Wednesday, September 12, 2007

More comic reviews: Seven Types of Continuity, Part One

Daredevil #100. I'm trying to figure out when Matt Murdock became a substitute for all the male comic book fans who can't get a date to save their lives, because it's turned into the Marvel version of Pass Go, Collect $200: Date Daredevil, Collect A Dirt Nap. (How many times has Elektra died now?) But if you're going to do a milestone book, this is the way to do it, with former artists for the flashbacks and a reprint which makes the current issue feel like a homage. A prime example of Marvel continuity porn (which is at heart softcore).

Booster Gold #2. A series which would not exist without continuity, the second issue is both a done-in-one and an extension of a mystery which began in issue #1. Think time travel through potential or real alternate universes, sort of like DC's answer to Exiles. Because Geoff johns is writing it, you don't need footnotes to understand the references, and the in-jokes (bwah-ha-ha) are actually in-jokes and not necessary plot or character points. Plus it's fun! Isn't it great when comics are fun? Whatever happened to fun?

Stormwatch #11. Speaking of curses, here's evidence of the Make Matthew Happy, Get Cancelled After Issue 12 curse. Stormwatch in its current incarnation is about to go the way of NextWave and Irredeemable Ant-Man as part of this year's entry in WildStorm's never-ending series of reboots. Which is too bad, because this is a smart character-driven series where black and white constantly shade into gray (with, currently, meh art) . Judging by the last panel, there's a major house-cleaning (and butt-kicking) coming up. After that, who knows? I'll probably pick up the next incarnation out of respect for all the others I've followed since the days when Warren Ellis was writing it, so we'll see . . .

Parade (with fireworks) #1. A based-on-a-true-story comic by artist/writer Mike Cavallaro, with whom I'm totally unfamiliar. The light, cartoony style of the artwork belies the seriousness of the story, which is a flashback from a prison cell to the days of pre-Mussolini Italy, when fascism and socialism were on a collision course. I'm just guessing, but I get the feeling from the final page that this all-too-real version of the Tybalt-Mercutio duel is going to result in this story's Romeo picking up a gun and blasting away like a Chicago gangster.

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