Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Stryder's Favourite Comics - 5/09/2012

Another week of comics is here and DC is cross-over crazy, with 3 new parts to Night of the Owls and 2 more parts to The Culling!  Not to mention Suicide Squad scheming away...let's take a closer look...starting with a book that was released one week early - Batman!

Batman #9 - The "Night of the Owls" continues as Bruce has to deal with an army of Talons that broke into his house and THE CAVE last issue!  Alfred is trapped in the armoury and Batman is trapped in the cave, hoping that a clever plan, a little science and a lot of  luck will somehow combine into an opportunity to survive the night!  The one upside?  Bruce is wearing a spiffy extra-tough outfit.  In his own words "My suit is built for war...it's built for battle in the most alien territories on Earth.  And I'm wearing it here, in my own home." Heavy stuff!

Of course, if the Dark Knight manages to survive this invasion of his home, there are plenty of Talons on the streets of Gotham City to deal with, murdering important figures right and left!  If you ever wanted a nice cushy government job in Gotham City, now's the time to put in your resume.  There's gonna be some job vacancies in the very near future!

We also get a back-up story titled  "Fall of the House of Wayne" wherein Alfred's father, Jarvis Pennyworth, narrates a tale of Thomas and Martha Wayne, and of course their tiny toddler son, Bruce!  Jarvis tells via a letter to Alfred how the Court of Owls is somehow involved in the Wayne's (and the Pennyworth's) downfall!  Usually I'm not a big fan of back-up stories, but in this case I'll make an exception!  The art and story are great and I can't wait to see where this one is leading...

There's so much more to talk about!  After the JUMP of course!

Batgirl #9 - Night of the Owls is not a good night for the Gordon family.  Well, obviously!!  Batgirl encounters a female Talon who completely outfights her.  It's pretty embarrassing, all things considered.  As this isn't the first time that Barbara's had this problem, one really has to wonder if she wouldn't be better off with a little more training before she tries to take on the big guns of Gotham...she's no Bruce Wayne, that's for sure.  Commissioner Gordon, meanwhile, is being controlled through fear by the Court of Owls!  They've threatened to kill Barb if he does...well...anything!  It's a rough night indeed as the Commissioner's fear for his daughter, so recently made whole once more, battles with his desire to fight evil...

About the female Talon...she is completely mute and also inexplicably leaves Batgirl alive, despite easily kicking her ass not once but TWICE!  Barb doesn't know why she's still breathing, but she isn't about to complain!  The backstory for this Talon has origins in WWII and involves the use of Fire Balloons by the Japanese.  It's a touching little side plot that I can't help but think may be relevant in the future as well.  Now the Court of Owls employs these same Fire Balloons in an attempt to burn Gotham City to the ground!  It's a grim issue indeed.  Don't expect a happy ending.

Batman And Robin #9 - Damien is home alone (AHHhh!!!) as Bruce is busy cleaning house (see Batman #9)!  Can our newest incarnation of Robin the Boy Wonder deal with the threat of the Night of the Owls all alone?  Damien got the same call from Alfred that all the Bat-Allies did and is off to try and protect Major General Benjamin Burrows, Gotham army base commander and closest potential victim of the Court!

Unfortunately, Gotham City is a pretty hard-baked place, and it's hard to be taken seriously as a 10-year old in a yellow cape without a big, looming Batman standing next to you.  At least until the Talon attacks!!
There are some really wonderful action sequences here between Robin, the Talon, the General and several army men to boot.  You don't HAVE to read this story to follow the Night of the Owls in Batman, but you really SHOULD.  It's very interesting to learn about Damien and how he operates on his own...almost makes me wish Robin had his own solo book!

Oh, did I mention the name of this story is "Robin Hears a Hoo"?  Brilliant!

Green Lantern #9 - Hal Jordan is still on the run from the Indigo Tribe on a crazy prison planet with a ring that isn't altogether working and NOW a BRAINWASHED Sinestro joining in the hunt for him!  This time, though, he starts to form a plan...maybe he can shut the whole tribe down if he can find the source of the Indigo light!!  With this in mind, it's off to see the wizard for Hal as he meets up with a wizened old man named Natromo.  This guy claims to be the co-creator of the Indigo tribe along with  Abin Sur!!!

Of course what Natromo doesn't know is that Abin Sur is dead and that his ring has been passed on to Hal (and of course now Sinestro has it, I think?).  He also doesn't know that the events known as the "Blackest Night" have already happened (Pre-New 52 but they're still counting it).  Upon learning of these tidings...well...let's just say he's more than a little perturbed.  Something about the Guardians impending madness and all being lost.  Hmmm.  Looks like Green Lantern is going to have his hands full in the very near future...if he can survive this!!

Personally, I'm still waiting for Carol Ferris to arrive.  What could be keeping her?  This is now a 3-month long cliffhanger you bastards!!  Oh also they want to make a big deal about the bad guy on the cover but he's literally in only one panel and not even an important one.  I think he has something to do with "Blackest Night" but I never read it so am not sure.  I could wiki it I guess but I trust they'll explain more next month...

Superboy #9 -  "The Culling" part 2 starts pretty much right where part 1 in the Teen Titans Annual #1 left us.  Superboy and his fellow Titans, along with Legion Lost and some other so-far unaligned kids have teamed up and successfully neutralized all of the other kidnapped metahuman teenagers without killing everyone and done their best to stop the Culling from taking place.  Of course, Harvest isn't about to just let them go home and thus sends his Ravagers (a group of villains who were previous victims of another Culling) into their underground battlefield to begin round 2.  Fight!!

Superboy gets top billing, what with it being his book and all, and immediately slams into the leader of the Ravagers, the dude on the cover, Warblade!  It's a good strategy and a good fight that includes a swim in a lava pool, among other things (not even the FIRST TIME Superboy has been dunked in lava, incidentally).  There are lots of other cool moments, and several hints regarding the origin of Kid Flash, oddly enough.  The Legion Lost are from the 31st century and so think of a lot of the other kids as "historical figures" more or less and drop hints about them.  Of course this book leads right into Part 3...

Legion Lost #9 - "You have fought well and sacrificed much, children.  Such a pity that most of you must now DIE."

This is the first time I ever bought an issue of Legion Lost.  Why?  I wanted part 3 of The Culling!  Just when Legion Lost, the Teen Titans and the rest start to hope they might actually SURVIVE the Culling, Harvest shows up in their midst!  So far he's been all shadowy and behind the scenes, but now he's going to show everyone why he's the BIG bad guy of N.O.W.H.E.R.E.  Luckily for everyone, Red Robin is here to use what Batman taught him and keep this uber-team-up on point!  With a little input from the Legion's leader, Tyroc, you know...to be polite, mostly.

Oh we also see what I suspect are the beginnings of the formation of a new team of kids which will probably lead into the New 52 Wave 2 book, "The Ravagers".  This is more or less speculation on my part, but it's sparked my interest.  I'll at least pick up The Ravagers #1 to keep all of you  (and of course myself!) posted.

While this is going on, everyone else is doing poorly trying to outwit or outfight Harvest.  He seems pretty unstoppable.  I'm afraid it's going to take at least a Part 4 to discover who survives The Culling!

Suicide Squad #9 - Suicide Squad is sent out on a mission to assassinate a man named Mitch Shelley.  Mission Accomplished.  OR is it?  See, Deadshot and the others haven't been informed that Mitch Shelley goes by another name as well...that name?  Resurrection Man!  This mission just got complicated!!

In other news, Harley Quinn is back on her feet and undergoing psychiatric evaluation!  Apparently Waller "still needs her".  One catch...she claims that her near-death experience changed her.  Could she be...Dr. Harleen Quinzel once more??

Speaking of Harley, her little stunt with Deadshot and the Joker's face two issues back is still messing with poor Floyd's rather fragile mind.  For the leader of a team called Suicide Squad, being off your game isn't such a great idea.  Nor is it all that flattering to be missing targets when your name is DEADSHOT.  He's rattled.  Badly.

As for the rest of the team?  We still don't know who the potential traitor may be, but I will say this.  We see one character thought dead reappear!  We also see someone who started out this issue alive get taken down!  Never know who's gonna end up in a pine box in this book...

Oh since DC's cross-over crazy with their efforts to "world build" these days, part 2 of this story is in the next issue of Resurrection Man.  Fair warning!  I'll probably buy it and write about it, but then I have more money than common sense...Three Whole Dollars!

So that's it for this week!  Tomorrow's another New Comic Book Day with another 3 or 4 Owl-related books and some Justice League and Wonder Woman thrown in to boot!

And of course, if you're bored you can check out Stryder's Dementia.  This week I try to look through the eyes of a Stranger.  Peace ya'll!

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