Saturday, June 25, 2016

Review: Supergirl and the Legion of Super-Heroes #22

I continue my review of Mark Waid and Barry Kitson's Supergirl and the Legion of Super-Heroes over on the Legion of Super-bloggers site. I am currently on number 22. Here is the link for my whole review:

We're at a time in the series where Waid and Kitson are really kicking things up a notch. There are a lot of plot lines bubbling. There are a few mysteries. For old school Legion fans who liked layers and layers of stories, this was starting to feel like home.

As for Supergirl, we are nearing critical mass on a couple of her plotlines.

One I find interesting is that many of the Legionnaires are completely smitten with her. Cosmic Boy thinks he has a crush on her but it is explained away. Ultra Boy may have a crush on her but it turns out he feels threatened by her power level. And here we see Invisible Kid has something of a creepy shrine for her.

The addition of Supergirl has been a bit unsettling for the Legion. And things are only going to get nuttier.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Review: Action Comics #958

Action Comics #958 came out this week, continuing the ongoing restructuring of the Superman mythos in the post-Rebirth landscape of the DCU.

It is phenomenal.

This feels like Superman. There are great character moments. There are fascinating mysteries. There is high action. This was an issue that lived up the the title Action Comics.

Writer Dan Jurgens is doing a brilliant job of weaving in the 'old' Superman and his background into the 'new' universe where the New 52 Superman is dead and Lex is wearing the S-shield. That friction of being a strange visitor from another universe is palpable. But Jurgens also fleshes out that feeling by bringing in older elements like Doomsday and showing us what this Superman's Lois is going through. It is both reminiscent of the Death of Superman storyline while feeling very different.

Jurgens also is keeping me engaged with some of the unanswered questions the book raises. Who is this Doomsday? How did he get here? Who is that Clark Kent? Where did he come from? And who is the enigmatic Mr. Oz? These questions are really the foundation that this arc is built on. I suppose I could channel Vince Lombardi and just say 'what the hell is going on out there?' As a long time reader who loves mysteries I have to try to decipher, I am rapt.

On top of the great story being written, Patch Zircher is just bringing it to this book. Everything about this book looks epic. From the concern on Lois' face to Superman's classic jawline to page layouts that add to the kinetic feel of the story to the palpable blows Doomsday lends, I was floored by the art. Fantastic.

Suffice it to say, I loved the issue.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

September 2016 Solicits

The wait is over.
We finally have an official solicit for Supergirl #1 and all the DC books for September.

Solicits have one job, to grab me as a consumer and make me want to buy a book I normally wouldn't. And this month's solicits do just that. I am on board with a lot of the DC Rebirth books. And some of these solicits make me even more interested! Here is a link to the whole slate:

And here are the actual solicits and some comments.

Art and cover by BRIAN CHING
Variant cover by BENGAL
Blank variant cover
“REIGN OF THE CYBORG SUPERMAN” part one! Supergirl is back and working for the DEO to defend National City! As Kara Danvers, average American teenager and high school student, Supergirl must balance her life as a superhero with her new life on Earth. But some demons from her Kryptonian past are coming back to haunt her, and Kara will find herself face-to-face with her father: the sinister Cyborg Superman!

So mark the calendar! September 7 is the drop date for Supergirl. We will have read the Supergirl Rebirth Special by now. But this book's set up seems to resonate with the show. She is Kara Danvers. She works for the DEO. She lives in National City.

Now one of my least favorite parts of the New 52 Supergirl was the revelation that Zor-El was a creepy scientist who experimented on his daughter and ultimately became the Cyborg Superman. Will Steve Orlando be able to make decent sense of this? I hope so.

But how great that we get a Bengal variant and a blank variant!!
And now the rest of the super-solicits.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Back Issue Bin: Action Comics #334, Streaky

Last week in Superman #1, we saw the Kents' ... ahem, Smiths' pet cat Goldie get incinerated by Jon's uncontrolled heat vision. It was a brutal, shocking scene which I felt was unnecessary to Jon's story. But there it was.

It was with that event in mind that I decided to look to a more pleasant story about a cat.

What better place to look than Streaky, the super-cat! Supergirl's pet cat was a mischievous scamp who was seen in her earliest stories in Action Comics. He was later seen as a normal cat in Daring New Adventures, the pre-Flashpoint Supergirl, in Cosmic Adventures, Tiny Titans, and even in in cartoon form in Krypto. Streaky is an important part of Kara's history.

Surprisingly, despite doing this blog for eight plus years, I have never reviewed his origin story. I unfortunately don't own Action Comics #261, Streaky's first appearance. But I do own the story in a variety of reprints. The scans you see here are from Action Comics #334, a giant issue of Supergirl stories.

So if you don't like to see a cat's charred corpse and would rather read about a cat flying around with a cape, read on!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Comic Rack

This magazine rack is the latest addition to the my section of the house. And I am pretty pleased with it.

I have my true comic 'collection' the issues bagged and boarded, all safely stowed away in long boxes. But I also have a couple of long boxes of loose books. This is for the scragged $1box finds, the duplicates I sometimes buy in cheap bins for easy reading, and for comic magazines. I have always wanted an old school spinner rack to display some of them. But those aren't easy to come by.

The hospital is renovating the library and a lot of old pieces were being tossed. I spied this rack in a pile to be thrown out. I asked and was allowed to take it home where it will be loved.

I decided to throw in a bunch of issues to showcase it, all from the loose section, so no worries about damage. It is a shame the bars go right over the title section of the books. But I suppose it was built for magazines, not comics.

Still, I thought this was a fun little addition to my corner of the house. I'll probably rotate things now and then.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Superman Cast!

Well that didn't take long!

A few days after announcing that Superman would appear on the first two episodes of season two of Supergirl, the CW announced they had found their man: Teen Wolf's Tyler Hoechlin. There is plenty of coverage out there. Here is the Entertainment Weekly article:

And the pertinent blurb:
“Greg [Berlanti] and I have wanted to work with Tyler for ages, so this worked out perfectly because Tyler is Superman,” executive producer Andrew Kreisberg says. “We are so thrilled and humbled to add another amazing actor to the legacy of this iconic character.” 

So, I'll be honest. I don't know this guy. That doesn't worry me at all. I hadn't heard of Grant Gustin or Melissa Benoist either. I trust the casting people on these shows.

Hoechlin certainly looks the part of Superman. And I have heard that Teen Wolf was a good show.

But he seems awful young for the show.

In my head, Superman should be in his late 30's on the show. Kara lands when she's around 12. He is already established as Superman. She is now 24. He should be around 36 to 38. I know somewhere along the way I did the math more elegantly. But this guy looks like he is the same age as Kara. And that seems off. Superman should be older than Jimmy, by far. This actor is younger than Mehcad Brooks.

Now I know people will tell me that there are plenty of comics that show Superman as near immortal, that Kryptonians age slowly in a yellow sun environment. But I don't think we need that here.

Who knows, maybe this guy is in the pod? Maybe this is a Superman from elsewhere? Or elsewhen? I doubt that too.

So while I have trust in the folks who run the show, I am a bit worried about this. I guess we'll need to see how it all plays out.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Review: Supergirl and the Legion of Super-Heroes #21

It's Threeboot Saturday, in which I point you to my review of the Supergirl and Legion of Super-Heroes review I did on the Legion of Super-Bloggers site. Here is the link to my review of issue #21:

This book was starting to pick up some steam at this point, juggling multiple plot lines and adding some nice mysteries and character points. I have enjoyed this run much more while rereading it this time critically.

Remember, Supergirl thinks she is in a complex dream state, safe on Krypton.

In a very good scene, the other female Legionnaires push her a bit, trying to snap her out of this odd idea and into reality. And they push some buttons.

Phantom Girl talks about how she feels like she doesn't belong on Earth or her homeworld Bgztl, torn between two cultures.

Triplicate Girl talks about how she can't go home again because she would be shunned.

Projectra talks about how her world was destroyed and she is alone. She wonders if Kara understands that.

All of these were meant to prick some emotional nerve in Kara. For a second, it seems to snap her back to reality. But then she sinks back into the safe fantasy that this is a dream world.

Fascinating take on Supergirl. Great issue of the Legion.