DOCTOR STAR & THE KINGDOM OF LOST TOMORROWS #3, THE SNAGGLEPUSS CHRONICLES #5 & MORE! [Mini-Reviews]

Batman #46 Cover
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BATMAN #46/ Story by TOM KING/ Art by TONY S. DANIEL/ Inking Assists by SANDU FLOREA/ Colors by TOMEU MOREY/ Letters by CLAYTON COWLES/ Published by DC COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

Over a year ago, Booster Gold tried to get Batman the perfect wedding present by showing him a world where he’d never become Batman. Now, the timeline has been altered so that Selina Kyle is a feral serial killer, Bruce Wayne is indifferent to the madness gripping the world and there’s a new gun-toting Batman who is obsessed with killing anyone in a costume!

Dark comedy is a difficult thing to pull off and Tom King totally blows the punchline in this issue. It’s not just the horribly mischaracterized Booster Gold, though Booster not noticing that Selina Kyle is unable to say anything but “Meow” and doesn’t act human doesn’t help matters. It’s the general ugly, mean-spirited tone of the whole issue and the way it becomes almost fetishistic in its violent final sequence.

The only redeeming factor of Batman #46 is the artwork. I’ve never held strong opinions on Tony S. Daniel one way or the other, but I will say that he (with the assistance from Sandu Florea and coloring finishes by Tomeu Morey) managed to make this book look good. It’s still a terrible comic, but at least it’s an attractive one.

In my review of Batman #45, I noted that your enjoyment of the issue ultimately depended on whether or not you can tolerate Booster Gold being portrayed as incurably stupid for the sake of a joke. That statement is even more true of Batman #46, though the gag now staler than your average Dennis Miller tweet.

 

Doctor Star #3 Cover
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DOCTOR STAR AND THE KINGDOM OF LOST TOMORROWS #3/ Story by JEFF LEMIRE/ Art by MAX FIUMARA/ Colors by DAVE STEWART/ Letters by NATE PIEKOS/ Published by DARK HORSE COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

Desperately seeking a cure his son’s illness, Doctor Star reaches out to a race of aliens whose world he once saved. What he finds is an army in search of a leader – The Star Sheriff Squadron!

Turning from Starman to Green Lantern, Jeff Lemire continues to expand the celestial side of his Black Hammer universe while paying tribute to the classic science fiction comics of The Silver Age. The comic history buffs will appreciate the nod. Everyone will enjoy a spirited story with amazing artwork. Grab the back issues of this one while you can, kids. This will be one to remember!

 

Green Arrow #40 Cover
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GREEN ARROW #40/ Story by JACKSON LANZING & COLLIN KELLY/ Art by MARCIO TAKARA/ Colors by MARCELO MAIOLO/ Letters by DERON BENNETT/ Published by DC COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

Trapped in the war-torn nation of Rhapastan and faced with an enemy he cannot bring himself to fight, Oliver Queen will find himself training a new group of young heroes to save their city.

There is so much wrong with Green Arrow #40 I don’t know where to begin so I’ll spare you all a long rant. The artwork is terrible, with sloppy pencils that are obscured by over-inking. The story sees the same Oliver Queen who couldn’t shoot a child soldier last issue deciding it’s perfectly acceptable for him to train a group of child soldiers.

This entire issue is a throwback to the kinds of Green Arrow comics Rebirth was meant to put an end to. The only good aspects of this book are the covers by Mike Grell and Tyler Kirkham and the fact that this was just a fill-in issue. We have T-minus two months and counting until The Benson Sisters take over and I can’t wait!

 

Injustice 2 #56 Cover
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INJUSTICE 2 #56/ Story by TOM TAYLOR/ Pencils by DANIEL SAMPERE/ Inks by JUAN ALBARAAN/ Colors by REX LOKUS/ Letters by WES ABBOTT/ Published by DARK HORSE COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

The Green Lanterns escape to Oa, but now Hal Jordan is firmly in the thrall of The Red Lantern Corps. As they seek out a new recruit who will enable them to take on The Guardians on their home turf, Conner Kent and Cassie Sandsmark contemplate their respective legacies and building a new team of their own.

One of the best aspects of the Injustice universe has been seeing those characters ill-served by The New 52 revamp in their classic incarnations. This was true of Oliver Queen and Harley Quinn in the early issues of Injustice and it’s just as true now of the Conner Kent Superboy and Cassie Sandsmark Wonder Girl.  Tom Taylor gives both characters a heart that has been sadly lacking in most of the Teen Titans comics of recent years, making me realize how much I’ve missed seeing them and how Young Justice‘s third season can’t come soon enough.

The artwork is as amazing as always when Daniel Sampere, Juan Albaraan and Rex Lokus are involved. Sampere’s pencils are clear yet divinely detailed. Albarran’s inks offer the perfect enhancements and shading of the original art, with Lokus’ colors providing a fine finish. The only flaw to this issue is it is not easily accessible to new readers. I strongly suggest readers start with the first issue and move forward from there.

 

Snagglepuss Chronicles #5 Cover
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THE SNAGGLEPUSS CHRONICLES #5/ Story by MARK RUSSELL & BRANDEE STILWELL/ Pencils by MIKE FEEHAN & GUS VAZQUEZ/ Inks by SEAN PARSONS, JOSE MARZAN JR. & GUS VAZQUEZ/ Colors by PAUL MOUNTS & ROSS CAMPBELL/ Letters by DAVE SHARPE/ Published by DC COMICS

Review by ROY BUCKINGHAM

In the wake of a personal tragedy that rocks him to his core, Snagglepuss goes to testify before The House Un-American Activities Committee. Instead of playing ball, however, he decides to use the televised trial as a platform to go all full tilt boogie on the American government and their hypocrisy.

I will be sad to see this mini-series end, as it shook me to the core as deeply as the title character. We knew the confrontation at the center of this issue was coming, but the reasons behind Snagglepuss’ reactions are what makes his later actions truly heartbreaking. Mark Russell has written one of the most compelling and important comics in recent memory –  not only the LGBTQ but for anyone who has ever fought for equality in their lives of in the face of any kind of bigotry or censorship.

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


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