Tag Archives: DC Comics

DC Comics October 2023: Great, Good, Decent

Introduction

Last month, for some reason, they sentme the first issues for Power Girl and Green Lantern. I thought maybe I added them to my pull list or cart to check them out because of the non-reboot reboot “Dawn of DC”. Maybe the latter, but not the former because I’m back to my usual 7 books for DC Comics October 2023.

Overall, the books entertained me this month. None of them were especially bad or annoying. That’s all I ask from my comics books right now. I’m older and softer when it comes to my criticisms. Since there are so few books, I’ll just give my thoughts on each of them in order.

Action Comics 1058

Writer: Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Artist: Rafa Sandoval. We got pay off after the evil Superman reveal. Supes keeps his doppleganger busy and away from the public. He pays for it, but defeats the other Supes. Someone talks about turning a Kryptonian and then Clark goes to Steel to have him craft a suit while he heals. I feel like I forgot something because of the Knight Terrors gap. Need to go back and read previous issues again. My verdict: Decent.

Batman 138 (Legacy: 903)/Catwoman 58

Writers: Chip Zdarsky (Batman), Tini Howard (Catwoman), Artists: Jorge Jimenez (Batman), Nico Leon (Catwoman). I put these two together, because they complement one another in the Gotham War storyline. Speaking of, the gild appears to be solidly off the lily on this one. I liked Catwoman better than Batman this month. I have no use for the Zur storyline. But, I like that Catwoman took it upon herself to keep Bruce busy and try to keep Gotham together in the face of overwhelming odds. My verdict: Decent.

Detective Comics 1076

Writer: Ram V, Artist: Francesco Francavilla. A fun conclustion to a two part scarecrow story. It expores the myth of Batman through a conversation between Batman and young Bruce. An old and overused technique. At least Ram V does it well. My verdict: Good.

Flash 2 (Legacy: 802)

Writer: Si Spurrier, Artist: Mike Deodato, Jr. You all know I liked Williamson’s Flash. Like, really liked it. I thought when they shuffled things around books might suffer. Some have a little bit (like Batman), but not this one. This story is weird, but I dig it. My verdict: Great.

Superman 7 (Legacy: 850)

Writer: Josh Williamson, Artist: Gleb Melnikov, Dan Jurgens, Norm Rapmund, Edwin Galmon. Unlike recent big number issues, they simply continue the current storyline in this one. That’s fine with me. Chris mentioned in the latest podcast that I keep making him rethink taking Supes off his pull list. What can I say? Williamson writes a fun Superman and this story has just enough to keep me interested right now. My verdict: Good.

Wonder Woman 2 (Legacy: 802)

Writer: Tom King, Artist: Daniel Sampere. I like Tom King. I wasn’t sure about his take on Wonder Woman after the prologue and first issue. I’m still not 100% sold on it. But, this one gives me just enough of the Tom King magic that I think he might eventually pull it off. My verdict: Good.

The Verdict

Like I said, DC Comics October 2023 has some fun books in it. I like what they’ve done with this latest not a reboot reboot and the creative teams work pretty well together. I do find it interesting that my two favorite books of all time, Batman and Spider-Man are both suffering right now, but they’ll get it figured out.

Visit DC Comics for these books and more.

DC Comics September 2023: Great, Good, Decent

Introduction

Catching up has proven more difficult that anticipated. I mean, I know from being a teacher that it’s often easier to just go into work sick and fake it as best you can instead of having to write sub plans and get back into the groove after being out. Also, I probably took this page lighter than normal. After all, I only maintain it as a labor of love. So, I put off the YouTube and updated it in chunks. I still haven’t finished writing my notes for the next episode of Noob’s Book Club. And, I meant to release this DC Comics September 2023 article yesterday or Thursday.

I skipped DC for a couple of months. That’s because I ordered all of the first issues of Knight Terrors. I forgot to update my DCBS order the next month and only ordered my main titles. I meant to go to That’s Entertainment to fill in the books I missed. At this point, I might need to go the Midtown route. They would have made a great Spooktober article. Oh well, there’s always next year.

Decent

Power Girl 1

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For some reason, even though I don’t remember ordering them, they sent 3 number 1 issues for the Dawn of DC non-reboot of a reboot. Why they couldn’t anticipate last month and send my Knight Terrors, I’ll never know. In any case, they sent Blue Beetle, Green Lantern, and Power Girl. Of the three, I liked Blue Beetle the best and I might keep collecting that one for a bit longer to see if it continues. I’ve never cared anything about Green Lantern and I just said to Christine, “Good to see horny dudes are still drawing comics.” Power Girl’s costume makes no sense.

Good

Wonder Woman 1

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Writer: Tom King, Artist: Daniel Sampere

Long time readers of the page know that I have little use for Superman. I always thought his character was simplistic and I prefer my heroes to have flaws. The Brian Michael Bendis experiment started off great and then, as he often does, he wore out his welcome. They sucked me back in by putting Williamson on the main title. I also like Phillip Kennedy Johnson’s take on Action so far. I enjoyed Williamson on Flash and that’s what got me to read Supes. The Si Spurrier era starts off decent and I’m willing to give him a chance. The same thing can be said for King’s Wonder Woman. Everything he writes ends up great, but he needs some time to figure out WW’s character.

Great

Batman and Robin 1

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Writer: Joshua Williamson, Artist: Simone Di Meo

I rolled my eyes so hard they may have stuck there (Mom was right after all) when I read “Gotham War”. We had Joker War. Now we have Gotham War. Well, I should have known that they’d not let us down with this one. What is surprising is that all of the supporting titles I read in the series supports the story in a logical and strong manner. Hell, it even convinced me to buy the Batman/Catwoman title that ties in.

The Verdict

DC Comics September 2023 takes a page from Marvel’s book. They go back to basics on a lot of their titles. Okay, it makes sense now. They kept saying this wasn’t a reboot. With every new announcement, Chris and I rolled our eyes via text and said, “Yeah, right. looks like a reboot to us.” But, by the gods, they actually pulled it off. Can’t wait to see next month.

DC Manga Sampler: Bonus Article

Introduction

As an added bonus (I don’t remember ordering it), DCBS sent me the DC Manga Sampler. Therefore, in my haste to switch things around on the page, I bring you a bonus article about the three stories contained therein. This also comes on the heels of me ordering too many of the Knight Terrors books last month or not ordering enough this month to cover the second issues of the ones I ordered last month. Perhaps both. As a result, I moved the independent books to Wednesday this week and Marvel still drops on Friday.

Joker: One Operation Joker

Once I got used to the manga set up (I knew that you read from back to front, but not that you read from right to left), I enjoyed this story. It starts like so many other stories, with Joker unsure what’s real and what’s not. Therefore, when he reveals that he has a baby (?!), you are left to wonder what’s real and what’s not. He pulls a knife. Sure, not even the joker is that much of a monster. Thankfully no. He uses the knife to cut open a bag of diapers and change the baby.

How the hell does he even have a baby? Well, let me tell you, dear reader. Apparently, it has to do with the night before. He met Batman on the same catwalk near the same vat of toxic waste that created him. They tussle and when you think that Batman might finish the job, Joker grabs him and throws him into the waste. Well, that’s quite the cliffhanger. Now I need to add this to my pull list.

Batman: Justice Buster

This one involves a wordless chase with Batman after a villain I don’t recognize. He wears one of his armored suits. At the end of the episode, he suffers a malfunction and the villain taunts him from above. The villain activates a “B-17 trap”. I assume the B stands for Batman, but I have no clue on the 17. Written by the same author, this one felt weaker than the Joker one. Maybe it’s the unfamiliar characters or the lack of dialogue. Whatever the case, I’m less excited about this one. I will still give it a shot and hope for the best, though.

Superman vs. Meshi

This one also opens in a familiar way. Wherever someone calls for help, he hears it. Even if it comes from the other side of the world. But, today, he stands in front of a noodle joint in Japan. He’s, as the book says, “super hooked” on ramen. Cut to Clark Kent getting chewed out for not bringing scintillating enough stories. Why can’t he be more like Lois and get great interviews with Superman? Speaking of Lois, when he leaves the meeting, he bumps into her and asks her out. She says no. Thank goodness, he thinks, there’s no way I could get her to Japan as Clark Kent! Yes, more noodles! The set up here is funny, if not overly dramatic. But, who knows what Meshi holds in store for the Man of Steel.

The Verdict

I never knew anything about the DC Manga Sampler before receiving it in my shipment. After reading the three stories, one of them interests me greatly. Another has potential. And, the third, well, I just don’t understand the appeal. Granted, I never liked Superman. And, I always preach that sometimes it isn’t for you. So, maybe that one just isn’t for me. But, I will definitely check out the other two.

Wonder Woman 800 Extra-Size Spectacular

Introduction

Wonder Woman 800 took a different approach than The Flash and other recent landmark issues. Instead of a collection of shorter stories, they wrapped up the previous arc and included an introduction to the next arc at the end of the book.

While I enjoy the issues with the smaller vignettes because they allow writers to explore the less well known aspects of the heroes, this method works, too. It gives the previous creative team a chance to finish their story. The new creative team gets a chance to put an imprint on the character and introduce their unique persepctive.

Whatever Happened to the Warrior of Truth? Part 2

Writers: Becky Cloonan and Michael W. Conrad, Artists: Joelle Jones, Alitha Martinez, Mark Morales, Nick Robles, Todd Nauck, Skylar Partridge, Cully Hamner, and Jen Bartel.

I liked the Beck Cloonan/Michael W. Conrad run of Wonder Woman. They understood the character and brought her back to her roots. Similar to the current story in She-Hulk, they just get Diana and what makes her a good character. This issue goes a long way to showing all of that in the finish of their run. Wonder Woman travels the universe to visit and work with allies. She ends the story by reminding everyone out there who she is and what she stands for. My Verdict: Great

Trinity

Writer: Tom King, Artist: Daniel Sampere

I loved Tom King’s Batman series. He also wrote Miracle Man very well. I look forward to seeing what he does with the new Wonder Woman series. From what I see in this story, she is in good hands. He writes her differently from the previous writers, but change can be good. My verdict: Good

The Verdict

I enjoyed both stories for very different reasons. Perhaps surprisingly, I liked Becky Cloonan and Michael W. Conrad’s better than Tom King. Perhaps not. They’ve had more time to establish themselves and their mythos, so saying farewell has more emotional impact right now than Tom King’s version. After Knight Terrors, we’ll see how this story in Wonder Woman 800 leads into the future of the book.

The Flash 800 Extra-Sized Spectacular!

Introduction

I wrote in my DC Comics June 2023 review that they released two landmark issues this month. The first of them that I read (simply due to the consequence of the alphabet) was The Flash 800. I originally started collecting Flash comics because Aiden enjoyed the character and watched the television show in it’s entirety.

I read several issues early in the Joshua Williamson run. I liked what I read, but with no attachment to the character, I never committed to making it part of my regular rotation. But, like any self respecting comic book fan, I need to read all of the big time issues. Let’s dig in to The Flash 800 and see what it offers.

Don’t Come to Central City

Writer: Jeremy Adams, Artist: Fernando Pasarin

A few years ago, while teaching a STEM summer course at Holyoke Community College, my TA made a statement that I initially considered controversial. I since heard the claim made by others and now understand the ramifications. While talking about The Flash, he says, “If you think about it in a Physics sense, the Flash is the most powerful super hero. Wait, what? Superman? The Hulk? Galactus? Then, we discussed it further and, as I said, I understood the thesis. Well, this story takes that thesis and presents it through the lens of some small time criminals warning against messing with Central City and the Flash. My verdict: Good

The Max in the Mirror

Writer: Mark Waid, Artist: Todd Nauck

As not much of a Flash fan, I think I missed something in this story. Aiden, better versed in the character, might understand and appreciate it better than me. Because, honestly, I just wanted to finish it and move on to the other stories in the book. My Verdict: Decent

Flash Family

Writer: Joshua Williamson, Artist: Carmine di Giandomenico

I wrote earlier that Williamson almost made me a Flash fan. More impressively, he recently turned me into a Superman fan. I like this story because it is sweet and focuses on family. As I mentioned more than once lately, that subject gets me every single time lately. My verdict: Great

Blitz Back

Writer: Geoff Johns, Artist: Scott Kolins

The last story in the book sells itself as a set up for the new book as part of “Dawn of DC”. This one leads in to the lead in with an analysis of Zoom’s character and his part in the next chapter of The Flash. Of all of the Flash villains, Zoom is my favorite. My Verdict: Great

Between Love and You

Writer: Si Spurrier, Artist: Mike Deodato Jr.

This story tells the typical dual life super hero tale. Admittedly, a bit of a let down after the two stories before, but I understand the reason for ordering them in that way. And, to their credit, after Knight Terrors, I plan on giving The Flash another chance to crack the rotation. My verdict: Good

The Verdict

Overall, a fun landmark issue that highlights the important parts of Flash history. They gave the issue the subtitle of “A Celebration of Wally West”. Again, as a lesser Flash fan, I don’t necessarily have a favorite Flash, but I liked this book, so I can’t wait for the next stories in the series.

DC Comics June 2023: Great, Good, Decent

Introduction

In my previous article, I talked a little about how I kept the page going during our trip to Germany. I unintentionally left out the part about how I kept the podcast alive and neglected the YouTube page. But, even so, this represents a watershed in the history of the page. Previously, I ignored the page for extended periods of time and found it difficult to get back into the swing of thing. No such lull this year. So, even though I must update three days in a row, I bring you DC Comics June 2023.

This month, they celebrate two milestone issues, Wonder Woman 800 and The Flash 800. I review those in another article so that I can give them the proper attention that they deserve. Unfortunately, that only leaves five books for this article. Oh well, at least they are good books. Join me to see what books they are.

Regular readers of the page know exactly what books they are.

Good

Detective Comics 1073

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Batman 136: Writer: Chip Zdarsky, Artist: BelĂ©n Ortega. I bumped this one up from “Decent” last month. I made no secret of not enjoying the multiverse storyline and infinity Jokers. Well, this ended that and put Batman at war with himself, sort of. I appreciated that return to some good old fashioned disassociative identity disorder.

Catwoman 56: Writer: Tini Howard, Artist: Marcus To, Marco Santucci, M.L Sanapo. Again, I judged Catwoman harshly last month. This one might have even jumped into “Great” territory this month, but the set up felt lacking. You guys know me and my preference for the literal cat burglar stories in this book and that’s what this ends up being in the end.

Detective Comics 1072/1073: Writer: Ram V, Artist: Ivan Reis with Stefano Raffaele and Goran Sudzuka. I normally love everything that Ram V does. But, I only liked this particular storyline. He makes it as compelling as possible, but it just didn’t hit with me.

Great

Action Comics 1056

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Action Comics 1056: Writer: Phillip Kennedy Johnson, Artist: Rafa Sandoval and Max Raynor. Yes, my world continues to be turned upside down. However, as you read, see that this month rights the ship a bit compared to the previous DC article. What can I say? I enjoy this storyline right now. Lex Luthor as an ally is exactly what I need in my comics life right now.

Superman 5: Writer: Joshua Williamson, Artist: Jamal Campbell. This one almost fell to the “Good” section this time. Part of it dragged a little bit for me. However, Williamson redeemed himself at the end and I look forward to the next installment after Knight Terrors the nexst couple of months. Speaking of, I forgot to order them in August, so I need to visit That’s Entertainment to pick up the missing books.

The Verdict

Yes, you read correctly. There are no decent books in DC Comics June 2023. Just some (very) “Good” bordering on “Great” and the two consistent Superman titles in the “Great” section again. Next month brings “Knight Terrors”, so expect a companion article for those titles.

DC Comics May 2023: Great, Good, Decent

Introduction

After half assing my way through last month’s return to comic book reviews, I performed my due diligence this time around. In between school ending and decorating and watching my son in his seniorparade I read the DC Comics May 2023 and made my great, good, and decent list. We returned from the parade. While they clean off my father in law’s truck, I sat down to write the article.

The list may surprise you. I know it surprised me. But, I come by it honestly. The surprises start early and continue through to the end. This article with shock you. You won’t believe your eyes. In case you can’t tell, I’m trying to trick the algorithm into boosting this articleinthe search results. Controversy sells, right?

Decent

Batman #135 (Legacy 900): Writer – Chip Zdarsky, Artist – Mike Janin. Okay, this one will cause some waves, if anyone reads it. Hey, I told you. I don’t know what it was about this story. It just didn’t hit with me. Maybe I have to go back and read the first couple of issues. I don’t know. The one thing I found cool about it was all of the universe hopping and different styles of Batman we got. Other than that, pretty forgettable as far as a “landmark issue”.

Catwoman 55: Writer – Tini Howard, Artist – Nico Leon. Again, a bit of a surprise. I loved when Joelle Jones rebooted the series. Then, it fell off a bit. But, it ramped back up with Ram V. I might just be missing major plot points because I jumped back in towards the end of stories. I just prefer the cat burgler or tenuous alliance with Batman Catwoman stories. Ones like this just don’t keep me interested or entertainted.

Good

Flash 798/799: Writer – Jeremy Adams, Artist – Tom Derenick. Unlike the multiverse and time hopping in Batman, I welcomed it in The Flash for these two issues. I can’t explain why. I only started picking up Flash comics for Aiden, who was a huge fan of the hero. Then, I read and enjoyed it during Williamson’s run. Since then, it just keeps showing up in my pull list. But, I pulled the trigger this time and I’m glad I did. Fun story. Can’t wait for 800.

Wonder Woman #799: Writer – Becky Cloonan and Mike Conrad, Artist – Alitha Martinez. I picked this one up after just reading another social media post about someone intentionally trying to pick fights with neckbeards about equal rights for all. I admit to being a sucker lately for that kind of thing, especially in light of my soul searching as a result of reading Ready Player One. Yeah, seriously. Anyway, the book (even with such a bold cover) downplays the relationships. But, I liked the seamless travel between dream worlds as the set up for something really cool, I hope. Next month looks big with a couple of 800s.

Great

Action Comics 1055: Writer – Philip Kennedy Johnson, Artist – Rafa Sandoval. Yes, dear readers, we truly live in the upside down. Both Bats and Cats reside in the dumpster this month and Action Comics (plus, I imagine you can deduce, Supes) in the great. What can I say. I enjoyed the heck out of this story. I didn’t know what to think going in, but they made everyone, including cyborg Superman, into a compelling character with a great narrative.

Superman 4: Writer – Joshua Williamson, Artist – Nick Dragotta. What can I say? All it took for me to finally get on board with the Man of Steel was a little bit of Joshua Williamson. Granted, it means that I don’t have to put Superman and Brian Michael Bendis into the same sentence, so that helps. But, it’s Lex and Supes teaming up. What more can you ask for? As far as I’m concerned, no more.

The Verdict

I told you. DC Comics May 2023 turned our whole world upside down here at 2 Generations Gaming. I imagine things returning to normal next month, but who knows. If Williamson keeps writing Superman, I don’t see that one budging. Maybe we just get the elusive month of only great books. Come back at the end of June to see.

DC Comics April 2023: Great, Good, Decent

Introduction

With some of the kid activities calming down over the next few weeks, I decided to try to get back to updating the page on a regular basis. This week, I eased into it with some comic reviews. Instead of just Spawn, I reviewed two other independent comics on Monday. Today, I return with DC Comics April 2023.

Before we continue, I need to come clean. I skimmed most of the books this month. Almost all of them are in the middle or close to the end of an arc. Therefore, I need to go back and do a little research before reading next month to get a better idea of the quality of the books. Therefore, and I know you all probably do anyway, take this month’s reviews with a grain of salt.

Decent

Wonder Woman 798

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I came clean a few years ago as not a fan of Superman. I know that probably pains my brother Tim, but the character just never interested me all that much. I like my heroes with flaws and Superman traditionally has none. Let me tell you something else, though. I absolutely hate Superman when they try to humanize him. But, if anyone can make me care about ole Supes, it’s Williamson. Watch these reviews to see if it comes true.

As far as Wonder Woman and Flash this month. Overall, I enjoyed reading through them. As mentioned above, I only flipped through Wonder Woman because I need context before passing final judgement. The only reason I started collecting Flash was for Aiden, but he seems to be out of his comics phase, so at this point I’m just collecting for collection’s sake. I will say, though, that the concept of the “One Minute War” looked interesting and I want to read that story.

Good

Action Comics 1054

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Well, apparently I lied when I said that only Williamson can make me care about Superman. Because, I thoroughly enjoyed the story presented in Action Comics this month. It revolves around Metallo and offered one heck of a cliffhanger at the end of 1054. Can’t wait until next month.

I flipped through both Bats and Cats this month. Both wrap up their current stories soon and I actually wrote under Batman in my notes that I needed more context because maybe it will be great. Zdarsky is writing it and Chris said he liked the story. I promise to update you next month. Plus, I pine for older writers on these books, so I need to get over that first.

Great

Remember those old writers I pined for earlier? Ram V is absolutely one of them. I love everything he does. He just writes such amazing stories and it doesn’t matter what character he writes for. Similar to James Gunn and super hero movies, every book that Ram V touches is gold.

The Verdict

For me, DC Comics April 2023 was a mixed bag. Part of that, admittedly, is my fault. I need to go back and read the previous books for some context in the stories. Who knew that coming back to review comics would give me homework? Oh well, I promise to be more well versed in the stories by next month. Until then….

DC Future State: The Great

Introduction

Chris clued me into DC Future State. I knew nothing of their plans for…whatever it is. Immediately, we though reboot. DC assured us this wasn’t the case. Okay, must be an event, then. Upon reading the books, I confirmed that with a text to Chris. I don’t remember the exact wording, but I’m pretty sure it was along the lines of, “This isn’t a reboot. It’s not an event, either. The Batman and Aquaman books are just like regular books. I’m so confused.”

Me to Future State: Who-What are you?!

Yes, I just dated myself with yet another reference. This movie is so old and there have been so many movie jokers since that I had to use an oddly specific search term. Plus, as you see, I wrote the text under the meme like some sort of plebian. Living in the future isn’t always the utopia they make it out to be in the movies.

And so, faced with my own mortality and bitter that I spent over 100 dollars on what feels ultimately like a failed reboot that they tried to repackage as an event, I read only the writers I like. Okay, that’s not entire true. I eventually finished the other books for the first round, but I haven’t made it there on the second round of books. And, now, before they move on and act like nothing happened, let’s look at the great from DC Future State.

Catwoman (Ram V and Otto Schmidt)

Joelle Jones and Tom King got me to start collecting Catwoman. I almost bailed after Joelle left and they cycled through writers. Then, Ram V came onto the title and I started collecting and reading voraciously again to support one of my favorite comic writers.

He took up the mantel of Future State Catwoman writer, as well. Ram loves him a heist story. Sure, it fits the character, but the same storyline over and over gets old. Well, guess what? Cats and friends board a train with heist intentions. I admit to liking this story very much. I mention that only because very few of the main title Catwoman titles kept my interest like this one. Hopefully Ram V can keep the inspiration and momentum going and bring back Cats in the main.

Dark Detective (Mariko Tamaki and Dan Mora)

I’ve made no secret of my fan boy love for Mariko Tamaki’s writing. I don’t remember where I discovered her, but her work on X-23 was top notch. Come to think of it, that might have been the first book of hers I read. I watched Logan, loved the portrayal of our favorite Wolverine clone in that and picked up the book based only on that. Hey, cross promotion works! She brought her talents to DC as writer on Wonder Woman and now Dark Detective in Future State. Surprise! Bruce Wayne is dead. Now, from here, I can go one of two ways with an inside joke. I can either use an overused line that one of the Simpsons Facebook groups I frequent and say, “That’s right! Dead serious about going to Itchy and Scratchy Land!” But, I think I’ll go with family favorite, Voldemort.

Spoiler Alert: Bruce Wayne isn’t really dead. Nevertheless, a sinister and possibly evil (aren’t they always!) police force took over Gotham and rule with an iron fist. Tired storyline to be sure, but Ms. Tamaki gives us a compelling storyline in spite of the limited environment. If DC went ahead with Future State instead of making it a tepid collection of one shots, I’d definitely like to see where this book went.

Justice League (Joshua Williamson and Robson Rocha)

Justice League Dark (Ram V and Marcio Takara)

If I’m being honest, I only got this title because of Justice League Dark. You already knew that, though. Imagine my surprise, then, when I saw Joshua Williamson wrote it. I enjoyed his Flash very much and have kept an eye out for his name ever since. This book follows the pattern of the others. We introduce the new Justice League. Some familiar faces in the group, but ultimately it goes nowhere because both DC and Marvel are afraid to take a leap and try something new.

As I wrote to Chris, I get that the market is different, but this whole Future State thing now just feels like the latest 2099 trip, which were simply half assed as a series of one shots. As with that “experiment”, some failed spectacularly. This is supposed to be about the ones that succeeded. This one mostly succeeded. And, Justice League Dark made it worth the price of admission.

Legion of Super Heroes (BMB and Riley Rossmo)

At this point, I only include this one because of BMB’s legacy. After his, let’s say “inconsistent”, runs on Superman and Action comics, I need a break from Bendis. I knew almost nothing about the Legion before this book. I still know very little. I definitely need a break from Bendis.

Swamp Thing (Ram V and Mike Perkins)

I saved this read for last. Chris and I both love the character of Swamp Thing. Honestly, his guest spot in Batman at the beginning of Rebirth cemented my decision to keep collecting DC Comics. You all know that I’m not much of a DC fan, but I always try to give them a chance and the benefit of the doubt.

This title represents all the potential of Future State. It features a lesser utilized character in a bigger role. It gives us a glimpse into a possible future that is both a hopeless post-apocalypse and a hopeful pre-rebirth (pun sort of intended). This is the best title of the lot and it isn’t even close. I can’t wait for the main title.

Wonder Woman (Joelle Jones)

I already said above that the Catwoman ongoing after Rebirth introduced me to Joelle Jones. She wrote the character in such a unique way that it kept me coming back in spite of the fact that I’ve never been a fan of Cats other than maybe Michelle Pfieffer’s portrayal in Batman Returns.

She brings that unique voice and storytelling to a new Wonder Woman. Having little history with the character other than the movie and collecting since Rebirth, I don’t know if this particular Wonder Woman has any history in the series. However, I like the character and wish we got more of her. Oh well, Future State, we barely knew ye.

The Verdict

Overall, DC Future State: The Great delivered. Each writer gave us a compelling story that I wish would be followed up in some form or fashion. You might ask why I only reviewed these books. If you remember, I ordered all of the books. However, other than these and one or two surprises, the books were underwhelming.

I think once I realized that Future State fell into this weird limbo it took some of the luster off of the books. As we all know, don’t count anything as ever completely over in the world of comic books. If DC ever grows a set and decides to follow this thread at some point in the future, it can be great.

DC Future State February 2021: Great, Good, Decent

Introduction

Technically, all of these books released in January. But, you know what you get here at 2 Guys Gaming. I’m not part of the comics media elite (yet, and I may never be, but hope springs eternal), so I order my books from Discount Comic Book Service and they arrive all in a big box at the end of each month. And, so, you read the general review of the first month of books DC Future State February 2021 instead.

If I’m completely honest, and I usually am, I considered calling this “Month One” instead of February 2021 to cover up my deficiencies. Delightfully devilish indeed, Seymour.

I originally planned to review each book individually as I do for all of my comic reviews. That plan is unfeasible for a couple of reasons. One, there are a ton of books (my order doubled for this month) and I only give myself a week to read and review the books. Two, none of the books have been very good so far.

I ran the gamut when it came to opinions of Future State. Initially, when I thought DC planned to use it as a reboot, yet again, I met it with my usual cautious optimism. When Chris assured me that DC said it was an event and not a reboot (though that’s looking to be delightfully devilish on their part in retrospect), I jumped all in. I put ever single book on my pull list. I even added a few variant covers by mistake. Now that I read a few of the books, put me on the (spoiler alert) extremely disappointed list. What makes DC Future State February 2021 so disappointing? I’m glad you asked. Let’s start with the good news first.

The Great

Sorry folks, no great this time. I wager there are more than one or two great books here. They have some of their best writers (Tamaki, V, Jones, Bendis, among others) on the “project”. So, once I get around to reading them on vacation, I might write an amendment to give them their props. Overall, though, as mentioned, the books give me the impression of a failed reboot that they repackaged as an event. It all looks and feels like the next generation reboot that pissed off so many Marvel fans about a decade ago now.

As I wrote to Chris, nerds are a fickle bunch.

I, personally, would have more respect for them if they just powered through the awkwardness of another reboot until the books got good again. You know it would happen eventually. The hard core collectors would keep collecting because they’d be afraid of missing out. The lovers like me and Chris would grab the books that held our attention and eventually found new books to enjoy. The casual fan (haha), if they still exist, would pop in here and there. Who knows, you might even expand your audience. Again, I mock, haha. Instead, we’re met with this mealy mouthed “event” in which nothing really happens.

That can be forgiven when Bendis writes for a title for 3 or 4 years. There’s bound to be lulls in the story. But, when you give these characters 2 or 4 books in which to be introduced and possibly concluded? Those books had better be damn good. And, quite frankly, they just aren’t.

The Good

Marketing – I often say that I’m not very susceptible to marketing. I say it almost as much as I say that I don’t hate Tom Brady. Both come out of my mouth (and virtual mouth) enough that you may think that I’m compensating. Chris has said as much on numerous occasions. Honestly, that may be partly true.

Mostly, I repeat myself because I don’t know which post might lead someone to the page. Therefore, I feel the need to explain myself on as many articles as possible so people know what they’re in for. To make a long story short…

Even though I generally feel like I don’t respond to marketing, of course I do. It’s just that marketing needs to be tailored exactly for me. DC accomplished that with Future State admirably. I went from not caring and maybe picking up a few titles that interested me to ordering every single title they published. Well played, DC.

The Decent

The Stories: I don’t mean to imply that the books are bad. They’re not. Admittedly, at this writing, I’ve only read three of them. However, the overall trend follows this pattern. They’re DC books set in the future. Sure, Aquaman mentions the multiverse. However, the Batman Superman and The Next Batman stories are just Batman and Superman stories set in a near future dystopia.

Don’t get me wrong. That’s all fine. It’s just not “event” stuff. As I said, it looks, smells, and feels very much like an aborted attempt at another reboot. I give them some credit for trying to switch it up and give the reboot some flavor. However, I have no respect for backing off and then trying to resell it as an “event”.

This is no event. Civil War was an event. Planet Hulk was an event. Secret Empire was an event. This is a well (at least to suckers like me) marketed shift of focus. Again, nothing wrong with that. They invested quite a bit into this and want to see some return. I just don’t understand why they’re being so coy about it. Perhaps their margins are thinner than Chris and I have feared all these years. If so, do what you need to do to keep making comics, guys. I’m 100% behind you.

The Verdict

I will read the rest of the books in DC Future State February 2021. I’m on break next week, so I’ll need things to keep me occupied. Perhaps I will also write an addendum article with some of my free time. I mean, there are some great writers and artists on the project. Almost every one of my favorites is involved other than Tom King and James Tynion. I suppose some had to stay back to hold down the fort when we return to the present. At the risk of sounding like one of those comic nerds, that return can’t happen soon enough. In the meantime, there’s always WandaVision.

Note: Header image from here.