Friday, September 25, 2015

What I Bought 9/15/2015 - Part 2

I never cared one way or the other about fantasy sports until it got popular enough to deluge us with ads for leagues where you can make so much money if you play fantasy sports with them. 35 dollars turns into 2 million? That sounds entirely plausible and easily repeatable! Where do I sign up?

Atomic Robo: The Ring of Fire #1, by Brian Clevinger (writer), Scott Wegener (artist), Anthony Clark (colorist), Jeff Powell (letterer) - Nothing like a good old Days of Future Past homage cover.

Majestic-12 has basically taken over every super-science based group, ostensibly under the banner of "global security" to combat a giant monster threat. The scattered remains of Tesladyne have been trying to figure out what happened to Robo, and have correctly determined he was sent back in time, and that he would find some way to have his remains sent to someplace they'd be safe until a friend could find them. They find his remains, and narrowly evade some of Majestic's forces, who at least so far, do not realize they've been evaded.

General Brooks (head of Majestic-12) is tedious to me. She's the standard military character. The one who insists it is on everyone else's head if lives are lost, because those people didn't roll over and cooperate fully with a shadowy organization that is outright invading sovereign nations to take control of their facilities. Gee, I can't imagine why anyone would not be shitting their pants in their eagerness to assist. I get that the book isn't arguing her tactic of trying to guilt people she's harmed into helping her is right, that she's the villain, I'm not supposed to like her, but damn, give me one character who tells her "fuck you", if only out of sheer contrariness. Even if they get shot in the head after. There has to be someone like that. I can at least live with the hope that she catches a bullet before the mini-series ends. It's a slim hope, but I'll also settle for being crushed by a giant monster and/or a giant robot.

Beyond that, I'm not sure how well this first issue worked for me. I usually have trouble remembering the names of any of his Action Scientists (save Jenkins), or really defining their personalities. Using them as the central protagonists, rather than as someone to bounce off Robo, not entirely on board. But hopefully by next issue they'll have figured out how to get Robo's head up and running (or they've uploaded him into a different, less advanced body if I'm reading next issue's cover right). At which point equilibrium will be established. I figure even if Robo can't be the physical presence he normally, having his personality in the mix will be sufficient.

Wegener's work is excellent, especially body language. Bernie for the first half of the issue, where's he alternately drunk, depressed, and skeptical was particularly good. That panel of him sitting in the chair silently, after hearing the whole Zorth explanation. He just looks like a guy who's given up, or is trying real hard to give up, anyway. And Lang's reactions to him, ranging from looking tired to barely controlling her irritation, are also good. I'm not sure if this is to Wegener's credit or Powell's, but the sound effect for the missile the drone fired exploding was really nice. "POOM", with the Os overlapping partially, and the whole word in the center of concentric circles. I have no idea what a missile explosion in a forest would sound like, but for some reason that works just fine with me.

I do wonder how Lang got from a bar in Mexico to Rio in one day, on a motorcycle, with a whiny drunk guy riding along. Is that feasible, especially needing to keep a low profile?

Ms. Marvel #18, by G. Willow Wilson (writer), Adrian Alphona (artist), Ian Herring (color artist), Joe Caramagna (letterer) - I guess Kamala will get her wish soon enough. Maybe not the big happy Hulk part, but hanging out with Captain Falcon and Thor.

Whatever Aamir was exposed to wasn't Terrigen Mist, but he still got powers. Powers he doesn't want, and can't control, but he beat Kamran handily anyway, so good. Then he passed out and his face landed on Kamran's shoe (still attached to the foot sticking out of the floor), which was pretty funny. Kamran must have really expensive shoes with soles with a lot of cushion to them. Kamala and Carol get him to the school, where they part company, but not before Carol gives two things to Kamala. One, a necklace with both their logos and a locator beacon. Aww. Two, she tells her the world is ending. Way to be, Captain Bringdown! Aamir wakes up again, he and his sister (back in civvies) converse briefly, then their parents show up, and Kamala gets blamed for not looking after her older brother. What the hell? I was under the impression it was the duty of older siblings to look after younger ones. Just like parents, changing the rules whenever it suits their complaining purposes. Kamala opts not to point out the absurdity of her mother's complaint, and instead explains she fights crime. Then her mother reveals she already knew that.

OK, I wasn't expecting that.

I like the Khan family's use of laundry as non-profane insults. Aamir calling Kamran a "duffel bag" is a little obvious as an alternative to "douchebag", but Kamala calling her brother a wet sock amused me. I'd like to do that, but I don't think it would work. People would just look at me as though I were crazy.

I was a little surprised Carol hung back as much as she did. Kamran is enough of a loser Carol could have beaten him in a half-second. But she admitted she wanted to meet Kamala, to see why these people she knows speak so highly of the kid, so I guess it makes sense she'd hang back, and let the kid take the lead. She just offers a helpful nudge or fist as its needed. I also thought it was a little odd Aamir was the one who turned out Kamran's lights instead of Kamala. But the fact Aamir rejects Kamran's sales pitch entirely, having no interest in the idea of setting himself above others as some ruler, or even in having powers at all, was a win for Kamala. It's exactly what she told Kamran, that her brother wasn't like him. Whatever his justifiable gripes about how the world treats him because of his skin color or religion, Aamir isn't the sort who wants power so he can get revenge or settle grudges. I have no idea what the stuff he was exposed to was, or what'll happen with him having powers going forward, though. But considering everything's about to get rebooted in some form or the other, it could always be wiped away easily enough (It's been mentioned that the end of Waid/Samnee's Daredevil run might present problems for the new series, in terms of where it left things, and I expect the reboot to handwave away problems there as well.)

Alphona and Herring are doing good work as usual. I already mentioned Aamir passing out and landing on Kamran's foot as a visual I liked (the drool bubble sells it), even if it seems unlikely to actually work that way. Kamala clutching at her scarf when she gets anxious is one of those little body language things I like. It makes sense, if the hero is the sort to get nervous, they'd fiddle with parts of their costume. I bet Gambit twirls that staff idly all the time. Of course, he probably thinks it makes him look cool, but it doesn't.

Oh, and I know our schools are underfuned, but I hope that poster in the nurse's office behind Aamir is advising students to not try sucking snakebite venom out of a wound. That's a no-no, folks

1 comment:

SallyP said...

Ms Marvel is... as usual... always delightful. I love the expression on Kampala's face when she is dealing with her parents, and then the bomb about her mother knowing she is a hero. I would say odds re pretty good her dad knows as well.

It reminds a little bit of Jaime Reyes totally awesome family!