The Comic Queen

Zip ribbons and word balloons, Wednesday bliss and Previews dreams. If these phrases mean anything to you, then you're in the right place. But if they don't -- hey stick around anyway. You might just like what you see.

Thursday, December 30, 2004

Single-Panel Reviews 12/30/04

Well, since Diamond hasn't shipped any copies of the new Previews catalog to my regular comic shop for two weeks in a row, I don't have a Previews Review to followup Kerry's rundown. While I try to track down a copy, please enjoy these "Single-Panel Reviews" while you continue to wait.

The Losers #19
Vertigo $2.95
Writer: Andy Diggle; Artist: Jock; Colorist: Lee Loughridge
Damn. Just when I was saying that “The Losers” was starting to lose my interest a bit, they have to go and publish a heck of an issue. This might be the best issue yet, in fact. Finally Diggle reveals the way the Losers were “created” while opening the door to another mystery. The issue concludes a storyline explaining how Max set up the group to be terminated, ending in tragedy—just not for the Losers. The issue also ends with a cliffhanger involving one of the members of the group. You won’t be disappointed.
Bottom line: A-

What If … Aunt May Had Died Instead of Uncle Ben?
Marvel $2.99
Writer: Ed Brubaker; Artist: Andrea Di Vito; Colorist: Laura Villari
This week Marvel published a group of “What If” titles, and I wanted to pick up at least one, mostly because I’ve always liked the concept. The only problem was none of the premises really caught my eye. What did, however, was Ed Brubaker’s name as writer on this issue. Now I know I should have put the title back. I’ve really liked a lot of Brubaker’s stuff, but this was just bad. The frame for the story is that a comic shop proprietor is telling the premise to a friend. So as the reader, we are overhearing the idea being told and fleshed out as a “voice over” to the art. The execution on this is only slightly less annoying than many conversations I’ve actually overheard at comic shops. And I know y’all know what I’m talking about. The plot is just plain lame, there is really no better way to put it. The art at least makes the book palatable.
Bottom line: C-

Solo #2
DC $4.95
By Richard Corben
I know this is only issue two of the Solo series, but I’m going to go so far as to say this is one of the best-executed concepts DC has had in recent memory. This issue features the work of Richard Corben in five different stories of varying subjects and styles, but all with the distinct feel that is Corben’s. His stories remind me a bit of the old EC tales with a touch of Twilight Zone mixed in. Yet, there is so much that is just indefinably Corben’s that you really have to see it to appreciate it.
Bottom line: A

Trigger #1
DC $2.95
Writer: Jason Hall; Artist: John Watkiss; Colorist: Jeremy Cox
Trigger is a story set in a not-too-distant future, in part pointing out foibles of our current times, and has the feel of a Philip K. Dick story. Specifically in this first issue of a new ongoing series, readers are introduced to Carter, employee of Ethicorp, a huge corporation designed to “get the bad out.” Both Carter and Ethicorp seem to have intriguing secrets, though, glimpses of which are revealed in this issue. Ethicorp’s public face is that of benevolent guardian watching out for the public’s safety and well-being, but its real face is that of controlling censor ready to take down whatever doesn’t meet the quality moral standards of the company. Carter is a modern everyman, dissatisfied with work, homelife fitful at best, but with a hidden life we are just beginning to see by the end of the issue. The series looks to be a good one, but too early to tell how good. I’m looking forward to seeing where Hall and Watkiss take it.
Bottom line: B

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