Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Stryder's Favourite Comics - 10/03/2012

Hey folks!  Happy Canadian Thanksgiving (better late than this article)!  It's going to be an exciting month for the DC Universe with "Rise of the Third Army" rocking the Green Lanterns, "H'El on Earth" crossing over the Super titles and of course, the return of the Joker as the "Death of the Family" crossover starts in Batman!  This week's titles, however, touch only on the first of these three epic events!

Green Lantern #15 - "I don't know why I have this ring or what else it can do, but there has to be a reason it came to me."

In last month's Zero Issue, suspected terrorist Simon Baz was busted out of a federal interrogation room by the reintegrated power ring of Hal Jordan/Sinestro.  This month, he awakes on the side of the road wearing a ring that won't come off with no idea what's going on!  All he knows is that he's in big trouble! 

The ring tries to play a message to him, but it's still having some plays a message that seems to be a corrupt mixing of two messages, one from Sinestro and one from Hal...they both manage to impart two important pieces of information to our newest Lantern, however.   1. DON'T go to OA and 2. STOP the Guardians!!!  The Third Army is on the move...while Simon Baz has to get his life in order and figure out what's going on, the Guardian's newest playthings are slowly but exponentially erasing free will from the Universe!

On an aside, I could see liking this new Lantern, but I still hope Hal comes back soon.  If I wanted to read about any old Green Lantern, I'd collect the other Lantern comics.  I only buy this one because I don't want to read about A Green Lantern...I want to read about THE Green Lantern, Hal Jordan.  Hopefully they won't leave him out too long...

New Creative Team on Detective Comics,  plus Action Comics, Green Arrow and more after the JUMP!

Detective Comics #13 - "Gotham is my city, and it's time I leave a bigger mark.  A more permanent mark.  It's not enough to have a kingdom...when you can have an empire."

The new creative team of John Layman and Jason Fabok start this book off with a bang, introducing a plot by the Penguin to leave a greater legacy to Gotham City than just slippery mob-boss and Batman foe.  To this end, he wants to co-opt the soon-to-open Martha Wayne Children's Center and make it instead the Esther Cobblepot Children's Center!  To facilitate this, he's also taken out a hit with some Chinese assassins known as the Ghost Dragons.  The target?  Bruce Wayne!

All of this and a Nightwing appearance too!  Oh, and the tone of the book has noticeably changed, with an emphasis on investigation and the use of crime tools.  Batman uses some of the scanners and whatnot that I mainly associate with popular video game Arkham City!  Cool!

Action Comics #13 - "It was Halloween in the Fortress of Solitude.  Trick or Treat, Superman."

Grant Morrison writes some of my favourite comics to read.  They're also some of the hardest to WRITE about.  I never feel like I can even do a brief synopsis justice! 

So first off, we get more of a view of the New 52 Fortress of Solitude...we still don't know how it got there or what happened to the Brainiac spaceship that Supes used to live in, but I'm sure it'll be explained eventually.  This month's story really delves into the Phantom Zone for the first time, as Superman is pulled into it by a prisoner named Dr. Xa-Du, a Kryptonian who was the very first prisoner in the Phantom Zone!  He's also the first to find a way to escape!

So the story, on the surface level, is about Superman being trapped in the Phantom Zone.  Whilst there, he also runs into the Phantom Stranger!  However, at the heart of this story (and a back-up story also included) is the tale of a boy and his dog!  That's right, even amongst the criminals and degenerates of the Phantom Zone, there is a reason to hope!  That reason?  A white dog named Krypto!

Before Watchmen: Rorschach #2 (of 4) - "Undeniable fact everyone denies is that at its heart, the world is a cold place."

A severely beaten, left for dead Rorschach manages to scrape himself off of the pavement and get back in the game, as he continues to hunt the gang that tried to murder him last issue and their ruthless and hideously scarred leader, Rawhead.  Of course, without the help of an over-friendly diner waitress, about all our hero is good for is slipping into unconsciousness in a pool of his own vomited up blood.  Perhaps a day off is in order...

On the other hand, this IS Rorschach we're discussing.  The best way for him to feel better is to make some scum feel worse!  Time to go out and get some answers...

Earth 2 #5 - "We're Wonders....that makes us heroes, right?  We do the right thing."

Earth 2's new "Wonders", Green Lantern, the Flash, Hawkgirl and the Atom must band together and try to stop the undead, plague causing, avatar of "The Grey" known as Grundy before A: all life on Earth is wiped out or B: the government sends a nuke to deal with the threat by killing them all.  This despite the threat originating on the front lawn of the White House!

Of course, the Grey and Grundy are literally the menace that Green Lantern was given his powers to counteract in this universe, so this situation might not be too daunting.  EXCEPT...the governement has Terry Sloan (in our universe he's Mr. Terrific but on Earth 2 he's one of history's greatest monsters, as we learned in last month's Zero issue!) working with them.  We know how much he LOVES to blow up large portions of the planet!!

Worlds' Finest #5 - "But Mom always said, you save the world when you save a single life."

Power Girl heads off to the CERN supercollider under the Alps, which she's been helping to fund in the hopes that their research will help her with her so-far futile mission of figuring out a way to get back to Earth 2.  This turns out to be lucky as the experiment they are currently running actually DOES open up a boom-tube like dimensional portal.  Of course, it doesn't lead to Earth 2, and a killer robot IMMEDIATELY emerges from the portal.  This looks like a job for Power Girl!

In the meantime, Huntress, in a much more meaningful story, joins a "Take back the night" protest/candlelight vigil.  She's definitely much more at peace with being the Huntress in "our" dimension...thankfully she doesn't have the "must get home" obsession that Power Girl shows.  Anyway, she also gets a job to take care of, as some asshole MAN decides that women who want to walk around at nighttime will make excellent targets for his brand new sniper rifle!  We'll see just how far THAT gets him...

Green Arrow #13 - "With this little toy, you can know a man's inner nature.  If his heart be good...or criminal."

Green Arrow is still in China, trying to regain control of Queen Industries from "legitimate businessman" Jin Fang, who is holding  the controlling shares of Queen's  company hostage until he receives the prototype for the "Wolf Tech" device, which can gather information on anyone it's pointed at with the click of a button.  Before he can do that, however, he has to somehow defeat a crazy gauntlet of weird Chinese death magic and weirdness.  Luckily, "China's Favourite Superhero," Suzie Ming, is there to help!  I'm just not sure WHO she's there to help...

Incidentally, I'm a little surprised that they didn't make this issue a better jump-on point for Green Arrow, since EVERY comic this week had a banner for the new CW show "Arrow" premiering TONIGHT Wednesday the 10th!  You'd think they'd want a better tie-in!  Regardless, I'm going to watch the show tonight...set your PVR's!  We can make fun of Green Arrow's shortcomings in a whole new medium!!

And that's it for another week!  Head out to the comic book store RIGHT NOW since it's new comic book day and pick up Batman #13 and Batgirl #13 to begin "Death of a Family"!  Also released today are Superboy, Suicide Squad, The Ravagers and more!  Come back next week to hear all about them!

I do my quarterly life assessment this week at Stryder's Dementia!  Make fun of MY shortcomings!  Green Arrow I ain't...

Have a great short week!  See ya next time!  PEACE!

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