Comic Reviews: Guardians of The Galaxy and Batman!
Guardians of the Galaxy #1 (Marvel Comics)
You can’t keep the Guardians of the Galaxy down, and that’s pretty apparent with the comic side of the team, which has another new #1 (their fourth by my count) that has a new creative team, a new roster of heroes, and a new threat. The Al Ewing and Juann Cabal series is intending to be just as grand and epic as the previous run from Donny Cates, but as it stands right now, it’s simply too soon to get all that excited about another crack on the team that will probably be rebooted in about twenty issues.
Star-Lord, Gamora, Rocket, Groot, and Drax are attempting to enjoy some much deserved R&R after their previous adventure, and unfortunately for them, the vacation is pretty short lived. After a visit from Nova, the team learns that the ancient Greek gods of myth have been reborn and are threatening all known reality. Despite agreeing with their teammates to stay out of the conflict, Star-Lord and Rocket secretly break off to help Nova against the threat, but that mission quickly goes South as the makeshift team assembled by Nova finds themselves way over their heads. But can the surprise arrival of Hercules help turn the tide?
It’s certainly a crazy start for a new spin on the Guardians of the Galaxy, but unfortunately Al Ewing’s tale comes hot on the heels of Donny Cates’ run. There’s less than a month of time between that ending and this new start, and while Ewing’s script is very easy to jump into for newbies, it lacks the balls to the walls craziness of Cates’ run, which is a shocking thing to say after I just explained what happened in this issue. Despite this, Ewing’s script is really well done, and he has a good handle on the characters , even if we only really focus on Star-Lord and Rocket Raccoon.
Juann Cabal’s art is a extremely solid, and honestly, if you were going to pick this up for any reason, it’s his art. Cabal gets to go all out with this issue, delivering some pretty great panels that try to help reach Ewing’s goal of making this an epic start to this new series. I have no idea how long Cabal will be on this series, but it’ll look pretty damn good for the time being.
It’s hard not to feel bad for Ewing and Cabal with starting this new series. It’s difficult for any creative team to step in after a stellar run has concluded on a book, so I can’t imagine what it’s like to have to follow up someone with such a rock solid run of titles like Donny Cates. While this opening issue isn’t going to make you forget about the previous run on Guardians, there’s a chance that maybe, just maybe, Ewing and Cabal could make this stand on their own.
Batman #87 (DC Comics)
James Tynion IV’s first issue as the new installed Batman writer was a pretty “safe bet” for the publisher, but with his latest issue, featuring art by Guillem March, starts to bring the rest of the run into clearer focus. Now that the status quo has been firmly established, there’s a great sense of what Tynion’s run will be about, and to be honest, it’s pretty solid.
After taking out the assembled assassins in the previous issue, Batman has to figure out who was behind this coordinated attack, and why they want to kill Bruce Wayne. After discovering that Cheshire isn’t actually behind bars, but just a clay dummy created by Clayface, Batman takes off on a thrilling high speed chase to take on the assassin, all the while The Riddler is trying to assemble his own group of allies to also figure out who hired the assassins.
Simply put, this issue is a lot better than the previous one. Tynion’s script ramps up the action and excitement several notches, and crafts a pretty tight series of action set pieces that don’t let up at all. While we don’t have that many more clues behind who hired these assassins, it honestly doesn’t bother me that much because the script is so great.
Having Guillem March take over from Tony S Daniel might seem like a downgrade at first, but March’s art is simply stunning in this issue. There are times where he sometimes seems to rush his pages, but March’s work in this issue is the best it’s been in a very long time. It’s extremely difficult to effectively depict chase sequences in a comic, but March’s art is full of fluidity and motion that makes it seem like Batman is practically leaping off the page. It’s a great surprise.
I’m thankful that it only took an issue for Tynion IV’s script to start picking up steam, and now that the mystery is in full swing, I’m very excited to see where it goes from here. It’s still a bummer that Tom King wasn’t allowed to get to issue 100 for Batman, but this is a pretty good consolation prize.
Posted on January 22, 2020, in Comic reviews and tagged Al Ewing, Batman, DC Comics, Guardians of the Galaxy, Guillem March, James Tynion IV, Juann Cabal, Marvel Comics. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.