Saturday, December 24, 2011

Three Worst Comics of the Year

I'm sure there's worse stuff out there, if some of the solicitations in Previews are any indication, but here are three comics that I suffered through in 2011...

1. X-Men: Regenesis #1 by Kieron Gillen & Billy Tan - This one-shot that kicks off the relaunch of the X-Men line in wake of X-Men: Schism, is a complete waste of time.  It pretty much shows which X-Men are siding with which new team, as Logan and Scott approach various members of the X-Men to recruit them. As each member decides on which side they are on, the artist flashes to this weird scene where Cyclops and Wolverine are battling each other in loincloths and animal skins, and each X-Man is depicted in this garb. It's...weird. The conversations that the X-Men have that lead them to their decisions are pretty shallow too, not insightful or interesting, but just...seemed like they were talking to fill the pages.

2. Animal Land (Volume 1) by Makoto Raiku - This manga, about a human baby raised in a world full of animals, had a lot of problems.  Monoko, the tanuki who raises the human baby, is perhaps the most irritating character I've ever come across, boasting a deep desperation to love the human baby and care for it and be its "mommy." She cries whenever anything goes awry, and is so suffocating and selfish in her need to "love" this child that she comes across as utterly pathetic.  And then the creator also shamelessly uses the baby to try to bring emotion to a book that, while characters show a lot of emotion, is pretty emotionless. Just because a character cries, the audience is expected to feel upset, despite no feeling or genuine emotion behind the gesture, and this happens often. Plot points are solved very conveniently as well. The baby is sad that he doesn't have a name, and the paper that Monoko hid from him says his name on it (and that's all). The end. It's almost insulting how little thought seemed to go into the writing here. I can't imagine anyone caring about the characters in this book, let alone remembering it the moment they set it down.

3. Catwoman #1 by Judd Winick & Guillem March - With DC relaunching their entire DC Universe line, there were bound to be a few duds, and this one takes the cake for the worst of the bunch.  It's a very straight-forward book, with nothing of interest to set it apart from other superhero books, and the protagonist is fetishised in a distasteful way, with a completely ridiculous, tacky final page that's, frankly, an embarrassing moment for comics.  The dialogue is clunky, the art is eh, and Selina Kyle is just not fun to read about here.

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