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Reading Pile: 12/22/12

Iron Or After The War, Indestructible Hulk, Black Beetle & Nowhere Men

Iron: Or After The War HC- I was really looking forward to cracking into this after seeing the beautiful cover design and quality of the format. Unfortunately, after about twenty pages into the story I was starting to get sleepy because the storytelling isn’t that engaging. Vidaurri’s artwork can be exceptionally beautiful in its bleak simplicity, and slightly reminiscent of Scott Hampton or Jon J Muth. However, he over utilizes a few specific page layouts again and again to the point where he quickly seems like a one rick pony. It’s a pretty layout, but it only works so often. He also utilizes are very dark and bleak palette of colors with very little details or backgrounds, so you’re pretty much just always looking at snowy landscapes and unlit bare walls. The plotting is a bog of unclear story elements and none of the characters really felt developed. Mostly, I just didn’t even care. It’s a pretty enough package at $24.99, and considering it felt like forever for me to trudge my way through the story I guess that says something about its density. One particular complaint on the design though, I friggin’ hate it when they put gold or silver on the cover to the point where it flakes off on your fingers. C+

Indestructible Hulk #2- It looks like Waid found the sweet spot again and found the right tone and motivating concept for the character. I’m not crazy about the $3.99 price tag for twenty pages of story, but it’s enjoyable and hopefully Waid can maintain the momentum. I’m also enjoying Leinil Yu’s artwork more on this title than I have on anything else in the past five years plus, so hooray for that. B+

Black Beetle #0- If you already pick up Dark Horse Presents, then fair warning because this issue is just all reprints. If not, it’s a good kick start into the series coming up. Screw the Dynamite pulp hero material like the Shadow and Green Hornet, just pick this up. Francesco Francavilla’s artwork is amazing and he captures pulpy action an crime noir perfectly. It’s a fairly quick read, but it’s a lot of fun. B


Nowhere Men #2- This issue did a great job of maintaining my interesting and propelling the story forward. I’m really looking forward to seeing where they can take this and hopefully it will continue to develop into another great hit. A-