Saturday, January 20, 2007

Weekly Comics Reviews for January 17th, 2007 -- SPOILERS

Better late than never I suppose. Only one book to review this week, She-Hulk #15. So let's just get right to it:

She-Hulk #15 -- Let's see, She-Hulk questions how heroes might become agents of SHIELD and then is forced to become one herself and she seems to have mixed feelings about it. This issue starts her new storyline of chasing after Hulk foes. It seems that without the Hulk around some of his villains are popping up and SHIELD is sending in She-Hulk to deal with them. In this case, it's the Abomination. Character-wise, Slott continues to make She-Hulk an interesting, multi-levelled character. Her attitude towards SHIELD and the registration is done much better in this series than in Civil War and most definitely better than Frontline. I still cringe when I think back about how she got physically pushed aside by a few media people or how she seems to buckle at the first sign of adversity in Frontline but that's a rant for another review. Besides that, she's filled with doubt on several levels. The separation of Jen Walters and She-Hulk, being thrown in there against Hulk foes, marrying the Man-Wolf, the registration and working with SHIELD, and her final "getting busy" moment in this book. They're all weighing heavy on her. Though I do question some aspects of this book. For one thing, why start with the Abomination? Was Slott trying to start with a bang? Because Peter David really did a great job of building Blonsky up where he wasn't just someone that got his butt handed to him repeatedly by the Hulk. This was the guy who killed Betty (ignoring Bruce Jones' switheroo of putting her into a coma instead) and also the guy who was pretty much made to go toe to toe with the Hulk, even starting off at as stronger than the Hulk. Slott tries to play up the Abomination with She-Hulk's narration but in the end, she beats him without Abomination doing anything to her. Sure, she started off using her "fighting prowess" courtesy of Cap and a psychological attack courtesy of Doc Samson but still, if she can put away the Abomination in such short time, and the Abomination regularly goes toe to toe with the Hulk in matches that last a long time, where do you go from there? I mean, just the fact that SHIELD only sent She-Hulk in kinda diminishes him and in turn, the Hulk. And although the psychological twist she uses makes use of just who the Abomination is and his self-hatred, it was all done just a little too easily. So yeah, as a Hulk-fan, I found this book to be a little disappointing. I know with Slott's She-Hulk sometimes you can't take things too seriously but on the other hand, I find it was diminishing character.

Secondly, there was the art (ooh, I started a second paragraph, unusual for a review). The art continues to be bad. Now I'm not a fan of the overly cartoony stuff but the art here continues to disappoint me. I've complained about it for the last few issues and although there seems to be improvement, it still bugs me. When the Abomination first appears the bumps on his head look like little ... well, I won't say what they look like but they stick out way too much. But as the book goes on it seems like the artist got tired of drawing them because by the end of the book he only has 5 or so. His head starts to look like an inflated latex glove albeit with small fingers. For a book that is as well received for its writing as this book is, I think it deserves better in the art category. And overall, I'm still hoping for a turnaround in this book after Civil War is done. Hopefully the time between Civil War/Planet Hulk and World War Hulk will do the job for me.

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