November 19, 2016

The Pull List: 9 November 2016, Part 2

Casey Brinke's strange entry into the world of the Doom Patrol continues, in this case with the return of fan favourite Danny the Street.

It's clear that in Gerard Way's able hands, Doom Patrol is not a new take or angle on the intermittent but long-running title but effectively one fan's tribute to the Grant Morrison era of the title back when it was one of DC Vertigo's original titles. The classic Morrison characters are getting re-introduced one by one, while weird stuff is happening pretty much for its own sake. There is a beautiful comic-within-a-comic sequence halfway through that is absolutely brilliant.

It's all very entertaining stuff, and a real nostalgia trip for fans of Morrison's run, but it's open to debate whether or not this is a book that we actually need to see. Morrison's take worked because he actively went out of his way to change Doom Patrol and provide it with a new angle. Way isn't doing that - or, at least, he isn't doing it yet - and instead gives us a copy of something that's already still out there in print. He has done a brilliant job of recreating something great. Now I want to see him take it somewhere new and great. (4/5)

Doom Patrol #3. Written by Gerard Way. Art by Nick Derington. Colours by Tamra Bonvillain.

Under the cut: reviews of Batgirl and the Birds of Prey, Daredevil, The Fuse, and Poe Dameron.

Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #4
DC Comics. Written by Julie Benson and Shawna Benson. Art by Roge Antonio. Colours by Allen Passalaqua.
The hunt for the fake Oracle continues, but with Huntress heading off alone will Batgirl and Black Canary be able to succeed without her? This revival of Birds of Prey has been pretty much pitch-perfect: lots of action, a sprinkling of humour, strong dialogue and dynamic artwork by Roge Antonio. This issue devotes more than a few pages to the back story of Huntress, which is a good thing: after being reintroduced twice during the New 52 it was important to establish this old-school version of the character firmly before this book got too much further on. (4/5)

Daredevil #13
Marvel. Written by Charles Soule. Art by Ron Garney. Colours by Matt Milla.
The artistic villain Muse has taken a whole courtroom hostage, and now it is up to Daredevil and his sidekick Blindspot to save the day. This issue focuses almost exclusively on Blindspot, which is something of a relief since he's been Daredevil's partner for 13 issues now and really has not received much in the way on showcasing or highlighting over that time. It's a strong chase issue, with very atmospheric artwork by Garney and sharp colours by Milla. It all ends on a strong cliffhanger as well, making the wait for issue #14 all the more urgent. (4/5)

The Fuse #23
Image. Written by Anthony Johnston. Art by Justin Greenwood. Colours by Shari Chankhamma.
With Ralph in custody under terrorism charges, he finally confesses to his partner Klem: why he is associated with the rebels, why he came to the Fuse in the first place, and most importantly why he is innocent of the crimes for which he has been charged. This is a hugely rewarding issue for long-term readers, finally clicking some critical pieces of the story into the place. It also rattles along towards a climax, as the Fuse's mayor prepares to deliver a first anniversary speech and an assassin prepares to kill him while he delivers it. There is one issue to go in this fourth story arc, and to be honest I can see there being one issue to go in the whole series; where does The Fuse go from here? (5/5)

Poe Dameron #8
Marvel. Written by Charles Soule. Art and colours by Phil Noto.
Both Poe and Agent Terex retreat to their respective strongholds to recuperate and develop their next plan of attack. For Terex it means a flashback to his experience following the fateful Battle of Jakku. For Poe it means considering the dreadful possibility that one of his squadron is leaking intelligence to the First Order. It's a solid interstitial issue, bridging the gap from one story to the next and advancing the development of both hero and villain. Phil Noto's artwork suits the more dialogue-based narrative as well: he captures the likenesses and emotions of the characters very well but does seem to struggle to give any space scenes a sense of momentum. (3/5)

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