w. Grant Morrison
a. Ivan Reis
5 out of 5 Space Monkeys
Why?: Because much like Superman in considered the paradigm of super beings to his fans and peers alike, so is Grant Morrison when it comes to super hero comic writing. I am beginning to believe we are all just characters stumbling around in Grant Morrison’s dream and he’s gonna wake up when I read the last page of this event series. The secret of the multiverse is that it all exists in Morrison’s head. Like a four color aneurysm spontaneously firing off neurons in waves of colors, words and pictures. The universe has had a stroke inside his mind. And this is the result:
I don’t know where to start.
Normally when I am overwhelmed by the utter coolness of a comic, I usual quote a few lines to show what impressed me so much, or a couple of pics if it’s more art based. (this usually happens with Hickman, Aaron, Tomasi, Manhke, JRJR, etc.) But there is too much here to just pick. A trans dimensional yacht made out of solid sound, powered by a musical engine. A pan-dimensional war room rotating through the fifth dimension around a fixed point in the multiversal Orrery of Worlds. The Gentry. The Rainbow of Worlds. Dame Merciless, Hellmachine, Lord Broken, Demogogunn, Intellectron: The Pitiless ones
Should I talk about the story? About how the 52 Worlds of the DC Multiverse are threaten by ancient death gods from beyond Bleedspace? How Nix Uotan, last of the Monitors and Super-Judge sacrifices himself to save Earth-7’s Thunderer, sending that planets last hero on a mission on board the Ultima Thule to collect the best heroes from Earth to save the Multiverse from the cosmic corruption that is spreading across the Earths of the Orrery?
Shall I mention the cast? The Black Superman of Earth-23, Captain Carrot, Lady Quark (remember her?) Dino-Cop, Red Racer & Power Torch of Earth-36, Aquawoman of Earth-11, Gypsy and Bloodwynd (this should shut-up Pre-New52ers, who have been searching high and low for some thread of pre-Flashpoint continuity) and a teeny tiny Wonder Woman and Steel. And that’s just the start!
What about the art, you ask? Ivan Reis and Joe Prado have drawn just about everyone in the DCU, and since Blackest Night and Brightest have evolved their style to one of superhuman fluidity and storytelling. Reaching Phil Jimenez like heights in terms of figure representation and rendering, each and every character is at once iconic and representative of the artists who came before, and instantly recognizable in fresh new ways. It’s hard to capture Morrison’s madness, let alone represent it in a comic book fashion, but these two do it effortlessly.
This is an Alternate Universe fans wet-dream. Besides traipsing through the DC multiverse, Morrison & Co touch on other Universes as well. There’s Earth-8’s Marvel Analogs, cheekily called Major Comics by Morrison (where, true to course the Hawkeye analog saves the day). Dino-Cop looks a lot like Savage Dragon, and then there’s us. Yep you and me. Part of the comic. Is not our Universe part of the Multiverse? Now what if comics were representations of events in other universes? And what if there was this comic… a haunted comic, that led to clues throughout the multiverse, guiding the reader to universal salvation… would you read it?
I just did.
Infinity Man & The Forever People #3 $2.99
w. Dan Didio & Keith Giffen a. Jim Starlin
Easy one. Jim Starlin jumping back into the Kirby Fourth World pool for a quick dip. Teamed up with Giffen. The rest is just classic cosmic comics Kirby style. Besides the Forever people taking on Mantis and his mutant bug soldiers, its worth the $2.99 just to see the floating Darkseid head ala Starlin that hovers within.
When the Justice League denied Batman both his Hellbat Armor (an awesome suit of armor designed by Batman, and forged, blessed, and enhanced by the skills and powers of the rest of the JLA) an access to Apokolips to take back his son’s body. Damian’s corpse was stolen by Glorious Godfrey, Darkseid’s “Diplomatic Envoy” after it became infused with arcane energy due to it’s proximity to the Chaos Shard, a piece of crystal with trans-dimensional powers stolen by Ra’s Al Ghul and hidden in Damian’s sarcophagus. Batman will stop at nothing to get his son back, first safeguarding Gotham by reconciling with the Bat-Family (Batgirl, Red Robin, Red Hood and even the “deceased” Dick Grayson), and then tricking the JLA into leaving the Hellsuit unattended on their satellite. Batman still gets a little JLA help in his quest to get to Apokolips, from their newest member….. Lex Luthor???? Tomasi and Gleason keep on rocking with this title, one no true Bat-fan can afford to miss!
Because that’s what I say at the end of every issue of New Avengers. It’s one thing for a writer to consistently end books on a cliff hanger, its clever and exciting, but it’s another to keep topping those endings one after another. It’s the writing equivalent of a basketball player repeatedly making nothing-but-net shots while walking backwards across the court. After Namor destroyed another Earth to prevent an Incursion from destroying ours, while the rest of the Illuminati stood by indecisively, unwilling to pull the trigger (even though they all decided to build this device, for this exact reason!), he was soundly kicked out of Marvel’s Kings and Geniuses club.
When another Incursion becomes imminent, the remaining Illuminati decide they cannot be apart of the trans-dimensional genocide and to let nature take it’s course: The two Earth’s (and their native dimensions) will collide, and every thing will die.
So they split up to spend their remaining time alive as they see fit. Bruce Banner heads out to the desert, finally at peace knowing the Hulk will be gone… forever, the Beast heads back to the X-Mansion and confesses his sins to his younger self, seeking absolution and finding little. Doctor Strange, dwells on the demons within, while Tony Stark wins one last battle with his own. Black Panther seeks solace in the arms of a former lover, and Black Bolt spends some alone time with his best friend, Lockjaw. Reed gathers his family for some final quality time. And we watch the clock tick down to universal death.
And nothing happens!
The Incursion doesn’t occur, and four of the world’s smartest men, and two of it’s greatest kings are left dumbfounded. Were their calculations wrong? Have they killed worlds for nothing??? As begins to descend into anger and bitterness, Black Bolt raises an important question: Where is Namor??????
Rise, the Cabal!
Seriously, Just turn to the last page… you will end up buying this book!
Magneto #8 $3.99
w. Cullen Bunn a. Javier Fenandez
Great jumping on point for this book before it gets deep into the upcoming AXIS event series. Magneto, powers waning an fluctuating, has gone solo. Splitting from Cyclop’s X-Men, he now hunts those who would harm mutants, and deals in a harsher form of justice. This time it’s an MGH drug cartel. MGH is a laboratory made drug that temporarily gives it’s user mutant powers. Problem is, the drug is derived from the genetic material of a mutant, usually taken against their will, collected via torture or just killed for it. Now that he has traced the drug to it’s source it’s time for some re-payment: Magneto style. Even a federal task force, armed with non magnetic weapons can’t stop the Master Magnetism. But is his reason for going after the “cooker” what it seems? Its Breaking Bad with a Marvel Mutant twist you won’t see coming!
Justice Inc. #1
w. Michael Uslan
a. Giovanni Timpano
4 out of 5 Space Monkeys
Why?: Between all the Marvel, DC, Valiant and Image books I get, I can’t afford (nor have the reading time for) all the ccool Pulp-era characters Dynamite has been pumping out the past few years. But when I see one of this team up books, like Masks and Kingswatch, I just can’t resist.
Doc Savage. The Shadow. The Avenger. They are… Justice Inc.
The fan-boy in me reacted and it was off the shelf and in my hands in the blink of an eye. All three of these icons were fanboy hand-me-downs from my comic mentor Hagan, even giving me copies of the Kirby drawn Justice Inc. from D.C.; complete with a post-it explaining his pulp origins!
Written by the ever present Michael Uslan, who produced almost every Bat-movie, wrote books about Batman, Masterminded the Stan Lee’s Justice Imagine DC books and even taught a class about comics, shows not only his writing chops,but his historical knowledge inside and out of the pulp/comic realm.
Large Hadron Collider. Time travel. Howard Hughes. Einstein. Magnetic boots. String Theory. H.G. Wells. And the Voodoo Master!!!! All that and stock tips from Doc Savage!
Uslan uses real science and real history to link the three coolest characters of the Pulp era together in this smartly written action adventure mash-up. And this feat is helped along by the clean lines and realistic rendering of Timpano’s artwork. There’s a smoothness to his detailed work, a mixture of past an present. Like Starlin did the lay-outs and Mike Mayhew the finishes, just what you want for a story taking pace in both 2014 and the 1930s.
Delinquents #1 ( Valiant) $3.99
w. James Asmus & Fred Van Lente
Quantum & Woody. Archer & Armstrong. Treasure Map on a Hobo’s ass skin. Nope that’s not a typo.
Figure the rest out yourself!
Last Week’s Surprise Pick:
Armor Hunters #3
w. Robert Venditti
a. Doug Braithwaite
4 out of 5 Space Monkeys
Earth Strikes Back!!!
After the destruction of Mexico City and the attack on M.E.R.O. headquarters, Unity and the forces of earth rally themselves and come up with a plan that will hit the Armor Hunters in their most vulnerable spot…. right aboard their own ship. With the destruction of Earth imminent, Aric surrenders his Armor to Colonel Capshaw of M.E.R.O. , who just wont hear it! She convinces Aric to follow her orders…. And surrender the X-O Armor to the Armor Hunters! But who says it Aric in the Armor lands in the sentient spaceship that is their spaceborn headquarters? The tables are turned this issue!
See Ya Next week folks!