Pointless Nonsense

Posted in comics by Bill on September 1, 2011

Comics. Some new, some old:

The Ultimates, the 5th iteration of this particular title, this time by Jonathan Hickman and Esad Ribic, is actually a fresh take on the concept without missing the core of the title: an updated take on the Avengers, doing things you can’t do in the regular Marvel Universe. Which is what attracted me to the Ultimate Universe in the first place. It was a really good first issue, and not just because of the drunk bear.
Ultimate Hawkeye, also written by Jonathan Hickman and with art by Rafa Sandoval, runs parallel to the Ultimates, but while it has a few appropriate moments of badassedness, it isn’t quite as good. I’ll still totally read it, though, since I like both the writer and the character.
Justice League, the first book of the big “New 52” relaunch, by Geoff Johns and Jim Lee, neither of which I am a big fan of, turns out to be quite a bit better than expected, even as it gets mixed reviews. It was Batman-centric, so that’s always a plus for me, and the dialogue was snappy. I expect it to go downhill at some point, but I’m totally on board for now.
Why I Hate Saturn is a 1990 graphic novel by Kyle Baker, whose work I mostly know from his satiric work in Plastic Man and Special Forces. Why I Hate Saturn is totally different, it’s rougher artistically, black and white, less cartoonish and more sketchy. More importantly, it’s very funny. I also have a strange affinity for the protagonist, who is talented but too lazy and depressed and socially awkward to do anything with her abilities, and instead just works hard enough to get by. I wonder if I might somehow identify with that. It also revealed to me that there were hipsters in 1990, which I totally didn’t know. Things go off the rails at the end, and maybe there was a point to it that I just missed, but whatever. I laughed enough at the first 2/3 that it could ended with the author telling me by name to go fuck myself and I still would’ve enjoyed it.
Chase was a short series from the late 1990s that people still seem to remember fondly, and it’s about to get a trade paperback finally. I was curious enough to check it out, and it’s ok. I could see it being a breath of fresh air at a time when things were still fairly crappy in comics, but the main draw for me was J.H. Williams III’s art, and it turns out he’s gotten better with time. It was fine, just not “holy shit I don’t care what kinda story it is, I just want to look at the pretty pictures” good like it was in Batwoman. The story follows Cameron Chase (no relation to two doctors from House), who works for the DEO, sort of a S.H.I.E.L.D. for D.C. comics, keeping an eye on the metahuman population. She has a particular distaste for metas, but it turns out she might be one herself. I’m not quite done with it yet, but so far it’s entirely readable but nothing special
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