Written by Cleveland Oakes, September 23rd, 2016, at 8:29am Tweet to: @Oakes945
And there came a day unlike any other day; when I decided to review my favorite books of the week. Thus “What I’m Reading Son” was born. This week’s Comic Book selection includes a trip back in time to the Magic of the Old West.
One family’s desperate last stand against the God of Lies. The return of Spider-Man’s most superior foe. And join the last son of Krypton; as he attempts to take a day off with the family.
Seven to Eternity #1
Welcome to Rick Remender’s and Jerome Opena’s world of Zhal. For readers looking for a break from the onslaught of superhero titles, this high fantasy comic book is the treat you have been awaiting. Markedly, the first page of Seven to Eternity begins with a long form prose entry from the diary of our hero Adam Osidis.
The world of Zhal was at peace until the arrival of an entity known as the Mud King. Adam’s father, Zeb, was the only ruler to stand against this new God. For this reason, Zeb forsook his home and kingdom and exiled himself along with his family to the outskirts of Zahl. Yet a man can only hide from a God for so long.
The Mud King will not be rejected so lightly. Hence Adam is forced to consider the offer, his father turned down. The series setup and premise, reminded a great deal of the writings of Brandon Sanderson. In fact, Seven to Eternity feels like it should be a part of his prolific living universe called the Cosmere. This is great read, that feels like the first chapter of a fantasy novel. I loved it, hopefully you will too.
Kingsway West #2
This second issue of Greg Pak’s magical old west comic book continues at a brisk pace. Kingsway Law reluctantly takes up his guns again to find his missing wife. The greatest monster of the Old West has reawakened and unsurprisingly the body count in his wake begins to mount.
The addition of the United States of New York has proven interesting. I was disappointed in the apparent early demise of a character just introduced in our first issue. I was interested in the Engineer’s use of Necromancy and the need for his subjects to be dead in order to interrogate them.
Necromancy, by the way, never ends up well for those of you unfamiliar with the ways of magic. This comic book continues to entertain, and I’m certain it will remain one of my favorites for sometime to come.
As much as I have always been fascinated with Victor Stone’s journey from man to machine to man again; Cyborg has significantly hit the reset button too many times since he has been promoted to big leagues. Issue 2 of this comic book continues the story that began in Cyborg Rebirth #1.
Victor is still haunted by the discovery that he could be just a “ghost in a shell” and not truly human after all. Victor, struggling with his humanity is not a new issue. It was an element touched upon several times in the New 52 version of the Justice League.
Notably it was Victor’s humanity that allowed him to defeat his evil doppleganger Grid, during the events of Forever Evil. Obviously I really wanted to like this comic book. But I’m just not engaged with this arc so far. I will stick around for a few more issues. If Cyborg is going to have a sustained run this time around it’s seriously time for a thematic upgrade.
Justice League #5
Do you want my one word review of the conclusion of “The Extinction Machines”? Disappointed. If I were to make it three words? Confused and disappointed. All things considered, a promising storyline that began with the League warily reaching out to the Pre 52 Superman for help; eventually ends in a muddled mess that seems to only be setting up yet another Crisis.
This was comic book writing at its worst. After five issues of investment, there was no payoff. That faux pas will always earn any comic book a big fat ZERO in my rankings. I will give issue six a try, but I feel really burned by this initial run.
“Better Together, Part One: Family Dinner” succeeds where the Justice League “Extinction Machines” storyline fell flat. The Pre 52 Superman is an unknown quantity. As a result his best friends in the world, Diana Prince and Bruce Wayne don’t trust him, don’t know him, or his motivations. For this reason Lois Lane, invites Bruce and Diana over for a family dinner to prove Clark’s good will.
This was a small quiet comic book that spoke volumes. Diana is obviously still heartbroken at losing the love of her life, yet here he is alive and well with his wife and son! Bruce is still mourning the loss of his best friend, but here is a stranger wearing his face.
Comparatively, perhaps Clark has it the worst, because he lost an entire world. Thus it’s genuinely uncomfortable and heartbreaking as he shares fond memories with Bruce and Diana, of adventures they do not recall. In summary, Trinity is off to a solid start, and I’m hopeful the Big 3 can be family once again.
The tortoise once told the hare, “Slow and steady wins the race.” In this issue Peter Tomasi and Patrick Gleason slow down the breakneck speed established in the first six issues and gives the Kent family a much needed day off. Much like the afore reviewed Trinity #1.
“Our Town” is a quiet standalone issue that highlights everything true and good we love about Superman. Reader’s looking for the bleak and down on his luck Man of Steel featured in BvS, please exit the room and go elsewhere. Big Blue is back, and he is fun, hopeful and as cheesy as ever!
It’s truly a dark night for Batman and family. Fresh off of the apparent death suffered in last week’s issue of Detective Comics, the Bat family is taking on the machinations of Hugo Strange. “Night of the Monster Men” finds team Bat dealing with multiple emergencies. First, the worst storm since the Zero Year hits Gotham City.
Second, the city is under siege by a series of kaiju monsters. This just in time for Halloween series is a perfect creepy, comic book event as we head into the Autumn season. What’s more exciting will be Batman’s struggle with the Suicide Squad after he defeats Hugo Strange’s initial volley.
The monster mash continues in Nightwing #5. Overall there isn’t anything super exciting in this comic book. It’s typical crossover fodder. Generally speaking, in a long crossover series like this the story loses momentum or the storytelling is inconsistent from book to book. For an example of this look at Marvel’s failing Civil War II series. With this in mind, “Night of the Monster Men Part 2” suffers none of these flaws. In fact the comic book is a seamless continuation of Batman #7.
I haven’t been reading Nightwing, and one of the main purposes of a crossover series like this is to get new readers to sample books they haven’t been reading. There was nothing here that compelling enough to make Nightwing a monthly staple. Nevertheless, I was surprised at how well the creative team has captured the current mood and tone of the other ongoing Batman titles. I will definitely be back next month to see how this story plays out.
In recent memory Otto Octavius’ run as the Superior Spider-Man, was one of Marvel’s most inspired storylines. Having stolen Peter’s body and life he improved it to the Nth degree. Point in fact, Peter owes all of his current fame and fortune to Doctor Octopus. “Before Dead No More” takes an interesting turn this month with the return of Doctor Octopus.
Wow, I didn’t see that coming! Poor Peter is going to have his hands full. I haven’t been reading Spider-Man in a while, however I’m very excited at all the insane possibilities in play here. Hopefully “Dead No More” proper will not disappoint. I’m looking forward to what the web of fate has in store for our friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.
Comic Book: Where To Find
These are the new comics I’m reading this week. What are you reading?