This is a wonderful blend of 2000 AD and Metal Hurlant, with some absolutely great art and design by Giorello. If you are looking for a pretty comic book for the week, this is a fine contender. It is also pretty much self-contained. Anybody reading 4001 AD can see where things fit in, but knowing that background information is absolutely no requirement to enjoying the comic.
Van Lente tells a brisk and action-packed story of rival salvagers and mutated deadly creatures. It is clearly a set-up for an ongoing series, but based on the entertaining story and beautiful artwork I'm pretty happy to see that happen. This one-shot is your opportunity to get in on the ground floor. (4/5)
4001 AD: War Mother. Valiant. Written by Fred Van Lente. Art by Tomas Giorello. Colours by Brian Reber.
Under the cut: reviews of Aquaman, Batman and Green Arrow.
DC Comics. Written by Dan Abnett. Art by Philippe Briones. Colours by Gabe Eltaeb.An issue for story development more than action. After the destruction of a US naval vessel, Aquaman voluntarily goes into American custody until the situation can be sorted out. That may be difficult, as trigger-happy Americans and Atlanteans alike push the two nations closer to war, and Mera loses patience waiting for an outcome. This storyline is shaping into a nice superhero political thriller, which is also tying in nicely to the past few years of Aquaman back story. Abnett's script is rock-solid, and Philippe Briones' artwork is getting better each issue. (4/5)
DC Comics. Written by Tom King. Art by David Finch, Sandra Hope and Matt Belling. Colours by Jordie Bellaire.I have not been sold on King and Finch's first story arc on Batman, as Batman takes a pair of idealistic superheroes under his wing - with what now seem like disastrous consequences. This issue pushes the story along, revealing who the real enemy is and why new hero Gotham has seemingly lost control. I am not a huge fan of Hugo Strange or Psycho Pirate, but together they are an intriguing combination - particularly Psycho Pirate, who is traditionally a Justice League villain. It's still not a brilliant book, but it's becoming more enjoyable. (3/5)
DC Comics. Written by Benjamin Percy. Art and colours by Juan Ferreyra.This is a great superhero comic. Benjamin Percy is positively nailing his portrayal of Oliver Queen, dragging the book back to the territory where it always worked the best. It also boasts a great new villainous organisation: the Ninth Circle, a demonic bank for super-villains. That is a staggeringly great idea, and I really hope they stick around in the DC Universe for a while.Juan Ferreyra's artwork and colours are richly presented and very readable. This issue has pretty much sealed the deal: this is my favourite book for DC Rebirth. If you like superhero books you should definitely check it out. (5/5)