Tag Archives: scott lobdell

Preview: Four Points #3

FOUR POINTS #3

Scott Lobdell – Story / Jordan Gunderson – Art / Valentina Pinto – Colors

Deadly secrets are exposed, as Gia’s origin finally comes to light and the true history of her “powers” are disclosed! Yet, the most shocking truth will reveal itself as the ladies investigate an international weapons manufacturer, and learn—perhaps too late—that they may be in far over their heads!

Aspen welcomes back acclaimed writer Scott Lobdell to introduce to you this years most exciting new series, FOUR POINTS!

FOUR POINTS #3 is in stores June 10th, 2015!

TheFourPoints-03a-Gunderson

Review: Convergence #8

Convergence-8-coverAll the heroes of the DC Universe unite to face a crisis of infinite proportions – but when all is done, there can be only one reality. But will even that survive the battle?

Convergence #8 is on shelves, ending two months of mediocre storytelling, and giving us a clearer direction of the DC Universe to come. Written by Scott Lobdell and Jeff King, the issue continues much of what’s plagued previous issues, choppy storytelling and leaving out key moments and facts.

With Deimos defeated, the chronal energy is loose threatening to destroy the multiverse. What will the heroes do? Well somehow it involves Brainiac absorbing the energy, and sending folks back, expect none of this is really explained and just is kind of presented. But, there’s a problem, the original Crisis on Infinite Earths stands in the way!

And here’s the issue, as is the problem with much of this event. If you don’t know your DC Comics history, you’d have no idea what’s being referenced, and why it’s important. I haven’t read Crisis on Infinite Earths in decades, so the specifics aren’t exactly fresh in my mind, and I have WAY too much to read to go back and reread it all. So, some of the specifics as to what’s said went over my head, and I shrugged my shoulders for most. And even in the “correction” there’s lots of things that can be debated as far as the impact and how it mucks with DC Comic history.

But here’s the cool, the results, and this is a spoiler, but one that’s all over, it now opens up all of DC history for future stories. Everything is game, and that’s represented by a few double page spreads by Stephen Segovia and Carlo Pagulayan. It’s a who’s who of DC comic history, which is neat to see in its own way. Overall though, the art isn’t quite up to the standard we’ve seen elsewhere and even in other spin-offs.

Really, in the end, the comic is a read mainly due to its importance in shaping what’s to come, not due to actual quality. There’s some things spinning out of it, like Earth 2: Society, that I’m now even more excited about. But, the real good is DC has opened the vault, and the future is wide open.

Story: Scott Lobdell, Jeff King Art: Stephen Segovia, Carlo Pagulayan
Story: 6 Art: 6.75 Overall: 6.25 Recommendation: Read

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Convergence #7

CONV_Cv7_55410d7b0e3fd1.85141484Worlds live. Worlds die. And nothing will ever be the same.

The largest battle in the history of the Multiverse is here! Who will win and who will lose when Deimos battles the combined might of the Earth 2 survivors, the heroes from Kingdom Come, the Titans and Parallax? All this and more, as the heroes of The New 52 join the fight!

I feel like I missed something between the last issue of Convergence and this one. The heroes of the New 52 last I remember were staring at a planet making its way through a rift. There’s some being that clearly Superman knows, but I have no idea who he is, and Superman is rescuing members of Stormwatch? What happened between issues!? I’ll also overlook the switch of Guy Gardner back to a Green Lantern from Red.

The rest of the issue is pretty much a giant fight scene as forces battle each other to survive and eventually everyone then focuses on Deimos, just like the whole good guys fight each other when meeting before teaming up storyline trope.

While all of that is pretty blah, the one thing I did like of who deals the killing blow to Deimos. There’s an interesting aspect of redemption in it, and as this character’s storyline is one I grew up with, it was something I particularly liked. There’s also the interesting argument and aspect of heroes killing.

Next week sees the conclusion of this event, which puts everything back on the table for the DC Universe. We know the series that will be coming out, but how the DC Universe/Multiverse will fit together is the bigger question I just don’t quite know the answer to.

The issue, like the previous ones, is just ok. This event is a rarity in that the tie-ins are much stronger than the main series, the opposite of the usual. The big thing though is how DC sticks the landing with the next issue, and what comes next. That in the end is how this event will be judged for the better or worse.

Story: Jeff King, Scott Lobdel Art: Aaron Lopresti
Story: 6.5 Art: 6.75 Overall: 6.5 Recommendation: Read

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Four Points #2

FOUR POINTS #2

Scott Lobdell – Story / Jordan Gunderson – Art / Valentina Pinto – Colors

Something dark is coming…

Tensions rise as Gia attempts to enlist the most powerful potential recruit to the group’s cause, however early talks lead to a much more “physical” confrontation than they were hoping for. Meanwhile, a much more pressing matter threatens not only the group’s existence, but that of mankind as well.

Aspen welcomes back acclaimed writer Scott Lobdell to introduce to you this years most exciting new series, FOUR POINTS!

FOUR POINTS #2 is in stores May 13th, 2015!

TheFourPoints-02a-Gunderson

Review: Convergence #1

Convergence #1 CoverDC Comics‘ big event brings the entire DC Universe, from the dawn of time through The New 52, together. They must fight to survive against a threat that bends the Multiverse to its will. Brainiac has collected cities of doomed and forgotten worlds, who must battle each other – and the losers will be destroyed! But why is he forcing this conflict? Join the refugees from Earth-2 as they unlock the truth behind this world that exists outside time and space and is very much alive! Is Brainiac really in control – or is this planet named Telos an unparalleled force of evil?

In the lead up to Convergence I personally have been back and forth as to my interest in the series. Having read Convergence #0 last week, my interest turned towards the positive, as the set-up was intriguing at least.

Convergence #1 quickly got rid of that interest presenting a comic that felt more like a choppy set of ideas as opposed to a coherent narrative. The comic is especially cumbersome for those who might not have been reading DC’s weekly comic Earth 2: Worlds End. The issue kicks off with the heroes of the Injustice pocket of the Multiverse dealing with an unknown assailant, and it would seem getting a quick beatdown. It’s a setup that’s supposed to show that anything can happen, and that there’s actually high stakes here. Instead, without any interest or connection to the characters, and really no introduction as to what is happening and how it connects to the bigger narrative, I found myself not caring about their fate. It was a cheap move for shock that failed to deliver an impact.

The majority of the issue is the heroes of Earth 2 attempting to figure out what happened and the Brainiac of Telos attempting to figure out why they have no city attached to them. It’s then declared a battle of heroes will commence and that they will actually have to fight. It’s a cool concept, if it were a video game, but feels like a bad cut-scene before I get to battle it out myself. Also for those who might not have read Earth 2: Worlds End, I feel like a lot of what is said by that group of heroes would be lost or just not understood. There’s just a weird disconnect.

The art for the issue is just ok. It feels like it was a “B” team a bit, not featuring a DC heavy hitting artist as you’d hope for a big event such as this. Much like the story and concept as a whole, it just doesn’t feel like DC is bringing its “A” game here.

Convergence rests in nostalgia from those who have followed DC Comics throughout the decades. As I’m not one of those people, it needs more to bring me in. While the zero issue had my interest perked up, this first issue quickly drained all of that. Here’s hoping the tie-in series will bring more excitement.

Story: Scott Lobdell and Jeff King Art: Jason Paz and Carlo Pagulayan
Story: 5 Art: 6.75 Overall: 5 Recommendation: Pass

Preview: The Four Points #1

THE FOUR POINTS #1

Scott Lobdell – Story / Jordan Gunderson – Art / Valentina Pinto – Colors

Something dark is coming…

Throughout history, oddities have remained hidden away within the fabric of societies across the planet. However, in recent years these unexplained phenomena have begun to emerge with a vengeance…Enter Gia Sorentino. They thought she was crazy, and locked her away from the rest of the world. Yet, following a family tragedy, she has inherited an empire—-and with it, the keys to unlocking some of the most unimaginable secrets of mankind.

Together, with three other women who possess abilities of inhuman nature, Sorentino embarks on a journey to discover the full potential of their collective powers. But, along with the amazing comes the sinister, and some things that should have remained hidden–including those that can threaten not only their existence, but the rest of the world as well!

Aspen welcomes back acclaimed writer Scott Lobdell to introduce to you this years most exciting new series, THE FOUR POINTS!

THE FOUR POINTS #1 is in stores April 8th, 2015!

TheFourPoints-01a-Gunderson

Aspen Launches All-Female Team Comic, The Four Points

On April 8th, 2015 Aspen Comics will debut their new series The Four Points written by Scott Lobdell and penciled by Jordan Gunderson with colors by Valentina Pinto.

Following a family tragedy, Gia Sorrentino has inherited an empire and is finally free to explore her full potential and perhaps even unlock some of the most unimaginable secrets of mankind. But with the amazing comes the sinister, and Gia and three other women who also possess abilities of inhuman nature must work together to thwart an ancient evil on the rise in this all-female team series.

The Four Points will also feature multiple exclusive variant covers from series creator Jordan Gunderson, as well as Khari Randolph, for the complete run of the exhilarating new adventure series.

FourPoints-01a-Gunderson-prev FourPoints-01b-Randolph-prev FourPoints-01c-Gunderson-prev FourPoints-01d-Gunderson-prev

Review: Action Comics #20

Action-Comics_20_FullAction Comics #20 is the middle issue of the three part story offered up by the creative team of Andy Diggle and Tony S. Daniel. Even though Diggle has already left the title and Daniel is on his way out with the conclusion of this arc, so far they have delivered on the title’s namesake. Giving us a story that is packed with plenty of action, Diggle and Daniel provide the comic book that we’ve been waiting for since the New 52 began. Scott Lobdell will be taking over writing duties on Action Comics and, perhaps as a preview of what’s to come, he writes a backup story that takes us to Krypton.

The Dialogue:

This issue has dialogue that is packed with information. Not a single word is wasted here as there doesn’t seem time for idle prattle. Everyone in the issue carries a distinct voice. I really enjoy how Lex’s dialogue is being written as there’s a sense of calm in every word he says. It’s as though he’s constantly in control and because of this, always maintains his composure. When the action picks up pace, the dialogue almost disappears and the action becomes the story. I like this separation as it allows us to focus more on the wonderful art provided by Daniel.

The Art:

Speaking of the wonderful art, Tony S. Daniel has done an amazing job with this run. His effort should be commended as he not only draws the issue, but at this point taken over writing as well. Pulling double duty could easily allow him the leeway to produce subpar work. But he doesn’t. I really enjoy his Superman and the paneling is very creative in some areas. The coloring was very vibrant and fit the mood of each scene very well, even the red monotone that was used to depict several panels. Page 13 is my favorite as Daniel captures Superman’s resilience perfectly. My hope is that Daniel finds his way back to a Superman title someday.

What I Loved:

What’s not to love? This title has really shined since Morrison’s run ended. Diggle and Daniel’s departure from the series is really a travesty given the great work they’re putting out. The art and the story are really working well together here. While the truth is that Diggle has already left and Daniel is finishing out the story based on the writer’s notes, the final product is still a culmination of two people that love this character. There is no mistaking that they wanted to bring this title back from the convoluted, steaming pile of trash that Morrison gave us for 18 issues.

What I Hated:

The backup story left much to be desired. I’ve really been enjoying Lobdell’s work on Superman. While I look forward to him taking over Action to provide some uniformity between the two books, I don’t feel the backup story is necessary here. Perhaps he’s setting up for his first arc, which isn’t unheard of, but it just seems like he’s getting ready to tell a story we’ve heard before. I’m not sure how it’s going to mesh with what’s going on in the current DCnU. There’s one line in particular that kind of rubbed me the wrong way. One of the Kryptonian’s paraphrases a famous Shakespearean line from Hamlet. While it’s possible that the reference was done merely to provide some levity, as a fan of Shakespeare I picked up on it and it felt out of place. Admittedly I’m probably nitpicking here.

Favorite (non-spoilerish) Line:

“More important, remember to keep your eyes open. Here endeth the lesson.” – Lex Luthor after teaching his Jujitsu instructor a lesson.

 

In Conclusion:

This book, while coming in at an expensive $3.99, will be worth the money if you’re a current subscriber of Action comics. Being that it’s in the middle of an arc, I would suggest picking up issue #19 before diving into it if you’re looking for a jumping on point. The story is great, the art is superb and we’re heading for an epic showdown in the next issue that you won’t want to miss!

 

Story: 8.5   Art: 9   Overall: 9   Recommendation: Buy

 

Book Credits:

Writer: Andy Diggle and Tony S. Daniel Pencils: Tony S. Daniel Inks: BATT and Daniel Colorist: Tomeu Morey Letterer: Carlos M. Mangual Cover Art: Daniel & BATT with Morey Associate Editor: Rickey Purdin Editor: Eddie Berganza Publisher: DC Comics Cover Date: July 2013 Cover Price: $3.99 US Title: “Hybrid pt. 2”

 

 

Review: Superman #19

Cover Superman #19Superman #19 gives us a WTF certified gatefold cover where we see Wonder Woman holding him back as he wipes blood from his mouth, surrounded by rubble. When you open the gatefold; there stands Orion, gripping Superman’s cape in his hand, hovering above. There is a lot happening in this book with plot elements setting up future stories and Scott Lobdell is really starting to have fun as he’s settled in quite nicely shaping the Man of Steel’s comic book world.

The Dialogue:

I really enjoyed the dialogue in this issue with the exception of one thing. There is a scene where Superman is talking out loud to himself about what he did and what he’s going to do. This seemed a bit like the old Super-Friends cartoon where he would spell things out for the viewer at home who didn’t know what he was capable of. He’s Superman, what can’t he do? Anyways, I thought this would’ve been a great opportunity to show off some narrative skills, but Lobdell chooses to let Superman talk out loud to himself. Also, Perry White is highly enjoyable in a J.K. Simmons sort of way. If this is the way Lobdell will continue to write him, we need more Perry!

The Art:

Kenneth Rocafort is quickly becoming one of my favorite artists. When Jim Lee decides to retire from drawing (which I hope his hand falls off before that happens), Rocafort could be my go to guy. His style fits this genre perfectly and the perfect adjectives escape me right now. He doesn’t use traditional panels as they splash all over the page with really unique framing that screams science fiction. The colors by BLOND are well blended, especially in the beginning where we get a glowing effect from Superman’s foes. The blur effect from anything happening at super speed in the book are nicely done as well. It seems like the Superman scenes have very ‘busy’ backgrounds, while Clark’s backgrounds are more relaxed and simplified. I really enjoy that symbolism in the art.

What I Loved:

The setups. This book gets the ball rolling on future plot points, not only by introducing Hector Hammond, but the Allysun and the people made of red sun particles. These will provide some great stories to tell in the future. Not to mention the discussion of Lois and Jonathan’s ‘soon-to-be’ roommate. That will definitely be something to keep an eye out for. I can’t imagine how that can end well for anyone involved.

What I Hated:

Superman’s need to talk out loud to himself. I really think at times the story could benefit from some narrative, rather than hearing him talk to no one. As I mentioned earlier, it seems a bit on the campy, cartoony side of things to have Superman talk about using his powers to do something. I would love a little box, that describes what’s happening and why. Remember those? Remember when comic books provided narrative and told a story rather than the characters setting it up for us? Then later we get thought bubbles! So, why is he talking out loud to himself at one point…but later decides it’s better to keep his thoughts to himself. This back and forth is a bit strange to me.

Favorite (non-spoilerish) Line:

“Honestly, if I didn’t have three ex-wives to support and a prostate the size of the weekend edition, I probably would have joined you when you walked out that door, kid.” – Perry White during a ‘heart-to-heart’ talk. If this is how Perry is going to be…we need more Perry!

 

In Conclusion:

This book is a must have if you’ve been reading Superman already, I don’t need to tell you that because you already understand how great Lobdell and Rocafort have been together. But if you haven’t been reading, and are looking for a place to jump on board, this is a great place to start. With new villains, old villains and hints of things to come this book is setting you up for a great future run.

 

Story: 9 Art: 9 Overall: 9 Recommendation: Buy

 

Book Credits:

Writer: Scott Lobdell Pencils: Kenneth Rocafort Colorist: BLOND Letterer: Rob Leigh Cover Art: Rocafort Editor: Eddie Berganza Assistant Editor: Anthony Marques Publisher: DC Comics Cover Price: $2.99 US Title: “Look Who’s Flying to Dinner”

Review – Requiem’s Batman Incorporated #9, Teen Titans #18, Nightwing #18 and Red Hood and the Outlaws #18

Batman Incorporated #9

batman incorporated #9 coverThe fallout from last month’s shocking turn of events has Batman on the run! Is The Dark Knight a murderer? Batman Inc. is still battling their foe, Leviathan. This is the continuation of the previous issues shocking event. Batman and his allies deal with the death of Robin and getting their collective butts handed to them.

This issue is filled with sorrow. There’s also another death of a Batman Inc. member that has to be dealt with and that’s done as well. But, again, there’s a lack of emotional heft that I’ve felt has been an issue with a lot of the  “Requiem” tie-in comics.

Morrison, in the last issue, gave us what should have been an emotional and shocking moment. Instead, it came off as a stunt in that issue. Here, I’d hope for a melancholy issue full of emotional outpouring. Instead it feels like the regrouping of Batman and his allies after getting their asses handed to them.

There just hasn’t been a reflection that I’ve been hoping for. Face it, this isn’t the first time Batman has gotten a kid killed. You’d think there’d be some more reaction, just based on that.

Much like most of what I’ve read of Morrison’s the story jumps around, almost to the point of choppiness. I know some folks are huge fans, but I’m not one of them. I can only recommend this issue for folks who have been keeping up with the storyline. Definitely not a point for new readers to jump on and find out what’s going on.

Story: Grant Morrison Art: Chris Burnham and Jason Masters

Story: 7 Art: 7 Overall: 7 Recommendation: Read

Teen Titans #18

Teen Titans #18 coverUnknown to the Teen Titans, Red Robin’s condition is worsening after the events of “Death of the Family.” And now Red Robin must face an even greater tragedy! The new Dr. Light is coming for Solstice! Guest-starring the Suicide Squad!

Red Robin (was he a Robin? I’m kind of confused) is a close member of the Batman family and here he deals with the death of Damian in some pretty touching scenes. They’re a little by the books, but still touching.

What’s good though is Lobdell uses this death to focus on Red Robin’s mission. He formed the Teen Titans to protect super powered teens. With the death of Damian, he failed. And there’s all the other death’s on his hands. He’s not doing so hot when it comes to his mission.

So, he takes the Teen Titans on a mission to free another teen from Amanda Waller’s prison. That puts them directly in the cross hairs of the Suicide Squad. Lots of fighting ensues and it’s entertaining.

There’s also a nice twist, but that I don’t want to give away.

Overall, the issue feels like a bit of a kick start and mission statement for the series. Nice to see the death of a character lead in a positive direction and used for the narrative good, instead of just shock.

Story: Scott Lobdell Art: Eddy Barrows and Eber Ferreira

Story: 7.5 Art: 7.75 Overall: 7.5 Recommendation: Buy

Nightwing #18

Nightwing #18 coverDick Grayson lost so much during “Death of the Family” that some new events are going to push him right over the edge! Nightwing has almost no hope left until the chance for vengeance presents itself. What decisions will he make?

We know there’s some big changes in store for Dick Grayson. With the next issue, he heads to Chicago, so this issue is a bridge between the death of Damian and his new location. It’s a reflection of the past as well as a look towards the future.

The issue feels like it’s an attempt to wrap up some plot points and ghosts haunting Grayson. He still spent time as Batman in the New 52, so he was a partner of Damian’s. The death of his former partner weighs on him, as well as his past role as Robin. And out of all of the characters, his seems to be the most emotional and believable. There is some catharsis and reaction here that totally makes sense. And it’s more than welcome, since it’s missing from a few other issues where it should have been more prevalent.

The issue is solid for another reason, it’s a good jumping on point. There’s some big changes coming for Nightwing, and this is the point new readers can hop on to find out this change’s motivation. It accomplishes two things, allows Nightwing to deal with the past and look towards the future. It’s one of the best of the “Requiem” tie-ins.

Story: Kyle Higgins Art: Roger Bonet

Story: 7.75 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.75 Recommendation: Buy

Red Hood and the Outlaws #18

Red Hood and the Outlaws #18 coverJason Todd suffered terribly at the hands of The Joker in “Death of the Family,” and now he’s changing the Outlaws’ mission! Something is bound to break with all that’s happened…will it be Jason’s soul?

So, did Jason die in the New 52? I stopped reading this series only a few issues in, so not sure what was retconned and which is still events. But, I’m going to assume that Jason was still killed at the hands of the Joker, instead of just being beaten severely.

So, you’d think next to Batman, Jason would be the most affected. Especially since the Joker tortured him a bit more than the rest. The story is two parts. There’s Jason struggling with his torture. The other part deals with Bruce/Batman dealing with the fact he has failed twice now when it comes to Robins.

First, there’s the pseudo issue with the fact this has Batman sitting around a lot when the other issues has him acting a lot and getting his aggression out by beating people up.

Then there’s what’s going on within Jason’s psyche. I really don’t know much about his coming back from the dead and whatever else was referenced in this issue. It’s interesting, but predictable. I’m sure there’s more to it for long time readers and fans.

The issue had a bit of the emotion other issues of “Requiem” has missed. It’s a predictable issue, but a decent read.

Story: Scott Lobdell Art: Timothy Green II

Story: 7.25 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.25 Recommendation: Read

DC Comics provided some of these comics to Graphic Policy for FREE to review

« Older Entries