Graceland 11/07/12

This week, (just like every week, haha shut up) I get a bit rambly.

Action Comics #14 written by Grant Morrison, drawn by Rags Morales and Mark Propst, colored by Brad Anderson:

“We’re going to figure out how to do the impossible.”

I’ve been trying to figure out why this comic just didn’t resonate with me despite the fact that it’s a Morrison written-tale in which Supes averts judgment day on Mars, which, if we’re being fair, would almost guarantee a good review regardless of quality. Still, Morales’ art is pretty lacking, giving widescreen panels to boring scenes, and scrunching down action set-pieces like Superman punching an alien wrecking ball into tiny panels. It’s just a weird flow to the comic that seems to draw attention to the fact that Superman and the astronauts solve a problem they had no concept of with a solution they had no concept of. Mysteries, in any medium, are tough because you need to be able to give pertinent information to the reader without  breaking their suspension of disbelief in the illusion of “reality, and then having done all of that, you have to give the answer in a way that feels natural and earned, and this issue just does none of those things. There’s interesting ideas, like in almost all Morrison written-titles, but either the art or the pacing, or even some combination, just doesn’t work for me. Two more issues before another creative change… wonder how he’ll end it. (Also that cover is just… not good in the Superman area.)

Deadpool #1 written by Gerry Duggan and Brian Posehn, drawn by Tony Moore, colored by Val Staples:

“Just so everybody knows- The Wheelchair guy started it!”

This comic has three things that I love to a ridiculous amount: presidents, crazy stupid violence, and puns. If there were bears, Dracula, and Space Jam in here, this would literally be my perfect comic. Anyway, Duggan and Posehn do a pretty good first issue that has a nice concept, and some good puns, and that’s all well and good, yes. The real star, though, is Tony Moore, who is a phenomenal artist with a mastery of facial expressions and excellent action. His two-page spread of a hall filled with undead presidents having a party is preeeeetty great. Also, Geoff Darrow covers! Holy damn! Have you guys SEEN the cover to #2? That’s something I didn’t even know I wanted in my life until I saw it.

The Manhatten Projects #7 written by Jonathan Hickman, drawn by Nick Pitarra, colored by Jordie Bellaire:

“But we’re actually running into a problem with our Death Buddhists.”

Storm Dogs #1 written by David Hine, drawn by Doug Braithwaite, colored by Ulises Arreola:

“This is fucking impossible.”

David Hine is a pretty interesting comics creator: he’s got a good mind for pacing and layouts, and his scripts often take advantage of that. Doug Braithwaite’s a solid artist, and the pitch for the series, a murder mystery on an alien planet with a crack team of female investigators sounded good, so I picked it up. Like most first issues, it doesn’t blow me away, but the creative team is strong, so I’ll give it a bit. Weird thing for me, though, is the coloring. It’s got a weird kind of dustiness to all the colors, which I’ll admit could be thematically important, but still doesn’t appeal to me. Personally, I’d rather have sharper colors, to show off Braithwaite’s figure work better, but ah well.


Sweet Tooth #39 written and drawn by Jeff Lemire, colored by Jose Villurrubia:

“Everything ends…”

Lemire’s got such a distinctive style that I think a lot of people don’t notice how good he is at the nuts and bolts of a comic, the way a scene plays out, where the best place to put a reaction-shot panel, how to move a reader’s eye across the page… it’s really amazing how deep his work is. I’ll really miss this comic when it’s gone, and hopefully Lemire gets back to some comics where he writes and draws soon after this.

Uncanny X-Force #33 written by Rick Remender, drawn by Phil Noto, colored by Frank Martin Jr:

“Lady, you’re making me wish I really did beat your mother.”

A couple weeks ago I was talking about how Remender seems to only care about a few characters, and when given a team book, he tends to write better when he can focus on them. Well, Uncanny X-Force, unlike Secret Avengers, is definitely that book. He’s able to play with that father-son relationship he enjoys writing about so much, and the guy even gave Deadpool a character arc, so clearly he’s operating at a higher level. Not much else to say, really. I enjoyed Wolverine’s conversation with Daken (which is a sentence I don’t think I ever expected to type, let alone think), and Phil Noto does an admirable job. He’s not Jerome Opena, but that just means he’s a fine artist instead of a transcendental one.

Ziah Grace

Ziah works at a comic shop and has seen Space Jam. You can contact Ziah at zbg333 [at] gmail [dot] com