Off The Rack #142

Monday, June 10, 2019

Well sir, summer weather has finally hit the nation’s capital. I am reluctant to fire up the AC yet but the ceiling fan was turned on overnight. The welcome heat means the flower gardens are showing off their myriad colours. The birdies are singing and the fish are biting. I am a happy and contented guy.



Domino: Hotshots #4 – Gail Simone (writer) David Baldeon & Michael Shelfer (pencils) David Baldeon, Michael Shelfer & Craig Yeung (inks) Jim Charalampidis (colours) VC’s Clayton Cowles (letters). Cold War part 4. It looks like the team has saved the world from extinction but wait, there’s more. Someone else has been given great power and she’s made it her responsibility to get revenge on the Hot Shots. The conclusion next issue should be epic.



War of the Realms: Journey Into Mystery #4 – The McElroys (writers) Andre Lima Araujo (art) Chris O’Halloran (colours) VC’s Clayton Cowles (letters). I don’t know The McElroys from Adam but I sure do like the way they write. Ares catches up with the team and their mission goes FUBAR. Now they have to rescue the demon baby. The conclusion next issue should be epic.



The Incredible Hulk: Last Call #1 – Peter David (writer) Dale Keown (pencils) Mark Farmer, Marc Deering, Walden Wong & Scott Hanna (inks) Peter Steigerwald with John Starr (colours) VC’s Cory Petit (letters). If you’ve been reading the Immortal Hulk you know that Betty Ross plays a major role in the recent story. This $4.99 US one-shot gives you some history and it’s brought to you by the creative team that made reading Hulk comics so much fun in the nineties. The super villain was a complete surprise but made a lot of sense.



Batman #72 – Tom King (writer) Mikel Janin & Jorge Fornes (art) Jordie Bellaire (colours) Clayton Cowles (letters). I’m not quite sure but this story looks like a team up of Bane and Thomas Wayne to kill Bruce/Batman. This whole issue is narrated by Thomas with not a peep of dialogue and references events leading up to the beating Batman gets from Bane this time. At least I think it’s Bane. Jorge Fornes’s protagonists aren’t as bulky as some artists draw them.



Black Cat #1 – Jed MacKay (writer) Travel Foreman (art) Brian Reber (colours) Ferran Delgado (letters). Marvel’s version of Catwoman first appeared in 1979 and I’ve liked her ever since. I think the last page of this debut pays tribute to DC’s feline femme fatale with the bats escorting the getaway car. There are two short back-up stories so you get good value for $4.99 US. This first heist isn’t too elaborate but it does serve to introduce Selina and her crew. This was good enough that I will read the next issue.



DCeased #2 – Tom Taylor (writer) Trevor Hairsine (pencils) Stefano Gaudiano (inks) Rain Beredo (colours) Saida Temofonte (letters). This zombie virus infesting the DCU story isn’t kidding around. Two major characters bite the bullet this issue. The only reason I would keep reading the rest of this 6-issue mini is to see how the good guys beat the walking dead and who else might possibly die before they do.



Guardians of the Galaxy Annual #1 – Four stories featuring a bunch of team members and a mysterious bad guy.

“Faith” by Donny Cates (writer) John McCrea (art) Mike Spicer (colours) & VC’s Cory Petit (letters) has Cosmo the talking Russian dog cosmonaut and the aforementioned villain foreshadowing some nasty doings for our heroes.

“A Long Time In Politics” by Al Ewing (writer) Yildiray Cinar (art) Rain Beredo (colours) & VC’s Cory Petit (letters) starts with two guys walking into a bar who wind up talking about intergalactic politics. The two guys are Nova and Quasar. This is not a joke.

“Advent Horizon” by Tini Howard (writer) Ibrahim Moustafa (art) Jay David Ramos (colours) & VC’s Cory Petit (letters) has Adam Warlock dealing with a planet of peaceful aliens being controlled by a malevolent god. Gee, I haven’t seen Warlock in a while so I’m not familiar with his current status but this Warlock could have been a brand new character to me. He didn’t spark any joy.

“You’re Only Young Twice” by Zac Thompson & Lonnie Nadler (writers) Filipe Andrade (art) Mike Spicer (colours) & VC’s Cory Petit (letters) features Darkhawk in a freaky Friday situation. I forgot that Darkhawk was a merger of two things like DC’s Firestorm.

I was not impressed with this sausage fest. No female characters at all and no one that I really cared about. I don’t think you would be missing anything crucial if you’re a fan of the regular book if you decide to skip this.



Shazam! #6 – Geoff Johns (writer) Marco Santucci, Marco Santucci, Dale Eaglesham & Scott Kolins (art) Mike Atiyeh (colours) Rob Leigh (letters). I was thinking of benching this book as I read the first few pages but then things take a turn with Billy’s dad showing up and now I want to keep reading. The last page sealed the deal.



War of the Realms #5 – Jason Aaron (writer) Russell Dauterman (art) Matthew Wilson (colours) VC’s Joe Sabino (letters). Showing the war on Midgard on all its fronts would be a daunting task for any creative team but this one does it beautifully. I hope they do an oversize full colour hard cover reprint of this main story. I would not hesitate to add that to my meagre collection. I’ve complained about excessive super-sized super hero versus super villains fights before but this one has just the right amount of action and suspense for me. I have enjoyed the evolution of Jane Foster that Jason Aaron has plotted and now she’s in for another surprise metamorphosis.



Marvel Team-Up #3 – Eve L. Ewing (writer) Joey Vazquez with Moy R. (art) Felipe Sobreiro (colours) VC’s Clayton Cowles (letters). The conclusion of the Spider-Man and Ms. Marvel body switcheroo story made me smile. I love a happy ending.



Young Justice #6 – Brian Michael Bendis (writer) John Timms (art) Gabe Eltaeb (colours) Wes Abbott (letters). This is a good jumping on issue even though it’s the conclusion of the first story arc. It gives you tidbits of information on almost everybody on the team and why they’re on Gemworld fighting the evil Lord Opal. When you get to the last page there’s the patented Bendis ending that makes you want to read the next issue as soon as it hits the racks. I was particularly impressed with Gabe’s colours this issue.



Savage Avengers #2 – Gerry Duggan (writer) Mike Deodato Jr. (art) Frank Martin (colours) VC’s Travis Lanham (letters). The cover may show Wolverine attacking Conan but nothing like that happens inside. This is one of those comic books that I was able to finish reading in about 5 minutes. That doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it, I actually got a chuckle out of it. The big bad Is revealed to be the wizard Kulan Gath who is also time displaced like Conan. I was thinking that Conan would only be able to survive in the modern world if he learned how to shoot a gun. Who better to show him the ropes than the trigger happy Punisher? Guess which Savage Avenger makes his first appearance in this issue? They’ve shown the cover to Savage Avengers #4 and the two macho men are featured, one with a sword and the other firing a gun. Ninjas of the Hand pop in with Frank so I hope that means that Elektra isn’t too far behind.



War of the Realms: New Agents of Atlas #3 – Greg Pak (writer) Gang Hyuk Lim (art) Federico Blee; Andres Mossa; Erick Arciniega (colours) VC’s Clayton Cowles (letters). Here’s another fake cover. It makes it look like the good guys lose the battle but the battle has just begun in this issue. Who picks these? I’m not a fan of the little ID captions naming everybody cluttering up each panel. I know there are a lot of characters in this book and some fans may need help identifying everybody. They should do what the main War of the Realms book does and have a full page showing who all the players are. Chances are really good that the heroes will find a way to stop Sindr from winning.



Batman: Last Knight on Earth #1 – Scott Snyder (writer) Greg Capullo (pencils) Jonathan Glapion (inks) FCO Plascencia (colours) Tom Napolitano (letters). Welcome to the future where the super heroes have lost the never ending battle with evil. This is a terrific first issue that sets up the story with everything making sense and there are no “what the heck is going on here?” moments. This 3-issue deluxe $5.99 US mini is going on my “must read” list. Thanks to Doug for lending me his copy to read.


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