31 December, 2010

The best ongoing series of 2010

The best ongoing series of 2010

5. X-Men

   Victor Gischler has handled this series very well. This series did suffer from starting in the middle of a series by using the vampires to early, and they did leave several loose ends. For example, what happened to Janus, and where is Magneto, but this series was written extremely well. When Wolverine had to come back from being a vampire there could have been an easy way out, but Gischler found a way to do it quickly and in a way that made sense. Combined with the art of Paco Medina and the series was great.

4. Justice Society of America

     I've been with this series for the past couple arcs, and I was impressed with two out of the past three. Then one with the Winds of War was one of the greatest arcs I've read in my life time, and the one that is currently out does the same. But the cross over with the Justice League of America and the Starheart I didn't care for. But the series has gone in two arcs what it took the comic book medium to do in 60 years. They showed how superheroes fought army in WWII and they fought terrorists in modern day, and that exactly what the JSA has done in the past year, and thats why the series is the fourth best ongoing series of 2010.

3. The Flash

     I've always loved the Flash, Not just one Flash, but all of them, Jay Garrick, Barry Allen, Wally West, and Bart Allen. When Geoff Johns wrote Wally West a couple years back, I thought that those were the best comics that I will ever read. This series, like X-Men, started in the middle. The Renegades should have been postponed until the second or third arc, but even though it came early the art was great. The writing, the plots, the art, all of it, this series would not have been the same without Geoff Johns or Francis Manapul, and this series is definitely one of the best this year.

2. Detective Comics

        The Batwoman arcs were good, but the impostor Joker Wars arcs is what really puts this series above all others. The arc showed the insanity of Gotham, andpeople, in any city. It wasn't only showed by the writing and story, but David Hine did very well with that, but the art reflected the story and the craziness, maybe even better than the story. It was a fun read, and then when other arcs came it got dark, and scary, there were funny moments, and happy m   oments, this series has everything, arc quality does vary, but it's consistently a good, and interesting read.

1. Amazing Spiderman

        I must admit that picking this series is strictly based off the past three issues. Redoing Spiderman, has just been the best thing that could ever be done to and for this series. Giving Peter Parker a new place where he can Spiderman and Parker was just a brilliant idea. There are still risks, but now it's not just the same story with Michelle every issue, which was just getting tedious. He has a job, a somewhat steady life, there are still risks, and it's just entertaining which is perfect. Just because of the past couple issues, this series is definitely the number one ongoing series of the year.


29 December, 2010

Detective Comics #871

           The last arc in Detective Comics was really good, and I'm a little sad to see David Hine leave the series, but I am hopeful that Scott Snyder will really make Dick Grayson his own Batman, with some of the old villains, and some new ones.
           In this issue Dick Grayson is worrying that he's not worthy of being Batman. Then Jim Gordon uses the Wayne's forensic lab. A boy attacked any other kids at a pool, and he had the Killer Croc mutagen in his system. Gordon came to compare the one used on Croc, and the one used on the boy to see if the two are "from the same batch," Which they were. Batman goes and talks to the families butler. The boy, who is now in a coma, was practically raised by his butler. When the butler is about to say something, the mother comes in and shoots him, then she runs out of a window and dies. Batman finds the mark of the Mad Hatter on her neck. Commissioner Gordon sends Batman to an ex-cop who had a record of stealing evidence. Batman goes there, but when he is interogating him, a tree grows out of his mouth and kills him. But before he died he did say he was working for some one called "The Dealer."
            This issue had a lot of build up. It had the previews in the back of many comic books, it had the letter "As I Write This There Is A Batman Costume Sitting In A Box Beside My Desk," where Scott Snyder said "We'll be introducing a lot of new villains in the coming year." Essentially this is a copy cat villain, I've seen these many times recently. I've seen them in Batman #698, and I saw one of them in the last issue of Detective Comics, I can hardly see this as a new villain. Although if this is the same villain we saw in Batman #698 that would be much better, it was never really clear what happened and this could clear it up, but if "The Dealer" is a new person then it would just look like DC is running out of ideas. When I first saw Dick Grayson wondering if he was worthy of being Batman, it was a very "oh, this again" kind of reaction, but as soon as he said "I actually sleep worse in this place now that Bruce is back," it came across as a different approach. When Bruce Wayne was travailing through time it seemed like every one was wondering if they were worthy of being who they were, and now that Bruce Wayne is back all of those feeling stopped abruptly, and now Dick Grayson is still worrying about this which is interesting and could be a constant theme for a while. So this was a very decent issue with a few flaws, and the problem with the Copy Cat villain could go either way, but I do have to admit that I am doubtful.

Grade: 6/10
Buy at: www.mycomicshop.com

24 December, 2010

The Flash #7

            I have always loved Geoff Johns work with the Flash, especially Wally West, so I decided to pick up his series with Barry Allen. I must admit that some of the earlier issues were a let down, but once Johns got into the series  (around issues five and six) it started to get much better.
           This issue has almost nothing to do with the Flash, it is very much an origin issue about Captain Boomerang. This issue starts off with Captain Boomerang breaking Girder out of prison. Then it tells his origin. When his father and brother left him to go work, a delivery man brought Harkness a Wiggins boomerang with no sign of who sent it. Digger tries it out, and ends up sending it into his dad's windshield. After he lost that boomerang, a new one came, he learned to use it, and then he robbed a store with it. His dad through him out of the house, but his mother gave him money to go work for Wiggins. He became the mascot, known as Captain Boomerang. He later turned to crime, got beat by the Flash and joined the Rogues, then joined the Suicide Squad. Then he went home for his mothers funeral and killed his father. Then the flash back ends and Captain Boomerang releases Zoom, which the Rogues don't like.
           I didn't expect to like this issue, but I did, a lot. Captain Boomerang is one of those characters that can be menacing while still having a very classic feel, even if he's not wearing his Wiggins Captain Boomerang suit. This also gives a real reason to put the Brightest Day header on, before Johns did put the header on, but barley talked about Captain Boomerang, and the series had almost nothing to do with Brightest Day, but now that he's focusing on Captain Boomerang more, it is tying Brightest Day into the series very well. I'm not a huge fan of not using Francis Manapul. Scott Kollins does a good job with the art, but he lacks a certain crispness that Manapul had. Although Manapul was a better artist, Kollins is the better story teller. Manapul had many effects, and stunts like when Flash ran on the helicopter rotor, but Manapul takes more of a subtle approach, so even if his art isn't as good, he tells the story better.  I'm very exited for the next couple issues to see how people react to Zoom. I do hope that the Rogues don't work with Flash against Zoom, simply because that would be tedious, and we just got done with the Renegades. So the rest of this arc could either be very good, or very bad, it all depends on the next two or three issues, but this issue was very good, and a very fun read.

Grade: 8/10
Buy at: www.mycomicshop.com

20 December, 2010

Green Lantern/ Plastic Man #1

         Recently I've been reading a lot of Green Lantern, and Plastic Man has always been one of my favorite characters, so this comic looked like the best thing that could ever exist, and that is why I picked it up.
        In this issue Plastic Man goes to Green Lantern and says that he got attacked by some weird alien weapons, and that he needs Green Lantern's help. Green Lantern decides to help. They disguise them selves as gangsters and try to investigate. They find that some of the gangsters in the bar are going to work for the aliens. Plastic Man then gets caught, and tortured by the aliens. Green Lantern disguised as a fly goes and frees Plastic Man when the aliens leave. The aliens turn out to be ducks from outer space, and Green Lantern contacts the good ducks. They disguise themselves as gangsters again and infiltrate the meeting the ducks are having with their gangster troops. Plastic Man and Green Lantern reveal that the ducks are trying to take over the world, and the gangsters turn against them, and the ducks lose and the gangsters promise to go clean.
         As far as I know, Green Lantern can't turn into a fly, or anything. The dialogue in this story was also weak. Now that I think of it this story was probably made for children, but when I read it. Plastic Man is such a powerful and interesting character, and yet he has been reduced to children's books for a while, for this and his last series. The Plastic Man in Batman the Dark Knight Strikes again is the ideal Plastic Man. One that is funny and annoying, but also is one of the more powerful people in the entire DC universe. Honestly I can't really judge the comic because it was made for a much younger audience so this grade is focused on how DC uses Plastic Man. Although I do have to say, even if this is a children's story don't use an evil alien race of ducks, give the story a little more credit than that.

Grade: 2/10
Buy at: www.mycomicshop.com

19 December, 2010

Shadowland After the Fall #1

          Daredevil is a character that I've wanted to be redone for a while. As soon as I heard about Shadowland I knew that there was a chance, and now that it is over Black Panther is taking over for a while, and that is just disappointing because I want some reborn Daredevil.
          In this issue Ben Urich and Detective Kurtz are both looking for Matt Murdock or Daredevil. They ask everyone, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Spiderman and even Moon Knight. Finally they both think to ask Foggy, he also has no idea, but when the suggestion came up that Matt might be dead, Foggy was outraged. Urich goes to Matt's place and finds a tape recording for Urich, saying that Matt doesn't know when he will be back, and not to tell Foggy anything. Electra comes in and tells Urich to stop his hunt. Kurtz finds Black Panther breaking up a fight. Then a bunch of cops tell Kurtz to stop the hunt for Daredevil because he's a good guy, but the Captain disagrees   with them and continues the hunt.
          Like I said before I really want Daredevil back,  I'm definitely going to keep reading because I love Black Panther, and I really want to here whats up with Daredevil and with Black Panther. I must admit that I want Black Panther's run to be short lived, because I really want Daredevil back. When the series returns I really want Johnston to pick up the series, because this issue was amazing. When I opened it up and saw that it was about Urich and Kurtz I was disappointed. But after reading the issue I was really happy, it investigated in to Daredevil and how others are reacting to Shadowland in a way that makes perfect sense. That and the art, not just the cover art, but all of the art through out the entire issue was perfect. When Daredevil returns I want this entire team on the series because this issue was great.

Grade: 10/10
Buy at: www.mycomicshop.com

Superman #706

            Grounded is much like Shadowland, it started off as a very promising series with one of the best first issues ever written, and when Shadowland slowly started slipping, Grounded did it very fast.  I gave the first issue a ten out of ten, and the second a six out of ten. It became something to look forward to, to something that I might remember to pick up.
           In this issue a kid named Sandeep gives Perry White a bad picture, Perry White doesn't like that, he throws him out. After that Ron Troupe walks in and tells Perry that a news blog named Urbanitis released a story saying that the Daily Planet is paying Superman for interviews, and that Lois Lane is having an affair with Superman. Perry calls Lois and she denies it, so he sends Sandeep in as a mole to Urbanitis. Superman meets with Perry and offered to help, Perry says he can handle it. He calls the head of Urbanitis and meets with him, he says he has a picture, but then Sandeep reveals that it was a photoshopped picture. Perry wants an apology and for the head of Urbanitis to apply for an internship this summer.
           Granted this story wasn't written y J. Michael Straczynski so this issue is not his fault. This was not good, for starters it had nothing to do with the grounded story line, it's almost like Wilson was asked to do an issue and he had no ideas. Also as much as I like Perry Whites outbursts, by the ninth or tenth I just got board. That combined with terrible art just made this a bad issue, perhaps the worst Superman comic I've ever read. Grounded started off with Superman talking down someone who was going to jump off of a building, why do I care about some scandal that was posted on a blog. Every time I pick up  Grounded I hope that maybe this will be better, maybe it will be like the first issue, but every issue I read is even worse than the last. I'm going to keep reading because I really want this series to be good, but I have serious doubts.

Grade: 3/10
Buy at: www.mycomicshop.com

18 December, 2010

Shadowland #5

           This is the last issue of Shadowland. This has been a great mini series, I wasn't a huge fan of Shadowland issue four, but the rest of the series has been fantastic. The first issue might have been the best opening issues of a series that I've ever read.
           In the final issue Foggy Nelson was climbing the Shadow Land Fortress' wall, and now he is falling. Ghost Rider picks him up and puts him on a roof. He goes in to battle Daredevil, but his flame only makes Daredevil more powerful, so Ghost Rider loses, and is down. Daredevil then turns to kill Foggy, after White Tiger brings him, but before he can Iron Fist builds up a lot of Chi and punches him very hard. The Chi energy is a life force and Iron Fist used it to exorcise the demon out of Daredevil. Matt Murdock goes through a weird thing in his mind filled with awful images of people he knows telling him how disappointing he is. Daredevil goes unconscious, and the fighting in the streets stops. Matt Murdock runs away, and no one can find him. He went to a church to do some confessing, and Kingpin takes over the Hand.
          I always wanted Daredevil to leave the Hand, ever since he joined up with them, and when Shadowland came out I knew this was going to be the end, the first issues were great, but then I wasn't fond of the idea that it was some sort if demon possessing him. It looked like Diggle was trying to find an excuse to get Murdock back to being a good guy. Also when Iron Fist punched him with the Chi energy all I could think of is why didn't that just happen before, couldn't Diggle think of something better, even if Iron Fist's Chi energy was amplified by something and thats why it was powerful enough to exorcise a demon, then that would have been better, but the whole demon and Chi healing just felt rushed. Another disappointment was Ghost Rider, he is one of the more powerful people in the Marvel universe, and he had this great build up to him (including the cover of the issue) and then he was taken out in the first six pages of the final issue. At least give him a couple moments before rendering him useless. Overall this issue felt like a rush to finnish the story by the fifth issue, and Diggle didn't take the time to think the plot through and how to use the characters. A series with a great first issue ended with a disappointing last one.

Grade: 4/10
Buy at: www.mycomicshop.com

12 December, 2010

Green Lantern Corps #54

          I've been on and off with Green Lantern. I have had trouble deciding whether or not it is worth sticking with, and instead of picking up Green Lantern this time, I decided to try Green Lantern Corps instead, mainly because I liked the cover.
          In this issue Sinestro is fuming because Kyle Rayner  punched him. They decide to fight without rings. Sinestro wins, by a lot. Rayner reveals that he punched Sinestro to get his attention because Soranik Natu has been captured by a Weponer. This Weponer blames Sinestro for his exile, he made the original yellow ring and gave it to Sinestro. Sinestro got greedy came back and killed the warriors of Qward and made the Weponers make yellow rings until they died. So now this particular Weponer (who was exiled for making the first yellow ring) is exiled and blames Sinestro for it. But when lanterns come, it's a group of Green Lanterns, not Sinestro.
           As I said before the cover is what attracted me to this issue, and it was a very good cover. I also really liked the story, it had a perfect sinestro. Tony Bedard managed to make Sinestro just "jerky" enough. The ringless fight between Rayner and Sinestro just seemed like a way to put in a cool fight scene, and it was cool, but after I read it the scene just seemed contrived. I really liked the simplicity of the issue. It had a very simple and easy to understand story, that just made the issue a fun read. Honestly I've never liked Soranik Natu, or Kyle Rayner, but after this issue I have decided to reconsider. They were both written very well. Along with the Weponers, the only time I've really seen them before is in Green Lantern First Flight, and this was a very different approach to them, and both approaches were very good.
         This issue was very good, and I'm definitely going to pick up the next one.

Grade: 8/10
Buy at: www.mycomicshop.com

11 December, 2010

Justice League Generation Lost #15

             This is the first issue of Justice League Generation Lost I've read. I've been trying to get into this series for a while, but I never had time to pick it up. I've heard about how good this series was from many reviews and people, but I finally was able to pick it up.
             In this issue Max Lord learns that he is the only one who can remember the existence of Wonder Woman. His tracking devices aren't working, it's like she never exists. He gets angry, calls Cadmus and tells them to activate things that aren't ready. He wants to find Wonder Woman and then kill her. He also framed Captain Atom of murder. Captain Atom rants about killing Max Lord, and Booster Gold rants about how good guys don't kill. Booster Gold, Captain Atom, Fire, and Ice can all remember Wonder Woman, but Blue Beetle, Rocket Red, Skeets and the rest of the world can't. Then the JLI is invaded by the Creature Commandos.
              I've always liked the new Blue Beetle, and Captain Atom, but have never found a way to read about them. I was slightly disappointed that the Blue Beetle wasn't used more, but I wouldn't blame that on the series, because the series is 15 issues in. I really liked the rant by Booster Gold, because he is usually known as a "silly," not to be taken seriously character, and this showed that he was a dynamic character that has many different aspects to him, and really just makes him a more interesting character. I must admit that while the Creature Commandos were cool, I've never heard of them before, so what I'm assuming was supposed to be a shocking event, it was lost on me. Judd Winick did a really great job with the whole Wonder Woman thing. Both with the commented recap, and with her disappearance. He really left me in suspense, and wanting to read the next issue.
              So this was the first issue of this series that I've read and I must say that I loved it. It had good writing, good story, and good character usage. I'm really looking forward to the next issue. This is a good issue that I strongly recommend.

Grade: 8/10
Buy at: www.mycomicshop.com

08 December, 2010

Justice Society of America #45

          I've really liked this series. I loved the arc with the Fourth Reich, I must admit I skipped this whole star heart business, and so far I've liked this new arc. It could be because I've always loved the Justice Society of America, and the past couple arcs have been really important, but it could also be that the past couple arcs have just been written very well.
        This issue starts with the Flash and Green Lantern on a mission during WWII. The mission was to destroy the  "Drachen Project."When they finally find the "Drachen Project" it turns out to be a baby. The Flash wants to kill it, but Green Lantern wont let him. Meanwhile (back in present day) heroes are helping with clean up of Monument Point. The citizens of the city come and yell at the Flash for not caring. Then a senator reveals that the terrorist that just destroyed the city, is the Drachen child. Elsewhere Green Lantern wakes up in the hospital and finds that he's paralyzed.
          This was a very good issue. It was really full of emotion from all of the characters with Jay Garrick getting yelled at by the people he was trying to save, and Alan Scott being paralyzed. Although as I said before, Jay Garrick being yelled at would have been better if I hadn't seen it so many times before. Although, this time, it was better than in Superman, or Green Lantern. It was the art, and one panel where a man is really yelling that made it better. Also the anger and disgust Flash showed toward the senator was done very well, as was the scene with Alan Scott. This comic does a good job of showing a big part of the JSA, and that is their past experience, especially WWII. It really bridges the gap between old comics, which were about fighting for America, against a foreign enemy, and todays comics, which are about terrorists. A huge part of this comic was the art. The writing was good, but with out Scott Kolins, and Mike Atiyeh, this comic wouldn't be nearly as good. They found a way to express emotion so well that even without the words in the story, I would be able to tell what the character was feeling. I also like that the terrorist did succeed, he was caught, but he still inflicted fear in the DCU, which was really his goal. This is much like the superhero version of 9/11. When the terrorist strikes there is nothing to do, but rebuild. This issue showed that perfectly.
           I'm caught between two things to say about this comic. I don't know weather to call it a extremely good one that you should look at, or a must buy. I'm somewhere in between right now, but definitely look at this issue.

Grade: 9.5/10
Buy at: www.mycomicshop.com

06 December, 2010

Superman/Batman #78

            I've been looking forward to this issue for about a month but for some reason it got mailed late. In the times that I've read this series I've been thrilled, and I don't know why I didn't subscribe earlier. The reason I did subscribe to this is because Brave and the Bold (which was one of my favorite series) got canceled and DC replaced my subscription with Superman/Batman, and this is one of the best series I've ever read.
           In this issue two kids are talking about who would win, Superman or Batman, but they are having trouble figuring out how to do that. They create rules like: No Kryptonite, no magic and no Batmite. Once the battle is underway a series of hypotheticals happen making both characters unbeatable. Superman and Batman both listened to the conversation, and Batman assures Superman that he could beat him without Kryptonite.
            Discussing who would win Superman or Batman is something that goes all the way back to the golden age, when Detective Comics and Action Comics were putting out their first couple issues, and most if not all of the comic fans I know have discussed this, so I was very exited for a DC writer to put the whole story in a comic. My main problem with this story is that it wasn't long enough, only half of the book was devoted to Superman and Batman, the other half was given to Power Girl and Huntress. I was disappointed that it wasn't longer because this is a moment that I have been waiting for. Not just this issue, but a layout of a battle between Superman and Batman. But after that I really don't have any big  complaints, except that the dialogue could have been better, but this was from the point of view of a couple of kids. Also I noticed a couple panels where the art could have been better. But I really have no big complaints, except it wasn't long enough. If it were longer it would be a must buy, but since it's short I would say, check it out if you have some extra time.

Grade: 7.5/10
Buy at: www.mycomicshop.com

05 December, 2010

Amazing Spiderman #649

           I can't even describe how much I loved the previous issue in this arc. Gave Spiderman his life back, and showed so much hope for the future of Spiderman, and the Amazing Spiderman series. Before it was always something I got in the mail, and read, but it wasn't exiting like getting a Legion of Superheroes, or Captain America, but now I'm constantly looking forward to the days when I find Amazing Spiderman in my mail box.
           In this issue the original Hobgoblin is working for the Kingpin. Hobgoblin goes down to Green Goblin's stash of high tech toys. When he gets their Phil Urich is hiding there. Hobgoblin is about to kill him, but then Urich uses his sonic scream and cuts his head off, and then he becomes the Hobgoblin. Spiderman beats up some Green Goblin worshipers with a reformed Black Cat. Aunt May walks Peter into work. After a unproductive day, Hobgoblin breaks into Horizon Labs, and starts fighting Spiderman.
          Another near flawless issue. The "revamping" of spiderman continues, not he has a place to work on being Spiderman. I'm pretty impartial about killing off the Hobgoblin and replacing him with another Hobgoblin because I've never really had much Hobgoblin experience. I don't really know why Marvel decided to make Hobgoblin into an evil Black Canary. It kind of works because it's Hobgoblin, but then making it the Sonic Scream seemed unnecessary, instead to just having him just steal a piece of Green Goblin tech. It would have made more sense, but that is only a little part of the story, so I'm not to worried about it. I loved the scene with Aunt May looking back on a conversation with Peter Parker. Especially during the revamp, it's always good to go back, it made the issue so much better, and gave emotion to the issue. I also like that Black Cat is being revamped simultaneously with Spiderman. I would say that this was a good issue, but it's not entirely about that, it's about making Spiderman the great character he once was. So I'm incredibly exited for the next couple issues, and the arcs that come after this with the improved Spiderman.

Grade: 9/10
Buy at: www.mycomicshop.com