Monday, December 26, 2016

Not-Very-Deep Thoughts: The August 24 Edition (HERE BE SPOILERS!)

Batgirl #2:  OK, I admit, it's exciting to see Babs on the road.  Larson has thrown the deck of cards into the air and we'll see where they land.  Babs is in a sort of controlled free-fall; she's never been an erratic "On the Road" type, but here she is.  She leaves Kai in this issue less because she's worried he's trouble (and he clearly is), but more because she doesn't want to be tied down.  Meanwhile, she's trying to improve her skills as a fighter, but she's still Barbara.  Her eidetic memory provides her clues about the identity of the villain who attacked Kai last issue, whether she likes it or not.  It's tweaking the Batgirl formula, where Barbara is recognizable if different.  I'm hoping Larson can keep us in this place as long as possible, after Fletcher and Stewart struggled to do so in the previous iteration of this series.

Captain America:  Steve Rogers #4:  This issue is not a smooth read.  I'm OK with Spencer entertaining the idea of Steve as a sleeper agent for HYDRA, since it's pretty clear it's going to end with him being returned to normal.  After all, Spencer isn't going all Slott and claiming he's going to remain a HYDRA agent forever.  But, the hook isn't enough to keep us going here.  Steve sounds hypnotized as Spencer is forced to drag out his dialogue to get it to work as a framing device.  But, he stretches it too far.  He uses it to cover everything, from Maria's fight with the S.H.I.E.L.D. governors to Sharon's presentation to Congress to Kobik's interactions with the Thunderbolts.  Throw in there flashbacks to Steve's new childhood and Rick Jones joining Free Spirit at a bedside vigil over Jack Flag and it's just too much.  We also have an example of pet peeve #2, since Steve isn't even in the same room as Carol and Tony, let alone putting himself in the middle of one of their arguments (as shown on the cover).  In other words, it's not Cap as a HYDRA agent that's a problem -- it's Cap as a boring expository device that's the problem.

Star Wars #22:  This issue really fulfills the promise of this series, as Han, Leia, and Luke steal an imperial Star Destroyer.  It's the sort of amazing untold story you expected to be out there, and it's one only a comic book could tell.

Titans #2:  On one level, I'm glad "Titans" is the front-line series exploring the impact Dr. Manhattan had on the DCU, because I'm at least moderately interested in the answer.  On the other hand, it could get old fast.  When Kadabra isn't sending the Titans against clones of their younger selves for convoluted super-villain reasons, he's pondering how Dr. Manhattan was involved in breaking time.  This part gets confusing, as all time-travel stories -- good or bad -- do.  In Kadabra's time, Linda and Wally haven't met yet, but it's difficult to see how that would happen.  Sure, in the original DCU, Linda and Wally would've already met.  But, in the current DCnU, Wally didn't exist.  Kadabra is implying Wally existed in his time, so is Kadabra from a third U?  I guess it's also possible he's from the future, but it doesn't seem to be the case.  I guess we'll see.  I just hope it's five or six issues from now, not 50 or 60 issues.

Also Read:  Detective Comics #939; Dungeons and Dragons #4; Extraordinary X-Men #13; New Avengers #15

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