Review: Doctor Strange, Doctor Doom: Triumph and Torment by Roger Stern

Doctor Strange, Doctor Doom: Triumph and TormentDoctor Strange, Doctor Doom: Triumph and Torment by Roger Stern

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

***This is the second of my “Green Theme” Buddy Reads with the Shallow Readers, criteria being: well Dr. Doom’s entire wardrobe is green.***

Firstly I got this only for Mike Mignola’s art but was pleasantly surprised with the wordsmithing Roger Stern provides. Speaking of the art it’s not quite as polished as his later Hellboy work but it’s still pretty great considering the time period (here’s a sample).

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Review: The Wake by Scott Snyder, Sean Murphy (Illustrations)

The WakeThe Wake by Scott Snyder

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I was pretty invested in the story for the majority of this book.
It kind of ran off the rails toward the finish line, and (in my opinion) never really recovered the momentum it had during the first half.
The ending?
I’m not even sure what the hell happened…

So, it starts off in present day (or the past, depending on how you look at it) with a cetologist whale/dolphin/porpoise expert named Lee Archer. She gets an offer she can’t refuse from a government agentish guy, to help them with something they’ve discovered in the ocean that is making a whale-like call. They have the ‘animal’ hidden away in an illegal deep-sea drilling rig, and they need Archer to take a peek at it.
Hint: Turns out, it’s not a whale.

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Archer isn’t the only one who’s been called into check out this sucker out. There’s a folklore expert, a deep-sea hunter, and another scientist who happens to be the guy who got her thrown off of her last project.
Anyway, it soon becomes apparent that this creature is some sort of a chompy-mermaid with a hallucinogenic venom that squirts out of it’s eyes.
Worse, it’s got friends.
Lots and lots of friends that are tearing the underwater rig apart. And it looks like once they’re done eating Archer & Co., they’re headed toward the shoreline.
*cue dramatic music*

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Fast forward a couple of hundred years, and now we’re following the story of Leeward. A young lady with a dolphin who hunts the mermaids…and sells their eyeballs.

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The creatures have taken over the world (sort of) by causing tsunamis that flooded the shores, and drove the puny humans into their mouths.
Leeward is searching for this Lost Voice on the airwaves that she thinks holds the key to stopping the mer…whatevers
The government (such as it is) is after her, and she has to band together with pirates to find this Lost Message.
Oddly enough, it seems like this voice on the airwaves is coming from Archer.
But that can’t be true.
Or can it?

*cue the damn music again.*

Alright. If you haven’t read this, but plan to? Please don’t click the spoiler tag. The whole book hinges on keeping you in suspense as to what the hell these things are, and why they’re trying to eat us.
If you’ve read this, then you might understand why I think the ending jumped the shark just a little bit.
(view spoiler) https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1094534535

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Review: She-Hulk, Vol. 1: Law and Disorder by Charles Soule, Javier Pulido (Illustrator), Ron Wimberly (Illustrator)

She-Hulk, Vol. 1: Law and DisorderShe-Hulk, Vol. 1: Law and Disorder by Charles Soule

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

2.5 stars

Pink Taco Buddy read with my fellow Shallow Readers!
Criteria? Chicks as the title character or in a leading role.

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It’s time for me to feel lonely, I guess. And guys? I am so sorry!
I mean it! I feel HORRIBLE! I know that literally everyone else loved this (I checked…twice!), but I just didn’t think it was all that awesome.

Ok. The very first issue was great, and if I’d reviewed that by itself, I would have given it 4 stars. Easy.
She-Hulk does cute stuff, gets fired, helps out a villain’s widow, and gets enough money to set up a low-rent law firm.
Cute!
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Was I in love with the art?
Not so much.
But it was whimsical, and it fit in with the sort of silly/fun first couple of issues, so it was ok. The stories still weren’t WOWing me, but they were alright.
There was a Dr. Doom thing that led Jen to a meet with Daredevil for advice, and it was cute. I didn’t really care about the outcome of the plot, but it was Cute!

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Then it wasn’t cute.
It was FUGLY. FUG-LY!
There just aren’t even enough words out there for me to express my displeasure. I HATED the art in the last few issues.
HATED IT!
Please, pleasepleaseplease! Will somebody tell me that they are seeing the same thing that I am?!
Are you seriously telling me you didn’t notice this?

What. The. Fuck?!
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Again! THE FUCK?!
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I can’t even…
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The entire time I’m reading this I’m internally screaming, “What the hell is that stupid top-knot on her head?!“.
Did no one else have a reaction to the fact that Jen looked like a man with a penchant for granny buns?
You know what? Every time I look at that art, it just pisses me off.
I’m actually UPSET right now from having to copy and paste the links!
And, yes, I understand that I must sound like a crazy person.
*pant, pant*
See, this was going to be part of my Green buddy read, but I hated it so badly…BURN IT WITH FIRE!…that I decided to try to give myself a little time and distance before I wrote the review.
IT’S NOT HELPING!
I’m going to wrap this up, because my mouse keeps (all by itself!) hovering over the one star button.
Ok, I know that it wouldn’t be a fair rating. The first few issues were cute, and even though the last few (my opinion) were a bit stupid, the entire volume wasn’t a wash for me.
I HATE THAT FUCKING ART!

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Review: Supergirl, Vol. 4: Out of the Past by Michael Alan Nelson & Scott Lobdell

Supergirl, Vol. 4: Out of the PastSupergirl, Vol. 4: Out of the Past by Michael Alan Nelson

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

2.5 stars

Pink Taco Buddy Read with my fellow Shallow Readers!
Criteria for this one? Anything with a female lead.

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The problem with this volume isn’t the actual Supergirl issues. They’re ok.
Not great, just ok.
Supergirl has Kryptonite poisoning from her run in with H’el, so she takes off into space to ‘die alone’…or something. She runs into a planet that can become any other planet, and it needs her memories to become Krypton…because that’s the purpose of the planet.
But.
Not all is as it seems!
Duh.
Cyborg Superman is the one behind luring Kara to this place, and he has nefarious plans, yadda, yadda, yadda. To be honest, it didn’t make much of an impression on me one way or another. There’s a BIG REVEAL at the end, but since it has to do with all that ‘Let’s revive even more fucking people from Krypton‘ bullshit, that I’m not a super-duper fan of, I didn’t care as much as maybe I should have.
Still, it seems like there may be forward movement in Kara’s maturity level, and I consider that a good thing.
Inch by precious inch…

It was the need to add in all the confusing time travel shit that really killed this one for me. You’re basically dumped into an entirely unexplained storyline with Kara, Superman, and Superboy that somehow involves going back in time to stop H’el from wreaking havoc.
Except didn’t they just finish stopping H’el?
M’kay.
H’el is somehow pinging around the timeline, including alternate timelines, trying to save Krypton.
Wait for it…
So that he can then DESTROY Krypton!
What the actual fuck is going on here?!
I don’t’ even know when or where this story is taking place in all of these titles. I just finished Superman: Psi War which is volume 4 of that one, and there was no mention of any timey-wimey stuff in there.
You know what would help?
If these ‘crossover’ events would kinda-sorta match up with the corresponding volumes. Like, say for example, if I were to read something in Supergirl volume 4 that had to do with an event happening with Superman, the missing information could then be (I’m just spit-balling here) found in Superman volume 4.
Are they trying to get people to purchase more comics than necessary to finish out stories like this?
Oh, DC, you wily beast!

Only recommended for Super-fans of Supergirl.

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Review: New Avengers Vol. 3 – Other Worlds; by Jonathan Hickman

New Avengers, Vol. 3: Other WorldsNew Avengers, Vol. 3: Other Worlds by Jonathan Hickman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Ok, so this is about 3.5 stars for me…it’s kind of repetitive for the first half, because apparently the audience cannot grasp that the variables might change, but the outcome is the same, unless we see different Earth lineups of various Illuminati doing it. The art is OK, it works better in the Dr. Strange stuff than the rest…the Rags Morales stuff in the second half I prefer, it’s got fewer loose lines and more realism to it.

What I loved, is that the gang is getting info from Black Swan and pretty much having to guess what she means, everyone eventually figured out what she means…except for Tony Stark…he gets quite pissy about it, and I love that Reed, T’Challa, Beast all get it before he does like it is super obvious. It was a needed touch of humour, or we risk running into DC grit no joke territory…

Dr. Strange embarks to another plane of existence or something…to literally sell his soul…

Black Bolt kinda just stands there…as we know, but his brother Maximus seems like a sharp dude…however…didn’t he release the Terragen Mists into Earth? Shouldn’t he be like a super villain or something?? Or am I totally wrong….even he gets to talk down to Iron Stark.

We see that through observing, there is the same outcome, except one world, which is run by some heroes who are a cross between the Authority and the Justice Society/League. There’s a Sun God (Superman/Apollo), the dark knight (guy actually wears a helmet a la jousty days of ole) as the Midnighter/other Dark Knight fellow…Batsomethingerother? A speedster, who is Flash/Atomica from Crime Syndicate, a Green Alien who is Martian Manhunter, and a dude who’s a sorcerer and has Dr. Fate’s helmet…

I’m entirely unsure if this is intentionally a nod to these various characters, a knock, or Hickman just actually came up with them…

Anyhow, these guys seem to have done the impossible and fought off/survived the Incursion…may be the key for our Earth…

Oh, and Namor finally shows up, having pretty much said just gimme a shout when it’s time to smash shit up, I’m sick of the brainy think-a-thon. Which I also love. He’s nonchalant about it, figuring que sera sera….he and Panther then have an enlightening discussion which reveals Namor the philosopher…

All in all I enjoyed it a lot, but feel like we didn’t move very far forward with the narrative. Sure there’s some more revealed about Black Swan, so we know she’s something to be unsure of, but still…the last page left a great image for us, and Morales’ art is superb. Makes me jazzed to read it.


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Review: She-Hulk Vol. 1 Law and Disorder

She-Hulk, Vol. 1: Law and DisorderShe-Hulk, Vol. 1: Law and Disorder by Charles Soule

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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I’m gonna double down with this Green Taco review since I think that it fits the criteria for both of the current buddy-reads I’m doing with my Shallow Comic Reading pals. I’m guessing it’s cool, cause who isn’t down with a little D.P. Yep, talking about you Gavin.

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I couldn’t help but think of Marvel’s new Hawkeye and Daredevil series while enjoying She-Hulk. The lighthearted fun that helped define both of those two series is what makes She-Hulk such a fuckin blast. Soule includes everything from “size isn’t everything” comments to self-inflicted shock therapy to drunken girl fights. Lots to love. Soule does a good job of mixing up Jen’s legal side with her big, green, ass-kicking side. And what’s up the creepy legal aid and her monkey, Hei Hei?
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Review: Batman and the Mad Monk

Batman and the Mad MonkBatman and the Mad Monk by Matt Wagner

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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Batman and the Mad Monk is Matt Wagner’s follow up to Batman and the Monster Men . This is really a continuation of that story. Set early in Batman’s career, this one pays tribute to Year One and The Long Halloween for much of its ambience. These two books continue to bridge the gap between Batman’s war on organized crime and street thugs to his first contact with things more paranormal in nature. While Monster Men had that Frankenstein vibe, Mad Monk riffs on Dracula. It’s a little more Vlad Tepes and a little less Edward Cullen for you new-school vampire fans.
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Review: Superman, Vol. 4: Psi War by Scott Lobdell, Kenneth Rocafort (Illustrations), Aaron Kuder (Illustrations)

Superman, Vol. 4: Psi WarSuperman, Vol. 4: Psi War by Scott Lobdell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

3.5 stars

Warning: There may be spoilers in this review!
*snort*
As if anyone actually reads this title anymore…

I am so shocked that I didn’t hate this! Just, well, shocked!
Now, maybe I’m rating this higher than it deserves because it vastly exceeded my expectations for a Superman title lately, so feel free to take this with a grain of salt.

So what went right for me this time around?
Well, for starters, my biggest complaint with the recent direction of the Superman comics had been the way they were stressing the importance of his Kryptonian family, while Ma and Pa Kent were collecting worms six feet under.
This isn’t Detective Comics, you know?
Batman’s secret identity is Bruce Wayne, Clark Kent’s secret identity is Superman. Do you see the difference?
This time around, I saw more Clark than I have in a while.

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Another bonus for me was Kenneth Rocafort’s artwork. I absolutely love the way he draws Superman! My only complaint was that he didn’t draw every issue, but I’ll take what I can get.
I’d like all my comic book fangirl friends (the ones who keep telling me that I’m crazy for putting Supes on my Book Boyfriend list) to take a look at this please…
Yes, that means you, Kat!

*ahem*
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It’s also worth it to see Diana and Lois meet for the first time at Ms. Lane’s housewarming party.

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And even though I’ve been enjoying the whole Power Couple thing, I know that underneath it all, there’s only one woman for Clark. Unfortunately, poor Kent is stuck firmly in the friend zone.
Which makes Lois’ (and everyone else’s) reaction to Wonder Woman even better.

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Ok, this volume isn’t without its problems, and I guess now is as good a time as any to discuss them.
First, it seems to be kind of long and meandering. I mean, it all ties up in the end, but it takes a while to get there.
As the title suggests, this is all about psionic battles, and everyone knows that Superman is nearly invincible to everything except magic and mental attacks.
Well, hey! The good news is, there are plenty of bad guys in Superman’s rogue gallery to choose from. The bad news is, they couldn’t seem to pick just one.
Hector Hammond, the H.I.V.E. Queen, Pysycho Pirate *smothers laughter*, and even Brainiac (kind of) shows up in this thing.
Brainiac doesn’t technically fight, but he was the one who got the ball rolling, so to speak.
At any rate, it made the story seems to drag on and on.
Superman beats the bad guy, only to find another one waiting in the wings. He fights that one, and by the time they’re done, the first villain has recovered enough to start causing problems again.
I did like how Lobdell used the narrator, though. Nice touch!
Turning Lois into this, however, was not a nice touch:

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No, she doesn’t stay that way. And, yes, I like that she isn’t being portrayed as the Damsel in Distress.
But come on! Turning her into a superhero so she could ‘save’ Superman didn’t sit right with me.
*sniff, sniff* Something smells like pandering…
Lois can be smart, tough, and capable without powers. Don’t go there, authors!
Think: Batman! Hawkeye! Iron Man! Huntress! Black Widow! Green Arrow! Catwoman! Punisher!
It can be done, so do it.

So, I disliked the villains somewhat, and felt like the plot could have been streamlined a bit.
However, I enjoyed Rocafort’s incredible art, and thought that Lobdell was actually bringing the characters back to where they need to be for fans to fall in love with them again.
Not perfection, but way better than my low expectations were anticipating!

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Review: Glory: The Complete Saga

Glory: The Complete SagaGlory: The Complete Saga by Joe Keatinge

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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Heh, Pink Tacos…..Ok, now that’s out of the way.

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Glory: The Complete Saga was a seriously fun book for me. It took me back to a time when I would pick up a copy of Heavy Metal Magazine hoping to find some ridiculously violent, fantasy tale or sexy, sci-fi epic drawn by some kickass artist I’d never heard of. And get a little nipple action. Glory delivers on all that and then some. I have to admit that it was the eye catching cover that got my attention. Then I realized that it was a character created by Rob Liefeld and I almost put it back on the self. But, this is a re-imagining of the character he created in Image Comic’s original heyday. So I gave it a try with no prior knowledge of the character other than that and I wasn’t disappointed.
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Review: Green Hornet #1 by Kevin Smith

Kevin Smith's Green HornetKevin Smith’s Green Hornet by Kevin Smith
My rating: 3 of 5 stars


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This is issue #1 of Kevin Smith’s Green Hornet, which I read on Comixology for free! I read it last year, but re read for Green Theme week…that and I couldn’t find just issue one to review…since I didn’t read volume one, just the first issue.

It’s bright colours, splash, flashy, and a few jokes, but seems like Seth Rogen version…I would read more if I could, because my shallow buddies have good things to say…and really, what can you tell from one issue?


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