A lot of books came out this week. Here’s my opinions on some of them, including a series wrap-up, a series start, and a series that’s just insane.
The Lone Ranger #5 (Dynamite)
(w) Mark Russell (a) Bob Q (c)
The Lone Ranger by Mark Russell and Bob Q was meant to be an ongoing series. So it stands to reason that this fifth and final issue is in a rush wrap everything up. I like to think the team had something more in store for readers than “the bad guys get their comeuppance in the end.” Ultimately, it’s a fine conclusion to a really good story. However, knowledge that there could have been so much more will haunt future rereads.
The Wild Storm #20 (DC)
(w) Warren Ellis (a) Jon Davis-Hunt (c) Steve Buccellato
Most of the time, when I read the latest issue of The Wild Storm I think to myself, “what the fuck was that?” That is not the case here. In a departure from the rest of the series, issue #20 relies very little on Warren Ellis’ script and more on Jon Davis-Hunt’s ability to craft a compelling fight sequence. This is the Apollo and Midnighter show, and it is fantastic. The layouts constructed by Davis-Hunt expertly conveys the brutality and abilities of the power-couple. But the issue isn’t just costumed characters trading blows, as Ellis continues to advance the plot of IO pulling the strings behind every major conflict on the planet, providing more clarity as the series marches towards its endgame.
Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man #3 (Marvel)
(w) Tom Taylor (a) Juann Cabal
Despite its title, Tom Taylor and Juann Cabal have made the perplexing decision to use their opening arc to take Spider-Man out of the friendly neighborhood. As impressive as it is for the series to jump the shark after only 3 issues, Taylor’s characterization of familiar faces like Spidey, Johnny Storm, and Boomerang keep the issue enjoyable. Ditto for Juann Cabal’s artwork, as the creative team takes Spider-Man into a new underground realm – Under York. While interesting in concept, there’s little reason why this story couldn’t take place in regular old New York City. Instead, readers are left scratching their heads.
Incursion #1 (Valiant)
(w) Andy Diggle & Alex Packnadel (a) Doug Braithwaite
There is an efficiency in Incursion #1 that makes this a great first issue for dedicated, lapsed, and new readers alike. Andy Diggle and Alex Packnadel lay out who the characters are, their roles, and the conflict that will drive this miniseries. Wisely, the writers opt to focus on the character relationships, primarily that of Gilad, the Eternal Warrior, and Tama, the Geomancer. It is done so well, that when the fighting starts there are real stakes – especially given the short life expectancies of past Geomancers. Doug Braithwaite’s art brings out the script’s emotional beats in a manner that makes for an overall satisfying experience.