The New DC Universe: Week 9 Reviews

The third month is upon us and I get to review a fewer books. Eventually, I have a feeling I will drop all but about twenty books (unless some book is really good and just outside the twenty). Mostly, because my finances dictate it. I haven’t been buying a lot of independents these last few months and I miss experimenting with new comics from smaller companies. I love superhero books but they really have to be doing something exceptional or interesting for me to stick around for too long. Plus, I am really worried about the art in the DC books. It has felt a little sloppy and rushed. I just can’t imagine over the long haul I will keep much more than twenty books. Of course, if the books were more reasonably priced I might keep all of them. I am interested to see which books make my final cut (Here are the previous weeks reviews).

Action Comics #3

Written by GRANT MORRISON; Art by RAGS MORALES, BRENT ANDERSON and RICK BRYANT; Cover by RAGS MORALES

I liked this issue more than number 2. I thought the art was cleaner and the storyline more engaging. I liked the mystery of Superman’s past being introduced slowly into the story. I also really like what Morrison is doing with Clark Kent. I have often felt Kent was kind of wasted in old Superman books. He is taking on a life of his own in this story and frankly I am as interested in it as the main bad guy story. 9 out of 10.

Animal Man #3

Written by JEFF LEMIRE; Art and cover by TRAVEL FOREMAN

This may very well be the weirdest comic being published by DC since maybe the last time Grant Morrison did Animal Man. This is not a bad thing. I am blown away by the story. Completely and totally sucked in. So much so that I worry a tiny bit about where can you go from here. This story feels so large and character defining that I can’t imagine Animal Man going back to the regular world of heroes. If nothing else it got the terrible taste of the last Animal Man mini-series out of my head. 9.5 out of 10.

Batwing #3

Written by JUDD WINICK; Art and cover by BEN OLIVER

This book continues to be a surprise. Really wasn’t fond of the first issue but I liked the second and the third is just as good. I was sure this book was going to be a cancel for me. If the story stays this strong there is no way that is going to happen now. It is a completely different take on the Batman mythos. Originally, I thought Africa was going to be a gimmick but now I can tell it is the heart of the story. I am excited to see where it goes next. 8.5 out of 10.

Detective Comics #3

Written by TONY S. DANIEL; Art and cover by TONY S. DANIEL and RYAN WINN

I have to be honest. There is nothing this book is doing which is particularly wrong. It just doesn’t interest me that much. It feels like a typical Batman story and I am guessing anyone who hasn’t been reading Batman for as long as I have is thrilled. For me it is just not as good as Scott Snyder’s Batman. The art isn’t as good. The story isn’t as good. You could substitute any villain into this storyline and it wouldn’t change at all. If you just can’t get enough of Batman each month you will be fine with it. For me I am thinking about moving on. 7.5 out of 10.

Green Arrow #3

Written by J.T. KRUL; Art by DAN JURGENS and GEORGE PEREZ; Cover by DAVE WILKINS

I have loved the character of Green Arrow for a long time. Over the years some really brilliant writers have done some very interesting things. This book is not one of them. As much as it pains me to say, this book is not getting better. The only reason I didn’t drop it was because it was Green Arrow. Now, it is definitely a drop and it will stay dropped until the new creators come on board. I think it will be a few more issues before that happens. The main story continues to bore me. The dialog is not wonderful. I don’t know what happened here. I was enjoying J.T. Krul’s Green Arrow before the reboot. Doesn’t even feel like the same writer. 6 out of 10.

Men of War #3

Written by IVAN BRANDON and JONATHAN VANKIN; Art by TOM DERENICK and PHIL WINSLADE; Cover by VIKTOR KALVACHEV

This comic started out so promising. It felt and looked different. It appeared to want to deal with some real issues of war. Almost a 50′s throwback comic. Since then it has been wandering all over the place. I have no clue what the story they are trying to tell is. It feels like they are dropping hints and wanting to go at a slower pace but it has left me at a loss for what type of book it is. We have something out of the ordinary happening to everyday soldiers. There should be an interesting story to tell there but mostly I am left scratching my head. I have never really liked the backup story and glad the first one has finally ended. Hopefully, the next one will be better. 7.0 out of 10.

Red Lanterns #3

Written by PETER MILLIGAN; Art and cover by ED BENES and ROB HUNTER

Red Lanterns is the gift which keeps on giving. Every issue so far I have braced for a let down and every issue the let down has failed to materialize. This comic fascinates me. It deals with war, pain, abuse. It is dark and depressing. It doesn’t pull any punches. It barely feels like it fits with the other Lantern books. It shows that a good writer and a good artist can do something interesting with most anything. For me this is the only book in the Lantern world worth reading. Just don’t expect to come out of it smiling and happy.  9 out of 10.

Stormwatch #3

Written by PAUL CORNELL; Art by MIGUEL SEPULVEDA and AL BARRIONUEVO; Cover by CHRIS BURNHAM

I am starting to worry a little about this comic. It came out of the gate like gangbusters, Martian Manhunter was badass. The story really clicked. Since then it has spun its wheels a little. Martian Manhunter is barely part of the story. Lots of action in this one but it was hard to appreciate because I think the art hasn’t really been as good as it needs to be. If this doesn’t turn itself around soon I could see this book as a future drop. The story is hinting at a bigger picture and I am still intrigued about Stormwatch in the DC Universe. Needs to get going though because otherwise I will drop it. 7.5 out of 10.

Swamp Thing #3

Written by SCOTT SNYDER; Art by YANICK PAQUETTE and VICTOR IBANEZ; Cover by YANICK PAQUETTE

I couldn’t stop smiling after reading this comic. This is starting to look like the best Swamp Thing story since Alan Moore graced the pages. A few years back DC had asked China Mievile to take a crack at Swamp Thing and then pulled the plug at the last-minute. I am going to assume because they were returning Swamp Thing to the DC Universe. I will always wonder what that story would have looked like but at least I know they handed the comic over to capable hands. I loved this issue. The horror was just the right amount and it did a great job of laying out the plot for the rest of this arc. Plus Abigail kicks all kinds of ass. Scott Snyder has become one of my favorite writers. 10 out of 10.

—-

DC Power Rankings

1) Wonder Woman -

2) Animal Man – Staying strong but not quite ready to bump Wonder Woman out of the top spot.

3) Justice League Dark

4) Swamp Thing – I was a tiny bit worried after the first issue but this book is just getting better and better. Another large jump.

5) Red Lanterns – Trying to do something I have never seen in a mainstream DC book. Explore hatred and pain. May end up being the only Lantern book I keep buying.

6) Batman -

7) Aquaman -

8 ) Action Comics – I liked this issue better than number two. Grant Morrison continues to make Superman interesting to me. A major feat considering how uninterested I was.

9) Batwoman

10) I, Vampire

11) Grifter

12) Batgirl

13) All Star Western -

14) Stormwatch – Continues to tumble-down. It needs to stay in the top twenty for me to keep reading it. Not sure it is going to make it.

15) Justice League -

16) Teen Titans -

17) Batwing – Jumps another ten spots up and climbs into the top twenty. Not sure how many more than twenty I am keeping but amazingly this book looks like it may make the cut now.

18) Supergirl -

19) Superman -

20) Legion of Super-Heroes -

21) Superboy

22) Resurrection Man

23) Deathstroke

24) Green Lantern

25) Men of War

26) Flash -

27) Frankenstien, Agent of S.H.A.D.E.

28) Men of War – Another book which can’t stop its tumble downward. A great first issue but I won’t be reading it much longer.

29) Detective Comics – Not sure how much longer I will keep buying this book. There are other Batman family books that are far more enjoyable.

30) Captain Atom -

31) Catwoman -

32) Demon Knights

33) Suicide Squad

34) Nightwing -

35) The Savage Hawkman-

36) Batman: The Dark Knight -

37) Justice League International – Eliminated

38) Green Lantern Corps – Eliminated

39) Green Lantern: New Guardians - Eliminated

40) Blue Beetle -

41) Green Arrow – This book is now dropped until a new creative team comes on. I am very disappointed.

41) Legion Lost- Eliminated

42) Batman & Robin – Eliminated

43) DC Universe Presents -

44) Mister Terrific – Eliminated

45) O.M.A.C. – Eliminated

46) Voodoo -

47) Blackhawks – Eliminated

48) The Fury of Firestorm: The Nuclear Men -  Eliminated

49) Birds of Prey -

50) Hawk & Dove – Eliminated

51) Red Hood and the Outlaws – Eliminated

52) Static Shock – Eliminated

About csdaley

C.S. Daley was born in California but has spent most of his life in his imagination. His first short story written in third grade, the now classic "Close Encounters of the Turd Kind," was sold to his next door neighbor for a quarter. The neighbor promptly demanded a refund. An unhealthy obsession with the writings of Neil Gaiman, Christopher Moore, and Terry Pratchett have left his mind warped and broken. He spends most of his evening swilling down coffee while tapping at a keyboard under the watchful eyes of his kittens. They are there to make sure he doesn't snap. He likes to write fantasy for adults and teens.

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