Picks of the Week – Feb 2-8

It’s Saturday night. Emma is wine-drunk and reading comics! This is what she read and then blogged about in the third person:

Secret Six #30

Last time I did one of these, some people disagreed with my assertion that strippers are one of the first things people typically think of when they hear Gail Simone’s name. I feel pretty vindicated this week. Not to take away from Dee’s big moment or anything. I’m usually much more of a Birds of Prey gal than a Secret Sixer, but this issue just pushed all the right buttons from the spot on parody of Wanted to the exchange between Negative Man and Ragdoll.

 

Batman & Robin #19

The art may feel rushed, but it’s hard to believe that Paul Cornell threw such a drum tight arc together as a stop-gap. I was enjoying it up until this issue and maybe making noise here and there about how his DC work just hasn’t clicked with me the way that his Marvel work did, but that’s over now. With the preceding issues he showed us that he grasped the peculiar tone that Morrison set for the series, but in this issue he cuts like a razor to deliver even deeper and perhaps harsher insights into Dick, Damian, and Bruce than Morrison’s entire run has. Cornell should own this title.

 

Scarlet #4

It’s been a long time since a comic made me feel like I was holding something combustible. The Body of a Journalist arc of DMZ feels right. There’s a palpable, violent rage to Scarlet that is utterly baffling considering that this is a comic book written by the most comfortable writer at a subsidiary of Disney. I know that Bendis can be serious and dark; I lived and breathed the simmering noir of his Daredevil run once upon a time but Scarlet exists on a level that is uncomfortably real. Which is why it absolutely needs to be read. This is Bendis’ legacy. Not Daredevil, not Alias.

 

Iron Man 500.1

Matt Fraction is a divisive name in Marvel fandom, so my thoughts on Iron Man #500.1 come with a very big your mileage may vary disclaimer. The one negative thing that I will say is that I’m disappointed that Rhodey was played down (and apparently retconned out of a pivotal sequence). With that said, given my perspective on Tony I thought it was a brilliant issue in no small part because of my own struggles that I saw reflected in it. Other people- whose opinions I respect- disagree. For better or for worse, Fraction’s Tony is my Tony.

 

Thor #619

Fraction’s Thor on the other hand is just pure fun. I usually just read Thor whenever Loki shows up but Ferry and Hollingsworth’s art is worth the price of admission alone. Of course I’m also incredibly relieved that. Of course Loki is not only back on the board so soon after his “death” in Siege, but strangely adorable in his new adolescent form.

 

Dee’s Choices

I’m going to spare you all more flailing about Secret Six (you can see enough of that here) and highlight a couple other things from this week that made me happy.

Scarlet #4

This book continues to grab me and run.  There’s something brilliant about the unfolding story and the twists Bendis has thrown us already that I am loving.  Maleev’s art suits it, adding a strange sense of realism.  I just wish it was monthly, as waiting so long for the next issue is almost painful.

 

 

Gronk by Katie Cook

For the past month or so there have been a series of delightful guest strips for Gronk, as Katie adjusted to the newest part of her family, her daughter Grayson  But Katie is back now, and this week’s strip made me happy.  Of course, all the guest strips made me happy too (espeically the one with the tacos.  OH THE BETRAYAL!)  If you’re not reading Gronk, start now!  I swear to you that you won’t regret it.

 

Freedom Fighters #6

If you’re not reading this book, you really should be.  I love books that take b list characters and make them shine.  it’s one of the reasons Secret Six holds a place in my heart.  If anything, I find these characters more intersting than the bats and supes of the world, but that could just be me.  This issue continues their fight through (and out of) the jail and their hunt for the artifacts.  It’s lovely to see Black Condor getting more time, Miss America and Phantom Lady stepping up and at time arguing with each other, and hell, just the whole team. I’m loving this book.

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