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Saturday, September 24, 2011

The New 52: Week 4!

I thought we'd continue our look at some of the New 52 books, the last week before Aquaman debuts!

sgI hadn't planned on getting Catwoman, basically because I'm just not that big a fan of Judd Winick as a superhero comics writer, and I doubted that he was going to write a Catwoman comic I'd want to read.

But I was so sucked in by the cover (by interior artist Guillem March) that I decided to give it a chance--and I'm glad I did!

DC over the years has done a remarkable job on Selina Kyle, turning her from a Bat-villain to a fully, er, developed character on her, capable of being the star of her own adventures. Having not read a solo Catwoman comic in a few years, I can't say whether Winick is doing anything new here, but I can say I enjoyed it, enjoyed some little details he threw in (Batman tastes like metal!), and was interested in seeing where the story went.

Add to the fact that I love March's work--it reminds me of more mainstream version of Paul Pope's stuff--and that means that I'm most likely going to be back for Catwoman #2!

sgAnother nice surprise was DC Universe Presents, the New 52's version of Showcase.

The first arc belongs to Deadman, and while I'm not sure I want to see this run for five issues (which is, I think, how long this is supposed to go), I enjoyed Paul Jenkins' take on the character: he nailed the whole "laughing through the tears" bit that it Boston Brand's stock-in-trade, and I actually laughed out loud at a couple of lines. I'm not totally sure I'll be back for issue #2, but I'm definitely intrigued.

Given this title's abbreviation, DCUP, I can only assume the next arc will star Power Girl.

sgMy final New 52 pick-up of the week was the book, other than Aquaman of course, that I was most looking forward to: Wonder Woman.

I've always liked Wonder Woman, and always bought the first few issues of every new series DC felt compelled to give Diana. For whatever reason, IMO various writers just have a hard time making Diana a compelling lead feature, and after a while my attention would wane and I'd drop the book.

This new series gets off to a good start--it feels like it exists in a slightly different pocket of the new DCU; the book has a dark, slightly nightmarish tint to it, both in tone and visuals. Wonder Woman is more graphically violent than I expected, but I think I have to stop being shocked at that, since so many modern superhero comics seem to have similar levels of gore.

Cliff Chiang's work is as good as I expected; he can render beautiful, alluring female characters without resorting to Maxim-esque proportions, and this book overall looks great. I have some reservations over what I read, but I'm more than willing to give writer Brian Azzarello--and Diana herself--a couple of months to see where it's going.

Of all the weeks so far since the New 52 debuted, for me this fourth one was the most successful, in terms of the number of books I'm definitely or probably going to continue with--the New 52 batted 1000%!

So that's it for this week. Remember folks--Aquaman #1 is now five days away!


Joe Slab said...

Here's some New 52: Week 4 tidbits:

Supergirl hear's Aquaman's voice in her #1 issue (although she doesn't know its him), and Roy Harper mentions Garth in a list of Titans names to Starfire in Red Hood & the Outlaws #1.

Of note is he did NOT mention Donna or Wally at all...

Count Drunkula said...

I thought CATWOMAN was really, really good. I know that some readers will love it or hate it based solely on the last four pages. Judd Winick is a pretty polarizing writer amongst fans, but between this and BATWING I think he went two for two this month.

DC UNIVERSE PRESENTS was really good. NIGHTWING was pretty good. BIRDS OF PREY was better than I expected considering Gail Simone isn't writing it.

My favorite issue, though, was BATMAN. I'm a Batman fan, yes, but I was unimpressed by DETECTIVE and I thought BATMAN & ROBIN was horrible. BATMAN, however, was probably my favorite single issue of a Batman book ever. And considering how much I liked SWAMP THING, well, Scott Snyder is quickly climbing my favorite writer list.