gerry Conway Vol 1
Writer: Gerry Conway
Artist: Steve Ditko, Ernie Chan, Michael Golden, George Tuska, John Calnan, Jim Aparo, Don Newton, Jose Luis Garcia Lopez, Carmine Infantino, Rich Buckler, Al Milgrom, Frank McLaughlin, Vince Colletta, Dave Hunt, Dan Adkins, Steve Mitchell
DC Comics


142 Justice League Of America: The Nail - The Complete Deluxe Edition

DC has finally collected both Alan Davis mini-series into one beautiful deluxe edition.  What an amazing book to sit and soak in.

Alan Davis wrote and drew a love letter to DC's Silver Age.  It doesn't quite get the love that something like Darwyn Cooke's New Frontier does, but it should.

Quite simply, Ma & Pa Kent get a nail in their tire the night they were supposed to find baby Kal-El.  They never leave the house and Kal-El gets adopted elsewhere.  He never becomes Superman.  So the story follows the DC Silver Age with that one alteration.  And what it turns into is a scene that is very reminiscent of what's happening today in America.  Except replace minorities with meta humans.  Meta humans are no longer trusted and they're feared.  There's a giant conspiracy against them, but the heroes do get their shit together and take care of matters.  It's a very compelling story.  It grabs your attention and doesn't let it go.

A follow up story was done called Another Nail.  This one I struggled a bit with.  It starts off going further into detail an event that happened in the first book, which leads to the new story.  Or so I guess it does.  The second book felt like it was a lot of plot points, but I was waiting to figure out what the actual plot was.  If that makes sense. 

Both series are some of the best work Alan Davis has ever done.  He's amazing.  I could look at this book for the rest of my life and never get tired of it.

Justice League Of America: The Nail - The Complete Deluxe Edition
Writer: Alan Davis
Artist: Alan Davis, Mark Farmer
DC Comics


141 Doctor Who - The Tenth Doctor Vol 6: Sins Of The Father

Okay, so I've read a lot of Doctor Who this week while being cooped up at home.   This is the third book (and the last on my backlog shelf of books to read) one.  What I love about the Doctor Who comic series is it takes a page from the tv show and stages out seasons of storytelling.  Like on the tv show, there's a big, over-arcing story being told at the same time as single, smaller stories are unfolding.  But the catch with that is if you don't care for the big story, all the rest of the smaller stories don't do it for you.

This volume deals with two big over-arcing plots, neither of which I care much for.  There's this storyline with the Nocturnes that has been unfolding since the fourth volume of this book and another storyline dealing with Anubis which is been going on since maybe the third?  I really don't care for either and that's distracting from any enjoyment I might find in this book.  I'm anxious for all these arcs to reach their conclusions so that I can get back to really liking the Tenth Doctors' adventures.

On a happier note, the art is as gorgeous as ever.  There's that, at least.

Doctor Who - The Tenth Doctor Vol 6: Sins Of The Father
Writer: Nick Abadzis
Artist: Giorgia Sposito, Eleonora Carlini, Leandro Casco, Simon Fraser, Walter Geovanni
Titan Comics

140 Deadman By Kelley Jones: The Complete Collection

I'm sure I've mentioned on the blog my love of Deadman.  He's a character who always always always appeals to me.  And this collection is a great one.  It collects together three separate series drawn by Kelley Jones.  And this is why when I think the name Kelley Jones, the first thing that springs to my mind of Deadman.  His stylized version of the character is amazing.

What we have here is an 8 part story that originally ran in Action Comics Weekly.  It involves zombies and possession and all that good ol' New Orleans voodoo nonsense.  Mike Baron wrote the tale, as he did the other stories in this book.  It's followed up by the two part mini series Love After Death.  Deadman meets, well, for lack of a better term, Deadwoman and instantly falls in love.  It's a great tale of the supernatural, love and betrayal.  And finally, the mini series Exorcism, which follows up both of the previous stories in this volume.  Deadman is distraught after the events of the Love After Death series and his basically lost his mind.  Madame Waxahachie, a character first introduced in the Action Comics Weekly series is brought in to help fix what's happened.  It's a great, but disturbing tale (and it also features the Phantom Stranger, another of my favorites!)

If you're a Deadman fan, this book is for you.  It's such a great read, cover to cover

Deadman By Kelley Jones: The Complete Collection
Writer: Mike Baron
Artist: Kelley Jones, Tony DeZuniga, Pablo Marcos, Vince Giarrano
DC Comics

139 Mister Miracle By Jack Kirby

I'm going to say something very controversial.  I don't like Jack Kirby.  I don't think he's the shit like everyone else does.  I'm not a huge fan of his writing.  I'm not a huge fan of his art.  I appreciate that he's a creative behemoth and he's responsible for some of the most well loved and most enduring properties in comics, but I'm just not a fan.

However, Mister Miracle may be my absolute favorite Kirby creation.  Everything about his sings to me.  His costume is simple, yet complex.  It's bright and shiny and happy.  His back story is tragic but his current story is positive.  He's a fun character and he has great adventures.

Sure, most of the stories in here are kind of awful, but they're fun awful.  And we get all 18 fun but awful action packed issues of Kirby's run.  We get a lot of Kirby's Fourth World characters showing up for different stories, which is neat.  He was writing, drawing and editing the whole Fourth World set of books for a number of years.  I don't know how he did it.  Granted, they weren't monthly books.  Bi-monthly at best, but that's a lot of pages to be putting out on a regular basis.

Anyway, if I was going to pick on Kirby book to love on for his 100th anniversary celebration, it would be this book.

Mister Miracle By Jack Kirby
Writer: Jack Kirby
Artist: Jack Kirby, Mike Royer
DC Comics

138 JLA Year One: The Deluxe Edition

I suppose there was a need for this book.  Crisis On Infinite Earths had made the JLA's origin obsolete.  Things needed to be shuffled around to make it still work.  And this book put it all down on paper for us.  I remember enjoying the book when it first came out all those years ago.  But reading it with a fresh set of eyes, all these years later, I kind of feel like this story is a big waste of time.  In the years since it was published, this story, too, has become obsolete.  Events have made changes in history and this doesn't hold up anymore.  And maybe that's why I feel like it was a waste?  I don't know.

There were a lot of things that bothered me about this book.  I love an Easter egg, but it felt like this book when above and beyond the call of duty to shove as many of them in here as possible.  It's distracting.  Some of the characterizations also annoyed me.  Black Canary especially.  She was insufferable to me.

I heard a lot of behind the scenes stuff about the production of this book back when it was being published.  There was a lot of talk about Mark Waid being furious with Brian Augustyn's scripting and that he had to rescript an awful lot of this book.  It may be true.  I've never been a big Augustyn fan.  I don't feel he's a very good writer.  It may be his presence here that brings the book down for me.  Because it's not Waid.  He's still got a million ideas and they're all good.

It was nice to revisit this book, but I don't know if it was necessary.

JLA Year One: The Deluxe Edition
Writer: Mark Waid, Brian Augustyn
Artist: Barry Kitson, Michael Bair, Mark Propst, John Stokes
DC Comics

137 Batman '66 Meets Steed And Mrs. Peel

I read the Batman '66 series when it first came out and while it was fun at first, it got old quick.  At least for me.  However, these occasional mini-series have more than redeemed the book for me.  This one was particularly fun.

Here we have Batman and Robin teaming up with Steed and Mrs. Peel.  I have to admit I never watched the Avengers and have read very little Steed and Peel, but knowing a lot about them isn't necessary.  

This adventure starts in Gotham City and spans all the way to England, covering both teams' home bases.  I'm not familiar with the Steed & Peel villain, so I don't know if they're brand new or canon, but they mesh well with the choice of Bat Villains used in this tale.

There are two highlights of this book for me.  The first is the tone of the book.  It's not as campy as the Batman '66 books can be, but it doesn't lose the camp, either.  It's a controlled camp and it makes the book extra enjoyable.  The other highlight is the art of Matt Smith.  I think he's incredible every day of the week, but this was really beautiful to look at.  I don't know if it's all free hand art or if he used video stills for some of the panels.  I can't tell.  Either way, it's gorgeous art that fits the book like a glove.

Batman '66 Meets Steed And Mrs. Peel
Writer: Ian Edginton
Artist: Matthew Dow Smith
DC Comics / Boom! Studios

136 Doctor Who - Tenth Doctor Vol. 5: Arena Of Fear

I didn't care for the 4th volume in this series, but volume 5 was significantly better. 

Two tales in this book.  The first picks up where the last volume ends.  There's a group of travelers consisting of Captain Jack and Cindy (among others) who are wandering the earth.  They really have no idea of who they really are or what they're doing.  They eventually cross paths with the Doctor, who is in the same situation.  And that's when memories begin to return.  A fun adventure to kind of undo the boringness of volume 4.

But the better story is the second one in this book.  The Doctor, Gabby and Cindy try to take a vacation but end up in the middle of an adventure featuring a witch.  Sounds boring, but it was actually quite good.  And this being Doctor Who, you know there wasn't really a witch.  But what was it?  Hmmmmmmm.....

Doctor Who - Tenth Doctor Vol. 5: Arena Of Fear
Writer: Nick Abadzis
Artist: Eleonora Carlini, Elena Casagrande, Iolanda Zanfardino, Simone De Meo, Luca Maresca
Titan Comics

135 The Legion By Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning Vol 1

I have to say I'm rather surprised that DC has published this book.  At this time, I mean.  They just started collecting the Legionnaires and Legion Of Super-Heroes books earlier this year.  This book shouldn't be out already.  I thought it would all get collected chronologically.  But I'm wrong.  And I'm happy.  I particularly loved this run on the book.

According to the afterword in the book, both series were losing readers and Abnett & Lanning were brought in to spark new interest with a new direction.  Now, if you've read any of my mini-reviews, you know one thing I hate is when a new team is brought in to give a book a "bold new direction" and they start things off by discarding what's come before them.  Well, Dan and Andy did just the opposite.  They had a big idea, but they lead into it.  Quickly, but without throwing anything away.  Their first story introduces the Blight, their second story sets characters in place for the Blight storyline and then BAM, we're smack in the middle of the story.  And it's a good one.  And from there they start making the changes they want to make in the book.  All the changes are plot dictated and very organic.  And that, my friends, is how you change the direction of a book.

I remember being kind of upset when this book first came out.  Olivier Coipel's art was so ugly to me.  But as the story progressed, I realized he was the perfect artist to draw the whole Blight storyline.  It works incredibly well.  It holds up to this day.

I love the Legion.  I love this book.  I'm so glad DC is showing the Legion some love right now.

The Legion By Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning Vol 1
Writer: Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning
Artist: Olivier Coipel, Adam Dekraker, Jeffrey Moy, Angel Unzueta, Chuck Wojtkiewicz, Andy Lanning, W.C. Carani, Jaime Mendoza, Dexter Vines
DC Comics

134 Doctor Who - Tenth Doctor Vol. 4: The Endless Song

For the most part, I really like the Doctor Who comics.  Especially because there are so many more things they can do here than they can do on tv.  But just because it's something you can't pull off on tv doesn't mean you should attempt it in the comics.

This starts with an awful story about living music creatures or some such bullshit.  Honestly, I hated it and didn't finish it all the way through.

Thankfully it's followed up with an earth based story involving cavemen.  And a side story about Cindy, friend of the Doctor's current companion, which expands into the next volume

But all in all, this book felt like a waste of my time.

Doctor Who - Tenth Doctor Vol. 4: The Endless Song
Writer: Nick Abadzis
Artist: Eleonora Carlini, Elena Casagrande, Leonardo Romero
Titan Comics

133 Justice League Of America: The Bronze Age Omnibus Vol 1

I'm dying.  Or at least it feels like I am.  I woke up Sunday feeling under the weather.  Monday was bad enough that I told work I wasn't coming in Tuesday.  It's now Friday and I still haven't gone back to work.  I think I'm on the verge of kicking this finally.  But as I've sat home sick, I've been reading.  Because there hasn't been anything else I've felt up to doing.  The first thing I grabbed was this beauty.  850 pages (give or take) of Bronze Age JLA goodness.

This volume picks up roughly where the Archive books ended, so I'm happy for the continuity of the reprints.  Black Canary has just left Earth 2 and joined the JLA.  It's been fun watching her in these comics most of all.  She developed a superpower but is having no luck controlling it.  In a couple issues she practices her canary cry, but with no luck.  Later on, her canary cry gives her psychic powers (which were quickly forgotten about).  Most of the use of her actual canary cry takes place in the Green Lantern book.  In this run of JLA, with the exception of her botched attempts at it, she uses it only once in a blink-and-you-miss it scene.

Otherwise, this was a joy to read.  The book has two running themes, I've noticed.  The front half of the book has a ton of stories about the ecology, the environment, civil rights, that sort of stuff.  The second half, however, is all about pure super-heroic action.  I guess I never realized how much I loved Len Wein's contribution to the series until I reread these stories.

I have nothing bad to say about this book.  Nothing.  It's a pure joy, plain and simple.  So much Dick Dillin beauty, too.

Justice League Of America: The Bronze Age Omnibus Vol 1
Writer: Denny O'Neil, Mike Friedrich, Len Wein, Robert Kanigher, Gardner Fox
Artist: Dick Dillin, Neal Adams, Murphy Anderson, Ross Andru, Nick Cardy, Carmine Infantino, Gil Kane, Mike Sekowsky, Joe Giella, Dick Giordano, Bernard Sachs
DC Comics


131 & 132 X-Men Blue Vol 1: Strangest / X-Men Gold Vol 1: Back To Basics

This is the first time I'm throwing two books into the same entry.  It seemed fitting to me, though.  X-Men Blue & X-Men Gold are the new X-books, setting the stage for the post Inhumans Vs X-Men event.  These books give me a very mixed outlook for the future of the X-Universe.

Let's start with Gold.  Kitty Pryde has taken leadership of the team.  She's assembled a small, but mighty, team of heavy hitters.  Colossus, Nightcrawler, Story, Old Man Logan and Rachel Summers, though now she's known as Prestige.  This book is one I was looking forward to more than the other.  It's the real, current X-team.  This should be good.  Marc Guggenheim is writing it.  I love his work.  This book felt like one giant fill in issue.  Nothing felt like it should.  Like he wanted to tell a story, but didn't want to disturb anything else that might be going on in the Marvel U.  It's weird.  It's a fine story, but it felt unnecessary.  I hope this changes with the second volume, or I'm done with it.

Conversely, X-Men Blue was the book I wasn't really hanging much hope on.  It's the time displaced original X-Men.  They were fine during Bendis' run, but can't they go home again.  But Cullen Bunn shows how you start a new series.  He's got a mission for the team.  He's got subplots he's slowly laying down.  He's setting his pieces all in place for when he needs them.  He's not discarding any history.  This is going to be my X-Men book, I have a feeling.  Excellent job, Mr. Bunn!!!

X-Men Blue Vol 1: Strangest
Writer: Cullen Bunn
Artist: Jorge Molina, Matteo Buffagni, Ray-Anthony Height, Julian Lopez, Jose Marzan Jr, Walden Wong, Cory Smith, Ramon Bachs, Marc Deering, Tarry Pallot
Marvel Comics

X-Men Gold Vol 1: Back To Basics
Writer: Marc Guggenheim
Artist: Ardian Syaf, Jay Leisten, Craig Yeung, R.B. Silva, Adriano Di Benedetto, 

131 Batman '66 Meets Wonder Woman '77

You want a fun book?  This is a fun book.  I swear to God.  It's like a big wad of cotton candy in a hardcover book.  

I had no idea how the story would transpire.  I figured that it was going to have a time travel element, but I was wrong.  Marc Andreyko and Jeff Parker were given the pieces to a puzzle and they put them together to make them work flawlessly.

This is kind of three stories in one.  The first chapter is a flashback to when Bruce Wayne was a boy and Wonder Woman (from season 1 of her show) ended up at Wayne Manor to battle Nazis.  The second chapter takes place during the Batman '66 run.  Diana is on Paradise Island and that's where the action moves to.  The last chapter takes place in 1977 when Diana is back in America, Batman is retired, Robin has become Nightwing and Batgirl is now Police Commissioner AND Batwoman.

Bravo to all involved making this book work so wonderfully.  Every once in a while you just need something that is pure sugar.  This is that book.

Batman '66 Meets Wonder Woman '77
Writer: Marc Andreyko, Jeff Parker
Artist: David Hahn, Karl Kesel, Bill Williams
DC Comics

130 Batman: Zero Hour

Collected together for the first time are all the Zero Hour crossovers from the Batman Universe.  It's an odd book, but it was enjoyable nonetheless.  I would have loved it if they devoted one page (as a forward, maybe) explaining what was happening in the Zero Hour mini series so that thing would have been a little bit clearer in this volume.  

Basically, the book is broken down into two sections.  The first have are the actual Zero Hour tie ins.  Time has gone screwy, different realities are popping up here and there, the Bat Family are being drawn to different realities and they have to deal with it.  Fun stuff happens, like the return of Batgirl, in full costume, though from a different reality.  In her reality, Commissioner Gordon was killed by the Joker rather than Babs getting maimed.  A young Dick Grayson shows up and teams up with Robin.  Batman is drawn back in time to where is parents lived but he was shot in Crime Alley.  Fun stuff all in all.

The second half of the book showcases all the #0 issues that were published after the mini series ended.  These were basically jumping on points for the characters, showing the new realities they're living in.  This being the Batman Universe, though, there really weren't many changes or tweaks at all.  You know how that goes.

Batman: Zero Hour
Writer: Chuck Dixon, Archie Goodwin, Alan Grant, Doug Moench
Artist: Bret Blevins, Mike Manley, Joe Rubinstein, Vince Giarrano, Graham Nola, Scott Hanna, Bob McLeod, Tom Grummett, Ray Kryssing, Jim Balent, Bob Smith
DC Comics

129 Red Hood And The Outlaws Vol 2: Who Is Artemis?

I'm sure I've said this before.  Scott Lobdell is far from my favorite writer.  I enjoyed him back in the 90s, but his recent output has left me really cold.  Except this series.  The first volume was highly recommended to me, so I read it and I actually liked it a lot.  The same with the second volume.  Though I liked the first one better, this one is nothing to sneeze about.  Scott has a cast of characters that doesn't seem like would work together, but it surprisingly does.

This volume is mostly about Artemis' back story.  I wish they held off just a little longer telling it until they get Wonder Woman's current back story all straightened out because Artemis' story hinges somewhat on Wonder Woman's.  But they didn't wait.

I hate that we have to get a new back story for Artemis.  She was a character I didn't much care for when she first appeared, but I grew to love over time.  We're starting at square one with her again.  I hope they don't fuck this up.

Red Hood And The Outlaws Vol 2: Who Is Artemis?
Writer: Scott Lobdell
Artist: Dexter Soy, Mirko Colak, Tom Derenick, Kenneth Rocafort
DC Comics

128 Green Arrow Vol 3: Emerald Outlaw

Ask me what my favorite Rebirth book is currently and I'll tell you Green Arrow.  This book is fun.  This book is interesting.  The action is great.  Everything about it is very appealing to me.  Ben Percy took a few elements from the Arrow tv show, introduced them, but didn't let them crowd anything else out.  

Ollie (and Team Arrow) are fighting to take down those that took Ollie's fortune and framed his as Seattle's big bad.  It's a really well thought out story and a joy to read.  I read this on the plane from Albany to Baltimore a couple weeks ago.  I was so afraid we were going to land before I could finish it.  Luckily the timing couldn't have been more perfect.

If you were to read only one Rebirth book, this is the one I recommend.

Green Arrow Vol 3: Emerald Outlaw
Writer: Benjamin Percy
Artist: Otto Schmidt, Juan Ferreyra, Eleonora Carlini, Carolos Rodriguez, Gus Vazquez
DC Comics

127 Wonder Woman Vol 3: The Truth

This still remains one of my favorite of the Rebirth books.  While I hate that we are yet again reinventing Wonder Woman (that is getting so fucking old), I feel like this is the version that is going to stick.  I like that this is the proper opportunity to tie in aspects of the movie to the comic.  While they aren't going to be on the exact same page, there are a lot of similarities that people who saw the movie will recognize.

This is the Wonder Woman that the New 52 WW should have been.  I enjoyed that run, but it felt like a giant Elseworlds story to me rather than canon.  I like that it's been addressed and we're moving forward.  

I like how the whole Doctor Poison thing is worked into this book.  Logical and sensible to me.  

The art seemed a little off to me, though.  I don't know why.  I ate up the art in the first volume.  This one it seems slightly rushed or something.  I can't place my finger on it. 

All in all, one of DC's best books. (for now)

Wonder Woman Vol 3: The Truth
Writer: Greg Rucka
Artist: Liam Sharp, Renato Guedes, Bilquis Evely
DC Comics

126 Justice League Of America Vol 1: The Extremists

DC has high hopes for Steve Orlando.  They gave him two high profile books (this and Supergirl) to write with the Rebirth initiative.  So far, he's falling slightly short for me.  And I don't know why.  I love love love love love his Midnighter work.  It's been one of my favorite books from DC in a long time.  But dealing with mainstream DC stuff, it's just not clicking with me yet.

This books has two stories.  The first is the modern day reintroduction of the Extremists.  Lord Havok and his bunch.  While the story itself wasn't bad, reading it all in one fell swoop didn't do it much justice (pardon the pun).  The timeline of the entire story is unbelievable to me.  Things happened entirely too fast for them to seem (even in comic books) plausible.  

I am enjoying the interpersonal exchanges between the characters and look forward to a lot more of that going forward.  It's an interesting line up for a team and I'm anxious to see it succeed.

The second story was my least favorite of the two.  It felt like the team was dealing with a Maxie Zeus knock off.  Yawn.

Justice League Of America Vol 1: The Extremists
Writer: Steve Orlando
Artist: Ivan Reis, Felipe Watanabe, Diogenes Neves, Andy MacDonald, Joe Prado, Oclair Albert, Julio Ferreira, Scott Hanna, Ruy Jose, Marc Deering
DC Comics

125 Batman Vol 3: I Am Bane

Tom King is a solid writer and I'm enjoying his Batman run so far, but not as much as Scott Snyder's run.  I think Tom King is a far better fit with Nightwing, but that's just my opinion.

This book feels like it's the point where everything is about to change.  The whole Bane storyline from the last volume gets wrapped up, though the ending left me cold.  It's like "Batman punched out Bane.  Batman wins.  Fade to black."  It was an abrupt finish to the story and it sat funny with me.

This run has been all about reinventing Catwoman again.  I guess the New 52 version was that awful that they decided to go in a new direction.  She's not quite where she was when the Flashpoint hit (that was my favorite era of Catwoman.  The last couple years up to Flashpoint), but it feels like that's the direction they're trying to take her in.  I'm not complaining (much), but I just want it done right, not rushed, not fucked up.  That's my wish.

I love that all the Robins get a chance to pop in and out of this book, too.  I don't know why, but that brings me joy.

Batman Vol 3: I Am Bane
Writer: Tom King
Artist: David Finch, Mitch Gerads, Clay Mann, Trevor Scott, Sandra Hope, Danny Miki, Seth Mann
DC Comics

124 Aquaman Vol 3: Crown Of Atlantis

Dan Abnett is continuing his stellar run on Aquaman.  He's been slowly laying down the pieces to make this book his own.  He's not ignoring anything that came before, but instead building on it.  He's developing the vast supporting cast and laying down stuff that seems like it will take him quite a while to get to the pay off stage.  I like that.  It's how comics used to be.  It's nice that someone will take over a book, do a six or twelve issue run and then go on, but it fucks with continuity.

While I'm enjoying this book, there are parts that irk me.  The Aqua Marines.  They're stupid.  They feel like a rejected late 80s or early 90s concept.  I really hope this is the last we see of them.  Seriously.  I do not care for them at all.  

This book also features yet another "Aquaman isn't fit to be King" story.  We get them all the time.  But I don't really mind this time around.  I'm interested in seeing where this will lead.

Aquaman Vol 3: Crown Of Atlantis
Writer: Dan Abnett
Artist: Scot Eaton, Philippe Briones, Brad Walker, Wayne Faucher, Andrew Hennessey, Scott Hanna
DC Comics


123 Batman/Two-Face: Face The Face Deluxe Edition

I read this back when it was originally published.  It's been over ten years, so it was definitely time to revisit it.  And thankfully, DC has collected it in a deluxe hardcover.

James Robinson has that unique ability to hook me on page one and keep me involved until the last page.  This story is no different.  

After Infinite Crisis, Batman left Gotham for a year.  While he was gone, he didn't want to leave Gotham unprotected, so he enlisted Harvey Dent, the former Two-Face.  Harvey was finally cured of being Two-Face, both mentally and physically.  And he took on the role of Gotham's protector and excelled at it.  But now Batman is back and Harvey feels like he's out of a job.  In the meantime, it appears that he's falling back into his old, criminal ways.  Some D-List Bat villains are turning up dead and all the evidence is pointing to Harvey.  Batman doesn't believe it and sets out to prove Harvey innocent.  But with everything that's going on, it's driving Harvey nuts and he's losing his grip on sanity, eventually reverting back to Two-Face.  Which is all unfortunate because Batman discovers that Harvey is indeed being set up for the crimes.

This is a fascinating story and one that I will definitely read again sometime in the future.  James Robinson is one of my heroes.

Batman/Two-Face: Face The Face Deluxe Edition
Writer: James Robinson
Artist: Leonard Kirk, Don Kramer, Andy Clarke, Wayne Faucher, Keith Champagne, Michael Bair
DC Comics

122 Midnighter And Apollo

Let me start out with everything I don't like about this book.  The first one is kind of big.  I hate that this book is called Midnighter And Apollo and not Midnight And Apollo Vol 1.  Having no volume number suggests to me that this is it.  One volume, no follow up.

I loved everything else about this book.  Steve Orlando gets Midnighter and it's super evident.  The regular Midnighter series was so much violent fun.  This book is no different.  There are a few fight scenes where I found myself actually laughing out loud.  Midnighter is a fucking badass and he's amazing.  

This book focuses on Midnighter and Apollo getting back together.  During the Midnighter series, they have gone their separate ways, but they're working back to what they are meant to be.  Until Apollo dies.  Oops.  Midnighter isn't ready to give up, so he fights his way through Hell (literally) to save Apollo from the clutches of Neron.  And as much as I really don't like the character of Neron, I felt that this was the very first time that Neron was actually written properly.  He was interesting.  He was used correctly.  I'm ready to see him pop up again, provided Steve Orlando is writing the story.

This book is a must read.

Midnighter And Apollo
Writer: Steve Orlando
Artist: Fernando Blanco
DC Comics


121 Wonder Girl: Adventures Of A Teen Titan

Fun.  If I could use one word to describe this book, it would be fun.  It's a collection of a lot of Wonder Girl "firsts."  We get the first appearance of Wonder Girl, who was actually Wonder Woman as a girl.  We get the first appearance of the Teen Titan Wonder Girl in Brave & The Bold.  We get the first origin story of that Wonder Girl as well as the first peek at her new costume.  We get the first real Wonder Girl / Wonder Woman team up from an old issue of Adventure Comics.  We get the first appearance of the Cassie Sandsmark and the first appearance of the Cassie Wonder Girl.  We get the first Donna Troy solo comic from DC's Girlfrenzy fifth week even.  And we get the first solo comic of the Cassie Wonder Girl.  It's really a fun, fun, fun collection of stories.  My one complaint about this entire book is that Cassie is featured so prominently on the cover rather than Donna Troy.  I'd much rather it be Donna or at least give Donna equal billing.

It really was a fun read.  If you like WG, you'll love this collection.

Wonder Girl: Adventures Of A Teen Titan
Writer: Robert Kanigher, Bob Haney, Marv Wolfman, Jack C Harris, J.T. Krul, John Byrne
Artist: John Byrne, Phil Jimenez, Ross Andru, Bruno Premiani, Gil Kane, Jack Abel, Adriana Melo, Mike Esposito, Nick Cardy, John Stokes, Mariah Benes
DC Comics

120 She-Hulk Vol 1: Deconstructed

I get what they're trying to do here.  She-Hulk was in a coma after the last big Marvel event (was it Civil War II?) and now she's awake and starting all over.  She's given up her practice and is working for someone instead.  She's broken.  She's not the strong, fun loving Jennifer Walters we used to know.  She's unsure of everything and that's not a good thing.  She tries to prevent herself from becoming She-Hulk because she realizes she has no control over herself when she transforms.  She's basically classic Hulk.  I don't like it.  It's like looking at an old friend who is just a shadow of their former self.  Self-doubting, broken, shattered.  I really want to see her break out of this sooner rather than later.

I find it funny that this volume is She-Hulk Vol 1 instead of Hulk Vol 1 because this is a collection of a series called Hulk.  They ditched the "She" in the title.  Another mistake, I feel, but one they seem to agree with me on based on re-titling the book.

I'm not sure if I'm really interested in reading any more of this version of She-Hulk.  It's kind of depressing and not in an interesting way, either.

She-Hulk Vol 1: Deconstructed
Writer: Mariko Tamaki
Artist: Nico Leon, Dalibor Talajic
Marvel Comics

119 Green Arrow Vol 8: The Night Birds

For some reason, this book was on back order from my comic distributor for a long time.  But I finally got it.  It's a little jarring reading it out of order, but I quickly got my bearings.  

I love everything Benjamin Percy has been doing with Green Arrow.  DC did good giving him this book.  He gets the character, he turns in solid stories and he digs a little bit into DC lore to do it.  It was kind of cool for him to revive Tarantula for this story.  She hasn't been seen, as far as I know, in the New 52 before this.  I've always had a soft spot for her, even though I don't think DC did good by her.  I hope she'll be back again after this volume.

This story is all about death cults, death drones and a rescued wolf.  It's kind of cool and I recommend it to everyone!

Green Arrow Vol 8: The Night Birds
Writer: Benjamin Percy
Artist: Patrick Zircher, Fabrizio Fiorentino, Federico Dallocchio
DC Comics

118 Batman: Shadow Of The Bat Vol 2

The second volume of Shadow of the Bat is mostly about the Azrael Batman.  Bruce Wayne was recovering from his battle with Bane and Jean Paul Valley had taken over as Gotham's protector.  I didn't read a lot of Batman back in this era, so it's really nice getting a chance to read these stories now.  Alan Grant always seemed to turn in solid Bat work and this is no exception.  Even the Bloodlines story here wasn't too bad.  And that's saying a lot.

And although Bruce Wayne was not Batman at this time, he still manages to get out of bed to take an adventure despite it not being the greatest idea for someone recovering from a broken back.

This book is good solid fun.

Batman: Shadow Of The Bat Vol 2
Writer: Alan Grant
Artist: Bret Blevins, Vince Giarrano, Norm Breyfogle, Steve George, Steve Mitchell, Mike Manley, Dick Giordano, Joe Staton, Trevor Von Eeden
DC Comics

117 Supergirl Vol 3: Ghosts Of Krypton

I love Supergirl.  Well, I love Supergirl when she's done right.  This volume, not my favorite.  I wasn't reading the series regularly when these stories were published.  I'm not sure why, but I'm kind of happy I wasn't reading it.  I really didn't enjoy this book.  An awful lot of it is spent on a story where Supergirl tries to find a cure to save a dying boy she "accidentally" promised would be okay.  I do love that Resurrection Man was featured prominently in the story, but even that wasn't enough to save it for me.  Kara spends an awful lot of time brooding about Krypton, too.

I loved the stuff Kelley Puckett did with Batgirl, but not so much with Supergirl.  It just didn't work for me.

Supergirl Vol 3: Ghosts Of Krypton
Writer: Kelley Puckett, Kurt Busiek, Fabian Nicieza, Geoff Johns, James Peaty, Will Pfeifer
Artist: Renato Guedes, Jose Wilson Magalhaes, Drew Johnson, Ray Snyder, Lee Ferguson, Rick Leonardi, Dan Green, Ron Randall, Brad Walker, Jon Sibal, Jesse Delperdang, Rodney Ramos
DC Comics

116 Uncanny X-Men: Superior Vol 4: IVX

Alright, I'm going to say it.  The last six months or so of the X-Men books have been completely squandered.  Due to the IvX thing no one asked for nor wanted, the regular X-Books were kind of put on a creative hiatus while still being published.  Like the other X-Books I've read, this volume is nothing but stand alone stories that don't interfere with the IvX series.  These stories aren't bad.  I think Cullen Bunn had a great run with the X-Men, but it feels like a waste of time to me.  I'd rather the creative teams be left to do what they do best instead of putting out these inconsequential stories.  But that's just me.

I'm just glad after this, the whole IVX crap will be done.

Uncanny X-Men: Superior Vol 4: IVX
Writer: Cullen Bunn, Anthony Piper
Artist: Edgar Salazar, Ed Tadeo, Ken Lashley, Anthony Piper
Marvel Comics

115 Patsy Walker, A.K.A. Hellcat! Vol 3: Careless Whisker(s)

I've been a huge fan of this book.  It's light, it's airy, it's funny, it's cute, it's entertaining as shit.  And this ends the run of this book.  Normally, I'd be really upset that a series like this is ending, but I feel like it's run it's proper course.  It's ending on a high note.

This volume picks up where the last one left off with Patsy having to defeat the Black Cat.  After that, there's plenty of room left to tie up any loose ends to make this run complete.  What I love is this book took on a completely different style, yet never cut it's roots and ties to Patsy's last appearances in the She-Hulk book.  This was a natural evolution to the character, but making it even lighter than her previous appearances.

I'll miss this book, but I also can't wait to see where life brings Patsy Walker next.

Patsy Walker, A.K.A. Hellcat! Vol 3: Careless Whisker(s)
Writer: Kate Leth
Artist: Brittney L Williams
Marvel Comics

114 Justice League Vol 3: Timeless

I'm continuing to enjoy Bryan Hitch's Justice League book.  As I've stated before, his Justice League stories are very cinematic looking to me.  The artwork is gorgeous.  The action is HUGE.  If this was a big budget movie, the budget would have been enough to feed a third world nation for a year.  It's big, it's bombastic.  But after reading this, it feels like there's something missing.  I'm not quite sure what, though.  I'm starting to feel this book is 85% looks, 15% depth.  And I'm dazzled by the looks, so whatever depth I'm missing is lost on me.  Does that make any sense?

This book starts off with a done in one tale, which I loved.  The League is trapped together and spend the entire issue talking to each other.  This tale felt like it had the depth I feel I'm missing from the bigger stories.  I loved it.

The rest of the book is the classic separate the team, do their parts, get back together.  I like that format.  It reminds me of the old JLA/JSA team ups where a member from each team would go off and accomplish what it is they needed to do to defeat the bad guy.

What I like about this story is we have a bad guy (or is he) and a good guy (or is she), but they're both kind of rotten.  An old comic book story device, but used effectively here.

Justice League Vol 3: Timeless
Writer: Bryan Hitch
Artist: Fernando Pasarin, Bryan Hitch, Matt Ryan, Daniel Henriques
DC Comics


113 Extraordinary X-Men Vol 4: IvX

The latest era of X-Men is coming to an end.  I'm not disappointed.  The whole Terrigan Mists era of X-Men feels like it was more a placeholder than anything else.  Like, "we just came off of the Bendis run but we don't know what to do with the X-Men.  Let's push our Inhumans hard, poison the air and let the X-Men figure things out while we try to find a direction for the book."  That's what the last year or two have felt like to me.  But it's ending.

This book has a lot going for it.  Lemire!  It's an Inhumans vs. X-Men tie in, but it has almost nothing to do with that series, which is fine by me.  What we have here are four stand alone character driven stories, focusing on a different X-Man.  Forge, Storm, Old Man Logan and Magik.  Jeff Lemire makes it work in the context of the big, awful crossover.  There's really nothing he can't do.

Also included in this book is X-Men Prime, the latest version of "let's start things all over again."  Kitty Pryde is back and she's in charge of the team.  I hope this leads to a strong direction for the X-Men.  It's something they've been lacking for a while now.

Extraordinary X-Men Vol 4: IvX
Writer: Jeff Lemire, Mark Guggenheim, Greg Pak, Cullen Bunn
Artist: Eric Koda, Victor Ibanez, Andrea Sorrentino, Tom Palmer, Ken Lashley, Ibraim Roberson, Leonard Kirk, Guillermo Ortego
Marvel Comics

112 Nightwing Vol. 2: Back To Blüdhaven

Volume one of this series felt more like the last volume of Grayson than it did the first volume of Nightwing.  And this story feels more like it should be the first volume of Nightwing.  I don't know if what took place in the first volume was originally plotted out to be a story for the Grayson series or not, but it doesn't really matter.  DC has decided to bring Nightwing back to Blüdhaven, but first the very first time.  Remember, the New 52 wiped out that part of his life.  Superman puts an idea in Dick Grayson's head that he should check out Blüdhaven.  The Superman that did that knew that his Dick Grayson lived there once.  So Superman is giving Nightwing a push to get him where he needs to be.

This is a fun story, though a little too much by the numbers.  If you can't figure out the true identity of the villain right off, you haven't read comics.  It's a little cliche (and by a little, I mean a lot) but it's still a good story.  Dick moves to Blüdhaven, finds a volunteer job at a community center that happens to be rehabilitating a bunch of his former adversaries.  Classic comic book misunderstandings take place, hero and villains team up and take out the true bad guys.  But it's still a fun story.  I hope these characters become part of the permanent supporting cast.  This could prove to be really cool.

I especially like that the main story is bookended by two done in one stories.  I wish comics would do this more often.  It breaks things up nicely.

Nightwing Vol. 2: Back To Blüdhaven
Writer: Tim Seeley
Artist: Marcus To, Marcio Takara, Minkyu Jung
DC Comics 


111 Batman By Brian Azzarello And Eduardo Risso

This book is a mixed bag for me.  I loved it, but there's a but here.  I love it, but only if I consider it an alternate earth Batman.  Which kind of makes sense considering there's a Flashpoint mini-series in here.  

I love what these guys do with Batman, only it's not quite the regular Batman.  It's a darker Batman.  It's a rougher Batman.  It's a grittier Batman.  The whole tone is different, yet not.  I don't know if this makes sense.

This book has a bunch of things.  A Flashpoint mini-series.  A six issue run on Batman.  The Wednesday Comics story. A black & white story.  It's all good stuff.  I promise.  

My biggest complaint of this book, if I had a true one, was the Wednesday Comics story.  This is not the right way to reprint that.  If you don't know Wednesday Comics, it was a series DC did a few years back.  It's printed on actual newspaper sized paper.  It does not translate well being shrunk down to comic book size, which is sad.  My old man eyes has enough trouble as it is.

Batman By Brian Azzarello And Eduardo Risso
Writer: Brian Azzarello
Artist: Eduardo Risso
DC Comics

110 DC Bombshells Vol. 4: Queens

I love the Bombshells.  I love their look.  I love their backstory.  I love the concept.  But I think I'm done with the book.  There's something about it that just doesn't rub me right.  I don't know if it's the digital first format that limits the storytelling.  I don't know if it's the size of the cast that limits the storytelling.  I don't know if it's trying to tell an overarcing story that limits the storytelling.  There's just something not right to me and I can't place my finger on it.  I think what I'd like to see is a bunch of smaller stories focusing on one or two Bombshells at a time.  It feels to me like there's too big of a canvas that these stories are taking place on and the focus is off.  It's too bad because I thought this series started off strong.  

DC Bombshells Vol 4: Queens
Writer: Marguerite Bennett
Artist: Laura Braga, Mirka Andolfo, Marguerite Sauvage, Richard Ortiz, Pasquale Qualano, Sandy Jarrell, Matias Bergara
DC Comics

109 Superboy And The Legion Of Super-Heroes Vol. 1

I've been waiting for this volume for a long, long time.  I have the full run of the Legion of Super-Heroes Archives.  I loved that series so much.  I just love the Legion so much.  This book picks right up where the Archive series ended.  I was particularly upset when the Archives stopped because of what was going to be printed in the next volume.  That volume is this volume!  And what I was waiting for was the tabloid that had the wedding of Lightning Lad & Saturn Girl.  About a year ago, I finally tracked it down, so it's in my collection now, but now I have it on really nice paper!  

This is the era when I first started reading the Legion.  My first issue was #238, which was a classic Legion reprint.  The cover is reprinted here, but not the story.  The rest of the book is wonderful and awful all at the same time.  I'm reliving a lot of this for the first time since the 70s.  And it's not as awesome as I remember it being.  Some of it is a little hard to read.  But it's still awesome to me.  This is when Paul Levitz jumped on the book to start his 700 year run on it.  If anything, this just makes me want volume 2 all the more.  We are finally into "my" Legion.  It just gets better from here.  Slowly. 

Superboy And The Legion Of Super-Heroes Vol. 1
Writer: Jack C. Harris, Gerry Conway, Paul Levitz, Paul Kupperberg, Jim Starlin
Artist: Juan Ortiz, Bob Smith, Mike Grel, Ric Estrada, Jack Abel, Vince Colletta, George Tuska, Joe Rubinstein, James Sherman, Bob McLeod, Mike Nasser, Rick Bryant, Walt Simonson, Jim Starlin, Howard Chaykin, Bob Wiacek
DC Comics


108 Batman: The Brave And The Bold - The Bronze Age Omnibus Vol. 1

Every day at work, I read comics.  I always have a trade or a hardcover in my desk.  The book I just finished was a labor of love.  It's this glorious book.  Bronze Age Brave & Bold stories.  This book absolutely brings me back to my childhood.  Many of these books were published before I started reading comics, but comics were so cheap back then that I'd picked up a lot of back issues at garage sales and flea markets.  As I got older, they got a little more expensive or were reprinted here and there. I've read all these stories before, but they're just as joyful and silly and fun a second, third, fourth or fifth time around.  Even moreso today.  They're all done in one stories, stripped of the darkness a modern day Batman book has.  The guest stars run a wide gamut from Wonder Woman and Flash to Sgt. Rock and the Demon and many more.

This book clocks in at just under 900 pages, so it took me quite a while to read it at work.  My lunch break is 30 minutes, so I was good to take in an issue or two at a time.  In a way I didn't want it to end.  It was so much fun to read.  They label this as volume 1, so I hope DC plans a follow up volume.  This ends at issue 109.  Brave and the Bold ran through issue 200.

And with this, I'm officially caught up on my mini-blog posts on my backlogged reading!!  

Batman: The Brave And The Bold - The Bronze Age Omnibus Vol. 1
Writer: Bob Haney, Mike Sekowsky, Dennis O'Neal, Marv Wolfman
Artist: Ross Andru, Mike Sekowsky, Bob Brown, Neil Adams, Irv Novick, Nick Cardy, Jim Aparo, Mike Esposito, Jack Abel, Dick Giordano, Joe Kubert, Frank McLaughlin
DC Comics

107 Wonder Woman Vol. 2: Year One

Wonder Woman is published twice monthly with issues alternating storylines.  The odd numbered issues tell a story set today.  The even numbered issues tell her backstory.  I thought it was an interesting concept.  I appreciate that each story is collected separately.  But after finishing this volume, I realize that doing it this way makes you miss a certain layer of storytelling.  The modern day story and this flashback story feature Barbara Minerva.  I think you'd get more out of the stories by reading them in the order that they're published.  Not to say that you can't read them as stand alone stories.  You absolutely can and they're both wonderful.  In fact, I'm willing to say that my enjoyment of this series is higher than it's been in YEARS.  Greg Rucka is hitting it out of the ballpark with this book.  It's a shame he's already leaving the series.  I feel like he's got a lot more Wonder Woman in him that I need to read.  Also already off the book is Nicola Scott, who is giving some of her best work ever to this project.  This book couldn't make me happier.  We're stripping away the New 52 version of the character, we're pulling elements of the awesome Wonder Woman movie into the book.  It's just fabulous.  You're missing out if you aren't reading Wonder Woman.  For real.

Wonder Woman Vol. 2: Year One
Writer: Greg Rucka
Artist: Nicola Scott, Bilquis Evely
DC Comics

106 Trinity Vol. 1: Better Together

On paper this is the greatest concept in comics.  Put DC's three biggest, iconic characters together in one book.  What could go wrong?

This book is beautifully illustrated.  I can't say enough nice stuff about how beautiful it is.  But other than that, it left me a little cold.  In a nutshell, it's a rehashing/sequel to Alan Moore's brilliant Black Mercy story a hundred years ago.  This story does nothing to add to it, unfortunately.  It feels like it takes more than it gives.  Been there, done that.  It would have been better if the inclusion of Poison Ivy didn't happen.  I'm still trying to wrap my head around that.  It just does not work for me.

I'm hoping volume 2 gives us a better story.

Trinity Vol. 1: Better Together
Writer: Francis Manapul
Artist: Francis Manapul, Emanuela Lupacchino, Ray McCarthy, Matt Santorelli, Clay Mann, Seth Mann
DC Comics

105 Supergirl Vol. 1: Reign Of The Cyborg Supermen

I love the comic book Supergirl.  I love the tv Supergirl.  I love Steve Orlando.  This book is all three things wrapped up on one.  What could go wrong?  Not much, but I find that I didn't love this book like I hoped I would.  First of all, I was having trouble wrapping my head around Steve Orlando writing Supergirl after his epic run on Midnighter.  How do you reconcile the two?  Answer, you don't.

The New 52 version of Supergirl was one of the few things about the New 52 that I actually liked.  At least at first.  I think Michael Green was writing the book at first (I'll need to look that up) and he gave great stories.  He understood the character.  He made the best out of an awful situation (that situation being the New 52).  This is supposed to be the same character, only the success of the Supergirl tv series meant that DC wanted to bring the character closer to that version.  I can't say that I blame them.  I'd do the same thing.  But the difference between the two is jarring.  Another volume of this book and the New 52 version will be a distant memory.

The one thing that really bothered me about this book, and it may seem nit-picky, was that the story told in here feels more like something we should get in volume 2 or 3, not volume 1.  It's way too heavy to go along with the changes to bring the book closer to the tv Supergirl.  I would have liked to have seem more of that transition and a lighter story than what was presented here.  It was too much.  

But with that said, I'm looking forward to the new direction of the book.  I hope the book just gets better from here.

Supergirl Vol. 1: Reign Of The Cyborg Supermen
Writer: Steve Orlando
Artist: Brian Ching, Emanuela Lupacchino, Ray McCarthy
DC Comics

104 Spider-Woman: Shifting Gears Vol. 3: Scare Tactice

I'm mad.  Pissed off.  Spider-Woman Vol. 3 ends Dennis Hopeless's epic run on the character.  I went into this book with trepidation.  I love Spider-Woman, but the spin on the character was to give her a baby, change her costume and change her entire tone.  I hated all of that, yet my love for Spider-Woman made me try the book.  And it quickly became on of my favorite books.  Who knew?  But like I just said, this book ends Hopeless's run and makes me incredibly sad.  Like all Marvel books, it's really not a continuing series, it's a mini-series dressed up in regular series clothing.  Seventeen issues is a long lifespan in the current Marvel Comics world, so I should be happy I got this much Spider-Woman goodness.

Like I was saying in my blurb about the Kate Bishop Hawkeye book, this is the type of Marvel book I have been gravitating towards lately.  Funny, grounded, not afraid to poke fun at itself and comic books in general, female lead.  I'm really going to miss this book.  They could revive it under a new creative team, but I'm afraid it's just not going to be the same.  I love this book.  Go buy all three volumes.  I demand it.

Spider-Woman Shifting Gears Vol. 3: Scare Tactics
Writer: Dennis Hopeless
Artist: Veronica Fish, Andy Fish
Marvel Comics

103 Moon Knight Vol. 2: Reincarnations

This book has many things going for it.  Jeff Lemire.  Moon Knight.  A stand alone book from the rest of the MCU.  Moon Knight's fucked up brain.  And as much as I'm enjoying the hell out of it, I think I've enjoyed the last few creative teams' work more.  Which surprises me, because I have yet to find anything Jeff Lemire cannot do.  Until now.  He can't top the previous runs on this book.  But by no means does this mean I'm not enjoying the book.  I really am.  It's just that I think the bar is now so high on Lemire's work that I expect even more out of him.  

Jeff Lemire writes such great psychological stuff.  He and Moon Knight are a great match, but I think maybe he's gotten too psychological.  Which doesn't seem possible considering the character.  

I've loved all the Moon Knight stuff Marvel has given us in the last few years.  It makes me think that I need to go back and read more of the old stuff.  This volume gives us an old issue of Moon Knight and it makes me realize it's extremely difficult stuff to read.  At least using today's comic book standards.  I struggled to read Moon Knight #2.  That's a sign that I don't need to look back, only forward.

Moon Knight Vol. 2: Reincarnations
Writer: Jeff Lemire, Doug Moench
Artist: Greg Smallwood, Jordie Bellaire, Wilfredo Torres, Michael Garland, Francesco Francavilla, James Stokoe, Bill Sienkiewicz, Frank Springer
Marvel Comics