Monday 23 January 2012


The One...
1x03 Griff Rhys Jones


In my quest to get caught up, I'm generally starting with series where I'm three or more issues behind.

Batgirl #3 by Gail Simone & Ardian Syaf
I last read Batgirl nearly 14 weeks ago. A lot of people seem to be loving this book but I wasn't sold (only enough to commit myself to at least finish the current story arc), and this issue does little to change my mind. Nice cliffhanger-resolving action with a twist at the start, but followed with too much business with Nightwing told in an overlong fashion. I thought this would be the end to said arc, but it's an aside. Next time... maybe...

Batgirl #4 by Gail Simone & Ardian Syaf
..."yes", here it is. Much better, this one. Mirror's a great idea for a villain and he's well dealt with in their final battle. And despite saying I'd be leaving the book here, Simone pulls out a cliffhanger too intriguing to leave hanging. Guess Batgirl has me for at least a little longer... and so...

Batgirl #5 by Gail Simone, Ardian Syaf & Vicente Cifuentes
...I would've just listed these together if I hadn't written comments on each one when I wasn't expecting to read them all. As for this one, I find the stuff with Barbara's mum -- sorry, mom -- a bit unconvincing. After, what, a decade away, through Barbara's teens and young adulthood, she just turns up on her doorstep and they just pop out for a coffee? Don't buy it. Meanwhile, there's another intriguing superhero-y plot kicking off.
So my conclusion about Simone's writing, after five issues: don't buy her character/drama stuff, but the superheroics are pretty good.

Batman #3, #4 & #5 by Scott Snyder & Greg Capullo
This is easily the best comic covered in this post... or quite a lot of other posts, to be honest. It feels like reading a classic in the making. CBR gave #5 the full five stars last week; personally I enjoyed the build up to it more -- lots of tension and revelations and action -- but it's all excellent.

Justice League #3 & #4 by Geoff Johns & Jim Lee
The more you read, the more you can see why comic fans complain about decompressed storytelling in modern books -- even reading two issues back to back, it doesn't feel like things have moved on a great deal. That doesn't mean there's not good stuff in here, but it can take its time actually moving the plot forward, and when there's only about 20-22 pages an issue, for the prices they charge, that can feel a bit frustrating.

Uncanny X-Men #4 by Kieron Gillen & Brandon Peterson
Why would you relaunch a series only to keep telling stories reliant on events from the past? Other than as a cynical sales tactic, of course.

Wolverine and the X-Men #4 by Jason Aaron & Nick Bradshaw
Some intriguing stories being set up, once you decipher them from the mass of references to other books and past storylines. And American comics creators wonder why their sales are dropping! Old fans get fed up with the number of books they're expected to buy at increasingly high prices, new fans find it all too dense and self-referential to get on board with... plus the number of books they might need to buy at increasingly high prices. But it explained enough for me to follow in the end, and the first three issues were strong enough that I'll stick with it for now. Not so sure about Uncanny's long-term future in my reading...


Russell T Davies creates new children’s BBC drama
by Jack Seale (from Radio Times)
Co-created with Sarah Jane Adventures' head writer Phil Ford, it's called Aliens vs Wizards. Sounds cool.