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Tuesday, November 4, 2008

What Do You Mean They're Not Superheroes?: Sneak Peek Reviews 11/4/08

Ultimatum #1 (of 5)
Written by: Jeph Loeb
Art by: David Finch

So, as you may have heard Jeph Loeb and his colleague Jesse Alexander were fired from their positions on Heroes. The ratings of the former television giant have fallen significantly since it's first blockbuster season. How much of that can really be blamed on Loeb is questionable but it must certainly be considered that as co-executive producer he certainly had quite a lot to say about the direction of the story of Heroes (which I have enjoyed but take that for what you will). Ultimatum is meant to be the first really big change in the status quo of Marvel's Ultimate Universe. It's interesting to see how quick things change in this issue. It's a pretty brutal beginning to what is bound to be a mighty big shake-up. From what I have understood the only title currently being published under the Ultimate line that is safe (won't be canceled by the end of Ultimatum) is Ultimate Spider-Man. So it's plain to say that there are likely to be casualties. David Finch's artwork is plenty good, and while Jeph Loeb's dialog is a little clunky in places I think that the plot of the issue is really pretty good. I think it is going to be interesting to see what happens between the forces of good (all the heroes in the Ultimate Universe) and the force of evil (Magneto). It feels a little bit like a popcorn blockbuster that while it seems like there have been “March on Ultimatum” banners forever hasn't really had much of a story lead up. So sit back and watch the explosions.

Terra #1
Written by: Jimmy Palmiotti & Justin Gray
Art by: Amanda Conner

It doesn't really hold much importance to the ongoing DCU, it doesn't feature any top tier characters, it isn't written or drawn by any of Wizard's Top Ten lists ... but that doesn't stop it from being rather good. The name Terra has been one that has been wrought with controversy. First Tara Markov, half brother of Brion Markov aka Geo-Force, joined The Teen Titans and became the lynch pin of a critically acclaimed as well as a fan favorite: The Judas Contract. But one of the things that has never been clear about the characters who have carried the name Terra concerns their origins. This new miniseries has every indication of being both the establishment of a new Terra, but also the establishment of a great new character. Amanda Conner crafts some really great pages and creates some really interesting subterranean creatures. It's really a great start to an interesting miniseries and I think that more and more fans and readers are going to start recognizing just how great Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti really are. I think that if you are looking for a fun new miniseries in the DCU this week that you are going to be hard pressed to find a better book to check out.

Gigantic #1
Written by: Rick Remender
Art by: Eric Nguyen

So imagine if the intelligent designer that so many people believe created Earth and Humanity did so out of a genuine hope to make a ratings juggernaut for the Universal Broadcasting Company ... Weird idea huh? That's pretty much the concept behind Gigantic. The United Planets has long forgotten disease and war and has settled into a nice routine of enjoying all the material broadcast thanks to the Universal Broadcasting Company. Earth and humanity were crafted to be the best channel on all of the UBC, smart enough to create really devastating weapons and tribal enough to use them, resilient enough to survive natural disasters but not wise enough to move out of the way. The main character of the series is “Gigantic” a human who had been taken from Earth and genetically altered to become a gladiator on an Arena Planet, he's run back to Earth and though he has returned in a hope to come home it looks more like his return might be the end of Earth as we know it. Really and truly this is going to be one heck of an interesting series going forward. Remender and Nguyen have a really great capability to craft an incredible cast of characters and an incredible series. Most definitely something to check out when you get to the store tomorrow.

I apologize for the lateness of these reviews, I was wrapped up in following Election coverage. Congratulations to President Elect Barack Obama and Vice President Elect Joe Biden and their family, friends, and our nation as we move forward into a new and exciting world.

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