So what comics did I buy last week?
First up, there is “Sgt. Rock: The Prophecy” # 1. I grew up on UK war comics, so it’s interesting to read this new one from Joe Kubert, the US master of the genre. The art is very different from what you would get in UK comics… it does not have the almost trainspotterish concern with accurate depiction of military hardware, but it has a spectacularly kinetic quality that draws the reader in. The story is a bit outlandish… in the middle of 1943, some super secret mission requires that the Americans parachute a squad of soldiers into Lithuania, only instead of sending in special forces they’ve just picked Sgt. Rock and his random squad of grunts. It also does not seem like any great thought has gone into planning how the team will be extracted, although this kind of slapdash thinking is typical of the military mind. The comic has an admirably up and at ‘em quality, and it also features a nice little puppy.
Then there is “Planetary” # 24, written by Warren Ellis and drawn by John Cassaday. “Planetary” is one of the greatest comics to have appeared in the last number of years, but this is one of those issues that treads water, particularly after the excitement of the last couple of issues.
And finally, “All Star Superman” #2, written by Grant Morrison and drawn by Frank Quiteley (in association with Jamie Grant). A dying Superman has revealed to Lois Lane that he is indeed Clark Kent, and carried her away to that Fortress of Solitude of his. It’s all kind of nice, but isn’t every second issue of “Superman” the one where Lois finds out that Superman and Clark are the same person? Still, Frank Quitely art is great, and no one writes the mainstream supers like Morrison. It does also call to mind the general Superman thing about how he is so powerful that you can’t really do stories about him fighting the bad guys… instead everything has to be about corny emotional entanglements with Lois. Ah well.