I have intentionally been quiet about the new DC books these past couple of weeks. Mostly because every site and its mom is reviewing them, E. has covered a few, too. What more could I possibly say that hasn’t been said? Well, I’ve always got something to say. I’m not picking up all of the titles, but of the #1 DC books I have gotten, I have loved, liked, and loathed.
Batwoman is a shining star in the DCU. I knew it would be. I reveled in every single panel of J.H. Williams III’s stellar art. He wins on writing, too. E. concurs.
Once upon a time I was getting Green Lantern, Green Lantern Corps, AND Green Lantern: Emerald Warriors. I lost interest and dropped all of the titles from my pull list. I thought maybe, just maybe, that a Green Lantern book with Sinestro as the star could win me back. But while I read Green Lantern #1, all I could think was how do we get a reimagined Superman but GL picks up right after the War of the Green Lanterns? I think we all know why that is, but my brain says, “NO!” Also, Hal Jordan is even more of a cad. Snore.
Action Comics and Batgirl were equally pleasing to me. Rags Morales is a rock star of comic proportions, and Morrison’s Supes is intricate and intriguing. Gail can write the hell out of some Barbara Gordon. Special kudos to Mrs. Simone for humanizing her in such a relateable way, and showing a Babs with an authentic trauma response. Realism for the win.
I was terribly disappointed by Eric Wallace’s Mr. Terrific. I admit that my reason for reading the book in the first place is rather shallow: I think the character is hot, but the story was just as shallow. It portrayed Michael Holt as haughty and dissociated, and don’t even get me started on the clichés regarding race, gender, and belief. This Mr. Terrific is a far cry from the wise and compassionate Michael Holt that Greg Rucka gave us in Checkmate. No thanks, DC.
I am a fan of Lemire’s Sweet Tooth, so both Animal Man and Frankenstein got bought. I gave Animal Man a try, and it felt lukewarm. Some in my geek circle were complaining about the art. I admire the clean simplicity of Travel Foreman’s art, and it does rev up into some rather complex, gory panels. I think this is a quality book, but there was too much Buddy with the morphogenetic field inner-monologue. It got a little boring in parts for me. Maybe I don’t relate to Buddy Baker, but you might.
That brings me to Frankenstein: Agent of S.H.A.D.E., I enjoyed this book more than all the others. I reread it as soon as I was done, and I feel compelled to make a case for it. The art is going to be an acquired taste for some. The colors and lettering are pretty great, but the loose lines and gritty feel might be off-putting. Don’t let it be. It really works with the tone of the book. What’s the tone of the book?
Okay. Seriously. It is just the first issue, but it is quite fun. Lemire skillfully references Frankenstein’s continuity with quick dialogue. There are tons of festive physics oddities and S.H.A.D.E. technology. Frankie is quoting the British poet Milton. Father Time is a little girl with pigtails. There is a crew of “Creature Commandos” complete with an amphibious lady scientist, a mummy, and a werewolf and vampire who have a penchant for bickering. The baddest S.H.A.D.E. agent of all is Frankie’s wife. This book has the right mix of camp and grit, and I can foresee these characters making for a most entertaining monster mash. I need you to go buy it so it doesn’t get canned. Please.
P.S. I am beyond excited about Azzarello and Chiang’s Wonder Woman, tomorrow!