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Phil's Reviews — Stuff I Bought #11

The Spirit #4 — Writer/Penciller: Darwyn Cooke; Inks: J. Bone Four issues, four solid hits: and this might be the best so far. I would not have bet that anyone could make The Spirit work in a modern setting, but Cooke makes it look easy. Reimagining Silk Satin as a CIA agent attached to homeland security works fine, and there are a lot of delights here — the double-page title splash; the coloring in the desert scenes (all washed-out yellow during the day, and dark blues and black at night); the use of Ebony; the twist in the introductory narrative; … Continue reading

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Phil's Reviews — Stuff I Read and Put Back #11

Ion #12 (of 12) — Writer: Ron Marz; Artist: Fernando Pasarin Um…what, exactly, was the point of this mini-series? Twelve issues of wheel-spinning: fights that didn’t go anywhere, relationships that didn’t go anywhere either, a death of yet another female close to the main character (leading to nothing but cheap angst), and plot developments with the Monitors and the Sinestro yellow rings that went unresolved — but hey, kids, buy the next GL mini-series and maybe then you’ll find out what’s going on! Geez, to think readers who shelled out $36 for this could have bought a Peanuts hardcover, or … Continue reading

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Phil's Reviews — Stuff I Read and Put Back/Stuff I Bought #10

Spider-Man: Reign #4 (of 4) — Writer: Kaare Andrews; Artists: Andrews and Jose Villarrubia The finale’s actually the best issue of the series, with, finally, a few decent action scenes and some heroism (and no penises or radioactive bodily fluids). It has at least one cringe-worthy moment, though, as a nine-year-old street kid says “Let me tell you a thing about hope! Hope has three daughters: Anger at the state things have fallen into. Courage to fight to make things right. And the third daughter is truth,” a piece of dialogue that I’m pretty sure no one, in the history … Continue reading

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Phil's Reviews — Stuff I Bought #9 & Stuff I Bought #8

Shazam: The Monster Society of Evil #2 (of 4) — Written and Drawn by: Jeff Smith No letup on this second issue; we’re in the presence of great storytelling here. This is the book that we should have shown to everyone coming in for Dead Captain America. Look at the way both Billy and Mary are little kids, both innocent and brave against the looming, corrupt adult world — and yet, the littlest adult, Doctor Sivana (the Attorney General of the United States, and the head of Homeland Security to boot) just oozes menace. The clever/compelling bits go by almost … Continue reading

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Phil's Reviews — Stuff I Bought #6

Batman # 663 — Writer: Grant Morrison; Art: John Van Fleet This isn’t a comic, but an illustrated Joker short story by Morrison ( his first try at the Joker, Arkham Asylum, was…1989? Eighteen years ago? Geez…). It’s a good story — a couple of places near the beginning are overwritten, in the way that most all comics writers do when they tackle plain prose, but it settles down and does fine, and maybe it was the only way to get all the psychological underpinnings of this new, more ghastly Joker into place. Points for not calling attention to itself … Continue reading

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