I expected a whole lot out of this week. I'm not quite sure it delivered. While nothing was flat out bad, most issues I picked up had small problems keeping me from that jaw-dropped happiness.
The only issue that 100% delivered, though, was Justice Society of America #18. If any of you had dropped the book amidst the Kingdom Come-induced lull (a lull I bet is going to feel a lot less boring when re-reading the story as a complete collection), you really should have jumped back on board once 50-foot tall Gog began roaming the Earth with his miracles. And, the best part about this issue was that the JSA seems to have finally reached their decision on how to handle the big guy, based on a couple of choices Gog made along the way.
As the cover of this issue gave away, yes, Gog creates Magog here. But, that isn't even the most interesting part of the character work done here by Geoff Johns. Subtly (if you haven't already learned this from solicitations) Johns begins showing which heroes will be standing against their teammates in the name of Gog, based on different personal reactions to the giant's actions. Quickly, the story is becoming a fantastic tale of "be careful what you wish for" mixed with questions of commitments and loyalty. The only question mark left from me regarding this arc isn't will it deliver, but rather, how the heck is the JSA going to get rid of Gog?
After JSA, though, there are slight flaws with every other issue I read this week. And, since there were a good deal of issues in my Buy Pile, we're going to do this lightning round style.
Final Crisis: Superman Beyond #1: While the story was cryptic and confusing, it's clear Morrison is trying to tell us something about the nature of the Monitors here, as well as clues for who the biggest baddie in "Final Crisis" will be. However, the 3D glasses got old very fast, and the story was a little too cryptic and hokey for my tastes.
Final Crisis: Rogues Revenge #2: If you like the Rogues, this was a fantastic character tale. If not, you can skip this issue and go right to the third issue without missing out on any key story elements. There is a slight clue to Libra's identity here (I think) but it's really not worth picking up the book for if you don't love Rogues.
DC Universe: Last Will and Testament: I wanted to love this book, I really did. And a good portion of it (the small Batman family section, Rocky's job on Challenger Mountain, Donna Troy and Wonder Woman, Hal's closing line) was fantastic. But, the better portion of the story is based around Geo-Force hunting down Deathstroke over Terra's death... who cares about that storyline with "Final Crisis" going on? What a waste of an otherwise great character issue.
Superman #679: James Robinson's "Superman" is not getting any better. Once again this month, we get little more than a few punches exchanged between Atlas and Superman. Three issues of this now! This all could have been an issue and a half at best. What a waste of time.
X-Force #6: The issue certainly delivered on the bodycount, but the entire book featured art that was much too dark (yes even darker than previous issues) to really tell what is going on. On top of that, Every wraps up a little too cleanly for my tastes. It's like writers Craig Kyle and Chris Yost decided at the very last minute they needed to take their feet off the gas in order to save some bullets in the chamber for future issues. How's that for mixing metaphors?
X-Men Legacy #215: I really love this series. HOWEVER, once again here, Scott Summers is written like a spoiled prick. I really don't know what is wrong with these guys, but come on now Mike Carey -- there is no way in the world that Scott truly thinks Professor X and Mr. Sinister are on the same level in terms of manipulation. Not after all the stuff Sinister has put Scott through, between the childhood experiments to the cloning of Jean and fixing his marraige to the whole turning Maddie evil thing -- Sinister is Cyclops' archvillain 1B to Apocalypse's 1A. I would have liked a whole lot less anger from Scott here and a whole lot more level-headedness... you know, like he should be acting.
Ultimate X-Men #97: The conclusion of a great arc featuring a mutant-boosting drug called Banshee. Unfortunately, it seems writer Aron Coleite was really hamstrung by the impending "Ultimatum," because this story wrapped up much too cleanly for my tastes. What could have been a great ongoing theme with the drug addiction and Wolverine's past was squandered.
That's it. As I said, disappointment all around. Oh well.