Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Weekly Rankings For 07/16/08
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:
*Holdover: Final Crisis Requiem
Tomasi & Mahnke
An outstanding issue. This comic gives you background on Martian Manhunter. It gives you a little timeline of his life. It gives you his importance to some of the DC heavy hitters. It gives you a detailed account of how the villains killed him. It gives you an emotion filled, story filled comic. I was very happy I found a copy of this. It is very much outside the Final Crisis arena as I haven’t picked up one issue with that banner up to this point and I loved it. The artwork took some getting used to. I had a difficult time telling apart some of the heroes without their masks on.
5. Transformers Spotlight: Hardhead
Furman, Musso, Su & Roche
I’m at a loss with the Transformers line as a whole. This issue is such a departure from the entire series I don’t even know where to begin. First off, it’s not a spotlight of Hardhead really. He’s in about a third of the comic escorting Nightbeat into a planet he is investigated. One of them is a traitor and I think they both either die, disappear or get “lost”. It wasn’t good at all. Secondly, the overall plot of these one shots (they do tie together) is that there is a dead universe getting created or merging or something. It’s not clear who is involved. Lastly, so many ‘bots just randomly show up from issue to issue without introduction it is impossible to keep track of what is going on. There is no recap of previous issues and really, there can’t be because too much has gone off the rails. People complain about the wild goose chase in Green Arrow, but that only has five or six characters. This comic has 20-30 and the thing is all over the place. I can’t even recommend this for the die hard fans. This was a huge disappointment.
4. Flash #242
Peyer & Willians II
When we left the Flash, he was trying to put out a fire and rescue the frozen Inertia. This issue totally ignores that. Yes, Inertia is….well….I don’t know where he is because I’m not told. This issue shifts gears and deals with the rapid aging of his daughter, Iris. They take a family trip to gorilla land to try to heal Iris. Grodd shows up and things go badly. This title is all over the place. Even the art has its ups and downs. Iris aging into her 30s and looks pretty much like she did in teens only with fatter cheeks. I don’t know what the purpose of this arc is. It apparently jumps around and where it stops no one knows. I cant recommend this to anyone.
3. Frank Frazetta’s Swamp Demon
Ortega, Medors & Fotos
Sword and sorcery doesn’t get better looking than this comic. The story is okay, but it’s the art that makes the issue shine. Basically, three druids are off to a holy spot when they find that it has been taken over by demons. They run and the demons have them dead to rights so they unleash their own Swamp Demon. It’s a good comic for the creativity in the characters depicted. It makes use of some of the Death Dealer characters and explains a little bit of some of the things that you saw in that series, but you don’t need to have read that one to get into this one. If you like a little horror in you comic diet then this one is one to take a peak at.
2. World of Warcraft #9
Simonson, Landry, Moore, Lullabi & Didier
This issue is heavy on plot. Kings have meetings. Assassins have assignments. Dwarfs have prisoners and Lo’Gosh and company have a new path. This issue tries to advance the plot of Lo’Gosh returning to his city to confront the imposter king, but they take a detour. All the while, the fake king continues to confuse his allies and his son. The issue gives out some great artwork and presents more interesting looking races of creatures. The comic is totally inaccessible to a new reader though. So much happens issue to issue I would think you need some type of character intro bubble to identify the key players. The series is getting into a deeply rooted universe that offers up a lot of interesting places and creatures. This was also the first issue that I found Lo’Gosh to be more interesting than his companions. This comic is very entertaining, but has some difficult spots in identifying new characters.
1. Mice Templar #5
Glass & Oeming
This issue packs in an awful lot of interesting ideas. We have two plot threads that get a lot of page count here. First, Karic, the main mouse is faced with losing his master and facing the “truth” about what really happened to the Templar. It’s an interesting situation because he trusted Pilot all along and now he is being told something totally different by the mice priests. Why would he believe them? Why would he even want to be involved with the Templar if the society is so messed up? The second thread is about the captured mice. The one armed mouse reveals some information through a story that pretty much explains how a mouse betrayed everyone to the rats. Basically a mouse is king of the rats who are enslaving other mice. It’s a complex and dense story with no clear right or wrong. The artwork continues to make things difficult to tell mouse from rat. This is not a comic you read in five minutes. The comic gives a huge recap page which is most welcome as it helps old and new readers. Add in that they have some extras in the back and you’d be hard pressed to find a comic that gives you more bang for your buck.