52 WEEK 28: This comic is sorta fun. 52 goes down a slight notch this week by focusing on three subplots that don't really seem to advance the story much: Red Tornado in the outback, The Question and Montoya face off against Batwoman (who's not proving to be that interesting a Bat-character in her brief appearances so far), and a kinda-confusing Lobo in space bit that suggests maybe we ought to feel sorry for the Emerald Eye. Oh well, next week's focus on Jade (but isn't she dead?) and the Green Lantern looks like fun.
X-MEN: FIRST CLASS #3: This comic is fun. How'd I miss #2 of this series? There's a lot of great character insights and moments here that flesh out the original X-Men, which to be frank, were not much more than two-dimensional ciphers for most of Stan and then Roy's writing runs. Extra points for writing each of the X-Men as intelligent and innovative, especially the oft-abused Iceman. This is shaping up to be one of my favorite continuity implants of the past several years, which prob'bly means it'll be cancelled before issue #12. Sigh.
ASTRO CITY: THE DARK AGE BOOK TWO #1: This comic is sorta fun. Long gaps in between issues of the original Astro City are what sorta killed the appeal of the series for me: I would forget what happened between issues which wasn't bad when the books were done-in-one, but this ongoing series in several separate miniseries with gaps between the miniseries is going to take more careful reading. If I were certain this were gonna be collected in a trade I'd be waiting for that: I've got the feeling it'll read better and more smoothly in one big chunk.
SOCK MONKEY: THE "INCHES" INCIDENT #2: This comic is fun. I honestly don't' think I'm capable of givin' a Tony Millionaire book anything less than a fun ratinghe tickles my sense of whimsy (and my little stuffed funny bone) with whatever he writes 'n' draws. There's a creepy insect possession element to this story (that's a bit reminiscent of Millionaire's Billy Hazelnuts) but it's done with such an ominous and creeping tension that you might forget you're readin' a story about stuffed toys. Um, not that I know anything about stuffed toys.
KRYPTO THE SUPERDOG #3: This comic is fun. Two done-in-one short stories obviously geared for younger fans but still a heckuva lotta thrills for this fanbull. Clear, crisp DC-animated style art (and very nicely shaded) highlight this pair of stories, the highlight being a wacky adventure against one of the Penguin's evil intelligent penguins holding Superman hostage in the Fortress of Solitude. Yup, you read that right.
SIMPSONS COMICS #124: This comic is not fun. Almost without exception I think the Bongo output is fun, so it's a rare Simpsons comic that doesn't even have a speck of delight for me. This is basically one joke extended to 27 pages, and it's not even a funny joke at that: Ned Flanders and those around him spout clichés and maxims, one after the other. A few mild giggles can be had from Homer's malapropisms of the clichés, which number 150+ (according to an editor's note at the end of the story), but this one's definitely below the par of the usual Simpsons fun. You can't build a story out of a string of clichés, can you? Can you?
CATWOMAN #61: This comic is fun. Well, whaddaya know, maybe you can make a good story out of a lot of clichés...as this issue of Catwoman proves! The entertaining (and deadly) antics of the Film Freak are fun to play along with: there's a "guess the movie" he's referencing aspect in most every scene, a nice "play along at home" element where we can guess the final clue along with Selina, and a wonderful sideways twist on one of the most frequent movie clichés of them all: a ticking time bomb. All that and The Best Line[s] of the Week: "Did you know that in the seventies, the so-called greatest decade of film, there were two
two!movies about [Evel Knievel]? Orson Welles couldn't get a film financed to save his life, but that flash in the pan was immortalized on celluloid not once but twice!" That's what makes CATWOMAN #61 not only the cat's pajamas but also the most fun comic of the week!