The Exile’s Read of the Week 3/23/11
BATMAN, INC #4
This is not the book I thought I’d be writing about this week.
I casually mentioned last week that I’m not a huge Batman fan. I’m not saying I’m not a fan. But on my rank of characters, let’s say he just misses the top five. (Dick Grayson, however is in the top five.)
I wasn’t sure what to make of this title when it first came out. I’m a child of the 80′s, when Batman, as a character was just getting out of the shadow of the 60′s TV series and all that came with it. The Dark Knight Returns, the Tim Burton movie, this was what my Batman was. The lone crusader of the night. So a book about Bruce Wayne starting a League of Batmen around the world was something I was unsure of.
I should have learned by now to trust Grant Morrison to give the concept edge, but still make it DC and Batman. Of course Morrison is one of a few writers right now who decides what the DCU is. It was his work on Batman that brought the concept of the Batman of Many Countries back in to continuity a couple of years ago. And now in a single issue, he has brought back Kathy Kane, the original Batwoman, Red and Yellow costume and, all back into the “real” DCU.
Artistically, this book does a great job of both playing to the modern sensibility of what a Batman book should be and homaging that bright four color era it is recalling. Grotesque and dynamic, with giant colorful masks, Morrison is creating new characters that fit into Batman’s dark world while still having thematic and historic significance to the franchise. And what a partner does he have in Chris Burnham? The play of brightness and shadow, the use of color (kudos to colorist Nathan Fairbairn) all just knock me out.
Right now this is my number 2 Bat book, right behind Batman and Robin. The rest are all on a month to month basis.
It was a good week to be a DC fan, here’s what else was on the top of my pile…
JUSTICE LEAGUE: GENERATION LOST #22
The JLI is closing in on Maxwell Lord, as Max’s ultimate plan is about to be revealed. And you’d be surprised what this has all been about. Or maybe you wouldn’t, if you been reading all along. The team is at full strength and finally have a had a few things go their way, and now they have Batman has gotten on board with the plan to stop Maxwell Lord.
GREEN LANTERN #64/GREEN LANTERN CORPS #58
Story:Geoff Johns/Tony Bedard
Art: Doug Manke, Christian Alamy and Keith Champagne (GL)
Art: Doug Manke, Tyler Kirkham, Batt, w/ Rob Hunter (GLC)
Hey Green Lanterns, I know, it’s been a long year. What with that Blackest Night, then Brightest Day. But that’s just about over with, so now you can just open a beer and rel.. what? a what? War? of the Green Lanterns? You don’t say? Put that beer back in the fridge. Hopefully it won’t skunk before this is through.
The Fable community is in hiding. But once again they are rallying to take back their lives. They are going up against the darkest foe they have ever encountered. The magics of the homelands may not be enough to win the day. The mundy world’s weapons have no affect on this evil. A new light will have to rise among the Fables. It will take a team, no, a League. A League of Extra Special Fables. A F-Force, if you will. Oh and the Great North Wind has something terrible to do, probably the worst thing ever.
NEW YORK FIVE
This is a book any fan of Strangers in Paradise should be reading. It’s one of those books that anyone who enjoys a character driven story, with real people facing life’s real struggles. It’s about choices. Making the important choices right as you enter adulthood. The scariest, most exciting time in a young person’s life. And It’s all happening in the scariest, most exciting place an 19 year old can imagine. The Lower East Side of New York City, (Which is represented here in an amazing way. Wood and Kelly clearly know this city, and this book is a bit of an artistic love letter to it)
The rest of the Stack..
Batman: The Dark Knight #2 – How long ago did #1 come out? I didn’t remember I even had this on my pull.
Justice League of America #55 - Just as things looked like they may be getting interesting with this Eclipso story arc, we get dragged in to Reign of Doomsday? James Robinson is a great writer, but sometimes he can just get a little too…. esoteric? Eddie Berganza (Editor of JLA) get JR focused man. When Robinson is on, he’s one of the best. oh and get back at least one of the (real) Big Three and a Flash on this team (I love JQ, and Dick is a great Batman, in Gotham, but Bruce is the League’s Bat, and Wally needs a home)
Legion of Super-Heroes #11 – Did you read the Legion of Super-Villains special last week? Me either. Apparently all the big bads of the 31st century have broken out of the prison planet. There. I just saved you $4. This picks up from there, oh and apparently Dreamgirl went back and picked up Starman (Thom Kallor) from the 21st century.
I’m going out of town for the next two weeks. I won’t be able to make it to my local comic shop, but I am hoping to find some where to at least take a look through the releases. If you know a good comic shop in the DC/Arlington area, please let me know.