Comics Briefly: American Vampire: Survival of the Fittest #1, Birds of Prey #13, X-Men: Legacy #250

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Favorite Issue this week: So Close.... But I think American Vampire: Survival of the Fittest takes it. Birds of Prey is just a hair behind.

All issues were new in stores on 6/8/11

Side Note: I am sick of the Super 8 ads that seem to be in all the DC/Vertigo books this month. They are so long and annoying, I've started pulling them out of my books.

American Vampire: Survival of the Fittest #1
Writer: Scott Snyder, Artist: Sean Murphy, Color: Dave Stewart

This is the start of a mini-series that runs somewhat concurrently with the normal American Vampire series, since the main storyline is currently set in WWII in the Pacific, while this book is headed to Europe in the same time frame. This issue is a fantastic reintroduction to Felicia Book and Cash McCogan, both characters we last saw in the Devil in the Sand story arc, both currently agents of the anti-vampire organization. Felicia has grown up a little more, gotten a little rougher around the edges, and Cash has been dealing with the fallout of the previous arc. You could easily jump in here without prior knowledge, although reading the earlier comics adds a nice grounding, particularly to Felicia. I am thrilled to see more of Felicia, I thought she had a lot of potential in the earlier issues, and she will handily carry her own story. Don't take my word for it, read the completely kick-ass amazing opening:

Birds of Prey #13
Writer: Gail Simone, Artist: Diego Olmos, Colorist: Nei Ruffino

The Birds' fight against Junior concludes in this issue, and everyone gets some great panel time. Question is cool, Lady Blackhawk gets to be her fabulous self, Huntress, Canary, Oracle: all awesome. I really liked this issue, with two small problems. First, the ending came too quickly; the resolution is pretty rushed. The second problem isn't the fault of anyone on the book. Second problem: WHAT DO YOU MEAN THIS IS GAIL SIMONE'S LAST ISSUE?!? I knew she was off the title as of the DC re-vamp/re-whatever, but I didn't know there was a two-parter with a different team between then and now! I was not prepared for this. And that's actually what makes the fact that the ending falls a little flat so sad. To me the ending feels a little like the lead in to an awesome team book that I would love, that we just are not going to get. It's good, it's almost great, but for me the bitter is a little stronger than the sweet.

X-Men: Legacy #250 (Giant-Size)
Lost Legions Part One: Writer: Mike Carey, Pencils: Khoi Pham, Inks: Tom Palmer, Colors: Marte Gracia
Flashback: Writer: Mike Carey, Pencils: Steve Kurth, Inks: Jay Leisten, Colors: Brian Reber
Into the Abyss (reprint) by Claremont, Sienkiewicz, Orx and Glynis

This is a double/triple/something size issue, containing two new stories and a reprint. Both new stories I felt were strong. "Lost Legions" is the continuation of the main plot from last issue: some of Legion's more dangerous sub-personalities took advantage of the recent reality warp to go wandering, and the team needs to contain them before tragedy strikes. Character moments are good, art well done, action good. I liked it. "Flashback" takes place actually at the same time, as sort of a side scene. This follows one of the other recent plot threads, and I'm excited to see what will follow out of it. I hope it's space travel! I love Galactic X-Men! The third story, "Into the Abyss", is a classic story from The New Mutants with one of the first encounters with Legion. It's pretty good, but a little wordy and awkwardly dated at times. On the other hand, it was really nice to read something with classic Moira this week. Overall: good solid issue.

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