It’s finally a non-Secret Wars edition! As always, these are non-spoilery.
Material #1 – This is definitely a “thinker.” There are times when the comic book threatens to feel more like a term paper (footnotes included) with some scratchily drawn pictures to accompany it. This can be both a good and bad thing. Like Kot’s other book I’m reading, The Surface, there are times when it can feel ever so slightly clunky. Characters feel a bit like M.O.D.O.Ps— MOuthpieces, Designed Only to Pontificate. But not every character is like that. And when you’re grasping for some pretty complex ideas, you’re going to lose a lot of words and in a graphic format that might require some shortcuts that seems a little clunky at the start. My general feeling after reading the first issue is that this could be a really interesting read. But I’m not sure a monthly format is where I, personally, will find this the most satisfying. So I might end up waiting for the trade.
Bizzaro #1 – Now for something completely different… humor is difficult. What might land perfectly for one person might not do much of anything for another. I landed somewhere in the middle on this book. I loved the art and style of it, but I found myself not being that drawn into the story and not finding it that funny. It might be that the Bizarro syntax joke can both make reading the book slightly confusing and wear thin pretty quickly. But it’s worth checking out. Maybe the humor will be more to your liking. The book itself is certainly well executed.
Bat-Mite #1 – To illustrate the point, I really enjoyed Bat-Mite. It has an easy, animated style and it’s fun to see Bat-Mite play off the serious Batman and generally be a real nuisance. But the book also has a pretty strong story at it’s center that hooked me in. The humor felt a bit more at ease, and I found myself smiling and laughing a bit here and there. I’ll pick up the next issue.
Midnighter #1 – So, super-violent gay superhero? Seemed interesting. I read the first volume of The Authority and I liked it pretty well, I just never kept up with it. I have zero clue what pretzels have been folded and unfolded since then. I have no idea if this takes place in the DCU or somewhere else. You’re kind of thrown into the deep end with the book. But it’s easy enough to catch up. I liked the central character, and I liked the approach of the book. I’ll definitely be checking out future issues.
Sons of the Devil #1 – Picked this one up on a whim, really. It’s a bit hard to see what the overall shape of the story will be from the first issue. We meet Klay, an orphan who’s life has been rough and doesn’t look to be getting any less rough from the events in this comic. Oh, and one of his eyes is red and one is blue. And he might be the chosen one of some cult. The characters are well rendered and the story is set up well enough. It’ll take a couple more issues to see how this actually shakes out. I am slightly maddened by the way the lead character’s face is rendered, though. It’s a very tiny nitpick for art that is generally well done. It’s just weird because I can’t figure out what the little scratch lines on the character’s nose are supposed to represent! They kind of look like the lines of his beard… but on the bridge of his nose. Anyway, if that’s the biggest issue I have, then it’s clear they are doing a lot of other stuff right.
Batman #41 – I actually read this the day it came out, over lunch. I’ve loved the Snyder/Capullo run on Batman. Although Batman has had a couple replacements over the years, who exactly is taking up the mantle really sets this apart. It’s an interesting, fun set-up. The team managed to keep a few surprises after all the teases of the new Batman. I won’t spoil, but I will say I hope DCC is working on at least a couple more action figures in the Capullo designer line.
Groot #1 – I liked Guardians of the Galaxy before everyone else did! So give me my ribbon! That being said, the Bendis-written Guardians hasn’t done much for me. It’s not been bad, it just didn’t have the old DNA magic. I keep meaning to try out Skottie Young’s Rocket Raccoon, but at this point I might just wait to pick up the first trade. That being said, I didn’t want to miss out on Groot. I’m glad I didn’t. The team of Groot and Rocket is pretty classic, of course, and I liked the focus on the big ol’ tree. The art is fun and lively and perfectly suits the script. Definitely picking up more of this one.