Suddenly out of nowhere the shelves in every major comic book store have exploded. This is the week. The one where it all kicks off! I went into my local comic book store yesterday and I was absolutely spoiled for choice when it came to which books I wanted to review. For the first time in ages I have series from DC Comics, the Indie market and Marvel for you guys and girls out there in cyberspace. It’s on weeks like this that the world needs to BSSFCBB (catchy abbreviation right?).
All images are screenshots taken from the Marvel and DC Comics App [Accessed: 08/04/2016]
Black Panther Issue One by Ta-Nehisi Coates and Brian Stelfreeze.
I must admit I am a little disappointed the premier issue of this Black Panther series. I think I was expecting something massive and earthshattering as it has been sometime since Panther has had his own series and the last run I can remember is the one Romita Jr. worked on from way back. At first I thought the issue just seemed bloated with too much exposition and set up but then I realised that while Ta-Nehisi Coates is a strong writer he has been set an impossible task. The book has to deal with all the major issues that have occurred in Panther’s life since Avengers Vs X-Men and even slightly before that while also kick starting a new chapter in the King of Wakanda’s life. That would be a tough job for any writer and with Coates being a relative newcomer to the genre it’s a tall order. I also feel like Stelfreeze is a weak choice of artist for the book when someone like Sorrentino would be a much better fit. I’m sure once Coates ties up the loose ends from the last few years of the Panther’s history we will get a good book, and maybe a better artist, but until them I will be buying the book to support the character and little else.
Empress Issue One by Mark Millar and Stuart Immonen.
Maybe I’m just in a bad mood this week when it comes to first issues but once again I am not impressed by this first issue from Mark Millar. When a series is already up for a movie deal before the first issue has even been released and Marvel Comics have offered to publish it instead of it going through the normal indie channels that creates a certain level of expectation. I am not going to sit here and tell you that Empress is a bad book, in fact it has all the makings of the start of a fantastic series but this is issue just gives us the bare basics of the concept. It moves so quickly it feels more like a preview than anything else. It does not deserve the hype surrounding it. Yet. Once the first arc is over and done with I will be at the head of the mob praising this book but until them I’m going to try and de-hype myself a little. I recommend this book for anyone looking for a new epic space sage to get into with stunning visuals thanks to the great Stuart Immonen.
Harley Quinn And The Suicide Squad April Fool’s Special by Rob Williams and a hilarious host of artists.
DC showed their hand last week with the Rebirth previews. Now, suddenly a bunch of Rebirth-related hints are dropping in almost every issue hitting the shelves from them this week. This entire issue feels like one bad hype train for one of the series coming out of Rebirth and honestly by the end of it there are so many twists that it all just lost impact for me. It you’re really interested in Harley Quinn specifically and her relationship with the Suicide Squad then this may be perfect for you but for everyone else the only real selling point in the slew of artists on the book.
Invincible Ironman Issue Eight by Brian Michael Bendis and Mike Deodato.
Peter Parker has now taken the place of Iron Man in the Marvel Universe, as a genius tech mogul, and Tony Stark and recruited Peter’s ex as his new assistant. With these new roles established you’d think that a meet up between Stark and Parker would be absolutely explosive, especially under character writer Brian Michael Bendis. Unfortunately the only sparks flying are in the fantastic battle scenes brought to life by artist Mike Deodato. Bendis just seems to be taking a back seat in this issue and it left me feeling a little underwhelmed. I recommend this to Ironman fans but everyone else can probably give it a miss this week, especially if you are looking for hints at Civil War Two as there are none.
BearSleuth Pick Of The Week: Justice League Darkseid War Special by Geoff Johns and Ivan Reis.
Now we get to the good stuff, the absolute shining pinnacle of the comic book industry this week comes in the form of a brilliant Justice League special. Geoff Johns has slowly pushed the Justice League towards one of the biggest stories in the team’s history and he’s shown once again that he’s not ready to stop yet. With the Rebirth event on the horizon, Johns is laying the groundwork for the next big chapter in the DC Universe cannon and instead of hitting us over the head with it, as in Harley Quinn’s title, he just dropping enough clues for diligent fans to piece together. I love this book and the series that it’s spring boarding off and I have to say that if you are in any form of love affair with the super hero genre you need to get your hands on it!
Old Man Logan Issue Four by Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino.
I cannot express how much I am in awe and admiration for this fantastic series. I hated the idea of anyone even touching the character of Old Man Logan after the amazing work Millar had done on the original story arc but then, with Secret Wars, Bendis opened me up to the idea leaving room for Jeff Lemire to coming storming in with this fantastic storyline. Logan is back and on the hunt to make the future right. We have seen him deal with the new universe and in this issue we see how he deals with the death of himself in this universe. It’s an odyssey that just feels like a natural progression of the character and one that I’m glad has been put to page. Anyone into Wolverine should be picking this book up, simple as that.
Poe Dameron Issue One by Charles Soule and Phil Noto.
Have you ever seen a character leave a building in a film and then turn up in another scene and wanted to know how they got from point A to point B? No? You know why? Because no one has. However, Charles Soule seems to think that the vital piece of information we need on Poe Dameron is how he got to Jakku at the beginning of the Star Wars: The Force Awakens. I don’t think I need to highlight what a silly concept this is and how little any fans want this. That beginning said Soule is a great writer and the story he’s crafting is still incredibly compelling. Coupled with Noto’s brilliant illustration this book makes for an underwhelming yet fun treat for any Star Wars fan out there.
The Vision Issue Six by Tom King and Gabriel Hernandez Walta.
DC released last week that Tom King is the new writer on Batman and I think I was one of a handful of people not surprised in the least by this move. King is a fantastic writer and if anyone wants to dispute that all I will do is give them the first of arc of this amazing series. In just six issues King has managed to take one of the least relatable Avengers and turn him into one of the most human characters I have ever seen in a comic book. This series is amazing and it appears to be heading towards a climax that could affect the entire Marvel Universe. This series shapes up pretty well if you consider it as an indie comic book and it’s certainly an amazing super hero book. I recommend this to anyone looking for something new in comics.
…That was this week’s BearSleuth Spoiler Free Comic Book Bundle!!! Check back on Monday for a new BearSleuth Opinion Piece!!!