Wednesday Comments – My Top Ten Comics of DC Comics Relaunch
by Mathan Erhardt on November 9, 2011

When I saw that Skitch had given his thoughts on the 10 Best Books of the DC Comics Relaunch, I realized that that I should probably offer up my thoughts as well. While I’ve been posting my thoughts on what I’ve been reading over in the forums, some of you might be curious what I’m loving in the DC Comics Relaunch.

So, I figured I’d give you my 10 favorites. Here we go.

10. The Flash

I’m a huge Wally West fan. I love the character and I miss him dearly. But I went into the DC Comics Relaunch with an open mind and The Flash benefited greatly from that. It’s a book about Barry Allen and I’m really enjoying it.

Most of it has to do with Francis Manapul. He’s the writer/artist on this title and he really brings a lively spark to the book. The way he conveys the way Barry uses his speed is so innovative. Every month I literally can’t wait to open The Flash and see what Manapul comes up with next.

9. Batman & Robin

In fairness to the title characters, you put Peter Tomasi and Patrick Gleason on Sugar & Spike and I’ll love it. Tomasi and Gleason are the superior dynamic duo on this title.

I love the little things Tomasi is doing with characterization. I love the notion that Damian has to overcome his nature and that Bruce is an inept parent. I like the introduction of Morgan as a character from Bruce’s past. And Gleason illustrates it all masterfully.

8. Demon Knights

I’m not a fan of fantasy fiction. I don’t dig medieval settings. Yet something about this book really clicked with me. And Paul Cornell deserves the lion’s share of credit for that. He makes me care about the characters.

Ok, so I’ve enjoyed Ystin’s previous adventures, and you can never go wrong with Vandal Savage. But the romantic triangle between Jason Blood, Xanadu and Etrigan was genius. And Mordru turning up again in the DCU isn’t a bad thing either. I’m surprised at how much I enjoy reading this book.

7. Justice League Dark

This book is another anomaly for me. I’m not really into the supernatural and for the most part I’m not really a fan of the individual characters. But Peter Milligan’s story is pretty captivating and Mikel Janin’s art is stunning.

While I dig the creepiness, I really like the humor that Milligan injected into the second issue. The scenes between Dove and Deadman were perfectly scripted and hilarious. Out of the three books that Deadman is appearing in on a regular basis, this one is the best of the bunch.

6. Aquaman

Much like Wally West, I really loved Orin. I loved PAD’s run on Aquaman. That said, I’m enjoying what Geoff Johns, Ivan Reis and Joe Prado are doing with Arthur. I love the meta commentary with Aquaman dispelling misconceptions about him and how powers. I even like the Trench and how they are being built up to be a formidable threat.

Reis and Prado’s art is in top form. Some panels remind me of Neal Adams, while others remind me of M.D. Bright. They really are such a crucial part of what makes this book click.

5. Animal Man

This book is the creepiest of the bunch. The last issue ended with the creepiest lingering flies I’ve ever seen in a comic. Don’t even get me started on the pregnant hippos. And all of this springs from the mind of Travel Foreman.

And Jeff Lemire’s scripts are impressive too. I completely buy Buddy’s domestic situation. And I’m totally weirded out by Maxine and her clarity of vision. This is the book that I’ve literally got to be in the right frame of mind to read. Honestly, I’ve got to tell myself that it’s only a comic. It’s that creepy.

4. Batman

Scott Snyder is the best Bat-writer to come along in awhile. He brings something new to the table and tells stories that feel so grand in scale. He did it on Detective and he’s doing it again with Batman.

His use of Gotham is inspiring. And his subplotting is impressive. I want to know more about the I can’t wait to find out more about the Court of Owls. Also, Greg Capullo’s art is perfectly suited for this title.

3. Action Comics

I’m a sucker for stories that establish a status quo for Superman. I loved Man of Steel and even enjoyed Birthright. Grant Morrison and Rags Morales are doing it again with Action Comics and it’s a ride that everyone seems to be raving about.

The new Clark Kent is such an isolated and fascinating character. And his Superman persona is even more of an enigma. And when you factor in new relationships with Lois, Jimmy and the Daily Planet things get even trickier. Toss in Lex for good measure and you’ve got a Superman story for the ages.

2. Wonder Woman

The greatest strength of this book is the team of Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang. They bring energy to this title that’s refreshing and new. Azzarello is a trusting writer who allows Chiang the room to tell a story visually. Some sequences lack dialogue, yet the story never falters.

And while it’s been done before, the Gods in a modern setting works very well in this title. Diana may be battling great forces, but she never feels in over her head. They capture her majesty and power in every panel. It’s really one of the book that look forward to the most each month.

1. Batwoman

This is the book that I look forward to the most each month. It’s a book that was a long time coming, but proved to be totally worth the wait. From the inclusion of La Llorona to the reintroduction of Cameron Chase and Director Bones this book is full of interesting characters.

And art wise, you’d be hard pressed to find a better looking book on the stands. J.H. Williams III employs a variety of different styles, depending on which characters are in the scene and if it takes place in the present. Batwoman is literally a feast for the eyes. Honestly, Batwoman is one of my favorite titles, not only of the DC Comics Relaunch, but period.



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