All Star Batman and Robin the Boy Wonder #7. Exuberance is beauty, as Blake says. I love this book. It is nuts, and it makes everyone very angry, and so Miller just pushes the nuts farther and farther. Exactly the right response. People did not like the phrase "I'm the goddamned Batman? Let them swallow this: "I've taken enough grief about calling my goddamn car the goddamn batmobile. I'm the goddamn Batman and I can call my goddamn car whatever the hell I want to call it". Hilarious. Plus the response is "That's just a totally queer name for a car, is all." Add in a sex scene punctuated by a lightning blast and a sound effect that suggest Dark Knight Returns and Dark Knight Strikes Again, and more ridiculous dialogue I do not have time to quote -- the whole project is aggressive, audacious, brazen, and prideful beyond all portrayals of Batman, if I can paraphrase Bloom on Dante. Make Mine Miller's.
Batman 669. Now that this is over I can see that this is a pretty good story -- I liked this issue more than the other two: Morrison is always good at endings. The art is often stylish and fun, and I see that it is nice to get a lighter more pulpy Batman. But I still do not really see the point of all the intertexts, all of the meshed art styles. It seems like a lot of occasionally distracting trouble to go to to make a small point about comics history that Morrison has made many times before, often much better -- in All Star Superman for example.
Immortal Iron Fist #9. I think if you are going to have a book where punching and kicking are so important -- even in a genre dominated by so much punching and kicking -- the art really needs to go to a whole new place to make it work. DavidAja does exactly that. The guy is just mesmerizing. I also like how Danny Rand is portrayed as maybe a little dumb, a little ditsy. I really like that. It is very not-Batman.
Immortal Iron Fist Annual. I know I am going to look like a philistine, but the art in this book is just not my cup of whatever. I know these guys are a big deal. I get that. It's not that I hate the art -- it is just not for me. I think maybeAja has just ruined me for Iron Fist. Aja is the Truth and the Way, as far as this book goes.
The Order. The art here was kinda frustrating in places. I did not get that Mullholland was choking, for example, and they weird hubba-bubba cocoon with a head was ... just odd. And was the stretchy girl the same girl in the black dress that got bug's blood on her? Maybe I read this too fast. Also I am pretty sure that in the exchange that begins "I can still use my powers" someone goofed and attributed the lines to the wrong characters. Or, again, I read this too fast. On the plus sideKitson is fantastic with faces (which this book needs a lot of) and there is a nice homage to Moore's Big Numbers.
Wonder Woman Annual. This is an odd week for me, where I am almost exclusively focusing on the art and not the story. I got this issue for the art only. I really admire the very few artists -- I am looking at youBachalo -- that can draw girls you can really crush on. As for story -- whatever. I think the distinction he sets up between human and non-human at the end of the book is pretty meaningless.
In Comics News Newsarama has an interview up with Judd Winnick about the Black Canary / Green Arrow Wedding special. There are two issues on the table. One is the dress. I like the dress actually. Not in real life, obviously. They considered getting an actual designer to do it -- Pat Field would have been a good choice, maybe. But they ended up doing it themselves. I think Winnick is right -- one you figure out that the fishnets are iconic and indispensable, the rest of the ridiculous thing falls into place. I have not read this but the art seems fun. As for the ending -- apparently it gets real dark for no reason. That's the age we live in apparently. The superhero version of torture porn cannot be far behind.