Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang on Wonder Woman #1

June 2nd, 2011 Posted by david brothers

New York Times bestselling writer Brian Azzarello, author of The Joker and 100 Bullets, teams up with the immensely talented artist Cliff Chiang (Neil Young’s Greendale) for WONDER WOMAN #1, an exciting new series starring the DC Universe’s greatest superheroine. The cover to issue #1 is by Cliff Chiang.

I’m going to go on ahead and call this DC relaunch a success, because they’re getting me to buy a Wonder Woman comic for the first time in… years, probably, during a brief dalliance with the Greg Rucka run. It’s creator driven, obviously–Azzarello and Chiang a team that is too good for most any cape comics character–but here we are nonetheless. Also, I liked this bit from the last time Azzarello wrote Wonder Woman in Superman: For Tomorrow (two trades: one and two):

Couple other bits that seem interesting:

The world’s third-smartest man – and one of its most eligible bachelors – uses his brains and fists against science gone mad in MISTER TERRIFIC #1, the new series from writer Eric Wallace and artist Roger Robinson. The cover to issue #1 is by J.G. Jones.

I still think “third-smartest man” is a dumb gimmick (It’s on the level of “When a lady walks to me says ‘Hey, you know whats sexy?’ I say, ‘No, I don’t know what it is, but I bet I can add up all the change in your purse very fast!”), but I liked the Eric Wallace who wrote Ink and I like Mr. Terrific in theory and a few times over the past few years (Infinite Crisis talking with John Stewart, Checkmate, maybe a couple other spots). Titans, though, I’m not even remotely keen on. Fellas: wow me.

Rising superstar Francis Manapul, fresh off his acclaimed run on THE FLASH with Geoff Johns, makes his comics writing debut in THE FLASH #1, sharing both scripting and art duties with Brian Buccellato. The Flash knows he can’t be everywhere at once, but what happens when he faces an all-new villain who can? The cover to issue #1 is by Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato.

Manapul draws nice.

One bit I’m not interested in:

Welcome to a major new vision of the Nuclear Man as writers Ethan Van Sciver and Gail Simone team up with artist Yildiray Cinar to deliver THE FURY OF FIRESTORM #1. Jason Rusch and Ronnie Raymond are two high school students, worlds apart – and now they’re drawn into a conspiracy of super science that bonds them forever in a way they can’t explain or control. The cover to issue #1 is by Ed Benes.

Ethan Van Sciver? Thanks, but no thanks–I’m not the type of guy who can knowingly put money in the pocket of a Joseph McCarthy fanboy and known associate of Breitbart/BigHollywood types. Not a chance, son. Those people are human scum.

I’ll have fuller thoughts once the solicits hit in a couple weeks, I guess. I’m gonna be checking for that new Justice League by Johns & Lee, too. More details here.

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Pretty Girls: Cliff Chiang

November 5th, 2010 Posted by david brothers

Cliff Chiang: Blog, Lambiek, Twitter
Books: Doctor 13: Architecture and Morality, Neil Young’s Greendale, Crisis Aftermath: The Spectre, Green Arrow/Black Canary: Family Business
Why? The fashion is a big part of what makes his work so crucial. He not only draws clothes like what you might actually see somebody wearing on the street, but they actually fit and have those little details that keep them from being plain. Folds, curves, wrinkles, whatever whatever.

What I like best (well not best best, but best at this specific moment in time) about Chiang’s work isn’t specifically lady-related, but it plays a role in why his ladies look so good. He’s got an absolutely fantastic sense of design. He uses blacks like the best of them, on par with people like Eduardo Risso. The lighting in cliffchiang-Justice_League_Generation_Lost_9.jpg is fantastic, especially Max Lord’s figure in the background. In cliffchiang-sadie.jpg, the crowd is rendered in both black and white, but it isn’t confusing at all.

Lady-wise, Chiang has a very classic approach to faces that I like. Same kind of classy dame/good girl that Darwyn Cooke and Jordi Bernet work with sometimes, right? You can see it in cliffchiang-scarlett.jpg, but cliffchiang-sadie.jpg and cliffchiang-sun.jpg shows that a classy dame can easily be turned into something more modern with a couple of tweaks. Versatility counts.

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Fourcast! 54: Doctor 13 vs Batgirl: Year One

July 19th, 2010 Posted by david brothers

-Minimal shownotes because it’s currently 0230!
-You Made Me Read This!
-David made Esther read Doctor 13: Architecture and Morality!
-The last page is a killer!
-Esther made David read Batgirl: Year One!
-The dramatic irony is sickening!
-6th Sense’s 4a.m. Instrumental for the theme music.
-See you, space cowboy!

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The Sun Will Come Out. Tomorrow.

March 13th, 2010 Posted by Esther Inglis-Arkell

To wedge myself out of the pit of mild crankiness I’ve been in regarding comics, I have started looking ahead to things that I look forward to.

Thank you, The Brave and the Bold, for seemingly being an impossible title to bog down in misery, no matter what medium you are in.  Here we have a female team-up book, a happy-seeming story, and complete indifference to current continuity.  It has everything I’m looking for in a book.

Moreover, it has Barbara Gordon as  part of it all.  This is the kicker for me.  She’s a sentimental favorite, and while I think her role as Oracle is great character development, I can’t get over the fun she had as Batgirl.  I’m always willing to see more of that.  This and Wonder-Con, another reason to look forward to April.

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