REVIEWS: DC Comics 52 Pick-Up – Week One

Barry Allen’s mother is in her heaven and all is right with the world. And what a strange new world it is.

All month long I’ll be reviewing each and every one of DC Comics’ new #1 issues from Justice League to Voodoo. Out of love. Out of lunacy. Out of fiscal irresponsibility. Every Thursday find my text reviews here on iFanboy. Then you can tune in for roundtable discussions on my podcast Fuzzy Typewriter featuring David Accampo and a new guest panelist each week. Last week included a segment with Dave’s son Jack for the sixth-grader’s perspective. This week it’s New York funny person and Radio Journal host Timmy Wood!

Sound like fun? Let’s dive right in!

Justice League #1

Justice League #1

Written by Geoff Johns
Art by Jim Lee

A new or returning reader could hardly ask for a more approachable entry point into the DCU, short of something that produces an audible tone when it’s time to turn the page. That’s genuinely commendable and a gesture that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Structurally similar to Batman: Hush, this first arc–if this issue is any indication–looks to showcase Jim Lee’s new character designs and offers a gentle reintroduction to familiar characters as seen in a new light.

One imagines this is also the stage for Victor Stone’s origin story as the young hero Cyborg and an opportunity for the kind of Justice League inaugural mission we’ve never really seen before. Something truly definitive. It’s not the most sophisticated script, but hopefully the complexity will build with each new arc, in tandem with new readers’ own understanding and desire for more challenging narrative directions.

I’ve come to terms with the realization that this book is not engineered for me, though I think its mission statement is a crucial one.

Story: 3/ Art: 3.5/ Overall: 3.5
(Out of 5 Stars)

 Picking it up next month? Unsure. My better judgment says this opening arc will read much better in a single sitting. But its prominence in the new line and the promise of Darkseid drama leaves me curious enough to consider sticking around. I’ll probably cave.

Pull, Rate, & Discuss Justice League #1

 

Action Comics #1

Action Comics #1

Written by Grant Morrison
Art by Rags Morales

To be sure, there’s a creaking swing-set in my soul where a mild-mannered Superman used to be. I’m a purist when it comes to Supes. He drinks milk, flosses regularly, and considers the occasional Family Circus strip to be a tad racy. But while I wait for the eventual, inevitable return of the milquetoast sentinel of liberty, I’m more than willing to permit that there were some growing pains before he settled down and conceded to his own profoundly reassuring, totally endearing lameness. That’s where Morrison’s street-level slobberknocker of a reboot comes in, and probably just in time.

Set several years before most other titles in the relaunch, this opening arc of Action Comics sees Supes venturing through Peter Parker territory. Living in squalor as a young journalist in the seedy Hobb’s Bay borough of Metropolis, Clark barely makes his monthly rent. He fairs slightly worse in his role as urban legend “Superman” considered by the military to be nothing short of a menace. They’ve even brought in a contract tactician, the energy drink chugging mastermind Lex Luthor, who refers to his target as “it.” Clark’s one consolation–and one of the book’s best moments–comes when a group of tenement dwellers defend a battered Superman, their champion, from pursuing tanks.

Rags Morales’ interiors seem to be suffering under an accelerated schedule, not quite on par with recent work on the First Wave mini-series. Still, his style seems wholly appropriate for the series’ tone and street-level atmosphere, which sees Metropolis looking less art deco and more like Will Eisner’s rough and tumble Central City (look for the “W.E.” graffiti on a Hob’s Bay stoop when Clark calls his pal Jimmy).

It’s unfamiliar territory for Superman, and I have little doubt that his rise to more familiar heights will be well worth the journey.

Story: 4.5/ Art: 3.5/ Overall: 4
(Out of 5 Stars)

Picking it up next month? How could I not?

Pull, Rate, & Discuss Action Comics #1

 

Animal Man #1

Animal Man #1

Written by Jeff Lemire
Art by Travel Foreman

An early contender for best book in the line, Animal Man #1 delivers truly affective horror and characters we desperately hope can see it through. Lemire embraces Buddy Baker’s longstanding role as DC’s everyman metahuman, a family man first and superhero second. Starting with a cleverly devised prose piece–an interview between Buddy and The Believer magazine–the writer reaffirms all those qualities that make Buddy and his world so relatable. We follow the character throughout in an affable inner monologue, a device that establishes a wonderfully conversational, intimate tone. It’s remarkable just how strong a bond is struck up between main character and reader in such a short time, but it’s this attention to voice and characterization that makes the horrific imagery and developments so heart-wrenching.

With his often aggressive camera angles and quirks, Travel Foreman’s atypical visual style will likely polarize readers. As for me, I found it wildly interesting, especially bold for a mainstream comic. Writer and artist take us to some nightmarish climes, but domestic solace is also readily apparent in those early pages.

Buddy Baker is unquestionably the brightest star in the new DCU, and it’s extremely heartening to see such a well-crafted and bold story receiving such critical acclaim and popular attention. This is one of our most-pulled books this week and we’re all pretty proud of your taste.

Story: 5/ Art: 4.5/ Overall: 5
(Out of 5 Stars)

Picking it up next month? Yes. And hopefully for many months to come.

Pull, Rate, & Discuss Animal Man #1

 

Batgirl #1

Batgirl #1

Written by Gail Simone
Art by Adrian Syaf

Barbara Gordon returns to her role as high-flying Batgirl, a nostalgic vision that doesn’t quite stick the landing. Simone doesn’t shy away from the character’s medical history, though the exact path to her recovery from severe spinal injury and partial paralysis isn’t explained just yet. Indeed, that backstory is shaping up to play a prominent role in this opening arc, as the character suffers a critical lapse in confidence when the series’ debut rogue points a gun toward her lower back.

Simone’s Barbara Gordon is ultimately charming and disarming, though none of this benefits from comparison to the previous iteration of Batgirl or with any amount of reflection (heh) on the repercussions of this editorial decision. Given that this opening story seeks to explain Barbara’s injury and recovery through concise and painless flashback, it stands to reason that the book could easily have gone forward without this decidedly offensive change. This admittedly speaks to my bitterness at the dismissal of Stephanie Brown in the title role, though the book’s quality and direction have yet to yield enough evidence to warrant the maneuver. There’s no shaking the notion that Babs-as-Oracle is an example of forward momentum and invention, and that reverting to this status quo, even while retaining the injury as a past event, simply seems like two steps backward.

The new Batgirl is enjoyable enough, though it feels decidedly average in the shadow of its wildly entertaining predecessor.

Story: 3.5/ Art: 3.5/ Overall: 3.5
(Out of 5 Stars)

Picking it up next month? Probably. It’s not the book that it was under Bryan Q. Miller, but I’ll always be a sucker for Batgirl.

 Pull, Rate, & Discuss Batgirl #1

Batwing #1

Batwing #1

Written by Judd Winick
Art by Ben Oliver

The concept: a Batman Inc. franchise holder, newly equipped with world-class technology and armaments, stationed in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. It’s both rich with potential and fragile like eggshells. It’s already earned understandable criticism for its slug line of “Batman of Africa.” For a continent so vast, it’s unlikely David Zavimbe will be patrolling or even visiting much of its breadth, especially at this stage in his career. But looking past the unfortunate branding, there’s a lot of potential here. We just don’t see a modern DRC or Africa in general in the traditional DCU. Not depicted with any intent of realism. Will Winick accomplish that with Batwing? It’s too early to tell given the slightness of this first issue.

Though clearly established as a police officer and protege of Batman with his own high-tech “Haven,” David Zavimbe isn’t very well -defined. We know from other sources that he’s the son of AIDS victims and that he’s trying to bring justice to his country. But beyond that, he’s a blank slate. Like the series in general, he’s a pulsing question mark. The first major rogue is Massacre, a masked murderer with a thirst for blood. Not exactly The Joker, but then that clown started out as well…you know.

Oliver’s photoreal painted style is often strikingly beautiful and even visceral. But just as often it’s distracting in it’s uncanny valley proximity to his real-life references. It works best in action sequences, as in the opening and closing battles between Batwing and Massacre.

Again, the issue seems slight, likely due to the panel count only rarely climbing above four on a given page. If any of the issues thus far warrant a “too early to call,” it’s this one. Comparatively, the book likely doesn’t have long for this world. But I’m not yet sure whether that’s so much of a shame or not.

Story: 3/ Art: 4/ Overall: 3.5
(Out of 5 Stars)

Picking it up next month? Promising as it seems thematically, this one is on the bubble. It all depends on how many other gems turn up in the remaining weeks of September.

Pull, Rate, & Discuss Batwing #1

Detective Comics #1

Detective Comics #1

Written and drawn by Tony Salvatore Daniel

Rife with lines like “I am the night,” and “I AM Gotham,” Daniel’s Detective Comics often reads like Miller’s All-Star Batman & Robin minus the crucial irony. A tired serial killer plot reveal in the final panel raised an eyebrow, but this only added to the overall effect of ham-fisted posturing.

Daniel seems eager to stake his claim on the dark new vision of Detective Comics as inherited from Scott Snyder. But this lacks the sophistication of “Black Mirror.” Most of all, Batman’s constant inner-monologue quickly grows grating, an uncharacteristic chattiness for the stolid Dark Knight, and likely a case of jitters from writer-artist Daniel, who’s still developing his authorial voice.

We’re not gonna talk about hologram Alfred.

Though he’s got some nice sass going for him.

The art fairs far better, with some great visuals of the Gotham skyline and some tremendous colors from Tomeau Morey.

Story: 2/ Art: 3.5/ Overall: 3
(Out of 5 Stars)

Picking it up next month? No.

 Pull, Rate, & Discuss Detective Comics #1

Green Arrow #1

Green Arrow #1

Written by J.T. Krul
Art by Dan Jurgens & George Perez

It’s sort of astonishing how great a difference that mustache makes.

Krul and Jurgens’ Oliver Queen could essentially be any nondescript, globe-trotting smart alec, especially if he’s from the late 80s to early 90s. A blast from the past in all the wrong ways, this new take on Green Arrow reads as anything but new. Without any cat-swinging drug fantasies, it’s also not the kind of terrible that offers anything in the way of amusement.

Shoddy one-liners run so rampant (“You’re right. I have a lot of toys. But I don’t play games.”), I’m tempted to suggest the book is being presented as intentionally hokey.

This is a very disappointing new start for a formerly terrific character. Hopefully this ship gets righted sooner rather than later.

Story: 2/ Art: 2.5/ Overall: 2
(Out of 5 Stars)

Picking it up next month? No.

Pull, Rate, & Discuss Green Arrow #1

Hawk and Dove #1

Hawk and Dove #1

Written by Sterling Gates
Art by Rob Liefeld

Hawk and Dove #1 epitomizes the worst vices of the relaunched titles, combining clumsy art and storytelling in a very unappealing package. Pouting, gasping Dove aside, most characters skulk through the issue with permanent, agonized scowls. The presentation leaves readers with no recourse but to read the dialogue as if through gritted teeth. It’s too soon for this kind of Macho Madness to be running wild.

In one panel, Hawk appears to have extended fang-like canines, an anomaly that disappears moments later when he’s shown screaming again. This may be an attempt at the kind of visual hyperbole common to manga, but this instance isn’t sufficiently highlighted because every moment feels exaggerated and over-wrought.

Though exposition is unavoidable in this round of books, the origin story Hank relates to his father is glaringly overt. It’s just one example of the issue’s knuckle-headed absurdity. To put it simply, it feels like Hawk wrote and drew this book himself. And he isn’t qualified.

Story: 2/ Art: 1/ Overall: 1.5
(Out of 5 Stars)

Picking it up next month? No.

Pull, Rate, & Discuss Hawk & Dove #1

 

Justice League International #1

Justice League International #1

Written by Dan Jurgens
Art by Aaron Lopresti

Though his art in Green Arrow veered into anachronism, Jurgens’ script for this light and refreshing team book is simply timeless and entertaining. This should feel familiar to experienced readers or ten those who enjoyed Winick’s recent Justice League: Generation Lost. But it also shrugs off enough continuity that it shouldn’t be terribly daunting to new readers either. Characterization remains true to this corner of the DCU, though it’s apparent that these relationships aren’t nearly so seasoned as they were last month. Most importantly, Guy Gardner is still a douchebag, and Rocket Red is still written like Chekov circa Star Trek IV. And now he’s got a bizarre Chinese foil in the form of August General in Iron. These two will be fun together.

Perhaps most surprising is Batman’s relationship with the team and especially its semi-reluctant leader Booster Gold (who’s bluer these days). Batman is almost suspiciously helpful, gregarious, and generous with his time and compliments. After the UN dismisses the suggestion of including Batman on the team (wisely realizing he’s a free agent unlikely to follow their rules) he pops in to help anyway. Is he some figment of Booster’s imagination? And where’s Skeets?

Lighthearted and familiar, JLI feels like comfort food without coming across as a relic unfit for the new regime.

 

Story: 3.5/ Art: 4/ Overall: 4
(Out of 5 Stars)

Picking it up next month? I think so. Yes.

 Pull, Rate, & Discuss Justice League International #1

Men of War #1

Men of War #1

Main Story Written by Ivan Brandon
Art by Tom Derenick
Backup Story Written by Jonathan Vankin
Art by Phil Winslade

A cold fish, this one.

While the idea of straight-laced modern combat set amidst the DCU is an intriguing notion, it seems unlikely that Brandon and company have found as compelling an alternative as the much beloved Checkmate series. Sgt. Rock’s grandson is a stoic young soldier, but his demeanor lacks both the bravado of his namesake or the charm of Steve Rogers. Without a colorful lead, this opening entry reads as very dry. Derenick’s art is decent, though the script doesn’t lend him much opportunity to show off his skills, save for some straightforward combat.

The backup story by Vankin centers on a U.S. Navy outfit on a ground-based mission. Though Phil Winslade’s art is absolutely tremendous, the script itself is burdened by overwritten dialogue and tedious, footnoted technical terminology.

Story: 2.5/ Art: 3/ Overall: 3
(Out of 5 Stars)

Picking it up next month? No. Especially not at this price point. I had high hopes for this title, but it’s left me cold. Maybe Blackhawks is more my flavor.

Pull, Rate, & Discuss Men of War #1

O.M.A.C. #1

O.M.A.C. #1

Story and Art by “Krackling” Keith Giffen and “Daring” Dan Didio

Truly stunning Kirby-inspired art elevates this one to pleasantly surprisingly levels.

Something wild and wooly and weird is going down in the deepest bowels of Cadmus labs, and I will admit to not grasping all of it at this time. But in media res and cosmic happenings will do that sometimes. It also give me ample excuse to pore over these beautiful pages again.

Kevin Kho is missing, trapped in the hulking form of O.M.A.C. as he trashes his own workplace under the power of Brother Eye. We’ll get to know Kevin a little better next month, but for now there’s things to be destroyed and sexual harassment suits to be filed in the halls and cubicles of Cadmus.

Is this the surprise hit of the reboot?

Story: 4/ Art: 5/ Overall: 4.5
(Out of 5 Stars)

Picking it up next month? Yep. Let’s give this one another issue or two to see where the story goes. This is an extremely rare case where art is playing a deciding factor for the positive.

Pull, Rate, & Discuss O.M.A.C. #1

Static Shock #1

Static Shock #1

Written by Scott McDaniel and John Rozum
Art by Scott McDaniel

As a fan of both the Static Shock animated series and Rozum’s previous project Xombi, I was eager for Virgil Hawkins’ glorious return. Unfortunately this first issue was not nearly so joyous as I’d anticipated, falling short of its most likely counterpart Ultimate Spider-Man. Both books feature gifted teenagers wrestling to balance family, classwork, and super heroics.

But at least in this outing, Static lacks the verve and charisma needed to win over the fans he needs to rally right now. At this early stage it’s also unclear whether the series has any of Rozum’s signature oddities waiting in the wings. All told, it’s a serviceable adventure with a perfectly affable and intelligent young hero. Unfortunately, it’s simply not sounding any inventive notes to worry the competition.

And these books can’t afford to be average.

Story: 3/ Art: 3/ Overall: 3
(Out of 5 Stars)

Picking it up next month? Rooting for this one, but uncertain.

Pull, Rate, & Discuss Static Shock #1

Stormwatch #1

Stormwatch #1

Written by Paul Cornell
Art by Miguel Sepulveda

Wild and wooly, verging on wonderful.

Stormwatch might be one of the most innovative and ambitious mash-ups in the relaunch, artfully inserting Martian Manhunter within a Wildstorm team and then positioning that within the larger DCU. And it all feels perfectly organic. Given enough time, this could be huge.

Hampered by relatively weak interior art, the book is otherwise a sprawling sci-fi romp through multiple planes. The learning curve is far steeper than many other books in the relaunch, though this reader–new to the Wildstorm material–finds it well worth the head-scratching. A woman with a psychic link to world media? A girl imbued with all the power and innovations of the dawning century? A man who can manipulate the physical properties of the surrounding city? It’s so out-there, but all together it’s just jaw-droppingly rich with possibility.

We’ve only just met Apollo and Midnighter, and the opportunity to see their relationship blossom within this new status quo, and potentially alongside Superman and Batman, is downright thrilling.

Story: 4/ Art: 2/ Overall: 3.5
(Out of 5 Stars)

Picking it up next month? Yes. Despite some middling art, this is one of the most compelling new mash-ups to come out of the reboot.

Pull, Rate, & Discuss Stormwatch #1

Swamp Thing #1

Swamp Thing #1

Written by Scott Snyder
Art by Yanick Paquette

Neck-and-neck with Animal Man for best new book in the relaunch, Swamp Thing #1 is one of the strongest single issues from the already accomplished Scott Snyder. Endeavoring to maintain decades of character continuity while simultaneously providing a welcoming new beginning for returning fans and new readers, Snyder finds the happiest medium this side of the bayou.

This issue boasts the strongest art of the week, with Yanick Paquette stepping up his game with astonishing aplomb. We only see Swampy himself briefly, but the artist sows the seeds of his return throughout the issue, offering some splendid images of plant life both serene and unforgiving. He may also deliver the best renditions of the new Batman and Superman designs, even given the quirks of the latter’s costume. The double page spread featuring those heroes and Aquaman early in the issue will give even J.H. Williams III a run for his money.

As for Snyder’s script, it’s clear he’s been doing his homework, presenting his signature assimilation of topical minutia–in this case on the nature and behavior of plants and wood rot–to furnish the inner monologue of Alec Holland, the newly resurfaced botanist and Bruce Banner to the Swamp Thing’s Hulk. Snyder also introduces some of his creepiest creations yet, including a new foe sure to turn some heads.

That the two strongest books are hurtling towards a crossover in their second arc is pretty damned exciting. DC’s Dark catalog is a force to be reckoned with.

Story: 4.5/ Art: 5/ Overall: 5
(Out of 5 Stars)

Picking it up next month? I should say so, madame.

Pull, Rate, & Discuss Swamp Thing #1

And that’s Week One. See you in seven days!

 

Comments

  1. stuclach stuclach says:

    Timmy Wood should be awesome.

    Thank you for being willing to read all of these and share your thoughts. You are a more generous man than I.

  2. diebenny diebenny says:

    Our comics budgets are not infinite and between this, the advanced reviews, the POTW, Conor and Ron’s visit to the restricted white room, and all the people reviewing these New 52 like mad, it is becoming very easy to make smart money decisions based on one’s specific tastes.

    Thanks Paul and everyone! With all this newness it would have been really easy to get lost and make bad purchases. I’m going into the New 52 VERY confident in what I want now.

  3. Kelly Kelly (@annaluna) says:

    “a new foe sure to turn some heads.” I see what you did there.

    That issue of Swamp Thing has given me a new appreciation for the medium. I never would have thought I could be so completely wigged out by a few panels.

  4. keith7198 keith7198 says:

    STUNNED that Action Comics art get a 3.5 but Animal Man’s art gets a 4.5! Wow! This is clear proof that it’s all about different tastes. I thought Morales’ work was superior in every way.

    • Paul Montgomery Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

      I love Morales in general, but this is not his best showing. There are some very unfortunate images of Clark, and Luthor’s depiction is very inconsistent.

      As for Foreman, I agree that it’s subjective. People will hate it, but I found it pretty exciting.

    • MrSethypants MrSethypants says:

      Agreed. I didnt really like the art for the first few pages of animal man

    • party party says:

      It really does come down to taste. I was very unimpressed by the Action Comics art but I loved every panel of Animal Man. Polarizing was honestly the best word to describe the art in Animal Man. I’ve seen a lot of people who loved it, and almost just as many who thought it was the ugliest thing they’ve ever seen.

    • Jeff Reid JeffR (@JeffRReid) says:

      I really liked the art in Animal Man when we saw Buddy’s dream, the Red and other supernatural events. That stuff was all great. When we saw Buddy’s homelife, I didn’t really like it. For some reason, the fact that the magazine that Buddy was reading looked so thin really bothered me.

      Having said that, I really liked the story. I wish that Brightest Day‘s storyline of Aquaman only being able to summon dead fish hadn’t happened so recently, as it took just a bit of the final page’s horror away from me. Still, it was a great first issue. I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the story in trade.

    • keith7198 keith7198 says:

      I thought Foreman was all over the place. Even in the issue’s strongest scenes (the opening) his wacky, out-of-context facial expressions were a distraction for me, much more so than any of Morales’ depictions of Clark or Lex (even though I do get what Paul means). Animal Man also featured what I felt was one of the ugliest splash pages I have seen in years.

      I get that he’s trying to be unique, but hyper-stylized art needs to keep some form of consistency to stay reasonably grounded. I felt the art, much like Lemire’s story, lacked that consistency.

  5. deezer deezer says:

    I agree with most of these (some I just didn’t read), but I didn’t realize that Men Of War was 4 bucks… don’t think I can justify giving it another try now

    • MrSethypants MrSethypants says:

      comics at 4 bucks are so much more worth it in DC cos you’re getting more than enough extra content.

    • Paul Montgomery Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

      @MrSethypants – True, though only if that content is enjoyable for the reader. If All-Star Western is as good as I fully expect it to be, that’s $4 I’ll gladly pay.

    • keith7198 keith7198 says:

      Men of War was written in the same way the old Sgt. Rock and Fighting Marines books were. You have the main story then a smaller unrelated story. As a Sgt. Rock fan, I thought it was nostalgic and cool.

  6. CaseyJustice CaseyJustice says:

    Man, you are a gladiator, sir. My thanks to you for this valuable service, and good luck in the coming weeks!

    Also, thanks for calling the Batgirl change offensive, ’cause it kinda is.

    • yyzKyle yyzKyle says:

      I am not a DC guy…. the only book I have read prior to the new 52 is Vertigo’s Fables. So I am not offended in any way by this book. I am not saying that you shouldn’t be, or that it is reasonable of long time fans to be upset over Stephanie Brown’s departure. What I am saying is that for new readers like me, this may be a great choice.

    • Paul Montgomery Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

      Here’s the deal. It wouldn’t be offensive if Babs had been temporarily paralyzed and then healed and it certainly makes logical sense that the DCU would have a means for remedying her spinal injury. But it’s disappointing that editorial doesn’t see the value of Barbara as Oracle. On a representational level and as plot progression.

    • CaseyJustice CaseyJustice says:

      @yyzKyle – Sorry, that wasn’t clear. I don’t mean that Babs in/Steph out is offensive. I sorta meant the whole de-handicapping scenario. Oracle was one of the rare characters in fiction representing a person with a physical disability as a hero, not for overcoming their impairment but for being a heroic person who just so happens to be in a wheel chair.

      Paul said it better above me, so please direct your attention 17 pixels north.

    • party party says:

      It’s also offensive to Stephanie Brown… She was really coming into her own as Batgirl and iirc her series was really well received. I don’t like the flippant dismissal of the more recent legacies like Stephanie and Wally to “try to get new readers,” many of whom probably never even knew Barbara as Batgirl or Barry as the Flash.

    • JasonB35 JasonB35 says:

      I agree with many of the sentiments expressed. I liked Oracle as a character and thought she was great as the glue for the Bat books. I’m not even sure I understand the explanation of her being able to walk again. If these are supposed to be new reader friendly then I agree that it really doesn’t matter who is wearing the mantel of the characther, that character just needs to be done well. The name is superfluous if you are just getting into the game now.

    • keith7198 keith7198 says:

      I don’t see the Batgirl change as offensive and my little brother is handicapped. I think it’s all in the handling of it. Simone certainly hasn’t ignored it and it’s obviously going to play a role in developing the character as the story moves forward. I’m fine with that.

    • yyzKyle yyzKyle says:

      Thank you very much for clarifying. I think I understand better the criticism for this book.

    • cosmo cosmo says:

      I agree with the comments about how well Oracle worked in the DCU, and how she was a rare example of a hero with a physical handicap. I miss Ms. Brown as well. However, I was willing wanted to give the reboot Barbara a chance, hoping it would work out. My main problem is that the writing failed, in my opinion. Barbara did not feel like the same character we have known these past years, but a new “chipper” voice dictated by editorial. Perhaps, further issues will right this wrong, though, honestly, I’m not sure how long I’ll stick around to find out . . .

  7. chadwhitley chadwhitley says:

    A new foe “sure to turn some heads?”

    Very, very nice. Well done, sir. :)

  8. OMACOMACOMACOMACOMA

  9. TomE TomE says:

    YOU are a reviewing maniac, sir.

    The reviews pretty much sum up what I felt about the books I got. Although I wasn’t a very big fan of the Animal Man art. But it wasn’t a deal breaker either.

    So I’m happy (but my wallet isn’t) to say, that I won’t be dropping any of the 6 books (Animal Man, Swamp Thing, Batgirl, Stormwatch, OMAC, Action Comics) I got this week.

    PS. Art in OMAC was fantastic. Giffen must’ve been possessed by Kirby himself.

    • ctrosejr ctrosejr says:

      It cannot be stressed enough: the art in OMAC was tremendous, replete with Kirby Krackle goodness. There was also a fair amount of out-there Kirby-esque creatures and concepts too. I can’t wait to see where this series goes. I am surprisingly (to me anyway) on-board.

  10. spaceghost15 spaceghost15 says:

    Props Paul for doing all the reviews. I love the fact that there is a difference of opinions on the books. Not everything for everyone. As I said I actually liked Hawk and Dove and Men of War. And I felt that while I liked Animal Man overall I did not think it was a “homerun”.

  11. bobby2889 says:

    It physically pained me to read previews of Stormwatch. It felt far more like it was trying to be Authority than Stormwatch which in my mind was a bad move. Authority faltered, in my opinion, since the Millar/Quitely era and it lost those central themes that made it what it was. It also lost the writing quality and after that it stopped being Authority and felt like a book desperatly trying to sound like Authority but not having the authority (heh) of voice to convincingly pull of the points it wanted to make without sounded forced and cliched.

    This book sadly was Authority post-quality. Art was lame and, keep in mind I only read previews, the writing seemed weak. Now it may be only cos I’ve seen the first few pages (which I conceed is not a good basis for a review) however lines such as ‘I am not a superhero!’ seem to overt. ‘You wont catch me in a cape’ was painful. Also there is no need for everyone to say people’s codename’s the first time said person is addressed. Or for that name to be in bold. People aren’t thick. They will get it if you tell it organically. And things such as ‘okay. this is me contacting the alien language processing lobe that got lodged in my brain’ are like being hit by a freight train of unnecessary exposition.

    I just wish it could have been the return to glory I was desperately hoping, and partially doubting, it would be.

    • Conor Kilpatrick Conor Kilpatrick (@cskilpatrick) says:

      There is actually a huge to identify people the first time you meet them. I’m glad that DC is returning to this.

    • tom_swift says:

      There actually isn’t a huge need to constantly call out characters names like that repeatedly.

      A simple page marvel style with character names and brief bio would do it a lot better than polluting the story
      like that with constant introduction and reintroduction.

      Unless DC is specifically going after the 10 year old audience here it feels very unsophisticated and tiresome.
      There are other options to utilization that would cover this kind of need.

    • I think for a first issue its very important to introduce characters clearly. Even with Stormwatch, i’ve never read it before or much anything from wildstorm, and i felt like i couldn’t follow it. Wasn’t that accessible for me.

    • Paul Montgomery Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

      I’m actually disappointed they seem to have ditched the mini character bios. Stormwatch would’ve greatly benefited from the LoSH method of providing a caption box with character names and a brief description of each power set. An odd choice to shy away from that in this new initiative.

    • Conor Kilpatrick Conor Kilpatrick (@cskilpatrick) says:

      @tom_swift: When going for new readers, and that includes kids, it’s very important to keep your lesser known characters constantly identified.

    • yeah that might have been really helpful. I mean they did something kinda like that in Justice League international even though it was integrated into the story. These Stormwatch dudes are being introduced into the DCU…they need an introduction. Don’t assume we all know who they are.

    • JasonB35 JasonB35 says:

      Maybe I just not the discerning of a reader but I didn’t think it was that obvious or ham fisted. I thought it was written pretty much as people who have a disdain for the title of superhero would talk about themselves. That being said I did have a bit of a hard time following who was who and what was going on but was still somehow fascinated and I want to see how these characters are going to end up interacting in the future. I like that it wasn’t laid out plainly right at the beginining.

    • bobby2889 says:

      Ok so I get the need to identify but I thought Animal-Man, which I just read, did it cleverly. We didnt know his origins really, and I never questioned it (and Im not a big geek when it comes to A. I think it has something to do with aliens or Anasi. So I guess best skipped anyway).

      I dont think they ever directly explained his exact power set or how it works.

      I think you can allude things or have people explain them in better ways than occured in those early pages.

      But like I said I havent read it and hate being the ranting forum nerd. But I do think it seemed a little well…90s? Just reminded me of some comic-book tropes that I dont think always need adhering to.

  12. OMAC was the standout for me.

  13. ato220 ato220 says:

    I can now see why I was greeted at the comic book store by a Paul Montgomery with a fiery look in his eyes proclaiming ‘I’ve got a lot of books to review!’ It’s good to see my instinct to avoid Green Arrow, Men of War and Hawk and Dove proved correct. This same instinct said steer clear of OMAC, might have to pick it up next week.

  14. RobotZombie RobotZombie says:

    “a new foe sure to turn some heads.”

    I tip my cap to you sir.

  15. JokersNuts JokersNuts says:

    loved Action Comics and Swamp Thing. I read Batgirl in the store, and while I am a fan of Gail, the issue did nothing to change my mind about canning Oracle, and I won’t be picking this series up.
    Animal Man I will have to return to the shop to pick up after reading the stellar reviews and finding out it will be crossing over with Swampy.
    Detective Comics. I was pissed about the renumbering and don’t care for Tony Daniels as a writer (though I like his art), so I didn’t pick this up but flipped through it in the store. The last page really turned me off.

    • dsaint dsaint says:

      I’m the same on Tony Daniel as writer vs artist.

      Why does he have a panel with Batman’s interior monologue that says “Chopper blades. Loud. Right outside.” only to be followed by a panel of a helicopter right outside making a loud noise. That same panel has the pointless monologue “Found Me.” as if we couldn’t tell from the art and the helicopter shooting at him.

      The opening monologue took me out of the book and had me laughing:
      “His modus operandi changes with the wind…”
      “…and it’s been windy in Gotham City.”

      As if Joker is literally behaving differently because the wind is blowing through Gotham City. I imagine Joker setting up weather monitoring stations all over Gotham and making decisions based on the latest readings.

  16. SteenAR SteenAR says:

    Though I agree with most of what you said in all these reviews, I feel like your scoring was a bit harsh. A 3 for the story in OMAC seems a bit low to me but I guess it’s all your opinion. I enjoyed reading this though. Always nice to see a variety of thoughts on these books.

  17. Thanks for doing this Paul…it will be really helpful in deciding on what to get. I was a bit higher on Detective and Justice League than you, but i wasn’t really breaking it down the same way you were. For me Justice League was successful in that it was fairly self contained and was relatively easy to get into. I think complexity can build as we get to know the characters.

  18. Timmy Wood TimmyWood (@TimmyWood) says:

    I really enjoyed Batgirl.

  19. JasonB35 JasonB35 says:

    I have not liked Tony Daniels the writer in the pastand I am not a big Joker fan but Detective grabbed me right off.

    I also enjoyed the more grim, cocky and powered down version of Superman that I saw in Action Comics. I am hoping that doesn’t totally go away once we are in the future tense. I could be wrong but I see glimpses of it in his appearance in Swamp Thing as well as his introduction in Justice League.

    Batgirl was well done from a story standpoint I just don’t think I like the art and layouts that much. As was covered in other posts I’m just not seeing the reason why this couldn’t have been Stephanie Brown still.

    I tried Swamp Thing after hearing all the hype and I enjoyed the story and the art blew me away. I have never read Swamp Thing ever in my life and I’m not sure this is going to end up being for me but I may give it a couple of more issues just to see if other things that I was hoping to be good don’t pan out.

    I think Animal Man was good but his home life is almost to relateable to my own.

    I am totally confused by Stormwatch but somehow really enjoyed it anyway.

  20. I have to say that if you loved the craziness/horror of both Swamp Thing and Animal Man (both fantastic reads this week!), then you should know that Milligan’s Hellblazer over at Vertigo has been on this incredible tear for years providing this same craziness/horror. It is never ever too late to jump on, what is now, the highest #’d book in all of DC.

    I picked up 6 new #1s and 3 of them really make me want more, but I’m trying to trade wait most of this stuff now out of DC.

  21. Does Stormwatch take place in the past? My only reason for asking is that one panel where they are looking at a website that is circa 1998. No way that can be contemporary.

  22. Hornhead Hornhead says:

    I love Snyder’s topical minutia! I was grinning like an idiot when Holland was describing the cause of woodrot (enviromental microbiology is part of my coursework).

  23. IroncladMerc says:

    Have to disagree on Detective. It was my pick of the week. Great art, great story, what’s not to like? And the last page happens, and you’re not onboard for next month? How could you not? Guess I’m not as picky when it comes to Batman books.

    • scottsisco scottsisco says:

      I totally agree! I’ve read Justice League, Action Comics, Bat Girl, Hawk and Dove, Storm Watch, Detective Comics, Animal Man, and Swamp Thing and the only 5/5 for me was Detective. I was seriously shocked Paul scored it a 3! What am I missing here? I think a lot of people have some sort of contempt for Tony Salvatore Daniel and loved Snyder’s detective run so much it’s clouding their judgment. I want to also say I really really enjoyed Swamp Thing and Animal Man too.

    • Paul Montgomery Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

      I’m glad you enjoyed Detective and I’m not looking to change your mind. Though I think I do offer a fair explanation as to what I didn’t like.

    • I also liked Detective. It had really good art and a solid story. The “I own the night” thing didn’t sit well with me but overall it was a good read. The art looked like it had a Frank Miller style to it which I liked. The cliffhanger at the end though was excellent but it would have been better as a page turner. Still waiting to see how it will compare to the last run on Detective. Looking forward to it though.

    • Funcrusher Funcrusher says:

      Same here, I was floored by how much I didn’t hate this as I did Daniels’ previous Batman work. Any criticism is lost on me, but I’m really enjoying reading everyone’s opinions. These comments convinced me to pick up OMAC on my lunch break…

    • yyzKyle yyzKyle says:

      Also loved Detective and it was my pick of the week as well. I gave 5 stars to Justice League, Detective and one or two others I think. I thought it did a great job of giving me good Batman and good Commissioner Gordon. It also delivered on the villain too!

  24. Paul Montgomery Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

    POLL: What, for you, were the biggest surprises this week? Both positive and negative.

    • First the negative: how very blah Batgirl really was amid all the hype. Gail shocks me by not rising up to the level I have known her to write. Its was the ending that really made me cringe. The detective pointing the gun at… , really?!?!? Usually, that sort of thought process occurs long after the incident occurs and this is a detective, not a cop.

      The positive: Well, the good was really good. My level of expectation for Swamp Thing, Animal Man, and Action Comics were met and exceeded.

      Imagine if Action Comics was the lead comic pushed out the gate by DC. Oh my!

    • IroncladMerc says:

      So far, with about 4 books left to read, I was pleasantly surprised by Batwing, I thought it was going to completely suck but it was good and had a great cliffhanger ending. I have no idea what’s going to happen next, given what happened.

      Batgirl, I think the “miracle cure” thing is a cop-out, hopefully there will one day be an explanation as to how she is suddenly cured and walking around the next day. Normally it takes months of physical therapy to be able to walk again after not walking for years, but there she is doing acrobatics like nothing ever happened.

      Action Comics I was surprised how Superman is acting in this, but it reminds me of the early Action Comics of the late 30s, I think Superman was more like that back then, so it makes sense.

    • I thought Batgirl was a bit dampened down. It just felt like it wasn’t fully committed in some way. They kind of explained the thing but I wish they just didn’t.

      You could tell they were pretty back and forth on what to do.

      A miracle? How about one of the billion scientists she knows invented something? I mean Batman was in the same boat and he was fixed by psionic feedback.

      I am intrigued by Batwing, it’s kind of like X-23 for me, I don’t know why I like it but there’s something unique about the tone that I enjoy so I keep reading it.

    • SteenAR SteenAR says:

      Positive:

      As I have said I really enjoyed OMAC which I expected but I didn’t expect to love it as much as I did. I was probably most surprised by Men of War, though. It started a bit slow but by the end of the main story I was really pulled in and all I could think was that my friend who is in the military would love it.

      Negative:

      I was really disappointed in Batgirl. I was hoping to get a fun book but it turned out to be a little too depressing. I understand she was in a wheel chair and is getting her bearings but I wanted to see her having a blast being back in the Batgirl role. Maybe it’s just because I really miss Steph but I have very little interest in Barbara.

    • zenman zenman says:

      Positive: Batgirl. I’ve never been a Batgirl fan but I surprisingly enjoyed this book (both writing and art). Perhaps as a non-Batgirl purist, I was less put off by the change in continuity. I don’t know anything about Stephanie Brown and Oracle was never really on my radar. Funny how confounded some folks are that her back injury was cured when comic book characters routinely return from the dead! Liked how Ms. Simone began peeling back Barbara’ s inner demons and will be interested to see where she takes it.

      Negative: Justice League International: Had high hopes for this book (especially after enjoying Generation Lost). I felt like Mr. Jurgens just mailed this one in. I understand that he was trying to tap into the past “campy” vibe of this team, but the dialogue just came off as overly cartoonish and moronic. Definitely did not hook me like a good #1 issue should (instead it felt like some throwaway issue from a tired arc). Hope this title improves dramatically (and quickly)

    • keith7198 keith7198 says:

      The Best: Action Comics, Batgirl, Swamp Thing
      Dissappointing: Animal Man & ESPECIALLY Hawk and Dove

      Close to greatness: Batwing, Detective, and Men of War

      (Call this a shameless plug: Red Skull: Incarnate continues to be the best thing Marvel is doing right now)

    • Skyfire124 Skyfire124 says:

      Biggest Surprises (+)… Animal Man and Swamp Thing. I fully expected to hear good things and still find them not for my liking.
      Biggest Surprises (-)… Batgirl and JLI were expected to be top top picks and both cases I found them to be ho-hum. If they dont shape up by #3, they’ll be dropped.

      I couldn’t really get into OMAC. Never have been able to get into Detective and still can’t. (I much prefer Batman’s family of heroes, then I do Batman himself). Still deciding on Men of War. Hawk & Dove was just boring and I can’t get past how bad the art is on Hawk’s body and face (and the other male avatar that looked like Hawk….Kestrel?)

      Action Comics was a lot of fun and Im looking to continue that but the art needs firming up. Justice League was cinematic.

    • NawidA NawidA says:

      Positive: Animal Man
      Was not expecting this to be so well executed considering that Lemire’s DC work so far has unimpressed me.

      Negative: Stormwatch
      What a lackluster debut issue. Nothing was interesting about it.

    • Gerry Lopez nudebuddha says:

      I think my biggest surprise would have to be Swamp Thing. I never read the character before and never had any interest. I almost didn’t get it, even though I love Snyder. I don’t know how much he’s pulling from Moore here, and really, it doesn’t matter. Snyder’s a master storyteller and I’m hooked.

      The other big surprise would be Animal Man, for similar reasons, though I did like Morrison’s run, so I had more interest in the character. Again, Lemire is a master. The art in this was amazing.

      On the negative side, I was dissapointed in Batgirl. I expected more fun. There wasn’t much characterization of Barbara, really. For being an intro for new readers, it left out most what makes her a great character, her personality.

      Also, Stormwatch seemed confusing. The concepts are kind of out there, which is a good thing, but the introductions were at times too expository and others not clear enough. It was never at a point where I could just go with the story.

    • Biggest Positive surprise for me was Animal Man. I knew virtually nothing about the character before this issue. All I knew was he somehow accessed the abilities of animals and people loved his comic back in the 80s. I think I may have seen him in 2 panels of a Justice League comic a few years back when he was talking to Vixen. I had no clue what to expect, but something inside of my head told me to buy this book. I did and I absolutely loved it. It was my favorite book of the 5 New 52 titles I read this week.

      Biggest negative surprise for me was Rags Morales in Action Comics. Now, i DID like his art in it, don’t get me wrong. I think his style perfectly fits the book, and I am a fan of his. I just felt certain pages towards the end weren’t quite as strong as I was expecting. I thought I’d be giving him a full 5 stars for art on the book, but I only feel he achieved a 3.5 or a 4. But I do like his work and look forward to issue 2!

    • CaseyJustice CaseyJustice says:

      I was genuinely surprised at how much I enjoyed Animal Man and Swamp Thing. It’s not that I thought they’d be bad, it’s more that they aren’t the kind of books that I usually enjoy. But the art and character work in both were just off the charts, with chilling and intriguing mysteries that will definitely get my 2.99 next month.

      On the negative? Nothing, really. There were some books that I didn’t care for, but nothing especially surprising. I wasn’t expecting Stormwatch to blow me away, so when it didn’t I remained unmoved. Good week!

    • The biggest surprises were OMAC, Justice League Int., Batgirl, & Detective.
      Disappointments were Static Shock as I was hoping to like that, and Stormwatch because of the terrible art.
      I expected Swamp Thing, Animal Man & Action Comics to be great & they did not disappoint.

  25. bobby2889 says:

    heard really mixed things about ‘Tec. Action however I really liked and kinda wish it was an ongoing in that era. Morrison has some out there ideas but damn he gets comic books.

  26. zenman zenman says:

    Justice league International has been my biggest disappointment (thus far). Had high hopes for this book (especially after enjoying Generation Lost). I felt like Mr. Jurgens just mailed this one in. I understand that he was trying to tap into the past “campy” vibe of this team, but the dialogue just came off as overly cartoonish and moronic. Definitely did not hook me like a good #1 issue should (instead it felt like some throwaway issue from a tired arc). Hope this title improves dramatically (and quickly).

  27. BinaryViking says:

    Don’t know if this has been brought up already, but has anyone else seen the glowing pink woman who appears in almost every issue? Is she the same person from the end Flashpoint 5 or am i just crazy?

    • Paul Montgomery Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

      She’s is every single issue. It’s a fun little Where’s Waldo.

    • Bigblue says:

      Yes she is from Flashpoint and she makes a cameo in almost all of the new books including Justice League and Action. Any speculation who she is? a new character? Looks a little like Raven?

    • I wonder if she is the magic witch girl from World of Flashpoint who sacrificed herself?

    • CaeuZokul CaeuZokul says:

      DCnU Week One +

      Action Comics – pg. 26, panel 3
      Animal Man – pg. 12, panel 2
      Batgirl – pg. 19, panel 5
      Batwing – pg. 17, panel 1
      Detective Comics – pg. 15, panel 6
      Green Arrow – pg. 8, panel 1
      Hawk and Dove – pg. 19, panel 1
      Justice League – pg. 18, panel 4
      Justice League International – pg. 8, panel 2
      Men of War – pg. 17, panel 4
      OMAC – pg. 6, panel 4
      Static Shock – pg. 15, panel 1
      Stormwatch – pg. 15, panel 1
      Swamp Thing – pg. 6, panel 3

  28. I have one major problem with these books, and it’s that it doesn’t feel like a reboot. I know it’s not officially a “reboot” but I was hoping to get into these characters and watch them grow into heroes and see their world’s develop, not that they can’t still do it, but it was disappointing to see Animal Man after years of heroing and Swamp Thing after he was Swamp Thing for a while. We basically have a new universe with five years of continuity we don’t know about, mixed with stuff that from before that may or may not be there. I have never read these series before the reboot, so it’s disappointing that it feels like Animal Man and Swamp Thing already had a long running series and this happens to be a #1 issue during that. They were still good books and Animal Man was my pick of the week, but I just wanted to vent.

    • IroncladMerc says:

      Yes, the Swamp Thing #1 would be confusing to new readers, since it continues directly from Brightest Day and Brightest Day Aftermath mini.

      Animal Man though, I felt it was more of a reboot because his years of heroing were mentioned, but nothing specific about any past events, so it works with new readers without any “Huh?”" moments.

      Alec Holland knowing Superman would really be a head scratcher to new readers.

      So for sure we know the events of Blackest Night and Brightest Day happened in this new U. The Dove and Deadman connection in Hawk and Dove #1 also indicates that.

    • I never read any of the Brightest Day aftermath books but thought Swamp Thing #1 was perfectly accessible. I did pick up they were referring to something that happened previously but it didn’t get in the way of the story for me.

    • Conor Kilpatrick Conor Kilpatrick (@cskilpatrick) says:

      @IroncladMerc: You didn’t really have to know anything about what came before to enjoy SWAMP THING. Certainly not from what happened in SEARCH FOR SWAMP THING.

    • I was able to follow the story just fine, it was more that my expectations of how the relaunch was going to be handled, and I was hoping to see Alec’s first journeys as Swamp Thing, and the same for Animal Man, although the way that was handled much better, and it seems like it will be more about Maxine’s journey than Buddy Baker’s. I did lose a bit of excitement to see that these characters already come with baggage. I keep up with the events on the podcast, but I haven’t read a DC issue since the first six issues of Batman & Robin. I know Snyder’s a great writer, but I wish all of the books were more like reboots, kind of like Justice League or Action Comics. I will still continue with Animal Man, Swamp Thing, and Stormwatch, and I hope the feelings of baggage on Swamp Thing fades for me.

    • Paul Montgomery Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

      Sounds like the baggage in question isn’t the books’.

  29. Bigblue says:

    Thanks for the great reviews and lively discussion. Like many readers I was most disappointed by Batgirl. I wanted to love it but I just didn’t. I will stick with it because I trust Gail Simone and I love Barbara Gordon. If, however, the entire story arc remains as mediocre as this opening chapter I will ultimately drop the book. I have not bought a Bat-book in years so I am looking forward to this relaunch as a jumping on point. After viewing your recent podcast with Scott Snyder I am really looking forward to Batman.

    I loved Snyder’s opening chapter of Swamp Thing. As for Animal Man…loved the story, hated the art. The story is so good I will try to get past the art but for me comics are a package of story and art. I need both to be good to really enjoy the book. I am looking forward to all of the new supernatural/horror books.

    I had no interest in OMAC what-so-ever but now I am going to pick it up this weekend. Thanks to all the good feedback on this page. I will (sadly) be dropping Green Arrow. I was a huge fan of the original (Steve Ditko) version of Hawk and Dove and this incarnation manages to be even worse than I feared, glad I passed on this one. I also wanted to love Stormwatch mainly because of Martian Manhunter but I’m afraid I really had no idea what was going on. I never bought a Stormwatch book before and I’m afraid as a new reader I need some kind of better introduction. It may not help that the story is supposed to take place immediately after Superman #1 which hasn’t come out yet. Not very new reader friendly.

    Finally I loved Action #1 !!! It was almost perfect in every way both story and art. I sincerely hope this book remains as a stand alone title. No need to read any other books. Superman is the first Superhero so keep any reference to any other books out. No Batman, no Supergirl, no Superboy, no JLA. I want to see Superman develope slowly and in real time. Each story laying the foundations for the rich history that is to come. This is a great start. Looking forward to learning how he met Jimmy Olsen and they became “best friends”. Will Jimmy know Clark’s secret? His first meeting with Lois? with Lex? I actually can’t wait until next month. I’m 12 years old again!

  30. books i got in order of awesome
    1.)Men of War
    2.)Justice League
    3.)Hawk and Dove
    4.)Detective Comics
    5.)Green Arrow

    issue 2′s i’ll be getting:
    Men of War
    Justice League
    Hawk and Dove

    maybe Detective Comics, but definitley not Green Arrow. As a side note- am i really the ONLY one who liked Men of War? if so that makes me sad.

    • I’m glad to see I’m not the only one who liked Hawk and Dove! I had a lot of fun with it. I can totally see why other peope wouldn’t like it, but I really enjoyed it. I didn’t think it was as good as Animal Man or Action Comics, but I definitely liked it enough to keep reading.

  31. Loser13 Loser13 says:

    wow, what a week

  32. JNewcomb JNewcomb says:

    I REALLY wanted to like Men of War. It was good but not good enough. Lacked vision and direction I feel.

    I’m coming around to Animal Man. I didn’t “get” it at first but I finding the groove and beginning to like it.

  33. Thanks for taking up the challenging of reading all the reviews Paul. A lot of these got me excited for reading in trade for the future. I can’t believe a book by Dan Didio (OMAC) is getting such great reviews.

    I still can’t believe people are loving the Foreman art so much….but I’ll be repeating myself if I continue.

  34. Paul Montgomery Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

    UPDATE: The Week One episode of the Fuzzy Typewriter podcast is now available for download. For a round table discussion of all 14 books reviewed here, click the link up top. Hope you enjoy it!

  35. As a Full 52′er the first month, I hope to cut it down to just maybe 10 titles next month. And I like twitter-sized opinions, so here are mine on each…

    JUSTICE LEAUGE – Curiosity will keep me on this for at least the first arc. I like the whole “there was a time when the world didn’t know.”
    ACTION COMICS – I’m diggin’ the new attitude Supes. But I really only enjoy reading Morrison in trade. So I’ll be waiting.
    ANIMAL MAN – Damn! This is good! This is exactly what I want in a comic. I’m loving Foreman’s style. This is beautiful.
    BATGIRL – I’m a fan of “Batgirl” no matter who is wearing the costume. But Simone has never really wowed me, and she didn’t wow me here. I want to be wowed in these books.
    BATWING – Like the story. The art… not so much. This is on the border.
    DETECTIVE COMICS – Nothing here impressed me. Moving on..
    GREEN ARROW – This shit is wack!
    HAWK & DOVE – This shit is even more wack!
    JUSTICE LEAUGE INTERNATIONAL – Maybe it’s my Generation Lost love, or being a Booster fan, but this was one of my favs. I’ll be on this for a minute, but I want Batman to leave.
    MEN OF WAR – At the bottom of the stack, but enjoyed it more than expected. I like war fiction that actually uses that soldier slang (i.e. the footnoted stuff). This is on the border as well.
    O.M.A.C. – Big bulky guys who smash stuff and talk in monosyllabics was never my thing. Next…
    STATIC SHOCK – Teenagers who swing around the New York skyline was never my thing. Next…
    STORMWATCH – I feel like this really didn’t give me much of anything. But I’m still curious. I’ll wait to see if it picks up some buzz.
    SWAMP THING – Twisty heads are creepy… and awesome! That Snyder guy may have a future in the business. Paquette’s take on the Superman redesign is worth the cost of the first issue alone. This book is a keeper.

  36. daccampo daccampo says:

    Well, my thoughts are all in the podcast that Paul just linked to. But overall I’m pretty close to Paul’s picks, with just a few variations — which comes as a shock, I know.

    But I will say that, overall, I was pleased with what DC as a whole brought to the table. Not every book is for me, but I can see the purpose behind most books, and I do feel like a lot of thought went into the relaunch. Whether a book feels wholly new or just like it’s the next chapter, they all still feel like good jumping on points. I like that.

  37. Great job with this, Paul! Looking forward to your week 2 round up!

  38. thepowerout thepowerout says:

    skimming this to not spoil the books that i’ve still yet to read, but by the looks of things, this is going to help me a great deal in picking the right books to follow, which from someone who hasn’t bought comics ‘weekly’ for over ten years, is an important thing! thanks paul!

  39. keith7198 keith7198 says:

    The more I’ve thought about it, I think Swamp Thing is my POTW.

  40. Limitless Limitless says:

    You weren’t lying. The Dark section is out in front by a wide margin. I had absolutely no interest in these, but spur of the moment, after hearing such glowing words about them, picked them up on Wednesday. Swamp Thing was the best DC thing I read this week, and Animal Man was a close second, but as mentioned, the art in it is polarizing and at the moment I’m not behind it (with the exception of the amazing scene with A-Man lurching forward with some barking to punch the perp in the face).

    Never thought I’d like these two books, but they were just amazing. If not for Wolverine Debt of Death, they would have been fighting for my POTW.

  41. I just want to say, I rushed halfway across London to go to two comic shops at lunchtime to pick up Swamp Thing, Stormwatch and OMAC to add to my reserved copies of Action Comics and Animal Man because of the reviews on here. I’ve turned down Friday night drinking to come home and read them. I can’t remember the last time I was this excited to read new issues of comics. However this whole 52 thing turns out, I’ve got to thank DC (and you guys) for this.

  42. Okay, after much deliberation, here are my scores for what I’ve bought.

    1) Stormwatch- 8.4/10
    2) Justice League- 8.0/10

    3) Swamp Thing- 7.8/10
    4) Animal Man- 7.2/10
    3) Action Comics- 7.0/10

  43. Jason Wood Wood says:

    Paul hurt my soul with his Hawk & Dove review. The fuzzy typewrite has lost a few bottoms it seems :(

  44. j206 j206 says:

    Here’s my week 1 score card:

    “When does issue 2 come out?!” (I’m In):
    Animal Man
    Action Comics
    Batgirl
    Swamp Thing

    “Let’s see where this goes” (wait & see):
    Detective Comics
    Justice League International
    OMAC
    Batwing
    Stormwatch

    “Adios amigo!” (Dropped):
    Men of War
    Static Shock
    Green Arrow
    Hawk & Dove

    • daccampo daccampo says:

      Your list is VERY similar to mine. ;) Except for Detective, which I didn’t even pick up. Gonna stick to the Snyder Batman book for my Bats fix.

  45. thehangman thehangman says:

    i’m really tired of Morrison.
    really, REALLY tired.
    overrated writer who is past his prime has to go and ruin ANOTHER main character.
    we get it grant, you’re “edgy”. superman’s not.
    don’t have him dangle a corrupt businessman off of the ledge of a building.

    EVERYONE gave stracynski hell for superman telling lois lane not to print an article, but no one complains when morrison makes superman exactly like batman in “the dark knight”?

    i buy superman comics. i just can’t help it. i love the character, and i love his nature.
    same goes for batman.

    yet grant kills off batman, puts dick as batman, brings him back, and starts up a storyline where batman has a bazillion sidekicks. “HOLY HORRIBLE STORYLINE, BATMAN!”

    if they don’t kick grant off soon, i’m dropping action. and i survived the horribly confusing “reign of the doomsdays”.

    • daccampo daccampo says:

      I’d say it’s not so much making him like the Dark Knight as it is taking him back to his roots. Back in 1938, Superman WOULD dangle corrupt businessmen from rooftops. In fact, many of the images in the first issue (Superman vs. tank, Superman vs. train, Superman vs. corrupt business man) are all taken directly from Golden Age Superman comics. ;)

    • thehangman thehangman says:

      yeah, but i really hope morrison does a good transition back to boy scout superman.

      he better. and perez better write the hell out of superman.
      he deserves better.

    • daccampo daccampo says:

      My thing is…? I’ve seen boyscout superman for many years. I’ve read a lot of Superman. I’m personally ready for something different. This is a cool step for me.

  46. thehangman thehangman says:

    i personally liked detective.
    the art was nice, the story was appealing, what more can you ask for?

    JLI was nice. art was nice, story was nice, all simple. no great work of literature, but just a rather pleasant read.

  47. mickmac59 mickmac59 says:

    @paul – OMAC was completely off my radar until I read your review. Picked it up & loved it. Thanks man.

  48. keith7198 keith7198 says:

    Ok, finally finished all of my New 52 pickups. Even though I’ve posted reviews for each I’ll summerize it like this:

    TOP OF THE PILE: Swamp Thing, Action Comics, Batgirl

    GOOD SOLID ISSUE: Batwing, Detective Comics, Justice League International, O.M.A.C.

    ON SHAKY GROUND: Animal Man, Men of War

    NO THANKS, I’M DONE : Hawk and Dove