Reviews for 1-02-05

Shaolin Cowboy #1

Publisher: Burleyman Entertainment
Writer and Art: Geofery Darrow

I'll get this out of the way right off, there isn't much of a story in this first issue. We have the protagonist and his horse squaring off against insurmountable odds as they wander through the desert. This book is more of a celebration of the work of Geoff Darrow. If you have evr seen his art before, perhaps in Hard Boiled or The Big Guy and Rusty the Boy Robot, you know that Darrow has an eye for details. This book certainly shows that. While I would normally be bothered that so little happens in a book, one can not look past the fact that Darrow manages to squeeze more detail in a single panel than most artists manage to put in a whole book. I think this book was a way of letting pople new to his work see that, and with it's bi-monthly schedule, I wouldn't be suprised if we are treated each month to the same high level of work. Heck, the five or six pages of art showcasing the rogues gallery waiting to get back at him for some past encounters. There isn't a whole lot to talk about plot wise but the imagry alone is almost worth the price of admission. I said almost, hopefully the next issue will offer a little bit more story wise, otherwise this will turn into a book full of nifty pictures. -KEVIN-

New Thunderbolts #3

Publisher: Marvel Comics
Writer: Fabian Nicieza (with some help from Kurt Busiek)
Pencils: Tom Grummett
Inks: Gary Erskine
Having not beena reader of the first Thunderbolt series, except for a couple of issues initially, I figured I would give the latest incarnation of this super hero group a try. Having heard good things about most of the previous run (I've been told that it went bad at the end- some sort of Fight Club type scenario). Last issue the team interrupted King Namor of Atlantis as he addressed the UN, in search of answers regarding their recent run in with the Fathom Five. Their quest for answers is interrupted when the Great Game, some sort of competition between super powered manhunters. The Thunderbolts along with Namor and Red Richards seemed to hav ethe upper hand when the armor worn by the Gamers had theiir fail safe devices activated blowing up the UN building. This issue picks up with the Fathom Five disrupting communication between countries, by destroying an undersea cable, Baron Strucker (the brains behind this latest incarnation of the team) scheming further, but how do his plans involve the Thunderbolts. Meanwhile the team is doing everythign they can to keep the UN building from falling. With the aid of Mr. Fantastic and Namor and a suprise or two the team manages to keep the building from coming down but not without some sacrifices. This issue like the three previous ends with a shocking cliff hanger. This is another example of a comic book done right, there is enough going on inside where the casual reader won't feel cheated by lack of action, there are also enough moments to move the overall story forward to keep readers interested over the long run. This book is a fun read with plenty of twists and turns, I hope they can keep it up.

Defex #2

Publisher: Devils Due
Writer: Marv Wolfman
Art: Stefano Caselli & Sunder Raj
Wow-Two for two. I was pleasantly suprised by the first issue of this series. Good story and great art. This issue finds our quartet (originally there were five- thr bulk of this issue is their search for their missing member). trying to figure out how their new powers work while searching for their friend, the group find themselves out in the wilderness over night. After lighting a campfire and settleing in a mountain lion appears. A mysterious creature drops down from the trees and saves the four sleepers from the lion and the group figures out that that is their missing member. They then decide that they have to figure out what has happened to him and get themselves some costumes. While getting ready for another try at finding their friend one of the crew, Mia, has an appointment that brings us some suprising news. In the first issue the government was chasing the four of them and now the four of them find the government after a new target, their missing partner, Tristain, who has turned into some goblin looking creature. The govenment ends up attaching the group and cornering Tristan. Another engaging chapter making me anxious for the next issue. I am really enjoying readng Marv Wolfman's work again and especially enjoying the art team of Caselli and Raj. If you have a chance check this book out, it's just getting started for what seems like a pretty solid ride.

Green Lantern: Rebirth #3

Publisher: DC Comics
Writer: Geoff Johns
Pencils: Ethan Van Sciver
Inks: Prentis Rollins
Generally when an author takes on too many titles, the quality of those titles seems to go down. They turn into a writing machine and whatever emotional ties you may have sensed they had with the characters disappears, and they turn into a word churning factory. Fortunately, for DC Comics, this is not what has happened with Geoff Johns. It seems the more he writes the better he gets, the better his stories get. This third issue of the mini-series, explains to us what it was that drove Hal Jordan "insane". Johns finds a way to explain both why there was the weakness with the power rings and the color yellow and why, it seems that Kyle, has seemingly escaped the madness that has possesed the rest of the Laterns when they have used their rings lately. While perfectly plausable, in a comic book world, the developments are handled in a way that respects everthing that has come before it. That is something that Johns excells at. He has always been able to incorporate the past while adding to the depth of the characters and move them into the future. This series is one, that if you have any interest in the Green Lanterns, you should check it out.

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