THE CAT'S MEOW: What's Good on the Shelf This Week / Year 2 - Week 7 ___________________________________________________________________________
THE BATMAN STRIKES! #38: “Pretty Poison” (All Ages)
Russell Lissau (w); Christopher Jones (p); Terry Beatty (i); Heroic Age (c); Rob Clark, Jr. (l); cover by Sanford Greene & Nathan Massengill
Format: monthly series
Concept: Follow the adventures of Bruce Wayne in his early years as Batman.
In this issue : Poison Ivy's out for a night out on the town, but don't worry — Batman and Robin are hot on her tail! What can the Dynamic Duo do when no one in Gotham City has seen Ivy committing a crime? (from dccomics.com)
Review: Poison Ivy prefers the green of the plants over the grays of Arkham Asylum, especially when she sees that a rare plant will be on display at the Gotham Arboretum. In the artistic hands of Jones, Beatty and Heroic Age, the plant is indeed wondrous to behold. Lissau provides a nice little twist when Ivy reveals what she really wants with the plant, and I like that he ends the story on a positive note as Batman and Robin respond. And I don't think I have ever seen Dick Grayson as happy as when he's raving about the band Demolition and “C is for Coma.” (Now THERE'S a song title for you!) It's great to see him just being a kid, and Jones gives him an absolutely wonderful expression.
MARVEL ADVENTURES AVENGERS #17: “It Was a Dark and Stormy Night…” (All Ages)
Ty Templeton (w); Ig Guara (p); Norman Lee & Jay Leisten (i); Val Staples (c); Dave Sharpe (l); cover by Grummett, Pallot & Sotomayor
Format: monthly series
Concept: Super-soldier from World War II. Weather Goddess. Super-strong alter ego of scientist Bruce Banner. Spider-powered web-slinger. Giant-sized crimefighter. Brilliant armored inventor. Feral mutant brawler. Together, they are the world's mightiest heroes, battling foes that no single super hero could withstand!
In this issue: Ok, you're a super hero. And you've got to fight a robot. But while the robot can punch and blast you with lasers, YOU can't touch him. That's a problem, right? That's what the Avengers are up against when they encounter THE VISION! (from marvel.com)
Review: Templeton goes from BATMAN ADVENTURES to MARVEL ADVENTURES in this tale of a practice android given life by a power surge. Not only is it alive, but it can shoot laser blasts from its eyes and alter its mass and density. Oh, and it's programmed to attack the Avengers and empty Stark Tower . Needless to say, the team sure has their work cut out for them! There's a nice scene with Cap and Spidey in total darkness. Fun stuff.
MARVEL ADVENTURES FANTASTIC FOUR #29: “The Hulk” (All Ages)
Steve Niles (w); Leonard Kirk (p); Kris Justice (i); Lee Loughridge (c); Nate Piekos (l); cover by Kirk
Format: monthly series
Concept: Irradiated by cosmic rays and transformed to possess superhuman powers, they joined together to fight evil. Mister Fantastic, the Invisible Girl, the Human Torch and the Thing. Together they call themselves the Fantastic Four!
In this issue: Hmmmm…can't remember…Hulk Knit! No, that's not right. Hulk Bake Muffins! Nope, nope…Oh! I know…HULK SMASH!!! (from marvel.com)
Review: What's this? Steve Niles—better known for his horror works such as “30 Days of Night”—is writing a MARVEL ADVENTURES issue? It's true! The Four are called in to stop the Hulk from destroying General Ross's planes. But is the Hulk really to blame? And if not, who is? It's an entertaining story, if nothing particularly memorable, with Kirk drawing a nice Thing.
MARVEL ADVENTURES TWO-IN-ONE #4
To be reviewed in next week's column:
FLASH vol. 2 #233
LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES IN THE 31 st CENTURY #7
MARVEL ADVENTURES IRON MAN #6
TRANSFORMERS: DEVASTATION #2
ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN #115
X-MEN FIRST CLASS vol. 2 #5
By thy side,
John “Figaro” Norris
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