Peter's Comic Book Ramblings

Sunday, March 12, 2006


Way way behind in my posting. So here are just a whole slew of little r'views of things I've thought about:

CATWOMAN the comic
Wow. I'm reading Catwoman. By Will Pfeifer and Pete Woods. And I like it! I never thought I would EVER read Catwoman. Not because I hate the character, I just didn't see what kind of stories you could tell that isn't already being told in Batman, Robin and Nightwing. And here I am, seeking out all of the Pfeifer/Woods issues and really digging them. The first draw to the comic is Woods' art. He does the pencils and inks and it has a clean style that is easy to the eye and that provides good storytelling. It sortof reminds me of less-cartoony Scott Kollins. But that could be because of the coloring provided by Brad Anderson. Catwoman has that colorwash look that Flash used to have. And I'm a fan of it. Sometimes coloring can be too much - making comic book pencils feel like photographs - but not with this one.

As far as the story goes, I am interested in the character especially considering her new dilemma with issue #50. You have to read it if you want to know. If DC is serious about restoring their characters to their easily recognizable iconic status, it makes me wonder how Catwoman will continue. If you're interested, start with issue #44 or pick up a trade if it comes out. Good reading.

THE CROW the movie
James O'Barr's comic book comes to life and, from what I've read, is pretty faithful while also expanding on the original comic. I saw this movie once in a drive in shortly after it was originally released but I don't remember much about it other than it was dark. Dark meaning the lighting was really dark. I couldn't tell what was going on - mostly because of being at a drive in probably. So while watching it this time, I "saw" more of the movie and it was like watching it for the first time. The revenge story is fairly simple but that's not really what I was interested in. Getting into Eric Draven's head after being resurrected and exploring his new powers and how his friends would react to his resurrection was believable and engaging. The acting of some of the crime gang members is a bit dated but Brandon Lee in the role of Eric Draven still works. I guess I was expecting a more violent movie, because of the impact the Crow comic had on its readers, but instead, I was pleased that the movie has humor and heart and main characters that are likeable. I would definitely include it or recommend it if you are building a comic book based movie library.

ELEKTRA the movie
I went into this movie expecting to hate it. But as a movie, it does play better than some other Marvel movies (especially the theatre release of Daredevil and Fantastic Four). By this I mean, the story moves, there aren't many plot holes (that I could recognize), and it doesn't feel overcrowded. Would I watch it again? Probably not. Would I include it in my comic book based movie library? Sure.

My main problem with this movie is that it didn't have to be an Elektra movie. There was nothing about this movie, other than character names, that makes it unique to the character of Elektra. If you were watching a movie where a baby is a sole-survivor of a dying planet who then comes to another planet and becomes their greatest hero - you know you're watching Superman (or a knock-off). If you're watching a movie where a picked-on nerd gets bit by an insect and gains powers but learns about responsibility because he let a relative die - you know you're watching Spider-Man. This was a movie about a trained assassin who doesn't believe in herself until events unfold where she is thrust into a position that she needs to find faith in order to succeed. This is not necessarily Elektra. With a few changes of settings and character names, this could just have been any generic assassin movie. Hell, it could've been an Alias movie.

I guess that's why I hate to see actors cross over into other franchise movies. Jennifer Garner was never a great choice for Elektra in Daredevil so she isn't always believable in this movie - but that could be the script itself. If she really is a trained assassin, there's no way she would've allowed the father and daughter to live in the first place. Granted, that is the point of the story, but it still felt sort of false.

My other major problem werer the fight and action sequences. There was far too much posing going on and quick edits during fight scenes. I know it's because Garner is not a well-trained martial artist, so wide shots are few and far between, but some of the fight scenes, especially the one with all the draperies, was confusing and disjointed. As for the villains, it just seemed like their sole direction was "Walk towards the camera and look cool". Yikes.

Anyway, it was still worth seeing at the time - especially for General Zod as Stick - but here's hoping other solo Marvel movies have more to them. I hope my main problem with this movie doesn't also happen in Wolverine.

MARVEL TEAM-UP the comic
#1-13. Come on. I've been pimping this book since issue #1. Since CGS Episode One. This book deserves to be higher up on the charts. How is Sentry outselling this book? Or the What If...? books?? Or Colossus: Bloodline??? Stop waiting for the trade on this one people. Preorder the issues. Put it on your pull list. If this book fails, Marvel's best title is lost. Here's a title that doesn't tie into any Marvel event, it doesn't live in the X-Men world and is the only comic that makes sense when you remember that all of Marvel's heroes FRICKIN' LIVE IN MANHATTAN!!! Read it. Now. Or else.

I'm out. I'm done. I bought the first two issues off the shelf but when it came time to purchase #3, I just couldn't do it. Nothing happened in this issue (yes, I gave it a quick read in the store) and I was still feeling the sting of the big secret being revealed in Marvel Previews a few weeks before. I'm sure it's not the only part to the story, but it still feels like this mini-series is going in a direction that has already been guessed at on various message boards. Of course that's my own fault for reading speculation, but I've still lost interest. I'll most likely pick up the final issue, just to see the outcome, but for now, I'm bored.


  • Good post. Marvel Team Up really is the best book out there right now.

    By Blogger Roland Dodds, At May 7, 2006 at 10:25 AM  

  • I might not call it the best book out there, but It certainly ranks high on my list. I wasn't sure I'd like it without Scott Kollins on art, but the new artist does his job well and I find no faults with it.

    Totally agree on the Elektra movie,it's okay, but it could have been anyone really. But if we compare it to say... Catwoman, it's a freakin masterpiece!

    I've finally dropped Catwoman since the new Year One story took over. I haven't read the darn book since issue 6, but kept buying it because they kept putting interesting artists on it. I'm curious about the new Catwoman, and even more curious about what will happen to Selena, but someone will tell me, I'm sure!

    By Anonymous Bruce R, At May 18, 2006 at 4:04 PM  

  • The only disagreement is Elektra: The Movie. I didn't hate it because it was so different from the comic. I didn't hate it at all. But I was so bored during the first third of the movie that I actually checked my e-mail at one point in the theater on my PDA and was looking to see what other movies were playing that I could go see. Evenutally I started watching again, but it's been a LONG time since I saw an action movie that was just so dead.

    By Blogger Cory!!, At September 21, 2006 at 6:39 PM  

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