Today, Drew and guest writer The Freakin’ Animal Man are discussing Superior Spider-Man 6, originally released March 20th, 2013.
Drew: Superheroes wear masks to protect their identities. The notion is that, by covering their faces, they will obscure who they really are. Of course, “who they really are” often has more to do with their actions than their names, which becomes readily apparent when another person steps behind the mask. The cops and villains of Gotham City all noticed a change in Batman when Dick took the reins, suggesting that much of the differences in Bruce and Dick’s personalities weren’t hidden by the cowl at all. At least Bruce and Dick are friends — imagine how apparent those changes might be if they were mortal enemies. That’s exactly the situation Superior Spider-Man finds itself in as the cracks in Otto’s facade continue to grow. Continue reading →
Today, Shelby and Patrick are discussing Superior Spider-Man 5, originally released March 6th, 2013.
Shelby: For a super-villain, murder is often the most efficient way to do business. Unless you need hostages or information, civilians are at best in your way, and at worst witnesses to your nefarious deeds. Also, there’s no more efficient way to be feared and considered dangerous than by ganking a few innocent bystanders. It’s why so many heroes have pretty strict “no kill” rules; not only does it make the hero the diametric opposite of the villain, there are also times when not killing is the harder choice. Doing the hard thing (like saving the life of a cold-blooded murderer) because it’s the right thing is a core tenet of hero-ness. When faced with a choice between what’s right and what’s efficient, I think we all know which option Otto will choose. Continue reading →
Today, Patrick and Drew are discussing Batwing 8, originally released April 4th, 2012.
Patrick: At its outset, Batwing was something incredibly new for the DC Universe. David Zavimbe is the first to open a Batman Inc. franchise and his is the first series to take place in Africa. The early issues explored dark dark dark themes, toeing the line of exploitation, but this gave these early issues a relevant, almost dangerous feel to them. With two whole issues in Gotham and in the presence of Batman, Nightwing, Robin and Batgirl, Batwing loses its identity, becoming a bland, by-the-numbers comic book adventure. Continue reading →
Today, Drew and Patrick are discussing Batwing 7, originally released March 7th, 2012.
Drew: At the end of issue 6, I had mixed feelings about this title. I liked the stylized art, particularly Brian Reber’s atmospheric, almost dusty colors, and I appreciated the idea of distilling the idea of Batman down to it’s essence and seeing how it plays in different cultures. At the same time, I wasn’t sure I actually liked the approach writer Judd Winick had applied to the Democratic Republic of the Congo. I complained that the title was exploitative, but it really isn’t guilty of doing anything any frank (or, more importantly, action-focused) depiction of subsaharan Africa wouldn’t do. I’m still not convinced that this title isn’t exploitative, but this month’s issue comes a long way in making me more comfortable with the world David Zavimbe inhabits. Continue reading →
Today, Patrick and Drew are discussing Batwing 1-6, originally released September 7th, 2011, October 5th, 2011, November 2nd, 2011, December 7th, 2011, January 4th, 2012, and February 1st, 2012.
Patrick: David and Isaac Zavimbe were orphaned when their parents died of AIDS. They were kidnapped from the orphanage by Warlord Keita, who transformed them both into monstrous child-soldiers. As the Zavimbe brothers were impossibly good at killing in the name of the warlord, Keita took them on as his own sons – calling them his Dragonflies. The more atrocities they committed for Keita, the more he trusted them. When Isaac defied and order and refused to murder children, Warlord Keita gutted him with a machete in front of his brother. By way of revenge, David left Keita defenseless in an enemy village and vowed to never kill again. David grows up to become a police officer in the Republic of Congo by day and superhero Batwing by night. This is canvas upon which the Batwing saga is painted.