Tuesday, December 9, 2008

This week's comic book expectations

CLICK HERE for the full list of comic releases for the week.

When you think about DC crossovers of the past, you think "Crisis on Infinite Earths," and "Legends," and "Zero Hour," and "Final Crisis," and... wait a minute. "Final Crisis" is still going.

Contrary to the popular rumor started by DC's HORRIBLE shipping schedule, "Final Crisis" and all its bi-products is still going on, as the series (finally) makes its return on Wednesday. And if you think I'm exaggerating, I just looked it up -- the last "Final Crisis" book to hit the stands was "Final Crisis: Resist" on NOVEMBER 5!

Still, this week we're treated to the series' big return, making the book I am most looking forward to on Wednesday Final Crisis #5. Just as a quick recap: Humanity is screwed, Darkseid took over for Dan Turpin, Batman is captured, Superman off in the Multiverse -- and they're still printing the Daily Planet. Who said Newspapers were outdated?

So what are we looking for here? Well, Barry Allen still has that plan of his, Mr. Terrific and Alan Scott are still holding down the fort, and we've still yet to see who the biggest bad guy of all is (it's supposedly not Darkseid!).

Final Crisis: Revelations #4 is also scheduled to hit stands, and frankly I think this tie-in series has been stronger than the main book. Cain has risen in the form of Vandal Savage, and he's coming after a little revenge on the Spectre. But more than the action, this series has excelled in putting a few very biblical figures into uncertain, even human, conditions, to the point where they are questioning what they know... and that's always fun to read! Greg Rucka has also succeeded in showing off more of a cross section of what this post-Anti-Life world has been like.

DC is far from finished with their big books this week, though. Justice League #27 marks the return of the Milestone characters to the DC universe, and the JLA is going to meet Icon and Hardware first-hand. Unfortunately, this is also (eventually) going to mean Milestone characters on the JLA roster. And while I know there are plenty of Milestone fans out there, as far as I am concerned there are more than enough good DC characters going unused that we don't need these guys on the JLA. Oh well, I guess.

Booster Gold #15 is Dan Jurgens first issue at the helm since his original series was canceled at issue #25. I am very excited about this, only because I'm always worried when one of my favorite series loses its writer (in this case, Geoff Johns and Jeff Katz left after the 12th issue), so the fact that Jurgens, the series artist and the character's creator, is taking over is just about as good as it could get. On top of that, this issue features a fan-favorite character, which shows off the value of time-traveling stories, Ralph "Elongated Man" Dibney. Gotta love the old JLI connection.

Speaking of old creators coming back, Detective Comics #851 is the first of a two-part story (part two is "Batman #683") written by Denny O'Neil! The story, called "Last Days of Gotham" under the "Last Rites" banner, promises to look at how Gotham City has changed in the absence of Batman... who we still aren't sure of his fate... should be a good read, nonetheless.

And all that doesn't even mention Action Comics #872, part seven of "New Krypton," which will feature Kal freeing other cities from Brainiac's ship and Lex Luthor experimenting on Brainiac himself... which is just never a smart idea.

There isn't NEARLY as much from Marvel this week, although there is one issue I am guessing just about every mainstream comic fan is going to have to pick up, Secret Invasion: Dark Reign #1. Brian Bendis promised this issue would better explain what each member of this dark Illuminati (I am sick of that word) has to gain, which is good, since I don't see what Emma Frost or Doctor Doom are doing there (since Emma is supposed to be a good guy and Doom shouldn't be lowering himself to their level), but it should still be an interesting explanation. Of course, we won't get the explanation I really want from Bendis, which is how he could possibly screw up a great idea like "Secret Invasion" so royally.

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