Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Fast Thoughts - The Week of 5/02/07

Expect a Spider-Man 3 review before weekend's end.

Oh, and in totally irrelevant to the comics industry news, I'm finally working full-time in my Secret Identity as mild-mannered librarian Matt Morrison.

52 WEEK #52 - Here it is. The moment we've all been waiting for.

Is this a perfect story? No. Did all the questions we need answered get answered? No.

Do I care in a story where we find out that old Captain Marvel villain Mr. Mind is a baby Cthulhu capable of devouring all of space and time? HELL NO!

So... yeah. The DC Multiverse is back, 52 Worlds strong. Which 52? Well, I'm sure this will get mapped out eventually but here's the ones we know about for sure.

Earth 1 - New Earth (i.e. where most of the DC Comics take place)
Earth 2 - The JSA Earth, where Huntress is Batman's daughter.
Earth 3 - The Evil Earth Prime. Home of Crime Syndicate of America.
Earth 4 - Charlton Comics
Earth 5 - Old School Captain Marvel
Earth 10 - Uncle Sam and the Freedom Fighters
Earth 17 - Unknown, save the Knights are riding weird white monster mounts through the rubble of another civilization.
Earth 22 - Kingdom Come
Earth 50 - Wildstorm Comics (Gen-13, WILDCATS, Authority)

One more thing: I want more adventures of Ralph Dibny: Ghost Detective!

ASTONISHING X-MEN #21 - The one X-Men book I'll read, and not just because it seems to annoy the piss out of the people who read all the other X-Men books. Like Grant Morrison before him, Joss Whedon is dragging the X-Men concept into new territories. About the only thing you can guarantee with each new issue is that there will be something to make you go into squeeing fanboy excitement at the sure coolness or appropriateness of the moment.

GIANT SIZE RED SONJA #1 - A value for the price, though I would have favored more of the new material and less of the remastered and recolored reprints of classic Roy Thomas tales. Not that I hold anything against Roy Thomas - far from it - but I had read some of these tales before and apart from one story I believe was originally told in the old Savage Sword of Conan magazine, none are particularly hard to find. Still, it's worth getting just for the one new story... a continuation of the story from the Red Sonja #0 issue, with the barmaid who aided Sonja's enemies in an ambush against her setting upon her own path of revenge.

GREEN LANTERN #19 - You know, I should be worried that they are taking the Emotional Color Wheel concept that begat Parallax and are running with it. I mean, it's a silly, old-fashioned concept... unworthy of the great concept of a man with a ring that let him do anything... except affect things that are yellow.

Nah, unlike many of my brethren I actually LIKE the concept of an emotional spectrum with Yellow as Fear and Green as Willpower. It's completely and totally unsound scientifically but... it's comic book physics.

So in this issue, we find out that long-time Hal Jordan villain Star Sapphire is also connected to this color spectrum. Billions of years ago when the alien Guardians who created the Green Lantern Corps, a number of females (dubbed The Zamarons) from their species struck out on their own. The exact reasons for this have never been fully explained... until now.

Basically, they were concerned about the Guardians taking a Jedi Order approach to their plans to police the universe (no fear, but no love either) and they set out to create their own guardians using the Violet light manifested by the Power of Love and (Cue the Huey Lewis music) and the

But the power proved all-consuming to any connected to the crystals, so the Zamarons relied upon deceit to control the women the crystal possessed, making them think they were to be Queen of their homeworld. They also gave the crystals only to the girlfriends and wives of male Green Lanterns in the hopes that The Guardians would see their good works and realize their folly.

Problem is, apart from the connection to all-consuming love tends to make most women crazed dominatrixes (I've had that happen a few times) that the means by which a world gets "saved" by a Star Sapphire involves everyone being frozen in amethyst.

So it all gets explained. Why The Star Sapphire only possessed two (now three) of Hal Jordan's girlfriends out of all the women on Earth... why their powers seemed so similar to those of the Green Lanterns and... oh yes... why the Zamorans are now gathering up an army of women to bond to their Sapphires.

I trust in Geoff Johns to pull this off. I just fully expect a revamped Rainbow Raider once this is all said and done.

TEEN TITANS #46 Duela Dent isn't dead. Much happiness.

And yeah... while this doesn't even begin to fix all the damage that has been done to Slade's character in the last year, it's a good first step.

Can we believe that Slade Wilson would honestly set up an evil Titans team and lead a fight against the latest incarnation of the group, purely so that his own children would fight against him, remove any doubt of where their loyalties stand and give them the family he couldn't provide?

The Slade of five years ago, sure. But not the Slade of today. Too much twisted evil has been done in the name of a character who was a killer and a mercenary, but one who still had something of a code of honor.

XENA, WARRIOR PRINCESS - DARK XENA #1 -The Cthulhu tributes continue this week, with this "What If?" (I think) story about Gabrielle meeting one of the Old Ones and bargaining to bring Xena back to life and put things back "as they were before". The catch being, of course, that Xena comes back as the ruthless, amoral warlord she was before she met Gabrielle and... well, hilarity occurs.

I saw the twist coming a mile away (the story title is Dark Xena, for crying out loud!) but the story is an ammusing tale regardless. I'll definitely be picking up Issue 2.

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