Take It Or Leave It – June 12, 2013


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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.

It’s been a great week for comics, not only did I finally get to read some of the books I picked up from Wizard World a few weekends back, which we’ll have reviews for soon, but this weeks releases were all stellar. I think this is the first week ever where everything got a Take It, the downside to that is it’s kind of an expensive week! Not every book is for everyone though, so whether you’re interested in the new Superman Unchained with Jim Lee and Scott Snyder or maybe you want to see the sudo-sequel to Zeb Wells and Joe Madureira’s opening Avenging Spider-Man arc in Savage Wolverine you’ll definitely find some cool stuff. And we can’t forget the first not FCBD issue of the new Aphrodite IX series (it’s really issue #2).

Alphabetical by Publisher
Boom! Studios | DC Comics | Image Comics | Marvel Comics | Zenescope Entertainment


batgirl21

Batgirl #21

It feels like more than just a month since the last issue of Batgirl, I had almost forgotten what happened. Fortunately as soon as this book got started I remembered all the crap that Barbara has had to deal with lately. Her interactions with Nightwing at the very beginning were great and I wish we’d see more of them, or other Batfamily characters together. The real meat of the story came with Batgirl facing off against the ventriloquist from last issue, and boy is she one morbid individual and the puppet is even worse! When I first found out the villain last issue I wasn’t to excited but the way it was handled kept me invested and that’s a great thing to say about any book. One of the more interesting parts was just how disgusted Barbara was at the situation and how much everything was obviously really weighing down on her. I’m glad that the events that have recently transpired both in this book and others are really having a lasting effect. It would have been a shame to just move right on like nothing major went down.

Verdict: Take It

Score: 7/10

Reviewed By: Chris


batman21

Batman #21

This is the first of two Scott Snyder penned titles released this week, and the opening to Snyder and Capullo’s Zero Year story line in Batman. So if you’re not familiar with the idea, they’re going back 6 years to before Bruce really became the Dark Knight and showing how he got there. This is right around the same time that the Zero issue happened last year so he’s already back in Gotham and trying to get his new ‘life’ in order. The one draw back I was having with the book was the jumping around it did. Every other page was a different time and a different place so the story felt very disconnected. Even with that problem it was still a really interesting read, and we got the introduction of a classic Batman rogue to the New 52, you can probably guess who but I’m not going to spoil it. Throughout the issue a lot of plot lines were setup and I just hope as this year long story continues things start to get more focused and we see Bruce deal with one problem at a time. It says something for the creators even when a person has a problem with the book, it’s still one of the best books on the shelves!

Verdict: Take It

Score: 7/10

Reviewed By: Chris


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Nightwing #21

Nightwing continues his duel with the Prankster in this issue, and we see what may have been the cause of the lack of superheroing happening in Chicago. I really enjoyed this issue of Nightwing, Dick got to be clever and funny while going up against Prankster and even have some alright fights. 90% of this issue is funny, there’s a lot of humor going on, then in the last few pages everything gets very real, very quickly. I’m really excited for what’s to come for Nightwing in coming months, he’s got one hell of a problem to face that’s for sure.

Verdict: Take It

Score: 8/10

Reviewed By: Chris


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Superman Unchained #1

Most comic book fans are probably going to be picking up Superman Unchained regardless of what anyone says about it. With a creative team like Scott Snyder and Jim Lee working on it you really can’t go wrong. I’ve tread issues of Action Comics and Superman over the last few months and neither of them really impress me. So far the best books to feature Superman have been Justice League, and the back ups in recent Batman issues featuring him working with Batman. Now though there’s a new book out there for Superman fans to get a good representation of The Man of Steel. I think Snyder really gets a nice flow going with his narrative, even while Superman is doing amazing things like catching a space station falling to earth he’s still Clark Kent. And frankly one of the coolest scenes in the book is him holding the wrecked station up over a bunch of scared scientists and astronauts, but I don’t want to spoil how we got there so I won’t say any more. Aside from the story, obviously Jim Lee’s art is amazing, I just hope he sticks on this title longer than just a story arc or two. I know the guy is busy, but most of the interest in this book is the creative team.

Verdict: Take It

Score: 8/10

Reviewed By: Chris


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Aphrodite IX #2

This is a really strange book, like I really have no clue how to describe just how weird it is. The thing about it though, it’s good, and the strangeness really helps it. As the reader you get a lot explained to you by various characters, but at the same time you’re just as confused about certain situations as the title character, she doesn’t know what’s happening and is trying to figure it all out too. By the end of the issue you’re genuinely upset about the outcome and what is probably going to happen next. That’s an impressive feat for the second issue of a book, let alone the second issue of a book that I personally had no familiarity with. Aphrodite IX is a completely new franchise to me, so while old fans are going to have their own opinion, I feel for a fantasy sci-fi book, there aren’t many better ways to go than this one.

Verdict: Take It

Score: 8/10

Reviewed By: Chris


avengingspiderman22

Avenging Spider-Man #22

It’s funny, I didn’t even consider this team up until it happened, but considering the circumstances of the Spider-Man books it makes perfect sense. Now I’m not a huge Punisher fan, he’s cool but just not my kind of read. I do however generally like books he guest stars in, and past interactions with Spider-Man have always been interesting considering their drastically differing ideals. Now that Doc Ock is in control though those ideals aren’t all that different. From Spider-Man threatening to end Punisher to the Punisher approving and at the same time wanting Spider-Man to step back before he’s lost forever were all just great character scenes. And the inclusion of Hobgoblin and his villains for hire business was a nice touch for this final issue. As the book transition to Superior Spider-Man Team-Up next month we’ve still got a lot of answers we’ll need.

Verdict: Take It

Score: 7/10

Reviewed By: Chris


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Guardians Of The Galaxy #3

I read on IGN today and the reviewer said that Guardians of the Galaxy is that surprise book each month where it’s like “Oh hey I forgot you existed” and frankly it’s true. Each month I look at my pull list and there’s Guardians and I suddenly remember how good it’s been. You’d think with such a quality book it would be something more on the radar, but being in it’s own secluded corner of the Marvel Universe has it’s draw backs. Other than Iron Man he’s got no real connection to any other stuff happening in the universe, which is one of the best selling points. You don’t need to follow anything else to get the story it’s all self contained in it’s own little bubble. Plus any book with a talking not-Raccoon and a giant talking tree is alright with me. So this month picks up right where last month left off with the heroes having saved earth, but getting arrested for doing it. There’s so much political stuff going on to keep people intrigued along with the action and sci-fi it’s a really good mash up of genres. Plus even in space with a new team, Tony Stark is still Tony Stark. Also “Blamo! Murdered You!” is my new favorite line.

Verdict: Take It

Score: 9/10

Reviewed By: Chris


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Ultimate Comics X-Men #27

Ultimate Comics X-Men feels like it’s finally going to start getting X-Men-y if that make sense. So much goes down in this issue it’s not even funny, characters aren’t who we think they are, others are who we think they are. Stuff from all over the Ultimate Universe is pretty much hating on mutants right now. The big focus it seemed in the issue was Jean and Psylocke along with General Ross. There was almost no Kitty or Mach Two to be seen. I’m particular interested to see where Rogues story goes with the Sentient Seed. They have a very strange relationship, and not much is shown of it, but we do know now that the Seed cares about the mutants and isn’t going to let anyone hurt them. With the conclusion of the story arc next issue, I have a feeling a lot is going to change and that’s something to really look forward to. Brian Wood’s best Ultimate stories so far have come out of massive change.

Verdict: Take It

Score: 8/10

Reviewed By: Chris


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Grimm Fairy Tales Presents Robyn Hood Wanted #2

The first Robyn Hood series was great, it introduced all the characters you wanted to see and gave Robyn a perfect character and story that both fits to the original legend but gives her an identity of her own. Now in the sequel she’s not that same person anymore, things have changed and her world frankly doesn’t want her. On top of that the world she saved isn’t in the best of circumstances either. Issue 2 has a lot going on, especially in Nottingham as Bree is now called. The book shows us just how bad things have gotten for real, and we see that like the first series, characters just aren’t safe. Back in the mortal world Robyn is in another terrible situation that she has no real hope of getting out of, but of course she does. We also get some great Will Scarlet, and I really hope series writer Pat Shand doesn’t kill him, but I have a feeling he will. Overall issue 2 was pretty solid, it’s still kind of setting up the main conflict, but that’s alright by the end of the issue you see where everything is headed and it should be epic.

Verdict: Take It

Score: 9/10

Reviewed By: Chris


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

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