Sunday, December 22, 2013

Dec 18 Comic Week in Review

Every week Pablo Gunner uses the little intelligence he has to muster up some written comic book reviews of the titles that he thinks his fellow nerds would want to know about most and the books that didn’t quite make it onto the Comicast.

DC Comics
HARLEY QUINN #1 $2.99
(W) Amanda Conner, Jimmy Palmiotti (A) Chad Hardin (CA) Amanda Conner
I had high hopes for this book. I really enjoyed the zero issue and had hoped this one was going to be a slightly toned down version of that, at least in some aspects. In the zero issue there was a lot of the breaking of the fourth wall. There was also a different artist about every page or two. I knew for a fact that going forth there was only going to be one artist for this title which was established at the end of #0. Despite there being a little too much breaking of the fourth wall in the zero issue I was looking forward to there being at least a little of it in this book. Unfortunately that wasn’t the case. There was no breaking of the fourth wall which was actually quite enjoyable in #0 and the character didn’t even seem like any Harley I have ever read or experienced. If I can think of any way to describe this character I would have to say that its DC’s version of a female Deadpool which was actually pretty lame. Instead of her having voice(s) in her head she has Two-Face looking gopher that she communicates with. The book starts with Harley Quinn barreling down the road with a huge load of crap on the back of a motorcycle. Right away I thought“,this is stupid but at least it looks great.” It was weird but it seems like this Harley is somewhat of an animal rights activist as she steals a wiener dog that was being dragged by its owner. She gets to her destination which happens to be Coney Island. Apparently she has apprehended some property there. She was given a building by one of her patients that recently passed so now she has tenants, taxes, and a floor all to herself. It was all a little much and too convenient. She is forced to get a job so that she can afford the place and the taxes for it so of course she goes back to practicing psychotherapy. It really made no sense to me as to why they are approaching this character in this way because there’s so many ways I could think of writing this character that would be way more interesting than this. It was an odd mixture of realism i.e. taxes and job hunting and ridiculous, over-the-top crap like having a talking gopher sidekick all the while being hunted by what I believe was a bounty hunter. I won’t deny that some of the art was just downright gorgeous but Harley’s size and proportions were somewhat inconsistent throughout the book. I barely noticed any remnants of the old Harley so if you’re an old school fan its very unlikely that you’ll enjoy this iteration. If you like the NEW52 Harley this might be worth checking out but I wouldn’t suggest this title to the hardcore Harley fans or anyone else for that matter.
Verdict: SKIM

VERTIGO
VERTIGO ESSENTIALS 100 BULLETS #1 $1.00
(W) Brian Azzarello (A) Eduardo Risso (CA) Dave Johnson
This book is weird, dark, seedy, and odd but it captured my attention and got my interest. The art and story telling style is very indie. The characters look semi-realistic. The art looks kind of faded. I got a strong ‘90s feel set in Compton or something. The main character in this story is approached by an old man. He tells her that he has a gun and 100 bullets that are completely untraceable, no matter who you use the bullets on the authorities will always come up short. The lady just got out of jail. He explains to her that the murder that was pinned on her and that the death of her boyfriend and child were actually the work of a couple of dirty cops. The old man provides her with the proof and a strong suggestion to use this gun and those bullets on them but no explanation as to why. She refuses to believe the old man but is convinced by the end of the issue after the dirty cops decide to give her a little visit now that she’s out of prison only to find the gun on her while they were molesting her. Oddly enough after they call it in, they are called off. Experiencing the evil of these men and the power that this gun had she reconsiders her position. It was at that point that I decided “, I can’t wait to see her take these fuckers out.” I want to know about the old man too. What are his motivations? Does he serve a higher power? These are all question I want answered, over time of course. Unlike many of these rereleased #1’s this one got me hooked for a second issue. I have no doubt it would be good in trade as well but I would like to read it in issues. Its weird too because I wasn’t too enthusiastic about the bleak, faded, dry art but in the end I realized that it just works.
Verdict: BUY


You can pick up these comics at Age Of ComicsKaboom Test Labs, or 




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