Thursday, August 6, 2009

On Wednesday Comics

DC's weekly experiment Wednesday Comics is almost half way done, and thus far I've barely commented on it here. I'm not entirely sure why exactly, as overall I'm thoroughly enjoying it, and would love to see some of the strips continued. Others, however, I would love to see banished to the 9th level of Hell for all of eternity.

I know you're just dying to know what I think about them, so here's a rundown of the WC strips:

Batman by Azzarello and Risso

You may recall this creative team from their first try at Batman, Broken City, which to put it as nicely as possible WAS NOT FUCKING GOOD. So I had low expectations to say the least. Thus far I'm pleasantly surprised at how good the strip is though, it's a murder mystery and while it's no Long Halloween by any stretch of the imagination, it's definitely got me interested. Plus it has Batman doing detective-y things, and some while hanging upside down even!

Kamandi by Gibbons and Sook

Ok this one is actually the gem of the bunch. I have never read any Kamandi, ANY Kamandi. I have little to no knowledge of the character or comic, other than it's one of Kirby's brainchildren. That being said, this is one damn well done comic strip. Ryan Sook has always been a personal favorite, and his art style on this is blowing me away. It's a definite change from his Mignola-inspired previous work. Dave Gibbons is of course a win in my book, he writes good things that I enjoy reading. I would kill to see this continued somewhere, or if somehow the planets would align and these two would be put on a Kamandi ongoing. Plus it has monkeys with guns on horseback, were-rats, and a royal were-tiger. I dare you not to love this.

Superman by Arcudi and Bermejo

Well, it's definitely pretty. Other than Bermejo's eye-candy artwork, this thing is a chore to get through. Thankfully it's only one page, and not an entire comic. Stop me if you've heard this before, Superman is feeling like a loner because he's an alien and not originally from our planet. Yeah, I've read this story a million times before too. Still, it was nice to see Batman basically tell him to STFU and stop whining in issue #2.

Deadman by Bullock and Hoeck

I've always liked Boston Brand, but he's primarily used as a back-up or guest star character. It's nice to see him get the spotlight, and this strip is of the usual weird craziness that normally accompanies a Deadman story. Dave Bullock co-writes and handles the art chores, which means that this is probably as close to a Darwyn Cooke Deadman comic as I'm likely to ever get. Good stuff!

Green Lantern by Busiek and Quinones

Ok, this one is the slowest starting of the bunch, but if you've ever read Kurt Busiek then you should've been execting this. So far it's typical GL space-fare with some sort of alien infected old pilot friend of Hal's turning into some sort of ant-creature after being exposed to something in space. I'm ok with the story, though as mentioned above, let's get on with it already, however I'm not impressed with this Quinones guy at all. His art is very cartoonish, and this strip looks like something I should be reading in a Johnny DC title.

Metamorpho by Gaiman and Allred

This one I have one major bone to pick with, it's a good strip and I'm enjoying both the story and the art, but my God when you're only given one page a week to work with for 12 weeks, how does 3 out of the first four end up being splash pages?! I'm guessing Mike Allred wasn't given a whole hell of a lot of script from Gaiman to work with, or this entire thing probably could've been done in four weeks worth or pages. Still, the story has been entertaining, with Metamorpho being tasked to recover some artifact that only he can get to supposedly, and then a female version of Metamorpho whose name escapes me, shows up and is also after it. Great story, great art, less splash pages, please.

Teen Titans by Berganza and Galloway

This one I'm not digging at all. Trident shows up, and is apparently the all-new and improved Trident, and kicks the hell out of the Teen Titans, then the Titans show up, and he kicks the hell out of them too. It's not so much the story that bothers me, it's typical superhero flair which works fine for the Teen Titans, it's the art. I don't like the style, and the coloring bothers me even more. It looks like it was done with washed out pastels or something. Overall, this one's really meh.

Strange Adventures by Pope

Ok so you're either a Paul Pope fan or you're not. I'm not.

Supergirl by Palmiotti and Conner

This is probably the most light-hearted strip of the bunch, and I suppose the best way I can describe it is "cute". The super-pets are running wild, and Supergirl is hot on their heels. Amanda Conner is a fantastic fit for this strip, as her art normally has a light-hearted look to it. I like her stuff a lot, it tends to almost jump off the page at times, and Palmiotti is a solid writer. I'd like to see more of this type of thing from these two.

Metal Men by Didio and Garcia-Lopez

Ah the one that the entirety of the fanboy collective was salivating at the mouth to hate. Dan Didio (DC's EIC and one of the internet's most hated individuals) is writing this one, and to be honest it's not all that bad. I'm not a Metal Men fan, I think they're goofy, and this strip isn't doing anything to change my opinion. So far what we've seen is a bank robbery foiled by the MM turn into a hostage situation which is again foiled by the MM. If not for the art of Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez, I'd probably consider skipping this one every week.

Wonder Woman by Caldwell

Apologies in advance to any Wonder Woman fans who might happen upon this, but my God this is unreadable. In fact I haven't bothered trying since week 2. This is without a doubt the worst part of Wednesday Comics. Bad, bad, bad.

Sgt. Rock by Kubert and Kubert

Yeah I get it, Joe Kubert is drawing it and one of his kids is writing it. So I'm supposed to be loving it. Well I don't, I don't really even like it all that much. For four weeks now, Sarge has been getting tortured by Nazis while the rest of Easy Co. search tunnels for him. It's boring. And for somebody who isn't really a Sgt. Rock fan, it's not really doing anything to win me over.

Flash Comics by Kerschl and Fletcher

Yep, this is definitely a Flash story. So Flash's wife is leaving him, so he goes back in time to warn himself that his wife is leaving him, but then they're too late, so they both travel into the future to find out from a future Flash what happened to her. She was thrown off a building by Gorilla Grodd. SO they travel back in time to prevent it from happening, but Grodd knew when and where they would return, so he had a trap waiting for them. See? A Flash story. Karl Kerschl is a good artist too. Thumbs up!

The Demon/Catwoman by Simonson and Stelfreeze

I'm sending out a cry for help on this one. I like Walt Simonson, honestly I do. Hell, I'm one of the only 1 people I know that enjoyed his Orion ongoing series. But I have read every one of these strips so far and I haven't the slighest idea as to what the fuck is going on. Initially I was intrigued by the pairing of Etrigan and Selina, now I'm just confused. But at least the confusion is accompanied by Brian Stelfreeze art, and that's always a welcome commodity.

Hawkman by Baker

And finally, the most talked about strip. Kyle Baker is another one of those guy's whose work is an acquired taste. I like his stuff a lot. This is probably my second favorite strip in WC. Hawkman boards a plane being hijacked by terrorists, begins kicking asses, and eventually finds out that the terrorists are shape-shifting aliens determined to take over Earth. It's so nice to just see Hawkman being Hawkman, not pining over Shiera, no convoluted story of Egyptian Prince's and resurrection, just a dude with wings and a mace beating the hell out of people who end up being aliens. I'm REALLY digging this one.

And that's Wednesday Comics at the (almost) half way point. I'll probably do another post similar to this one when all is said and done. For now though, I would consider WC a success, and I would definitely be on board for another round once these 12 issues are finished.

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