Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Stryder's Favourite Comics - 3/13/2013

DC Comics releases the World's Most Heartbreaking Comic this week!  What better time than the final week of Winter to mourn a fallen hero?  None!

Batman And Robin #18 - "..."

When Grant Morrison spoke in interviews about the events of Batman, Inc #8 and the aftermath of same, he told us that we'd "cry and cry and cry..."  It didn't take long for his prediction to come true, as this 100% dialogue-free issue of Batman and Robin made me weep like an adolescent girl whose kitten just got run over in the street.

In a "Requiem" issue simply titled "Undone", we join Bruce, Alfred and even Damian's faithful dog, Titus in saying good-bye.  I defy anyone who has ever felt real loss in their lives (and who among us has not?) not to empathize with this silent tribute to the Boy Wonder...I've personally never been so moved by a single 20-page comic book in my life.  This is a beautiful comic book. 

Thanks to writer Peter J. Tomasi and particularly penciller Patrick Gleason, inker Mick Gray and colourist John KaliszBatman and Robin #18 is pure art.  The last page in particular would hang on my wall, if only it didn't make me want to cry every time I looked at it...Amazing!

More Batman, some Before Watchmen and more after the JUMP!

Batman #18 - "If I'm being honest, it's because I'm worried.  I've never seen him like this before.  And I'm terrified of what might happen next."

Batman's on a dark and angry path in another "Requiem" title this month...a path that is more than likely going to get him killed if he doesn't step back from the brink of madness!  Harper Row doesn't know what the Caped Crusader's problem is (she must not have read Batman, Inc #8) but she knows that something is very, very wrong. 

Seems Harper's been following the Dark Knight around since she realized she could track him by following his electronic counter-measure cloaking technology through the city's grid with the awesome power of science.  Now she sees him losing his cool and decides to confront him...earning her some angry words and  a broken nose for her efforts, even after she does manage to assist Batman in his battle.  No good deed goes unpunished, particularly in Gotham City...

Before Watchmen: Ozymandias #6 (of 6) - "Her death had been tragic, but necessary.  In the end she knew too much--and as my master plan grew to fruition, that could not be allowed."

Adrian "Ozymandias" Veidt is tying up loose ends and gearing up for the grand launch of his ultimate plan to save the Earth from nuclear annihilation as we come to the end of his mini-series this month!  He doesn't have too much left to do...make sure everyone's prepared on his secret private island...finally discover the secret to Dr. Manhattan's teleportation power...give Moloch a job as he's freed from prison...oh yes, and pay an unfortunate late-night visit to the Comedian, who looked out a window at the wrong time and learned something of Ozymandias' plan.  There is no way that Adrian can let anyone know the details of what he hopes will be the World's greatest con as well as the World's best hope!

Batgirl #18 - "Gotham is a city that devours its heroes..."

Poor Batgirl gets no time to rest as fresh from being held prisoner by the Joker, she must carry on and mop up the mess her brother, James Jr. has been creating...he's been manipulating both Batgirl and their mother, playing mind games that grow increasingly...serious...

Not only that, but Batgirl's still trying to stop this dude Firebug, who is going around blowing up the policemen who were trying to round up the Joker's gang!  He's working for someone, but won't say who...

Oh and continuity be damned, this is a "Requiem" comic, too!  Batgirl (by way of her dad Commissioner Gordon) hears the disturbing news about poor Damian "Robin" Wayne...Considering I don't recall Barbara and Damian ever speaking to each other, and only remember them being in the same room once or twice since the New 52 began, it's not really all that earth-shattering.  It did make for an awfully pretty cover for this comic though!

Superboy #18 - "That's GOTTA hurt.  Of course, when you're a jelly-filled, glowing, radioactive hate monster, maybe less so..."

In the aftermath of Superboy's battle with H'El in the last several issues (not to mention the last several issues of Superman and Supergirl!  Where've YOU been?)  Superboy is starting to realize that despite being a clone created as a living weapon for an evil, ambiguous organization of aliens and freaks, he has a choice in the way he behaves!  His actions have consequences and there is a difference between right and wrong!  This is a HUGE revelation for Superboy, who has been morally ambivalent at best in his short life.  Putting his money (literally) where his mouth is, Superboy decides to return the millions of dollars that he stole several issues back to the bank! 

Once again we find that no good deed goes unpunished in the DCU as while returning the money, Superboy is interuppted by a bank robbery by a huge radioactive monster calling himself Plasma!!  Not only that, but a weird little telepathic man (named Dr. Psycho, no less) is also drawn into the battle and into Superboy's MIND due to the psychic power that Superboy is utilizing!  You know, you try to just run ONE simple errand...

The Ravagers #10 - "The Ravagers are laughing--and about the Colony no less."

Things finally seem to be working out for the Ravagers this month, as they actually survived last month's confrontation with Rose Wilson and Warblade!  They seem to finally be loosening up and acting like people instead of scared, half-crazed refugee survivors of the Colony!  Not only that, but THREE really good things happen to the team this issue!  Two of which I was NOT expecting at all...

Sadly, one VERY BAD THING is also about to happen.  Unfortunately for our heroes, big bad Harvest knows about the events of the last two issues and the failure of his soldiers, Warblade and Rose.  This gives him a little leverage with Rose's father...Harvest will spare the life of Rose Wilson if her father agrees to take on the Ravagers as his next targets and dispatch them with something called the Abeo Blade.  Oh, this is all much more worrisome when you realize that Rose's dad is none other than Slade Wilson aka Deathstroke the Terminator!!!

Suicide Squad #18 - "I'm not a leader...a teammate...or even a hero.  I've never cared about anything or anyone but moi."

It's a big battle royale this month as the Suicide Squad must face off against Regulus and Red Orchid to rescue a mystery man from their clutches (secure the package, to use their lingo).  Regulus, of course, is the leader of criminal organization Basilisk and someone that Deadshot just killed a few issues back.  Of course, Deadshot also DIED in that issue...and yet here we are, with both of them drawing breath yet again.  How can this be?  Well, Deadshot was the unknowing beneficiary of A.R.G.U.S. research into the powers of Resurrection Man!  As for Regulus?  Who can say how he still lives? 

And then there's Red Orchid.  She is the sister of Squad member Yo-Yo and has some pretty impressive plant-based powers!  She's like Poison Ivy taken about 8 steps too far...completely sacrficing any remnant of humanity to the plant kingdom.  Even the combined abilities of the Suicide Squad may not be a match for this one...as we can clearly see when Amanda Waller is forced to take to the field personally!  Who could this mystery "package" be to inspire such an unprecedented step?  Read the issue and you'll find out!

Well, that's it for the comics of Winter!  It may not be the Stark motto, but guess what?  Spring is coming!  Tomorrow as a matter of fact...and with Spring, comes New Comic Book Day!!  I'm looking forward to both Justice League and the new Justice League of America!  Not to mention Nightwing, Red Hood and the Outlaws, Supergirl...of and of course the long-awaited double-sized final Grant Morrison issue of Action Comics!!  Gonna be a big one! 

As if that's not enough, for once I'm in a GOOD mood over at Stryder's Dementia!  Weird...

Okay folks have a good week!  Peace and love and gigantic robotic dinosaurs FTW! 

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