The TALKING COMICS REVIEW ROUND-UP
Every week, the Talking Comics collective posts a mega-list of the comics they’re most excited to pull off the shelves that week. Check back here to see if the comics on the Pull List met the team’s expectations with reviews and quippy quotables!!! Click the links to go to full reviews and reflections!!!
Also, check out our weekly Favorite Comic Book Covers of the Week column for more coverage of last week’s new books!
Reviews for New Comics – May 25th, 2016
Batgirl #52 – By Brenden Fletcher & Eleanor Carlini
- Verdict: Buy it! Although it feels weird to be giving Barbara Gordon another send-off, this issue ends the previous mini-arc started in Batgirl #51 and throws a spotlight on all those characters that have helped Babs since her move to Burnside. In the absence of series artist Babs Tarr, Eleanor Carlini and Minkyu Jung operate seemingly as one, creating a seamless reading experience that will appeal to anyone missing Tarr’s interior designs (though I would highly recommend the Babs Tarr variant for this issue if available). Gladius isn’t the most compelling villain Barbara Gordon has ever faced but Brendan Fletcher’s script keeps the issue frantic and fun, and the addition of Gotham Academy’s Maps and Olive is delightful. There isn’t a lot of setup for Batgirl post-Rebirth, though. –John D.
DC UNIVERSE REBIRTH #1 – By Geoff Johns & Gary Frank/Ethan Van Sciver/Phil Jimenez/Ivan Reis
- Verdict: Buy. Chances are the events of Rebirth have already been spoiled for you, but let me assure you that just reading the bullet points of the big revelations in this book and actually reading them in the context are two entirely separate experiences. DC fans that dropped off the line (or severely cut back) due to the New 52 will be especially interested in finding out what Johns and his team of all-star artists are able to come up with while new readers…well, this isn’t exactly for you. The core story here–of a certain character trying to find his way back through time–is one that any reader can pick up on, sure, but the impact of where that character goes and what he talks about is really only impactful to anyone feeling like the DCU has been missing part of itself since its first relaunch in 2011. In either case, this issue should be read because for $2.99, you’re getting a hell of a lot of great comic book. –John D.
- Verdict: Buy. Colour me excited for what DC has lined up for us from here on. I really, really enjoyed this issue and I’m so glad I avoided spoilers and went into it unaware as the last page made me audibly gasp! Granted, this is another exercise in retconning DC’s continuity, but cynicism aside Geoff Johns has done a wonderful job of steering the DCU back into the sun so it’ll have some light shone on it at last. There’s a monologue that runs throughout here that directly addresses things that many people complained about with the New 52, like how characters couldn’t be married, others who were closely associated barely even acknowledging each other and setting things up to correct that. Our heroes look like they’ll be allowed to be happy again! Holding a really big emotional beat revolving around a reunion that’ll get the waterworks on standby at the very least, along with a massive bombshell at the end, this is up there with my favourite issues of the year so far. – Huw
- Verdict: BUY IT – DC Universe: Rebirth is both beautiful to behold and deeply emotional. At 80+ pages and only $2.99 this book is a deal. It also works as both a primer for a new universe and a great self contained story. I found myself smiling at the references to deep DC lore and in the next moment getting choked up by the here and now. This is a triumph of big comic book storytelling and is something everyone should read. – Bobby
Secret Six #14– By Gail Simone & Tom Derenick
- Verdict: Buy, and a second copy if you’re a fan, as your tears may ruin one! Gail Simone delivers a perfectly-pitched finale that I think will elicit laughter and tears even from those who were not reading previously, as Ms. Simone’s remarkable gift for characterization is on full display! Each of our titular anti-heroes has their moment in the spotlight, and within a line or two, they stand fully illuminated as real, if very flawed, people. I won’t go any further into detail so as not to spoil the myriad charms of this wonderful issue, but fans such as myself will have a lump in their throats at the final pages. For the rest of you (and that’s, sadly, nearly everyone!), in a Big Two landscape littered with crossovers, gimmicks, and other ploys designed to direct your dollars to the “important” titles, if you’re at all interested in something off the beaten path, the fourteen issues of Secret Six will be something you’ll remember long after the latest “event” has been ret-conned away.-Bob
Captain Marvel #5 – By Tara Guggenheim, Felipe Smith & Kris Anka
- Verdict: Check it out. It’s a shame that this title will get sidetracked by Civil War II for the next few issues, comfortably my favourite issue so far and one that would’ve pulled me back from dropping it if it wasn’t for being tied to an event. Full of Carol being a stubborn ass, selflessly heroic and saving the day without a life being lost, I had a good time with this. This is more in line of what I want to see from Captain Marvel, it still lacks the deep and personal relationships that make her character so special but her interactions with the Alpha Flight crew are enjoyable whilst lacking personal depth. A good way to round off a shaky start to this volume. – Huw
Captain America: Steve Rogers #1 – By Nick Spencer & Jesus Saiz
- Verdict: BUY. Give it a shot. Captain America: Steve Rogers #1 is a dynamic, jam-packed start to this new volume, and with Nick Spencer and Jesus Saiz at the helm, you know you’re in for something crazy down the line. Filled with politics, action, and a heck of a lot of character,Captain America: Steve Rogers #1 is a promising start. Let’s see what happens. – Joey
Doctor Strange #8 – By Jason Aaron & Chris Bachalo
- Verdict: Buy it. This issue has us following Doctor Strange as he and his friends scramble to find any tiny shred of magic that they can. It really is dire straits for them, but we all know that you don’t get magic for nothing or tricks for free, right?! Aaron and Bachalo are proving to be a dream team on this book. We’re treated to some seriously amazing art, the last page is so creepy and messed up! Combine that with Aaron’s ability to tell a story that sees a hero in huge amounts of trouble, but also manages to add moments of lightness and humour, we have another issue here of a run that’s shaping up to be something really special. I mean, who doesn’t want to read a book where a guy uses a slug to sniff out magic, that it normally eats, so he can try to battle on?! – Huw
Ms. Marvel #7 – By G. Willow Wilson, Adrian Alphona, & Ian Herring
- Verdict: BUY!!! What are you doing!?!?! You should be reading this book. Ms. Marvel has become my go-to for classic coming-of-age superheroics. This week, Kamala goes to a flippin’ SCIENCE FAIR and competes against a certain webslinger (hint: not Peter Parker). It’s the high school science competition equivalent of Civil War, and it’s absolutely wonderful. Check it! – Joey
And that’s our Pull List for this week!!! If you happen to pick up any of these books, please join the conversation here or on twitter and let us know what you think! As we update the site with reviews and verdicts on these comics, we’d love to include your input!