Writer: Geoff Johns
Artist: Philip Tan
Inker: Jonathan Glapion
Colorists: Randy Mayor & Gabe Eltaeb
Story – Agent Orange: Part One
We finally get the introduction of the Orange Lanterns and from the looks of it the Orange Corps will probably be the smallest in terms of members. It would make sense that the Lantern Corp powered by greed would be the one with the least amount of members as the leader of the Corps, named Larfleeze, showed his unwillingness to share his power. And I got to say Tan’s artwork perfectly fit the dark tone that this “Agent Orange” arc is heading towards. I really loved the creepy look Tan gave to the Orange Corp and the Controllers.
Also continuing to be Johns continues to build the strength of the Green Lantern titles is the darker path that the Guardians have been using to cut all emotions from the universe. As they showed with the very direct way that they tried to strip Hal of the Blue Lantern power. It should be interesting how Hal is finally able to tap into the power hope and if he will decide to lead the Blue Lanterns after what the Guardians did to him.
Now the one thing I am starting to worry about as we head closer to “Blackest Night” is if Johns will be able to handle the huge cast that the event will have. Because not only will he have to all the various Lantern Corp members but also a lot of the major DCU characters. Also Johns still has the whole Sinestro’s child thread and also John Stewart being hunted by Fatality to deal with before the event. It just seems that with those two threads as well as building up the Orange Lanterns and the yet seen Indigo Lanterns that there will be to much for Johns to handle heading into the huge War of Lights.
Story: 7.6/10 – Even though Johns did a great job introducing the Orange Lanterns and continuing the dark path the Guardians are heading towards it is starting to feel that Johns may be overwhelmed by the amount of characters he has to handle.
Art: 9/10 – I really dug the creepy look Tan gave this book.
Overall: 8.3/10 – “Agent Orange” is off to a nice start though it seems that this story will take a back seat to the John Stewart vs. Fatality story in the next issue which may take away some of the momentum from this story.
Writer: Damon Lindelof
Artist: Leinil Francis Yu
Colorist: Dave McCaig
Story – Part 4
With the “surprise” appearance of Ultimate She-Hulk at the end of the last issue this issue is almost completely dedicated to telling her origin, as well as a surprise appearance by Ultimate Rulk in a different form. I was actually a bit surprised that Lindelof had Betty turn into She-Hulk as in her Ultimates 2 appearance, which takes place after this story, Betty shows no sign of having powers.
Still even though with this swerve in the story this was still a kind of dull read as Lindelof kind of over did it with the dialogue. It kind of felt that I was reading a Bendis New Avengers issue as there was dialogue in every single panel. This issue might have been better if Lindelof allowed Yu to tell a bit of story with just the artwork alone which I will say that was better than the his previous work.
Story: 5.7/10 – Though Lindelof did not have his characters be to self-aware of being a comic this issue was littered with a lot of Bendis-talk which I don’t know if it was intentional on Lindelof’s part or not.
Art: 6.6/10 – Yu did a better job with the art as this issue was a more dynamic especially in the Rulk and She-Hulk transformations.
Overall: 6.15/10 – While this issue was an improvement over the last issue the overuse of dialogue hurt this issue.
Writer: Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning
Artist: Wellinton Alves
Inker: Scott Hanna
Colorist: Guau EFX
Story – Dark Matters: The Secret of The Darkhawks
Picking up were the Darkhawk mini-series left off DnA continue Darkhawk and Talon’s adventures as they fight there way through the Negative Zone. DnA continue to have a great handeling of all things cosmic in the Marvel Universe and as the writers of War of Kings this mini-series feels like it is heading towards something that will involve the main event.
The one thing against this issue is that this was more of an action pacted issue than developing Darkhawk and Talon’s characters as it was predictable from reading the Darkhawk mini that Talon would become a villain. Though the aspect of The Fraternity of Raptors being villains could play as an interesting foil to the Nova Corps and DnA may be building towards a Sinestro Corp Wars-type event over in Nova once War of Kings is over.
The real star of this issue is Alves artwork. Since this issue was filled with cosmic action Alves was given a lot to work with, and since Alves is no stranger to Marvel cosmic as he did some work on Nova. With the nice clean look that Alves gives Darkhawk and Talon’s armor, as well as Darkhawk’s power-up armor, I kind of hope that he would be given a crack at drawing Invincible Iron Man comic as his artwork would be a perfect fit for Iron Man.
Story: 7.5/10 – DnA continue to do a great job building Marvel cosmic characters as they give Darkhawk and Talon some nice chemistry in this issue.
Art: 8.4/10 – Alves does a great job with the art as DnA give him plenty of action to illustrate in this issue.
Overall: 7.95/10 – This was a nice start to this mini-series and it will be interesting to see how this adventure in the Negative Zone will tie into War of Kings.
Writer: Jason Aaron
Artist: Ron Garney
Colorist: Jason Keith
Story – The Adamantium Men: Part 1
Just like how The Invincible Iron Man started at the same time as the Iron Man film Wolverine gets a new reader friendly title just a few weeks before the release of the X-Men Origins: Wolverine film. But since Wolverine already appears in half of Marvel’s comics why does he need another ongoing series? Easy, because the Wolverine title will be changing its name to Dark Wolverine with Logan’s son Dakken as the star so of course Wolverine needs his own solo book.
But joking aside I actually enjoyed this first issue by the “Get Mystique” team of Aaron and Garney. Just as he did with the “Get Mystique” arc Aaron really nails Logan’s character and makes this “The Adamantium Men” arc feel like one of the old school Wolverine stories we use to get back when he only had one solo series in the 80s and 90s. After the “Old Man Logan” arc is over Wolverine: Weapon X will most likely be the only Wolverine title that I will be getting as I find Dakken character to be extremely annoying. The only problem I had with this book is that I wish that Garney would have used the old orange and brown Wolverine suit instead of the X-Force black and grey suit as it would have made this issue truly feel like the old school Wolverine stories.
Story: 8/10 – Aaron has a great handle of Wolverine’s character as his version of Wolverine is one of the only non-PC versions of Wolverine that we currently get, as shown in the subway scene.
Art: 7.4/10 – Garney does a good enough job with the artwork as he gives Logan the proper mountain man look he should have. Though I would have preferred that he would have used one of Wolverine’s old school costume and not his current X-Force costume.
Overall: 7.7/10 – This was a nice start to what looks to be a return to the old school Wolverine stories. And I strongly recommend this title for any new reader that is looking to get into Wolverine as it is not hampered by all of Wolverine’s history that is hurting his other books.