Issue 7 of Geoff Johns and Ivan Reis's run on Aquaman sees the beginning of a new arc involving a group called 'The Others' and we find our hero with some explaining to do. I always struggle to review issues that start with a new story arc, especially when Geoff Johns is behind the script because this is obviously going to be paced slowly, which isn't a bad thing, it just doesn't give us a lot to talk about in the first introductory issue. Aquaman #7 introduces us to 'The Others', a group of men and women (probably Atlanteans) who share some unknown relationship with Aquaman; all we seem to know is it looks like he used to belong to their team.
I don't really have much to say here. It was an enjoyable issue and Ivan Reis was incredible on art duties as he usually is. All I can say is I'm interested to see where this goes but I need a little bit more before I can judge it properly. As a single issue it was good but like I said, there's plenty more to come from Johns and Reis and I'm excited to see who 'The Others' really are and why Aquaman separated from them.
Now this is what a Superman comic should be like. Superman #7 was twice as good as any of the previous 6 issues by George Perez and full praise goes to Dan Jurgens and Keith Giffen who co-wrote the plot. This book desperately need a new start and that's exactly what we got. Right from the start you could tell Giffen's script was going to deliver the goods: no longer do we have to suffer through those God-awful television reporters explaining every single detail because Giffen has produced a smart and witty inner monologue for Superman that is both enjoyable and interesting to read. I was surprised just how fun this was. It was a nice change to see Superman as an intellectual and his rapport with other characters was pitch perfect. Jurgens and Giffen have gotten of to a very good start and I'm eagerly anticipating issue 8.
My only nit-pick would be the art. From what I gather, the majority of the pencils were done by Jurgens but finished by Jesus Merino and it doesn't really produce the best results. The art is in no way bad - for the most part its well done and clear to follow. But for me its not the style of art a book like Superman deserves. I'd prefer a cleaner overall look to the pages and I think the fantastic Ivan Reis cover spoiled me slightly. I'd love an artist of Reis's calibre on Superman permanently. However that really is the only fault, and it is a minor one at that. Superman #7 was exactly the kind of issue this series needed and I hope Giffen and Jurgens can keep delivering quality like this every month.
Avenging Spider-Man #5
This was my random choice from the shelves this week. I already buy Amazing Spider-Man every month so there's little room left in my life for two Spidey books. But having Leinil Francis Yu as a guest artist was enough to lure me in and it was a happy coincidence that Captain America featured heavily as well. I'd read issue 1 of this when it was released (bought it as a Christmas gift for my nephew) and enjoyed it quite a bit. I like the idea of Spidey teaming up with a different Marvel hero; it's like reading an Avengers book through Peter's eyes, which is great for me because my Avengers knowledge bank is rather limited so its nice to have Spider-Man there to guide me through it.
Overall, Avenging Spider-Man #5 was good fun. Yu was his sublime best on art and Zeb Wells writes a great Spidey. The best part of this book is that I didn't have to have read any of the previous issues. It was easy to jump into and enjoy it for what it was and then have it wrapped up in a neat finish. I recommend checking it out if you want a fix of Peter Parker with some Avengers thrown in for good measure. I expect I'll pick up the next issue as #6 marks the start of a crossover featuring my Marvel favourite Daredevil, as well as the Punisher and Spidey (of course).
Boy does it feel like a long time since issue 9! Along with Batman this is easily one of the most anticipated books for me, every single month. Mark Waid and Paulo Rivera, who've quickly become a Daredevil dream team, never fail to please. Issue 10 wraps up this two-issue arc featuring Mole Man, who has been stealing graves from a New York cemetery, including Daredevil's father Jack Murdock - yes, it gets personal for DD in this one. Without spoiling anything, Daredevil "saves the day" and resolves the problem, dispatching Mole Man in the end. I really liked where Waid took this; he turned a poor villain like Mole Man into a dangerous foe that forced Daredevil to get pretty nasty, about as nasty as he's gotten since they relaunched the character last year. There were moments in #10 that felt like we were seeing the Matt Murdock of old. I've really enjoyed the new direction Waid has taken the character since he took over, taking Matt back a bit to his 'swash-buckling' ways. But it was pretty awesome to see him get angry and ruthless like the old days, when he was at breaking point nearly every issue.
Even with Waid's brilliant script, this book wouldn't be the same without artist Paulo Rivera. Both of the creators need to share the credit because they really do work perfectly together. Rivera has produced another stunning issue here. His style lends itself beautifully to the character and ever since issue 1, Rivera has made Daredevil his own. Just look at that cover for proof.
My favourite moment of issue 10 revolved around Daredevil getting home and reading Black Cat's letter. This little revelation was a really nice touch and solved some questions I've had ever since issue 8. I really hope Waid brings Black Cat back later on down the line; I'm a fan of the character and I like the idea of her as a love interest for Daredevil. It'd certainly make Matt's life interesting, that's for sure.
All in all, another sublime issue from a team establishing themselves as Daredevil legends. It doesn't get much better than this for a Daredevil fan like me.
Rating: 5/5 Pick of the Week
Thanks for reading.