Whoo-hoo, got my books early this week, and it's a good-un. Here we go:
Annihilation Conquest: StarLord #1
After picking up the collections of the first Annihilation event, I knew that I'd be getting the sequel as well, but I figured I'd hold out for the collections since I knew I'd be getting them anyway. Until I heard that this series would be featuring Rocket Raccoon. Well shit, I gues I'll have to pick this one up. Essentially, this book is a variation on the Dirty Dozen, with Peter Quill, StarLord leading a low-tech team to Hala to try to take down the Phalanxes (ie. the Borg of the Marvel Universe)
doomsday weapon. this issue is little more than set-up and the gathering of the team, but it does it so well, that you don't even care that no one gets punched. The art was very good too, I've never heard of Timothy Green II, but I'm going to keep an eye out for him. His work really reminded me of the late Seth Fisher's and that's definitely a complement.
The Immortal Iron Fist #7
While the creative team charges up for the second arc of this fun series, we get a quick "mythology" issue, providing the story of the Pirate Queen of Ping-Hi Bay. There's some fun kung fu action in this story, which is essentially: girl meets kung fu master, kung fu master trains girl, girl meets boy, boy and girl get married, kung fu master gets ticked, boy runs away (not wanting to watch girl die), girl searches for boy and kicks the crap out of southeast Asia while she does it. Oh yeah, there's pirates too. So fun for the whole family, at least the one's who like kung fu and pirates.
Queen & Country #32
I had completely stopped believing that this series would ever even come out again, but here it is, at least for one more issue. Greg Rucka wraps up the current storyline featuring British spy Tara Chase being held in Baghdad (with a journalist and her partner). truth-be-told, I had no idea what was going on, since the last issue came out over a year ago, but even without the benefit of a recap page, I was up to speed pretty quickly. This is a very good issue of this excellent series, but sadly, according to Greg Rucka's letter at the end, it's to be its last for a while. We'll have to wait for a relaunch coming in 2009 (or 2010!) in order to keep following these characters he has so well brought to life. It's funny, this series has been gone for quite a long time, but I didn't realize how much I'd miss it until someone told me when it would come back.
Black Summer #1
So Warren Ellis's new Avatar series fully kicks off and it's quite the grabber. In issue #0 we learned that John Horus (ie. Superman) killed the President and his cabinet for their lies and is determined to bring a newly elected government into power. Unfortunately, that means all of his old allies are now targets of a very scarred government and Tom Noir (ie. Batman) is fighting for his life. Oh yeah, Tom is now a drunk and minus a leg, so he's not exactly in shape to be fighting off super-powered hitmen....or is he?
Ellis, gives us a very good look at "real-world" superheroes, which is funny, since this is like his eighth time exploring this subject. Irregardless, I guess I'm in again, I wonder how it'll come out this time?
So I really don't know how you go wrong here. You have issue #666, written by Grant Morrison, featuring Batman's son, in the future, fighting the Anti-Christ and his minions (including a Gorilla in a clown costume) on the eve of the Apocalypse. But it all comes off rather flat. Part of the problem is that you have to search for clues throughout the story to see what the heck is really happening, and a fair amount of it refers back to stories that happened in the last few months (that I haven't read). It's still very good, but I wanted more.
One more bone to pick, could there have been more blood in this book? I understand that this is future-bad-ass-psycho-Batman, but did he really need to eviscerate all of his opponents? And this all got Code approval....how? It didn't bother me so much as pull me out of the story in a few place.
Let's hope Superman #666 is better.
So that's it for this week, everything was good, if not great. I also picked up Warren Ellis's Doktor Sleepless, but haven't gotten around to reading it, but based upon thumbing through it, I'm not hopeful. Now to figure out who's going to be fighting tomorrow night!