I’m just back from the comic shop for the week and I picked up four of my regular books. Winners all:

  • The Walking Dead 33
  • Strangers in Paradise 86 (only 4 left)
  • American Splendor 4
  • Jonah Hex 14
  • A buddy of mine just sent me a box of recent DC comics. I haven’t read many DC comics over the last few years so this is a change of pace for me. I’m going to write a short review as I read them. Here are this weeks.

    Omega Men 1 & 2 (of six)- A first issue shouldn’t be this confusing. I had no idea what was going on. The second issue helped a little bit and near as I can figure out The Omega Men have been fighting some religious empire way out in space. Meanwhile the religious empire has gotten the secular law authorities after the Omega Men. The lawmen and the JLA end up fighting the Omega Men on Earth. Yeah, a classic super-hero “misunderstanding” fight. Just what we need another of. Read at your own risk.

    Albion 6 (of six)- I bought the first issue of this many moons ago and had no idea what was going on in it. Now I’ve read the sixth issue and I am still confused. It seems that the story is about a bunch of super-villians breaking out of an asylum. The storytelling is so bad that I can’t tell who anyone is or what their motivations are. There may be 100 characters in this or there maybe 10. I just don’t know because the storytelling is so jumbled. Stay away

    Action Comics 843- Busiek, Nicieza, and Woods are obviously a cut above the pack because this is the last part of a three part story and it was clear and well told. Supes and a bunch of guys have been capture by some giant alien but now their busting out. I wasn’t really that interested in the story and I’m tired of the “no line weight” art style that’s dominated comics for the last few years but this is a well crafted comic. Check it out if super-heroes are your thing.

    Claw The Unconquered 5-6 (of 6)- Claw is a Conan rip off leftover from the 1970’s. The difference is that Claw has a gimmick; he has the hand of a demon that gives him magical powers. Claw never shuts up about that dumb hand either. Otherwise he looks and acts nearly the same as Conan. These two issues wrap up this revival mini series of his and they’re not bad. There is the usual sword and sorcery mumbo jumbo about demons being let loose to take over the world but the story telling and art are solid. I had no trouble jumping on board for the last two issues and following things. Check it out if sword and sorcery is your thing.

    American Virgin 4, 7-8- If you like to be hit over the head with irony than this book is for you. It’s a “high concept” book about a Christian guy who has taken a pledge of virginity and is hunting around the world for the killer of his girlfriend. He wants to kill said killer by the way. If you don’t immediately see the contradiction in a person taking “Thou shalt not commit adultery” (even though he seems to not know the definition of adultery which isn’t the same as premarital sex) so seriously but being fuzzy on “Thou shalt not kill” don’t worry. The writer will remind you of it at least once an issue. Each comic is filled with the lead and couple of supporting characters walking around the world’s sleazy places and being ironic. That art and script are okay but the plot is dreadful. Any character can get preachy at any moment. Read at your own risk.

    Flash 4-5- The very definition of mediocre comics. The plot, script, and art are all fair to middling. Nothing to recommend.

    Hellblazer 225-226- Talk about not knowing what is going on in a story.This is it. Not because the storytelling is bad but the writer is obviously writing for the trade. These are parts two and three and some key stuff happened in part one which they don’t bother to mention again. Our characters are in some unnamed city where everyone has committed suicide because of something called “the empathy engine”. If our hero doesn’t stop it the “virus” will spread everywhere and everyone on Earth will commit suicide. Is the empathy engine a virus? I’m just confused. The characters shuffle around for two issues not really doing or resolving much. I gave up on Constantine years ago because of excessive moping on his part and it seems I’ve missed nothing. Check it out only if feeling sorry for yourself is your thing.

    Deadman 3- Ahhh… the curse of modern comics strikes again. I have no idea what is going on in this issue. It seems to be ripping off the movie “The Butterfly Effect” (and countless others) as the lead character is leaping back in time to try and change things. Who, what, when, where, and why are barely touched upon. The most laugh out loud confusing moment was when, after being chased and shot at by a bunch of guys (whoever they were), our two main characters stop at a dinner where the woman goes into the restroom, takes out a home pregnancy test (!), and the goes and tells Deadman (I think that’s who the lead guy is) she is pregnant. Talk about out of nowhere! Stay away from this mess.