Thursday, December 15, 2011

Dark Reign: The Hood TPB

I'm kind of over Dark Reign. What I've found is that all those minis that Marvel pumps out featuring tie-ins to the big event of the moment? Well, I just don't care about them if I don't read them right when they're shipping. I mean, you can pick up Red Hulk or X-Force and read that any time, but all the Dark Reign books are really tied to their era. Now that age is gone, and does any of it really matter?

Jeff Parker dodges some of the problems of the event-era comic by putting a lot of influence on Parker Robbins, the man under the hood. Parker is a fascinating character, alternately shown as a savage criminal mastermind (by Bendis) or an almost-Peter Parker-esque guy who is just trying to get by (Brian Vaughn and Jeff Parker's take). This series explains some of that personality split by showing that the more savage moments in New Avengers are the moments when Dormammu is ascendant, but the "regular" Parker's crimes are a bit more mundane. Sure, he's a thief and a bully, but he's not out to kill people.

Jeff Parker also seems to be having fun with the mob the Hood has put together. The Controller, Griffin, Wrecking Crew, and more all show up and get a few good lines as they either line up with or against the Hood. (I don't recognize the Squid or fish-guy in this. Are they old characters or new creations?) I'd say my favorite part of the whole Hood's mob angle is just playing spot the obscure villain.

Kyle Hotz's work is always stronger on mood and atmosphere than detail. He's not the best at drawing faces, but I really like the way he draws battles and the big emotional moments. I will say his Force re-design is terrible. Why would you mess with the original look?


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