Weedbeater's Comic Reviews for 12/8/2011

Weedbeater's Comic Reviews for 12/8/2011

DC:
PICK OF THE WEEK:
Swamp Thing #4
Written By: Scott Snyder
Drawn by: Marco Rudy
-As slowly as Swamp Thing is progressing, I really love what Snyder is doing with this book. His habit of building slow, progressive stories into exciting epics is annoying and exciting at the same time. It’s like he moves at a snail’s pace, but that pace is filled with so many innovative things you end up not caring. And boy does Scott innovate. Not only has he introduced a new element into the life-web spectrum, he’s also managed to introduce Alec Holland as a character whilst developing past characters and concepts even further than they originally were. Alan Moore used the tagline “sophisticated suspense” for his run, but I wouldn’t call this suspenseful so much as outright horror. I mean, Alan Moore’s run introduced some suspenseful stories but this is just outright shocking, with a little kid manipulating diseased flesh to kill people. And best of all is that he gets Snyder’s best, creepiest one-liners. One thing I love about Snyder’s wordplay is that he takes complex sentences and breaks them down into chunks to make it easier for newer readers to understand. This way he doesn’t drown us in exposition or clumsy moments. There’s a fair balance of action, story and character development here, and I love it. From Abby’s new badass form to Alec’s lost-from-reality view, it’s all wonderful and breathtaking. Also excellent is Marco Rudy’s artwork, which balances the fine line between original and a Paquette-clone. I love how he implements Paquette’s panel layout design while incorporating some original work. Overall a masterpiece issue 5/5

MINOR:
Action Comics #4
Written by: Grant Morrison
Drawn by: Rags Morales
-I really like the craziness of this whole arc and of this issue as a whole. Morrison is fitting so many crazy and cool concepts into one book it’s just amazing. I can’t wait to see more crazy shit from Morrison. The art is average but the Steel backup earns the book points. 4/5

Animal Man #4
Written by: Jeff Lemire
Drawn by: Travel Foreman
-We get the other half of brilliance on the modern writer spectrum with Animal Man. If Scott Snyder is a modern Alan Moore, Then Lemire is a modern day Grant Morrison; introducing new, trippy, and out of this world concepts into conventional books. Both of Lemire’s mainstream DC books are his fun play things with which to introduce so many crazy ideas and stories whilst keeping them grounded into certain genres. Equally psychedelic is Foreman’s art, which runs the gamut from LSD-fueled to shockingly grotesque horror. An excellent book. 4.5/5

Detective Comics #4
Written by: Tony S. Daniel
Drawn by: Tony S. Daniel
-As cliché as his writing is, Daniel knows how to write a fun, jam-packed story full of action and grotesque things. I just wish the detective element was played up more. This arc concludes while extending into what is sure to be a unique Penguin arc. 3/5

Justice League International #4
Written by: Dan Jurgens
Drawn by: Aaron Lopresti
-This first arc isn’t really impressing me as it is just now picking up in the story. As much as I love the interactions and bwa-ha-ha moments, if the second arc fails to impress me I will be dropping this. Lopresti’s art is really good though. 3.5/5

Static Shock #4
Written by: Scott McDaniel
Drawn by: Khary Randolph
-The artwork on this is clumsy for a superhero book and seems more befitting of modern day Image. The story carries on nicely with this being a mostly action-packed issue. Some new elements are introduced and Static is still likable. 3.5/5


MARVEL:
Avenging Spider-Man #2
Written by: Zeb Wells
Drawn by: Joe Madureira
-A fairly awesome issue with some JJJ moments and solid Madureira artwork that has been sorely missed. Spider-Man Team Up is turning out to be great. 4/5

Defenders #1
Written by: Matt Fraction
Drawn by: Terry Dodson
-Matt Fraction decides to write something I actually enjoy with a solid, likable cast and great art. The character and story development here coupled with the artwork automatically makes up for the crap that was Fear Itself. 4.5/5

Punisher #6
Written by: Greg Rucka
Drawn by: Bryan Hitch
-This Punisher was confusing as it had a lot of characters to balance. Extremely nice art though that gives it a wintry felt. 3/5

Venom #10
Written by: Rick Remender
Drawn by: Lan Medina
-Remender is pretty awesome so far when it comes to Venom. I’ve read none of his other work, but his solid character development and unique pacing makes me want to read more. Medina’s art is serviceable but nothing compared to the first Tom Fowler run. 3.5/5

IMAGE:
OTHER PICK OF THE WEEK:
Chew #22
Written by: John Layman
Drawn by: Rob Guillory
-Chew has got to be hands down the best indie book in comics today. No scratch that; the best indie comic book ever made. That’s just how good Chew is. Not a single bad issue has been released and if you haven’t been reading it or haven’t read it yet, it’s never too late; there are trades of the first 20 issues out there that should be easy to get your hands on. I recommend you do too, because there is nothing else quite like this series anymore. Chew has a unique, sensible charm that can’t be found in most other books. John Layman and Rob Guillory have got a special secret formula down-pat that nobody can quite imitate. Layman’s writing is chock full of humor, action, story, growth and outright wackiness while Rob Guillory provides suitably colorful, cartoony artwork with a clever sense of humor and a wicked feel for the weird and insane. Chew has been nothing but a fantastic read so far and not a single dip in quality has made itself present. Chew is like the wacky but extremely fun Christmas gift under your tree on Christmas morning; you want more of it but you have to wait a while for the next one to come out. It’s extremely frustrating too, because Chew is as solid as a comic book can get. I suggest you hop on the Chew train now before it is too late. 5/5

VERTIGO:
Sweet Tooth #28
Written by: Jeff Lemire
Drawn by: Matt Kindt
-Sweet Tooth’s guest art run/flashback arc is finally at an end. It provides with new story details without giving away too much, only teasing us with future knowledge. A special tip of the hat goes to my new favorite writer Jeff Lemire, who manages to enthrall me each month. Another tip to Matt Kindt, whose guest art is suitably perfect for the flashback arc. 4.5/5


No Marvel picks this week
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