By Brandy Dykhuizen and Jarrod Jones. Our Week In Review collects our thoughts on the comics that demand attention. Do you have a deep-rooted desire to know what we think about all your favorite books? Well. This is where you need to be.
The Six Million Dollar Man: Fall of Man #1 (of 5)
Written by Van Jensen.
Art by Ron Salas.
Colors by Mike Atiyeh.
Letters by Taylor Esposito.
BD: An unrepentantly silly retelling of the absolutely delightful 70s TV show of the same name, The Six Million Dollar Man: Fall of Man has the requisite nonstop action you’d likely expect, but comes up short on substance. We dive right into the action (literally, as Steve Austin falls out of a plane) in which our bionic man is guided by a helpful internal voice with a strange habit of cursing in binary. Recovery doesn’t take long, not with the help of the fictional US spy agency OSI. Colonel Austin is back on his super-fast feet in no time.
And here’s where things start to spaz all over the place. We meet Barney Hiller, the series’ unstable Seven Million Dollar Man and general thorn in Austin’s side. Almost immediately, Steve is taken over by his internal potty-mouthed programming, which directs him to engage in a whole laundry list of bad behavior (breaking and entering on government property, espionage, etc). Upon fleeing the scene, he encounters a group of Yakuza ninjas (what?) who are there to settle a grudge, but are thwarted by a dapper business man with torso-slicing laser eyes (huh?). And that’s pretty much a wrap.
It’s been quite some time since I’ve seen the reruns, so I can’t reliably say how true-to-form this retelling is. If it’s perpetual motion you seek, look no further. Perhaps the Bionic Woman will step in at some point and smooth over the mess the boys have made. Until then, enjoy the erratic goofiness of issue #1 – it practically promises to get more haywire next month.
6 out of 10
Detective Comics #936
Written by James Tynion IV.
Art by Alvaro Martinez; inks by Raul Fernandez.
Colors by Brad Anderson.
Letters by Marilyn Patrizio.
JJ: If you’re among the many Kate Kane uber-fans who felt a bit cheated that Detective Comics wasn’t returning to its Batwoman-centric glory for Rebirth, rest assured that ‘Tec is still primarily a one-woman show.
That’s by design. James Tynion IV knows the true narrative worth of Kate Kane, and has placed her center stage in his ambitious and so-far-pretty-damn-great Detective run. Kate’s leading a motley crew of Bat-Family members that, when assembled in their brilliantly-named secret base, The Belfry, resemble something you could call The Gotham Titans: Spoiler, Orphan, Red Robin, and *sigh* a conspicuously youthful and inexplicably reformed Clayface round out the rest of Detective‘s supporting cast. And while it would seem that some of those members serve more of a greater purpose than others (at least, for now), DC’s namesake is definitely Kate Kane’s turf.
Remember what I said about “great narrative worth?” Kate’s history, her family, and who she is plays as the epicenter of “Army of Shadows”, the third part of Tynion’s “Rise of the Batmen” saga. Kate’s moping about her new position as Batman’s second-in-command, drowning her sorrows in a pity party with former squeeze Renee Montoya instead of proactively scouring the rooftops of Gotham, all while the Dark Knight gets tuned up by a super-secret cabal of Arkham Knights and their shadowy leader. The reveal of who that leader is comes with its own baggage (Batwoman readers may call foul), but it still hits with the appropriate might. What happens next is anyone’s guess, but there’s little doubt that Batwoman will be right in the middle of it.
7 out of 10
The Violent #5
Written and Lettered by Ed Brisson.
Art by Adam Gorham.
Colors by Michael Garland.
BD: From the beginning, The Violent set out to invade readers’ comfort zones and confront us with a world largely hidden from view. Some characters made a habit of hiding their own humanity from themselves in order to slog through the pain of another day. Others quickly fell into various circles of Hell, or made it their business to send former friends there a little sooner than they anticipated. The first few issues took care to underscore the importance of choice, holding our attention as the protagonists teetered along the fractured borders of “right” and “wrong.”
However, as the drama heightened and the action pulsed, loose ends have failed to come together; many components of the larger puzzle have been merely swept under the rug. We knew Becky and Mason weren’t going to be able to make it last. And of course the very title points towards Mason’s bloody rampage during his complete psychotic break. But while the art remained fantastic and the commotion didn’t miss a beat, something was lost in tone and depth. Part of The Violent’s initial appeal was that it felt like a labor of love – a baring of the soul, even. We were asked to come take a walk through a painful malady in hopes that sharing could lead to recovery.
Instead we’re whisked through The Violent‘s final chapters without much cause for empathy. For a book that started out reading like a love letter towards the city of Vancouver, it ended on an oddly rushed and hollow note, almost as if it was running away from itself.
6 out of 10
From earlier this week —
Agree? Disagree? What books are YOU reading this week? We want to know! Tell us about those feelings of yours in the comments section below.