Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Sorry for being behind on DCnU

I apologize for getting behind.  I have read the last two weeks and am gearing up to write comments on every single issue and collect them as I did before.  This will just take time on my part and the paying jobs come first.

I do hope to get Flashback Fridays and Mantra Mondays back on a schedule that is weekly.  I am still figuring out the tie that occurred on which old book series to look at as I collect the last issues.

On the positive note I did get many Mantra issues at the Hickory Comic Con.

BDS

Monday, September 26, 2011

DCnU: Character Reactions in Four

      Once the announcement of DC's new 52 was made the conventions became abuzz with rampant rumors and tales of disregard towards female fans.  The portrayal of women in comics heated up as teaser and cover images were released.  I feel the need to comment on the gut reactions I had to these latest images and characterizations of some of DC's wonderful females.


      My strongest reaction was to Starfire in Red Hood and the Outlaws.  Kori is still an alien powerhouse.  Her energy blasts were really impressive.  What was terrible was the way she has been reduced to an indifferent sexual creature.  I do not think her intelligence was lowered, just her judgment on sex.  It really bothers me.  There is zero emotion from her.  I have always thought of her as a caring being that had remained hopeful through the most terrible of ordeals.  Now she resembles some fan fiction female toy to be used for whatever task is required.


      Supergirl was really not much in terms of any character.  The drawn out power reveal just makes for a really flat opening.  I had included her in the retractable pants rant I made a few posts back.  It seems she does have pants, but the color is flesh-like.  Maybe a brighter shade that resembles gold would have been better.  It is too early to tell what her personality will be.  I am weary of Supergirl reboots, so I hope they at least run with this for a bit.


      Under the radar was Wonder Woman.  I had heard this was to be a horror book and wondered what that might mean for Diana.  Her standard costume form has survived.  The dismissing of the NBC TV series nixed the pants on her it would seem.  There is some flesh shown.  We have implied nudity.  What is neat is for once it makes sense and is down played.  Where she needed modesty she had it wrapping a sheet around her nude body.  Diana sleeps au natural it would appear. 


      The cool part is when she approaches her wardrobe to dress for action.  She lived on an island of women where the body held no shame.  It makes sense she would drop the sheet to get dressed not worrying whether the young woman in distress saw her.  Cliff Chaing to his credit did not over expose this scene, instead playing it subtle and making Wonder Woman sexier by not showing all the skin.


Catwoman In Disguise
      Catwoman had the most sexual and blatant use of the female form.  What is surprising is that it is very story relevant.  Selina has always been a flirt to both sexes and displayed the ability to use sex to shock.  The setting and criminal background lends itself to the use of Selina's body as distraction and tool for her work.  Even the shocking ending has its place in the Batman\Catwoman relationship.  This DCnU book is the only one where the sexuality used as plot device really is justified.  Hopefully this can be maintained as Catwoman is one character that is highly exploitable.


      There is justification for the complaints about the objectification of women.  Long has comics been aimed at hormonally challenged males and created by many frat boy wannabes.  Sex sells and comic covers and stories have taken advantage of that fact.  Still, in an age where more women are admitting to comic fandom and a quest for new readers is shouted from the rooftops, it makes little sense to not work to appeal to half the world's population.  Some hate that "fangirls attack" so often, but the question should be asked, are they justified?


BDS

Monday, September 19, 2011

Friday, September 16, 2011

Flashback Friday: Creeper #1,000,000 (Hillsville Buy)

Today I give you one of the weirdest of the One Million DC Comics I have collected.  I love these Fifth Week and gimmick comics that DC did during the 1990's.  I have a few of these One Million issues.  This year on the Labor Day Weekend trip to Hillsville, Virgina for the big Flea Market I picked up this comic.  I used to do a post theme called The Comicbook Rescue Project where many of the comics from Hillsville were listed.  I am toying with bringing that Project back someday.  If I were listing those purchases, Creeper #1,000,000 would be on the list.

What a strange story we have here.  My knowledge of The Creeper has always been just so-so.  I know he is a crazy type character that can be good or bad depending on the situation.  He is an unpredictable personality that a newsman called Jack Ryder plays host.  There is also some demonic elements involved as well.  In the future, The Creeper is the combination of all the thoughts every in the universe or something like that I think.  When the order of things are threatened then The Creeper manifests and sets things straight.

In accomplishing this current task The Creeper must time travel.  Sometimes these crossover events intrude on the story that is on going.  I sense that this time the main book used this story to advance the story that had been laid out for the current timeline.  The Current Creeper is separate from his host and seems that copies of The Creeper are roaming Gotham and each is a different type of sinful creature.  The Future Creeper starts hunting them down.  It looks like the job is to kill all Creepers, and Jack Ryder decides he likes the one he is dragging around.

The resolution has a fully powered Creeper once again jumping crazily into the fight against crime.  Future Creeper is holding one of the Creepers he captured.  Seems Future Creeper was both the cause and the solution.  Don't ask, temporal mechanics, just go along.  Thing is now this can't happen, because we all know the Flashpoint event closed off Time Travel.

Not the best I have read of the One Million books, but enjoyable.

BDS

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Retractable Pants: The (DC)New Fashion Rage

From one of those panels at one of those big Conventions I think Jim Lee was credited with a flippant remark about why Wonder Woman had pants and then did not have pants.  He said something about Retractable Pants.  Oh so hilarious Mr. Lee.  You are so funny.  You really told all those female fans.  Ha Ha.  Beside being dismissive of people that pay his salary.  Yes, we fans do pay you creators salaries.  We buy the product and that pays the bills.

I have been joking to myself about these retractable pants.  Now I think that they might just catch on.  Wonder Woman has always been a bit showy when it comes to those long and muscular legs.  She come from an Island of Women.  No shame in the Female body on Paradise Island.  That shame is an invention of Man's World.  Why wouldn't she be comfortable and wear what she wants.  What, you ask what happens when she needs a more formal look, well BAM!  Retractable Pants, for those time you need to be more formal.


Think about it.  The super gal is in a warmer climate and she can work on her tan while also being cooler.  Sexy bare legs would be a tactical advantage as a distraction.  Sometimes though we need to operate in colder climes.  So utilize those Retractable pants.  It is a genius costume design.  Brilliant.  Why, the fellows ought to try this out as well.  Why should the gals get the benefit of Retractable Pants?

I thought when the redesigns came around Supergirl was to have pants this time.  No more of the small skirt showing little panty shots.  She was going to be this tough looking fully covered teen heroine.  But, that had to be before Mr. Jim Lee and the DCnU costumers thought up Retractable Pants.  Now it looks like she has chosen to retract those pants and show some leg, even in snow.


Yes, this is just a snarky post.  I have thought a bunch about the way DC tries to be all about the female while trying to be like their competition and act like frat boys slobbering over a Maxim Magazine.  I look at the pics and stuff coming out and I saw Kara without pants.  So either she needed to be sexier, or it is Retractable Pants.

BDS

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

DC Blog teases Batgirl in Birds of Prey

So the DC Blog has a tease about a status quo altering scene in Birds of Prey #4.  I get tickled by these.  Most of you that follow know I love to give guesses.  Sometimes they are ridiculous, and sometimes close to reality.  Is Babs wearing Stephanie's costume?  That stinks.  Here is the post that accompanied this image.

Wednesday, September 14th, 2011
DC Comics – The New 52 and acclaimed writer Duane Swierczynski introduced a bold new take on the BIRDS OF PREY team dynamic – and in the fourth issue, a shocking revelation is going to upset the status quo all over again. Featuring a special guest appearance by Batgirl, the explosive issue’s going to rewrite the rules – so don’t get too comfortable, because anything can happen.
“One of my favorite thrillers is Ira Levin’s A KISS BEFORE DYING, because right in the middle of the novel…well, the cliche phrase would be, ‘Levin pulls the rug right out from under you,’ but that doesn’t do his legendary plot twist justice,” said Swierczynski. “Forget the rug being pulled out from under you… when you reach that point in KISS, it’s as if someone’s rolled up that rug and proceeded to use it to beat the living crap out of you. That’s what I’m shooting for with this first arc of BIRDS OF PREY. I won’t tell you where it is (other than somewhere in issue #4) But If I’m doing my job, you’ll be relaxing, enjoying your comic, and then…”
BIRDS OF PREY #4 goes on sale December 21, but we’ve got a first look at the cover by David Finch and Richard Friend.
 What is my guess?  I think they will reveal that Barbara is either a lesbian or bisexual.  She will be in bed with a Bird.  That is my ridiculous guess and if it is close I will do a Homer Simpson D'OH and slap my forehead.


BDS

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Warehouse 13 #1

People probably think the only books to come out right now are DC's New 52.  It is genius in a marketing sense to have the dominating releases of an entire month.  it has opened up a few possibilities for me.  I have paid for the month in advance and I can try out a few books because I have the cash to check them out.  One of those books is Warehouse 13.

I almost missed the fact that this book was coming out.  I think I saw it online somewhere in a mention of new releases that people do.  I asked for it to be placed on the old pull list and had it there when I had the big stack of DCnU.  I love the show.  I have to watch it on Hulu.com because we do not have cable or satellite.  Getting a comic was just a nice surprise.

Sadly, this is not a comic with any wow factor.  If you want a story like the show, then you will be happy.  There is a good use of the medium by having and artifact that can earthquake an entire city out of existence.  It is an international tale that is worthy of the original format.  Plus Pete talks Myka into a teeny tiny Carnivale costume.  To be fair, he runs around with his shirt off and Myka looks like Myka still, no breast enlargement for the sake of sales.  Really the scenes with her in them dressed like this are muted.  She was being encouraged to sidle up to the suspect and try to get his attention with her feminine wiles.  Could have been played for some humor, but that missed that chance.

I am not giving up, but with the cost of comicbooks, they had better get a bit better than just good real fast.  It is a good story and a understated first issue.

BDS

Friday, September 9, 2011

DCnU or The New 52: The first two weeks

     I have written comments on 15 comicbooks.  Each is in a separate post on the Blog and all are part of DC Comics' New 52.  I got my books Thursday and slowly read them.  I began Friday morning compiling the comments.  Some books have very indepth looks.  Others are short and sweet.  I didn't see a need to try and drone on about books that didn't thrill me.  Others just had too much that needed to stay vague for the book's integrity.  I do not believe I have spoiled anything, but just in case, I apologize.

     Here are the links to the individual posts on the Blog.  Would be really nice if there were some comments on some of the books if others have an opinion as well.  Some of you probably disagree with my likes and dislikes.  I have a different take on a few books compared to others on the Interwebs.

BDS









DCnU: Detective Comics #1


            Tony Daniel has been another writer that has been given a hard time for being named a writer on the New 52.  I have read some of his early stuff and some of his DC stuff and always liked it well enough.  I guess I go in without the preconceived notion that his writing will be bad here.  I thought he did a great job of portraying the Joker.  He laid out the connection with Batman for this story by having Batman describe the Joker in an analytical way.  He also nails Batman as being torn when he has to let the creepy clown prince get away because a little girl needs him.

            This is still like the Justice League in terms of batman and the police.  We have an alliance with Commissioner Gordon, but it feels raw and new.  The comfort that was built up over the years has been stripped away and Daniel did a great job in making this transition.  This is just a great Batman issue.  I think Daniel has a chance to make his mark on the character.

            There is also one of those “last pages” I have been droning on about.  It is befitting of the Joker.  Makes one curious as to just what is really going on.  You get that idea the entire way through the book.  Some clue is still missing.  Batman and the reader are not yet privy to the entire picture.  This is a good read and really starts the Batman family off strong in the DCnU.

BDS

DCnU: Batwing #1


            I had heard about this Batman Incorporated character.  I was not looking forward to the book because I have a zero track record with reading Judd Winick.  I have nothing against the guy, his writing is good, it just never captures my imagination enough to stay with his stories.  So how did he do on Batwing?  I say he has a strong start here.  The story is different and the setting is out of most readers comfort zone.  This was not an easy task either.  We are asking Winick to create a Batman for Africa.  Use the skeleton of batman and layer the cultural and essence of the African continent.  I think he did OK with this first issue.

            The people are not seen one dimensionally.  The police in the book resembles what an African Nation might have as a security force.  The corruption is true to form as well.  We have super villains that are credible to the real life evil that part of our world deals with daily.  It all works in this first issue.  The trick will be for Winick to continue to build upon this foundation.

            We get another strong last page from Batwing #1.  It really makes you question what can happen in issue #2 after you see it.  Very disturbing in a way that feels real.  Batwing is worth a look.

BDS

DCnU: Green Arrow #1


            So Justin Hartley got a comicbook based on his role of Oliver Queen on Smallville.  Not really, but I did look to see if Chloe Sullivan was anywhere in the book.  Really, I have heard some talk here and there about the age regression for Green Arrow.  It means no Conner Hawke I guess, well, at least not as any type of grown up.  I mean Conner could be a baby out there somewhere.  Others bemoan the loss of the older and grizzled JLA member.  One thing about this book, the age thing works in this opening story.

            Ollie is a young man that is balancing a corporate legacy while on a quest to put down punks that harm people.  I like the quest aspect for this archer.  He has a decidedly non-Batman feel to him as we see his story unfold.  The fight scene was awesome and had some crazy opponents.  It just really resonated with me on some levels.  Made me think of my Halloween costume from last year and the possibility of working on sharpening it up for HeroesCon.

            This is a different Green Lantern for most people.  I am old, but still not really old enough for all those classic Green arrow stories.  This could be one of the sleeper successes of the DCnU.  I will have to say that it is on my possible pull list with a strong lead on the other possibles.  I want to see where this story is going.

BDS

DCnU: Stormwatch #1


            I guess if the idea is to have a confusing and shadowy start to Stormwatch, then Paul Cornell succeeded.  I just got lost in this mess of an opening.  There is apparently a big horn, which gives us the campiest line I have read in a comicbook in a long time.  The characters seem to not really exists in the DCnU the way they present things.  I am not well versed in the backgrounds of these characters and received little info about them here.  Martian Manhunter is unrecognizable to me and I just really think this is a book I will not be reading.  The only cool thing was the creature that is in the moon.  This book will tie directly into the mystery woman's warning from Flashpoint #5 about some gigantic menace coming to Earth.  Otherwise I take a pass.

BDS

DCnU: Animal Man #1


            A creepy story with some nice artwork.  I like how Buddy Baker's wife Ellen is drawn.  I did not care for the book itself.  It just doesn't catch me and keep me.  I guess I just am not into this type of superhero story.  It was well written and very clear in what kind of book it is and where they are going with the story.  I did get an idea of who Animal Man is in some sense, but really, if I am a new reader I would have no idea what his powers are and why that relates to what his daughter does at the end of the book.  Again we have a big last page tease for next issue.  Not one I am going forward with in my pull box.

BDS

DCnU: Static Shock #1


            The Milestone section of the DCnU is without the city of Dakota.  I have always been curious about the Milestone comics and may try to gather some back issues one day.  My introduction to the Milestone Universe was through the Static Shock  cartoon.  Guess the title is an attempt to atract that generation of kids that grew up with the WB's version of Virgil.

            I like this book.  I am going to have to think hard about whether to add this book to my pull list.  Scott McDaniel has done a terrific job of writing a compelling start to this New 52 title.  Like many of the DCnU we are given a shocking (tee hee) last page.  It is totally disarming to see how this book ends. 

            I like the new Static.  A character from the same Universe has outfitted him with some new tech.  Hardware is his mentor.  This could have some cool potential.  The two are keeping an eye on S.T.A.R. Labs for some reason.  This will replace the dealing with others that are new with powers like Virgil use to deal with in Dakota.  I expect more technology in the baddies that Static faces.

            The entire book is just sharp and the color pops off the pages.  This is what one wants from their comicbooks.  It is eye catching and has style all its own.  Hopefully this will be a good tribute to the man that created Static and allow for some healing over how DC handled his death.

BDS

DCnU: Hawk & Dove #1


            Sterling Gates has done a great job.  The rage of Hawk is well done.  He is still a jerk, but we can see it comes from the pain of missing his brother.  Dawn rocks as a Dove with an attitude.  There is a great zombie horde and an unique terrorist threatening Washington D.C.  The action in the opening is funny and tense.  I like the way Hawk and Dove do not work together.

            A hint as to why these two are paired up now is given.  Dawn is still dating Boston Brand.  That is either the creepiest thing imagined or oddly romantic.  I am sure the Internet fanfiction groups are having a good time with this idea.  I think Hawk could be a little jealous of this relationship.

            There is a great deal going on in these 22 pages.  It is a great start with interpersonal relationships between all the characters.  Introduction of  supporting cast was smoothly done and this is just a wonderful story.  What amazed me is that the art didn't bother me.  I am not a Liefeld fan.  It is not that I dislike his art as much as it just doesn't inspire me like others in the profession.  The success here is that the art didn't detract from the story.

            This is a maybe for my pull list.

BDS

DCnU: Justice League International #1


            What an odd book.  I really am unclear how to categorize it.  Is it a Checkmate type United Nations intrigue book?  Maybe it is a Spares & Pairs superhero team.  It has so much going on in this first issue that it was really hard to love it at all.  I do like that the August General in Iron is in this book.  The characters are neat.  Was Godiva around before Flashpoint?  If not she is here now.  Booster Gold is interesting as a leader who could be great.

            I sure hope Guy Gardener is not exclusive to this title.  I will miss him if he is.  I do not plan on getting the next issue.  It just didn't do anything to make me want to read more.  I know this one is short, but really I have little to say about Justice League International.

BDS

DCnU: Men Of War #1


            The first to be canceled of the first week of September's offerings.  Sorry, that is how I feel.  I know there are fans of War Stories, but this really is not a war related comic.  They are suppose to be soldiers fighting super beings.  I got that from the online description.  Here I see a long and drawn out berating of a not yet Sargent Rock and the forming of some special forces group.  What I do not see is a way to connect to a broad readership.  The fan base is thin here and it is just a bland book.  I didn't even feel like reading the back up story.  For $3.99 and a new #1 in a company wide relaunch of the brand this was a poor showing.

BDS

DCnU: Batgirl #1


            I will probably have my Gail Simone fan club membership revoked after this discussion.  It really is not her fault.  She does a great job with this changed history.  It makes sense.  What hurts my ability to connect is that I have such a long association with Barbara Gordon as Oracle that I just can't go with Simone on this journey.  I am debating whether to drop the title before the second issue.  I can't believe I liked OMAC better than Batgirl by Gail Simone.

            OK, time to be above the emotional reaction.  For a new reader who has no connection to DC history this is a well done comicbook.  Simone hits all the right buttons and provides her excellent dialogue.  Having a cheerful new roommate will be interesting for Barbara.  It was cool she did a nod to the wheelchair and disabled community with the scene about the wheelchair lift and Batgirl commenting on her upper arm strength.  Still, it is not as powerful as a woman in a wheelchair finding ways to overcome her mobility issues and being smarter and able to still physically defend herself.

            The post traumatic stress issues will be a great plot device.  Her seeing the Joker every time a crook points a gun at her makes sense.  Also ramps up the tension if and when the Joker shows up in the series.  Will she even realize it is the real Joker?  Simone has done everything she needs to do for the casual and new reader.  Long timers will have a harder time accepting Batgirl.  DC will back this decision to the hilt.  I can see many confrontations at Conventions over this change.  It was the biggest controversy when the DCnU was announced and I see no change in that fact going forward.

BDS

DCnU: Swamp Thing #1


            My Swamp Thing knowledge comes from the campy movies.  I never read all these classic tales that I hear about, but I kind of understand what the character has been.  This is not a book I will really follow beyond this issue.  It is not my type of comicbook.  What I do know is that this is a tight and well written story.  We get a good start for the new path of Swamp Thing and Alec Holland.

            Having Superman seek him out was really interesting.  It made sense and it gave us a glimpse of where Alec Holland is mentally.  This is a man that was never Swamp Thing, he was resting in peace and suddenly he is alive again and he is burdened with the memories of this being that walked the Green.  It is a nice approach.  I am reminded of how they brought Buffy Summers back when Buff TVS moved to UPN.  At one point she exclaims that she has happy and at peace in a wonderful place of light and love.  This can be a powerful plot idea they have created for Alec Holland.

            Horror and Creepy Story fans should check Swamp Thing out.  It has the creep factor nailed as the twisted heads and disturbed bones of an archeological site show us.  Bad things are happening and soon Alec Holland will have to decide whether to accept his other side or be haunted by the screams of the Green.  We have another great last page from the #1's in this issue.  Folks that like this type of comic have a hook to ask them to buy issue #2.

BDS

DCnU: OMAC #1


            I will be one of the lone voices out there to say this I think, Dan Didio did a great job on this first issue.  Many people love to hate on the bombastic executive of DC Comics.  I might not agree with his decisions and all his comments, but I can say that watching and interacting with him at Heroes convention that he loves comics and is like us in terms of that love.  Us being those that love stories and know the way we feel when we read a great comic book.  OMAC was a book I was not looking forward to at all.  Now I am considering it for my pull list.

            The story is very different from the other stable of books from the first week of September.  We never see the main character in his secret guise until the very end of the story.  OMAC could become a Hulk-like character.  I see it as an engine of destruction character.  What is different is the controlling mechanical voice that really is driving the story.  I should have known what it was, but I didn't connect it because I was so into the plot. 

            This was a very Jack Kirby styled issue.  The scene where the lady opens her mouth and weird cannons start shooting mad me think Scott Koblish and company had traveled back to the early days of comics.  The way that art melds with a modern technology for comics looks awesome.  The electric arcs around the Mohawk are a great aesthetic for the visual presentation.

            All in all this could be a sleeper in my opinion.  The next three to five issues will be crucial.  Who knows, Didio might win over some of his detractors by the end of the third issue.

BDS

DCnU: Action Comics #1


            Is it Action Comics or is it Superman Action Comics #1?  No matter what it is called, it is written by Grant Morrison.  All the long timers wondered which Morrison we were getting.  He is such a genius that you know it will be astounding.  What we didn't know was whether it would be his over our heads cosmic conscious expanding writing or a more down to earth straight forward tale?  Morrison gave us a very accessible story of a Superman that is not so super yet.  He does it very well.  This is what DC needed from him as they are trying to court “new” readers. 

            This is a Superman that is not catching the bullets bouncing off of him.  It is a hero being hounded by what looks to be corrupt cops, military, and corporate interests.  I like that Morrison has brought back the people's hero concept.  Two comicbook characters should be the people's protectors, Captain America and Superman.  Morrison reminds the long timers of this while explaining it to a group of readers that live in a world where we are told not to worry about the poor and struggling.  Having Lex Luthor contrasted as a cold-hearted corporate shark is what we also needed.

            You have to read this issue to really enjoy it.  I do hope that issue #2 drops down from $3.99.  I would add it to my pull list if it does.  I will look to the trade if it does not.  My pal from PBR days rich had it right.  That last page is just so amazing.  It hooks you.  We know that Superman goes on, but wow what he endures in that page makes you wonder why he would.  One quick mention of Rags Morales and the art.  Very well matched.  This is a great team and I hope they can stay matched up for a long time in the run of Action Comics. 

            Action Comics is one of the new issues that worked in this glut of #1's  Worth the $3.99 to check it out. 

BDS

DCnU: Justice League #1


            While not necessarily worth $3.99, it is an enjoyable story.  Batman is like he should be in terms of the character skeleton.  The world being against heroes has been done before and strikes against the core of what the DCU has been for decades.  Makes sense as we are now in a generation of writers that came up under the Marvel style of stories.  Many have decried the fact that we have not gotten the entire team displayed.  Get over it.  This is a story.  It has a beginning, middle, and end.  This is what Geoff Johns brings to the table.  He crafts a tale and you get what should be there when reading.

            Jim Lee did what we figured he would do, incredible art.  This was a pretty book to look at when you read it.  Green Lantern was very cool looking and as for the constructs, wow.  So that is what we knew would be.  The big question is whether Lee can deliver each month.  Can he keep the schedule running.  If this book become late, it will not matter that it is not in line with the present in terms of timeline.  It will be another slap in readers faces, and new readers that might have come along will not be as forgiving as us long timers.  This is the age of instant gratification.  When a podcast begins not having content in a timely manner, you drop it.  If DC can not deliver books each month as promised they run the risk of alienating that small group this reboot was aimed at in the first place.

            Last thing is the last image we are left with, Superman.  What was he thinking?  Aquaman should not look cooler than Superman.  OK, that was just a bit tongue and cheek, but come on, that costume is not very stylish.  Maybe Supes should have retractable pants like Wonder Woman is suppose to have.  It could be the face Lee draws.  There is an arrogance there that just doesn't fit for me.  His costume is not that defined, maybe that will be the argument.  I dislike the arm-guards  Why would an invulnerable being need arm guards?  Now the thing is I kind of like the look in Swamp Thing.  Yanick Paquette has taken Lee's design and somehow made it work.  Still hate the arm-guards, but Paquette does a better job with this awful look.

BDS

DCnU: Flashpoint #5


            I must disclose at the beginning of this discussion that I have not read the first four issues of Flashpoint.  In fact the only Flashpoint series I have read were Canterbury Cricket (enjoyable) and Grodd of War (very lackluster).  So why did I buy this issue?  Simple, every review I read online stated how this story did lead directly into the DCnU.  It does very well as a “one shot” for me.  I knew enough to get the tension in the action.  Professor Zoom did a great job of stating why was going on concerning the temporal mechanics of the event.  I have been reminded of  Chief O'Brian's dislike of temporal mechanics as this and the DCnU has progressed.

            There is a very interesting parallel I felt as I finished reading the issue that I will share soon.  What is interesting is that we have Barry Allen (who has an awesome first name by the way) facing the ramifications of his actions.  To me this is a powerful motivator.  As someone who is in the club of “Those who have lost a Mother” I get his pain and desire to save her.  Who wouldn't do this if they could go back in time?  It makes a heavy statement when Zoom tells Barry that he is the villain 

            Seeing Thomas Wayne dispatch Zoom was a very graphic scene.  It did solve the fact that Zoom was now out of time.  He was so cute pontificating on how he could now kill Barry without their being a consequence for him in the future.  A sword through the chest kind of stops that bragging cold.  All around we see familiar heroes and villains dying and fighting.  Wayne is zapped by The Enchantress, she in turn is stomped on and splatted by Superman, and all the other chaos is astounding.  It is in this mess that Barry does what the Flash is good at, he runs.

            Now we come to my epiphany.  The DCnU is the DC Comics Brand New Day.  Instead of using one character to change like Marvel did with Spider-Man, DC has made the change affect the entire DC Universe.  The one thing that is very different here in this version of Brand new Day is that Barry acts in character.  Whereas Spidey choose a path that Aunt May would have slapped him for as being unlike the child she raised, Barry chooses to do what makes his mother proud of him.  Their discussion of him stopping himself from saving her is very emotional.  Her asking how many people are killed because she lived makes it all the more heart wrenching.  She is making the heroic sacrifice we know her son has made time and time again.  He honors her with his actions.  This is how you do this story Marvel, e'nuff said.

            Part of me sees an out for DC with the line reboot.  This mystery lady that is the cause of the DCU, Wildstorm, and Milestone continuities to coalesce into what we have come to call the DCnU.  Some big threat that needs this reality to fight it is a common and neat plot idea.  Still, if the whole thing blows up in the faces of the executives, they have a way to bring back a close status quo.  We never will have a complete return after this reboot.

            So I liked this issue.  The DCnU makes sense in more ways to me right now.  Whether it was the correct move only time will tell.  I encourage those that are jumping on or old readers who want to connect their continuity knowledge should buy this one issue of Flashpoint.  It will help make the DCnU clearer.

BDS