Comic Wolf’s Pull Box Week of 7/11/18+

Hey y’all, as you may have noticed I didn’t publish last week. After making a joke about getting too many books, I only had one book last week. Therefore I decided to roll Justice League #3 into this week’s review and take the week off. Here we go for this installment!

Detective Comics #984

The line of cool introspective comics continues as Karma pushes the BatFam apart by targeting all of them separately. He has the power to read minds and uses it to great advantage, both determining Bruce’s identity and easily countering his surprise and strategy based fighting style. He appears to have some other tricks hidden in his magic or whatever helmet as well. It seems unfair to be putting Bruce through this much bullshit given what happened in his main book, but I’m curious to see how it plays out. Putting another rift in the family feels a bit like piling on. It’s also unclear how much this lines up with the main book, I have no fucking idea how that works. Regardless, Karma seems like a pretty rad villain and I want to see his motivations and see more about who he is and where the powerful helmet came from. There’s some dialogue from Bruce I really like toward the end, and I really like Black Lightning’s role in the story. Detective Comics is really fucking strong and I really hope it doesn’t get messed up by the big developments from Batman. Regardless, I’ll be sticking with it as we’re just under a year from DC #1000!

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Comic Wolf’s Pull Box Week of 6/20/18

Welcome back fellow nerds to another exciting round of comical books! It’s a light week this week, which is good because I have a lot going on with work stuff. The good news though is that despite being a slightly light week, it’s packed with some of my favorites (to be fair I did prune a lot of stuff off my list so it’s mostly favorites and things may be light for a while). Anyway, let’s jump in!

The Brave and the Bold #5

The penultimate issue of the Brave and the Bold miniseries! The mystery all comes together, setting up an action packed final issue. I have to say, I had a lot of fun guessing along with Diana and Bruce. It wasn’t quite formatted for you to try and draw your own conclusions along the way, but it did give you pieces slowly to try and guess. I did not get the right trail at all, I had no clue how this would turn out, but it’s still very satisfying. Dipping even further into Celtic myth is fine by me as well, with Balor of the Evil Eye solidifying as a villain and a massive battle beginning to take shape. More and more this series reminds me of Hellboy. Shame to see it end. Overall I still love this series and this issue was strong. Art remains excellent, although on some pages the font seemed weirdly too big and almost blurry. I need to investigate if it’s a print error in my copy or just weird formatting. Regardless, when the trade for this comes out down the line I strongly recommend grabbing it if you have an interest in mythological based superhero comics.

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Comic Wolf’s Pull Box Week of 6/13/18

If you’re reading this, I survived going through 3 weeks of comics last week without handing Getch my resignation! The show must go on, after all. Now that I’m nice and caught up (mostly) we can get back to the regular weekly schedule. This week has a bunch of #1’s, although I only picked up a couple. The stand out is of course Thor #1, with Odinson having regained the mantle after the bullshit end of The Mighty Thor. Let’s jump in!

Detective Comics #982

Dang what the fuck? The story arc is over for like 5 seconds and they throw in a weird one. The issue seems to be a one-shot dealing with a villain called Blackfire. Batman remarks that he’s never been sure if Blackfire is an actual ghost or a metahuman who believes himself to be one. He gains power from people believing in him, and he’s used the city’s homeless population to capture a child for an evil plot. Batman has to track down the kid, fighting through possessed homeless people and Blackfire’s evil influence on his own mind. It’s a super weird issue that has an almost Hellboy vibe to it. The art is appropriately dark and spooky, with nightmare creatures, ,hooded figures, and one very angry ghost/meta. It’s nice to see the short cases sometimes, since so often the story focuses on big world changing stuff. Batman saves people from smaller threats as well, and that’s reflected here. He wants to save a child’s life. Not the city, not the multiverse. Just a kid. That unwillingness to abandon anyone in need in Gotham that he can help is core to the character, and revisiting that in the wake of the drama within the Bat-family is sorely needed.

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Comic Wolf’s Pull Box Giant Size Special #2 Weeks of 5/23/18 – 6/7/18

Hey y’all! As you might have noticed, Skill Floor content has been a little lighter than usual. Our fearless leader editing bitch Getch came to our humble coast for a wedding that tied up myself, Rosa, and him. We’re in the process of getting back into the flow, and what better way to do that than to try and jam like a thousand fucking comics into one review? We’ve got all kinds of stuff, from the launch of an all new Justice League, to the continuation of my beloved Moonstruck, and the merciful last issue of Astonishing X-Men that I personally will have to suffer through.

Detective Comics #981

The “Batmen Eternal” storyline actually ended up having a really excellent final issue! The threat of Brother Eye and brainwashed Tim is resolved fairly quickly, if in a slightly anticlimactic way. However, that left a lot of room for resolving the moral and ethical problems facing the many Bat-family members. This was a really strong follow up to the way some of the moralizing was posed earlier in the story. It’s not quite a magical happily ever after, but everyone sort of talks out their issues and at least manages to get to a point where they know they can count each other even if they aren’t always close. I’m curious which members of the family the story will follow going forward. Tim and Steph are following one path, Batwoman is off on her own (and has a solo book), Batwing is taking a break, Azazel has a role in one of the new Justice League books, and Batman has the whole marriage thing coming up. Regardless, we’ll see soon what happens.

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Comic Wolf’s Pull Box Week of 5/16/18

What’s up Skill Floorians, it’s another exciting pile of comics. Most notably this week features the Mighty Thor: At the Gates of Valhalla special, a farewell to Jane Foster as Thor and an opportunity for Jason Aaron to look back at the time we’ve had with her. If you read my review of The Mighty Thor #706 you know I have some feelings about this, so stay tuned for more nerd rage!

The Brave and the Bold #4

We’re nearing the end of this series, much to my dismay. This issue had very little in the way of action, especially for being close to the end, but I enjoyed it immensely. After a brief sequence dealing with the fallout of last issue’s small fight, Batman (who has added a cloak to his ensemble to look less out of place) and Wonder Woman go to speak to the murdered king’s widow. She explains that the spell of forgetfulness over their home has caused them to forget much of their history, and that the king had a series of paintings done to honor King Nuada who died in the most recent war against Balor Evil Eye. That’s why I loved this issue really. A series of gorgeous paintings and just straight up telling of myth. What else could I even ask for? From the story, Batman gains a clue, which leads to a big reveal at the end to leave us hanging. I’m still REALLY enjoying the writing on this series. I can’t believe how naturally Batman and Wonder Woman are being made to fit into Celtic myth, it’s really a feat. This issue, the art deserves really special mention. I couldn’t find an image of one of the pages in question, but a majority of the book has the paintings taking up most of the page. The painting art reminds me of Ted Nasmith, an artist who did a lot of art for Tolkien’s worlds. It’s really beautiful, and stands out even from the already excellent looking book. If you haven’t been on this series, I highly recommend grabbing it or waiting for the trade for the art alone.

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Comic Wolf’s Pull Box Week of 5/9/18

Hey everyone, jumping right back to your regularly scheduled nonsense now that the FCBD special has passed. It’s a pretty light week, but also a balanced one with one (1) entry each in the categories DC, Marvel, and Indie. I’ll enjoy the easy week of writing, Getch will enjoy the easy week of editing, and y’all can enjoy not having me rattle on quite as long as usual. Off we go!

Detective Comics #980

“Batmen Eternal” prepares to transition over to “Rise of the Batmen” with this issue which escalates the conflict with The General, Brother Eye, and the newly brain warped Tim (Red Robin). Batman, Spoiler, and Orphan attempt to get in and control the nanites (O.M.A.C.) that have possessed many of the Colony soldiers plus Azrael and Batwing. There’s a lot going on here, obviously.

The conflict remains interesting and rooted in moral questions. For better or worse this is the idea of the Bat-family expanded to its most extreme. What does that mean for what they stand for? There’s no easy answer, and even though I’m sure the comic will end up wrapping neatly, it’s still important to bring up these questions. Cass (Orphan) and Stephanie (Spoiler) get to shine a bit which I appreciated since I’m not too familiar with them yet and need more of them in the spotlight. My major complaint is tied to them though; this book switches artists every issue or two, and the guy in charge of pencils on this one can only draw one female body. Everyone is absurdly curvy in the same skintight suit even though their shapes and costumes have (slightly) more distinction than that. It’s not a huge deal but was actively distracting in a few panels. We’re still headed toward something big, and no matter the outcome it should be pretty neat.

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Comic Wolf’s Pull Box Week of 5/2/18 – Free Comic Book Day Special

Welcome to a special and late edition of CWPB! As mentioned, Saturday was Free Comic Book Day and my store really goes all out. We had a ton of artists and vendors, plenty of guests, two small concerts, and a lot of awesome sales. This was my first FCBD working and despite the stress, it was a blast as expected. Super thankful to have been involved. Anyway, due to setup and then the day itself and then clean up and recovery from all that at the store I am behind and that’s why this is late. As promised, I’ll talk about some of the free books. Much like the Superman Specials, I’m gonna bump that up into the main content so no post-credit. You’ve already waited extra, so let’s not waste any more time on intro; to the comics!

Action Comics Special #1

After Action Comics #1000, a lot of change is coming to the world of Superman. Mostly Bendis writing Man of Steel. Anyway, creative teams are changing so a Special was put together before #1001 to let the current team wrap some stuff up. The book had three short stories. The primary one involved an enemy from the future who figured out Lois Lane’s connection to Superman and attacked her. It was a pretty tense story and was really good. The villain is all at once obvious but still interesting to see the journey to Superman figuring it out. The writing is excellent, this story being the main event from the current team. Barring AC#1000, this particular story is probably my favorite so far. There’s a second story where Lex, Lois, and Superman as Clark Kent attend the White House Correspondent Dinner. It’s mostly lighthearted and full of jokes like the real dinner, but the story is from Lex Luthor’s point of view and it sets up something significant that happened before. The last story is just a small cute story about Superman helping someone out and then also being a great husband to Lois. This whole issue feels a little redundant, given that we literally just got a big pile of short stories. However, it’s short and enjoyable enough to get a pass. Definitely worth checking out.

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Comic Wolf’s Pull Box Week of 4/18/18

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s a mediocre review segment! For those who have been following, it should be no surprise that this is CWPB 80 Years of Superman Special Part 2! The actual Action Comics #1000 issue released this week, so now I can talk specifically about the issue itself. Plus a few other exciting reads this week! Like last week, there won’t be an after-credit. I was going to throw in a review of a Superman story in trade paperback form, but between the cost of buying one and the amount of time AC #1000 ended up taking it wasn’t feasible. My review of AC is almost as long as some entire weeks of review, so hopefully y’all don’t feel I shorted you. Let’s dive in!

Action Comics #1000

The format of AC #1000 is a little different, since it’s a collection of short stories. The Swamp Thing Winter Special had the same thing, but was only a couple stories. Since this is more, I’m going to break it up a little bit into sections

From the City That Has Everything – A great story to open it up, Metropolis celebrates a Superman Day. A few different people show up to talk about how Superman saved and changed their lives. The touching testimonials show all the ways Superman matters within Metropolis, and what a huge impact he’s had over the years. I really like the stories being told, and I like the characterization of Superman who is of course very humble. Lois has a plan to make him enjoy Superman Day, with tension being resolved in a really sweet way. The art is solid as well, pretty much in line with the last few issues, which isn’t surprising since this story is the normal AC creative team. Starting out with a “thank you” to the Man of Steel works perfectly even if it’s obvious, and I thoroughly enjoyed the story

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Comic Wolf’s Pull Box Week of 4/11/18

Hey everyone, welcome back to CWPB! This week will be Part 1 of my 80 Years of Superman Special! By the time you’re reading this, tomorrow (4/18/18) will be the release of Action Comics #1000! This is a huge landmark, and is being massively celebrated. Due to the way I publish, I decided to do double the Superman coverage! Some hype stuff now, right before release and then a full review of the issue and some other cool Superman biz next week. As part of the Superman Special, I’m gonna bump the Post-Credit up to before the credits (like Marvel did with Age of Ultron, which fuck that movie but we’re not getting into that). To start, this week’s books!

Detective Comics #978

Detective Comics pushes forward, examining the wake of last issue’s ending. Colony soldiers, controlled by Ulysses, are killing people in an attempt to put more distance between Batman and Batwoman. The two of them agree to meet to discuss everything going on, while Tim stays back at the cave and tries to figure out what happened to cause the soldiers to start shooting. This arc remains pretty interesting, watching Ulysses pull strings from the shadows and get increasingly involved. This issue pushed the story forward a bit, but the real progress isn’t til the end so there isn’t too much to discuss here. It lacks the serious look at the characters that the previous arc had, and this particular issue is light on action or mystery. It’s still interesting and necessary – it’s not filler, just the slight lull before things pick up. The art had a few particularly excellent moments in this one too. Overall while this might not be the best issue of Detective Comics ever, it sets up a hell of a next issue. Come back in two weeks to see if it lives up to my expectations!

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Comic Wolf’s Pull Box Week of 4/4/18

Hey comic fans, welcome back! After last week’s heavy stack of comics, this week is appropriately light (although not on my wallet, since I bought a couple comics I am not reviewing yet and my store’s Gundam model kit shipment is in). This week is notably exciting though, due to the end of Motor Crush’s second arc and the beginning of Isola which has been on my pull list since it first appeared in Previews. Additionally in the larger scheme of comics, this week’s Batman focuses on the Bat/Cat wedding with some lovely matching covers (I bought both, because I suck – stay after the credits to see what they look like). Buckle in!

Astonishing X-Men #10

This is, I think, the first issue of Astonishing that I’ve genuinely liked in a while. The X-Men attack Proteus’s little warped reality bubble, and inside is fucking wacky. Turns out if you give every person in a small Scottish village the ability to change reality to their will things get messy. The art on this issue is really awesome; there are a bunch of psychedelic splash pages of all the nutty shit going on, from dragons to zombie vikings (?) and plenty of weird colors. It’s a lot of action, but it’s weirdly structured action so it’s visually a lot of fun. There’s also a decent moral conundrum, nothing super new but it’s going to force some characterization of X in a way that I’m hopeful about. The nature of humanity as it relates to mutants (and the obvious connection that has to real world marginalized groups) is a pretty common topic to tackle with the X-Men, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t always more room to explore it. The end of this issue was actually pretty cool, so I think the second stretch of this arc will be the stronger part. That said, I still intend to exit with the Fresh Start (again, if this book continues since it doesn’t have a confirmation).

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