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Archive for February 20, 2023

Week of 2/15/23

Daredevil issue 8 is  giving us that confrontation we were promised to be between The Punisher and Daredevil, and yet it feels almost like filler. 
It’s fine, it’s OK.
But I don’t know, I think I was expecting more than just OK.

On the other hand, it’s not nearly as bad as Harley Quinn Screws up the DC Universe. You know, I’m a sucker for these kind of concepts. Maybe it’s just some old nostalgia for Fred Hembeck destroys the Marvel Universe, but when it’s done right, it’s really a good story. The Punisher Kills the Marvel Universe is a shockingly good tale, that really leans into both Punisher and the fantastic nature of the Marvel universe. This Harley Quinn book is none of those things. The story is meandering and a little amateur tonight, and the art is absolutely atrocious. When did the quality on Harley Quinn just fall off a cliff?Even when it was skewing more activist, the series itself still had good art and some sort of a compelling plot. Nowadays it’s just garbage. I keep coming back to it because I keep wanting it to be good, but it just isn’t!

Spider-Man on the other hand is getting better. At least, I’m starting to settle in. We get Spidey heading off on holiday with black cat, only to bump into MJ and the husband . Maybe it’s just my relief at the fact that Dark Web is over, but I really do enjoy the sort of quirky stories. Spider-Man has such a great supporting cast that it’s a shame  they’re not leaning into them more. This is a good step in that direction

Star Trek Resurgence continues to be the best of the Star Trek books out there right now. Maybe one of the best Star Trek series we’re seeing overall, even better than Prodigy. Perhaps it’s because we’ve got unique characters and a completely different crew, or maybe because it’s set in the era I’m most looking for… just post TNG. As a result, It gets to do it’s own thing with just a dash of nostalgia and familiar faces. not too much though. Not so many that it’s overwelming with a lineup that’s such a crazy mash-up it becomes off-putting. That’s the star trek main title is right now in a nutshell and also the even weirder Worf title that’s coming up. This story about  Leah Braun’s developing a new sort of warp drive in  Tularian space, it’s just been really good. Quite frankly, it’s got me ready to play the video game… and we all know I’m not a gamer!

I took a minute to go through the new WildC.A.T.S. series. Maybe it just feels weird to me to see them interact with DCU characters. I wanted this series to integrate better, and I still love Grifter, but something just feels a little off this time around. It’s just not quite giving me what I’m looking for. It’s not bad by any means though, and I still hope that it’s going to develop into something.  I think there’s room for a corporate driven superhero team in the DCU if they could just focus in on that.

Batgirls is actually still going pretty strong. It may be running out of gas a little bit, but it’s still clever and interesting enough for me to keep wanting to follow it. Steph kidnapped by her father, and Cassie on the way to rescue her. It was a good story complete with a little mindswap schtick… and then interrupted by this bizarre no text issue #14. You can just skip that thing. It was a total waste.

If I have any real complaints about this particular arc, it’s that it’s just a little too long. I feel like we could have resolved this with one issue fewer. Some of this action, some of the brooding could have been compressed. The jury still out as well, on Cluemaster. I get what they’re doing with him… I understand where they’re going. I’m just not sure if I like it or not. Actually, I’m not even sure if I care enough to like it or not. I know that sounds neutral, but it’s a bit of a negative. I should want to care. The story should make me care. It should make me like it or hate it… and it doesn’t do either of those things. It’s a very weird indifference. Nevertheless, I’m stoked and ready for the next arc. I don’t know how long this series is gonna last….. it feels like the sort of title that should have gotten the axe a while ago, but it’s continued on . I had much the same feelings about Nightwing in the late nineties,  and I can’t think of a much higher praise than that.

Joe Fixit #2  continues to be a solid book. Indeed, it feels like a flashback to the eighties, that’s sort of fun when the hulk and Spider-Man would show up in each other’s books and cartoons. you never know where the kingpin was gonna show up and where the whole situation could just be… well, it could be anything. I’m not entirely sure where this is going or how it’s going to end up, but I’m really enjoying the ride.. andisn’t that exactly what we read comic books for?

Speaking of a good ride, the Flash season premiere was excellent. Look, I was already on board with a whole Groundhog Day episode… but you throw in a proper comic accurate Captain Boomerang? Let me tell you something! I’ve been waiting nineyears to see Captain Boomerang finally shot on the Flash! I always resented that they deployed him on Arrow instead, because this is really a Flash villain, and one I grew fond of during John Ostrander’s run on Suicide Squad, And I’ve always enjoyed the new 52 revamp of the costume. So definitely get him on TV in a proper costume come up with  Grant Gustin and company, it’s just a real treat.

So how can they get the second episode this season so wrong? They’re doing wild bizarre things with Caitlin… neither Frost nor Caitlin, but a weird mess created from a terrible experiment. I’m not enjoying that storyline at all. Then we have a gender swapped Fiddler, and while I admit that the instrument itself is pretty spectacular (clear plastic electric violin with LEDs), It just smacks of The sort of modern day political driven changes that sunk the rest of The CW. And of course she’s after an old villain who is gay, very gay and make sure to point out that hes gay every chance that he gets. Do I mention, that hes gay? It’s vitally important to know that he’s gay. I only point this out, Because we hear more about him being gay and his boyfriend and how his gayness with his boyfriend has changed his life, way more about that than the sonic gauntlets that he uses. Being gay is really his only character trait.. and that’s not actually a characterization ( Unless perhaps you’re just one of those cardboard cut out characters in a horror movie that’s just being introduced so we can kill you off in half an hour). It’s just tokenization. It gets tiresome when the message is this in your face and taking priority over the adventure. We’ve only got half a season this year, can we please not waste it and get back to the business fighting the Red Death? Is that too much to ask?

I hope not. See you next week.