Thursday, April 26, 2012

Teen Titans #8 Review!

Teen Titans #8
Written by: Scott Lobdell
Art by: Ig Guara & JP Mayer

The issue opens with Red Robin being turned into, well...a bird. Apparently, the Titans launched an assault on N.O.W.H.E.R.E.'s (that is a lot to type...) base on the North Pole and the team has seemingly been captured and is being tortured by Omen. It turns out that, at least one of, Harvest's (the big bad guy running N.O.W.H.E.R.E.) powers is to be able to turn the teenaged metahumans against one another. Wonder Girl is trying to free Red Robin, while Solstice and Bunker take some time to relax and think things through. Omen decides to stop transforming Red Robin into a bird and even reverts him back to human form for some reason. Then after Omen rants to Tim for a little, she sends him off to Harvest. Since I'm feeling lazy, the rest of the Titans get taken down one by one. The main interesting thing that we find out in the issue is that Wonder Girl's powers aren't actually her's, it's her armor and such that give her the metahuman abilities and also that she saved the life of "someone close to" her by getting the armor. Aaaaanyway, we also find out (as Brett Booth said the last time I talked to him which you can read here and I'll be talking to him again after the last issue of the Culling crossover is released next month) that Bart can survive without the suit on for limited periods of time and that somehow the fact that he is having weird memories and the injuries he got from fighting Superboy are related. Interesting. At the end of the issue, the entire team is in their New 52-Superboy-esque outfits (also: Superboy was missing entirely from this issue. Just saying) get taken by a guy named Leash(???) who looks exactly like Bunker(!?) but it isn't him. Same color scheme, though. And he's got the little hat thing, too. Weird... Anyway, he ties the team up and they teleport away to wherever Harvest wants them to be. And to cap off the issue, Omen simply states "Hail Harvest."
This issue was really good...for a filler issue. It certainly set up well for the crossover that starts in a week(!!!). I liked it, it set up some interesting stuff that I would like to find out answers for if not in the Culling story, then in the months following soon after. I have a feeling some of the questions about Wonder Girl and Kid Flash's back stories will be answered soon enough. Which is very good. My only gripe with the issue (which will be the same for next month) is the fact that Brett Booth's art isn't here. Not that Guara's art is bad, which is definitely isn't bad at all, it's just that Booth is one of my favorite artists and I think he works really well on Teen Titans. Can't wait til next week for Teen Titans Annual! This issue gets a 9/10!

And speaking of next week, I'm getting Teen Titans Annual #1 (with Brett's art! YAY!) and Earth-Two #1 which I have literally been waiting MONTHS for! Oh and Justice League International #9 and Red Lanterns #9 will both be coming out. But they aren't as cool as EARTH TWO AND TEEN TITANS ANNUAL WILL BE!!! See you all in less than a week!!

                                          Lol. Get it? Because his name is Red Robin, he's turning into a bird? ... Me neither.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Trinity War!?!?!? DC's 2013 Event!? (SEMI)-SPOILERS BELOW!!

This past weekend at C2E2, DC allowed a few lucky fans the chance to read through DC's Free Comic Book Day offering. Apparently the story will feature a story by Geoff Johns and drawn by several artists from across the New 52, including Jim Lee (Justice League), Ivan Reis (Aquaman), Kenneth Rocafort (Red Hood and the Outlaws), and Gene Ha (no ongoing series...yet?). Inside, there seems to be a 4-page panel (like the one at the end of Blackest Night #8 when the 12 heroes and villains were resurrected!) which shows what seems to be DC's version of something out of Marvel's Civil War. Being: Heroes fighting heroes. In the corner, we see some words that include: "Coming next year...TRINITY WAR!"

Here's parts of the images that were pulled from across the internet and combined by a writer on Bleeding Cool. Another writer on Bleeding Cool had this to say, but many of the characters involved were redacted mostly because they reveal way too much, but here you go:

“has probably something to do with the Trinity of Evil which gets introduced in DC’s FCBD comic. Pandora is one of the Trinity.”

“It appears to be the 3 original sinners, of which Pandora has already been disclosed. Let me just say that the identities of the other 2 will surprise and amaze you.”

“I read the FCBD issue from DC last night. Trinity War probably has to do with the three sinners of the DC New. One is Pandora, the other is the [REDACTED], and weirdly the last one is the [REDACTED]. That’s right. [REDACTED] is somehow magic based now. Also, they are punished by the seven gods who gave Shazam his power.”

“In it, there is a group referred to as the “Trinity of Sin.” This group includes Pandora,[REDACTED], and [REDACTED] (I have no idea why). The Rock of Eternity, a council of powerful wizards (thanks, Geoff Johns), sentences them to [REDACTED]. This may have something do with DC’s Trinity War, but I’m not sure. Maybe Pandora, [REDACTED], and [REDACTED] versus Wonder Woman, Superman, and Batman? Who knows?”

Oh and here's the pieced-together image from Bleeding Cool, which I will be analyzing:

Let's start from the left and go right. On the left side, we see a character who seems to have similar powers as the character in Flashpoint known as Brainwave, but seems to have a middle-eastern look, unlike the FP-Brainwave. But that's no big deal. He seems to be fighting the Flash, while above them it seems to show a Black Adam-outfitted Shazam fighting against Deadman (who, yes, is part of Justice League Dark so he really shouldn't be on the regular JL as well). As we move slightly to the right, we see Wonder Woman fighting against Aquaman. Why does Geoff Johns like Aquaman and Wonder Woman fighting so much?! (They were the main villains, besides Reverse-Flash, in Flashpoint) Then above that, we see Superman smashing a pillar that John Stewart in a bad ass redesigned GL outfit? It looked like a mix between Luke Cage and Batman with a GL ring, not even joking. Underneath of that, we see Element Woman (from Flashpoint) fighting against Cyborg. (Who has one of Green Arrow's arrows stuck into the back of his head. I thought that was very amusing.) In the background, we see Atom, Green Arrow, Batman, and Hawkman seemingly facing off. Green Arrow and Hawkman seemed focused on one another while Atom and Batman seem to be trying to escape. And Batman also has something on him. It looks like a man-purse.

While none of the "Big Three" are fighting each other...
You have to assume wonder if it's a war between them. So I've instantly started wondering: Who would side with who.
This is a lot harder to figure out than it would have been with Marvel's Civil War story between Captain America and Iron Man. But I've come to the decision that, out of the character on this 4-pager, the groupings would be something along the lines of the following:

Batman's Team:
Green Arrow-As the only other non-powered character here, I have to assume that Ollie would side with Bats here. Also: He seems to be covering Batman's retreat. And he pegged one on Cyborg, who is probably on Superman's side.
Green Lantern (John Stewart?)-John is a strategist. He respects Batman, and Batman respects him. As long as Batman's side is relatively mentally stable and not completely insane...John will probably agree. Plus, as I said before... Luke Cage + Batman - Batman's ear things + GL Ring = This guy. This could be something along the lines of what Iron Man did with Spider-Man leading to Civil War with the Iron-Spider outfit. Maybe Bats designed his outfit.
Deadman-He and Batman are (or were, at least) buddies. And honestly can you see Superman or Wonder Woman wanting a ghost who cracks dark jokes all the time on there side?
Brainwave-Batman loves control. And if this kid seems like he might be a threat with his young and uncontrolled powers, Batman may scare him into siding with him. Everyone's scared of Batman, right? Especially if he's got the Christian Bale Batman's voice.

Wonder Woman's Team:
Wonder Woman
Steve Trevor-He doesn't appear here, but he would obviously side with Wonder Woman in this case, as he loves her.
Hawkman-He's a warrior. She's a warrior. That may be enough for him to join on her side.
Atom-He is (or at least was) Hawkman's best buddy. He'll PROBABLY side with whoever he joins with.
Captain Mar--I mean, Shazam-Billy's a teenage boy. It's Wonder Woman. Must I really explain why he would join her quickly?
Element Woman-If Batman can't connect with her, Wonder Woman will just by connecting the strong female role.

Superman's Team:
Cyborg-They both seem to be the bright and colorful hero in this case. Plus, since Supes doesn't have anyone with technology smarts, he might convince him.
Flash-Barry is like a little kid. He wants to be good and cheerful. Who, at least before the New 52, is more "good" and "cheerful" than Superman.
Aquaman-He would've been on Wonder Woman's side, but she's kind of punching him so yeah... And he can't be on Bat's side if Green Arrow is. They hate each other.

Now, I'm just mostly hoping that it is kind of a "Big Three War" when they say "Trinity War." But Newsarama has other thoughts. From the big secret organizations (Checkmate, S.H.A.D.E., N.O.W.H.E.R.E.), to basic super-teams (Justice League, Teen Titans, and Legion of Super-Heroes), to individual heroes (Supes, Bats, and Wondy), to Space Groups (Green Lantern Corps, L.E.G.I.O.N., Darkstars), to parallel worlds (Earth-1, Earth-2, Earth-3), they've covered it all. And it all seems very likely that it will be caused by that dumbass girl known as Pandora (seen in every #1 issue of the New 52 and in Justice League #6's back-up story). Hey, how about Justice League vs. Justice League International vs. Justice League Dark? That'd be a pretty badass Trinity War right there.


Friday, April 6, 2012

My Favorite New 52 Series Thusfar?

Well, I started reading 20. Then it got cut to 10. Lately it's jumped between 5 and 7. Currently, the only series I do/plan on getting regularly are the following:

Justice League-Geoff Johns & Jim Lee, Batman-Scott Snyder & Greg Capullo, Green Lantern-Geoff Johns & Doug Mahnke, Teen Titans-Scott Lobdell & Brett Booth, Red Lanterns-Peter Milligan & Ed Benes (for now), & Justice League International-Dan Jurgens & Aaron Lopresti.

So for all the reviews I've done since the beginning of the New 52...I am going to round them all up and put together a collective score list for those series. Here we go.

Justice League:

#1-September 2011: 8.5/10

#2-October 2011: 10/10

#3-November 2011: 10/10

(I didn't review #4)

#5-January 2012: 7/10

#6-February 2012: 7/10

#7-March 2012: 7/10

So far, Justice League collectively has a score of 49.5/70 which averages out at a 7/10 score which leads me to think that this series is merely average rather than the series which should be getting near-if-not-perfect scores monthly.


#1-September 2011: 8.5/10

#2-October 2011: 10/10

#3-November 2011: 8/10

(Didn't review #4-6 for some reason...)

#7-March 2012: 8/10

So far, Batman is collectively getting a score of 34.5/40 which comes to about an 8.6/10 but to be completely honest those issues in between would be pulling the series up to about a 9/10 average at the very least.

Green Lantern:

#1-September 2011: 9/10

#2-October 2011: 10/10

#3-November 2011: 10/10

(Again...didn't review #4-6 for some odd reason...)

#7-March 2012: 9/10

Wow. So far, GL has gotten an overall score of 38/40 which comes to be about a 9.5/10 average and I think that the scores for #s 4-6 would at the very least keep it around that same score.

Justice League International:

#1-September 2011: 10/10

#2-October 2011: 10/10

#3-November 2011: 10/10

(didn't review #4 & 5)

#6-February 2012: 10/10

#7-March 2012: 7/10

Alright, so far J.L.I. has gotten a collective 47/50 which ends up as a 9.4/10 average. If only they hadn't killed Rocket Red, this series would be riding at a perfect 10/10 average.

Teen Titans:

#1-September 2011: 8.5/10
#2-October 2011: 7/10
(didn't review 3-5, I guess)
#6-February 2012: 10/10
#7-March 2012 (which I am not gonna review but just bought a few days ago): 9.5/10

Well this series now has an overall of 35/40 so that rounds to about a 8.75/10. But as you can see, this series is slowly getting better and I think that this is easily in the top 3 of favorites series thusfar with or without the ratings agreeing with that statement.

Red Lanterns:
To be completely honest, this was my favorite series in the beginning but it has slowly but surely dropped in quality for me. And this month with that new artist coming on board...? I dunno if I'll be able to read this series for much longer. If only I had gotten Teen Titans or Aquaman instead of this when my mom paid for subscriptions. It's a had such good potential. I'll read it out through the rest of the year but after that...maybe not.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Teen Titans #6 Review

Teen Titans #6-Scott Lobdell, Brett Booth, Norm Rapmund
Here's a series that seems to be getting better and better with every issue. I am beginning to regret getting a Red Lanterns (or Justice League for that matter) subscription over this. Oh well, I thought it was better at the time. This issue starts out good and just gets better and better as the story progresses. I thoroughly enjoyed this issue, although I didn't quite get how the suit is the thing that is keeping Bart alive. I mean I could see if Virgil Hawkins (YES, THAT IT STATIC FOR THOSE OF YOU WONDERING) whipped up some kind of device that he could always have or some kind of chip or something, but I mean that would really suck ass having to wear your super-suit 24/7. Bart and Solstice now have something in common! Anyway, this issue was certainly a good filler issue and we got to see Static (one of my secret favorite characters)! My only complaint...well, not really a complaint...more of a question...would be why doesn't/hasn't Tim figured out that Virgil is Static? I mean wouldn't he want to recruit him for the Titans? (I sure as hell wish he would!) I mean Tim is, as I like to say, a "Mini-Bruce" so I'm just kind of confused about that. It's not a big issue, but whatever. I'm glad we got to see Cassie (Wonder Girl) and Miguel (Bunker) have a little character-bonding while Bart and Solstice hint at a future relationship (and figuring out Bart's origin) and we also got to see who I can only assume is Chameleon Girl posing as a detective asking about why Bart is in the 21st Century (and plus we got to see Bart in a snazzy BLUE outfit, assumptively from whatever time Bart's new origin makes him from). This issue had good character-bonding, an interesting new villain (named Grymm), and so yeah this issue easily gets a 10/10.

Kid Flash: "That's the thing, Kiran. I don't know. About my powers. How they work. How I got them. I don't even know who I am. I can usually pretend it doesn't bother me. Keep running. Keep joking. But now...I've stopped. And all those questions keep running around inside my head."
Solstice: "It will be okay, Bart. Get through this and we'll find those answers together. Promise."
Me: "Awwww!"

Justice League #7 Review!

Justice League #7-Geoff Johns & Gene Ha
This was kind of an odd issue. It doesn't really seem like that bad of an issue at first, but after re-reading it you kind of realize how ridiculous, out-of-place, and confusing it is. The issue is focused on Steve Trevor who seems to be getting the full "Geoff Johns' Treatment" up, down, and around again. Sadly we see very little of the League itself in this story and even less dialogue beyond bitching to Trevor about stupid issues while he's trying to have a nice conversation with Wonder Woman over video chat. Speaking of the video chat scene (which took up more pages than the fighting scene...), when Batman was bitching to Trevor about something, he was like invisible. Is Geoff Johns just adding in a power for Bats or something? I know he isn't like (the Pre-New-52) Mr. Terrific and that his "power" is to be invisible to technology. BUT HE JUST ISN'T THERE ON THE SCREEN AT ALL!!! Maybe it was a mistake on Gene Ha's part... Whatever. OH! And speaking of that, HOW THE HELL IS BATMAN GONNA TELL TREVOR TO SHUT DOWN THE J.L.I. He worked side-by-side with them and SAID to Booster that he is a good leader and that he can lead the team. CONTINUITY ERROR, CHAIRMAN JOHNS! JUST BECAUSE YOU HATE THE J.L.I. DOESN'T MEAN EVERYONE ELSE HAS TO!! And for some reason, every damn civilian seems to think that the Justice League would somehow be better government officials than the real government. Call me crazy, but I'd be pissed if Batman or Superman was the president. (Except for the parallel Earth's "President Superman" of course) This issue was just all-around confusing. Only interesting thing we learned was that the dude who wrote the novel that originally dubbed the J.L. as the "World's Greatest Super-Heroes," is the villain for the second story-arc. I give this issue a 7/10 not for the story, but because I was pleasantly surprised by the artwork from Gene Ha, which I have to admit I was not looking forward to but now after reading this issue...I'm glad I didn't just skip it. Plus, it sets up for the second story arc, which is hopefully better than the first.
As for the Shazam! back-up story...I thought it was okay. Gary Frank's artwork was great as always. But it was kind of confusing as to what was going on at first. Once you re-read it, it makes much more sense. I promise. It was good and I am certainly looking forward to seeing more of the New-52 Shazam (hopefully he will eventually join the League!!!). 8.5/10

Me: *looking at the cover* "It says "Justice League" but it stars Steve Trevor...why doesn't Geoff just write a Steve Trevor ongoing instead!?!?!?!?"