It’s time again for my Weekly Haul and boy what a haul. Since yours truly took a little vacation last week, there was quite a bit of comic goodness to catch up on. In the last two weeks Steve Seeley and Michael Moreci brought us another installment of Hoax Hunters, Dan Slott finished up his Lizard story arc and so much more. So, sit back, relax and let’s delve together into another magical week of comics.
Amazing Spider-Man # 691
By: Dan Slott and Giuseppe Camuncoli
I can’t lie; the last few weeks reading Amazing Spider-Man have been tense. While Spidey has been distracted with bludgeoning Morbius, Curt Connors has been turning the whole lab into giant lizards in an attempt to transform himself and last issue’s cliff hanger was a really doozey. How is Spidey supposed to take on an army of human lizards? I think the part that really hooked me was Connors’ doubt about becoming the Lizard again. Maybe the man within the beast wasn’t as dead as we were lead to believe.
This latest issue has left me with some very mixed feelings. Don’t get me wrong, it was a great ending to the story arc and Slott is definitely setting us up for something huge, but making all of the lizards like giant puppies was a little too goofy, even for Spider-Man. I understand the reasoning because it shows that the evil of the Lizard was Connors the whole time. It was his bitterness and hate that was the real monster. Gentle giant lizards aside (say that three times fast) the action of the issue picks up pretty fast and doesn’t let up until the very last page.
One of my favorite parts comes after that scene. As Connors is beginning to change, Spider-Man rushes to get him out before the transformation is complete. When they arrive at the barricaded door, Spider-Man uses the Lizard as a live battering ram to open the door. Now outside, the two begin tearing into each other. It was a little heartbreaking to see Spider-Man driven to this point, but he’s now ready to do what he needs to do to stop the Lizard. He drives the cure into the Lizard’s brain, via harpoon and stops the Lizard. Unfortunately the cure doesn’t work this time…or does it?
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Dan Slott is an amazing writer. He’s able to make you laugh one minute and put you on the edge of your seat the next. The ending of this issue was deeply saddening and makes the Lizard a more tragic character. Silliness aside, I’m really excited to see what Slott has in store for Spidey and you should be too.
Hoax Hunters # 2
By: Michael Moreci, Steve Seeley and Axel Medellin
Okay, so I’ve now rewritten my opening sentence for this review about four times, because I want the words to be just right. Hoax Hunters is rapidly becoming one of my favorite series and as bold of a statement as that may be; the quality of issue two fully backs me up. I hope everyone listened to me when I told you to preorder this issue…just saying.
After the events of issue one the Hoax Hunters have found themselves in pretty hot water. Another mass animal death has been discovered and the circus in town doesn’t sit well with the group. The Hunters head to the circus to question a familiar face about the strange events and they definitely get more than bargained for. Now, struggling in the proverbial deep end, the Hunters find themselves stuck between a rock and a large set of teeth. What’s a Hoax Hunter to do?
I know that I stayed pretty vague above, but I didn’t want to give anything away because Moreci and Seeley don’t waste any time with this second issue. They jump right into the action and give readers a larger glimpse of the world that the Hoax Hunters are trying to cover up. The circus itself has an extremely ominous feel to it and I love that the circus folk definitely aren’t locals. I think what I liked most about this issue is that you get to see more of what the Hunters are capable of. Moreci and Seeley also leave their readers on one hell of a cliffhanger: a pretty big, toothy, ugly cliffhanger.
I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again; buy this book. Seriously, why are you still here? You can finish reading this later.
Fanboys vs. Zombies # 5
By: Sam Humphries and Jerry Gaylord
The Wrecking Crew is back and they’re not letting a little thing like the zombie apocalypse get them down. What’s a nerd to do when the dead rise from the grave and over take the western seaboard? Watch movies, play video games and chop some zombie heads, that’s what.
Now that the gang is out of the convention center they find out that San Diego is running rampant with zombies. The story then skips ahead a month later. The Wrecking Crew is down a few members; J-Mac met his untimely demise, while Rob and Burger both went missing. Now holed up in their homemade command center, Kyle, Missy, Amanda, Jenna and newcomer Brendan continue searching for their missing comrades. Of course with supplies running low, the group must decide to continue their search or move on to a safer area…if any still exists.
What I like most about this series is that it likes to not only poke fun at itself but also pay homages to different comic series. I feel that Humphries is really starting to have a lot of fun with these characters and their situation. Probably my favorite inside joke is when Kyle breaks the fourth wall and talks to the audience. It was a little jarring at first, but I think it shows how Kyle isn’t handling things well. Brendan is a lot of fun and I think could be a great addition to the crew. He is the perfect homage to Robert Kirkman’s Michonne from The Walking Dead, while also being his own character.
I think Humphries and Gaylord is an awesome combo and you can tell from reading Fanboys vs. Zombies that they have a lot of fun working together. I’m interested to see what they do from here. I’d like to see the Wrecking Crew take on some vampires or werewolves.
Before Watchmen: Rorschach # 1
By: Brian Azzarello, Len Wein, Lee Bermajo and John Higgins
Ever since Before Watchmen was announced Rorschach was the series that I most anticipated. You can ask anyone who’s read Watchmen who their favorite character is and ninety percent of them will say Rorschach. This comic is a prime example why he’s the fan favorite.
The story begins with Rorschach talking about how he is the way he is because of everyone. The crimes that we commit are the reason that heroes exist. After following a lead, Rorschach is lead down into the sewers where he finds an unwelcome surprise. After being outnumbered and left for dead, Rorschach makes his way out of the sewer to heal and get a little retribution. Of course while Rorschach is busy recuperating another body pops up in the alley and could be a sign there is something far more evil roaming the streets.
This is the book that I’ve been waiting for and Brian Azzarello and Lee Bermejo perfectly capture the grittiness of the original Watchmen. Azzarello does a great job at crafting a really intriguing set up to something bigger. Not a lot happens in this issue, yet I can’t wait to read more.
What I find the most compelling is the title character himself. It seems every time readers have seen Rorschach he kicks ass. It never seems like anyone can get the drop on him, but finally we get to see what happens when someone does. I think the final dialogue from Rorschach is the best and really sums up his attackers’ biggest mistake; they didn’t kill him when they had the chance. I can’t wait for the next issue and to find out more about this mystery murderer that’s happening in the background. I also think that Azzarello and Bermejo have really raised the bar for the other series.
Revival # 2
By: Tim Seeley and Mike Norton
After reading this second issue of Revival, I’ve now added meeting Tim Seeley and Mike Norton to my bucket list. These two have become one of my favorite comic dream teams (see Hoax Hunters above for one of my others). Seeley continues to turn the zombie genre on its head and just when you think all your questions are answered, he throws a few new ones in there.
Issue two picks up not long after the first issue ended. Dana and Martha both try to wrap their minds around what is happening with Martha and the other revivers. Shaken by Martha’s ‘death,’ Dana goes out to blow off a little steam and runs into her partner in a very unconventional manner. At the same time Martha is finding her own ways of blowing off a little steam. The real questions are what person or creature was making the terrible cries outside Lester Majak’s house? Who is this Mr. Abel? And where did he get his exorcism license?
Revival is definitely a one of its kind. It’s a very dark and compelling story that answers questions with questions. Seeley does a great job of hooking his readers and Norton creates brilliant art. The hard part about this issue and this series is that I can’t choose a favorite part becasue everything is vital to the story. It may not make itself evident at the moment but I know it will eventually. I think the part that gave me goose bumps the most was Martha after her ordeal. The look on her face was sad and frightening at the same time (Mostly frightening). I also need to give credit to Mr. Norton because his art sets the mood for the whole book. He’s able to create something very dark and makes your hair stand on end.
Tim and Mike, I want you guys to know that I applaud you both. Bravo!
– Joe D.