PLASTIC MAN #1, THOR #1 & MORE! [Mini-Reviews]

Deadpool Assassin #1 Cover
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DEADPOOL ASSASSIN #1/ Story by CULLEN BUNN/ Pencils by MARK BAGLEY/ Inks by JOHN DELL/ Colors by EDGAR DELGADO/ Letters by VC’S JOE SABINO/ Published by MARVEL COMICS

Review by ROY BUCKINGHAM

I would like to state at the start that I am a fan of Deadpool and have been for a long time. That being said, it does seem like he is getting overexposed and it seems like there’s twenty different Deadpool comics right now. Heck, there is even one book right now that combines Dungeons and Dragons with a Choose Your Own Adventure book. I am waiting for the day they release Deadpool Farts On A Baby because you know it will happen.

So, just one week after the relaunch of the Deadpool comic, we get this – another Deadpool mini-series. The focus here is on Deadpool taking on mercenary jobs to save money so he can retire to an island getaway. There is really not much story or satire here compared to past Deadpool titles. There are a good few laughs though, especially one involving the Ninja cinema of the 1980’s.

Still, as much as I liked the issue, I feel it is not an essential story to the Deadpool saga. Just an excuse to draw blood, guts and explosions. Think of it as Michael Bay meets Eli Roth porn, only with much better writing.

Maybe something will happen in later issues that will prove me wrong and make me reconsider whether or not this series is a must-read. Either way, if I miss an issue, I will not fret. Still, it is worth a look at if you are a Deadpool fan. Just don’t expect anything too deep.

 

Domino #3 Cover
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DOMINO #3/ Story by GAIL SIMONE/ Art by DAVID BALDEON & ANTHONY PIPER / Colors by JESUS ABURTOV/ Letters by VC’S CLAYTON COWLES/ Published by MARVEL COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

With her luck power becoming increasingly unreliable thanks to an enemy who can switch it off or hypercharge it at will, Neena Thurman seeks out a teacher who can help her attain the control she’s never needed until now.

Simone gets serious with this issue, which is largely devoted to flashbacks detailing a frankly disturbing scene from Domino’s childhood as well as how she came to hook up with her friends in “The Posse”. The character moments are great but the action sequence in which Neena finally cuts loose without her powers to save her is pretty darn fine as well. The artwork matches the script in quality. If you haven’t been reading this series, you should correct that mistake immediately.

 

Deadpool Assassin #1 Cover
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PLASTIC MAN #1/ Story by GAIL SIMONE/ Art by ADRIANA MELO/ Colors by KELLY FITZPATRICK/ Letters by SIMON BOWLAND/ Published by DC COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

Eel O’Brian was a scumbag criminal. He’s still far from an upstanding citizen, working as the night manager for a sleazy superhero-themed strip club, but he is trying to become better. That means bringing his former partners in crime to justice for the murder of the security guard who died during the same botched robbery that transformed Eel into a rubber-skinned, nigh-invulnerable, kinda-crazy super-freak. Unfortunately, Eel’s quest for redemption will have to be put on hold, as his unique talents and powers may make him the only person capable of saving the world from a cabal of evil geniuses.

Gail Simone has neatly modernized the classic origin of Plastic Man for the reality of Rebirth. Be warned that this new series is not for kids, being far closer to Deadpool  in tone than Plastic Man’s recent appearances in The Terrifics and Justice League Action. It’s a fair portrayal, however, and Simone’s script is well matched in comedic content by artist Adriana Melo, who slips a LOT of great sight gags and references into the background. The only real flaw to the book is some overly heavy inking that weighs down some scenes. All in all, this is a great comic that is sure to appeal to fans of the character and dark comedy in general.

 

The Flash #48 Cover
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THE FLASH #48/ Story by JOSHUA WILLIAMSON/ Art by HOWARD PORTER/ Colors by HI-FI/ Letters by STEVE WANDS/ Published by DC COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

With Wally West’s memories of the pre-Flashpoint world restored and armed with the knowledge that his children are trapped within The Speed Force, he is ready to do something drastic to save his family… like destroy The Speed Force itself. The race is on as Barry Allen tries to stop his protege from destroying the source of their powers and potentially unleashing untold damage upon all of reality!

I’ll give Joshua Williamson this – when he gambles he does not bid low. While very little ultimately happens in this issue, apart from setting up the scene from the very beginning of Flash War, Williamson’s grasp of these characters is phenomenal and Howard Portrer’s art puts an amazing amount of energy into every scene, even the ones that just involve the characters talking to one another. Throw in some eye-catching colors from Hi-Fi and Steve Wand’s excellent lettering and you have one solid comic, even if it does wind up seemingly like filler before the main event.

 

Thor #1 Cover
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THOR #1/ Story by JASON AARON/ Art by MIKE DEL MUNDO & CHRISTIAN WARD / Colors by MIKE DEL MUNDO, MARCO D’ALFONSO & CHRISTIAN WARD/ Letters by VC’S JOE SABINO/ Published by MARVEL COMICS

Review by ROY BUCKINGHAM

Back in the saddle as Thor once again, The Odinson picks up where a now resurrected (but still dealing with cancer) Jane Foster left off in the war between The Realms. This time, without his mighty Mjolnir, he journeys to find the items lost from Odin’s weapons vault, which were flung across all the worlds when Asgardia was blown up. Trying to improvise the best way he can, Thor finds this task not as easy as he might have wished.

Upon reading this relaunch issue, I could not help but be distracted by the artwork. It seemed like it was trying to affect the appearance of a stylish watercolor but only looked like a hot mess. It’s sad when Loki is holding up his hands while pleading for Thor stop beating him and it takes you a few moments to realize it is his hands and not an half eaten rack of spare ribs. As for the stories themselves, they were OK at best.

There was nothing in this issue that made me want to urgently run to the comic shop and get the next issue. However, the story teased for Thor #5 (yup, talk about a mega future tease) with what appears to be a Cyberpunk Mr Miyagi Wolverine may be interesting. We shall see…

 

Titans Special #1 Cover
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TITANS SPECIAL #1/ Story by DAN ABNETT/ Art by SERGIO DAVILA, VINCENTE CIFUENTES, BRENT PEEBLES, MATT SANTORELLI, BRIAN CHING, NICOLA SCOTT, MAX RAYNOR & BEN OLIVER/ Colors by LUIS GUERRERO, MARCELO MAIOLO, MICHAEL ATIYEH, JORDIE BELLAIRE, DINEI RIBEIRO & ROMULO FAJARDO JR./ Letters by DAVE SHARPE/ Published by DC COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

With the energies unleashed by The Source Wall awakening metagenes at random across the globe, a new rapid response team is needed to cope with the chaos. To that end, Nightwing proposes reforming The Titans as a special Justice League task force. The idea is met with approval, but can Nightwing recruit the team that he wants?

This issue is largely devoted to setting up the new Titans team, with relatively little action until the very end. While I’m apparently one of the few who enjoyed the previous Titans series and will miss many of the characters from it (especially Arsenal and Lilith), Dan Abnett does a fantastic job of establishing all of the characters for the benefit of new readers. He also explains many of the recent events they might be unaware of (such as Beast Boy’s inability to control his powers in the wake of No Justice) with a minimum of exposition.

Sadly, the artwork is all over the place, as one might expect from a special that features eight artists and six colorists! There’s very little sense of continuity to the art, with character heights and appearances seemingly changing at random. I specifically recall one artist who couldn’t keep Nightwing’s height the same relative to Raven from panel to panel. It’s worth suffering through this for Abnett’s story… but just barely.

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


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