Wednesday, December 24, 2008

New Comics Day

Couple books for reading on x-mas eve...

Hulk
Wonder Woman

Hulk has been an unexpected highlight of the year with a double dose of Art Adams and Frank Cho the last three issues. Frank Cho is always great to see drawing and he certainly was a good fit for Red Hulk's bash against She-Hulk and her Lady Liberators. The story was fun if a bit light on any sort of plot outside of an well drawn, extended fight scene. There was a small story twist but it's hard to see me following it unless the follow up art is of equal caliber.

Seeing Art Adams, however, feels like more of a gift. It's far too rare to see him doing sequential pages, and every one of the Las Vegas-based Hulk/Wendigo pages was a reminder of how unique and inspiring that art can be. I hope it is a sign of things to come with Adams back on the scene (outside of comics covers that seem to keep him working, of course).

Aaron Lopresti's art has been the primary draw of picking up the Wonder Woman Monthly, but that's not to say Writer Gail Simone is doing a bad job. She's off and on for me, at times crafting detailed and well constructed tales, at others hacking out less than inspiring material (-ahem- Gen13 -cough-). With the last arc and the current "Rise of the Olympian" storyline, she appears to be slowly crafting her own Mythology For Wonder Woman, something that every Wonder Woman author of note has attempted, and with such expectation that it must be demanded by the work contract. Of the most regarded (or noticeable) may be that of George Perez and John Byrne. Perez set the tone of Wonder Woman for many that followed and I feel is still looked upon as the de-facto mythos. Personally Ifound great enjoyment from Byrne's take on the whole shebang, as strange and abstract as it sometimes was in both style and content. I mentioned Simone is "slowly" building up the foundations, which is one of my grievances. I would prefer things get going already, only because I've no clue how long Rise of The Olympian may be taking before the entry of the already announced "Manazons" storyline. Why I point back to Byrne is that with Wonder Woman he was introducing new concepts and contexts at a dizzying pace, giving his run on the book a palpable acceleration while offering a dense and entertaining read. Particularly of note was the backstory he introduced explaining the split that generated between the once singular Roman and Greek Pantheons, great stuff. As with Perez, many of Byrne's Wonder Woman trappings are still around in the DCU today, one wonders how Simone's will fare as time marches on.

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