Bane Conquest #1
It’s often said that Batman’s got the best villains in comics. They are the most interesting, varied, and in the end, fun. So, here we are with one of the greatest: Bane. Who doesn’t want to see more of the man who broke the bat? Bane is back in his own mini-series, written and drawn by two of his co-creators Chuck Dixon and Graham Nolan.
It’s always interesting to read about Bane because, as bad of a guy as he seems to be around Batman, he’s usually presented as a not-so-bad guy fighting for his city. That is made pretty clear here, as he whoops everyone from cover to cover (except the last page, more on that later, though). The most exciting part about this was to see the co-creators of this character (sans Doug Moench) working together again. It gave about the most authentic feel you can get for this character. Chuck Dixon (the writer) gives us a story with plenty of fighting (what else do we want from Bane?) while fleshing out a plot that sees Bane, himself a villain, hunting down another bad guy. Like I said, he’s got an interesting dynamic. The art, by Graham Nolan, is interesting. His line art looks a little more classic comic drawing, while the color (by Gregory Wright) looks very modern. It creates a mixture of styles that seems to cross different eras.
Now, the end was probably the most interesting part. It introduces us to a foe that can stand toe to toe with Bane, which isn’t too easy, is it? But the reason it’s so interesting is because this villain isn’t big like Bane. No, he actually looks pretty average. It was interesting to see the reversal of this dichotomy (the big guy having to find a way to beat the little guy, instead of the other way around) and if Bane will be the hero of this story, or the villain.
All-New Guardians of the Galaxy #1
Well, here it is, the new comic to accompany the upcoming Guardians sequel. And, let me just say that if you like the movie, you will like this book. While not quite as outlandish as the movie (there’s no stealing of anyone’s leg here) it’s very much in the same vain. And, unlike some line ups of the team, this has the space scoundrels that you love (including baby Groot).
The story (written by Gerry Duggan) sees the Guardians pulling off a daring heist, in a giant replica of Galactus (what) for the Grandmaster. And, speaking of ships, I guess the Grandmaster flies around space in a giant fish. Pretty cool. Also, my interest in the Grandmaster has been way up since Jeff Goldblum is playing him in Thor. I should also mention that this book features a cassette (even though Peter Quill has been back on Earth in the present, but who am I to judge?). I think the most interesting thing to this story is that Drax is now a pacifist. Pretty odd considering he is called the Destroyer, huh?
I also enjoyed Aaron Kuder’s art. All of the characters have their own sense of identity through his depictions, and his style for the outer space scenes work perfectly. And the Grandmaster, true to form, looks eccentric. Though sadly he is blue, and not Jeff Goldblum.
These creators, with this team of Guardians, looks to be gearing up for a comic book run to accompany the film perfectly, catching fans of the film. So, if you enjoyed the movie (which, who didn’t?) it’s work keeping an eye on this title.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Funko Universe
Look at that title. Ridiculous. OK, so this is the first in a series of one shots that IDW is publishing about Funko Pop figures. So, just a heads up, I’ll probably be doing one every week. I had to read this title, literally. Not only do I love the Turtles, but Pop Figures are cool. In fact, I have the very same Michelangelo on my desk that’s on the front cover of this issue.
After all that, it’s time for the actual review. This issue was fun, I mean, really fun. You can tell that writer Caleb Goellner was a fan of the 80s Ninja Turtles cartoon, because this adventure of the Pop Figure Turtles reads exactly like an episode of the show. In fact, while reading I could even hear the voices of each character. The story revolves around Mikey trying to get a decoder ring from a cereal company (after his box didn’t have one). But guess who runs the factory? Shredder and Krang! It’s as much nonsense and Saturday Morning cartoon sugar rush as the real stuff.
The art was done by Nico Peña and looks like the genuine thing. And I would know, remember, I have one on my desk. I think the best thing about the art was that Shredder and Krang looked particularly adorable. Which, considering how useless they were in the cartoon, is a good look for them. It’s simply done, but that’s exactly what this story needed.
Like I said, this is basically a cartoon episode. There’s not a lot of substance to either of them, so they really feel like the same thing. I was reading in joy as I figured this out. I’m interested to see what else they will do for the Pop Universe one-shots (mostly X-Files), and I’m sure by the end of the month, you’ll all know how they were.
Review by Jordan Kirian