Tag Archives: Peter Tomasi

New York Comic Con 2013 Day 2 Report

cosplayersIf you missed my first Con Report from this years’ New York Comic Con follow this link here and then come back and read this second chapter in my trek! Day One ruined my feet; this is what happens when one dresses for style versus comfort. I applaud the Cosplay girls (and I guess some of the guys) who hit this thing in seven inch fuck me pumps. Though to be fair, they spend most of the day posturing and posing whereas I moved across the entire center between Artist Alley and the Main Floor to talk to as many creators as I could before the closing bell.

Given the fact my pinky toes were bleeding into my shoes (literally), I took a slightly more relaxed approach to this day. Spending a little more time with creators, banging out a scheduled interview, and actually sitting in on a panel.

First stop though was the main floor while I had some energy!

kill shakespereKILL SHAKESPEARE – I have a personal history with this title. As a theater major in college I grew to abhor the bard, so I have dickishly avoided all requests to review this book that is actually wildly successful and well praised. I asked the guys how they would sway a naysayer like myself to imbibe the three volumes already available, they kindly said, “it’s an awesome action adventure if you like books like FABLES. If you hate the bard, look at your 8th grade teacher and shake you your fist at them for making you that way.” I retorted I’ll bite my thumb in protest or throw a cabbage. Nerd laughter ensues. Pictured are creators Anthony Del Col & Conor McCreery.

ryan browneRyan Browne – Ryan was signing some MANHATTAN PROJECTS issues and hocking his new title GOD HATES ASTRONAUTS from Image. This time around Ryan is taking on writing and art duties to tell the tale of super powered narcissist who are charged with policing barn storming farmers who keep trying to launch themselves into now commoditized space. There’s also talking bears and other crazy shit. Originally a Web comic, this hard cover collects the entire series with some surprise guest artists thrown in for good measure. If you’re too cheap to buy the book you can read it online.



dave schulner

David Schulner – Author of CLONE from Image about a protagonist who is part of a government cloning conspiracy. With eleven issues under its belt, the book was just picked up by NBC for a series with David and Robert Kirkman at the helm.





monty nero

Monty NeroDEATH SENTENCE is Monty’s brainchild from Titan Comics. The book explores a world where an AIDS like virus gives you superpowers for 6 months before you shuffle off your mortal coil. What would you do with that precious time and who would try to stop your before your 6 months are up?

Smoke, 2 Tanqueray & Tonics break so shit can get real down in artist alley where no PR wonks are around to keep things moving.

ben-templesmithBen Templesmith – I loved Templesmith’s work on TEN GRAND, but he’s no longer on that anymore. A big to-do amongst con chatter by the way. Here’s Ben doing some great technique with blood work on the page for a commission. He basically spits it through a straw for a true splatter effect. Get a commission, get some Ben DNA. I also like this picture because I feel like I genuinely made him laugh and spit some blood on the table.




peter tomasiPeter Tomasi – Peter worked his career in reverse from editor to writer and frankly I couldn’t be happier. Damian Wayne basically lived in two books in the New 52, BATMAN INC and BATMAN & ROBIN. All along though, BATMAN & ROBIN stood shoulders above for the heart and trueness of a little boy fighting against his gruesome nurture. I tried to get Peter to spill the beans on when the BATMAN & INSERT SOMEONE ELSE HERE would be ending and he said soon. When I asked him if it would be Carrie Kelly, he laughed at me and mimed zipping his lips. You won today Tomasi.



bad karmaBAD KARMA – Kickstarter done good. This 200 page hardcover is the culmination of four creators bringing together their ideas in one beautifully rendered trade. The guys were mum on the overall plot, but I did peruse some of the art and it is beautiful. Pictured are Alex Grecian, Jeremy Haun, B. Clay Moore, and Seth Peck.





JMSJ. Michael Straczynski Panel – My devotion to JMS stories is no secret. We’ve done about 6 interviews together and I always pester him personally when I know a new book is on the way. Here’s the thing though, instead of ignoring me, he actually responds. Granted if it’s a book like EARTH 1 we need to vet things through proper PR channels, but when it comes to creator owned stuff like JOE’S COMICS, the man is a machine of deep and honest responses to even my most ridiculous of questions.

I abhor panels and I hate lines even more. Thankfully they put JMS in a big enough hall there was no line and secondly once the door shut, this was a conversation not some PT Barnum like spectacle like the GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY screening (and screaming happening next door).

As much as I’ve “hung” with Joe and read his work, I realize I am but balls deep in one of Joe’s many genres. When he finally opened up the floor for questions the Babylon 5 flood gates opened wide, along with a shit ton of movie questions. There was also some Dutch kid that kept trying to make him eat cookies. I would say I wish I were tripping if it I didn’t feel like I already was. Joe ended the, hell let’s call it what it is, the discussion, with some very uplifting words about following one’s dreams and handing out copies of the newest Joe’s Comics title, PROTECTORS INC #1.

With the panel over and an hour to kill before my Scott Snyder interview soon…

Back to Artists’ Alley I go!

glen brunswickGlen Brunswick – I love talking to creators who offer me a copy of a their book and my quote is already on the cover. To be fair though, I only read issue 1 of Brunswick’s NON HUMANS. We still had a good laugh though. I rectified my 1/5 review and gave the full TPB the review treatment last week. I love the concept of dolls coming to life spurred by humanity’s imagination so I was happy to see the tale come to a close. In addition to volume 2 of NON HUMANS coming out in April, Glen also recently wrote REALITY CHECK, the story of a creator’s super hero coming to life and not having a freaking clue what to do.

daniel coreyDaniel Corey – Author of MORIARTY from Image was selling the recently dropped trade. In Corey’s world, Moriarty wins at the falls and must find meaning without his greatest nemesis. For anyone who read the first two volumes and enjoyed them, help Daniel out by contributing to the volume 3 Kickstarter campaign.





peter davidPeter David – I simply love this man, he hits all the East coast cons and hasn’t seemed to age a day in the 7 years I’ve been pestering him for Ain’t It Cool (An even more remarkable feat at this con giving the recent stroke nonsense. Personally, I don’t buy it, he was Peter through and through) The coolest thing about Peter is that he talks all original properties at his table despite having written one of the best X-titles of all time, X-FACTOR. At this show Peter was all about SIR APROPOS OF NOTHING, the tale of an amoral knight thrust into destiny despite his best efforts to simply make a galleon. IDW has released the graphic novel version or you can read some of those non picture books to learn more about this less than chivalrous knight.

james tynionJames Tynion IV – It would almost be easier to list what isn’t Scott Snyder’s protégé doing right now for DC? Starting as a back-up writer for one of the best runs DETECTIVE Comics has ever seen, he has now moved into the big chair in RED HOOD & THE OUTLAWS and the recently announced BATMAN ETERNAL (for more on B.E. read my interview with Scott Snyder). In Artist Alley though, the guys like to talk pet projects; James’ is a web series called THE EIGHTH SEAL where politics is infested by things that go bump in the night.



Scott-Snyder-Rob-PateyIronically I now had to run across the building (make that hobble) for my 3:15 with Tynion’s Obi-Wan, Scott Snyder. I’m not retyping the full interview, just go here to read it.






I’ve been to enough cons now to know when the shift times flip. After my interview with Scott I knew I had an hour to kill before there would be new folks to talk to in Artist Alley. I hunkered down in the press room with my cohorts Ambush Bug and Matt Adler to plan the evening’s shenanigans.

Drunk, I’m now drunk. Fuck you, Ambush Bug. And fuck you Matt Adler for laughing at the lushes. My feet feeling fine at this point I stumble to artist alley in hopes of some last few coherent conversations. All of you have my deepest apologies from this point forward.

ed brissonEd Brisson – While best known for his new Image book called SHELTERED, a tale of the pre post apocalypse gone wrong, Brisson was also at the con showing off some of his pre-discovery titles like MURDER BOOK and COMEBACK.





brian clevengerBrian ClevingerATOMIC ROBO is the name of the book and it is already 8 volumes strong. I know a ton of people who are fans of this little indie that could which is an amalgam of every 80s adventure you could imagine all wrapped into…a robot, so this is shot is for you folks.





unmaskedUNMASKED – Mike Sarro and John Broglia. Another Kickstarter team done good. UNMASKED is about a young journalist going around unmasking new heroes who have no problem with killing. She does it all in hopes for a return to the true golden age of heroes. Get volume 1 now from Arch Enemy Entertainment before volume 2 launches.




joe harris Joe Harris – Last, but certainly not least Joe Harris showed off his Image series GREAT PACIFIC, his IDW X-FILES project and GHOST PROJECT from Oni Press. GHOST PROJECT was intriguing not only for the fact it is being courted for TV, but also it’s just a cool concept about weaponized supernatural beings built by the Soviet Union during the Cold War. Flash-forward to today and the cadre is unleashed on the world by a few bumbling thieves.

And with that the closing bell rang and I hobbled back to my hotel to recharge for an evening of parties and glad-handing. NY Comic Con 2013 I thank you for an experience I will never forget.

BATMAN & RED ROBIN 19 REVIEW – Game of Clones

batman-and-red-robin-19-carrie-kelleyBATMAN & RED ROBIN 19
Writer: Peter Tomasi
Artist: Patrick Gleason
Publisher: DC
Reviewer: Rob Patey (aka Optimous Douche – Ain’t It Cool News)

Tomasi is a tits writer, Gleason’s magic stick is his pencil; whatever I say from here forward is ABSOLUTELY no reflection on the creators of this book. That is of course unless it was their idea to give us “just the tip” of “jazz hands” Carrie Kelly. In case you’re reading this review for the advertised WTF moment, I’ll tell you right now:  Carrie’s not Robin, she’s not even close to becoming Robin. Harper Rowe was more in the running a few months ago. Sadly the real WTF moment was a nary a whisper on anyone’s list as Bruce looks to resurrect Damian sans a Lazarus Pit.

First, I feel the need to educate the young bucks and buckettes of comicdom. Carrie Kelly was a young High School student from the future. The future as Frank Miller saw it in 1986 when he looked 25 years ahead to create his masterpiece the DARK KNIGHT RETURNS. While I find his modern work to be shit incarnate, back then Miller was a forward looking genius and in hindsight a sage prophet. I can’t even begin to, so I won’t even try, to set the mood of DKR. If we just focus on Carrie though, she’s a girl who idolized the then retired Bats. She comes from a home of not abusive parents, but certainly anesthetized by pot, pills, and the electric allure of 24 hour television. They bitch about the state of the world and how to fix it, but never put plan into action. Remember gang, in 1986 no one knew what Gen X and Y would be like as parents 25 years later. I think Miller hit the nail on the fucking head, even though he missed the part about posting inactive action on message boards. Carrie, not content to just be a passive observer in life, dons a Robin costume (most likely purchased online) and helps to fix the problems her bleary eyed parents simply bitch about.

I was really excited to see this sage satire reflected once again on the pages of BATMAN & RED ROBIN given we are actually in the timeframe that DKR took place. After all, the rewrites would be minimal since Miller did all the heavy lifting. Nope…this Carrie Kelly is a musical theater major that Damian was taking acting classes with. I’ll let that sink in a minute…

These book-end moments would have been fantastic, because again Tomasi is tits in my opinion, if it was anyone but Carrie Kelly. These sections especially resonated with me because I am the 1% of straight men in America with an MFA in theater, and chooses to watch PBS broadcasts of Les Mis on Sundays as opposed to Footballs. Carrie is a saucy and fun young adult, she really is. She also has a caring heart for Damian, which leads her to Wayne manor to find out why this young talent stopped taking lessons…and to get payment of course.  She is a good character, just not THE Carrie Kelly.

As for the rest of the issue I have nary a bad word for it. BATMAN is becoming unhinged; his grief over the loss of Damian (and the rest of the family) is wearing his soul incredibly thin. In a desperate effort to right Talia’s wrongs, Bruce actually finds a way to abduct FRANKENSTEIN to learn what made the monster come back to life. FRANKENSTEIN and his S.H.A.D.E. team are DC’s answer to the HELLBOY crew and sits as one of the most underrated titles of the New 52. Every issue has been amazing in weirdness and a touching exploration that the human soul does in fact exists within monsters. Sorry, back to BATMAN & RED ROBIN. So once Bruce deciphers where Frankenstein’s lab is located he flies a bound Frank to his Daddy’s lab and starts the dissecting.

RED ROBIN comes into the fray because of a desperate plea from Alfred. Great continuity here as Tim laments any contact with Bruce based on the events of “Death of the Family” and even better follow-through once the two finally come face-to-face-to-Frank’s dismembered head.

I loved this issue, I really did. I’m OK with an unhinged Bruce. It shows a level of humanity I wish we saw more of twenty-five years ago when Jason bit the big one. Gleason does amazing work playing the lighter fare of Carrie’s adventure, juxtaposed against the dark moments as Bruce tries to find the spark of immortality. I just have a lot of wishes after reading this. I wish this was old Carrie, not a New 52 Carrie. I wish I had seen moments with Damian taking acting lessons instead of it being a Ret-Con allude. I guess I wish I was in an editorial position at DC, which will never happen. So, if we take solely what is, this was a damn fine issue, just not the issue I would have written.

BATMAN & ROBIN ANNUAL 1 REVIEW – Rise of The Cute Crusader

batman and robin annual 1 coverBATMAN & ROBIN ANNUAL 1

Writer: Peter Tomasi
Artist: Ardian Syaf
Publisher: DC
Reviewer: Rob Patey (aka Optimous Douche – Ain’t It Cool News)

Here’s a novel idea, “Let’s make comics fun again.” Don’t get me wrong, I love the facial puppetry and emotional turmoil embedded in Death of the Family. My Gen X cynical sensibilities are also all about the deconstruction of the superhero mythos. I like my comics dark, but even I sometimes require a brief respite from doom and gloom to renew my faith that the world is not just an exercise towards entropy and that life is something to revel in, not just get through.

BATMAN & ROBIN ANNUAL 1 has no dissent amongst the bat-clan, there are no heady moments of distrust towards Bruce, nor silver platters dripping with blood. Whether this is canon or not, (and I do have questions in light of Death of the Family), I don’t really care. Because when a comic takes my favorite Robin and infuses it with a little John Hughes Home Alone action, the result is soul-lifting comic gold.

Damian Wayne won me over day one. His petulance, emotional baggage and haughty attitude made him a damaged youth you couldn’t help but love. When he came on the scene, Daddy was finding his way back home from his seeming one way ticket to nowhere at the end of FINAL CRISIS. Damian became Dick’s problem, and for a year or so Damian tested Dick’s patience and decisions at every turn. Any character becomes dull without growth, Snyder did a bang up job in DETECTIVE by making the wall of aggression between the two Robin’s slowly erode and form some semblance of respect and dare I say love. The dynamic between the two was so delicious; I’m on record in quite a few reviews requesting DC never bring Bruce back. Dick and Alfred couldn’t rear the young lad all the way though, Damian’s arrogance would only truly allow for Bruce to guide and instruct him. Especially since Bruce wasn’t a living being, merely a specter of myth and legend as told by Talia and…well…the world.

When Bruce did come back, I was worried that he would put the young lad’s head through plate glass after one well misplaced “tt” of annoyance.  Especially since the moments before the DC Reboot, Morrison had portrayed Batman at his darkest. It looked as though Father would shun his responsibilities in favor of a life in the literal and emotional shadows.  Damian would have no hope of ever going beyond his surly and homicidal ways.

The New 52 changed everything though, and one of the greatest changes was a Bruce Wayne ready to be Batman and a Father. Wisely, writers didn’t have Damian just jump in Bruce’s lap and snuggle. Their maturation process together has been long and slow as each learns their role in a new family dynamic. Bruce has worked diligently to wipe away the killing machine to make Damian a true purveyor of justice and an actual 10 year old boy — very akin to the life of Dick Grayson in the silver age; Robin by night, normal kid by day.

BATMAN & ROBIN ANNUAL 1 is the perfect culmination of this Father/Son evolution. Of course a kid that runs around fighting crime will never be “normal.” But between Bruce’s love and patience, additions of four legged bat-friends Titus the dog and Bat-Cow (oh sweet sweet Bat-Cow), and a fair amount of work on Alfred’s part, Damian has now become what I will Grandfatherly call a feisty little scamp. His ability to go from fierce to adorable in one mere panel makes him simply one of the most unique and endearing characters in comics. Especially to Fangeezers like me who stand on the precipice of procreation.

So anyway Home Alone. In a clever turn of selfish altruism, Damian concocts a scheme to get Alfred and Bruce out of the country – and it actually works. Once Bruce and Alfred are following clues across Europe with Damon green screening himself one step ahead of them updates, we finally  get to meet Bat-Boy, Bat-Brat…oh hell with it…Bat-Mite!

The new Cute Crusader starts to hits the street of Gotham in pursuit of a gas eating monster and his ultimate master. Honestly this isn’t what stuck with me. What I remember are the moments of Titus as acting Alfred confidant. Damian’s pint-sized frame harnessing the horsepower of the Bat-Mobile. The  sheer joy in seeing a young man unfettered from the constant lessons that come with any Father and Son…engaging in anything.

Bruce’s story also pulls at the heartstrings when we discover Damian’s mystery is a step-by-step journey chronicling the courtship of his Grandparents. Alfred’s no slouch here either as he abandons the chase in pursuit of a little thespian time with some ole’ mates  at The New Globe.

Morrison may have spawned this relationship, but Tomasi is the right writer for now. Morrison is a master for hooking fans with his trippy ideas, but eventually his weirdness overshadows his characters. Tomasi knows humanity, not trip above it. This isn’t a judgment on either man, just a fact.  Also, Syaf does an amazing job with this book, particularly Titus and European locales. Both were equally majestic. This story deserved nothing less.




Writers: Snyder, Tomasi, Simone
Artists: Capullo, Gleason, Benes
Publisher: DC
Reviewer: Rob Patey (aka Optimous Douche – Ain’t It Cool News)

A King, a bride, a prodigal son and a silver domed serving platter seeping with blood: This isn’t a Don Mclean song; it’s the latest happenings in the Joker’s reign of terror against the Bat-Clan. “Death of the Family” is the panacea of how events should be run, with the sum being greater than the whole of the parts while not forcing readers into imbibing every mother-loving book to understand what the hell is going on. Synergy has also been the mantra of this series. Each book has kept chronology straight and truly built off the last and this week’s books are the absolute proof in the proverbial pudding.

Now, since I’m a completest I’m reading every tale, even the ever so tangential DETECTIVE, but this is my compulsion at work, not a mandate from DC. Every character has their beef with the Joker, and with only a few weeks left we now stand at the precipice of his grand plan’s fruition.

Before we pontificate, let’s SEE what these penultimate series of books have to tell.

batman 16 coverBATMAN 16

Snyder delivers the most esoteric of this week’s offerings, with the motivations of the Joker still only being understood by him and him alone. He’s blathered abo;ut breaking up the family for issues now, so Bats could reach his full potential, but the means to accomplish this end seem haphazard at best. However, when dealing with a psycopath it’s probably best not to understand.  When last we saw Bats he was on his upward climb into the mouth of madness that is Arkham Asylum. Now Bats is cowl-deep in the crazies following a maze of gore that lead to his throne. Yes, the King has returned and his court consists of Penguin, Two-Face, Riddler and of course the Jester himself. Why Joker is anointing Batman remains unknown, the joy in this issue remains firmly steeped in Joker’s twisted sense of humor. Endomorphic inmates dressed as the JUSTICE LEAGUE, flaming horse torpedoes, and a double cross on his accomplices are what keep the pages turning. The issue ends as all will this week, Joker gently lifting the lid on a silver domed serving platter.

Batman_and_Robin_Vol_2-16_CoverBATMAN & ROBIN 16

Gleason still wins the award for creepiest representation of the Joker’s rotting Halloween mask. It’s attached, but not really. It’s intact, but not really. It’s creepier than Poltergeist’s Carol Ann in a movie with the two chicks from The Shining, really. While I’m still partial to Joker’s macabre puppetry with his flesh mask in last issue, Gleason does a great job of still making this the face of fear. Likewise Tomasi hits ever psychological chord expertly to make Damian believe he is in a mano-a-kido against dear old Dad in a fight to the death. Obviously it’s not, but Damian’s belief rips off his emotional scabs to reveal an epiphany that not all “bad” guys should be killed. As with BATMAN, the last page is the Joker serving Robin…something under a silver domed serving platter.

batgirl 16 coverBATGIRL 16

Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to celebrate an unraveling of the mind. No, not Joker’s, that ball of yarn has already been undone. Barbara’s sanity is what’s at stake in issue 16 as she becomes the wedded wife of Mr. J. Why is the Joker suddenly interested in betrothing BATGIRL, well, we’re still not sure. Again, it has to do with tearing the Bat-Clan asunder, but it’s still inconceivable “how” Joker’s scheme will all come together. Benes balances beauty with horror in this issue, giving us one of the best rendered Barbara’s we’ve seen. I’ll also say there are a ton of other artists on this book, but not once was the shift jarring or out of place. Each artist hand-off was so perfectly timed with the movement of the plot chapters; I honestly thought the changes were merely Benes making stylistic shifts for mood. This issue also answers the age old question about how long Barbara was Oracle (or merely wheelie-bound) in the New 52. The answer, about a year. Simone delivers her final piece of goodness in redeeming James Gordon Jr. (sort of). Since Snyder took Jimmy J on in DETECTIVE, he has become one of my favorite new Bat villains. And clearly one of the Joker’s favorites as well. This issue, as with all others this week, ends with the Joker revealing something to Barbara under a silver domed serving platter.

What’s Next?

All right, now let’s speculate. The serving platter at the end of each issue this week is a pretty good indicator that Alfred is what’s for dinner. I find this to be too easy and convenient. I still don’t believe we are to take the “death” in “Death of the Family” literally. It’s too easy, and Snyder has already alluded to the fact Joker wants BATMAN separated from the family, but not necessarily shuffling off any of their mortal coils to achieve this end. Also, to kill Alfred would do anything BUT tear the family apart. Let’s be honest, they would band together to pound the Joker into white jelly if he touched one combed over hair on Alfred’s head.

Basically, we still don’t know Jack…or Joker.


Green Lantern Corps 30GREEN LANTERN CORPS #30
Writer : Peter J. Tomasi
Artist: Patrick Gleason
Publisher: DC Comics
Reviewer: Rob Patey (aka  Optimous Douche Ain’t It Cool News)

“This week on Yellow Lantern’s Cribs, we tear into the back fat of homicidal homonym Kryb. She’s got a whole sack of nipples and can interspecies lactate, that’s why all the Green Lantern babies are getting up inside this Kryb!” Ever since Kryb was introduced during the Sinestro Corps War, she has been a nightmarish favorite of mine in the same way I revere and at the same time fear Carol Anne’s clown from the movie “Poltergeist.”
Tomasi wasted no time imbedding readers in dark undertones right from outset by opening the issue with Kryb’s line of razor sharp teeth and nipple-backed baby cage. With each panel of the hunt for Kryb and the botched diplomatic mission to the Star Sapphire home world in this issue, the war drum of Blackest Night beats louder. I’m never one to promote or validate crossovers, especially when they simply serve to sell more books. In this case, though, I will say without hesitation, if you are not reading GREEN LANTERN CORPS you are not only missing out on an amazing reading experience, but also critical story elements to the entire Blackest Night war of light.

In my opinion, the Guardians of the Galaxy have always been more concerned about controlling the universe than serving as malevolent protectors. This belief has been flirted with in past issues of GREEN LANTERN, but always pulled back at the last minute with a very special “awwww aren’t they cute and blue” moment to show that their deeds are truly altruistic. Well, no more. As the Guardians seek allies to thwart the onslaught of the Red and Yellow ring wielders they seek out their sisters in Guardianship, the pink ring wearers of love, the Zamorans. There were so many golden moments to this diplomatic mission gone awry I don’t want to ruin the surprise. Suffice to say, Guy Gardner acts perfectly in character when confronted with a planet of interstellar babes and Ion serves not only as muscle should the shit hit the fan, but also to drive home the point that the universe needs love to survive as much as unrelenting willpower.

If any two titles deserve to be called a crossover it would GREEN LANTERN and GREEN LANTERN CORPS right now and why they aren’t being officially dubbed as such boggles my mind. This tightness of storytelling is what I’m still waiting to see in amidst the FINAL CRISIS hullabaloo. I won’t pretend to know how stories are developed are cross pollinated across titles, but the harmony and synchronization between GREEN LANTERN and GREEN LANTERN CORPS is making me believe that Johns and Tomasi are sharing a work space and interchangeable creative centers of the brain.

In short (I know, too late), if you enjoy GREEN LANTERN and want to experience the full impact of Blackest Night – buy…this…book!

BATMAN & ROBIN #0 – The Cutest Lil’ Psychopath on Earth

batman and robin 0 reviewBATMAN & ROBIN # 0
Writer: Pete Tomasi
Artist: Pat Gleason
Reviewer: Rob Patey (aka Optimous Douche – Ain’t It Cool News)

When a character is birthed from a matrix, then seconds later forced to swim in a Lazarus Pool filled with his wet nurse’s spilled blood for insolence, that’s a special young man who I want to know more about.

Fortunately I already do, Damian Wayne was a much-needed breath of fresh air to the BATMAN mythos. Tim Drake was ready to move on. Another “ward” would be trite at this point. A true son of Wayne was ready to come forward and making his Mother the world’s greatest assassin who lives on a completely 180 degree ideological wavelength from Bats has created the most dysfunctional and engrossing nuclear family in entertainment.

But to truly understand Damian, I needed to see more of Miss Talia’s relationship to her son outside of her recent assassination attempts in BATMAN INC. We could all guess at the expected moments, brought forth in action packed glory as Talia and Damian battle year-after-year from his toddlerhood till tweens.

The date of the battle that matters though is always on Damian’s birthday. The prize for winning? Talia finally spills the beans on who Damian can call for a transplant donor if a ninja zealot punctures his kidney.

Not only where these training days interesting and actually…endearing and informative…Tomasi also remembered the fundamental rule of Damian – never EVER forget he’ still a kid. From my favorite shot of the year (Bat Cow) to this issue where Damian finds his Father’s cowl in Mom’s hope chest and plays dress up, his sweetness is never that of a normal child’s. There’s a certainty to his actions that come with an affluent background and even with big doe preschooler eyes, that arrogance and certainty of rightness should be forever omnipresent.

And it was, right up until the last page when Damian meets the kidnapped Bats and makes a height joke while Dad is being held to the ground by henchmen.

BATMAN & ROBIN #0 is one of those truly necessary prequels and promises great things for issue 13 next month.

GREEN LANTERN CORPS #0 – Gaggle of Guy Gardner Goodness

Green Lantern Corps 0 ReviewGreen Lantern # 0
Writer: Peter Tomasi
Artist: Fernando Pasarin
Publisher: DC
Reviewer: Rob Patey (aka Optimous Douche – Ain’t It Cool News)

Tomasi and Pasarin created a wonderful book as we learn about the early days of the great Guy Gardner. It’s really good, Tomasi hits all of the heart strings about Guy being the black sheep of his multi-generational police household in Baltimore. Everything was right…well…except a couple things.

None of my gripes about GREEN LANTERN CORPS have a thing to do with creators of this book – these boys deserve blowjobs and ice cream for this issue and the entire past year. They have deepened the insanity of the Guardians, while keeping the hearth fires burning at home with deep introspections into both Guy Gardner and John Stewart. The recent arc, where once again John is placed in an impossible situation and forced to kill was some of the best GREEN LANTERN writing to date. Given Liefeld’s rant about editorial, I’ll admit there are a few messes in the DC verse. GREEN LANTERN and all it’s titles have run with precession of a Swiss Watch, which is a direct reflection of an editor running the entire property like a show runner would in Hollywood.

My problem is once again (wahh wahh – Optimous Bitch Fest) this five years before nonsense that the New 52 keeps harkening back to. It’s like looking at a piece of Swiss cheese, from far away the holes in some brands become indiscernible, but if you put the fucking thing up to my face, the holes become gaping and one can see right through.

GREEN LANTERN was one of the titles for us old foggies. It remained seemingly unscathed by FLASHPOINT, always just sort of being. True fans, truly didn’t care. When you place a story exactly five years ago though, while just following up from an arc built upon 20+ years of friendship, the math starts to become fuzzier than my Grandma’s vision without pot.

Perhaps my problem lies in the fact so much of the story took place five years before. Tomasi was forced by page count to make Guy’s transition from shamed cop to GREEN LANTERN happen faster than getting propositioned by a hooker in Vegas (Seriously, you walk off the plane and they’re on you). It was a great scene as guy is rushing his wounded Brother and his slain partner to the hospital after a shootout with gang lords; so great in fact I wanted another three pages of it.

Again, this book is simply one wonderful moment after another, I simply want mooooooorrrrrreeeeee.