Sunday, September 14, 2014

Young Justice Vol. 4: Invasion by Greg Weisman

Young Justice Vol. 4: Invasion by Greg Weisman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Justice League: Young Justice

My least favourite of all the Young Justice series. It is good but just didn't live up to the build-up of the first three. This book takes place five years later, though we have infrequent flashbacks to approximately the time period we left off with volume three on what is now Dick Grayson's 14th birthday. This is a major team-up volume and if you like lots of superheroes in one book you are in for a treat! First of all the Young Justice team has now expanded, five years down the road, minus a couple of the old team. Plus the book includes many, many, many appearances by major and mostly minor Justice League members. As for plot, what we basically have here is a re-imagining of the Braniac storyline where he first comes to shrink Metropolis to add to his collection. No one knows who he is and all the superheroes work together to figure out what is going on and stop him. To make matters worse at the same time a new character, (created for this series I think) Kylstar, is also on the scene. He's kidnapped the Justice League's most powerful members and intends to keep them as "weapons". Are the two aliens working together? I loved Kylstar, he's a cool new anti-villain. It was fun having Captain Marvel play such a prominent role. However, Young Justice just wasn't the same; too much was going on to really care about the new members or get to know them so they just weren't the lovable team I'd come to, well ... love. I did however like the background story of Nightwing and Batgirl's blossoming relationship, as I am a big fan of that couple. But what I most of all missed was "What happened in the missing five years?" Somebody has to write a series filling in the missing years!!! It's possible to just read the first three volumes and be sad the series ended when it did as this doesn't give any feeling of satisfaction on that count. This volume could also be read as a standalone.

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Captain Atom (The New 52), Vol. 1: Evolution by J.T. Krul

Captain Atom (The New 52), Vol. 1: Evolution by J.T. Krul
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

New 52

A so-so introduction to the New 52 Captain Atom. The story deals with a few issues but really doesn't have a major plot line. Basically, this is an introduction to Atom, not exactly a complete origin story, though throughout we're given enough info to piece together a good idea of his past. Atom is completely unstable at this point and is doing a lot of soul searching as he tries to understand what he is, the book get's a bit science-y as Atom tries to understand his new nuclear self and of what exactly he is capable. The second half of the book is better as Atom has a team-up with Flash in a brief cameo and Atom ends up battling a monster by book's end. But still through the second half Atom starts to contend with whether he is more weapon or bringer of justice and healing. He also learns he may have to except a solitary life. Not exactly a thrilling story, rather ho-hum, but an introduction that gives a deeper understanding of a superhero who pops up here and there in the New 52 Universe. There is a sequel to this which I will read but wouldn't run out and buy. New 52 readers could easily skip this one, unless you are a completist. (like me, LOL!)

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Static Shock (New 52) Vol. 1: Supercharged by Scott McDaniel

Static Shock (New 52) Vol. 1: Supercharged by Scott McDaniel
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

New 52

Well, I've read a lot of The New 52 by this point and while some of them fall short of being good this is the first one I've read that was a total and utter dudd. Static was new to me; I'd never even heard of him, but I've had fun meeting plenty of new-to-me heroes through The New 52. Static was mostly a very boring story with new made up villains just for this series and it felt like it didn't even belong to the DC universe. There were no connections with anyone or anywhere else, except for two very slight insignificant items. I really had to force myself to continue reading this and finish it. Static is a pretty arrogant kid too, not very likable and I wasn't even partial to the art. You can skip this one and you'll miss out on nothing.

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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The Adventures of Super Diaper Baby by Dav Pilkey

The Adventures of Super Diaper Baby by Dav Pilkey
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The Adventures of Super Diaper Baby (1)

This was just absolutely hilarious! I loved it! Set up as one of the comics that George and Harold are always writing it starts off with the two of them getting in trouble with Mr. Krupp who assigns them an essay but tells them they cannot write one of their offensive Captain Underpants comics. Soooo, they invent a new superhero, Super Diaper Baby, and give a rollicking, laugh-out-loud comic. The whole book is written in graphic novel format and toilet humour abounds, much more so than in the Captain Underpants series, but that's ok. I thought it was plain silly and all in good fun. There are a couple of jokes that are there simply for the parent who will be reading this aloud that got a good guffaw from me. Captain Underpants fans will love this and now I'm off to read the sequel! Great fun read!

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Young Justice Vol. 3: Creature Features by Greg Weisman

Young Justice Vol. 3: Creature Features by Greg Weisman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Justice League series

OMG! This was absolutely fantastic! At some point during the publication of these issues the cartoon was cancelled but the comics continued for a while longer. We start off with a nice long story that takes place in Atlantis (minus Aquaman because he's busy with the JL) but everyone else you could almost imagine from Atlantis shows up with Ocean Master the villain, though no one knows his identity here. Only Aqualad, Superboy and Miss Martian are in the story so we next jump back a few days in time and visit our other heroes who are each out on a mission with their partner: Artemis & Green Arrow, Kid Flash & Flash and Robin & Batman each have separate crimes to solve which lead them and the 3 others to the same place where they find all are linked to the Kobra Cult for another good story. Finally the coup de grace is a gorilla story. It was with glee I realised we had three Gorilla villains in one story! Monsieur Mallah, Ultra-Humanite & Gorilla Grodd! But they weren't even the real bad guy! Great story, loved it. Then the book ends with one little panel that says 5 years later and Robin is Nightwing! OMG! I can't wait for the 4th and final volume of this series. An excellent series, suitable for all ages.

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Saturday, September 6, 2014

Young Justice Vol. 2: Training Day by Greg Weisman

Young Justice Vol. 2: Training Day by Greg Weisman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Justice League series

cellent! These volumes tie-in with the cartoon so I do feel like I'm missing out a little bit but still they are whole stories and becoming much more serious and intense. There are some inconsistencies with the main DC universe canon but that is the norm for these cartoons. A fantastic start with the introduction of Artemis and how she goes against her villainous parental heritage to become a hero, joining Young Justice under the guise of being Green Arrow's niece. I like her already! Then some serious stuff when Captain Atom is teaching them a course and decides to send them into the field on a cold case to solve what really happened to "Captain Nathaniel Adams". Then finally we have some Batman vs the al Ghuls and a unique take on Clayface's origin story with Young Justice battling the clay dude. This is a great kid's comic which should satisfy all ages.

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Young Justice Vol. 1 by Art Baltazar

Young Justice Vol. 1 by Art Baltazar
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Justice League series

I had previously read 2 issues of the comic and greatly enjoyed them so wanted to try the series proper as I'm a Justice League junkie. The JL pops up now and then as the guardians and bosses of Young Justice but mainly they stay out of the picture. This first volume starts off with friends Aqualad, Robin and Kid Flash having just rescued (let loose) Superboy from Cadmus where he was being made as an ultimate weapon. He and Miss Martian also come along and the five teenagers form a covert team that the JL will use on League cases where they think it will make a difference sending in the new YJ instead of themselves. First off Superboy has some time adjusting from the things done to his mind while at Cadmus and has a run in with the Joker (who is drawn like David Bowie from his Ziggy Stardust days. What a look!). Then Kid, Robin and Lad take off by themselves to try to figure out how to work as a team before the whole group training starts. Of course their egos get in the way until they can actually gather some effort to try teamwork. The last issue was great as it gives each character a chance to give themselves a background story as they all sit around a campfire and we learn which person each hero is and what their origin story is compared to DC Canon. Here Kid Flash is Wally West, Robin is Dick Grayson but he had more relatives die in the acrobat "accident" with one surviving in a coma. This is a great all ages kids' comic. Not just for little kids, aimed at older readers with the characters being mid aged teens 14-16, but the material is all ages safe and the story is exciting. It has continuity and a large cast of both heroes and villains. It does feel a bit like if I'd watched the show I'd have been a bit more clued in on things. I just had that feeling I had perhaps missed something and that may well have been something from the show. Otherwise, a top-notch comic for kids, but then that's what I've come to expect when I see Art Baltazar listed as an author!

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