DC Comics New 52 Reboot: A Nerds-Eye View - Week 1

DC just relaunched their entire line last week with Justice League. The first full slate of new #1's come out this week, and I, for some horrible reason, decided to read all new issues. All. 52. Of. Them......I already regret my decision. Can't go back now, though, so here we go!

Action Comics

This issue - This is basically a straightforward issue of Superman, with him running around town, saving people. He stops a runaway train, which Lois and Jimmy happen to be on. He even gets one of the city’s wealthiest people to confess to his crimes. However, Grant Morrison’s name is on the cover of this book. You know it’s not that straight forward

How it differs - The entire time Clark is saving people, the police are after him. They believe him to be a danger to the city. He even has to fight the police to escape at one point. And who is devising the plans for the government to capture Superman? Why, Lex Luthor, of course.

Will I read issue #2? - Grant Morrison is one of DC’s most prolific writers, and Rags Morales drew the S out of this book (S for Superman? No?). This will definitely be on my pull list for the foreseeable future.

Animal Man

This issue - Buddy Baker has the power to “borrow” abilities of animals, which he uses to fight crime. In this issue, he tries to stop a man that has taken the children’s wing of the hospital hostage. He uses the thick skin of a rhino to shield himself from bullets, and when he actually goes after the guy, he uses the strength of an elephant, reflexes of a fly, speed of a cheetah, and the bark of a dog. The last one is to catch him off-guard. However, what was really interesting was what happened in his dream, after this fight. Very odd, even for a dream sequence.

How it differs - Animal Man hasn’t had his own book for a while, so I really don’t know how this version is different than the previous. He does say that his connection to the “Life Web”, what ever that is, has never been stronger. Oh, and his eyes gushed blood at one point, which seemed to shock him. So that might not be normal. Other than that, i am not quite sure of differences.

Will I read issue #2? - Jeff Lemire can write an offbeat, crazy book like this, so i have faith he will handle the story well. The real story is the art by Travel Foreman. Man, is this art beautiful. This might be a book that I will pick up for art alone, if necessary. Good thing the story is pretty good.

Batgirl

This issue - We see Batgirl on patrol, stopping a home invasion / murder group from hurting people that the group picked out of a phone book. At the same time, a person named Mirror, who I have never seen before, has a list of people, who he kills. Barbara is on that list. At the end of the issue, Mirror points a gun at her, causing her to have a flashback to Joker shooting her, and she freezes, giving Mirror the opportunity to kill a prisoner.

How it differs - Two very, very small things are different with this re-launched title. 1) Stephanie Brown was Batgirl, now it has reverted to Barbara Gordon. 2) Barbara Gordon stopped being Batgirl in the first place, because she was paralyzed. She was still paralyzed by The Joker, but she’s....better now? They didn’t really get into it yet, but I assume they will eventually. Also, I’m really glad they left The Killing Joke in the timeline, because if they got rid of the greatest Batman/Joker story ever told from continuity, I would have been really bummed

Will I read issue #2? - I loved Barbara Gordon as Oracle, but this is the first time I have read her as Batgirl. I don’t know where all of her high-tech stuff went, but she is fantastic as Batgirl. Gail Simone knows how to write female characters (I wonder why that is...), and Syaf draws her like a person, not just some hot chick. There wasn’t one gratuitous shot from behind in this whole issue, which I was really impressed with. Definitely getting issue #2.

Batwing

This issue - David Zamvimbi was recruited by Bruce Wayne into Batman Incorporated, and is now Africa’s Batman, Batwing. He is fighting a villain calling himself Massacre in the present, but most of this issue takes place six weeks prior. Batwing and Batman follow leads, and find a room ful of mutilated bodies of known drug runners. Zamvimbi, whose real job is a police officer, works on the case from both sides, as both of his personas.

How it differs - Batwing was only introduced 3 or 4 months ago, in Batman Inc, so there’s not a lot of previous continuity to go from. However, he went from being a side character in a Batman book, to having his own book, so that is something.

Will I read issue #2? - In the past year or so, I have moved from being a Marvel Zombie to a DC...Vampire? Werewolf? Anyway, Batman is one of the reasons for that change, it has been so good recently. This is no exception. The art is really fantastic, with the sparse (or non-existent) background, give the feeling that the African landscape itself is sparse. It also has an Adi Granov, metallic feel, which I personally like a lot. Overall, it was really good, but those last two pages hooked me again. It’s sad how often that happens. Thumbs up.

Detective Comics

This issue - We see Batman (Bruce Wayne, in this book) chasing The Joker from scene to scene. Again, it is a pretty straightforward Batman story: he meets with Gordon, he leaves when Gordon’s back is turned (classic), he uses all kinds of gadgets. The only thing I didn’t like is Bruce mentions how “unprepared” he is. Batman is at least 27 steps ahead of every situation, he is never caught off-guard. Other than that, a solid issue

How it differs - Like Action Comics, the police are after Batman, as well. Gordon sees how Batman helps, and works with him, but the rest of the cops want him gone. Before, they didn’t like him, but they knew he could do what they couldn’t, and that he was always on their side. Now, they seem to go after him more than the villains.

Will I read issue #2? - I am not normally a fan of Tony Daniel’s art, but this issue was really solid. Also, I only started reading comics after Final Crisis, so this is the first good run of Bruce as Batman I have got to read (other than Batman Inc., but that was everybody). I don’t think I would ever drop Detective Comics, but after that last page (That’s gonna leave a mark), I can’t wait for the next issue.

Green Arrow

This issue - Green Arrow is going after some people that have powers, and were causing trouble, and posting it on YouTube. So, now they are famous, and Ollie is there to stop them. Not much happens in this issue, really. Green Arrow fights bad guys, they get put in jail, they get broken out by their friends. Sort of by-the-numbers.

How it differs - This section might not have been the best idea for me, because I didn’t read Green Arrow before, either. Research shows that Ollie wasn’t the owner of his company before, and he was in Brightest Day, living in the Star City forest, protecting it. He is now the owner again, and I don’t think his identity is public knowledge anymore, which I believe it was previously. I could be wrong, though.

Will I read issue #2? - When I opened this book, I did not like the art on the first page. However, after that, it became a fantastic looking book. Other than that, though, I didn’t really get into it that well. This book will be liked by a lot of people, but this isn’t really for me. Great art, though.

Hawk & Dove

This issue – Alexander Quirk, science terrorist (what?), has hijacked a cargo plane, and is heading towards Washington DC. Hawk & Dove get onboard, and try to bring it down. And there are zombies on the plane…. Anyway, Hawk fights off zombies, and Dove tries to fly the plane, but she doesn’t know how. They both steer the plane out of a head-on collision with the Washington Monument, but they still clip it. Then they both separately whine for like ten pages.

How it differs - Hawk and Dove were just recently resurrected for Brightest Day, and they have been a key figure in that. I don’t really see anything different with this Hawk & Dove, as compared to pre-Flashpoint

Will I read issue #2? - I tried, you guys. I really tried to not let the Liefeld bias I have built up, affect my enjoyment of this book. But there’s a reason why there is a bias....His art is terrible. Him and Jim Lee were some of the biggest artists on the 90’s. Lee has evolved his style, and still looks great for current comics. Liefeld...learned how to draw feet, I guess. Other than that, the art was way dated, and for me, was terrible. Add that to the barely there story, and I won’t be picking up issue 2 of this next month.

Justice League International

This issue – This is obviously the team-building issue, where everyone comes together, meets for the first time, and gets thrown into the field. The team is put together by the UN, and will be basically working for them. The members are Booster Gold (the leader), Ice, Vixen, Fire, Rocket Red, August General in Iron, Godiva, and Guy Gardner. There is a lot of good interactions (Rocket Red and General in Iron {Russian and Chinese, respectively} arguing, Godiva being really into Booster Gold), and with the addition of Batman (unofficially), it was a very good issue.

How it differs – Man, I didn’t read anything, did I? From what I can tell, this is an entire new team, bringing together heroes from all over the world. I don’t think they have been sanctioned by the UN before, but again, I could be wrong. Other than that, there doesn’t seem to be anything else different with individual characters.

Will I read issue #2? - I probably will pick it up. The art is pretty solid, and the team dynamic is good enough to give it a second chance.

Men Of War

This issue - Men of War is a war book....you probably knew that. It is the current war, instead of World War 2, so it hits a little closer to home. This book has the main story, which follows Corporal Joseph Rock, and his unit, behind enemy lines. The second, follows a completely separate group. The two stories are almost interchangeable

How it differs - There were no stories like this before. Joseph Rock is a brand new character, but he is the grandson of Sgt Rock. He actually becomes Sergeant at the end of this issue, so I guess the onyl difference is the war that it is set in

Will I read issue #2? - This has 2 war stories, but it is also 3.99. The only other #1 that was 3.99 was Action, and that book was worth it. For a book that I can’t remember which parts of the two stories belonged with each, that’s too much. However, the art in the first story by Tom Derenick is really cool. You should give it a look for that, but I won’t be getting the next issue.

O.M.A.C.

This issue - What is this I don’t even. I have no idea what happened in this book. There’s something called Brother Eye that is in space, that takes over Kevin Kho’s body, and turns him into OMAC (One Man Army Corps). That is literally all I know what happened, and that is because it was actually written out on the last page.

How it differs - I started reading the Wikipedia page for this, and I got dizzy. I don’t know what is different, although Kevin Kho is a brand new character, and someone else was O.M.A.C. before. This is a Kirby creation, so maybe that’s why the history is so crazy.

Will I read issue #2? - Maybe? Honestly, I have no idea what happened. The art was pretty good, but Keith Giffen usually is pretty good. It will be up to how I feel when I get my books, a last minute decision.

Static Shock

This issue - Alright, another character I have never read, and know nothing about! Virgil Hawkins and his family just moved to New York City, from Dakota (North or South, it doesn’t say...). In an unexpected twist, Static also shows up in New york at the same time! Sunspot is on a rampage, and Static uses his electricity powers, and his suberb intellect, to stop the destruction. When he finally corrals him, Sunspot is killed by a sniper. I believe the villain reveal was supposed to mean something, but I couldn’t find a single thing about him. Is he new?

How it differs - Static had lost his powers before Flashpoint, so he has his powers back, now. The move from Dakota to NYC is also new, although I don’t know if I would consider that a major change. Not like Barbara Gordon no longer being paralyzed.

Will I read issue #2? - The art was kind of meh, and Static has the funny quips of Spider-man, with none of the charm and charisma. I might pick it up next week, but again, it will be an in-store decision.

Stormwatch

This issue - The hero known as Apollo is running around the city, stopping small crimes, but he could be doing so much better. Enter Stormwatch. Jack Hawksmoor, Projectionist, and Martian Manhunter go to reason with him, and enlist him to save the planet with Stormwatch. Meanwhile, the Moon is threatening Earth. Yeah, that’s right. It has these giant claws coming out of it. Harry Tanner (Eminence Of Blades...what an awesome name) is being attacked, while on the moon. Before Angie can pull the other team back, to help out, they are attacked by The Midnighter, and he recruits Apollo to be on his side, to kill everyone evil on the planet.

How it differs - Stormwatch was in the Wildstorm Universe, so it is one of several that has made the jump to DC Proper. Martian Manhunter was not on the team, so he is a new add, as are several other, brand new characters.

Will I read issue #2? -The art is passable, but not great. I read The Authority (Ellis wrote Stormwatch, and killed off most characters, with the survivors starting The Authority), and loved that, so I am really excited to see these characters again. Plus, Martian Manhunter is always fantastic. Definite read for next week.

Swamp Thing

This issue - Alec Holland is back in the DCU, which means Swamp Thing is back, as well! Half of this book is Holland talking to Superman, about the fact that Holland is back from the dead, and having to deal with that. Superman knows a thing or two about that, so he tries to give him advice. The other half...Oh God. A tormado picks up some recently unearthed mastodon bones, and carries them away, they come back, covered in bugs, or moss, or something, and kills 3 people, by turning their heads 180 degrees. Oh, and they are still walking around, as zombies. WHAT!?!?!

How it differs - Swamp Thing was originally in the DC Universe, but for the most part, has been a Vertigo book, and thus not been in the DCU. He is back now, along with several other Vertigo and Wildstorm characters. Also, Alec Holland comes face-to-face with Swamp Thing, meaning they are no longer one in the same.

Will I read issue #2? - Yanick Paquette is a fantastic artist, and this book is no exception. I might get this book solely for the art anyway, but give me a walking pile of bones turning people into backwards-headed zombies? I am so on board.

So, there you have it. One week down, three to go. I hope I will be able to get through the rest.

Below is a list of the choices that I have made. Feel free to post your list of choices, or let me know where I was wrong about differences. I'm sure I got a bunch of stuff wrong, so keep me informed!


See you next week!

Running List Of Choices

Yes
Maybe
No
Action Comics
Justice League International
Green Arrow
Animal Man
O.M.A.C.
Hawk & Dove
Batgirl
Static Shock
Men of War
Batwing
 
 
Detective Comics
 
 
Stormwatch
 
 
Swamp Thing
 
 

More by this Author


4 comments

uncorrectedvision profile image

uncorrectedvision 5 years ago from Indiana

Thanks for another good Hub. I grew up reading comics in the 60s. Batman has always been my favorite. The cover art on this new issue is good. I am glad to hear it is an interesting book. We have got to get you to read some of the older Batman books, especially that golden age title, Detective.


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 5 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

I used to be a big comic fan and had a huge collection. I don't read the new stuff any longer but from what I hear, I don't like the changes DC is making. Especially to Superman. There's a reason the character has been popular for over 80 years. Every once in a while, someone will come along and do a major revamp of Clark (Such as John Byrne's poorly concieved depowering ret-con in the Post-Crisis '80s and '90s) but the character always goes back to the way he was because he works best that way.


joawmeens profile image

joawmeens 5 years ago from Hopewell, Ohio Author

@uncorrcteddvision - Thanks for that. I would love to read some of the old Batman stuff, but I have no idea where to start. Any help on runs, or trades you would suggest, I would appreciate it!

@Robwrite - Superman has been one of the most popular superheroes in years, but his books are not the big powerhouse sellers that they should be. Especially after Straczynski took over this past year, and had Superman walk across America, to see what the "common man" is going through. After that, they had to do something. For the most part, I am in favor of changing characters, for the times, but we will have to see if this one works well.


trusouldj profile image

trusouldj 2 years ago from Indiana

Static would probably appeal to you more in his original incarnation. Look up Milestone Comics on Amazon for Static's cooler adventures. That's when he was written by the people who actually created him. Makes for better stories.

I pretty much reject New 52 except for Batgirl and Catwoman. Interesting hub.

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working