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review 2017-04-27 01:12
Love, love, love!
Daredevil (2015-) #19 - Charles Soule,Marc Laming,Dan Panosian

Sorry guys, I got into this review, and realized I had a lot to say about the comic book industry, characters, and how people perceive people who want more diversity.   It all does tie into Matt Murdock/Daredevil eventually.

 

I was looking up Marvel's latest sales and recently fell into the hell hole of Brietbart when I clicked on a link, not realizing it led there.   I read some of the comments and felt a bit ill, but the guest is: they believe that anyone who wants diversity and progressive storylines also hates the thought of white men as superheroes - um, not true - or anything that's conservative.   (Matt Murdock, who also goes by the name Daredevil, the Man Without Fear, is Catholic.   The reason I bring this up is Christianity and traditional family values - which often correlate to religious values - seem to be under attack.)   I've been thinking about this, as well as some breakdowns of who buys what.   (Messier than it seems: female led titles, and people of color as leads do lead to a more diverse audience, but they can also appeal to white liberals.   Furthermore, women don't only buy female led titles.   As a teen, I picked up comics that were mostly mixed teams - with, yes, quite a few women - or that had male leads, like Wolverine, whose titles I slavishly bought and followed.)

 

I do enjoy diversity, particularly when written by diverse creators, as I feel it gives me a point of view that I haven't read.   But I enjoy a lot of white male superheroes; have since I got dragged into a comic store as a girlfriend of a boy who loved comics.  I saw zero appeal at the time, until I stumbled upon both X-Men and Wolverine.   Wolverine was my first comic book love, and you don't forget that; I still have soft spot in my heart for him, although I'm not quite as fond of Old Man Logan in general.   Daredevil was the superhero I ended up connecting with the most; I own a bust of him, and of no other superhero.   (I thought I was going blind when I was in the teens, and was so serious about this I learned braille.   Daredevil, as a blind superhero - despite his abilities pretty much erasing his disability - not only appealed to me, but in a lot of ways gave me comfort and helped me overcome my fear.)   At that point, I needed that: white, black, blue, or yellow, man, woman, trans, gay, straight, Jewish, Christian, whatever.  I didn't care.  I just wanted that blind superhero, I needed it desperately.  

 

I don't even want Matt Murdock changed or replaced.   While I enjoy the new Wolverine, Laura Kinney doesn't have the same nostalgia, didn't make the same connection with me, as Logan did.   I like my white, male superheroes.   But I like a lot of the women superheroes, the black superheroes, the Muslim and Jewish superheroes.   (I am Jewish, just full disclosure here.)   Matt Murdock is slightly more conservative than other superheroes because of his Catholic upbringing - but he's not imposing that on anyone.   It doesn't become preachy.   And while I understand that many other series, as well as Daredevil, have become too liberal for some readers, they only have to stop reading.  Should Marvel go to a heavy conservative, much less alt-right, position, no doubt they'll have liberals dropping titles.   They have instead made the choice to keep politics out of their titles.   Probably a smart move: I enjoyed comics before they became politicized as they have now, and I liked them after - mostly because they were mouthpieces for how I felt.   (A lot of comic writers are liberals.   I suspect the comics will lean that way, even if they aren't as politicized.  I do wonder what will happen to The Champions, which was a heavily liberal mouthpiece - and which I loved for making all the statements I loved.   Slightly worried, but I will simply stop reading if it gets too weird for me, say so, and then move on unless I'm asked about it in the future.  Or I suspect this will happen.)

 

And what's weird is now I feel like I have to defend myself: no, no, I can have a vagina and like male superheroes!  Or maybe explaining why I can be white, and liberal, and still like white heroes.   And the thing is: if superheroes weren't interesting, I wouldn't read them.  I stopped reading the black, female Iron Man because I had too little time and energy to keep up with yet another title, and because I was already more invested in heroes like Daredevil, Moon Girl, Blue Beetle, and the like.  (Same  with Infamous Ironman, which starred another white boy, but I found myself more interested in because of the villain-to-hero aspect, and why that happened and how it happened.)   But, yes, the point is: I can like what I like.   I'm a little unsettled by everyone trying to unpack what I like and bottling it up by race or liberal or not.   That's not how it works all the time.  I liked Logan because he had to struggle to keep cool, because he had interesting journey, and I liked DD because the blindness resonated with my own fears.  I like Moon Girl because she hangs out with a huge red dinosaur - at least at first.   Now I love her for being smarter than so many of her peers and struggling with that, because I did, too.   I like superheroes for various reasons.  Or I have holes that I fill with literature: emotional, mental, or just holes in my knowledge.   I use different titles to fill those and I can't always tell what will strike my fancy.  

 

This storyline - which has been going on for a couple issues - is a confessional - quite literally.   Daredevil is finally revealing how the Purple Man - or his children or both - managed to get the whole world to forget he's Daredevil.   Not only that, every time I think I have a bead on what's happening, it changes.   I'm loving being continually surprised, without feeling like anything that happens is nonsensical.   Most of this takes place in Matt Murdock's mind while Zeb Kilgrave tries to manipulate him into doing the worst thing he can think of.   It's quite telling.   

 

But the ending.  Ah, the ending is the real kicker. 

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review 2017-04-27 00:25
Oh, yes, please!
Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur (2015-) #18 - Amy Reeder,Brandon Montclare,Amy Reeder,Natacha Bustos

I'm still loving Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur.   Lunella Lafayette, aka Moon Girl, is stumped when it comes to fighting off an invasion of Doombots, especially since she's used to fighting on her own - and more recently depending only on Devil Dinosaur.   Devil might be unintelligent enough to be a pain in the ass, but at the same time, Lunella knows he's well meaning and loyal enough to be considered a tried and true friend.   She might yell at him, or even tell him he's a big dum-dum, but underneath it all, they have a friendship that's based on mutual respect.   (Lunella yells at him and calls him a dum-dum for a couple reasons, ranging from the fact that he often times can get in the way to the fact that she's the smartest person on the planet and until very recently, no one would acknowledge this, or would help her find a way out of the boring hell hole of her school life.   She'd get frustrated, and take it out on him, but... she also praises him, and very obviously cares a great deal about him and his well being.  Honestly, her yelling at him bothers me, even though I realize that it's frustration from her home life, and that Devil doesn't seem to mind, or really even be aware of how wrong what she's saying is.)

 

Still, despite this minor complaint, I love both how Moon Girl figured out how to defeat the Doombots and the epiphany she had about what it said about her and how she interacts with the world around her.   It also makes me think that with this knowledge, and with her friends supporting her, she may stop treating Devil Dinosaur the way she does.   Maybe not, because learned habits can be hard to kick - but one can hope, especially since superheroes are supposed to be the best of us.   Which means, in this case, that I'm hoping she does better sooner rather than later.

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review 2017-04-26 22:41
So this might be why Marvel is lacking so many sales?
Rocket Raccoon (2016-) #5 - Matthew Rosenberg,Jorge Coelho,David Nakayama

Or it might be a symptom of the things that are losing them money.   I read an article earlier about the burnout - series being rebooted, too many larger events and/or higher priced issues ($5-%10 for oversized issues depending on size), and a glut of series (six Avengers titles, coming up on that for Guardians of the Galaxy, up to six X-Men titles planned post their latest huge event, and a new event coming up that's rebooting series - again.)   Beside the fact that this, and the next Rocket series, won't have Groot, I'll have to deal with two issues of Guardians a month, possibly Star-Lord, and Rocket Raccoon - the newest Rocket series - as well as I Am Groot.   And possibly others.  I'm just so burnt out trying to keep track of all the series, how many they are, when they'll reboot, and on and on.  I'll probably get these on sale as digital versions or even as graphic novels eventually.  (Again, most likely digital.)

 

I'm disappointed not only that this series is ending after five issues, stopping then starting yet another Rocket series, but the writer who is currently ruining Royals for me will end up ruining Rocket, too.   Ugh.   (Rocket's next adventure?  I'll take from the library if I read it at all.)

 

This was a fun story, a good wrap up, and would have gotten five stars if not for the fact that I'm just hugely disappointed that Marvel keeps cancelling the series I like to reboot them less then a couple years in.   Just stop, focus on the characters and less on the huge ass events I don't want, and let a series stand for more than two.   Fucking.   Years.

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review 2017-04-20 01:25
Love!
The Punisher (2016-) #11 - Becky Cloonan,Matt Horak,Declan Shalvey

This series shows off how one-track minded Frank Castle is now that he's The Punisher.   Held prisoner on a boat, he's pitted against all the men in the criminal organization he's been tracking.   

 

Look, it's not good for the poor boat.   

 

He's determined to see the man responsible for all this death and grief brought to his own brand of justice, so getting a little beat up is nothing to him.   Love how true to the character this is, and how he just guts everyone who gets in his way.

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review 2017-04-20 01:20
I really loved this!
Daredevil/Punisher: Seventh Circle (Daredevil/Punisher: Seventh Circle Infinite Comic) - Szymon Kudranski,Charles Soule,Reilly Brown

Then again, I tend to love anything written by Soule, who is one of the best writers in Marvel's corner right now.   He revolves everything around the characters and carefully thinks through conflicts, both in how the characters would react and how they're paired up  - meaning that when someone is fighting, he knows not only how they would fight most effectively, but what powers should be pitted against one another.

 

I kind of love this series, because Frank Castle (The Punisher) and Matt Murdock (Daredevil) respect each other on some levels.   Well, Frank does talk shit about Murdock, even to Daredevil, but Castle doesn't know that Murdock and Daredevil are one and the same.   The alter egos, the superhero and anti-hero, respect each other on some level, though.   They're both doing all they can to help innocent people, but disagree on the methods.   Murdock is a lawyer and believes in due process; he, as Daredevil, sees his job as being to bring criminals to the authorities to be tried by the legal system.   Castle, however, believes in extremes, and that if the legal system won't cut down murders, rapists, and drug dealers, then by god, it's his mission to bring the death penalty straight tot hose scumbags.  This conflict is at the heart if this graphic novel, as Mirdock is transporting a criminal to the airport so he can be moved to, and tried in Texas.   When the Punisher intervenes, both Daredevil and his protege, Blindspot, show up to make sure that their man gets to his plane safely.   

 

It's never that easy with The Punisher, whose strength of will serves only one thing: his need to punish those who are naughty.   And the man Daredvil and Blindsspot is downright and pure evil.   Nothing will stand in Castle's way to see justice done, and the little given to us about the man he's tracking?  That makes me want Punisher to put this down as a win. And since Murdock is not only just as strong willed, but just as determined to see this man get a fair trial, it was bound to be a long struggle.   I loved how these characters played off each other and how they managed to hold each other off for eight issues.   I loved the art.   I'm hoping to see more of these two in more Infinite comics.

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