By: Derek Ng.
10/21/15 C.C.P. Reviews:
Justice League #45 – $3.99
Uncanny Inhumans #1 – $4.99
Star Wars: Shattered Empire #4 – $3.99
Justice League #45
Writer: Geoff Johns | Artist: Francis Manapul
The Darkseid War has been nothing but nonstop action and Justice League #45 is no exception. This could even be read as the “slow” issue of the current arc. Yet, from the beginning of this issue to the end, you feel like you’ve been on a roller coaster that only goes down. Darkseid is “dead” and the Anti-Monitor has disappeared. Now the heroes are left to pick up what remains. The Flash, Superman, and Batman all have new powers that make them more “Gods” than they were before. Geoff Johns’ script focuses mainly how the psyche of these heroes change with great power. With so much knowledge, Batman is more mysterious and dangerous than very before. Superman is completely drunk on power and Flash is acting a little too calm as the harbinger of death. Francis Manapul picks up the art where Jason Fabok left off and it’s a good time for a transition. Manapul’s Kirby-esque art and water color style really emphasizes the changes the characters are going through. And it’s pretty awesome art to look at as well. This issue is a great example of a between-arc issue. The action slows but not to the point of boredom (in this case, not anywhere close). There’s enough material for this issue to stand on its own and builds the anticipation for what’s to come. Justice League #45 continues to be a fun ride and is worth a buy.
Uncanny Inhumans #1
Writer: Charles Soule | Artist: Steve McNiven
The Inhumans are here to stay. Marvel has been promptly and actively making the Inhumans more relevant in the Marvel Universe. I can’t really complain about this because Black Bolt is awesome and always has been awesome. But when comparing this issue to Uncanny Inhumans #0, this issue is a slight disappointment. The events before Secret Wars have still taken place. Black Bolt gave his son up to Kang the Conqueror in a desperate attempt to save him and now Black Bolt wants him back. But for some reason, Kang is making a fool out of Black Bolt. It’s such a change from issue #0 that it seems odd and misplaced. But I do like how Charles Soule is focusing the plot on Medusa and Black Bolt instead of all the NuHumans popping up. In the Marvel Universe, the mutants have always been prosecuted…but the Inhumans aren’t? I understand that Marvel wants to include the Inhumans in the universe more but it doesn’t make sense that people like the Inhumans. They’re basically mutants as well. There also seems to be a growing war between the mutants and the Inhumans. It’ll be interesting to see how this whole event will turn out. Steve McNiven’s art works well for this series. McNiven has always drawn faces really well to convey emotion, which is crucial for a character who can’t speak. All in all, for $4.99, this issue is worth looking through before you buy.
Star Wars: Shattered Empire #4
Writer: Greg Rucka | Artist: Marco Checchetto
There’s so much Star Wars excitement this week that I absolutely couldn’t wait to review anything related to The Force Awakens. Unfortunately, Star Wars: Shattered Empire doesn’t really meet its incredibly high expectations. That doesn’t mean this is a bad issue by any means. In fact, I absolutely wanted more. And because I wanted to read more, I was ultimately disappointed by this limited series. I simply didn’t want it to be limited and the limited restriction ultimately hurts this series. Shattered Empire continues to follow Shara Bey (Poe Dameron’s mother) as she joins each of the main characters on an exciting mission of doing something. I say “doing something” because each mission is random, as each character is doing their own thing. And readers never get time to know who Shara Bey is because she’s outshined by the characters we actually care about. This issue, for example, is a mission with Luke Skywalker and he completely steals the spotlight. Shara Bey didn’t even have to be in this issue. She served no purpose besides, literally, flying the plane. But the plot with Luke Skywalker was such a tease. This is one of the first Disney canon stories about Luke after the fall of the Empire. With no mention of Luke in the newest Force Awakens trailer or in the poster, many fans are asking: “Where’s Luke?” What has happened to Luke since the death of his father? How is he mentally dealing with the “defeat” of the dark side? There’s a page in this issue that left me shocked. I couldn’t believe what I was reading or how the events played out. It was subtle, but from Shara Bey’s reaction, you could definitely tell something was different. Something that has be read for yourself and I hope doesn’t bear any fruit (and I refuse to spoil). Really this moment is shocking is because Marco Checchetto drew such a powerful Luke. Luke is a Jedi Master now. With every force push to lightsaber swing, Marco Checchetto makes Luke the star of the page. It’s as if you’re seeing a Jedi in real life because you’re just sitting back, amazed, over the battle taking place. After such an exciting battle with a surprise subtle shock, the issue comes to a screeching end. The ending is so abrupt and sudden that you’re left wondering if April Fool’s came early. How can Shattered Empire be over after we barely got to see what the Empire was planning or learn more about Poe Dameron? I want more, Marvel!!! Ultimately, that’s why this issue was a disappointment…because there’s just so much to explore and questions left unanswered. If you’re on the Star Wars hype train, you’re going to want to pick this issue up. The moments with Shara Bey may be forgettable, but the moments with Luke aren’t. Luke is a complete bad-ass and I can’t wait to see him in The Force Awakens. #WheresLuke?
Panel of the Week:
“I am a Jedi, like my father before me.”
There are many more books released by DC and Marvel this week. I wish I could read them all but my wallet can only take so much. What did you read this week? Which issues would you put on your $15 budget this week? Remember to read and buy what you want and support your favorite writers and artists!
Derek is comic book fan like none other. You can follow him on Twitter.