Wednesday, April 25, 2007

World War III, Nightwing Annual #2, The Flash # 11

World War III

So the next big DC event has already fallen upon us. It's been 52 weeks since Infinite Crisis ended, and in those 52 weeks we've been slowly building to this opening salvo of a climax. This is where, in case you don't know, Black Adam goes freaking mental on the DC Universe. Now there's two ways you can read this, well okay, techinically three ways. You CAN get the entire story that you need in the pages of 52 issue 50. But there are also four specials that released the same week which follow Martian Manhunter during the event, and attempt to expand on some of the larger meanings of what's going on, as well as tie up the messy loose ends left over from One Year Later. You could also
just read both and take the whole thing as it's own thing, like I've done here.

But if you were strapped for cash, what I would recommend is just getting 52 #50. I think the story is told better and more impactful in 52, whereas in the specials the point tends to be overly belabored as redundant as that sounds.

From my perspective, I enjoyed this event a LOT more than Infinite Crisis. Infinite Crisis, the big mumbo jumbo superhero battles just didn't have the focus and seemed just really quick and chaotic. Whereas here, they really feel very intense, and you really feel a battle of wills. I think Black Adam battling the DCU was better than all the battles even in Marvel's own Civil War. Of course it remains to be seen if World War Hulk, which is a similiar concept to Black Adam's rampage, can hit the same high note. I hope, and think, that it can.

For people worried about finding a jumping on point, I really think this beginning of World War III is where you want to be. Because leading out of this is the next big DC weekly book Countdown, and you can easily segue into that. And
if you pick up the four specials, you can also kind of catch up to speed on the rest of the DCU and start going on those books.

Nightwing Annual # 2
Mark Andreyko-Joe Bennett

Yeah so I'm really not the biggest of Nightwing fans. I have never liked his
costume. I've never really bought the central malaise of the character as it relates to Batman, and plus I routinely do get confused as to who and which Robin is which. So I was really suprised when I read this book and enjoyed it as much as I did.

It's basically a love story of sorts which follows the relationship between Barbara Gordon(Batgirl, Oracle) and Nightwing and what it has gone through over the years(including some really heinous stuff done by Nightwing to Batgirl, which I kind of wish I had read THOSE stories).

I'm still not terribly interested in Nightwing as a crimefighter or even as a leader of the Outsiders, but I don't know, I think maybe it's because I do love Birds of Prey that I liked this story? Yeah, now that I think on it, I think my interest in Barbara Gordon is why I enjoyed this so much. I do think the story is kind of centered on her, and I think that's why it works for me.

But yeah, really good book, and it does give a nice jumping on point to the rest of the series, I would think, I will definitely have to check that series out now. Marv Wolfman after all, I guess.

The Flash: The Fastest Man Alive # 11 Marc Guggenheim-Tony Daniel

The Flash is back! Remember when I was on about how I was excited for when the Flash book changed creative teams, in particular because I thought Marc Guggenheim was the perfect man for the job? Yeah, so I feel completely vindicated. We're FINALLY getting a book worthy of it's main character.

The art on this book is fantastic. There's all kinds of speed hijinks. There's the romantic drama that we've come to expect from the character over the years. And the Rogues Gallery is back in force. Yes, if you are at all a fan of the Flash, now is the time to get back into reading him. The dark days are over, hallelujah hallelujah the Flash is back!

Now we just need to wait for Gail Simone's run on Wonder Woman to start, and all will be right with the DC Universe.

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