Friday, October 21, 2011

Ultimate Hawkeye, Arkham City

Don't turn around, dude...
On the advice of my counsel, Marcus, I picked up Marvel Comics' Ultimate Hawkeye.  My first exposure to Hawkeye was the old 90's Captain America video game at the Family Fun Center in Omaha.  That game, at the time, was awesome.  Captain America, Hawkeye, Vision, and I think Iron Man were grouped up kicking all sorts of ass.  I wish I had all the money I threw down at the Family Fun Center.

Oh yeah, Hawkeye.  Clint Barton is our bow and arrow-weilding hero.  Mr. Barton hails from Waverly, Iowa which is approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes from my house.  According to my crack staff of Wikipedia searchers, he was born in September of 1964 in Tales of Suspense #57.  His most common affiliation is with the Avengers.  He was in the Great Lakes Avengers for a short period in the late 80's/early 90's.  

Look, I vacation at least once a year in Michigan, and have been to the Great Lakes many times.  Unless you count guys like me walking around in swim suits, then there is really little need for a super-hero presence.  I mean, for the love of all that is holy, send EVERY super-hero to Flint and Detroit to clean up those cesspools.  

Back to Ultimate Hawkeye, I was sincerely impressed with the first three issues.  A smart story, with a special-ops type feel to it.  These were great to read, and I anxiously await the results of this storyline.  I haven't heard of the writer or artist, but hats off all the way around.  The cover art for the first three issues were excellent, particularly number 3, pictured here.

I would suggest this book to anyone with a brain (sorry Twilight fans, not for you).

5 out of 5 arrowheads.

The title of this blog mentions Arkham City, which is the latest Batman video game.  I am not going to go too deep on this one (insert joke here), but if you like super-hero games, this is the benchmark.  I cannot stop playing it without F.I. kicking in.  F.I. stands for Family Interference.  

This game is incredible all the way around.  Buy it!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Aquaman #1

I've been a fan of comics a long time.  Probably way too long.  Whenever I hear the name "Aquaman", I get the following thoughts...

  • I want to like him.
  • Why can't ANYONE make him cooler?
  • Can I get a hold of him for a discount on lobster?
When Aquaman #1 came out, the writer/artist combo of Geoff Johns and Iva Reis, I had to take a look.  Geoff Johns was the person responsible for bringing Green Lantern out of the proverbial toilet by bringing Hal Jordan back from the dead.  Ivan Reis' artwork is simply amazing, and I can look at a drawing of a wall with a freshly open can of paint on it, and if it was drawn by Reis, I will make it a desktop background for awhile.
In this issue, it is addressed that Aquaman is clearly the Rodney Dangerfield of super-heroes, and I was just waiting for him to snap, especially when he was asked "How's it feel to be nobody's favorite super-hero?"

This issue was entirely bad-ass, and I give it 5 out of 5 fish heads.

Now that the new 52 comics have come out from DC, these are my favorites, in no particular order...

  • Green Lantern
  • Aquaman
  • Detective Comics
  • The Flash
  • Justice League
DC really hit a home run, and despite my initial reservations, I am excited about the new launch.  Other cool news?  The new line sold out, and books like Justice League have sold so well, they are on their 4th printing.  Pretty impressive.  What's next?  Sustain the quality.  It sounds simple, I know.  However, in a field like comics, especially in today's economy/competing mediums (video games, for one), I think it's important to keep your target audience at top of mind.  
You can't fall back into the trap of yearly company crossovers that are so amazingly widespread that readers feel they have to get every single issue to know what in the hell is going on.  Look at Blackest Night.  While I would call it a success, an insanely bigger success than Infinite Crisis, it's easy to get overwhelmed with 30-50 books a month all crossing over.  At the comic shop I visit, I heard people discuss how they just said "screw it" and dropped the storyline, and some dropping DC altogether.  

Please please keep the quality intact, as I'd hate to see comics become a dying medium, as some argue it is becoming.  DC has an excellent opportunity here, and I hope they continue to capitalize.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Batman #1

There are several great comics to get to from this week, but today, we will look at Batman #1.  If you've been living under a rock (spoilers), there is a new Batman #1 available for purchase.
Scott Snyder does the words and Greg Capullo the doodles.  I really enjoy Capullo's work.  His work on Spawn alone is just amazing and brings a creepy vibe with him.  I don't know much about Snyder, which is to say I don't know anything about him at all.  I think I could Google him and lean more, but come on.

The art with Batman and Harvey investigating a crime scene is so excellent, it made me want to buy the original pencils and cry on them.  Good story, and I am interested to see what the deal is with Dick Grayson is in this story.  Speaking of Grayson, Nightwing came out as well this week, and I was very happy with that!  It's about time he is "his own man" again.

Future posts will take a peek at Green Lantern Corps, Catwoman, and Red Hood and the Outlaws.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Green Lantern #1 and Stuff

Hi.  I'm a badass.
Green Lantern #1. Whoo! How was that for a detailed review?

Okie dokie, pot we go. As you might gather from the cover, Sinestro is our new Green Lantern. Oh yeah, possible spoilers lie ahead. If you are like me (and pray that you aren't), you were wondering how Hal Jordan will fit into the new book now that he has been stripped of his power ring. He shares space with Sinestro in the book, 11 pages to 11.

Hal jumping off of his building to answer a distress call was freaking great.

This was an excellent, excellent first issue.

The Guardians are little bastards, and I am interested in seeing them get a little payback/grief from Hal and/or Sinestro.

Hi.  I want to be a badass.
Grifter #1 features Cole Cash being driven insane and jumping from a plane. The rhyme in the aforementioned sentence was not purposeful. Stay with me here.

Grifter has such a cool look about him when he is in costume, but this is the 2nd or 3rd character I've seen from DC in this relaunch with Wolverine's sideburns. Seriously. Knock that shit off.

Good issue here, but not one that had me hooked in too deeply. I don't mind waiting for the story to develop and learn as I go, on the contrary, I think that is what a good story should do. However, Grifter, like some of the Image comics from whence he came, throw you in and sometimes I feel like I should know more than I do.

I will stick with this for the first storyline and see where it goes. Trust me, it's not bad at all, and nowhere near the level of the Spawn/WildC.A.T.S. mini-series that left me questioning my purpose on this planet.

The last one I will tackle tonight is Batman and Robin #1. I will start by saying this: I have a daughter. I would never, ever hit her. When I set this book down, I wanted Batman to smack Robin in the mouth. Hard. Hard enough to possibly shake the kids brain back to where it should be.

I still need to read Red Lanterns. Meow.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


So many comic movies this year. I picked up Thor yesterday, and already watched it once. That makes 5 times. Once at home, and 4 times in the theater. DORK ALERT!

Let's set aside Natalie Portman perpetuating the cinema's "female scientists are all blazing hot" mentality...this movie is fun. The effects are great, the characters are great, and the Rainbow Bridge didn't look like unicorns were the only thing allowed on it.

Thor, pictured here, is the thunder god, and, according to my wife and daughter, a "hottie".

Spoiler alert: there's lots of fights, frost giants, hammer throwing, ass kicking, and narration from Hannibal Lecter. In a nutshell, there isn't much wrong with this film.

Marvel scored huge this year with the new X-Men film, Captain America, and Thor. All were well-received from the critics.

Not so well-received: DC's Green Lantern. If you take the time to look around, you might see that I am a huge GL nerd. When the critics went after this, they really, really went after it. So much so that I was plotting numerous revenge schemes. Most of them involved an orange ball of yarn, an ear of corn, and a stapler. Thankfully for the world, those plans never came to fruition.

What the hell were we talking about?? Oh yeah, the GL movie. As a fan of Green Lantern for approximately 35 years, I can tell you that this movie was a bast. My complaint: DC's love affair with two villains. Hector Hammond should have sat it out. Really. The added Hammond stuff really made the movie feel rushed to me, and here I am griping about it. The effects were awesome, the 3D was 20 times better than Thor, and there were a ton of "easter eggs" for GL fans.

The last scene with Sinestro? WOW. Loved it. Anyway, this comes out on DVD next month, and I will be there. Enthusiastically. Screw you critics! :)

Monday, September 12, 2011

Is this thing on?

Well, THAT was an experience. Sitting in a jail since last April for crimes I did not commit was a bunch of crap, let me tell you. It all started when I was driving down the interstate. As I came over the hill, a roadblock consisting of military vehicles were waiting for me. In an effort to escape, I...all right, screw it. I'm lazy. Blog-lazy, that is. Increased travel at work, comics stacking up and not being read, as well as other excuses that start with an "x" and end with a "box" come into play.

This, however, is a fun time to come back. DC Comics has relaunched their entire line with a slew of new titles. Before we continue, let's address the following...

"But but but but Action Comics #1? Re-numbering Action comics is sacrilege! It's an outrage! I will never throw another cent at DC! My undying need to express my negativity is surpassed only by emo kids! DIE DC!!"

Anyway, to those people I say good riddance, and try to look at the bright side. Of anything.

So far, I've read these titles:

Justice League #1
Detective Comics #1
Action Comics #1
Batgirl #1
Green Arrow #1
Stormwatch #1
Justice League International #1

I have to say, I have not been disappointed with any of these books. Justice League, Detective, and Action Comics were probably my favorites. The highlights were easily Green Lantern and Batman's interaction in Justice League, Superman's "year one" approach in Action Comics, and the portrayal of the Joker in Detective Comics.

Next week is going to be awesome: Green Lantern! Look out, though...the Green Lantern is not Hal Jordan, it's Sinestro. Spoiler space in the sentence before this one. As a lifelong Hal Jordan fan, he better be back in green tights soon! Still, I am very excited to see how Sinestro plays into everything, and why the Guardians could not remove the green ring from his finger. Cool $#!+!!

Other titles on my pull list:

The Flash
Batman: The Dark Knight
Batman and Robin
Nightwing (FINALLY, Dick Grayson is back where he belongs)
Red Hood and the Outlaws
Green Lantern
Green Lantern Corps
Green Lantern: New Guardians
Red Lanterns
Grifter (I am really, really, really looking forward to this)

Lots of great stuff. I would like to get them all, but Marvel is creeping its way into my collection...screw you Thor and Captain America and your awesome stories!!!!!

To the negative people out there, lighten up. Comics are fun, escapist forms of entertainment. For a few minutes, I set down Action Comics after reading it and asked "What in the F--- was I just reading?" I read it again and decided it was completely awesome, because I got my underwear out of the crack of my ass. Get yours out, too, and have some fun!