Posts Tagged ‘W. Haden Blackman’

Let’s All Cheer Up With A Preview of Smallville Season 11 #17

September 6, 2013

If you’re a fan of good, beautifully illustrated comics, you can’t be having the best day.  Yesterday, J.H. Williams III and W. Haden Blackman announced that they’ll soon be leaving Batwoman due to some rather epic editorial interference, ending one of the few consistently enjoyable and interesting runs of the New 52 era.  I was going to do a post about that today, maybe start with a joke about how DC put absolutely no effort into garnering publicity for Kate and Maggie’s engagement but now damn near every major entertainment outlet is covering THIS story; you know, the usual snark that comes from being perpetually disappointed by the people who own your favourite characters.

But then I saw that Comicosity has a preview of Smallville Season 11 #17, and good lord do I love that book.  So instead, let’s accentuate the positive and take a peek at one of the most enjoyable comic stories of the year, brought to us by Bryan Q. Miller and Jorge Jimenez:






What’s more fun than young Diana kicking that annoying Artemis in the stomach and jumping off a cliff in her homemade glider?  That’s just comics gold.  I love everything Miller and Jimenez are doing with this new, Smallville version of Wonder Woman.  And now it looks like she’s running a home for wayward girls, which is just fantastic.  If you didn’t read the first issue or follow along digitally, you are seriously missing out on some great comics.  So far, this is the best Wonder Woman story I’ve read in years, by leaps and bounds.

Look for Smallville Season 11 #17 in comic shops this Wednesday, or all of the digital issues are available right now as Smallville Season 11 #60-62.


Covers And Solicits For Wonder Woman #16, Batwoman #16, And Justice League #16

October 15, 2012

Wonder Woman super busy in January.  She’s got her own book, her guest-starring arc in Batwoman, and of course our regularly scheduled inter-superhero fighting in Justice League.  Let’s take a look at Wonder Woman #16 first:

Art and cover by CLIFF CHIANG
On sale JANUARY 23 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T
• Wonder Woman and her half brother Milan must grapple with the dangerous New God known as Orion!
• What strange alliance has the terrifying First Born made?

We saw this cover the other day, but now we’ve got a solicit to go with it.  Still no answer on that nasty fly situation, though.  And we’ve got another half-brother for Wonder Woman!!  Much like I have no idea what’s up with this First Born dude, I have no idea who Milan is either.  Zeus really gets around, so lord only knows how many new siblings Wonder Woman will meet before Azzarello’s run is over.  Anyway, we’ve got some new info, but it’s not telling us a whole bunch.  Informative AND cryptic… good work with the teaser!!

On to Batwoman #16:

Art and cover by J.H. WILLIAMS III
On sale JANUARY 23 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • RATED T+
• This issue guest-stars everybody!
• In this penultimate chapter, everything that’s been happening in BATWOMAN comes to a head!
• Plus, a new hero is introduced, and Wonder Woman fights monsters!

You had me with “Wonder Woman fights monsters!”  I’ll pay three bucks for that any day of the week.  Also, it looks like Wonder Woman will be in Batwoman in February too.  This is quite an arc.  It’s fun that we’ve got an extended team-up.  Plus, I’m excited for Williams to draw “everybody.”

Finally, friggin’ Justice League #16:

Written by GEOFF JOHNS
Art and cover by IVAN REIS and JOE PRADO
Backup story art by GARY FRANK
Variant cover by LANGDON FOSS
On sale JANUARY 23 • 40 pg, FC, $3.99 US • RATED T
• “THRONE OF ATLANTIS” continues!
• Aquaman can barely hold on against Ocean Master even with the League by his side!
• The United States loses faith in the Justice League and enters the battle against Atlantis, setting in motion the creation of the Justice League of America!
• More on the Superman/Wonder Woman alliance!
• Plus: In the backup story, the origin of SHAZAM! continues!

An “alliance”, eh?  That’s what they’re calling it these days?  Anyway, the Justice League is fighting each other again, and I don’t even care.  Even though the solicit sounds like they’re working together, but whatever.  Maybe they’ll get mind controlled and be pitted against each other.  I don’t much care for this book.

Look for all three Wonder Woman starring books on January 23rd, 2013!!

One Year Later: My Top Five New 52 Titles

September 6, 2012

It’s been an entire year since DC’s “The New 52” premiered, and with a year of new comics under our belts I thought it might be fun to take a look at my five favourite titles, one year later.  Originally I was going to do a Top Ten list, but it turns out I’m not even buying ten DC books right now!!  I’m barely buying five.  So “Top Five” could also read “the five books I actually buy”.  Let’s get to the list:

5) Dial H

Yes, it’s part of the Second Wave, but again, I’m not buying a lot of these books.  I’m very surprised by this, honestly… I assumed I was getting more.  Anyway, Dial H has been very fun so far!!  It’s weird and random, but a good time all around.  It’s fun to have China Mieville doing comics (have you read Perdido Street Station or The Scar?  If you haven’t, stop reading this article and go check them out now!!), and Mateus Santoluoco’s art has been great as he draws a variety of bizarre heroes each month.

4) Supergirl

The story is fun, albeit a little bit slow, but the reason I like Supergirl so much is because when Mahmud Asrar is on his game and can pencil and ink the entire book it’s just absolutely gorgeous.  The dude has skills.  Plus there’s been some cool villains with that weird alien gang and the Silver Banshee and such.  I do like the story, it’s just all about the art for me.

3) Batwoman

I am pleasantly surprised by how well J.H. William III and W. Haden Blackman are doing writing this book.  The first arc was great, and while the second arc went off the rails a bit with the weird time breakup and such it was nonetheless impressively ambitious.  Greg Rucka is a hard act to follow, and they’re doing a really good job.  And the book looks amazing… whether it’s Williams or Reeder or McCarthy, Batwoman’s been consistently beautifully drawn.

2) Batman

This is just a ridiculously good comic book.  Scott Snyder knows how to write a killer Batman story, and Greg Capullo is starting to grow on me as an artist (I like his Batman but not his Bruce Wayne, if that makes any sense).  The whole “Night of the Owls” storyline was great, and that issue where Batman was trapped in the Owls’ labyrinth was just amazing, both in terms of art and story.  Plus Becky Cloonan did a fill-in issue!!  I hope she, and Harper Row, are back soon.  Batman is the best it’s been in years now.

1) Wonder Woman

This is probably not a surprise, but a) it’s been AGES since Wonder Woman was even a Top Five book at DC, much less their best one, and b) it was touch and go for me for a while there with the whole Amazons murdering and raping dudes situation.  However, after the last few issues the book is back on track and firing on all cylinders.  Brian Azzarello is building a crazy, fantastic story and Cliff Chiang is drawing the hell out of it, along with Tony Akins sporadically.  New characters like Hermes and Strife are some of my favourites now, and the reveal at the end of Wonder Woman #12 is just all sorts of fun.  I’m so happy that Wonder Woman is good, and that Cliff Chiang is drawing it.  Chiang makes everything better.

So that’s my Top Five!!  It’s so weird to be getting only five mainline books.  When the New 52 started, my best friend and I picked up at least 20 of the new titles, but we really pared it down over the months.  Part of it was the freedom from what I’d always bought, I think.  I used to buy Batman, Detective Comics, Action Comics, Superman, and some other books because I’d ALWAYS bought those books, even when I didn’t like them, but now that completism is gone for me with the renumbering and the new universe.

Another part of it is the sheer number of awesome new books that came out this year from other publishers.  My budget is only so big, and books like Saga, Captain Marvel, Hawkeye, and others have bumped a lot of DC books from my pull list.  I used to get 10-12 DC books and 2-3 books from other publishers, but now it’s around 5 DC books and 7-8 others.

I know the New 52 has been pretty decent for DC in terms of increased sales, but I’m getting a lot less than I used to.  However, what I do get I really like, which is fun.  When I used to get more DC books, I didn’t actually dig a lot of them.  So while I may be a worse customer saleswise, I’m a much happier customer with the books I do get.

Please feel free to leave your Top Five in the comments.  Are there books I’m crazy for not reading?  Let me know.

Solicits For Wonder Woman #14, Batwoman #14, And Justice League #14

August 15, 2012

Wonder Woman is going to be on a lot of covers this November!!  She’s getting around, which is very fun to see.  More Wonder Woman is never a bad thing.  First up, let’s look at Wonder Woman #14:

On sale NOVEMBER 21
• Wonder Woman’s twisted “family” grows larger than she could have imagined.
• On the trail of the god who betrayed her, Diana crosses the path of the deadly SIROCCA!

If Wonder Woman’s family is growing, that could mean some more gods.  New gods are always a good time… they’ve all been very cool so far.

I can’t find anything on Sirocca.  There was a Sirocco during Busiek’s Superman run a few years ago, and he was an Iranian superhero.  Sirocco is also a super strong wind that comes from the Sahara up into the Mediterranean.  It can reach hurricane speeds, and causes dust storms in North Africa and storms in the Mediterranean.  Maybe Sirocca is some sort of physical embodiment of that wind?  Wonder Woman was in a desert in October’s cover, and it’s still sandy here, so the Sahara is a possible setting.  We’ll just have to wait and see!!

On to Batwoman #14:

Art and cover by J.H. WILLIAMS III
On sale NOVEMBER 21
• The Batwoman/Wonder Woman team-up epic continues!
• Batwoman may be out of her league as she chases down Medusa!

Medusa stories are a good time.  You really can’t go wrong with Medusa.  This should be a cool arc, and it starts today, actually, in Batwoman #12.  It’ll skip next month with the #0 issue, but then it’s back again in October and now November.  And it doesn’t sound like this issue is a conclusion either.  I’m very excited for this team-up!!

Finally, Justice League #14:

Written by GEOFF JOHNS
Art and cover by TONY S. DANIEL and RICHARD FRIEND
Backup story art by GARY FRANK
Variant cover by JASON FABOK
On sale NOVEMBER 21
• The second chapter of a tale that lights the fuse that will ultimately explode in 2013’s TRINITY WAR.
• The League must fight the mysterious Cheetah… AND a monstrous Superman! The result will radically change the dynamics of the entire team!
• Amid all this, where is Green Lantern?
• Plus: The next chapter of the SHAZAM backup epic by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank!

Oh hey, the Justice League is fighting each other.  Way to mix it up!!  Seriously, they’ve fought each other WAY more than they’ve fought any bad guys so far.  It’s getting sort of ridiculous.  Anyway, the Cheetah story continues with Tony Daniel on art!!  We still don’t have a ton of details on which Cheetah it is and what she’s up to, but I suppose we’ll find out soon enough.

There’s some Shazam stuff too, which I go back and forth between really liking and not enjoying at all.  I flip flop like crazy on it.

All of these nice, Wonder Woman starring books will be out on November 21, so mark your calendars and go check them out!!

Wonder Woman And Batwoman Team Up In Batwoman #13!!

July 3, 2012

To be honest, I don’t love this cover, but this is still pretty much the best team-up ever.  Batwoman AND Wonder Woman drawn by J.H. Williams III is going to be EPIC.  And it sounds like it’s going to be a bit of arc too, which is super fun… The Source says that it’s “beginning in Batwoman #13, so maybe Wonder Woman will be around for a few issues.

I’m excited to see what Williams and W. Haden Blackman do with Wonder Woman, since she hasn’t really done a lot outside of her main series since the relaunch.  She’s pretty much a background player in Justice League, and most of her lines consist of “Hells yeah, fighting!!” or some such.  I like Williams’ concept of having Batwoman and Wonder Woman be both very different but still complimentary, the way that Superman and Batman are.  That’s a really cool angle to take with the characters.  Plus the art is going to be NUTS.  Here’s a Williams Wonder Woman piece from a few years ago to tease you further:

Also, it seems that I am a genius.  When I started my blog a while back, I did a few posts called “Why Aren’t They Drawing Wonder Woman?” profiling artists that I thought would do an awesome job with Diana.  First up was Cliff Chiang, who’s now the regular artist on Wonder Woman.  Second was J.H. Williams III, who’s now drawing her in Batwoman.  Third was Jim Lee, who’s now drawing her in Justice League.  All three have come true!!  I must have a weird superpower.  If I do, then universe/DC Comics, I LOVE Mahmud Asrar and would like to see him do some Wonder Woman please!!  Perhaps a Wonder Woman/Supergirl team up?  Get on it, special powers!!

The (presumably) first issue of Wonder Woman and Batwoman’s team up,Batwoman #13, hits the stands on October 17, and if you don’t pick it up then you’re insane.  That’s all there is to it.  Wonder Woman.  Batwoman.  J.H. Williams III.  You HAVE to buy it.

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