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   Captain America And The Secret Avengers One Shot,4/26/2011 2:21:15 PM
The book is a fun read. The characters as written by DeConnick are enjoyable and likeable. The pacing is a little off but the art of Tocchini is lively and fun to look at. The book is a good way to read more about two characters who usually share their comic book time with at least eight other super heroes.
   Takio HC,4/26/2011 2:22:44 PM
This is a comic book suitable to all ages. Younger readers in particular will gravitate to this story as the characters are relatable and could be one of their classmates. What is not to like about super heroes who can only stop the bad guys until dinner time. The witty, believable dialogue and the lively and fun art really make this an enjoyable read.
   Amazing Spider-Man Vol 2 #656 Cover A 1st Ptg Regular Marcos Martin Cover (Spider-Man Big Time Tie-In),4/26/2011 2:25:47 PM
Spider-Man’s credo is that with great power comes great responsibility. A lesson he learned at an early age due to his failure to act. ‘Amazing Spider-Man’ issue #656 asks what if acting is not enough. Recently Spider-Man failed to save the life of Marla Jameson the wife of long time Spider-Man tormenter J. Jonah Jameson. After this loss and still holding the guilt for the lives he was not able to save Spider-Man comes to the conclusion he has to do more. Written by Dan Slott with art by Marcos Martin, ‘Amazing Spider-Man’ #656 has Spider-Man make a promise that no one else will die. Still reeling from grief and dealing with the loss of his fabled spider-sense Spider-Man must use his brain to start outthinking the bad guys. His brawn, agility, and speed will not be enough to get the job done. His smarts take center stage as he designs a new costume with new tools to help him in his crusade. Slott provides an excellent story for readers to get a look inside Spider-Man’s head. His words convey the grief the character feels over the recent death he could not prevent and the overcompensation in living up to his new ‘no one dies’ motto. Spider-Man has to learn to fight smarter not harder and Slott does not make this easy for the hero. Martin is a stellar artist who shines by using a seemingly simplistic style of art. Shedding the over used modern coloring effects Martin’s art shines on each page clearly with emotion and detail shining through each panel.
   Time Masters Vanishing Point TP,5/3/2011 12:37:39 PM
Time Masters: Vanishing Point continues the story of Booster Gold and his partner Rip Hunter from the Booster Gold series produced by DC Comics. Booster and Rip are time cops making sure that time progresses as it always has. There are villains who wish to go back in time and alter events to suit them. Booster and Rip must prevent this. Jurgens uses some nice story telling techniques to go in depth on the characters of Booster Gold and Rip Hunter. The interactions the two heroes have throughout the story with Superman and Green Lantern help to tell who these characters are. Booster is defined by his aloofness. He must present the act of a media crazed, bumbling fool to continue as the greatest hero the world has never known. If his enemies knew what he was really up to they would stop at nothing to finish him off. This is not always easy for Booster to take and Jurgens conveys this throughout the story. Rip Hunter on the other hand is more of a mystery. Jurgens frames every story in this collection with a look at a young Rip as he grows and learns the dangers that come as a protector of the time stream. This method that Jurgens uses allows the reader to get more from the story not only of its central character but also of how the events of his youth are shaping his present. The art that Jurgens provides with his inker Norm Rapamund is outstanding. A throwback to the more classic art of the 1990s, the pencil work is clean.
   Legion Of Super-Heroes The Choice HC,5/17/2011 3:54:06 PM
DC Comics reintroduces the premiere team of the 31st century in Legion of Super-Heroes: The Choice which collects the first six issues of the new ongoing series. Paul Levitz the long time writer of the Legion of Super-Heroes returns to his roots with this stunning relaunch of the long running super hero team and there is no shortage of action. With a cast of hundreds Levitz tells an intricate story about the Legion with plots that weave in and out of one another. The peril for the Legion has never been greater. At home they are dealing with xenophobic response and hatred from the people of Earth against anyone who is not from Earth. This means many on Earth detest the majority of Legion members. While the peace at home is strained the Legion must also deal with the destruction of a planet, the kidnapping of the children of a prominent Legion couple, an old enemy’s return, the return of the green lanterns and a hidden danger that lurks in the guise of an alien-people they believe to be their friends. With a cast too numerous to count and a continuity so heavy it usually turns new readers off, Levitz manages to craft a story that is not only satisfying to long time readers but also manages to introduce the comic to a whole new audience. Each chapter contains small introductions to each member as they appear in the story. We learn their name, true identity, home world and powers. It is the next best thing to keeping a scorecard.
   Star Wars Jedi The Dark Side #1 Regular Mahmud Asrar Cover,6/1/2011 7:59:00 PM
Issue one is the set-up issue for the series. War has erupted on a planet that once was strong with the dark side of the Force. Qui-Gon Jinn and three other Jedi are sent to investigate. Each member of the Jedi has different issues to deal with. Doubt, love, fear, dedication, loyalty all raise questions about the effectiveness of this collection of Jedi. Qui-Gon Jinn is trying to determine why this group was put together when they are attacked and brought into the conflict they were sent to mediate. The story is rewarding. The characters are introduced over the first issue in different ways that shine light into their personalities. The story is not slowed by heavy prose or exposition to explain the what is happening. Each detail is given in a manner that moves the plot forward while still enriching the characters. The art of Asrar is very nice. It tells the story in pictures where dialogue is not necessary. The action scenes are dynamic while the quieter scenes still pack their punch. He introduces a new character to the mythos in Jedi Master Tahl who is beautiful but in her alien way.
   New Mutants Classic Vol 5 TP,6/1/2011 8:00:06 PM
This collection of comic books originally published in 1985 and 1986 looks closely at who the New Mutants are. They deal with issues that affect many teenagers but in extraordinary ways. Issues of weight, self-doubt, uncontrollable emotions of love and fear and most of all acceptance. The authors place the characters in outlandish situations such as having the team of young heroes travel to Asgard, home of the Norse-Mythological-Gods, where they encounter different races of god-like beings. They struggle with how they are welcomed by the people of this fantasy world and then have to deal with why they cannot stay. The story inevitably returns the characters to Earth but they are left to wonder what might have been. On Earth they are outcasts because of their mutant abilities, but Asgard offered them a place where they could be themselves. The friendship of the characters is explored and tested through the various adventures collected here. The art in this book begins with stunning art by Arthur Adams who draws the Asgard adventure in the collection. The detail on each page is incredible and tells a story that flows from panel to panel. After the first adventure the consistency of the art diminishes as the art duties are passed between several different artists that keep the book from having a cohesive look throughout.
   Planet Of The Apes Vol 3 #1 2nd Ptg,6/6/2011 2:56:38 PM
Daryl Gregory writes a story which has the foundation for an entire world of stories that has previously gone unexplored. He introduces new characters to the mythos and adds gravitas to their struggles. The peaceful nature of the apes is highlighted by the near-barbaric and quick tempered actions of the humans. Subtle clues are dropped as to how the world turned into a planet ruled by the apes, but it is not as important as the story that takes shape. The art of Carlos Magno is beautiful. His depiction of the societies of the apes and the humans shows the contrasts between their lives. While the humans are surrounded by misery, squalor and overcrowding, the apes are living in lush and spacious palaces. He makes the illustration of the emotions of the characters look effortless. If he is showing misery, anger, sadness or sarcasm Magno relates it through the characters which complements the words on the page seamlessly. The world comes to life through his art and becomes an important part of the story.
   Mister Terrific #1 Cover A 1st Ptg,11/8/2011 1:04:44 PM
Mr. Terrific holds more degrees than the faculties of Harvard and Yale combined, has won Olympic gold and runs a billion dollar corporation. So what does the world’s third smartest man do? He fights the good fight as the hero who is all about fair play in Los Angeles. From the DC Comics New 52 comes the first comic book series starring Mr. Terrific. Issue #1 of Mr. Terrific is available now by writer Eric Wallace and artist Gianluca Gugliotta.From the T-Santuary, his headquarters, in the ninth dimension to perfecting infinite fractal mechanics, writer Eric Wallace firmly establishes Mr. Terrific as a man of science. All of Mr. Terrific’s cases can be solved simply by following the science behind the mystery. The dialogue is quick and sharp befitting the world’s third smartest man. The story is balanced well with an opening action sequence that has Mr. Terrific zooming over the streets of London battling an armored villain and with quiet scenes in Michael Holt’s home in Los Angeles and a fundraiser in Santa Barbara. Gianluca Gugliotta provides the stunning artwork of the first issue. To see Mr. Terrific in action is something to get excited about and Gugliotta makes Mr. Terrific’s aerial tactics jump off the page almost as if our hero is speed skating in the sky. The rendering of the science based T-Sanctuary is also done very well with Gugliotta keeping a cold feel to the base in character for Mr. Terrific.
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