Why comics are awesome: Odds 'n' sods from this week's releases

No reviews this week, just some little things that made me smile, because comics are awesome.

Batman can say stuff like this:

And comics fans just think, "Well, sure. I mean, obviously that makes sense."

It's rare that writers let Batman succumb to his rage, but Morrison does, and as bleak as this issue is, it really works. It's a gut-wrenching issue, setting up what will probably be a gut-wrenching finale.

Joe Casey, Dan McDaid, Paul Maybury, and Ulises Farina look at something like Pacific Rim and laugh their asses off, because they can do this without spending the gross domestic product of several nations.

Dark Horse has published the third Grendel Omnibus, which finally reprints issues #20-22 of the Comico series, the ones drawn by Hannibal King in which Matt Wagner decides to turn his story into a centuries-spanning epic. If you don't own the original issues, this is the first time they've ever been reprinted, and the reproduction is very nice:

Grendel, of course, is a wonderful series, and it's nice that Dark Horse is giving it a nice trade paperback treatment. Especially because they were able to reprint these issues!

In an out-of-continuity book starring a presumably one-off villain, James Gordon (and writer David Tischman) stop for a moment to remind us that, yes, there was another villain named Abattoir, because of course there was. Tischman even gives the two villains similar reasons for doing what they do. I guess he just really dug the whole concept!

Batman smiles! That's always fun!

(One thing that was not awesome about the issue: the death of the cop. It seemed utterly pointless. Blech.)

The first volume of Persia Blues (of 3, I think) came out this week, and it looks pretty cool. Dara Naraghi tells the story of a modern Iranian woman who also has an active fantasy life, and Brent Bowman does a nice job distinguishing the two aspects of her personality. I'll probably have a review of this coming up, but I just thought I'd mention it in case you're interested in reading a comic about a culture that Americans know very little about.

I was hoping that Howard Chaykin's art in black and white wouldn't disappoint, and while some of his figures are still obviously Photoshopped into backgrounds, for the most part, the slickness of his color art is lacking from Satellite Sam, which means it's the best Chaykin art I've seen in a long, long time.

It's a decent first issue, too - Fraction gets the frenetic pace of live television pretty well, and the mystery is set up decently enough. Is this an ongoing? I'm not sure how that will work. We'll see!

I don't know much about Science Fiction by Joe Ollmann, but it sounds pretty neat. It does contain this panel, however:

Ollman's commitment to the 9-panel grid is downright Giffen-esque, too, and that's another reason comics are awesome: I can say something is "Giffen-esque" and 95% of the people reading this know what I mean. COMICS!!!!

Whenever Marvel or DC dives into their archives and dredges up some old stuff, I'm reminded about how many cool comics are out there by excellent creators. So this week we get Wolverine by Larry Hama and Marc Silvestri volume 1, which is mis-named a bit, but whatever. It collects 7 issues of the Wolverine ongoing, but it also collects The Jungle Adventure by Walt Simonson and Mike Mignola and Bloodlust by Alan Davis. I already own Bloodlust (it remains one of my favorite Wolverine stories) but not the rest of this, so I'm sure I'll enjoy it. If only because I love Silvestri's wacked-out Lady Deathstrike:

This wasn't even a particularly brilliant week in comics, either - everything I read was solid but not spectacular. There was enough, however, to remind me that comics remain awesome. Let's all raise a glass of Belgian Red (the best beer I've ever tasted) to comics!!!!

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