I've got six other comics besides this one, but I felt like discussing it solo. Or maybe I was just lazy and only wanted to discuss one book.
Blue Beetle #2, by Keith Giffen (story/script), Scott Kolins (story/artist), Romulo Fajardo Jr. (colorist), Josh Reed (letterer) - You'd think the scarab could keep Jaime's blood inside the armor.
Jaime and the Posse try to investigate what's going on, though Jaime mostly only succeeds in learning his mom has been helping the Posse, and making them think he's crazy. Then he can't get rid of Blur, who keeps following and flirting and getting pissed for no reason, and finally attacks him for awhile before kissing him and departing. Then Jaime tries to yell at his mom, which doesn't work at all.
This was a little better than the previous issue, if only because everyone seems slightly less on edge. Honestly, Jaime and the Posse seem to get along better than anyone else in this book. I'd like to think that's a deliberate choice on Giffen and Kolins' part. That extended exposure to the scarab exerts a dark influence on people's psyches. It would go along with Dr. Fate's dire warnings. But I'm not convinced that is the case.
I'd like to see some sign Ted Kord is actually helping Jaime. Besides giving him money to investigate weird stuff Jaime would probably look into anyway. There hasn't been any indication he's doing anything to figure out what the scarab is, how it works, how to get it off Jaime. At least give us some hint that when he asks Jaime to try and do new stuff with the suit (like run "scans), he's analyzing what's happening as part of his work.
Also, I think Ted's assistant and Milagro's friend, Tina, might be artificial constructs Ted made. Something the assistant said about possibly getting Tina out of the house if Jaime was going to cause a scene makes me think that. I could be misreading it entirely; maybe she just meant it in terms of Jaime not blowing his secret identity in front of a stranger, but I don't know.
Kolins' art seems to be playing into this. I don't recall the armor having all those spike on the arms and legs previously, and that panel of the Beetle crawling into the hole was interesting. There's enough room to walk in the tunnel, or float down if the angle is too steep, so why did Kolins draw him in a classic Spider-Man pose? But it does make him look a little more creepy, a little less human. Ditto some of those antennae or whatever that come off his shoulders. There's just a certain vibe that's less Iron Man, more something out of one of those '60s sci-fi/horror things Ditko would have drawn.
You could throw in the fact Jaime doesn't seem to talk to the scarab, or even have that much control over it. It's a thing, alien and silent, that may have motivations Jaime doesn't know and couldn't grasp if he did. And the people who are supposed to be helping all seem to have their own hidden motives. It's different, but there's potential. It's not always a bad thing to go against audience expectations, but I wonder if it's the right move here.