Comic Book Rebel Reviews for 11/30/11
- Published on Sunday, 04 December 2011 04:49
- Written by Kevin
- Hits: 1139
After taking a week off I back with your weekly dose of Comic Book Rebel Reviews. This week I we got a full Marvel menu as DC Comics took the week off. There is a bit of catch up on my part as well as I review Fantastic Four #600 along with this week’s Daredevil #6, FF #12, Ultimates #4 and Uncanny X-Men #2. Hit the jump button to read reviews that won’t pull any punches.
Writer: Mark Waid
Artist: Marcos Martin
Colorist: Muntsa Vicente
Story Rating: 9 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 10 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 9.5 Night Girls out of 10
Review: When picking up a comic there is something to be said about losing yourself for the 15 minutes you read an adventure. It is just fun to read a superhero book that does not limit itself. That is the feeling I have been getting from Mark Waid’s run on Daredevil so far. Daredevil #6 emphasizes how much fun Daredevil can be without having to be completely enveloped in darkness.
Probably more than any other comic on the stands right now, Waid’s Daredevil reads and looks like a comic book from the Silver Age. This is not to say it is a bad thing. It is actually the complete opposite as Waid has brought Daredevil back to being a fun adventure comic. With the character having been through countless creative team runs that have covered his life in the darkness, Waid’s run is becoming something that is refreshing to see for Daredevil.
The story here really emphasis the fact that Daredevil is a not a hero that will overpower anyone. Instead, Daredevil will methodically take down his opponents. The unique fighting skills along with his super senses he is able to analyze his surroundings and opponents to make the most of any situation he may be stuck in. In this issue, Daredevil came out as a real badass as he used these skills to take out the Bruiser and get the upper hand when surrounded by AIM, Hydra and others.
To go along with this fun story, Marcos Martin provides some absolutely gorgeous artwork. Waid gives Martin plenty of ways to show off Daredevil’s abilities and Martin more than delivers. It is a true testament to Martin’s abilities that he is able to tell a fantastic story with his artwork alone. Just watching how Daredevil uses his abilities in and out of fights is awesome as we are shown how Daredevil sees things through his powers.
Overall: Daredevil #6 is a comic book that is just pure fun. I did not have more fun reading a comic than I did this issue of Daredevil. With Mark Waid at the helm as the captain of the ship Daredevil is a title that I continue to put at the top of my stack to be the first to be read when I get home from my comic shop. And when you have the absolutely breathtaking artwork from Marcos Martin this is a title no fan of superhero comics wants to miss out on reading. Only six issues into the new series I can already say Daredevil is my favorite series on the stands right now.
Fantastic Four #600
Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Artist: Steve Epting
Inker: Rick Magyar
Colorist: Paul Mounts
Story Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 6 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 6.5 Night Girls out of 10
Review: I do not think it is a spoiler anymore to say that Fantastic Four #600 saw the return of Johnny Storm. Only 10 months after his apparent death the Human Torch has returned. How was this return handled? It was actually much better than I thought it would be.
In full disclosure, I did not actually know Johnny was returning in this issue since I have been staying off comic news websites as of late. That does not mean I was surprised with the return. To be honest, as soon as I got to the last page of the main story the first thought that came into my mind was “Well, it’s about time.” It is a bit sad that this was the first thought that came to me but that did not kill my enjoyment of the main story and the various back-ups.
At 100 pages, Fantastic Four delivers some strong story telling throughout the issue. Of all the content we got in this issue the main story was by far the star of the show, with or without the final page. Jonathan Hickman has really gone full speed with his story on the Fantastic Four franchise. After spending most of this year slowly building out all of his sub-plots it is great to finally be getting some payoff to everything he has been building towards.
In his fully realized structure, Hickman opened up this first chapter to make the reader feel like we are reading a big event-style story. The story being told feels epic for not just the Fantastic Four but the Marvel Universe as the Avengers and X-Men get involved in the whole invasion. At the same time, Hickman does a good job emphasizing the fact that the Fantastic Four are the heart of the story. Mr. Fantastic, Invisible Woman, Thing and Spider-Man each get their moments to shine in this issue as they are the ones leading the defense against the Kree invasion.
As for all the back-up content included in this 100 page comic, they were all solidly told. The story of what happened to Johnny Storm was by far the strongest of the back-ups, even though it did have a repetitive nature. At the same time, I am not sure the back-ups were enough to justify the $8 asking price of this anniversary comic that, as always, Marvel is trying to push as new reader friendly. It is a lot of money to ask for in a market that has plenty of comics that are just as enjoyable, if not more so, for $3.
The artwork provided for this issue was mostly serviceable. The only artwork from this issue that I enjoyed was that of Steve Epting who continues to bring it on Fantastic Four. He provides Hickman’s main story with a big blockbuster look. There are a lot of widescreen shows that we get in this issue that Epting nails. It is too bad I cannot say the same thing for the artwork for the back-up stories as they are mostly forgettable
Overall: Fantastic Four #600 is an anniversary issue that gives us a strong main story but fails to deliver back-up content to justify the $8 asking price. I continue to love the epic story Jonathan Hickman continues to tell. All of our patience for what Hickman has been building towards is finally paying off as things only get more epic. Hopefully, this will continue to be the case with the rest of this big storyline that should see a lot of fun confrontations.
Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Artist: Juan Bobilo
Inker: Marcelo Sosa
Colorist: Chris Sotomayor
Story Rating: 6 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 1 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 3.5 Night Girls out of 10
Review: With the return of the Fantastic Four ongoing the FF series looks to be relegated to second position. This in no way is a bad thing since the FF series has been based around the kids in the Future Foundation. Hickman has emphasized Franklin, Valarie and the rest of the kids as playing important role in the Fantastic Four franchise and now they have their own book to star in.
FF #12 does an interesting job of taking place parallel to the current story. This issue definitely is a comic that you will have to read after Fantastic Four #600. It’s a delicate balance that Hickman is going to have to be running.
At the same time, the issue does a good job staying focused on the Future Foundation and the returning Doctor Doom. The kids continue to be entertaining. Each one of them brings something different to the table. With FF now becoming their book it will be interesting to see how these characters will clash with one another.
Doctor Doom’s situation is probably the most interesting. Doom has always been a fascinating villain to follow as he is someone that is always up to something. With the return of his mental capacity we have not completely seen Doom’s dark side, outside of Children’s Crusade, and you have got to wonder if he is up to something that no one knows about.
With that said, the story Hickman is telling on FF feels like it does not have much legs since he has the main series to tell his biggest stories. Hopefully this does not mean that we will see things being stretched out because there was a definite feel that it could happen in this issue.
Though I enjoyed the story, I have to say the art really killed this issue from being great. The artwork in this issue was not only bad but creepy at times, and not in a good way. There were points in the issue that it looked like characters eyes were going to pop out of their heads or they suddenly looked like aliens who have taken human skin.
Overall: FF #12 was a good issue. Hickman continues to move forward with the various sub-plots he has been telling with the Future Foundation and Doctor Doom in interesting ways. At the same time, I am not sure if FF has enough legs now that the Fantastic Four series has returned. It is just too bad the art could not help the story and instead kills some of the fun of this issue with it being all over the place. Right now, I am not sure if I am going to stick around for the long run on FF. The next issue will definitely be a big decision issue for me.
Ultimate Comics Ultimates #4
Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Artist: Esab Ribic
Colorist: Dean White
Story Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 4 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 5.5 Night Girls out of 10
Review: With Ultimates #4 being the third straight Jonathan Hickman book I am now reviewing this is really starting to turn into the Hickman Comic Book Reviews. In any case, coming into the second Ultimate Universe relaunch I was not expecting much from the new Ultimates series. I picked up the first issue as a last minute pick up a few months ago. I am glad I did because now Ultimates is back to being the brainless blockbuster that made this series so much fun originally.
So far, Hickman has done a good job using everything that has happened to the various members on the team to make this book much more cohesive. Every member on the team has a full personality that when one of gets the spotlight it can work. That is the case in issue #4 as Hickman has his pet Ultimate character, Thor, as the star of the show in this issue.
This issue did works as showing how powerful Thor is and expands on his role as the Thunder God. The explanation of Thor being on Earth plays well off what happened in the Ultimate Thor mini and lets the readers who may have not read that mini learn more about the character. With the reveal for the character it should make things more interesting to see if Thor becomes more powerful or something else happens to him.
Ultimates #4 also works in continuing to build up a sub-plot Hickman originally introduced in Ultimate Fallouts. The villain reveal actually came as a surprise to me because I actually forgot the character was still around. This spin on the character is something we haven’t seen before in the 616-universe that may bring in other characters into the Ultimates for some fun confrontations.
Now, where this issue does not work is the lack of the Ultimates outside of Thor and Captain Britain. Even Captain Britain plays nothing more than spectator to what Thor does. This is supposed to be a big team book and to leave out almost the whole team for a whole comic book shouldn’t happen unless it is a one-shot for a series that has be around for a while.
I continue to not be a fan of Esab Ribic painted art style. Ribic’s art works for some of the dramatic moments but the majority does not click with me. With this being a heavy action issue the art did not have that punch you expect from this type of comic.
Overall: Ultimate Comics Ultimates #4 was another good issue. It is weird to read a team book that lacks 99% of the team but Hickman does move the plot forward with Thor’s short battle against the big bad of this series. With the revelations for Thor’s character and the semi-reveal of who the actual villain of the story is I am looking forward to how things turn out in the next issue.
Uncanny X-Men #2
Writer: Kieron Gillen
Artists: Carlos Pacheco, Jorge Molina and Rodney Buchemi
Inkers: Cam Smith, Roger Bonet, Walden Wong and Jorge Molina
Colorist: Frank D’Armata, Rachelle Rosenberg, Jim CharaLampidis and Jorge Molina
Story Rating: 5 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 6 Night Girls out of 10
Review: I want to like Uncanny X-Men more than I am currently. I am a lifelong X-Men fan and have a lot of Uncanny X-Men issues in my collection but I just cannot get into this version of Uncanny X-Men. The story is not boring but it is not something that is standing out.
What works in this issue is how Kieron Gillen is working his magic on Sinister. Gillen has returned the long time X-Men villain to that creepy arrogance that made him one of X-Men’s iconic villains. Gillen does a good job playing up the history Sinister has with Cyclops. Even with the Cyclops version of the X-Men having extremely powerful characters there is a sense that Sinister will get away like he usually does.
Where this issue does not work is the fact it lacks chemistry within the team. The X-Men have a confusing history and this issue only shows how so much continuity hurts an issue. There are a lot of points in the dialogue and certain character actions feel forced. Things like Colossus brutally taking down one of the Sinister clones felt like something out of left field since I still have no idea what caused this change in the character.
For as many hands working on the art for this issue the artwork by Carlos Pacheco and company actually looks good. Usually a mash up of so many artists working on an issue does not work but here it does. The action has a good flow and the dialogue heavy scenes have all the right character emotions.
Overall: Uncanny X-Men #2 was a comic that was just okay. Though I enjoyed how Kieron Gillen is writing Sinister the heavy reliance on continuity is killing this series. It is too bad because I want to like this series. Unfortunately, this title is just reminded me why I stopped reading this series years ago. For now, if I want my X-Men fix I will only be reading Wolverine and the X-Men, which I am surprisingly really enjoying.