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Weekly Comic Book Pulls for 02-13-08
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Henchman21   |  @   |  
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Weekly Comic Book PullsScud, the Disposable Assassin #21
The most anticipated return of the month, at least for me (no offense Alan Davis fans). After more than a decade off, (was I really in high school when the last issue came out) finally we get to see the end of the series. The only problem is, it’s been too long, and while I remember the premise and creator Rob Schrab does a good job of bringing new readers up to speed, I wish I could catch up with the complete story. Schrab’s art still has all the style and excitement we’re used to, and fans of the series will enjoy this. The story is pretty light, and is mostly catch up, but it sets the rest of the story up and there are some good moments. If you’ve never read Scud before, wait a few months, and pick up the omnibus, as I plan to do anyway. That’s pretty much my highest level of approval, because I hate to buy things twice, but I’ll be doing it for this series. —4 out of 5

PULL LIST 02-13-08

  • Scud, the Disposable Assassin #21
  • Booster Gold #0
  • Justice Society of America #12
  • X-factor #28
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer #11
  • Astro City: The Dark Age Special: Beautie
  • Wasteland #14

Booster Gold #0
This is definitely the weakest issue of the series so far. Booster and Ted Kord Blue Beetle say goodbye to the other Blue Beetles, but not before they run into Parallax and Extant during the events of Zero Hour. Now part of the reason I may not have enjoyed this issue is that I’ve never read Zero Hour, so I may have missed some of the in-jokes from that story. Credit to the writers though that knowledge of Zero Hour is not needed to follow this story. This is mostly a set up issue though, which is kind of what they did last issue, so this felt a bit redundant. I also have to take points off for the overuse of a particular DC threat introduced in Infinite Crisis, which makes a last page appearance here. I’m still curious to see where the story goes, so I’d still recommend checking out the series. The creative team can do better than this. —2 out of 5

Justice Society of America #12
Okay, enough with the recruitment drive, or at least if you’re going to do it, let’s have an actual story already. This book has been in set-up mode for the last few months, and it’s just a bit tiring. This issue sees the return of a character from the last JSA series, and also the introduction of several new characters, some of who are interesting enough, I just wonder if they’re setting up more fodder for DC patented “Huge, Shocking Death.” Dale Eaglesham continues to do a great job of juggling all the characters and giving personality to each of them in a few short panels. The biggest problem is that Geoff Johns has done such a good job of creating interesting characters, but the book is too full to explore any of them. There’s just too much going on, and while it might end up reading okay once it’s collected, it’s a drag from month to month. Focus on some characters, or get some action going already. —3 out of 5

New Avengers #38
I’m really ready for Secret Invasion to begin already, because I’m getting really sick of the lead up, particularly in this book. While other books have taken the opportunity to present interesting mysteries or take a unique look at certain characters, New Avengers has been in a state of constant moaning and just hasn’t been very much fun to read since the end of Civil War. I’m sure Brian Bendis has a long term plan for this book, as he does for all his other ones, which is fine but this one has just been a bear to read for a long time. I’m looking forward to when the corner turns and the team comes out on top for once, which I’m assuming is coming. We’re also waiting for the other shoe to drop to see how Spider-man will be handled in this book. This particular issue is mostly taken up with Luke Cage and Jessica Jones arguing about their marriage outside of Avengers Tower. I’ll give it credit for being realistic, but it’s not something I want to read for 15 pages. While this is going on, Danny Rand finds the team a place to squat, but that scene left me wondering why Wolverine is even bothering at this point. What does he get out of being on the team, other than headaches? I’m also not really a fan of Michael Gaydos, who does the fill in art this issue. There’s nothing particularly bad about it, I just personally don’t enjoy the style. So, bring on the big event, and get back to some action, that’s all I’m asking for. —2 out of 5

X-factor #28
I wasn’t going to read this one this week, on account of having sat out the last few issues for the Messiah Complex crossover, but I picked it up, and am glad I did. Peter David does a pretty good job of explaining the new status for the characters, and the new mission for the team. It helped that I knew some stuff that happened during the crossover, but I probably could have followed the story without knowing. The story is mostly about Jaime Madrox dealing with losing two teammates, Layla Miller and Rahne Sinclair, and what those two meant for the team dynamic. Jaime decides to take out his anger on a group of Purifiers but it doesn’t really help him. Meanwhile, Siryn starts to deal with her pregnancy, and Rictor gets beat up. Not really the best day for the team, but David really uses the narration to get into Jaime’s head and brings the point home to the reader. I’m glad I can pick this series up again, and hope that David continues to write the crap out of this book. —5 out of 5

Buffy the Vampire Slayer #11
This has to be my favorite issue of the series so far. This is another one-off story, written by Joss Whedon, and deals with Buffy talking to one of her teammates about matters of the heart, until she runs into the big bad of the series (presumably). Whedon’s script harkens back to classic episodes of the series with its level of wit and humanity. My constant complaints about the art for the series still stand, and are not going to change any time soon. I’m just glad there was an excellent script for this one. I would never recommend this to people who aren’t fans of the show, but for us Buffy fanatics, this is a breath of fresh air. —3 out of 5

Astro City: The Dark Age Special: Beautie
Okay, we all know that Kurt Busiek‘s Astro City comes out once in a blue moon, and the current storyline, The Dark Age, has had its ups and downs, but these specials are the kinds of stories that endeared the series in readers minds so many years ago. This is the second of these specials and is easily one of the best issues released so far this year. The story is one any comic or sci-fi fan has seen before (any story about Vision or the whole of Data’s story on Star Trek) but the way he tells it brings new dimensions to the tale. Beautie is a robot built to look like a classic girl’s doll, but she has no memory of how she was created or what she should be doing, all she knows is she’s supposed to save lives. She spends her life saving the world and then trying to find why she was created, the problem being her programming won’t let her remember. The ending is pretty heart breaking, but the story has some fairly humorous moments as well. Busiek does a great job on this issue, and it’s the kind of issue I wish he did more of. The art by Brent Anderson is up to his standards. I’ve never been a huge fan of his style, but he’s great with the storytelling, and I really enjoy his work on the flashbacks in this issue. If you’ve ever wondered what Astro City is all about, this makes for a good exposure. Now I just have to wait for the next issue, whenever that is. —4 out of 5

Wasteland #14
Wasteland is back after what feels like a long break, although it was probably only a month. I’ve got to be honest though, this was probably my least favorite issue of the series so far. This one takes a break from the main story to show a flashback of one of the main characters, Michael, as he has a run in with a holy man. The story is fine, and adds some interesting layers to the character and the setting, and setting is what this book is all about. The problem I had with it was guest artist Joe Infurnari, and with other comics this week, I’m just not a fan of the style. He has a, I don’t want to say sketchy style, but it’s definitely rough style, and he’s got a fairly interesting page setup that removes panels and blends the individual shots together. If you want to see some unique art, give this a try, but I have to say it didn’t do much for me. Still nice to have the series back and I can’t wait for the next issue. —2 out of 5

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