Comic shipments were delayed a day for us non-Canadians, so here are this week's offerings.
SECRET INVASION #4: The issue of Tony Stark possibly being a Skrull still has the potential of leaving a major sour taste in my mouth. But it's looking more and more like a complex mind game, which is a good story twist. The inclusion of the Hood and Earth's villains as defenders of the planet and the arrival of Thor and Bucky America make for one hell of an ending. Thumbs up!
TRINITY #6: After the action-heavy last couple of issues, this one's almost a bit of a relief. The tarot card part of the plot expands a bit, as we learn why Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman all represent Truth, Justice, and the American Way. It's an interesting analysis, if nothing else. I like it, though some might find it a bit dull. Thumbs in the middle.
FINAL CRISIS: REQUIEM: This issue expands on the Martian Manhunter's death scene from Final Crisis #1 and also serves as a eulogy to one of the best Silver Age characters in DC's history. I still think he'll be back in a couple of years, but this was still a great send-off, while also helping make the mystery of Libra's identity a little curiouser. Thumbs up!
DETECTIVE COMICS #846: A part of Batman RIP, Paul Dini brings back Hush. The dynamic of Hush wanting to be the only one to off Batman seems a little too similar to where Grant Morrison's heading with the Joker, but I'll play along. Unlike Dini's previous one-and-done's, this one's a five-parter, so come back for more. Thumbs up!
JOKER'S ASYLUM: PENGUIN #1: Now THIS is more like it! After last week's disappointment, we get a horrifically twisted tale of the Penguin and a deep look into his psychosis and motivation. It's a moving character piece that makes you sympathize for the poor guy ostracized for so long, just before you feel your stomach twist upon realizing how sick and twisted he really is. I loved this! Thumbs up!
BOOSTER GOLD #1,000,000: Ok, so the draw is supposedly futuristic "hero" Peter Platinum, but his appearance is brief and inconsequential. The ending sequence with Booster and Batman is actually pretty touching, but it's the two HUGE reveals at the end (one involving the true identity of Rip Hunter) that make this issue a perfect end to Geoff Johns and Jeff Katz's run on the title. The only bad thing to say here is that it can only go downhill from here without Johns and Katz's masterful work. Thumbs WAY up! If you see the trade hit the bookstore, BUY IT!
And for fun, it's RIP HUNTER'S CHALKBOARD OF DOOM! -Death leads to Darkness -Azrael comes and goes -For every positive, it's a negative -BOOSTER GOLD - ARMAGEDDON 2001?!? -Is Dibny the KEY?
ULTIMATE ORIGINS #2: This is a pretty straight-forward origin of Ultimate Captain America and it's fascinating to see him interact with FDR, but aside from a mysterious monolith, this issue doesn't tell you anything you don't already know. Thumbs in the middle, leaning down.
It's a shame you used the MARVEL logo on here because Geoff John's trifecta of books this week easily gave DC the win.
As mentioned, BOOSTER GOLD #1,000,000 was an excellent end to John's run. The Batman scene was nice, Pete Platinum was interesting and I'm sure we'll see him again, and Rip Hunter 'outing' himself to the readers that way makes me hope I'm never kidnapped by Degaton or Vandal Savage cause I'd totally spill the beans.
ACTION COMICS #687: The second John's book to really get me this week, by way of actually making me have feelings about Supergirl. I've hated Supergirl since she first popped up in SUPERMAN/BATMAN. Hated her through her solo series making me read issues with characters I like. Hated her stinking up the LOSH... do you see the pattern here? I really fucking hate her.
This issue, however, gives her some actual characterization. You really see the fear she has of Brainiac thanks to him attacking Krypton just before she left and her longing for Kandor makes me almost forget what a annoying cunt she is.
JUSTICE SOCIETY OF AMERICA #17: Last on our Geoff John's lovefest is this issue giving almost every character on the team a cool moment. Mr. Terriffic in church struggling with his beliefs (...or lack there of.) is an interesting plotline. Here's a guy who can do all the amazing things and is one of the smartest people in the world and has everything going for him, but it's killing him that he has no spiritual faith and a God has appeared on Earth and it can't see him. Wow!
Gog is scary, yet all he's doing is walking across the planet and helping people and doing good things with a huge smile on his face. He seems to be genuine in his actions of only wanting to do good... till the end when he see's that there is a war going on and his smile goes away. Shit is about to pick up.
Oh yeah, he gave Dr. Midnight his sight back, gave Sand 24 hours of uninterrupted sleep, and granted Power Girl's unasked wish to "go home.' which directly leads into the Annual in a couple weeks.
TRINITY: As much as I love Superman, I am totally not interested in this series. I'll grab the trades or at least read them in one sitting later on.
SECRET INVASION: I'm on strike from the main series. Won't read it, don't really care.
CAPTAIN BRITAIN AND MI:13: Holy Shit! THIS is how you bring a character back from the dead. Yeah, Brian just 'died' in the first issue and seeing as the title of the series IS his name, you knew he wasn't gonna stay dead, but Pete Wisdom releasing Merlin (along with MANY other evil people (like Cyttorak!)) who then brings back Brian who kills the Doctor Strange Skrull with Excalibur. Again... Holy Shit!
NOVA #15: The thing about this issue that I'm unhappy about is that it's leading into a damned SECRET INVASION crossover. Marvel needs to keep the good cosmic books far away from the shitty ones. Dan and Andy are doing such great work on NOVA and GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY without dragging them through the crapfest with the Skrulls.
Other then that, Nova seems to have lost Worldmind here and I'm kinda worried about that.
Yeah, a lot of good stuff this week. Booster Gold was so good, and I'm really dreading the new writing team on the book. Not that I have any evidence that whoever it is won't do a good job, it's just that the premise of the book requires the writer to have a really strong grasp of DC history and a genuine love for it that lets them write new stories that fit inside that framework. That's Geoff Johns right there, and I don't know who else can fit the bill as well as him.
Also picked up Captain America: White this week, and it's actually pretty good. Jeph Loeb hasn't been doing a lot (read: any) good work lately, but team him up with Tim Sale, and magick happens. No other way to explain it.
Oh, and I woudn't worry too much about the Worldmind. He's one of the book's only two main characters, and the book has no regular supporting cast. They need to keep him around. However, they also need to take him out of play for the Secret Invasion cross-over, because that leaves Rich without anyone to rely on, which is the whole premise of the event.
Edit: Yeah, Hellboy was really awesome this week too. That drawing of the Crooked Man just creeped me the fuck out.
What about Dark Tower? If you haven't read it yet, I'd suggest reading Talisman, Black House, Insomnia, and The Stand first. I was recommended The Devil in the White City on a thread here a few months ago and it is great.