Monday, October 14, 2013

DC's Villains Month (Part 2)

Let's take a look at weeks 3 and 4 of the much-loved Villains Month! Are you ready to make millions on your 3-D covers?

Cheetah #1
So I couldn't resist trying to grab an investment or two, and the choice was pretty easy when I saw that this issue is written by John Ostrander. Victor Ibanez's art is easy on the eyes too, he actually does a nice job keeping Cheetah from being too sexy, she's way too animalistic to please hormonal comic fans. Of course, being a master storyteller, Ostrander manages to set up interesting supporting characters, an entertaining backstory, and a decent protagonist all in one issue. The hero is Mark Shaw, Manhunter. (This is a whole different pet peeve, though, I hate how the DCnU gets to cash in the familiarity they decided was not worth keeping when they rebooted. If you liked Mark Shaw, why start over?) The gore is way over the top, but hey, if you want to read DC, that is what you are getting!

Oof. So basically, this comic consists of Scarecrow walking around talking to other villains, all in an effort to set up Gotham War. Unlike the Bane comic I review below, this doesn't have a lot of action on its own, and ends up very repetitious. For some reason, the sun is out, and Scarecrow is working for the Crime Syndicate. I can't say I really understand what is going on Peter Tomasi's story. Szymon Kudranski's artwork is too psychedelic for what ends up being a pretty talky story. If Scarecrow's fear gas was causing more hallucinations, I think the fit would have been better.

Dial E #1
 Now this is a joke, right? I’ve read Perdido Street Station, so I know China Mieville is bonkers, but this is just too much. This comic barely has the semblance of a plot. This is one page word gags, letting Mieville work with a bunch of artists to create ridiculous pun-based villains. Honestly, I can’t even review it. It’s a bunch of random nonsense! 

Bane #1
Oh Bane, I can’t quit you. You know who else I can’t quit? Batman artist Graham Nolan, who returns to re-tell Bane’s origin. I liked it better the first time, but I can’t complain that so much of Bane’s origin is left intact. I enjoyed his road to redemption in Gotham Knights, but there is no denying Bane’s appeal as a villain. I get the impression that Peter Tomasi was setting up his next miniseries more than servicing Forever Evil, but I’m skipping both, so it doesn’t matter. Other than the insane levels of ultraviolence, this is like a Batman comic I used to read.

For me, Villains Month boils down to this: if the creative teams matter, why weren't they on the covers? I hate to think that the cover is the most important part of these books, but is hard to argue with that feeling after seeing how DC handled their press over the past month. So enjoy it DC, I definitely bought more than my normal DCnU level of books in September. Even I can't resist those speculator gambles. But unfortunately, I didn't see anything to make me stay. 

Villains Month was EVIL! 

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