Monday, October 7, 2013

DC's Villain Month (part I)

I suppose this is an unqualified win for DC Comics. Sales are up, demand is high. And good ol’ Timbotron, who hasn’t bought more than one or two DC books a month for a year, picked up a bunch more books.

Let’s take a look!

Two-Face #1
Peter Tomasi and Guillem March do a nice job delivering a Batman comic that almost feels timeless. I didn’t say “timeless classic,” but this is a perfectly acceptable villain feature piece. It is insanely violent, as most of Tomasi’s work usually is, but for this character, in this crossover, it is acceptable. I also liked the use of Tomasi’s oddball D-list villains as fodder. As I always say, if you made ‘em up, you can kill ‘em.

Joker #1
I’ve seen a lot of people bashing Andy Kubert and Andy Clarke’s random Joker tale, but I don’t see why. Insane levels of melodrama and and bat-crap insane high concept often work well in Batman stories. When Joker somehow raises a stolen gorilla to be a villain savant, I don’t’ know why anyone would bat an eye. It’s just another day in Gotham, right? The art is solid, the story preposterous. Totally acceptable.

Relic #1
First of all, I’m not interested in yet another terribly named new super-villain in the new 52. Second, I’m getting exhausted of the many, many, rainbow corps-themed villains in the DCnU. Relic is a survivor from another universe, one that had power staffs instead of power rings. I just can’t make myself care. The only thing this book has going for it is the use of Kirby’s Source Wall, but tying it to this new villain is a mistake. Robert Venditti is doing much more solid work over on X-O Manowar. Never in a million years would I have picked this out as Rags Morales on artwork. He used to be a fave, but this is DC House style all the way.

Harley Quinn #1
I’m pretty confused. Matt Kindt and Neil Googe go out of their way to show Harley getting all the parts of her new, extreme costume through beatings and assaults, but the victims are always shown alive. Yet at the climax of the story, Harley blows up a ton of school kids with booby-trapped handheld games. That’s pretty bloodthirsty, and honestly? There is zero chance that Harley can ever be used as a “tweener” character again after this. That’s full on evil, so no Gotham City Sirens or the like for her. I’ve missed Googe’s art, and it remains as expressive as always. The best part? These one-shots tie into some bigger crossover, right? This is the first time I’ve really seen the Forever Evil plot mentioned in a specific way. Until now, these have been random villain one-shots!



Devin said...

Oooo!!! New number ones!!!!! Must buy them so I can pay for my kid's college!!

Did you get any of the 3-D covers? I haven't seen one yet. Has modern printing technology caught up with 90s gimmicks?

Timbotron said...

I got 3-Ds for most of 'em. I have subscriptions to Batman and Batman & Robin, so Joker and Two-Face both came in "standard" $2.99 versions in the mail.