Monday, June 26, 2017

It’s the last week of June, so Canada Day is soon. With the country celebrating its 150th anniversary, this year is a big deal. I was 10-years-old when we had our centennial in 1967 and I was part of a children’s choir that sang at city hall as part of the year-long celebration back then. We’re getting together with friends for Canada Day come Saturday and I wish you all a great week and weekend.

 

Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #1 – Chip Zdarsky (writer) Adam Kubert (art) Jordie Bellaire (colours). Get ready to be assaulted by an explosion of Spider-Man stuff as we near the theatrical release of the movie “Spider-Man Homecoming” on July 7. I still remember picking up Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #1 off the spinner rack in 1976, happy that there was another comic book starring my favourite super hero. I wasn’t sure I wanted to read this new incarnation because I am not a big fan of Chip’s writing. I was not impressed with his work on the new Howard the Duck and Jughead books. My problem is that he comes across as too frenetic and eager to please by writing way too much. The double page spread with Peter and Johnny Storm having lunch together is a great example. Look at all them word balloons. The rest of the book is no better. Almost every panel is jammed full of word balloons. And what’s with Peter leaving his mask on during lunch? Johnny knows his secret identity already. Wouldn’t it have been more comfortable to take his mask off? I know I’m being picky but it’s these little details that annoy me. The other thing that annoyed me was that I had to Google two acronyms to get what was being said. I’m an old fogey so I didn’t know what NBD and NPC meant. Maybe it was to balance out all the other words used that “no big deal” and “non player character” were shortened. My quibbles are not enough to keep me from reading the next issue however because Chip pulls something out of the asphalt at the end that makes me want to find out more about the surprise person that Johnny meets. Well played Chip Zdarsky, well played.

 

Batwoman #4 – Marguerite Bennett & James Tynion IV (writers) Steve Epting (art) Jeromy Cox (colours) Deron Bennett (letters). The first story arc ends with Kate and company saving the day. I was satisfied with how the story ended and there is enough mystery to keep me wanting to read more. What is Plan B and who is the shadowy figure in the last panel? I want to find out.

 

Shirtless Bear-Fighter! #1 – Jody Leheup & Sebastian Girner (writers) Nil Vendrell (art) Mike Spicer (colours) Dave Lanphear (letters). This takes place in a land where Yogi Bear would fit right in. The well endowed Shirtless Bear-Fighter’s origin story is part Mowgli from Jungle Book and part Superman and part Punisher. This issue was mildly humorous but I didn’t chuckle or laugh out loud. Maybe I’m too old. Is this the next Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1? Or The Walking Dead #1? Do bears poop in the woods? Buy it, read it and you be the judge. I only read it because Ottawa’s own Tom Fowler did one of the variant covers.

 

W.M.D. Weapons of Mutant Destruction #1 – Greg Pak (writer) Mahmud Asrar (art) Nolan Woodard (colours) VC’s Joe Caramagna (letters). I hope you’ve been reading the new Weapon X comic book with Old Man Logan, Sabretooth, et alia because this is a direct tie-in to what went on there. No worries if you haven’t because Greg spells everything out very clearly. The good guys are fighting an evil anti-mutant organization that is creating mutant killers. The Totally Awesome Hulk is one of the good guys so look for part 2, 4 and 6 of the story in that book. Parts 3 and 5 are in Weapon X. I’m reading them all.

 

Aquaman #25 – Dan Abnett (writer) Stjepan Sejic (art & colours) Steve Wands (letters). This title has gone “Game of Thrones” but that’s not why I took this extra-sized anniversary issue off the racks to read. It was the cover and interior art by Stjepan Sejic that made me want to give this book another try. I sure am glad I did. The story of a new power mad King of Atlantis and the return of the usurped King isn’t anything new but the beautiful art makes it more exciting to me. Stjepan knows how to draw hot women and Mera and Dolphin gives him plenty of opportunity to show that off. Aquaman is going back on my “must read” list.

 

Crosswind #1 – Gail Simone (writer) Cat Staggs (illustrator) Simon Bowland (letters). It’s nice to see Gail back on the racks again. Here she does a grown up version of Freaky Friday where a housewife and a mob enforcer switch bodies. Juniper and Cason are introduced pre switcheroo, which happens at the end of this issue. I can’t wait to see what happens next. Cat’s art is nice and that made it easy to put this new book on my “must read” list.

 

Plastic #3 – Doug Wagner (writer) Daniel Hillyard (art) Laura Martin (colours) Ed Dukeshire (letters). The “hero” of this story is a psychotic killer but I like him a lot. A damsel in distress who may suffer a fate worst than death (haven’t heard that cliché in a while eh?) plays a big role in this issue. Punisher fans will like this series.

 

Royal City #4 – Jeff Lemire (writer & illustrator) Steve Wands (letters). This is a really cool ghost story. Patrick’s thoughts about aging hit close to home.

 

Archie #21 – Mark Waid (writer) Pete Woods (art & colours) Jack Morelli (letters). OMG (I know what that means) they killed…! You have to read this issue to find out who.

 

The Mighty Thor #20 – Jason Aaron (writer) Russell Dauterman & Valerio Schiti (art) Matthew Wilson & Veronica Gandini (colours) VC’s Joe Sabino (letters). Loved the Walt Simonson tribute cover by Patrick Brown. Speculator alert: it’s the first appearance of a new Thor. You won’t believe who it is. What motivates this guy to pick up the hammer is heart wrenching and the bad guys are going to get it. I can’t wait to see him in action. There’s a scene between Jane Foster and the Odinson that puts into question the fate of the Mighty Thor. I really hope she sticks around.

Batman #25 – Tom King (writer) Mikel Janin (art) June Chung (colours) Clayton Cowles (letters). What made last issue worth reading was the kaboom on the last page. This whole issue is worth it for the build up to “The War of Jokes and Riddles”. It’s Batman versus the Joker and the Riddler and it’s super intense. Mikel’s art is the cherry on top and it’s yummy. Batman is getting really good again.

 

The Wild storm #5 – Warren Ellis (writer) Jon Davis-Hunt (art) Steve Buccellato (colours) Simon Bowland (letters). You should read this. It’s all coming together beautifully.

 

Luke Cage #2 – David F. Walker (writer) Nelson Blake II (art) Marcio Menyz (colours) VC’s Joe Sabino (letters). This is an uh-oh issue as Luke investigates what the scientist that gave him his super powers was up to. Kind of reminded me of Orphan Black.

 

Superman #25 – Patrick Gleason & Peter J. Tomasi (writers) Doug Mahnke & Patrick Gleason (pencils) Jaime Mendoza, Mick Gray, Joe Prado, Ray McCarthy, Scott Hanna & Matt Santorelli (inks) Wil Quintana & John Kalisz (colours) Dave Sharpe (letters). The conclusion to “Fade to Black” has guest stars galore and highlights the core of this title as the good guys prevail. I’ve enjoyed this book more because of the family values that Clark, Lois and Jonathan embody and the art is spectacular.

 

Star Wars: Darth Vader #2 – Charles Soule (writer) Giuseppe Camuncoli (pencils) Cam Smith (inks) David Curiel (colours) VC’s Joe Caramagna (letters). By the way Vader is mowing down storm troopers he must be really pissed at his boss. We find out who he’s going to get his light sabre from in this issue. From the looks of the next issue teaser, it’s going to be a scorcher.

 

Nick Fury #3 – James Robinson (writer) Aco (pencils) Hugo Petrus (inks) Rachelle Rosenberg (colours) Travis Lanham (letters). This is freaking awesome. All you fans out there not reading this are missing out on some excellent writing and art. This reminds me of how I felt when I first saw Jim Steranko’s art on Nick Fury Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. in the sixties as a teenager. Aco and Hugo’s art with Rachelle’s colours is so pretty and pops off the page. Buy this book.

 

Super Sons #5 – Peter J. Tomasi (writer) Alisson Borges (art) Hi-Fi (colours) Rob Leigh (letters). Few writers know how to make young adults sound genuine but Peter is one of them. This issue establishes Jon and Damian as the young dynamic duo. I can’t wait to see what they get up to next.

 

 

Invincible Iron Man #8 – Brian Michael Bendis (writer) Stefano Caselli (art) Marte Gracia (colours) VC’s Clayton Cowles (letters). This sets up next issue’s fight with Lady Von Bardas. We’ll see how bardas she really is.

 

 

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