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Tuesday, October 28, 2008

What Do You Mean They're Not Superheroes?: Sneak Peek Reviews 10/28/08

Final Crisis: Rage of the Red Lanterns
Written by: Geoff Johns

Art by: Shane Davis

Alright, so that was damn good. Back in October of 2004 Geoff Johns took the reigns of the Green Lantern with the miniseries that he and Ethan Van Sciver crafted: Green Lantern: Rebirth. Since then the Green Lantern book has been in good hands. Last year one of the big events that no one expected was Sinestro Corps War, which proved that you can have a really great event without an independent miniseries and while involving only one or two titles. To be honest I think that more people should be reading both Green Lantern and it's companion book Green Lantern Corps because they are probably the best sci-fi books currently being published in todays market. Add to that the storied history of the Green Lanterns, especially the concepts crafted by Alan Moore currently being explored by Geoff Johns in coordination with Pete Tomasi (the current Green Lantern Corps writer) and you've got some great superhero storytelling going on. Now starting with last year's Sinestro Corps War we have started to see the ground work for the creation of the lanterns of the different aspects of the emotional spectrum. Just prior to the official declaration of the war we saw the beginnings of the Violent Lanterns of Love who had long been known as The Star Sapphires. Since then we have seen the Yellow Lanterns of Fear, known to the universe as The Sinestro Corps. This issue in particular shows how intricate and how rewarding a story that Johns has planned for those who have been following his work on Green Lantern since the beginning. We see the first assault by the Red Lanterns of Hatred or Rage (how they get their rings and lanterns will leave your jaw on the floor). This is truly a fantastic issue and for all intents and purposes is a great jumping on point for anyone who is going to want to read the Blackest Night crossover that will start next year between the Green Lantern and Green Lantern Corps books.

Ultimate Spider-Man Annual #3
Written by: Brian Michael Bendis
Art by: David Lafuente

I love this book. I've loved Ultimate Spider-Man since I first started reading it in 2002. I love it through it's ups and downs. I love it unconditionally. I love this book and yet I have never, in my life, regularly followed an in continuity Spider-Man book for longer than a story arc or two. I guess I am just a complex dude. There is something about the way that Bendis writes all of these characters that just sits ever so well with me. I mean I love many of Bendis' other books but I think that in a lot of ways Ultimate Spider-Man is the book he was meant to write. I think that if you are looking for the perfect superhero book to get a non-comic reader into comics that Ultimate Spider-Man might just be the answer (if they aren't into Marvel books then I would say that Invincible from Image is next best and Blue Beetle over at DC is a close third). This is a great issue of Ultimate Spider-Man. Bendis has come up with a great story, he has ultimized a long standing Spider-Man villain who has never appeared in USM before, it deals with some great Peter Parker/Mary Jane stuff, and it is drawn by the incredible new talent David Lafuente. One thing that cannot be overlooked about Ultimate Spider-Man is that it has the unique distinction of having never been drawn by a less than great artist (some people might disagree but I think that they are just letting bias get in their way or don't know good art when they see it). I really think that if you are trying to get a young kid into comics or really anyone who has expressed interest in getting into comics that Ultimate Spider-Man is the place to start.

Hellboy: In The Chapel of Moloch
Written and Drawn by: Mike Mignola

It's been a mighty long time since Mike Mignola has pencilled an entire issue of Hellboy. And while he may not have pencilled his characters in a mighty long time he certainly hasn't let any rust develop. His pages are still incredibly well laid out and his figures haven't suffered a single solitary iota. This is a really fun one shot story that anyone interested in Hellboy or BPRD should most certainly check out. It's probably not the best written of the recent Hellboy stories but it certainly isn't bad by any stretch of the imagination. It's a Hellboy adventure that takes place in 1992, before he left The BPRD, and it's a joy to read. Since it's a one shot and I wager that everyone who is interested in reading this will pummel me to death with shoes I will keep my mouth shut about the plot and just say that it was incredibly nice to see Mignola doing interior work again. A MUST BUY this week!

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