(Four of) The New 52

I’ve resolved to keep up with comics for a year and see how I like it. Part of the reason I’ve avoided comics for so long was the confusing continuity issues. I never liked being required to read every tentpole from a brand to understand the stories of just one hero. More so, there seems to be no less than five Batman comics at any given time, and I didn’t want a spreadsheet to understand a story.  With DC rebooting a bunch of their iconic heroes with the New 52, and Ultimate Spider-Man getting its own new take, it seemed like a good time to jump in.

So, I’m keeping up with the new Action Comics (Superman), Batman (not Batwing or Detective Comics or Batgirl or Batwoman or Nightwing; just Batman), and the new Ultimate Spider-Man. I figure dropping $10-15 per month isn’t too crazy, and that leaves me some budging room to pick up whatever happens to catch my eye.

Don’t expect my short thoughts to be anything mind-blowing, since I’m a self-professed newbie towards all this. But hey, they snagged me, and that was probably the point of the reboots in the first place.

Action Comics: Love the new take on Superman as a younger “man of the people” type who isn’t beholden to law enforcement. At least, not yet. I presume that eventually he’ll be trusted like he always was, but for now he’s holding people accountable whether it fits within the boundaries of law or not. And I love that he apparently chucked a wife-beater out a window.

Batman: A passable first issue, though it really only had one action beat at the beginning before I had much invested in it. I liked the cliffhanger at the end, though, and I’m glad the “new” continuity didn’t nix the various Robins. As cheesy as the Batman Family concept can be, it also gives Bruce some stakes to work with.

Batgirl: I don’t plan to keep up with this, but I picked up the first issue. I like the idea of her spinal injury causing an emotional scar that makes her freeze up. It lets them explore some more internal traits of the character. And unlike Samus in Other M, her crippling emotional state makes some damn sense.

Blackhawks: Never read this before. Seems like GI Joe.

Ultimate Spider-Man: This might be a bias towards Marvel, but I’m actually liking this series more than the New 52 so far. The second issue is what really sold me, when you see Miles reacting to his new powers. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a superhero origin story where the hero is just a scared kid; or at least, it wasn’t communicated as well. They also do a lot of great moments with “shots” of meaningful expressions or glances, while the DC 52 stuff seems to center its plot more in dialogue. A quiet close-up can mean a lot more than an explanation.

  • I am really, really terrible at Battlefield 3.
  • Nielsen provides a pretty interesting look at anticipation for upcoming games. I wouldn’t put too much stock in it personally — MW3 definitely doesn’t top my list — but this is probably at least a peak at how the holiday sales will shake out.

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