Take It Or Leave It – January 30, 2013



Welcome to Take It Or Leave It, where each week we pick out some of that week’s newest comics and give you our opinion on whether it was worth the price and you should take it, or if it was better left sitting on the shelf.

This week’s Take It Or Leave It is a bit smaller than usual, but we’ve got some great variety. Books like Batman and Robin Annual, Mara, and Superior Spider-Man are only some of the titles that are getting covered, so what are you waiting for stop reading this and start reading about the books!
Alphabetical by Publisher

Chris
There weren’t a ton of titles on the shelves this week that I was to interested in, and unfortunately a good portion of the ones I did buy were a let down. I guess that’s always the chance you take with comics, even the best series have a bad issues every now and then.

Batman & Robin Annual #1
DC Comics
This is probably one of the best Annuals I’ve read in a long time. It was a great breather from the intensity of Death of the Family. And while Damien had his ulterior motives to getting Bruce and Alfred out of town for a bit it was pretty touching. There was some nice mirroring of Bruce and Damien in the issue too and overall it was just a great read. Not the best jumping on point, but if you’re a Batman fan and want to read something a little lighter than Death of the Family and don’t mind the slightly higher cover price this is well worth your time.

Verdict: Take It

Score: 8/10


Talon #4
DC Comics
Talon has been a pretty cool read so far. I haven’t hid that either, it’s been a good read each month. Issue four ends the first real story arc and finishes establishing the core of Calvin’s supporting cast. I don’t think this was the best issue so far though, it felt to predictable, right up to the last reveal. It doesn’t make this a bad issue, but it’s also not as good as this series has been in it’s short history. Hopefully the coming months will develop more story and turn Calvin into more of a hero and start to veer away from Talon of the Month enemies.

Verdict: Leave It

Score: 6/10


The Darkness #110
Image Comics
The Darkness is an interesting book, this was my first issue and I must say it’s pretty weird. Image Comics has this interesting story going on between three books, The Darkness, Witchblade, and Artifacts all tie together into one big story and it’s really interesting. So after reading a few issues of Witchblade and Artifacts it only made sense to check out The Darkness. Issue 110 probably wasn’t the best jumping on point, but really who knows when a good point would have been. There’s a lot of story going on in this book, if you’re easily intimated by continuity it’s probably not for you. If you’re not worried definitely give it a shot, this whole universe is one of the more interesting in comics right now.

Verdict: Take It

Score: 7/10


Mara #2
Image Comics
Do you like futuristic stories in worlds torn apart by war? Are you favorite comics filled with attractive females and super powers? Have you longed to read a book about volleyball? Well I think you may have just struck gold here. Mara is a story about a girl who plays professional volleyball in what I’m assuming is the near future after we’ve been through a lot of wars. It’s not quite post-apocalyptic, but it doesn’t seem like the best place. The city reminds me of the Capital in the Hunger Games movie and everyone puts a ton of emphasis on sports and athletes. It’s definitely not your generic super hero book, but there’s something special going on with Mara and it’s more than enough to keep someone interested.

Verdict: Take It

Score: 8/10


Avengers #4
Marvel Comics
Poor Avengers, you had so much potential. Hickman was coming off a highly praised run on Fantastic Four, but so far it’s you’ve been falling short. Issue 4 feels the dullest so far, with all the Avengers back on earth searching for these plant things that were sent to earth to remake it in the opening issues. To be completely honest I don’t even remember the name of the ‘villain’ from those opening issues. Hickman is known for big elaborate stories so this could just be the setup for something amazing. Is it really worth the wait though? For now I’d have to say this issue is just filler and doesn’t do much to keep the story flowing.

Verdict: Leave It

Score: 4/10


Hawkeye #7
Marvel Comics
There are a few books that every month are at the top of my list. Hawkeye is 100% one of them, since issue one I’ve loved this book. Now we’re up to issue 7, and it’s a bit of a different story. Issue 7 takes place during Hurricane Sandy that hit the New York/New Jersey area pretty hard in October. Matt Fraction decided he wanted to write a story about that and what it would have been like for Clint and Kate. If you read the letters page you’ll find out that this was pushed out pretty fast and a lot was juggled around to make it happen. So basically you don’t have to read this issue if you don’t want to. But why the hell wouldn’t you want to? The book while it could be a little depressing especially for people who lived through the worst of this storm, is still a great book. The One-Quest team is from South Jersey and luckily we didn’t get hit hard during the storm, but a few of our team were without power for days and many people we know were hit even harder. So a book like this so soon after the storm is a great way to show how people really came together and what the mentality was. Plus being awesome Matt Fraction has said he’s donating a portion of his commissions on the book to the Red Cross. So not only do you get a good book, but you’ll kinda be helping people out too!

Verdict: Take It

Score: 9/10


Punisher War Zone #4
Marvel Comics
Issue 4 has been the best so far, unfortunately that’s not saying much. Rather than continuing with the single Avenger vs Punisher theme it was a team effort this time. Overall this was a much better issue, and actually pretty enjoyable, the problem is the rest of the series has been pretty disappointing so it’s hard to get behind it. With just a single issue left if you’re still reading the book you’re going to finish, otherwise definitely don’t bother wait for a trade or something.

Verdict: Leave It

Score: 6/10


Superior Spider-Man #2
Marvel Comics
**SPOILERS** If you have not read Superior Spider-Man #1 or Amazing Spider-Man #700 you might not want to read this**

A lot of people were pissed off about the whole Pete dying and Ock becoming Spidey thing that happened in ASM 700. I was alright with it though, I’ve got a lot of faith in Dan Slott. Then issue 1 of Superior Spider-Man hit the stands and I’ve said this before, but I wasn’t really feeling it. Ock was just too different of a Spidey and it just wasn’t sitting right. Then the big reveal hit at the end of that book, ghost Pete or whatever he is, is still there determined to get his body back. This set off even more nerd rage as to be expected, but as Slott said on a CBR interview people were waiting for something like that to happen. They were saying it would go down in a year, or so many issues so why not throw it right out in the beginning. And that makes sense, and frankly I enjoyed it. What comes next though in issue 2 feels like to much. It was a great issue don’t get me wrong, I feel like Ock is actually starting to realize what this power means. The problem was there was too much ghost Pete, we get it he’s there but we don’t need him on every page. It’s funny at first I was into it, I liked it because he was playing out the reaction that us readers would be having at Ock’s behavior. But after a while it started to sink in and it just felt like to much. Like I said before, I have faith in Dan Slott, I just hope this whole ghost thing fades a bit, I don’t mind having Pete around like that just not on every damn page.

Aside from that, this was a good book, and the relationship between MJ and Pete/Ock is definitely never going to be the same.

Verdict: Take It

Score: 8/10


Grimm Fairy Tales Presents Sleepy Hollow #4
Zenescope Entertainment
For months I’ve been saying how much I want to like Sleepy Hollow. The Headless Horseman is such a great story and if anyone could give it a great twist it would be Zenescope. Well with the final issue I have to say I’m a little disappointed. There was so much setup in the first 3 books that the final ‘justice’ of this book felt way to fast. If you read all the issues you know that there was a ton of promise in this series, I think it needed more than just 4 issues to get that across. On the bright side it’s always open for a sequel. As far as the story in issue 4 goes, it’s got a pretty surprising twist that if you haven’t been reading to closely you won’t see coming. I can’t recommend getting this issue by itself, but this series is worth picking up when it’s released as a trade.

Verdict: Leave It – Wait for a trade

Score: 7/10



talks a bunch on PodQuest each week. He's also been known to write about stuff from time to time.

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