Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Comics Out 4 October 2006

The Infinite Crisis hardcover is out this week, and, having missed the whole thing because the hype was making me crazy, I finally decided to check it out. Brad also talked me into reading Civil War, so I picked up issues 2, 3, and 4 (I originally got 1 and decided to skip the rest). Noticing a pattern, I also grabbed the House of M trade -- I will now catch up on all the comics I missed while I was avoiding "big events" and following my reliable favorite writers and artists. What can I say? -- I was busy reading Seven Soldiers, All Star Superman, the Ultimates, and Astonishing X-Men.

The big event comics all seemed bad to me; ultimately I decided as a comic book fan I could not ignore them. Weigh in: do you feel like you have to buy these things? Don't you feel like your money could be buying something better? Or, as people who care about this industry, is getting all the big events the responsible, informed thing to do? Discuss; also recommend and comment on what you are reading. I will let you know how my reading goes when I finish.

Also out this week is the third installment of Brad Winderbaum's Satacracy 88 at (link in the bar on the right). For the new kids Satacracy 88 is a series of free four minute live action chose your own adventure movies about a female assassin. Go see it and vote, then return here tomorrow for the commentary. You are going to like what you see.


Pat Moler said...

I don't like All-Star Superman. It talks about being Superman in his purest and best form, but it's just a jumbled piece of crap IMO. I think it's okay, not the best, but I hate that it says it's something it's not.

Pat Moler said...

oh but I did read House of M not to long ago. I thought the story was great, but I hated the stupid ploy of getting rid of excessive ammounts of super-humans fo the sake of simplicity. if they maintain that idea then it'll defeat the whole meaning behind X-MEN....well actually Stan Lee created mutants to make it easier to create characters, without creating elaborate origins. Irony, but still the moral tale of X-Men will be lost if they continue this 198 stuff.

Mitch said...

About big event comics, Geoff: I buy into all of them even if I hate them, like I did House of M.

I suspect my reasoning for it is similar to the way I watch the World Series every year, even though I haven't watched a single game all season... I don't like to follow books like Captain America, Spider-Man, Iron Man, Hulk, etc... But, when they all get together for something big, it feels like it's worth my time all of a sudden.

Also, it's important to remember that things like Infinite Crisis and Civil War are getting "normal" people into comics shops, as well as getting comics covered in the New York Times. For that , my two fifty and a little of my respect are a small price to pay.

rocafan said...

As a comic fan you have to at least keep up with what's going on in these big events. Mainly because they have the ability to change the entire playing field. Now I hated House of M like most people, which I guess made Marvel decide to throw another huge event so close after. At least with Identity Crisis it stayed localize until after it was done. I loved Identity Crisis, because DC took a huge chance throwing a dark shadow on the most shiny of worlds. Infinite Crisis was great if you liked the 1st Crisis. It served as a way to streamline a pretty imposing DC universe, although I'm still kinda not getting if some old things still apply. House Of M was a pretty cool idea that spawned from Bendis' Avengers Huge Event. But the ending and all the different books you had to read kinda sucked. There will be no more mutants...oh except The summers brothers and about 196 other mutants.

ping33 said...

I buy the ones I care about or that sound good. I skipped House of M totally because I hated BMB's pointless, poorly staged and mean-spirited Avengers shakeup. I dug Infinite Crisis and (as you know) am liking 52... I made the conscious decision to get Civil War because Millar was involved and I hadn't realized that he'd jumped the shark or that the whole thing was an excuse for fight scenes.
Geoff: I take it you're not reading Civil War Frontline... do yourself a favour and at least peruse it in the shop... While I've generally liked the anthology better than the main CW book it's also notable in that the final "story" in each issue of the anthology is perhaps the most wrong-headed/borderline offensive thing I have EVER seen in comics and I'm really surprised that more people aren't talking about it.

New Comics: BKV Dr. Strange!!! Can I get a hell yeah?! Rocketo 12 is out which means that the 2nd trade should be out soon. Manifest Eternity, Woot! Dini 'Tec and the Marv Wolfman Nightwing (which I have tempered expectations for) as well... not a bad week all in all.

Other stuff: Good piece on about Studio 60 which reminds me of a piece a few years back on by Bill Simmons about how ALL WOMEN hate Mariah Carry, if someone knows the link please post it because I have been unable to find it.
Got Dead Rising for Xbox360 which is WAY better than it has any right to be... and for the first time in years I can watch the MLB Playoffs without having to adjust my sleeping schedule in order to catch the Red Sox on the West Coast at 3am, Go Tigers! Go Mets! Go Whoever is playing the Yankees!

Marc Caputo said...

ping33: Dead on about the last story in CW:FL - the Billy Joel was laugh-out-loud criminally stupid!

To all: I agree with rocafan; if you enjoy mainstream comics, you've got to pay to play. (Just like "52" - I'm gonna make T-shirts: "52 - Buy it weekly - read it monthly".) I was not happy with "Infinite Crisis" for many reasons. While I thought the story was good, the artistic decisions due to scheduling were horrid. Yes, I like all the artists involved, but not on the same issue. So far, Civil War is intriguing, mostly because I want to see Millar pull this off. I'm still standing behind the original party line that this is not the good guys being controlled scenario; if we get screwed, that's gonna be a lot of bad will towards Marvel. I expect that the guy who wrote "Red Son", "Wanted", "The Authority" and "The Ultimates" will do right by me.
"House of M", to me was one of the better "Event" stories I've read. It contains one of the best panels I've EVER seen; towards the end of issue 8, when Cap and team go to the Mansion, they see Hawkeye's costume arrowed to the wall. The look on Cap's face says so much about the dynamic between the two of them. It shows Olivier Coipel to be truly talented and makes me impatient for Clint's return. Also, the Wolverine "HOM" tie-in was inspired and the Spider-Man mini was well-done.

Anonymous said...

I wanna be able to say I was there for IC and CW. Both are great reads for different reasons. In 10 years we won't be talking about how DC kept getting fill in artists and Marvel had huge delays. We'll be talking about the stories, and that what should matter. Big events are necessary to revamp the universe from time to time. Writers get bored and in lulls with their stories and need to be reminded why we all started reading in the first place. Don't miss the boat because you see yourself as a sell out or buying into the corporation of Marvel or DC. Then again, I don't think corporate America is all evil. Just most of it haha.

alex said...

Everything I know about events I learn by sheer osmosis or via perusing the interweb. Not for lack of interest or distaste or anything like that, I just won't really commit to them--plus they are "event" comics after all. You know what happens in a line or two of description, and as we've seen in Civil War, that's all you need, because characterization goes out the window.

Generally, I find Marvel has better hooks for their ideas, Sccarlet uber-Witch aside, but DC has always had a stronger editorial focus and executes their events much better. I'm not an old DC fan though, so their we fix continuity in continuity style doesn't interest me. But they're all so often editorially driven stories, I don't feel like any of them really hold together, like they grew organically instead of hitting points. The only completely good one was Onslaught, but started this whole thing. This is without touching my admittedly nostalgic feeling that most characters are being run aground, except for Morrison's Batman. Because less jerky Batman is better. Though I did pick up the first of Annihilation thinking I could read just what I liked, and with Seven Soldiers, then didn't commit.

I'm like many comic readers who still have the weekly visit habit, I expect. Mostly interested but unwilling to go full tilt or half-tilt into reading an event. All or nothing.

I like my series that tell their own stories w/o interuption these days. Maybe the fun of shared universes doesn't grab me the way it used to. But fun or wonder isn't key in these stories either.

Picked up: Winter Men #5, Conan something--an installment of the childhood arc, the last 100 Bullets trade, and Brubaker's Criminal #1. Read the Hulk in the store, and it's just Green Conan in outer space, but that's I kinda like that. All one title, one storyline.

ping33 said...

I'm loving Annihilation and it's 'Saving Private Ryan...IN MOTHERFUCKING SPACE' vibe, It's SO much better than Civil War has been and I hope they're lying about it not crossing into CW like they lied about CW not having sides or being an allegory to current events.

Illuminated said...

I am presently reading House of M as well as Civil War. I admittedly don't stay extremely current on individual comics of the characters, but enjoy them non-the-less. I read them because they are engaging and they intrigue me. They are deeply complex moral ideas and philosophies that are being covered, so minimizing the numbers of mutants or super-heroes for a time allows us to focus on one aspect or point of view at a time. With that one perspective (or group perspective)we are forced to look at things from that point of view whether it's ours or not without other interuptions.
Plus, it takes people who otherwise might not care about certain issues going on in real life, and gets them involved. Before they know it, they're aware and feel strongly about current events and issues. It's important. And I don't believe it has anything to do being the "responsible" thing to do. Comic books didn't have to cover these ideas, but I believe it's necessary.

mitch said...

Annihilation is very enjoyable. It's turned Nova into a sure nuff, actual character.

Thivai Abhor said...

I haven't bought a comic book for over a decade, academia kept me otherwise occupied, and I was in the bookstore the other night, bored, looking for something to provide a thrill ... was wandering around the store getting wired on expresso when I came across a new book section that featured the Identity Crisis collection.

I browsed the back and the intro--said what the hell... something to keep me occupied until I went to go see The Science of Sleep later that night (I'm a film professor and this can be classified as work--ha!) The series was very good and it was great to rethink the old classic stories--I thought it was a good attempt at rethinking the consequences of secret identities.

I might pick up another one sometime... when I get the time.

Anonymous said...

I like Mitch's comment:
"I suspect my reasoning for it is similar to the way I watch the World Series every year, even though I haven't watched a single game all season... I don't like to follow books like Captain America, Spider-Man, Iron Man, Hulk, etc... But, when they all get together for something big, it feels like it's worth my time all of a sudden."

I completely agree. That, and being a relatively new comic-fan and not having grown up with some of these storylines, I like the fact that the "biggies" tend to give a bit of backstory for the less-informed. Granted, to diehards I'm sure this reads as "Exposition, exposition, exposition," but I'm grateful for the chance to find my way into the universe.

Geoff Klock said...

Starrlett and Mitch: yeah, I think I agree. On Wednesday I will give little reviews of the three events I read. Thanks for the posts everybody; this is a good thread.