(A) Essential (B) Recommended (C) For fans only (D) Avoid

Superman & Batman: Generations 2 (John Byrne)
DC Comics

This is some of Byrne's best work and yet has been cruelly ignored and severely underrated! Nevertheless, this issue centres around the second generation heroes in this Elseworld universe (where heroes grow old, get married, have babies etc y'know - have a life!) and describes how these Teen Titans became the adult Justice League of America. Ace super hero storytelling from the master himself. (A) 


Orion #18 (Walter Simonson)
DC Comics

A Green Lantern in Apokolips? Why the hell not? You've got to admire a book where the titular hero spends its entirety unconscious! Simonson has re-introduced an interesting hidden tapestry involving the Green Flame of Agometto. Wonder if this scenario is where Orion will be finally wrapped up? (B) 

Murder Me Dead #8 (David Lapham)
El Capitan Comics

Half this comic is an extended chase sequence. Is that why Lapham needed an extra issue to complete Steven's tragic story? Not much to report as Steven finds Tara on the arm of an infamous gangster and Steven decides to confront you with his undying devotion. All to be revealed in the grand finale presumably. Ho hum. (C)

New X-Men #117 (Grant Morrison/Ethan Van Sciver/Prentiss Rollins)
Marvel Comics

Was it just Van Sciver's merely perfunctionary art that turned me off? Or did Morrison let the cat out of the bag concerning "Xavier" a tad too soon? You decide. Expected Morrison to dabble in more high concept stories but this issue was uncharacteristically vicious and visceral. Maybe it's just me but there is something seriously out of synch in the usually fluent Morrison story-telling here. A momentary lapse of reason? (C)


Legion Worlds #6 (Dan Abnett/Andy Lanning/Kilian Plunkett/Mike McKone)
DC Comics

The spotlight of "Rimbor" falls on Timber Wolf and the expectant Phantom Girl. As with most of the Worlds issues, there is a dark undercurrent that permeates the dystopian 'sci-fi' scenario that Abnett & Lanning have placed the Legion in. In this instance, it provides an intriguing and gritty premise to detail the dilemma our increasingly Logan-esque Brin and runaway Tinya find themselves in. The McKone-illustrated back up is superfluous. The Worlds series were never as good as Legion Lost but provided a satisfactory stop gap for the new ongoing series to come. (C) 

Fantastic Four 1234 #3 (Grant Morrison/Jae Lee)
Marvel Comics

Not sure if this is Morrison's idea of irony but thus far, Namor has proven to be the most interesting character in this series. Lee's moody static impressions are at odds somewhat with the subject matter although always gorgeous to look at. Why did Morrison break from the one issue one character focus here? Less studied than the last 2 instalments - which involved character examinations of the Thing and Invisible Woman, Namor steals the show with aplomb in an otherwise flaccid showing. (C)

Kimota!:The Miracleman Companion (Edited by George Khoury) TwoMorrows Publications 

Another winner from the TwoMorrows' stable, this lovingly compiled book is at the moment virtually everything you would want to know about this truly ground-breaking comic book. Interviews with the key players involved during the character's tumultuous history - creators Alan Moore, Garry Leach, Alan Davis, Neil Gaiman, Mark Buckingham and publishers Dez Skinn and Cat Yronwode present perhaps the most comprehensive perspective of this beloved super hero. Also included, tons of fantastic art, Moore's script of "A Dream of Flying" from Warrior #1 and an unpublished Alan Moore story drawn by John Totleben. Indispensable for true scholars of the super hero phenomenon. (A)


Universe X X (Jim Krueger/Alex Ross/Doug Braithwaite)
Marvel Comics

This convoluted bore has been going on for much too long. Earth X its predecessor worked well with its intriguing interpretation of major Marvel characters and their history. Universe X has not managed to maintain that level of interest and this turgid finale is short on ideas and long on tedium. What's worse is that there is yet another multi-part sequel Paradise X waiting in the wings. Enough is enough! (D)

X-Force #120 (Pete Milligan/Mike Allred)
Marvel Comics

Guest-starring Wolverine! HAH! A feeble attempt by Milligan and Allred to convince us that this iconoclastic super-hero book indeed based in the boring ol’ Marvel Universe. Try again, guys! There is a resolution of sorts to the Coach’s diabolical machinations and there’s more to Goop than was first suspected. But these do not make up for a lackluster issue – the first one so far. Anymore to come? (C)


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