Friday, October 19, 2012

Death of the Family Part 2: Catwoman #13 and other book thoughts

OK, so I think we all know why you clicked this, so let's get to that review first.

Catwoman #13

This story... oh wow, this story!

To put it bluntly, this book attempted to make the Joker's plan seem like it's been going for a while, but while it introduced some good ideas, I can't figure out for the life of me why anything was happening.

I am willing to accept that someone (Joker) planted a possession of Selina's dead friend to mess with her head. What I don't get is why a second one was introduced via a gigantic exploding chess piece.

For that matter, why was there a gigantic game of chess being conducted around the city? Is that just something that Gothamites who spend a lot of time at the Chess Club do? And why does Catwoman have to be part of it?

I know this whole thing was probably a setup by the Joker, but just because Joker's actions behave randomly doesn't mean they ARE random. He knows what he's doing and he has a grand scheme. The scheme may be random chaos but he gets you need to be organized to gain chaos.

Yes, I hear how that sounds, but that's how Joker differs from a villain like Carnage in Spider-Man. Carnage is just about chaos and suffering, and therefore just kills without any care for who or what is in the way. Joker is trying to prove his point of chaos to Gotham and Batman, and therefore needs to have that goal in everything he does. Joker wants chaos everywhere, Carnage is chaos embodied.

But yeah, the bottom line is that in a DC Universe where Tony Daniel and Scott Snyder's Joker exists, I don't really buy a story this crazy existing unless it's some deep-rooted fear for Selina or she's under hypnosis thanks to the Mad Hatter.

It's an interesting enough read, and for those collecting DOTF stories, I'm sure that news of an attack on Selina will be relayed to Batman, which means it doesn't hurt to follow this storyline.

But man-oh-man, do I ever wonder what happened to the Catwoman story that sat pretty high in the "Night of the Owls" crossover rankings?

Anyway, while at the comic store, I did catch a glimpse of some other books that may be of interest. I won't go into full reviews, but I'll share brief thoughts.

Green Lantern Corps and Green Lantern New Guardians #13

Both are in the Third Army crossover, but are very hard to follow if you haven't been into GL books for a while.

I am looking forward to seeing this in TPB, but you do need to actually sit down to follow it in its current form. Skimming does not work for a story this complex, so either buy all-in or wait for the trade.

Phantom Stranger #1

After reading Jesse Scheeden's review of this book, I had no desire to buy it, but I took a look anyway.

And Jesse, all I can say is: WTF IS WRONG WITH YOU?!?!

No, not because the book is good. It's actually kind of average. What upsets me is how this reviewer somehow glossed over (and by that, I mean ignored entirely) the fact that this was RAVEN'S DEBUT IN THE NEW 52!!!

How do you not bring that up? She's been a prominent and popular figure in DC and the fact that both she and Trigon debut in this issue and that gets no play is mind-blowing.

As I said, the tale of Judas Iscariot, er, the Phantom Stranger is not that interesting overall, but sets up what I'm guessing will lead to an important part of the upcoming Trinity War (given that what occurs is part of a "bargain").

I personally didn't buy it because a book that is so clearly a universe-builder will inevitably lead me into a ridiculous amount of books just to follow what is going on. For this issue, though, Raven and Stranger fans will definitely want a look.

No reviews of DC next week, but keep an eye out for my review of Dark Horse Comics' The Promise Part 3, as well as my thoughts on the Marvel NOW! Initiative.

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