This post is about comics. So those of you not interested can tune out now…
If you’re still with me, good for you. Over the last 2 weeks DC comics have begun a relaunch of some of their classic titles and some not so classic. For those geeks among us, this has been an exciting buildup and so far, for me at least, they have hit the mark. So here is my rundown of what I have read thus far.
The launch kicked off on August 31, with the release of Justice League #1. Growing up I was never the biggest JL fan. In fact I’ll hold my hand up and admit, I was always more of a Marvel and Dark Horse comics kinda kid. Thats not to say I avoided DC. They always had my heart with Batman and his assorted titles/link-up’s. I particularly liked the graphic novels, Batman – A Lonely Place of Dying being one my favourite.
That said, JL #1 was fantastic, some truly amazing artwork. Not to give too much away, but it involves Batman and Green Lantern riffing off each other as they chase some mysterious beast, whilst being chased by the Gotham authorities themselves. The ending is a cliff hanger, as it infers a battle between Batman and another famous caped fella, or ‘the alien’ as Green Lantern calls him.
Next up was Action Comics #1 released on September 7th. I have to admit to never being the biggest fan of Supe, and even though Grant Morrison was on board for this one, it still did not grab my attention. Sorry DC, im a bit of a philistine when it comes to your Golden Boy.
Also released on Sept 7th was Detective Comics #1 (which is what DC comics actually stands for..for you noobies out there). This was brilliant, with the best cover art yet.
This was (as expected) quite adult, with Batman chasing the Joker as he rather graphically, butchers someone…whilst in the nude. The Joker escapes, however Batman does catch up with him later on, after a massive explosion. This was a very fast paced, gritty opening and Batman appears once again to be on Gotham City’s shit list, which is where he really excels (which is why the ending of Chris Nolan’s last movie was so damn great). Not to post a spoiler, but again this ends with a brilliant cliffhanger. A rather graphic last page of artwork too. I will definitely be keeping my eye on this story.
Next up for me, was Grifter #1, who I believe is a relatively new character in the DC universe. But I liked the cover art and his mask vaguely reminded me of one of my all time favourite comic book series, Dark Horse’s X. I have to admit, I thought the timing of Grifter’s release (September 14) was a little insensitive, as it opens with a fracas on board a plane, with Grifter threatening to blow the plane up. The story suggests that our (anti?)hero narrowly escaped some kind of alien brainwashing, and now they’re out to get him. But it seems Grifter is going down vigilante avenue, determined to take some of these apparent body snatchers with him. Of course to the public it looks like he’s simply murdering normal humans, which sets up the whole premise nicley. I’ll definitely be checking in with Grifter again.
And finally, Batman And Robin #1, released the same day as Grifter. This opens in Moscow with one of Batman’s apprentices hunting down some bad guy, only to be caught by some mysterious villain. Cut to Wayne Manor and an overly introspective Bruce Wayne, and a right cheeky Damian (who i would find hard not to smack if he were my son) it’ll be interesting to see how this relationship develops. The two head out to the place where Batman lost his parents all those years ago, and Batman vows to begin celebrating their life instead of continually mourning their death. A situation develops at Gotham University which requires their attention – cue ass kicking of bad guys, Robin disobeying Batman, possible nuclear accident and a finale involving bad guys on chains and a vat of molten nuclear lava or something. Again a great finish and one that forces you to go for issue #2.
I had planned to review Swamp Thing #1, but alas by the time i got down to my local, it had been either sold out or reserved.
In any event, a big thank-you to DC Comics for a great first few weeks of their New 52 relaunch so far. They’ve forced me to spend more than I planned to and I also have set up my own reservation tray for the first time ever to ensure I don’t miss out like I did with Swamp Thing (which i had to order of Ebay for £5). With Marvel’s X-Men Schism storyline heating up nicely and an excellent start to DC’s New 52, now is a great time for us geeks out there and even better time to become one..aint that right Ali 😉