DC Rebirth marches on this week but overall is a nice light week for new comic books that is a nice change of pace.
Wonder Woman #1
DC Comics Writer Greg Rucka, Artist Liam Sharp, Colorist Laura Martin, Letterer Jodi Wynn
This has to be the one book that DC announced at WonderCon that had me the most excited of all of the rebirth books that day because Rucka was coming back to a character that he had written so well back in 2003 to 2006. He is one of the few writers that has been able to capture what Wonder Woman can and should be. He has a really great knack for writing strong female characters and this new take on the book gets off to a really great start. While it does help if you read the Wonder Woman Rebirth book a few weeks ago, Rucka makes sure that new readers will not be lost if they are just starting to read the book with this issue. This issue is a lot of set up work for the first story arc but never gets too bogged down with exposition that keeps it from becoming a solid reading experience. The one thing that he really gets right with the book is the mythology and the icon that Wonder Woman is. While Rucka gets the story going you need an artist that can really deliver the scope and weight of this icon in the art department and Sharp not only delivers but even exceeded my expectations on the book. He’s not afraid to p;ay with the layouts of the pages and gives the book the visual flow that fits perfectly with the story. He is an artist that while he hits the big moments of the script but is able to really capture the more subtle dramatic moments that keeps a great balance and tone to the book that few artist could deliver. The other thing that I’m excited about is that thee book is going to run tandem with the Year One story (that will be drawn by Nicola Scott) in issue #2 and this story will continue and alternate with it in issue #3. While I think that DC on a lot of the books are biting off more than they can chew with the two issues a month,, in the case of Wonder Woman I think that this is the right approach for both the story and talent to keep them both on track.
Is this book worth your time and money? I have been a fan of Wonder Woman ever since I watched both the Lynda Carter television series and the Super Friends when I was a kid. She has always been a great character but at times has really struggled with a regular creative team that can handle the challenge of getting it right. Thankfully Rucka and Sharp have not only nailed this they actually have me very excited to read Wonder Woman again. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
Detective Comics #935
DC Comics Writer James Tynion IV, Penciller Eddy Barrows, Inker Eber Ferreira, Colorist Adriano Lucas, Letterer Marilyn Patrizio
I was very impressed with Tynion’s fun take on this book and glad to report that the second issue really keeps the book moving along nicely. There is something very appealing to a rag-tag team book that has worked well for Batman over the years. This book reminds me of Batman and the Outsiders from the 1980’s that delivered a great little book that has the same feel that Tynion is bringing to Detective Comics. He wisely doesn’t just keep the story focused on Batman but is giving all of the characters equal time to develop and flesh them all out. The biggest kick that the book really delivers on is that it’s a fun and exhilarating story that is sure to please both new and longtime readers. He doesn’t try to reinvent the wheel here and that is what I am loving about the book that is delivering a satisfying story. Barrows and Ferreira are really delivering the goods with their artwork on this book. They are really putting a lot of fine detail into this book that not only hit the big action scenes but the dramatic scenes are just as important and done with the same level of detail and care. They are also having a lot of fun with the layouts of the art and taking some risks that you don’t normally see in most mainstream superhero comics much today.
Is this book worth your time and money? While Batman has always been DC’s big bread-winner, what I love about this book is that isn’t about being dark and broody. While the story is not sunny and bright by any means it has a level of charm and fun that has been missing from the dark knight for a while that is ok to do. Tynion is not afraid to mix things up with this title and it’s nice to see some diversity in the Batman universe with the use of other characters to drive this book. I’m excited to see where they are going to take the story because so far I am really digging this story and art. RECOMMENDED!
The Flash #1
DC Comics Writer Joshua Williamson, Artist Carmine Di Giandomenica, Colorist Ivan Plascencia, Letterer Steve Wands
The Flash Rebirth book was a decent start to the book and while it’s certainly not bad I am finding the story to be nothing new or fresh. Williamson’s script seems to be playing it safe and that is where the problem is. After reading this issue I found it to be nothing that I hadn’t seen or read before and even rehashes the current television series to a point. While I understand that you don’t want to change what makes the Flash such a good character but you also need to deliver something to get readers excited about it and sadly this is where the book falls short. While I will give Williamson points for his ending in the first issue but trudging through the issue where there is little to keep you super interested does little to get you too excited for the next issue. Di Giandomenica artwork is an interesting mix that does give the book a nice visual punch and he really plays with the angles on the characters and gives the book a very unique look and feel that is refreshing non standard superhero artwork.
Is this book worth your time and money? On the plus side for the book is that if you’re a new reader looking to read the Flash for the first time then your going to get a lot more from this book than a more seasoned comic book reader. I really wish that Williamson would have created a story that was more compelling and fresh than this. For me there is just not enough for me to stick with this book.
Archie Comics Writer Mark Waid, Artist Veronica Fish, Colorists Andre Szymanowicz With Jen Vaughn, Letterer Jack Morelli
I have been a big fan of this book but I have to say that Waid has delivered one of the best stories in this issue to date. This version of Archie has been a must read book from day one but the script for this issue really touched me. Waid’s script is just one that works so perfectly and is really sweet and has a lot of great emotional moments that really caught me off guard. The mixing of Veronica’s lifestyle and Archie’s family in a lesser writers hand could have fallen off the rails but Waid wisely gives a balance of each and shows that neither side is either better or worse. What was really touching in the story is how Betty wants to be more than a friend to Archie and yet is still willing to hold back and keep her feelings inside and letting Archie decide. I also like that he doesn’t have Veronica as the villain just because she is rich she is actually in love with Archie for all of the right reasons not just to have his as a prize. Fish’s art on the book really fits the script perfectly. She really captures all of the emotional beats of the script and delivers a simple yet very detail artwork that is simply perfect.
Is this book worth your time and money? This book continues to be a mush read and this issue really hit the heart with a simply wonderful story that really captures the characters and what we really love about the charters of Riverdale. It’s a simply sweet and charming story that delivers on every level. VERY RECOMMENDED!
Dept. H #3
Dark Horse Comics Writer and Artist Matt Kindt, Colorist Sharlene Kindt, Letterer Marie Enger
This issue is a real turning point for the story in Dept. H. Kindt throws a lot of wrenches in the story with the descending of the base into chaos and the mystery of what is going on goes deeper than one had suspected. I love that everyone is a suspect and that solving the case of Mia’s fathers murder is not going to be that easy. There is also something going on that is more of a supernatural element that is creeping into the story that was both unexpected and welcomed twist to the story. Kindt is a writer who really is able to flesh out a story with such great character detail that really takes the reader on a wonderful journey that both thrills and surprises you with every issue that leaves you on the edge of your seat and wanting more. His art style is a real visceral experience that really adds to the tone of the book. It gives the story a more personal feel because of the artwork has a more natural and organic look that gives the book a strength that you don’t see very often.
Is this book worth your time and money? I am really getting into this book and the story is far from a simple murder mystery that is just on the surface. There is so much more going on here and Kindt is unfolding the story at a perfect pace that makes for a very enjoyable and compelling comic that is a real winner. RECOMMENDED!
Lucas Stand #1
Boom! Studios Writers Kurt Sutter & Caitlin Kittredge, Artist Jesus Hervas, Colorist Adam Metcalfe, Letterer Jim Campbell
Kurt Sutter’s first original comic story has some good ideas in the first issue but there were a few bumps in the story. One of the problems is that the script jumps around a bit too much and is a little confusing. While I get you don’t want to give too much away too soon you shouldn’t feel as if you have missed something when your reading it. One of the problems is that while I understand that Lucas is not very likable but I didn’t feel like I connected with him at all. There was too much of a pity party going on with him that didn’t help things. On the flip side there were things that were interesting with the story like the who should Lucas trust to make a deal with was played quite well in the script. I think that the problem might be that the first issue is like a so-so television pilot of a good show but gets off to a shaky start and this book feels like that. Harvas artwork fits the story with a nice gritty feel and tone that does help the story work well and does help move things along. There were a few times where the artwork was a little inconsistent but overall is a pleasant look.
Is this book worth your time and money? While not a train wreck it was a disappointing start to the story. There are some good ideas here and it could come together in the next issue but as it stands with the first issue it’s a tough call to recommend. If you’re a Sutter fan from Sons of Anarchy then you might want to check it out but the big question is whether Sutter can pull off an improvement in the second issue to save the book.