A little more life is injected to the Lex Luthor story from guest penciller Sean Chen, but unfortunately a lot of that good will gets sucked away with his gorilla drawings. They all look like they’ve been shaved. It looks really weird to me. There’s an inordinate number of attempted robot-head eating, which I am, of course, all for. Also, not enough wink to the camera when Grodd brandishes his “combat spoon”. That’s a tough sell right there. The Spencer/Silva Jimmy Olsen back up is AMAZING. The art looks to me like a mix of Adam Hughes and Amanda Connor, while the story is about Jimmy taking some action without Superman… yes basically the only story I’ve seen Jimmy have lately, but this promises a lot of fun as well. Special note to Smallville fans, this story is the DC universe debut of Chloe Sullivan. There’s a lot to enjoy here. — Isaac Mills
Isaac’s rating: 4 out of 5
Amazing Spider-Man #644
Mark Waid (w), Paul Azaceta (a), Javier Rodriguez (c), Marvel Comics.
There’s a nice sense of closure going on with this storyline. Closure to the “Brand New Day” era of Spider-Man, I mean. As a reader who only got into Spider-Man through “Brand New Day” there’s something appealing about that. Elements of this era are sprinkled throughout: the new Doctor Octopus, Menace, even Freak shows up. But at the heart of it you’ve got Peter on the run with a baby. And that’s terrifying. It’s an intense story, with a powerful scene near the end. I dug it. – Owen Craig.
Owen’s rating: 3.5 out of 5
I’d like to say that this was a strong ending for one of my favourite Marvel series — but it’s not. There’s too much to cover and not enough time. Heck, there’s even a couple pages of prose to get more content in here. And, I think that’s kinda awesome how it’s used, it just seems like an attempt to get more story here. It was a story that was supposed to ramp up a series, not cool down a franchise. That said, there were a lot of great moments. The real injustice is that it’s getting canceled in the first place. Here’s to you, Altas. — Miles Baker
Miles’s rating: 3.5 out of 5
I’m not going to lie, I don’t know a lot about Baron Zemo. Like, I’m pretty sure this was a guy who led the Thunderbolts until Ellis made it all Elli-y. So he’s a villain turned hero turned… maybe a villain, maybe not. I think that’s neat. I read one review of this issue that said that Zemo was “out of character” but I would postulate that it make sense that a man who had spent a long time working for redemption would expect that of other heroes. Anyway, other than that, I’m looking forward to the next Captain America arc for sure. — Miles Baker
Miles’s rating: 3.5 out of 5
I’m glad I switched to issues from trades with this title, because each issue of this series is immensely satisfying. Layman’s humour and gift for character-work are well on display here, but what really blew me away was Guillory’s work on the action scenes. His dynamic images created some amazing fights in so few panels that I better understand why I sometimes bristle at whole-issue fight scenes. In this issue I got awesome fights, informative flashbacks, new characters and some rather touching scenes, too. No wonder this is one of my favourite books. – Owen Craig.
Owen’s rating: 4.5 out of 5
I feel bad that I have to come down so hard on McDaniel’s art. Fact is, Nightwing #6 is one of my all time favourite comics — with the art by McDaniel. I don’t know if it’s merely a matter of different inkers or changing styles, but it doesn’t work like it used to. As for the story, it tried to create this feeling of chaos with a series of riots, while also making it “epic” by drawing out the conclusion (by the books time frame three weeks go by). Unfortunately how it’s done here the one goal cancels out the other, you can be either chaotic or drawn out, not both. I’ve likely already solved the mystery behind the “Impostor Batman” solely because of how few candidates we’re given. If I’m right then we’ve been given a lacklustre mystery, and if I’m wrong we’ll probably end up with an equally unsatisfying curveball. — Isaac Mills
Isaac’s rating: 2.5 out of 5
This seemed rather rushed. I’m not sure this was always the plan or if the plug was pulled on the Frank-Castle story prematurely but I had to reread this a couple of times to figure out how exactly Frank got better. I liked what went on here, okay, and the stuff with the monsters was great I just wish that more time had been spent on those first few pages. Like… maybe a couple of issues. Liked the rest, though. And always a pleasure to see Elsa Bloodstone, who (as it turns out) is a great foil for Frank Castle. – Owen Craig.
Owen’s rating: 3 out of 5
Read this without getting choked up. I dare you. And if you can do it then I declare, sir or madam, that you have a heart of stone. This is easily the best issue since #1. I appreciate the storytelling that had to be done in issues 2-4, but it’s the beginning and end of this story that work as the big guns. And wow, did Remender ever deliver. With McKelvie on board as a Hell of a bonus. This is a touching finale to a neat little story that Marvel pulled together. Thanks, Marvel for trying something cool and different here! I enjoyed it! – Owen Craig.
Owen’s rating: 4 out of 5
There’s a reason I gravitate towards the Marvel books at the fringe of popularity — interesting stuff happens in them. After a few issues properly establishing the desperation ofHydra, Leviathan, and Nick Fury, it’s time to make things even worse and maybe kill off more characters. And, hey, they are new characters who don’t have movie deals, some of them might actually die. I do enjoy death. — Miles Baker
Miles’s rating: 4 out of 5
Pretty much just a big brawl issue that was so intent on moving from fight-to-fight that it cut out some good corners that could have fleshed out those fights into something more interesting. The flashback to Rip’s childhood (or flash forward depending on your frame of reference) was fun, but we’ll have to see how the series plays out before we know if it really fits in to the book in general. The best part was the appearance of the Linear Men — I don’t know what their deal is, I haven’t seen them in like 15 years, are they evil? Who knows! Exciting! — Isaac Mills
Isaac’s rating: 3 out of 5
You know what? This is the best X-Men book on the stands right now. It has consistently solid art, and is written by the best writer in the X-Men stable. Even medium-good issues of this book are better than most Marvel Comics. This plotline isn’t exactly thrilling me to no end — but it’s competently executed, gives me tons of great character moments, and there is a sense that our protagonists are in danger. That’s hard to accomplish. — Miles Baker
Miles’ rating: 4 out of 5