Garth Ennis' The Boys was, last we saw, teetering on a dangerous fulcrum between Good Ennis and Bad Ennis. Now, I'm not saying we've got another masterpiece quite yet, as there are a couple of obvious dumbjokes. But as we meet the various members of the, uh, Boys (?), we get some insight. Two of them are fairly psychopathic, but in their own, surprising ways. Me, I'm just glad someone's not going with that stupid "French = wuss" meme. Talk about played out . . .anyway. Mother's Milk is interesting as a family man and Butcher makes some good points. In today's superhero comic book world, the damn bastards ARE pretty hatable. They deserve this kind of treatment. The book inched closer to Good Ennis. Here's hoping.
I generally like Kelly Plunkett's artwork, so I picked up the first issue in the arc he and Chaykin are doing for JLA: Classified. If you enjoy things like watching superheroes stiltedly debate modern political theory and generic terrorist countries, then this is the comic for you! Also, you are probably stupid. The art's nice, at least. But, Jesus, this makes last week's Justice League book look like EXCITEMENT TIME!!!!
I haven't had much exposure to Brendan McCarthy's work before his issue of Solo, so I'm speaking from a bit of ignorance here. It's really impressive, though. He really uses Solo as an artistic platform like no one else really did. I still prefer the overall quality of the Pope, Cooke, and Allred issues, but there's a certain gusto to the "Shit, I'll try THIS" attitude McCarthy seems to exude. The entire thing is a series of rather short bits, sometimes vaguely linked. It really reads like a dream. In fact, dreaming is a common theme in some of the bits, and a dream links it all together in the end. Plot-lovers won't get much out of this, and I didn't even understand some of it but it sure was nice to look at, like that pretty genius drunk at a party.
All-Star Superman is fucking amazing. You know that. Morrison and Quitely are not only at the top of their crafts, but they seem to expand it with each issue. The subtle storytelling bits in this book continue to be the real showcase of the utterly baffling talent of these two men. From Clark's early trip to the prison cross-section/splash page these men are pushing comics forward (apologies, Mr. Doane). Has anyone gotten Clark this well before? Jesus. I have a hard time reviewing this book. In all honesty, I'd rather study it. There's so much to love here, and I know I'll find more with each reading. If you're not loving this, you hate comics.
I saw that Pirates of the Carribean sequel. That was an entertaining use of two and a half summer hours. There were some great bits and set-pieces. Depp kind of outclasses the rest of the actors, but at least he's being hammy so it's not as embarrassing as it could be. The bad guys were creepy and effective. This is a well-done summer flicker and distraction.
The new(ish) Muse album, Black Holes and Revelations is completely blowing me away today. Imagine if Radiohead did the soundtrack to Flash Gordon with Queen. That's the best explanation I can give. Check out their video for Knights of Cydonia and glory in the kung fu cowboy sci fi action. It's not for everyone, of course (although the video should be because it's like the best movie ever) and see if you like it.
Also, Vast Aire's solo album, Look Mom . . .No Hands is fun as hell. My favorite MC and member of Cannibal Ox name drops Clark Kent, the FF, and other comics concepts with good regularity. It's nerd friendly hip hop. Check out some tunes on Itunes, especially Cannibal Ox's Battle for Asgaard. Goodness.