WHAT IS THE BUY PILE?
Every week Hannibal Tabu (winner of the 2012 Top Cow Talent Hunt/2018-2019 City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs Cultural Trailblazer/blogger/novelist/poet/jackass on Twitter/head honcho of Komplicated) takes on an between seven to thirteen reviews (or so) to share his opinions with you. Thursday afternoons you'll be able to get those thoughts (and they're just the opinions of one guy, so calm down) about all of that ... which goes something like this ...
THE BUY PILE FOR MAY 15, 2019
Ironheart #6 (Marvel Comics)
This self-contained issue is a delight as the title hero goes looking for the latest Spider-Man, who has no idea what he's fallen into. This very, very smart script from Eve Ewing perfectly balances characterization (with great nuance), plot development and spectacle, nimbly depicted by Kevin Libranda, Matt Milla and Clayton Cowles. This run is doing a great job of defining a legacy for Ironheart outside of the shadow of Tony Stark. RATING: BUY
Life comes at you kind of fast in Battlestar Galactica Classic #4, chock full of double crosses, interspecies diplomacy, mustache twirling villainy and emotional twists. The uneven pacing makes these elements interesting to navigate, and the coloring is a little too X-Files-ish, but this isn't bad. RATING: HONORABLE MENTION.
Did you like Sheriff of Babylon? Well, American Carnage #7 takes some of the same vibe and transports it stateside, with tense conversations and blood-soaked proclamations. The pacing is slow for a periodical, but the storytelling chops are there. If you're very patient, this might be right for you. RATING: HONORABLE MENTION.
James Bond 007 #7 did an okay job establishing Goldfinger as a super villain and putting Oddjob (now known as John Kim) in a sympathetic role, but it has too little story meat on the bones of its plot to really go anywhere, despite two very charming scenes. RATING: HONORABLE MENTION
The premise of Fairlady #2 is solid, a self contained mystery procedural dancing between fantasy and science fiction. The execution rushed the conclusion, needing another few pages to establish the reveal. The testy protagonist is engaging, but the supporting cast needs some beefing up. RATING: HONORABLE MENTION.
Star Wars Age Of Rebellion Lando Calrissian #1 wasn't very "Lando-ish" as he's bad at gambling, bad at running things and bad at picking partners. Not exactly a book, like the Double of Nothing series (or even when he robbed the Emperor) that shows you Lando living his best (and most entertaining) life. RATING: MEH.
Aquaman #48 was, in essence, an entire issue of Arthur Curry reading a magical Wikipedia entry about himself. Hard pass. RATING: MEH.
Transformers #5 gave a frustratingly brief look at the orator who could drive a world to war, but otherwise kept plodding at this frustratingly languid pace. This issue's quiet ... too quiet. RATING: MEH.
Peter Parker borrows a page from the Doreen Green playbook in War Of The Realms Spider-Man And The League Of Realms #1, where he's in way over his head yet somehow manages to do exactly what he needs to do. Weak supporting cast, super lame and possibly culturally insensitive motivations, but the Spider shines. RATING: MEH.
The best part of Justice League #24 was a geriatric quartet of Legion of Doom members, doing what is both unthinkable and totally in character for them. There are good ideas, like reverse engineering one of the oldest bits of superhero technology, and less interesting ones, like Batman building tech beyond his weight class, but in the end, it doesn't leave much of an impression, so ... RATING: MEH.
Star Wars #66 had some decent dramatic moments as Leia finally confronts the person who betrayed her many issues back, while Luke is a waste of space and Han stands around doing nothing. Don't even get started on Chewie. There were really great elements here, but it is surely not paced for monthly publication. RATING: MEH.
WHAT'S THE PROGNOSIS?
Let's all be grateful that nothing was terrible, so even with the one great book, this week wins.
Have you checked out season four of the free web comic Project Wildfire: The Once and Future King? Every week catch a page of the story for the best possible price: "free."
The writer of this column isn't just a jerk who spews his opinions -- he writes stuff too. A lot. Like what? You can get Scoundrel (historical fiction set in 1981 east Los Angeles), Irrational Numbers: Addition (a supernatural historical fiction saga with vampires), Project Wildfire: Enter Project Torrent (a collected superhero web comic), The Crown: Ascension and Faraway, five bucks a piece, or spend a few more dollars and get New Money #1 from Canon Comics, the rambunctious tale of four multimillionaires running wild in Los Angeles, a story in Watson and Holmes Volume 2 co-plotted by 2 Guns creator Steven Grant, two books from Stranger Comics -- Waso: Will To Power and the sequel Waso: Gathering Wind (the tale of a young man who had leadership thrust upon him after a tragedy), or Fathom Sourcebook #1, Soulfire Sourcebook #1, Executive Assistant Iris Sourcebook #1 and Aspen Universe Sourcebook, the official guides to those Aspen Comics franchises. Love these reviews? It'd be great if you picked up a copy. Hate these reviews? Find out what this guy thinks is so freakin' great. There's free sample chapters too, and all proceeds to towards the care and maintenance of his kids ... oh, and to buy comic books, of course. There’s also a bunch of great stuff -- fantasy, superhero stuff, magical realism and more -- available from this writer on Amazon. What are you waiting for? Go buy a freakin' book already!
Got a comic you think should be reviewed in The Buy Pile? If we get a PDF of a fairly normal length comic (i.e. "less than 64 pages") by no later than 24 hours before the actual issue arrives in stores (and sorry, we can only review comics people can go to stores and buy), we guarantee to try and review the work, if remembered. Physical comics? Geddouttahere. Too much drama to store with diminishing resources. If you send it in more than two days before comics come out, the possibility of it being forgotten increases exponentially. Oh, you should use the contact form as the CBR email address hasn't been regularly checked since George W. Bush was in office. Sorry!