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    Wednesday Is New Comic Book Day! (Reviews 12-31-09)

    By | December 31st, 2009
    Posted in Reviews | % Comments

    Well, as we’ve said, this is Indy Comic Book Week! Since the only mainstream review to do this week is for Blackest Night #6. The rest will be if we can get our hands on indy releases. We’ll do our best, but we can’t make any promises due to the unfortunately limited number of retailers that are participating. However, if you’d like to see your retailer participating in the future, feel free to give them a call or write them an e-mail asking for them to participate! Indy Comic Book Week is a great initiative and one that we fully support.

    Until next week, enjoy our reviews of Blackest Night #6.

    Blackest Night #6

    Matt’s Thoughts: I’ve gotta say, Blackest Night continues to kick absolute ass. I can’t remember the last time I read a comic that made me cheer this so much. With this week’s ending especially, we’re treated with some of the craziest stuff to happen in comics in a while. I am incredibly entertained. And when you see the tie-ins from last week’s Green Lantern, it becomes a very satisfying comic. All things considered, another great entry in a great event.

    I have one major problem with Blackest Night though. I really feel that, with two issues away from completion, SOME explanation should be given (especially when all the solicits say as much). This issue drops bits and hints, and it’s interesting to develop theories based on scraps of dialogue, but I figured back at issue #4, with “WHAT IS NEKRON”, that there would be a “FOR THOUSANDS OF YEARS I HAVE EXISTED…..” monologue by the big baddie. I still expect that to happen, truthfully. I feel it’s something that we’re owed as readers. Nekron has basically been in the background since he arrived, not saying much. I want him to come to the front and say, “Alright, look. This is why I’m here. Get with the picture, eh?” He’s been in TWO Green Lantern stories, and BOTH times he explained himself… why not now? Is his tongue tied or something? There is a lot to explain with him, such as the chains around his neck or the fact his chest is exposed.

    While most of us firmly believe this should have been a Green Lantern/Green Lantern Corps crossover (a la Sinestro Corps War), I can’t help but fear a little bit for the ending. I’m just worried that 8 issues won’t be enough to create a satisfying enough ending, even if it is an “over-sized” finale. I have high hopes and faith that Johns will deliver, I just wish we could have a sit down chat with Nekron. Let him open up a bit, make him a more interesting villain rather than an ominous looming figure standing by a giant hole in the ground. And for the record, no, I would not be happy with a surprise tie-in issue that stars just Nekron in a similar thing to what Johns did during “Thy Kingdom Come” over in Justice Society of America.

    David’s Thoughts: I’m almost certainly going to be the dissenting opinion on this, but enough is enough.

    Every issue so far of Blackest Night has followed the same formula and followed the same patterns to the point they are so episodic that it doesn’t feel like a continuous story. Every issue we get the ramifications of the previous issue’s cliffhanger, big fight, side scene with a fact generating conversation, tide turning moment, more fight, big cliffhanger complete with a splash page filled with a big group of characters rushing the reader.

    I don’t have them all on me, but I feel as if this theory is true (especially the splash page part). Even if it isn’t true, the fact that every issue feels like a variation on the same formula is massively disappointing to me. This is the universe and the writer that gave us the Sinestro Corps War – an event comic that abandoned event comic formulas and kept its contents to the two Green Lantern comics.

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    While it may not be fair for me to compare the two, I can say this: it’s impossible not to. While it is technically well done and Ivan Reis continues to put on the show of shows with this title, my expectations were for Blackest Night to give us a little something more. With great expectations come great disappointment, and it’s impossible to deny that this is what I’ve felt so far while reading this series.

    Gil’s Thoughts: If it weren’t for the contents of this issue, I might have given up on Blackest Night. While it’s been lots of fun seeing DC’s Holy Trinity take a back seat to Hal Jordan, it wasn’t always Hal Jordan in the driver’s seat, so to speak. When Ray Palmer, Mera, and Barry Allen were in the starring role, I was confused. Why are these characters who, for the most part anyway, have no connection to the Green Lantern mythos, headlining a Green Lantern event?

    Well, thankfully that’s not the case. Those character’s reasons for being so prominent are explained (and then some) while battling the undead former comrades and enemies during the longest night in the history of the DC Universe. It’s a little weird that for such a big bad, Nekron has been largely absent, but he had a feature in last week’s Green Lantern issue, explaining where he’s coming from ,and why he’s doing what he’s doing. While it has the title of “Tales of the Black Lantern Corps,” it also goes directly into this issue, which brings a certain level of cohesion that is appreciated.

    That being said, there are some odd parts in the book. While the ending makes complete sense with regards to the buildup of the rest of the event, there are some cameos that are odd insertions. Does it make sense that Lex Luthor and Scarecrow are making their appearances? Of course it does. Could they have been featured a little more satisfactorily? Without a doubt.

    All in all, it’s a fun diversion and I maintain that this is the best event since The Sinestro Corps War. It’s not nearly as good as SCW, but it’s better than the rest.

    Brandon’s Thoughts: Well only one book this week. That made this a pretty easy choice for book of the week. I think had it not been the only book it still would have been a solid choice though. Things as of the last couple issues have really been picking up and this issue is not different. We are really seeing things come together and it’s a ghastly sight. In a good way I assure you.

    One of the coolest things to happen so far comes in the final pages. I say one of the coolest because I assume it is short term. If it lingers more than another issue or two I will retract this statement quicker than DC retracted theirs that they planned on staying committed to Wally and Bart despite Barry’s return. ZING! Anyway…

    The art here is phenomenal and I have a hard time complaining. This is high action at some of it’s best. What a way to end the decade that’s for sure. The art has been by far the most consistent aspect of this title and I don’t think many would argue with me on that.

    If this is to be the last “new” comic I read this decade than I can pass to the next decade feeling rather content. Geoff Johns comes through like he has most of the decade and, as he probably will for the rest of the next decade. Green Lantern is a prominent jewel in the DCU and hopefully this event will cement that in the minds of those who weren’t convinced pre-Johns.

    Invisible Sam: The Unremarkable Man – Review by Gil

    The lone book that was available to me on Indy Comic Book Day is also one of the most melancholy I’ve read. The eponymous main character could be any one of us, and he feels something that most of us have felt at one point of another.

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    He lives in a world where he is as the title suggests, completely unremarkable. He lives alone, and the only thing he has to keep himself from falling into oblivion is his work. It’s what drives him and makes him feel like he actually matters in the world.

    If you can’t tell, the book only gets darker and sadder from that point, and it’s beautifully written and drawn by Adam O. Pruett, along with the grayscales provided with surprisingly rich detail by David Seltzer. You definitely get a feeling of being swallowed whole by the world, and the pain in Sam’s eyes as his life (or the closest thing to a life he has) falls apart around him until there is (literally) nothing left.

    If you were lucky enough to be near a store that carries it, then please do yourself a favor and read the exploits of Sam. For more information, check out the creators at http://www.bigredh.net/

    Final Verdict: 8.9 – Buy

    Matthew Meylikhov

    Once upon a time, Matthew Meylikhov became the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Multiversity Comics, where he was known for his beard and fondness for cats. Then he became only one of those things. Now, if you listen really carefully at night, you may still hear from whispers on the wind a faint voice saying, "X-Men Origins: Wolverine is not as bad as everyone says it issss."