Holy crap! In-depth album reviews take a while! For those waiting for my review of Paramore's new self-titled album (which is No. 1 on the charts, by the way), it will be out this week and will hopefully be followed up by Kacey Musgraves' Same Trailer, Different Park.
Anyway, enough of my rambling. I've got two new books to review. For those who are going to miss RHATO, I may continue at some point, but from what I've read, I'm not going to enjoy the James Tynion IV run in the first arc at least. If I see Issue #19 at some point, I'll give my thoughts, though.
Let's get to the books!
I'm going with the book building up to Trinity War first, as we see Jason Todd still hanging around the Batcave talking with a grieving Alfred. Both are attacked by someone who can apparently pass Bruce's fingerprint/retinal scan test (Clayface, perhaps?), and this person grabs the emergency briefcase with special Superman combat equipment (I'm guessing kryptonite, but that's kind of obvious thanks to the cover).
Anyway, Batman discovers this but can't go through any detective work because the media is freaking out at Superman and Wonder Woman stopping an international hostage crisis, causing him to debate with them on their actions.
In the side story, Firestorm and the Atom are waiting for formal induction and we get a nice, humorous side story with the two exploring the satellite until the location gets invaded.
Lastly, there is a SHAZAM! back-up where Billy Batson wants to get rid of his powers, but instead is simply given part of Black Adam's origin. There are also some interesting teases, like Shazam's fight with Black Adam being imminent and Billy's sister Mary possibly having access to the Mary Marvel powers eventually.
Both the main and back-up stories are really well-done and I enjoyed both. Geoff Johns' writing and the combined artwork of Reis and Frank do a lot to complement the stories they're trying to tell. The only issue I see is that Aquaman is shown on the cover and isn't present in the story at all.
I got a lot out of this story and I'm really loving this build-up to the Trinity War this summer.
Dick Grayson is now in Chicago and (surprise, surprise) it's corrupt as all hell!
Nightwing's story here makes the move to the Second City so that he can hunt Tony Zucco, but it appears that he's got the Prankster to deal with as well as some borderline psychotic girl who is actually REALLY gifted in fighting.
If Brett Booth could stay the artist for this book for the foreseeable future, I'd be happy. This was the first artist in a while that didn't throw off the mood of the entire title and kill the narrative, so I'm glad for that.
The bright colors and general insanity of the people in this storyline serve each other well. And it gets dark at the right times as well, knowing to get grittier when Nightwing is running from cops and when we find out where Tony Zucco is.
Once again, Dick is developing a supporting cast, with a roommate who lives by the railroad tracks. I really love the way minor characters are made so interesting in this title, but I'd love it if they don't get written out or killed this go-around.
Overall, this is a good start to the arc and I think it's a very good time to jump on. This title's writing remains consistently awesome and the art may FINALLY be coming around, so yeah, jump on board!
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