Thursday, May 11, 2006

Weekly Comic Round-Up

My show opens tonight.

Tonight.

We had our only full tech and dress rehearsal last night.

I have the most amazing actors and crew on this show, but I just don't think we were able to give them enough time.

Look to the right side of the screen. This is what my life feels like right now.

I have left behind the state of controlled panic and am now in full fledged terror.

Doomsday is going to kick my ass.

So, let's forget about my show for a little bit, and look at this week in comic books, shall we?

52 1
So, the Crisis has passed, and now it is time to move on. (And yes, I know, I still owe you my thoughts on Crisis. It's coming. Really. I promise.) So, we have a world with many deaths, and a world without Batman, Superman or Wonder-Woman. So, who do we have to mind the shop?

The Question. Steel. Booster Gold. Detective Montoya. And a suicidal Ralph Dibny, once the Elongated Man.

I think we've got some real potential with this series, although not a lot actually happened in this series. But that's ok, after all, it's the beginning of a 52-issue, one book a week series. We established that the Big Three are missing, that the future is no longer set in stone, and the state of mind for Ralph, Steel, Montoya and Booster. And the Question does the mysterious action of removing the bat symbol from the Bat-Signal and replacing it with a question mark.

I think the Question we see in this series is going to be a little bit more like the one from Justice League Unlimited. And that really makes me happy.

Last Planet Standing 1
So, I am one of the few people who really enjoyed the MC2 Universe. I've been a loyal reader of every MC2 book since it's inception. Of course, at the moment, that only means Spider-Girl, but that's beside the point.

So, it looks like this may be the end of the MC2 Universe. Galactus has his new herald, the Wave-Rider, and they've eaten the Shi'ar homeworld.

Something involving overloading suns so that they go nova is helping Galactus "evolve to the next level", whatever that means.

And at the very end, we see that Galactus is going to go eat Asgard before he makes another attempt on Earth.

Ok, they've got my attention. And if this is the end for the MC2 Universe, well, at least it'll go out with a bang.

She-Hulk 7
Wow. This may be the most serious issue of She-Hulk I have ever read. And I feel a little dirty reading it.

Starfox is on trial for, essentially, rape. You see, his superpower is to make people love him. This means that he never has a shortage of willing company for the evening. It also means that the company isn't always really willing. The trial is being brought against him by a married woman who cheated on her husband with Starfox. And yes, she threw herself at him. But not by her own conscious choice.

One of the researchers at Jen's firm commented on how uncomfortable that makes him. Someone like that shouldn't really be an Avenger.

Half-way through the issue, Jen realizes that Starfox (his actual name is Eros) may have used his power on her, which might be the reason she hooked up with him many years ago.

What bothers me most about this, aside from the horrid relationships that sprang up around Eros, is Jen's reaction. She becomes livid and beats the snot out of Eros, but not until she begins to think that she was a victim. It seems to me that if Eros was using his powers against people to make them throw themselves at him, essentially acting as a walking, talking date-rape drug, Jen should have been mad from the get-go. The fact that her anger is only personal struck me as being less heroic, and more selfish. And I don't like that. This series has, largely, been about watching She-Hulk mature. I believe this is a step back.

Spider-Girl 98
Goblins are scary.

There has been a trend to overlook the Goblins as the greatest foes of Spider-Man. Doctor Octopus is flashier. Venom is creepier. But all of the worst moments of the Parker family can be traced to the actions of the Goblins.

Roderick Kingsly, the original Hobgoblin, got released last issue. And now he is systematically destroying Spider-Girl's life, starting with her friends. Peter has found out that Normie Osborn is now bonded to the Venom symbiote, making him a terrible synthesis of both the Green Goblin and Venom, and has forbidden May from being Spider-Girl any longer.

Things look grim. The Hobgoblin is every bit as terrifying as Norman Osborn ever was. And the final page of the comic, when we see May's friends and allies, The Buzz, the Ladyhawkes and Raptor beaten, bound, and possibly dead, hanging off a fence sent shivers up my spine.

May has her hands full. And I don't know if telling her dad the full details would be the right choice, or a horrible one. It's possible that Peter would bring the old costume out of retirement, and possibly get himself killed. Kingsley doesn't seem to have slowed down in the past twenty years. Peter lost a leg and is seriously out of practice.

We're building to issue 100. This might be the end of Spider-Girl. If so, it has been one hell of a run.

Superman 652
Up, Up and Away continues. Clark now knows that he has his powers back, at least to some extent. He quickly theorizes that his powers were gone due to his own unwillingness to let them return. He enjoyed being Clark, and having time to spend with Lois and his friends.

But Lois's reaction was perfect. Lois is his real strength, and when he is full of doubt, she is the one who hands him his costume and tells him to go and be Superman. She knew what she was getting herself into when she married Superman, and wouldn't let Clark deny that part of himself.

The fight between Superman and the assembled Intergang goons was fun to watch, but ultimately, unimportant. A sad truth is that when it simply becomes an issue of "Will Superman win this fight?", the story isn't that interesting. Of course he'll win. He's Superman, it's what he does. But the writers have picked up on what does make Superman worth reading. Exploring what being Superman means, for Clark, for his friends, for his family, and for the world.

And of course, Superman's return has pushed Lex into overdrive in his quest to use the Kryptonite to get that Kryptonian artifact. I wonder what it could be...

So, that's this week in comics. Hopefully I'll have some downtime now that my show is opening, and I'll get that Infinite Crisis/Civil War recap up this weekend. After all, Doomsday may be coming, but if Clark Kent could get back up from that, I can too.

Right?

6 Comments:

Blogger BacaKhann said...

"Go get 'em, tiger"

12:10 PM  
Anonymous os said...

Should we start a pool for when "52" misses its first week?

12:11 PM  
Blogger Aaron said...

Os,

We can start a pool, but I'm betting it makes it. They made sure to have the first few months of if completed before the series began.

12:50 PM  
Anonymous Dave said...

"Lois is his real strength..."

The fact that this statement can be made with a straight face just goes to show how much I haven't read Superman in the past 20 years. In most Superman I can remember, Lois' purpose is to be the person he's stronger than, wiser than, someone who gets into trouble and who needs help and saving. Attempts I can remember to write her otherwise were generally silly or at best half-hearted (Lois takes out the thug or insults the baddie, only to be ignominiously rendered helpless or unconscious and figuratively tied to the railroad tracks anyway).

The only thing I ever respected about Lois especially was that I never thought of her as, once captured or otherwise imperiled, saying "Just you wait until Superman gets here!" Maybe she did in some issues, but that didn't seem like her core character to me. She didn't *count* on him to save her, which allowed her to be genuinely brave in investigating some of the things she did. This is why throwing herself into Niagra Falls to try to make Supes come out in Superman II kinda bugged me. I mean, sure, she's got a crush on Supes. But we should be writing these people as adults here, aren't we?

1:35 PM  
Blogger Aaron said...

Dave,

The originaly inception of Lois was very much like that, no question. But they tried to make Lois important even way back in the 60's and 70's with the "Superman's Girlfriend: Lois Lane" features.

Regardless, the Post-Crisis Lois is a match for Clark in every way. She's a General's daughter, and competent at self-defense. She's even taken some lessons with Diana and Bruce, IIRC. She's smart, brave and capable. And she provides a moral center that Clark needs. She isn't alone at this, Ma and Pa do the same thing.

And it must be terrible to be the spouse of a superhero. Being the spouse of a policeman, firefighter or soldier is terrible enough. But in those cases, even as a soldier, people aren't specifically trying to kill your spouse. (They may be trying to inflict casualties on the army, but no one is saying "Lieutenant Goldstein. Him. He's the one I want to shoot.")

1:42 PM  
Blogger Chana said...

Your show will be a great success. Enjoy and have tons of fun.

Happy Mother's Day to your beautiful wife...

Have a great wknd.

4:02 PM  

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