To be perfectly honest, I wasn't going to pick up Batman #69. The entire Knightmares story really seemed a little contrived to me, and I wasn't sure if I really cared to read another case of a Batman foe messing with his mind. I opened it up and saw the artwork of Yahick Paquette. I loved his work on Wonder Woman: Earth One, so I gave it a try.
It seems like forever since I reviewed a new comic, much less read a new batman comic. It seems like I only show up in Gotham when something big is happening. However, this issue caught my eye because it's an Amanda Conner one. The preview pages had the feeling that Tom King was giving her a script that suited her talents and were much like the work that she and her husband Jimmy Palmiotti have come to be known for. While I like the creators behind this issue, I really dislike the way Batman has been treated in recent years.
At WonderCon on Friday, there were some major announcements coming from DC's streaming service, DC Universe. In addition to release dates announced for new series, the digital comic feature of the service is getting a major expansion in April.
It's odd for me to get surprised by an old comic book. I tend to remember what comics were good, especially when it comes to legendary artists. I had completely forgotten that World of Krypton was drawn by Mike Mignola. Of course, this was a period in my life when I wasn't buying comics regularly. The books I had been buying before, like John Byrne's Superman were also not the ones that I ended up buying when I started up again. I recall reading Superman #18, where he returns to Krypton and has a vision of a world where all of Krypton evacuated to Earth. However, that was half a year later. Cue to one sleepless night when I was browsing DC Universe and came across World of Krypton, the 1987 mini-series that fleshed out the view of Post-Crisis Krypton we had seen in Man of Steel #1. I read the whole series in one night and to be honest, I enjoyed the first issue much more than the others, especially the last issue. The last issue actually did a lot of retelling from aforementioned Man of Steel #1. The first issue impressed me enough that I felt like I needed to review it.
Superman maintains a secret identity as Clark Kent. Everyone knows about it and the lengths that he goes to maintain it. However, what if his story was written from the beginning to be a mystery to even the reader?
DC Universe has been making waves lately with their exclusive shows Titans and Young Justice: Outsiders, which have been critically well-received. However, a feature of the service often overlooked is the ability to read back issues of various DC Comics.
We're back to the Legion of Super-Heroes stories that hooked me in the 1980's. With the story of the Legion of Super-Villains pretty much finished, we're shifting our view over to the newsstand title, Tales of the Legion. To be honest, I wasn't reading the Baxter title at the time this issue was published. I didn't have easy access to a direct market comic shop. I bought all of my comics from the newsstand. It wouldn't be until about a year later that I managed to snag a few copies at a nearby comic show at a shopping mall. A couple of years later, I would discover a direct market shop in that same nearby town.
As part of the very delayed best of 2018, I'm grouping the honorifics into categories that sometimes don't get explored. The creation of efforts by fans to engage with their passions is a part of the history of comics. It goes back before the Internet with Amateur Press Associations and fanzines. In 2018 I discovered, completely by happenstance, a fan effort that has gone on since 2015, the DC Continuity Project.
At Wal-Marts all over the country, DC Comics makes stories available featuring their greatest heroes. The general purpose seems to be to get comics in the hands of new readers, perhaps even those that do not have easy access to a comic book shop. The general public will read this as "kids," and in some cases, they're not far off. That's why it's disturbing that the original content offered up in Superman Giant #7 is literally twelve pages of Lois Lane being repeatedly tortured and murdered.
It's amazing whenever you see Batman go into cosmic or science fiction stories. That's not to say that it's necessarily bad, because sometimes it's really good. It shows the strengths of the character. In the Justice League, we often see Batman in situations that he should not be suited for. Somehow, he manages to show himself to be very adaptable. With Batman and the Outsiders, Batman gave up the more fantastic adventures for those that were more grounded. There were still threats that should have been outside of his skill set. Writer Mike W. Barr proved how adaptable Batman is. Even in the more grounded 1980s, Batman could be taken into space and fight other-dimensional beings. With issue #22, we also saw an artist join that would excel at telling these stories, Alan Davis. It was in that issue we got to see more than the team facing a cosmic threat illustrated by a new artist. We saw the beginnings of the rift between Batman and the Outsiders.
I've had a rough couple of weeks. The thing is that comic book creators have given me some lessons that help me cope with rough times like this. A professional might take issue (no pun intended) with some of these lessons, but they're what gets me to the next stage of dealing with rough patches. Legion of Super-Heroes is one of those titles that has always been something that I come back to over and over. One run that I really enjoy is referred to as the Five Years Late Legion, specifically the first 38 issues, shaped primarily by Keith Giffen and Tom and Mary Bierbaum. It was extremely dark in that the Earth had been covertly conquered by the Dominators. The Legion had disbanded, In almost every issue, there was some level of death and destruction. It'sonly fitting that this story should end with the destruction of Earth, even after it had been liberated with the help of two Legions.
I can here you now, “You’re reviewing an eight page preview comic? You’re getting really lazy. You just hate writing synopses.” First, kudos to you for knowing that “synopses” is the correct plural of synopsis. Second, yes writing the synopsis for a Review of Old Comics is the hardest part of writing this column. That