Thursday, May 26, 2011

Sketch Reviews (May 26 2011)

I mentioned this on Twitter on Tuesday, but I'm taking a break from my Random Thoughts feature at Comics Should be Good. It was a spur-of-the-Tuesday-morning decision, but one that's been coming for a while. I've done the weekly thing before and continue to -- and, if there's one thing I've learned: walk away for a time when you want. Why force it when it isn't fun? I'll come back when I want to, or maybe not. Who knows. (Oh, and this definitely applies to shit I'm doing for free. It's crass and cruel, but... well, money does make a difference.)

Saw Thor this week and enjoyed it. It was a bit of a strange movie, wasn't it? Most of the big 'twists' were things that are right out in the open in the comics. It was also a movie that wasn't really about who can hit things until they stop, though that played a part. For a movie about a big strong viking god, it was largely based around inner conflict and strength. Interesting approach. My inner fanboy couldn't get over some stupid things -- like the Frost Giants were more 'Andre the Giant' than 'actual fucking giants.' Shit that doesn't matter at all, but will always bug me because it bugs me. Something to ignore inside, I guess.

Yesterday, the two-issue Silver Surfer mini-series, "Parable," by Moebius and Stan Lee arrived in the mail. The only thing I have to say about that right now is how much I love the casualness of Moebius's Silver Surfer. He just sort of stands on his board like he's standing on a street corner, not giving a fuck. And that little hunch he has at the end of the story? Awesome.

Butcher Baker, the Righteous Maker #3: Loving Huddleston's art... Casey's writing less so. This feels more laboured than usual. Probably my fault for the expectations I built up. [***1/2]

Captain America #618: I kind of love how Gyrich is basically "Yeah, the Russians had no case for extradition, but I fucking hate superpeople, so I sent your boy wonder to the gulag. Fuck you, Captain America." How does that guy stay employed? Anyway, this story isn't really clicking with me. I'm curious about the ending, but ever since the end of "The Trial of Captain America," I haven't had my heart in it. Some great art. Love Butch Guice's first couple of pages in this issue. [***1/4]

Detective Comics #877: So, this was fine. Not great or excellent. Fine. Aside from that one-and-a-half issue of this run that I've really loved, I've been the guy standing around going "Hey, guys, this is an okay comic, but it's not as good as you're all saying!" while no one listens or cares. Nor should they. Like what you like. But, yeah, this was fine. [**3/4]

Secret Avengers #13: Ah, the new character that pops up and makes some big point about something... wait, did he make a point? What was the fucking point? I especially love the convenient 'this new character you've never heard of is also an insanely powerful mutant who has never appeared before!' The minute they pulled out that twist, I was like "And this guy wastes his time in congress, banging his head against the idiocy of that system? Moron." It doesn't help that this comic has horribly mediocre shiny art. Is every issue of Spencer's Secret Avengers going to end with some bullshit speech that I wind up skipping after two sentences? [*1/2]

Strange Adventures #1: I'm amused that the review on CBR has links at the end to my reviews of the Jim Starlin-penned Strange Adventures mini-series. This was pretty hit or miss in every way you can imagine. Some good writing, some bad writing, some good art, some bad art. I was hoping for better. Even though I'm buying it when it comes out, I did partially get this to see the Spaceman teaser/first chapter bit. I dug it. Once you get a handle on the dialogue quirks and such, it's pretty easy to follow. I'm curious what Azzarello and Risso will do with that concept. Other quick bits: Denys Cowan art is always welcome, Juan Bobillo does some nice work, "Partners" was one of the stronger pieces overall, "All the Pretty Ponies" went nowhere, Jeff Lemire's "Ultra" story was good, "Refuse" was strange and had a nice horror element, and the two stories before Spaceman are better left forgotten. [**1/2]