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Graphic Breakdown: DCs ‘Metal’ Wins The Gold

Welcome back to Graphic Breakdown!

It’s the middle of August and one of the biggest new releases of the year has appeared! Let’s begin!

 

Dark Nights: Metal #1
Written by Scott Snyder
Illustrated by Greg Capullo

This is it! The big summer event begins here! Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo are back together and it’s one hell of a reunion! These two work great separately. Together though they are one hell of a unit. Here, they function at the highest level of each of their respective careers.

The Dark Multiverse is making its way into the DC Universe and it’s unrelenting! It’s a dark place with dark characters. It’s almost a nightmare version of our characters from the DC Universe. Batman and his Justice League pals have to fight against it. Judging by the first issue, they might not be up to the challenge! A lot of bad things happen to them. Can they survive?

This is awesome. Snyder just jumps in with both feet writing the story. There’s twists, turns, and shakeups in this. The art is spectacular as well.

This is THE book to buy this month. Buy it now.

RATING: A

 

Batman #29
Written by Tom King
Illustrated by Mikel Janin

Tom King is certainly on a roll all of a sudden.

The just released Mister Miracle comic he wrote is spectacular and now he has found his writing groove on Batman. It’s nice to see as King is a good writer and finally his talent shows here.

“The War of Jokes and Riddles” storyline continues!

Batman has done his utmost to stop both the Riddler and the Joker’s mad campaigns. So he decides he’s got to try a different approach to things.

There is a lot of amusing interplay between the various players here and King handles them like a pro. The opening scene in particular is great.

The art by Janin is just plain awesome. He composes each panel with craft and love. I said it in previous reviews and I’ll say it again: this is a classic Batman story in the making.

Make sure to pick it up and add it to your collection.

RATING: A

 

Aquaman #27
Written by Dan Abbott 
Illustrated by Stjepan Sejic

This tale of Aquaman dethroned is turning into a classic and is quite awesome.

King Rath makes for one hell of a villain. He’s angry because Aquaman is challenging his rule. So he decides to gather all the magic Atlantis holds and have it in his Arsenal. He’s going to need it too as it’s not just Aquaman he’s going to be contending with but Mera who is trying to break into the dome.

Dan Abnett has taken this B level book and turned into into an A. This is an adrenaline fueled storyline and he makes it look easy.

Sejic is doing killer work on this book as well. His art is eye popping and just plain awesome. Pick this up.

It’s turned into a must read book.

RATING: A

 

The American Way: Those Above And Below #2
Written by John Ridley
Illustrated by Georges Jeanty

John Ridley is killing it on this book. He really has developed as a writer. When I say this I don’t mean just as a screenwriter, but as a comic book writer as well. He is writing compelling scripts through and through and it keeps you engaged every time.

The conflict that took one man’s life isn’t sitting too well with Jason. It involved some political radicals. He is starting to feel like the government’s lackey. He has to make a decision: to continue on this path or make the choice to go on his own.

The story is infused with a healthy dose of political relevance. Ridley does well in not making the themes heavy. The art is perfect for this book as well. This is shaping up to be a fantastic series. Pick it up now.

RATING: A

 

Astro City #46
Written by Kurt Busiek
Illustrated by Brent Eric Anderson

This is a well thought out issue that harkens back to the beginning of the series.

Kurt Busiek has been writing this book for years. When it first started, this book was fairly amazing. Then it took a dip in quality. Now it’s back to being amazing all over again.

The last chapter of the Broken Man’s tale of Astro City is truly something epic.

Busiek has taken us through the various times and eras of the city and it is very interesting. It’s very thorough and the success is in the details.

He covers the music scene, the art scene, and the various decades quite well.

The Broken Man is forming a defense against the Invader known as Oubor.

Is he crazy? It can he do it? Busiek answers those questions quite well.

The art is awesome as well. Anderson is a rare treat and I love his work. Pick this up. It’s a good quality comic book.

RATING: B+

 

Future Quest: Showcase #1
Written by Jeff Parker
Illustrated by Ariel Olivetti

I’m so glad this title arrived this week.

Jeff Parker is one of my favorite writers and this is just amazing. Most of the Hanna Barbera books have left me cold from DC but this has been a hell of a lot of fun. Parker has a way of making things work in a comic book that I just love.

This book involves Space Ghost and his two young wards, Jan and Jace, teaming up with that wacky alien race The Herculoids. Their mission? They want to rebuild the Space Force.

This proves not to be an easy task. Why? Oh, because there are forces at work that seem to want to stop them of course! Can they accomplish their goal?

Parker’s writing keeps you on your toes. The book is as entertaining as can be. Ariel Olivetti is one of those talents that never really took off. That’s a shame too as the artwork is always good. This is a nice book that I am happy has come out.

It’s been far too long since the last Future Quest series.

RATING: B+

 

Jack Kirby’s 100: The Sandman Special #1
Written by Dan Jurgens
Illustrated by Jon Bogdanove

This is something of a disappointment. Nothing extremely exciting happens in this book. Jurgens has been doing some decent work lately but this iteration of the Sandman feels all wrong.  I’ve never been a fan of the 1970’s Sandman and this issue shows me why. This issue has two stories in it.

One features Brute and Glob in a story that is very dull. They have to fight a force so powerful it’s invading other people’s dreams!  The second one features a guy returning to his childhood home only to be haunted by his dreams. It’s not very engaging either.

The art by Bogdanove doesn’t help. He is not my favorite artist nor has he ever been. It always feels clunky and that’s what we have here.

The backup story from the 70’s is the best thing besides the Paul Pope cover.

This was just okay at best.

RATING: C+

 

Superman #29
Written by Peter J. Tomasi and Patrick Gleason
Illustrated by Doug Mahnke

Tomasi and Gleason are back rocking and rolling with the writing part of this comic book! The amazing Doug Mahnke is back illustrating this fine series!

Life is good yet again. This is a definitive run on Superman and I can’t wait to read this title, month in and month out.

In this issue, we are treated to the second part of the “Fear Itself” storyline. Superman must take on help from that rascal Sinestro. Sinestro has to help Superman get out of the anti-matter universe of Qward. It’s fun, but what makes this book sing is the characterizations of both Sinestro and Superman.

Tomasi and Gleason have an excellent take on both and it shows through with every panel.

The art by Mahnke is top notch. Honestly, it’s hard to find a better artist than him. He can do anything with a straight face and his storytelling is incredible. You put all of this elements together and you have yourself a top notch book. This certainly is for yet another month.

RATING: A-

 

DC Comics Bombshells #33
Written by Marguerite Bennett
Illustrated by Sandy Jarrell

I really have to go back and reread the entire series. I picked this up four issues ago and I am trying to catch right back up.

I can figure out most of what is going on. I just would like to get a grander scope of this. It’s pretty well done and this is the final issue.

Power Girl may be joining Faora to create a new Krypton! Lois Lane may have shot on avenging her family!

What Side has Lex Luthor been on this entire time? Bennett is very good at juggling all of the various stories here. They are all clear and concise and wonderful. She wraps things up very nicely.

Jarrell has been one of my favorite artists for awhile now. I love the work on the Archie line of books and I love the work here.

Bombshells will be relaunching soon and I will be picking it up (as well as reading the previous issues I missed.) You should do the same.

RATING: B+

 

Gotham City Garage: Chapter 1
Written by Collin Kelly and Jackson Lanzing
Illustrated by Brian Ching

This is a digital first only comic book! This book takes the idea of the DC characters and turns them on their heads. These are the DC Heroines but done as a bunch of outlaws. They are in a world where Governor Lex Luthor exists and the world as we know it is a mess.

A young Kara Gordon comes under suspicion of her bosses, The LEXES, of being a rebel. When she is found out, she goes on the open road to save herself and fight for freedom. It’s a blast to read and DC is doing something really cool with it, having a new chapter hitting bi-weekley digitally. It’s quite cool.

The story is mighty fine and the art by Ching is super. This is a nice experiment that is really working. Make sure to give this a chance and download it. It’s well worth your time.

RATING: B+

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