The Harley Quinn Valentine’s Day Special
This comic features Harley having a dream where she eats Batman and poops him out while he talks about having children. Really.
That said, while I have a long record of being completely unable to stand this book, I will say Connor’s and Palmiotti’s writing of Batman is pretty funny in places. To be honest, they do a better job of writing him than they do Harley Quinn, and there’s a nice little scene where Bruce Wayne subtly figures out what his captor wants, and whether or not he’s dangerous, and then solves the situation with a few well-placed words and a little kindness. Maybe apply this level of thought to the damn jokes and we might have something here!
Darth Vader #1
Kieron Gillen and Salvador Larroca have a problem they don’t quite overcome here, which is that they’re hemmed in by movies on one side and the main Star Wars ongoing on the other. Still, it’s hard to go wrong when your protagonist is one of the scariest villains in modern fiction, and if nothing else, it’s a quick, engaging read. Good for Star Wars fans.
The Empty #1
I’ve made no secret of the fact that I’m a pretty big fan of Jimmie Robinson, as he often takes tired ideas (like a school for assassins) and turns them into something fresh and fascinating. The Empty is, admittedly, an incredibly odd book about a post-apocalyptic landscape and the two women trying to save it. But despite the dialogue feeling stiff and formal, Robinson manages to create an almost folktale atmosphere while keeping a sense of wit to the proceedings. It may not be for every taste, but it’s definitely worth reading the first issue to see if it’s in your wheelhouse.
Dark Horse’s massive crossover ends on a rather melancholy note, actually. Suffice to say it’s an interesting setup we’re left with, but after a huge crossover and so much build-up, a sequel hook is a lame way to end it. Still, worth a read for Aliens and Predator fans.
Abram Adams was the top Russian cosmonaut, and he was sent to the edge of space to prove the superiority of Russia. It’s 2015, he just came back, and he has godlike powers. This will end well! What’s most fascinating about Jeff Lemire’s origin story for an odd new character is that it’s more of a poem made of little moments from what Adams was before than anything else. Trevor Hairsine is more than up to the art chores, and he has some great images here. It’s an oddly beautiful book in both words and pictures and thus, one worth reading. Highly recommended.
Help Us! Great Warrior #1
Madeleine Flores brings her web comic to print and… well, the transition is bumpy at best. The comic has some great art, but the writing has absolutely no flow or sense of plot, content to coast on its Adventure Time-esque concept and its own quirkiness. A good book for kids, but Flores should tighten up the writing a bit and make it more than a web comic on the page.