Friday, March 07, 2008


By John Judy

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #553 by Bob Gale and Phil Jimenez. One of the best illustrated Spidey stories in a while. Jimenez knows his stuff and “Back to the Future” screenwriter Gale is quickly learning the ropes of comics scripting. Worth a look, even if the whole Spidey-verse feels out of whack since the Deus Ex Mephisto business.

ASTOUNDING WOLF-MAN #5 by Robert Kirkman and Jason Howard. The further adventures of the most conflicted lycanthrope hero on the stands today. Good stuff, appropriate for older kids.

AVENGERS INITIATIVE #10 by Dan Slott and Stefano Caselli. Mayhem abounds now that evil MVP clone KIA has an ultimate weapon in his hands. It’s the sort of government-run super-hero program you’d expect during the Bush years. “Heckuva job, Slottie!” Recommended.

BOOSTER GOLD #7 by Geoff Johns and Dan Jurgens. Blue Beetle’s back! But so is Maxwell Lord. And those stupid OMACs. Seriously, enough with them already…

COUNTDOWN TO MYSTERY #6 of 8 by Steve Gerber and Others. Now sadly among the last works of the great Steve Gerber who passed away recently from a smoking-related illness.

DMZ#29 by Brian Wood and Riccardo Burchielli. A new story-arc begins as the US and Free States begin peace talks and a Che Guevara type player emerges. Also out this week is DMZ VOL. 4: FRIENDLY FIRE SC by Wood and Burchielli. A good jumping-on point for this exciting series.

FANTASTIC FOUR #555 by Mark Millar and Brian Hitch. A swell adventure story with all the bells and whistles you'd expect from the original ULTIMATES creative team. Recommended.

HARVEY COMICS CLASSICS VOL. 3: HOT STUFF SC by Various Creators. Collecting over 100 tales of comics’ original Little Devil, the Demon in a Diaper: HOT STUFF! A perfect gateway for all age groups into hardcore Satanism! Highly recommended!

LAST DEFENDERS #1 of 6 by Joe Casey, Keith Giffen, and Jim Muniz. Answering the musical question "How Often Do You Need to Publish a Title to Retain an Active Trademark?" Doo-wop, doo-wop...

MIGHTY AVENGERS #10 by Brian Michael Bendis and Mark Bagley. Okay, it’s a time-travel story. Just know that going in. There’s fights too.

PUNISHER #55 by Garth Ennis and Goran Parlov. Ennis’s final PUNISHER story begins here. Gotta have it.

SERENITY: BETTER DAYS #1 of 3 by Joss Whedon, Brett Matthews, and Will Conrad. A story from the pre-Big Screen days of Captain Mal Reynolds and his crew. Y’know, back when everyone was still alive. A nice preview is available at Dark Horse’s website. Recommended.

SHOWCASE PRESENTS: PHANTOM STRANGER, VOL. 2 SC by Various Creators. Bronze and Silver Age fun from folks like Bob Haney, Jim Aparo, Marv Wolfman, Mike Grell, and others. Good for all ages.

THUNDERBOLTS #119 by Warren Ellis and Mike Deodato. Swordsman and Venom fight. It's awesome. Not for younger kids.

WALKING DEAD #47 by Robert Kirkman and Charles Adlard. After last issue’s shocking cast member death will Kirkman up the ante? The cover suggests he will. Devastating stuff. Recommended but NOT for kids.

WOLVERINE #63 by Jason Aaron and Ron Garney. It's official: There is a WOLVERINE comic on the stands that DOES NOT SUCK!!! Thank-you, Jason Aaron! Highly recommended.

WONDER WOMAN #18 by Gail Simone and Bernard Chang. Wonder Woman fights the Khunds. They’re an alien race. Honest. Oh stop it already…

X-FACTOR #29 by Peter David and Valentine DeLandro. A nicely illustrated first chapter blissfully apart from the various cross-overs and Events currently ricocheting around the Marvel Yoo. Also contains the most deeply buried credits page I've ever seen.

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