Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Weekly Rankings For 06/25/08
Here are this week’s comics ranked prior to reading them, based upon past performance and advance information released on each issue:
Here are the rankings after the first read through with a mini-review:
5. Hulk #4
Loeb & McGuinness
This is a poor sign where all of the Hulk titles I am getting end up at the bottom of the list week after week. Here is the good: the issue has a lot of action. It’s a big fight between the two Hulks sprinkled in with the apparent reveal of the identity of the red Hulk. The artwork is also excellent, as again, the colors really drive home the mood of the comic. The art compliments the action which is always nice to see. The bad is the story has no tangible direction. The dialogue is simply dreadful. Also, when did green Hulk become an idiot? I have no problem with the dumb Hulk but I’d like to see some progression of the character to get there. This isn’t the X-Men were you have 200 characters that you can leave things unexplained in creating a new status quo. Add in that the red Hulk wants to use a gun to kill the green Hulk and it makes the comic just out of place in the Hulk continuity built from Planet Hulk to World War Hulk. I am still in this but I am questioning for how much longer. Art and battles take you only so far.
Brubaker, Choi & Oliver
Okay, I know this is an arc to stall until issue 500. That’s fine, but this arc did give us a touch of the new status quo in the X universe. Mastermind is alive and well, Omega Red is alive and well and the X-Men move to San Francisco. That’s not “nothing” but it wasn’t the best arc ever either. As far as this issue goes we tie up the Omega Red versus Wolverine and company. It’s pretty good but the whole plot had no real purpose. We don’t really know what was going on with the torture of the mutants or if others were in there. Also, Cyclops and company knock Mastermind off her perch and gain the thanks of the mayor with an invite to move to San Fran. As with the Wolverine plot, this one gives little reason behind the hows and whys of this part of the story. The issue does stay light with comments about not remembering so-and-sos powers, which is funny because I find myself checking wikipedia often because I cant keep the evolution of some of them straight. The artwork wasn’t my favorite. To me, Omega Red looked way too much like Sabretooth. Also, Emma’s diamond form looked like she wasn’t fully colored. It looked odd. Not an Earth shattering issue but it made decent use of the A list mutants I felt.
3. Green Lantern #32
Johns, Reis & Albert
A good issue but not the greatest out there. I felt like I read all of this before. I didn’t get the sense that any of this was new except the idea of creating a lantern from the dead which takes up all of one page. Sinestro visits Hal and they verbally battle for a while. If anything, this arc shows that Hal standing up to Sinestro doesn’t make much sense when you factor in that both have massive egos. If using the ring is a matter of will power then why wouldn’t they be on even ground with their ego sizes being equal? Especially when Hal has already knocked down Kilowog? Also, if Sinestro is obsessed with order then why wouldn’t he drop a beatdown on Jordan? To me, this part of the origin never made and still makes little sense, just as Abin Sur picking his own replacement while he was still alive. Think of it in terms of today. Would you expect to find a random rookie stand up to Kilowog and the greatest lantern, Hal, and get away with it? It’s odd. I loved the evolution of Hector and the involvement of Carol and how she had to beg Hal to stay with her company, but I still felt like it wasn’t really new. The issue is really good if you are new or you don’t mind old stories with updated art. It does raise more questions about the validity of this origin though. The artwork is great as always.
Harrison, Wheatley & McCaig
A great issue of Dark Times is bittersweet as the series goes on hiatus until 2009. The best part of this issue is that it reveals insight into Vader’s intentions. This comic could have just focused on the Sith artifact or the Jedi who holds it, but instead it evolved Vader a notch or two. Add in a great fight and the comic is very solid. Bomo and company manage to get away but not without another death. The comic features excellent artwork. A good benchmark is what Darth Vader looks like and he looks fantastic. The issue was as good as any in the Star Wars Universe today.
Carey & Eaton
A solid storyline gets better and better. The overall plot is unfolding. Basically Xavier is being used by Sinister in an unfriendly way. This arc really has a lot of possibilities and it is using so much X history in the comic that it is actually opening avenues that might have been long forgotten. This comic has outstanding art and packs each page with as much visually as it does with plot and dialogue. Even the flashbacks scenes have that old feel to them that adds a layer of contrast to this issue that is very welcome in the storytelling. This comic is very, very good and is building as it goes.