Wednesday, December 23, 2015

What I Bought 12/22/2015 - Part 1

Starting what are hopefully not the last set of reviews I get done this year. I tried going to the closest store that sells comics today, but they didn't have any of the three books I wanted that came out this week. Hopefully I can grab those next week, and in the meantime, we'll focus on stuff from earlier this month.

Atomic Robo: The Ring of Fire #4, by Brian Clevinger (words), Scott Wegener (art), Anthony Clark (colors), Jeff Powell (letters/design) - The Atomic Robo Aerobic Workout series was not a commercial success once people realized the exercises wouldn't help, because Robo doesn't need to work out.

The Biomega Island approaches Tokyo, as both Ultra and Robo/China's Super-Science division scramble to enact plans to stop it. Ultra's going to use their mechs to blast open the island's core and nuke it, rendering Tokyo and the surrounding environs uninhabitable. Robo's plan is to be blasted into space, hijack a leftover Nazi space weapon to fire tungsten rods and smash the island without radiation. Assuming he can get past the station's defenses (which include a deathbot). And assuming he can manage it before he runs out of power (since he can't draw from China's power lines once he's out in space). And his plan involves ALAN, the artificial intelligence that nearly killed him in Ghost of Station X. So nobody's plans are inspiring much confidence here.

When Broughton frightens off his babysitters by pretending they're being exposed to monumental amounts of radiation, which is already killing him, so run, you fools, Wegener draws little "x"s for his eyes when he's feigning death, which made me chuckle. The "OrbitPanzer" has a good design, though I wonder if that's an actual human skull in the bubble, or the Nazis put a fake in there because they thought it would be more intimidating. The green plexiglass its covered by is a nice touch, that spooky, unearthly green color.

I'm not at all sure how this is going to end, though I still have the sinking suspicion it won't go as Robo hopes. And bringing ALAN into the mix just seems to be asking for trouble, but we'll see.

Deadpool #3, by Gerry Duggan (writer), Mike Hawthorne (penciler), Terry Pallot (inker), Guru eFx (colorist), Joe Sabino (letterer) - I have no idea why Terry Moore drew Terror as being Hulk-sized on the cover. He's not that big a guy.

Wade's being questioned by the cops about the Zoning Board Commissioner, but they believe he didn't kill the guy, because he had already told the feds about the now-dead guy trying to solicit bribes. So Wade gets the cops to pretend they don't believe him, so they'll put him on a bus to Ryker's to draw out the fake, and then Wade and the mercs will bust him. Except their paychecks bounced, so none of them are showing up. And Wade, unarmed and alone, can't catch the guy, which makes Wade worry he's losing his edge. Uh-oh.

I guess Duggan is sticking with the idea that the "yellow caption box" from Daniel Way's Deadpool run was Madcap, having been nearly liquefied and inhaled unwittingly by Wade (this was introduced in some annual I didn't buy in the last couple years). Which never made a lot of sense to me, because there was also a white caption box, and it argued with Wade's external voice as much as the yellow, so was that still supposed to be Wade's own thoughts? But with Wade talking about missing having another voice in his head, and Steve Rogers talking about needing to get rid of Madcap, I'm not sure I like where this is going. I'm also starting to get tired of the mercs, at least some of them. I'm sure they're meant to reflect different aspects of Wade in different ways, but as a supporting cast go, they kind of aren't great. Maybe just get rid of half of them? Especially Slapstick. Please, no more scenes of Slapstick being horribly depressed because his family is gone.

Also, it's a little frightening to see Steve Rogers talking about killing a man in the Ardennes Forest for trying to "boop" Steve's nose. That is. . . coming on a little strong there, Steve. On the other hand, I enjoyed Mr. mantle the weapons' dealer calling a guy "Cochise". I've found myself doing that a lot lately, mostly when I'm talking to myself about some person driving aggressively near me. Maybe because I saw Fort Apache again over Thanksgiving. I know I shouldn't watch it, because Fonda's character pisses me off so much, but everyone else is so good in it.

The fight scene, brief as it was, was good. The Hawthorne/Pallot/Guru eFx team is doing some strong work. Pallot's inks really steady Hawthorne's pencils, which can get a little shaky and rough at times in the past, and the color work is just good. There's nothing wild or psychedelic about it, but it always seems to work for the scenes. Especially the interrogation scene with the cops. The color of the walls, and something about the pallor of the cops' skin under those lights, just makes it seem like one of those interrogation rooms designed to make people feel uncomfortable.

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