This Week’s Haul

Comic books I bought the week of 21 February 2007.

  • Aquaman: Sword of Atlantis #49 (DC)
  • The Brave and the Bold #1 (DC)
  • 52 #42 of 52 (DC)
  • Wonder Woman #4 (DC)
  • Red Menace #4 of 6 (DC/Wildstorm)
  • Brit: Old Soldier vol. 1 TPB (Image)

The Brave and the Bold revives a very old DC title. Best-known for being dedicated to team-ups between Batman and other characters, this new series will feature rotating team-ups each issue. The first issue is Batman and Green Lantern, while the second will be Green Lantern and Supergirl. But the real attraction is the all-star creative team: Writer Mark Waid, and artists George Pérez and Bob Wiacek. Waid is an always-entertaining superhero wordsmith, and Pérez – as I’ve said before – I think is the best artist in the business. Wiacek is no slouch as an inker, and it seems like it’s been years since I saw his name on a book. The first issue is a fun romp involving 64 identical bodies all murdered in the same way at the same time, and a trail leading to a Las Vegas casino. It’s too early to tell whether the story will make a lot of sense, but it sure does look good. The kicker is that Waid plays up the differences between Batman and Green Lantern – in both their identities – but has pleasantly put all the horse-hockey involving Hal Jordan’s murky story of the last decade behind them. Go Mark Waid!

52 resolves the ongoing Ralph Dibny (the former Elongated Man) storyline. His wife Sue was pointlessly killed in the pointless mini-series Identity Crisis a few years back, and he’s been muddling around ever since, most recently palling around with the helmet of Doctor Fate to cast a spell to pull her back from the afterlife. It all comes to a head here, with several nifty revelations, although a ending which seems far too unfortunate given all the build-up. Hopefully this isn’t the end. It’s also a rare issue illustrated all by one artist, Darick Robertson (Transmetropolitan), whose style suits this issue very well. Well done, guys.

Brit is yet another book written by Robert Kirkman (Marvel Zombies, Invincible, The Walking Dead). Brit is actually an American government agent, who is an older man who’s completely invulnerable. He’s the government’s last line of defense. Kirkman writes that he wanted Brit to be a “widescreen” fight book, with big panels and lots of violence. In this, it succeeds.

Kirkman also misses a bet completely: The first issue teases us with the view of a long-standing hero (well, sorta-hero) who’s perhaps nearing the end of his career and perhaps losing his powers, but who refuses to see it. Given Brit’s take-no-shit attitude, this could have ended up as an interesting character story, but instead it’s just a big fight book. Pity. The art ranges from good to merely passable, steadily declining throughout the three chapters in the volume.