Saturday, February 05, 2005

New comics 2/2

The Monolith #12 (Jimmy Palmiotti & Justin Gray/Phil Winslade, DC)
I guess I was wrong in my review of the previous issue when I lamented the fact that Winslade wouldn't be back for the final issue of the character he co-created. This is a good conclusion to the book in that it doesn't feel the need to wrap things up neatly or somehow sum up everything the past 11 issues were about. It's just a nice little story that, while it feels final in some senses, could easily have just been another issue. There's plenty here for other writers to pick up if they feel so inclined, and I always think that's the best thing to do. Somewhere someone is reading this book who will, someday, become a comics writer and have fond memories of it, and bring the characters back. I have to say that I was never as in love with this book as some reviewers were, and, while I am always sad to see something new and different get cancelled, I probably won't miss it all that much. I picked up the entire run of The Resistance for less than a dollar, so I'll get around to reading that at some point, but I don't know that Palmiotti and Gray's writing so impressed me that I'll be buying their next project unless it's something that sounds really inherently intriguing (like this did).

Uncanny X-Men #455 (Chris Claremont/Alan Davis, Marvel)
Okay, this is ridiculous. The last issue just came out last week! I said last week that there isn't really any point to my reviewing every issue and saying the same things, and that's true. So here's what's new: Davis is back on art, and that's always welcome. But this issue features yet another return of a dead character (Psylocke, who was killed off by Claremont himself) for no reason. The return of Colossus in Astonishing bugged me, but at least Whedon seems to have some idea of what to do with him. I have absolutely no faith that Claremont will find a good reason to have Psylocke back. Knowing him, he'll forget all about her in a few issues. I am seriously thinking of dropping this book, which I have been reading for something like 12 or 13 years, because it's just silly to spend money every month (or more often) for something I don't even remotely enjoy.

X-Men: Phoenix - Endsong #2 (Greg Pak/Greg Land, Marvel)
Especially when I can still read about the X-Men in books like this. Really, there is no reason why this isn't a storyline in a core book except greed on Marvel's part. This story is way more significant than what Claremont or Milligan are doing in their respective books, and also much better. It's not spectacular, but it tells an interesting story with good characterization, builds on past continuity (both from Claremont's original run and Morrison's) and, yes, features the return of a dead character, but for a much clearer reason. Also, it's not set in stone that Jean will stay returned after this series ends, and, as some have pointed out, the whole concept of the Phoenix is that it rises from the dead anyway. Not to make like this is the greatest X-Men story ever - it's still a little slow, and I still find Land's art a little stiff and static, but it's far better than the crap Claremont's been writing.

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