‘This is what Clint Barton does when he’s not an avenger.’ That one line says it all. That’s the reason why I love this book, because it’s about Clint and not his alter-ego Hawkeye. Sure, he’s what you would class as a superhero, yes he’s part of a superhero gang that fights crime and generally prevents the Earth from being messed up. But this is an exploration of his down-time, his ‘Clint time’
Finally. It’s over. Villains Month draws to a close and like the lame duck that it is Bane #1 comes stumbling over the hill to usher in the end of this completely pointless promotion. I’m not even sure what DC were trying to achieve here, other than sneaking in first issues of villains that then pick up in the various spin-off books that they pull out of the air when running one of their main events.
Malekith’s rampage across the Nine Realms continues unabated. Alflyse, queen of the Dark Elves has sought refuge amongst the Dwarves of Nidavellir to escape his murderous cull of all those who oppose him. Even the queen’s champion, the finest swordsman in the land is unable to oppose him.
Zero Year continues in Batman #24 with a double-sized (and priced) issue that wraps up Bruce Wayne battling the Red Hood gang, and shows the emergence of two very key figures in the Batman universe. One of whom you can probably guess from the cover image – yes, Batman makes his first full appearance in Zero Year, or at least the Batman we know.
So, we’re onto the third issue of the superhero legacy thriller from scribe Mark Millar (Kick-Ass, Superior, Old Man Logan) and superstar artist Frank Quitely (All-New X-Men, All-Star Superman). After teasing and setting up the pieces for the last two issues as to what sort of world our story is taking place in, Millar finally smashes all of what he has established in one swift blow and changes the whole dynamic of the book.
Red Sonja #3 continues the march set out after the soft-reboot of the character by Dynamite Comics. Sonja continues her journey into exile after her defeat at the hands of a rival female warrior. Suffering from plague and dying of exposure to the snow, Sonja struggles to stay conscious as the fever overtakes her.
Villains Month from DC marches on as the spotlight falls on the Riddler for this standalone issue of Batman. Batman is missing and Wayne Enterprises is left to defend itself from the wrath of former employee Edward Nygma. The Riddler is back in town to reap a revenge against those who tormented him when incarcerated at Arkham Asylum, whilst simultaneously pitching his wits against a supposedly foolproof security system.
The Justice Leagues are dead. Earth is left defenceless. And from across the gulf of the Multiverse comes the Crime Syndicate of Earth-3 intent on conquering our world. Composed of evil counterparts of each member of our Justice League, the inhabitants of this world are given an ultimatum: fall into line or be destroyed!
If you’re reading this you’re probably a fan of books, comic books, yes, the ones with words and pictures. Unless you’ve been living under a hedge, or a fence, much like the one I’m struggling to put up in my garden, you will know that comics have undergone a metamorphosis. They’ve gone from the fat, little caterpillar, sold only in little specialist stores and have regenerated and spread their digital wings, yes, if you have a device (or several) you can now read a comic book anywhere.
Most of you who read comic books will know the name Mike Deodato Jnr. He has been a constant in the world of comic books for the last twenty years plus. Often called an ‘artist’s artist’ by peers and fans alike, Deodato has reinvented and breathed life into old and new characters alike. With a majority of his mainstream career at Marvel, Mike has celebrated runs on Dark Avengers, Secret Avengers, Incredible Hulk, the list goes on and on. Last week Mike took time out of his busy schedule to answer some questions, covering his inspirations, thoughts on the future of comics, and his personal favourite moments of his career.
When I was a kid comics were comics. That, you’re probably thinking, is true now, comics are comics, but are they really? Who can recall a time when Marvel just published comic books, with the occasional foray into a cheaply made cartoon series based on one of their properties, or some B-movie adaptation that flopped at the box office? You probably all can, in some way remember this dark and distant past, but what has the comic industry become now?