I wanted to make my "Wednesday is new comics day!" posts a regular feature here, but to be honest, there's not that much in new mainstream superhero comics these days making me excited. Ocean's 13 is on the free premium cable HD station I have--I'm assuming--for this weekend. That kind of describes how I feel about the comics I've purchased over the past few weeks. It's free HD! And I'm watching Ocean's 13. Blah.
I've pretty much quickly lost interest in the big two's summer hijinks--in other words the allegedly Final Crisis and the all-but Secret Invasion. The latter I gave up on after one issue, mainly because I realized what takes Brian Michael Bendis 7 issues to write could probably be best done in 4 or 5, and my own sneaking suspicion that this is just a plot to turn Nick Fury into the spitting image of Samuel L. Jackson. (That Fury that's been around since 1963 in our time zone, and World War II in Marvel's? Skrull. The real Nick Fury is the black guy who was in Pulp Fiction. ) Final Crisis at 7 issues is about 2 too long, also, especially with Grant Morrison writing--and if anyone can explain the wonky Superman Beyond to me, in 25 words or less, feel free to do so. Nice house, nobody home. While I like the idea of all the separate mini-series tie-ins to Final Crisis--I believe there are 734 of them--none of them have lit a fire for me yet, and probably won't. "Batman RIP," you ask? Let's just say I'm waiting for the final cover, when the word "OFF" finally appears after "Rip." I don't know if he's dead, nuts, or just out getting his bat-ass hauled, but this isn't any fun.
I am enjoying Geoff Johns' work on both Action Comics--the Brainiac storyline is great--and Green Lantern, which is wrapping up the "Secret Origins" arc. His Justice Society, however, is one of the slowest moving stories I've ever read. I think that's on part 57 right now (okay, enough with the exaggerations), and it's one of those oh-so-serious stories that make me want to hurl. And okay...much as I like his work, can we go a week WITHOUT an Alex Ross cover on something, please? Superman, Batman, Spider-Man, Project Runway Superheroes (or whatever it's called), a new edition of Marvels, a new one of Kingdom Come...c'mon, man. TAKE A BREAK!
I have been picking up the new story in Amazing Spider-Man, a book I boycotted when Marvel decided Mary Jane Watson needed to be "removed" as Peter Parker's wife. I'm a bit in a fog as to why they didn't just make her a Skrull, or turn her into the spitting image of Samuel L. Jackson, which may--or may not--have turned off Petey from eating his wheatcakes, if you know what I'm saying. I'm buying it primarily because John Romita Jr. and Klaus Janson are doing the art, but I am sort of enjoying it, even though I don't think any of the writers constituting the "Spidey braintrust," who write the weekly series are brains I trust, or at the very least, writers I'd follow on a regular basis, like an Ed Brubaker or Greg Rucka (although I think the latter should go write a new Tara Chace/Queen & Country novel NOW). I like the whole Venom/Anti-Venom thing, but every time I read "Anti-Venom" to myself, I chuckle and imagine it as "Aunty Venom," and wonder how her wheatcakes compare to Aunt May's, if you know what I'm saying. After all, Spidey picked May over MJ. Face it tiger, you hit the crap-pot. Oh, and there's some red-haired super type running around calling herself "Jackpot." I'll drop the book again before I go there.
Don't get me wrong...some of my best friends are comics, and I love them. I just think we're in the doldrums of what used to be a summer stunt, a big company-wide crossover that was designed to entertain the kids whilst they were out of school. Well, the kids all grew up, and the "kids" reading comics these days are about 20-30 years past their halcyon days in school. So the stunts last 6 or 7 months (the preferred size of a story arc to collect into book form), oh, and while we're here, let's tie it into everything else going on.
See you Wednesday at the comics store.