Monday, July 13, 2009

Reviews part 5: 3 collections and some old crap

Slowly getting through stuff. I now have a selection of Justice related books and last week's purchases to go. Then on to the speculative posts. Whew.

These notes will cover Extreme Justice, Green Lantern: Rebirth, Marvels and Strawberry Marshmallow volume 2.

Extreme Justice
This is some old crap. Macho posturing rubbish with appalling art to match. Amazing Man inexplicably changes from black to white and back again every other panel, I think it might be dependent on the powers he’s just absorbed, or on the other hand, it could be a shit colourist. Read at your peril. Me, I must be knee deep in peril cos I’ve now read 12 issues and will be reading to the tiresome end.

Green Lantern: Rebirth
Overall I enjoyed this. The one punch reference to Giffen JLA made me chuckle as did all the bits mentioned in the preface. I think I’d have got more out of it had I known more general Green Lantern history and Hal’s history specifically. The book is one for the avid fans, not a general introduction to comics or Green Lanterns - people who don’t know much about the characters won’t get as much out of it.

This was bought (as was Rebirth actually) with the voucher my sister got me for being bridesmaid at her wedding. I got this book a good 4 weeks ago but it has been sat on the side table waiting for me to find a good time to read it. A time when I didn’t feel rushed and like I could actually savour it – I’ve had precious few of those recently.

I had already read the book as our local library had a copy. I think this book was my introduction to Alex Ross’ art and Kurt Busiek’s writing, both of which are wonderful. It follows the career of Phil Sheldon, a newspaper photographer, from 1939 to the present day. At the start he’s a young man waiting for his chance to be sent to Europe to photograph the war and make a name for himself. Then the first Marvel, the first Human Torch, appears and over the next few years Sheldon comes to believe that the real story may be found not in the war but in the Marvels back home in the USA.

The rest of the book covers the key events in the history of the Marvel Universe – the arrival of Namor the Sub-mariner, the creation of Captain America, the role of Superheroes in the war, the arrival of the X-Men, Gwen Stacey’s murder, the Sentinals, Galactus and the Silver Surfer, the forming of the Fantastic Four and the Avengers. The book is told through Sheldon’s view so we get to see the general public’s view of the Marvels.
I really really like this book. It’s a great introduction to the Marvel Universe and it looks beautiful. An exemplary piece of comic storytelling.

Strawberry Marshmallow volume 2
Fun. A new character, Ana from England is added to the mix. She decides she is losing her Englishness so resolves to never speak Japanese in school, only English. A fine idea, except she didn’t account for her automatic greeting of people in Japanese or that she wouldn’t be able to talk to anyone if she only speaks English.

She accidentally speaks Japanese to Matsuri and so falls in with friendship group This is pretty much the same stuff as volume 1, just with different adventures. If you like volume 1 you’ll like this. If you don’t like this then you don’t have a soul. Fact*.

EDIT: I forgot to mention that one of the kids in this is wearing a Super Furry Animals top. That pleased me no end.

Currently listening to: Rico

*Actually, that's probably not true. If you don’t like Azumanga Daioh then you don’t have a soul. If you don’t like Strawberry Marshmallow you are merely of dubious character.

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