Thursday, November 18, 2004

Quick Alt-DCU Comic Reviews

Superman/Batman; Teen Titans; JLA

Three comics out this week, each featuring an alternate version of the DCU, all designed to appeal to a long-time DC Comics fanboy such as myself. Each even ends similarly, with a full-page splash revealing surprise characters. It's a super-hero geek-o-rama!

Superman/Batman #14
by Jeph Loeb, Carlos Pacheco & Jesús Merino
So, how big of a comic geek am I that I recognized immediately who the forces behind this alternate reality were? Loeb's captions are still in abundance, though at least at times they're actually narrating story & background information instead of just prattling on. Like the stories in this title that preceded it, I'm sure that "Absolute Power," an alternate reality tale wherein Superman & Batman have taken on the role of world dictators, will fall apart if looked at too carefully, but will be a fun ride if we all just go along with it. Those who disliked Turner's art on the previous story (which seems at times to be every single pundit on the Net, although it sold tons of copies to presumed Turner fans) will appreciate Pacheco's art, which is still dynamic but without many of Turner's tendencies to, um, exaggeration.
Rating: 3 (of 5)

Teen Titans #18
by Geoff Johns, Mike McKone & Marlo Alquiza
We learn more about the world of ten-years-hence and some about how the Titans grew so dark, especially Tim/Batman. (Hmmm, wouldn't Bats have wanted to show Robin his father's grave along with all of the others?) This is another of those 'don't think about it too hard' stories, but it still has me interested and wondering how it's going to get wrapped up in just one more issue.
Rating: 3 (of 5)

JLA #108
by Kurt Busiek, Ron Garney & Dan Green
Then opening part of this book, where we get a good look at the Crime Syndicate's world and what makes it tick, is interesting; but the later part, page after page of boring politics on Qward, could and should have been shortened. Thankfully the CSA show up to raise a little Cain (in a wonderful full-page splash with maniacal laughter, exploding sound effects, and the dude in the bottom corner looking back at the reader--it's just like the old days!), and then some kind of cosmic reset button gets pushed and we end up with a slightly different CSA. I don't recall when exactly I encountered the Crime Syndicate--it may have been in DC Comics Presents Annual #1, with the Earth-1 & Earth-2 Supermen teaming up with Earth-3's Alexander Luthor to defeat Ultraman, but maybe it was in an earlier comic. Anyway, it's always fun to see them again, and Busiek's story looks like it won't disappoint.
Rating: 3 (of 5)

No comments: