The New 52 Round-up – Part One

So, after having gotten all the comics I was really interesting in buying over the last month, I now have access – via Bren of Knights of the Black Banner to some of the other new 52 comics, most of them are things I don’t know anything about or wasn’t really interested in at the time. But now I thought I’d have a look, and write a little about any that stood out to me.

The first two stand out good comics of this bunch are All Star Western and Aqua Man (Bren was also surprised by their awesome-ness).

All Star Western was very good, with the two main characters ( Amadeus Arkham who we know more recently from the Batman: Arkham Asylum video game, and Jonah Hex, who apparently has a film – which I have not seen) acting as a great contrast to each other. The other great contrast is between Jonah Hex, the grizzly old world guy in the new and rising city and city men with their evil, evil plots. It feels an awful lot like what the video game Red Dead Redemption was aiming for with John Marston but didn’t manage what with John being a dull, dull, dull, painfully dull, main character.

Aqua Man was also very enjoyable, despite the comic being very much a downer in feeling. I felt a lot of sympathy for Aqua Man, the criminals laugh at him, cops don’t take him seriously, he gets harassed when trying to go out to eat. He plays long suffering very well and comes across as very human. So good, but sad.

The real stand out low point, on the other side of this, is definitely Batman The Dark Knight. The art and style of the comic feels very dated to me, and not that great. The first female we’re introduced to is wearing a shirt masquerading as a dress that doesn’t suit the event she’s at, and again feels like a very dated character. Adding to this is the second striking female instance (which part of me assumes is the same woman and the writer is sure they’re being clever with) being a thong wearing ‘sexy’ white rabbit lady. I’m sure they thought it was a good idea. I also can’t help reading the comic is Christian Bale’s painful throat cancer voice, but that isn’t the comics fault.

A couple of final, extra mentions:

The cover for Black Hawk rivals Rob Liefeld in it’s pouch and belt laden characters, but didn’t stand out in any other way.
Blue Beetle felt very weak in beginning and middle, but managed to pick it up by the end with a hint of Spiderman awkward poor young male lead story.
Death Stroke manages to be awful and a bit redeeming all at the same time. The characters are all unlike able, but that end wasn’t so bad.
And finally DC Universe Presents: Dead Man was actually quite strange and interesting, definitely worth a look.

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