Comics – 25th April 2012

A strong set of comics see things shaken up for a few titles, and the conclusion the Rise Of The Vampire cross over between I, Vampire and Justice League Dark.

DC – New 52 #8 Part 4
Aquaman
Blackhawks
The Flash
Green Lantern New Guardians
I, Vampire
Justice League Dark
Teen Titans

Not Reviewed
All Star Western
Batman The Dark Knight
The Fury Of Firestorm The Nuclear Man
The Savage Hawkman
Superman
Voodoo

Other
The Activity
The New Deadwardians

Skipped To The End…


DC – New 52 #8 Part 4

Aquaman #8
Written by Geoff Johns
Pencilled by Ivan Reis
Inked by Joe Prado
Cover Colour by Rod Reis
Lettered by DC Lettering
Coloured by Ivan Reis & Joe Prado &Rod ReisThere’s a very different feel to this month’s issue, which gives a window on Arthur’s past as part of The Others. He’s seen to be far less of the usual clean cut hero, in a way; prepared to make whatever sacrifice necessary to achieve his goal. This hardness resurfaces a little in the present as he embarks on his pursuit of Black Manta.There’s a feel of things shifting in the title, as having got itself established it’s going off elsewhere. Certainly the unknown background of the New 52 looks set to provide ample opportunities for interesting plot lines. Trying to reconcile the continuity is already starting to be a bear though.

Blackhawks #8
Written by Michael Costa
Pencilled by CAFU & Carlos Alberto Rodriguez Vazquez
Inked by BIT
Cover Colour by BIT
Lettered by Rob Leigh
Coloured by CAFU & Guy MajorThings are looking seriously bleak for the Blackhawks this issue. Mother Machine masterminds her return to strike within the Eyrie. While she is overcome it’s a pyrrhic victory for the team, that concludes their present run.

The high technology feel of the series remains strong, particularly with Mother Machine’s captions boxes, discussing the potential of designed intelligence vs an evolved brain.

It’s a shame to see this series go, as it was really hitting its stride, and was something different to the other 51 books.

The Flash #8
Written by Brian Buccellato & Francis Manapul
Pencilled by Francis Manapul
Inked by Francis Manapul
Cover Colour by Brian Buccellato
Lettered by DC Lettering
Coloured by Brian Buccellato & Francis ManapulWe’re in the heart of the Speed Force and revelations continue to come thick and fast. While Turbine’s introduction takes up a small amount of the issue, the main focus is Barry and his relationship to the source of his powers. There’s a close relationship with Flashpoint, and it’s going to be interesting to see where this is headed. The art this month is fantastic,breaking down the standard panel structure and dealing with flashbacks without intruding on the main story line too much.

Green Lantern New Guardians #8
Written by Tony Bedard
Pencilled by Tyler Kirkham
Inked by Batt
Cover Colour by Nei Ruffino
Lettered by David L. Sharpe
Coloured by Batt & Tyler Kirkham & Nei RuffinoA bit of a messy issue this month as the team heads off in separate directions as dictated by the other Green Lantern titles. Released by Invictus, on the condition they attempt to kill Larfleeze the team must first marshal their strength and recharge their rings. Arkillo returns to Korugar and discovers that the Yellow Lantern Corps is no more. Kyle returns to Earth, in unexpected company, ready for a tie in issue.

Justice League Dark #8
Written by Peter Milligan
Pencilled by Daniel G Sampere
Lettered by Rob Leigh
Painted cover by Ryan Sook
Coloured by Admira WijayadiThis month sees the conclusion of the pleasingly short cross over between JLD and I, Vampire. Once again JLD is the issue to start with.

Constantine and Deadman journey into the land of the dead, and manage to find Andrew Bennet, but the meeting really doesn’t go as plan. Meanwhile the others continue to battle Cain and his vampires, but suffer losses. And quickly on to I, Vampire

I, Vampire #8
Written by Joshua Hale Fialkov
Pencilled by Andrea Sorrentino
Inked by Andrea Sorrentino
Cover Colour by Marcelo Maiolo
Lettered by DC Lettering
Coloured by Marcelo Maiolo & Andrea SorrentinoThe conclusion to the above, and hence rather full of goings on, that I’m anxious not to spoil.

The story fits neatly into the four issues given to it, and wouldn’t have worked in the same way over a longer time line. There’s also a feeling of appropriate impact to the finished piece, and it has really marked both series with changes. It’s a device that needs to be used with care as there does seem to be a horribly large number of interlinked series cropping up. Marketing vs story I suppose.

Teen Titans #8
Written by Scott Lobdell
Pencilled by Ig Guara
Inked by JP Mayer
Cover Colour by Andrew Dalhouse
Lettered by DC Lettering
Coloured by Brett Booth & Norm Rapmund & Andrew DalhouseIt’s all going a bit Tron. Which already feels rather dated and over done, given Marvel’s run of covers when the latest film was released back in December 2010.

Costumes aside it’s a dark issue this month as the team faces Omen, one of Harvest’s minions. There’s elements of Animal Man style body horror as she plumbs Robin’s mind, before messing with each of the team in turn. All this provides a springboard into the cross over between Legion Lost and the Titans in the coming month.


Not Reviewed

All Star Western
Batman The Dark Knight
The Fury Of Firestorm The Nuclear Man
The Savage Hawkman
Superman
Voodoo


Other

The Activity
Pub: Image
Written by Nathan Edmondson
Art by Mitch GeradsAnother strong issue this month sees things start very grimly indeed, and only get worse, with the team imprisoned. There are threats and torture all intertwined with a bit of team history.

The Activity continues to surprise and impress month on month, and while the overall push of the arc and the characters is a very slow reveal the deftness with which it’s being handled and the strength of the single issue plot lines makes up for it.

The New Deadwardians
Pub: Vertigo
Written by Dan Abnet
Art and Cover by I.N.J. CulbardThe pace of this issue seems far more befitting of a crime series than either of the two monster genres it mixes. There’s a bit of Edwardian CSI as we have a visit to the morgue to see the recently deceased. The larger backstory to the situation gets fleshed out a little and there looks set to be more of this next issue as Inspector Suttle’s heads into Zone B.

There’s a really light touch to the story so far, and hopefully that will be retained as the series continues. The writing is strong and hopefully the world that’s being built can live up to this promise.


Skipped To The End…

It’s impressively difficult to pick one comic to stand above the rest this week. So I’m going to be awkward and pick Blackhawks. You should have started reading it sooner.

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