This was a great week for reading comic books, with a promising story in the lastest issue of Action Comics and Legion of Super-Heroes, and the always excellent All-Star Superman. And I didn't expect the new issue of Dan Dare to come out, but it was icing on the cake. So I hated having to wait one extra day to buy them because of the Memorial Day holiday.
Comic books for the week of Thursday, May 29, 2008:
Dan Dare #6 (of 7) (Virgin Comics)
Legion of Super-Heroes #42 (DC Comics)
Action Comics #865 (DC Comics)
All-Star Superman #11 (of 12) (DC Comics)
Dan Dare #6 (of 7) (Virgin Comics) * * * * *
The issue has a great cover of Space Marines, and Space Marines are Marines in whatever timeline. This issue opens with Dan Dare having turned himself over to the Mekons, but not as a sacrificial lamb. Throughout this mini-series Dan Dare acts in that sometimes cliched stiff upper lip cool Brithish personality, yet this series is anything but hackneyed or cliched. He acts with impeccable manners whether dealing with the enemy, promoting junior and unappreciated but talented officers, and cutting off weak willed admirals off at the knees, or charging the fleet into point blank action with the enemy. His cool inspires those who serve under him to work harder and reach higher than they thought they had the ability to reach. It ends with the caption, "To be concluded" and I hope this won't be the last Dan Dare mini-series.
Legion of Super-Heroes #42 (DC Comics) * * * * *
This issue opens with Legionnaires waking up to find new style uniforms mysteriously appearing in their rooms. A Legion team goes to Rimbor, Ultra-Boy's home planet, where he is a fugitive, to fight more destroyer aliens, who seem to be immune to past tactics that defeated their predecessors. And United Planets political enemies at home prepare to move against the Legion. The action is not mindless fisticuffs. We see the Legion have to think on their feet to defeat the aliens, and the political intrigue looming against the Legion has me wating for next month's issue.
Action Comics #865 (DC Comics) * * * * *
Jesus Merino is an excellent fill-in artist, as Gary Frank takes a break after the Superman and the Legion of Super-Heroes to return with the next issue to begin a Brainiac story. This one issue story does not read like a filler or just a fluff issue. The cover is a chilling picture of Toyman laying on top of a bed covered with various version of Superman dolls and action figures. It deals with tow stories, one in the present as he kidnaps Jimmy Olsen for an interview, and another, drawn in a different art style, reprising Toyman's origins. Nothing is really "ret-conned" just some details added that I wasn't familiar with, but fit with past stories.It also deals with the apparent change in Toyman's personality, when his fight against adults changed to kidnapping children and holding them in cages, and eventually killing Cat Grant's only son. She was a gossip and entertainment reporter for the Daily Planet, who flirted with Clark and all the other male members of the staff. She left the paper to move to the West Coast after his death. This story offers a plausible explanation for Toyman's descent to threatening children. It also shows how Toyman is no less insane.
All-Star Superman #11 (of 12) (DC Comics) * * * * *
Time is running out on Superman, and Lex Luthor has one last surprise for authorities when they take him to the electric chair to pay for his many crimes. The cover shows Clark looking at a computer monitor with the Daily Planet headline of the century Superman Dead. Well, not yet, but he has one more labor to perform as he battles a very unexpected ally of Lex Luthor. It's too bad that the next issue will probably be the last, as Frank Quitely has other projects scheduled in the near future. This is the best Superman story I have read for many years.
Some upcoming titles for next week, Wednesday, June 4, 2008:
Justice Society of America #16 (DC Comics)
Noble Causes #34 (Image Comics)
Tor #2 (of 6) (DC Comics)
Ultimate Origins #1 (Marvel)
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