My first pick this week is Batman Incorporated #8. This is the book that everyone is talking about. It sold out at my local comic shop and I’m sure other shops around the nation also had trouble keeping it in stock. The reason this issue sold so well is because everybody’s favorite Robin was killed. Poor, poor Damein. Normally I really can’t stand single issues by Grant Morrison because he completely lacks the focus to get a story told in a single issue. Reading his books when they are gathered into a volume is better although I’m still not a big fan since his meandering way of telling stories bugs me. He always seems to lose focus about what is interesting and instead focus on the parts that I can’t help but not care about. Anyway, I say this because this issue is not like that at all. It is a very good single issue. Although I’m disappointed to see one of my favorite characters in the Bat U to go down it makes for an interesting new twist. I’m not a big fan of Batman Inc. most of the time either so I was pleasantly surprised when I actually enjoyed this issue. I think Morrison knew that this issue would be picked up by lots of people who don’t normally read Batman Inc. so he made it readable… I just wish he would always do that.
My next pick is Batman and Robin #18. What better place to go to the fallout from Robin dying then the book where he is a title character. Of all of the Requiem books so far that have reacted to Robin’s death this is the only one where I think the death seems real. The pain being carried by Batman and Alfred is real. This issue is one without any words. It uses the art to express the pain that the characters are wrapped up in. I had my doubts about that working well but the talents behind this work make it come off as far more powerful then a wordy issue could have been. The future of this title is now in doubt but I’m glad to see that a plan is in place.
My next pick is Superior Spider-Man #5. It took them to issue one to reveal that Parker’s spirit was still in his body and it took them until issue five for Doc Ock to go back to his killing ways. It looks to me like they are rushing through this arc and that even though there was a title change this can’t last for too long since they seem to be running quickly through the story possibilities. That being said, watching Doc Ock kill somebody is what I have been waiting for since the first issue because I wasn’t positive they would have the guts to go through with it. They set up the situation perfectly to make Doc Ock feel it necessary to end a man’s life and the reader can certainly identify with his thought process. Now we get to see how the rest of the Marvel U identify’s with what Spider-man has done. He has crossed a line that can’t be uncrossed and until Peter is back in control to explain to everyone what happened then Doc Ock will have to deal with the consequences.
My next pick is Thor: God of Thunder #6. This issue is the origin story of the god killer. The humble beginnings that the monster that can be Thor’s equal came from help us to understand where he is coming from. The Godkiller is no longer a remote terrifying villain, now he is a relatable, flawed, and terrifying villain. Getting angry at “the gods” for not helping those in need is an idea that anyone can understand. The only difference is the Godkiller has found the means by which to enact the revenge of everyone who has been let down by a deity in their time of need. Another interesting facet of this issue is that there was no sign of Thor in the entire issue. It’s nice to see an author who has the confidence in his story to leave the title character out of an entire issue. Thor continues to be one of the issues I look forward to most each month.