Weekly Comics Roundup – June 4th

It’s been a while since I shared some of my favorite comic picks of the week.  We are back again to talk about some of the books that hit the stands this week.

1394502118000-XXX-BATMAN-GREEN-HORNET-COMICS-jy-3150-Batman 66 meets the Green Hornet #1

There is a lot in this book for me to love.  First off it’s written by Kevin Smith and Ralph Garman.  I’m a big fan of both of them and they are the hosts of one of my favorite podcasts, Hollywood Babble-On.  Secondly, I simply love the Adam West Batman.  So this was like a perfect combination for me.

I never really got into the Green Hornet however.  I’m vaguely aware of his backstory and I’ve seen an episode or two of the old sixties TV show, but I never saw the original Batman/Green Hornet cross over episode that this series is a sequel to.  However I never felt like I was missing out on anything, as they do a good job of catching you on anything important that you may have missed.

This first issue is very much in line with the other Batman 66 title from DC, it has captured the campy, fun spirit of the old TV show.  There is a lot to be said for a book that is simply fun, and that is exactly what this book is, fun.  Reading it put a smile on my face and made me happy.

Batman Eternal #9Batman_Eternal_Vol_1-9_Cover-1_Teaser

I wasn’t sure about the Batman Eternal story when it was announced.  First off it’s a weekly book which feels like a marketing gimmick to me.  DC has been pushing far too many gimmicks in their books since the New 52 launched.

I am a sucker for Bat books and the preview that was included in Batman #28 was enough to get me interested.  Here we are 9 issues in and I’m really enjoying it.

The story surrounds the return of Carmine Falcone to Gotham, and the removal of Commissioner Gordon from the GCPD after he apparently shot and killed an unarmed suspect and caused a subway train crash.  However, there is more going on here than they are letting on and each issue keeps adding another level to the story.

This week, Batman has traveled to Japan to find out more about Falcone’s plans and what he has been doing while away from Gotham.  He has teamed up with the Japanese Batman, a member of Batman Inc to help unravel the mystery, but while one question is answered 2 more seem to pop up.

While the weekly release initially felt like a gimmick, it has helped to really keep the story moving quickly and the tension increasing.

Black Widow 7Black Widow #7

Black Widow has come to San Francisco tracking down a lead.  While there she encounters an old friend who has also recently made the move out west, Daredevil.

Some of have complained about the Hawkeye-ification of Marvel.  That these books are more about the hero’s feelings and lives than their superheroics.  That could be a way to describe this current Black Widow run.  It would be short sighted and wrong, but it could be said.

This Black Widow run has been delving more into the espionage side of the character.  It’s less about her taking down supervillains and more in line with a Jason Bourne type of spy story.  We do get a very human side to her as well, she is an Avenger, but she doesn’t have any superpowers.  She is a normal human and therefore still has to deal with normal human problems.  This has been a great book so far, and I think it would make a great blueprint for a Black Widow film.

The Punisher #6Punisher 6

I didn’t realize until this week that Nathan Edmonson is writing both Punisher and Black Widow.  These two books are similar, but also very different.

They are similar in that both take a “real world” approach to the characters.  We are using the term real world pretty loosely here because while these main characters are not super powered, they do still live in the proper Marvel universe alongside Gods, super soldiers and Hulks.  With the focus being on these normal human characters, you get stories where the heroes are hurt, they get beat down and have to out think and out maneuver their opponents.

Punisher has joined the ranks of the Marvel heroes leaving New York and heading out west.  He is just outside Los Angeles battling a drug cartel, who happen to have Electro on their payroll.  But, that is not all, Frank is also being hunted by the Howling Commandos.  Seeing someone like the Punisher take on a supervillain like Electro is pretty great.  I like seeing how he takes a different approach to dealing with someone with powers, knowing that his normal arsenal wont be effective.

It is hard to follow up on Greg Rucka’s fantastic Punisher run from before, but 6 issues in, Edmonson has been giving us a terrific story that I would say is a must read for any Frank Castle fan.

green-arrow-32-coverGreen Arrow #32

With the majority of superheroes, their job is to protect their home, their city.  What happens when the heroes get pulled away from the city and get wrapped up in something else on the other side of the globe?  That is the question here in Green Arrow.  Ollie has been out fighting the Outsiders and dealing with that, but no one has been there to protect his city, and the evil doers have been taking advantage of his absence.

Oliver has returned to see Seattle is caught in the midst of a gang war, the people are too scared to go outside and the government has threatened to bring in the National Guard to restore order.  Some are blaming him for leaving the city and allowing this to happen.

The Outsiders arc wasn’t doing a whole lot for me.  I think it ran a bit too long and I’m glad that we have moved past it.  This story looks to be much more interesting as Arrow quickly finds himself out matched, and isn’t that where we always want our heroes to be?  We want them to be the underdogs fighting heroically against the overwhelming odds.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #34TMNT-34_Cover-A

I don’t know how much more I can really say about the TMNT comics that I haven’t gushed about a thousand times before.  If you were ever a fan of the Turtles, you should be reading this book.  It really is that simple.  Forget the Michael Bay nonsense that is coming this summer and read this.

This time around the heroes have returned to the city and are torn between stopping Krang and the technodrome or stopping Shredder and the Foot.  Donnie and April have gone to Harold Lilja’s lab to return the equipment they borrowed and see what else he can do to help them in their fight.  Things quickly turn awkward and dangerous after they see what else Harold has been working on.  They have gained another tool in their fight, but also may have added another enemy to their list.

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