DC News & Views

So last week, I told you about my job related semi-woes and I happy to report the end is near. I completed my first act in my new job last week by running in the Flag Day 5K to benefit the Veterans’ Hospital and today I got my new office that has, get this, two windows. Thus, with any luck, the days of late and/or missing columns are long behind us. YAY!

Now, moving on to the NEWS!

“Kid” Gets No Respect

This August, JLA CLASSIFIED #26 will feature the first chapter of “Sacred Trust,” a new 6-part tale of the Justice League!

“Sacred Trust” replaces the “Kid Amazo” story originally scheduled for this issue and solicited in the June Previews (Volume XVI #6). The “Kid Amazo” story will be resolicited in JLA CLASSIFIED at a later date.

All previous orders for JLA CLASSIFIED #26 under the item code JUN060190 are cancelled.

See “The Man” keeping down the youth yet again at The Pulse

“Finally, Kid Amazo’s on the way,” I thought a few week back. “Excellent!” I mused when I saw it in solicitations and pre-ordered it.

So to DC, I say this now, “BOOOOOOOOOO!” Why do you play wit heart so? What’s the hold up here? Is it really still not done? Or is this another Giant Sized Elseworlds caught just a bit sooner? Give me something here, DC, cause you got me thinking the worst. This press release? It is just not getting it done.

Wacker Hour

For a changeup this week, instead of focusing solely on the content of 52 #6 for our weekly q&a with editor Stephen Wacker, we opted to go backstage a little, and check out the production side of things.

As keen observers know, the 52 writers were in New York recently for a meeting to”¦well”¦let’s just let Wacker give the answers.

How many of these can Newsarama do before I’m forced to make a “weed whacker” joke.

Uh-oh Booster fans. All two of you. You could be sad next week. I feel SO bad about that.

(Am I out of line gloating when I use an Aztek image as my article divider?)

Comet Drops the “Captain”, Gains a Davis

Announced in Philadelphia, DC is bringing back a classic title this November, with the launch of Mystery in Space, an eight issue miniseries written by Jim Starlin and illustrated by Shane Davis – and Starlin.

Breaking it down, each issue will feature two stories, the lead story, by Starlin and Davis, will feature a new Captain Comet”¦or just “Comet,” maybe, and will be a detective story set in the far reaches of the DCU, while the second story will feature The Weird, a character Starlin created in 1988 at DC.

Both stories have their heroes individually and in their own way battling a corporate church that goes by the name of “the Eternal Light Corporation” for the first seven issues, with the two joining forces in issue #8.

We spoke with Davis to get some insight on the cosmic nature of the miniseries.

Newsarama holds the court martial hearing

In Who’s Who two weeks ago (and possibly this column last week) I mentioned that I am inexplicably drawn to this series given my overall disinterest/dislike in space opera stories. But, I was still fence sitting.

Now, I know I’m picking up the first issue.

Why?

That’s right, a dog! Apparently Comet (formerly Captain Comet) has a talking bulldog as mentor/confidante/friend. And like that, I was sold. God, I love me dogs something fierce.

I kind of sound like a little girl right now, huh?

The Wildcats Are Covered

DC Comics has given Newsarama a look at the cover to Septembe’s Wildcats relaunch by Grant Morrison and Jim Lee, the kick-off to their post Armageddon, “Worldstorm” run.

Take a gander at the first series art at Newsarama

That cover doesn’t do much for me, but come on, its Morrison. I’ve gotta buy at least one issue of it, right?

Plus, a McFarlane variant cover?!?!?!?!?!?!

SOAP!!!!!!!!!

The internet phenomena that “Snakes on a Plane” has become has been impressive. Months before the August 18th release date, the Samuel Jackson starring vehicle generated a lot of pre-release covering in a way never before seen with a film of this type, primarily due to its premise (FBI agents escort a Mafia informant on a plane, and, well, an assassin loads up the plane with snakes to kill the informant) and title. It started out as something of a joke, with interested parties latching on to the rather obvious title, and running with it at high speed. Fan trailers and posters were popping up everywhere and interest in the film grew exponentially. In fact, the organic, viral fan campaign got so big it even affected the production of the film, with New Line Cinema upping the budget and allowing additional days of footage to be filmed primarily because of that interest. The film gained cult status months before anyone saw any footage of the film.

That cult status will extend to comics later this year. Yesterday, writer Chuck Dixon revealed on his message board that he’ll be writing the comic book adaptation of this instant B-movie classic for DC/Wildstorm. While he offered no further details, the reaction on his message board was very positive. Art for the two-issue series will be handled Gordon Purcell.

Did I mention SOAP!!!!!!! Cause Comic Book Resources wants you to read all about it.

Last week, I got news of a Connor Hawke by Chuck Dixon book.

This week, a Snakes on a Plane by Chuck Dixon book.

My life, truly, has reached its apex.

MISC.

Sell Outs/New Printings

SUPERMAN/BATMAN #25, the incredible conclusion to the “With a Vengeance” storyline, has sold out at DC Comics and is being rushed back to press for a second printing!

Newsarama has the news”¦fittingly.

BEWARE THE FUTURE’S AWESOME MIGHT

Comic Book Resources has the scorecard this month.

Batman #657Wow”¦they are really going through with it. I’m impressed. I thought the Son of Batman thing was going to end up being a hypothetical resulting in nothing, but this”¦well, this could be very cool. Or a disaster. We’ll see.

Catwoman #59The father is revealed. What are the odds on Slam Bradley? Anybody interested in a little action.


Action Comics # 843Why can’t every major newspaper rock a headline like this from time to time?

Birds of Prey #98I’m sure this is Batwoman being described in the solicitation, but how great/awful would it be if they are talking about yet another Batgirl? Gotta love a DC that’s not afraid to go to the well so many times they drain it dry, right?


Checkmate #6WOOHOO! Suicide Squad! And it’s great to see Mirror Master and The Icicle out in front, two personal favorites of mine. I still miss the very cool collage format they were working with the first several covers though.


Green Lantern #14I can’t say much about the book itself, but goodness this is a nice looking Van Sciver cover. And so simple too. Nice.

JSA Classified #17Hourman v. Bane? I can’t decide if that is brilliant or awful. Oh well, its drawn by Scott McDaniel so that probably means I’ll be picking it up regardless.

JLA Classified #26-27This could end up being the storyline of the decade and I don’t care. I still say booooooooooooo to it. Replace my “Kid Amazo” story and expect me to still support the title? Crazy DC.


Justice League of America #2Commence the guessing”¦now! (I even left the cover extra big for you.)


American Virgin #7You just can’t go wrong with a nubile young ladies nearly making out cover, can you?

COMING ATTRACTIONS

ALL STAR SUPERMAN 4

More Morrison/Quitely goodness. A Superman book that continues to hold my interest. Jimmy Olsen wielding a raygun, being chased around by a crazed Superman. Why couldn’t I have this issue like yesterday?

BIRDS OF PREY 95

Prometheus v. Huntress: Round Three! And Prometheus is actually cool again. YAY!

MANHUNTER 23

The comic gods have taken pity on your soul by ending this book’s run at least 5 issues. Make sure that they did not make such a decree for no reason. Pick up this book and show them that the gods were right to trust you to change your sinful ways. Actually, buy two. The gods will like that.

ROBIN 151

No, obviously, Robin isn’t going to shoot Cain. But how the heck is Tim going to get out of this. I mean Cassie is three times the fighter Tim is and now SHE’s CUH-RAZEEEE!!!!

I’m also interested to see if Beechen can explain that whole crazy Batgirl thing. I’m not invested in the character but I still recognize that it was a pretty quick turn for her so I hope that he takes the time to justify it a little more than we’ve seen already.

Finally, how great was it to see Cassie, nuts or not, completely nail the problem of “Batman and Robin” as a legitimate partnership. I’m hoping for more of that meta-commentary.

OPINIONS ON THE WORK OF PEOPLE FAR MORE TALENTED THAN I

52 WEEK 6

It is seven weeks into DC’s bold experiment in real time storytelling and I still feel like they are working tirelessly on getting their ducks in a row. This sort of endless setup makes sense in “real life” but in serialized storytelling it can grow frustrating.

At this point, I’m happy to say that 52 still has not reached that point. That’s not to say I recommend it hold this pattern of endless setup, but it can probably survive a few more weeks of it unscathed.

What does hurt the book a bit is the alternating focus. It is necessary given the number of plotlines already gestating, but that does not stop week’s like this from happening; weeks where the storylines I am most interested in (Renee and The Question, Ralph Dibny) are not heard from and storylines I don’t care about (Booster Gold) are given 90% of the spotlight.

So while I think this issue was up to par with the previous ones and I enjoyed some things (the Iron Man looking Manthrax, the mystery of the missing geniuses, the Great Ten), I have a lower opinion of it because it just did not engage me.

CHECKMATE 3

Saiz is missed, but otherwise, this is another strong issue of Checkmate. Thus, I am confident enough to proclaim issue #1 an aberration and this level of quality the “real thing” for this title.

The Chinese are given a little more depth here as their reasons for voting against Checkmate are not generically “we are an evil nation” but rather a form of diplomacy and meant to fend off American attempts to embarrass them. Mr. Terrific is shown to be out of his depth in at least one thing besides faith, politics, as he realizes too late that everyone involved in the organization is not about just being the altruistic good guys, and Alan Scott and Amanda Waller show they are both very effective at protecting themselves in very different ways.

The big strike against it? Now even Alan is rocking that Green Lantern hologram/badge thingee. ENOUGH! He’s not even a Corps member, there’s no reason for him to be doing that.

As you can tell from the nitpick though, overall, this is a solid success.

SUPERMAN 653

For the second issue in a row, “Up, Up, and Away!” fails to deliver on the promise that the beginning of the storyline had. That promise? Keeping my interested in the ongoing adventures of Superman.

It is not bad, really. It’s just”¦flat to me. Superman goes head to head against Lex who is “wearing” some sort of giant Kryptonian crystal space ship. The thing is built for adaptation so, for once, it seems Lex is Superman’s physical equal. Metropolis and Superman take a beating until Superman sacrifices himself to stop Lutho’s mad plan.

First, I am tired of Superman needed to sacrifice himself all the time. But whatever”¦I get that that’s just who he is.

What was really problematic to me was the lack of drama. Metropolis is being ripped apart by these crystal tanks. Superman is being bombarded by Kryptonite rays. Lex is talking about killing everyone in the city. The city is cut off from the rest of the world by a force field so there are no reinforcements coming. It should be nail biting. The only time it comes close though is when Jimmy Olsen steps up to protect Superman (with a trash can lid of all things) and almost loses his arm for his troubles. Even that moment of intensity only lasts a panel.

Still, if you are a Superman fight, inherently, you’ll probably dig this. Johns and Busiek seem to “get” him and the narration proves that. They also have a good feel for the supporting cast who continue to earn MVP status by providing just the right amount of support. Not too much, not too little.

The book does score one great moment in my count, too. As Superman and Lex Luthor finally meet face to face, Luthor says an extremely Luthor line as Superman muses on where they are heading. It happens on the last two pages and fits together just perfectly. I may not love everything else in this book, but that alone is keeping me around for next issue.

AMERICAN VIRGIN 4

Confession time: I have no idea where this book is going. Literally zero.

And that makes me very happy.

Keep it up Steven. Keep it up Becky. Keep it up Jim, and Brian, and all the rest. You got me. I’m hooked.

Ex Machina Special 2

Did we need a “special” for this? No.

Do I mind? No.

I’m not one for looking a gift horse in the mouth and this is one heck of a gift.

It continues and completes the story of Hundred’s (short lived”¦maybe) nemesis who can talk to the animals like Hundred talks to machines. That’s the surface stuff. The real story though concerns Hundred coming face to face with a challenge to his ideals and not being able to maintain them. It’s great stuff and, dare I say, even better than the parent title has been as of late. If you drifted from Ex Machina, this two issue mini should definitely bring you back.

Well, that’s it for me. The temp is spiking and I’ve got no AC in the study. Thus, I’m off to lounge in front of the TV and soak up some artificially created cool. See you next week. Until then, drop me a line at my parallax2@juno.com or stop by the ol’ message boards. Look for a Revamp in the next two weeks or so, letters to me next week, for certain, and probably a Tirade too. Until then”¦

Un Gajje Is a Delicate Flower Withering in the Heat