There is a lengthy rant about the Batman titles below this so before I subject you all to that here is my pick from last week (I’ll get this thing out more timely soon, I swear!).
This title is very very unabashed a riff of the classic film Big. Ollie Jansen is wheel chair bound due to his multiple sclerosis but maintains an upbeat attitude. Ollie is a huge fan of the somewhat dorky and very old-school Superman riff called Superior. Then a space monkey shows up; the space monkey is Superior’s Zoltan. Needless to say this is another one to watch from Millar who seems to have cornered the market on combining superheroics and supervillainry with a real world approach. Yu has definitely improved as an artist over the years, his stint on New Avenger having honed his skills in portraying big superhero action without sacrificing his attention to detail. Excellent stuff here and I highly recommend picking up a copy!
Now, on to the rant!
So anyone who visited a comic book store last week (10/13) might have noted a series of titles on the shelves under the title of Bruce Wayne: the Road Home. Sitting perhaps to the left of these titles would have been Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne #5 of 6. The latter comic has been, if I’m not mistaken, oft-delayed to the point where the series of one-shots featuring a returned Bruce Wayne is now on shelves before he has actually returned. Does this sound familiar? Marvel had a similar problem when Captain America: Reborn was delayed and Captain America: Who Will Wear the Shield was published before the Reborn series concluded.
These kind of publishing screw ups annoy the hell out of me. Death in comics these days has no meaning. I say this as a categorical fact. When a hero dies I rarely, if ever feel anything, since (assuming it isn’t some jobber) there is 99.999% chance that we’ll that hero again in the not too distant future. Once, we had the surefire weight of the Bucky Clause to mitigate death’s revolving door policy. Unfortunately even that has been more-or-less swept under the rug (I do like Brubaker’s method of bringing Bucky back though). All I ask, knowing that death matters little in comics, is that you make the “return” even something memorable. So when a publisher mucks things up by getting ahead of itself with something like Captain America: Reborn or The Return of Bruce Wayne I find myself feeling a bit put out. While there was never any question Bruce Wayne would return, I mean the series title tells you what will happen, I find it bizarre that a comic publisher would cut the legs out from under one of its own titles.