Wrapping Wednesday: Micro Reviews for the Week of 8/7/13

By | August 9th, 2013
Posted in Reviews | 4 Comments

There is a lot to cover on Wednesdays. We should know, as collectively, we read an insane amount of comics. Even with a large review staff, it’s hard to get to everything. With that in mind, we’re back with Wrapping Wednesday, where we look at some of the books we missed in what was another great week of comics.

Let’s get this party started.

Green Arrow #23
Written by Jeff Lemire
Illustrated by Andrea Sorrentino
Review by: Zach Wilkerson

In “Green Arrow” #23, artist Andrea Sorrentino continues to wow visually. Shado’s backstory is told with washed out inks over faux-parchment in a beautifully rendered sequence. Sorrentino continues his use of minimal color to highlight key movements and points of interest, especially in the scenes involving Count Vertigo. The way in which Sorrentino portrays the foe’s abilities makes the character far more interesting than he would be otherwise. Unfortunately, the plot is a bit more juvenile, with story beats like Fyff’s unrequited feelings for Naomi and a literal, mystical green arrow that bestows enlightenment and immortality. Still, Lemire’s characterization of Ollie is spot on, and Shado looks to be a worthy addition to the cast.

Final Verdict: 7.3 – Buy it for the art!

Avengers #17
Written by Jonathan Hickman
Illustrated by Stefano Caselli
Review by: James Johnston

Jonathan Hickman’s run on Avengers run has been, in some ways, very underwhelming. There’s been a lot of talk about these “systems” and “Perth, Australia” but with issue 17, it seems that Hickman has finally (FINALLY) finished setting up his pieces and is ready to knock them all backdown. There’s plenty of wonderfully Hickmanian ominous narration and a lot of the odder characters from previous issues return with a new purpose that is sure to make the rest of this volume of “Avengers” interesting. That said, it is kind of upsetting that it took 17 issues (more than the entirety of Nextwave, Watchmen, etc.) to actually get to where Hickman needed The Avengers to be, but that only means that we now have everyone exactly where they’re needed to be. Stefano Caselli does a great job on the art, although some faces (particularly Cap’s) seem a little off, and he gives us the single best final splash page from this series so far. “Avengers” may have been a bit of the black sheep for the Avengers family of titles, but this issue shows that it’s now ready to be the series it was always meant to be.

Final Verdict: 8.2 – Buy. This Infinity thing is probably gonna be a fun barrel of monkeys.

The Phantom Stranger #11
Written by JM DeMatteis
Illustrated by Fernando Blanco
Review by: Brian Salvatore

Ick, what a mess. For a crossover that has had such a sense of purpose and unified tone, “Trinity of Sin: The Phantom Stranger” #11 sticks out like a sore thumb. J.M. DeMatteis makes these characters sound old fashioned and, sometimes, comically goofy. Batman, in particular, doesn’t sound like his New 52 incarnation, or even his pre-“Flashpoint” self. If there was one Batman he resembles, it is the “Batman Odyssey” Batman, where he is insane and unhinged. The art by Fernando Blanco is decent enough – it is hard to draw a book that mostly takes place in an ethereal land – but the book, overall, just feels clunky and tiresome. This is the first book with “Trinity War” on the cover that has felt completely detached from the main storyline, and for that reason, this should be skipped.

Final Verdict: 4.4 – Avoid

Superior Foes of Spider-Man #2
Written by Nick Spencer
Illustrated by Steve Lieber
Review by: Brian Salvatore

As fun and funny as the first issue was, #2 tops it, easily. Spencer and Lieber are a match made in heaven for this book, and have really done some incredible work here. The book manages to be heartfelt, hilarious, and genuinely engaging. Sure, you’ll hear claims of “Hawkeye”-light, but they’re just saying that this book feels like the best superhero comic on the market, which is high praise in and of itself. Lieber’s pencils bring such humanity to the Sinister Six, while never missing the opportunity for a punchline. Spencer, in the past somehwat of a mess when doing Marvel books, has proved himself more than up to the challenge at hand here, and is crafting a story that works on just about every level.

Final Verdict: 8.0 – Buy

//TAGS | Wrapping Wednesday

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