Sunday, October 28, 2007

Zombies, Bizarros, and Sinestros: Oh, my!

My head is still hurting from last night's Halloween festivities, so I'll probably keep this brief. Let me start by saying, however, that despite what DC and Jim Starlin might think, Jack Kirby's New Gods are alive and well, thank you very much.

That's my pal and co-worker Rachelle Goguen as Big Barda, and me as Orion. In your face, DC!

On to the comics. The three part ACTION COMICS storyline, "Escape From Bizarro World", wrapped up this week--it was written by Geoff Johns and Richard Donner, and drawn by THE GOON creator Eric Powell. First off, I'd like to reiterate how much I am loving this writing team's run on the book, however intermittent it might be, and I'm super happy to see it back on track. Next week, Donner takes a break (I'm honestly not sure how much he actually contributes to the process, anyway) and Gary Frank joins as new regular penciller, which is very exciting. In the meantime, though, this was a fun little storyline that restores the idea of a Bizarro World to the DCU. In the olden days, it probably would have been a single issue, or maybe a double-sized annual, but in these days of "decompressed storytellng" or "writing for the trade" or whatever you want to call it, it somehow translates to three issues. As a result, it felt a bit padded--lots of pages are spent introducing characters like Bizarro Luthor, Bizarro Doomsday (who is really just Doomsday--shouldn't he be weak and puny or something?), and the Bizarro JLA, but when the artwork is this nice, it's hard to complain about it. Superman comes to a nice, Silver-Agey solution in the end by making Bizarro the hero of his people rather than just fighting him, and there are lots of fun details in the issue, like Bizarro Aquaman with a fishbowl on his head. I also loved how the Bizarro Green Lantern is actually that sector's representative of the Sinestro Corps, who is too stupid to get with the program and join the GL/Sinestro war that's currently raging across the galaxy.

Speaking of the Sinestro Corps...the "Sinestro Corps War" storyline is nearing its conclusion in the GREEN LANTERN titles, and as much as I've enjoyed this crossover, I think I'll be glad to see it end. This week, three tie-in books--GREEN LANTERN CORPS, BLUE BEETLE, and TALES OF THE SINESTRO CORPS: SUPERMAN-PRIME were released, and not much actually happened between them. They all kinda reiterated the same basic info--the war has come to Earth, Superboy-Prime hates everybody, and Sodam Yat is the new Ion--yet none of them managed to advance the story very much. It's kind of like what went quickly wrong with the WORLD WAR HULK tie-ins, where multiple issues cover the same couple of events from a few different angles, but the story doesn't go forward quickly enough. The multitude of unappealing fill-in art on GLC doesn't help either. Still, this has been one of the more exciting crossover events of recent memory, and there's still time for Geoff Johns and Dave Gibbons to bring a big finish to the whole shebang.

So, the last time I posted, I complained yet again about the proliferation of zombie comics, but now I have to go and recommend one. FEAR AGENT co-creators Rick Remender and Tony Moore team up with artist Kieron Dwyer to unleash XXXOMBIES (a title that kind of only works in print) on the world, and the result is good, gross fun. Really gross. Like, not for 99% of the population gross. The premise of this series (which is the first of a projected series of horror titles under the banner CRAWLSPACE) is that a bunch of 70s porn stars are holed up in a mansion to film three days of hardcore sex, unaware that Los Angeles has just been invaded by walking corpses. Eventually the two worlds collide, and the result is disgusting and awesome. One gag involves an actor who leaves the mansion, is bitten by a zombie, and stumbles back to the shoot where he is thought to be high on crystal meth or something and, before he has a chance to infect anyone, he is rushed off to do a scene...I'll let you imagine where this one goes. Good stuff, but most definitely not for everyone.

My head still hurts, I have to go back and lie down for a while. Happy Halloween, everybody!

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