DOMINO #1, THE FLASH #44, X-MEN: RED & MORE! [Mini-Reviews]

Batgirl And The Birds of Prey #22 Cover
Buy Digital Comic ($3.99)

BATGIRL AND THE BIRDS OF PREY #21/ Story by JULIE BENSON & SHAWNA BENSON/ Art by ROGE ANTONIO/ Colors by MARCELO MAIOLO/ Letters by SAIDA TEMOFONTE/ Published by DC COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

With her allies being targeted in their secret identities, Dinah Lance must take the lead when The Calculator’s forces start taking hostages all around Gotham City. Good thing a certain Emerald Archer is on hand to lend a helping hand!

Green Arrow fans curious about what they can expect in a few months when The Benson Sisters take over would do well to check out this issue. Despite being the third part of Full Circle, it stands on its own as a story surprisingly well and offers a pitch-perfect take on the Oliver Queen/Dinah Lance relationship. The artwork is as lackluster as ever, sadly, with Roge Antonio clearly recycling several faces and Marcelo Maiolo’s colors being as washed out as ever. I look forward to seeing The Bensons work with an artist who is worthy of them in a few months.

 

Domino #1 Cover
Buy Digital Comic ($3.99)

DOMINO #1/ Story by GAIL SIMONE/ Art by DAVID BALDEON/ Colors by JESUS ABURTOV/ Letters by VC’S CLAYTON COWLES/ Published by MARVEL COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

It’s Neena Thurman’s birthday but she’s in no mood to celebrate. The luck-manipulating mercenary would rather focus on her work than party. Her best friends Outlaw and Diamondback have other ideas, however, and they’ve arranged the surprise party to end all surprise parties. Unfortunately, someone else has planned a surprise that will insure this birthday is Domino’s last!

Don’t know much about Domino? Doesn’t matter. Gail Simone provides the perfect introduction to the character with this fun-filled first-issue. Paired with the animated artwork of David Baldeon and the vivid colors of Jesus Aburtov, this comic looks as good as it reads. And yes – a certain Merc With A Mouth does put in an appearance. A must read, even if you don’t normally like X-Men or X-Force.

 

The Flash #44 Cover
Buy Digital Comic ($2.99)

THE FLASH #44/ Story by JOSHUA WILLIAMSON / Art by CARMINE DI GIANDOMENICO/ Colors by IVAN PLASCENCIA/Letters by STEVE WANDS/ Published by DC COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

Grodd has been neutralized but his Speed Force Lighting Rod still threatens to destroy Central City. Can Barry Allen make the ultimate sacrifice to save his city and everyone he loves? Will Wally West allow him to do so?

A muted conclusion to The Perfect Storm, that fails to be at all dramatic given the already foreshadowed Flash War storyline. Joshua Williamson adds in a few good character moments and the artwork by Carmine Di Giandomenico is good enough, but ultimately there’s nothing here Flash fans haven’t seen done before and done better.

 

Titans #22 Cover
Buy Digital Comic ($2.99)

TITANS #22/ Story by DAN ABNETT/ Pencils by PAUL PELLETIER/ Inks by ANDREW HENNESSY/ Colors by ADRIANO LUCAS/ Letters by CARLOS M. MANGUAL/ Published by DC COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

The Brotherhood of Evil’s plan to take over the world picks up the pace and only Roy Harper is aware of it! Can Donna Troy escape her captivity on The Watchtower to help her friend when The Justice League won’t?

You’d never know this was a Titans book if it weren’t for the title. Most of the focus here is on The Justice League being totally outclassed by The Brain, as Batman realizes – too late – that Roy Harper was right about some vast conspiracy capable of hacking reality.

This isn’t a bad thing on the face of it, but it’s still odd for there to be an entire story arc of this series which has only shown us four members of the title team, and only two of them show up in this issue! And I say that as a Roy Harper fan who loves seeing Roy getting treated as a hero worthy of respect rather than a junkie screw-up.

A larger problem is the artwork, which resembles completed coloring book pages thanks to the bold colors, thick inks and forced poses. It doesn’t look bad but there’s little sense of subtlety to it and the whole thing is just strange.

 

X-Men Red #3 Cover
Buy Digital Comic ($3.99)

X-MEN: RED #3/ Story by TOM TAYLOR/ Art by MAHMUD ASRAR/ Colors by IVE SVORCINA/ Letters by VC’S CORY PETIT/ Published by MARVEL COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

Jean Grey and her new ally Tertiary uncover evidence of a horrifying new form of Sentinel – one that utilizes the power of social media! Meanwhile, in New Orleans, Gambit stares down a mob of anti-Mutant protesters seemingly radicalized by this new enemy!

While the idea of social media being used to manipulate people is nothing new, Tom Taylor presents a horrifying conceit that is perfectly suited towards the reality of X-Men – a program that turns those inclined toward seeking out anti-Mutant messages into brainwashed foot-soldiers for a war between humans and mutants. There’s little room for the quiet character development that Taylor is famous for, but he does manage to sneak a few laughs into the story in spite of this timely concept. There’s lots of epic action scenes, however, well illustrated by Mahmud Asrar and Ive Svorcina.

Buy these comics digitally or from your local comic book store!


About Matt Morrison

Matt "Starman" Morrison is The Grand Exalted High Macha of Raspur - a non-existent but real-sounding country. He has been writing about comics since before the word "blogging" was coined. He enjoys acting, role-playing, movie-riffing and sarcasm. You can follow his adventures on Twitter, @GeekyGeekyWays.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *