Sunday, September 18, 2011

DCnU Reviews, Week 2: Demon Knights; Frankenstein; Resurrection Man

(Back in June when the new DCU titles were announced, I ranked all 52 titles on my likelihood of buying them. Only fair then to look back and see if my initial assessments hold up. My plan is to review each of the new titles as they come out.)

Demon Knights #1
by Paul Cornell, Diogenes Neves & Oclair Albert

Original Rank/Assessment: 19 (Yes, with Reservations) - Again, not sure about the premise, but Paul Cornell hasn't let me down yet.

Set in medieval time, in the Dark Ages following the fall of Camelot, this is DC's medieval Justice League, featuring The Demon, Madame Xanadu, The Shining Knight, Vandal Savage, and others. This issue is the start of their origin, with the principles meeting in a bar brawl, which is such a cliché that it is humorous and an indication that thankfully this comic won't be taking itself too seriously. If I'm disappointed at all it is that Mme. Xanadu's character is not the same as in her recent Vertigo series, but this new version does have a level of snark that may grow on me. The art is clear and clean and it is surprisingly colorful. Not yet a must-read, but it is a good solid comic with the potential to be a lot of fun.

Rating: 3 (of 5).

Frankenstein, Agent of S.H.A.D.E. #1
by Jeff Lemire & Alberto Ponticelli

Original Rank/Assessment: 4 (Definitely Yes) - This looks to possibly be twenty pages of four-color awesome every month.

Frankenstein's monster leads a team of Creature Commandos based on old Hollywood movie monsters (vampire, mummy, werewolf, etc.) to fight the strange and unusual. Fun concept (if a bit reminiscent of Hellboy) and good execution. I like my comics full of crazy super science concepts and monsters fighting and this comic delivers the goods. I was unsure about Ponticelli's art at first as it doesn't quite fit with the super science stuff at the beginning, but when we got to Frankenstein and his crew laying the smackdown on the giant monsters invading a small town, I was completely sold; Ponticelli draws great monsters!

Rating: 3.5 (of 5).

Resurrection Man #1
by Dan Abnet, Andy Lanning, & Fernando Dagnino

Original Rank/Assessment: 35 (Maybe/Provisional) - I never really read this the first go-around, but the premise always struck me as interesting.

I still find the premise intriguing: Every time Mitch Shelley dies, he comes back to life with a different super power. As such, Mitch is a very reluctant hero, visited by a new compulsion when he is reborn with new powers. This new first issue introduces the title character and his situation and manages to get in some action as well, but I found Dagnino's art to be inconsistent and at times detrimental to good flow; there's a rushed feeling to the whole affair (maybe a separate inker would help?)

Rating: 2.5 (of 5).

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