Comics reviews! 13 August 08

BATMAN #679 RIP – Truly, I cannot look away from the car crash.
Oh Grant.  Grant.  Grant.  Grant.  You’re a crazy sumbitch.  This book is markedly better than the preceding ones, in that it is actually coherent.  (I was going to say “makes sense”, but that’s not entirely accurate.)  There’s a bunch of interesting stuff at work in this book, and we find out the Batman of Zur En Arh is essentially Batman without Bruce; it’s a “backup identity” set up by Batman in case of extreme psychological attack.

Sounds cool, right?  Until you think about it a bit.  What the hell?  Backup identity?  Batman planned for what happens if he gets broken psychologically and somehow managed to arrange for himself to go crazy in a very specific way?

…okay.  Also, Batman is carrying a baseball bat, which he beats people with, which is a great pun.  Oh, Grant, you scamp.

Another fun and light-hearted romping serial adventure.  The League of Assassins has nothing to do with the Assassins League, and Batman’s got the R’as al-Ghul to prove it!  Essentially, we find out how this whole arc began, though the big reveal at the end had no impact on me because I didn’t recognize the character involved.  Oops.  Way to not know stuff, Foo.

This is still the best crossover / big event we’ve seen in years.  Agents Brand and Maria Hill both kick some butt and the heroes begin to rally.  There should’ve been more time invested in building up the Ronin / Mockingbird relationship again, but I guess there wasn’t time with so much going on.  The result is still pretty satisfying, but could have been better.  I still look forward to watching Clint go all Bullseye on everyone.

I can actually see how the heroes are going to get out of this, though I kind of hope they do something more interesting than “Let’s kill all the Skrulls!”  I’m also surprised at how readily people seem to just off the invaders.  I guess war is war, but at least I haven’t seen Spider-Man kill anyone.

This book’s far better than the last, which was basically a recap of the main book with a couple side scenes of the Runaways and Young Avengers thrown in.  Here the main thrust of the book is shaping up, and it’s looking to be a decent finish.  As usual, the best scenes come from Molly and her awesome dinosaur hat.  (“Princess Powerful Powers… Activate!!)  Particularly good is the scene where she thinks the invasion footage on the TV must be fake.

Angel is screwed.  That’s really all there is to it.  I keep wanting to drop this series, as it’s not nearly as good as the Buffy comic, but at the same time I find it’s not bad enough to give up on.  It’s actually pretty good; it just doesn’t capture the feel of the show as well.

Anyway, I’m not sure what’s going to happen next, or how the whole thing is going to play out, so I’m putting that in the positives column.


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