Friday, February 4, 2011

One-paragraph reviews: Superboy, Hellboy, Dr. Strange

Superboy #4
Written by Jeff Lemire; art by Pier Gallo; DC

Another entertaining issue by Lemire and Gallo, moving the various plots forward with a good mix of action, mystery and character development. Lots of really cool layouts, including a few pages where Lemire's mark can clearly be felt (widescreen close-up of character's eyes!), but credit is due to Gallo for pulling them off in style. The plot thickens with a not-completely-unexpected twist on the last page, which I won't spoil here. My only complaint is that the regular cover is kind of ugly, and the variant by Stanley Lau is only slightly better, since Superboy looks like he's about 30 years old on it. I don't usually care that much about covers, but the first three issues were so nice that it would've have been nice to see the series continue in that direction. Also, when are we going to get a Jeff Lemire variant? -- GOOD.

Hellboy: The Sleeping and the Dead #2
Written by Mike Mignola; art by Scott Hampton; Dark Horse

There's nothing really earth-shattering about the conclusion of this two-part mini-series, but it's a good horror story with a classic feel and some really nice art from Scott Hampton. I guess I don't have much to say about it, except that it delivers what you expect from a Hellboy story about vampires, without any big surprises or revelations. -- GOOD.

Doctor Strange: From the Marvel Vault #1
Written by Roger Stern; art by Neil Vokes; Marvel

Since I'm not a big reader of Marvel comics, I don't have a lot of context for this early adventure in Dr. Strange's career. It includes some flashbacks to his origin story, which was all new to me, but mostly deals with his first night in his NYC mansion and his battle with some creepy entities that dwell within it. I don't really understand why his cape is red on the cover, but blue inside the comic. Nevertheless, it's a good story and the art is nice. As a rare $2.99 one-shot from Marvel, this is worth picking up if you're a fan of the character. -- GOOD.

(new rating scale)


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