Written by: Leah Moore & John Reppion
Art by: Ben Templesmith
I really have begun to wonder what has taken me so long in getting around to reading the Doctor Who comics. There is something about the character and the stories that are told with him that are unique to him, and they are always interesting, often brilliant, and sometimes pure genius. This story is really no different, husband/wife team John Reppion and Leah Moore (daughter of comics legend Alan Moore [but who does a very good job of trying not to ride daddy’s coattails]) have crafted an incredibly interesting story utilizing the most recent incarnation of The Doctor and his second companion Martha. The story has an interesting twist and really feels like a solid if not a rather good episode of the show. I think that having read and enjoyed this issue that I might even start looking into reading some of the previous stories because they have had some really great creators involved in the making of them. The only thing that I would say is a little frustrating about this book is that the amazing talent of Ben Templesmith is … somewhat muted by his use of photos of characters faces in certain shots … it just makes for a somewhat still shot here and there, even though he does his best to also draw around the capture. All in all I think that this was a fun story and a solid read and that anyone who has thought about maybe checking out the Doctor Who books (like I had) would be well served by checking this issue out.
Written by: Brian Michael Bendis
Art by: Billy Tan, Brian Hitch, David Aja, Michael Gaydos, David Lopez, Alex Maleev, Steve McNiven, Leinil Yu, Steve Epting, Greg Horn
December 2004 saw the launching of an all new Avengers title, New Avengers, with a whole new approach to the line-up of The Avengers, instead of taking a huge list of characters who couldn’t really support their own books and adding a few who could and making the story be about their camaraderie it was suddenly packed with headliners and mystery characters … and Luke Cage. It was essentially a book featuring all of Brian Bendis’ favorite Marvel characters together. And a lot of people didn’t think that it would work. A lot of people scoffed and said “These aren’t MY Avengers” … but the book sold. Like hotcakes. Like hotcakes with $100 bills stuffed in them. And it is still very likely the #1 ongoing book at Marvel as far as numbers are concerned. And for 50 issues, for all intents and purposes, Bendis has been telling one big long story, the kind he is famous for on works like Powers, Ultimate Spider-man, & Daredevil. It all sort of culminated in the pages of Secret Invasion and now it seems as though we have reached the second act of the New Avengers story. It’s certainly interesting where it seems to be heading, and it is certainly causing a lot of buzz in the industry … if only it were causing it for the right reason. Marvel decided to raise the price on two of their best selling books in order to try and weather these difficult financial times without having to raise prices on a bunch of lower selling books to keep them afloat. So, for the time being Dark Avengers and Mighty Avengers are both regularly $3.99 and so because of that the expectations have really been cranked up. For someone to buy a monthly ongoing book for $3.99 from one of the big two is really asking quite a bit these days, so the price of admission had better damn well be worth it. This issue was really exciting, there were a lot of very classic Bendis moments and a lot of really cool new ideas and innovations that he hasn’t used much in his writing prior to this, so it seems clear that he realizes that in order to get fans to plunk down $4 a month he’s going to have to get a little creative and really go one step further than we might imagine he would. This issue also featured great art by Billy Tan and great guest pages from some really great artists (with the exception of Greg Horn … why does anyone let that guy do interiors?) … And this book would have totally been worth the $3.99 price tag … but I realized about ¾ of the way through it that it was longer than 22 pages … it was 37 … and so I looked at the cover … and saw that it was $4.99 … so I think you’ll have to decide for yourself if it is still worth that price tag … ultimately I would say that it is, but the 7 page preview of Dark Reign: Fantastic Four seemed a little out of place in a big anniversary issue.
Was it worth the price tag for you? I’d love to know, email me at ComicDorksCast@gmail.com