Tag Archives: grifter

Unboxing: DC Multiverse Grifter

Grifter is now in 7-inch scale courtesy of McFarlane Toys and the DC Multiverse line. The figure comes with a card, katana, dagger, and base. The look is based on the Infinite Frontier comic series.

We open up the box and show off what you get, going over the figure details.

You can get yours!

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Big Bad Toy Store

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McFarlane Toys Reveals Grifter

McFarlane Toys has revealed Grifter will be coming to their DC Multiverse line of figures. The Image Comics/Wildstorm turned DC property looks to be coming with a sword and hopefully we get his more iconic pistols.

You can order the figure now.

This site contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and make a purchase, we’ll receive a percentage of the sale. Graphic Policy does purchase items from these sites. Making purchases through these links helps support the site.

Review: Batman: Urban Legends #1

Batman: Urban Legends #1

As seen in The Lego Batman Movie, the Arkham video games, and the Batman comics of the 1990s and early 2000s, Batman’s strength is in the world and characters that he creates access to. Whether that’s his allies, villains, nooks and crannies of Gotham, or even police officers that he either works with or against, these personalities and settings are why I continue to return to the Batman side of the DC Universe. The creators of Batman: Urban Legends #1 understand this and flesh out different Batman-adjacent characters and even sometimes explore their relationship to the Dark Knight while also telling action, romance, and crime stories.

First up in this Gotham-themed anthology is the beginning of a six part Batman and Red Hood serial where Batman and his former protege-turned-killer vigilante (He’s switched to rubber bullets for the moment.) investigate a source of a hallucinatory street drug tackily called Cheerdrops. Writer Chip Zdarsky has a firm grasp on Jason Todd’s voice, including the darkness inside his soul and his hunger for justice, especially for Gotham’s beleaguered working class. Artists Eddy Barrows and Eber Ferreira and colorist Adriano Lucas nail the grit of the city with explosive linework and jagged layouts to go with a color palette that has had all the light sucked out of it. However, Excalibur’s Marcus To does the art in the flashbacks, which features brighter colors as well as simpler, cleaner lines with a more traditional superhero feel even though one of the scenes is set during “Under the Red Hood” when Jason Todd came back from the dead and started killing criminals.

“Batman and Red Hood” is also a study in contrasts in how two very different crime fighters deal with the same crisis. Batman is the World’s Greatest Detective and is super methodical with Barrows and Ferreria drawing him looking at the chemical makeup of Cheerdrops CSI-style, and his All-Star Superman-esque moment with a jumper is less feel-good and more evidence collection. On the other hand, Jason fights crime with his guts and heart and even admits in a wry line from Zdarsky that he’s not a great detective as he struggles to find a Cheerdrop stash house. However, he does find a boy named Tyler, and of course, Jason is great with kids and even lets him wear part of his mask while he looks for his dad in a dodgy part of Gotham. Zdarsky, Barrows, and Ferreira create something truly heartwarming between Jason Todd and Tyler.

There’s a throughline between this and the flashbacks where Batman (Portrayed as more of an action figure than man by To) struggles being a father figure to Jason, and Alfred does the job perfectly because he sees him as a human being and not an obstacle in his war on crime. Chip Zdarsky writes Alfred Pennyworth as the perfect parent to the Bat-family, who isn’t afraid to tell Batman that he’s full of shit and chooses compassion over a closed fist. And speaking of Batman, I love how Zdarsky doesn’t give him an inner monologue and depicts him more as a force of nature than a gun toting, broken man like Jason Todd, who agonizes over every decision and whose interaction with Tyler bring back memories of his mom who died of a drug overdose. Also, he’s not afraid to go a little dark, and Eddy Barrows and Eber Ferreira jagged layouts and emotional poses are along for the ride.

Batman: Urban Legends #1

The second story in Batman: Urban Legends #1 is an eight page Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy one-off from writer Stephanie Phillips, artist Laura Braga, and colorist Ivan Plascencia. Plascencia is this story’s secret weapon that shows the happy, hilarious times of Harley and Ivy’s first dates and the bleak current times for Harley as she has moved back to Gotham in her solo title and as a recurring character in Batman. Braga’s art is expressive and high energy for both the good times (Harley and Ivy smooching and snapping selfies) and bad times (A sudden bolt of lightning shattering their pictures), and she is a good fit for a story that isn’t centered around a heist or fight against a superhero, but a relationship. She and Phillips tap into the depth of feelings that Harley has for Ivy, and through some handy plant symbolism, they create hope for the relationship that has become very popular for fans in the past decade. “Harley and Ivy” is a nice, nearly slice of life oasis in the midst of the three other stories, which have more moving parts.

The third story in this comic is a 10 page “Outsiders” feature by Brandon Thomas, Max Dunbar, and Luis Guerrero starring Black Lightning, Katana, and an interesting take on Metamorpho. Thomas turns in kind of a mystery plot with the story starting with Black Lightning and an unseen Metamorpho in a Japanese prison before cutting to a bonkers, two page spread of a speedboat chase. Unlike the previous two stories in Batman: Urban Legends #1, Thomas and Dunbar go for a action over character focus, and honestly, I’m here for it. Dunbar uses arrows from their pursuers to act as eye-lines to follow the high speed chase, and he and Thomas have a clever moment or two up their sleeve, especially in regards to Metamorpho’s first appearance. The story isn’t particularly deep, but it has the vibe of a James Bond cold open with superpowers as Guerrero really makes Black Lightning’s abilities sizzle. Finally, Brandon Thomas’ plotting really kept me engaged with thinking about why characters were acting a certain way, and the the mini mystery box structure has me intrigued for the upcoming issue.

Batman: Urban Legends #1

Grifter is a character I didn’t really know a lot about except for some random comics like the New 52 Team 7 and JLA/WildCATs, but Matthew Rosenberg, Ryan Benjamin, and Antonio Fabela have made this anti-hero/rapscallion and his various pratfalls quite lovable and hilarious Batman: Urban Legends #1’s final story. Grifter is like that guy who bluffs at poker, but never has a good hand. And until maybe the penultimate page of the comic, he’s either screwing up or making a joke about it beginning with his mad rush towards supervillain fire during his Team 6 days with a lot of characters with familiar names from Wildstorm comics. (I’m not an expert on these characters, and you don’t have to be to enjoy the story.) Grifter uses his sense of humor to detract from his mediocre performance as Lucius Fox’s bodyguard or to avoid getting his ass kicked by Batman, but he also has a mystery side that is revealed when he has a “date” at one of Penguin’s bars. The mystery starts to really unfold towards the end of the comic, but Rosenberg hints at every time, he talks on a headset with what I assume is his older brother.

The comedy in “Grifter” isn’t just limited to Matthew Rosenberg’s delightfully smartass dialogue. It shows up a lot in Ryan Benjamin’s visuals, which range from G.I. Joe or Authority homages (When the superheroes clean up Team 6’s mess.) in the flashback to pure slapstick. For example, Grifter spills a drink at a party Lucius Fox is meeting a client at and spills a drink on a woman. In this situation, Benjamin doesn’t just show a simple facial expression, but throws in some growlixes and makes you know that she’s furious that the soaking wet guy in Converse and blue jeans is even in the same room with her. This playfulness extends to the fight between Batman and Grifter, which starts as a serious throwdown and ends up in a total cat and mouse situation with Grifter finally getting enough self-awareness to call it quits. However, their paths will cross, and you can tell that Batman understands he’s a wildcard with his connections to Lucius Fox, the criminal underworld, and probably those Wildstorm guys. All in all, Matthew Rosenberg, Ryan Benjamin, and Antonio Fabela turn in a hilarious action-comedy set in DC’s weirdest and (sometimes) dourest city and also slowly unveil what seems to be a master plan to merge the worlds of Wildstorm and Gotham.

Batman: Urban Legends #1 is an absolute win for the anthology format that DC Comics has been trying out with all of the four stories in the comic being entertaining and shedding light on a unique cast of characters. The longer stories that bookend the comic are especially noteworthy thanks to Chip Zdarsky’s pitch-perfect handle on the fascinating character of Jason Todd in “Batman and Red Hood” and Matthew Rosenberg and Ryan Benjamin’s skill with verbal and visual humor in “Grifter”.

Story: Chip Zdarsky, Stephanie Phillips, Brandon Thomas, Matthew Rosenberg
Art: Eddy Barrows, Eber Ferreira, Marcus To, Laura Braga, Max Dunbar, Ryan Benjamin
Colors: Adriano Lucas, Ivan Plascencia, Luis Guerrero, Antonio Fabela
Letters: Becca Carey, Deron Bennett, Steve Wands, Saida Temofonte
Story: 8.0 Art: 8.6 Overall: 8.3 Recommendation: Buy

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Purchase: comiXologyAmazonKindleZeus ComicsTFAW

Batman: Urban Legends Dives Into the World of Gotham Spotlighting, Jason Todd, Grifter, Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy, the Outsiders, and more

Explore the world of Gotham in a brand new anthology series, Batman: Urban Legends which launches in March 2021 from DC Comics. Batman may be the biggest name in Gotham City, but there are lots of other heroes—and villains—who will get a turn to shine in a brand-new monthly anthology series highlighting top talent and a mix of new voices making their mark on the city the Dark Knight calls home.

The first six issues are anchored by a Batman/Red Hood thriller from writer Chip Zdarsky and fan-favorite artist Eddy Barrows. Renegade vigilante Jason Todd, a.k.a. Red Hood is investigating a new and lethal drug sweeping through Gotham City. In the course of one night, this investigation will change his life forever – and put him in Batman’s crosshairs.

Future State: Grifters writer Matthew Rosenberg and artist Ryan Benjamin continue from the pages of Batman #101, as gun-for-hire Cole Cash is still in Gotham, on the trail of the true motives of the Halo Corporation…and yes, Batman and Grifter go head-to-head again!

In a story set before the launch of the new ongoing Harley Quinn series, writer Stephanie Phillips and Future State: The Next Batman artist Laura Braga team up to help Harley sort out her complicated history with Poison Ivy – but first she’ll have to find her!

This debut issue also launches a three-part tale of the Outsiders, courtesy of Future State: Outsiders writer Brandon Thomas with art by Max Dunbar. This saga reunites team members Black Lightning, Katana, and Metamorpho, but this reunion quickly turns into a confrontation with the appearance of a figure from Katana’s past!

Batman: Urban Legends #1 is a $7.99 prestige format series, debuting on Tuesday, March 16, 2021 with covers by Hicham Habchi (main), David Finch (variant), and Kael Ngu (variant).

Around the Tubes

I’m still recovering from New York Comic Con with a nice case of nerd flu, blaargh. Here’s some news to keep you busy.

Around the Blogs

ICv2 – Disney Slates ‘Ant-Man’ Movie for Nov. 5, 2015Counting down starting now!

Bleeding Cool – Grifter, Legion Lost And Blue Beetle Join The DC CancellationsAnd we know of one new series so far.


Around the Tubes Reviews

CBR – Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 9 #14

CBR – Fantastic Four #611

CBR – Ultimate Comics X-Men #17

Around the Tubes

The weekend is almost here and we’ll be at the Small Press Expo! Who’s going?

Around the Blogs:

Bleeding Cool – The Many Deaths Of… (SPOILERS)This is exactly my first thought… a return in 3..2..1..

CBR – Read BOOM! Studios CEO Ross Richie’s Harvey Awards KeynoteA good read.

The Comics Chronicle – Relaunch takeaways: Everyone up, but DC boosted industry most – Interesting stats.

MTV Geek – ‘Settlers of Catan’ World Championships To Stream Live This Weekend What do I need to do to enter!?

The Mary Sue – Lets Talk About Some S.H.I.E.L.D TV Show Tidbits, Because You Know You’re Hungry for ThemI can’t wait for this!


Around the Tubes Reviews:

IGN – Avengers vs. X-Men #11

CBR – Stumptown #1

MTV Geek – DC Zero Month, Week Two Reviews: Green Lantern Corps, Grifter, Legion Lost, and The Ravagers

MTV Geek – DC Zero Month, Week Two Reviews: Batgirl, Batman, And Batman & Robin

MTV Geek – DC Zero Month, Week Two Reviews: Suicide Squad, Superboy, and Team 7

Complex – Review: “Chew” And “Conan The Barbarian” Bring Some Much-Needed Diversity To Comics

Comic Book Weekly Reviews – 10/12/11

A little late for these reviews.  Was it worth it?  Find out below!

Alpha Flight #5 – The team pulls in Taskmaster to help train their army as the Unity government continues to push their agenda.  The art is really off, Taskmaster just doesn’t look like himself.  The story is getting better, but it all feels a bit rudimentary instead of the complicated political story it should be.

Story: 7.25 Art: 6.75 Overall: 7

American Vampire: Survival of the Fittest #5 – And that’s a wrap for the limited series.  It’s a big action sequence that’s very Indiana Jones at times.  I really liked the series overall, and it added a lot to the overall American Vampire story.  The ending was solid and fun and a nice way to wrap up the story line.  Here’s hoping we’ll see some more limited series and graphic novels based in this universe in the future.

Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5

Batgirl #2 – The second issue is pretty solid.  The fight scenes are really good and I like how Babs has PTSD from being shot.  The more I learned about the villain Mirror the more I dug him.  It’s an issue that grew on me, but didn’t grab me like I’d of hoped.  It’s a solid read though, and it looks like this’ll be one of the standout series of DC’s new 52.

Story: 7.75 Art: 8 Overall: 7.75

Batman and Robin #2 – I really like Bruce and Damian, one struggling to be a father and the other struggling being a kid.  That dynamic is great and watching Bruce having issues with doing and saying things a father would is great.  The bad is this villain.  There’s clearly history and if you don’t know what that is (like me) that section falls short.  Half of the comic is fantastic, the latter half falters.

Story: 8 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.75

Batwoman #2 – Pretty solid story that stumbled only on a few pages, the art is just amazing.  The look, the layout, it’s beyond unique and unlike anything else out there.  The art alone is enough to buy the comic.  Just amazing in that department.

Story: 7.75 Art: 9.5 Overall: 8.25

Black Panther #524 – A Spider-Island tie-in that’s really not needed.  It does nothing to add to that story, but really this is just a bridge to the next arc which involves the Kingpin.  The story is pretty bad and art isn’t as good as usual.  Pretty sure you could skip this issue and miss nothing.

Story: 7 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7

Daken: Dark Wolverine #15 – I was hoping the whole Daken being a drug addict would of lasted longer.  I liked the art, but story seems a bit convoluted.  We’ll see how it ends, but the lead up has been better than this issue.

Story: 7 Art: 7.75 Overall: 7

Deathstroke #2 – I’d hope the second issue would give a bit more than over the top violence.  But with little plot the second issue of the series continues it’s attempt to make Deathstroke the bad-ass character he used to be.  I myself need a bit more to my characters other than over sized swords and lots of stabbing.

Story: 6.5 Art: 7.5 Overall: 6.75

FF #10 – A quieter moment for the FF, everyone is scattered to where they were “needed” and that’s really the reflection here.  This is the quiet before the storm as Hickman starts weaving all of the threads he’s set up together in what looks like one colossal story that’s leading up to Fantastic Four #600.

Story: 7.5 Art: 7.25 Overall: 7.5

Generation Hope #12 – A choppy story, very uneven art and a reprint from another comic, sigh.  The series was getting good, but this just kind of slides back to the second class X comic it was emerging from.

Story: 7 Art: 6.75 Overall: 7

Green Lantern #2 – This issue sets up a dynamic that’s pretty damn interesting.  It looks like Jordan gets his ring back, but with a twist that should lead to some fun stories in the future.  There’s still a lot of questions about continuity, but I like where the series is going.

Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5

Grifter #2 – Hmm, I’ve decided the whole Daemonites story running in Grifter and Voodoo is a bit too They Live for me.  The story is jumbled and too jumpy for me.  It’s not quite a clear linear plot and something is very off.  It just doesn’t feel very DC and not revealing info in a way that makes the story entertaining.  The series is very off to me.

Story: 6.75 Art: 7.5 Overall: 6.75

Jennifer Blood #5 – We get a lot more of the history and one ending I didn’t need to see.  The words “bring out the gimp” come to mind.  The comic is pure torture porn, but there’s something fun about it.  Garth Ennis knows how to tip-toe that fine line keeping you entertained, but hating yourself for being so.

Story: 7.75 Art: 7.75 Overall: 7.75

The New Avengers #17 – Osborn is back and playing on even a bigger scale.  The plot is just starting and if the Green Goblin is involved, it’s going to be good.  There’s never been a better time to hop on the bandwagon, cause this looks like it’s going to be a lot of fun.

Story: 8 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8

The Punisher #4 – The Punisher is broken and it looks like the new Vulture is dead (we’ll see how long that lasts).  A reporter struggles with the story and cops are chasing a killer.  Lots going on in Rucka’s interesting take on the classic character.  It’s a good start and I especially like the different perspective this issue has.  We’ll see where it continues to go.

Story: 7.75 Art: 8.25 Overall: 7.75

Resurrection Man #2 – Huh.  The series feels like a riddle mixed in an enigma.  I’m willing to stick around a while to see where the series goes, but it’s definitely interesting so far.  There’s a mix of Vertigo and over the top action, a bit Preacher feel too.  It’s an interesting mix overall.  A decent second issue, but not absolutely amazing.

Story: 7.75 Art: 8 Overall: 7.75

S.H.I.E.L.D. #3 – I am so lost as to what’s going on.  The series is a bit hard to follow as individual issues and would read much better as a trade or graphic novel.

Story: 6.75 Art: 8.25 Overall: 7.25

Suicide Squad #2 – The villain is laughable but interaction in the team is great.  Everyone is expendable which makes this anything is possible comic.  That’s the good part.  The characters are no Secret Six when it comes to banter, and there’s a line in there that negates that entire series.  So glad I got into it…  Not a bad second issue, but not great.

Story: 7 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7

Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #3 – Miles still learns about his powers and comes to terms with them a bit.  He also has his first few days at school which is interesting.  But, most importantly, we learn when this is all occurring which is very interesting and pretty smart writing.  So far so good.

Story: 8 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8

Ultimate Comics X-Men #2 – A second solid issue that finds the Mutants of this world hunted and persecuted.  It’s a great mix of some of the latest solid plot lines from the regular 616 Marvel universe mixed a bit and just different enough to be original.  It’s familiar yet totally new and I’m hooked.

Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5

Uncanny X-Force #16 – When it comes to “X” story lines, this is it.  A mix of everything that’s good, full of action and packed full of “holy shit” moments.  Archangel is the new Apocalypse, X-Force keeps getting their asses beat and it all looks pretty damn hopeless.  I have no idea how this is going to end.

Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5

X-Men: Legacy #257 – The battle is space continues for about two issues too long.  Can’t wait for this to be over.

Story: 7 Art: 7.75 Overall: 7

X-Men: Regenesis – The sides are chosen and we get to see the various pitches.  The “X” universe has shifted again and it’s looking like for the better right now.

Story: 8 Art: 8.25 Overall: 8

52 Reviews, Part 2

So, for the fun of it, I’m going to be collecting all 52 DC #1 issues. And I’m going to review them all. Keep in mind, though, that I’m generally a Marvel fan and, while I’m working may way through DC’s recent big events, I’m only up through the middle of Countdown and I haven’t read any of DC’s non-event comics in a long time, so I’m coming at these stories with a bit of a disadvantage in terms of chronology and character knowledge. Since DC is certainly trying to attract new readers, though, this makes me come at them with a perspective similar to their hypothetical new fans…

Batman and Robin #1 (DC) – This one starts and ends with heavy action and has a good amount of character development in between. It all works. I’m in.

Story: 9 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.75

Batwoman #1 (DC) – I’m relatively new to the character of Kate Kane, but I have to say I like what I see so far. The creative team on this one appears to be top-notch and this is a comic I’ll definitely keep reading.

Story: 9 Art: 10 Overall: 9.5

Deathstroke #1 (DC) – I’m pretty conflicted about this one. It looks great and the story does a good job of establishing the horrible person that Deathstroke is while also showing that he’s a total badass. But there aren’t any characters here I want to root for (well, at least not by the last page) and I’m not enough of a fan of the character to follow him along as bad as he is here. The comic is well-done, it’s just not my type of thing. I’ll probably read issue #2, though, because of the quality of this issue.

Story: 7 Art: 8 Overall: 7.5

Demon Knights #1 (DC) – I’m really not a fan of the fantasy premise behind this one. It’s not a bad premise, it’s just not one I want to read a lot of. I won’t read any more of this series, but it’s not because of a lack of quality.

Story: 7 Art: 8 Overall: 7.5

Frankenstein, Agent of S.H.A.D.E. #1 (DC) – I was totally unprepared for how much I liked this story. It is totally not at all the type of thing I would have expected to like and yet it was one of my favorite reads of week 2 of the New 52. It doesn’t break any new ground and it is incredibly similar to the recent Frankencastle run in Punisher or Hellboy, but the execution is so good, it’s a great comic. I’m definitely coming back for more.

Story: 9 Art: 9.5 Overall: 9.25

Green Lantern #1 (DC) – There is a reason why Geoff Johns is where he is today and this issue is a great example of his success. The story is entertaining, including action, intrigue and humor in a perfect balance. You have compelling characters and plotlines that require the reader to tune in next month, which I will definitely do.

Story: 9.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 9

Grifter #1 (DC) – Not knowing anything about this character before this issue, I’m not sure what the point is. I don’t particularly like him after reading this comic and nothing here made me interested in finding out more.

Story: 6 Art: 7 Overall: 6.5

Legion Lost #1 (DC) – This comic does a good job of juggling a big cast without making them all clones and while getting across a story that is intriguing. I’m not completely sold on the comic or the concept, and I don’t like the cartoonish art much, but I’m at least coming back for the next few issues.

Story: 8.5 Art: 6 Overall: 7.5

Mr. Terrific #1 (DC) – I had high hopes for this book, having recently discovered the character and liking him quite a bit, but I felt this was a bit of a letdown. The art wasn’t terrible, but it wasn’t great, despite some great sequences. The story also starts out solid before going off on a strange tangent at the end that didn’t seem to fit. Some of the things going on were a bit confusing, too. Hopefully future issues will perfect it. I’ll hang around to find out.

Story: 7 Art: 7 Overall: 7

Red Lanterns #1 (DC) – This is my first time reading any of the extended Laterns material and I’m going to say that it grabbed me. The art is at times brilliant and the story maintained a good balance of exposition and action that I liked a lot. It had some ridiculous moments, most notably with a cat, but I can let that slide.

Story: 8 Art: 9 Overall: 8.5

Resurrection Man #1 (DC) – Not a great comic, this one was just good enough that I’ll check out #2, but I’m skeptical. The art was pretty weak in places and I just didn’t get enough from the story that’d hook me. The premise is one I like though, so I might hang around to see where it goes.

Story: 7.5 Art: 6.5 Overall: 7

Suicide Squad #1 (DC) – Reading this issue as a noob, I loved it. The villains and the scenario were great, the horror of it was engrossing, the characters were varied and I wanted to know more about them. It was both violent and funny and the ending was a nice little shocker. I’ve never heard of Amanda Waller before, though, and was unfamiliar with the character. It seems she used to be a much larger and more reserved woman and she’s been slimmed down and sexualized. That’s a shame because that one arbitrary panel brings down an otherwise excellent issue.

Story: 10 Art: 9 Overall: 9.5

Superboy #1 (DC) – Another comic I really like. This is very different than your usual Superman comics. You don’t really know who is good or bad or what they are capable and it’s very difficult to predict what is going to happen next. That’s all great and on top of that, you get some very good art.

Story: 9 Art: 9 Overall: 9

Comic Book Weekly Reviews – 9/14/11

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It’s a thick stack of books this week with DC still releasing their number one books.  What’s worth it?  What should be skipped?  Find out below!

Alpha Flight #4 – The team is on the run from the government who has been taken over through an overly complex plan.  There’s a lot I like about the series, but also so much that just seems blah.  Overall it’s getting much better, but there’s definitely some things strange things that don’t jive.  The brutality of one particular character just doesn’t fit in with the relative niceness of Alpha Flight.

Story: 7 Art: 7 Overall: 7

American Vampire: Survival of the Fittest #4 – It’s the second to last issue of this series that  delves into the myths of the vampires.  It adds a bit to the world and the story is really entertaining, but as usual you have to question why the bad guys just don’t kill the good guys right away.  That’s about the only flaw I find, for what’s turned out to be a hell of a limited series.

Story: 8.25 Art: 8.25 Overall: 8.25

Batman and Robin #1 – The good here is Damian’s depiction.  The mysterious bad guy also has me intrigued.  The bad is the story itself which just seems silly to me.  Also, how old is Batman supposed to be in the DC revamp/reboot/relaunch?  If Damian is still around, he obviously can’t be younger than he was in the previous world.  I’m a bit confused about that part.

Story: 7.5 Art: 8 Overall: 7.75

Batwoman #1 – A beautiful comic book, the art alone is enough to get me to come back for more.  The story on the other hand is a bit week, but still intriguing enough to get me to overlook it.  What is very strong, like the art is the characterization.  The various characters in the comic are well written and there’s some great female leads.  It’s been a long wait for this first issue, and while I can’t say it blew me away, I’ll definitely be back for the second issue.

Story: 7.75 Art: 9 Overall: 8

Black Panther: The Man Without Fear #523 – Out of all of the Fear Itself tie-ins this one is the best, though it’s competition isn’t that great.  As a whole though, I really like the American Panther storyline.  There was a solid ending to it, and a great mystery left at the end that seems like it’ll lead to something more interesting going forward.  With the next issue, it’ll get a new subtitle, the series is quality and a definite recommendation to make a monthly read.

Story: 8.25 Art: 8.25 Overall: 8.25

Criminal: The Last of the Innocent #4 – Wow, that was one hell of an ending.  This is a crime story of the best caliber.  Brubaker’s story telling seems to get better and better and this one’s ending is just amazing.  Another fantastic volume in the best noir on the market.  I can’t wait to see what comes next.

Story: 9 Art: 9 Overall: 9

Daken: Dark Wolverine #14 – What the hell did I read.  The heat part is great as usual, but the art seems to have taken a dip and it won’t be until next issue that’ll I’ll truly understand what’s going on.  This is one part of a bigger story and by itself the issue doesn’t make too much sense or keep my interest.  Hopefully the next issue will do it some justice as the “set up” issue.

Story: 6.75 Art: 7 Overall: 6.75

Daredevil #3 – Some great pulp fun as Daredevil fights Klaw and helps a man in court.  The entertaining ending is a nice end cap for the first story arc and this issue sets up a bigger bad guy that’s only hinted at.  The action is good and there’s some great writing in the issue.  Mark Waid has returned Daredevil to his roots and it’s fantastic so far.

Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5

Deadpool #43 – Deadpool is on the loose as he’s escaped from the mental institution, though how he’s done that isn’t really explained very well.  There’s also some other plot points that seem to have been dropped.  The issue is entertaining enough, but falls into the campy end of things way too much.

Story: 7 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7

Deathstroke #1 – Wow, that was a hell of a start.  The issue feels more A-Team than anything else, but then that ending throws you for a spin.  Pretty impressive as it gives you a good idea as to who Deathstroke is and does it all in a self-contained issue.  Really solid beginning.

Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5

Demon Knights #1 – I appreciate what DC is doing here, taking some of their characters and throwing them into a world similar to one you’d find in a D&D campaign.  The story is ok, but I’m not really one for straight up fantasy.  My concern that it stars Etrigan and his speaking habit was not founded as that seems to have gone away, which is odd, since that was something that made the character very unique.  It’s not a bad comic, but can’t say I really look forward to the second issue.

Story: 7 Art: 7.75 Overall: 7.25

Fear Itself #6 – There’s lots of dramatic moments and some big speeches in the second to last issue of Marvel’s disappointing summer event.  There’s some great moments and a lot of characters manning up, but overall this feels like that “big moment” that’s a few issues too late for me to really care or save this event from smelling like a stinker.

Story: 7 Art: 7 Overall: 7

Fear Itself: Hulk vs. Dracula #1 – Not quite sure what the point of this limited series is as it doesn’t add a whole lot so far to the overall event.  Also, isn’t the Hulk fighting in a few other places and against a few other heroes?  Fear Itself has been a mess of an event, and this is another example of that.

Story: 6.75 Art: 7 Overall: 6.75

Fear Itself: The Monkey King – A decent enough issue, but again, it doesn’t add anything to the Fear Itself storyline.  I’d of much rather seen a three issue limited series come out of this than this one-shot that’s not really needed.  But, even though it doesn’t add anything to Fear Itself, it’s still a good comic and hopefully we see more of this character than this one-shot.

Story: 8 Art: 7.75 Overall: 8

Frankenstein: Agent of S.H.A.D.E. #1 – A Hellboy wannabe I figured this was what to expect of the series after seeing it’s Flashpoint tie-in.  It’s not the story is is bad, I think Hellboy is better in every sense, so there’s nothing new or interesting to keep me coming back for more.

Story: 7 Art: 7 Overall: 7

Green Lantern #1 – Sinestro has a green ring again and Hal Jordan must go back to a normal life.  Just when you think there isn’t anything more creative Geoff Johns can do with Green Lantern, this comes along.  A great new start that’s fresh and interesting.  The series has had some issues of late, but this first issue breathes new life into the series and again has me excited.

Story: 8.75 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.75

Grifter #1 – Huh!?  Where’s the Grifter I came to know and love from Wildcats?  What is this crap?!

Story: 6.5 Art: 7.5 Overall: 6.75

John Carter: A Princess of Mars #1 – With Roger Langridge’s name on the comic I had to pick it up knowing nothing about this beloved story.  Can’t say I’ll be coming back for the second issue.  It’s not Langridge’s fault, the story just doesn’t interest me at all.

Story: 7 Art: 7 Overall: 7

Legion Lost #1 – Hmm, a lot is interesting here, but the story is too much tied up in mystery and the action too choppy to get me to want to come back for more.  I was never a Legion fan before, and can’t say this series has done anything to get me to change my mind.

Story: 6.75 Art: 7.75 Overall: 6.75

Mister Terrific #1 – The beginning of the comic was interesting enough, but that ending made me not at all interested in the second issue.  It was too abrupt and comes out of nowhere.  There’s also the very blatant playing off that Mr. Terrific is a black hero and there’s event a rather stereotypical issue of his interest in a white woman.  I’m sure the series will find it’s pace and feet after a bit, but I don’t think I’m sticking around for it.

Story: 7 Art: 7 Overall: 7

Mystery Men #5 – A ho-hum ending to the series that attempts to mix real life events with a comic book and doesn’t pull it off too well.  The series was ok, and probably will read better as a trade paperback, but the finale isn’t anything special.

Story: 7 Art: 7 Overall: 7

The New Avengers #16 – We get to see what Daredevil was up to during Fear Itself and the issue is actually really solid.  I like the interview aspect of the issues and the story in this one is really good too.  It’s Daredevil’s acceptance into the crew and it’ll be interesting to see how that goes considering his recent past.

Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5

Red Lanterns #1 – In short, this is DC’s version of Ghost Rider.  It has potential, and I’ll stick around to see what that is, but the characters kind of started off as a one note gimmick and adding a bit to them will be a tough task.  We’ll see how it all goes though, but so far it’s pretty decent.

Story: 7.5 Art: 8 Overall: 7.75

Resurrection Man #1 – A lot I really liked here.  I can’t say I know a lot about the character and this first issue gives you a hint about him.  There’s enough here that will get me to come back.  The issue though is it seems like I’ve seen this all before in a movie or television show.  Heaven and hell after one man’s soul, it seems too familiar.

Story: 8.25 Art: 8.25 Overall: 8.25

Suicide Squad #1 – So much I like and at the same time it makes me miss Secret Six.  There’s so many costume changes that are so unnecessary too.  Still, there’s more than enough to get me to come back for the next few issues and see where it goes from here.

Story: 8 Art: 8 Overall: 8

Superboy #1 – More than enough here to get me to come back for the second issue.  The story is interesting and unique enough to stand out from Superman and there’s enough mystery here with numerous characters to keep me intrigued.  This might be the first “Supes” comic I get into.

Story: 8.25 Art: 8 Overall: 8.25

Supreme Power #4 – Just one piece of a bigger puzzle.  By itself the actions of folks makes me scratch my head, but this seems to be the end of the middle chapter of a three act play.  Interesting, but it doesn’t blow me away as much as that first issue did.

Story: 7 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7

Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #1 – An origin story that’d normally have taken an issue to get through looks like it’ll be spread out a bit.  But there’s a lot here that makes Mile Morales stand out from Peter Parker.  Bendis has made some interesting choices here and it’ll be interesting to see where he goes.  I’ve never been an Ultimate Comics fan, but this relaunch of the line has gotten me very interested.

Story: 8 Art: 8 Overall: 8

Uncanny X-Force #15 – The team is trying their best to take on Archangel and his new horsemen before they transform the world.  Deathlok has also lost his shit in the process.  The trio of Deadpool, Fantomex and Deathlok is a team I want more of.  So wrong yet so right.

Story: 8.25 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.25

The Unwritten #29 – The story of Wilson the the Tinker grows deeper and that ending kind of came out of nowhere.  The story is s bit easier to understand but no less interesting.  This is one of those sleeper series more people should be reading.  It challenges you in every way.  Solid as usual.

Story: 8.25 Art: 8.25 Overall: 8.25

X-Men: Legacy #255 – Magneto attempts to bring a peace between the two warring armies while Rogue takes over command of a familiar bunch.  The story is really just a way to get Havok, Polaris and Rachel back into the fold, the stroy I could do without.

Story: 7 Art: 7 Overall: 7

Around the Tubes

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The weekend is so close and reports are already coming that DC comic’s new releases are selling out.  There’s a lot of other quality books out too, so make sure to get to your store and pick up some new releases.

Around the Blogs:

Kotaku – Aaaand Harley Quinn’s Saucy Arkham Mo-Cap was Actually Done by a Dude …Ha.

Kotaku – The New Ultimate Spider-Man Debuts Just in Time for Edge of Time – The costume looks pretty damn cool.  Look forward to seeing what this looks like on my high-def TV.

Con Coverage:

Spandexless – SPX Pulls: Dresden Codak Primer, Aaron Diaz

Spandexless – SPX Pulls: Box Brown Roundup

Comicsgirl – Small Press Expo 2011 reviews: The Ladies!

Around the Tubes Reviews:

CBR – American Vampire: Survival of the Fittest #4

MTV Geek – Green Lantern #1

CBR – Green Lantern #1

MTV Geek – Mister Terrific #1

Comics Alliance – Ultimate Comics Spider-Man’ #1

MTV Geek – Ultimate Comics Spider-Man’ #1

MTV Geek – Image Comics Reviews: ‘Severed,’ ‘Li’l Depressed Boy,’ ’27,’ and ‘Pigs’

Newsarama – NEW 52 NEWBIE Reviews: Non-Comics Readers on the DCnU

Bleeding Cool – Wednesday Comics Reviews: Batman and Robin, Batwoman, Deathstroke, Demon Knights, Frankenstein, Agent of S.H.A.D.E., Green Lantern, Grifter, Legion Lost, Mister Terrific, Red Lanterns, Resurrection Man, Suicide Squad and Superboy

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