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Giant-Size Graphic Breakdown: Much Love For ‘Superman’ #16; Continued Hate For ‘The Flinstones’

Welcome back to Graphic Breakdown!

It’s February, the coldest month of the year! Let’s get warm by talking some comic books!

Aquaman #16   
Written by Dan Abnett
Illustrated by Brad Walker

Brad Walker is finally back drawing Aquaman and man, is he good. This issue is so well composed and so well drawn. You actually are reminded of how good Walker is with each panel.

And then you kind of hate him a bit because you know he probably won’t be drawing the next issue.

Still…

Aquaman and Mera lead the rebuilding of Amnesty Bay and other American cities drawn into the war with Atlantis.

But Arthur’s tenure as a hero threatens to be short-lived when a new villain emerges from the rubble.

Abnett is doing pretty well on the scripts. I was never a huge fan of his but he’s doing great on the Rebirth books.

He’s especially doing well on this…and this is the most improved Rebirth book on the stands.

Well done.

RATING: B

Batman #16 
Written by Tom King
Illustrated by David Finch

Man, Tom King has a hard on for Bane.

After focusing four issues on the guy recently, we are back with a new Bane storyline called “I am Bane!” The good thing is that this one was a lot more thrilling than the other storyline. Maybe it’s his second chance?

Bane is coming for Batman. Bruce must keep those he loves safe for five days in order to save Gotham Girl once and for all.

But Bane will stop at nothing, and no one is safe.

David Finch is back on the art and he’s doing better than he started off with (at the beginning of his run).

This may be the best issue King and Finch have done.

Still, it could be better. And maybe it can be in future issues. I hope the two of them improve on each issue.

This has a nice last page too. Let’s see what happens.

RATING: B

Nightwing #14 
Written by Tim Seeley
Illustrated by Marcus To

This book is also among the “somewhat improved” books of the week.

This Bludhaven storyline was fairly decent. A lot of that has to do with the art of Marcus To. His work is very suited to Nightwing And brought the whole production up a notch.

The psychopath who’s been carrying out the killings in Blüdhaven has placed the blame on Nightwing!

Now Dick Grayson must apprehend this maniac to stop the murders and to convince Blüdhaven he’s not a villain.

The book still needs to have a plan to it or feel like it does.

The long term plan isn’t apparent. It just feels like we are skipping from storyline to storyline.

It needs a tighter focus to keep us reading.

RATING: B

Superman #16 
Written by Peter J. Tomasi and Patrick Gleason
Illustrated by Tony S . Daniel and Clay Mann

This book is fairly awesome. The writing is spot on. And the art was pretty great.

This is the way Superman should be done. It’s fast, furious, and exciting.

Superman, New Super-Man and Justice Incarnate make their last stand against their multiverse-spanning foe, and the Man of Steel discovers another clue to the truth of his existence.

There is also a small link to the Watchmen on here…which is getting me hoping that we get to see them in 2017.

One month in and the clues are starting to surface more.

This could be very exciting.

RATING: A-
Shade The Changing Girl #5 
Written by Cecil Castellucci
Illustrated by Marley Zarcone

This book has been a totally weird adventure thus far and this issue doesnt let up on the total weirdness. Castellucci writes a great tale though full of quirk, imagination, and emotion.

Which is more powerful?

These new human emotions or the madness that brought Shade to Earth?

Balancing both is difficult, as the divide between where she is now and where she comes from grows deeper. It’s all about duality as the future and the past are racing to catch up with Shade. She sees strange visions of a possible tomorrow while Megan, the girl whose body she stole, is racing across galaxies to take her life back.

Plus, an all-new backup feature: Shade’s favorite TV show, Life With Honey, comes to comics!

The art by Zarcone is spot on and wonderful. You actually can’t take your eyes off it. It’s a nice book and it’s a pleasure to read. Give it a shot. It’s certainly different from everything else on the stands.

RATING: B+

The Rise and Fall of Captain Atom #2
Written by Cary Bates and Greg Weisman
Illustrated by Will Conrad

This is a fairly well written book with some incredible art.

Captain Atom has never been a favorite of mine.

Here though, Bates and Weisman make him and identifiable character who we can relate to. It’s a pretty impressive feat.

An overload in the quantum field forced Nathaniel Adam back to the 1990s, leaving him stranded.

With no powers and no clear way to get home, he wonders how his presence in the past might affect his future.

But if he gets his wish…will that future include Captain Atom?

The art makes this book very special. Conrad knocks it out of the galaxy. This is a decent book. Pick it up and you’ll enjoy it for sure.

RATING: B+
Harley Quinn #13   
Written by Amanda Connor and Jimmy Pamliotti
Illustrated by John Timms and various

As I’m fond of saying, it’s another week so it must be time for another issue of Harley Quinn!

Another fun filled issue is at hand! The Joker guest stars! Wackiness ensues! Here we go!

Just how did a gentle, “reformed” Joker come to arrive at Harley’s doorstep when everyone believed him dead and gone?

The answer’s in this issue—and it’ll shock you! Tune in!

The art is truly special here. There are some guest spots by Char Hardin here and Bret Blevins…but John Timms is the breakout here. He is going places.

The book is a good time…it’s just I’m being beaten over the head with Harley Quinn. Less is sometimes more.

RATING: B

And the rest….


Ever After #6 
Written by Dave Justus and Lilah Sturges
Illustrated by Steve Rolston
This spinoff from Fables continues and it’s a moderately good read. It’s slowing down a bit for me though. Either it needs to pick up or something major needs to happen.
RATING: B-

Green Lanterns #16 
Written by Sam Humphries
Illustrated by Neil Edwards
Batman guest stars in a decently written, well drawn book. Neil Edwards may be the Green Lantern artist we have been waiting for. Let’s hope someone gives him a strong story.
RATING: B

The Flintstones #8 
Written by Mark Russell
Illustrated by Steve Pugh
Is anyone even buying this book? I doubt it. So why is it still being produced? It’s just awful. The art by Pugh is nice.
RATING: F+

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