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Weekly Review

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It’s a fairly light week of books this week.  What stands out from the batch?  Find out in our reviews below.

Monthly Comics

Age of Heroes #2 – The Age of Heroes limited series has a goal to introduce us to the new status quo of the Marvel universe and treat us to run ups to new series, in this case Young Allies and American Son.  Those two main stories are backed up by a two pager focused on the Dark Young Avengers which has nice art but a horrible layout and a one page story about Gauntlet which comes off as patronizing.  If you want to see the run up to the two series it’s plugging it’s worth it, otherwise skip.

Story: 7 Art: 7.75 Overall: 7

Atlas #2 – The latest series to star these characters enters it’s second issue which does an excellent job of catching up the reader on the need to know history of the characters.  The series has a nice pulp feel to the mystery story, yet overall the comic feels modern, unlike the previous Agents of Atlas which leaned towards either the pulp or the modern.  Overall, the issue is solid and the series so far is as impressive as it’s predecessor.

Story: 8 Art: 8.25 Overall: 8

Black Widow #3 – There’s definitely a dip in this issue as Black Widow takes on Elektra in a rather odd and stilted fight, it was so in both action and dialogue.  The rest of the issue has Widow tracking down who attacked her.  The series started off great, but this is so far the weakest point.  Let’s just hope it’s just for this issue.

Story: 7.25 Art: 8 Overall: 7.5

Brightest Day #4 – Brightest Day has been entertaining so far and all of the first four issues have been setting up the mystery of why these people have returned and what does the white power want?  This has been the focus along with some other mysteries here and there.  However, like the television show Lost there’s only so much build up you can do.  It’s starting to wear thin, four issues in and I already want to see some pay off for the investment.  Hopefully we get a bit of that soon.

Story: 7.75 Art: 8.25 Overall: 8

Deadpool #24 – Usually in an issue of Deadpool there’s a great mix of humor and action.  Unfortunately this issue leans more on the action and less on the humor.  Deadpool’s adventure in Vegas was rife with potential, it’s sadly not reaching it.

Story: 7 Art: 8 Overall: 7.25

DMZ #54 – Part four of the M.I.A storyline that shows how amazing of a writer Brian Wood is.  Matty Roth is feeling guilty for his crimes and turns himself into the United States.  The story goes in directions I never expected and just shows why this series is some of the best political commentary out there in any media.

Story: 10 Art: 8.5 Overall: 9.75

Fables #96 – It’s the third part of the excellent story giving the history between Rose Red and Snow White, which is a great interpretation of the fairy tales we know.  My only issue, is the past few issues have been a distraction from the storyline involving Mr. Dark.  I can see where it’s all going, but it’s kind of hard to shelve a story line for so long and then go back to it.

Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5

The Marvelous Land of Oz #7 – Um… my dog ate the review?  Yeah, we’re not caught up yet.

Story: ? Art: ? Overall: ?

The New Avengers #1 – Norman Osborn’s “Dark Reign” is over and it’s a new “Age of Heroes,” but does everyone now have to bow down to Steve Rogers?  Enter Luke Cage and the New Avengers.  It’s a nice start to the series as it looks like a lot of what’s been set up by Doc Voodoo’s series and Strange’s series is going to have an impact right away in this series.  Very entertaining so far.

Story: 8.5 Art: 8.25 Overall: 8.5

New Mutants #14 – Second Coming continues to rocket ahead as the strike team in the future does what it needs to do to end the nightmare in the present as Cyclops psychs up the troops to take on the threat their facing.  This is X-Men at their best as a giant action movie.  Great stuff.

Story: 8.75 Art: 8.25 Overall: 8.5

The Walking Dead #73 – This series by Robert Kirkman is so much more than just a “survive from zombies” series.  The focus is on psychology and character interaction and it takes you in directions you never expect.  Filled with shocking moments even the touching quiet scenes are tense.  The entire series is a must read.

Story: 9 Art: 8.5 Overall: 9

Dark Wolverine #87 – Daken seems to be a character folks either love or hate.  This issue shows the impressive things that can be done with him.  One of the few characters whose sexuality is a main focus this issue sees the character in Rome and being picked up by a man in a con.  It’s a great focus on right and wrong and the nature of individuals layered with what already stands out about Daken.  Keep this up and you’ll have those haters rethinking their dislike.

Story: 8.75 Art: 8 Overall: 8.75

Graphic Novels

Criminal: The Sinners – The trade paperback collecting Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips’s latest mini series.  The noir crime tale is exactly what you’d expect, which is excellence.  The story, depth of characters, art, everything is top notch.  I just wish we saw this series more often.  Imagine this quality in a Vertigo Crime novel, released every month.  The thought leaves me salivating.  Marvel needs to take these two and get them moving on new material.  Every Criminal collection is an example of the excellence that comics can achieve.

Story: 10 Art: 9.5 Overall: 9.75