Friday, May 16, 2003

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What I bought and what I thought, week of May 14!

1. H-E-R-O 4
Great finale to a wonderful new book's first story arc. I especially appreciated the lack of overblown dramatics. That being said, the actual resolution seemed a bit pat, but it was heartwarming nonetheless- so much so that gets it by as far as I'm concerned. That and the excellent art by this Kano fellow. A

I'm still digging how all these multiple plot threads are being woven together- especially the humorous but vicious Bug team and the relationship between Babs and Dick. The secret weapon, the MVP of this title if you will is Alvaro Lopez, and his wonderfully expressive fine line inking style. A

3. FABLES 13
What appeared at first to be a short-term story arc turns out to have serious ramifications for at least two major characters. Great plotting and dialogue by Willingham, nicely drawn by Lan Medina and excessively inked by Craig Hamilton. Not that his inks are bad, but sometimes I think you could cut your finger on his ink lines! Why not let Leialoha ink Medina sometime? A

After the clumsy cliffhanger of #6, Rucka and co. come back strong with chapter two. Note-perfect and solid all the way through, and now I'm very interested in what's going on. A

5. JSA 48
Longtime readers of my ramblings may be aware of how disappointed I've been with this book in the last year or so. Well, I gotta 'fess up: I totally enjoyed last issue, and this one even more. Despite dealing with a multitude of characters and twisty plotlines, Goyer and Johns have maintained their focus with a minimum of contrivance, and this time out managed two touching scenes (Stargirl's stolen kiss and Hector's grieving for his wife) that rang absolutely true. And the Kirk/Champagne art team has improved 1000 percent in the last six months- this was their best effort yet. Great to see Jared Stevens again, and Eclipso too, although he didn't really have anything to do this time out. I've badmouthed this comic and its creative team a lot lately, but when I'm wrong, I'll admit it- and I hope they can keep it up. I may not reconsider dropping this comic after #50, but it's no longer an easy decision. A

As tired as I am of the multiple versions of Tom Strong and his family that Moore apparently can't get beyond when it comes to the series, I just had to pick this up because of the amazing group of artists that were enlisted to illustrate the lightweight, but enjoyable script. Very nice to see such a significant amount of Jason Pearson art, and Frank Cho (of all people), regular Chris Sprouse, Adam Hughes and long-unseen Jose Luis Garcia Lopez all shine as well. A-

7. POWERS 31
Jesus, Bendis, when I said your scripts were talky I didn't mean it in a bad way...I didn't know how he would follow up the sturm und drang of the last storyline, but a pastiche of 2001: A Space Odyssey and Quest For Fire wasn't it at all. Kind of a slog to read, but as always the Oeming art redeems all. B