Best Comics of February: Classic Doctor Who Returns and So Does... Vibe? Really?
Once a month the amazing staff at 8th Dimension Comics selects a pile of the best new releases for us to peruse and judge.
Star Wars: In the Shadow of Yavin #2:While we all wait impatiently for Episode VII to become reality, do take a few moments to check out Shadow of Yavin. The book takes place immediately after the destruction of the first Death Star, with Princess Leia turning to black ops and espionage in order to ferret out an imperial spy in the Alliance. Brian Wood's script is fantastic, and feels like it was birthed from the original series itself.
He introduces Colonel Bircher as a main antagonist, who takes over Darth Vader's star destroyer command in the wake of his failure at Yavin. In one brief scene he manages to fill every page with swagger and cool, combining the best of Grand Moff Tarkin and Hans Landa of Inglourious Basterds. The real treasure, though is the art of Carlos D'Anda. His wookiee could use some work, but Princess Leia has never been so wonderfully drawn.
Rating: 8 of 10
The Adventures of Augusta Wind #3: This month's children selection is probably stretching that definition. J.M. Dematteis is channeling a bit too much of the darker moments of Sandman to be called kid friendly, and Vassilis Gogtzilas' art is too mad to be considered truly pretty. The book follows a young girl who discovers she's secretly from a fairytale world with the ability to fly on an umbrella. She faces strange demons, which may or may not just be hallucinations, as she tries to save her storybook family. It's a fairly standard book that doesn't offer much more than you could get out of re-reading Rushdie's Haroun and the Sea of Stories, but if you want a good, non-princess romp that's not afraid to frighten you'll love Augusta.
Rating: 6 of 10
Green Arrow #17: Despite a few mistakes here and there it's pretty safe to say that DC's reboot almost two years ago was a grand move that has done a world of good for its characters. Green Arrow was one of those few mistakes. #17 has Jeff Lemire stepping in to reinvent the Oliver Queen once again, this time as a broken man with a destroyed life being targeted by a shadowy cabal. Lemire takes the cocky arrow and leaves him almost dead and framed for murder. It humanizes Queen, as Batman's loss of his family humanizes The Dark Knight, and makes for some fascinating storytelling.
Rating: 7 of 10
Hawkeye #8: As long as we're talking archers, let's look in on Marvel's Hawkeye. Just a quick note, David Aja is drawing the best covers in comics right now. They're truly a work of art. I'm not entirely sure the same can be said for Matt Fraction and his storyline. Clint Barton has become something of a constant fuck-up in his own book, always on the horns of some wacky dilemma that he only gets out of through sheer badassness and the tired intervention of other Avengers to bail him out of jail. It's fun in a Dukes of Hazard sort of way, but at times it's more like Judd Apatow and Quinton Tarantino teamed up on a movie.
Rating: 5 of 10