Comic Reviews for 12-14-11
Written on Thu, Dec 15, 2011 by Kyle
Reviews for 11-23-11
Reminder: The Unshaven grading system puts each book into one of 3 categories. ‘Buy It’, ‘Borrow It’ and ‘Pass It’.
The first arc wraps up with what feels like a standard finish on the first read. Since I had another 20 minutes left on my train ride I decide to give it another look. A few things sunk in the second time around once I thought about them a little more. We do have the typical ‘Hero figures out how to defeat the villain by something said totally offhandedly’ and the final showdown with a mirror faced bad guy is in a carnival house of mirrors. Yeah. These clichés seem too much at first but Gail Simone pulls them together nicely.
Barbara Gordon proves that Batman might be the master detective but she knows how to read and even manipulate people. She leaves a challenge to the villain on his family’s graves knowing he’ll be there Christmas eve and draws him somewhere she’s had two days to prepare for him. It’s a great move to pull and shows how she is taking his greater strength into account and using images of his family on the walls to attack him psychologically. The whole scene reminded me a lot of when the Joker was tormenting Commissioner Gordon in Killing Joke and I wish someone would ask Simone of that was intentional.
Highlight of the issue is seeing the muggers who have an app that updates a place and time whenever there is a Batman sighting so criminals know if he might be nearby.
Grade Buy It
-Suicide Squad #4
Right when I’m ready to drop this book it does just enough to make me keep reading. Every issues in this series has had something I’ve been unhappy with and after seeing them all together I felt ready to say this first arc was as far as I would go. This issue lacks everything that has bothered me over the previous three. We don’t have Harley Quinn slutting it up and acting out of character. We don’t have tentacle monsters all over the place. We don’t have criminals throwing out terrible/ outdated slang terms to make them sound more street.
This is the first issue that makes total sense and covers a full mission that would actually be practical for the team. We even have them showing character and everyone being different. The biggest surprise if that the issue validates why they would even bother making Harley Quinn a member of the team which will lead into their next arc. I’m not super excited that the issue is tying in events from Tony Daniels Detective Comics but it does give Harley Quinn an excuse to make a daring escape. Hopefully she’ll find her old costume since even she complains about the one she’s wearing in this series.
Grade Borrow It
The situation deepens this issue but on every front but the main mystery. Batwoman’s former side kick is the real focus. After getting fired as a trainee Flame Bird goes back out on her own and gets herself near gutted by the first gang boss with a weapon for a hand she sees. This all leads to the agents tracking Batwoman to picking her up and telling her she’s dying to find out if she wants anyone there. Guess who’s real name she gives them.
Batwoman spends more time in bed with her new detective girlfriend than doing any detective work. When she finally gets going we learn that two of the missing/ dead children’s mother killed herself in despair. It’s be more depressing if the amazing and melancholy art didn’t suit the story so amazingly well.
The next issue promises a lot of fun with Director Bones on the scene to trap one of “Batman’s shadow soldiers.”
Grade Buy It