Friday, September 7, 2007

Buffy Season 8, Usagi Yojimbo and Spider-Man

I just finished reading the first arc of Buffy season 8 from Dark Horse, and I liked it well enough. I feel that the writing was quite good, and again than Joss Whedon has continued to develop as a comic book writer. I also like that the book is firmly rooted in continuity, and has continued with a quick-witted dialogue and fun. The art is passable, whith good renditions of characters, though at times, I found there to be a lack of dynamic action on the page. All in all, however, the book is a must read for Buffy fans.

Stan Sakai's Usagi Yojimbo continues to be one of my favorite books every month. Every book is a little gift, in my opinion, and the characterization is always sharp and fresh. It is one of the great mysteries to me why this title continues to only appeal to a niche, when it is consistently excellent and has great re-readability. The recent arc has him poisoned and fighting through fever dreams, and maintains the high drama and grit and quality story telling I expect from Mr. Sakai every month.

I've also just recently started picking up Spider-Man again, catching the tail end of the "Back in Black" and leading into the "One More Day" arc. Following Civil War, I felt that I needed to mix up the Marvel books I was reading, dropping "Mighty Avengers" and with "Nextwave" getting canceled, I had some space to play with my pull list. Spidey seemed to be the character that had benefitted the most from the shakedown of Civil War, in term of storytelling" so I figured I'd give it a run. Amazing Spider-Man #542 has a black-costumed Spider-man hunting down the Kingpin in prison, only to unmask and give ol purple pants a humiliating beat-down in front of the crown of inmates. Peter's again in a situation where he's been pushed to his limits, and it's taken a turn for the darker. Especially nice work by penciller Ron Garney, who draws a very good fight scene.

That's all I got for now, but I expect to be making more regular postings again around here now that I've gotten a few technical issues sorted out.

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