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a little bit of BK in VA

Posts made in January 15th, 2013


I don’t usually review single issues of comics, but two books came out last week that I have to mention.

The first is the final issue of Jeff Lemire’s Vertigo title, Sweet Tooth.
After 40 issues of heartbreaking bleakness in a post apocalyptic world that is part “The Road” and part Wizard of Oz, Lemire wraps up his story with an ending that is incredibly touching (I actually got choked up reading it) while being wholly unsurprising. This is the only ending that could have happened.  He’s not stopping the action in the middle of the Journey, he’s showing us the logical conclusion to mankind’s constant folly, and incessant attempts to control nature and biology.  If this book doesn’t speak to you, you have no heart.
IMG_1136But read the first 39 issues first.
I can’t wait until there’s an omnibus.  I’d gladly shell out a hundred bucks for it.
The other book that blew the doors off my expectations was Punisher War Zone #3.  This may be Greg Rucka’s single best issue of any comic, ever.  And this is the guy who wrote the hell out of Batman and Gotham Central.
It’s Punisher “versus” Thor, and although blows are exchanged, the battle is more for hearts and minds than blood and honor.  Neither character doubts the other’s resolve, and neither character judges the other too harshly.  There is a mutual understanding and respect between the two that is reflected in some of the best dialog I’ve read in comics.  Ever.  That’s right, two “evers” in one post.
This is a fantastic series.  Read it.


If I haven’t said this before, I’ll say it now: The best part of Gerry Conway’s run was George Perez signing on for semiregular art duties.  Perez was one of the greatest comic artists of the 1970s-1980s, both in terms of consistent quality and influence.  Also, he drew a TON of comics.

Storywise, something I forgot to mention last post was that Thing hung out with Hulk so much that Hulk’s high Gamma Ray content “cured” Ben Grimm.  Yes, that is indeed ridiculously stupid.  That’s why I didn’t mention it when I was paying tribute to two otherwise pretty good Gerry Conway issues.

Sometimes, slogging through the FF one panel at a time is a forced march.  I can’t wait until John Byrne comes on board and the series gets great again.

Anyway, the team has to hire a strong-man replacement, and when you need to hire a hero, you can’t go wrong with Luke Cage.  I think people forget that before Spider-Man, others had been both an Avenger and an F4.  Actually, She Hulk was, too.

Anyway, Puppet Master gets involved, the team has to fight Luke, blah blah blah.

By the end of #170, Luke is off the team and Grimm now has a “Thing costume,” complete with powers, so he’s back as the fourth member.

My copies of these issues did not preserve well (and I’m missing #169), so I’m not bothering to scan panels from them.  Sorry.

Trust me, you ain’t missing anything.  And next issue gets even worse.  Let’s all just pray Conway’s run doesn’t last much longer.




Why the homeless shopping cart woman?  Because Frank Miller introduced her in The Dark Knight Returns.  Then, Grant Morrison used the same concept throughout Batman RIP, where Bruce Wayne’s guardian angel and drug counselor helps him pull through a brief period as a homeless person himself.  The image of the dark-skinned person with a red hat/bandana became a recurrent one, and was used to show Batman’s connection to the streets.  Superman saves cats in trees.  Batman saves homeless people, the humans that even humanity has forgotten.


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