By the time you’re reading this, you’ve probably already gotten the last two Lantern ring replicas from your favorite local comic shop. For those who haven’t yet, Green and Red are out right now. Try this for fun: Say the Green Lantern oath slowly and loudly while slowly slipping the Green Lantern ring on your finger. Ignore the stares you get…you just became a goddamn Green Lantern!
But I digress. New comics this week! Let’s see what I got myself into!
It’s pretty stupid of me to get Blackest Night #5 without actually getting numbers 1 to 4, but aside from getting a discounted price for a Green Lantern ring if you buy the issue, the buzz around this particular ish made me curious. And this time, curiosity didn’t kill anybody. The entire spectrum of Lanterns have come together (whether they like it or not) to stop the threat of Nekron, while the rest of DC’s big guns arrive to try to stop the rest of the dead from doing any more damage.
I’ve never read a lick of Green Lantern before getting this ish, but Geoff Johns delivered by giving us some great character moments from all the Lanterns. Larfreeze in particular just became a favorite of mine. Greedy little bastard!
Shocking revelations on the nature of death in the DCU (“You’re still connected to [death]. To me.” Nekron snarls in one panel), a shocking “resurrection”, and an ending that just spells ‘we’re fucked’, bodes ill for the rest of the DCU, but not for this book, which gets a well-deserved 4 out of 5.
Queen Sonja #2 breaks it down with a breather of an issue, with Sonja’s prisoner from the previous ish fleshing out some of the history behind some very bad country with a douchebag for a king. Sonja doesn’t like it one bit (like all good bikini-clad warriors do) and decides to teach them a lesson only the She-Devil with a Sword can provide. Never thought I’d love a ‘story’ issue like this, but writer Joshua Ortega makes it interesting enough to keep me reading. When Sonja proclaims that an entire country just gained ‘a most dangerous enemy’ (i.e., her!), you just know it’s about to get good. That, and Mel Rubi’s smokin’ hot rendition of Sonja, gives this book a 4 out of 5.
Invincible Iron Man #20 opens up with a hologram recording of Tony Stark laying down his ‘last will and testament’ to someone off-panel. Like about 10 pages of it. It’s all well and good, though, because not only does Tony back-sass Osborn like crazy, he also lays down plans to revive him from his vegetative state, and he wants Iron Man, Thor and Captain America together to clean Osborn’s mess after. Can anyone say Siege?
Not much happens this issue, but I’m guessing this is the part where it all goes to hell for Osborn and co., and I’m loving the very prospect of defeat for these very bad people. This gets a 3 out of 5.
Finally, we come to Image United, a very ambitious project involving the original seven founders of Image Comics, along with some help from Robert Kirkman. The very thought of all these comic juggernauts coming together to basically do an artjam of a comic (with each creator drawing the characters they created, save for Whilce Portacio, for reasons you can probably research yourselves) blew my brains. I’m in this for my main man Whilce, and I’m happy that despite not having access to Wetworks for this story, the character he does draw is the focus of the story!
Good or bad, the story reads just like pure, distilled 90’s. Bad guys start trashing major cities in what I assume is America, and the Image heroes' solution is EXTREEEME violence and bad puns. But Fortress, the guy in the green and violet (ugh) suit is sensing that something is very wrong, and he needs all these heroes from all these different worlds to make it right.
If you have no connection to these characters, the book might be confusing, but if you want to see what an artjam from the most popular 90’s artists looks like, that's all you'll probably get out of it. I’d get this for nostalgia, if nothing else. Aside from the sheer awesomeness of seeing the Image founders drawing their own characters in one comic (never thought I’d see Velocity as done by Marc Silvestri again!), nothing much is explained, and the only hook they have to get you to buy the next issue is that if they don’t unite against this unseen threat, they are all going to die. We’ll give this issue another shot, but they better have more Witchblade in there if they want me to keep buying! This one’s a 3 out of 5.
An altogether satisfying week for comics, and that’s all I can hope for these days. If you think there should be more Witchblade in the next issue of Image United, or just want to talk about my choice of words in this blog post, leave me a comment below and let’s discuss! Thanks for reading.