Reading Pile: 2/17/13

Mylo Xyloto & Amazing Spider-Man

Mylo Xyloto #1- The trend of musicians creating comics has created some interesting (and not so interesting) results. I’m not a particular fan of Coldplay but I also don’t hate them either, so I figured what the hey I might as well give it a chance. The most interesting aspect is that it’s published by Bongo, so this seems to be a bit of a tangent from their usual creative output. The concept is pretty heavy handed, focusing on an alien society where a small percentage of the population controls the rest through entertainment and force. There’s a slight spark of independence though (called the Sparks, of course) that utilizes artwork, sound, and light to create free thought. A soldier from the brainwashed police force is mystified by the light and blah blah blah go read 1984 and A Brave New World. If I haven’t already seen this as a cartoon or movie from the 80’s, then I’ve read it as a European comic at some point (this thing is even dedicated to Moebius). I’m chalking up the plot to Coldplay itself, but I actually did find the scripting and artwork to be really good. Mark Osborne knows how to pace a story and has a good handle on dialogue, but I really liked Alejandro Fuentes’ art. His layouts are sharp, his narrative flow strong, and his sense of design and facial expressions really help push the book forward. I think it's worth sticking with this to see where they can take it and expand on the plot hopefully, but at the least it’s pretty nice to look at. B

Amazing Spider-Man #700- Yes, I am incredibly late on reviewing this book. We only just recently got in enough copies of the 2nd printing, so even though I knew the big deal behind the story it’s nice to see how they played it out. I’m not entirely against the concept, because if you have been reading comics for any amount of time you would realize it’s just another gimmick. It just happens to be a slightly better gimmick than a few of the previous ones, and hey when you’re comparing Spider-Man gimmicks the goal is to just be better than Clone Saga. And Sins Past. And One More Day. And, well, a whole lot of other bad stories, but I digress. I actually like the idea of Doctor Octopus being a good Spider-Man, just sort of a more diabolically good Spider-Man. The trick will be to just see how long it lasts, and I’m placing bets that if they over publish on these they can make it to #25 by the release of the next Spider-Man movie. As far as this overall package goes, eesh, $7.99? So the main story is fifty-one pages, then you get twenty-four pages of back-up story that I didn’t care about (despite the nice Camuncoli artwork in one of them). Then you get twenty-three pages of useless back-matter material, including a cover gallery of every issue of Amazing Spider-Man spread across even pages. I consider that crap to be one of the biggest wastes of spaces in any comic considering the thumbnail images are too small to actually really see the art work which is the entire point. So, basically eight bucks for seventy four pages of story. That’s not the worst ever, but man they could have trimmed the fat out of this sucker to save some bucks. B-