Saturday, May 26, 2018

Review: The Last Siege

I have been a fan of the creative team of Landry Walker and Eric Jones for some time now, following them from Supergirl Cosmic Adventures to Danger Club and beyond. So when I heard they were being joined by artist Justin Greenwood on the Image book The Last Siege I knew I would be there.

Now Cosmic and Danger Club are two very different styles of books so I didn't know what to expect with The Last Siege. It leans more towards the darker end of the thematic spectrum mixing medieval politics with sword play and desperate battles. I have been trying to come up with a sort of elevator pitch shorthand for the book and I guess I would say it's "Seven Samurai meets Braveheart meets Yojimbo". But even that sells it short for what I am sure will be an exploration of power and the corruption of power throughout the story.

Walker brings the reader into this first issue effectively, going back and forth between two plotlines which are inextricably linked and therefore laying the foundation for what the story is about. In particular, the opening pages are quite cinematic and let's the reader know this isn't going to be a sunny romp.

Greenwood's art is new to me but very much works here. I think of medieval times as a sort of dingy, rough time period and there is a raw quality to the linework here which just puts me into the story. You can feel the grime and grit as warriors battle in the rain.

I'm in and hope you will give it a try.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Review: Wonder Woman #47

Wonder Woman #47 came out this week, the only book on the shelf this month to feature Supergirl as we await her 'bold new direction' in August. So even though Kara is out of her mind in the issue, I have to be happy she is somewhere.

I have been collecting Wonder Woman since the Rebirth reboot. I found the Rucka run to be good enough, especially the early issues resolving some of the New 52 snags. Recently James Robinson has come on board and his time has been a bit more hit or miss. At times Diana seems like an after thought in her own book.

This issue seems to underscore that a bit. The first half is a fight with Supergirl in which we get some good insight into Diana and some wonderful art by Stephen Segovia. But this fight, in the end, is sort of meaningless and ends with a whimper. The second half is dedicated to Diana's long lost brother Jason, a character who has dominated the book a bit too much. I don't read the book for him; I read it for Wonder Woman.

The overall story here is about Dark Gods coming to Earth which seems a bit badly timed given that we also have Omega Titans coming in No Justice. I thought this was a tie-in to that book but it turns out the Dark Gods are their own entities.

I'll stress again that Segovia really crushes it this issue. His visual storytelling is superb. On to the book.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Happy Anniversary! The Shrine Then & Now

I continue my look back at ten years of collecting by looking at the sheer amount of Supergirl merchandise I have obtained over the course of the last decade. It's crazy to look at this 'then and now' take on the collection.

Here is the first look at 'The Shrine' from way back in June 2008 here:

Back then I was using a tiny sort of 4 shelf corner cabinet to display 22 pieces.

I quickly would need more space.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Supergirl Episode 319: The Fanatical

Supergirl episode 319, titled 'The Fanatical' came out this week and was an decent episode. This one pushed the season long plot of the World Killers forward a bit. We learned of a possible solution to Reign, one that would save Sam. We revisited the Coville cult and saw how people can define themselves by their faith. And, given the name of an upcoming episode, we are that much closer to seeing Erica Durance as Alura.

But the main thrust of this episode was character growth as once again we see how the events of this season are bringing people together or driving them apart. Every member of the DEO team is struggling a bit these days with some personal crises. And as a result, everything seems a little uneasy. Supergirl and Lena are bristling with each other. Mon-El is dealing with his conflicted feelings. J'onn is dealing with his father. Alex is trying to mother Ruby. James is pulled between alliances. All this while their friend is captured and threatening the world. Add to this a relatively heavy dollop of political sentiment and you get an episode more memorable for character moments than for punches.

While I love the cast and the well developed characters, this is another episode where Supergirl seems like part of an ensemble show instead of a lead. J'onn and Alex carry the emotional heft here. James is the political figure crying out for social justice. Mon-El gets most of the action.

Hopefully when all this plays out, Supergirl is the center of all the action and the actual hero of the day.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

New Creative Team/New Look For Supergirl Announced

In what has to be deemed tremendous news, we learned yesterday that the Supergirl title has not been cancelled and will be back on the shelves this summer! Supergirl #21 ... not even a renumbering! Hooray! ... will be out in August!

Over on, it was announced that Marc Andreyko and Kevin Maguire will be the new creative team. Andreyko then does an brief interview about the book. Here is a link:

Now first off, I definitely like Andreyko as a writer, especially his work on Manhunter. So I really feel like Kara is in good hands there. And I have gushed about Kevin Maguire on this blog many many times. I can't wait to see him drawing Kara monthly. So I am grateful for that announcement.

We also get Terry Dodson on the cover of the first issue of the new direction. And in the story, Kara will sport at least four new outfits as designed by Jorge Jimenez. So more artists I love are attached to the title. This is great news. While my beloved red skirt is gone on the more classic outfit, at least the long point sleeves remain. And I like the wide gold belt. Nice touch. Okay, onto the article itself.

I'll say again, I am thrilled the book is staying around. My thoughts on specifics coming up.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Supergirl On Sundays

 The CW Upfronts were held last week and there was some shakeup to the lineup of the shows worth mentioning here.

The biggest change for the network as a whole is the CW now expanding to Sunday nights.

And this has an impact on the Supergirl show as she will now be the 8p show on Sundays. Here is a link to the whole schedule:

I am glad that the CW feels Supergirl can still be the tentpole on a night, especially a new night for the network. Having the reboot of Charmed follow the show also is evidence that the network has faith in the series bringing in and holding viewers.

Of course, much like Mondays, it does mean that Supergirl will be up against prime time professional football. Hopefully that doesn't crush the numbers.

The Supergirl 'poster' for season 4 looks a little odd to me, like a photoshop job. Does Melissa Benoist's head look just a smidge too large?

Friday, May 18, 2018

Review: Superman Special #1 (2018)

With the Bendis era around the corner, DC has allowed the current Superman creative teams a little breathing room to wrap up some storylines.  Earlier this month we had  Action Comics Special #1 , an extra issue to let Dan Jurgens finish one of his ongoing plots, the complex recent relationship between Superman and Lex Luthor.

This week we got Superman Special #1 which allows Peter Tomasi and Patrick Gleason one last chance to showcase the super-family as well as close out a lingering plot point, the destiny of Captain Storm.
As this is a special, we also get a couple of short bonus stories, perhaps inventory left unpublished before now.

I have touted the Tomasi/Gleason run since it started so no surprise I love their story.  It is a nice amalgam of the father/son relationship we have seen grow in this book, a wonderful representation of Lois (something missing before Rebirth), and a nod to heroes of all ages. It ends with a literal closing of the door, a symbolic way for the creators to show that their time here is done.

The art on the main story is done by Scott Godlewski who brings a nice feel to the piece, bring a little Darwyn Cooke and a little Wayne Boring to the proceedings, totally appropriate for an adventure on Dinosaur Island.

But the key thing is that it made me once again realize that despite firing on all cylinders, this team is being nudged out. I am hopeful that Bendis is bringing something phenomenal.

On to the book.