COMICS DO NOT STOP FOR THE HOLIDAYS!
Christmas is here! Which comics should you give as gifts for the Holidays?
INFINITY WARS #6
Writer – Gerry Duggan
Artist – Mike Deodato, Jr.
Cover Price – $5.99
With the Marvel Cinematic Universe, more people than ever are aware of Marvel heroes and their potntial. Sadly, this story does not live up to that potential.
Gerry Duggan has crafted a good premise in this event, however, the ending is a plodding tying-up of the event’s stories. A few details of the Infinity Stones are changed and updated, and characters are given new lives in the normal Marvel continuity. The dialogue is passable, though not exemplary. Meanwhile, the overall problem is that this event’s effect on the universe is very limited. You could probably get by reading the rest of Marvel’s line and be unaware that this story changed much at all.
Mike Deodato, Jr. Has worked in comics for a long time, and his pages reflect it. His proportions are heavily influenced by the “extreme” 1990’s. Moreover, his gradients tend to be a series of scratchy lines to imply depth and shadow. His characters can look dingy and murky. Meanwhile, Deodato’s action has good pop and energy. In short, I think his work has a good base, although it has not evolved to match the current levels of storytelling.
This event started very strong with the death of Thanos and Gamora’s decent. Meanwhile, it is ending on a muddled tone and wrapped up so quickly and cleanly, it will pass with little note. Personally, I think an event is at its best when it has a lasting impact on its universe, and Infinity Wars will not do that.
TEEN TITANS #25
Writer – Adam Glass
Artist – Robson Rocha
Cover Price – $4.99
I am not a fan of the current Teen Titans line up. Meanwhile, this kind of issue goes a long way to making me a fan.
Adam Glass spent this issue telling the origin story of Crush, the presumed daughter of DC mainstay and anti-hero, Lobo. Glass put a deft story together that does not ignore Crush’s more violent impulses, however he makes her into a sympathetic girl with an origin that could be the taken as Superman’s liberal arts cousin. The dialogue is strong and gives the characters good voices. Although this is a large issue with a lot of exposition and word-bubbles, it is a fast-paced read.
Robson Rocha is a terrific match of art to story. His versions of Crush at different ages has terrific energy and detail. Rocha prefers a combination of thick outer lines and thinner detail work. His detail is via very thin lines. The action in this issue has a good flow. Moreover, the scenes involving property damage has a heavy impact feel. The backgrounds have the right amount of detail in that they are easily recognizable without overpowering the foreground. However, faces can be a weakness for Rocha. They show emotion well, even though they are distracting in panels; perspective is not Rocha’s strong suit.
This volume of the Teen Titans is far from the era of Superboys and Wonder Girls. Although, with this kind of character story, they can surpass that era with a flourish.
G.I. JOE #258
Writer – Larry Hama
Artist – Ron Joseph
Cover Price – $3.99
It has been a LONG time since I read a G.I. Joe comic and this felt a lot like it did way back when… and that’s not a good thing.
Larry Hama is the man that created the lore for G.I. Joe back in the ’80s. This comic has all of his usual touches because it has the same tenor as the comics I read as a child. The dialogue doesn’t sound like it is being spoken by humans. There is clunky exposition and sometimes characters have to say exactly what they are doing or found. Moreover, there isn’t much of a reason for them to talk like that. They just do. Meanwhile, I really don’t know what is happening in this issue other than a short synopsis of a villain origin story was told in the latter part of the comic.
Ron Joseph’s art also has a tremendous throwback feel. His art relies on thick lines and extremely little detail. Additionally, the action has almost no real connection from panel to panel. I had to take a second look at one page to see if one of the Joes could fly. (They could not.) The body proportions are inconsistent. There is little sense of motion and even less of a feeling that these characters have evolved at all from their ’80s origins.
The story isn’t very clear and the art is extremely forgettable. Overall, this is a comic to skip. Maybe G.I. Joe: Silent Option will be a better place to look into their stories.
Catalyst Prime Comics
Writer – David Walker
Artist – Alitha Martinez
Cover Price – $3.99
I picked up this issue because the cover stood out to me with its strange energy and near snarky feeling. What was inside is better than I thought it could be.
David Walker has crafted one heck of a comic issue. While I am not entirely up on the story, I understand enough to get the gist. Meanwhile, the dialogue is on point. These characters sound like real people whether they are adults or teens. This issue is a bit word-heavy, although this issue lays out a lot of characters in it, so the letter count is forgivable.
The art is by Alitha Martinez and it is strong. The detail is light, however, the characters are extremely expressive. The faces convey a lot of bewilderment, anger, or seething, making this comic very visually deep despite its minimalist approach. The visuals have an odd fusion of styles that aren’t quite your typical comic, nor are they anime. It falls so far in between that you can sense both and neither. It is not the strongest style, but it is still interesting.
Meanwhile, the subplot regarding a character with down syndrome is very humanizing. It gives me a lot of pauses to think about what I know about people with down syndrome versus how they are regarded in society. I have a lot to ponder about.
I will not say this is the best written or drawn comic, however it has surprised me in subtle and profound ways. A story that makes you think is always going to be high on my pull list.
Which comics will you read after your Christmas dinner? Let us know in the comments below! In the meantime, enjoy a link to our comic book news and reviews podcast, the Part-Time Henchmen!