Reading Pile: 2/20/13

The Black Beetle, Detective Comics, Snapshot & Superior Spider-Man

The Black Beetle: No Way Out #1- Now that is some pretty artwork. Francavilla really knows to get to the heart of a pulp style story, and his artwork is a treat for the eyes. If you’re in the mood for some good hardboiled noir style vigilante action you should really drop that weaker Dynamite crud and jump over to this title as quick as you can. A

Detective Comics #17- Every cycle of creators on Batman always tend to try to create new villains, and sometimes they last but more often they tend to be long forgotten. Remember the Answer, Façade, or the Great White Shark? Probably not, which is a shame because some of the lesser renowned villains from the past few decades were actually pretty interesting. Layman is doing the same thing, and I’m hoping because he’s developing them so well that they can survive the eventual turn of creative runs. The Merrymaker of the past few issues has been genuinely interesting, as well as the build up for the new Emperor Penguin. On top of the storytelling,  I think that Jason Fabok is such a stronger talent than the likes of David Finch and even Capullo that I would like to see DC really push him as a premier artist. A-

Snapshot #1-Diggle and Jock are a good pairing of storytellers, and this has the startup of an interesting mystery. My only complaint is fairly unique, and it’s grounded in the fact that virtually every comic that tries to depict comic stores and their staff are fairly cringe worthy. As a retailer, it bugs me to see store employees automatically depicted as insulting to their non-regular customers. Regardless of how stupid customer questions may be(and oh, can they), you still have to answer nicely because this is retail after all. Besides that though (and like I said, that’s a very particular perspective), this was a decent start. B+

Superior Spider-Man #1, 2, & 3- Regardless of how short term this is and how much of a gimmick the run is, I honestly think these first couple of issues are kind of fun. They pretty much set it up right away to let you know there won’t be any lasting permanence to the run of Doc Ock, which is ok because I actually prefer them letting the readership know that the safety cord is all set up to return the property back to the norm. It’s an experiment, and considering I get tired of how whiny Peter Parker can be at times I think it’s a nice break for the time being. It also seems pretty aware of itself, which goes a long way. The thing that I hope doesn’t get overshadowed among all the flashbang of the concept is that Ryan Stegman is doing some pretty solid artwork. B+