Forgive the lateness of these reviews. I was held up by a stomach illness Thursday, a full work day Friday and a Saturday of various pre-Labor Day preparations to attend to.
AMAZONS ATTACK #6: I can almost, ALMOST forgive this entire insipid, banal crossover for the ending... even if I did like it a lot better when Grant Morrison wrote it with White Martians and it was called New World Order.
Why? Well, there's a number of reasons.
1. It did bring the Amazons back from the limbo that Greg Rucka shunted them into. Granted, they are scattered across the world and have no memory that they are/were Amazons. But there are still Amazons existing in some form on Earth.
2. It did bring Hippolyta back from the dead. Granted, she has been driven a wee bit crazy by hubris and the fact that Circe used part of her own twisted soul to bring the Amazon Queen back from the dead... but still, she is alive.
3. Circe gets sucked into Hades. Naturally this won't be permanent... but maybe it will keep her from being the villain in every Wonder Woman story in the NEXT year.
4. The final two pages, in which it is revealed that all of this conflict has been arranged - not by the Greek Goddess Athena - but by New God Granny Goodness posing as Greek Goddess Athena. What is more, Granny Goodness is holding all the Olympian Gods prisoner.
Let me repeat that; Granny Goodness is holding ALL THE OLYMPIAN GODS PRISONER!
As much respect as I've had for Jack Kirby's work, I've never really thought of the New Gods as actually being... well, gods so much as very advanced aliens with very high opinions of themselves. A large part of that is, probably, due to the fact that most of the New Gods characters (Darkseid in particular) have been used for so long as generic alien conquerors that it is hard for most modern comic readers to think of them as deities.
With this story, not only is one of Kirby's greatest creations reworked into a credible threat after years of being a rather comical figure (She was voiced by Ed Asner talking in falsetto, for crying out loud!) - but something has finally been done to explain away one of the more confusing aspects of the DC Universe post-52. That is, why on earth is the Goddess Athena taking a personal hand in creating women's shelters all around Earth and taking in any manner of young women but turning away single mothers and battered wives who need the help more.
Now it becomes obvious; Granny is obviously getting ready to create her own new army of Female Furies on Earth and is using the Amazon teachings and the guise of Athena as a front to keep recruiting. Between that and now having control of every Amazon on Earth in a sleeper identity...
... well, this idea - to say nothing of the thematic idea that any woman could be a goddess in disguise - is one that almost negates the stupidity that Wonder Woman spent most of this series mewling like a kitten over a dying Nemesis, that Wonder Girl and Supergirl were shown to be borderline incompetent, that Black Canary didn't even get any dialogue much less get shown leading the JLA in battle and that the final magical whammy against Circe is delivered, not by Zatanna, but by Batman repeating something Zatanna told him.
FANTASTIC FOUR #549: Mr. McDuffie?
No less a fictional personage than Victor Von Doom - widely agreed upon to be the most dangerous supervillain of all time - noted that he considered Susan Storm to be the biggest threat out of all the Fantastic Four members. This was due not only because of the level and versatility of her powers but because she was the one who would become the most dangerous if pushed.
You showed this on two pages as Invisible Woman single-handedly took down the entire Frightful Four in a matter of seconds.
The extra three pages of Sue taunting The Wizard after she had him pinned down? That was just icing. :)
It is my understanding that you are not long for the writing of this title, which is a shame as I haven't enjoyed a Fanastic Four book this much since the days of Mark Waid and the late Mike Wieringo. Still, I look forward to your run on JLA and hope that DC Comics has the sense to offer you an exclusive contract, if not an editorial position.
TEEN TITANS #50: Why did I pick this book up?
I'm not a big Teen Titans fan. Never have been.
While I've heard good things about Sean McKeever and how he is the greatest thing since sliced bread when it comes to comics written for a Young Adult audience... I've never read anything by him that I can remember. So unlike most of my fellow ComicsNexus brethren, I did not consider his coming onto this title to be a sign of hope.
And I certainly wasn't giving this title a chance as a new book to grip me as it is, in reality, a hodge-podge of stories by different writers and artists and not really a proper First Issue.
So, why did I get it? Probably because this was a light week and because I could afford it and because I took pity on the local comic shop clerk, who seeing me looking at it, noted that as an Issue #50 "it's a collectors item that will be worth something someday". I remember too well what it is to be the guy trying to push some book that the boss over-ordered using whatever excuse is handy... so what the heck?
And yet... despite all of this... it wasn't all that bad of a book. Heck, the Blue Beetle story here finally sold me on the character - which is something even Mark Waid and Keith Giffen couldn't do, so maybe it's a great book. I just didn't have much point of reference for anything that was going on apart from Bart Allen being dead and the Titans kinda/sorta going through a rough-time with keeping a hold of new members.
Still... not that bad of a book, all things considered.
WONDER WOMAN #12: I barely flipped through this one, just to see how much it had to do with Amazons Attack.
Sod and All, honestly.
There's just enough to spell out what happened for everyone who had stopped reading Amazons Attack out of boredom or annoyance and then another short, silly story to reestablish that Diana is getting feelings of a sort for Nemesis, Nemesis has eyes for Wonder Woman while ignoring his hot new partner in the shades and Lara Croft bodysuit and the whole thing is still just a sad parody of the good ol' days with Diana and Steve Trevor.
I said it before and I'll say it again.. for the last time. Bring on Gail Simone!