Still in the thick of “Rebirth,” DC Comics has unleashed a firehose of titles on us between bi-weekly publishing and a new #1 almost every week. Although we’ve had a few in-depth reviews, it’s becoming a little insane to cover all of them. Therefore, here’s some quick coverage of the books we didn’t go into extreme detail on.
Aquaman #3 (Dan Abnett/Phillippe Briones): Funny that Aquaman’s become more like the 1990s Wonder Woman, in that Dan Abnett’s making him into a royal warrior who’s an ambassador of peace. Atlanteans are conducting acts of terror against the United States, and all Arthur wants is normalized relations between the countries. There’s plenty of action with Black Manta and his terrorists. The only drawback? Aquaman himself doesn’t do jack this entire issue, a point driven painfully home by the issue’s final page.
Rating: three squids out of five.
Batman #3 (Tom King/David Finch): Three issues in and we’ve finally got at least half an origin for Gotham and Gotham Girl, and no, they’re not Silk Spectre and Nite-Owl. The wisdom of including a pair of psuedo-Kryptonians in a Batman title remains to be seen, but this book does seem awfully dry for a title about a city under siege (again). It’s OK, but something’s not quite working here. David Finch’s art is pretty, though.
Rating: Three bats out of five belfrys.
Batgirl and the Birds of Prey Rebirth #1 (Julie Benson/Shawna Benson/Claire Row): Maybe the revived Birds of Prey can be comicdom’s premiere female-led book now that A-Force appears to be going under? Maybe, but only if the reunited team of Batgirl, Black Canary and the new Huntress can get along. (That’s the new Helena Bertinelli Huntress, not the old one who went back to Earth-2, although she was based on the old version…ohhhhh, continuity.) BATBOP Rebirth is much less of a setup issue than prior “Rebirth” issues have been and this one pretty much demands you read the next issue. It’s honestly not the best start to this new creative team…but it’s the closest we’ll get to a revival of the 1990s title. Read if you’re a diehard BoP reader or looking for some girl power in general.
Rating: Two and half birds out of five.
Green Arrow #3 (Benjamin Percy/Juan Ferreyra): Funny coincidence: both Green Arrow and Birds of Prey include a scene in a confessional this week. Is DC taking us back to church? Oh, and Black Canary’s here, too, even though she’s also across the country in BOP. These books really need to coordinate. Percy’s got a lot going on in this story which requires a lot of backstory. Seriously, if you haven’t been following this since issue #1, you might be lost. Ollie is fighting some bad guys, and I really don’t know who they are or what the heck is going on. Ferreyra’s art is OK and he can work a great deal into a page…but the “painted” art style makes the whole experience a bit muddy.
Rating: Two and half shafts out of five.
Green Lanterns #3 (Sam Humphries and FOUR art teams): This is a little more like it, in that Green Lanterns feels like “classic” DC with a good, clean house style–even if the book inexplicably uses four penciler/inker teams in the space of 20 pages. Double-shipping is rough on an artist, but really: four teams? They’re all similar enough that the art shift isn’t jarring, but it’s still there. Anyway, Green Lanterns fight Red Lanterns, and Jessica and Simon are still figuring out how to work together. Humphries’ story reads pretty much like you’d expect a follow-on to Geoff Johns’ long run to read–pretty much pulling from that existing mythos. It’s OK–though if you want some new stuff, there’s last week’s Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps.
Rating: Three rings out of five.
Scooby Apocalypse #3 (Keith Giffen/J.M. DeMatteis/Howard Porter/Dale Eaglesham): Three months into the Hanna-Barbera revamp and the world hasn’t ended, except in Scooby Apocalypse, where it’s literally ended. This issue finally gets the Scooby Gang out of the bunker and into the larger world which, yes, is infested with monsters too. We do finally get some one-on-one interactions between Velma and Daphne, as well as Fred and Shaggy. Meanwhile, Scooby is just sort of there–possibly the weak spot of this book, given that his name is in the title.
Rating: Three and a half Scooby Snacks out of five.
Be sure to check out the rest of this week’s DC Rebirth reviews and stay tuned for more.