Comic Book Review: Infamous Iron Man

Details: First published in 2016. This is a review of issues one through twelve. Official site is http://marvel.com/comics/series/22596/infamous_iron_man_2016_-_present

At the end of Secret Wars, the Fantastic Four bid their adieu and disappeared, possibly never to return. While it is common knowledge that superheroes never truly die, it seemed as if the Fantastic Four had finally met its match: greedy fucking business people fighting over movie rights who were willing to kill a historic comic book series in order to get their way. In my stupor over the potential death of the Fantastic Four comic book line, I desperately looked for some alternative to get my science fiction comic book fix. Luckily, Marvel decided not to wipe out all the characters in the Fantastic Four franchise and left us with the Infamous Iron Man.

There won’t be spoilers for Infamous Iron Man ahead, but I will go over the events leading up to Infamous Iron Man.

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Comic Book Review: Gotham By Gaslight and Master of the Future

Details: Gotham By Gaslight was released in 1989 and Master of the Future was released in 1991 by DC Comics. The book I read collected both stories and is about 115 pages long.

I was watching a trailer for the new animated movie coming out called Gotham By Gaslight. It’s a what if kind of story which imagines if Batman had taken place a hundred years ago. The trailer got me curious and I decided to give the source material a read. What I found was a decent story that gave a different take on the character and mostly gave me feelings of nostalgia about the style of comic books during the 1980’s and 1990’s.

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Comic Book Review: Doctor Strange (2015) Issues 1 through 20

Details: Published by Marvel Comics. Mostly written by Jason Aaron and drawn by Chris Bachalo.

I’ve never been a big fan of Doctor Strange. I’ve enjoyed watching him interact with other characters in the Marvel Universe, like when he was in the Illuminati or when he was god Doom’s sheriff. That changed with this series. They invoked one of my comic book weaknesses; they got Bachalo to do art.

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Comic Book Review: Dark Knight III: The Master Race

Details: Started being released in 2015. Published by DC Comics. Written by Frank Miller and Brian Azzarello. Pencils by Andy Kubert. Nine issues in total.

After Frank Miller’s disastrous run on All Star Batman & Robin, the Boy Wonder, I’d pretty much given up hope on Frank Miller and the Dark Knight series. Thankfully, Dark Knight III redeems Miller, or should I say that Miller does okay work when he’s supervised by a competent adult.¬†Writing duties for this miniseries fall to Miller and Brian Azzarello. It’s likely Azzarello’s influence that made this series so readable. I’m sure Miller has plenty of good ideas, but like George Lucas and the Star Wars prequels, sometimes you need someone around who can say no to you and tell you when your ideas are stupid.

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Book Review: The Name of the Wind

Details: A novel written by Patrick Rothfuss. Published in 2007. A New York Times Bestseller. 662 pages long.

A while back, a friend lent me two books to read. The first was The Way of Kings by Brian Sanderson. It was a long, but enjoyable read. The second was The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. Prior to these two books, the last fictional books I read were the Harry Potter books. What I’m trying to say is that people make judgment on things based on comparison with the things they know. Accordingly, while I will try to give my thoughts on this book, those thoughts will unavoidably compare The Name of the Wind with The Way of Kings and the Harry Potter series.

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Book Review: The Way of Kings

Details: Fiction written by Brandon Sanderson. 1258 pages.

I don’t enjoy reading for fun. Not fiction at least. To me, reading is meant for instruction; textbooks, instruction manuals, news articles, that sort of thing. In the case of this book, a friend strongly recommended I read this book… and also gave me a copy. So, since I had really no excuse not to read this, I decided to give it a try. This is my first foray into the fantasy genre, and seeing that this book is a New York Times bestseller. The last fiction book I read was Harry Potter, which I enjoyed.

This book takes place in a fantasy world with magic, knights, kings, other races, and everything you’d might expect from a fantasy book. Think Game of Thrones and you’ll be on the right track. I do feel like this book is less brutal than Game of Thrones, but, after some research, The Way of Kings is only the first book in what is likely a series of ten books that explore this fictional world.

The story centers around a few characters and is told from the first person perspective, switching perspectives between chapters. The primary characters I’ve found are Kaladin (a slave and former soldier), Dalinar (a highprince and ruler of a kingdom), Shallan (a girl from a lesser noble house who is seeking out a heretic), and Szeth (an assassin with unique powers). I won’t go further into the characters or plot for fear of spoilers. Stuff happens. Some of it is surprising.

What I’ve realized about the fantasy genre is that on of the primary goals of the book is the creation of this fantasy world. Accordingly, I found a lot of the text kind of wordy and extraneous. This is probably because I don’t normally read fiction novels and these very lengthy descriptions of… everything are likely the norm in fictional literary works.¬†Or maybe not. Either way, expect a lot of in-depth descriptions that mostly add color to the world, even if I found them a bit much.

Overall, I enjoyed the book, but my first foray into fantasy novels will likely be my last. It’s just to time consuming. I recognize that part of the appeal is to immerse yourself into this world and it’s characters and lengthy text do a great job to facilitate that. I couldn’t help but feel like I was wasting time every time I sat down with this fiction. While books of this length and subject matter may not be to my liking, if you like reading fiction, especially books like Game of Thrones or Lord of the Rings, then I thoroughly recommend this book.

Score: 6.5/10

Comic Book Reviews: Books Released on January 25, 2016

I didn’t review anything last week because nothing looked good. Found some this week though.

Captain America: Steve Rogers (2016) #10

http://marvel.com/comics/issue/57875/captain_america_steve_rogers_2016_10

Not my favorite book of the week, but still something I keep coming back to. This book is mostly a retelling of evil Captain America’s origin as it was rewritten by the Cosmic Cube and the unfolding of evil Captain America’s grand plan. It’s not an emotional book. It just lays out the series of events in order. I read it mostly because I want to see where it’s all going, which seems to be a big Marvel event that is coming down the road.

Score: 5/10

 

Civil War II: The Oath (2017) #1

http://marvel.com/comics/issue/60574/civil_war_ii_the_oath_2017_1

The only reason this book is worth mentioning is that the end of the book gives you a glimpse at evil Captain America’s end game. I probably wouldn’t buy the book. Just walk into your local comic book store and read the last few pages.

Score: 3/10

 

Doctor Strange (2015) #16

http://marvel.com/comics/issue/55430/doctor_strange_2015_16

Bachalo’s art. That’s the main reason to buy this book. The story is fine, I just don’t like that Doctor Strange has become a mystical Tony Stark. Doctor Strange used to be a more wise, mysterious character. Now her cracks jokes and reminds me more of the Doctor Strange in the movies. A big change to attract a more mainstream audience I guess.

Score: 6/10

 

Infamous Iron Man (2016) #4

http://marvel.com/comics/issue/61550/infamous_iron_man_2016_4

Likely my favorite book of the moment. I’ve seen Maleev’s art before and I’ve always enjoyed it. That doesn’t change here. It’s just fun to see this spin on Doctor Doom. Not much progression in this issue, but still all right.

Score: 6/10

 

Inhuman V. X-Men (2016) #3

http://marvel.com/comics/issue/61596/inhumans_vs_x-men_2016_3

Another fine issue. Worth the purchase if you’ve been following along.

Score: 6/10

 

Justice League v. Suicide Squad (2016) #6

http://www.dccomics.com/comics/justice-league-vs-suicide-squad-2016/justice-league-vs-suicide-squad-6

Not a great book, but I can see the appeal if you’re interested in the Justice League or the Suicide Squad.

Score: 4.5/10