Travis Walecka's Comic Reviews

Reviewer For: Comics Bulletin Reviews: 57
6.9Avg. Review Rating

3
Action Comics #901

May 30, 2011

But dont blame him. Hardly anyone can write Superman.

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9
Amazing Spider-Man (1999) #657

Apr 5, 2011

If there is any disappointment that #657 doesnt continue the epic grandeur of Slotts current run, hath no fear: with Infested, Amazings current author is sure to patch every element of his wonderful arc to culminating circumstance. Im just glad he didnt overlook honoring Petes best friend with such beautiful appropriateness.

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7
Annihilators #2

Apr 8, 2011

Does this mean equating a fresh voice to the Cosmic U for the first time in years? Though in DnA I trust, how about someone like Jonathan Hickman? With Secret Warriors almost done, and both FF and S.H.I.E.L.D. often referring to those in the higher limits, his intergalactic touch couldnt be a bad thing. Regardless, the great news for our current authors, and purchasing buyers, is that Raccoon & Groots tale is worth the $4.99. Thus, whether the slightly- improved title story appeals to you or not, Marvel has packed in plenty of length in Annihilators #2. No doubt, Im looking forward to whats on the horizon.

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6
Batman #699

May 17, 2010

Ever since that undying moment Tony Daniels take on Dick Graysons dark cowl has been superb. And those unparalleled detective skills dont go to waste in this issue. Theres just an overabundance of tricks, schemes, cons, and clues that boggle what had been up this point a fantastically-paced title. Meanwhile the repeated interrogations of Firefly, abrasive hocus pocus of Sebastian Blackspell, and Riddlers ever-gyrating criminal agenda simply wore me down. Hopefully, Daniel will get another chance to resurrect this otherwise promising arc once Morrison does his thing, and, with any luck, draw it too!

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10
Batman and Robin #13

Jul 11, 2010

Funny that Frazier Irvings panels are referenced as scenes, but thats exactly how they feel. Much of the action goes over-the-top, even as Pygs virus reveals a 28 Days Later-esque riot in Gotham, despite thankfully never reaching too far into cheese territory. And while I wasnt the biggest fan of his evocative haunts during Waynes Pilgrim portrayal (which may have to do more with an overly eclectic script) Irvings cartoony brushes just seems like the right fit. His colors come off as glum and murky as all possible, conveying much of that ominous atmosphere Tony Daniel displayed throughout R.I.P.that something really bad is going to happen (if not already), even with the imminent return of Bruce Wayne.

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8
Batman and Robin #21

Mar 17, 2011

Oh, theres no doubt the new Batman & Robinll feel a bit sci-fi compared to Morrisons hokey throwback textures. Yet, with that style already displayed internationally with Batman Incorporated, Scott Snyders horror-driven Detective, Batwomans artistic fantasy, and Tony Daniels mob-mentality on the main title, Tomasi and Gleasons ingenious style will hold just right on its own.

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8
Batman: Streets of Gotham #12

May 24, 2010

Oh, not to mention, the cover to this comic is absolutely stunning. Til next time...same Bat time, same Bat channel.

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7
Birds Of Prey (2010) #2

Jun 24, 2010

Despite this second issue taking on little more than a base to setup the rest of the arc, as well as one epic slugfest that shall continue, theres no doubt Birds of Prey is here to stay. The startling circumstances of recently reformed villains Savant and Creote, the grim possibilities of Gothams criminal underworld (i.e. Penguin), and the new hope that is Brightest Day all make for one exciting title--as long as Ed Benes is on full throttle, of course.

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4
Black Widow (2010) #1

May 21, 2010

I really enjoyed the art throughout the book but, once again, Marvel has simply presented us with a sampler. With all the money we pour into Marvels products, this, along with their other sampler comic this week, Enter the Heroic Age, should be paltry gifts that they give us for free or at a greatly reduced price.

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6
Blackest Night: The Flash #2

Jan 25, 2010

Final word: Entertaining mini that has all the means of setting up a remarkable finale. Since Flash stories involving the rogues in the past have been so great, its simply not that easy to live up to.

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9
Brightest Day #0

Apr 16, 2010

Pending your personal preference, some of these stories and characters will impress you more than others. My only wish for future issues of Brightest Day is for the series to allow enough character exposure equally as possible among the 12. I know its an unlikely task, but if Johns and Tomasi can make Osiris, Boomerang, and Jade as interesting as say, Hawkman, Firestorm, and Maxwell Lord, then theres no doubt well have another triumphant 52 on our hands.

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8
Brightest Day #1

May 9, 2010

Its evident Im going to have to treat the creators of this book to a nice cup of clam chowduh and lobstuh roll in order to receive credit for New Bedford having the vilest seaport this side of Atlantic City. More apropos, the bi-monthly Brightest Day is the clear second coming of 52, and thats akin to all the crashed-waves and seagull-chirping to my ears.

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8
Captain America (2004) #606

Jun 11, 2010

With the titles return to greatness, Brubakers obvious return to focus, and Guice returning the moody pencils of old, Ill easily forgive the mishap that is the Nomad backup. Sure, were being charged an extra dollar for something most of us probably dont want, and I was knocking down half a bullet rating because of it. But if the quality of the book keeps on ticking, then my $4 will keep on clicking.

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8
Captain America (2004) #607

Jul 2, 2010

With the addition of the Super Soldier and old school villains like Zemo who have such huge ties to the current Captain America, I see this title becoming one of the great runs in Marvels history--if it hasnt already. Now, can we just get rid of this exasperating Nomad back-up, please?

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8
Captain America (2004) #618

May 27, 2011

By the end of Fear Itself and the film, of course, fans are surely going to tire of anything Red Skull. That doesnt leave too many intriguing foes for the blonde guy with the big shield.

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8
Captain America (2011) #2

Aug 19, 2011

Let me get this straight. The same writer who delivered the very best espionage stories to the Marvel in the past decade is now resorting to Elseworld imaginations, twin-headed German Shepherds, Hydra portals, wooly dinosaurs, and an ending "boss" so far out of the crime noir/war realm, it could very well shake heads of long term Ed Brubaker Cap fans? But it all works.

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7
Daken: Dark Wolverine #13

Sep 8, 2011

As my fellow colleague Samuel Salama Cohen would say, "Your dream has come true!" No, Jessica Biel, Jessica Alba and Jessica Simpson (well, before she let herself go) haven't been stalking me on Facebook just yet; but, yes, Daken and Moon Knight have finally squared paths in the palm tree silhouettes of Los Angeles.

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8
Daredevil (1998) #506

Apr 13, 2010

Daredevil's nightmare (which might seem like a dream for some) should have pulses beating, while the best scenes contain briefings about the bit of an inside job going on, as both trust and defiance knuckle up. During a meeting of minds between the fractious principals of the Hand cabal, Daredevil reverts to reverse psychology. His longing for unity infuriates Bakuto, despite the fact Matt came to his aid not once but twice earlier in the issue. Clearly, the Daimyo of the Hand has his own inexorable suspicions. While Matt's original intentions were to use bad to solve good, isn't this always the case with Daredevil: Matt bargains off more than he can chew. And as Daredevil fans, we shouldn't have it any other way.

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5
Daredevil: Reborn #3

Mar 25, 2011

Much like Matt Murdocks seemingly fruitful months, I hope for the talented UK scribers sake he receives the same treatment.

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3
Deadpool (2008) #21

Mar 30, 2010

And lets hope Hit-Monkey dies right along with it.

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8
Detective Comics #872

Dec 30, 2010

Also deep in the creaking banquet halls and dark skylights are Jocks typically granular visuals. Improving ever the issue, Jock detains the seedy days of Gotham Central, with enough sporadic window placement to keep up the curving energy. Although Detectives always going to be a whodunit series, Snyders version is a fast one, and one to keep an eye on throughout the new year.

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8
Doctor Voodoo: Avenger of the Supernatural #5

Feb 23, 2010

In all, I was on my way in giving this issue a rare four and a half bulletscore (a hot topic among current bulleteers at the moment), and then the issue never stopped. I swear if the Sorcerer Supreme was wrapped up more punctually, it couldve been something else. In a way, its unfair to the author that this book got canceled and the final few pages got stranded. Or did they? With news of a Heroic Age anthology title featuring some of the canceled cult favorites, among them Paul Cornells MI13 and Remenders Doctor Voodoo, maybe fans of Jericho will get the finish they deserve, after all.

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8
Fear Itself #1

Apr 10, 2011

Besides, Fraction also gets the voices of these characters (makes you wonder what the hell happened on X-Men!). You dont get the off-quirky, wisecrack vibe of the heroes that Bendis is so renowned for--which, in a serious event such as Fear Itself, where anything can go to shit at any time, is a plus.

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7
FF #3

May 13, 2011

FF certainly stands as one of Marvel's top books at the moment, so even a slow issue such as this month's does little to detract the notion. You really shouldn't miss next month for this cherished family's entire conglomerate (sans Torch, of course) versus these intergalactic-elastic, skunk-sideburn-wearing, unlimited-intelligence-sporting clones. Or something to that effect.

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6
G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero #165

Apr 30, 2011

Simply put, if youre a fan of either or all of the toys, cartoons and the old classic run, I cant recommend this series enough. You cant go wrong with the pure fun of Hamas script. If youre looking for something a little less cartoony and more modern espionage, then Mike Costas got the goods with Cobra. Or, if you just like to spend excessive comic book cash --like yours truly -- and want to have the best of both worlds, then here you go, you walking kamikaze bunker penetrator.

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7
G.I. Joe: Cobra II #3

Apr 5, 2010

As G.I. Joe: Origins slips from Larry Hamas grasp into the hands of other guest writers, Cobra II easily takes the cake as best Joe book on the stands. It actually proves as a simpler, tighter espionage world if compared to that of Jonathan Hickmans Secret Warriors (not that I'm saying it's better, just easier to follow). Although Cobra II might come off at times a slow drag--a signature IDW trait--the pay off appears to be looming next issue. For now, the setup and plot mechanics are as fined-tuned as they come.

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9
G.I. Joe: Cobra II #13

Feb 22, 2011

If we cant get Costa in control, at least put this creative team on something else. Now.

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9
Green Lantern (2005) #50

Feb 8, 2010

Final Say: Many have recently labeled Green Lantern #50 Blackest Night 6.5. To say that would be an injustice. This is the best comic book of 2010. While it wont take you long to read, dont be surprised if you spend a minute on every page unable to shift your eyes to the next.

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5
Green Lantern: Larfleeze Christmas Special #1

Jan 1, 2011

Hopefully, War of the Green Lanterns will make up for any cheesy Christmas Special I could've just caught on TNT. With the level of consistent writing Johns continues to pour month in and month out, hes done more than his fair share of giving. Expect nothing less from the best. Happy holidays.

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7
Herc #2

May 12, 2011

As for right now, the shiftier, torn-to-creative Herc is anything but a mockery, so heres to a brewski, or several, for hoping it stays that way.

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7
Heroes for Hire (2010) #2

Jan 14, 2011

Heroes For Hire #2 goes in a different direction this month as Paladins intel for Control (think DCs Oracle, but Misty Knight) gets brushed wayside for a Silver Sable solo infiltration. Little does Misty know this forthcoming task contains more occult roadblocks than usual, or does she? With Puppet Master secretly at the helm, these tasks get about as ghastly as they come. And thats the straw that stirs the drink. While I enjoyed the debut issue a little more, the ongoing providence of Controls actual whereabouts and, ahem, control is the ultimate intrigue. Besides, Brad Walker scorching out several bad-ass Johnny Blaze panels may be worth the price of admission alone.

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7
Hulk (2008) #30

Feb 24, 2011

With Marvels "Point One" initiative kicking in for the Hulk next month, it was smart to give recent followers a treat before the newbies jump on. Despite the flimsy tag on this book from the last couple years, the Red Hulks title has made a great turnaround. Like anything from Jonathan Hickman, Jason Aaron and Rick Remender these days, purchasing Parkers work is a no-brainer even if the two brains of this compound monster prove too much for their own good.

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8
Incredible Hercules #141

Feb 23, 2010

Certainly, I'm not going to sit here and pretend to be the ultimate Hercules connoisseur, as the only trade in my bookcase is the Secret Invasion crossover (although the rest will be purchased at a convention someday), and didn't start picking up this title until this event began. But, thanks to Van Lente, Pak, and Buschemi, the last six months have been a thrilling ride towards Olympus. Let's hope this epically underrated series doesn't falter with Prince of Power.

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7
Invincible Iron Man #27

Jun 11, 2010

Invincible Iron Man has to be one of your favorite comic serials. Youve got to be indulged in all the detail. The building of the bottom of Resilient, Peppers return to Rescue, Stark bending his new line with the Avengers, and old friends and enemies returning for more (they mustve liked the movie, too). All these subplots are bound to explode into seamless, invigorating story. Fractions conjuring up something special here and its making the Iron Man title more interesting than its ever been.

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6
Iron Man: Legacy #1

Apr 16, 2010

With all that said, those already fearing the addition of more books to their pull list are likely to steer clear of this title and that notion could be wildly unfortunate. Van Lente has proven in the past to be as steady a writer there is in this business, all the while Kurth has proven his potency with detailing the many armors of Iron Man. The last page reveal might be enough to give the creative team another shot, just as long as Legacy avoids repeating itself like so many non-Fraction Iron Men have failed previously.

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8
New Avengers #63

Mar 26, 2010

Now more than ever, Im convinced that Siege will be better read in one giant omnibus that combines some of the events better tie-ins. If New Avengers continues along this upper echelon of quality, itll be imperative to the collection.

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8
New Avengers (2010) #1

Jun 18, 2010

Now, if only the New Avengers hired me to do all their moving, I could surely use the hours . . . or the dollar tip (thanks Tony!).

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8
New Avengers Finale #1

May 14, 2010

If indeed Siege was just another device for changing the status quo, New Avengers Finale effectively sums up all that was good during one of Marvels most successful runs in company history. For that, anyway, Bendis deserves closing this curtain to grateful applause.

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8
Punisher: In The Blood #4

Feb 28, 2011

because no matter how much I sell you on this remarkable run from Remender, youre probably not going to care anyway.

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7
Secret Avengers #11

Apr 7, 2011

While as swift of a read as most of Brubakers issues are, Secret Avengers #11 contains an intriguing enough premise to have readers rattling for next issues conclusion. And if you like this ish, youll like the movie even more.

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8
Secret Six Vol. 2 #29

Jan 15, 2011

This shouldnt be the last time these titles meet again, at least not the last time these writers do. Their penchant for writing clever personalities is so apparent I wouldnt mind seeing the two sharing co-writing duties during a big Lex event. Does a Birds of Prey/Secret Six crossover seem a little more obvious? Regardless, with all these villains on Lexs bucket list being shot down by his wits month after month, something bad (or orange) is bound to brewand trade-waiting Secret Six is not one of them.

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6
Superman #700

Jun 27, 2010

While The Slap Heard Round the World (what is this, Vince McMahon?) is all too brief, it does have some pretty nice art from Ed Barrows. The detail of emotion and facial expression is beyond the pale horse stance that Woods and the gang covered in recent months. Even if Clark sobs himself to death throughout JMSs run, Superman comics are sure to look pretty at least.

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5
Superman: World of New Krypton #12

Feb 6, 2010

Final Say: It feels like my whole review has been a final say, for a series I had such high hopes for, that didnt have the widespread expectations of a Batman Reborn or Blackest Night, still came up empty. No ones talking about Superman these days and its up to DC to find out why.

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8
The Mighty Thor #1

May 1, 2011

In all, Mighty Thor #1 isnt the traditional reboot per se, as Fraction and Coipel merely re-trigger the epic feel youd expect from both creators. Even though it takes a few steps back from continuity, Thor should remain a mainstay in your punch-list for a more than generous duration.

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5
The Savage Hawkman #1

Oct 3, 2011

When I offered our wonderfully prolific writer Ray Tate the opportunity to give up reviewing Superman or Savage Hawkman, there was no surprise after reading this issue why he happily obliged. To at least this reviewer, both of these DC titles had high expectations, and to put it bluntly, they both failed. One more than the other, perhaps, yet, regardless, reviewing either was certainly "pick your poison."

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6
The Transformers #3

Jan 21, 2010

Solid issue, just pales in comparison to the earlier earth crushers.

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7
Thor (2007) #609

May 3, 2010

Thus, if youve been following the title all along, particularly with interest in Lokis role in Siege, dont let the absence of the great Thor himself let you down. Buy this issue.

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7
Thor (2007) #620.1

Mar 25, 2011

If anyone solely interested in Marvels imminent number of features -- especially Thor -- picks this comic up for shits-and-giggles, theres undoubtedly a chance theyll keep on coming. This small tale will certainly make a lot more sense to newbies than the current intergalactic struggle taking place in Matt Fractions book. Im just glad these Point One issues havent been the waste of time or money initially thought!

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6
Thunderbolts (2006) #143

May 3, 2010

Character-speaking, Ant-Man hasnt been written this well since Robert Kirkmans take on him, and boy do I miss that all-too abbreviated series. His future with the Secret Avengers should be enticing. Nothing hints at that notion in this issue, but its impossible not to see Gradys heroic qualities seeping through. Also, its impossible not to feel like Parkers run has been as much about the guests as the Thunderbolts themselves. First ,it was the battle with the group most close to his heart, Atlas, and now this embattled motley crews shift change came off more a Mighty Avengers than issue Thunderbolts. I suppose with the fact that groups own swansong (issue #36) was more about Hank Pym than the team itself having the Mighty Avengers steal the Thunderbolts shine was the only way to go.

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4
Ultimate Comics Captain America #1

Jan 14, 2011

If the plotting didnt match up with Ultimate Thor, neither does its art. And its a bit of a surprise, considering how well Ron Garneys sleek pencils flowed with Aarons techno-genic mass undertakings. Harsh neon green blades were a plenty, characters conveyed much maligning, backdrops reminded of a Terminatorland where reality was invaded by the far evocative future. Rather, this issues digital ink was slapped together in no time, perhaps to coincide with the looming movie buzz. With classic Wolverine in the resume, this creative team will always be one of my faves. Though you have to think with this pedestrian effort, their better days could very well be behind them.

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4
Uncanny X-Men #533

Feb 28, 2011

Time to trim this roster down to the level of the cartoon.

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5
Vengeance of the Moon Knight #7

Apr 9, 2010

Though not all is bad in Vengeance #7, particularly Hurwittz surprisingly solid handle of the Deadpool, the arc is simply met with too many conventional matters in just one issue. With the new title, new uniform, new gadgets, and new attitude, Hurwitz was supposed to deliver something unique and exciting to longtime fans of the Moon Knight. Slapping on Deadpool this early in the run, along with all the aimless quibbles and trivial banter that go along with it, isnt going to fulfill that notion. For Marvels sake, I hope DEadpools presence on the cover makes up for the sales dive when the diehards start dropping. Otherwise, Moon Knightll have no other choice but to echo Wades earlier sentiments about staring into the abyss.

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5
Vengeance of the Moon Knight #8

May 9, 2010

Vengeance of the Moon Knight #8 doesnt lack for humor, thankfully, much to the chagrin of Jake Lockley where a heckling Khonshu is concerned. Last month I complained about the absence of the demonic Egyptian shoulder parrot. In Deadpool's ever reflecting house of horrors, Khonshu once again strikes to the thick of Jake's mental imbalance, torturing Lockley in both mirrored reflection and nightly dream. And if that was Hurtwitz' goal for the two-parter coming in, I suppose the writer accomplishes one thing: That some hindrances, no matter how minute in stature, just seem to never go away.

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8
Wolverine (2010) #7

Apr 7, 2011

And thats fine by me, as this title is quietly becoming, alongside Remenders Uncanny X-Force, the best in Marvels hands. If you keep telling yourself youre as sick of Logans overexposure as youre really not, then you are truly missing out on a modern day masterpiece. Snikt.

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7
Wolverine (2010) #11

Jun 30, 2011

Wolverine #11Posted: Thursday, June 30, 2011By: Travis Walecka Jason AaronRenato Guedes, Jose Wilson Magalhaes (i), Matthew Wilson (c), Cory Petit (l)Marvel This comic book review serves part critical analysis, part personal blog, and part... well... apology, because some of you deserve it. Not that I have followers of the Howard Stern type -- thank the high heavens, who has the time? -- but I pretty much damn near took June off. Moon Knight #1 and #2, the last few issues of X-Factor and Cobra #1: all missing from the Comics Bulletin archives due to Yours Truly.

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9
Wonder Woman (2006) #41

Mar 1, 2010

There's no doubt in my mind that this has been the most enjoyable Wonder Woman issue since the beginning of Simone's run, possibly ever. It's actually quite a lengthy read despite half of the issue dedicated to an epic brawl between Karen and Diana. While that main event was indeed pleasing, Simone and company are doing an even better job pushing smaller arcs towards the bigger picture.

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7
X-Men: Second Coming #1

Apr 6, 2010

Placing all trifling issues aside, the X-Men: Second Coming one-shot is an ambitious beginning. Here's to hoping the cash cow known simply as Marvel gives us an X-event worth investing in.

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