Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Superheroes that Cry

Kyle Baker's frustration with/ridicule of current DC comics is often seen in his interviews. But it hasn't been seen so explicitly in his comics until this week. The whole "Prelude to Edwina Crisis Pt. 4" was such a spot-on parody of current DC editorial positions I could hardly stand it. We get death, weeping, pain, anxiety, the Spectre, resurrections, bizarre clues ...and good jokes. This was a really, really good issue. Those of you who stopped reading because it became a humor comic rather than a superhero humor comic should pick this issue up. Looks like Baker's going out with a bang.

Invincible was good fun. I got two issues of New Avengers, an issue of the Sentry, and an issue of Young Avengers. These are very light comics, but they're superhero comics. I mean light-weight, by the way, not fluffy kid comics, though I do believe kids could read them. Straight ahead storytelling with twists, mysteries, and action. I've never liked the Bendis school of comics writing, but it doesn't seem so bad now. It's not great, but in a time where very few superhero comics are readable at all, decent stuff can seem better.

BPRD kicked ass, as you would imagine. God, what a great book. Second best after the brilliant Plastic Man issue. Losers was OK, but it's time for it to end, I think. When Jock isn't drawing it I get bored.

And I heard all this buzz about Peng, so I tried it. Christ, I couldn't get past page five. I guess I'm too old or something, but the combination of art and text styles made this impossible for me to read. I'm a fogey now, right? Shit.

Still haven't read Lady Snowblade, but I have a good feeling about it. So far you are negligent without buying BPRD and Plastic Man. You'll have fun reading Invincible and maybe all the million Avengers books. You will be younger than me if you enjoy Peng.

23 Love Letters:

Anonymous Daniel Apodaca said...

"It's not great, but in a time where very few superhero comics are readable at all, decent stuff can seem better."

Uh oh. Don't settle, Joe! Remember why you started the other site. Comics should be GOOD, not decent.

8:44 PM

Blogger Joe Rice said...

I contend that it IS good. It's not great, not by any means, but it's good.

But, yeah, good isn't really "good enough." But sometimes I enjoy this comic. I can't explain why. Is it really just that the other superhero books are so fucking awful and I kind of want to enjoy something simple?

8:49 PM

Blogger Brian Cronin said...

I am really curious myself whether I think Green Lantern Corps: Recharge #1 was so good because the regular title sucks so bad.

8:54 PM

Anonymous Daniel Apodaca said...

Well, I'd agree that Young Avengers has some quality to it.

New Avengers is still a boring piece of crap, though.

11:53 PM

Blogger Joe Rice said...

Call me crazy, but I actually kind of prefer New Avengers (when it's "on") to Young Avengers, I think. Young Avengers was neat for a while, but the talky-talky teen thing never appealed to me on TV and it doesn't here, either. When New Avengers is on, it's superheroes going out and doing stuff. They've got a lot of talky, too, but the plot does move.

I guess it moves in YA, too. I dunno. Am I just crazy?

5:56 AM

Blogger Scott M said...

Has there been any talk about further Plastic Man TPBs?

I know the title didn't sell well - but sometimes DC will publish TPBs with a long term view. Seeing that Kyle Baker will likely have a strong fan base for years, it might make sense to keep the Plas stuff on the shelves.

7:58 AM

Blogger Kevin Church said...


Hey, man. About Peng:


You'll Die Next! You hear me? You'll. Die. Next.

(I can totally see how it must have been overwhelming and weird for a lot of people. I dunno why it clicks with me so much, when I generally am fogey-ish.)


9:11 AM

Blogger Paul said...

"I'm a fogey now, right?"


But take solace in the fact that I'm so old that I forgot to even look at it.

9:56 AM

Blogger Bill Reed said...

Yeah, they're putting out a second Plastic Man trade, but it skips the Scott Morse issue.

11:08 AM

Blogger Scott M said...

That's ok - because I don't know what that means.

Talk about an 'old fogey'.

1:40 PM

Blogger Sophia Yanow said...

Oh man. I want so bad to go down to the comic shop and buy me some goods. But the buses. The buses are on strike.

No Peng for me. DAMN IT.


1:50 PM

Blogger Joe Rice said...

Scott Morse did a fill-in issue of Plastic Man. The first one I didn't think was all that good, really. I never like his work as much as I want to, though.

Sophie, I'd recap the issue for you BUT I HAVE NO CLUE WHAT HAPPENED!

2:55 PM

Blogger Joe Rice said...

PS I want a pulp trade paperback, dammit.

3:04 PM

Blogger Bill Reed said...

So what the hell is Peng? Is it like Tang? Because's that a kick. In a glass.

10:55 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was totally lost with PENG as well. Totally lost. I couldn't get past page two. I guess I am even older than Joe.

LADY SNOWBLOOD totally ruled. Seventies-style sword and sex action! It made me feel dirty and covered with gore. Awesome.


7:45 AM

Blogger T. said...

Lady Snowblood was trying way too hard to shamelessly capture the trade dress of Kill Bill tho.

11:47 AM

Blogger Paul said...

Peng is from this guy Corey (El Rey) Lewis and it's a book about EXTREME KICKBALL. It stars the brother of Lewis' other Oni production, the much acclaimed Sharknife.

It's hard to sum up how I felt about Sharknife. It was much like these fellows describe Peng, fast-paced and frenetic, but not meaty enough to sink your teeth into. It's puff, but it absolutely fucking revels in its puff status, so it's hard to hold that against it.

It's amazing and it's interesting and it's an actual work of cartoon art, but I can't say I actually enjoyed it. Despite this, I was going to check out Peng. Now I'm not so sure.

1:39 PM

Blogger Paul said...

Sharknife is like a piece of too-sweet candy. You eat it and think, "Damn, I probably would've liked this a lot as a kid."

1:41 PM

Blogger Joe Rice said...

Well, T., it's only fair, since Tarantino ripped the book and the movie off wholesale to make Kill Bill. The actual creators should get some of that cash.

2:16 PM

Blogger Bill Reed said...

Oh, so it *is* like Tang!

2:49 PM

Blogger T. said...

True, Joe. There's been a Lady Snowblood movie in the past, by the way:

6:09 PM

Blogger Joe Rice said...

Yeah, I know, T. It's a great movie. Seeing it a few years ago before Kill Bill was one of the reasons I didn't care for Tarantino's version.

6:56 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...


2:15 AM


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