Friday, November 03, 2006

Comic reviews for November 1st, 2006 with SPOILERS

So, with one of my previous reviews being linked to on the Hip Flask website maybe someone can tell me why my copy of Mystery City hasn't come in yet. :) Anyway, I was pretty excited to see that they felt my review was worthy of being put up there but I'm also really happy to see them take an active role in seeking out what every day readers have to say about their books. So kudos to them!

On to this week's reviews, we have three to get to and not much time in my schedule so here goes.

Incredible Hulk #100 -- Yep, the Hulk finally gets his 100th issue (as opposed to having to settle for issue 100 of Tales to Astonish). Anyway, enough history. This book has two new stories and reprints some older issues. The first story continues with the Planet Hulk storyline. I've been pretty critical of the flow of the story but this issue didn't have as many glaring issues as previous ones. But after I was done reading it I just wondered was that really the big 100th issue? The problem is that this issue fits in well with the storyline but will be a disappointment for anyone expecting a big 100 extravaganza. But I can't be too critical of it, it serves its purpose of continuing to tell the Planet Hulk story and is a decent issue in itself. Then you have the second story and wow! Someone expecting a big Hulk blowout might be disappointed but I think fans of a more in depth Hulk story will be excited as all heck by this story. We have Amadeus Cho (a character I admittedly knew nothing about) deciding to track down the Hulk since he's been missing. This storyline does so much right, it brings in Hulk's history (I nearly gasped when I saw the name Waynesboro), it highlights the intelligence of Banner, it keeps the question of who is the monster, the Hulk or us, and I even liked how Reed Richards is portrayed in this story (him putting the blame of Goliath's death square on his own shoulders was a great start for this). The Hulk may have only been the string that holds this story together and he may have only appeared in quick flashbacks but this is a Hulk story. As for Gary Frank's artwork in this, you can really see how his work has changed since his Hulk days. In some ways for the better, in some ways, I'm not so sure because some of the shots of the Hulk made me long for his earlier Hulk work. But I think I'm being too critical, expecting something better even though what I see is top quality comic art. One nitpick, in the flashback to Secret Wars I think She-Hulk was wearing the wrong costume and was in worse shape than depicted in the flashback but oh well. :)

I haven't read through the reprints that are included in the book (of some really old Hulk issues) but after flipping through them it was interesting to see how times change. How Reed easily de-powered the Hulk back then or how he actually re-powered and freed him instead of allowing him to be sentenced to death. I'll have to read through these at some point. So overall, this book was well worth it. You have a decent regular Hulk issue, an amazing follow up story, and some classic stuff.

She-Hulk #13 -- First up, the art is pretty bad. I think it's the same artist because it seems to have the same problems as previous issues but I'm too lazy to make sure of that. There were just so many panels that made me cringe. One shot of She-Hulk had her lower body look like it disappeared, some shots had her taller than Thanos talking down to him while others had it reversed, Man Wolf/Star God's armoured top just blended in with his fur, and people's faces were constantly "smooshed". And this low quality art really hurt the story telling. Overall, this issue seemed rushed. It was kinda cool to go through Thanos' history and see some of the epic battles. But you knew it was a Thanos clone, it's always a Thanos clone. And sure enough, Thanos has been playing around with Starfox's mind (okay, that's slightly new for Thanos) and has made Starfox's powers out of his control. So he has to give them up in the end. Wow! That's pretty major. But overall this storyline just seemed to be dragging on at this point, I'm looking forward to the next issue (Awesome Andy!!!) and the "Planet Without a Hulk" stuff. Hopefully they get a better artist soon though.

American Splendor #3 -- This book continues to be interesting. It's just little stories about life but told in such a dynamic way you feel like you're reading something spectacular. Pekar really has a talent for telling a story. The only story that didn't work for me was the political discussion. He makes great points but with all the political talk that's been going on as of late I just couldn't bring myself to get into this one as much as the others. Maybe some other time I'd be more keen on it. Still, it's something interesting you might want to check out for yourself.

So that's it for this week.

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