Nightwing 9

nightwing-9

Today, Spencer and Mark are discussing Nightwing 9, originally released November 16th, 2016. As always, this article contains SPOILERS.

Spencer: If you go back and read my reviews of recent Nightwing issues, I’m on record as calling this run “grim” more than once. I’m still a bit puzzled as to why writer Tim Seeley has filled Dick with so much angst, but at least Nightwing 9 is an acknowledgement of this trend, and seemingly an active move away from it. It’s a refreshing look at why Dick Grayson is such a powerful character in the first place. Continue reading

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Convergence 0

convergence 0 CONV

Today, Patrick and Spencer are discussing Convergence 0, originally released April 1st, 2015. This issue is part of Convergence.

convergence div

Patrick: Did you know that there’s a sort of loose narrative that justifies the Super Smash Bros. games? The good folks at Hal Labs must have wanted some semblance of logic dictating why Pikachu was fighting with Samus Aran and Link, so they landed on the simplest possible explanation: this is a child playing with their toys. No, f’real. That’s why the final boss is a disembodied hand (or pair of hands) — those belong to the kid with all the action figures. There’s no magic, there’s no transdimensional nonsense, there’s only the conceit that a child with boundless imagination can sure make it look like Donkey Kong is pounding Marth into the ground. That’s freeing and fun and makes just as much sense as it needs to before getting to the truly rewarding business of having Solid Snake launch a mortar at Jigglypuff. Convergence, in its introductory issue, appears to be suffering from the exact opposite of this: an overly-explained mechanism backed by a total lack of imagination. Continue reading

Green Arrow 23

Alternating Currents: Green Arrow 23, Drew and Mikyzptlk

Today, Drew and Mikyzptlk are discussing Green Arrow 23, originally released August 7th, 2013.

Drew:  Last month, Count Vertigo articulated exactly why he’s such a perfect match for Green Arrow — Ollie needs to aim, while Vertigo stymies perception of space and motion. Ollie’s life has been such a mess recently, it’s easy to forget that archery is inherently very ordered. Even the quickest shot requires some pre-planning, some careful thought. In this way, the relationship between Green Arrow and Count Vertigo is one between order and chaos, a theme writer Jeff Lemire blows up in issue 23, as just about everyone has their plans upended. Continue reading

Green Arrow 22

green arrow 22

Today, Shelby and Patrick are discussing Green Arrow 22, originally released July 3rd, 2013.

Shelby:  Last night I was hanging out with friend and fellow writer Taylor; we’re going to the steampunk weekend at the Bristol Renaissance Faire, and we needed to spend some time crafting toy guns into steampunk weaponry. After adding some gears and coils to the rubber band shooter he’s going to use, Taylor started to play around with some copper wire, but ultimately decided to keep it simple with what he already had. It’s easy to give in to the temptation to add more stuff to a craft project because you can, but it’s important to know when something is finished, to keep things simple instead of cluttering your project with unnecessary extras. Jeff Lemire is the king of keeping things simple; his books may not have a lot going on, story-wise, but he definitely knows how to use simplicity to let a book shine.

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Constantine 4

constantine 4Today, Patrick and Taylor are discussing Constantine 4, originally released June 12th, 2013.

Patrick: For all it’s crude early-90s wordplay and carefully constructed explorations of popular culture, the greatest strength of the movie Clerks is Dante’s refrain “I’m not even supposed to be here today.” The indignity of living his life is made all the worse when we realize there’s no escape for the poor guy, even on his day off. It’s like the universe is only happy when Dante’s stuck behind the register at the Quick Stop. Just as the DC Universe is only happy when John Constantine is up to his neck in charms, angry wizards and grifter-assassins. It turns out magic doesn’t take a holiday, even when Johnny needs it so badly. Continue reading