Thursday, November 22, 2012

EXCLUSIVE! Chad Nevett's Comic Book Mini-Reviews and Star Ratings for the Week of November 21, 2012

Avengers #34: The first of the one-two punch that is the End of Brian Michael Bendis's Avengers Run. I wonder if the essay at the end of this issue will run in next week's New Avengers finale as well. It seems like that would be the more fitting place. While Bendis began on Avengers technically, New Avengers was his book really. I liked this end well enough. Wonder Man is put back in the box alongside the Wasp. I'm not sure Bendis ever really did enough with Wonder Man, but I always liked the idea of his turn. Not a 'bring the house down' finale or anything, but I liked this. [***1/2]

Daredevil #20: A well-crafted comic. [***1/2]

Hawkeye #4: Probably my favourite issue of this series so far from a writing perspective. Some clever bits, too. A bit more balanced... Yeah, I dug it. [****]

Indestructible Hulk #1: One of the few Marvel NOW! titles that I'm giving a single issue to make me continue and, while I think the concept is clever and reminds me a bit of Joe Casey's approach to Bruce Banner, it doesn't really interest me. It's the sort of idea that can only go so far because of the limitations of the Marvel Universe and I can see that that will always be a frustration for me with a book like this. The conflict between Marvel's internal reality demanding it approximate our world and the level of genius it possesses is one that I try my best to avoid, because it's just hell watching. Also, the Hulk never seems to interest me. He smashes. Yay...? Whatever. [No issue 2]

Ultimate X-Men #18.1: Brian Wood jumps over 'the cure' almost as quickly as he jumped over the end of the Sentinel conflict. Good for him. A transition issue that allows the book to jump into "Reservation X" in issue 19 without too many distractions. The problem with the cure is that it's partly an effort to exterminate mutants, but it's also a story-ending machine where those that don't take it don't necessarily engender sympathy. There's the idea that mutants are born that way... but they also only get their powers as teens and most mutants in the Ultimate Universe are teens... is that who they really are? And given the sort of lives they've been forced to lead as mutants, why would they want to remain that way? Mutants in the Ultimate Universe have had a much harsher time of it than the regular MU and by sidestepping the conversation as much as possible, Wood doesn't linger on that too long. That QQ mention has me wondering, though... [***3/4]

The Unwritten #43: It's shocking to see fictional characters like that... but... there isn't any effect. I know that Leviathan hurt is bad for humanity, but the shocking lack of effect of the damage of fictional characters take a bit of the urgency out. As Tom says, this doesn't change anything in the real world. So, why care? This book has become about managing destruction that seems contained in a way where we know it's bad, but that's only because we've been told. What we've been shown doesn't actually seem to matter. There is something interesting in watching a book flail about like this, unable to find its footing, though. I'm with it. So: I'm with it. [***]

Wolverine and the X-Men #21: Amusing, but something that misses my sensibilities. That happens. No one's fault. This just doesn't click with me. [***]

Wonder Woman #14: Oddly, my least favourite pages were the final ones with Highfather and Orion. The rest was good: Wonder Woman winning someone over with patience and genuine caring, and the gods being dumb and petty... Good stuff. [***1/2]